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Last time I asked about how many targets confusion can affect. Now my question is "are there any defenses against it, aside from never leaving a force 18 ward?".

Having had the ol' drek hit the fan and finally convincing the team's monkey shaman that A> spirits don't suck and B> we need some spirit support, we called in a city spirit to start using its confusion power on our foes. The course of the run (and several spirits later), spanning from one cyberzombie troll to a pair of opposing runner teams (three spell slingers included)swarming us with spells, spirits, and elementals, proved the value of Confusion. (In other otherwords, how does a melee centric str 6 human adept survive the full onslaught of a troll cyberzombie with SL-2, a ruger thunderbolt? Confusion, superflash grenades, IR smoke, cover, and some good dodging.)

Up until this point, no one in this group had really ever paid attention to nature spirits and their powers, but now that the city spirit is out of the bag, what's the best way to not end up with +6 confusion modifiers to everything, if there is a way at all... (and yes I am aware it is not applied to 'everything' but close enough to count)
Herald of Verjigorm
The best defense is a good offense. Kill the shaman (if applicable) or disrupt/banish the spirit.
you might check out the "defense vs astral weenies" thread. there's at least one good idea there--swarm the spirit with watchers.
Change domains.
Thanks for the tips.

We were sorta jumped by the elementals and city spirit, so if we had thought ahead, the watcher swarm might have helped. We didn't expect them to bust through the ward on the van so quickly.

As far as changing domain, I know for shamans they can only be in one domain at a time for determining what spirits they can summon, but say you were being attacked with confusion by a city spirit, while you were in a van out on a city street. Would it work to get access to the open sky and switch to the sky domain? Or would the city spirit still be able affect you since you have 'access' to both sky and city domains? My guess would have to be you'd have to get entirely out of the city domain and not just choose to switch to one of the others available in the location.

But yes, I think Backgammon had the easiest solution of just getting out of its domain. The next trick is making sure those mages don't have LOS on you as you dash to a building... Now that's an idea, got a armored vehicle with people you can't get to but want to, send in a spirit, wait for them to try to make it to the next domain type... Or just fear them out of there...

So greater form nature spirits are something to really fear, since they can cross domain boundaries.
well, you'd still be in the city. only way you could get out of a city spirit's domain is to, well, leave the city. find a good-size park with an open field or some woods.
A Clockwork Lime
Or just walk inside a building.
Luke Hardison
I'm assuming you mean an occupied building, like a home (so that you would be effectively leaving the city domain and entering a hearth domain); a Stuffer Shack or the like wouldn't count.
An office building ought to count. They're governed by Nuyen Spirits.

The White Dwarf
Leaving the domain is the obvious way to escape the power, as movement doesnt take a success test and if youre in combat youre not likley to fall into the wander off effect.

The confusion power is a complex action and is sustained, so the spirit will be doing little else and penalties as well. It also has to be materialized to affect you. So as a melee-centric adept Id simply run up and kill it, or the shaman. Killing hands or a weapon focus will make it easy, just use your combat and karma pool to overcome the penalties for one round to kill either one.

As to the troll, evasion while you move up or having a mage cast armor on you is about all it takes to nullify the gun fire. Then just /melee-on and drop it. Thunderbolt is 12S, even with just form fit and a jacket your looking at max of 5's for soak if you fail to dodge for some reason (like the confusion power, in that case save pool to soak as thats not a success test), and the bad recoil on the rugar is going to make that second shot even easier to avoid.

But if you have it one mage using a high force stunbolt on the spirit and sending several spirits to attack the troll trumps it all...
So greater form nature spirits are something to really fear, since they can cross domain boundaries.

Just about any great form that somebody sends against you is going to be a lower force than a normal spirit of the same type would have been, because the summoner has to resist twice as much drain.

The confusion power is a complex action and is sustained, so the spirit will be doing little else and penalties as well.

I think it says that since their power is innate they don't get sustaining modifiers. Could somebody else verify this for me?
I'm surprised noone mentioned the Spirit Barrier spell. If you surround yourself and your party with it, all spirit powers are "impeded" through the barrier. They don't say how, specifically, but that's easy enough for the GM to make up.

I suggest reducing the spirits effective force by the rating of the barrier.
QUOTE (The White Dwarf @ Mar 22 2004, 10:46 AM)
The confusion power is a complex action and is sustained, so the spirit will be doing little else and penalties as well.

Nope - it is Sustained, and Complex, but Confusion is not an 'Exclusive Complex Action' like 'Engulf'.

Sustained powers can be maintained by the spirit over time at no effort or cost. Because the powers are innate, they do not suffer from any strain or TN modifiers for keeping an effect going. Even taking damage will not disrupt their ability to sustain.

