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MilkManDan
Hey there, ran in to a problem while looking for new gear for my character. I'm playing an adept, who now has over 200k nuyen to spend. My first thought of course was weapon foci, but I can't afford the karma for a worthwhile rating, and saving 25-30 karma would be a serious problem as there is lots of improvement needed attribute and skillwise. So I read up on inanimate vessel's, and then I read up on inhabitation and possession, and then I searched all the books for potential spirits. I've been unable to find any sample spirits with either power, except insect spirits with the restriction of living vessels. So I read some more, and then I came home and spent an hour or so searching google and dumpshock.

So after lots of reading, I'm now thoroughly confused. I'm not clear on whether or not a non-free spirit can be used to inhabit a vessel. I'm even less clear on how to determine the stats/powers of a free spirit if I used one. I'm not 100% clear on when the spirit uses it's powers/how I can use them at my command. And I'm really unclear on how I would go about making sure the spirit stays in the vessel for an extended period of time (years). Last but not least, I'm absolutely clueless on how much all this would cost my adept (as he'd have to hire a magician) and how long it'd take.

After reading about free spirits, the best sketch I've been able to think of in regards to the spirit in question is a free spirit with some sort of long-term pact and only 1 or 2 powers (concealment, influence?) that will become more powerful as I feed it karma. Aside from that, I'd be perfectly ok with a non-free spirit that doesn't improve over time so long as it's a long-term inhabitation, however from what I've read it seems none of the spirits in the book have the inhabitation or posession power.

Any help/advice on how to make this work would be great. As I said, the main goal is to have some sort of spirit bound into a weapon long-term, with of course powers my character can somehow utilize. Again, he is an adept, with his magical skills limited to assensing (astral perception power), and counter-spelling. He is initiate grade 1, with shielding as his metamagic. He has over 200k to get this done, a fair amount of time, and if necessary some shade for astral projection. Figuring out the cost/time is something my GM and I can work out if we know all the options to go about picking the spirit and getting him in the vessel, so answering the question of price/time isn't as important to me. Thanks for your help!
Neraph
Welcome Milk Man Dan (please move your milk truck off my box of puppies, by the way).

Insect Mages are the only mages who have ready access to Inhabitation Spirits, although any mage that uses Blood Magic (Blood Invoking, IIRC) can turn any spirit into an Inhabitation spirit. The problem with both of those is that they're usually KoS'd.

Otherwise you use Possession-based spirits, of which there are a few Traditions that use them (Voodoo, Psionics from the Digital Grimoire). Basically they're the exact same spirits as normal, but replace Materialization with Possession.

The main difference would be that Possession spirits only stay for as long as you can make them, whereas Inhabitation spirits are stuck in their vessel until it gets destroyed (or if they get a True Form merge and then get disrupted).

As the rules are written, you can't really get spirits for yourself like an agent program in a drone, especially not as an Adept. As a Mystic Adept/Mage you'd be able to summon your own though.

Here's a guide for spirits that you may want to read through. It details on the last couple of points how you can do basically what you're wanting to.

EDIT: As a straight adept, I would suggest getting a Restricted Gear for a R4 Weapon Focus bound at chargen (I assume you're doing Karmagen, as you mentioned karma during chargen, where under the BP system you only spend BP to bind foci at chargen). It'll hurt your karma a bit to get one that high, but you'll enjoy it in the long run. Now, after you get that Weapon Focus, get it prepared for a Bloodmourne conversion, which is simply adding powers to the weapon focus. The process is detailed in the thread I linked above.
MilkManDan
Thanks for the reply! I'm sorry I wasn't clear about my char., this isn't during chargen, I've played this char. for a couple of runs now so the binding cost is out of the question. You say that insect mages are the only ones who can turn a spirit into an inhabitation spirit. But the Bloodmourne idea you suggest is using a free spirit for inhabitation isn't it? I'm guessing you're saying the only non-free inhabitation spirits belong to insect mages?

Using the bloodmourne idea, would that work if I had someone else do every step of the process except the bargaining (As I'm an adapt, with no occult/enchanting)? This seems very much like the rough idea I had thought of after my initial research, i.e. getting a free spirit to inhabit the weapon. Anyway, assuming there are no problems with someone other than my PC summoning/offering/etc the free spirit and my PC still doing the bargaining to inhabit his weapon... any clues how hard it would be to find a mage to do this? I'm guessing it wouldn't take a very powerful mage to do it, from the way you described, but I could be missing something.

