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My issues with 6th edition: "suspension of disbelief" vs. "the uncanny valley"

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Moonshine Fox

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« Reply #45 on: (18:13:11/07-13-19) »
Might the Edge mechanic feeling weird be because we've only been talking about it in Combat situations?

That could very well be. It's ignoring the entire rest of the game and focusing only on the one part of play. Maybe that's because combat in the past took so long?

See, as a GM, I was always more apt to give a bonus modifier if the player described their actions in great detail, or made them sound very cinematic and added to the story. Too often everyone here is talking about modifiers as only being the ones from the book. Have none of you had a game where you got a modifier for good roleplaying?

All the time. And it wasn't just for RP. Coming up with good ideas, throwing out plans, anything that helps contribute to the overall joint story the GM is directing.

Shinobi Killfist

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« Reply #46 on: (18:31:37/07-13-19) »
Yeah weapon speed isnt a thing in games for the most part. Itís hard to get right. Realistically a combat axe would almost exclusively be a peak human or higher strength weapon because otherwise it would be clumsy slow attacks. Even if you are strong the top heavy aspect creates a powerful attack but itís hard to recover from. The base AV might help reflect things like this. Like Iíd of had the sword and katana do the same damage but the katana with a higher AV. The slashing effect would be in the same ballpark or damage but the katana is a more controlled weapon. The axe high damage low AV since itís clumsy. Staff medium/low damage high AV.

But Iíd say rapid strikes from a staff really is a reflection of strength. Outside the skill half virtually everything you do in a melee is represented by strength. Pushing past a block, speed, force itís all strength. I guess if I was being pedantic based on how SR defines stats Iíd say strength for the dice pool body for the base damage. Strength providing the acceleration body the mass for the force calculation.

Where does that leave finesse style weapons though? Like or not, Strength has a set definition in most games, SR included of being raw power. Usually a second stat like Dexterity or Agility represents the speed you move. A person may not be able to lift more then 50 lbs, but they can move lighting quick, while the guy who can casually pick up 100 lbs may be slower moving. Making only strength, or strength plus body as the only melee characteristics you cut out sizable number of examples of melee combatants and combat styles.

Strength is speed. Agility is more hand eye control and balance. Finesse weapons is a d&d construct for a class based system so a character whose class features are based around dex doesnít get hosed. Shadowrun isnít a game like that you elect and but individual skills and attributes you arenít locked into a ability set. and with stats costing the same amount you should be spreading the skill love.

It should be if you want to be peak ranged combat go agility. Want to be peak melee go strength. Want both get decent in both. Itís a game design flaw as designed since 4e since agility is a far more useful stat yet costs the same. Itís just far more obvious of a flaw in 6e due to the melee damage issue.

dezmont

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« Reply #47 on: (18:39:08/07-13-19) »
I think we are talking about edge in the context of combat because that is easily where the mechanic has made the most changes. Like edge changes to social scenes make them more dynamic for sure, but it isn't a total rework of a major archetype's main upshot in combat. Faces, probably, will be mostly the same in practice. Samurai will now be totally different and while that may be good or bad it definitely creates more anxiety and attention to how edge changes the combat scenes.

Edge in social scenes probably works great, as in social scenes a more abstract generic advantage sneaking up from a totally unrelated exchange makes sense. We kinda already have that already with mechanics like first impression. In combat Edge does clearly feel like a narrative mechanic (In that it gives you a totally non-specific benefit further down the line for you to seize control, in fact 5e edge was a narrative mechanic too, it just doesn't feel as much like one because the tone and style of SR makes it feel more mechanically important as a re-roll system, and changing that was a stated goal of 6e) but it is given in mechanical contexts. You don't get edge for narrative beats divorced from things that advantage or disadvantage you (Like someone stabbing you in your Leg Scar aspect ala Fate) but from interactions of specific, in universe things that always apply or are total GM adjudication but still always hypothetically apply. It is a narrative mechanic, but unlike most narrative mechanics where they aren't a 'law of physics' of the system but instead something someone has to deliberately create a window to 'score narrative points' in SR it happens automatically at the nitty gritty base level of every combat interaction. And this... gets weiiiird.

For example: If Edge is giving you an abstract future benefit somewhat divorced from the context in which you gained edge (Ex: being able to shoot better way down the line well after you got hit to gain edge from armor, or getting bonuses to defense after shooting a totally unrelated guy 4 turns ago) it raises the question: Why do people in universe wear armor?

