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Lilt
Okay, I'm interested in starting to run a gangers campaign (possibly a one-off). it's possible to make incredibly un-ganger-like runners even with 400BP, however, and cutting the limit even further just means that people can specialise to un-ganger-like levels. For example, the ganger could still tot an assault rifle and a bit of top-of-the-line cyberware.

I'm contemplating the following rules:
  • 350BP
  • Skill caps reduced by 1
  • a max of 30BP may be spent on resources (150k nuyen.gif )
  • Max availability 6 on gear, alphaware has +2 availability, and the right to buy a runner-grade item (availability 12?) can be bought with a 5-pt quality.
  • High Magic and Ressonance cost more to buy. It costs 15 to buy it to 3, 20 to buy it to 4, 25 to buy point 5, and 30 to buy point 6.
  • Cyberlimbs are the only area where people are being cut breaks. -20% cost for obvious limbs and base stats for cyberlimbs are 4+Racial Mods
So... Do people think that will encourage ganger-like characters? Am I penalising any character type too harshly or not enough?
Samaels Ghost
You're penalizing Magic characters a little bit too much. Keep the whole "stat cap down 1" part and don't allow summoning (or oversummoning if you get PC's that really want it) and that should cover it, IMO.
Shadowmeet
QUOTE (Samaels Ghost @ Jun 30 2006, 05:29 PM)
You're penalizing Magic characters a little bit too much. Keep the whole "stat cap down 1" part and don't allow summoning (or oversummoning if you get PC's that really want it) and that should cover it, IMO.

I disagree, I think the limiting of Magic for a gang campaign is a great idea.
I do not see any logical reason to disallow summoning or oversummoning. However, lower magic, and then it's harder.

Personally, my favorite games are Ganger ones, where the Mage knows just enough to get himself in trouble, the gillette is just fast enough to get herself killed, and heavy doses of drugs can make you a superior fighting force...for a price.

Edit: I like the idea of dropping skill caps down. One skill at 5, or two at 4. Skill groups max at 3. I'd probably be more inclined to do 325 or maybe even 300 BP for fun. And Nuyen/Resources, I'd keep them down to some 10-15BP(Enough for wired 1, a bike, some guns...yeah)

Edit: And a hacker with a deck, and just a couple of programs makes it even more fun.
Lilt
The idea of the increased price for magic is to encourage low power levels by making it expencive to be good. Sammies need to spend extra BP to get good (high availability) gear by buying the quality. Mages need to spend extra BP to have a high enough magic attribute to compare to a runner.

I think that sammies would be too hard-done-by if magic cost as much as it normally did. They can't get good weapons or ammo, they can't get good cyber, and they can't spend as much money. A magician could otherwise easily have a magic of 5 and spellcasting skill of 5, making it just too easy. Making it cost 30BP more makes them actually think about having that magic of 5.

Hmm. What do people think of the idea of making the normal resource cap something really low, like 10bp for 50k, but saying that a quality can be bought to increase that? The idea obviously being that I want to encourage low-resources characters. Perhaps I could even have the increased spending cap rolled-in-to the quality to buy a runner-grade item?

Do people agree with my logic? Would anybody be willing to make a (or some) trial character(s) to see what works and what doesn't?
Cynic project
Or you could use the normal rules, that make characters that aren't uberly powerful..Wait you say they are better than normal gangers..So what? characters will have a smaller number of people than most gangs....
Squinky
I tried this.....Didn't work well for me, so I just told the characters to remake their characters the right way, heh.

Magic can really blow when it is low level, almost to the point of uslessness. Keep an eye on your gun characters, it is real easy for them to become un-street like smartlinks and specializations combined with that level they can get of muscle toner/improved ability.

I think the best idea if you want to be restrictive at the start, is to put a limit on begining dice pools. Why should the mage with a magic of 3 and skill of 4 only roll 7 dice when the sammy can roll 14? Pick a good limit and apply it to everyone.
FanGirl
Maybe you could have them spend a certain number of points on contacts. After all, what is a gang if not a social network?
Grogs
QUOTE (Lilt @ Jun 30 2006, 08:25 PM)
Do people agree with my logic? Would anybody be willing to make a (or some) trial character(s) to see what works and what doesn't?

