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Advice on Missions for New to SR

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ahayford

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« on: (19:47:13/10-11-13) »
Hey guys,

I have a group of guys I've gotten into RPGs via Pathfinder Society, and the one-off format really works well for our group. However, some of them are really more into sci-fi than straight up fantasy. You can imagine my excitement when I realized Shadowrun, a game I used to play in my highschool days (1st/2nd ed) had a missions format! Now, however, I'm debating on the best way to introduce my players to SR and SR Missions. I'd really like to start with some of the earlier seasons and run them through the early plot lines rather than just dump them into the middle of Season 5. That, of course, means playing 4th edition rather than 5th to start off with.

I own both the 20th Anniversary core book and the 5th Ed core book, I just can't decide what the best thing to do is for players new to the SR universe. None have past SR experience or knowledge.

What would you do?

1) Play 4th Ed and start at Season 2? Convert at Season 5 or reroll. The plotlines are worth experiencing!
2) Suck it up and start 5th Ed at Season 5. Gameplay improvements are worth it! The players will figure out what is going on.

I have not had any experience GMing for either edition yet, so this decision will also decide which rulebook I start studying in depth first.

P.S. I know this thread is similar to another one in here, but my circumstances are a little different.

Insaniac99

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« Reply #1 on: (07:04:56/10-14-13) »
Option C:

Pick 5th edition, but play with Sprawl Wilds and Firing line which are converted to 5th edition, then possibly convert other 4E missions over before jumping into Season 5 for the real meat of a plot.
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martinchaen

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« Reply #2 on: (07:48:59/10-14-13) »
I began a game of SRM Season 2, which is the first 4th Edition season and the game is set in Denver. Season 3 is set in New York, Season 4 is set in Seattle, and Season 5 is set in Chicago.

If I were in your shoes, I would begin with Season 4, using the example characters in the book for the players to confuse yourself and your players as little as possible. The biggest changes from my point of view between 4th and 5th is, in no particular order, the entire Matrix system, direct combat (initiative, weapon stats, armor, etc), and various tweaks and fixes made to other aspects of the game.

I personally think that Season 4 sets up Sprawl Wilds, Firing Line, and Season 5 beautifully, and I enjoyed reading the fluff. There's also an absolute wealth of information on Seattle, since it's the icon runner city, whereas Chicago (aka Bug City) is a feral city not really representative of most of the world. I would personally imagine that the Season 4 Seattle campaign could be played much more diplomatically than a potential Chicago campaign, as you just can't reason with insect spirits.

Summary;
Read Seattle 2072 while your players read up on each piece of gear and rule affecting their chosen example characters for Season 4
Play Season 4
Play Splintered State
Retire the example characters
Create new 5th Edition characters once the Errata has been released
Play Sprawl Wilds, Firing Line, and then SRM Season 5

ahayford

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« Reply #3 on: (08:49:05/10-14-13) »
Hey guys,

Thanks for the advice! After reading the 5th edition book a bit last night, I think I have decided to stick with 5th ed rules....and if I decide to do the previous seasons, convert to 5th. I like the new Matrix rules a lot and character generation seems less confusing....though I may have them stick with pregens. We'll see. I'm going to run Food fight with them tonight to just learn the rules a bit and see if they like the world.


Linkdeath

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« Reply #4 on: (20:45:04/11-11-13) »
If you haven't checked it out yet, I'd also recommend Splintered State. It's a starter game that gets players and the GM both used to the 5th edition rules.
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Michael Chandra

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« Reply #5 on: (06:22:25/11-12-13) »
Keep in mind it's not a Mission, however.
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Kincaid

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« Reply #6 on: (08:18:24/11-12-13) »
With brand new players, I'd start them with "Welcome to the Sixth World."  It's a total milk run (a real one!), but the idea is just to get people comfortable with how the mechanics work.  Brand new players with brand new characters playing Splintered States might think things like, "I could fight some guys from Chimera!" and that would be a fatal mistake.  They also might not be comfortable enough with the Matrix rules to actually do that thing that triggers the entire adventure.
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samiam

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« Reply #7 on: (15:51:10/11-12-13) »
"Welcome to the Sixth World" is a generic name for introductory sessions intended for new players rather than the name of an actual module.  It usually consists of an introduction to the setting and the game mechanics, character generation (optional - as there are PreGens available) and then a short introductory encounter that covers much of the basis - combat, magic, the matrix, negotiation...whatever you want to throw in.

The Quick Start Rules are a great place to start new players - much briefer set of rules and aligned with the core rule book.  The introductory encounter included - Fast Food Fight - is a good one.  I've run this for several groups that are now working on their first actual Mission.  They used their own characters (we held CharGen sessions separately) but the PreGens included in the Quick Start Rules are quite usable.

You can set Fast Food Fight where ever you want....in Seattle if you plan to convert the season 4 missions to 5E would be a good choice.  McHugh's after all is a global chain  8)