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Aerospider
Just wondered what the general consensus was on the Hand of God rule. Please click all that apply (though the first three should be considered mutually exclusive).
Feel free to debate.
Elfenlied
My players can use it however often they like. It's their Karma they're burning, after all.
Ascalaphus
I'm not sure how you meant #5. You're referring to permanent edge there, right? In which case 1 and 5 also exclude each other..
CanRay
I allow it (Hasn't cropped up yet), but I have a plan to show how costly it is... devil.gif
Summerstorm
I mostly allow it. But it doesn't protect from "follow up moves" or consequences, only ONCE you can get away.

For example:

Foe sneaks up on someone and shoots him in the head. Player uses Hand of God to not die: So i rule that he maybe got shot, but his thick skull deflected the bullet, knocking him out (and some minor damage)
The "Hand of God" will not prevent the assassin to shoot him again a few times, or checking up if that dude is dead (although i will rule that he assumes it, and will not fill him with bullets unless he has a good reason for that) Nor will it protect him from being found and eaten by ghouls if no one gets him.

Also i might charge more Edge if he wants to survive something truely ridiculous. (One edge per logical jump) - for example: he want's to: Survive the explosion, be ignored by the sea-critters and then somehow wash up to the shore... three Edge, man... ah well, maybe two.
TheScrivener
I try to get my players to share the storyteller's hat as much as possible, and Edge is a big part of that. Any use of Edge has to be justified by a signature move or a lucky break, and needs to be described as such; burning Edge such as for Hand of God needs to be a cllimactic moment which defines the session, or it doesn't fly. If your character doesn't want to die like a punk in a taupe hallway, you better have something for him to LIVE FOR!
Notsoevildm
I would allow it, but not without consequences.

Get shot in the head - maybe you wake up with amnesia, in a cell, naked, next to Bubba the love troll.
Ascalaphus
I certainly wouldn't charge multiple points for a single encounter. It's more like this: everyone thought you were dead, but you...

came back...

So the character is definitely out of action for the scene, likely for the rest of the game session. (I like to have the dangerous fights near the end of the game session.)
Neurosis
My feelings on this issue are...complicated.

Maybe I will expand on this post later.
Warlordtheft
My two big issues are the consequences and that in some situations it is pointless (Bullet to the back of the head--yeah right!!).

I think the main point of the hand of god rule is to prevent a PC from dying to a luck shot. This does not mean they go un hurt, which may mean the players PC becomes non-playable for a significant period of time.
sabs
You wake up briefly to an unfamiliar face.
"Don't worry.. we'll fix you up."
And you black out again.

You wake up again, in a hospital bed, in some way way off the books black ops medical facility.

A new campaign begins smile.gif
KarmaInferno
QUOTE (sabs @ Sep 27 2010, 01:43 PM) *
You wake up briefly to an unfamiliar face.
"Don't worry.. we'll fix you up."
And you black out again.

You wake up again, in a hospital bed, in some way way off the books black ops medical facility.

A new campaign begins smile.gif


And you can swear you occasionally hear a ticking noise that nobody else can hear...




-k
sabs
QUOTE (KarmaInferno @ Sep 27 2010, 07:21 PM) *
And you can swear you occasionally hear a ticking noise that nobody else can hear...




-k


I prefer the poison filled sacs sewn into your arteries.. slowly breaking apart unless you get a certain shot of enzymes regularly.
Shinobi Killfist
I am totally for it. It supports cinematic action IMO. In how many movies has the hero been in a situation where the villain had him dead to rights or an explosion was about to kill him but a random looking event disrupts the attack etc.
Dumori
If you can coem up with a reason I'll let it fly. So what SR4 makes PCs hard to kill if the player wants them to live and? If the play doesn't want the PC to die they'll send edge I'll depending on circumstance often not let them get out of the shit for free tha'ts what burning edge for a critical success is for. HoG is for when you really need to escape death for example you could Cirt success you resistance roll against the head shot but then you still have to fight off the assassin or you could HoG it get knocked out wake up nude in a morge.
Doc Chase
QUOTE (Neurosis @ Sep 27 2010, 04:55 PM) *
My feelings on this issue are...complicated.

Maybe I will expand on this post later.


