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Posts posted by MonSTeR

  1. For me, V3 just doesn't offer enough of the classic cyberpunk ethos, the post crash thing isn't cyberpunk to me. I think it's hard to fight the system from the underground, when the underground is so prevalent it IS the system ;)


    But I do understand Mike's idea to create a mind and paper based computer game that anyone can just pick up and play.


    It's just that well, I don't want to !


    CP2020 is outdated now, but inho it's still better than anything else out there, but whilst the setting and system work really well, the technology REALLY needs updating to make it a viable extrapolation of our future.





  2. What gets me is how little Combat sense resemble common sense. In real life when someone hears a loud noise like gunshot, their usual reaction is to look around to see what it was. To say that this is a stupid thing to do in combat is an understatement. Armies spend most of basic training teaching their soldiers to disregard their normal instincts and drop to the ground instead.



    What Andy Mcnab described was not a failure at anything, but common sense in a situation were people are throwing lead around really fast. :P In fact this training combined with the taste of combat, usually changes people's reactions for life. Stories of combat vets droping to the ground at the sound of car backfiring abound(Author Joe Haldeman is one such vet).


    I still see it as a failure: If it had been a success the character would recognise the sound for what it was a car backfiring.


    A failure the other way around would be to mistake the sound of gunfire for the sound of a car backfiring, do nothing and get shot.



    Now take the typical CP firefight. A solo can fire of a shot faster than anyone else, but do they have the sense to come out of the (lead) rain? When someone shots at you, your first reaction should be to get behind something solid. Instead CS encourages you to stand out in the open a fire back, wasting precious time that could have been used to find cover.


    That's just player decision, nothing more. The player can make his character, quickdraw and fire back, dive behind the corner of a building or start folding origami cranes. He just gets to make that decision first.


  3. I have to agree with The Public on this one. Initiative is nice and all but it's who puts the rounds downrange and on target first that wins the day. There are plenty of veterans out there with gobs of real-life experience who get caught with their pants down but still win in the end because they put down effective fire in response while the enemy was tearing up the countryside. Sure, being more alert (covered by a high alertness skill) is a good thing and reacting quickly (high REF/initiative bonus) is great but you can't possibly miss fast enough to suddenly hit the target. The best soldiers can maintain their cool while being fired upon to return accurate fire to the enemy.


    This is why I keep saying, that these are the guys that have both. Yes it's all well and good to go first, but if you can't shoot for toffee it's no help.


    Similarly, if you can spend an hour and a half readying yourself for a bullseye at 1000 yards that's great, but if you stand around wondering what you should do, that's no help either.



    In Andy McNabb's memoir 'Immediate Action' he mentions that a shot out of nowhere will make even the much-vaunted SAS soldiers hesitate for a moment. How is this reflected by the solo's SA as-is?

    Mark(psycho)Phipps( HAHAHA! )


    Shot out of nowhere with no warning at all and the army guys jump, simply a high difficulty number and a failed roll... A failure is still a failure.



    I'm not saying Combat Sense can't be abused, but I maintain that used in a sensible fashion, it accurately reflects the fact that some guys are used to combat (or other similar situations), and others aren't. Keeping tabs on the players during character creation to stop munchkin-ing gets rid of ALL CS's failings.






    Do what needs to be done quickly, with no hesitation and as brutally as possible ensuring a satisfactory outcome.



    Thanks Public, I think you just succeeded in making my point for me :)



    It does however pull the combat dynamic so far askew that if CS is applied in the standard fashion then anyone w/o CS will die in the first two rounds of any given encounter.


    Way sucky for your players and their PCs that aren't solos (read: a balance role playing party)




    No no no no, it's a) realistic and B ) a dynamic that works.


    If you work in an office all day and the nearest thing you see to "conflict" is your secretary bringing you tea when you wanted coffee, you ARE going to die in the first two round of any given encounter.

  5. Sorry Monster I gotta totally disagree.


    The Fantasy of the ready men and women that possess both is just a bunch of fanboy fantasy.


    I'm not here to spread fantasy, I'm here to give a dynamic that works and the reason why.


    I am not a trained killer by any ways or means.


    I can however, spot the top 3 people in any situation to take out if things go sour.


    This is called streetwise, and anyone can get it.


    it really isn't who shoots first, it's who can drop those rounds reliably where they want them every time.


    That's Combat Sense (which in variation should just be called Combat), and there is no spidey sense bologna about it.


    lets be realistic for once in our lives.


    You might know any of these guys Joe, I’ve known a couple. So no, it’s not fantasy, you’re just not either mixing with the right people, or not fully appreciating their skills.


    Spotting “the top 3 guys to take out” is streetwise and anyone can get it. You’re absolutely right.


