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How much do you use the matrix in your games ?

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Stainless Steel Devil Rat

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« Reply #90 on: (15:26:57/03-07-19) »
I'm not sure why you're appearing to get so heated Michael.

All I was saying is that having the opposition buy hits is in effect the same thing as transitioning matrix rules to a paradigm of threshhold based tests rather than opposed tests, and this is indeed a useful/good thing with regards to streamlining how much real-world time decking consumes.  And also that the transition can be abandoned just as easily as adopting it by simply resuming the opposed rolls.

Lets have an argument about the philosophical differences between PCs and NPCs elsewhere, ok?

Michael Chandra

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« Reply #91 on: (15:39:28/03-07-19) »
All I was saying is [..]
No you weren't. But if you truly believe 'There's no equivalency between hosts/NPCs defending against PC deckers and PC deckers defending against NPC deckers.' translates to that, there's no point in continuing.


Back to topic: If you're dealing with thresholds, I'd go with average dicerolls (rounded normally) for NPCs. No more risks of 'hey I rolled 6 hits on 8 dice, so enjoy wasting Edge to prevent triggering all opposition', without making NPCs way too weak. Just tweak the comms to deal with annoying numbers when you want as GM. I do like the mechanic: Goes much quicker, so a Decker could score those marks in a matter of 15 seconds.
« Last Edit: (15:41:15/03-07-19) by Michael Chandra »
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Stainless Steel Devil Rat

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« Reply #92 on: (15:43:55/03-07-19) »
Yeah, I'm going to go ahead and disagree with your being a self-appointed expert on what I was saying.  I suppose the rest of this conversation can continue in PM.

Michael Chandra

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« Reply #93 on: (15:45:26/03-07-19) »
Yeah, I'm going to go ahead and disagree with your being a self-appointed expert on what I was saying.  I suppose the rest of this conversation can continue in PM.
Never said I'm a self-appointed expert. I was talking about your RAW, not your RAI. And please don't PM me if all you're going to do is try to lure out a flamewar.
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neomerlin

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« Reply #94 on: (16:08:04/03-07-19) »
For the record, I have set the threshold at (Firewall/2) and (Dicepool/3) and the difference in play between the two was negligible. I settled on the latter. I also tend not tell my players thresholds before rolling so as far as I know the decker does not know beforehand how many hits she needs to succeed any more now than she did before. She just knows it is a threshold.

Other Personas generally still make opposed rolls to feel more like combat. It is just hosts, devices, and IC that have thresholds.

PiXeL01

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« Reply #95 on: (16:25:07/03-07-19) »
Given the amount of rolls involved in hacking in general I’m inclined to change the NPC side of that to buying hits too, simply because all too often I have seen something which should be a simply task ruined by a GMs lucky dice roll.
This would be applied to to anything aside from “bosses” of course or PCs throwing themselves at what should be very challenging endeavors. This will help especially Technomancers who then would not have to compile Primed Charge before each matrix action.
1-4 -> 1
2-8 -> 2
9-12 -> 3

I guess you could change the buy ratio to 3 instead of 4 for challenging targets.
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Stainless Steel Devil Rat

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« Reply #96 on: (16:38:59/03-07-19) »
If you combine the design of threshold benchmarks (pg 45) with the host benchmarks (pg 247) they pretty well line up with the results as if the host bought hits.
EDIT: I guess technically, they'd line up if you added +1 to the threshold value, since you need that NET hit.  Still, it satisfies my suspension of disbelief to call hacking a Stuffer Shack "Average" in a formal game mechanics sense, and your local Lone Star precinct "Hard".

Thresholds:
Easy 1 (corresponds to a host rating 1-2: Personal sites, pirate archives, public education)
Average 2 (roughly corresponds with a host of up to rating 4: Low-end commercial, private business, public libraries, small policlubs)
Hard 4 (represents 16+ dice, corresponds well with hosts up to rating 8 )
Very Hard 6 (hosts up to 10 or 11, the hardest stuff you'd normally attempt to hack)
Extreme 8–10 (the stuff off-scale hard for the chart on pg 247)
« Last Edit: (17:00:55/03-07-19) by Stainless Steel Devil Rat »

Ghost Rigger

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« Reply #97 on: (17:08:30/03-07-19) »
Given the amount of rolls involved in hacking in general I’m inclined to change the NPC side of that to buying hits too, simply because all too often I have seen something which should be a simply task ruined by a GMs lucky dice roll.
But that's what makes the game fun.
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PiXeL01

