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JcDent
May 13, 2013

Give me a rifle, one round, and point me at Berlin!


Elf Bezos, Orc Bezos, I'm the guy with the smartlinked AK-94.

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Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



Midjack posted:

Sure, and you can even do stuff like “high quality” to represent nicer parts, a scope, handloaded cartridges, etc that costs more and gives +1 to hit or whatever and it doesn’t get out of hand. The catalog happens when the authors forget they’re writing a game and just copy/paste their reference materials in. It’s true to the cyberpunk aesthetic but a waste of time for the game.

Yeah, if I were to write an armory for a cyberpunk game I'd probably just do something like 'pistol,' 'high quality pistol,' 'hand cannon,' 'high quality hand cannon,' 'smg,' 'high quality smg,' etc with a few suggested makes and models for each and a note of who (as NPCs) would be likely to carry each. So, say:

Pistol (High Quality)
1d6+2 kinetic
Price: 50 credits
Range: Medium
Models: American National Arms M-8, Khrabrost Industries PhP-41, Heckler & Wesson PDW-19
Used By: paranoid civilians, well-paid security guards, regular mercenaries

Bam, done.

Cooked Auto
Aug 4, 2007

If you will not serve in combat, you will serve on the firing line!




CroatianAlzheimers posted:

That's how we did it in FFG's Star Wars. "Blaster Pistol (stats) Models include: xxx, yyy, zzz". Half the fun was coming up with make/model names.

Although I feel that changed over time, especially when you look at the Gadgets & Gear book that came out at the end of the line.

Either way if it was a near future game I'd probably just go generic weapon types like pistol/smg/rifle/assault rifle/shotgun/longrifle/machine gun and have the player make up the models after that.
Could be granulated a bit further if needed but never anything specific beyond holdout/light/heavy pistol and such.

That Old Tree
Jun 23, 2012

nah




Yeah, I played Edge of the Empire kind of early on and really appreciated how I could just have "a blaster pistol" and, like, call it a DL-44 or whatever the gently caress. Recently, I found a retail-priced Speeders & Starships and decided to grab the whole lot of "universal" supplements just to round out my meager collection (I'm never going after all the Career supplements, lmao), and Gadgets & Gear was a pretty disappointing collection of mostly-the-same stuff with a point of difference here and there.

That Old Tree fucked around with this message at 20:23 on Oct 21, 2020

Young Freud
Nov 25, 2006



Yeah, as time goes on, more and more guns and stuff is more genericized and homogenized. See the explosion of the AR-15 in the last decade, both domestically and globally. Or how ubiquitous the Glock magazine has become. There was maybe a difference of a couple bullets and a caliber, but they all look the same.

The stat lines I had for my heartbreaker looked like this...

Generic name, but each with a class, the major differences being their traits. I developed some brand name guns to put aside along this with some old favorites, like the M1911 and the MP7, where they perform slightly differently from these stats, but would be something that could be conceivably be something to come across.

Zereth
Jul 8, 2003




Cythereal posted:

Yeah, if I were to write an armory for a cyberpunk game I'd probably just do something like 'pistol,' 'high quality pistol,' 'hand cannon,' 'high quality hand cannon,' 'smg,' 'high quality smg,' etc with a few suggested makes and models for each and a note of who (as NPCs) would be likely to carry each. So, say:

Pistol (High Quality)
1d6+2 kinetic
Price: 50 credits
Range: Medium
Models: American National Arms M-8, Khrabrost Industries PhP-41, Heckler & Wesson PDW-19
Used By: paranoid civilians, well-paid security guards, regular mercenaries

Bam, done.
Yeah, I would be fine with an edition of Shadowrun where the stats for an Ares Predator are "Heavy Pistol with Integrated Smartlink" and that's all.

Wrestlepig
Feb 25, 2011

my mum says im cool



Toilet Rascal

Shadowrun’s gear is mostly genericised: it’s basically only the guns that are like this. Computers have it but there’s a pretty linear progression for those so it’s not a big deal.

FMguru
Sep 10, 2003

peed on;
sexually

Zereth posted:

Yeah, I would be fine with an edition of Shadowrun where the stats for an Ares Predator are "Heavy Pistol with Integrated Smartlink" and that's all.
Basic statlines modified by keywords is absolutely the way to gp.

The FFG 40K games mostly do this.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.


FMguru posted:

Basic statlines modified by keywords is absolutely the way to gp.

The FFG 40K games mostly do this.

If by the keywords you mean rules like Tearing, but otherwise they're massive lists of minor statistical differences that produce a few unquestionably mechanically superior results everyone uses.

