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I am quite dissatisfied with the current fact that Threading takes no actual 'in-game' action to perform. I am probably going to change this, and am looking for some idea of the consensus of the Dumpshock alumni on this matter.
Simon May
Threading is something which is second nature to a Technomancer. They should be able to do it as easily as anyone can talk while performing other actions.
wasn't a sentence of more than 5 words a simple action?
A street sam doesn't take drain when he loads EXEX over EX, nor does an Adept take drain when he sheaths his knife and pulls out a katana, and these are simple actions. Why assign an action to something that takes drain but doesn't actually do anything until you use it? The drain is a limiter enough.
I voted complex action, but would remove the penalty and limit threading to one complex form at a time.
Keep it as non-action, but just note they have to keep it within reason. I've been looking at it like this.

Once is non-action, twice is free action, three is simple. So at most 6 per pass. Or you could always steal the d20 "swift action", a free action that you can only do once per turn. You could limit it further than this and put a cap on their threading/rethreading at half their resonance. This would allow the rating 6 technomancer to only thread/rethread the same program 3 times.

I just started playing a technomancer last night, and the threading isn't really an issue, but I'm not one thats going to take ridiculus advantage of something. The most I used on one program was 2 rethreads and that was on my stealth, and they were done about 3 or 4 passes apart. The pain came from having to thread a difuse program to take out a data bomb very quickly. I threaded a rating 7 difuse from scratch, and used my edge to resist the fading, still ended up with 2 physical damage. And that was just to get the job details from the johnson. Threading is most useful in tight time constraints, on extended tests. As time starts to wear thread a higher program.

The sustaining isn't really a big deal most threaded forms you only sustain as long as you are using them. Stealth is the only one that is sustained for long periods, so if you have a chance before facing anything compile/register yourself a rating 2 or 3 sprite to sustain stealth. They might be seen, but as long as their not doing anything they're not likely to raise alerts just draw some analyzes towards them. And while their examining the sprite you are gaining extra time that their not examining the node to find you.

Most other programs are just threaded as necessary and then dropped. Here's a chain that happened, I didn't actually thread each of these in game, but in high security scenario you could do it like this. Thread scan to find hidden wireless signals. Drop scan once you've locked onto the signal, then you can thread sniffer to intercept the signal. Drop intercept once you have the feed, then thread Decrypt to decipher the traffic. Once the decryption pattern is received drop the decrypt. Now you can thread spoof or edit as necessary into the stream at this point you might have to keep both sustained especially if you got one fairly high with little or no fading. Hackers have system reponse to keep their number of programs low, Technomancers have threading.

Ok rambled too much, but loving the technomancer and my GM is loosing his fear of them and the Matrix in general.
Just because it's free doesn't mean you can do it infinitely.
I never even noticed that there wasn't an Action assigned to it. I'd been handling it as a complex and it seems to be working fine. Jsut like a mage casting a spell.
if threading gets an simple or an complex action Technomancer really become a lot worse than they already be. If you are attacked by an IC ist important to have up you defence asap, if you have to thread for the first 3-4 IP, you loose, always.

voted for no action, but i think free Action might work as well.
Off the cuff, I'd apply the old coder's proverb "Cheap, Good, On-Time: Choose Up to Two."
One Minute to thread a complex form: you have taken the time to extensively rework the code, and apply quality assurance testing aka debugging. +1 to Software skill. Any glitches get a free reroll.
Complex Action: standard Software + Resonance DP.
Simple Action: -1 DP.
Free Action: Your hasty efforts may have actually improved the code, or may have introduced "undocumented features". -2 DP and apply the Gremlins mechanic on glitches.

Alternatively, apply these when a TM is threading from scratch, and Free Action if they're threading to improve a CF that they already know at rating 1 or more.

I think this would result in TMs pre-threading Stealth or Armor on their way in, and dropping that to thread Edit, Analyse, Defuse, etc. when they've reached the target.
I think Threading should be free, provided the player provides a sufficiently entertaining explanation of how on earth they came up with that name for that mechanical effect.

I voted Complex because it is discribed as being akin to a Mage weaving spells, but in reality as long as you apply the cumulative -2 Modifier to each additionally try at the same program Threading pretty much polices itself.

Still I'd never allow a Technomancer to Thread multiple programs at the same time for free, it just strikes me as being cheesy.
I voted non-action. Comparing threading to spellcasting isn't as cut and dried as everyone here is making it out to be either, and it's tremendously unfair to the Technomancer to look at it that way. Spellcasting takes one action and then you get an effect (maybe even several if you multicast) while with threading you usually accomplish nothing until another action is taken because threading is nothing more or less than the act of modifying or creating a Complex Form. Since it takes a complex action to run a program or form, anything greater than a free action will effectively cost a TM an full initiative pass before using a threaded Form, which is an all around bad deal when you consider that they're already risking Fading and potentially taking a penalty. Fading, losing a pass and then losing much of the advantages of having a new Form thanks to sustaining is just plain broken in Matrix combat, and not in the way that gets munchkins all hot and bothered either. I know it's easy to just say "Oh, gee, TMs are Matrix Mages!" but their mechanics are indeed different and they need to be balanced with the Matrix rules and how they stack up with Hackers in mind, not with the Awakened.

P.S. TMs are narrow and suck even with "unlimited" Threading. I hate them and the Matrix rules they rode in on.
Eryk the Red
Basically, as it is, you treat the act of threading as part of the action you take to use the complex form. Seems okay to me. I don't have any players playing TMs in my game, though, so I can't speak to the in-game effects of threading.
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