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Demonseed Elite
I think you just clearly demonstrated the problem with retconning things!
Stahlseele
QUOTE (HappyDaze @ Jun 8 2010, 09:18 PM) *
That would amount to reconning most of the fucked up insanities of the SR timeline, and many of those (the NAN for a big example) are sacred cows.

Well, fucked up does not neccessarely mean bad . .
MindandPen
QUOTE (Abstruse @ Jun 8 2010, 12:39 PM) *
I'm not kidding...the extraction is going to go perfectly to whatever their original plan is. Security's going to be elsewhere or on a bathroom break, alarms will suddenly fail, bystanders will offer assistance, everything is going to run absolutely perfectly...and if they can manage to NOT say the magic words, they'll get out. They'll complete the run and the shutdown happens immediately after they exit. However, if they DARE to tempt fate...if they even breath anything remotely like "This is too easy"...that's when gates slam shut.


Heh Heh Heh Heh Heh devil.gif

I like.

-M&P
Synner
QUOTE (sabs @ Jun 8 2010, 07:24 PM) *
I'm reading what you wrote for India. Because I was curious. I'm just starting but I have a question. Why in /Hades left testicle/ is the new Sikh country called Khalistan? -stan is a muslim denominator.

I assume a little about the Sikh autonomist/independentist movement and its history. I suggest you look into it (start here), before criticizing other people's research...

For the record the "-stan" is not a "Muslim designation", its use in Central Asia and Indian subcontinent comes from the bastard child of Persian, Arabic, Turkic and Pastu tongues, the Hindustani Urdu language. Its widespread use originates during the Mughal Empire. While Islamic the Mughals actually developed from the Central Asian Timurids, which in turns explains why Urdu is one of the dominant languages in both the subcontinent and neighboring regions.

QUOTE
The Sikh and Muslims hate each other with a passion that is rivaled pretty much by noone. They make the Palestinian/Jewish conflict look positively friendly.

They have a bloody history, but things simply aren't that black and white. In fact, you're oversimplifying to an extreme. For instance there have been Sikh honor guards to Muslim emperors, and the Guru Granth Sahib cites Muslim texts, parables and hymns. Though there's been bad blood since the Mughal emperors' attempts to convert and persecute the nascent Sikh faith (which explains its roots as a warrior order), there's a whole lot more to it than simplistic hatred.

For the record: a little further research will reveal that several key texts of the Sikh faith, the writings of the Sikh Gurus were in Urdu - including tracts of the Guru Granth Sahib (which, by the way, includes mantras and hymns written by Muslim holy men). A comparative study of Sikh theology and (non-Wahhabist) Islam will reveal telling parallels. And I won't even get started on the commonalities between certain Sufi and Sikh ritual practices.

QUOTE
Why are the Sikhs in the Kashmir Valley? They're originally from Punjabi

That is correct. According to Shadows of Asia Khalistan occupies a large portion of what used to be Punjab and the Sikhs simply neighbor the Kashmir Valley. The Sikh homeland happens to be in the path of the fallout with many of the rivers running south polluted by the Kashmir nuclear exchange. (note I haven't read Bobby's cut texts nor did I consult on the Almanac so I cannotvouch for the contents, but I did write the Shadows of Asia chapter and I thoroughly research my subject matter.)

QUOTE
It's just. Was this info pulled from previous source or just bad homework? So much could have been done with India. The tech industry, the caste system. It reads very dissapointing.

I suggest you read Shadows of Asia for the original piece on Sixth World India, I believe you'll find most of what you mention and then some.
Brazilian_Shinobi
Most people forget that Shadowrun timeline diverts from ours in 1989. So, when you try to compare the world of today with the world of 40 years from now imagined 20 years ago of course there will be things that don't make sense.
Abstruse
QUOTE (Brazilian_Shinobi @ Jun 8 2010, 07:59 PM) *
Most people forget that Shadowrun timeline diverts from ours in 1989. So, when you try to compare the world of today with the world of 40 years from now imagined 20 years ago of course there will be things that don't make sense.

Actually, the first major diversion wasn't until 1999 when the Shiawase Decision didn't happen. That one can be glossed over a bit, but if a dragon doesn't pop out of Mt. Fuji in a year and a half, I'm going to be very upset...
HappyDaze
QUOTE (Stahlseele @ Jun 8 2010, 03:28 PM) *
Well, fucked up does not neccessarely mean bad . .