Echoing this sentiment. Having had my Hand of God turn into 'you're playing a GMPC now', I'm a fan of some stringent regulation on the 'consequences' aspect.
LurkerOutThere
Hand of God is a funny thing. Generally speaking it's on unless the death is to be caused by the characters own stupidity when there were other options. Wanting to use hand of god when you've decided to fight rather then run from ares firewatch (especially when there's in character reasons to do so) is fine. Usually if Hand of God isn't going to be usable for an encounter the players know about it well in advance but those situations have been few and far between. On the whole I've found the costs involved more then limit the practice enough.

On a similar note when Hand of God is used it tends to be a fairly solid save. The assasin shoots the PC and is then shot by another rooftop sniper, or the police arrive, or Docwagon just happens to be right there, something takes the characfter out of the situation and ensure that they will still be viable. That's not to say I havn't done the "You owe some powerful people a big favor for saving your life." angle, but I try to avoid things as open and shut as cranial bombs and mysterious implants. Often Don Corleone just shows up at their hospital bed with flowers. "Get better soon kid, all this has made me aware I have some work your uniquely suited for."

Dumori
QUOTE (LurkerOutThere @ Sep 27 2010, 11:08 PM) *
On a similar note when Hand of God is used it tends to be a fairly solid save. The assasin shoots the PC and is then shot by another rooftop sniper, or the police arrive, or Docwagon just happens to be right there, something takes the characfter out of the situation and ensure that they will still be viable. That's not to say I havn't done the "You owe some powerful people a big favor for saving your life." angle, but I try to avoid things as open and shut as cranial bombs and mysterious implants. Often Don Corleone just shows up at their hospital bed with flowers. "Get better soon kid, all this has made me aware I have some work your uniquely suited for."

Aye the means of payment depends on how they surive I often get the PC to decide how as well or at least hash it out. IF they want to play the corp prisoner aspect or don't mind it I might go there but I'm unlikely to force them in to a situation that the play might just of his PC his self.
Ascalaphus
Survival by HoG always has a price, but this kind of powerful GM intervention should be coordinated with the player; it should feel as paying a price, but the character should still be fun.
CanRay
The main character of some of my stories used the HoG rule to save his own ass.

He's mostly cybernetic now, and mildly unbalanced due to various other events relating to the event.

Actually, that makes him even more fun.
Aerospider
QUOTE (Ascalaphus @ Sep 27 2010, 01:55 PM) *
I'm not sure how you meant #5. You're referring to permanent edge there, right? In which case 1 and 5 also exclude each other..

By RAW, HoG needs the PC to have a free Edge point to spend and when he spends it to save his life his Edge attribute drops by 1. In my last session the technomancer got chewed by a cybertooth tiger but had already spent all (both) his Edge points so technically that should have been that, but I decided to show some compassion and allow it.

Well I say 'compassion', but he's now on a rock bottom Edge attribute and about to find out the full extent of the damage ... vegm.gif
Fringe
QUOTE (Doc Chase @ Sep 27 2010, 05:44 PM) *
Echoing this sentiment. Having had my Hand of God turn into 'you're playing a GMPC now', I'm a fan of some stringent regulation on the 'consequences' aspect.


I second this. Apparently, having to burn an Edge point (which already makes the character less powerful) isn't enough for some GMs. Too many "extra consequences" can lead to that character having to burn more Edge, which leads to a death spiral of non-fun. While I'm not normally a fan of the "slippery slope" argument, I think GMs need to tread lightly with the "extra consequences", since consequence is built into the mechanic as written. I can accept some story/RP possibilities, but be careful with anything that has a negative quality attached to it (like the Cranial Bomb), since the permanent loss of Edge has already made the character less powerful.

As an example, let's consider a character with Edge 3 (about the minimum I'd recommend for a character) in a Missions game. If that character has to use HoG, he burns a point of Edge, permanently dropping to Edge 2. If I want my Edge score back, I have to spend 15 (New Rating x 5) Karma to do so. That's three full Missions (assuming my average of 5 Karma per Mission) where I'm basically getting no Karma to spend on other stuff but rather just scraping my way back to where I started.
Aerospider
QUOTE (Fringe @ Sep 28 2010, 01:58 PM) *
I second this. Apparently, having to burn an Edge point (which already makes the character less powerful) isn't enough for some GMs. Too many "extra consequences" can lead to that character having to burn more Edge, which leads to a death spiral of non-fun. While I'm not normally a fan of the "slippery slope" argument, I think GMs need to tread lightly with the "extra consequences", since consequence is built into the mechanic as written. I can accept some story/RP possibilities, but be careful with anything that has a negative quality attached to it (like the Cranial Bomb), since the permanent loss of Edge has already made the character less powerful.

