Help - Search - Members - Calendar
Full Version: Survival Tests
Dumpshock Forums > Discussion > Shadowrun
Pages: 1, 2
HappyDaze
I have a run coming up in a toxic wilderness area that is having a terrible storm (high winds, acid rain per Arsenal, and heavy lightning to cause some wireless issues). This sets backdrop and puts some environmental difficulty modifiers (including some areas with rating 1-3 background counts) in play. However, I'm also looking at the Survival rules (SR4A, page 137) and seeing that it can help me put a clock on the run too, reducing the time in area to a few days at best. Essentially, long-term exertion and exposure will start adding up Stun boxes, and I'm OK with that.

However, it does raise some questions:
1) Does each character have to use their own Survival skill (or default to just Willpower - 1)? It looks that way, and I can't seem to find a good way to have a skilled character help out an unskilled character that doesn't actually give them a better dice pool than the trained character.
2) Will a Trauma Damper reduce the Stun damage froma failed Survival check, making the Mild terrain category harmless to someone with it?
3) Would it be fair to say that many of the outfits runner wear - like leather jackets and even the basic armor jacket - fall into the "inappropriate clothing" modifier? They had advanced warning and only a few of them selected wilderness outfits like the camouflage jumpsuit and fatigues. I'd like to reward those that "packed right" for the occasion.

Game in six hours. No rush...
Matsci
QUOTE (HappyDaze @ Aug 13 2009, 07:44 AM) *
I have a run coming up in a toxic wilderness area that is having a terrible storm (high winds, acid rain per Arsenal, and heavy lightning to cause some wireless issues). This sets backdrop and puts some environmental difficulty modifiers (including some areas with rating 1-3 background counts) in play. However, I'm also looking at the Survival rules (SR4A, page 137) and seeing that it can help me put a clock on the run too, reducing the time in area to a few days at best. Essentially, long-term exertion and exposure will start adding up Stun boxes, and I'm OK with that.

However, it does raise some questions:
1) Does each character have to use their own Survival skill (or default to just Willpower - 1)? It looks that way, and I can't seem to find a good way to have a skilled character help out an unskilled character that doesn't actually give them a better dice pool than the trained character.
2) Will a Trauma Damper reduce the Stun damage froma failed Survival check, making the Mild terrain category harmless to someone with it?
3) Would it be fair to say that many of the outfits runner wear - like leather jackets and even the basic armor jacket - fall into the "inappropriate clothing" modifier? They had advanced warning and only a few of them selected wilderness outfits like the camouflage jumpsuit and fatigues. I'd like to reward those that "packed right" for the occasion.

Game in six hours. No rush...


1. Aid another Rules. Player with Survival Rolls, and adds his hits as dice to the poor person who is defaulting.

2. It reduces all stun damage, I beleve.

3. Depents on the eviroment. Leather in a Jungle? Bad idea. Leather in a cold, wet forest? Not so bad idea. Body armor in a desert? Bad idea.
McAllister
1) Make it some kind of teamwork test. Maybe the whole party is "helping" the guy with the most Survival dice, and they can spread the hits around, or maybe the ones with the skill just help the other ones.
2) I'm seeing DV 2S for a Mild terrain category. Does this person have a trauma damper and platelet factories? Anyway, I'd say this "damage" is not resistable by cyber or bioware. It can't be soaked, which is a big indicator, and it has more to do with dehydration and being worn down than blood loss and combat trauma.
3)I'd give a leather jacket -1 and an armour jacket -2. Maybe a good rule of thumb would be inappropriate civilian clothes = -1, armor value equal to or below Body = -2, and armor value above Body = -3. -4 would be for things like wearing a bikini to Antarctica. In the case of a toxic wilderness, I might have anything with Chemical Protection alleviate the Inappropriate Clothing mod. Besides, they could always take the damn stuff off.

Also, I think the endlessly-accumulating Stun boxes is a bit harsh. Maybe net hits over the threshold on subsequent Survival tests should let the characters take off boxes (either one net hit = one box, or two net hits = one box). If you had a bad day and didn't find any water (or just found polluted sludge), you'll feel better if you hit a nice, clear stream the next day, right?
Zaranthan
QUOTE (McAllister @ Aug 13 2009, 10:59 AM) *
Also, I think the endlessly-accumulating Stun boxes is a bit harsh. Maybe net hits over the threshold on subsequent Survival tests should let the characters take off boxes (either one net hit = one box, or two net hits = one box). If you had a bad day and didn't find any water (or just found polluted sludge), you'll feel better if you hit a nice, clear stream the next day, right?

Better now, yes, but you still had 24 hours of stress from dehydration. Your cracked lip doesn't just magically heal because it's wet now. Your foot still throbs from when you got lightheaded and tripped. Your eyes are no longer burning, but they're still sore. Fatigue damage requires REAL rest in civilization to recuperate from. Even magic can't heal it, your body just doesn't have the resources to do what it needs to do.
the_real_elwood
If you want advanced rules for survival tests, check out Target:Wasteland. I believe there's rules in there where one character can make a survival test for a group of people for a certain penalty. It also has guidelines for penalties for things like inappropriate clothing and equipment. It's SR3 rules, but you could adapt it to SR4 for a little more balanced guidelines for survival tests.

And as for inappropriate clothing, synthleathers or an armor jacket aren't necessarily inappropriate for the wilderness, presuming they're appropriate clothes for the climate. Something that's appropriate for the climate of the Seattle 'plex would also be appropriate in the surrounding wilderness in the Salish-Shidhe Council. However, any of your runners who brought along camo clothing should get the bonus for having camoflage appropriate to the environment, and the other runners should be penalized as such. This just wouldn't translate to a penalty on your survival test.
HappyDaze
What about Actioneer Business Clothes?
the_real_elwood
There's a range of penalties you can assess for the character having inappropriate clothing. Trying to survive in the tundra wearing a bikini is the most severe example. If a character is wearing business clothes (which I assume includes dress shoes), and is doing a lot of fairly extreme hiking around the mountains, I might assess a penalty for that. If it's heavily raining and the character doesn't have any waterproof gear, that could be a penalty as well. The rules on it are loose, but if a character is doing a lot of tromping around in the wilderness in business clothes, I might assess a -1 penalty to their survival test. I mean, even Bear Grylls has a nice pair of boots.

But as far as the standard cyberpunk runner outfit of syntleathers, combat boots, and day-glo mohawk, the only penalty I'd assess in a standard forest wilderness condition is for inappropriate camoflage.
Dumori
Heavy military armor with that heating and air con mod from the BBB by by negative modifiers 90% of the time.
HappyDaze
QUOTE
Heavy military armor with that heating and air con mod from the BBB by by negative modifiers 90% of the time.

Yeah, um...

