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darune
Anyone has a "solution" to drain calculation when ending up with halfs ?

I was thinking: roll a die to randomly round up or down.
Medicineman
There are no halves !
"Round down"is official
(Manabolt 5 = Drain 2)

with an official Dance
Medicineman
D2F
QUOTE (darune @ Apr 28 2010, 12:44 PM) *
Anyone has a "solution" to drain calculation when ending up with halfs ?

I was thinking: roll a die to randomly round up or down.

How about you round down (like the rules "suggest")?
Aerospider
QUOTE (Medicineman @ Apr 28 2010, 01:48 PM) *
There are no halves !
"Round down"is official
(Manabolt 5 = Drain 2)

with an official Dance
Medicineman

... with a minimum of 1.
(Manabolt 1 = Drain 1)
Lansdren
Down is the way to go wink.gif


ok that was more smutty then when I first thought of the reply.

From a math point of view down works best because if your going to get three drain no matter what casting at 5 or 6 you would cast at six
darune
Yeah, i know RAW (you round down).

This is not a big issue, i know, but it has bothered me a little that if you get 3 drain value it doesn't if you cast at Force 4 or Force 5. Apart from going into overcasting there is not really any drawback except if you need to limit netsuccesses.

So i wanted to hear if anyone has a house rule and suggested one myself.
Aerospider
QUOTE (darune @ Apr 28 2010, 02:33 PM) *
Yeah, i know RAW (you round down).

This is not a big issue, i know, but it has bothered me a little that if you get 3 drain value it doesn't if you cast at Force 4 or Force 5. Apart from going into overcasting there is not really any drawback except if you need to limit netsuccesses.

So i wanted to hear if anyone has a house rule and suggested one myself.

By the by, I believe it's specifically mentioned that you can withold successes from a spellcasting test so there's no need to limit it by Force.

I too am a little unhappy about the round down since in the absence of a +ve modifier it works out the same for Force ratings 1, 2 and 3. I also prefer the notion of resisting half a DV point that isn't there to ignoring half a DV point that is there. It's also inconsistant with similar cases, such as melee damage where the DV is increased in the rounding. Still, when it's you against the players there's only so much fiat they'll let you get away with ...
Karoline
QUOTE (Lansdren @ Apr 28 2010, 09:00 AM) *
From a math point of view down works best because if your going to get three drain no matter what casting at 5 or 6 you would cast at six


From a math point of view, up works best because if you're going to get three drain no matter what when casting at 6 or 7, you would cast at seven.

wink.gif

As you can see, it doesn't really matter if you round up or down as far as math is concerned. Rounding will always cause one option to be better over another. The only real difference is that rounding down means the higher force spell are better than when rounding up.
Starmage21
QUOTE (Karoline @ Apr 28 2010, 10:40 AM) *
From a math point of view, up works best because if you're going to get three drain no matter what when casting at 6 or 7, you would cast at seven.

wink.gif

As you can see, it doesn't really matter if you round up or down as far as math is concerned. Rounding will always cause one option to be better over another. The only real difference is that rounding down means the higher force spell are better than when rounding up.


But if your magic is 6, then the difference is the drain is physical, or stun biggrin.gif
Karoline
But if you're magic is 5, then the difference in your example is physical or stun. Like I said, they're exactly the same, except that rounding down encourages a slightly higher number to be used.

Only time this isn't true is when you get to max force, because it is always an even number, and thus always a little bit more drain to max yourself out than go just slightly under max (Which is why I think it rounds down and not up).
Aerospider
QUOTE (Karoline @ Apr 28 2010, 05:22 PM) *
Only time this isn't true is when you get to max force, because it is always an even number, and thus always a little bit more drain to max yourself out than go just slightly under max (Which is why I think it rounds down and not up).

Good observation! Ok, I like it again now.
Draco18s
Personally I like the rule "round in favor of the player." Which for drain means rounding down.
Aerospider
QUOTE (Draco18s @ Apr 28 2010, 06:18 PM) *
Personally I like the rule "round in favor of the player." Which for drain means rounding down.

