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Endgame50
My group is composed of a hacker/rigger, a gunbunny adept, a troll adept, a hacker/gunbunny, and a face/mage.

The problem we have is neither of our adepts has astral perception and our mage thinks dodge is an astral combat skill. He has, as far as I know, no attack methods at all. I know magicians are rare and will only actually guard the best secured areas, but that doesn't stop places from buying spirits to guard their areas. We can take care of a manifested spirit, but if they have a watcher that goes off to tip off the security, all our sneakiness will do us no good.

Short of lacing our adept's food with deepweed, I'm at a loss when it comes to dealing with them on their home turf. Does anyone have any suggestions?
Backgammon
Detect Magic spell will let you know when there's a spirit around. The mage can also throw mana-based spells at the spirit by switching to astral perception.
Endgame50
Good ideas...

except our mage is pretty useless as far as combat goes. No combat spells, no astral combat.
Jaid
conjure bigger spirits. the kind that have concealment as a power.

if your mage doesn't have any conjuring skills, then i recommend you tell him he's an idiot.

alternatively, you could try getting him a weapon focus... assuming he has some kind of melee skill. which, based on what you've said so far, i'm beginning to doubt.
Lagomorph
I'm gonna have to go with Jaid on this, get spirits for concealment, or to combat the other spirits.

Though deepweeding your adept would be pretty ingenious way around it.
FrankTrollman
Mid-size spirits are actually pretty non-resistant to firearms. And while that won't keep spirits who camp the astral plane from triggering alarms, killing a spirit won't solve that problem either (dropping a spirit notifies the conjurer, who can pull the alarm his own self).

A force 4 spirit has 8 points of armor and a body of 4, so basically it's just a goon with an armored jacket - nothing special really. It's only with the larger spirits that mundanes are in trouble. But of course binding a Force 5+ spirit is a life-ending proposition for even Great Dragons, so you're unlikely to see many running around as security.

My suggestion: Wait for spirits to materialize, then have your gun-bunny blow their faces off.

Edit: You don't need Detect Magic to know spirits are around. The threshold of the perception test to notice a spirit fooling around on the astral is only 6 - Force. Any spirit which even counts as "slightly difficult" for the gun-bunny to disrupt is by definition going to stick out like a sore thumb to your physical senses.

-Frank
TinkerGnome
QUOTE (FrankTrollman)
Edit: You don't need Detect Magic to know spirits are around. The threshold of the perception test to notice a spirit fooling around on the astral is only 6 - Force.

Oh, what page is this on? Handy to know.
Endgame50
QUOTE (FrankTrollman @ Feb 14 2006, 10:32 PM)

A force 4 spirit has 8 points of armor and a body of 4, so basically it's just a goon with an armored jacket - nothing special really. It's only with the larger spirits that mundanes are in trouble. But of course binding a Force 5+ spirit is a life-ending proposition for even Great Dragons, so you're unlikely to see many running around as security.

And with a taser, it's only 4 points of hardened armor. Stick and shock ammo can damage even a force 6 spirit if it hits (since you need 1 net success to hit). Not necessarily well, but it's a darn sight better than standing there doing nothing.

I didn't consider the facet of the summoner realizing when his spirit gets blown away. I suppose if there was a mage hired to leave a spirit there, he may or may not report if one of his spirits got gacked (his job is only to summon and bind it there--whether he'll waste his precious time later on depends on his contract and how much he's paid, I'm sure). But it's probably best to consider that there's always the chance he will notify someone, or there could be an on site mage. Ah well. I suppose even spirits can't be everywhere at once.
fistandantilus4.0
QUOTE (FrankTrollman)
But of course binding a Force 5+ spirit is a life-ending proposition for even Great Dragons, so you're unlikely to see many running around as security.

Why do you say that? Drain should be simple enough to handle. Most boes the spirit can give out for binding is ten. With a Will and logic of 5, that gives am average of appx 3 successes, which is only 7 boxes of damage, and most likely stun at that. And Force 5 can't stand up to that much magic. Even a Force 10 spirit goes down pretty fast from a manabolt (although it'll probably go first).
Ranneko
The most boxes a force 5 spirit can give out for binding is 20.
emo samurai
QUOTE
But of course binding a Force 5+ spirit is a life-ending proposition for even Great Dragons, so you're unlikely to see many running around as security.