As an example, let's consider a character with Edge 3 (about the minimum I'd recommend for a character) in a Missions game. If that character has to use HoG, he burns a point of Edge, permanently dropping to Edge 2. If I want my Edge score back, I have to spend 15 (New Rating x 5) Karma to do so. That's three full Missions (assuming my average of 5 Karma per Mission) where I'm basically getting no Karma to spend on other stuff but rather just scraping my way back to where I started.

A poor GM could really overdo the consequences aspect, but IMO HoG should hurt bad. If you play it by RAW you can do HoG multiple times, making a 6+ Edge character effectively immortal except for really long campaigns (and over-deadly ones). If one of my players were to create a big stink over the terms of his 'reincarnation' I'd start fishing out a new character sheet for him. Three missions in exchange for your life? Seems fine to me.

"Hey, if you don't wanna die I can always get out my Toon books ...?"
Faraday
Generally, I allow HoG within a pretty wide margin of reason. Explosions make for pretty good "no one could've survived that" situations. If a character jumps out of a suborbital in mid-flight without clothes or any protective gear...

Also, I house rule that when a character burns edge (for any reason), it lowers their max edge by 1 as well.
Doc Chase
QUOTE (Aerospider @ Sep 29 2010, 01:06 PM) *
A poor GM could really overdo the consequences aspect, but IMO HoG should hurt bad. If you play it by RAW you can do HoG multiple times, making a 6+ Edge character effectively immortal except for really long campaigns (and over-deadly ones). If one of my players were to create a big stink over the terms of his 'reincarnation' I'd start fishing out a new character sheet for him. Three missions in exchange for your life? Seems fine to me.

"Hey, if you don't wanna die I can always get out my Toon books ...?"


If it's to the point a character is having to HoG more than once a campaign, I would think there's an underlying problem in the campaign itself that needs to be looked at.

I'm all for a lethal game, that's fine. However, if someone's to the point they HoG or lose their sheet, then the GM saying "WELL THE BAD GUY PUMPS A FEW MORE ROUNDS IN NOW WHAT" crosses the line into that GM v PC area that makes for a bad situation.

HoG already burns a point of Edge. Additional consequences such as scars and extended heal times are also understandable - you're cheating Death, and he's not going to let you go without a little something to remember him by. But there should be limits to it, otherwise it's better off for the player to roll a new sheet - and it is the player's sheet. We as GM's shouldn't be making extensive changes to it without their input and their consent. Telling them 'you're taking all this or roll another sheet' just stinks of sour grapes to me.

sabs
I never understood this
your sheet vs my sheet thing.
Players who guard their sheets jealously
GM's who seem to want to kill a character just so they can collect the sheet.

It really doesn't make sense to me.

The goal of a game should be to create a collaborative story/effort.
it should always be a give and take. As a GM if I've setup a situation where the PC's are sure to die.. It's my msitake. Unless of course, the Players went in their own direction, and despite my warnings that hitting the Knight Errant Training Facility was bad idea, did it anyways.. well that's a different story.

If someone uses HoG to escape a bad roll that got them killed, then it should have minor consequences.
if someone uses HoG to escape a death that could have been foreseen because the Players bit off more than they could chew. Then the Consequences should be equivalent to the stupidity that got them there.
Doc Chase
QUOTE (sabs @ Sep 29 2010, 03:24 PM) *
If someone uses HoG to escape a bad roll that got them killed, then it should have minor consequences.
if someone uses HoG to escape a death that could have been foreseen because the Players bit off more than they could chew. Then the Consequences should be equivalent to the stupidity that got them there.