Surely that depends whether they have a high Awakened to mundane ratio? If the team only has the one mage and consistantly runs against strong spellcasters then they'll prefer you round up...
Blade
I follow the rule of "round in favor of the roller" (which AFAIK is SR's implicit rule for rounding) so that PC aren't favored over NPCs.
Smokeskin
QUOTE (darune @ Apr 28 2010, 01:44 PM) *
Anyone has a "solution" to drain calculation when ending up with halfs ?

I was thinking: roll a die to randomly round up or down.


If I had to cover that, I'd just use the drain resistance test - if drain is rounded down, reduce an uneven number of hits by 1. That way you don't need to bother with an extra die.

For F/2 + 1 drain spell, you'd suffer:

Force 4, 3DV:
0 hits: 3
1 hit: 2
2 hits: 1
3 hits: 0
4 hits:

Force 5, 3DV

0 hits: 3
1 hit: 3
2 hits: 1
3 hits: 1
4 hits: 0

darune
QUOTE (Smokeskin @ Apr 29 2010, 12:37 PM) *
If I had to cover that, I'd just use the drain resistance test - if drain is rounded down, reduce an uneven number of hits by 1. That way you don't need to bother with an extra die.

For F/2 + 1 drain spell, you'd suffer:

Force 4, 3DV:
0 hits: 3
1 hit: 2
2 hits: 1
3 hits: 0
4 hits:

Force 5, 3DV

0 hits: 3
1 hit: 3
2 hits: 1
3 hits: 1
4 hits: 0


I like that. Will have to try it out. It's a bit hairy but that is maybe unavoidable.
Smokeskin
Had another idea: apply a -1 or -2 dice modifier to the drain resistance test if drain is rounded down.
Mesh
Wow, I can't believe nobody's mentioned this before! Just switch to d20s.
darune
QUOTE (Mesh @ Apr 29 2010, 02:19 PM) *
Wow, I can't believe nobody's mentioned this before! Just switch to d20s.


I guess you are joking. But seriously, how is that going to help anything ? I don't get it.
Karoline
QUOTE (darune @ Apr 29 2010, 07:45 AM) *
I guess you are joking. But seriously, how is that going to help anything ? I don't get it.


Obviously because the d20 is God's perfect creation, and using it will solve all problems, simply by virtue of using it. [/sarcasm]
Doc Chaos
I'm guessing nobody house-ruled this because nobody needs a house-rule for something that ain't broken.
Draco18s
QUOTE (Blade @ Apr 29 2010, 05:04 AM) *
I follow the rule of "round in favor of the roller" (which AFAIK is SR's implicit rule for rounding) so that PC aren't favored over NPCs.


This is what the "round in favor of the player" is, really. NPCs don't round differently because its in the player's advantage, but that the direction of rounding is chosen from a player character perspective.
Aerospider
QUOTE (Draco18s @ Apr 29 2010, 02:28 PM) *
This is what the "round in favor of the player" is, really. NPCs don't round differently because its in the player's advantage, but that the direction of rounding is chosen from a player character perspective.

Ah ok. It gets confusing when you use the term 'player' for NPCs (non-player characters).
Draco18s
QUOTE (Aerospider @ Apr 29 2010, 09:48 AM) *
Ah ok. It gets confusing when you use the term 'player' for NPCs (non-player characters).


Fair.
darune
QUOTE (Doc Chaos @ Apr 29 2010, 02:48 PM) *
I'm guessing nobody house-ruled this because nobody needs a house-rule for something that ain't broken.


Im not saying the RAW is broken on this point. Just because something is not broken doesn't stop people from making house rule about and have never done so. Ill even go as far as to say that the majority of house rules out there is not ones that fixes something perceived as broken.

But i guess you are right in that nobody has tried a house rule on this..
darune
I got another idea i will want to try out: If you were left with a half drain and you resist the (usual) drain spot on, the half drain convertet into a damage box.

