May 29 - Transhuman Tech - Feedback Thread

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AdamJury AdamJury's picture
May 29 - Transhuman Tech - Feedback Thread

This is the feedback thread for the Game Mechanics chapter, updated on May 29th.

It can be downloaded as part of the EP2 Open Playtest at: http://bit.ly/ep2playtest

We are getting down to the wire for this playtest. This is likely to be the final update to the Eclipse Phase Second Edition playtest. At this point, core mechanics and major features are locked down. Things to look for:

• Numbers and terms that are inconsistent or seem off-base with each other
(IE: a number/rule/term was updated in one chapter but not in another, or a number in text that contradicts a table).
• Unclear wording or explanations, typographical mistakes.
• Rules that are easily exploitable that lead to un-fun game situations, characters mechanically hogging the spotlight, etc.
• Places that should have cross-references (“p. XX” references) to other sections but do not OR vice-versa — places that seem to have excessive cross-refs.

Please exercise restraint in back-and-forth posting in this thread.

Fenrir Fenrir's picture
Typographical Mistake

On page 3, in the Death and Backup Insurance section, one of the paragraphs ends with this line:
"...temporarily re-instanced and asked (and perhaps questioned about your demise)."
I think this is supposed to be
"...temporarily re-instanced and asked (and perhaps questioned) about your demise."

TheGrue TheGrue's picture
Anything resembling a

Anything resembling a changelog, or should we go line by line through these looking for what's been updated in order to give feedback?

Thermonuclear Banana Split - A not-really-weekly Eclipse Phase campaign journal.

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
I'm here after a quick read

I'm here after a quick read of the gear chapter. I'll do a more thorough read later.

Skillware wasn't well defined in EP 1st. How quickly can you change your skillsofts? Can you use a skillsoft while swapping skillsofts? Do skillsofts add on top of existing skills? For instance, does using programing 40 when you have Programing 35 count as 5 points or 40 points? Can skillsofts be used at any setting less than max?

Any rules for making your own ALI? How about modding existing ALIs?

Vehicle hardware, improved handling: It says it offers a -10 mod to pilot tests. Shouldn't it be +10 mod?

Edit: Sorry folks. I replied to the wrong thread.

Xagroth Xagroth's picture
DivineWrath wrote:I'm here

DivineWrath wrote:
I'm here after a quick read of the gear chapter. I'll do a more thorough read later.

Skillware wasn't well defined in EP 1st. How quickly can you change your skillsofts? Can you use a skillsoft while swapping skillsofts? Do skillsofts add on top of existing skills? For instance, does using programing 40 when you have Programing 35 count as 5 points or 40 points? Can skillsofts be used at any setting less than max?

As far as I remember, "skillsofts" are the override, so to get Programming 40 you need a skillsoft of Programming 40 that counts as such, with no regards to you having already 35 in Programming (I might be mixing this with how skillsofts worked on Cyberpunk 2020, however).

Switching skillsofts should be addressed, since I think the only instance of such I've seen was in the second Takeshi Kovacs book, where one of the soldiers (a woman) carried several skillsoft packages in some sort of USB sticks she would plug as needed... but no mention of how much time does it take (I'd rule an action for the swap, then you get the skill on your next turn, while the removed skill is lost inmediately).

As for using the Skillsofts at different levels, if you are talking about buying 3 skills at 40, assuming a total limit of 120, and wondering if you could use the three at 33 or two at 40 and one at 20, I have no idea... I always simply ruled that you could have 3 skillsofts active, and they were limited to 40 (so a slight buff over the official limit on 1st ed, if I remember right), but one had to be a Knowledge/Profession skill, Art not really working well as creative (so you could not get Art: poetry, since you would be like a record of the original's style, but you could get Knowledge: Poetry, which would allow you to judge the quality of a poem for example).

[quote=DivineWrath
Any rules for making your own ALI? How about modding existing ALIs?

I'd also ask for forking and psychosurgery, specially of one's Alpha fork. Extra support on the "drone master" kind of build would be appreciated, specially if we can cobble some rules for use with something more easy to place on the game (kinda like using miniatures, even if it's just as representation), let's say I want to place clusters of drones under the command of a Beta fork while the Alpha acts as a general... By that I mean something that lets us resolve the situation without resorting to handwaving it as "it ends as the plot demands".

Some extra chapters on infrastructure for establishing a colony (let's call it "do a Minecraft" XD) would be appreciated aswell.

Androminous Androminous's picture
Skillsoft

IMO a lot of uncertainty would be handled if the total level of skillsofts the skillware could handle was set at 120, not 100. It should be clearly stated whether you can load only parts of it or not and that it overrides, not adds to, your ego's skills. The question of the time it takes to reload skillsoftsand what action you need to do that should also be clearly answered.

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
Sorry folks. I replied to the

Sorry folks. I replied to the wrong thread.

AdamJury AdamJury's picture
TheGrue wrote:Anything

TheGrue wrote:
Anything resembling a changelog, or should we go line by line through these looking for what's been updated in order to give feedback?

I just posted this as a distinct thread: http://eclipsephase.com/may-29-open-playtest-changelog

Androminous Androminous's picture
Merging table

The table MERGING on page 9 needs fixing.

