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Angier
The second step of creating an ally spirit for a magician speaks about choosing forms for an ally spirit.
The wording seems a bit unclear to me: Is the choice of what form an ally spirit can have limited to the form the spirits of the ally spirit's creator's tradtion have or are you free to choose one of those three (inhabitation, materialization, possession)?

eg: Can a voodoo priest have an ally spirit with the materialization power even if his basical conjurable spirits are given the possession power?
Ancient History
The rules assume you're using a Materialization tradition as default, and offer two choices for the form of your ally spirit: Materialization or Inhabitation. As usual, members of a Possession tradition would replace the Materialization power with Possession, so their options for the form of their ally spirit would be: Possession or Inhabitation.

This could probably have done with some clarification in-text.
SCARed
wouldn't it be VERY strange for any "normal" magician to have an ally with inhabitation? the only traditions using this power are a little .. evil.

plus: ally spirits can only have powers out of the pool, conjurable spirits of the tradition, the ally conjuring mage belongs to, can have.
Ryu
QUOTE (SM Errata 1.2)
p. 103 Step 2: Choose Form(s)
The first line should read:
“The ally spirit may have one (and only one) of the following
powers: Inhabitation (p. 100), Materialization (p. 289,
SR4), or Possession (p. 101).?
Also add the following line: “Possession allies have no material
form of their own (though vessels are often prepared for
them).?

The magician currently has free choice. And it is certainly interesting to have a spirit of "the other" type. I´d guess that inhabitation is for "golems"?
Dumori
Inhabitation is not evil it just can be. However a nice inhabited troll would do nicely with a high power spirit or if you sick abd an elf how about inhabiting a troll from conseption.
Ancient History
From a fluff angle, "familiar animals" or "familiar spirits" inhabiting animals or in the form of animals is fairly common in European magical lore.
SCARed
sure. just concerning the fluff, some inhabtitaion is imaginabele. but considering the crunch, it is very unlikey in SR4 to have a magician using inhabitation.

and btw: all these things (familiar animals etc.) can also be done with possesion, IMHO.
Pendaric
Golems, both hermetic and Kabala/middle eastern; zombies for voodoo and the traditional folk lore hebrew golem, woud require inhabitation.

The option to use possession as you have pointed out, I think is a good thing for magic, it blurrs the line as there are several ways to 'have a cat familiar', to paraphase the proverb.

Personally, I do believe paradigm is the only indicator you should reference when choosing you type/style of ally spirit.
The Jake
So how would the average GM feel about said mage and his running mates finding the biggest, nastiest troll they can find and using Stick-N-Shock, Stunbolt and Stun batons to club the poor sod unconscious, throwing him into the boot of a car and then preparing him for a vessel for Inhabitation... ? ("Guys, trust me, its for the benefit of the TEAM!").

- J.
Ryu
QUOTE (The Jake @ May 15 2009, 11:22 AM) *
So how would the average GM feel about said mage and his running mates finding the biggest, nastiest troll they can find and using Stick-N-Shock, Stunbolt and Stun batons to club the poor sod unconscious, throwing him into the boot of a car and then preparing him for a vessel for Inhabitation... ? ("Guys, trust me, its for the benefit of the TEAM!").

"You want something with solid Int/Wil, so that you can get a fleshform. Well-trained guards are "perfect" for this, special operatives even better. Hell, you could likely send your "undercover agent" steal the best stuff from OpsCentral..." ( ork.gif )
Dakka Dakka
Probably the same way as he would, if the characters would sell their dead comrade's organ to Tamanous. Shadowrunners are criminals, so chances are there are some sick freaks among them.
Pendaric
There is always going to be sick puppies but a magician that would use a living metahuman to permanantly inhabit an ally spirit are usually the kind or sick puppy that even most runners think have gone too far.

More importantly, however, is that you have to look passed the game stat. Yes the rules say you can but your magical tradition says you cannot. The ritual is for a properly prepared statue, corpse or specific animal only.

Now if you are a twisted/toxic path follower you can use the bad juju and think in a manner necessay to the action of inhabiting sentient beings. In fact this kind or action and thought pattern is what defines you going over the line.
Of course that comes with it own set of disadvantages, like hipocritical moral outrage, nabby pamby do gooders trying to stop you or mercenarys trying to kidnapp and sell you to the DIMR. The cheek, the gall! More fools you must crush in the path of your ascention to"fill blank with agenda".
Screaming Eagle
In the event that a PC tries this kind of... horror... yes, horror, and the group is willing to let them do 'it', it would VERY likely be the kind of group to then subue the mage in question and sell him the the DIMR for the cool million and use the Troll/Spirit as a kind of negotiating chip for more money.