That's nothing like what they've got available to them. Thankfully, the opposition doesn't have any either.
Dumori
How about Light milspec armor? Or tbh any full suite of armor even the urban exploers thigncan be made to cool and heat.
the_real_elwood
Isn't environmental adaption a modification that can be added to any armor?
DuctShuiTengu
QUOTE (Matsci @ Aug 13 2009, 05:54 PM) *
1. Aid another Rules. Player with Survival Rolls, and adds his hits as dice to the poor person who is defaulting.

Bonus dice from teamwork are capped by your skill. Which makes it useless as a way to help a teammate who's defaulting.
Dumori
QUOTE (the_real_elwood @ Aug 13 2009, 08:54 PM) *
Isn't environmental adaption a modification that can be added to any armor?

No only full body armor
Totentanz
QUOTE (Zaranthan @ Aug 13 2009, 10:22 AM) *
Better now, yes, but you still had 24 hours of stress from dehydration. Your cracked lip doesn't just magically heal because it's wet now. Your foot still throbs from when you got lightheaded and tripped. Your eyes are no longer burning, but they're still sore. Fatigue damage requires REAL rest in civilization to recuperate from. Even magic can't heal it, your body just doesn't have the resources to do what it needs to do.


People rest in the outdoors all the time. You think everyone in the world has the benefits of civilization to survive?

Seriously, this is one of those common sense issues that come up in RP games a lot. If the characters pack appropriately, including food, water or water purification, shelter, etc, give them bonuses, or simply ignore the rolls. If they seem unsure what to do, let the character(s) with survival make tests and tell them the appropriate stuff to take. If they run off into your inhospitable wilderness (nice idea for a run, btw) without prepping, feel free to assess penalties based on that.

I've done probably more than my fair share of deep wilderness camping over the years. There are three criteria for clothing in this situation. The first is temperature. Heat exhaustion or hypothermia can kill much faster than dehydration. The second is moisture. If they are facing rainfall or something like a swamp they need to stay dry. People have nearly died of hypothermia in 80 degree weather because there was lots of wind and they were wet. Additionally, moisture breeds disease. The final one is weight. If their clothing is weighing them down while they are having to move over rough terrain, it's going to slow them down and tire them out. The saying is "an ounce in the morning is a pound at night." There is an entire industry focused around providing reliable, light backpacking and extreme sports equipment. If they are out there with a canteen and their best club get-up, it should hurt, at least a bit.

The final consideration is the most important: how do you want to run your game? Is your purpose for the run to demonstrate how mundane things like weather can be a threat even to a sam? If you want to make it about the survival challenge, as so many movies and books have done, feel free to spend a lot of time RP'ing individual decisions with the players. Read up a bit on real-world survival tactics and see how the characters measure up. On the other hand, if you just wanted a different setting for your run, abstract it to a few dice rolls, apply the appropriate bonuses and penalties, and carry on with the run. The only wrong way to handle this is do something your group doesn't enjoy.
Zaranthan
QUOTE (Totentanz @ Aug 13 2009, 09:05 PM) *
People rest in the outdoors all the time. You think everyone in the world has the benefits of civilization to survive?

Intimate knowledge of your local area's flora & fauna and a loyal dog to curl up with at night are a suitable substitute for civilization. If you live in the bush day to day, you've got a lifestyle out there. If you're just visiting, it's a Survival roll, no matter how many episodes of Survivorman you've committed to memory.

QUOTE
Seriously, this is one of those common sense issues that come up in RP games a lot. If the characters pack appropriately, including food, water or water purification, shelter, etc, give them bonuses, or simply ignore the rolls. If they seem unsure what to do, let the character(s) with survival make tests and tell them the appropriate stuff to take. If they run off into your inhospitable wilderness (nice idea for a run, btw) without prepping, feel free to assess penalties based on that.

Fair enough. If they've got appropriate supplies, they don't need to forage (which is the vast majority of what a Survival test represents).

QUOTE
I've done probably more than my fair share of deep wilderness camping over the years. There are three criteria for clothing in this situation. The first is temperature. Heat exhaustion or hypothermia can kill much faster than dehydration. The second is moisture. If they are facing rainfall or something like a swamp they need to stay dry. People have nearly died of hypothermia in 80 degree weather because there was lots of wind and they were wet. Additionally, moisture breeds disease. The final one is weight. If their clothing is weighing them down while they are having to move over rough terrain, it's going to slow them down and tire them out. The saying is "an ounce in the morning is a pound at night." There is an entire industry focused around providing reliable, light backpacking and extreme sports equipment. If they are out there with a canteen and their best club get-up, it should hurt, at least a bit.

Good stuff to keep in mind. My interpretation of the OP was that your last sentence was the most applicable. They had fair warning that they were going to be slogging through a wasteland for several days, but have taken no precautions. They're out there with assault rifles and FFBA instead of a sturdy knife and fire-starting materials.

QUOTE
The final consideration is the most important: how do you want to run your game? Is your purpose for the run to demonstrate how mundane things like weather can be a threat even to a sam? If you want to make it about the survival challenge, as so many movies and books have done, feel free to spend a lot of time RP'ing individual decisions with the players. Read up a bit on real-world survival tactics and see how the characters measure up. On the other hand, if you just wanted a different setting for your run, abstract it to a few dice rolls, apply the appropriate bonuses and penalties, and carry on with the run. The only wrong way to handle this is do something your group doesn't enjoy.

This is, of course, the most important point of any game situation. Personally, I'm trusting HappyDaze's judgment of his table: that the players don't mind the occasional catastrophic obstacle to their survival, and facing down Mother Nature is a refreshing change of pace from cyberzombies and HTR teams. Good advice in this paragraph, to be sure.
HappyDaze
QUOTE
Personally, I'm trusting HappyDaze's judgment of his table

You really shouldn't have - I killed the game tonight. Not because of the issues of this post, but because I've found myself disliking more of the SR rules than I like. Too many broken bits in a system that has very poor game balance and a combat system that takes way to long to resolve. I'm looking for something rules-light right now becasue SR has sure driven me away from clunky-ass old relic games that have a modifier for every thing and dozens of mini-systems within the rules.
McAllister
I'm sorry to hear, that, HappyDaze. What sort of rules-light system might you have in mind?
Totentanz
QUOTE (Zaranthan)
Intimate knowledge of your local area's flora & fauna and a loyal dog to curl up with at night are a suitable substitute for civilization. If you live in the bush day to day, you've got a lifestyle out there. If you're just visiting, it's a Survival roll, no matter how many episodes of Survivorman you've committed to memory.


You have a point. I guess I was thinking that the survival ability would help with the actual knowledge. However, if they don't prepare, all the knowledge in the world won't help.

I agree completely that having Nature be the challenge instead of cyberzombies is a great change of pace. Sometimes it is little things like this in games that brings home the mortality of PC's.

However, I don't need to watch Discovery shows, I've done it myself. : )


HappyDaze:
I'm sorry to hear that. SR is definitely a complex system. Like McAllister, I'd like to know which, if any, systems appeal to you.