Example:

DV: 3

0 hit on drain resist: 3 damage
1 hits on drain resist: 2 damage
2 hits on drain resist: 1 damage
3 hits on drain resist: 1 damage (spot on: the is rounded up)
4 hits on drain resist: 0 damage
Draco18s
Nono, you should take that half-damage from half-a-mana burn.
Doc Chaos
QUOTE (darune @ Apr 29 2010, 05:03 PM) *
Im not saying the RAW is broken on this point. Just because something is not broken doesn't stop people from making house rule about and have never done so. Ill even go as far as to say that the majority of house rules out there is not ones that fixes something perceived as broken.


Touche smile.gif
Mesh
QUOTE (darune @ Apr 29 2010, 08:45 AM) *
I guess you are joking. But seriously, how is that going to help anything ? I don't get it.


Yes, I am. I love 6's in Shadowrun. My point is that if you're anal about the statistics of the six sider, maybe d20s are up your alley. By switching you go from increments of 16.7% to 5% which reduces the degree to which rounding is necessary by a factor of 3.

Mesh
Redcrow
I prefer the base DV = F instead of F/2, so I don't really run into any problems with rounding.

Some may think its a bit draconian, but it works well for my group.
Patrick the Gnome
QUOTE (Redcrow @ Apr 29 2010, 11:17 PM) *
I prefer the base DV = F instead of F/2, so I don't really run into any problems with rounding.

Some may think its a bit draconian, but it works well for my group.


So you've remove combat spells from your game entirely then? The only reason they work is because at F/2 a mage can reasonably expect to take less damage than his target when casting a spell. At Force = DV a combat spell using mage pretty much becomes a kamikaze...
Karoline
QUOTE (Patrick the Gnome @ Apr 30 2010, 12:31 AM) *
So you've remove combat spells from your game entirely then? The only reason they work is because at F/2 a mage can reasonably expect to take less damage than his target when casting a spell. At Force = DV a combat spell using mage pretty much becomes a kamikaze...


Not really. Spells like stunbolt have a - to them, so they would still be quite viable. You're also failing to take into account that the mage still gets to apply net hits, which there will be alot of since the target only resists with willpower, and that the mage has more drain dice than the target will have dice to soak a stunbolt with. And that isn't even taking into account adding foci or anything like that.

I admit it means that a combat mage will be using F6 stun bolts instead of F12, but I consider that a more or less good thing.
Redcrow
QUOTE (Karoline @ Apr 30 2010, 09:45 AM) *
Not really. Spells like stunbolt have a - to them, so they would still be quite viable. You're also failing to take into account that the mage still gets to apply net hits, which there will be alot of since the target only resists with willpower, and that the mage has more drain dice than the target will have dice to soak a stunbolt with. And that isn't even taking into account adding foci or anything like that.

I admit it means that a combat mage will be using F6 stun bolts instead of F12, but I consider that a more or less good thing.


This^

My reason for using F for DV instead of F/2 is an attempt to mitigate Artillery Mage Syndrome ©. I tend to run SR in a more "caper/hard-boiled detective" style with a bit of "horror" thrown in for good measure, so it was necessary to tone down things like magic, cyber and the availability of weapons. YMMV of course.
Patrick the Gnome
QUOTE (Redcrow @ Apr 30 2010, 06:55 PM) *
This^

My reason for using F for DV instead of F/2 is an attempt to mitigate Artillery Mage Syndrome . I tend to run SR in a more "caper/hard-boiled detective" style with a bit of "horror" thrown in for good measure, so it was necessary to tone down things like magic, cyber and the availability of weapons. YMMV of course.


I suppose as long as you weaken everything equally it works out. Seems kinda hard to take something out with spells without hurting yourself just as much, but if it works in your game then :shrug:
Draco18s
QUOTE (Patrick the Gnome @ May 1 2010, 08:37 AM) *
I suppose as long as you weaken everything equally it works out.


