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Aristotle
I've read so much this evening that I'm not sure if my mind is overcomplicating things or not.

QUOTE ("pg174")
While sustaining ... draining on the magician's magical abilities. For each sustained spell ... -2 dice penalty on all other tests


The clarification I need. Is that penalty applied to all tests (as it basically reads) or just all additional magic related tests (as it kind of implies)?

This'll probably be clearer after I get some sleep, but I'd like to get some input asap just in case it isn't. Thanks!
Thanee
All tests. It basically requires some concentration and thus distracts you from just about anything else.

Bye
Thanee
Jaid
i dunno if it should apply to damage resistance tests though. that seems a little fishy to me.
Darkness
QUOTE (Jaid @ Feb 27 2006, 03:58 PM)
i dunno if it should apply to damage resistance tests though. that seems a little fishy to me.

Damage resistance is always exempt from those, just like with wound modifiers. The -2 isn't applied to drain resistance either (p.174, Step 6: Resist Drain, the sentence before the last one).
mdynna
My group always had a house rule that no modifiers applies to DR tests. It was too easy for characters to die, not to mention we couldn't resolve it "conceptually" either.
Dashifen
Also notice that they don't count for drain resistance tests:

QUOTE ("p. 174")
Note that wound modifiers or sustained spells have no effect on the characterís dice pool for Drain Resistance Tests.


This is one that I missed in my initial reading. Of course, it makes drain resistance really hard (as my wife unfortunately found out).
Chiaroscuro23
A sustaining focus will sustain the spell for you, eliminating that penalty.

Which, I guess, makes such a focus a way to have the spell on permanently. So a focus which you use to sustain an Armor spell at force 4 would give you 4 stackable levels of B and I armor that you always carry around with you.

The big advantage to this is that you can handwave it offscreen. In a month of downtime you're able to cast the spell up to the force of the focus, and then just keep it that strong indefinitely, rather than having to recast every day. This lets you heal up the drain damage while keeping the spell, I guess.

Which makes sense if the spell is bound to the object, a "magic item" if you will, but is confusing if it still requires concentration, just not enough to cost dice. Then you'd need to recast after every period of sleep, presumably.

Though since foci are so expensive, I don't see a lot of trouble with letting a spell be permanent. You have to pay for the focus and the spell, so it's not like you didn't sink the BP into it.
Eyeless Blond
And it gets shut down whenever you walk through a ward you're not keyed to. Does Masking still allow you to take active spells through a ward?
hyzmarca
It isn't a good idea to permently sustain an armor spel. Your GLOW!!! will keep you awak at night. Not to mention being equivilant to a bright neon "Geek me First" sign.
Aristotle
All tests. got ya. Thanks for the clarification. I'm ripping through this book to get ready for my group's return to Shadowrun, but I tend to overcomplicate things or find vagueness even when things are spelled out. smile.gif
Johnnycache
The glow is kind of assumed. There's no reason a mage couldn't write a version of the spell that didn't glow.
BishopMcQ
Johnny--For that though we have to either wait for Street Magic to be our savior and bring us spell design rules, or port the old system.
Aaron
Has no one tried to reverse-engineer the grimoire spells?
Azralon
QUOTE (Johnnycache @ Feb 28 2006, 04:25 AM)
The glow is kind of assumed. There's no reason a mage couldn't write a version of the spell that didn't glow.

Negatory, not assumed. Explicit, even.

QUOTE (SR4 p.202)
This spell creates a glowing field of magical energy around the subject that protects against Physical damage.


And yeah, once the spell design rules come out you can bet there will be much numbercrunching and spell redesign. A lot of buffs will become personal range rather than touch, I wager.
calypso
Just a quick note: the -2 dice for sustaining also does not apply to tests made to maintain concentration when you're distracted/damaged.

QUOTE
If a magicianís concentration is disrupted while sustaining a spell, she must make a Willpower + Spellcasting (2) Test to avoid dropping the sustained spell (note that the sustaining modifier does not apply to this test).


Pg. 174. Second to last paragraph, last line.

Calypso
Xenith
Personally, I'd say there shouldn't be much of a bonus, if at all, from changing a touch spell to personal. Too easy to abuse with buffs. Blech.
FrankTrollman
QUOTE (Eyeless Blond)
And it gets shut down whenever you walk through a ward you're not keyed to. Does Masking still allow you to take active spells through a ward?

No. Masking has no such power. Further, it no longer even applies to magic items or spells no matter how high your grade is. Masking effects your aura and your aura alone. So masking yourself as Mundane while you have Active Foci is completely useless. Anyone with half a brain can figure out that you are masked.

-Frank
Azralon
QUOTE (Xenith @ Feb 28 2006, 03:38 PM)
Personally, I'd say there shouldn't be much of a bonus, if at all, from changing a touch spell to personal. Too easy to abuse with buffs. Blech.

In prior editions (which may or may not matter to SR4), it did have a bonus.

You had the following ranges for spells, if I recall: Personal, Touch, LOS, Area. Each one had a progressively beefier drain code modifier.

SR4 seems to carry that legacy forward with the new drain codes. Touch adds -2, LOS is +0, and Area is +2. Holding the pattern, that'd seem to imply that Personal is -4. Myself, I'd make Personal -3 so it wasn't such a huge jump.

There are a few reverse-engineering threads running around here (I remember participating in one a few months ago) somewhere. It's probably already been figured out.
fistandantilus4.0
the idea of having spells stuck in sustaining foci for days or weeks at a time is why we still use thost good ol' grounding rules from 2nd edition.

As far as visual effects of spells like armor, it says (somewhere) that the exact visual effects of spells can differ from caster to caster. I've always talked it over w/ my GM first, but we generally have no problem with the armor spell not being visible. There's canon references to that sort of thing anyways. Underworld SB , talking about the Chimera asassins geeking an ork that had a bullet barrier stop bullets before, but not actually be visible. Besides, I have a hard time seeing a shadowrunner doing anything taht would make them friggin' glow. shadowrunner, not day-glo runner. We call those targets.
Dissonance
Well, bullet barrier'd just provide ballistic armor, wouldn't it? Armor provides both. I imagine that armor provides the bonus, plus a visual effect. And, like, a version that didn't? Maybe add a +2 to the DV for a stealth version?
fistandantilus4.0
the barrier spells also have that tell-tale yellow-ish glow to them. But really the visuals is up to the mages style. For instance, a dragon shaman whos powerbolts look like little dartins (or big) dragons. Or the difference between a frieball racing to it's target, or just exploding at point of impact. Yeah, if you'd like, you could add some specific drain modifiers to spells, especially if they don't jive with the mages normal style. I think +2 is a bit much though. +1 should be enough for such a minor alteration.
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