Also, don't forget you can streamline the rules. There is nothing wrong with simply house-ruling certain mini-games out and replacing them with lighter mechanics. Were there any systems in particular that frustrated you?
HappyDaze
QUOTE
Were there any systems in particular that frustrated you?

Let's start with a three-roll combat system (roll to hit, roll to avoid being hit, roll to avoid damage) with each roll adjusted for numerous modifiers. Then let's add in all the crap that requires more rolls (stick-n-shock, toxins, white phosphorus, etc.) that my players seem to love.

Let's also talk about the silly-fast 3 second combat round and the terrible IP system. Even non-augments go way too fast unless everyone (like the stuffer shack vendor) is in ice-cold spec-ops badass fully prepared for combat 24/7. Sure, you can gimp the NPCs and say they're unprepared, but try gimping the PCs (I've never seen one of them actually turn their wired reflexes off) and see what happens. Anything not in the immediate vicienity of combat will never get there in time to matter - if your PCs have 3 minutes to get in and out, that's an eternity with the SR rules. I find that really limiting, and any fight with any numbers (5 PCs vs. 10 cram-heads) takes forever in realtime to resove a six-second fight!

Modifiers - there's a fucking modifier for everything, and sometimes there's multiple modifiers for the same thing (I'm shooting in melee -3, but I'm point blank +2). Yes there is the whole eyeballing modiers bit, but really a -4 when the guy has a poolf of 15 dice doesn't fucking matter all that much. Modifiers just screw the people that don't min-max.

Fighting is better than sneaking - often sneaking gets totally fucked by a singel bad roll, and if that's the cae, the one to shoot first usually wins. So the PCs often jut decide to shoot without sneaking. Mechanically, it's often the smart choice regardless of what the setting tries to tell us. Sure, as a GM I can always send in more forces to eliminate them, but 'bigger hammer' isn't my idea of fun.

Vehicle combat. There's a whole section on it and a few archetypes that depend on it. Beyond that, almost everyone drives at some point. And the rules are terrible.

The matrix. I WANT the matrix to be important. If I didn't, I wouldn't (and now don't) play SR. No one wants to learn it because of the complexity. No one wants to play it because it interferes with their purile fun of shooting people in the face. I don't end up wanting to run it because no one will know the system (I already had to hand hold the magician's player through the magic system).

Wildly imbalanced crap - like possession/channeling, and some of the more broken martial arts tricks. I'll also throw in scene-breaking crap like the Radar Sensor (too many things can go to crap if the PCs can just see through walls - and very few people have radar jammers as standard), and some of the 'I Win' spells (Mind Control, etc.) and Critter powers (Fear). I usually try to shy away from using these things as a GM, but when you've got a PC build around possession...

Fiddly bits of gear are just too important. Often they overshadow the abilities of the character. Sure, it may be a feature for some, or a genre bit, but I don't like it. It's alos here that many of the game-breakers can hide. I already mentioned Stick-N-Shock, toxins, and some of the chemicals out there (I've seen the "freeze foam - I win" trick). My players took to muchkin stuff like flies on shit (only one of them ever used regular ammo, and everyone looked at him funny the one time he did). Rating 4 power focus at character gen, check...

Putting it all together is a bitch. Too much prep time goes into every session. Between the modifers, the fiddly bits of gear, checking on how the rules interact with this or that other obscure rule... It's a waste of my time. I don't mind spending a few hours prepping for a session - but I want most of it to be creative time planning possibilities for the adventure - instead, most of it becomes 'homework' checking on the rules for various shit.

OK, fuck it, I'm done. I think I'm ready to play something like Cortex, D6, Savage Worlds, Ubiquity, or Unisystem for my gaming right now.
Totentanz
Based on what you've said, I have to agree that the system might not be right for you. Good luck on your other gaming adventures.
Zaranthan
Okay, I'm going to omnislash your post. Not because I want to start a flame war, not to pick on you, but because I feel SR4(A) is a good system and you sound infuriated with its quirks (a little) and your players (a lot). I'll try to address each core problem with equal attention.

QUOTE (HappyDaze @ Aug 14 2009, 05:44 PM) *
Let's start with a three-roll combat system (roll to hit, roll to avoid being hit, roll to avoid damage) with each roll adjusted for numerous modifiers. Then let's add in all the crap that requires more rolls (stick-n-shock, toxins, white phosphorus, etc.) that my players seem to love.

Combat can be clumsy, but modifiers don't change much. Surprise round: you figure ranges, lighting, available cover, and assume everyone involved moves to take advantage of the situation (their lives ARE in danger, after all). Any alterations will be announced, such as throwing a smoke grenade, shooting out the lights, or flipping over a table. If your players are using battlefield modifiers and extra-rule gear every IP, then you're running some pretty hardcore combat and should expect to spend most of the table time figuring out who's getting shot and how hard. If you don't want to run a wargame...I'll sum this point up at the end. Assume I attach these two sentences to each paragraph.

QUOTE
Let's also talk about the silly-fast 3 second combat round and the terrible IP system. Even non-augments go way too fast unless everyone (like the stuffer shack vendor) is in ice-cold spec-ops badass fully prepared for combat 24/7. Sure, you can gimp the NPCs and say they're unprepared, but try gimping the PCs (I've never seen one of them actually turn their wired reflexes off) and see what happens. Anything not in the immediate vicienity of combat will never get there in time to matter - if your PCs have 3 minutes to get in and out, that's an eternity with the SR rules. I find that really limiting, and any fight with any numbers (5 PCs vs. 10 cram-heads) takes forever in realtime to resove a six-second fight!

Non-rhetorical question: have you ever been in a firefight? Have you ever been shot at? Three seconds is a long fucking time when a dozen people with automatic weapons start trying to kill each other. To gimp the PCs, give them social penalties for spilling their drinks when they leave their Wired' on. Make NPCs as suspicious as the PCs when they want to keep their backs to the wall and eyes on the exits while trying not to draw attention. You've got the timescale right for combat vs. response time, but remote response isn't supposed to end combat, it's to drive the PCs. I'll get back to this.

QUOTE
Modifiers - there's a fucking modifier for everything, and sometimes there's multiple modifiers for the same thing (I'm shooting in melee -3, but I'm point blank +2). Yes there is the whole eyeballing modiers bit, but really a -4 when the guy has a poolf of 15 dice doesn't fucking matter all that much. Modifiers just screw the people that don't min-max.

I'm with you here: there are a LOT of modifiers, but you don't seem to appreciate their impact. If I'm throwing 15 dice at somebody, that's 5 Agi + 5 Automatics + 2 Specialization + 2 Smartlink + 1 Reflex Recorder. Pretty damn minmaxed. I'm either shooting at a security guard with 7 dice (Reaction 4 + Dodge 3) or a High-Threat Response Sergeant with 7 dice (Augmented Reaction 7, plus he's shooting back). I'm expecting 2-3 net hits. If my pool is reduced to 11, I'm only expecting 1 hit, maybe 2. Modifiers matter, even to the minmaxed.

