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Full Version: Maglock Passkeys and trying again
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Dr. Dodge
My PC's use passkeys all the time, but they always seem to fail the first time around, and I can't decide if I should allow them to keep trying or to say, "nope sorry ain't working." I have pretty much been going back and forth, so I figure I need to make a concrete decision one of these days. They usually only have a rating 3 p-key, so the odds of them defeating any "average" maglock (I use rating 3 generally, but that may be the problem too) on the first try are slim. At the same time, if i just let them keep retrying, they'll always succeed. So, I'm curious what people think. Should I let them retry at -2 (like the book suggests for skill retries)? Of course, that pretty much means they got one more chance and are not likely to succeed at all. Or just let them keep retrying, and only worry about it if they are in combat or some other "time is of the essence" type of situation. Or, one try is all you get? Or something else altogether?
Frag-o Delux
Id probably do a once fail is ok, twice fail sends up a flag, third fail locks the door down and sets off an alarm. That is for normal doors. Super sensitive doors maybe one shot and you are done if you fail. smile.gif Might do the Fifth Element security responce.
My policy is pretty close to the books on this kind of situation. I apply the -2 penalty for each retry after the first.

The important thing is that this penalty only applies if they don't try anything new. If they are just sticking the passkey in the door and hoping that it does the job for them, then the penalty is appropriate. But if they apply some roleplaying muscle or take a new approach, then you can give them another shot at the initial difficulty, or even give them a bonus.

That and I wouldn't let them try over and over forever. Even the most lax security in the 6th world is going to notice them if they keep acting suspicious and are not able to access the same door forever. Guards, security cameras, or even the door itself is going to notice after enough of the "bang your head against the door" approach.

If you want them to be able to get through, make the lock easier. personally, I would let them fail and have to run away so they have to find another way in.
Dr. Dodge
yeah most of the time i give them one shot and don't let them try again (at least not right away). But then I started feeling bad since it never seemed to work and I could tell they felt like they wasted their money. But that's the life of a shadowrunner i suppose.
Yeah I wouldn't rule this hard and fast, myself. Depends on the situation, the tension, how much you want them to succeed etc. Sometimes one fail fluffs it. Sometimes, Frag-o's way.
They will usually have another option, if they've got Hardware skill and something that passes for an appropriate tool. It'll take time, but it can be done.
The -2 actually seems like an appropriate way to do this systemwise.

Frag-o's way is essentially what I do. There's this green light on the cardreader. One failed swipe, it goes yellow. Another, it goes red. A third, the alarm goes off. This is a pretty typical maglock in my games, as it allows for things like "Didn't work? Try it again. Didn't work? Wait, it's upside down..." before the men with shotguns come out.
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