OK, here's an Ork Street Tough I threw together real quick. I took the SR level gear quality twice, not sure if you meant to allow that or not, but it really wouldn't change much since one of the SR level items is a smartlink on the cybereyes, which could be had cheaper on a pair of goggles anyway.

350 BP
Race: Ork - 20 BP

ATTRIBUTES (200 BP):

BOD: 7
AGI: 4 (5)
REA: 5(6)
STR: 6(7)
CHA: 2
INT: 4
LOG: 2
WIL: 3

EDGE: 3 (20 BP)
INIT: 10
Physical: 12 boxes
Stun: 10 boxes

SKILLS (116 BP):

Automatics: 2
Blades (Swords): 4(+2)
Ettiquette (Street): 2(+2)
Intimidation: 2
Palming: 3
Perception: 2
Pilot Ground Craft (Wheeled): 2 (+2)
Pistols (Automatics): 4 (+2)
Running: 2
Unarmed: 4

QUALITIES (+25 BP):
SR Quality Gear x2: 10 BP
Uneducated: +20 BP
Addiction, Mild: Cram +5
Allergy, Common/Mild: Pollutants: +10 BP

CONTACTS (9 BP):
Fixer (2/2)
Street Doc (2/3)

GEAR: (10 BP, 50K nuyen.gif):

CYBER
Dermal Plating I
Muscle Replacement I
Wired Reflexes I
Cybereyes II
+Flare Comp
+Low Light
+Thermo
+Smartlink
Cyberears II
+ Audio Enhancement I
+ Damper
+ Sound Filter I

Bold = ShadowRunner Level Cyberware

Low Lifestyle x 2 months
Urban Explorer Jumpsuit
Leather Jacket
Ares Predator IV
Ingram Smartgun X
Regular Ammo
Sword
Knife
Med. Commlink & OS (all 3's)
Harley Davidson Scorpion


I think squinky's suggestion about dice pools may have some merit since this guy has 5+4+2+2 = 13 dice firing the Predator and I really wasn't even trying.
Lilt
Hmm. Although limits on dice pools are vaguely the desired end-result, I'm not that sure about making it the deciding factor of character creation. Also, trolls could find it hard to fit under some limits without having unrealistically low attributes or skills. I also believe that it should be possible to specialise, and be good at something, but at the expense of weaknesses or less rounded abilities.

If sammies with smartlinks are realistically dead-eye shots amongst groups with limited resources and low-end gear then I want that in the game. The game-world defines what's realistic, not how many dice someone can throw. I do, however, want to make magic playable allongside a sammie. Just allowing it as it is when sammies are limited to availability 6 gear, however, would mean magic=win more than it does normally.

I'm well aware that adepts can throw lots of dice at a situation no-matter-what, that's one of the reasons that I made magic attribute more expensive. Perhaps I could make adepts more expencive, but really I think the increased price of the magic atttribute can limit them. Adepts don't have an availability on their powers, meaning that they can start-off with uber stuff, but they're spending far more BP than the sammie can possibly hope to spend on it at the same time.

Is magic really weak at low levels? Assensing, astral projection, and a bunch of abilities are all bundled into those 15BP (okay, so you need to buy a skill rank to open-up assensing but it's still a powerful tool useable by a magic 1 character). Against gangers with pistols, force 3 spirits and spells are formiddable. Aside from having to spend the BPs on them, characters don't have lower limits on their drain attributes, so they can potentially over-cast fairly well.

@Cynic project: The idea is that the characters are mid-low-level gangers in a big gang, not a party forming a gang of their own.

@FanGirl: Interesting, but that's hardly different from just giving them fewer build points. Yes, they get something for it but it's not going to resolve the core issue of making it advantageous for them to make street-level characters.

@Grogs: Thanks for that sammie writeup. If you were a runner in my game, I'd suggest reconsidering the allergy to pollutants as a street-ganger, however. You can buy runner-grade gear multiple times, that's cool. That's still perhaps a level or so beyond what I was hoping for so I may well cut back on the BPs. Maybe 300? Seeing what can be doen with 50k, I think I'll cut the max spent on gear to 10BP. A separate quality can be bought to increase that total. Also, out of interest, did you buy your willpower above 1?
Grogs
QUOTE (Lilt)
@Grogs: Thanks for that sammie writeup. If you were a runner in my game, I'd suggest reconsidering the allergy to pollutants as a street-ganger, however.