Also, how would it's energy drain work in a melee weapon? The blooddrinker arrows you suggest, draining 1 karma/1 damage seems reasonable, but I'm wondering if it's the same ratio for my melee weapon? It's not uncommon to for him to do 8+ damage in one hit, which would of course be enticing to the free spirit, but I want to be sure if the ratio is 1:1 because I'm sure the GM will raise a brow at the free spirit gaining 25ish karma from 1 fight!

Thanks again for helping me work this out.
Yerameyahu
It's hard to imagine the free spirit wants to be permanently bound into the item, though. I mean, there's always GM fiat, I guess. frown.gif

1:1 doesn't seem reasonable for any weapon. Perhaps 1 per enemy *killed*, and even that could grossly exceed karma award guidelines.
sabs
You have 200K you don't know how to spend?

Do you own a vehicle? is it modded?
Do you have a good commlink with agents to defend it, do your data searches, run tacnet on?
Do you have several burnable commlinks for day to day use.
Do you have enough attachable sensors that you have access to UWB radar, ultrasound, thermo, lowlight?
You could buy the weapon foci, and not bind it yet. It would still be a sweet sweet weapon.
Did you buy your 3 months of high lifestyle
Do you have a R6 SiN yet? with R6 licenses
Do you have 3 R4 SiN's with associated lifestyles purchased and paid for.
Did you invite some of your high loyalty contacts out for a weekend in Vegas? smile.gif


Even without cyber/bio I can spend 200k in a blink of an eye.

Does your GM allow you to convert cash into karma?
Dre569
Iím the GM for this game and no karma to cash converting allowed
Neraph
QUOTE (Yerameyahu @ Sep 8 2010, 02:39 PM) *
It's hard to imagine the free spirit wants to be permanently bound into the item, though. I mean, there's always GM fiat, I guess. frown.gif

Actually it's not. And it's not permanently bound - it's just bound until the item is broken. Or it gets in the area of an Astral Rift, or the Spirit Power that does the same thing. Or it gets the Unique Power to project.

Or, or, or.

And the spirit would be quite willing. Get a small, easy-peasy F1 piddly spirit and promise him massive amounts of guarenteed power for the small price of being bound in a weapon and protecting a mortal for a few years? Just about any Blood spirit would jump on that offer.

QUOTE (Yerameyahu @ Sep 8 2010, 02:39 PM) *
1:1 doesn't seem reasonable for any weapon. Perhaps 1 per enemy *killed*, and even that could grossly exceed karma award guidelines.

That's not how it works. The damage you deal with a weapon is not the karma it gets. It only gets karma from dealing damage with the Extended Test from its power.
Yerameyahu
That's what 'permanent' means. smile.gif

I was responding this this, Neraph: "The blooddrinker arrows you suggest, draining 1 karma/1 damage seems reasonable, but I'm wondering if it's the same ratio for my melee weapon?" Of course that's not how it works, but I assumed we're discussing how rules. smile.gif
Neraph
QUOTE (Yerameyahu @ Sep 9 2010, 01:05 AM) *
That's what 'permanent' means. smile.gif

I was responding this this, Neraph: "The blooddrinker arrows you suggest, draining 1 karma/1 damage seems reasonable, but I'm wondering if it's the same ratio for my melee weapon?" Of course that's not how it works, but I assumed we're discussing how rules. smile.gif

.... I'm not exactly sure of what you're trying to say here.

It's permanent until it's not? That's not very permanent then.

And the 1 karma/1 physical damage is per the Test the spirit has to do, not the damage the weapon does. IE: You stab a guy for 8P damage, the spirit gets nothing. It then has to do its Extended Test to pull karma out of the guy, doing 1 box of Physical Damage every ~10 minutes (more time at low force), until the man dies a horrible, excruciating, profitable death.
KarmaInferno
QUOTE (Neraph @ Sep 9 2010, 02:12 AM) *
It's permanent until it's not? That's not very permanent then.