They can also sustain a number of powers equal to their essence.
SR3 pg 262

On the other hand, I'm trying to develop a house rule for resisting spirit/elemental powers - a lot of times a fight can come down to who can summon the biggest/most spirits, which is kinda boring. However I do want the house rule it to be stacked in the Spirit/Elemental's favor.

It kinda blows that it's effects are automatic - one force 6 spirit/elemental can ruin your day.
We've come up with a house rule for this one. Give the targets of the Confusion a resistance roll (Willpower vs. TN = Spirit's force). The successes on the resistance roll reduce the Confusion penalty on a one-for-one basis. We've been doing this for a little while now, and it seems to work pretty well.
The White Dwarf
Yea theyre right. As I typed that I went "wait, wtf that doesnt sound right" and checked. I just sucked at block delete and missed the second half of that sentence, which is why the grammer is horrible. It shouldve read just "The confusion power is a complex action and is sustained, so the spirit will be doing little else". While it can take other actions etc; first it has to be summoned, then it has to wait to recieve an order, then it has to materialize, then it has to use a complex action to confuse. By that time the players better have killed something, because few npc shams come wired. And as soon as that penalty hits the team theyre going to gun for the spirit. So at most itll get 1, maybe 2 actions off while the ability is sustained. Thats my angle of thought anyhow.
I have allowed characters to use the guard power of spirits against confusion, fear, and other spirit powers. Aside from that, Confusion is an awesome power.

After-all: When the targeted character says "I know! I'll *do something to get out of it*" The GM gets to make them make a willpower test to make their mind to do it.

Also: I have played with the effects of confusion being somewhat hallucinogenic in effect whaich can add humor value.
Doesn't astral barrier adds it force the TN to the confusion people? I know this works for spells, so I assume it works the same for spirit powers. However the greater question is how to keep the astral barrier up.

However a spirit can't break down a astral barrier that easily. For example lets say six spirits of force 6 are after a mage. If the mage puts up a astral barrier of rating 6, it will take all 6 spirits to break it down. In fact if the mage can just gets 2 net successes they can raise the force of the barrier to 7 and spirits can never break through via pounding the barrier (in the first combat phase)

Correct me if I am wrong ...
The way that astral barrier works are the following:
1) If the power of the attack is less than 1/2 the power of the barrier, the attack does nothing to the barrier.
2) Otherwise the barrier is reduce in power by 1

When the effective barrier rating is reduced to 0, the barrier is dropped. However, if the barrier is not reduced to zero, the barrier is back up to full force at the beginning of the next combat turn.

The literal meaning of this, is that barrier will hold indefinatly as long as the number of combat actions is less than the force of the barrier, assuming that the spirit is at least = to 1/2 the power of the barrier.

HOWEVER if the spirit is materialized, then the strength of the attack is no longer the force of the spirit, but the actually physical strength. In most cases this means the spirit is more powerful. frown.gif However if a mage orders a spirit to materialize, then that takes a service. smile.gif AND if a spirit is materialize, aren't they slower? smile.gif This means few number of attacks, which is key to breaking down barriers.

In any case what this means is that it would take 6 spirits to break down a barrier in the first phase of combat. It would take 3 spirits with 2 actions each to break down a barrier in a combat turn ... however a barrier of force 7, would never be broken down. smile.gif

Summary: What matters is the number of attacks the spirit(s) can do against the barrier; as long as the spirit is at least = 1/2 force of the barrier. So in theory a spirit of force 12 could be held by a barrier of 4, as long as the spirit has less than 4 attacks. This makes sense when compared to other fantasy games, where some magic hack blocks a powerful spirit.

Now there are two major loop holes:
1) The best way to defeat a barrier is to dispel it. So if a spirit has sorcery, you are in trouble.
2) If a mage walks through the barrier in the physical plane, they can call fore the spirit from its native plane and the barrier is completely bypassed.
3) Couldn't a free spirit do opinion #2?

So from my understanding of the rules, a astral barrier isn't that easy to break down. And as long as it is up, the TN for the power is +force of the barrier.

No comments?
QUOTE (Mardegun)
Doesn't astral barrier adds it force the TN to the confusion people? I know this works for spells, so I assume it works the same for spirit powers. However the greater question is how to keep the astral barrier up.

There's no test for the spirit to have a TN penalty to, so there's nothing for an astral barrier to do here. I'm not aware of any rule that says astral barriers impede spirit powers.

A spirit still needs LOS, though, and seeing someone on the other side of an opaque astral barrier should take a perception test unless the spirit is materialized. I guess that makes it useful in certain circumstances.
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