Like I am not saying NPCs and characters are aware of mechanics, but mechanics serve as an underpinning law of physics that model in universe phenomina. When an NPC puts on armor, they aren't thinking 'this will get me edge to help in a counter attack.' They are thinking 'this will help protect me.' But, as written, Edge does not do that at all, it only indirectly does in a super weird way. So in universe I can accept NPCs wear it for protection, but it really gets weird because I know on an OOC level it in no way actually protects you.

This is why I think people got their Berwick Suits in a twist. In the context of combat, there is clearly something good with this idea (Dynamically gaining benefits or 'charges' used to spend over the course of every combat jives well with the intent to lengthen combat and creates escalation if you are doing well or a deterioration effect if you are not) but it could use like... 5 more minutes in the oven. For example, I get they don't want huge soak tanks anymore (I don't agree with it but I 100% understand why soak tanks can be hard for making this game accessible to GMs used to other systems where the concept of limited character invulnerability doesn't exist) and armor is a key component of soak tanks working (The difference between 'ware making you take 2-3 less DV but still take DV and taking NO dv is huuuuge), but maybe getting rid of soak ENTIRELY from armor was a mistake, or maybe not giving edge soak functions you can spend immediately was a mistake. Like I don't think it adds too much complexity to give armor 'pitty soak' like of a rating of 1-3, or giving it automatic DV reduction, and that would help a LOT with wrapping your head around armor from a verisimilitude standpoint. Divorcing myself from game balance issues (I am still very concerned about samurai PC but it could be that Samurai get the face treatment and basically become a role that naturally hybridizes or they get some other rad stuff) I still feel there is something... off about edge. They probably should have left a FEW situational mods in. A LITTLE soak. Ect.

That said I think while I adore 5e edge and think it actually is a really good mechanic (It is no accident many RPGs have a similar 'get X re-rolls anytime' resource to increase player agency) NuEdge is a decent framework to build on because in theory it can power things. I could totally see, for example, 'ware or gear that is 'edge powered' because it represents things you need to wait for the right moment to use. Murder armor, for example, would be a delightful armor to 'upgrade' coming into 6e by making its effect stronger and making it require edge. I think it is fair to say new edge is weird, but it definitely has merit (Again, looking at it pretending it will be 100% balanced which it obviously won't be because nothing ever is, but assuming it is balanced helps look at what it might do well or poorly if it works as intended). I can see new edge being interesting, but it definitely has... lets call it a weird aftertaste that may get REALLY distracting long term.

tenchi2a

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« Reply #48 on: (19:26:07/07-13-19) »
On the Armor issues, I was thinking that having armor impose a threshold modifier would fix a lot of the problems.
Like;
Lined Coat, Armored Clothing : +2 to the Threshold
Armored Jacket: +3 to the Threshold
Full body armor: +4 to the Threshold

or if that's to high knock the values down by one each
 
So you just add this to the attack roll and armor has a value in combat.
It's not the overpowered 5th armor.
and it's not the nonexistent 6th armor.
« Last Edit: (19:33:17/07-13-19) by tenchi2a »

Iron Serpent Prince

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« Reply #49 on: (19:54:55/07-13-19) »
See, as a GM, I was always more apt to give a bonus modifier if the player described their actions in great detail, or made them sound very cinematic and added to the story. Too often everyone here is talking about modifiers as only being the ones from the book. Have none of you had a game where you got a modifier for good roleplaying?

As a rule?  No.

Now, that is objectively a flat out lie.  If there exists some recording of my RP history, there will be examples that I have.  None of them come to mind though.  Part of this is because the modifier might not interact with the game directly (XP bonus).  Even if I restrict the examples to apples to apples type comparisons, nothing comes to mind because getting a +X or -Y to a roll isn't any more immersion breaking than rolling the dice in the first place.

Now, I will admit right up front that I have yet had the opportunity to actually use the 6e Edge system (I like the moniker NuEdge) in play, since we are talking about how the system feels based on what is released so far, the following has some merit - no matter how small.

In my head, this is how I picture NuEdge working in a Social interaction:
Player describes what they are doing / delivers their characters lines.
GM awards a point of NuEdge.
Player:  "Cool, cool!  Um...  What can I do with a point of Edge again?"  Sound of pages being flipped as the player looks up the possibilities.  "Oh, yeah.  Okay.  Maybe I should just save it?"
Other player:  "You won't be able to keep it, unless you are less than your Edge Attribute."
Player:  "Oh, yeah.  I guess I need to use it then, huh?"
The player then proceeds to figure out which effect will provide the most noticeable effect.
Followed by a bargaining period as the player and GM negotiate which effects can be applied to the situation.

