Help - Search - Members - Calendar
Full Version: Dealing with Ruthenium
Dumpshock Forums > Discussion > Shadowrun
Pages: 1, 2
Narmio
I'm hoping someone can help me out with this most irritating substance.

I've got nothing against stealth characters getting huge bonuses from a burglar's tux, but frankly, ruthenium polymer bodysuits and cloaks are just abusable.

Hitting a character who constantly uses a ruthi-suit is nigh-on-impossible, and actually tailoring an encounter to challenge him or her seriously restricts a GM's options. While the cost is not negligable, there is a horrible possibility that every Resource A streetsam can show up to a new game completely invisible, there's no way to stop them, they throw their entire combat pools into shots, and are untouchably broken.

There is one particular character (Hi Ranneko!), a sniper/infiltrator who greatly irritates me in that he cannot be seen by most enemies, and happily snipes away even when in the middle of a combat, taking aim and making fifteen dice sport rifle shots with a TN of 2, killing ANYTHING thrown against him. That thing took out a boat in one shot, he staged the damage up so high with successes it took way-more-than-Deadly damage despite having TN2 to soak (I bet they'd be regretting not having *slightly* heavier armour, if they weren't so dead).

Even mooks with thermo or ultrasound get +4 against him, seriously reducing the number of successes from any attack. Only astrally perceiving foes can really do much, and manaballing the team and killing half of them falls under what I would consider "Bad GM form" just as far as "grenading all the runners".

I have already said they can't have visibility TN modifiers above +8 (M&M says +12 from the suit), as that's the amount from total invisibility or blind fire. Of course, the more scanners, the faster you can go without dropping below that +8. Arguments then arise over whether this makes the thermographic and ultrasound TNs +6 or +4.

So, what methods can people think of for handling this character and other transparent abuses (pun very intended)? I have a few ideas, most of which my players probably will not like, but they're logical enough, they should get the idea...

1) Simply boosting the availability of ruthenium and/or the image scanners to 12-15. This is, of course, a bandaid option, they'll acquire them eventually, but it may stave off the worst abuses.

2) Ruling that the modifiers, as a particularly pedantic look at the book may reveal, apply to perception tests only, not firearms tests, but this flies in the face of the logic that it is HARD to hit someone who you can't really see.

3) Houseruling out the image scanners and replacing them with a rating-based scanner package, limiting starting characters to +6 in any case, again a mostly bandaid measure.

4) "No, you buggers just can't have the bloody stuff. Go abuse Dikote instead!"

5) Hard-capping the bonus at +4, IE: No additional scanners.

6) Tailoring all my runs to have some method of defeating ruthenium (Drones, loads of magically active foes, hell, even ink grenades), thus devaluing it and having players dislike me (Although the ink grenades thing is a cool idea. *ponder*).

I'm still trying to think of a better way of handling this, what do people use in their games? Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Arethusa
QUOTE (Narmio)
I've got nothing against stealth characters getting huge bonuses from a burglar's tux, but frankly, ruthenium polymer bodysuits and cloaks are just abusable.

Hitting a character who constantly uses a ruthi-suit is nigh-on-impossible, and actually tailoring an encounter to challenge him or her seriously restricts a GM's options. While the cost is not negligable, there is a horrible possibility that every Resource A streetsam can show up to a new game completely invisible, there's no way to stop them, they throw their entire combat pools into shots, and are untouchably broken.

This is completely wrong.

Ruth suits really are not that great. They are expensive to maintain, prohibitively expensive to maintain as combat equipment, and extraordinarily useless against even the lowest grade magical opposition. Against any form of nonvisual scanning, the suit is useful but hardly perfect. If you need to engage an objective invisibly, even the potential for thermal microcams is enough to hose you.

They certainly have their uses, and a creative player can make them invaluable, but an intelligent player will also be constantly aware of their significan drawbacks.

And, really, you've got it all backwards. Street sams are pretty much never the game-breaking nightmare. An adept (especially an adept up to date with the ludicrous options available to him in SOTA2064) or a mage in one of these is far worse.
FrostyNSO
QUOTE (Narmio)
Only astrally perceiving foes can really do much, and manaballing the team and killing half of them falls under what I would consider "Bad GM form" just as far as "grenading all the runners".

I don't see that there's really a problem here. Abuse the system. The system comes back at you.

I like to fall back on the NPC Family Rule. The NPC's have families. If they're getting slaughtered, and have the means to kill the enemy, and hence save their skins, they'll utilize those means so that they can go home that day and kiss their wife and hug their daughters. Even if the methods are considered "Bad GM Form", it is also bad GM form if the enemies have the means to win, (like that astrally percieving mage with manaball, hell you can just make it bolt and ice just the player with the Ruthie gear if you want), and doggedly persist trying to shoot a guy they can't see. NPC's are people too, and unless their meant to be dumb NPC's (a perfectly plausible occurance), if they can't just shoot the guy, they will try and think of other options.