Mind Net. (F/2)+3
Each point of force allows you to put one other target into the Mind Link net (range of Force x Magic in meters).

I don't think it'd be feasible at F+3. Extended (useful range) would be F+5.
Tymeaus Jalynsfein
Just as a point...

Mechanics wise, overcasting is probably common, regardless of which table it occurs...

However, within the game world, it should really be rare, used only when there is no real other option... I mean really, think about that... are you really willing to shoot yourself in the chest with a firearm (specific type varies based upon damage) every time you cast? That is exactly the parallel that you are talking about...

If you must overcast that Lightning Bolt (Because you must) and use Force 12... that becomes damage equivalent to a Assault Rifle with a Narrow Burst... tell me how many of you are willing to go out and stand stock still, while someone aims an assault rifle at you and then unleashes a short burst into your chest... not me...

Realistically, the desire to use overcast magic should be rather rare, exercised only in dire circumstances... Headaches and fatigue are one thing... but when it becomes a brain aneuryism or stroke, that is something totally different...

I know that it is mechanically beneficial to overcast, and with exceptional drain stats, the chances that you take damage become a calculated risk for minimal damage... but would you be willing to stake your life in the same situations with a person shooting at you? Would you put your life on the line, fully trusting that the armor you are wearing will keep you from harm absolutely? There are not many people like that in the real world... Why would you expect that everyone in Shadowrun would do so?

Just Sayin'

Keep the Faith
Shinobi Killfist
QUOTE (Redcrow @ Apr 29 2010, 11:17 PM) *
I prefer the base DV = F instead of F/2, so I don't really run into any problems with rounding.

Some may think its a bit draconian, but it works well for my group.


Welcome to Shadowrun 1st edition smile.gif 2e on they wussified it so you could sling spells without much of a worry in drain.

During the 4A is coming out and they have this awesome rule about increasing the drain of a combat spell based on net hits thing, some people came up with a different method where it was full force but like -3 off the current drain modifier. So generally spells cost the same as they did now or a bit cheaper until force 6 and then it started getting more painful. I really liked the idea, it stomped on overcasting but allowed mages to sling spells.

If I were just going with full force drain I'd remove the cap of force and hits, and make it a force and net hits cap, or just remove it entirely.

QUOTE (Tymeaus Jalynsfein @ May 2 2010, 10:33 AM) *
Just as a point...

Mechanics wise, overcasting is probably common, regardless of which table it occurs...

However, within the game world, it should really be rare, used only when there is no real other option... I mean really, think about that... are you really willing to shoot yourself in the chest with a firearm (specific type varies based upon damage) every time you cast? That is exactly the parallel that you are talking about...

If you must overcast that Lightning Bolt (Because you must) and use Force 12... that becomes damage equivalent to a Assault Rifle with a Narrow Burst... tell me how many of you are willing to go out and stand stock still, while someone aims an assault rifle at you and then unleashes a short burst into your chest... not me...


While I'd like to see overcasting to be rare, I disagree with your analysis. Given how overcasting works in is something I'd see a lot of mages doing in a lot of situations. I say thins because I assume people in the world are fairly familiar with how there shit works, so they kind of know the rules like we do. Yeah they wont think of it as boxes in damage, but they will be aware of the effects.

Yes you might be taking the same damage as a narrow burst from a assault rifle in extreme cases like force 12 elemental spells, but its a narrow burst that wont stage up and you have the equivalent of a bullet proof vest on to help you take it. And then guess what all 8 dudes who were actually shooting you with assault rifles fall down and stop shooting at you.

Lots of times the damage is more like taking a shot from a heavy pistol where you know it wont hit anything vital and you have a vest on. And really the real point is its not like being shot, because when being shot it is totally unpredictable what might happen, you might take it in the brain, it might pierce your heart etc. With the drain it is very controllable amounts of damage. You know it is 5 boxes translated into real world terms for that force 9 powerbolt, you know perfectly well after casting it you might pop a blood vessel or two but be mostly in good shape. You are not in a state of oh crap I might die except in the extreme cases of force 12 fireballs or whatever because the damage is usually much, much less than that and it does not scale up on you like being shot can.