At this point, even if I am right, it could very easily smooth out as people get used to it.

But as of right now, based on what has been revealed it feels like all of the chart look ups in Combat have been shifted to non-Combat scenarios.
Will it lessen the overall book lookup?  That remains to be seen.  I dunno yet.

Wolfman65

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« Reply #50 on: (10:56:50/07-14-19) »
Just my two nuyen :
At the end of the day, if you're running the game, it's your creation, your world. You can elect whether or not to allow pixies at all, and make house rules to govern what they can pick up and use, etc. 
This really sounds like a "munchkin" player issue vs a suspension of disbelief issue. Find better players.
I'm playing with a full deck: all Jokers

Michael Chandra

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« Reply #51 on: (11:05:37/07-14-19) »
... and make house rules to govern what they can pick up and use, etc. 
Hm...

'Cannot gain or use Edge when wielding a melee weapon with 8+ Close AR, or Rifles and bigger ranged weapons.'

and/or

'Any melee weapons with 8+ Close AR, and Rifles and bigger ranged weapons, will count as Unadapted Gear and thus make the Pixie suffer a -2 dice pool penalty on all actions involving that gear.'

with motive

'These weapons are too large to be properly adjusted to a Pixie's small stature.'

Yeah, I can work with that. Thanks for that tip! *notes them down for future*
How am I not part of the forum?? O_O I am both active and angry!

Shinobi Killfist

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« Reply #52 on: (11:06:27/07-14-19) »
Just my two nuyen :
At the end of the day, if you're running the game, it's your creation, your world. You can elect whether or not to allow pixies at all, and make house rules to govern what they can pick up and use, etc. 
This really sounds like a "munchkin" player issue vs a suspension of disbelief issue. Find better players.

At the extremes used to illustrate its a table issue. But human decker with a sword hits as hard as troll bruiser with a sword. That seems silly on its face. Without a beefy cyber arm or something on the decker.

FastJack

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« Reply #53 on: (14:30:49/07-14-19) »
Just my two nuyen :
At the end of the day, if you're running the game, it's your creation, your world. You can elect whether or not to allow pixies at all, and make house rules to govern what they can pick up and use, etc. 
This really sounds like a "munchkin" player issue vs a suspension of disbelief issue. Find better players.

At the extremes used to illustrate its a table issue. But human decker with a sword hits as hard as troll bruiser with a sword. That seems silly on its face. Without a beefy cyber arm or something on the decker.
Kinda explains why Hollywood uses props instead of real swords in movies since it's so easy to hurt someone with one.

Moonshine Fox

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« Reply #54 on: (14:40:30/07-14-19) »
Just my two nuyen :
At the end of the day, if you're running the game, it's your creation, your world. You can elect whether or not to allow pixies at all, and make house rules to govern what they can pick up and use, etc. 
This really sounds like a "munchkin" player issue vs a suspension of disbelief issue. Find better players.

At the extremes used to illustrate its a table issue. But human decker with a sword hits as hard as troll bruiser with a sword. That seems silly on its face. Without a beefy cyber arm or something on the decker.

Or, to flip it around, it places more emphasis on being skilled with the weapon rather then just happening to be the most roided rager in the room, since unless you know what you're doing you're likely to hit someone with the flat of the blade or misjudge the position needed for a good slice leaving only painful, but otherwise superficial bruises and lacerations.

Shinobi Killfist

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« Reply #55 on: (14:50:40/07-14-19) »
Just my two nuyen :
At the end of the day, if you're running the game, it's your creation, your world. You can elect whether or not to allow pixies at all, and make house rules to govern what they can pick up and use, etc. 
This really sounds like a "munchkin" player issue vs a suspension of disbelief issue. Find better players.

At the extremes used to illustrate its a table issue. But human decker with a sword hits as hard as troll bruiser with a sword. That seems silly on its face. Without a beefy cyber arm or something on the decker.

Or, to flip it around, it places more emphasis on being skilled with the weapon rather then just happening to be the most roided rager in the room, since unless you know what you're doing you're likely to hit someone with the flat of the blade or misjudge the position needed for a good slice leaving only painful, but otherwise superficial bruises and lacerations.

Iíve never been a fan of the attribute+skill system but that is what they have used since 4e where they equally value natural ability and skill. Just being strong or agile or whatever stat you want to use doesnít mean you have any idea how to strike or parry. Itís why people go so nuts on having high stats they are fairly easy to max and get you a solid dice pool with minimal investment.

