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Power Foci

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Overbyte

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« on: <09-01-16/2254:13> »
"Power foci live up to their name. They are very powerful foci that temporarily increase your effective Magic rating.
That means they add to your Sorcery, Conjuring, and Enchanting dice pools, along with any other test where
Magic is involved. Power foci can take any form, but for some reason, rings and amulets are quite popular."
  SR5 p319

Does this mean they increase your Magic rating for the purposes of whether Drain is Physical?
One assumes they don't increase it with regards to focus addiction rules?
Nothing is foolproof. Fools are so ingenious.

Imladir

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« Reply #1 on: <09-01-16/2316:35> »
They don't increase Magic.
They only increase the pools where Magic is present (spellcasting, summoning, binding, etc. but not drain, arcana, etc), that's "all".
"Speech" | *Thoughts* | >>Matrix<< | ~Astral~

Overbyte

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« Reply #2 on: <09-01-16/2335:14> »
They don't increase Magic.
They only increase the pools where Magic is present (spellcasting, summoning, binding, etc. but not drain, arcana, etc), that's "all".

That is how I thought about it, but unfortunately (as is often the case with SR), the description is not standard.
Other rules state "adds to dice pool", where this rule states adds to ""effective Magic Rating".
Nothing is foolproof. Fools are so ingenious.

Kiirnodel

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« Reply #3 on: <09-02-16/0258:21> »
"Power foci live up to their name. They are very powerful foci that temporarily increase your effective Magic rating.
That means they add to your Sorcery, Conjuring, and Enchanting dice pools, along with any other test where
Magic is involved. Power foci can take any form, but for some reason, rings and amulets are quite popular."
  SR5 p319

Does this mean they increase your Magic rating for the purposes of whether Drain is Physical?
One assumes they don't increase it with regards to focus addiction rules?

This has come up in conversation in my group time and time again, and we have people on both sides of the argument.

On the one hand, the phrasing states that Power Foci "increase your effective Magic rating" which taken straight simply means that you increase your Magic by the rating of the power focus. The second sentence therefore becomes somewhat redundant and read as a reminder to the reader of the scope that it affects.

On the other hand, that first sentence could also be read as the "flavor text." With the second sentence serving as the actual rules, this puts the emphasis on the use of the words "That means" taken to show that the bonus to the various skills (and other rolls involving Magic rating) is all that it adds to. The text does not lend itself to explicitly being read as one way or another.

This is also important when you route all of that back to the caveat that "only one focus may add its Force to a dice pool for any given test." If the Power Focus is increasing the Magic rating directly, I've seen it argued that it is not adding to the dice pool, which would mean that having the Power focus would allow you to have two Foci to double up the power. There's a whole barrel of monkeys waiting to pour out when you really get down to the grit of the issue...

Quatar

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« Reply #4 on: <09-02-16/0318:37> »
I'd actually let them add the rating to the Magic for determining the max Force and at which Force Drain becomes physical. I would not allow it to count to the Focus Addiction threshold of course as that would be silly.

That might seem overpowered at first, to allow a Magic 6 with a Force 3 focus to cast Force 18 spells max, with Force 9 being still stun. But remember, most characters aren't that amazingly well equipped to handle drain above their natural magic anyway, and they have to resist that now as well.

Even an Elf with 8 Cha and 5 Will has only 13 dice to resist. That's 4-5 drain he resists on average. That's ok to cast a Force 6 F-1 spell.
He can now buff that a bit for example with Initiate 1 for Centering, and a Force 3 Centering focus (anything more and he'll risk addiction), would give him 17. Ok, that's decent, but will only resist around 5-6 Drain on average, so around 1 more.
That's still fairly risky for a Force 9 F-1 spell. And if he casts more than 1 of those, it adds up quickly.

Initiation, Power Focus 3, Centering Focus 3. That's a decent investment already, at least 40 karma and 81,000 nuyen. And he still takes +2 Drain than normal on average.

Let him have that, I'd say. It lures the mage into a false sense of "Oh I can now safely cast Force 9 spells", forgetting that  even though just because the drain is stun, it's still damage, and no damage is totally safe.
« Last Edit: <09-02-16/0320:25> by Quatar »

drakir

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« Reply #5 on: <09-02-16/2145:40> »
Power Foci does not raise the magic rating. That would be totally broken. It gives extra dice equal to its rating which is really good as it is.

To only get (maybe) some stun damage when summoning F9 spirits with a foci you can get at chargen would be so broken I shudder to think about it!

Kiirnodel

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« Reply #6 on: <09-03-16/0125:07> »
Power Foci does not raise the magic rating. That would be totally broken. It gives extra dice equal to its rating which is really good as it is.

To only get (maybe) some stun damage when summoning F9 spirits with a foci you can get at chargen would be so broken I shudder to think about it!

