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Elfenlied
Hello all,
a new game of SR is coming up in the next couple of weeks, and I'm currently pondering different character concepts. Right now, it's a toss up between a Missile Mastery Adept (whom I can build easily enough) and a Combathacker/Rigger. Both characters would also go the face route.

Now, how do I build a proper Combathacker/Rigger? The following house-rules are in place:
  • 750 Karmagen
  • Attributes are <new value>*3
  • WR/MbW are slightly cheaper on the essence
  • the optional hacking with attributes rule is in place (hits capped a Logic)
  • skills on skill groups can be specialized without breaking the group
  • AR only gets 1 IP
  • Free Contacts (Cha*2) and knowledge skills ((Int+Log)*3) house rules


With that in mind, what do I need to make the build work? Thus far, I've got the following:
Attributes:
Body 4
Agility 8(12)
Reaction 5(7)
Strength 4
Charisma 6
Intuition 5
Logic 4
Willpower 4
Edge 4

Ware:
Attention Coprocessor
Control Rig
Datajack
Wired Reflexes II
Touch Link
Muscle Toner 4
Synthacardium 3
Fingertip Compartment
Genetic Optimization (Agility)
Modular Obvious Lower Cyberarm: Cyberarm Gyromount, Radar Sensor 4, Customized Limb (Body 4, Agility 7, Strength 4), Commlink(Fairlight Caliban with Firewall 6, System 6)
Modular Parts: Dronehand

Qualities:
Elf
More than Metahuman
Biocompatibility (Cyberware)
Restricted Gear: Muscle Toner 4

Addiction(mild): Novacoke
Compulsive(mild): Prejudiced vs Orks
Scorched(hacker)
Signature

Skills:
Athletics (Group) 2
Gymnastics 4
Cracking (Group) 2
Electronics (Group) 2
Hardware: Maglocks 2
Firearms (Group) 2
Automatics (AR) 2
Longarms(Sniper) 2
Pistols(SA) 2
Influence (Group) 3
Con(Impersonation) 3
Etiquette(Gangs) 3
Negotiation(Barter) 3
Stealth (Group) 3
Disguise (Cosmetic) 3
Infiltration(Urban) 3
Palming(Legerdemain)3
EW: Monowhips 4
Perception(Visual) 4
Pilot Aircraft 2
Pilot Ground Craft 2
Pilot Water Craft 2

Programs:
All Common Programs 6
Spoof 6
Stealth 6
Biofeedbackfilter 6

Total Karma spent: 749

Now, I'm kinda strapped for cash. I've got 12.350 nuyen.gif left, and gear isn't covered at all. Therefore, I need to cut some costs, and I've got no idea where to start. Also, is there some really essential gear for this character concept?
Ascalaphus
Not to be nasty, but don't you think you're a little subpar for a hacker/rigger?

Hacker and Face are difficult to combine.. they use pretty different attributes and skills. Also wanting good combat skills is a bit overgeneralization I think.
Blade
Face and hackers combine well. Not necessarily in the stats but in the concept: social engineering is a great help when hacking and hacking is a great way to get background information for facing.

- You can raise your Logic cheaply with the Encephalon, if you don't want the cap to get in your way.
- IIRC Response 6 commlinks (or is that rating 6 system?) aren't available at chargen with the base rules. If you use a basic Caliban, you won't be able to benefit from your rating 6 programs.
- You need Exploit if you want to hack. If you just want to Spoof, you don't need Biofeedback filters since you won't connect directly to the nodes you're hacking.
- You don't need the whole cracking group, you don't have the Attack programs needed for cyber-combat, nor do you have the Exploit program for hacking.
- Gymnastic is in the Athletic group. Are you breaking the group and, if so, does your GM accept? I take it he accepts specialization of skill inside groups.
Ascalaphus
QUOTE (Blade @ Apr 4 2011, 01:22 PM) *
Face and hackers combine well. Not necessarily in the stats but in the concept: social engineering is a great help when hacking and hacking is a great way to get background information for facing.