I think it's "Bad Player Form" to abuse things like Ruthenium Suits, because in our experience with it, it takes away the fun from everybody else (as does any overly-power-gaming character). Sure, if you need it for the run, cool. If you're going to wear it everywhere to be a 6 year-old smart ass, "Slot Off, Frag Face".
FrostyNSO
Arethusa makes a lot of good points.

Also, I agree that not all runs and encounters should have to be tailored to one pain-in-the-ass player. "Sometimes, drones and mages are just not available."
Narmio
QUOTE
Ruth suits really are not that great. They are expensive to maintain, prohibitively expensive to maintain as combat equipment


How is a suit high maintenance? The cost of purchasing battery packs is negligable to most runners, and if you don't get shot, you can hardly tear it.

QUOTE
extraordinarily useless against even the lowest grade magical opposition.


Yes, it is useless against astrally perceiving enemies, but I try to stick to the "Magic is rare" line, characters are unlikely to encounter more than about three magical opponents in a run, and in that case they have a distressing tendency to geek him or her before they can get more than two spells off.

QUOTE
Against any form of nonvisual scanning, the suit is useful but hardly perfect. If you need to engage an objective invisibly, even the potential for thermal microcams is enough to hose you.


+4 to TNs is hardly a guaranteed hose, the number of successes even a top of the line gunbunny is going to get from a TN6 shot (And even that's sans-cover) are small enough that dodging isn't that hard (Unless combat pool has already been used, then soaking is still easier than usual).

QUOTE
Street sams are pretty much never the game-breaking nightmare


I don't want to get into an argument about what archetype can be most easily broken, IMHO, all of them are abusable given enough effort.
FrostyNSO
If you have an extraordinary problem with mages getting geeked off too quickly, just have the mage send his horde of bound elementals to protect <insert whatever needs protecting here> from the safety of his condo halfway accross town.
Necro Tech
Its VERY important to remember that ruthenium is not invisibility. The stuff only helps you from being noticed. The desciption always says perceiving and detecting. Once you are noticed, you have to run away and hide to disappear again. It doesn not give "Visibility" modifiers.

It is almost useless in combat. You have to move very slowly so that the ruthenium can keep up with the changing environment. You can screw this up royally real real fast.

1.) Flash Packs/ Flash grenades make rutheium go nuts.

2.) Blowing smoke.

3.) Being between fast moving objects and someone trying to see you. Rutheium can't keep with with normal street traffic.

4.) Shooting while wearing it. The muzzle flash and loud noise kinda give you away.

5.) Cloaks blow around in high wind and wearing a body suit leaves you without significant armor.

6.) Rain pretty much screws you. It might start raining an awful lot in Seattle.

There are more but this covers most of it. Its designed to help infiltrators, not make combat monsters. If it worked like it did in GitS maybe, but it doesn't.
Brazila
This has been a bit annoying in some of the games I have ran in the past. I try to focus on keeping mages in check and in the end this is a good equalizer for mundanes. A F1 invis spell with a good number of successes is just as bad!
Arethusa
QUOTE (Narmio)
How is a suit high maintenance? The cost of purchasing battery packs is negligable to most runners, and if you don't get shot, you can hardly tear it.

If the environment is hostile, one can safely assume that it's hard to keep the suit suitably undamaged. In combat, simply because you soaked a shot down to not taking a wound doesn't mean you weren't hit. All it means is you weren't sufficiently injured to register on the would modifier scale. A gash will damage the suit. A grazing hit will damage the suit. Peppering with shrapnel will damage the suit. Any impact that does not penetrate armor will still have penetrated the suit. You get the idea.

They can be used in combat, but they're not something I'd take to war. They're highly specialized equipment, and you need to understand teh strengths and weaknesses of the suit to use it properly.

QUOTE (Narmio)
Yes, it is useless against astrally perceiving enemies, but I try to stick to the "Magic is rare" line, characters are unlikely to encounter more than about three magical opponents in a run, and in that case they have a distressing tendency to geek him or her before they can get more than two spells off.

But magic isn't rare enough. It's expensive and limiting (no matter how flexible you are with your design, you cannot carry and manage a normal loadout with one) equipment, so you don't just drag it out for everything. When you do use it, you use it because you do not want to be seen, and in most cases, cannot in any way afford to exist. When the stakes are the high, magic being rare just isn't good enough.

QUOTE (Narmio)
+4 to TNs is hardly a guaranteed hose, the number of successes even a top of the line gunbunny is going to get from a TN6 shot (And even that's sans-cover) are small enough that dodging isn't that hard (Unless combat pool has already been used, then soaking is still easier than usual).