Basically yeah I'd freaking slit my hand with a big ass knife in order to drop a group of dudes in heavy armor with assault rifles who were bearing down on me, and I'd do it without hesitating. Why I know what is likely to happen when I slit my hand(I might not know exactly what I'll soak, but I know the max possible damage) I sure as shit don't know what the dude with the assault rifle is going to roll when he shoots at me. I'm more afraid of the what if they get a clean shot on me than I'm afraid of the knife cutting into my hand. Fear is one powerful ass motivator and being shot at is scary.
Tymeaus Jalynsfein
QUOTE (Shinobi Killfist @ May 2 2010, 12:40 PM) *
Welcome to Shadowrun 1st edition smile.gif 2e on they wussified it so you could sling spells without much of a worry in drain.
While I'd like to see overcasting to be rare, I disagree with your analysis. Given how overcasting works in is something I'd see a lot of mages doing in a lot of situations. I say thins because I assume people in the world are fairly familiar with how there shit works, so they kind of know the rules like we do. Yeah they wont think of it as boxes in damage, but they will be aware of the effects.

Yes you might be taking the same damage as a narrow burst from a assault rifle in extreme cases like force 12 elemental spells, but its a narrow burst that wont stage up and you have the equivalent of a bullet proof vest on to help you take it. And then guess what all 8 dudes who were actually shooting you with assault rifles fall down and stop shooting at you.

Lots of times the damage is more like taking a shot from a heavy pistol where you know it wont hit anything vital and you have a vest on. And really the real point is its not like being shot, because when being shot it is totally unpredictable what might happen, you might take it in the brain, it might pierce your heart etc. With the drain it is very controllable amounts of damage. You know it is 5 boxes translated into real world terms for that force 9 powerbolt, you know perfectly well after casting it you might pop a blood vessel or two but be mostly in good shape. You are not in a state of oh crap I might die except in the extreme cases of force 12 fireballs or whatever because the damage is usually much, much less than that and it does not scale up on you like being shot can.

Basically yeah I'd freaking slit my hand with a big ass knife in order to drop a group of dudes in heavy armor with assault rifles who were bearing down on me, and I'd do it without hesitating. Why I know what is likely to happen when I slit my hand(I might not know exactly what I'll soak, but I know the max possible damage) I sure as shit don't know what the dude with the assault rifle is going to roll when he shoots at me. I'm more afraid of the what if they get a clean shot on me than I'm afraid of the knife cutting into my hand. Fear is one powerful ass motivator and being shot at is scary.


Mechanically, you are right... I cannot argue that Overcasting is not as rare as it should be...

But look at this realistically for a change, instead of by the mechanics...

Here is a story for you...

Many years ago, my father was a cop in Texas... when the new technology of bullet proof vests came out, they were not the most reliable of things, sometimes bullets went through and sometimes they did not... now, the times where it penetrated were few and far between, but it did happen, enough for it to actually be a statistic... now, when the Rep for the company brought their wares to the department my father worked at, there was a bit of hesitation... understandably so... (now, common sense is that you wear one to hopefully not die, but common sense does not always reflect the business model)... the Rep, in a demonstration of faith, volunteered to wear the vest in a demonstration against a .357 magnum. Of course, no cop was willing to participate, so the rep borrowed a service pistol, turned it on himself and shot himself in the chest... fortunately for him, the vest worked as advertised and stopped the round. As a result the department bought a dozen sets... how did the rep turn out? 4 broken ribs and a bruise the size of a cantelope... but he walked away...