That's true - conceptually it combines very well. However, in terms of BP, it doesn't so so well, since you need to buy different skillsets with different Attributes.

An approach you can take here is to have one person play the face, and the other the hacker, but trained to work together. The hacker provides overwatch for the face, supplying information needed to impress people (names of children, technical expertise), and the face goes in to do social engineering. Of course, such a face would have to have a point or two in most hacker skills, to be effective "hands" for the distant hacker. And it helps if the hacker has the social awareness to know which information would be most useful.

QUOTE (Blade @ Apr 4 2011, 01:22 PM) *
- You can raise your Logic cheaply with the Encephalon, if you don't want the cap to get in your way.


Actually the Encephalon is bizarrely expensive, both in money and Essence. It costs 75K and 1.5 Essence to get a +2 to stuff. Since the character is for a campaign that uses Logic for hacking, I'd pick Cerebral Boosters at rating 2 instead: 20K and 0.4 Essence for the same bonus. Plus, it's harder to detect.
Blade
Oops, you're right I was thinking of the Cerebral Booster.
capt.pantsless
Are you trying to balance all three role roughly equally? As others have pointed-out you're going to be sorta underwhelming in all three categories crunch-wise, but that doesn't mean you're not going to be effective, depending on how challenging the GM wants to make things.

I'd start by cutting strength down to 3, or even a 2 - assuming you're not planning on clubbing things constantly. Focus on shooting stuff. Being viable in melee AND ranged is going to be a tough challenge.

You can probably get by with Wired 1, assuming that there's other PC's who will be more focused on combat. That'll save you a bit of cash to buy the 47 different programs you need.


Also, what does the rest of the team look like?
Fortinbras
While there are certainly places you can trim the fat on this character(Str, Intuition, Attention Coprocessor) you are trying to make four differnt builds. You want to make a Hacker, a Street Samurai, a Face and a Rigger. A Jack of all trades is a master of none. You can make a character that is good at all four, but she's not going to be spectacular at anything.
I would suggest focusing on 2 things. Hack/Combat or Hacker/Face or something like that. Right now you've got your hands in too many pies. Besides, when the bullets start flying, each of your builds has a particular job to do and you can't do them all at once. You can't be expected to shoot at the bad guys while hacking their commlinks and controlling drones.

Ask yourself what you want to do when the Shadowrunning goes down and build your character from there. After that, the point build will just come to you.
Blade
Well, actually I know some players who are able to create RAW characters (with BP or karma) who can do nearly everything with at least 12 dice in each area, without Edge.
Ascalaphus
But should you? 12 is pretty good, but it's not elite. You could specialize a bit more on one thing and keep oh, say, 8 dice for the rest instead. Enough to get by, not enough to compete for spotlight with whoever in the group picked that niche to specialize in.

What is the rest of the group doing? If you divide the "jobs" a bit as a party, everyone has something to be good at & time to shine. It's easier on the BP too.
Yerameyahu
Spectacular shouldn't really be necessary, though. A decent hacker/face/shooter is easy enough, with enough gear. Hell, the emotitoy alone

I agree that *if* other players are handling those jobs, it's more effective to specialize a little.
capt.pantsless
QUOTE (Elfenlied @ Apr 4 2011, 05:16 AM) *
Combathacker/Rigger


Also, are you planning on owning the various rigging vehicles? You can easily spend a fortune on cars, choppers and boats. This might be a good time to ask your GM what kind of vehicles you might be needing for the adventures they're planning, otherwise you might end-up making some very wrong assumptions about what you really need.
Fortinbras
You could always make her a mystic adept. Use Power Points instead of cyberware. Then you could have a Combat hacker/rigger face mage.
Epicedion
You've spent too much on being awesome at combat, and made a terrible hacker.
KarmaInferno
QUOTE (Fortinbras @ Apr 4 2011, 10:51 AM) *
You could always make her a mystic adept. Use Power Points instead of cyberware. Then you could have a Combat hacker/rigger face mage.

