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How many languages are too many?

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Chalkarts

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« on: <02-14-20/1419:09> »
I've been toying around with an Edgelord investigator adept,
but im not sure if its really an active play character or a neat Npc.

i was thinking of eidetic sense memory combined with Jack of all trades and Linguist would allow a character to go to 3 or higher in all languages fairly qucikly.

Would this be useful?
Would a read/write remember all type character be really all that good?
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Stainless Steel Devil Rat

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« Reply #1 on: <02-14-20/1441:20> »
It's a neat idea, but I wonder if it has a viable role as opposed to just using translation programs.
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.

Chalkarts

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« Reply #2 on: <02-14-20/1459:43> »
It's a neat idea, but I wonder if it has a viable role as opposed to just using translation programs.

THat was my thought,
It would be kinda pricey to do, but technoloigy does it better. I could just get a skilljack 3 for languages.
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Beta

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« Reply #3 on: <02-14-20/1500:06> »
You know the old saying "When all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail"?  To me this is really the secret of shadowrunning, being such a fragging amazing hammer that you can drive a soyburrito into a concrete wall ... and hopefully being in a toolbox with an awesome screwdriver, a fantastic wrench, and an all-star socket set. 

You don't hammer anything with language skills (or with perception, the more frequent skill that causes this issue).  Languages might help hold a nail in place so that you can hit it square, or even arrange for a nail instead of a rusty bolt or the aforementioned soyburrito, and sometimes they may even help put in some putty to cover the dent that you made in the wall.  but you don't hammer anything with language skills.

First figure out what your hammer is, then figure out the nice-to-haves around it.

Disclaimers: trying to hammer soyburritos through concrete walls will make an awful mess, don't do this at home or at the home of anyone you want to stay friends with.  Also do not interpret "hammer" to necessarily mean violence, it is any means of overcoming people who are (quite correctly) trying to stop you from doing your job (charm, intimidation, bribery, turning them into turtles, taking away their free will, or sending fake orders to their commlink are all perfectly reasonable hammering-type activities)
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Chalkarts

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« Reply #4 on: <02-14-20/1518:02> »


First figure out what your hammer is, then figure out the nice-to-haves around it.


Well said.
I suppose this little nice to have inherently requires the character be an adept. 
But what kind?
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Horsemen

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« Reply #5 on: <02-14-20/1530:04> »
Keep in mind that language skill limits all social tests where talking is required in 5e, not sure about 6e, to that of the rating of the language.

Knowing languages has always been a major point in our campaigns especially since not all of them have translation programs.

I will always encourage someone wanting to expand the languages they know and how well they speak them. Granted it is up to the GM to make sure that languages are relevant to support that investment but it can be richly rewarding when they do.

Our primary campaign which is going on thirty years now, every PC knows at least a dozen languages competently and most know double or more than that.
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GuardDuty

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« Reply #6 on: <02-14-20/1707:52> »
Matador had a good deal to say about the importance of actually learning the local language as opposed to relying on linguisofts back in Fields of Fire.  It's a good read.  Basically, he says linguisofts don't account for regional variances and uses the way naturally learning the language does.

That said, if your table doesn't run into a wide variety of languages often, and if it doesn't value character and roleplaying more than dice and action, it's probably not practical to have a lot of languages.  Building a character around a concept rather than min-maxing is awesome, but if you can't do it and be useful to your table it will get in the way of the fun rather than enhance it.

Beta

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« Reply #7 on: <02-14-20/1723:14> »


Well said.
I suppose this little nice to have inherently requires the character be an adept. 
But what kind?

I don't think being an adept matters all that much.  That one power will save you a day now and then, and a point of karma.  But i don't think that is enough to say that you have to be an adept to make this work.

Languages most obviously goes with a Face type, because of languages being limits on social skills.
 Adepts can be very good at face type things, and perhaps can make a hammer out of it more than any other type of face due to that one adept power that let's you make brief hard to resist commands.  But you can make a lot of different adept builds (I seem to recall there even being some interesting decker-adept builds).

But if you go at the other way, language dice pools are controlled by intuition, and the mnemonic enhancers bioware boosts them.  So any character with high intuition (like perhaps a Chaos tradition mage, or a detective type ... or just the typical street samurai who needs high perception and initiative) will have nice language pool.  Or just combine decent intuition (most character builds) and mnemonic enhancers ... the latter of which also go nicely with high knowledge skill pools, which suggests logic, so you could easily have a decker who speaks many languages (perhaps learned them all from talking to people in the 'trix?), and is tossing something like skill+7 dice.  Perhaps they specialize in hacking into things to listen in on conversations to gather intel, but can provide general decking services?

There are a lot of types of character that can make use of language mastery. 
« Last Edit: <02-14-20/1726:37> by Beta »
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Chalkarts

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« Reply #8 on: <02-15-20/0013:05> »


Well said.
I suppose this little nice to have inherently requires the character be an adept. 
But what kind?
Languages most obviously goes with a Face type, because of languages being limits on social skills.
 Adepts can be very good at face type things, and perhaps can make a hammer out of it more than any other type of face due to that one adept power that let's you make brief hard to resist commands.  But you can make a lot of different adept builds (I seem to recall there even being some interesting decker-adept builds).

There are a lot of types of character that can make use of language mastery.

I was leaning toward Adept because I also liked the eidetic sense memory since you can Photoread with it.
Perhaps the adept face infiltrator, high disguise, has the ability to fit in anywhere and often walk right through the front door of any building to collect intel.  The type that Could talk his way into a vault.
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Trigger Lynx

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« Reply #9 on: <02-15-20/1259:09> »
I was leaning toward Adept because I also liked the eidetic sense memory since you can Photoread with it.
Perhaps the adept face infiltrator, high disguise, has the ability to fit in anywhere and often walk right through the front door of any building to collect intel.  The type that Could talk his way into a vault.
Whenever I've had a player say something along the same lines, I encourage them to write-up a version as a mundane first and if they're not satisfied with it then to convert it to an Adept. My reasoning for this is because an Adept's powers stem from the "perfect self" of their subconscious and that is how they manifest their Powers. They eat, sleep, and breathe their Adept Way, and were most likely very focused on the core abilities that their Powers enhance before they Awakened. If your character has been something of a social butterfly/fly on the wall for as long as they can remember, then Adept fits the concept.

EDIT: Even though it's not your cencept,  it's worth noting that Mystic Adept Faces with Astral Perception and Summoning are some of the most frightening characters out there. Food for thought.
« Last Edit: <02-15-20/1303:38> by Trigger Lynx »