"Honest he's a Toxic! Look what he did to this poor guy! Now wheres my rutting money?"

Ok either that or you are playing a WAY different game of shadowrun then I am. "Bad" (moral) Shadowrunners are loyal to the team, to a point. That point is usually well before the "High lifestyle forever" line.
Dumori
Yeah but on sentient inhabitation is far form toxic. It might be for some traditions completely opposing but toxic is more than just actions its a mind set as well.
Screaming Eagle
Taking the role of the people turning the mage in:

"Well dey gots to Start getting Toxic some place right? Don't you'z want to investigate dat? Say 500, 000? And we toss in the poor possesed Troll man for anotther 200,000. Or do you'z want us to let him out in da wild for a bit? Bring him back when he is good an courrupt? Cause it's just time now ya see'z?" - Negotiation test?

Joking... mostly. This would be the kind of crime hardened killers would have trouble shaking off, its F&*%ing creepy. The DIMR would probably pay something for the guys capture, if only to stop him being on the street doing... ew, and giving Magicians everywhere a worse name. But I digress.

I've got to agree with Pendaric, anything that can fit the Mages paradigm is fair game for Ally spirit, and in most cases that will be any of the three options within restrictions. I espesially like a Voodoo priest with a materialising spirit crow that "Comes freely to and for the other side with messages from Ghede! All heed his words! The lord of Graves speaks!"
Mordinvan
I'd just buy a medical clone of someone who was big and strong... and use that.
HappyDaze
Inhabitation of living metahumans can also be used as a death sentence. Imagine the use in certain Awakened nations as an alternate to cyberzombies...
Screaming Eagle
QUOTE (HappyDaze @ May 16 2009, 12:20 AM) *
Inhabitation of living metahumans can also be used as a death sentence. Imagine the use in certain Awakened nations as an alternate to cyberzombies...

Ew... I'm so doing that in my game next chance I get, but ew.
Neraph
QUOTE (SCARed @ May 14 2009, 01:36 AM) *
wouldn't it be VERY strange for any "normal" magician to have an ally with inhabitation? the only traditions using this power are a little .. evil.

plus: ally spirits can only have powers out of the pool, conjurable spirits of the tradition, the ally conjuring mage belongs to, can have.

A kannushi can totally summon inhabitation Ally Spirits to bring the spirits of his blades alive. Or a hermetic doing the same for his staff (a-la intelligent mage's staff), or some other trinket (a-la Bob the skull from Dresden Files).

Don't forget to do metaplanar quests for spirit formulae of spirits with the powers you want. See the link in my sig for some ideas.

EDIT: My Chaos Mage (posession) in my group are roughing it in a Z-zone, and we killed a couple organleggers (troll and human) harvesting some chipheads. My guy worked up the troll's body for posession and now has a F6 Fire Spirit zombie using the average-stat troll's body.
The Jake
QUOTE (Ryu @ May 15 2009, 12:05 PM) *
"You want something with solid Int/Wil, so that you can get a fleshform. Well-trained guards are "perfect" for this, special operatives even better. Hell, you could likely send your "undercover agent" steal the best stuff from OpsCentral..." ( ork.gif )


You add the caster's Conjuring + Edge to the flesh form's roll for a starters. Not counting focii. It wouldn't be that difficult unless you're talking Force 10+...

That aside, if I had a player try that I'd probably tell them that is a Twisted/Corrupted use of magic (kidnapping and using a living sentient being for inhabitation that is). It would certainly make him no better than the Bugs.

- J.
Dumori
I don't see the corrupted view of this. Toxic magic is much more destructive than taking some one and inhabiting them as a PC steeling that troll that was knocked out or hit with a slab round seams perfectly reasonable and I could even have RP fluff to justify it.
Pendaric
Bit of thread mancy, tisk real life keeps getting in the way.

There are some good stories and hence RP in going to the darkside. I am fairly sure we have all played monsters before but for the less experenced amoung us let me clarify.