Which is the common failstate of Gear Porn.

senrath
Nov 3, 2009

Look Professor, a destruct switch!




I'm still a fan of how Fragged Empire handles things, where you have a base set of stats and then a bunch of tags you can mix and match as you please.

CroatianAlzheimers
Jun 15, 2009

I can't remember why I'm mad at you...




Cooked Auto posted:

Although I feel that changed over time, especially when you look at the Gadgets & Gear book that came out at the end of the line.

Either way if it was a near future game I'd probably just go generic weapon types like pistol/smg/rifle/assault rifle/shotgun/longrifle/machine gun and have the player make up the models after that.
Could be granulated a bit further if needed but never anything specific beyond holdout/light/heavy pistol and such.

I wasn't on the Gadgets and Gear book, unfortunately. I was on the ships book, which was the last SW book I worked on.

Cooked Auto
Aug 4, 2007

If you will not serve in combat, you will serve on the firing line!




I really wasn't sure for how long you'd worked on those anyway.

Also that's the one book I haven't had the chance to check yet. Such a shame we won't get more of them as the system is solid.
Especially now that my group is starting a sequel to our previous FFG SW campaign we played four years ago.

feedmegin
Jul 30, 2008



That Old Tree posted:

I liked the old SR gear books from I think 2nd edition with the BBS-style conversations under each product, including barely-related tangents. Clearly, FASA predicted the internet's true form in 1993.

I mean, Usenet had been around since 1980 already. The internet is older than you think.

wiegieman
Apr 22, 2010

Royalty is a continuous cutting motion




Wrestlepig posted:

Shadowrun’s gear is mostly genericised: it’s basically only the guns that are like this. Computers have it but there’s a pretty linear progression for those so it’s not a big deal.

Even something like an Ares Alpha is just the Ares brand of "high end AR with underslung GL." There's an Aztechnolgy/etc. version of it, but rules-wise it's still an Alpha.

(Ares does have a lot of high-quality guns to their name, but that's because they're the US MIC writ large.)

CroatianAlzheimers
Jun 15, 2009

I can't remember why I'm mad at you...




Cooked Auto posted:

I really wasn't sure for how long you'd worked on those anyway.

I was on Star Wars for the entire run. I started on the very first drafts of Edge and worked all the way to the end. Still really proud of that work, too.

Cooked Auto
Aug 4, 2007

If you will not serve in combat, you will serve on the firing line!




CroatianAlzheimers posted:

I was on Star Wars for the entire run. I started on the very first drafts of Edge and worked all the way to the end. Still really proud of that work, too.

You did good. It's a good simple system that I wish FFG had used more beyond the failed venture of a generic version of it.

CroatianAlzheimers
Jun 15, 2009

I can't remember why I'm mad at you...




Cooked Auto posted:

You did good. It's a good simple system that I wish FFG had used more beyond the failed venture of a generic version of it.

What, Genesys? I was on that from the beginning, too. It's way tighter than SW is. I use it for everything that's not PbtA or D&D. Genesys didn't fail, and is still in production.

Proud Rat Mom
Apr 2, 2012

did absolutely fuck all

Also L5R 5e is great.

CroatianAlzheimers
Jun 15, 2009

I can't remember why I'm mad at you...




Proud Rat Mom posted:

Also L5R 5e is great.

Lawl, I was on that, too. FFG paid a lot of my bills between 2009 and 2019.

Cooked Auto
Aug 4, 2007

If you will not serve in combat, you will serve on the firing line!




CroatianAlzheimers posted:

What, Genesys? I was on that from the beginning, too. It's way tighter than SW is. I use it for everything that's not PbtA or D&D. Genesys didn't fail, and is still in production.

Ah, I was admittedly referring more to the lack of support for it rather than production. Haven't really heard much about books coming out for it beyond the fantasy one and possibly one for Runeterra?

I know my group looked at it when it first came out but realized there was a bit too much work involved with making up talents and such for it that we passed on it for future campaigns.

Midjack
Dec 24, 2007





Cooked Auto posted:

Ah, I was admittedly referring more to the lack of support for it rather than production. Haven't really heard much about books coming out for it beyond the fantasy one and possibly one for Runeterra?

I know my group looked at it when it first came out but realized there was a bit too much work involved with making up talents and such for it that we passed on it for future campaigns.

They did one for Android/Netrunner, In the Shadow of the Beanstalk.

Wrestlepig
Feb 25, 2011

my mum says im cool



Toilet Rascal

Shadowrun 5e
Combat Primer: Actions and initiative.

