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Jimson
Iím looking to bring in an AI/e-ghost NPC to my group when the hacker is not available to play. I understand most of the rules around this, but there are a few things Iím not able to wrap my mind around. Iíve tried to do searches, but they have failed due to ďAIĒ being under the 4 character limit. If anyone knows of any threads for AIís question, please feel free to point me in the direction.

My questions are:

1. When an AI action calls for System or Firewall, does it use its own independent rating (ďThe System attribute is the average of the Intuition and Logic attributes, rounded up. Similarly, the Firewall attribute is the average of the Charisma and Willpower attributes.), or does it use its home node (with the AI Node Adjustments)?

2. Do you have to use the AI Qualities listed in Runnerís Companion? I think the Negative Quality list is a little restructed. I was picturing the particular AI NPC as having the Enemy negative qualtity. Anyone see any reason this could not be the case?

3. A non-AI question I have is, can you buy a program (hacking or common use) with Program Options and not have to worry about degradation? I was looking to use some starting nuyen to purchase some, but wasnít sure if that was ok.
Saint Sithney
1) When the AI is attacked it uses its own personal firewall. Its node firewall is only used if some hacker ist trying to break into its home node (e.g. it has already beat the AI and has traced it back to its home node to try and destroy it while it recomplies.)

2) The GMs word is always final on stuff like this. If you want to create an AI with bad blood already in the mix, that's up to you. The only reason I think it's not generally a quality for PC AIs to take is that a Metasapient AI PC is generally about 1 to 2 years old. I guess a year could be long enough to earn some hate in matrix land.

3) Degradation is an optional rule. If you want to get around it, maybe you can load a mess of agents up with Software autosofts and set them towards keeping everything patched.
Udoshi
3) Yes, you can. Options add to availability for a reason. This makes finding Common Use programs with availabilities really, really easy.(Availability 1? yes please). Pretty sure making your own programs via software tests do not degrade either.

Tymeaus Jalynsfein
QUOTE (Udoshi @ Nov 9 2009, 03:08 PM) *
3) Yes, you can. Options add to availability for a reason. This makes finding Common Use programs with availabilities really, really easy.(Availability 1? yes please). Pretty sure making your own programs via software tests do not degrade either.


Self-Programmed software does not degrade, yes...

Keep the Faith
Jimson
I guess my only problem is having a hacker with a lot of nuyen, and not a lot of time, is stuck with either buying (not at character creation) a program w/program options have having to deal with it degrading, or spending the weeks/months self coding a new program with options to not have to worry about it degrading. I do know about patching, but that too takes a lot of time.

So what's a hacker to do in this case?
Tymeaus Jalynsfein
QUOTE (Jimson @ Nov 10 2009, 08:13 AM) *
I guess my only problem is having a hacker with a lot of nuyen, and not a lot of time, is stuck with either buying (not at character creation) a program w/program options have having to deal with it degrading, or spending the weeks/months self coding a new program with options to not have to worry about it degrading. I do know about patching, but that too takes a lot of time.

So what's a hacker to do in this case?



2 Options...

Purchase a legal copy that does not degrade, or
Purhcase a cracked copy that does...

The cracked copy will only cost 10% of the legal version, but it must be patched every month or so... use what is available until you can create your own...

Keep the Faith
Jimson
QUOTE (Tymeaus Jalynsfein @ Nov 10 2009, 09:43 PM) *
2 Options...

Purchase a legal copy that does not degrade, or
Purhcase a cracked copy that does...

The cracked copy will only cost 10% of the legal version, but it must be patched every month or so... use what is available until you can create your own...

Keep the Faith


Oooh...maybe I misread the following

"If a character wishes to upgrade software he already has with
new program options, he must possess the source code. Source
code can be acquired by cracking the program, in the same way
as circumventing copy protection (see Source Code and Piracy,
p. 228, SR4, and Piracy, p. 94). Programs that are modified with
new options are no longer considered legal programs, and suffer
degradation just like other illegal software.
" (Unwired p. 118)

So you can buy legal copies of Programs with Program Options then?
Tymeaus Jalynsfein
QUOTE (Jimson @ Nov 12 2009, 09:44 AM) *
Oooh...maybe I misread the following

"If a character wishes to upgrade software he already has with
new program options, he must possess the source code. Source
code can be acquired by cracking the program, in the same way
as circumventing copy protection (see Source Code and Piracy,
p. 228, SR4, and Piracy, p. 94). Programs that are modified with
new options are no longer considered legal programs, and suffer
degradation just like other illegal software.
" (Unwired p. 118)

So you can buy legal copies of Programs with Program Options then?