They roll 10 dice against about 30; there's no contest, even if they both use Edge.
fistandantilus4.0
QUOTE (Ranneko @ Feb 15 2006, 02:16 AM)
The most boxes a force 5 spirit can give out for binding is 20.

Isn't it double their force that they roll against binding? or are you including Edge? Even so, that would be 15 dice. If you reroll failures, you couldn't have 20 sucesses, as it's only the failures that are rerolled. The exploding dice can give you more, but as I understood it, although it's debated, the spirit doesn't get Edge to resist binding. What am I missing?
Endgame50
As an aside, a spirit bound for remote service (for example, to guard / warn guards of intruders) at a site doesn't count as bound any more, so the conjurer wouldn't know if it was disrupted... but alas, no one in their right mind would bind a watcher, even if you could.
Cain
QUOTE (Endgame50)
As an aside, a spirit bound for remote service (for example, to guard / warn guards of intruders) at a site doesn't count as bound any more, so the conjurer wouldn't know if it was disrupted... but alas, no one in their right mind would bind a watcher, even if you could.

I'm afraid that's no longer the case. According to pg 178, bound spirits (as opposed to conjured ones) aren't released when assigned to Remote Service or sent out on loan. So, if a mage tells them to guard a site for the next twenty years, they have to do so, and count as bound for the whole time.
Endgame50
QUOTE (Cain)

I'm afraid that's no longer the case. According to pg 178, bound spirits (as opposed to conjured ones) aren't released when assigned to Remote Service or sent out on loan. So, if a mage tells them to guard a site for the next twenty years, they have to do so, and count as bound for the whole time.

Ah, I see. Nasty stuff.
Azralon
QUOTE (Endgame50 @ Feb 14 2006, 08:17 PM)
Good ideas...

except our mage is pretty useless as far as combat goes. No combat spells, no astral combat.

It costs 5 karma and a few hundred nuyen to buy a combat spell. What is he, a Pussy shaman?

... Er, Cat. I meant Cat.
Endgame50
QUOTE (Azralon)
QUOTE (Endgame50 @ Feb 14 2006, 08:17 PM)
Good ideas...

except our mage is pretty useless as far as combat goes. No combat spells, no astral combat.

It costs 5 karma and a few hundred nuyen to buy a combat spell. What is he, a Pussy shaman?

... Er, Cat. I meant Cat.

Well, he's playing a frenchman with combat paralysis and ineptitude in several things combat related. He's decided to run with the stereotype, it seems.
FrankTrollman
QUOTE (fistandantilus3.0)
QUOTE (Ranneko @ Feb 15 2006, 02:16 AM)
The most boxes a force 5 spirit can give out for binding is 20.

Isn't it double their force that they roll against binding? or are you including Edge? Even so, that would be 15 dice. If you reroll failures, you couldn't have 20 sucesses, as it's only the failures that are rerolled. The exploding dice can give you more, but as I understood it, although it's debated, the spirit doesn't get Edge to resist binding. What am I missing?

They double their force to resist binding, and the Drain is 2 per hit on the binding resistance test. So before they add in Edge (which could of course provide unlimited Drain), a spirit can potentially generate four times its Force in Drain when being bound.

So the chances of dropping Lofwyr with failed binding are very small, they are nonetheless there, and he presumably has lived thousands of years by not taking chances like that.

-Frank
TinkerGnome
Your team's mage sounds useless. Geek him and get another.

I mean, seriously. If a mage does nothing else, they should be able to banish spirits and counterspell other mages. Magic is powerful, which is why you level the playing field with magic on your team.
Moon-Hawk
What an interesting RPing choice for a mage.
Now RP him actually growing a pair, put some skill into banishing and counterspelling, and buy off combat paralysis. (not necessarily in that order)
This character can be non-combat oriented, pacifistic even, without being useless defensively. There are many ways to contribute to combat without being the attacker.
I'm all for people who want to RP something different and challenging, but do your fellow players a favor and give them an in-game reason to keep your character around, without resorting to metagaming: "Uh, we hang out with him and trust our lives to him, and give him an equal share of our income because it's Jim's character" If this mage is this useless in combat, he's better be un-freakin'-believable in some other area to be worth keeping around.

note: The Jim in this example is purely fictitious. Any resemblance to any Jim's, living or dead, was purely coincidental.
runefire32
QUOTE (Endgame50)
Well, he's playing a frenchman with combat paralysis and ineptitude in several things combat related. He's decided to run with the stereotype, it seems.

out of idle curiosity did he grab 'Surendering' as a specialization for Etiquette? 'Surrender' for a specialization for Negotiation? 'away from the germans' as a specialization for Running?