In SR magic is more than a tool, it is an art. A collection of beliefs on how the universe works which also requires a specific lifestyle from the practistioner within its philosophy or theology. Consequently it also provides a moral code with which a magicain must act.

As there is a code of ethics inherant in each path of magic, actions opporsite to these are considered wrong, destructive or evil. These are the paths of the corrupted and toxic magicains. A fact that the magicain accepts in their belief within a paradigm that allows them to wield magic.

Now as we are dealing with moral ambiguity, there is a vast spectrum of grey in the circumstance and intention of these acts and the path that leads to becoming corrupted. However there is and always will be, an objective line to be crossed, deliniated by the enviromental factors within the context of the game: simply due to how a paradigm works.

Be it by design, misfortune, insanity or good intension gone astray, that line can be crossed as descerned objectively by the players/ref. Whatever the reason this corruption of world view, there is then only redemption, death, torment or aquecence to this metaphysical state.
The Jake
QUOTE (Ancient History @ May 14 2009, 01:31 AM) *
The rules assume you're using a Materialization tradition as default, and offer two choices for the form of your ally spirit: Materialization or Inhabitation. As usual, members of a Possession tradition would replace the Materialization power with Possession, so their options for the form of their ally spirit would be: Possession or Inhabitation.

This could probably have done with some clarification in-text.

The way I read it, it is the magician's choice, period.

E.g. A voudoun houngan decides he wants his ally spirit to have Materialisation can do so.

Yes this section of the book is particularly vague.

QUOTE (Pendaric @ May 18 2009, 08:36 PM) *
Bit of thread mancy, tisk real life keeps getting in the way.

There are some good stories and hence RP in going to the darkside. I am fairly sure we have all played monsters before but for the less experenced amoung us let me clarify.

In SR magic is more than a tool, it is an art. A collection of beliefs on how the universe works which also requires a specific lifestyle from the practistioner within its philosophy or theology. Consequently it also provides a moral code with which a magicain must act.

As there is a code of ethics inherant in each path of magic, actions opporsite to these are considered wrong, destructive or evil. These are the paths of the corrupted and toxic magicains. A fact that the magicain accepts in their belief within a paradigm that allows them to wield magic.

Now as we are dealing with moral ambiguity, there is a vast spectrum of grey in the circumstance and intention of these acts and the path that leads to becoming corrupted. However there is and always will be, an objective line to be crossed, deliniated by the enviromental factors within the context of the game: simply due to how a paradigm works.

Be it by design, misfortune, insanity or good intension gone astray, that line can be crossed as descerned objectively by the players/ref. Whatever the reason this corruption of world view, there is then only redemption, death, torment or aquecence to this metaphysical state.


There is no moral ambiguity about having a sentient being's soul consumed as a side effect of using the Inhabitation power.

- J.
Apathy
QUOTE (The Jake @ May 18 2009, 03:48 PM) *
There is no moral ambiguity about having a sentient being's soul consumed as a side effect of using the Inhabitation power.

- J.

SR allows moral ambiguity in just about anything.

SR neither confirms nor denies the existance of the soul. And even if it did, it never clearly states that the soul is destroyed (just that the person is gone and can't be brought back) - maybe it is just permanently displaced from the body and sent on to it's final reward. In that case, death by inhabitation would be no worse morally than death by bullet.

And some people would argue that there are particularly bad folks out there whose souls are contaminated beyond redemption and don't deserve another turn of the wheel.

We could use Cheney's "ticking time bomb" example. A good merge has all the memories of the host, so by inhabiting the terrorist you could gain access to the location of the bomb that he hid in the city. Some people would argue that it's immoral to let the millions of people die just so one bad guy doesn't get "de-souled". A Christian theologian might argue that one eternal soul was more important than a million mortal lives (or not, don't know) but I'm sure that there are some out there who would disagree.

Combine this with people's infinite capacity to justify their own actions ("Think of all the good I could do with this ally spirit." "You've got to break a few eggs to make this omlet." "He was a blight on society and an abomination to all right-thinking people - at least now some good can come out of his existance...") and you can certainly make an argument that it's ambiguous.
The Jake
QUOTE (Apathy @ May 18 2009, 09:57 PM) *
SR allows moral ambiguity in just about anything.

SR neither confirms nor denies the existance of the soul. And even if it did, it never clearly states that the soul is destroyed (just that the person is gone and can't be brought back) - maybe it is just permanently displaced from the body and sent on to it's final reward. In that case, death by inhabitation would be no worse morally than death by bullet.