    But; that is in itself not combat sense! Combat Sense isn’t spotting the top 3 guys to take out, it’s knowing, instinctively (which can be drilled into you, developed through necessity, gifted by benevolent aliens or whatever you choose) what to do in combat, which decision to make in that split second and not standing around like most civilians do looking at what the hell is going on.


    Combat sense is a dynamic that gives an accurate representation of the fact that most people (even those in Cyberpunk) are not used to fighting in life threatenng engagements, and those that are trained and experienced in for want of a more specific term, combat, get a bonus to reflect this…


    lets be realistic for once in our lives.



  6. I think that I have to agree with MonSTeR. It's not so much a failure of the system as it is a failure of the players. SoAm War Vet may explain where he/she/it learned to Juryrig or Medtech or has a Family of likeminded vets he roams the country on bikes with. It may explain where he got weapon training but it's not an excuse to have Combat Sense at 10.


    People with that sort of native ability are freaks of nature. They may or may not have ever been in the military. I recall being at Ray Chapman's Academy and watching in amusement as a couple of sportsman class shooters won bets from a couple of SEALS every day at lunch. Hell I was faster and more accurate on some courses than those guys. But I wouldn't dream of saying that I could operate in their teams.


    The Solo can be the gifted amateur who makes the dogged professionals look bad. He may even get in on a team but may never, ever fit in the regimented life of the military or police.


    Thanks Dog Soldier, that’s exactly what I’m trying to say, you can be a great marksman, but not necessarily a good soldier, you don’t need combat sense to be the best marksman, you need the best weapon skill.




    OK, ok ok, here comes the Public with the option for SA's like CS that work.


    Now listen, this may sound awful, but it really works.


    Combat Sense, as written is THE uberskill (you mean I can act before everyone, never get noticed and off everything before anyone can even react- kewl:actual gamer quote here)


    IF, and this is the if, your GM is able to think out of the box and listen to reason this is something that you can run by them:


    Solos are supposed to be full on superkillers, right? Now when looking at the know super soldiers out there IRL, LERPS, paid assassins, delta force, ninjas, super holy seven chinese words I don't even know fighters, Moussad, whatever, the one thing that they all have in common is the following:


    What they shoot, stab or beat gets hit right away. They don't really miss after those decades of training and working in various hell-holes and dangerous situations. SO:


    Combat Sense should work like all the other SAs- Modify the skill group that is used for the job:killing.


    Not sneaking, not looking, not hiding- but killing.


    Modify the weapon skills, hand to hand skills, gun skills- but just those.


    That, boys and girls, is only one of the reasons that my CP2020 game when I was in school lasted for years and years.


    It works, still makes the Solo a deathmachine, but allows the other PC to be on an equal footing for the day to day stuff (since Awareness/Notice is the #1 most useful skill in CP).


    Try it, you'll like it.


    Now see, doesn't that make it all better?



    No, lol

    That makes them great shots. Most of being a solo isn’t being the best shot it’s going first, being the best shot is being the best marksman, perhaps down at the firing range on a Sunday afternoon with your buddies, perhaps at a secret base in the middle of you don’t need to know, the where and why is irrelevant.


    Being a Solo/combat sense is understanding the situation knowing where the other combatants are, anticipating their moves and acting accordingly, not being able to bullseye a beer can from 1000 yards away.


    The Uber killers you talk about have don’t just have deadly skills with guns or lightning reflexes honed over years of service and training, they are the rare ones who have BOTH.




  7. In my opinion, it's not so much a restriction on the special ability, its a restriction on the role that needs to be imposed.


    Not everyone with a gun needs to be a solo.


    There's a line that I'll paraphrase (another word for mis-quote) somewhere that reads...


    "Molly wasn't special because she was a solo, she was a solo because she was special."


    And that, to me at least it the very essence of where folks go wrong.


    Combat sense isn't broken it's just a tool that needs to be used for the right job. When I first started playing cyberpunk folks always wanted to play solos and always wanted "CS + 10" which was fine for a while but led to a lot of one dimensional "characters" (a term used loosely) who couldn't do anything else apart from go first, shoot a pistol, shoot a SMG and use Thai Kick boxing. They couldn't swim, they couldn't drive and they didn't even have high school spanish.


    When I was last playing CP (a while back now :( ) there was a solo, he had CS+4, was a much more rounded character and was a much more playable character.




    The other thing to notice is the CS also means that folks aren't artificially skewing the use of Awareness/notice. Don't forget, just cos you can tell that you're standing in the perfect place for an ambush and can manage to leap to the side in time, doesn't mean you can spot that the left handed person has put all their tool on the right side of their bench etc.


    If you play a thinking game of CP, then CS is a comfort blanket, and nothing more.