QUOTE
Fighting is better than sneaking - often sneaking gets totally fucked by a singel bad roll, and if that's the cae, the one to shoot first usually wins. So the PCs often jut decide to shoot without sneaking. Mechanically, it's often the smart choice regardless of what the setting tries to tell us. Sure, as a GM I can always send in more forces to eliminate them, but 'bigger hammer' isn't my idea of fun.

Alarms should cost the players more than a few bullets. Doors should seal, security drones should be deployed, entire building wings should be locked down (specifically, the one the players are in or need to get in). If you don't want to send the HTR teams, why should the players worry about them?

QUOTE
Vehicle combat. There's a whole section on it and a few archetypes that depend on it. Beyond that, almost everyone drives at some point. And the rules are terrible.

You're not saying what you don't like here, so I can only give generic advice. Vehicle rigging is a spotlight encounter, and SR's core M.O. is a rotating spotlight. You let a good car chase happen now & then to give the rigger a chance to show off his tricked out van, and occasionally make one of the non-riggers handle their bike to make them appreciate having the rigger around, but it's probably not going to be a central campaign gimmick.

QUOTE
The matrix. I WANT the matrix to be important. If I didn't, I wouldn't (and now don't) play SR. No one wants to learn it because of the complexity. No one wants to play it because it interferes with their purile fun of shooting people in the face. I don't end up wanting to run it because no one will know the system (I already had to hand hold the magician's player through the magic system).

No system advice for this one, pure player problem. If your players have sent you a clear message that they don't want to play that part of the game, then downplay it. You should be having fun, but not at everyone else's expense. If they don't care what their firewall rating is, or how to break encryption, or what a Crack sprite can do to their cyberarms, then handwave it. The Matrix can be important as a plot device if nobody wants to handle the details. Make someone take a good hacker contact, and charge them through the nose to have their hands held. There's a very good write-up of an entire run through a corp residential enclave where the team's matrix support was provided 100% by a contact whom they had to offer an equal share of the pay. It works.

QUOTE
Wildly imbalanced crap - like possession/channeling, and some of the more broken martial arts tricks. I'll also throw in scene-breaking crap like the Radar Sensor (too many things can go to crap if the PCs can just see through walls - and very few people have radar jammers as standard), and some of the 'I Win' spells (Mind Control, etc.) and Critter powers (Fear). I usually try to shy away from using these things as a GM, but when you've got a PC build around possession...

Possession isn't the end of the world like everyone seems to think it is. Read the rules again (I know you're sick from walking the mage through them, but you ARE the referee), find the weak points. Background counts, wards, punks with Aptitude: Banishing, and as always: shooting the mage right in the damn face are all good ways to show a Shedim that they're not gods. If the players have cyber-radar and powerful spirits with Fear, they should be sent into installations that can handle radar scanners and paracritters. Otherwise, you're just not offering them a proper challenge.

QUOTE
Fiddly bits of gear are just too important. Often they overshadow the abilities of the character. Sure, it may be a feature for some, or a genre bit, but I don't like it. It's alos here that many of the game-breakers can hide. I already mentioned Stick-N-Shock, toxins, and some of the chemicals out there (I've seen the "freeze foam - I win" trick). My players took to muchkin stuff like flies on shit (only one of them ever used regular ammo, and everyone looked at him funny the one time he did). Rating 4 power focus at character gen, check...

If they want to play hardball, then don't let them crowd the plate. A sammie with stick & shock should be shooting at insulated targets. A mage with a R4 power focus should need it to beat the enemy's Counterspelling. SR is eggshells and hammers. Don't let the players face eggshells with squeaky mallets.

QUOTE
Putting it all together is a bitch. Too much prep time goes into every session. Between the modifers, the fiddly bits of gear, checking on how the rules interact with this or that other obscure rule... It's a waste of my time. I don't mind spending a few hours prepping for a session - but I want most of it to be creative time planning possibilities for the adventure - instead, most of it becomes 'homework' checking on the rules for various shit.

OK, fuck it, I'm done. I think I'm ready to play something like Cortex, D6, Savage Worlds, Ubiquity, or Unisystem for my gaming right now.

This is all you, brother. If you don't want to play the game, then nobody can help you enjoy it. SR is a game of modifiers, fiddly bits, and on-the-fly rule interaction GM calls. SR4 is amazingly simple when it comes to off-the-cuff rulings.

I said I'd come back to the wargaming thing: your players sound like they want to shoot people in the face for money, get paid, and throw parties. If this isn't what you want, then you need to sit down with them and find a middle ground. I'm assuming your players are your friends (most face-to-face groups are), so they should be understanding. You have a right to have fun while playing a game.
HappyDaze
QUOTE
This is all you, brother. If you don't want to play the game, then nobody can help you enjoy it. SR is a game of modifiers, fiddly bits, and on-the-fly rule interaction GM calls. SR4 is amazingly simple when it comes to off-the-cuff rulings.

Too often the on-the-fly calls are contradicted by some fiddly-shit rule that the rules-lawyers will pull out. This game breeds them - look to these forums alone to see rules-lawyering to the Nth degree. As a GM, I can either let them trample my fun, or I can rail against the rules and trample theirs. Either way, someone loses.

QUOTE
If they want to play hardball, then don't let them crowd the plate. A sammie with stick & shock should be shooting at insulated targets. A mage with a R4 power focus should need it to beat the enemy's Counterspelling.

Escalation - got it. An arms race is your answer? And what about the players that don't gravitate to munchy power-gaming? Do we want to push them there too? Oh, yeah... we're on Dumpshock, so the answer has got to be YES to that one...

QUOTE
I feel SR4(A) is a good system and you sound infuriated with its quirks (a little) and your players (a lot).

I feel that playing with the SR4/SR4A ruleset is a chore that detracts from my enjoyment of the game and also encourages players to be min-maxing rules-lawyes even if that's not their normal playing style. Yes, I do blame much of the munchy crap my players do on whifs of shit Dumpshock has brought to their noses.
Totentanz
Zaran: Your analysis is astute, and your efforts laudable.

HappyDaze:

You need to have a Come to Jesus Meeting with your players. Explain to them your issues with the game as it stands. If you are honest without being accusatory maybe they will hear you and you can work something out.

This isn't really about SR anymore. It's about you and your group not gelling in terms of the game you want to play. People have different styles. If you aren't cut out to be their GM, cool. If they aren't cut out to be your players, also cool. If SR isn't cut out to be your system, completely cool. What isn't cool is not having fun at your hobby because of these issues. Handle the issues, or walk away.

QUOTE (HappyDaze)
Yes, I do blame much of the munchy crap my players do on whifs of shit Dumpshock has brought to their noses.