That's pretty much what my Missions character is. Except a Pixie for the massive mental attributes.

Social skills in the 16-24 range, drone/vehicle combat 16-18, hacking in the 12-16 dice. Casting sucks but that's mostly just to throw attribute-boosting spells into foci.



-k
Yerameyahu
I haven't repeated recently, KarmaInferno, that I love your fresh munchkin cynicism. smile.gif
KarmaInferno
I'm a munchkin that is just as enthusiastically into deep roleplay.

My favorite run so far was a bunch of guys in a bar, mostly talking. Never left the bar the entire time.

Which is why I always contend that deep roleplay can also be optimized up the wazoo. It's not either/or.

That said, I have been told that I don't optimize like other people do. That all my characters are weird. I prefer "different".



-k
Doc Byte
QUOTE (Fortinbras @ Apr 4 2011, 04:51 PM) *
You could always make her a mystic adept. Use Power Points instead of cyberware. Then you could have a Combat hacker/rigger face mage.


I'd prefer the TM-face with some basic combat skills.
Elfenlied
Hello all,
thanks for the feedback so far. The other characters, thus far, are:
  • Dwarf Sam, focused on combat but with some vehicle skills. Heavily cybered
  • Troll Adept, focused on unarmed melee combat
  • Undecided yet, probably mage


Another thing I should mention is that this campaign will take place in Hamburg, AGS. The DM specifically mentioned that water vehicles might be relevant. I'll post more info later, when I've got more.
Doc Byte
HH's shiny. Offers me an opportunity to post another member of the Alpha Crew. biggrin.gif

[ Spoiler ]
Mx
QUOTE (Elfenlied @ Apr 4 2011, 02:16 PM) *
Now, how do I build a proper Combathacker/Rigger?

You might wanna consider making the character a Technoshaman, that gives you a nice synergy between being a face and hacker/rigger.
You should also (IMO) ditch the high agility and other sammy stuff you spent points on and use those recources for rigger stuff and combat drones.
The second part stand for both a normal hacker and my succestion of technoshaman.
capt.pantsless
QUOTE (Elfenlied @ Apr 5 2011, 02:18 AM) *
The other characters, thus far, are:
  • Dwarf Sam, focused on combat but with some vehicle skills. Heavily cybered
  • Troll Adept, focused on unarmed melee combat
  • Undecided yet, probably mage


Given that list, I'd be making a HACKER/FACE/Rigger/combat

Start building the hacker/rigger/face aspect, and once that's looking functional, spend whatever you've got left on combat skills/gear/ware. With that group, just being an extra gun in the fight adds enough, you don't need to be the uber-fighter.
Ascalaphus
You can usually get by with only mediocre Face stats, if you can play it well. Plenty of inspirational movies available.

If you want to hack however, you need to be good. Because you won't get anywhere if you're not elite, and you're likely to get killed if you don't win. So take the Cracking and Electronics skills at 4, if not higher. Take Logic and Willpower of at least 5; take Cerebral Booster, too.
Yerameyahu
You don't need Logic or Willpower, psh. Just get pirated high-rating programs, and an Emotitoy for the facing.
Fortinbras
QUOTE (Elfenlied @ Apr 5 2011, 02:18 AM) *
Hello all,
thanks for the feedback so far. The other characters, thus far, are:
  • Dwarf Sam, focused on combat but with some vehicle skills. Heavily cybered
  • Troll Adept, focused on unarmed melee combat
  • Undecided yet, probably mage


Another thing I should mention is that this campaign will take place in Hamburg, AGS. The DM specifically mentioned that water vehicles might be relevant. I'll post more info later, when I've got more.