Very true. Except when it's false! wink.gif
Bull
QUOTE (Abstruse @ Jun 8 2010, 10:02 PM) *
Actually, the first major diversion wasn't until 1999 when the Shiawase Decision didn't happen. That one can be glossed over a bit, but if a dragon doesn't pop out of Mt. Fuji in a year and a half, I'm going to be very upset...


Yes, the first major diversion. However, the split really does start in 1989, as most things are based on what things were then. There's been a few minor retcons and tweaks in the 20 years since, but for the most part... Shadowrun is the world of the future, seen through the lens of 1989.

Bull
RunnerPaul
QUOTE (Abstruse @ Jun 8 2010, 11:02 PM) *
Actually, the first major diversion wasn't until 1999 when the Shiawase Decision didn't happen.


The 1991 fall of the Soviet Union was fairly major, but FASA was able to retcon that with the release of SR2, so that leaves the fact that Princess Diana dieing well before she could ever become the Queen Diana described in the London Sourcebook the earliest major diversion in my opinion.
Tzeentch
There was some talk about this during Shadows of North America brainstorming. My personal belief is that the Shadowrun universe diverged a long time ago (especially if you consider Earthdawn as actual hidden history), with major divergence probably no later than the 1970s to help account for the "somewhat" whacky world conditions and demographics (it's implied that the 'modern' Shadowrun version of megacorps date back to the 1980s as well -- if you use a broad interpretation of Shadowrun, Third Editions timeline text).
Brazilian_Shinobi
QUOTE (Abstruse @ Jun 9 2010, 12:02 AM) *
Actually, the first major diversion wasn't until 1999 when the Shiawase Decision didn't happen. That one can be glossed over a bit, but if a dragon doesn't pop out of Mt. Fuji in a year and a half, I'm going to be very upset...


The whole Shiawase Incident wouldn't have happened if the world wasn't already caothic for 10 years already. Poverty, hunger, droughts. All this happened during SR's 90's that lead to the truckers' strike of 99 that lead to the Shiawase Incident.
Catadmin
QUOTE (Brazilian_Shinobi @ Jun 9 2010, 09:03 AM) *
The whole Shiawase Incident wouldn't have happened if the world wasn't already caothic for 10 years already. Poverty, hunger, droughts. All this happened during SR's 90's that lead to the truckers' strike of 99 that lead to the Shiawase Incident.


I think you're getting things mixed up. Seretech was the truckers strike issue, was it not? -> Corps right to maintain personal armies.

Shiawase was the nuclear power plant defending itself from protesters. -> Corporate extraterritorialty.

Seretech happened first, in 99. Shiawase in 2000.
Bull
QUOTE (Tzeentch @ Jun 9 2010, 04:02 AM) *
There was some talk about this during Shadows of North America brainstorming. My personal belief is that the Shadowrun universe diverged a long time ago (especially if you consider Earthdawn as actual hidden history), with major divergence probably no later than the 1970s to help account for the "somewhat" whacky world conditions and demographics (it's implied that the 'modern' Shadowrun version of megacorps date back to the 1980s as well -- if you use a broad interpretation of Shadowrun, Third Editions timeline text).


Ken! Holy shit, talk about random people popping up outta nowhere! How you been?

And yeah, I agree with this as well. It's never been spelled out in detail because, well, why does it need to be? But I imagine there were a lot of subtle differences starting in the 60's on up through the 80's and 90's with the way certain corps developed, laws passed, etc. Nothing really noticeable, but enough to slowly lay groundwork for things that happen later in SR.
\
But even going back to the late 80's, with the prominence of the Japanacorps in early Shadowrun and throughout the 21st century prior to 2050, it's obvious that one deviation was that the Japancorps never "declined" as they ended up doing in the early 90's.

Bull
Stormwraith
Thanks for posting these AH, just wished you got paid for them.
HappyDaze
QUOTE (Stormwraith @ Jun 9 2010, 06:29 PM) *
Thanks for posting these AH, just wished you got paid for them.

If he had gotten paid for them, then we wouldn't be able to talk openly here about downloading them for free. cool.gif
Tzeentch
QUOTE (Bull @ Jun 9 2010, 08:21 PM) *
Ken! Holy shit, talk about random people popping up outta nowhere! How you been?

