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Author Topic: Hacking in the world of cyberpunk  (Read 1021 times)
ludomastro
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« Reply #30 on: February 02, 2014, 07:50:39 PM »

So, here's what I've put down on paper.  Some of this was inspired and/or lifted from previous discussions I've had with people.  SO if you see some of your stuff here, please feel free to claim it.  None of this is play tested and some of it is still pretty high level but I'd love to get some feedback.  Sorry up front for the wall o' text. 

Not sure where this goes as it's not directly related to hacking but I thought it might be good to see the outline of the world I'm brewing.  The following are the campaign qualities that will be in place: Deadly Combat, Fragile Heroes*, Hewn Limbs, and Rampant Corruption.
Fragile heroes also lends itself to tweaking the NPC system.  Vitality for specials would be "2 x Health x TL" in stead of "5 x Health x TL."

* I'm considering a ludo-variant called Extremely Fragile Heroes that would be 1/3 of normal vitality.  (2/3/4)

So, on to the Hacking bits.

Most Hacking actions are just Hacking + INT mod v. DC.  Electronics have a device rating (I to X) that gives an indication of the difficulty they are to hack.  There are two ways to use the device rating.  1) The GM can group the ratings to provide a sliding DC (I and II are Easy, III and IV are Average, etc.) or 2) the GM can look up the appropriate modifier as if the device were an NPC*.  Here is a list some device ratings.

IHousehold appliances
IIEntertainment systems
IIIPublic net terminals, Public library catalogs
IVPersonal electronics, Home net terminals
VVehicles, Drones, Business net terminals
VIBasic cyberware, Research net terminals
VIIType 2 cyberware, Security drones, Security vehicles
VIIIType 3 cyberware, High end electronics, Security net terminals
IXType 4 cyberware, Military drones, Military vehicles
XElectronic wallets (sometimes called credsticks)

*When using the persona in VR, the GM should use NPC method.

Most hacking is done through specially designed commlinks which are treated as kits for the purpose of FC rules.  This type of hacking is done in Augmented Reality (AR).  AR can interfere with the ability to notice and respond to the physical environment around the hacker.  This is represented by <PENALTY to be determined later.>

Virtual Reality (VR) is the complete immersion of the mind into the digital world of the net.  Some systems require it as they are shielded from the normally pervasive nature of wireless access.  Other systems just don't have a coherent way to display the terabytes upon terabytes of data accept as a visual metaphor.  Whatever the reason, some data will require immersion into the digital world to get at it.  Doing so requires specialized and much larger hardware than most can lug around with them.  (Treat as a workshop for FC purposes.)

Just keep in mind that the physical body is inert for the duration of the VR session.

    There are rumors of a new type of comm, called a board, that lets you surf the net in sweet, sweet VR without needing a home setup.
    I'll believe it when I can surf it.  Sounds more like corporate cheese to cause us mice to stick our heads into the trap.

There are two types of VR: cold and hot.  Cold VR is what was originally designed.  It's relatively safe; as long as you consider a hardwired connection to your brain safe.  Hot VR is the dream child of some desperate hacker who lived to share the design.  Through a series of hardware and software "fixes" along with a serious disregard for safety protocols designed, this unnamed hacker was able to eke out a touch more performance from her (or his, no one's sure) equipment and brain.  The downside?  The net's own background static can be fatal.  In fact, some corporations have opted to create intrusion counter-measures that temporarily spike the background static to lethal levels.  The upside?  The hacker is faster.  (Gain the effects of Haste while operating in hot VR.)

While in VR, the metaphor can look like anything.  The hacker may perceive that they are hiding from a monster but in reality they are executing a stealth program to avoid detection from the expert systems that patrol the digital landscape.  The persona is created using the NPC rules as follows:

Physical attributes are 10
Mental attributes are the same as the Hacker.
The CPU used determines speed (CPU rating is Initiative.)
The Firewall helps defend the persona (Firewall rating is Defense.)
The Operating System (aka OS or System) is both Resilience and Health.
Competency is System -2.  (Yes, this means low end devices don't have any default programs.  Go cheap on your OS, pay for it elsewhere.)