  8. I've always thought the Nude option would be a good fit for something like Malek77 described here. The occasional exhibitionist really isn't that uncommon out in the world. I can think of a few people I know who seem happiest wearing nothing but a dark tan and/or tats.


    Damn right.


    That's a style that I've seen loads in CP games over the years. Guys with Bod 10 who'll go shirtless (and recieve seduction bonuses for their rippling abs) until it's time to stack some Kevlar.


    A characters personal style isn't necessarily what they wear all the time though, that's of course dictated by situation.


    Two extremes of this are at home I normally wear jeans and army surplus gear cos I think it's comfy, for important meetings at work I wear handmade suits and silk ties.

  9. Depending on the scenario, and possible because you've already said, less action...


    We've already decided that it might be a good idea to go for a slighty older character, someone who's maybe used to dealing with the real world, 10-15 years ago (ie now, 2006/7).


    Perhaps a lawyer type, so he's familiar with working on books on PC but probably works for a firm with a real library and the younger lawyers either a) have the respect for the old guy despite his old ways, he got the biggest payout ever on that accident claim... or B) mock the old fuddy-duddy who's way past his sell by date.


    Or if the player wants a more action based character howabout a burned out Solo, someone who served in Gulf War III back in 2010 doing real covert stuff, pre cybernetics, but lots of skill. He moved to a log cabin in Oregon and has come out of hiding as a favour to one of the other members of the team.


    Or an amnesiac, if he can't remember the last 10 years, he won't know what's going on and still thinks you have to use a keyboard to surf the web. He needs to find out just what has been going on in the last 10 years, not just to the world, but why someone brain-wiped the last 10 years of his life and just what was he doing on Mars?



  10. I'm not clued into the V3 system yet, I haven't had time (or inclination) to give it the benfit of the doubt yet :(


    I'm not saying BTM is perfect, but a low damage levels it, or something like it is necessary to represent the comparative differences in physical intrusion.


    ie. under 2020 rules it takes exactly the same level of physical damage to render limbs useless whether you're the Hulk or Aunt May.


    What does bug me is that "average" body types, got a modifier!!! Surely average Body types should be teh norm on which the system is based?


    However I agree thatthe stun system does seem to accurately reflect whether folks are KO'd in a more appropriate fashion :)

  11. it all boils down to how you view the cyber part.

    to me its about general high tech, not about cyberware specificaly.

    therefor i dont see the need to break it all down into bio-, info-, nano- or any other kind of punk combo...

    allso, if one go down that route, one may have to ask oneself: are hackers, and their realm, cyberpunk or infopunk?



    Don't get me wrong, I agree with where you're coming from, I just think that extrapolating from today's tech base means that cyber may be a little bit of a misnomer. - I don't actually think that any of the others I mentioned above are actually any more accurate and certainly not any better!


    tech-punk? ;)


    As for hackers, I think it depends on the level of the integration of the hardware! If they sit at a keyboard and monitor, it's info, if they have carbon fibre and titanium in the back of their skull a la Matrix for them to "jack in" then we're definately talking cyber.


    20 years ago, Maximum Mike didn't envisage that we'd have mobile phones or the internet to the extent we do today. Cyberware was also written way in advance of where it seems we wil be in 14 years time. All I'm saying is it seems we've gone down a slightly different path to that R Tal wrote about.


    For me the main thing that needs updating is the existing base upon which the tech level of the genre is built.



  12. i dont see the need to change the word before the punk.

    cyber have become more or less a ubiquitous label for anything where people use high tech (be it electronic or biological) to enhance their own bodys.


    sure, for some it will allways be big hair and crome fists, but for others its more the mental part, about turning the latest products of the establishment against itself. hell, in some ways using a mobile phone to detonate bombs can be seen as on the edge of cyberpunk ;)



    See that's exactly my point!!! :)


    The mental part - the "punk" is still the same, but the "cyber" part is just inaccurate.


    Taking your example. The use of a mobile phone in this way is a pure demonstration of infopunk!!!


    I'm not saying that the name needs to be changed, just that it no longer describes the near-future science fiction aspect associated with the extrapolation of the present.

  13. OK guys, as some of you know I've been away off and on really for a couple of years now :(


    This of course means I've lost touch with the street ;)


    I'm just curious, what guns are "in vogue" these days. I remember back in the day that it was things like the M16 with the M203 slung underneath, the MP5 and the MP5K, the Desert Eagle and the Beretta M92. And like all the other fan boys, I squealled in delight when it was "time to let ol' painless out the bag".


    I'm just thinking that if I was going to run another CP game, I'd want to know what the hardware will be derived from.