-- Finishing my Masters. They start leaning on you after you start working on your 3rd/4th undergraduate degree to move on or up smile.gif I haven't really been doing anything interesting with Shadowrun for a while, but I still tinker with updates for Salish-Shidhe and Tir Tairngire (I try to keep track of the rather vague updates SR4 has dropped on those two areas). I'm sort of on standby until I see what happens in the Almanac.
QUOTE
And yeah, I agree with this as well. It's never been spelled out in detail because, well, why does it need to be? But I imagine there were a lot of subtle differences starting in the 60's on up through the 80's and 90's with the way certain corps developed, laws passed, etc. Nothing really noticeable, but enough to slowly lay groundwork for things that happen later in SR.

-- There was an annoying habit of retconning early historical elements each revision of the rules too -- even before you get into the sometimes bizarre personal grudges that freelancers have about setting minutiae grinbig.gif It's easy to forget that the game was in development and most of the major setting elements set down in a haze of crackpipe smoke before the game even saw print in 1989
QUOTE
But even going back to the late 80's, with the prominence of the Japanacorps in early Shadowrun and throughout the 21st century prior to 2050, it's obvious that one deviation was that the Japancorps never "declined" as they ended up doing in the early 90's.

-- Shadowrun has a metric boatload of "a wizard corporation did it" design decisions that look increasingly silly due to setting inertia: each edition revises the decker rules and then proceeds to just tinker around the edges of other things. I expect Shadowrun, Fifth Edition to have yet another iteration of the Matrix (that still looks outdated or is unplayable) and some minor changes here and there in "flyover country" outside of Seattle. spin.gif For example, the TŪr na n”g draft posted by Ancient works mightily to make the area more "playable" (e.g. reverse the authorial immunity Sargent & Gascoigne gave it in the book set in 2053) but only truly misbegotten areas like Tsimshian ever actually die off no matter how ridiculous their situation would really be. It's been 22 game years with world shattering events one after another, and only cosmetic stuff gets shuffled around or accretes on a rickity metaplot that more often then not relies on freelancer in-jokes and hooks hidden in books over two decades out of print (or from novels that were never actually printed) smile.gif

-- An Ultimate Shadowrun so new players can get their heads around the core setting elements without all the baggage since First Edition was released is my dream. Make it happen!

otaku mike
You mean, Shadowrun 5th Edition, a big world reboot, like the WoD reboot?
It's actually something that appeals to me.

Mike
otakusensei
QUOTE (otaku mike @ Jun 9 2010, 09:58 PM) *
You mean, Shadowrun 5th Edition, a big world reboot, like the WoD reboot?
It's actually something that appeals to me.

Mike

Exact opposite over here. That kind of reboot would throw out years of back story and established fluff in a system that can easily be run without it.

I was in a WoD game for a year and a half and had a great time. Same group of people can't seem to keep a nWoD game going more than a few sessions, even if the ruleset is better.
Abstruse
QUOTE (Tzeentch @ Jun 9 2010, 07:54 PM) *
I haven't really been doing anything interesting with Shadowrun for a while, but I still tinker with updates for Salish-Shidhe and Tir Tairngire (I try to keep track of the rather vague updates SR4 has dropped on those two areas).

So can YOU tell me what the hell happened other than "Oh, we got bored with Tir so we had the rebels win."?! It's been bugging the hell out of me.
QUOTE (Tzeentch @ Jun 9 2010, 07:54 PM) *
-- An Ultimate Shadowrun so new players can get their heads around the core setting elements without all the baggage since First Edition was released is my dream. Make it happen!

And the second that happens, I promise you I will never buy another Shadowrun product ever again. Shadowrun is awesome fiction for me first and a role playing game second.
Platinum
QUOTE (otaku mike @ Jun 9 2010, 10:58 PM) *
You mean, Shadowrun 5th Edition, a big world reboot, like the WoD reboot?
It's actually something that appeals to me.

Mike


For SR5 I wish they would just name it something else other than shadowrun.
Retconn the whole thing from todays perspective and quit pissing on the works of those who wrote before them.
The damn metaplot and advancing timeline has been the heaviest millstone around Shadowrun's neck, next to Rob Boyle and Carl Sargant.
HappyDaze
I would love a reboot of the SR line with many sacred cows slaughtered.
Synner667
QUOTE (HappyDaze @ Jun 10 2010, 07:25 AM) *
I would love a reboot of the SR line with many sacred cows slaughtered.

As someone said, just tidy it all up...

I know many people like the detail, but I think too much detail is part of the problem - it limits what can be said and done without "breaking" the setting

I said it before, I think SR 4 should have been set in NYC and been a reboot, with a focus on the world from that viewpoint [so lots of things could have been different, as they would have been seen differently].