Meh, it's something that will actually be a factor a lot, unlike some of the ones you see in the archetypes, like allergies to gold. When I play, I expect my flaws to be used against me, otherwise they're just free BP.

QUOTE (Lilt)
You can buy runner-grade gear multiple times, that's cool. That's still perhaps a level or so beyond what I was hoping for so I may well cut back on the BPs. Maybe 300? Seeing what can be doen with 50k, I think I'll cut the max spent on gear to 10BP. A separate quality can be bought to increase that total. Also, out of interest, did you buy your willpower above 1?


Yeah, I just forgot to write it down. Willpower is 3, edited on the char sheet. You may want to go through the cyberware and gear sheets and find the cutoff you want for 'shadowrunner' gear. A 12 lets you get Wired Reflexes 2 for for example, and that just doesn't feel very 'street' to me.

As for the dice pool, maybe a rolling soft cap would be appropriate. At character creation, for example, you can only roll 10 dice, no matter what, but as your characters increase karma, the cap increases, say +1 die per 10 kerma points. So in my example of the Ares Predator, this ganger could only roll 10 dice at character creation, 11 after he had gained 10 karma, and the full 13 after he gained 30 karma. That way, you discourage people from min-maxing everything to exactly 10 dice because they'll get a 'free' improvement at 10 karma, whereas a character who stopped at exactly 10 will have to spend karma to increase the dice pool.

EDIT: Really, the biggest question is what do your players want to do. More mature players probably won't 'twink out' a character no matter how many build points you give them. Players that just want to have the 'biggest, baddest mutha on the block' will find a way to abuse any system you put in place. I've played both ways, both can be fun, so it's really the makeup of your players that decides whether or not playing a group of fairly weak gangers is viable or not.
hyzmarca
'Ganger' doesn't mean 'sucks'. 'Ganger' does mean that characters are below average. 'Ganger' means that the characters ar emembers of a street gang. SR Street gangs are hardcore. They are far more hardcore than real street gangs are today. There are some canon gangers who are real ass-kickers.
Look at the Spiders, for example. Many of their members are magically active and they have to kill Insect Spirits as part of their initiation rituals. Every member of the Red Hot Nukes has world class demolition skills because those that don't get blown to smitherines when they try to disarm one of Grinder's world class bombs during their initiations. And Lord Torgo, a giant morning-star wielding troll who constantly reads his dog-eared copies of The Art of War and The Prince, there isn't much that has to be said about him. There's very little difference between upper level gangers and prime runners. The main disparity is in connections.

If you want to limit magic then lower the soft caps instead of adjusting the prices.

Limiting contact to connections 2 or 3 is required for a ganger campaign. If they have better connections then they aren't a gang any more. They're a policlub.

Grogs
QUOTE (hyzmarca)
'Ganger' doesn't mean 'sucks'. 'Ganger' does mean that characters are below average. 'Ganger' means that the characters ar emembers of a street gang. SR Street gangs are hardcore. They are far more hardcore than real street gangs are today. There are some canon gangers who are real ass-kickers.
Look at the Spiders, for example. Many of their members are magically active and they have to kill Insect Spirits as part of their initiation rituals. Every member of the Red Hot Nukes has world class demolition skills because those that don't get blown to smitherines when they try to disarm one of Grinder's world class bombs during their initiations. And Lord Torgo, a giant morning-star wielding troll who constantly reads his dog-eared copies of The Art of War and The Prince, there isn't much that has to be said about him. There's very little difference between upper level gangers and prime runners. The main disparity is in connections.

It depends really. The Ancients are one thing, while that pissant teener street gang that claims some particular block in the Redmond Barrens might be quite another. It's like the difference between one corp that might have just two sleepy 60 year old guards with light pistols versus a Mega that might have a full company of elite security forces with heavy weapons and magical backup. It's really all up to the GM.


