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Stainless Steel Devil Rat

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« Reply #15 on: <02-15-21/0912:33> »
Making it skill only would be the easiest fix. Still OP as hell, but I don't think we expect much less from the magic book.

But if it is either not changed or not intended to only affect skills, and can affect any test as it says, I am correct in my thinking that there is nothing that currently acts as an arbitrary cap to that, right? I.E, old school combat sense - enjoy however many hits you got.

I'm going to reiterate something I said upthread because I think you must have missed it in the sea of text... or else you wouldn't have written that bolded portion :D

The "Affect a Specific Type of Test" ingredient includes the following text: "This has to be narrower than a single skill—". Attribute + Attribute is NOT narrower in focus than a single skill.

Regardless: I don't mean to disparage your point but this particular debate is largely meaningless... we can segue into your other concern about there being no limit on REA + INT dice to make someone unhittable, for example.  The Designing a Spell header rules (pgs. 45-46) make clear that the GM has a say in the spell's final details.  In no world does a player get to design a game breaking spell and force the GM to allow it.  The process is explicitly meant to be a two way participation.  I'd go so far as to say there's an implicit veto given to the GM, if the spell is fundamentally game-breaking (teleportation, communication with the dead, time travel, etc)

RPG mechanics exist to give structure and consistency to the game world, true, but at the end of the day, you’re fighting dragons with algebra and random number generators.

Lormyr

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« Reply #16 on: <02-15-21/0933:32> »
The "Affect a Specific Type of Test" ingredient includes the following text: "This has to be narrower than a single skill—". Attribute + Attribute is NOT narrower in focus than a single skill.

I saw it. I am not saying that interpretation is incorrect or even that you are wrong bro, just that as written it is very subjective. For example, I personally would say that a defense test is more narrow than most skills, because you only get to do the one thing with it, where as choosing sorcery: spellcasting allows for incredible overall versatility.

we can segue into your other concern about there being no limit on REA + INT dice to make someone unhittable, for example.  The Designing a Spell header rules (pgs. 45-46) make clear that the GM has a say in the spell's final details.

GM always has the final say on everything, so that sentence is nothing new. No hard limit rule acknowledged, thank you. I was mainly just curious if the writing/design had improved any.
« Last Edit: <02-15-21/0935:09> by Lormyr »
"TL:DR 6e's reduction of meaningful choices is akin to forcing everyone to wear training wheels. Now it's just becomes a bunch of toddlers riding around on tricycles they can't fall off of." - Adzling

Shinobi Killfist

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« Reply #17 on: <02-15-21/1106:50> »
Without the book I can't really talk balance, but spells to improve skills even narrow focuses of skills has thematic concerns for me.

One, its sort of the adepts trick to improve skills, sure they improve close combat and you are just improving blades, but its your character you know you are mr stabby. I'm not going to say its unbalanced without seeing it but it kind of sounds it as a spell and a sustaining focus is probably a shit ton cheaper than 4 points of magic devoted to improving close combat, so much cheaper that it being capable of being dispelled etc does not come close to enough of a cost. And yes, stabby is less broad than close combat, but again you know you are going to use blades. But my main thing is let adepts keep adept things. Not sure if this is good or bad for the mistake adept.

two that it open ended into any skill it sounds like, improving hacking should be outside the bailiwick of magic imo. I guess that ship has already sailed with adept abilities and at least with analyze object it was resisted by OR so it kind of fit the theme of tech/magic conflict.  but i'd like less of it not more. The boost tech item spell in the main book was a bad thematic choice to add imo.

Stainless Steel Devil Rat

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« Reply #18 on: <02-15-21/1152:10> »
Without the book I can't really talk balance, but spells to improve skills even narrow focuses of skills has thematic concerns for me.

The 'didn't read it' version of spell design is basically this:  It gives a loose framework of how to construct a statblock for a player-designed spell.  Very loose.  It's intended, from start to finish, that the player and GM work cooperatively to ensure the spell both does what the player wants and doesn't unbalance the game.

If, for example, you feel that giving bonus dice to skills impinges on Adept territory, then either don't allow it, or make sure it's sufficiently costly for a player to step on those toes.  Easy peasy lemon squeezy!
RPG mechanics exist to give structure and consistency to the game world, true, but at the end of the day, you’re fighting dragons with algebra and random number generators.

Lormyr

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« Reply #19 on: <02-15-21/1157:09> »
Well we all know how magic goes in SR at this point, so I don't imagine anyone will be too surprised to find the new magic book is not well balanced. It's just how the designers and system roll at this point.