Although not a very good metaphor, when osx came along it was a break from previous versions of the operating system...
...Which, while being roughly the same in result, was very different.

Really, SR just needs a tidy up, some proper forward planning for the world and not changing things for the sake of it.
Dread Moores
QUOTE (HappyDaze @ Jun 10 2010, 01:25 AM) *
I would love a reboot of the SR line with many sacred cows slaughtered.


Yes. Quite a bit. Additionally, guidelines need to be put in place to keep future fiction and rule bloat way down. Fiction bloat has been a big issue for me with newer players, in terms of being a turn off.
hermit
QUOTE
Although not a very good metaphor, when osx came along it was a break from previous versions of the operating system...
...Which, while being roughly the same in result, was very different.

It also developed to be a spectacular failure.

Which is what an SR reboot would be. That'd be the breaking point for me with the game, too.
Fuchs
People can easily rest the setting themselves. I haven't followed the metaplot since sometime past Chicago, picking and choosing what to implement from the metaplot, and I can play Shadowrun just fine.
Angier
The solutions lies - as always - somewhere in between. A propper future planning for the plot and the game line itself should contain a thought-through cleaning of SRs assets especially in the fiction department but it should'nt lead anywhere near a total relaunch. I know many gamers around me who migrated from 3rd to 4th edition and where heavily confused about some rather harsh and aprubt changes who seemed to be forced on the materia. This shouldn't happen again. So no revolution should happen but I'd greatly appreciate a renewal.
Platinum
QUOTE (Synner667 @ Jun 10 2010, 02:41 AM) *
As someone said, just tidy it all up...

I know many people like the detail, but I think too much detail is part of the problem - it limits what can be said and done without "breaking" the setting

I said it before, I think SR 4 should have been set in NYC and been a reboot, with a focus on the world from that viewpoint [so lots of things could have been different, as they would have been seen differently].

Although not a very good metaphor, when osx came along it was a break from previous versions of the operating system...
...Which, while being roughly the same in result, was very different.

Really, SR just needs a tidy up, some proper forward planning for the world and not changing things for the sake of it.


I think tidying up and rebooting an rpg causes confusion and dilutes the brand. Look at nWOD. It divides the playerbase, and makes things messy.
Especially something with as heavy a meta plot as Shadowrun has. It's probably because I don't spend a lot of time in other PnP's, but from my reading other systems don't have a progressive story woven through each book that is released.

Call it something new. Rewrite it, especially when you do something as drastic is change a dice mechanic.
Fuchs
I do not see why people would have to follow the metaplots, or even know of them, to play Shadowrun. The information in the SR4 book is enough to play.
Lansdren
QUOTE (Fuchs @ Jun 10 2010, 01:37 PM) *
I do not see why people would have to follow the metaplots, or even know of them, to play Shadowrun. The information in the SR4 book is enough to play.



Thats a fair point.

From my perspective is I like the background and the history it fleshes out the world for me. In our group theres a couple of people who have played since first and second who know the background better then the rules a couple like me who are happy with the rules set and the background about equally and then a new to the game guy who is still full of wonder and innocence about the history. It means we can see the real look of horror and shock when someone mentions hunting bloodmages and he catches up and twigs.
deek
QUOTE (Fuchs @ Jun 10 2010, 08:37 AM) *
I do not see why people would have to follow the metaplots, or even know of them, to play Shadowrun. The information in the SR4 book is enough to play.

I am in that same boat, Fuchs. My players, who all have played SR before I GM'd and have always loved the setting, know nothing of the metaplot. Hell, I only know some of it from years or reading in these forums. I've always tried to get a better feeling on the metaplot and work that into my campaigns, but the majority of the time, it just takes a backseat.

From my player's perspective, they know that Seattle is a runner haven and there's lots of big corps. They might be able to name a couple, like Ares and Horizon (the latter only due to me having done a lot with Horizon in the last campaign arc). I'm sure if they looked at an equipment list, they could point out names of other corps, but other than a name, they know nothing of metaplot with any of them.

I'd say that my group is pretty hardcore gamers, but no one really gets into any metaplot. We all like rulesets and a little setting information, but after that, we just play whatever is in the GM's head. Metaplot ends up being read only by me, the GM, and very little at that, just because I have my own ideas and plot that I want to run and normally don't want someone else telling my what goes on in my Shadowrun world...
Ancient History
I'd like to point out the last time there was a world reboot - the Xboc/PC game from Microsoft - people were having shitting fits.