If you don't like the forum and the game, then just leave. Nobody likes a troll. Quit blaming your crappy gaming experience on a forum and a system. The only person responsible for your fun is you.

HappyDaze
QUOTE
You need to have a Come to Jesus Meeting with your players. Explain to them your issues with the game as it stands. If you are honest without being accusatory maybe they will hear you and you can work something out. .... What isn't cool is not having fun at your hobby because of these issues. Handle the issues, or walk away.

We might work something out on our own, without feebly turning to a figure from Christian mythology. And while our solution might use the SR setting, if it's to include me, then it certainly won't be run with any edition of the SR ruleset.

QUOTE
If you don't like the forum and the game, then just leave. Nobody likes a troll. Quit blaming your crappy gaming experience on a forum and a system. The only person responsible for your fun is you.

So I'm now a troll when I don't like the system? I'll lay blame where I like, and if you don't like it Tote, don't bother to reply (just a reminder, you can add me to your ignore list if you like). I can come here and tell people that the SR4 game is a steaming pile of crap just as others here can and will continue sing its praises. The fact that I've played and run with the system for years - and tried hard to make it work - means I'm not just trolling. As for the forum, look at how many threads are all about abusive over-the-top specializing. Look at how many encourage total min-maxing. Look at how few encourage suboptimal choices for the sake of characterization. Face it, while there might be exceptions, Dumpshockers as a whole post as min-max munchkins.

By the way Tote, do you really believe that encouraging a player/GM arms race that only pushes the moderate players into the camp of the min-max munchkins is "astute advice"?
Falconer
Happy... basically, if you don't like the game you don't. There's little reason to keep posting. The only reason to keep posting is because you want to be A. a troll or B. convinced otherwise.


I think your bigger problem is with rules lawyers and that you need to have everything down exactly right. As far as 4th ed goes... it's a huge change on 2 and 3e... where you not only had to keep in mind if something changed the size of the dice pool, but also which mods changed the target number (is it a 3 or is it a 5 or is it a 9. (roll a 6, roll another d6 and get a 3 or better). In SR4 the TN is always blessedly 5.

Also activity on forums is NOT a good analogue for activity in games. In game, while I'll sometimes make a quick dissention from a spot call and give a fast argument. I don't let it stop the game for more than 30s, and always make it clear to keep the game flowing. On a forum like this, there's lots of time to look at rules, and theorycraft. In fact, the theorycrafting is some of the fun of the system to some dumpshockers.


While I'm not immune to sometimes asking the GM are you sure how that works. I almost always immediately follow it with, run it as you see fit to keep the game moving. (Rule 0). In your case, it basically comes down to, it sounds like you need fast play rules. In which case, I suggest you sit down with the book, work out which pool modifiers you're going to keep (both positive and negative). Then hand it to your players and tell them for sake of keeping things running smoothly, I'm limiting the dice pool mods to this quick reference card. Plus/minus any relevant situational bonus/penalty as the GM sees fit.


Quite frankly... in SR. Magic always has been powerful. It's one of the driving plot elements. Oh crap, we've gotten set in our ways... we had a nice established order, then magic comes and gums up the works with it's reemergence. What do we do now, and how do we deal with it. Generally the best way to handle that is to A. keep it reasonably powerful (don't nerf it into the ground), but B. make sure mundanes can still recourse to 'heavy weapons' if a force 7 or 8 spirit comes out to play. (EG: spirits aren't invulnerable... they're magical creatures w/ their own, if diffferent, sets of strengths and weaknesses. called shots for damage work... ItNW doesn't stack... etc. etc. etc. All of which are strictly RAW btw and aren't houseruling. The bigger problem I see is people try and explain 'how' for fluff, then make house rules counter to the RAW then complain that it's broken)
McAllister
I for one don't know HappyDaze from Adam, but I come to this forum to see people's opinions, and his are just as valid as anyone else's. For example, I'm interested in why his experiences have been unsatisfying (and I get the conclusion it's a combination of the rules and his players, neither entirely one nor entirely the other), although he's stated that pretty conclusively; I'd also be interested to hear what makes "Cortex, D6, Savage Worlds, Ubiquity, or Unisystem" better, because I have no personal experience with any of them.

Nothin' against y'all, Totentanz and Falconer, I just feel like since he's not being a troll, there's no reason to tell him to leave. He clearly wants to talk about Shadowrun, or he'd've stopped posting already.

And HappyDaze... my two cents would be to take a break from Shadowrun. Don't forswear it forever, but if you're seeing the negatives more than the positives, you'll be better off doing something else for a bit.
HappyDaze
QUOTE
I'd also be interested to hear what makes "Cortex, D6, Savage Worlds, Ubiquity, or Unisystem" better, because I have no personal experience with any of them.

Speaking of Cortex and Savage Worlds mainly - although Unisystem falls into this as well - the first major thing is that your 'dice pool' never changes. In Cortex, if you have Agility d8 and Rifles d8 then you'll almost always roll d8+d8 for shooting a rifle. The modifiers will adjust the difficulty number that your roll has to add up to for success. In Savage Worlds, your Shooting skill of d8 is accompanied by the d6 that all Wild Cards (PCs and important NPCs) get to roll. You only take the higher rolling of the two dice (with max resluts on a die exploding) and compare that die to a target number - usually 4, but adjusted for difficulty. Either way, the player never has to ask "How many dice do I roll?" - which IME is a bitch for newer players to juggle. You still get the, "What is my target number?" question, but this is no different than "How many hits do I need?" As a result, the complexity of every dice roll in the game is cut in half, and not having to recalculate dice pools constantly cuts down on wasted table time quite a bit.

Secondly, equipment and other fiddly bits are far less important and don't alter your dice rolls much (if at all). Your character's personal traits tends to matter much more than the equipment carried/worn. Things like cyberware are a part of your character not gear, and are treated as such. If you have 'ware that increases your shooting ability, it adds directly to the appropriate stats - you never have to worry if it's a dice pool modifier vs. and increased rating or any such cumbersome (and argued) crap.
Totentanz
QUOTE (HappyDaze @ Aug 15 2009, 04:19 AM) *
We might work something out on our own, without feebly turning to a figure from Christian mythology. And while our solution might use the SR setting, if it's to include me, then it certainly won't be run with any edition of the SR ruleset.


I'm sorry you aren't familiar with the term "Come to Jesus Meeting." You are entitled to not use the system, but I hardly see ragging on the systems, this forum, the members of this forum, and your players as productive.

QUOTE (happydaze)
So I'm now a troll when I don't like the system? I'll lay blame where I like, and if you don't like it Tote, don't bother to reply (just a reminder, you can add me to your ignore list if you like). I can come here and tell people that the SR4 game is a steaming pile of crap just as others here can and will continue sing its praises. The fact that I've played and run with the system for years - and tried hard to make it work - means I'm not just trolling. As for the forum, look at how many threads are all about abusive over-the-top specializing. Look at how many encourage total min-maxing. Look at how few encourage suboptimal choices for the sake of characterization. Face it, while there might be exceptions, Dumpshockers as a whole post as min-max munchkins.