This is where I start getting mean. I like the gear stuff, the character creation works pretty well if you like that level of complexity, but once we hit the table, things get awful messy.

So as a quick overview, all combat, whether regular, cyber-dueling electronic warfare or Astral Combat, follows the same structure. You have an initiative roll, based on whatever mode you’re in. If you’re just a VR presence or a magical projection, you aren’t really acting on the same timeframe, so you might be going faster overall. Most commonly initiative is a roll of all your Reaction and Intuition dice, plus bonus dice based on a bunch of bonuses. Then the highest initiative goes first and starts their action phase. You get as many free actions as the GM feels like, and either 2 Simple Actions, or one Complex action. Once everyone has had a turn, subtract 10 from everyone’s initiative. If anyone’s above zero, go through that cycle again. So there’s an action economy going on. Better make sure you invested in wired reflexes so you can go first and more, if it's physical. Each turn is expected to take roughly 3 seconds.

There’s a huge pile of different actions with their own little variants and details, so I’m not going to go over everything in specifics. I’m just going to cover stuff with broad strokes. Rest assured though, there’s a lot. I’m just going to go with a frenzied list.

Movement isn’t really an action on it’s own, its just something you do. You get to either walk your agility times 2 in meters, run as twice that, which gives you a -2 to your dice pool on anything, except make a melee attack which is a +2 for charging, and you’re harder to hit with ranged attacks. You can also sprint with a skill check for extra successes, but that's an action. The game will never admit it, but it’s a tactical minis game as written.

There isn’t a single Attack option. There’s a lot of things in the general group that all work kind of differently, but you only get 1 attack per Action phase even if it targets multiple people. Exactly what an Attack action is not defined, and many things that are probably attacks do not use the word in their entire description. I’m going to give the attack move it’s own post, but rest assured: the most common thing involves two opposed rolls of probably the largest dicepools people will have, as well as situational modifiers and different things to check. Attacks are either simple or complex: Single shot ranged attacks are simple while melee and ranged attacks with a lot of bullets are complex.

Simple actions include a lot of things that would normally be ignored, or abstracted. Here it gives a pretty exhausting breakdown of actions. Taking cover, grabbing an item, observing and taking aim readying the weapon, changing the firing mode of your gun or issuing a command to drones and spirits takes a bit of your turn. Fortunately you can still attack in most cases. Smartguns let you do a few important steps as a free action, which can be very helpful. You took it for the dice and accuracy, but the slight upgrade to the action economy helps.

There’s a quickdraw mechanic: You can draw and fire a pistol-sized weapon in one action with a Weaponskill + Reaction test. If you get 3 hits, or two with a special holster, you get an attack as part of the same action. This should be a cool thing to do, like it is in every movie it happens in, but there’s a lot going on with this one.

>Some ranged attacks are complex actions, like if you go really full-auto, and it’s not defined which one you do. If this game was written sensibly, it would say “If successful, take action X as a free action” but instead we have vague wording that raises questions.
>This one outlines glitch options that make your character incompetent, and drop the weapon or launch it out of their hands, so probably worse than the average cowboy. It couldn’t just be “You’re too slow and don’t get it out fast enough to take a shot”, your character, established as a hardened pro-criminal badass, does slapstick if you’re unlucky.
>It’s not really clear if this is considered an attack. It never uses the word Attack, it just says you immediately fire. The intent is obvious, but cmon.
>This is ranged weapons only, and maybe knives. For a game that loves samurai aesthetics, it doesn’t let you iaijutsu people.

You could rewrite this to be simpler and clearer, easily. People talk about different systems and radical changes but the first thing it needs is an editing pass.

The game has called shots, which are a -4 penalty on the attack roll but give you an effect that’s either cute or situation-changing, like kneecapping someone or shooting a gun out of their hands. Pretty standard, but it interacts with Accuracy in a weird way. Since only our dicepool changes and our maximum successes doesn’t, you might end up doing called shots every time, since hitting accuracy is so likely you don’t want to waste successes. A lot of shadowrun vets aren’t fans of accuracy. I like it, but it does have odd results beyond just “Feels Bad”.

Reloading is a lot more involved than it should be. It’s actually two seperate actions: Remove clip and Insert clip. Removing a clip is a simple action unless you have a Smartgun, where it’s thankfully free, but you need another action to insert a new clip, and it varies based on the sort of clip you’re using. Hope you wrote that down! It’s a simple action to insert a regular clip or nock another arrow, (which hurts archers since you can’t multiattack but whatever, it’s just a gimmick for trolls to destroy vehicles). Everything else is a complex action, both mechanically and ruleswise. Because you need to keep track of actually filling clips as well. If you’re inserting new bullets or shells, that’s a separate action, and you load your Agility of individual rounds into the clip. This absolutely does not need to be two actions, even if you really want to represent different speeds.