And some people would argue that there are particularly bad folks out there whose souls are contaminated beyond redemption and don't deserve another turn of the wheel.

We could use Cheney's "ticking time bomb" example. A good merge has all the memories of the host, so by inhabiting the terrorist you could gain access to the location of the bomb that he hid in the city. Some people would argue that it's immoral to let the millions of people die just so one bad guy doesn't get "de-souled". A Christian theologian might argue that one eternal soul was more important than a million mortal lives (or not, don't know) but I'm sure that there are some out there who would disagree.

Combine this with people's infinite capacity to justify their own actions ("Think of all the good I could do with this ally spirit." "You've got to break a few eggs to make this omlet." "He was a blight on society and an abomination to all right-thinking people - at least now some good can come out of his existance...") and you can certainly make an argument that it's ambiguous.


Yeah you're right. "He had it coming."

Sorry but the SR books actually do make a reference to a soul. Very specifically, it says under Inhabitation that 'the host's soul is consumed in the process' (words to that effect). I don't think it gets more literal than that I'm afraid.

- J.
Mordinvan
QUOTE
Sorry but the SR books actually do make a reference to a soul. Very specifically, it says under Inhabitation that 'the host's soul is consumed in the process' (words to that effect). I don't think it gets more literal than that I'm afraid.


nowhere do they reference anyones soul surviving death. If it did, resurection in SR would be possible.

Get person X's body inhabited by a greatform plant spirit with regeneration to repair it. So long as dust remain the body will be whole eventually.
While this is happening, go on a meta plaineir quest to find person X's soul, and rebind it to their body using a something between binding a spirit and cybermancy.

But since by cannon this can't happen, I'm guessing souls MUST not survive death.
Dumori
so here is what would happen leading up to a inhabitation if I was playing a mage. So the team fights its way though a few sec opp guys killing or knocking out then finishing off the guards. The mage takes one of the guards that was going to get killed by the team to inhabits them at a later time. I fail to see how this is more corrupt than just manabolting them and if that's corrupted and especially immoral then I guess the Draco Foundation must be skint by now with all these toxics (seaming to be any mage that kills with magic).
Screaming Eagle
In the eyes of the law (in the UCAS anyway) there would be little difference as any crime you commit with magic is pre-meditated. Taking several hours to bind a spirit to someones form killing the host has the same legal concequence as powerbolting them into bite sized chunks in the heat of battle. The difference I would point out is in intent - several people here seem to be confusing Possession (short term, leaves the subject in its previous state once over, useful in a fire fight) with Inhabitation (Spirit subsumes/consumes the subjects physical traits and mental abilities to bind itself into the world, takes hours). Your ally spirit is your familiar, spirit guide, ansestor spirit, bound golem etc. etc. etc. Do you want this bond to be founded on murder? None of my players would want me to have that kind of "Hubris ammo" should their ally ever become uncontrolled.
I'm not going to say there will not be traditions that view taking a living host for an Ally with inhabitation as a standard would not exist, heck with a bit of looking I'm sure I could find some mystic tradiditon in which it is a high honour with only the best and brightest being considered for such a thing.
Outside of such a specialised tradition however, what it boils down to is torturing someone to death over hours to bind spirits, something insect shamans are rather reputed for. Does this make you Toxic? Don't know, I doubt any PC in one of my games would do it, and yes I've had a few people play real monsters over the years. Why? Because the only in cannon examples I have of such "Flesh forms" and "True Forms" come out of the Threats sections. It is Bad Mojo. Because magic is rather more black and white, good and evil then the rest of the game. Because (and this has been quickly working from booklore and rule interpratation to pure opinion) there is a difference between killing a man with a shotgun during a confrontation and killing him by knocking him out, binding him to an alter, having a parasite lay eggs in his abdomen, and letting them eat thier way out while you "help the process along" to ensure the new being has your victims skills and memories. I'd take the shotgun thanks.

P.S - someone please correct me if I'm getting the Inhabitaion rules freakishly wrong.
Zurai
QUOTE (The Jake @ May 18 2009, 07:12 PM) *
Very specifically, it says under Inhabitation that 'the host's soul is consumed in the process' (words to that effect).