By the way Tote, do you really believe that encouraging a player/GM arms race that only pushes the moderate players into the camp of the min-max munchkins is "astute advice"?


You can certainly lay blame where you like. However, heaping insult upon insult onto the people who started helping you is trolling. Moreover, blaming the forum and the system still doesn't solve your core problem, which is that you and your players are at odds over play style. You can blame Dumpshock and the system, but the only people responsible for your game not going well are you and your players. My comment about blame was an attempt to help you realize the solution to your problem isn't complaining here.

Bitching about your players on a forum they read isn't going to help you, either.

I think Zaran's advice wasn't an arms race. He was advising to you to put forth the same effort your players do, or at least to talk to them and gain some kind of understanding.

Anyway, I'm done. You have fun.

McAllister: Trolls have opinions too.
McAllister
Totentanz: I don't think that was a jab at me, so I'm just going to assume it wasn't.

HappyDaze: yeah, now that you mention it, SR's system of modifiers is probably even worse than D&D's. At least with D&D, every modifier is pretty clearly labeled, stacking is intuitive and there are no arbitrary caps on stats or rolls to track (maybe there should be, but that's a different story). And what the hell's the deal with optional rules? It's almost like they're there just so people can argue what the Founding Fathers really meant when the designed the game.

It's been awhile since I played World of Darkness, but it sounds like it might appeal to you. Combat is all one uncontested roll (defensive modifiers take away dice from the attack) and there is if anything a lack of fiddly bits. Are you familiar?
HappyDaze
I'm somewhat familiar with WoD. Mainly the old WoD line, but I've looked at the new ones (mainly Changeling and Promethean) a few times. Mechanically, it's much cleaner than the SR4A system, but it still uses variable dice pools - something I'm a bit soured on at the moment. Most of my group is quite favorable to various WoD games, but I'm the exception as I don't really care for the setting and story elements of most WW games (the built-in angst and counter-heroism elements). It's also a system that doesn't really appear to let non-supernatural creatures to accomplish much in the cinematic range, and I certainly don't want to be in a a gritty game (which some of my players DO like).

I agree that SR has way too many optional rules. Every week I had a few questions of wheher or not we were going to use this ruling or that option, and it's hard to predict how all of the various optional rules are going to interact with all of the other fiddly bits in the various books. I even become suspicious of player motives and had to start prefacing every answer with "Why does it matter to you?" or, "Tell me, how will this interact with what you're trying to do again?" Towards the end of the game, I had to start making rulings that I didn't like (in the direction that didn't make the best sense) just to prevent rampant abuse of the rules.

FWIW, I consider D&D3.5 to be a PITA only a bit less aggravating than SR4A, and I'll never play or run it again. IME, D&D4E is a fun tabletop skirmish system with a hint of RP to it, but I have't found it to satisfy my needs for roleplaying. Still, I'll gladly slap minis on the table for a fun skirmish before I delve into either D&D3.5 or SR4A again.
HappyDaze
QUOTE
Bitching about your players on a forum they read isn't going to help you, either.

I'm not bitching about my players. I am bitching about some of the actions/decisions those players have taken/made and the game system that encourages them to go there. There's a difference, and I've already aired my frustrations with them face-to-face at the end of the last session. I'm a pretty straigh-up guy, and what they might read here is no different - though perhaps more detailed out - than what I've already said to them.

As for posting here not helping me - you're simply wrong. I'm getting some positive feed back back from at least one other poster, and blowing off steam in a non-destructive way (nobody gets hurt and nothing gets damaged) is great for anger management.
Falconer
And I find DnD4e to be a complete and utter system w/ no depth whatsoever. With incredibly boring gameplay and very formulaic fights since everyone is a one trick pony. It's that last bit which I really don't like... everyone's a one trick poney... here's my VERY limited set of attack tricks.. in what order do I play the cards.

Look a fight... I use an enocunter power... I use my other encounter power... is it bloody/dead yet? Bloody - yes, okay we at-will it to death. No - okay who bites it and uses a daily on it.

Suitable system for DnD mini's... absolutely lousy for an RPG. (oh wait, they killed DnD minis... and remade it in book form)


McAllister: disagree strongly... stacking in DnD is a pain. And even MORE prone to abuse... And 4e has also been adding it again, with more and more feats not done as 'feat bonuses' but as untyped bonuses. DnD itself is NOT a skill-centric system and skill checks aren't the norm and aren't used to resolve combat (where most mods lie... EG: melee, partial cover, prone, entangled, nauseated, etc. etc. etc.). 3/3.5e can be very bad on this score as well. How much damage do I do... +3 str... +1weapon... wait bane +2 +2d6 more... and the bard is doing something.... again and again... by the time you're done you're adding 6 different numbers from 7 different sources just to puzzle out one your attack bonus right at the moment, and your damage. This got especially bad when spellcasters (especially buffers) come into play.




If that kind of mind-numbing simplicity is your preferred venue, then shadowrun of any stripe isn't for you.

As far as your other comment... it's easy to roll these dice, then keep adjusting the TN's up & down... it's no different than you have X dice, now add or remove Y. The only problem is you're familiar w/ one, and not with the other. Or you haven't distilled down the pools to something you're comfortable with. (hence why I suggested getting a quick ref of pool mods you'll stick with). If you started playing, and allowed expanded rules at the same time. You are a glutton for punishment. Then your other system, complicates it even more by introducing dice of different sizes, changing the question from 'how many d6's?" to "what kind, what is my TN, AND how many do I roll?".

At the end of the day, all dice rolling methods are simply statistical distributions.


As far as the rest... you're sounding like you're overwhelmed w/ shadowrun. You should tell your players no optional rules whatsoever. No expansion books. Stick w/ the BBB until you are familiar and comfortable w/ the system. Adding too much, and ESPECIALLY adding optional rules w/o understanding what they change is a bad move and will quickly make things miserable in any system.
McAllister
Falconer: I get the impression that HappyDaze is fairly familiar with the system; the problem is that his players are too. Limiting the game to the BBB (what the hell does that stand for, anyway?) would probably help, though. Dunkie knows Arsenal is the fiddlybitstm catalogue.

Also, I feel like I was unclear with regards to my stance on D&D modifiers. They're prone to abuse the same way a hooker is prone to getting banged. The things I LIKE about them are the stacking (armor; I've got my deflection bonus, my enhancement bonus, and my holy/profane bonus -- no others need apply) and the intuitiveness (if I were lying on the ground puking my guts out and covered in vines, I'd be a pretty easy target!). It's true that there are likely to be 5-10 modifiers to any roll that's important, but hey, they have space on the character sheet to list them and add them up for a reason.