Also, anyone that likes Netcat/Slamm-0! sweet talk, I think I put something in The Megacoporate Shuffle and Mitsuhama drafts.
otakusensei
QUOTE (Ancient History @ Jun 10 2010, 09:24 AM) *
I'd like to point out the last time there was a world reboot - the Xboc/PC game from Microsoft - people were having shitting fits.

Also, anyone that likes Netcat/Slamm-0! sweet talk, I think I put something in The Megacoporate Shuffle and Mitsuhama drafts.

That shit fit was totally warranted. Even if it was less of a reboot and more of a turd behind glass with a "Shadowrun" flag in it. It doesn't effect me, but it's still somewhere and that bothers me...

Also my wife and I thank you for the Netcat/Slamm-O! updates.
Dread Moores
QUOTE (Ancient History @ Jun 10 2010, 08:24 AM) *
I'd like to point out the last time there was a world reboot - the Xboc/PC game from Microsoft - people were having shitting fits.


There's a big difference between a well-written "reboot" that's respectful of the original material, while still keeping an eye to easing introduction of new players and streamlining material, and that. But you already knew that. It just wouldn't go with your point we discussed elsewhere that reboots are always bad, no matter what. smile.gif Still a point we probably won't agree on.
sabs
The problem with a reboot is that you'd have to do away with alot of the Japanese centric aspect of the game. Nuyen being the world currency makes absolutely no sense if you start with today's world and move forward.

What would be nice, is for more cities in the world to get the same treatment that Seattle has gotten.

NYC
Denver
London
Paris
Vienna
Istanbul
India
China

The african subcontinent. This is potentially a great Merc sourcebook. This would be interesting for small group milspec games.

I can understand wanting to sidestep the giant turd mine that is trying to write a sourcebook involving Central Asia. Iran/Iraq/Pakistan, Afghanistan/Georgia. It would be interesting, but i can understand not wanting to take the risk.

An improvement to the contact system would be really nice.
Contacts as a source of goods work great. Although Fixer contacts are so much better than any other type.
Armsdealer, Hacker, ChopDoc, Corporate Insider, Ares R&D engineer, those guys are all useful contacts that are worth having, and the cost for them makes sense.

But, purely informational contacts seem under-developed. They're either way too expensive Karma wise, or the GM has to jump through hoops to make them worth the karma you paid for that parking Lot attendent, or bartender, or what have you.

otaku mike
OK, a reboot of the world in the corerule might be a bad idea, I admit.

But the concept intrigues me, with all the options that it opens again, the setting choices that need to be made again.

What about a special campaign sourcebook then, that would present an alternate SR world? It's entirely plug and play and self-contained. Either you use it or not, but that way it doesn't affect the rest of canon SR because, hey, it's a sort of What-if book.

Mike

EDIT: and then I realize that I have completely derailed the thread. Sorry Bobby! I'm gonna start a new one.
hermit
QUOTE
What would be nice, is for more cities in the world to get the same treatment that Seattle has gotten.

NYC
Denver
London
Paris
Vienna
Istanbul
India
China


The african subcontinent.

What the fuck.

India and China aren't Cities. Africa is a fully recognised continent, and also not a city.

And finally, Vienna got it's own sourcebook. Just, someone needs to translate it from German.

QUOTE
What about a special campaign sourcebook then, that would present an alternate SR world? It's entirely plug and play and self-contained. Either you use it or not, but that way it doesn't affect the rest of canon SR because, hey, it's a sort of What-if book.

If there would be enough buyers, why not?

And if it wasn't made officially, why not make a netbook like that?

QUOTE
An improvement to the contact system would be really nice.
Contacts as a source of goods work great. Although Fixer contacts are so much better than any other type.
Armsdealer, Hacker, ChopDoc, Corporate Insider, Ares R&D engineer, those guys are all useful contacts that are worth having, and the cost for them makes sense.

But, purely informational contacts seem under-developed. They're either way too expensive Karma wise, or the GM has to jump through hoops to make them worth the karma you paid for that parking Lot attendent, or bartender, or what have you.

What should the Improvement be like? Lower cost for purely information-oriented narrow grad contacts?

Of course, you need to conceivably maintain the contact. The day only has so many hours.
MJBurrage
Rebooting the canon of the Sixth World would be a bad idea for a variety of reason well covered in this an other threads. Also many have noted that Shadowrun can be easily played without any reference to the canon metaplot.