Incorrect. Shadowrun rules make no reference anywhere to souls. Souls and the existence and continuance thereof are a purely religious matter and the rules stay very clear of that sort of thing. The rules DO say that the "spirit, if any" is consumed -- but there are a lot of definitions of spirit that don't include a soul.
Zurai
QUOTE (Screaming Eagle @ May 19 2009, 12:03 PM) *
what it boils down to is torturing someone to death over hours to bind spirits, something insect shamans are rather reputed for.


Source, please? The rules make no mention of pain or suffering being involved at all. They do say it is "trying" for both spirit and inhabitant, but it's a rather large stretch from "trying" to "torture".
Mordinvan
Again, why not just use a medical clone? The brain isn't functional enough to be sentient, and so there shouldn't be a moral delema over it. Its only about 20k which can no one should bitch.
Apathy
QUOTE (Mordinvan @ May 19 2009, 05:26 PM) *
Again, why not just use a medical clone? The brain isn't functional enough to be sentient, and so there shouldn't be a moral delema over it. Its only about 20k which can no one should bitch.

Depending on GM fiat (as always), inhabiting a clone might be possible, but the inhabiting spirit would not gain any skills or knowledge from the host like they would from sprouting out of a living, learning, growing person. For best results, inhabit your mundane shadowrunner buddy who already has a whole host [pun intended] of skills that'll be benificial to the team. Or capture a connected person (political figure, Mafia Don, etc) and inhabit them. As long as the Mafia underlings don't know about his inhabitation, he'll have a hellacious contact list right from the get-go.

[edit: Did anybody else think of the alien species in Ender's Game when I referred to inhabiting spirits sprouting from the host body? Now I can't get the image out of my head. )
The Jake
QUOTE (Zurai @ May 19 2009, 10:18 PM) *
Incorrect. Shadowrun rules make no reference anywhere to souls. Souls and the existence and continuance thereof are a purely religious matter and the rules stay very clear of that sort of thing. The rules DO say that the "spirit, if any" is consumed -- but there are a lot of definitions of spirit that don't include a soul.


I respectfully beg to differ with your interpretation.

Dress it up however you want, it doesn't change the fact you are effectively killing the original occupant of that body and any sane GM would consider it an evil act.

Just because we don't have alignments in SR, doesn't change the fact that evil deeds should be recognised accordingly. If it was as trivial as you are attempting to portray, there would be no issue with PCs playing toxics, blood mages or insect shamans.

Whoever mentioned the law before is exactly correct - within the UCAS, using inhabitation on a living, breathing human host would be comparitive to pre-meditated murder. This is precisely why the government and megas cracked down on the UB. Tax evasion was only to stop the masses from panicking.

Unless of course, you think there is nothing wrong with Inhabitation on an involuntary human host, in which case you're no different to the Insect Shamans out there.

- J.
Screaming Eagle
QUOTE (Zurai @ May 19 2009, 06:20 PM) *
Source, please? The rules make no mention of pain or suffering being involved at all. They do say it is "trying" for both spirit and inhabitant, but it's a rather large stretch from "trying" to "torture".

I was not attempting to site a rule that says its torture. I feel it is a small stretch from trying to torture in the "grab the guy rather then kill him" instance. Perhaps owing to different definitions:
If the effect is "trying" owing to ongoing waves and crests orgasmic bliss on the part of the vessel I still would call it torture. They are still physically bound (or too numbed/ intimidated to leave), still involentarily dying for an inhuman being to enter the world. The victim is either ignorant and teriffied of what is happening or knows what is happening AND IS TERRIFIED.

Now that I'm home I see (force) days listed as the duration for inhabitation to "take", not hours... more eww.

Several of us seem to have a different outlook on this. I will gladly yeild that using this power can be moved from black magic into the gray depending on context, volenteers etc. I (personnally) still feel its a dark gray and far darker then just killing the guy in the kidknapping or powerball him example.
Rules Wise: the only spirits I see that get inhabitation as written are Threats - Insect spirits, they get it with a tag "Living Vessels". They can only do this to living things and prefer Metahumans.. well cus' they are just that naughty.
Can any mage make their ally this way as per the rule book? Yes. Go f'ing nuts.
Steping away from the rule book and into the world of SR 2050- 2070ish you will need to live in after you have done this to a person: Would I, as a GM, make any Shamanist/Christian/Wujen/Shinto etc. magician and any law enforcement horrified at the sight of your Hybrid or Flesh form spirit (once they pierce its masking) Hells Yes.

