Author Topic: Matrix House Rules  (Read 481 times)

PauloAM

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Matrix House Rules
« on: (16:25:25/05-10-17) »
Hello to you people!

I'm thinking about two house rules and want to find out if they would unbalance the game:

a) Making the Matrix a 1:1 representation of the meat world.
     In AR, the decker would see the icons of hackable devices on his overlay vision (unless running silent).
     In VR it would function pretty much like Astral Projection, seeing the environment greyed out, and devices glowing.

b) Making Matrix Perception as a kind of "sonar pulse" in a 100m radius. The player would make one test, and all devices running silent would have to resist the same amout of hits to stay hidden.
    I thought about this because the current rules seem so boring  and restricting, making the player roll a million tests to spot everything...

So, don't mind any technical explanation as to WHY things would function like that, I just want them to because they seem cooler gameplay wise. The question is: how do you think they would unbalance the game, and if so, suggestions about how to rebalance it...

Hope I'm not asking much, and thanks in advance!

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #1 on: (16:30:39/05-11-17) »
I think the problem with VR projection is dealing with hosts, as they neither have a physical location or maintain the same "volume". I guess you could have floating "clouds" above the PC with tardis like qualities.
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PauloAM

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #2 on: (22:12:30/05-11-17) »
What about b?

Kiirnodel

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #3 on: (05:59:55/05-12-17) »
In my games I use a somewhat limited version of what you're talking about. Your (a) for example is half-used. I allow deckers to effectively point at a target and say "What devices does he have?" (Matrix Perception). They automatically see all devices not running silent and hits on the Matrix Perception gives them details about the device(s). If the person has something running silent, that same Matrix Perception is opposed by the Silent roll to see if they notice the Silent device. In effect, this is utilizing the fact that a device's location could essentially be used as one of the "identifiers" that you need to have to spot specific devices.

However, I don't allow trying to navigate the real world via a sort of "Matrix Projection." That sort of detail would require information that hacking is required to retrieve. It would effectively negate the Trace Icon action, and make it extremely difficult to do any sort of Hacking without getting caught. Imagine if someone that spotted your Icon could just know where you were hacking from with a simple Matrix Perception...


As for (b), I don't let a single Matrix Perception hit every device all at once, but I do allow for "grouped" information to be gathered using Thresholds rather than expecting roll after roll for identifying each and every little device. For example, the Decker is looking over the room and wants to know what sort of weapons that the opposition is carrying. I use the examples for Perception to help out with the sort of thresholds you might like, I just alter them for a Matrix perspective.

1 hit - There are 4 other people in the room, they have commlinks running with attached device icons.
2 hits - 3 of the devices are lower end Sensei commlinks with some attached periferals. The other one is running a higher end Erika Elite.
3 hits - All of them are carrying Pistols (you notice the weapon icons among their devices), the other devices could be smartlinks.
4 hits - The three guys are definitely using Ares Predators (their gun icon is second nature), and you think the tomahawk on the fourth persona means they're carrying a Ruger Super Warhawk.
5 hits - The three guys with Predators have attached smartlink systems (probably their sunglasses). But your realize the guy with the Ruger isn't using a Smartlink, his just has the advanced range finder and a laser sight.

Something like that...

PauloAM

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #4 on: (09:51:49/05-12-17) »
I see, like devising "layers" of perception right? With 1 hit you get commlinks, and then goes up the ladder until finding cyberware.

And i also got your point about "matrix projection" being overpower, I guess it would be...but the thing about knowing the physical location seems enough for me, so if a Decker can see a security camera running silent, he can try to "Matrix Perceive" it right away. It's better than seeing the camera and then hoping to randomly find it in the Matrix.

Kiirnodel

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #5 on: (21:16:03/05-12-17) »
So, verbatim, in the rules "If you know at least one feature of an icon running silent, you can spot the icon" that's the third from the bottom option on the Matrix Perception sidebar on page 235. Using that, I ruled that knowing the physical location of the device counts as a "feature" for that purpose. Therefore, being able to physically see a device lets you attempt to spot that specific device even if they're running Silent.

I just don't allow it to work in reverse, just because you can see the devices' icons doesn't mean you know where they are physically. Like I said, that's what Trace Icon is for. If they can't physically see the devices, I only give them a rough direction for things. They know which way the signal is coming from, but not how far.

PauloAM

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #6 on: (22:06:15/05-12-17) »
Yes it all make sense, I'm gonna run it like you do.

