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Drunken Review: Shadowrun 5
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hyzmarca
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 23, 2017 9:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

FrankTrollman wrote:
The obscurantist faction was pretty much out of control since before 5th edition was a thing. The reductionists wanted possession and inhabitation traditionsto be the same. There's honestly no reason why voodoo zombies and insect spirits have to use different mechanics. We have separate possession and inhabitation rules because the obscurantists threw a tantrum.

Now that they control pretty much everything, it doesn't really surprise that they are covering themselves in poop and demanding complex new mechanics for character types that are thematically interchangeable with already extant magical groups.

-Frank


There are good reasons for the two to be different. Namely that Inhabitation kills the host and Possession doesn't. That is to say, if you're possessed then it's always possible for someone to kick the spirit out of your body and you'll be good as new, if possibly horribly traumatized. If you're inhabited, the best case scenario for you is that you fully merge with the spirit and you both cease to exist as individual entities, while the most likely scenario is that you're consumed by it and nothing remains of you but a shell. That's a good enough reason to model them differently.

Especially since they want the Inhabitation traditions to be crazy guys who kidnap and murder homeless people over a period of weeks or months, and the Possession traditions to be playable and useful in combat time without the risk of starting Scientology or some other perpetual growth scheme that will inevitably lead to the apocalypse.


Last edited by hyzmarca on Thu Nov 23, 2017 9:44 pm; edited 1 time in total
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souran
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 24, 2017 2:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Yeah that's bullshit. How often are the differences going to be relevant? If it's less than once a session the game would be better with fewer rules to remember. If the only difference is inhabitation is fatal and possession is not then that can be all the rules difference the game needs.
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hyzmarca
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 24, 2017 8:17 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

souran wrote:
Yeah that's bullshit. How often are the differences going to be relevant? If it's less than once a session the game would be better with fewer rules to remember. If the only difference is inhabitation is fatal and possession is not then that can be all the rules difference the game needs.


Inhabitation as a spirit power is grandfathered in from 1E Insect Spirits. In order to function, it must be able to produce insect spirits that behave about like insects spirits that behave like insect spirits. And insect spirits have 4 editions and many novels of baggage behind them that you can't just get rid of. Particularly since those novels didn't suck.

This is a problem that a lot of RPGs have. If the new rules invalidate your old metaplot, then you've fucked up. You might not have fucked up at making rules that work, but you have fucked up at making rules that accurately model your setting.

And making possession and inhabitation different powers with different rules is a hell of a lot less complicated than making them the same thing, but with 50 different exceptions only for insect spirits. The entire reason the Inhabitation power exists in the first place was to codify Insect Spirits in a non-exception-based manner.
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FrankTrollman
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 24, 2017 2:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Quote:
Inhabitation as a spirit power is grandfathered in from 1E Insect Spirits. In order to function, it must be able to produce insect spirits that behave about like insects spirits that behave like insect spirits.


Sure.

But in previous editions, Houngans were known for doing two things: getting themselves temporarily possessed by Loa spirits and making Voodoo Zombies. With the SR4 Summoning/Binding divide, you can in fact do both of those things if you Summon temporary spirits that have the ability to possess prepared vessels (you always count as one) and binding makes a possession into a permanent merge.

Combining Possession and Inhabitation in that way more closely matches the way Voodoo summoning works in Awakenings and also has less unique mechanics. The Obscurantists insisted on throwing Voodoo Zombies out altogether as a thing anyone would ever consider doing in order to make there be more distinct kinds of conjuring.

-Frank
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Longes
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 24, 2017 8:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

I've read some of the fluff in Forbidden Arcana. The Horrors are not forgotten. Apparently the current canon is that mana voids in Aztlan are vacuuming mana to help the Horrors. Because clearly the Horrors and Aztlan being EVIL are the plot that needs to keep going.

Also Harlequin seems to be growing a neckbeard.
Quote:
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> The Laughing Man


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Longes
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 8:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

A book came out today. A book that allows you to make an insect spirit runner.
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Stahlseele
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 9:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Same deal as with shapeshifters and HMHVV. wait for it to turn its back. pump it full of its allergen and then set it on fire.
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FrankTrollman
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Longes wrote:
A book came out today. A book that allows you to make an insect spirit runner.


Bizarrely, I don't really have a problem with that. Of all the spirit types, Good-Merge Insect Spirits are the closest to being a normal playable character. They are dual-natured, look like humans, and have access to normal senses and tool use.

When the thought of making playable spirits first came up, these were my suggestion as the first ones to go to, which of course gave everybody the vapors. But it is of course historically true that every attempt to make playable free spirits in every other context has been a complete failure - not managing to make something remotely playable and also failing to capture even basic qualities that spirits have.

-Frank
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Longes
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PostPosted: Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

What is strange is that instead of making rules for playable free spirits and saying that you can only play inhabitation spirits they specifically doubled down on it being a playable insect free spirit and have weird spiels about Mantis and shit.

And as usual, Dark Terrors (the new 'plot' book) disappoints me by going into alien world-ending menaces instead of just doing Man vs Society thing cyberpunk does best. But such is the fault of Shadowrun.