They also gave adepts a power to increase mental attributes, so it's basically just a magic buffet free for all at this point.

I have still only glanced through the book, so I am sure there are other elements worth discussion. You can do stuff like aoe heals, aoe buffs, and other things now too. At some point when I have time I will play around with the rules to see if you can create standard spells cheaper on drain just for comparison.

Also, SSDR I just saw there is an ingredient specifically for skills called skill boost, which affects an entire skill. I am now 100% convinced that "affect specific test" has to apply to anything that is a test, which is any dice pool. Otherwise why do both need to exist?

For discussion for those without the book, the wording on the two ingredients:

"Affect specific type of test"
When this ingredient is selected, choose a type
of test. This has to be narrower than a single skill—
for example, Blade attack would be appropriate,
but Close Combat attack would not be. Similarly,
a Lockpicking test could be selected, but not any
Engineering test. All tests of the selected type get
+2 or –2 dice per 1 point of Drain the caster adds.

"Skill boost"
A specific skill must be selected for this spell. The
maximum skill bonus is +4. Drain: Caster rolls a Sorcery
+ Magic (5 – Essence) test; each net hit increases
the skill and the Drain Value of the spell by 1.
« Last Edit: <02-15-21/1200:07> by Lormyr »
"TL:DR 6e's reduction of meaningful choices is akin to forcing everyone to wear training wheels. Now it's just becomes a bunch of toddlers riding around on tricycles they can't fall off of." - Adzling

Stainless Steel Devil Rat

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« Reply #20 on: <02-15-21/1234:26> »
Right....

Skill boost doesn't exactly affirm the augmented skill limit as being bonus dice, but it does certainly imply that's how it works.

Affect Specific Type of Test doesn't say explicitly that it only works on skill specializations/expertises, but that's how I read it.  This goes back to the player-gm cooperation.  If you were my player and I were your GM, I'd be telling you you can't use this ingredient to make a spell that adds to defense tests.

If you were the GM and you wanted to allow it, who am I to tell you that you can't :)

But to circle back to your earlier point:  yes, it's correct that in the case of attribute+attribute tests, there's no limits on those tests above and beyond the attribute augmented limit.  If you do allow "affect specific type of test" to unbalance attribute-only tests, then... it's not the rule's fault when you allowed it, is it?  A GM seal of approval is required for every aspect of a player designed spell.  Not just by virtue of Rule Zero... the spell design rules are counting on GM discretion rather than trying to rely on hard-coding against unbalanced spells.  So even if the ingredient rule doesn't prohibit defense tests, the GM is expected to impose SOME limit to ensure game balance isn't broken. No dice at all?  +4 dice? something else?  GM discretion.
« Last Edit: <02-15-21/1253:17> by Stainless Steel Devil Rat »
RPG mechanics exist to give structure and consistency to the game world, true, but at the end of the day, you’re fighting dragons with algebra and random number generators.

Lormyr

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« Reply #21 on: <02-15-21/1315:41> »
Don't get me wrong SSDR, we're on the same page that allowing it to effect defense/drain/possibly soak depending on whether that counts as a test or not (I haven't looked) is not advisable. We just differ in our methodology for getting there. You're cool with light rules/heavy GM discretion, and I much prefer sharper rules writing/design that just doesn't allow this sort of abuse/loophole.

I just like rules to be clean so that mental gymnastics to create a reason within the rule that <insert abusable thing here> doesn't work in the abusable way isn't necessary.

Before I saw the separate skill ingredient I thought one could make a very strong case for the former to apply to any test. After seeing that a skill one is also included I personally think that denying the first within the confines of the mechanic would be incorrect. Just saying dude that's grossly OP and we're not allowing it is fine though.

Have you tried to get them to just insert a hard dice pool limit? I know you are in favor of it, but don't know if you've actually tried to convince anyone.

Another option might be: attribute +4 max, skill +4 max, skill spec/exp, and a max of other bonuses up to +4 that do not directly augment an att or skill. That could also help keep stuff sane.
"TL:DR 6e's reduction of meaningful choices is akin to forcing everyone to wear training wheels. Now it's just becomes a bunch of toddlers riding around on tricycles they can't fall off of." - Adzling

Stainless Steel Devil Rat

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« Reply #22 on: <02-15-21/1612:49> »
like I said, I would have liked to have seen an arbitrary cap on dice pools.  All dice pools can never be larger than X.

Would close the loophole you're talking about, and potentially could even dispense with the discrete bonus caps on this or that.  No bonuses that fall through cracks when there are no cracks! One limit to rule them all.  You never roll more than X!