Such is fine by me. I take issue with those who craft the situation where it's likely the players will get killed, then dumping huge penalties on them when they hit that damage overflow - such as targeting the players who have the Drive skill, then engaging them in a car chase, or slapping them with the Great Form spirit possessing the cyberzombie after he's geeked the mage, etc.
sabs
Sure, the I have fun as a GM when i TPK
That's not a Gm that's a jerk smile.gif
Fringe
QUOTE (Aerospider @ Sep 29 2010, 08:06 AM) *
A poor GM could really overdo the consequences aspect, but IMO HoG should hurt bad. If you play it by RAW you can do HoG multiple times, making a 6+ Edge character effectively immortal except for really long campaigns (and over-deadly ones). If one of my players were to create a big stink over the terms of his 'reincarnation' I'd start fishing out a new character sheet for him. Three missions in exchange for your life? Seems fine to me.

"Hey, if you don't wanna die I can always get out my Toon books ...?"


That's just my point. I don't mind a dangerous game--as you suggest, that's why we're playing SR and not Toon--but when GMs want to change the rule to hose a PC further than the rule already does, I have a problem with that.

HoG already hurts bad. There's no need to hose further an already-hosed character. If the GM makes HoG hurt more than making a new character, what's the point of HoG? In that case, just tell your players you're not allowing the HoG rule in the first place. But if, after I've burned a point of Edge, my GM tells me I have a Cranial Bomb and 20-30 BPs equivalent of "consequences", I'm going to be the one reaching for a new character sheet...or the door, if I sense a trend.
Megu
QUOTE (TheScrivener @ Sep 27 2010, 08:30 AM) *
I try to get my players to share the storyteller's hat as much as possible, and Edge is a big part of that. Any use of Edge has to be justified by a signature move or a lucky break, and needs to be described as such; burning Edge such as for Hand of God needs to be a cllimactic moment which defines the session, or it doesn't fly. If your character doesn't want to die like a punk in a taupe hallway, you better have something for him to LIVE FOR!


I like your style. This is basically my take as well. It's as much my players' game as mine, and if they don't think their character's story has been resolved to the point where they can let 'em go, then I'm not going to have a problem with that, but we both then try to come up with, "Well, what would be coolest or most dramatic to have happen now?"
Shinobi Killfist
QUOTE (sabs @ Sep 29 2010, 09:24 AM) *
I never understood this
your sheet vs my sheet thing.
Players who guard their sheets jealously
GM's who seem to want to kill a character just so they can collect the sheet.

It really doesn't make sense to me.

The goal of a game should be to create a collaborative story/effort.
it should always be a give and take. As a GM if I've setup a situation where the PC's are sure to die.. It's my msitake. Unless of course, the Players went in their own direction, and despite my warnings that hitting the Knight Errant Training Facility was bad idea, did it anyways.. well that's a different story.

If someone uses HoG to escape a bad roll that got them killed, then it should have minor consequences.
if someone uses HoG to escape a death that could have been foreseen because the Players bit off more than they could chew. Then the Consequences should be equivalent to the stupidity that got them there.



There is a fine line between stupidity due to what the players should have foreseen and stupidity by a GM who thinks people should see things because he sees it. Not everyone thinks the same way, the way a GM phrases things has a large impact on how the players see things. I wonder how many of the he was dumb, punish him incidents are happening because the GM phrased things in a way that got the players to see the situation differently than the GM saw them.

I guess my attitude is if the players did something really dumb, I wonder what did I do to cause them to act that way. Did I explain things poorly, did I give a vibe that is was a light adventure that they'd just plow through etc. If the players are being intentionally dumb, or disruptive that is a different thing, but also not really a HoG issue. I just don't want to play with them.
Aerospider
QUOTE (Fringe @ Sep 29 2010, 07:44 PM) *
HoG already hurts bad. There's no need to hose further an already-hosed character. If the GM makes HoG hurt more than making a new character, what's the point of HoG?

I couldn't disagree more. Losing a point of Edge? All that means is a temporary pay-break on your future karma (assuming you even do want it back more than you want to improve anything else) so no roleplaying cost whatsoever. "Got sliced up by a dragon? You poor thing hand me an Edge and you'll be out of hospital and right as rain in no time. What's that? You think you've been hard-done by?!!"

The point of HoG when it hurts more than creating a new character, is that the player gets to continue on with a character he wasn't finished with yet. The reverse question is far more poignant: If HoG is never less-favourable than creating a new character then what's the point of death?