Your team is probably set for combat. A lot of folks get antsy at the thought of not having a lot of skills to defend yourself, but once the bullets start flying a hacker has a LOT to do. Hacking cyberware, smartguns, enemy drones, setting up tac-nets and preventing counter-hacking just off the top of my head. Combine that with the fact a great many GMs like to run system hacking in time with combat and you should be using your hacking skills way more than any fighting skills.
When the technomancer in my game began play, she started spending BP and Karma on firearms and infiltration, but quickly found that, during action sequences, she was too busy actually hacking to get much use out of it.

Tangential to that is the idea that role playing is an ensemble cast. I'll assume you are familiar with Firefly? Imagine a character that was a doctor, a mechanic, a pilot, a gunslinger, a war vet and a preacher thrown on that show. It takes away from the dynamic of storytelling.

You can make a Combat Hacker Face Mage, but unless you're the only one playing it's not going to be nearly as satisfying.
Ascalaphus
QUOTE (Yerameyahu @ Apr 5 2011, 03:09 PM) *
You don't need Logic or Willpower, psh. Just get pirated high-rating programs, and an Emotitoy for the facing.


They're using a variant of the hacking rules where Logic matters and AR is nerfed. Also, Willpower is used against Biofeedback.
Yerameyahu
Ah, thanks Ascalaphus.
Ascalaphus
One option you have is to drop the Face aspect. Maybe the mage will pick up a Charisma tradition and deal with the Face work.


That leaves you free to become a badass rigger/hacker: attack drones and the hacking skills to make sure you're stealing their drones, not the other way around.

You don't have to have extensive physical fighting skills, because you can delegate that to the drones. But you can still have a big impact on combat.

Ryu
QUOTE (Elfenlied @ Apr 4 2011, 01:16 PM) *
Hello all,
a new game of SR is coming up in the next couple of weeks, and I'm currently pondering different character concepts. Right now, it's a toss up between a Missile Mastery Adept (whom I can build easily enough) and a Combathacker/Rigger. Both characters would also go the face route.

Now, how do I build a proper Combathacker/Rigger? The following house-rules are in place:
  • 750 Karmagen
  • Attributes are <new value>*3
  • WR/MbW are slightly cheaper on the essence
  • the optional hacking with attributes rule is in place (hits capped a Logic)
  • skills on skill groups can be specialized without breaking the group
  • AR only gets 1 IP
  • Free Contacts (Cha*2) and knowledge skills ((Int+Log)*3) house rules

Given your attribute scores, Id take a suprathyroid gland and muscle toner 2. Agility 7(10) is "acceptable", investing into Charisma 7 instead nets you 3 karma and improves the faces aspect. Id use them to shift a point from Edge to Logic to allow for more hits on hacking tests. Youd gain both Contacts (2 points) and 3 knowledge skill points.

Given your current dicepools Id handle the matrix via a mook, so no Cracking group needed. The points would go to a solid Gunnery skill. Given the Hamburg background Id buy Diving skil instead of the Gymnastics upgrade and improve Pilot Watercraft at the cost of Pilot groundcraft. Id like to see your list of knowledge skills.
longbowrocks
You said CombatHacker/face, but as a few people have pointed out, your spread is broad.
I'm new at this, but I see:
  • Street Samurai
  • Hacker
  • Rigger
  • Face

and then a lot of extra BP sinks:
  • bought athletics as a group, then bought gymnastics separately to take it only 2 points further.
  • stealth skills
  • infiltration
  • you spread your skills so much that you're still in "I shouldn't roll this because I'll crit glitch and knock my teeth out" territory for a lot of them.
  • you took firearms as a group up to 2, then bought 2 points In. Every. Skill. In. Firearms. Just so you could specialize in them. I have no words.


That's the short list. I guess you could try being a reliable mage too at this point. It won't hurt.

Try not to take offense. Sometimes I find cutting humor irresistible. spin.gif
Elfenlied
Thanks for the feedback so far, guys. Guess it's back to the drafting board for now. Will post the new sheet soon.