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« Reply #98 on: (18:33:42/03-07-19) »
Being struck by convergence when you try to hack the library system even though you are throwing 16 dice isn’t my idea of fun if it happens all the time.
“This is an easy target, low budget matrix Security” yet the Technomancer is left bleeding from all orifices and the decker’s cyberdeck is fuming and shedding more sparks than a greater spirits of storm in a thundercloud
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neomerlin

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« Reply #99 on: (20:52:51/03-07-19) »
because all too often I have seen something which should be a simply task ruined by a GMs lucky dice roll.
This, on top of speed, was one reason for the change. I like the inherent risk that comes from rolling dice, but too many times I watched a run quickly turn to drek because I rolled improbably well against the decker and now a whole system is on alert that it is being attacked/invaded. Without rebooting and starting again, it is difficult to come back from that.

As a general rule, unless PCs are going up against NPCs, I try and resolve things with rolls against thresholds. It is faster and it does tend to favour PCs making successful progress until they're in deep. Then if something goes awry, it tends to be a bigger and more dramatic disaster either because they made more progress before their luck ran out, or because there was an NPC involved and I think that should be more significant than computers and inanimate security.

That is a more satisfying, narrative in my view.

Hobbes

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« Reply #100 on: (21:56:30/03-07-19) »
Buying hits for NPCs is a pretty standard way of speeding up the game.  If there is a Spider or something that the Decker is tangling with then roll dice. 

And Railroad your hacker player.  A lot of Players (IME) will tend to Hack stuff, just to Hack stuff, and then don't know what the hell to do with it.  Before they roll dice ask what they want to accomplish in a narrative sense, and spell out the mechanical steps for them.  "Okay to do that you'll need to make a Hack on the Fly, then Matrix Search, then Control Device." 

If the player doesn't have a Narrative goal, then give them a couple easy options and make it a multiple choice question.  And then spell out the mechanical steps for them.  After they do this a few times, they'll start to memorize the steps and dice pools and it'll click along quite fast.

Ghost Rigger

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« Reply #101 on: (22:06:05/03-07-19) »
Being struck by convergence when you try to hack the library system even though you are throwing 16 dice isn’t my idea of fun if it happens all the time.
“This is an easy target, low budget matrix Security” yet the Technomancer is left bleeding from all orifices and the decker’s cyberdeck is fuming and shedding more sparks than a greater spirits of storm in a thundercloud
I'm torn between three responses on this one, so I'll give all three:

A) It sounds like your hackers don't know when to jack out.

B) Unexpected difficulties add challenge, drama and fuuuuuuun to the game.

C) You say "Technomancer is left bleeding from all orifices" like it's a bad thing.
After all you don't send an electrician to fix your leaking toilet.

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PiXeL01

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« Reply #102 on: (22:15:04/03-07-19) »
I was basically just stating an extreme example. Up to now we haven’t had an instance of convergence because the two hackers on the team more or less jack out if spotted by security.

But that is my point: the hackers, who are supposed to be experts at what they are doing shouldn’t be forced to jack out within 9 seconds of a hack, because of blind luck.

A combat samurai can shine from the beginning more or less in every case because NPCs in general are weak, so it’s like bringing a bulldozer to a mudshack village.
But hackers they have to face even the lowest budget shop as if charging the worlds of a castle armed only with a spoon.

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Overbyte

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« Reply #103 on: (21:15:02/03-08-19) »
Given the amount of rolls involved in hacking in general I’m inclined to change the NPC side of that to buying hits too, simply because all too often I have seen something which should be a simply task ruined by a GMs lucky dice roll.

This sort of statement baffles me. I can't imagine letting my entire game be slave to a single die roll.
If something is going to turn out really badly for the players (or really too easy) I change it.
This is main reason I don't roll in front of my players. I never reveal their dice pools or their rolls.
Nothing is foolproof. Fools are so ingenious.

Stainless Steel Devil Rat

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« Reply #104 on: (21:28:12/03-08-19) »
Ah the old "behind the GM screen" shenanigans.

I used to love throwing a giant handful of dice behind my screen just to make it sound like the opposition had giant dice pools, but in reality I'd only be counting the red dice. or whatever.

Such tricks, and dice fudging, has become much less in fashion in modern RPG tastes though.  Some players even get upset if the GM fudges dice.