A group that doesn't want to put up with undesirable consequences should dispense with the dice and character sheets and just write a story together as they would like it to go. Me, I like a challenge and want to be proud that my character is still vertical after facing some real nasty shit.
Game2BHappy
QUOTE (Shinobi Killfist @ Sep 30 2010, 12:29 AM) *
There is a fine line between stupidity due to what the players should have foreseen and stupidity by a GM who thinks people should see things because he sees it. Not everyone thinks the same way, the way a GM phrases things has a large impact on how the players see things. I wonder how many of the he was dumb, punish him incidents are happening because the GM phrased things in a way that got the players to see the situation differently than the GM saw them.
I guess my attitude is if the players did something really dumb, I wonder what did I do to cause them to act that way. Did I explain things poorly, did I give a vibe that is was a light adventure that they'd just plow through etc.

I agree, Shinobi.

I'm the GM. I can kill/steal/frag/screw the characters whenever I want. If the characters are in a bad situation, I put them there no matter what the players did to "deserve" it. Sometimes its fun for everyone, sometimes its not. HoG is just a tool for them to survive when I as GM screw up.
Fringe
QUOTE (Aerospider @ Sep 30 2010, 07:21 AM) *
I couldn't disagree more. Losing a point of Edge? All that means is a temporary pay-break on your future karma (assuming you even do want it back more than you want to improve anything else) so no roleplaying cost whatsoever. "Got sliced up by a dragon? You poor thing hand me an Edge and you'll be out of hospital and right as rain in no time. What's that? You think you've been hard-done by?!!"

The point of HoG when it hurts more than creating a new character, is that the player gets to continue on with a character he wasn't finished with yet. The reverse question is far more poignant: If HoG is never less-favourable than creating a new character then what's the point of death?


I classify the "not finished" part as still viable. Yes, I see story considerations for how that HoG got your drek out of the rotating blades. But personally, when I wake up with another 30 BP worth of negative qualities in addition to the lost Edge point because some heavy-handed GM wants to "make it hurt," I tend to move that "finish line" a little closer.

There's a subtle difference between making it hurt for the character and making it hurt for the player.
Megu
QUOTE (Game2BHappy @ Sep 30 2010, 12:00 PM) *
I agree, Shinobi.

I'm the GM. I can kill/steal/frag/screw the characters whenever I want. If the characters are in a bad situation, I put them there no matter what the players did to "deserve" it. Sometimes its fun for everyone, sometimes its not. HoG is just a tool for them to survive when I as GM screw up.


Me, too. I kind of figure, unless it's the kind of boss fight that rarely happens, I either misbalanced the combat or someone rolled some crazy shit, and why be vindictive about that?
Shinobi Killfist
QUOTE (Megu @ Sep 30 2010, 11:04 PM) *
Me, too. I kind of figure, unless it's the kind of boss fight that rarely happens, I either misbalanced the combat or someone rolled some crazy shit, and why be vindictive about that?


I am sure there are times where the player takes the initiative to do something stupid like raid the local lone star office because terminator was an awesome movie. But I can see a lot of damn you were dumb you could have just ran and got away, what is it with stopping to lay down cover fire before splitting. And then I wonder who the idiot really was, the GM for assuming all the players would just run, or the player for laying down cover fire and hanging back too long. Me I think it is the GM. Which when it comes to killing PCs it usually is me as the dumb GM.
Ascalaphus
Maybe a good indication is what the other players think? I've got a couple of players who regularly do stupid things, with all the other players facepalming. In those cases I'm pretty sure it's not my mistake for providing bad information.
Aerospider
QUOTE (Fringe @ Sep 30 2010, 07:43 PM) *
I classify the "not finished" part as still viable. Yes, I see story considerations for how that HoG got your drek out of the rotating blades. But personally, when I wake up with another 30 BP worth of negative qualities in addition to the lost Edge point because some heavy-handed GM wants to "make it hurt," I tend to move that "finish line" a little closer.

There's a subtle difference between making it hurt for the character and making it hurt for the player.

If the GM knocks you back by 30 BP purely for the sake of inflicting hurt then I agree that's not right, but if it's something you would have got anyway had you not died then it's all above board IMO.

Example 1
Take 2 points of damage and go into overflow
Bleed to death
HoG
GM rules your gun arm is shot to buggery
Not ok

Example 2
Take 13 points of damage and die outright
HoG
GM rules your gun arm is shot to buggery
Perfectly fine (by Heavy Damage rules)
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