In the majority of games though, this is not my call. It's yours.
Zurai
QUOTE (The Jake @ May 19 2009, 06:38 PM) *
Dress it up however you want, it doesn't change the fact you are effectively killing the original occupant of that body and any sane GM would consider it an evil act.


How is that really any different than just shooting them in the face and having the spirit inhabit their just-deceased corpse, other than the mechanical side-effects? You're still killing them. Shadowrunners pretty much kill for a living.
The Jake
QUOTE (Zurai @ May 20 2009, 01:45 AM) *
How is that really any different than just shooting them in the face and having the spirit inhabit their just-deceased corpse, other than the mechanical side-effects? You're still killing them. Shadowrunners pretty much kill for a living.


1. Shadowrunners may kill for a living. Not always. It depends on your team. Some runners even have a 'code' -
Example #1. Sam 'Twist' Verner.
Example #2. My PCs are arms dealers, drug dealers as well as runners. They're performed wetwork once and it left them with a real sour taste in their mouth. They did it - but they didn't like it and it left them with a permanent sour in their mouths. Next session they're confronted with the fact they need to kill two cops or otherwise risk exposure to their arms dealing business and their client in Ghost Cartels.

In their case, while killing often comes with the job, its not always a requirement and sometimes, there can be ways around it. Sometimes however, sure, you can't escape it.

2. Lets stick with comparing apples with apples here. We're talking about the boundaries of magic here and what crosses over into twisted/toxic territory.

At the end of the day, the rules are explicitly clear that Inhabitation on a living host constitutes murder (ethically at the least, if not legally). The sidebar on Twisted magicians in SM also states that twisted magicians have no compuction about murder, rape, etc.

Is there a point where a magician across over from 'normal' uses of magic into 'twisted'? Unfortunately there is no rules for it. It comes down to GM fiat.

I think AH has posted elsewhere here that the intended 'norma' use for Inhabitation was in animals. Wish I could find the exact post....

But based on the information presented in SM, I - as a GM - would rule using Inhabitation in that manner would put the magician on the Twisted path.

I won't debate this any further. Some people are clearly entrenched in their view, no matter how hopelessly flawed it is. At my table at least, I have the privilege to be able to tell players the way it is.

- J.
Zurai
QUOTE (The Jake @ May 19 2009, 10:55 PM) *
I won't debate this any further. Some people are clearly entrenched in their view, no matter how hopelessly flawed it is.


The sheer irony of these two sentences, deliberately placed one following the other by the original poster, just kills me.
The Jake
QUOTE (Zurai @ May 20 2009, 02:59 AM) *
The sheer irony of these two sentences, deliberately placed one following the other by the original poster, just kills me.


The only irony is that you continue to debate the interpretation of the rules when there is such overwhelming evidence to the contrary.

- J.
Zurai
The irony is that you "refuse to debate this any further" because "some people" (implying "not myself") are "clearly entrenched in their views" and refuse to see any other possible view as valid. Which, to be perfectly blunt, describes yourself to a tee. Pot, meet kettle.
Screaming Eagle
I'm going to regret this but:

Hello Zurai. How are you? I am well.

We, as in you and I (and several others), seem to have a difference of opinion. At its roots you hold that killing someone with magic is what it is. To quote something I read an age of the earth ago "A chicken with its neck rung is different from a chicken with its head cut off, but does it matter to the chicken?"
I hold that there is a diffence as I have outlined in my posts above. You kill someone slowly over days with the end goal of stealing their skills, appearance and personality (either that or you want a True Form and are just being an ass). A single Metahuman you can use for influtration into their previous life at your leisure. They are bound to obey your commands have the memories of the person you killed etc. I personally find to use of this power on ANYTHING alive questionable and on anything sapient grotesque, the kind of thing you'd find in a horror story as the villan.

This is not a debate, it is a difference of opinion.

How is killing someone slowly over days different from killing them during a fire fight? I'm not sure if I can address this question as you asking it demonstrates that we have a very fundamental difference in viewpoint.

Is there a difference between a hunter killing a deer for food and someone who goes into the woods and wounds animals badly, watches them bleed to death over days, and then uses them for food? Bleeding to death is "trying" too, not very painful at all though (yes, I have in the past lost alot of blood, no, I don't hunt).
Dakka Dakka
We know for fact that the process of letting a spirit inhabit a vessel takes hours, and we also know that, if the process is complete, the vessel ceases to exist/is killed. AFAIK there is no mention that this process is painful.