I can dream.
RPG mechanics exist to give structure and consistency to the game world, true, but at the end of the day, you’re fighting dragons with algebra and random number generators.

Lormyr

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« Reply #23 on: <02-17-21/0705:09> »
I'd just love to know what the hell some of these guys are thinking when they print some of this stuff.
"TL:DR 6e's reduction of meaningful choices is akin to forcing everyone to wear training wheels. Now it's just becomes a bunch of toddlers riding around on tricycles they can't fall off of." - Adzling

Shinobi Killfist

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« Reply #24 on: <02-17-21/1045:02> »
I'd just love to know what the hell some of these guys are thinking when they print some of this stuff.

I don't think they have a rules guy on their team. It is like a team of fluff writers trying to make a simulationist system instead of a narrative one where they might shine. Some of the mechanical flaws are so obvious just one rules guy would spot it just by glancing through even without any kind deep read.

Banshee

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« Reply #25 on: <02-17-21/1126:15> »
I'd just love to know what the hell some of these guys are thinking when they print some of this stuff.

I don't think they have a rules guy on their team. It is like a team of fluff writers trying to make a simulationist system instead of a narrative one where they might shine. Some of the mechanical flaws are so obvious just one rules guy would spot it just by glancing through even without any kind deep read.

Hey ... some of us are rules guys,  but we can only do so much. Plus I avoid magic whenever possible. I pitched a complete overhaul back during 6e development and got shot down so I leave alone now.
Robert "Banshee" Volbrecht
Freelancer & FAQ Committee member
Former RPG Lead Agent
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Lormyr

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« Reply #26 on: <02-17-21/1210:07> »
I don't think they have a rules guy on their team. It is like a team of fluff writers trying to make a simulationist system instead of a narrative one where they might shine. Some of the mechanical flaws are so obvious just one rules guy would spot it just by glancing through even without any kind deep read.

Hey ... some of us are rules guys,  but we can only do so much. Plus I avoid magic whenever possible. I pitched a complete overhaul back during 6e development and got shot down so I leave alone now.

I believe that the fluff, themes, and narrative writing is the real strength of Shadowrun. I can't speak for anyone else, but it is literally the only thing keeping me in the game currently.

That said, on the game mechanics side the editing and poorly balanced and worded rules really have sunk well below the tolerable level. I have no idea how much of that falls on the authors vs. developers vs. shot callers, but whomever is to blame, the final result is they desperately should be listening to more Banshee's and less of whomever they are allowing to do what they are currently doing.
"TL:DR 6e's reduction of meaningful choices is akin to forcing everyone to wear training wheels. Now it's just becomes a bunch of toddlers riding around on tricycles they can't fall off of." - Adzling

Shinobi Killfist

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« Reply #27 on: <02-17-21/1257:39> »
I'd just love to know what the hell some of these guys are thinking when they print some of this stuff.

I don't think they have a rules guy on their team. It is like a team of fluff writers trying to make a simulationist system instead of a narrative one where they might shine. Some of the mechanical flaws are so obvious just one rules guy would spot it just by glancing through even without any kind deep read.

Hey ... some of us are rules guys,  but we can only do so much. Plus I avoid magic whenever possible. I pitched a complete overhaul back during 6e development and got shot down so I leave alone now.

I can see that in the main book it is heavily segregated in style and quality by chapter but a rules guy needs to go over the entire book before release which is what I mean by on their team, the decisions and game math in the magic section for example have such obvious flaws to me. A dude who contributes who is good with rules, isn't the same as a dude in the decision process of the game. And in a supplement I just don't get it. It is one theme, its short, have a rules guy go over it before it ships.


Lormyr

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« Reply #28 on: <02-17-21/1311:09> »
I can see that in the main book it is heavily segregated in style and quality by chapter but a rules guy needs to go over the entire book before release which is what I mean by on their team, the decisions and game math in the magic section for example have such obvious flaws to me. A dude who contributes who is good with rules, isn't the same as a dude in the decision process of the game. And in a supplement I just don't get it. It is one theme, its short, have a rules guy go over it before it ships.

You're not wrong bro.
"TL:DR 6e's reduction of meaningful choices is akin to forcing everyone to wear training wheels. Now it's just becomes a bunch of toddlers riding around on tricycles they can't fall off of." - Adzling

Odsh

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« Reply #29 on: <02-17-21/1324:58> »
Speaking of which, what does it take to become such a reviewer? Where does one apply, if that's even a thing?