Now, in teh world of Shadowrun, casting spells is like trusting the Bullet Proof Vest... you cast to a certain extent and you know that the risk of serious bodily harm is relatively low... the higher you push that spell's force, the more likely you are to take damage that is no longer insignificant (Stun effects), and the more likely you are to take Physical damage... now, most optimized spell casters are going to favor their drain stats, that is expected, but constantly pushing the envelope in casting those spells that could kill you is akin to relying upon that bulletproof vest, eventually it will fail, and you will seriously injure yourself... maybe even to the point where your life is in actual danger. Are you telling me that every single mage out there is going to blindly trust their "Drain statistics" (their armor)? I do not believe that that will be the case, and I would willing to bet that if you were capable of such actions, you would not trust it blindly either. I would bet that you would err on the side of caution more often than not, and rarely push beyond what your body is capable of channeling. You would only overcast when you absolutely needed to, and you would probably say a prayer to whatever you believed in, that this time would not be the time your body failed you...

Maybe I am wrong here, but human nature is more than likely on my side in this argument... you push it in game because you know the mechanics involved,a nd you trust in the averages of the dice to see you safe... "It could never happen to me" is a common justification in game, and though you see it often in real life, the averages will more often than not catch up to you...

My opinion is that you would find few mages willing to put their life on the line to cast a spell that may kill them in the end... the same number of conjurers would think twice before summoning over their capability as well, even though mechanically, many can do so with little consequence... The one time when you fail will be the one time you never thought it could happen to you...

Just Sayin'

Keep the Faith
Shinobi Killfist
QUOTE (Tymeaus Jalynsfein @ May 2 2010, 03:30 PM) *
Mechanically, you are right... I cannot argue that Overcasting is not as rare as it should be...

But look at this realistically for a change, instead of by the mechanics...


I am I think. I just see things differently I guess. I don't see it like trusting yourself to the bullet proof vest because again in the bullet proof vest analogy when it fails or it hits your head instead of the vest you die. I don't think you will see much in the was of force 12 lightning balls for 11 physical drain except in extreme cases but a force 9 stun ball is 5 physical drain. It will never produce that head shot, your drain stat might fail and you are wounded like in the broken ribs category from your story but that is as bad as it will get. If I knew for certain I'd only get 3 broken ribs at the worst of it, but the group of guys I am facing with big ass guns would drop I'd take the broken ribs. You are not gambling your life you are gambling a broken limb in order to maximize your chances at living. For me the guy who does not overcast is the guy who is betting on the bullet proof vest working this time. The way I see it the mage knows for damn sure that a force 9 stunball wont kill him unless he is already jacked up, and chances are he'll get off with light wounds. He also knows for damn sure that virtually everyone if not everyone in a 9 meter radius is going unconscious. You also know for sure that it is highly unlikely the force 5 stunball will take any of them down, though they may retreat from there wounds. If the guys in the 9 meter radius have assault rifles and are shooting you wont you take a for sure worst thing broken rib in order to stop the shooting. I would, because I am more scared of them than the broken rib. Like I said I think people are more afraid of the unknown and potential damage from being shot than the max assured damage.

Now if you are talking non-combat situations I agree with you. Overcasting your levitate spell so you can get to the top of the roof faster seems a bit off to me.
Karoline
I have to agree with Shinobi as far as things are set up right now. As things stand you can push your body to the absolute max, and know full well that the absolute worse you'll take is some moderate damage, and most likely you'll take a very light wound or possibly be unaffected entirely.

What TJ is saying is less how the game is, and more providing an idea (which I like) of how (he thinks) it should be. Casting a spell at the 'max' of your ability should be potentially painful, but not life threatening. Pushing out every last little ounce of magic that you can possibly muster should carry a very real risk of death or serious serious injury, and thus be something that happens only in the most extreme of circumstances.

As it stands now, a F12 stunbolt is the standard, and a F9 or so stunball is also standard. Basically with the rules as they are, there is very minimal consequence for going over your limit.

Perhaps an option would be to combine the two. F/2 up to your magic, then +1 per force over your magic score. That would leave casting below your magic unaffected, and still leave a more serious consequence for going over your magic (Because lets face it P over S isn't that special if you expect to soak all the drain anyway)
Tymeaus Jalynsfein
Hey, No problems...

