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[6e] Magic Weapons, Bullets and Spirits

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My experience with 6e spirits is: They are even harder to deal with than 5e. A typical player summoned spirit will be 5-6 force that ignore 5-6 damage + body soak, and with the lower weapon damage values, it can be quite hard to deal any significant damage with a gun or a sword. Of course, it is also meant that spirits are significant foes that are trouble unless you have an adept or mage.

Unfortunately, in actual game, it seems to come down to if the players face a materialized sprit, most of the party is not able to contribute much while mage and/or adept do their stuff. Likewise, if the players encounter mundane opposition, sending in a beefy spirit, pretty much auto win the conflict unless there is something tailored to challenge the spirit, likeÖ another spirit. I am not too fond of combats ending in summing wars.

With that, I am looking into how to use 6e rules in a sensible way to smooth things a bit and make it a bit more interesting for everyone at my table. But I prefer to work with the rules there are, rather than do some custom house rules that clash with the rules. That said I looked at what it takes to make enchanted weapons and bullets a thing that comes into play.

Of course, there are already the weapon foci for adepts. They are permanent, quite powerful and great for dealing with spirits, but it seems there is a large gap between mundane weapons and actual weapon foci. So, these are my thoughts (and here Iím NOT trying to use previous editions as guidelines, just what is in 6e)

So, what does it take for a weapon to count as magical? Immunity specifies:Ē all attacks that are not magical in nature; weapon foci, spells, and adept or critter powers". So, what about an item under the effect of a spell or an alchemy preparation? Would they count as magical or mundane in relation to normal weapon immunity?

Here I am looking a bit for balance. An alchemical preparation (in waiting) on a bullet or sword could somehow be considered magical, but on the other hand, it would allow for quite long-lasting magical weapons with unrelated effects that may never trigger, so I went away from that idea. On the other hand, an active magical effect on a bullet or sword requires a bit more, usually some timing and of course a relevant spell.

I looked in Street Wyrd to see, what would it take to make a spell that enchanted a weapon but had no other side effects. Letís called it Enchant Weapon. It seems it would just be a basic manipulation spell without any ingredients added since it does not do anything beyond being magical. Opposed by object resistance and lasting net hits rounds. Seems like it would useful but also situational and a tactical choice. It also seems it would valid if used as alchemical preparation, allowing for the party to prepare before a run if they have invested in enchantment (often less tempting to do).

So, an Enchant Weapon spell like that could have two uses:
1. When in combat with a spirit, you could cast it on a weapon or regular bullet against object resistance 6, lasting net hit rounds, allowing the attack to be magical.
2. In preparation to a run, bullets or weapons could be prepared with alchemy and a suitable trigger. When triggered, the potency+magic vs object resistance would determine if it worked, and how many combat rounds it lasted.

This would give runners and NPCs a bit more options for handling medium force spirits, and it may encourage more use of enchantment skill.

I would love some 6e feedback on:
- If its reasonable within the 6e rules? Is it way off?
- Is my approach balanced? Too hard on spirits?
- Or just if itís generally a good idea? or not at all. 

Stainless Steel Devil Rat:
Immunity to Normal Weapons is a bear.

A couple of things that can help mitigate the effective invincibility of spirits:

Street Wyrd has an allowance for mundanes to employ command-trigger alchemical preparations.  When any mundane can have an arcane taser, the ItNW loses much of its luster!

ItNW is tied to essence, not force.  Yes, the statline says essence = force, but as a GM you can alter that.  Allow a player or villain to have a high force spirit, but nerf the essence and the only thing that happens is ItNW isn't making the spirit invincible.

You can also assign weaknesses to spirits... whatever a spirit is allergic or vulnerable to bypasses ItNW.  By all means, assign a vulnerability to fire extinguishers for a spirit of fire, and then turn on the sprinklers...

IMO, a good fix for ItNW (or rather, Hardened Armor in general) is to just add its rating in soak dice instead of the flat damage reduction. Works pretty much the same as (standard) armor worked in 5th Edition. Itīs still a noticable effect due to the reduced damage codes in 5th Edition, but not nearly as broken as the current RAW.

My suggested fix is to change the Hardened Armor spirits get from ITNW from one that scales with Force to one that is static regardless of Force.  3-4 would be the sweet spot IMO.  This would make spirit toughness scale at the same rate as character damage, so encounters with spirits would be similarly challenging across power levels.

So I ran an episode involving hunting down an malicious spirit. The J provided 20 enchanted bullets for the mission and the group investigator, who has a broad (somewhat underpowered) character managed to land the final shots with his Ares Predator, which was huge for him. :)


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