Since we're talking about Matrix, I was reading the chapter again, and on the topic of matrix damage I got a doubt. If I brick a firearm, does it stop shooting? I'm asking this because on page 228 it states that "The firing pin on an assault rifle might not work, but its bayonet works just fine for stabbing smug hackers."  Are they implying that a bricked assault rifle cannot shoot anymore? That doesn't make sense to me, because the firing of the gun is mechanical in nature, not electronic, therefore things like smartgun systems should stop working, but the firing mechanism should be fine...

Kiirnodel

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #7 on: (01:44:27/05-13-17) »
I would say that is based on the weapon. A gun with an integrated Smartgun System might  be more vulnerable to being completely slagged when it is bricked via the Matrix. While one with an external smartlink would just fry the circuits that give a bonus.

That's probably the line that I would draw, internal smartlinks make the weapon vulnerable to being completely unworkable if hacked.

PauloAM

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #8 on: (19:59:51/05-13-17) »
Hm... I'll give it a thought...

You're being really helpful btw!

Here's another one: does the Wired Reflexes augmentation boost the initiative of someone who is in VR? What about spells and drugs?

PauloAM

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #9 on: (20:22:55/05-13-17) »
Sorry, but i have yet another one!

It says in the book that when I fail  a Sleaze action against a device, said device alerts its owner. Ok.
What if I fail a Sleaze action against a security camera who's slaved to a Host? Who's the camera's owner? Is it the Spider? What if there is no Spider? Who will know about my failed action?

Thanks for all the help!

Kiirnodel

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #10 on: (05:35:57/05-14-17) »
I like helping where I can, clarifying rules and taking part in interpretation questions is one of the ways that I work to improve the Shadowrun community.

As far as Wired Reflexes goes, my ruling has always been No. Ditto for the others. Basically, all those things affect the character's Physical Initiative, which is handled separately from the Matrix Initiative.

If you want to increase your Matrix Initiative Dice, there is a modification in Data Trails called the Multidimensional Coprocessor which gives you one more die, that plus going Hot-Sim will bump you up to the maximum 5 dice.


The owner of a slaved device in that case would be the Host. It would get alerted to potential intrusion and go on alert. Depending on the host, the response could be different. Generally, when I'm contemplating the Host's response I take into consideration things like the availability of a Security Spider, what sort of IC it runs, and of course what sort of host it is.

The Host at a local Stuffer Shack, for example, might queue up a bunch of IC to try and ward off against intrusion, but if it doesn't find anyone (if you haven't entered the host) it might calm back down after a few minutes. It would also probably alert the physical staff on-site to look for potential hackers, if you're hacking a security camera it means that you're either in the host already or you're direct connected.

The Host of a company might set the building security on alert as well, although it might wait for a security spider to make that call. Many Hosts probably see many attempts to hack them over the course of time, most are probably simple hit-and-runs that don't get past the initial attempts to get Marks.

Stoneglobe

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #11 on: (05:45:12/05-14-17) »
Any physical initiative boosting ware whether it be bio/cyberware. magic or drugs have no effect in VR, as they effect the physical body, but will in AR. Those that boost the mental attributes will have full effect in VR, both for skill rolls and initiative.

In terms of failed sleaze actions, not only do they notify the owner, they also place a mark upon the decker/technomancer. The exact quote is:

Quote
If you fail a Sleaze action, the target’s Firewall software detects the intrusion and places a mark on you. A device immediately informs its owner, a host launches IC. If the target already has three marks on you, it doesn’t get another, but it still does the informing and launching.

p231 CRB


So basically the host gets a mark upon you, with all the problems that gives, and immediately begins to launch IC in whatever order it has been programmed to. Hope that helps.
´Wonderful´, the Flatline said,´I never did like to do anything simple when I could do it ass-backwards.´ - William Gibson, Neuromancer

"Speech" Thought >>Matrix<< >>Astral<<

Stoneglobe

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #12 on: (05:47:59/05-14-17) »
And Kiirnodel beat me to it which is why I cut my post back down as he covered all of the other bits I wanted to cover
´Wonderful´, the Flatline said,´I never did like to do anything simple when I could do it ass-backwards.´ - William Gibson, Neuromancer

"Speech" Thought >>Matrix<< >>Astral<<

PauloAM

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #13 on: (09:36:39/05-14-17) »
Thanks for all the help guys  8)

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Re: Matrix House Rules
« Reply #14 on: (15:37:22/05-14-17) »
if you're hacking a security camera it means that you're either in the host already or you're direct connected.
Is that to say that a device slaved to a Host is inside said Host?
Yeah, TMs got thrown in the cell with Bubba the Love Troll and sandpaper for lube.
there is autosofts for everything  8)