Faction Advantages/Disavantages

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ThinkWriteMute ThinkWriteMute's picture
Faction Advantages/Disavantages

Jovians
+ 50 Skill Points
- 2 Morph selection
- No Nano

Lunar
+ 40 Skill Points

Socialite
+ 40 Skill points
- No Flat or Pod morph
- No /ALL/ Uplift morphs
- No /ALL/ Synth morphs

1. Jovians get more skill points at the disadvantage of being stuck in a character concept. Why is this bad? Basically you get free skill points for simply having a character concept. Bad favoritism.

2. Socialts get the same amount of skill points as Lunars, but get severe restrictions for having a character concept.

3. InfoLife backgrounds actually get an extra 20 free points from each of these. Not really a problem, but something to be aware of.

Tearlach Tearlach's picture
Infolife are even more tied

Infolife are even more tied to their concept, having computer skills costing half really makes it hard not to put your points there and having social skills at double makes that route pretty much impossible.

Jovians and Socialites need only pay 15 cp to get their restrictions voided.

Also, what do you mean with #3? What does infolife get 20 free points from?

HappyDaze HappyDaze's picture
Reinstantiated get: +20

Reinstantiated get:
+20 skills = +20 CP
+2 moxie = +30 CP
-5000 credits = -5 CP
Edited Memories = -10 CP

In effect, they are worse off than some with a net of +35 CP.

Admini Admini's picture
Infolife are even more tied


Infolife are even more tied to their concept, having computer skills costing half really makes it hard not to put your points there and having social skills at double makes that route pretty much impossible.

And being stuck with Real World Naiveté doesn't help.

Cardul Cardul's picture
But why would a Jovian, a

But why would a Jovian, a Bio-Conservative, have a "second skin"?

It would not fly at my table...



And there was a post from RobBoyle elsewhere that some of the

restrictions on Socialite's and HyperElite were not supposed to

be there...In fact, this would invalidate one of the sample

characters. And Morphs are alot more significant then some of the

errors in the Shadowrun 4th Ed Core book(original run), so I do

not think that the Socialite in a Pleasure Pod is a mistake..

Tearlach Tearlach's picture
Many reasons, he might be a

Many reasons, he might be a spy and to better blend in with the other freaks he'll adopt another skin while keeping his original body safe at home, iced.
Or he might be one of the opressed that managed to get away and is now living a life somewhere else. I'm sure you can find plenty more reasons.

ThinkWriteMute ThinkWriteMute's picture
Because Network is a social

Because Network is a social skill and it would normally cost an InfoLife 40 points to get 20 Networking (Largely an inconsequential thing).

ThinkWriteMute ThinkWriteMute's picture
Yes, but as someone else

Yes, but as someone else said, Infolifes actually have specific disadvantages. Increased skill point costs and a hard trait.

Jovians, literally, have 0 disadvantages as long as you're playing the concept.

Tearlach Tearlach's picture
Yeah, but if you are playing

Yeah, but if you are playing the concept: geeky hacker with no social competence, there are no disadvantages there either. Unless you count failing in social situations as a disadvantage and then you are clearly not playing the concept :)

HappyDaze HappyDaze's picture
Your Jovian doesn't have to

Your Jovian doesn't have to be a bioconservative. Faction doesn't restrict Motivations, nor does it mean you are even friendly with your starting faction - it's just who you are associated with in a general grouping. A Jovian taking second skin isn't too much different than playing a Communist in modern America - you're certainly not in the mainstream, but you're still an American.

Decivre Decivre's picture
Re: Yes, but as someone else

I think it fair to note that Jovians get two weapon skills as part of their perks... not a particularly advantageous bonus unless you happen to use more than one weapon type (something that most characters can get along without).

Transhumans will one day be the Luddites of the posthuman age.

Help me get my gaming fix, if you want.

HappyDaze HappyDaze's picture
Re: Faction Advantages/Disavantages

I find that a bonus to two weapon skills is useful bonus. Many of the more combat-centered characters can easily have need of 2+ weapon skills. And if you're not playing a combat-aimed Jovian, it still adds options.

Decivre Decivre's picture
Re: Faction Advantages/Disavantages

Useful, but not dramatically so. Weapons skills are based on an entire group of weapons, so a character could easily go his entire career with just the Kinetic Weapons or Beam Weapons skill. It'll add a very mild amount of versatility to a character, likely giving them the opportunity to have a +10 skill bonus in both a ranged and melee weapon type.