See above. When you need to be a ghost, +4-6 is nowhere near enough.

QUOTE (Narmio)
I don't want to get into an argument about what archetype can be most easily broken, IMHO, all of them are abusable given enough effort.

Of course they are. But you're wrong in thinking they're equally abusable. Adepts haven never been as broken, and specifically in the case of the ruth suit, its primary downsides are lack of magical protectionó something a mage or perception-able adept are infinitely more able to adapt to than any mundane.

QUOTE (Necro Tech)
Its VERY important to remember that ruthenium is not invisibility. The stuff only helps you from being noticed. The desciption always says perceiving and detecting. Once you are noticed, you have to run away and hide to disappear again. It doesn not give "Visibility" modifiers.

Where the hell are you getting this?

QUOTE (Necro Tech)
It is almost useless in combat. You have to move very slowly so that the ruthenium can keep up with the changing environment. You can screw this up royally real real fast.

1.) Flash Packs/ Flash grenades make rutheium go nuts.

2.) Blowing smoke.

3.) Being between fast moving objects and someone trying to see you. Rutheium can't keep with with normal street traffic.

4.) Shooting while wearing it. The muzzle flash and loud noise kinda give you away.

5.) Cloaks blow around in high wind and wearing a body suit leaves you without significant armor.

6.) Rain pretty much screws you. It might start raining an awful lot in Seattle.

There are more but this covers most of it. Its designed to help infiltrators, not make combat monsters. If it worked like it did in GitS maybe, but it doesn't.

While I agree with some of this, I do find issue with a lot of it:

1. Nowhere in canon have I ever seen anything that says flash packs and grenades do anything to it other than momentarily making obvious that there's something in the way (you'll still cast a shadow, etc), but since everyone else will be at the time too busy being blind, it doesn't much matter.

2. If you're covered in smoke, it doesn't matter if you're invisible or not; no one's going to be seeing you since you're surrounded by smoke.

4. Shooting while wearing it will be a disadvantage, yes, but add in suppressors (maybe brass catchers) and sufficiently hectic combat environment (and when is combat not?) and you can do reasonably well. What's really a pain is getting the gun coated in the first place, not to mention repairing the suit after combat.

5. The suit doesn't have to. Just tailor it to fit FFBA and some armored pants, or something. It'll give you less than normal, yes, but it doesn't have to be debilitating. Just more expensive.
Crusher Bob
There are several 'mundane' things that will defeat the suit;

1 Shadows
The suited person still casts a shadow, at night with alot of direct (i.e. spot) lighting, a cast shadow can be very easy to see.

2 Weather
The suit does not really 'defeat' things like rain, snow, standing in water, any tracks you leave, etc

3 Minor damage, the suit can be damaged by area of effect attacks like grenades, is the suit is caught in a blast, it should be damaged.

4 Smell
Dogs and other animals that rely on smell have no trouble detecting this guy.

5 Hearing
If he is shooting at you, you can use your spatial recognizer cyberware to figure out the general area, then fire a grenade, shine a light, send in the dogs, or whatever.

6 Mud, dust, etc
The suit can be covered in dust, paint, blood, flour, mud, etc.

Necro Tech
QUOTE (Arethusa)
[QUOTE=Narmio]How is a suit high maintenance? The cost of purchasing battery packs is negligable to most runners, and if [QUOTE=Necro Tech]Its VERY important to remember that ruthenium is not invisibility. The stuff only helps you from being noticed. The desciption always says perceiving and detecting. Once you are noticed, you have to run away and hide to disappear again. It doesn not give "Visibility" modifiers.[/QUOTE]
Where the hell are you getting this?

[QUOTE=Necro Tech]It is almost useless in combat. You have to move very slowly so that the ruthenium can keep up with the changing environment. You can screw this up royally real real fast.

1.) Flash Packs/ Flash grenades make rutheium go nuts.

2.) Blowing smoke.

3.) Being between fast moving objects and someone trying to see you. Rutheium can't keep with with normal street traffic.

4.) Shooting while wearing it. The muzzle flash and loud noise kinda give you away.

5.) Cloaks blow around in high wind and wearing a body suit leaves you without significant armor.

6.) Rain pretty much screws you. It might start raining an awful lot in Seattle.

There are more but this covers most of it. Its designed to help infiltrators, not make combat monsters. If it worked like it did in GitS maybe, but it doesn't.[/QUOTE]
While I agree with some of this, I do find issue with a lot of it:

1. Nowhere in canon have I ever seen anything that says flash packs and grenades do anything to it other than momentarily making obvious that there's something in the way (you'll still cast a shadow, etc), but since everyone else will be at the time too busy being blind, it doesn't much matter.

2. If you're covered in smoke, it doesn't matter if you're invisible or not; no one's going to be seeing you since you're surrounded by smoke.