It just seems a bit off some days is all...

Keep the Faith
Shinobi Killfist
I get where you are coming from but I think you and I just have a different opinion of character knowledge. I think the character and not just the player would be aware that they are in the 5 box of damage range to soak and usually get away with 1-2 boxes of damage. It is a fine line of where player knowledge becomes character knowledge or it becomes metagaming instead.

I would like it if what TJ viewed as the threats of overcasting were the reality of the rules. I like Karoline's idea or something similar to bump up the drain. I want a similar drain bump for summoning and binding, maybe make the drain x3 the spirits successes.
Patrick the Gnome
QUOTE (Shinobi Killfist @ May 2 2010, 09:43 PM) *
I get where you are coming from but I think you and I just have a different opinion of character knowledge. I think the character and not just the player would be aware that they are in the 5 box of damage range to soak and usually get away with 1-2 boxes of damage. It is a fine line of where player knowledge becomes character knowledge or it becomes metagaming instead.

I would like it if what TJ viewed as the threats of overcasting were the reality of the rules. I like Karoline's idea or something similar to bump up the drain. I want a similar drain bump for summoning and binding, maybe make the drain x3 the spirits successes.


Have you ever read Firestarter by Steven King? The dad's ability in that book is kind of what I view overcasting as, with each use of the power causing you to feel extreme pain and experiencing the knowledge that what you're doing will kill you, but still doing it anyway because you have to and because you feel that you can take one more push. It's a little bit easier with shadowrun mages, even max overcasting isn't going to kill you if you haven't taken damage before it, and the damage can be recovered so its not like constant overcasting is going to build up into an eventual brain aneurism that will just kill you. As for only being willing to experience that pain when it will save you in a desperate situation, keep in mind that 'runs in 2077 are dances with death and that practically every encounter with armed opponents is a desperate situation. Certainly it's better in a mage's mind to take the bullet he knows over the bullet he doesn't.
Tymeaus Jalynsfein
QUOTE (Shinobi Killfist @ May 2 2010, 08:43 PM) *
I get where you are coming from but I think you and I just have a different opinion of character knowledge. I think the character and not just the player would be aware that they are in the 5 box of damage range to soak and usually get away with 1-2 boxes of damage. It is a fine line of where player knowledge becomes character knowledge or it becomes metagaming instead.

I would like it if what TJ viewed as the threats of overcasting were the reality of the rules. I like Karoline's idea or something similar to bump up the drain. I want a similar drain bump for summoning and binding, maybe make the drain x3 the spirits successes.


I don't know... I do not have much of a problem with the rules as they are, honestly... What I have a problem with is the amount of metagame knowledge that is assumed between the character and the character playing the character... Yeah, I think our views on Character Knowledge do differ a bit there Shinobi...

I mean really... Players know that there is a difference between Stun and Physical, and they know exactly where that line is... however, I just have an issue with a character who plays upon that knowledge, knowing that "it is only a box or two of physical"... to me, that just destroys immersion... "Gee, I know that I have 13 boxes of physical damage, so what the hell, I think I am going to overcast today"... Doesn't that sound a little off to you? "Gee, that guy is point a pistol at me, but chances are good that if he hits me it will only be 2 boxes of damage"... I am sorry, that just seems wrong... Physical wounds hurt, but few play upon the knowledge that that is a factor...

All a Mage character knows is that when he overcasts, it can possibly kill him... it is not like getting a simple headache, it is a real possibility of having a coronary or stroke episode... something that he may never recover from... are you really telling me that your character knows exactly where that line is? When I am playing Mages, it is a very rare thing for me to overcast, unless there is absolutely no other choice, and if there is a mundane choice that will work, then I will pursue that choice over the overcasting... It just seems that many characters know way to much about the mechanics of the system... they do not look at the organic consequences, they look at the mechanical ones...