Sorry couldn't resist asking...
Aku
QUOTE (runefire32)
QUOTE (Endgame50 @ Feb 15 2006, 10:17 AM)
Well, he's playing a frenchman with combat paralysis and ineptitude in several things combat related. He's decided to run with the stereotype, it seems.

out of idle curiosity did he grab 'Surendering' as a specialization for Etiquette? 'Surrender' for a specialization for Negotiation? 'away from the germans' as a specialization for Running?

Sorry couldn't resist asking...

rotfl.gif

i wonder if that would be as funny w/o the codine...
Endgame50
QUOTE (Moon-Hawk)
What an interesting RPing choice for a mage.
Now RP him actually growing a pair, put some skill into banishing and counterspelling, and buy off combat paralysis. (not necessarily in that order)
This character can be non-combat oriented, pacifistic even, without being useless defensively. There are many ways to contribute to combat without being the attacker.
I'm all for people who want to RP something different and challenging, but do your fellow players a favor and give them an in-game reason to keep your character around, without resorting to metagaming: "Uh, we hang out with him and trust our lives to him, and give him an equal share of our income because it's Jim's character" If this mage is this useless in combat, he's better be un-freakin'-believable in some other area to be worth keeping around.

note: The Jim in this example is purely fictitious. Any resemblance to any Jim's, living or dead, was purely coincidental.

I don't think the player of our mage reads DSF. I'm the gun toting hacker of the group. But yeah, "Jim syndrome" is not uncommon in my gaming group.
Moon-Hawk
I had a player once that consistently made characters that the rest of the group had to bend over backwards trying to justify keeping around.
My solution was to request that their next character's background be in the form of a Shadowrunner's resume.
It actually worked. eek.gif
Endgame50
Well, the good news is we got him to take stunbolt. The bad news is he ditched us as soon as things got hairy in the astral, so now we have a swarm of spirits heading towards us and our astral overwatch just abandoned us. That frenchman is so dead if my PC lives through this.
Aku
QUOTE (Endgame50)
Well, the good news is we got him to take stunbolt. The bad news is he ditched us as soon as things got hairy in the astral, so now we have a swarm of spirits heading towards us and our astral overwatch just abandoned us. That frenchman is so dead if my PC lives through this.

Well, atleast he's roleplaying well to the (american) sterotype of a frenchman well.
chevalier_neon
I am not sure that it is only an "american" stereotype... funny, I would like to know where it is coming from...
Aku
well, i can say (as an american, which is why i put that, i'm not sure what the rest of the world feels, i havent had time to interview all 6 billion, yet) but the perception is that they've never won a war on their own, and have only been tangently involved in wars they've helped with.
chevalier_neon
Ok... thanks for the answer. It helps to understand a little bit more...
Aku
not a problem, if you want more i can try and think of it, just send me a pm
BlackHat
QUOTE (Endgame50)
Well, the good news is we got him to take stunbolt. The bad news is he ditched us as soon as things got hairy in the astral, so now we have a swarm of spirits heading towards us and our astral overwatch just abandoned us. That frenchman is so dead if my PC lives through this.

Not a "swarm", per se, but more than 4. smile.gif The only person who saw them, and knows the exact number, is said Frenchy, who , although he returned to his meatbody almost immediatly after retreating - didn't bother to radio you guys a warning.
Endgame50
QUOTE (BlackHat)
QUOTE (Endgame50 @ Feb 16 2006, 01:33 AM)
Well, the good news is we got him to take stunbolt. The bad news is he ditched us as soon as things got hairy in the astral, so now we have a swarm of spirits heading towards us and our astral overwatch just abandoned us. That frenchman is so dead if my PC lives through this.

Not a "swarm", per se, but more than 4. smile.gif The only person who saw them, and knows the exact number, is said Frenchy, who , although he returned to his meatbody almost immediatly after retreating - didn't bother to radio you guys a warning.