Mages have a fairly simple initiative system: Spells are complex, unless you cast recklessly for more Drain. That’s not bad! More of that. We'll get to magic.

There’s also Interrupt actions, which are almost all defensive. Each adds more to a defence roll at the cost of initiative, so you go later and possibly less. There’s like 4, mostly interchangeable. I missed that there was a default defence rating on this the first time, so these really worried me. If you’re in a position where you needed to use these to defend at all, but it’s thankfully not that bad. If you’re in a position where you need to use this, you’re probably kind of hosed, but if you aren’t going to get an extra turn go for it.

So that’s an overview of our actions, ignoring all the matrix ones. The 2 Simple or 1 Complex isn't a bad divide, really. It's basically the same as Lancer but with a bunch of action economy poo poo and poor editing. Mostly we're just going to attack, and that's really where it goes to hell. This has just been a look into things. Honestly the only thing to really keep in mind is make sure you don't waste simple actions if you have a spare, even if you just aim.

Next time: We go through every single step of shooting a bullet at somebody.

Cooked Auto
Aug 4, 2007

If you will not serve in combat, you will serve on the firing line!




Midjack posted:

They did one for Android/Netrunner, In the Shadow of the Beanstalk.

Oh yeah, that one I remember hearing about.

Yeah I guess I've just been bad at keeping track of news related to it. v:shobon:v Last time I followed the FFG twitter account it was just board games anyway so I dropped that.

Dawgstar
Jul 15, 2017



Zereth posted:

Elf Bezos. Orcs are an oppressed minority in shadowrun. (And uh, often a little too closely oppressed in like, very similar ways to real-world black people down to the existence of things like the "Orxplotation" film genre.)

There is that odd, pervasive notion in Shadowrun that racism gave way to speciesism very quickly.

MuscaDomestica
Apr 27, 2017



One of the few good things that 6e Shadowrun did was get rid of the lowered mental attribute maximums for Orcs and Trolls. Near the end of 5e they mentioned the lowered numbers were because of systematic racism and not because the two groups were less intelligent.

Wrestlepig
Feb 25, 2011

my mum says im cool



Toilet Rascal

The racial politics of shadowrun are weird, but I leave that discussion to people with more metaplot knowledge.

Libertad!
Oct 30, 2013

You can have the last word, but I'll have the last laugh!

Dawgstar posted:

There is that odd, pervasive notion in Shadowrun that racism gave way to speciesism very quickly.

Only in Western countries. Non-Japanese citizens in the Japanese Imperial State and its vassal territories are treated as second-class citizens and colonized subjects, while also oppressing orks and trolls.

Xiahou Dun
Jul 16, 2009
BUTTS





Libertad! posted:

Only in Western countries. Non-Japanese citizens in the Japanese Imperial State and its vassal territories are treated as second-class citizens and colonized subjects, while also oppressing orks and trolls.

Wait what? I never actually read much Shadowrun so I didn't know they brought back Imperial Japan.

That uh sure is a decision.

Robindaybird
Aug 21, 2007

Neat. Sweet. Petite.



Yeeah, every other cyberpunk setting goes full Imperial Japan

Wrestlepig
Feb 25, 2011

my mum says im cool



Toilet Rascal

Xiahou Dun posted:

Wait what? I never actually read much Shadowrun so I didn't know they brought back Imperial Japan.

That uh sure is a decision.

I don't know the whole details but japan comes up a lot, but it is called Imperial Japan. I don't know if it's a clone of the earlier incarnation, instead of having 3 megacorps running the show. I wouldn't put it past this game though.

I prefer cyberpunk 2020 having Europe be the big deal economic power, to be honest.