Read the decription. The rules for perception checks are singular. Once an object is noticed, you don't need to keep looking for it. Its just camoflauge on steroids. Like regular camo, once the person is spotted and your mind puts together the shape of a person, you don't lose them magically every few seconds.

2nd paragraph. "When activated, the target numbers needed to perceive such a cloaked object are increased by 4. For each extra scanner beyond four, add 1 to the final target number for detection."

SR3 pg 231. "A single success on a Perception Test indicates that someone has noticed something."

1 success = something is there.

No further information is required to open fire.

No where in the decription do the words "Visibility Modifier" appear. It doesn't inflict any modifiers after the target has been detected. Before that time, you still get the +8 blind fire modifier.

1.) A flash pack strobes. The ruthenium can't work that fast. Look at the out of snyc target. This would lower the target number for the perception test.

2.) When you watch smoke blow around an invisible pillar or watch as a person shaped hole cuts through it............

4.) During a full on assualt its not unreasonable not to notice a person who isn't rutheium covered. First few shots or a lone person away from the crowd, again, it will lower the target number.
hahnsoo
Regular Camo gives a +2 TN Modifier vs. Ranged attacks if the character is moving due to breaking up the profile of the character against his/her surroundings. I'd assume Ruthenium would do something similar (less for fast moving characters), but that's nowhere near the +8 for Blind Fire. Of course, the attacker would have detect the character using a Perception test (Simple Action) before they could nullify Blind Fire modifiers against Ruthenium.

According to canon, Ruthenium Polymers do not add a Ranged attack penalty. Since it requires the person to move relatively slowly (less than 6 meters a combat turn, walking distance for most characters) or to stand still, one could argue that the attacker would have either the stationary target bonus or only the penalty against walking targets.

I'd like to know how a Sport Rifle took down a boat. Most boats have enough bulwark and hull to nullify non-naval damage completely. Was this a small rowboat?
hahnsoo
Oh, and three more ways to deal with Ruthenium Polymer stealth junkies:
1) Dual-natured Paracritters.
2) Grenades don't care about line of sight
3) Suppressive Fire (p107 Cannon Companion) doesn't care about visibility modifiers. Actually, Suppressive Fire is a great equalizer against all sorts of penalties (visibility, recoil, and movement, specifically). It allows common security guards to use full-auto effectively (especially if your guard are coordinating their attacks).
Ranneko
QUOTE (hahnsoo)
I'd like to know how a Sport Rifle took down a boat.  Most boats have enough bulwark and hull to nullify non-naval damage completely.  Was this a small rowboat?

Yes, it was a very small boat, not a rowboat (since it had an outboard motor), but it was a small boat. And the rifle was using Ex ammo (not that that actually ended up making much of a difference after the halving and reduction of armour and the like). In that combat the wearing of ruthenium didn't actually make a difference, because the other people were too far out to see him in any case really, hence the ability to use combat pool on the shot rather than saving it for dodging.
hahnsoo
QUOTE (Ranneko)
QUOTE (hahnsoo)
I'd like to know how a Sport Rifle took down a boat.† Most boats have enough bulwark and hull to nullify non-naval damage completely.† Was this a small rowboat?

Yes, it was a very small boat, not a rowboat (since it had an outboard motor), but it was a small boat. And the rifle was using Ex ammo (not that that actually ended up making much of a difference after the halving and reduction of armour and the like). In that combat the wearing of ruthenium didn't actually make a difference, because the other people were too far out to see him in any case really, hence the ability to use combat pool on the shot rather than saving it for dodging.

Well, that doesn't sound nearly as impressive. If it was a Light Merchantman or a Trawler, I'd question how the weapon caused damage in the first place (since they both have a Hull rating of 2), but if it was the size of a rowboat or swamp boat (less than 100 metric tons), then it would be the equivalent of taking out a VW Electro or Nissan Jackrabbit.
durthang
I also believe we had a thread about how to deal with magical invisibility not too long ago. Some of the ideas there would also work for ruthenium.

Another thing to consider is that your runners are probably not the only people with enough money and brains to figure out the tactical advantages to ruthenuim. If all the other good runners are using it as well, you can bet your last Nuyen that the Megas are going to have specific defenses for it.

Arming all of their security personnel with splash grenades filled with paint is a very inexpensive solution. The grenades themselves would be very cheap, and no new training is really required. Sure, the corp. will need to clean paint the next day, but thatís still cheaper than whatever it is the runners came to do. Also, should the runner still survive, his suit is ruined and he now has to purchase another one. That should cut down on how often they bring the ruthenium out of the closet.

Sentry guns/drones. Granted, they still have a penalty to spot the runner, but it is much smaller than for a metahuman. Full auto suppressive fire from a HVAR will ruin anyoneís day.