Yeah, well, I think when spirits show up with not a word from frenchy, it will be rather obvious he bailed on us, especially since he took every opportunity to try to weasel out of doing anything useful.
TinkerGnome
I'll repeat my earlier urging to geek him and get a new mage wink.gif

Geek enough of them and he'll either quit or make something useful.
Apathy
QUOTE (Aku)
well, i can say (as an american, which is why i put that, i'm not sure what the rest of the world feels, i havent had time to interview all 6 billion, yet) but the perception is that they've never won a war on their own, and have only been tangently involved in wars they've helped with.

To be fair, they did kick a lot of ass during certain periods of the middle ages and early industrial age. But yeah, they've had a less-than-stellar record in the last couple hundred years. Hopefully they won't be saying similar things about us (Americans), after we've been around more than a few hundred years.
Backgammon
QUOTE (FrankTrollman)
Edit: You don't need Detect Magic to know spirits are around. The threshold of the perception test to notice a spirit fooling around on the astral is only 6 - Force. Any spirit which even counts as "slightly difficult" for the gun-bunny to disrupt is by definition going to stick out like a sore thumb to your physical senses.

-Frank

Wait, what? A mundane can notice an astral-only spirit? Page number for that rule?
Darkness
QUOTE (Backgammon @ Feb 16 2006, 06:01 PM)
QUOTE (FrankTrollman @ Feb 14 2006, 11:32 PM)
Edit: You don't need Detect Magic to know spirits are around. The threshold of the perception test to notice a spirit fooling around on the astral is only 6 - Force. Any spirit which even counts as "slightly difficult" for the gun-bunny to disrupt is by definition going to stick out like a sore thumb to your physical senses.

-Frank

Wait, what? A mundane can notice an astral-only spirit? Page number for that rule?

I know it was possible in earlier Editions.
And the only thing i was able to find about the remote possibility, that it is still so in 4th, was this one (emphasis mine):
QUOTE (SR4 @ p. 168, Noticing Magic)
Just how obvious are magical skills? Not very, since most spells and spirits have little, if any, visible effect in the physical world (unless the magician prefers to have flashy effects, or her tradition calls for it). [...]
Noticing if someone is using a magical skill requires a Perception Test (p. 117) with a threshold equal to 6 minus the magicís Forceómore powerful magic is easier to spot. The gamemaster should apply additional modifiers as appropriate, or if the perceiver is Awakened themselves (+2 dice), astrally perceiving (+2 dice), or if a shamanic mask is evident (+2 dice).

The second sentence indicates that the following explanaitions and rules may also be used for spirits.
But, it is the only place in the whole paragraph, where spirits are mentioned in this regard. The rest only talks about magicians practicing magic.
So, it may, or may not be possible to notice spirits on the astral by just normal mundane senses.
TinkerGnome
QUOTE (Darkness @ Feb 16 2006, 12:12 PM)
So, it may, or may not be possible to notice spirits on the astral by just normal mundane senses.

There is a rule for when an astral form passes through a physical form. That'd apply, I guess.

EDIT: Intuition + Perception (4) with +2 dice for being awakened.
Darkness
QUOTE (TinkerGnome)
QUOTE (Darkness @ Feb 16 2006, 12:12 PM)
So, it may, or may not be possible to notice spirits on the astral by just normal mundane senses.

There is a rule for when an astral form passes through a physical form. That'd apply, I guess.

EDIT: Intuition + Perception (4) with +2 dice for being awakened.

Ah yes, of course.
But that could be a feedback from the mundanes aura reacting to the astral form passing through. So it could be argued, if this was a mundane sense.

I referred to seeing with your eyes the astral form as it "shimmered" through to the physical plane.
TinkerGnome
QUOTE (Darkness)
I referred to seeing with your eyes the astral form as it "shimmered" through to the physical plane.

I don't think this happens. You'd get a chance to notice if the mage were summoning in front of you, but not after that.
Darkness
As i said, exactly that was possible in earlier editions wink.gif .
Azralon
I agree with TG. "Noticing if someone is using a magical skill requires a Perception Test," says that you get a chance to notice the use of the skill. It doesn't even say that you get to notice the effect; just the use.