It just annoys me a bit I guess... especially when the choice is made because of the mechanics, rather than a choice that a living, breathing individual would make... If I remember correctly, Kerenshara had a very good thread on this very subject... sadly, I could not find it...

Keep the Faith
Patrick the Gnome
The thing is that overcasting can't cause an embolism or heart attack or any other kind of instant death attack. A mage can know, in game and out, that while casting that next spell is going to hurt it's not going to kill him, and I don't see why knowing that he has the skills and the gear to handle channeling large and dangerous amounts of mana should cause him to still feel trepidations about overcasting. Keep in mind that increasing the drain modifiers for spells, even if you only increase them for overcasting, is going to hurt the weaker mages in your party without all the drain resist dice a lot more than it will the drain focused mages. If you only have drain focused mages in your party, then it's even less fair to corrupt the game against them just because you think they're too good at what they do. Mages in shadowrun are supposed to be fucking scary and fucking dangerous, that's why there are so many laws about them. If you decide to start gimping mages so that they can't even blow away putz mundanes with impunity then you are failing as a GM. The drain rules as they are are fine, changing them to make overcasting unviable just makes combat spell focused mages completely unplayable and encourages players that want to play mages to go the less satisfying but more effective route of Manipulation spells and mind fuck their opponents with Force 5 spells as opposed to blowing them up with fire, which is ten times more handleable by a GM that knows what he's doing.

Sorry for the rant, but I have used the combat spells as they are in the system and I know that drain as it is makes taking out decent sized chunks of enemies damned hard and that even those 1-2P points of drain really come back to haunt you after you've cast 3 or 4 spells. Combat spells and their drain as they are already set up in the game are completely balanced with everything else in the system. Mages are pretty hard pressed as it is to one shot enemies, gimping overcasting is just going to make mages that throw fire and energy all the worse compared to gun bunnies who can easily take out targets in one hit without taking damage in return. I know that if a GM tried to pull shit like this in a game I was playing without subsequently gimping all of my allied players and all of my enemies, I would be pretty fucking pissed.
Shinobi Killfist
QUOTE (Tymeaus Jalynsfein @ May 2 2010, 09:54 PM) *
It just annoys me a bit I guess... especially when the choice is made because of the mechanics, rather than a choice that a living, breathing individual would make... If I remember correctly, Kerenshara had a very good thread on this very subject... sadly, I could not find it...

Keep the Faith


For me the mechanics represent the rules of the universe to a bit. So yes for me the mage does know that a force 9 stunbolt flat out wont kill him. I kind of think the knowledge comes with the magic skills the mage has in order to sling those spells. I was going to use a much faster car getting away on a straight way analogy but the chase rules of SR are so borked it didn't work out. I do not assume people know exactly what condition they are in so if someone is seriously injured I don't calculate how much more physical drain they could take before going under. But I assume they know that X spell just does not channel enough energy to kill someone, so when they are healthy it is a solid risk to take. You know it will hurt not kill you, you just don't know if being hurt will screw you in the long run since the job isn't over yet.

It is like the levitate spell to me. You don't know the spell gives you 200KG per hit, but you know the best you can pull off at force 5 or whatever they'd call force in the setting is one ton, and lifting 200KG is easy as pie. Or using a gun bunny analogy I assume the gun bunny knows how many bullets he can fire in a burst before the recoil effects him and will know how many bullets he can fire before his shots get inaccurate. He won't know it in the sense that after 5 shots he loses 1 die to his skill pool, but he will know that even at 10 shots and -5dice he has a damn fine grouping or a worse shooter will know they can't hit the broadside of a barn. And the good shooter or average shooter knows perfectly well that even with that full burst all it will do is scratch the paint of the citymaster he is shooting at. The shooter knows his crap about shooting and the mage will know his crap about casting spells and the effects those spells will have on him. Magic has been around for 60 years, I just think they have things down by now, the in game character terms will be different but the effects are known.
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