Keep in mind that many types of animals track using smell and sound and donít really care if they can see someone to know that they are there. If the critter barks/makes noise, security will now be alerted that someone it there. If the critter comes to investigate and the team has to kill it, security will have a critter missing and know that someone is there.

Corp security will also start using it. Itís definitely too expensive for your average security slug, but any HTR team worth its salt will have it, along with all of the SOTA means of defeating it.
tisoz
QUOTE (Ranneko)
because the other people were too far out to see him in any case

If you say so. I usually assume if you have LOS, so do they.
Kagetenshi
QUOTE (hahnsoo)
I'd like to know how a Sport Rifle took down a boat. Most boats have enough bulwark and hull to nullify non-naval damage completely. Was this a small rowboat?

Someone isn't a sailor wink.gif Note the term "boat". Boats are small and never use the naval damage rules. Ships, as Shadowrun defines them, start at about a hundred tons.

~J
Fortune
So Submarines, which most definitely are classified as boats in real life, do not use the Naval rules?
Kagetenshi
The only two Naval-rules using subs are nuclear subs with total loads of over 2,500,000 kilos not counting the weight of the vessel itself.

~J
Fortune
Seriously? (It really was an honest question, as I haven't read the Naval rules for quite a while)

So all other subs can be taken out with a hold-out pistol packing AV ammo? eek.gif
Kagetenshi
No, because all other subs are underwater where that hold-out is losing Power at a rate of -1/meter nyahnyah.gif

Seriously, though, no. The only sub you shouldn't be able to do that to (not a minisub, not a sea sled) is a patrol submarine with an Armor of 9. Hold-out with Power 4 will halve that, but will still be bounced.

Other than that, the fact that a hold-out can use AV ammo is a flaw in the rules everywhere, not just for subs nyahnyah.gif

~J
Fortune
I admit I was being a little facetious. wink.gif

Per canon though, a light pistol (with AV ammo) could destroy a Patrol Submarine if it were to surface? That in itself is pretty silly. Is there any rationale given for subs not to be covered under Naval rules?
Kagetenshi
Ok, I'm going to check the errata, because whoever wrote said patrol sub was drunk. 85 basic living amenities in a Body 4 vehicle (for reference, that's about the size of an SUV or van).

Edit: Praise be! Errata says change Body and Armor to Hull and Bullwark. That gives us a minimum naval sub size of ~170,000 kilos before vessel mass.

~J
HMHVV Hunter
QUOTE (Fortune)


Per canon though, a light pistol (with AV ammo) could destroy a Patrol Submarine if it were to surface? That in itself is pretty silly. Is there any rationale given for subs not to be covered under Naval rules?

I'm not trying to start another "Shadowrun should go D20" argument here, because I don't agree with that.

However, in Star Wars D20 there's something called Damage Reduction that keeps such ridiculous things from happening (so that, say, a blaster pistol can't down an X-Wing fighter).

Maybe Shadowrun could benefit by some house rules tweaking for such things?
FlakJacket
Bull covered dealing with ruthnium in one of his Damage Control articles for tss. Might be worth a look for some ideas.
Kagetenshi
QUOTE (HMHVV Hunter)
However, in Star Wars D20 there's something called Damage Reduction that keeps such ridiculous things from happening (so that, say, a blaster pistol can't down an X-Wing fighter).

That's the entire point of both the normal vehicle rules and the naval damage rules. The problem is just careless application of things that bypass it, not an absence of the mechanic in the first place.

~J
Narmio
The vehicle damaging system is somewhat strange in SR, yes. Personally I don't think it's a need for Damage Reduction or anything, but instead because of the insanely low Body ratings of vehicles. Yes, sure, they're on a different scale to metahuman Body ratings, but when you factor in AV ammo, shooting an armoured truck with a Predator is like shooting a tough but un-augmented human with the same. Which is just crazy.

I've considered attempting some kind of houserule to stop the ease of damaging vehicles in general, such as flat-out doubling all Vehicle body ratings, making them only require one success to soak a human-scale damage level, making attacks against them require four successes to stage up a level, and things like that, but I have not.

Why? I honestly do not know how hard it is to damage such a vehicle in reality. Hollywood can most likely not be trusted, and in any case ranges from the shot-once-then-explode examples to the completely-ignore-small-arms-fire ones.

It seems that at least from a game balance perspective vehicles carrying half a dozen enemies shouldn't be able to be destroyed by anything that can penetrate their armour.

Thanks for all the suggestions on Ruthenium, by the way, you've given me some things to think about. (By all means keep suggesting anything you like, but it seems the thread has been at least temporarily hijacked by vehicle damage rules).
FrostyNSO
In RL, the best way to stop a vehicle with small arms is to shoot the driver.
Kanada Ten
On the issue of AV ammo, a careful reading of Rigger 3 indicates that only auto cannons loading AV ammo are considered anti vehicular. Of course one can argue either way because CC was so stupidly vague, but R3 is fairly specific.