Having said that, I think a book with four to eight alternate backgrounds would be interesting.

One chapter describe a scientific history were all of the races, magic etc. came from genetic change; some deliberate engineering, some unintended environmental damage. In such a world, magic didn't return so much as we learned how to make magicians and paranormals much more common then they were in the past.

Another chapter could describe a political history, where counties didn't officially balkanize, but instead simply ended up irrelevant to the growing power of the megacorps. So on paper the EU rules the Nations of Europe, NAFTA rules the Nations of North America, China still rules all of its regions, Give Japan more control over the Pacific (replacing the US which had to withdraw its military fr economic reasons.) etc. The dystopia comes from the fact that the real power is the corps, and their is still plenty of room for Shadowrunning.

And so on, with more chapters giving other ways to get fantasy and cyberpunk combined.

Those who like the canon metaplot could still mine the book for ideas (helped by sidebars for said purpose, to make the book useful to all), those who just do not like the canon history, could choose the versions they want, from those presented in the book.

I.E. GURPS Alternate Earths for Shadowrun.
otakusensei
QUOTE (MJBurrage @ Jun 10 2010, 11:43 AM) *
Rebooting the canon of the Sixth World would be a bad idea for a variety of reason well covered in this an other threads. Also many have noted that Shadowrun can be easily played without any reference to the canon metaplot.

Having said that, I think a book with four to eight alternate backgrounds would be interesting.

One chapter describe a scientific history were all of the races, magic etc. came from genetic change; some deliberate engineering, some unintended environmental damage. In such a world, magic didn't return so much as we learned how to make magicians and paranormals much more common then they were in the past.

Another chapter could describe a political history, where counties didn't officially balkanize, but instead simply ended up irrelevant to the growing power of the megacorps. So on paper the EU rules the Nations of Europe, NAFTA rules the Nations of North America, China still rules all of its regions, Give Japan more control over the Pacific (replacing the US which had to withdraw its military fr economic reasons.) etc. The dystopia comes from the fact that the real power is the corps, and their is still plenty of room for Shadowrunning.

And so on, with more chapters giving other ways to get fantasy and cyberpunk combined.

Those who like the canon metaplot could still mine the book for ideas (helped by sidebars for said purpose, to make the book useful to all), those who just do not like the canon history, could choose the versions they want, from those presented in the book.

I.E. GURPS Alternate Earths for Shadowrun.

If Shadowrun was a more universal game, that would make sense. But SR has always been a setting first with a ruleset. That's part of the charm. It doesn't have be the cyberpunk D&D, there's others to do that and do it better.
Abstruse
QUOTE (otakusensei @ Jun 10 2010, 09:52 AM) *
If Shadowrun was a more universal game, that would make sense. But SR has always been a setting first with a ruleset. That's part of the charm. It doesn't have be the cyberpunk D&D, there's others to do that and do it better.

I buy the books to read them. I enjoy reading the plot. I re-read them regularly. I only manage to get a group together to actually play once every 3-5 years max.
Platinum
QUOTE (Ancient History @ Jun 10 2010, 09:24 AM) *
I'd like to point out the last time there was a world reboot - the Xboc/PC game from Microsoft - people were having shitting fits.

Also, anyone that likes Netcat/Slamm-0! sweet talk, I think I put something in The Megacoporate Shuffle and Mitsuhama drafts.

They only had fits because it was called shadowrun. Call it something else and no one cares.

My issue with the metaplot is that it is woven through everything. You can't really get away from it now. It eats up content in technical books. If each event was contained and didn't hinge on other books it would be more palletable. Kind of how 1/2 the pbase didn't look at year of the comet. Problem was there was some ok edges/flaws in there. (Not furry of course)
hermit
QUOTE
Another chapter could describe a political history, where counties didn't officially balkanize, but instead simply ended up irrelevant to the growing power of the megacorps. So on paper the EU rules the Nations of Europe, NAFTA rules the Nations of North America, China still rules all of its regions, Give Japan more control over the Pacific (replacing the US which had to withdraw its military fr economic reasons.) etc. The dystopia comes from the fact that the real power is the corps,

Replace 'corps' with 'Lobby groups' and you have the Real Life.

QUOTE
I buy the books to read them. I enjoy reading the plot. I re-read them regularly.

+1

I like to read the books as books, too.
deek
QUOTE (hermit @ Jun 10 2010, 12:56 PM) *
I like to read the books as books, too.