Problem is, the rules aren't exactly clear on that, which is why it needs clarification (I already posted it again as a reminder for the Errata committee in that thread). As it is currently stated it could be interpreted as adding to the magic attribute.

firebug

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« Reply #7 on: <09-03-16/0444:30> »
Is it really unclear though?  It literally says "That means..." as a clarifying statement as to what the effect is.  Adding to your dice pools whenever Magic is involved."
I'm Madpath Moth on reddit (and other sites).  Feel free to PM me errata questions!
Jeeze.  It would almost sound stupid until you realize we're talking about an immortal elf clown sword fighting a dragon ghost in a mall.

Kiirnodel

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« Reply #8 on: <09-03-16/1024:24> »
It also says it "increase{s} your effective Magic rating" which I pointed out earlier can be read as the definitive statement. That part could just be a reminder.

And just to be clear here, I agree with you. I'm just playing devil's advocate, because I know people who read it the more powerful way, and I haven't been able to change their mind on that stance. And this debate has been going since 5th edition was released.

Actually it started back in 4th edition, because Power Foci had a similar (but slightly different) way of stating its effect. And it actually became less clear in the rules change. One of the arguments I always hear is "if they meant it to stay as just a bonus on checks and not extra magic, why did they change the text"

Edit:
It used to say "inreases the effective Magical ability" rather than "effective Magic Rating" but otherwise the text is mostly the same. The end result in this change makes the effects less clearly just a dice bonus, because it says it increases the rating and then gives an example of what it does. We know what the rating means, so it can just be read as an example. Before it just said "ability" so we needed an explanation of what that meant.
« Last Edit: <09-03-16/1121:08> by Kiirnodel »

Tarislar

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« Reply #9 on: <09-03-16/1341:55> »
It boggles my mind how many times this gets asked over & over again.

Lets boil it down to the key words to focus on....

Temporary  =  For the test only  =  Not the after effects...... IE Drain or Addiction
Effective  =  Not the REAL rating  =  IE. Its not the actual Attribute.
That Means  =  The definitive clarifying statement  =  Not some add on reminder

They tell you exactly what it does.  Adds Dice Pool where Magic Attribute is used.
Follow the example of nearly every other foci (Qi & Sustaining excepted), and it Adds Dice To Pool.
The only difference is "Power" foci add to several pools.

The damn things are already overpowered for the cost compared to other foci. 
No need to make it even more broken.


Don't get me wrong, as someone who's current character has Spirit Whisperer, the idea of running around at chargen with a Force-10 Spirit for nothing but stun drain seems totally awesome  ;), and HORRIDLY BROKEN.  :o :o :o

Who needs a Team of Shadowrunners?    Not me & my pal Thor the Guardian Spirit Force-10 who ends EVERY fight on turn 1.

Overbyte

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« Reply #10 on: <09-03-16/1539:27> »
OK.. So I really didn't mean to open a can of worms, I thought there might be a clarification at one point from a definitive source.

@Tarislar I can argue as well as the next guy and I think you arguments are VERY weak.

1) "Temporary " - the text does not specify how long it lasts. Temporary can mean "only when it is activated".

2) "Effective" - does not mean "not the real thing" as you imply, in fact it means just the opposite, Google gives this definition "fulfilling a specified function in fact, though not formally acknowledged as such".

3) That Means - also contains the statement "along with any other test where Magic is involved."
Magic is "involved" in many many tests (in differing ways).. like Drain where it is "involved" by being the deciding factor of Physical and Stun drain.

NOW.. I actually don't read it that way at all. I think its all just bad writing and the meaning really is to add to dice pool for any magical test. And really should have been written that way. Like so:

"Power foci live up to their name. They are very powerful foci that add to your dice pools for any test where Magic is one of the stats used for the roll, i.e. -  Sorcery, Conjuring, and Enchanting, etc. Power foci can take any form, but for some reason, rings and amulets are quite popular."


So this includes: Alchemy, Artificing, Banishing, Binding, Counterspelling, Disenchanting, Ritual Spellcasting, Spellcasting and Summoning.
While ruling out Drain, Assensing, Astral Combat, Counterspelling and a many other things.
Nothing is foolproof. Fools are so ingenious.

FST_Gemstar

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« Reply #11 on: <09-03-16/2059:07> »
Overbite: 
Power Foci work on counterspelling for dispelling purposes... :-) 



Imladir

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« Reply #12 on: <09-03-16/2138:30> »
You'll notice he put Dispelling in "includes" and "rules out" :P
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Overbyte

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« Reply #13 on: <09-04-16/0002:49> »
Yah.. why did I do that? :-)
Take your pick I guess. :)
Nothing is foolproof. Fools are so ingenious.

Quatar

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« Reply #14 on: <09-04-16/0346:22> »
It boggles my mind how many times this gets asked over & over again.

Lets boil it down to the key words to focus on....
I'll stop you right there. You're trying to win this argument by examining what the sentence literally said and analyzing words? In a Catalyst book?

 

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