Personally, I agree with Necro Tech that the suit only provide camo bonuses, but combat ones. However, try telling your players that. Anyway, on defeating ruthenium, smoke from grenades will cling to the suit, pressure plates, freeze foam (try peeling that off without damaging the paint), stun grenades... Doors: I cannot overstresss these enough. Doors that require pressure pads to open and have cameras monitoring them - doors in secure facilities are required to close within a period of seconds or they set off an alarm. Doors make excellent ambush spots for suppressive weapons (remember, security forces know where the other security forces are: "Roger, is zone 234 clear?" "Clear" "Open fire!"). Proximity sensors on a hallway and drone weapons using sensor lock == ouch.
Austere Emancipator
Just a few past discussions on how SR3 handles vehicle damage:
Vehicle Damage Resistance Test
Melee weapons against vehicles or drones?
Vehicle Damage, Are they made of balsa wood?
Anti-Vehicle weapons, Does dikote count?

As for small arms vs. vehicles IRL, an anti-material rifle firing special ammunition can deal with lightly armored vehicles. With weapons lighter than that, you can forget about stopping any armored vehicles, and even against unarmored vehicles your best bet is indeed to shoot the driver. Riddling the engine compartment also works, if shooting the driver is not an option for some reason -- the problem with that is, you may well have to literally riddle the engine with bullets before you force the vehicle to stop, or you might get lucky and it'll stop soon after the first shot. A bit like shooting a human, in fact...
Vlad the Bad
Back to the topic ... I ran for a player whose character was a ruthenium wearing adept, who was making short work of most of my standard goons. So I gave him a run where he had to break into a Sioux military complex that was being rented out to Universal Omni. What the character didn't know is that they were working on a "stable" strain of Kreiger HMHVV, in an attempt to develope a way grant soldiers Astral Perception, and their test subjects were Wildcats.

So said character was being hunted by Ghoul Wildcats who were also using Ruthenium against him. biggrin.gif
Necro Tech
QUOTE (Kanada Ten)
On the issue of AV ammo, a careful reading of Rigger 3 indicates that only auto cannons loading AV ammo are considered anti vehicular. Of course one can argue either way because CC was so stupidly vague, but R3 is fairly specific.


Um, not quite sure what you are saying here. Unless a weapon says that it is AV, it isn't. Even vehicle weapons follow this rule, including rotary autocannon. Are you saying that autocannons are the only weapons that can have AV ammo or that autocannon are not automatically AV?
Sandoval Smith
Re: Ruthenium in combat, how is he rolling TN 2s all the time with the hunting rifle? Are you taking into account that there are probably a few bonuses from that rifle that won't apply in close quarters?

Is the player wearing a ruthenium suit, or a poncho? If he's wearing a suit, then all his gear (which includes guns) has to be under it, which makes anything he's carrying pretty hard to access at a moment's notice. If he's got the poncho, that makes getting your hands on your gear easier, but unless he's gone and gotten his gun its own coating of Ruthenium + scanners, then everyone is going to see a rifle floating around. I'd say it doesn't nullify all of his concealment bonus, but the opposition would know exactly which one meter square to pour the suppressive fire into.

Where is the thermographic penalty coming from? Does the suit have thermal dampening on it? If it doesn't, then thermogrpahic vision can see it just fine, and ultrasound has no additional problem at all. Also remember that adding thermal dampening doubles the availibility, and quadruples the time (so ruthenium is 10/10 weeks).

Finally, I'm not sure if there is cannon material to support this, but does limiting yourself to moving no faster than 6 meters/turn add any TNs to your dodge test? I know you lose one point of concealment for every 2 m/t higher than 6 you go.
Teulisch
a couple points here.

First, Ultrasound very specificaly cuts your vision modifiers in half, rounding up. This means if you have thermo and ultrasound together, you end up with a +2, not a +4, to see that target. +3 is he has 1 or 2 points of thermal dampening. if i want to hide, im going to get some thermal dampening as well as a white noise emitter just in case

Second, what kind of suit is he wearing? how does it cover his gear? if it covers his gear, how accessible is that gear? how does a cloak affect mobility? If it was me, i would go with ruth pants/boots, and a poncho that went to just above the knee. This would give me good mobility, without stopping me from getting to my gear harnesses.
Cochise
QUOTE (Teulisch)
First, Ultrasound very specificaly cuts your vision modifiers in half, rounding up. This means if you have thermo and ultrasound together, you end up with a +2, not a +4, to see that target.

arguable ...