Here's a low-level mage ganger. I was lazy, plus I haven't played a mage in SR4 yet, so I won't insult anyone's intelligence by picking spells and foci for this character. Feel free to add to and/or pick apart what I've done:


350 BP
Race: Human - 0 BP

ATTRIBUTES (190 BP):

BOD: 3
AGI: 3
REA: 2
STR: 2
CHA: 3
INT: 5
LOG: 5
WIL: 4

EDGE: 3 (10 BP)
MAGIC: 4 (45 BP - by Lilt's rules)
INIT: 8 (10) (Astral)
Physical: 10 boxes
Stun: 10 boxes

SKILLS (88 BP):

Assensing: 2
Astral Combat: 2
Negotiation: 3
Perception: 2
Pilot Ground Craft (Wheeled): 1 (+2)
Pistols (Automatics): 1 (+2)
Ritual Spellcasting: 2
Spellcasting: 4
Summoning: 4

QUALITIES (+20 BP):
Magician: 15 BP
Combat Paralysis: +20 BP
Incompetent: Unarmed Combat: +5
Low Pain Tolerance: +10 BP

Contacts/Gear/Foci/Spells/Etc: 37 BP Remaining
Phobos
Grogs :
Too many BP on attributes, limit would be 175.
Pretty slow and weak for a real barrens street gang ... even for a mage. Okay with C area gangs.
So, lower INT + LOG to 4
Ritual Spellcasting ? Binding would probably be more apropriate, even Banishing ... Best : COUNTERSPELLING.
Combat Paralysis ? Inapt Unarmed ? Street Gang ??? Not even a mage. Their are enough contests in normalday life for someone on the streets where using anything potential lethal (like magic) means a harmless fight turning into last-man-breathing ... you NEED a non-lethal alternative.
In fact ... ETIQUETTE !!! ... either high Etiquette (Gang) and decent Unarmed, or high Unarmed and decent Etiquette.
Even a mage.
Survival ... Athletics Group ... both don't seem very optional to me.
Back to the drawing board.

... oh, and ...
@All:

... more Contacts !!!

Gangs only work because they form a Group, a Community ... because there are a lot of people you know by being part of the gang ... because they ARE the gang.

Have a minimum of 50 or better 100 BP spent on Contacts, and only Contacts. high Loyalty, low-to-mid Connection : some C3 Contacts like the gang's Fixer, Fence, StreetDoc - whatever - Contacts should be fine, more for better connected gangs or CorpKid-ThrillGangs ... PLUS a LOT of C2 and C1 Conections signifiying people in the gang's turf ... PLUS the gang itself (probably something like a C2/L5 to C3/L6 Group Contact ! ... damn, they might even know people outside the gang, perhaps even on other gang's teritory ...

If you enforce this requirement, there's no problem with 400 BP Characters ... or you lower BPs and give them the Conections for free.


For anything else, make use of soft caps instead of cost, and of course GM aproval.
A good rule-of-thump would be a a maximum of one atribute at 5 OR 1, and at least 10 ratings spent on physical atributes.
Maximum of one skill at 5 or 2 at 4, all others at 3. Both active and knowledge skills.
Max. Avaibility 6, Max. BP on Gear of 5 (including a vehicle) or even 2 (=10k nuyen.gif ) ... plus one item of player's choice and GM approval (better commlink for hackers, focus for mages, gun or cyber for mundies)

That should work out pretty well.


Still, much depends on what kind of gang you have in mind : the above is pretty much low-level (that is : a pretty normal) Street Gang; a GoGang or ThrillGang might have other requirements ... and of course the bigger and better-conected a gang, the less differences there'll be to 'Runners skill- or equipment-wise ... Gang Leaders and officers of the large and famous/notorious gangs sometimes even like Prime 'Runners, depending on who's backing them.
Nidhogg
Generrlly, a 300 point build limit seems correct for a ganger-level campaign. Plus an additional minus one to skill limits, and a minus one to skill group limits to skill group limits seem fair for ganger campaingns. More that seems excessive fir a ganger level campaign.

Forgive any spelling mistakes, for at the time of posting, I quite drunk.
Lilt
@Grogs:
Again, thanks for the quick write-up. Phobos's points aside, that's vaguely the level of ganger I'm looking for. The problem is that I may be reducing the BP limit down to 300. How do you think that woudl affect your mage character?