I would say YES...You can purcahse a program with an option already in place... If you read further, you would notice that ALL LEGAL SOFTWARE comes with 2 options already coded... Copy Proterction and Registration, so obviously, you can include options in legal software... you would just have to pay the extra money and satisfy the heightened availability limits...

Your quote above indicates altering a program you already possess with available options not coded... to do that, you must crack the code first, which means it is no longer Legal... or you just go but a version that already has what you are looking for...

And when you code your own programs, you can write the optionds into the Code when the program is designed...

Keep the Faith
Jimson
QUOTE (Tymeaus Jalynsfein @ Nov 12 2009, 10:09 PM) *
I would say YES...You can purcahse a program with an option already in place... If you read further, you would notice that ALL LEGAL SOFTWARE comes with 2 options already coded... Copy Proterction and Registration, so obviously, you can include options in legal software... you would just have to pay the extra money and satisfy the heightened availability limits...

Your quote above indicates altering a program you already possess with available options not coded... to do that, you must crack the code first, which means it is no longer Legal... or you just go but a version that already has what you are looking for...

And when you code your own programs, you can write the optionds into the Code when the program is designed...

Keep the Faith


Thanks Tymeaus Jalynsfein! You've helped ease my mind. All clear here. twirl.gif
Tymeaus Jalynsfein
QUOTE (Jimson @ Nov 13 2009, 09:05 AM) *
Thanks Tymeaus Jalynsfein! You've helped ease my mind. All clear here. twirl.gif


Glad I could help...

Keep the Faith
Saint Sithney
Also remember that, according to degradation RAW, Hacking softs are generally all illegal and therefore don't get patched even if purchased "legitimately" or stolen via source. It might work well enough to make them just degrade at a random, dice-roll (months) rate to represent the hacks in question being found and patched/countered by whitehats.

For example, you've managed to gear up a viscous lvl 6 Attack program written by some wunderkind from Sweeden. As of T=0 it's the best possible means to play wack-a-mole with IC, even if it's not the only means. Eventually though, the corps are going to get a copy, or enough data logs, and start messing with their own softs to try and plug up the holes in their armor. You can represent this by rolling a die. That die represents how long it takes for someone with this very exclusive software to muck up enough to wear its edge down. After that time is up, roll again to determine when it degrades further, or, if you've the money, trade up to the next new thing on the block.
darthmord
QUOTE (Saint Sithney @ Nov 17 2009, 09:00 PM) *
Also remember that, according to degradation RAW, Hacking softs are generally all illegal and therefore don't get patched even if purchased "legitimately" or stolen via source. It might work well enough to make them just degrade at a random, dice-roll (months) rate to represent the hacks in question being found and patched/countered by whitehats.

For example, you've managed to gear up a viscous lvl 6 Attack program written by some wunderkind from Sweeden. As of T=0 it's the best possible means to play wack-a-mole with IC, even if it's not the only means. Eventually though, the corps are going to get a copy, or enough data logs, and start messing with their own softs to try and plug up the holes in their armor. You can represent this by rolling a die. That die represents how long it takes for someone with this very exclusive software to muck up enough to wear its edge down. After that time is up, roll again to determine when it degrades further, or, if you've the money, trade up to the next new thing on the block.


For a mechanic like that, I'd roll a D6 and the number rolled is the number of months it takes to degrade it. I'd also roll a 2nd D6 and divide the result by 2 to get the rating decrease. So for cracked software, every 1-6 months, it degrades 1-3 points. Makes it convenient. Represents the fact that sometimes faults and vulnerabilities hang around for months or years or they may get hammered in a very short time frame. Obviously, if you want it to degrade faster or slower, change the time tables.
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