    Any and all avice is appreciated







  14. I think we are probably "it" for the online community. Especially for CP2020


    Cyberpunk as it was is finished because when it was written back 20 years ago, we thought the future would be very different, cybereyes cheaper than cell phones etc etc ;)


    Therefore true cyberpunk will always look dated now and won't really appeal to the mass of new players, don't forget we're now closer to the setting of the game than we are to when it was written!


    Maybe Biopunk, Genopunk, Nanopunk or even Infopunk are the re-evaluation of cyberpunk?


    The punk will be exactly the same, but the corps might come from China and Korea as well as or instead of Japan, Bioethanol will be the new CHOOH2, and retroviruses will rewrite your DNA for IR sensitive retinal cells rather than plucking out your good eyes and fitting machines in there. And you won't jack into the net from a huge ass cyberdeck with limited MU, you'll do it all from your cell phone and cash will be the only limits on the programs you run.



  15. Armor is simple in all versions of CP, unless the GM is a wimp


    First, kill BTM. Everyone that has run Cp for a while does it and it works. Just let it go.


    See this is where Joe and I will always differ. BTM is the only factor in the whole game that differentiates in any way the capacity of different individuals to handle damage differently.


    I.e why a 6'8" tall steroidally enhanced 400lbs ESWAT commando with muscle and bone lace, grafted muscle and orbital alloy cyberskeletal enhancement handles being shot in the shoulder differently than the 8 year old little girl he's trying to save!!!


    A point blank head shot with a 10mm handgun will kill them both, and a solid hit with a big rifle round is going to put them both down for good (usually) but a 9mm to the shoulder is going to affect little Jenny Smith more than it's going to stop DeathSolo


    If you think BTM is the problem, it's not, it's the abuse of BTM by munchkin players and the permissal of that abuse by unconfident GMs :(





    second, let them stack whatever they want, for full effect and EV negs as normal.


    The hardest Negative is the INTERACTION negative. Make them pariah for walking around with those layers on.


    Shoot them in the head at random by other punks looking for some of that gear. Just about any gang will take out one man to outfit 3-6 of them later (figuring a item each or so).


    and bake them, Summer is a bitch when you are in layers of kevlar and such.


    Oh, and all hits do atleast a STUN roll at current standing, it hrts even if your gear did the job it was supposed to, make it real.


    But all these others are SO right.


    Today you walk around with bike leathers on and people regard you with suspicion, try doing that in an obvious armourjack. You think you're going to walk into an office block, or a policed CBD?


    The movie Predator 2 was a great example of the heat effect. Folks are having to change their cotton shirts just to keep from slowing down with grime and sweat and to be able to talk to other folks without funny comments or making them vomit from the stink ;)

  16. As far as affording a PA suit look at how much money goes into a streetraceing Riceburner. Think of it in the thousands of dollars.



    I think that's a really good example, it's just a matter of available tech levels. I know guys who throw thousands at their Evos and Imprezas.


    If the tech level is high enough that "Top Secret" or "Mine" have branched out into PA and there are hardsuit mechanics on the highstreet then all's well and good :)

  17. Sorry CJ, I'm only just getting back online. I've been too busy getting my "resources" special ability EPs to really post much :(


    On the plus side I'm off to Tokyo again in a couple of weeks :D Yes someone has to fly business class and stay in 5 star hotels in the coolest, most CP city in the world, but I'll try to live with the burden ;)

  18. Cyberpunk is a genre of thought, of action and consequence (as well as huge guns and leather trenchcoats ;)


    I'd say that a key thing to a cyberpunk game is choice.


    I'd say you should allow the player to pick a side some point in the game, BUT have both endings fully playable.


    Deus Ex, perhaps the seminal cyberpunk computer RPG game had choices, but no real impact other than on the end of game animation. If you do go for choices, make them choices you can't recover from, just like real life.


    Maybe you can


    a) play the whole game working for the first corporation

    B) switch sides to the second corporation


    c) join the elite hackers you were initially hunting and bring down ALL the corporations.


    Thefts of data, people, prototypes etc and their recovery are cliched cyberpunk stories.


    Usually the stolen thing, turns out to be not what it was thought,


    Then the player chooses whether to a) allow the NEW use of the thing, or B) return of the thing to the original owner or c) destruction of the thing for the benefit of all mankind.


    Ideally, the hero wants to rebel against the system, whether the system is political, corporate or personal. That's the punk part


    Then you need to set it 30 years or so in the future, use the word "nano" a lot and have powerups to speed, strength computer hacking etc. and there's your cyber.


    Other cliches (which are good things;) )include the hero not realising he's not who he thought he was, he's actually a sleeper agent for the other side, or has a moral crisis and can no longer be the corporate assassin, or the whole world is a computer simulation ;)


    Now go re-write Syndicate for us and we'll love you forever :D



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