Pools of 8 to cast and summon seem fine, and are about what I expected.

If there was any problem with the particular flaws then they could just be replaced (with a mild addiction, for example). I don't think that's too few physical attribute points. Remember, 3 is average. I don't think you spent too many BPs on attributes, your total is 385 due to the negative qualities for a max of 190 on attributes.

@Phobos:
I do agree that gangers should probably have some ettiquette (gang). Otherwise they'll stick-out like sore thumbs and make social faux-pas, especially if they're uncouth and can't default. I do agree that counterspelling is far more likely than ritual sorcery, but I don't think that gang mages nessecarily need to be physically combat-capable. They can heal and do astral stuff, that should be enough. The exact flaws may vary from character to character, so I'm not ultra-bothered by particular limitations they give.

The problem with enforcing that X points be spent on contacts is that it means everyone will have the same general connection level. Does the uncouth troll really keep in touch with people as well as the charismatic street-face?

My plan was to let people be as well connected as was realistic. They're in the gang, and that doesn't have to be represented by contacts with numbers. They'll know the gang for free, and through it they'll be able to get in-touch with the local important people. Not everyone in the area/gang will know the local street-doc personally, but the street-gang as a whole will.

Your suggestions about skill caps were in my original post. That's what I meant by skill caps lowered by 1, if it wasn't clear.

I am not going to enforce people spending on physical stats. The numbers you're suggesting would mean the whole gang must have above-average physical stats, which I don't consider to be nessecary for all gangers. There's the slight one who seems to be the voice of the group ('face'), the weedy guys who are offered the protection of the gang in exchange for their services (hacker and mage), and others who realistically don't need to get into fistycuffs.

@hyzmarca:
I am not interested in running a game with the ancients or the spiders. Yes, some gangs are kick-ass, but some gangs are just anarchistic kids with smartlinks and wired 1 who's friends got them involved in organised crime for money and drugs. I suppose you could say that I'm interested in running a 'sucky gangers' campaign.

@Nidhogg Yes, I'm leaning towards 300BP myself.
Cray74
QUOTE (Lilt)
Okay, I'm interested in starting to run a gangers campaign (possibly a one-off). it's possible to make incredibly un-ganger-like runners even with 400BP, however, and cutting the limit even further just means that people can specialise to un-ganger-like levels. For example, the ganger could still tot an assault rifle and a bit of top-of-the-line cyberware.

How about just telling the players "Try to keep them low key ganger characters? Use 350pts and be prepared for some of your skill and gear picks to be vetoed."
imperialus
These are the basic rules I came up with for a street level campaign.

1) You are street punks. Keep that in mind when designing your characters. Think of what skills, gear, qualities and abilities a street kid would have and try not to min max.

2) Buildpoints are capped at 300, however you get the home ground quality for free representing your characters knowledge of his/her home turf.

3) No more than 10 buildpoints can be spent on money or 50000•

4) The magic stat is capped at 4. This is to prevent a team consisting entirely of mages and adapts and to keep their power level in sync with team members who rely on gear.

5) You may pick a single piece of equipment (weapon, armour, cyberware ect.) with an availability of up to 8, everything else is maxed at availability 6.

6) Skillcaps are reduced by 1.

7) Maximum starting dice pool for any skill is 12 (not counting edge).

cool.gif You cannot take a lifestyle higher than low, and cannot take a lifestyle higher than squatter unless you have a SIN (either real or fake), however you must purchase a minimum of 2 months worth of a given lifestyle representing first and last months rent.

9) Try to come up with character concepts in keeping with the gang theme. For instance, if you want to play a hacker perhaps create a character who has limited hacking skills but focusí on jacking cars. If you want to play a face, a street corner dealer might be appropriate.

10) Donít focus too much on firearm skills. Unarmed combat, and weapons such as knives and clubs are generally acceptable in a brawl. Pulling out a pistol and shooting someone however is likely to trigger a gang war and remember you canít run and hide as easily as a regular runner, you have to protect your turf. Itíll be a lot easier to get revenge when they know where you live.