Programs:
If the hacker is running either an Armor (Resilience) or Medic (Health) program higher than the System rating, she may use those values.
Attack programs do what's on the tin.  Without a Weapon program, a successful attack does 1d3 damage.
Weapon programs have Grades (I to V) and are treated as the Claw attack of a Medium creature regardless of the size of the persona in the net.
All other programs mirror the skills found in Chapter 2 with the exception of Hacking which is always at the hacker's skill level.
Hardware can't run an OS with a rating higher than the CPU.
An OS can may have any number of programs loaded but may only actively use System x 2 programs.
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VisualStatic
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« Reply #31 on: February 02, 2014, 08:35:56 PM »

As another SR2 vet, let me say that the SR5 character creation rules sap my will to live.

Premades, or at least templates, aren't a bad idea for them treasuring preparation.

I didn't think they were that bad. I'm not crazy about going back to the priority system, but it was a hell of a lot better than the point system in v3/v4. 
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Valentina
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« Reply #32 on: February 03, 2014, 06:33:17 AM »

As another SR2 vet, let me say that the SR5 character creation rules sap my will to live.

Premades, or at least templates, aren't a bad idea for them treasuring preparation.

I didn't think they were that bad. I'm not crazy about going back to the priority system, but it was a hell of a lot better than the point system in v3/v4. 

My mistake might have been wanting to get into Drone use right off. I just remember being just overwhelmed trying to balance skills v. money v. stats v. disadvantages. It's not, and I could be wrong and thus confused about being confused, compartmentalized at all.
There's three steps to character creation:
1) Concept.
2) Handle.
3) Allocate points for EVERYTHING.

Didn't help that one of the most senior players in the local community liked to openly brag about how he'd kill other runners at mission's end to cut down on competition for pay because, "it's just business." Tongue
One more stupid complication to work in; making sure I had some kind of ace in the hole for his dumb ass to choke on.
Or Mr. "I'm a were-jaguar with 23 dice in Firearms!" Roll Eyes

Last time I played Shadowrun 6 dice was expert in a given skill. And playing a were-anything didn't happen.
Kind of killed my fire to get back into the shadows.
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MikeS
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« Reply #33 on: February 03, 2014, 07:59:39 PM »

To me, purchasing equipment was always the longest and most tedious parts of SR.

The rest of character creation is comparatively tame. I actually like the priority system: that way, I don't need a spreadsheet to track point expenses.

Can I get my concept exactly right this way? No, but I can get to 90+%, which is good enough for me.

PS: races not in the basic rulebook are banned from my games. I hate freak show games in general.
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ludomastro
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« Reply #34 on: February 03, 2014, 11:40:46 PM »

SR has always suffered from the build point / karma point split.  The fact is, that regardless of how you got build points, some types of spending were less optimal when you considered the later costs of karma.

---

Back to the OP: Any feedback on what I have posted?
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ludomastro
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« Reply #35 on: February 08, 2014, 01:54:43 PM »

If I offended anyone who was discussing SR, please accept my apologies.  I hadn't intended to squelch discussion.

-----

I will assume that since the discussion of the mechanics have dropped off, that I am either on the right track or, at the very least, that I am not on a horribly wrong one.

I'll try to post some simulated play test documents once I get them complete.



EDIT: I'm having trouble spelling for some reason.
« Last Edit: February 08, 2014, 07:01:22 PM by ludomastro » Logged

Valentina
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« Reply #36 on: February 08, 2014, 06:15:02 PM »

Oh, uh not me. Smiley
I just don't have anything to say. I think treating it like an alternate form of spellcasting make sense and matching matrix-to-meat actions 1 for 1 is sensible.
A Hacker could have an ability that lets them generate extra actions while plugged in maybe, but otherwise Mum's the word.
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"Cui bono?" -Lucius Cassius Longinus Ravilla, 127 BCE.

"Hier stehe ich, ich kann nicht anders" -Martin Luthor, 1483-1546.
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