In other news - NeoNET has fallen because it got blamed for the dragon_ghost-AI nanovirus CFD thing that was taking over the world. NeoNET's place on the corporate court has been taken by Spinrad. Said CFD plot has also been finished because no one gave a shit about yet another zombie plague and because Boston: Lockdown was a massive failure of an MMO.
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Trill
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 10, 2018 1:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Something that I only just now realized after someone mentioned it to me:

In 5e you can start mundane and become awakened during the game, without having Latent Awakening.
Because there doesn't seem to be a rule forbidding you from taking the relevant quality in game. Your GM still has to approve it like with any other quality, but RAW there is nothing against it.
So either they forgot to copy the particular rules text (likely) or they intentionally didn't copy it (also likely)
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Stahlseele
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 10, 2018 7:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Also, HMHVV < = basically instant awakening.
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Longes
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 10, 2018 8:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Trill wrote:
Something that I only just now realized after someone mentioned it to me:

In 5e you can start mundane and become awakened during the game, without having Latent Awakening.
Because there doesn't seem to be a rule forbidding you from taking the relevant quality in game. Your GM still has to approve it like with any other quality, but RAW there is nothing against it.
So either they forgot to copy the particular rules text (likely) or they intentionally didn't copy it (also likely)


There is no "Awakened" quality, so you can't actually do this short of becoming a vampire.
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Trill
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 10, 2018 3:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Longes wrote:
There is no "Awakened" quality, so you can't actually do this short of becoming a vampire.


But there are the Magician, Adept, Mystic Adept and Aspected Magician Qualities
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TheSystem
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2018 8:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Strange content for a first post, but I always imagined the lower life expectancy for trolls and orks to be a combination of their size and the fact that they are depicted as largely poor in a future that is already dystopic as it is. The lower life expectancy rates in Shadowrun are supposed to be reflective of the setting's dichotomies. Sure, there are life-extending treatments for the super rich, and the technology exists to help everyone, but the world doesn't actually help everyone. What is "possible" is not directly related to what is "available" in Shadowrun. It's all part of the setting's blatant inequality. When we look at the rising lifespan of humans over past couple decades, we're looking at a world that has actually made great strides to create and make available health care. I mean, even in the US where we routinely decry the disparity in medical coverage, the level of care for most people is really good, often just in the ways society passively provides "healthcare" in the propagation of clean drinking water and health standards for restaurants and other food providers. No system is perfect, but clearly we're many levels about even just 100 years ago.

Shadowrun's world doesn't care as much about that. If at all in many cases. There are entire classes of people in Shadowrun who don't officially exist to any government or corporate entity, and medical care is quite literally mercenary in some cases. You can't really dive into the geopolitics, sociopolitics, or economics of a world like Shadowrun without going into some deep rabbit holes, but if you accept that it is possible, Shadowrun's world is going to have a lot less regulation and oversight for health standards outside the controlled areas of the metroplexes. You get into the Barrens and the world looks a lot different than it does in the gated communities of Bellvue or even just the business districts downtown. Then there's the fact that large swathes of the mainland US at least are basically uninhabited and certainly unsupervised by any regulatory bodies. My meta-knowledge of a lot of parts of the 6th World has diminished with time, but I don't remember much of the rest of the world being presented as overly idyllic, so we can only assume the life expectancy hurdles faced by the impoverished and disenfranchised is on exacerbated in most other parts of the world. The average human lifespan (worldwide) being lower in the 2050+ of Shadowrun doesn't really feel too far off to me at all.

Now, the fairly silly fantasy trope of "immortal" elves is a different story, and I've pretty much always thought it was awful. From a "Okay, we get it, Tolkien and D&D inspired this" but also from the "They don't have anywhere near enough medical data about what happens to elves as they age."
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Stahlseele
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PostPosted: Sun Jan 28, 2018 9:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

No no, the immortal elves are literally that.
Aside from being killed, they are immune to age, poisons and diseases i think.
And nobody knows how old a NON IMMORTAL elf actually can get in Shadowrun.
No, not even in SR5. They have all died of non natural causes.
Same for Dorfs. They are expected to live really long as well.
But none of them have made it to that age as of yet.
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Last edited by Stahlseele on Sun Jan 28, 2018 9:50 pm; edited 1 time in total
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TheSystem
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 1:59 am    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Sorry, guess I should have specified the metahuman elves that awakened, not the really literally Tolkien immortal elves like Harlequin and such.
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Nath
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PostPosted: Mon Jan 29, 2018 9:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote Add User to Ignore List

Stahlseele wrote:
No no, the immortal elves are literally that.
Aside from being killed, they are immune to age, poisons and diseases i think.

SR2 Harlequin's Back does mention "Immnity to Age, Disease, Pathogens, Poisons" on Jane Foster profile, and SR4 Street Legends Supplemental stats for Harlequin lists "Immunity (Age, Disease, Pathogens, Toxins)".

Funnily enough, Street Legends does not mention even immunity to age as a trait of Lugh Surehand. I don't remember SL ever receiving an official errata, so that would mean the current canon is that Lugh Surehand is not an immortal elve.
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