11) In keeping with point 10 the gang does not operate in the barrens. You will be based in an area like Tacoma or another lower class neighborhood. This means that there will be a police response to overt acts of violence, and even if they canít prove anything the star can still make your lives miserable. A couple of pistol shots isnít likely to get a response until the body is found the next day but a burst of automatic fire almost certainly will.
Grogs
QUOTE (Lilt)
@Grogs:
Again, thanks for the quick write-up. Phobos's points aside, that's vaguely the level of ganger I'm looking for. The problem is that I may be reducing the BP limit down to 300. How do you think that woudl affect your mage character?

Ugh, start getting into some really tough trade-offs at that BP level. I'd start by losing a point in agility, intuition, and logic. That's down to 160 BP for physical and mental skills, and it's also enough to buy every attribute up to 'average' level. If you want to follow strict cannon and make it 150 for physical/mental attributes, I'd lose a point of willpower as well. I also dropped edge down a point, along with a point off of spellcasting, summoning, and negotiation (which I then changed to Etiquette) for a total of 52 BP.

@Phobos: I incorporated some of your suggestions (remember, this is the first SR4 mage I've built, and I did it in a big hurry to boot) but others I disagree with. Inept: unarmed is a flaw. None of that crunchy crap like Incompetent: Pilot Anthroform on a Street Sam you see on some of the char. sheets posted around here. This one hurts, which is what it's supposed to do. As for non-lethal alternatives, there's always a sleep spell, and hopefully he's got some big chums hanging around. If not, Willy the Wondermage is in trouble, plain and simple.

Anyway, here's a down and dirty 300BP Mage Ganger:

300 BP
Race: Human - 0 BP

MENTAL/PHYSICAL ATTRIBUTES (160 BP):

BOD: 3
AGI: 2
REA: 2
STR: 2
CHA: 3
INT: 4
LOG: 5
WIL: 4

EDGE: 2 (0 BP)
MAGIC: 4 (45 BP - by Lilt's rules)
INIT: 6 (cool.gif (Astral)
Physical: 10 boxes
Stun: 10 boxes

SKILLS (76 BP):

Assensing: 2
Astral Combat: 2
Etiquette: 2
Perception: 2
Pilot Ground Craft (Wheeled): 1 (+2)
Pistols (Automatics): 1 (+2)
CounterSpelling: 2
Spellcasting: 3
Summoning: 3

QUALITIES (+20 BP):
Magician: 15 BP
Bad Luck: +20 BP
Incompetent: Unarmed Combat: +5
Low Pain Tolerance: +10 BP

SPELLS (18 BP):

6 Spells (Max)

CONTACTS (13 BP):

2 Decent contacts or 3-4 weak ones.

GEAR (7 BP, 35K nuyen.gif ):

Force 1 Power Focus (Bound) (1 BP, 25K nuyen.gif)
10K nuyen.gif for Lifestyle, weapon, etc.
HeySparky
Be careful with the positive quality, Home Ground. I played in a ganger game here on the boards (300bp, magic/skills/resource restrictions) and we were playing mostly on our turf, so just about every check had +2. I know I felt super cheesy getting +2 on my mechanics roll, just because my character was sitting in his garage. I think others did as well. Just some forewarning.

Restrict it or embrace it, if you restrict it then you'll have a quality that makes more sense (allowing it on perception and influence rolls) or if you embrace it, you'll have gangers that don't want to leave home - or, maybe better still - who want to expand their turf.
Butterblume
Your players have to want playing at ganger level (at least be ok with it), or it won't work...
Aaron
If it was me running a ganger game, I'd leave the BP cap where it is (gangers can be exceptional, too), and simply limit the starting gear to an Availability of 6 or less.

NB: This would include spell formulae. It wouldn't limit the Technomancers or the Adepts much, but "ganger" is really more of a social thing, ne?
Glyph
QUOTE (Butterblume)
Your players have to want playing at ganger level (at least be ok with it), or it won't work...

Absolutely. If they don't want to play weak characters, then running a low-powered campaign won't automatically make them less interested in combat or more interested in roleplaying. They will min-max as much as they can under the new rules, and complain when their weaker characters get their asses kicked.