Which I think is part of the problem. I'm a gamer first and a storyteller second. While I appreciate the plots, I don't need them and sometimes, frankly, I don't want them. I love being able to pick up a book and read through the crunch, as do my players, and then create characters and play the game.

I know that there's a fan base that wants the story, but that could be separate from the "game". The hardcore are going to buy all the books regardless. Those that don't play much, may stray away from the rule books. Those that play a lot, obviously will want the rules, but then may dip into the plot books...as a choice.

I don't know...while I realize plot and rules have been intertwined since the beginning, I don't think that's doing Shadowrun any favors at this point in time.
MindandPen
QUOTE (deek @ Jun 10 2010, 12:13 PM) *
Which I think is part of the problem. I'm a gamer first and a storyteller second.


But Shadowrun has always been a storytelling based game. The Shadowrun rules were written, as far as I can tell, to facilitate the story first.

QUOTE (SR4LE pg 60 - Game Concepts)
Above all, the rules are here to facilitate telling good stories. Donít get bogged down in rules disputes when itís important to keep the plot moving, just fudge it and move on. Donít allow powergaming to run out of control, but donít let an unexpected death or glitch derail the plot either. If you know in advance that a certain outcome would be more dramatic or amusing than what you are likely to roll, then donít bother to roll. When the rules get in the way of the story, ignore the rules and tell the story.


-M&P
hermit
QUOTE
Which I think is part of the problem. I'm a gamer first and a storyteller second. While I appreciate the plots, I don't need them and sometimes, frankly, I don't want them. I love being able to pick up a book and read through the crunch, as do my players, and then create characters and play the game.

I'll never understand the appeal of this, in an age of computer games, but to each their own.

QUOTE
I know that there's a fan base that wants the story, but that could be separate from the "game". The hardcore are going to buy all the books regardless. Those that don't play much, may stray away from the rule books. Those that play a lot, obviously will want the rules, but then may dip into the plot books...as a choice.

For reasons of return and selling them, most gaming supplementals purposely mix crunch and fluff into one book. So that both gtypes of gamer will buy all the books.
deek
I don't think I wrote exactly what I meant there with "storyteller second". I love to run games and do focus a lot on the underlying plot of the campaign. I do like having some basic setting information, but I don't really want to sit there and educate my players on the metaplot or tell someone else's story.

The uniqueness (in my mind) of a tabletop RPG, is that the players are the focus and they get to tell their own stories through gameplay. I want them to drive it and me react. Now, granted, having all the SR knowledge of the past would help me reacted more closely to how the game was written, but I really don't have the time to invest hundreds of hours reading up on what happened in the 2050s and 2060s. I'm happy that that stuff is there, but I don't really need to use it and sometimes I don't want so much fluff in my books.

I feel like SR4 core books are 50/50 crunch to fluff and I'm more wanting an 80/20 or 90/10.

So, I want to tell stories, but I want them to be mine and the players...not sure if any of this makes sense, but I know that the name Shadowrun instills a certain image in my players's minds and the game doesn't need much history to still be fun.
otakusensei
QUOTE (deek @ Jun 10 2010, 04:08 PM) *
I don't think I wrote exactly what I meant there with "storyteller second". I love to run games and do focus a lot on the underlying plot of the campaign. I do like having some basic setting information, but I don't really want to sit there and educate my players on the metaplot or tell someone else's story.

The uniqueness (in my mind) of a tabletop RPG, is that the players are the focus and they get to tell their own stories through gameplay. I want them to drive it and me react. Now, granted, having all the SR knowledge of the past would help me reacted more closely to how the game was written, but I really don't have the time to invest hundreds of hours reading up on what happened in the 2050s and 2060s. I'm happy that that stuff is there, but I don't really need to use it and sometimes I don't want so much fluff in my books.

I feel like SR4 core books are 50/50 crunch to fluff and I'm more wanting an 80/20 or 90/10.

So, I want to tell stories, but I want them to be mine and the players...not sure if any of this makes sense, but I know that the name Shadowrun instills a certain image in my players's minds and the game doesn't need much history to still be fun.

You could run a game where your player characters take over Ares and have them build a rocket so you can attack the MCT base on Mars. There's nothing stopping you. It's just that a book based around that wouldn't sell very well.
Synner
I'd really apppreciate it if people didn't bandy the term "metaplot" as a catchall term when they're actually referring to several distinct elements of the Shadowrun world/setting.