Noticing an already-summoned spirit is going to be as likely as noticing that someone's got a spell running on them. That is to say, you get no Perception roll unless the GM decides to spend some of his special effects budget.
Darkness
I agree, in so far, that until now no rule explicitly states, that you can see an astral form on the mundane plane.
TinkerGnome
QUOTE (Darkness)
As i said, exactly that was possible in earlier editions wink.gif .

Do you mean the noticing the spirit from the physical plane or the aura interaction? Because all I remember from SR3 is the aura interaction.
Darkness
I had to look again, and indeed. SR3 only knew the detection through aura interaction. SR2, otoh, knew the other one (Target Number was 12-force for Nature Spirits and 10-force for Elementals, iirc).
We ported that rule to SR3, it seems. My Bad.
But then again, earlier editions, did know those detection method wink.gif nyahnyah.gif
Easier Said
QUOTE (BlackHat)
QUOTE (Endgame50 @ Feb 16 2006, 01:33 AM)
Well, the good news is we got him to take stunbolt. The bad news is he ditched us as soon as things got hairy in the astral, so now we have a swarm of spirits heading towards us and our astral overwatch just abandoned us. That frenchman is so dead if my PC lives through this.

Not a "swarm", per se, but more than 4. smile.gif The only person who saw them, and knows the exact number, is said Frenchy, who , although he returned to his meatbody almost immediatly after retreating - didn't bother to radio you guys a warning.

Hey, maybe the spirits acquire a new target when they hear someone a couple blocks away is capping a real-cop in the head w/ ExEx ammo.
Endgame50
I think they'll have enough time for all of us.
Endgame50
QUOTE (TinkerGnome)
I'll repeat my earlier urging to geek him and get a new mage wink.gif

Geek enough of them and he'll either quit or make something useful.

Ha. I'll keep that in mind, but I don't want to be a bully.

I think to begin with, spreading word of his antics in hopes of raising his Notoriety would be a good response. It would hit him where it hurts and it would be mostly due to his own actions...
Shrike30
My brother's solution (as the GM) a while back to a totally psychotic character was to have the Johnson inform the group (after seeing Evening News footage of this character using hand grenades in a packed hotel stairwell during a fire alarm, after they'd been sent in just to talk to a guy staying at the hotel) that the character was fired. He was happy to continue working with the rest of them, but that character was fired.

They kept him around anyway and just divvied up their pay differently (and went to extremes trying to hide this from the Johnson, which eventually broke down but was amusing in the meantime), but it's really amazing the lengths some players will go to in order to avoid issues with other players stemming from character interaction. They had to regularly keep this guy from turning any given scene into a killing field.
b1ffov3rfl0w
QUOTE (Aku)
well, i can say (as an american, which is why i put that, i'm not sure what the rest of the world feels, i havent had time to interview all 6 billion, yet) but the perception is that they've never won a war on their own, and have only been tangently involved in wars they've helped with.


Well, that's a kind of, um, ign'ant perception. Napoleon (who was a right bastard) nearly conquered Europe, but unfortunately for him (and especially for his army) decided to get involved in a land war in Asia. Or at least very Eastern Europe. During the winter. Bad idea, but getting to that point was part of some serious military power.

Going back a bit earlier, in which language does "Charlemagne" mean "Charles the Hammer"? Hint: not American.

No less a military giant than Caesar repeatedly praised the Gauls, who these days would be the French, Belgians and Swiss, among others. Heck, they *sacked* Rome in the 4th C.

The French were more than tangentially involved in the American Revolution, too. So if "the perception" is what you say, it's pretty pathetic.

And also I don't think it's a good thing for Americans to say the French are cowardly because they surrendered to Germany -- it was quite a while later that the US got involved in WWII.

(Sorry about the off-topic-ness)

Um ... so, maybe the Frenchman character can learn about the Resistance or the Holy Roman Empire or the Gauls (I think they had Druids, might be an interesting color on the magic), and decide to become a bit more useful. Being the only astral character on a team, he should be able to deal with spirits if they're going to encounter spirits. Combat Paralysis is fine; heck, he can be cowardly even, but if he's missing critical useful skills, he's a burden to the team
Endgame50
All I really have to say is the most useful thing he did for the group so far was seduce another man... and it wasn't really necessary.
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