While the rules on Ultrasound Vision do say vision mod /2 rounded up, the table on p. 49 of M&M contradicts that to a certain extend: The given modifiers imply that US only halves the vision modifiers for "normal" human vision.

Generally all vision enhancements seem to work under the doctrine "best system under when the lights go out, worst system, when light becomes more intense or is otherwise obstructed, but no cumulative effects"
Buck Satan
Yeah my players tried to abuse the Ruthenium polymer suit. What I did to them is that if you use a Ruthie Suit extensibly then it generate radiation on account of the energy being pumped into it and because of that and the light that is being bent to keep them from being seen I had them start taking rads. Evently they had to go to their local shaodwdock to have surgery done to remove chunks of their skin on account of their skin cancer. Evently they just started having to ween themselves off of the ruthie suit because it does more harm than good if you use for everything. Anyways you may call me a bad gm if you want but trust me anything can give you cancer. I just try to balance unbalanced things out with my sessions so that way the party will learn to be more thankful of the thing that they have to use sparingly. Also as far as sniping is concerned most my NPC's that can catch a sniper can general get to cover and call in support to get rid of the pesty bastard. Grant it that is a bit excessive. Mind you it is necessary especially if you are dealing with Megacorps that have small militaries (all of them.) Anyways the smart ones always have means of catching and killing those who are dumb enough to take them on without a plan. Then again I am a gm who believes who believes in being just plain lethal when it comes to situations that require it.
Kagetenshi
No light is being bent. A high-res picture of what's on the other side is being displayed.

~J
durthang
QUOTE
Where is the thermographic penalty coming from?


M&M pg. 114
QUOTE
Radar, thermographic, and ultrasound systems are not affected by the ruthenium's cloaking effect.  This means that dwarfs and trolls, ultrasound using characters and vehicle sensors reduce the target number modifiers of the ruthenium by half, rounding down.


So, assuming the full 12 scanners, any of the above has a +6 (+3 with both thermo and ultra) modifier to notice someone in ruthenium. If the goons/security still fail that roll you can use blind fire at +8 (or arguably +4 with ultrasound), or suppressive fire which ignores visibility all together.

Don't forget to apply the perception test modifiers on SR3 pg. 232. IMO shooting at someone would count as "action very obvious" with a -4. Further in the unlikely event that the character did not silence the sporting rifle that is an additional -2.
Arethusa
QUOTE (Buck Satan)
Yeah my players tried to abuse the Ruthenium polymer suit. What I did to them is that if you use a Ruthie Suit extensibly then it generate radiation on account of the energy being pumped into it and because of that and the light that is being bent to keep them from being seen I had them start taking rads. Evently they had to go to their local shaodwdock to have surgery done to remove chunks of their skin on account of their skin cancer. Evently they just started having to ween themselves off of the ruthie suit because it does more harm than good if you use for everything. Anyways you may call me a bad gm if you want but trust me anything can give you cancer. I just try to balance unbalanced things out with my sessions so that way the party will learn to be more thankful of the thing that they have to use sparingly. Also as far as sniping is concerned most my NPC's that can catch a sniper can general get to cover and call in support to get rid of the pesty bastard. Grant it that is a bit excessive. Mind you it is necessary especially if you are dealing with Megacorps that have small militaries (all of them.) Anyways the smart ones always have means of catching and killing those who are dumb enough to take them on without a plan. Then again I am a gm who believes who believes in being just plain lethal when it comes to situations that require it.

Uh, what the fuck? Sounds more like you're just a GM who enjoys abusing his position and being a complete prick because he can.
Ranneko
QUOTE (Buck Satan)
Yeah my players tried to abuse the Ruthenium polymer suit. What I did to them is that if you use a Ruthie Suit extensibly then it generate radiation on account of the energy being pumped into it and because of that and the light that is being bent to keep them from being seen I had them start taking rads. Evently they had to go to their local shaodwdock to have surgery done to remove chunks of their skin on account of their skin cancer. Evently they just started having to ween themselves off of the ruthie suit because it does more harm than good if you use for everything. Anyways you may call me a bad gm if you want but trust me anything can give you cancer. I just try to balance unbalanced things out with my sessions so that way the party will learn to be more thankful of the thing that they have to use sparingly. Also as far as sniping is concerned most my NPC's that can catch a sniper can general get to cover and call in support to get rid of the pesty bastard. Grant it that is a bit excessive. Mind you it is necessary especially if you are dealing with Megacorps that have small militaries (all of them.) Anyways the smart ones always have means of catching and killing those who are dumb enough to take them on without a plan. Then again I am a gm who believes who believes in being just plain lethal when it comes to situations that require it.

Err... have you read what a ruthenium suit does?

It generates an image, rather than bending light (which would be an incredibly inefficient exercise by comparison).