Transhumans will one day be the Luddites of the posthuman age.

Help me get my gaming fix, if you want.

Rasumichin Rasumichin's picture
Jovians

ThinkWriteMute wrote:

Jovians, literally, have 0 disadvantages as long as you're playing the concept.

Playing the concept actually is a disadvantage in itself, from a purely mechanical viewpoint.
Flats and splicers are terribly inefficient morphs (probably the worst ones besides cases).

Sealab2020 Sealab2020's picture
Re: Faction Advantages/Disavantages

Am I the only one who chooses concepts, backgrounds, and factions based on what's appropriate to the role I play, rather than what extra points I gain or lose?

Rasumichin Rasumichin's picture
Re: Faction Advantages/Disavantages

Yes, probably you are.^^

No, seriously, of course i do care about what's appropriate to the concept, but that doesn't mean i'm not aware of when it has built-in drawbacks.
And when there's tons of concepts that are both interesting and mechanically better off, i'll certainly give those a try at first.

Now, if i'd find Jovians particularly interesting, i'd probably find a way to build a viable character sleeved in a flat, and the extra skill points certainly would help a little with that, even though the Jovy most likely still wouldn't come out particularly powerful.

HappyDaze HappyDaze's picture
Re: Faction Advantages/Disavantages

I've considered rewriting the book-presented backgrounds and factions as standardized 50 CP-equivalent packages. This will include the value of starting Credits and Rep (typically the equivalent of 10 CP for most characters). Most packages will get a slight boost out of this, but nothing extraordinary. I'll drop these here when I've finished them.

Graf Graf's picture
Re: Faction Advantages/Disavantages

Obviously, re-written factions are great.

But it would also be great to have an idea about what your design level view is... do you think factions -must- be balanced? Or are they driven primarily by roleplaying concerns?

HappyDaze HappyDaze's picture
Re: Faction Advantages/Disavantages

I'd like to see the game-stat advantages and disadvantages balance out in terms of CP, but I'm not so worried if the in-game factions are balanced.

However, some of the in-print factions - the Infolife in particular - are really hard to balance. For a hacker it's very good, and for a social character it's very bad. If it were flat bonuses and (possibly) penalties to the appropriate skills it would balance out a bit better than half cost/double cost. Likewise, restrictions on morphs are a nebulous disadvantage and hard to really put a point value on.

Keep in mind that I don't feel that the current Backgrounds and Factions are at all unworkable in their current state - I was just considering some tweaking here and there as a way to play with the system a bit. Any modification I do is way down the list of my gaming priorities.

The Doctor The Doctor's picture
Re: Faction Advantages/Disavantages

I do not think that you are, no.

HappyDaze HappyDaze's picture
Re: Faction Advantages/Disavantages

For greatest freedom as well as balance, I'll probably just eliminate ALL Background and Faction packages an instead allow each character to have a 'Lifepath' (valued at 100 CP) generated by the player. Skill bonuses can be taken at +10/+20/+30 depending on how important it is to the character's concept and backstory. Appropriate positive and negative Traits - as well as increased Moxie, Credits, and Rep - can all be bought as part of the Lifepath too. The only limit is that the Lifepath has to be negotiated with the GM to be deemed reasonable. Most hard restrictions - such as on morph choices - will be dropped from the Lifepath, but initial morph selection must pass by the GM and approval should be based on the Lifepath. This does mean that the Second Skin trait is likely to see less use, but it's a casualty that I won't really miss.

Rasumichin Rasumichin's picture
Re: Faction Advantages/Disavantages

A lifepath system sounds like an interesting addition.
It would be great if you could post it here when you're done.

HappyDaze HappyDaze's picture
Re: Faction Advantages/Disavantages

I think you're expecting more than I plan to do. What I shared above is my Lifepath system.

Here's an example of how it would work out:

Player decides he wants to play a character from a microgravity habitat that's a neighbor of Extropia in the belt. He plans to have his character's backstory be as a humble hab-tech/janitor that planned to work in the family business... until Firewall came along.

Here is a sample package for this character:

+20 Free Fall
+20 Hardware: Industrial
+20 Networking: Autonomists (Specialization: Extropians)
+20 Profession: Janitor
+1 Moxie

Nothing too outrageous. Reasonable morphs could range from Flats and Splicers up to Bouncers or possibly some of the sythetic morphs. Morphs like the Sylph, Ruster, Fury, and several others would probably require Second Skin as they don't really fit the Lifepath.