I wish defaulting was a bigger penalty and there was a limit too how much of your attribute you could bring to bare depending on your skill. But assuming you do connect you will maximize the damage done not just by skill and good form but the speed gained through strength.

dezmont

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« Reply #56 on: (15:30:05/07-14-19) »

Iíve never been a fan of the attribute+skill system but that is what they have used since 4e where they equally value natural ability and skill. Just being strong or agile or whatever stat you want to use doesnít mean you have any idea how to strike or parry. Itís why people go so nuts on having high stats they are fairly easy to max and get you a solid dice pool with minimal investment.

I wish defaulting was a bigger penalty and there was a limit too how much of your attribute you could bring to bare depending on your skill. But assuming you do connect you will maximize the damage done not just by skill and good form but the speed gained through strength.

Mechanics exist to tell a story, they set up the 'laws of physics' of the fiction and encourage people down certain paths.

Attribute focus in SR does a few important things that are subtly integral to how we play SR, and changing that without understanding the work that attributes do would probably be bad.

For one, it isn't an accident that pretty much every major archetype cares mostly about 1-2 attributes (Sam care a lot about agility due to its effects on combat, as well as moving around and stealth, and intuition to a lesser extent because they also are often CYBERNINJAS and perception is important in addition to its use in dodging and initiative, at least in 5e), faces pretty much exclusively care about charisma and thus can branch out to other roles really easy, deckers about logic+intuition, mages about their magic score, ect. This is why non-burnout adepts struggle: Roles are secretly entirely based around attributes that contain a bunch of synergistic skills (Being able to lie and disguise yourself has synergy, gymnastics and sneaking help each other because you can get to weird places and not be noticed sneaking about em, and both help shooting because ambushes HURT in SR, ect), and Adepts are defined by being bad at attributes, which would sorta like being 'bad at having a class' in D&D. They work, but they have to be way more narrow than everyone else and that is why there is such an intense pull towards attribute 'ware: Losing 1 magic to basically have a 'class' is very worth it.

Secondly, attributes help the themes of SR, which include the concept of transhumanism and the inherent unfair advantage transhumans would have. It is sorta a big conceit that someone who is able to literally buy raw talent to the point they pass normal human limitations (AKA push an attribute past their racial attribute max, which almost every PC ends up doing) can transform that difference of capabilities into them being transcendent at basically anything they do. It isn't actually unrealistic to assume someone who has motor control and spatial reasoning so sublime that it bypasses anything an existing human could achieve simply because they are just fundamentally good at getting the pointy end of an object from A to B regardless of the fact they haven't been in a fencing studio ever. The idea that a mundane, unaugmented human literally can't compete with an armored hyper-agile cybernetic monster who sees all of time in slow motion (which essentially makes them a super-intelligence regardless of their actual logic score!) in a domain they are even casually interested in learning about is sorta baked into the setting, it is why HTR exists and why corpsec focuses on being 'button pushers' turning on security systems, sounding alarms, tossing smoke, ect, rather than actually trying to down the samurai.

It is why the game system skews 'basic' actions to the point where it is assumed you are doing things that would be dumb for a modern, realistic human with 3 agility and 3 skill to do, like shooting a gun while literally not even aiming it, which the default SR attack assumes, which is why corpsec are 'bad shots' vs normal unauged human defenders; they actually aren't, having a 30% hit rate vs someone trying to avoid being shot when you aren't even trying to line up your sights at all is actually pretty darn good!

On to the topic of 'str to damage.' There is an... element of strength to damage in 'real life's mechanics' but in reality most weapons are designed to maximize harm while minimizing effort. Like it is 'in theme' for a crazy deadly cyborg to throw a knife or slash with one so hard they can rip through steel and bone, but when talking about the normal human STR range almost all of the damage being done with most edged weapons is the knife's work, not yours. And that knife is going to really mess you up as long as you aren't so weak you literally can't cut through flesh. Same with most blades. Clubs is a bit different but, again, most maces or hammers or clubs really are just trying to get to the speed where they break bones and once you get past that you aren't going to notice much more effect because you already mangled and broke the person you hit. Sure, maybe a crazy killer cyborg should be able to swing a hammer so hard it looks like their target was chopped in half by a meter thick axe, and you need some strength to get that mass moving, but even though blunt weapons ARE doing damage with the college level collision physics of 'speed x mass' or whatever the body does not care past a certain point that most humans already can hit pretty easily. Put another way, a katana can already be fatal wielded by an average joe on a body hit and on a good day literally bisect you. I know that katanas are sorta overhyped blades in real life but it is important to remember that getting slashed with a sword will already kill you super dead even without super strength, like the average person swinging one can sever someone's spine.