It is also powered by a 50 nuyen battery, which it can last 10 hours on.

Your reasoning makes no sense, and your methodology is highly bizarre and worrying.

Fortunately most of the other suggestions in this thread are good.
Fortune
QUOTE (Arethusa)
Uh, what the fuck? Sounds more like you're just a GM who enjoys abusing his position and being a complete prick because he can.

I have to agree with Arethusa. That is just utterly ridiculous. ohplease.gif
toturi
indifferent.gif There is no real way to counter-balance a bad GM, is there?
Sandoval Smith
Play with a new one?

Okay, the above example is a _very_ bad way to deal with something that gets out of balance. I will repeat my stance that most times when something like that happens, it means a rule has been overlooked, or you're somehow missing _something_ that keeps things normally in check. And if there are no rules, then you can make ways to deal with it that don't invovle unreasonable fiat.

For example, Ruthenium is not armor. If a cloaked player starts taking heavy wounds, that should mean that their ruthenium has also taken damage which should reduce it effectiveness. It wouldn't be too hard to come up with a correlation between wounds taken and reduction of concealment bonus (and while a mage might be able to heal that Deadly, there probably won't be a way to repair the ruthenium in the middle of a run).

Likewise, if the opposition knows that someone is there, but can't see them, then they should start opening up with supressive fire

Finally, what's good for the goose is good for the gander. Especially if they're facing corp level opposition, with its terrible deep pockets, why shouldn't their oppenents be just as prone to using ruthenium as the players are?
Deacon
Players I've known are fond of fiddling with their Ruth suits (adding it to the outside of medium security armor, for example, so you -do- have armor on when wearing it, or using a clear-coat substance (like dikote) to protect the ruthenium) so any time the suits could be damaged, they have an answer as to why they can't be.

Not to mention that there's nothing in the rules covering equipment breakage... and it shouldn't have to be up to the GM to write his own. (Many are too lazy.)

I find it's easiest to spring the environment on the ruthenium-gifted. Rain never looks right, smoke and fog also make you seem like a very out-of-place picture. Any sort of substance you leave footprints in (mud, snow, water) also makes you look odd, to say the least. Oftentimes I find it easier to drop money on smoke grenades and camo suits than dink with ruthenium.

Corporations have another defense: ruthenium. The stuff makes wonderful wallpaper, especially considering it will create moving images (like kinetic art on your walls). Suddenly your ruthenium suit is trying to display a moving image behind you... and if the image is actually larger than you are, it's probably out of sync.
Large Mike

Just a note on ruthenium in a non-rules fashion. Firstly, displaying a picture of something behind you, unless you're really close to it, is not going to be seen at the same angle as the actual image, thus, checkered floor > ruthenium. In addition, curves would be difficult as all hell to display. Not impossible, just make sure you're still good and nervous while wearing that ruthie suit. Furthurmmore, even if, by some bizarre somehow, you have a camera on the bottom of your feet, there's no light under there when they're in contact with something. As the ruthie would have nothing to display there, at best it would have a (hopefully) colormatched swatch where you're stepping, at worst have a display error and just show grey, or worse, blue screen.

I'd like to present the possibility that hiding using ruthenium is similar to, but not exactly like, hiding normally, making ruthenium a specialization of stealth.

I may be a crackpot, but near as I can tell, ruthenium is a tool for stealth, not invisibility-in-a-box.
hahnsoo
We've actually come up with a home-grown security feature in our games called "stereoscopic environmental patterns" that basically are physical defense features designed to deter camo of all types. The theory is that you can create optical illusion patterns on your walls, floors, plazas, etc. that look pretty and innocuous, but mess up attempts to use ruthenium, the Camo spell, and urban camo. It halved modifiers, which stacks with other vision "halving" for the purposes of perception tests and removes the +2 profile visibility modifier for ranged attacks.
Garland
Wow, I really like that idea.

Though I bet the company would have problems with their cyberzombies getting lost in the details and doing nothing but staring at the walls. biggrin.gif
Sandoval Smith
Adding Ruthenium to the outside of armor doesn't really negate the potential to be damaged, and I recall hearing somewhere that it was possible to interweave the ruthenium into the armor, but that decrease the B/I rating by some factor.

You sure as hell can't dikote Ruthenium either.

Just like invisibility, there are several sure fire ways to limit Ruthenium abuse. Personally, doors have always struck me as being the most logical.
hahnsoo
QUOTE (Garland)
Wow, I really like that idea.

Though I bet the company would have problems with their cyberzombies getting lost in the details and doing nothing but staring at the walls. biggrin.gif

"Whoa, I can see a sailboat..." *thunk, plop* biggrin.gif
This is a "lo-fi" version of our main content. To view the full version with more information, formatting and images, please click here.
Dumpshock Forums © 2001-2012