The subject does not even have to know that it will no longer exist when the procedure is done, as it has happenend with the squatters at the Universal Brotherhood IIRC.

Zak
This is a game. Lean back a bit from your personal morals and relax. If you can't do that, please consider it an option other people explore within Shadowrun.

Most things Shadowrunners do are questionable. Capturing someone and using him in a ritual to empower an ally spirit might push some boundaries.
If you do not want to deal with that in-game, noone is forcing you to.

Personally I like the potential. There might even be voluntary targets for this procedure: those of old age, with a terminal illness, working towards a greater goal or who want power they will never get as mundanes.
The idea of using it as an alternative to the death sentence in certain organisations is quite interesting aswell.

But let's think this "voluntary" theme through a bit more. What exactly do we know? If the procedure is successful the spirit gets all the subjects memories and skills. The newly created ally-spirit is under the control of a magician. The rulebook also tells us that the soul is lost.

Not that souls can be measured in any way. So it comes down to personal belief in the existence of souls or lack thereof.
So for a person not believing in souls, turning you into an ally-spirit actually only has one downside: You are under control of some mage.
But you won't get sick anymore. And you will never die of old age. Killing you in general won't be easy anymore. And you get to explore Astral Space. You gain awesome powers.

People sell their lifes for less(to corporations, religions, drugs, etc.)

Sure, there is still this control issue. But if you have an agreement with said mage that he won't abuse his power(which could be reinforced by a third party or shared belief) you are not getting a bad deal.

Neraph
QUOTE (Dakka Dakka @ May 20 2009, 10:05 AM) *
We know for fact that the process of letting a spirit inhabit a vessel takes hours, and we also know that, if the process is complete, the vessel ceases to exist/is killed. AFAIK there is no mention that this process is painful.

The subject does not even have to know that it will no longer exist when the procedure is done, as it has happenend with the squatters at the Universal Brotherhood IIRC.

The vessel doesn't cease to exist (except in the case of a True Form), only the original vessel's personality (except as a "reference sheet" in the case of a Flesh Form).

QUOTE
I think AH has posted elsewhere here that the intended 'norma' use for Inhabitation was in animals. Wish I could find the exact post....

But based on the information presented in SM, I - as a GM - would rule using Inhabitation in that manner would put the magician on the Twisted path.

Are you saying that using Inhabitation on an animal is on the twisted path? Or that using Inhabitation on a person is, but an animal is ok? Those two sentences are confusing, given your wording.

QUOTE
I won't debate this any further. Some people are clearly entrenched in their view, no matter how hopelessly flawed it is. At my table at least, I have the privilege to be able to tell players the way it is.

I'm resisting my natural instinct to tell you how I feel about this (it's not pretty), but instead I'm going to politely inform you that "them's fightin' words". Those three sentences are designed specifically to incite people into a flame war. I would advise against such action in the future, and I would suggest that all the other posters on this thread pretend those last three sentences weren't written.
Pendaric
hmm
Did not mean to kick up a fuss with this. I will try not to re iterate but explain my intent, as most have already covered this ground through play.
To have a monster, you need a definition of one. This is provided by a view point. Change the view point and monsters become heros and vice versa.
SR world has an inherant view point on moral lines where magicains become corrupted/toxic. Thats given.

Now for the charcter,game world and more importantly the players; that moral line is placed by how you like to play and what your exploring. It can be as wide as a universe or so close you cannot see daylight between the 'slightly good' and the 'slightly more bad'. All dictated by your preffered play style and theme.

But it still exists(unless you perpurosly choose to eliminate it) and the corrupted have trespassed over it.

As this thread has shown, what is and what isn't, evil for want of a better word; is subjective.

So you can only really objectively judge it by the internal logic of a belief system the magicain subscribes to, or in some extreme cases what metahumanity thinks of the beliefs of the corrupted.

When you play, believe what the character believes. When you put the character back in the box though, you have to be able to objective. That way you can explore all that moral ambiguity.

Now for a ref, objectivity is key. You have to know where to draw that line, while understanding all the view points to maintain maximum fun.