That said STR not adding to DV at all does definitely FEEL weird. Realistic does not mean 'a simulation of reality.' To bust out that overused 20 dollar word, despite str not applying to many melee weapons being a somewhat better simulation of reality than assuming a body builder is significantly more deadly with a knife than a couch potato, it isn't verisimilitudinous, it doesn't feel real. Hopefully stuff like str augs will add to DV in the same way how bone lacing still gives soak dice even though soak mostly went away, because it definitely does feel appropriate for super strength to make these weapons unrealistically traumatic. That or there is some other really major strength related benefit to fighting in close combat outside of DV.

Iron Serpent Prince

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« Reply #57 on: (15:35:36/07-14-19) »
Or, to flip it around, it places more emphasis on being skilled with the weapon rather then just happening to be the most roided rager in the room, since unless you know what you're doing you're likely to hit someone with the flat of the blade or misjudge the position needed for a good slice leaving only painful, but otherwise superficial bruises and lacerations.

And professional baseball players have never had steroid scandals because the power (damage) behind swinging a bat has nothing to do with strength....

Gimme a break.

As anyone who has any true understanding of physical combat will tell you, strength, speed, coordination, and skill all play a part in how much damage can be brought to bear.  With simplification being a main goal of 6e, we can't expect anything to come close to accurately incorporate all of those things, the least that can be done is if Agility and Skill are being used to attack, Strength should play a part in damage.

adzling

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« Reply #58 on: (16:37:34/07-14-19) »
Or, to flip it around, it places more emphasis on being skilled with the weapon rather then just happening to be the most roided rager in the room, since unless you know what you're doing you're likely to hit someone with the flat of the blade or misjudge the position needed for a good slice leaving only painful, but otherwise superficial bruises and lacerations.

And professional baseball players have never had steroid scandals because the power (damage) behind swinging a bat has nothing to do with strength....

Gimme a break.

As anyone who has any true understanding of physical combat will tell you, strength, speed, coordination, and skill all play a part in how much damage can be brought to bear.  With simplification being a main goal of 6e, we can't expect anything to come close to accurately incorporate all of those things, the least that can be done is if Agility and Skill are being used to attack, Strength should play a part in damage.

100% this.
Watch any martial videos on youtube (both martial artist / mma and actual medieaval style combat with weapons) and ALL the practioners will expound on the myth of the agile, slight combatant being powerful in combat.

Real ninjas weren't front line soldiers, those were samurai.
There was a reason for that.

Strength, agility, training, armor and weapons working together to make a deadly combatant.

6e tosses strength, armor and weapons entirely out the window, instead relying upon skill, agility and...bikinis.
The mechanics are actually designed to encourage outright silliness, for no real gain.

This is the definition of the Uncanny Valley experience the O.P. was talking about.

tenchi2a

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« Reply #59 on: (16:56:33/07-14-19) »
Or, to flip it around, it places more emphasis on being skilled with the weapon rather then just happening to be the most roided rager in the room, since unless you know what you're doing you're likely to hit someone with the flat of the blade or misjudge the position needed for a good slice leaving only painful, but otherwise superficial bruises and lacerations.

And professional baseball players have never had steroid scandals because the power (damage) behind swinging a bat has nothing to do with strength....

Gimme a break.

As anyone who has any true understanding of physical combat will tell you, strength, speed, coordination, and skill all play a part in how much damage can be brought to bear.  With simplification being a main goal of 6e, we can't expect anything to come close to accurately incorporate all of those things, the least that can be done is if Agility and Skill are being used to attack, Strength should play a part in damage.

100% this.
Watch any martial videos on youtube (both martial artist / mma and actual medieaval style combat with weapons) and ALL the practioners will expound on the myth of the agile, slight combatant being powerful in combat.

Real ninjas weren't front line soldiers, those were samurai.
There was a reason for that.

Strength, agility, training, armor and weapons working together to make a deadly combatant.

6e tosses strength, armor and weapons entirely out the window, instead relying upon skill, agility and...bikinis.
The mechanics are actually designed to encourage outright silliness, for no real gain.

This is the definition of the Uncanny Valley experience the O.P. was talking about.
+1