Let's be clear: Shadowrun is a living setting, it has an "evolving history", this is one of its greatest strengths and one of the reasons it has remained healthy and popular game world over 20 years. It's what makes this game feel alive. It feels like our own history (hell just look at what's happened in the real world in the past 20 years!) and helps us identify with the world portrayed.
And while it's also a problem simply because of the hassle that long a continuity represents, it's a minor one compared to what it brings to the table. Now the important thing to keep in mind is that this evolving history is not a story per se. Events happen or are detailed but many are not by themselves plot points or linked to narratives/stories - hence they are not "metaplot". Open Corporate Enclaves and read about what Neo-Tokyo is like after the Crash 2.0. Now step back and realize there is no "metaplot" to it. The setting information has simply been updated to reflect the passing of time. True, certain elements might tie into metaplots (the rise to power of the Emperor's faction) but ultimately there is no backstory to it, there is no plot (unless you make it up). Hence it isn't metaplot, it is simply updated setting material.

On the other hand Shadowrun has a bunch of metaplots. Note the plural. A metaplot is an overarching story linking together several narrative elements in an ongoing long term or short term plot. Shadowrun has never had a single metaplot (like say the WOD's Gehenna storyarc). It has instead offered up several metaplots; some of which have ended, some new ones have begun, some are ongoing, some have morphed into very different stories than originally intended. Regardless these are separate elements from the "evolvoing history" above. Whilst the two interact, the history is larger in scope and many (i would even say most) events are never detailed in a narrative fashion.

Now contrary to what has been said in this thread, the SR4 developers made a conscious decision to remove metaplot from the corebooks with the exception of the BBB itself. The one arguable exception is the emergence of technomancers and the Matrix material in Unwired. On the other hand, the core books feature a lot more fluff than the previous edition's equivalents. It should go without saying but fluff and setting information do not equal metaplot. SR4 intentionally added fluff back into the corebooks because it was something the fanbase demanded after SR3 corebooks were seen as encyclopaedic in tone and dull tomes of stats. We believed it made sense to provide setting material to contextualize the new developments, technologies, magics, gear, and other elements we were introducing in these books rather than leaving them hanging out of context (after all, who produces all this stuff? who uses it? how common is it? what's the likelihood of someone thinking you're odd for carrying it? why is it of interest to runners? what are the less obvious risks and pitfalls of the technologies being introduced?) We also deemed this updated setting context important because there has been paradigm in many established aspects of the setting with SR4 which is directly attributable to the whole "evolving history" thing I mention above (such as the Matrix and Augmented Reality, but also bio vs. cyber, the rise of genetech and nanotech, etc). But I would like to repeat, the main reason we opted to put the fluff back in was because the fans demanded it.

People also seem to have strange ideas as to what constitutes fluff and what are rules; the SR4 corebooks have a roughly 30 fluff/70 crunch breakdown with some (like Arsenal) favoring the crunch side of things.
hermit
QUOTE
It feels like our own history (hell just look at what's happened in the real world in the past 20 years!) and helps us identify with the world portrayed.

When the government passed a new set of environmental laws, and I was reading up on Tir na nOg, I was pretty startled how far in that direction Germany has gone.

And the security chapter ... the TRC may hold you up to a week without due trial. Wow. That's the norm in the West with terrorists now - which is what these laws in the Tir book are for. The draconian Tir anti-terror laws. It is worth mentioning the Tir has no Guantanamo in canon.

QUOTE
But I would like to repeat, the main reason we opted to put the fluff back in was because the fans demanded it.

I would like to thank you for that. Much as I have my gripes with SR4, I really enjoy this. It is one of the main reasons I still buy SR books.
Ancient History
I feel I should mention this, the blue text in the drafts is stuff I highlighted for "first cut" in the event of space issues...or whose character might be a bit much for the audience.
Tzeentch
-- Here's my somewhat snarky take on things: Aside from a few top-down story elements (that are basically injected into canon with a splash, like SURGE) there is no "plot" in the metaplot of Shadowrun (unless later line developers knuckled down and wrote a "story bible," which I doubt). It's a disparate group of freelancer story arcs (that the other writers are often unaware of), in-jokes, backwards references to old material, sly comments about contemporary news, and the occasional line developer meddling. There's no plan as to where Shadowrun is going year to year, or even book-to-book.
-- The one bright spot is the lack of novels; Smedman could have written "and then a grue eats the Sioux Nation" and it's instantly canon and the RPG guys have to write around it
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