If it's "longer than the lifespan of the played campaign", then it's permanent enough.



-karma
Neraph
That's not neccessarily true though. Don't forget that NPCs can try to break weapons.

Or if you tick off the spirit inside the weapon it can Levitate away, or convince someone else to steal it from you.

Or, if RP'd properly, after the player and GM decide it's time, you can "release" the spirit by breaking the weapon and allowing it to depart.
MilkManDan
As I would see it, it would be a means to an end for the spirit. Every spirit has to start somewhere right? The chances of an actively used weapon lasting longer than a 'lifetime' (lets say 80 years) really isn't that high in 2070, and that's just assuming natural chaos and entropy. 80 years isn't a long time at all for a spirit, 200 years probably wouldn't be considered a long time to one. Going from having next to no power, then spending 80 years in an object gaining power, knowledge, and possibly contacts before you're free to use you're now considerable power however you choose for the rest of ETERNITY. Hmm... sounds like a pretty good deal to me, especially compared to working a 9-5 job for 1/4 of your lifespan, to have the 'financial freedom' to do what you want. There are billions of people who sign up for that particular deal, and I imagine they're a lot more intelligent than a force 1 free spirit.
Neraph
Especially if you consider it very well may have been waiting in the metaplanes since the 4th Age to finally get a chance...
Yerameyahu
I thought it had to be a Free Spirit? They're already out of the metaplanes. smile.gif

I didn't say it was impossible, but I still think it's unlikely. You'll have to very carefully search for the right spirit, and they're rare enough anyway.
sabs
Mm..
You search the metaplanes for a Free Spirit.. and you run across a Horror.
It happily empowers your bullets, for just the cost of a little karma, and then a little more, and then more.

Until you've fed this Horror enough Karma that it can start doing happy things like Materialize.
Neraph
sabs, I don't think you understand. We're not looking for something with empower (and I don't even think that's a Power), and we're not paying the karma cost. Also, if you were to do a bullet I think it'd break after the first shot. That's not nearly useful enough.

And it is hardly a method of gaming that would be considered "broken." You'd simply have an extra member for the team, essentially. One that can be used by the GM at any time to backstab the group, be kidnapped, destroyed, injured, or any list of other things to help keep balance. Just because you can't figure out how to balance it does not make it unbalanced - it just means you need to think on your toes more.

If it gets Concealment and Levitate, it can leave whenever it wants. It could then Levitate straight up a considerable distance and stop sustaining the spell, breaking the weapon from falling damage and releasing the spirit.

If it gets Influence or any mind control spells it can convince someone else to take it away from the player.

What it really is intended for, though, is a great RP tool and being able to get a "mage" for a group that doesn't have one. I'd say that as long as the person who crafts the weapon is respectful of it and does not insult it, it would have no reason to try and leave or be spiteful. As soon as you start abusing it, however, then you've made a really dangerous enemy indeed.

Also, due to the fact that it itself is a Free Spirit Magician, you can have it learn spells and abilities that would be helpful for the rest of the team: Concealment, Physical Mask, Powerbolt, Guard, ect.

Not to mention how easy it is to counter mages. All it takes is a little Backround Count and it is nearly useless.

History and Lore is full of weapons like this. Enchanted blades endowed with spirits, semi-sentient weapons of power, ect. Instead of arguing against your players thinking of anything cool, why don't you work with your players for them to have fun?
KarmaInferno
After running a game where I playing a single character was fielding a small army of drones with heavy weapons, I don't think one spirit in a bottle is going to be THAT big a problem.



-karma
Neraph
Thank you, Karma-ferno.
Hagga
QUOTE (Neraph @ Sep 8 2010, 07:41 AM) *
Welcome Milk Man Dan (please move your milk truck off my box of puppies, by the way).

Insect Mages are the only mages who have ready access to Inhabitation Spirits, although any mage that uses Blood Magic (Blood Invoking, IIRC) can turn any spirit into an Inhabitation spirit. The problem with both of those is that they're usually KoS'd.

I can't dig this out of street magic. Do you have a page number for me? I need to eat the page to ensure my players never see it.
Neraph
I do not approve of page-eating.

Magical Threats section - you'll get no more out of me. NO page eating!
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