I also agree with the general consensus that where 3.Xe was a convoluted RPG with 8,000,000,000 rules for combat, 4e is simply a streamlined skirmish game.

HappyDaze: I wish WoD didn't have the haze of angst hanging about it that it does, but it does. I mean, for cryin' out loud (or alone in a corner), every supernatural creature has a built-in tragic flaw that it usually spends its days trying to cope with. It's also the game of choice of conspiracy theorists. It's just that, if you ignore the players, the fluff is great.

Also, I tried to do some research into Cortex, but had trouble finding anything about the universe. It seems to be a family of related systems which prominently features rules for a Serenity RPG, judging by what little I absorbed from the Wikipedia article. Is there a good PDF floating around that might introduce me to it well?

Finally... All Flesh Must Be Eaten... where can I find a group?
HappyDaze
QUOTE
As far as your other comment... it's easy to roll these dice, then keep adjusting the TN's up & down... it's no different than you have X dice, now add or remove Y.

That's not how I see it, and at least one of my players agrees - she hates dice pool systems. Call it a personal preference, but once the dice pools get large - and min-maxers will make sure that happens sooner rather than later - dice pools get cumbersome.
QUOTE
The only problem is you're familiar w/ one, and not with the other.

Poor assumption. I'm familiar with both.
QUOTE
Or you haven't distilled down the pools to something you're comfortable with. (hence why I suggested getting a quick ref of pool mods you'll stick with).

Wrong. I'm familiar with them, I just hate the adding and subtracting of dice - even the physical act of having to move them into and out of my hand is an annoyance. Watching others have to do the same thing is a PITA too.
QUOTE
If you started playing, and allowed expanded rules at the same time. You are a glutton for punishment.

Everone that 'started playing' in our group has at least some familiarity with SR4. Some of us are quite good with the rules, which is not always a benefit to the gaming experience.
QUOTE
Then your other system, complicates it even more by introducing dice of different sizes, changing the question from 'how many d6's?" to "what kind, what is my TN, AND how many do I roll?".

You look at the sheet. It tells you directly. You just don't have to manually adjust your pool every fucking time you roll. And adding a pair of numbers is faster for most people than sorting through 20 rolled dice for 5s and 6s.
QUOTE
I get the impression that HappyDaze is fairly familiar with the system

Yes, I am quite familiar with the system. The good, the bad, and all of the ugly.
QUOTE
Also, I tried to do some research into Cortex, but had trouble finding anything about the universe.

Cortex is a system without an integral setting. You can use the ruleset for many types of games, but the scale is pretty-well defined as being centered on handling humans rather than superhumans. It's good for playing anything up to Indiana Jones and even Rambo, but not for Wolverine or Neo. There are sourcebooks for Serenity, Supernatural, and Battlestar Galactica that all have the Cortex system mechanics, but you can also purchase the Cortex System rulebook by itself (and you get a free PDF with your purchase). For other settings that would convert well to it, I'd suggest the old Shatterzone game by WEG, and Alternity by TSR.

Savage Worlds is also a system that is not tied to a setting. It has more support than Cortex with a number of different premade settings you can purchase. It's lighter on rules than Cortex with less detail in some areas, but even faster play. Each world has a few variant rules particular to the setting, but these are usually no more than 2-3 pages in length. Deadlands is perhaps the most popular of the settings, but there's also the Savage World of Solomon Kane out there if you want to buy a big book that has the full rules built in.
The Jake
QUOTE (HappyDaze @ Aug 13 2009, 05:11 PM) *
What about Actioneer Business Clothes?


Oh dear god no...

- J.
Crusher Bob
Cain might have some notes on Shadowrun using Savage Worlds. I'm not sure if he's still around here, but he's still active at rpg.net.
Mx
QUOTE (HappyDaze @ Aug 16 2009, 11:28 AM) *
Wrong. I'm familiar with them, I just hate the adding and subtracting of dice - even the physical act of having to move them into and out of my hand is an annoyance. Watching others have to do the same thing is a PITA too.

wobble.gif wobble.gif
Why would you ever do that, there's no reason for for moving dice in and out of your hand, thats totally pointless.
First you figure the diepool size, then you pick-up the dices.
DWC
QUOTE (Mäx @ Aug 17 2009, 03:58 AM) *
wobble.gif wobble.gif
Why would you ever do that, there's no reason for for moving dice in and out of your hand, thats totally pointless.
First you figure the diepool size, then you pick-up the dices.


I have no earthly idea why, but I got into the habit of doing the manual addition and subtraction of dice from my hand. Build the pool up as high as you can, drop dice for any applicable penalties, check to make sure it's not over the 2*(Attribute+Skill) cap, drop dice if over the cap, roll.
HappyDaze
QUOTE
Why would you ever do that, there's no reason for for moving dice in and out of your hand, thats totally pointless.
First you figure the diepool size, then you pick-up the dices.

Often the players would grab up the base pool and then start throwing in and pulling out dice to account for modifiers. Sometimes I'd ask them if they accounted for a certain modifier before they rolled but while the dice mass was in their hands. Likewise, sometimes they'd remind me of some fiddly bit that thye had put in play that affects dice pools. Everyone was wanting to roll the dice and the tedium of accounting for all of the modifiers meant that sometimes the dice were in hand faster than the modifers could be applied.
Mx
QUOTE (HappyDaze @ Aug 17 2009, 07:21 PM) *
Often the players would grab up the base pool and then start throwing in and pulling out dice to account for modifiers. Sometimes I'd ask them if they accounted for a certain modifier before they rolled but while the dice mass was in their hands. Likewise, sometimes they'd remind me of some fiddly bit that thye had put in play that affects dice pools. Everyone was wanting to roll the dice and the tedium of accounting for all of the modifiers meant that sometimes the dice were in hand faster than the modifers could be applied.

Oh okey, your post just made it sound like you do that allways and that just seemed stupid to me.
the_real_elwood
I haven't played D&D 4E (like others have stated, it just seems like a terrible system to me, where everyone does the same basic thing but with different fluff descriptions), but modifiers in D&D 3E were hardly intuitive. Maybe if you were just playing with the PHB it was, but if you account for all the supplements, there were so many different types of modifiers, it was insane.

Shadowrun isn't quite so rules-heavy, and for a lot of things (like survival tests), it's best to get some general guidelines and then let the GM use those to make up a modifier that seems appropriate.
Shinxy
Listen:

Munchkin players getting you down?

Lower point value at chargen to 350 and cap availability at 8. It's done WONDERS for my game. The SR system scales much better when dice pools are in the 8-10 range. Higher than that and the system is broken from a realism perspective.

EDIT: But it sounds to me like you're playing with some immature kids and you should RP with someone else. You're going to see the same problems in any system if your players are intent on powergaming.