QUOTE (longbowrocks @ Apr 6 2011, 04:44 AM) *
and then a lot of extra BP sinks:
  • bought athletics as a group, then bought gymnastics separately to take it only 2 points further.
  • stealth skills
  • infiltration
  • you spread your skills so much that you're still in "I shouldn't roll this because I'll crit glitch and knock my teeth out" territory for a lot of them.
  • you took firearms as a group up to 2, then bought 2 points In. Every. Skill. In. Firearms. Just so you could specialize in them. I have no words.


No offense taken, but thought I should clarify: I bougth the respective groups, then specialized in it (in case of firearms). I didn't buy it separately. Same with Athletics; I bought it at 2, then raised Gymnastics to 4.
Elfenlied
Alright, here's Version 2 of the sheet:
Attributes:
Body 4
Agility 6(cool.gif
Reaction 5(7)
Strength 4
Charisma 7
Intuition 5
Logic 4(6)
Willpower 4
Edge 4

Ware:
Wired Reflexes II
Muscle Toner 2
Control Rig
Math SPU
Internal Air Tank (Somehow, I think I'm gonna need this in Hamburg)
Cerebral Booster 2

Qualities:
Elf
More than Metahuman
Biocompatibility (Cyberware)

Addiction(mild): Novacoke
Compulsive(mild): Prejudiced vs Orks
Scorched(hacker)
Signature

Skills:
Athletics (Group) 2
Diving (Scuba) 1
Cracking (Group) 4
Electronics (Group) 4
Longarms (Sniper Rifles) 4
Gunnery (Ballistic) 4
Influence (Group) 3
Pistols (Semi Automatics) 1
Infiltration (Urban) 4
Dodge (Ranged) 4
Perception (Vision) 4
Pilot Aircraft (Rotorcraft) 2
Pilot Ground Craft (Wheeled) 2
Pilot Water Craft 2

Comlink: Fairlight Caliban (System 6, Firewall 6)
All Common Programs 6
Armor 6
Attack 6
Biofeedbackfilter 6
Decrypt 6
Defuse 6
Disarm 6
Exploit 6
Medic 6
Sniffer 6
Spoof 6
Stealth 6
Track 6
ECCM 6

Assuming I spent all remaining Karma on Cash, I'd be left with 60.500 nuyen.gif . Now, how do I get the most mileage out of that one? I intend to spoof the lifestyle, but I still need all the standard gear (SINs, armor, a couple of guns, and drones). I was thinking about going with a Ford LEBD as my primary combat drone, and a MCT Flyspy for surveillance.
longbowrocks
QUOTE (Elfenlied @ Apr 5 2011, 11:50 PM) *
No offense taken, but thought I should clarify: I bougth the respective groups, then specialized in it (in case of firearms). I didn't buy it separately.

I don't think you can specialize in group skills.
QUOTE (Elfenlied @ Apr 5 2011, 11:50 PM) *
Same with Athletics; I bought it at 2, then raised Gymnastics to 4.

That sounds like a neat idea, but is it legal? I can see this making a gray area with the "no specializing in group skills" rule.
Elfenlied
It's one of the house rules. And new sheet is up!
longbowrocks
QUOTE (Ryu @ Apr 5 2011, 02:40 PM) *
Id take a suprathyroid gland and muscle toner 2.

Oh my god want. I decided a while ago that those didn't stack since the book says for almost every 'ware enhancement that "This this does not stack with any/almost any other enhancement to attribute X", then goes on to explicitly state the exceptions. I really want them to stack though. Could I hear your reasoning?
longbowrocks
Your new character sheet is a lot better. You're still holding out on pistols though. Is that so you don't need to default? On the other hand, taking one point in a skill and then specializing is mathematically the most efficient approach if you only expect to use the skill when your specialization would apply (which makes this a nice choice for someone like you who's multiclassing).
Elfenlied
Well, the Pistols (Semi-Automatics) 1 is only there for those few occassions where I need to carry a discreet, silenced weapon. For actual combat, there's drones, and for meatspace, I plan on packing an Ares Desert Strike or an Enfield Shotgun.
longbowrocks
Sounds good either way.
Mx
QUOTE (Elfenlied @ Apr 6 2011, 06:05 PM) *
I was thinking about going with a Ford LEBD as my primary combat drone

If you have access to This old drone, you migh want to consider getting Lone Star Strato-9 instead, it might be obsolete but that baby has a reinforced weapon mount eek.gif .
longbowrocks
QUOTE (Mx @ Apr 6 2011, 08:30 AM) *
has a reinforced weapon mount eek.gif .