Hope that was not too preaching to the perv, er converted.
The Jake
I'd be the first to admit that voluntary hosts fall into a grey area. Like euthanasia really.

Re: animal inhabitation -
I was just trying to point out the intented, non-twisted use as I understood it. Personally I think it doesn't matter to the chicken. smile.gif I can't think of a use that isn't twisted.

- J.
HappyDaze
QUOTE
Personally I like the potential. There might even be voluntary targets for this procedure: those of old age, with a terminal illness, working towards a greater goal or who want power they will never get as mundanes.

The use on a terminally ill loved one is fantastic and inspires a great story idea of a magicain that just can't let go. Something along the lines of Wesley's love for Fred transferred to the demonhost Illyria (spelling?) in the Angel TV series - only with a twist of summoning.
The Jake
QUOTE (HappyDaze @ May 21 2009, 02:23 AM) *
The use on a terminally ill loved one is fantastic and inspires a great story idea of a magicain that just can't let go. Something along the lines of Wesley's love for Fred transferred to the demonhost Illyria (spelling?) in the Angel TV series - only with a twist of summoning.


This moral ambiguity is something I (and my players) would find interesting. I'm getting some ideas here....

- J.
Mordinvan
QUOTE (The Jake @ May 20 2009, 03:48 PM) *
I'd be the first to admit that voluntary hosts fall into a grey area. Like euthanasia really.

Re: animal inhabitation -
I was just trying to point out the intented, non-twisted use as I understood it. Personally I think it doesn't matter to the chicken. smile.gif I can't think of a use that isn't twisted.

- J.


Since SR does not permit resurrection, and thus far no mage watching someone die has seen their spirit go anywhere, it at present makes sense to assume metahuman spirits as destroyed at the time of death given the total absence of evidence to the contrary.

Given death causes destruction of the spirit... and inhabitation causes much the same, I can't see an issue with it.
In one case the person's spirit is destroyed, and in the other case.....
I mean really can you tell the difference?
The Jake
QUOTE (Mordinvan @ May 21 2009, 05:10 AM) *
Since SR does not permit resurrection, and thus far no mage watching someone die has seen their spirit go anywhere, it at present makes sense to assume metahuman spirits as destroyed at the time of death given the total absence of evidence to the contrary.

Given death causes destruction of the spirit... and inhabitation causes much the same, I can't see an issue with it.
In one case the person's spirit is destroyed, and in the other case.....
I mean really can you tell the difference?


I agree. That difference is impossible to know, really.

I mean, technically you can try to argue it either way, but by my own reading of the book - based on Inhabitation, Insect Spirits, and the Twisted sidebar in Street Magic, suggests that the soul/spirit/whatever is DESTROYED upon Inhabitation. Not departed, merged or otherwise shunted - DESTROYED.

Not even delving into the subject of the afterlife, the concept of some form of spiritual oblivion on an unwitting host strikes me as horrifyingly evil. I don't see how anyone can argue the contrary.

Ethically, it comes down to whether the host is willing or not. I guess that would make the difference between whether the use of Inhabitation is Twisted or not.

- J.
Mordinvan
QUOTE (The Jake @ May 20 2009, 10:53 PM) *
I mean, technically you can try to argue it either way, but by my own reading of the book - based on Inhabitation, Insect Spirits, and the Twisted sidebar in Street Magic, suggests that the soul/spirit/whatever is DESTROYED upon Inhabitation. Not departed, merged or otherwise shunted - DESTROYED.

Not even delving into the subject of the afterlife, the concept of some form of spiritual oblivion on an unwitting host strikes me as horrifyingly evil. I don't see how anyone can argue the contrary.


The point I am making is there is no evidence that the spiritual oblivion faced by a victim of inhabitation is any different from that face by any other from of death presently available. There is no evidence to suggest people who die of old age/poison/bullets/long falls/car accidents/heart attacks during sex, or any other cause for that matter actually 'depart' to anywhere. If they did it would be very easy for an atrally projecting mage to follow them to whatever metaplane they were headed to. That this hasn't happened yet, is in my opinion a strong indicator that it doesn't happen at all.

My argument is since spiritual oblivion seems to be the end stage of life regardless of the path taken to get there, arguing one road is 10 millions times more immoral then another to people who any well 'extract' seniors out of old age homes, or orphans out of foster care homes to have their brains removed and inserted into drones seems a little 'off' to me.
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