If you're unwilling to ditch these players and they get their jollies from shooting people in the face and making characters with implausible power levels... switch to RIFTS and be done with it.
Ravor
Try playing a low dicepool game before you give up on the system as a whole. Also it might help your players to write the standard dice pool mod on a note card and handle the persoal modifers on top of that.
HappyDaze
QUOTE
Try playing a low dicepool game before you give up on the system as a whole.

I still have to ask "Why?" when there are systems out there I trust much more to remain balanced without having to play with guardrails up. There's really nothing about SR's mechanics that make them necessary for playing SR. If the mechanics were a girl, SR's rules would be a cheating slut - and why stick with the cheating slut and hoping she'll change her ways when there are plenty of other choices out there?

I tend to like game systems that I can just allow the players to make their characters with minimal oversight (some would say interference) from the GM and yet I can still feel that their characters will be reasonabley balanced with one another and the expectations of the GM. SR (and D&D3.5, btw) don't qualify here. Neither do systems like HERO or GURPS where the experienced player can really twist things to their advantage over the newer player. This is an advantage of streamlined systems with less fiddly bits, and it's a place that you can't take the SR4 rules without trimming so much from them that what you have left compares to the original like Michael Jackson's 2008 nose resembles what he had in 1988. And if you're cutting so much, why stick with it?
Ravor
*Shrugs* Because the game actually runs quite smoothly at lower dicepools, but if you are determined to hate Fourth Edition than by all means, use whatever system you feel comfortable with.





HappyDaze
QUOTE
*Shrugs* Because the game actually runs quite smoothly at lower dicepools

So basically you're syaing that the mechanics have poor resilience. Taking them out and pushing them a bit results in a system failure. I wouldn't want to drive a car that performed that way, and I'm not really inclined to run a game with such a flaw either.
Ravor
*Shrugs* To each their own then, personally I like how Fourth Edition runs at low dicepools.
Shinxy
QUOTE (Ravor @ Aug 19 2009, 02:25 PM) *
*Shrugs* To each their own then, personally I like how Fourth Edition runs at low dicepools.


biggrin.gif *high five*

You'll have to post about your games some time. (House rules?) As far as I'm concerned, low dice pools run fantastically under the SR4 rules.
Ravor
I've mentioned some of the events once or twice. cyber.gif

Seriously though, I take the darkest parts of the Sixth World and crank things up a notch, the world is literally a shit hole, wageslaves can and are executed at the whims of management, stepping in and stopping a father from selling his daughter's body for drugs is likely to get you shunned, ect, ect...

Throw in a PvP attitude where the proper responce to thinking another PC might rape you is a prempetive strike and a dicidely Pink Mohawk slant on things and you've got my games pretty well pat.

IEs do exist, but since they had to result to some really nasty Blood Magic in order to keep enough Mana built up in the downcycle they tend to be some pretty sick and twisted fraggers.

Oh, and for the most part, I focus on the tech side of things, although magic does have its moments. vegm.gif

And although it might sound like a blanent counterdiction considering my starting points, I try to play everything as straight laced and "realistic" as possible.

<><><>

As for house rules ... hmm, let's see, off the top of my head...

Essence Loss only affects your Max Magic, not your current, but everyone and everything with the exception of Horrors has a Hard Cap of ( Magic 9 ), ( Magic 10 ) if they buy an Initate only Edge. (Yes, this means that with my second house rule, the only real reason to Initate past Grade 3 would be for the metamagics, even when you get cybered.) And yes, Dragons are probably Horrors, thanks for asking. cyber.gif

Enhancement is only good for whatever Rating your x1.5 would be, no more ( Reaction 1 ) characters boosting their stats up to ( Reaction 9 ). They could get ( Reaction 4 ) however.

Betagrade cyber can be fairly easily found, but forget about Delta.

Although "Blood Magic" is considered "evil" and has bounties, it is perhaps the most common magical tradition of all.

Banishing only gives you drain if the Spirit wins.

Astral Combat is LoS, and is a "must have" ability for anyone who dabbles in the Astral.

All spells cast while in Astral Space must be overcast at max Force, and the drain can't be soaked.

While hacking, a Decker is limited by his Logic Rating in the same manner which a Mage is limited by Force. Technos may choose either Logic or Int at character creation.

I don't really use the book traditions, magic is personal so make your own fragging tradition. silly.gif Spirits tend to be downplayed in my group, but thats just a personal choice.

No, you may not use Banishing to "Catch them all".

I don't really use Avalibility Caps at char gen, but we instead have a verbal understanding about what is and is not reasonable. Of course, since I tend to do most of the actual "book keeping" portion of char gen for most of my players it isn't really a problem either way.

Quickening can either use Karma to "tie off" the spell, or the Mage may power the spell with a point of his Magic, he gets the Magic back after the spell is dispelled.

SnS is not "Spirit Bane", sorry.

Yes, Direct Combat Spells are more "effective" than Indirect ones, but are you willing to be laughed at by all of your magical buddies for being a wimp?

Edge is a "magical ability" that all metahumans have, and is the ability to tell the universe is go frag itself. This means that "Pink Mohawks" are going to have higher Edge than Ice Cold Pros or corp drones anyday.

*EDIT*

In play it basically boils down to trying to take away as many dice as possible from the other side while stacking as many mods in your favor as possible.

Oh, I almost forgot, Mages can only use one of their IPs on "magical" abilities, and Deckers can only hack with one IP while in AR.
Wombat
QUOTE (Shinxy @ Aug 17 2009, 09:16 AM) *
EDIT: But it sounds to me like you're playing with some immature kids and you should RP with someone else. You're going to see the same problems in any system if your players are intent on powergaming.


You don't know anything about the game we were playing or the players themselves, and you're still throwing insults like that? Originally, most of our pools weren't beyond the 8-10 range. Unfortunately, that meant that when the street sam and I got into a fist fight with some dockworkers on cram, I got my a** handed to me in the first IP and the street sam had to take the rest of them on himself. After that, 3 of us decided to change out characters(with the GM's encouragement) because of how ineffective we were. We made our characters with the power level HappyDaze was running the game at in mind. The breaking point came when we were fighting a Toxic Shaman in a R:2 Background count(Magical Complications), with Haida pirates shooting at us(Multi-phase Resolution System) in the middle of a rough storm(Numerous Modifiers for lighting, wind, and rain). The 7 seconds of the fight we got into, took more than 3 hours to resolve, and we still weren't done.

If HappyDaze had a problem with our characters, he could have said no to mine(The Psionic Tradition Mystic Adept) at least, the 3-4 days before game when I sent it to him.

As a side note, most of the group disagrees with the way some of the rules interact as well and we're House Ruling the aspects of the game we don't like and are moving on. If you still think we're a bunch of munchkins take a look at the House Rules thread I posted awhile back. The rules themselves recently got chopped due to lost connection while editing, but you can see the kind of responses we got.
This is a "lo-fi" version of our main content. To view the full version with more information, formatting and images, please click here.
Dumpshock Forums © 2001-2012