Not a slam against Lilt. I am sure his group wants to try something different, and he's trying to revise char-gen for a lower power level.

But I do run into this attitude a lot, that making the power level weaker can magically make people change playing styles.
Lilt
@Glyph: I fully expect my players to make their characters as optimal as possible, tweaking every last die and every last BP out of it, that's why I'm trying to balance the chargen system.

Playing low-power may not magically make people roleplayers, but it does mean they have to throw any ideas of powergaming they had out of the window for the time being. To accept this sort of game is to accept that your character is weak. To reject it is to demand a certain level of power from your character. Why demand X standard and not Y standard which is offered with the game? Can it not be fun to roleplay a less powerful character?

Some people like powergaming, some people like low-powergaming. I can't remember exactly how many calls I've seen for 1st level D&D games, but 1st level games are certainly popular.

Butterblume: Actually, I'm fully aware that some people don't want to play at this power level. So-far two people have opted-out due to the nonstandard power-level, but with a theoretical audience of many (it's being run online), I thought I'd offer it up. The game is being offered as a take-it-or-leave-it thing. I just want to make-sure that if they take it then it's balanced.

@ES_Sparky: Home Ground is quite powerful. If someone takes it and seems to be getting too much of an advantage from it then I can change the scenery a bit.

@Aaron Interestign point, but don't you think that gives a big advantage to mages? Same BP, same costs, no restrictions aside from no combat spells. Sammies are screwed, mages aren't really beyond being unable to buy foci beyond force 1.

Otherwise, saying that they're as exceptional as runners but limiting their gear makes no sense. They can have the same skills, the same contacts, the same attributes, why then is their gear limited so much?

I don't think I've ever seen a game where mages had to pay for formulae for their starting spells, but it's an interesting point. I think I'll make the cost for a combat spell 5BP at chargen as they're hard to get hold of but don't technically need to be bought.
Shadowmeet
I've found that with the groups I love to play with, when we get into a lower powered game, things tend to get a little more bloodthirsty.

More powerful tends to be more professional.

So, I like down and dirty, low powered games. Love to play in them, and I love to run them.
Jaid
i would suggest you include rules limiting skills... in particular, academic knowledges should probably not be allowed, and weapon skills for weapons you aren't allowed to start off with (that is to say... heavy weapons, monowhip, pain inducer, etc are not realistic ganger weapons, and a ganger with heavy weapons 3 is just not realistic IMO... or at least not in a normal gang). possibly also vehicle skills would make sense, though with the new dirt cheap drones less so. depends on how you feel about drones in gangs and the gang territory (i daresay gangers who hang around the seattle docks might have pilot watercraft, but gangers in denver won't).


you will also have to make some exceptions for hacking programs, btw... they have a flat availability 12F iirc. perhaps make it rating x 2 F instead?
Ryu
Imperialus Rule No. 1 is the best. Tell your players what kind of char you want.

You need to give guidelines on chars you WILL accept...

Gear: no more than 100k. Few items/ware above 5 k•. Gangers of the kind you are looking for should not have access to much money at once.

Skills: 4 is an exception, not the rule. You need two skills at 2 for each at 4.

Attributes: Go crazy on STR and KON, all other maximums are at -1.
Lilt
@Jaid: Limiting Academic Knowledges is interesting, but not a matter of balance so I'll see what the players turn-up before throwing limitations on things like that. It strikes me that there are a number of such skills that could be learnt on the streets in gangs, like chemistry to make bombs, biology from street-docs who learnt it elsewhere, and history from lore-master shaman types. As long as I ask them to explain where they learnt something from then the skill cap reduction should provide all the limitations I need.

On the programs front: They have an availability of (Ratingx2)R, and with my system allowing batch purchases with well-equipped a hacker could buy a commlink and set of programs at availability 12.

@Ryu: Interesting, I'll certainly think about using a system like that but I'd prefer something concrete. The 'few' items/ware thing is a bit open, and limiting them to 5k for most items still lets them get sniper rifles, assault rifles, steel lynxes, LMGs/MMGs, and so on. I think I'd rather let the game's internal definition of how hard something is to get ahold of (availability) be the deciding factor.
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