Wrestlepig fucked around with this message at 00:49 on Oct 22, 2020

megane
Jun 20, 2008





Shadowrun is fun, but honestly, what it mostly makes me wish for is a new cyberpunk IP, unburdened with these eighties ideas of the future. Cyberpunk is even more relevant than ever, but the genre has fallen behind reality - the primary touchstones are still things like Neuromancer (36 years old), Snow Crash (28), and Blade Runner (38). I'd love to see an all new Shadowrun that ditches all those decades of metaplot and starts fresh.

e: The Japan thing is a perfect example. In the Eighties there was this idea that Japan - which was in the middle of a huge tech-industry boom - was going to become this world-dominating economic superpower, eclipsing the old world order in a tide of digital watches and canny business deals. So naturally that's the way it is in cyberpunk stuff from the time. And so that's how it is in SR, still, forty years later.

megane fucked around with this message at 00:56 on Oct 22, 2020

CroatianAlzheimers
Jun 15, 2009

I can't remember why I'm mad at you...




megane posted:

Shadowrun is fun, but honestly, what it mostly makes me wish for is a new cyberpunk IP, unburdened with these eighties ideas of the future. Cyberpunk is even more relevant than ever, but the genre has fallen behind reality - the primary touchstones are still things like Neuromancer (36 years old), Snow Crash (28), and Blade Runner (38). I'd love to see an all new Shadowrun that ditches all those decades of metaplot and starts fresh.

The Sprawl by Ardens Ludere may be what you're looking for.

Cooked Auto
Aug 4, 2007

If you will not serve in combat, you will serve on the firing line!




I'm still curious at how the new version of Neotech looks like but I haven't been able to get my hands on the books to get a better look at it.
The description did come off as very modern cyberpunk though. Not to mention far more interesting than the utter blandness that was the original setting.

Ratoslov
Feb 15, 2012

Now prepare yourselves! You're the guests of honor at the Greatest Kung Fu Cannibal BBQ Ever!



Xiahou Dun posted:

Wait what? I never actually read much Shadowrun so I didn't know they brought back Imperial Japan.

That uh sure is a decision.

Shadowrun Japan is essentially a list of regrettable decisions. It's also one of the regions of the world that in 4e they went out of their way to make it somewhat PC-friendly, because both Japan and Tir Taingere (fash elf Oregon) were too oppressive and too cool to permit player characters to do anything.

Dawgstar
Jul 15, 2017



Wrestlepig posted:

I don't know the whole details but japan comes up a lot, but it is called Imperial Japan. I don't know if it's a clone of the earlier incarnation, instead of having 3 megacorps running the show. I wouldn't put it past this game though.

And in 5E it's "only" three. They used to have Fuchi (which got torn apart, parts of it went different places and a big chunk turned into another megacorp located in Boston which merged with... NeoNet, I think) and Yamatetsu which became Evo and moved to Vladivostok. So back when there were just eight megacorps, Japan had five.

Young Freud
Nov 25, 2006



MuscaDomestica posted:

One of the few good things that 6e Shadowrun did was get rid of the lowered mental attribute maximums for Orcs and Trolls. Near the end of 5e they mentioned the lowered numbers were because of systematic racism and not because the two groups were less intelligent.

It was something that definitely pissed me off when I started thinking about it. Like, why would Orc and Troll magic users be penalized in astral combat for a societal oppression? Or what about Orcs and Trolls who goblinized late in life as opposed to being born that way?

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements





A major issue is that cyberpunk as a genre is as much undergirded by techno-orientalism as by anti-capitalism. In fact, the one shapes the other; early Gibson stories like Johnny Mnemonic are underwritten by ideas about how Japanese people are culturally predisposed to fit into corporate hierarchies. Thankfully he got over it, mostly, but the idea of “Tokyo as the future” leads to Japan obscuring capitalism as the influence making the cyberpunk world like it is.

Nessus
Dec 22, 2003

To witness titanic events is always dangerous, usually painful, and often fatal.





Joe Slowboat posted:

A major issue is that cyberpunk as a genre is as much undergirded by techno-orientalism as by anti-capitalism. In fact, the one shapes the other; early Gibson stories like Johnny Mnemonic are underwritten by ideas about how Japanese people are culturally predisposed to fit into corporate hierarchies. Thankfully he got over it, mostly, but the idea of “Tokyo as the future” leads to Japan obscuring capitalism as the influence making the cyberpunk world like it is.
What's funny is that I gather there was a Japanese cultural reaction to cyberpunk comparable to the American reaction to things like Metal Wolf Chaos and Chibodee in G Gundam: "gently caress yeah, that rules."

OvermanXAN
Nov 14, 2014


Nessus posted:

What's funny is that I gather there was a Japanese cultural reaction to cyberpunk comparable to the American reaction to things like Metal Wolf Chaos and Chibodee in G Gundam: "gently caress yeah, that rules."

Yeah, Japan seems to absolutely love Shadowrun, at the very least, and they've certainly produced some pretty iconic media that's either in the genre or adjacent to it.

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Robindaybird
Aug 21, 2007

Neat. Sweet. Petite.



Germany also had a similar reaction despite the state of Germany (and most of middle europe for that matter) in the canon is... not that great.

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