Giggity.
Ascalaphus
Looks pretty good for the most part. I'd move one more point from Strength to Logic though. Strength isn't very useful, and raising Logic later would be expensive.
Mx
QUOTE (Ascalaphus @ Apr 6 2011, 09:34 PM) *
Looks pretty good for the most part. I'd move one more point from Strength to Logic though. Strength isn't very useful, and raising Logic later would be expensive.

IIRc, he's using karmagen, he cant just move a point from strength to logic as the fith point of logic is more expencive then the fourth point of strength.
Ascalaphus
QUOTE (Mx @ Apr 6 2011, 07:58 PM) *
IIRc, he's using karmagen, he cant just move a point from strength to logic as the fith point of logic is more expencive then the fourth point of strength.


Oh, right. Even then I'd lose the point of Strength. This is the twenty-first century, strength is obsolete.
Ryu
QUOTE (longbowrocks @ Apr 6 2011, 05:11 PM) *
Oh my god want. I decided a while ago that those didn't stack since the book says for almost every 'ware enhancement that "This this does not stack with any/almost any other enhancement to attribute X", then goes on to explicitly state the exceptions. I really want them to stack though. Could I hear your reasoning?

Yes. It is not forbidden (ingame logic), and it should work (RL logic). More energy for better muscles.
Elfenlied
Alright, here's the vehicle/drone loadout so far:
1x Rover 2068 with Armor 20, Morphing License plate and Gridlink Override
1x MCT FlySpy with Chameleon Coating, Ultrawidebandradar and Sensor 6, Covert Ops 6
1x Ford LEBD-1 (unfortunately, no Strato-9 for me) with Chameleon Coating, Targeting 4, Maneuver 4, Clearsight 4, Covert Ops 6, Sensor 6

What do you think? Anything I should modify? Do I need more drones at chargen?

Also, I'm considering dropping Pistols and Longarms in favor of Automatics, since they seem really versatile. Is this reasonable? Also, the drone weapon loadout is an Ares Alpha with GV III.
Ascalaphus
1) I thought Autosofts only went up to rating 4?
2) Do the drones have the required Device rating to run those autosofts at their full rating?

Also, since you said you were playing in Hamburg, I'd get at least one underwater drone (if such a thing exists; if not, Mod one for it). And emphasize flying drones over ground drones.

Have a talk with your GM about whether you can buy an autosoft once and then load it onto all drones. I think you probably can, which makes them a pretty sweet investment.

I personally like the Bust-a-Move toy drone. It's still a Rating 3 Device for only 350 nuyen.gif, which makes it cheap enough for throwaway jobs, like carrying a grenade somewhere. Or you can send them as a "get well" present to someone, and then in the middle of the night have it assassinate/open the doors from within. Autosofts are nice if you can re-use them on the next BoM doll when the first one gets killed.
Elfenlied
You're right, Covert Ops 6 is bogus. Gonna fix that, it'll save some bucks, which I'll use to upgrade the device rating.

As for autosofts, I'm already assuming that you can copy them onto other drones. If not, I'll need to cut some additional costs...

I think I'll buy a couple of Bust-a-moves, they seem cheap enough.

KarmaInferno
Don't forget spoof chips.

Microwave or laser links for intra-vehicle comms is nifty for those times you need to be stealthy. It sucks when sneaking in and your radio signals blow your cover.




-k
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