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
On p. 3, Post-Mortem Uploads,

On p. 3, Post-Mortem Uploads, is skill loss really something that should happen? If you have someone's head, you probably have that person's stack as well. Also, can't you put the person in medical stasis using a nanobandage? Actually, looking at it now, can it still do that in EP 2?

I checked and medichines can still put you in medical stasis. Does that protect you from skill loss?

There is no mention of rules for putting a recently deceased biomorph head into a ego bridge to retrieve the ego. For instance, when you have an ego bridge but no healing vat.

p. 5, Resleeving tests, one of the types of damage is SV 1d10/1. What is 1d10/1 supposed to mean? Hopefully its just a typo.

p. 8, it says that there are 4 versions of forks, but it only lists 3. Also, is delta forks no longer a thing?

p. 9, the merging table is a little confusing. I'm seeing things like SV 1d10/1d6. Does that mean I roll 1d10 and divide by the result of a 1d6?

p. 13, Nanofabrication. I don't like how it now takes longer to program blueprints. While increasing time to make blueprints might seem like it'll restrict what players can do, keep in mind that some tasks are too time consuming to complete without time-accelerated VR (unless the GM gives you *a lot* of time). Adding more time shouldn't amount to much in the grand sceme of things.

While there is mention of breaking blueprint DRM, there is no mention of breaking the DRM on nanofabbers.

p. 16, Reputation and Identity. Typo.

Quote:
It is important to note that reputation is closely ti to identity.

It think it should be "closely tied to".
icefyer icefyer's picture
DivineWrath wrote:On p. 3,

DivineWrath wrote:
On p. 3, Post-Mortem Uploads, is skill loss really something that should happen? If you have someone's head, you probably have that person's stack as well. Also, can't you put the person in medical stasis using a nanobandage? Actually, looking at it now, can it still do that in EP 2?

I think that only applies to those that don't have a cortical stack. Think of the cortical stack like the hard drive while the brain / cyberbrain is the processor + memory. You don't have a hard drive and suddenly cut off the power, naturally the data would start degrading or even be lost entirely.

ubik2 ubik2's picture
DivineWrath wrote:What is

DivineWrath wrote:
What is 1d10/1 supposed to mean?

The number before the slash is the amount of stress taken if you fail the WIL test, while the number after the slash is the stress taken if you succeed. This is detailed on p. 34 of Actions and Combat under Stress Value.
Xagroth Xagroth's picture
DivineWrath wrote:On p. 3,

DivineWrath wrote:
On p. 3, Post-Mortem Uploads, is skill loss really something that should happen? If you have someone's head, you probably have that person's stack as well. Also, can't you put the person in medical stasis using a nanobandage? Actually, looking at it now, can it still do that in EP 2?

I checked and medichines can still put you in medical stasis. Does that protect you from skill loss?

There is no mention of rules for putting a recently deceased biomorph head into a ego bridge to retrieve the ego. For instance, when you have an ego bridge but no healing vat.

Expanding on what Ice has said, consider that sometimes the stack has been blown over (not broken... just lost in the clutter), or the morph directly has no stack whatsoever (Jovians, assassins...), etc...

So why do you want to do this? Well, simply put, interrogation comes to mind faster than "saving another PC's charsheet". As for the rules for this, I'd treat the head as a normal morph regarding the ego bridge, and rule as ok the nanobandages option for preservation.

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
Thanks Xagroth.

Thanks Xagroth.

Interrogation. One of the many things I might want to do if I'm trying to save transhumanity from extinction.

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
I've ran into a brick wall

I've ran into a brick wall regarding blueprints. There doesn't seem to be any rules for blueprints for gear higher than [Major] Complexity or blueprints for morphs. This matters if you are trying to make a morph yourself, as whether or not you have the blueprints can affect the make time by 5-10 times longer.

Urthdigger Urthdigger's picture
I don't believe such a thing

Mistaken

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
Huh?

Huh?

The rules already say that making a synthmorph takes (MP + 1) weeks, Pods (MP +1) months, and biomorphs takes (MP + 6) months. This is before the 5-10 multiplier for no blueprints.

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
Another question. How much

Another question. How much work do you have to put in to make morphs? I assume that most of the time is waiting for the morphs to grow and fabbers to make parts. I don't think there would be a whole lot to do until another part is made or a important step in a morph's growth phase is reached.

Yet another question. Can you speed up the rate of making synthmorphs by using more fabbers and larger fabbers?

o11o1 o11o1's picture
I think that using more

I think that using more fabbers would just allow you to create multiple morphs in parallel, each given fabber job still takes the same time.

A slight smell of ions....

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
I don't think a medium fabber

I don't think a medium fabber has the volume to build a single morph in one go. The medium fabber has room for 4 liters, but the average human body is 70-90 liters. A similar sized synthmorph is going to have to be built in pieces.

Xagroth Xagroth's picture
o11o1 wrote:I think that

o11o1 wrote:
I think that using more fabbers would just allow you to create multiple morphs in parallel, each given fabber job still takes the same time.

I dunno in 2E, but in 1E the advantage of Pods against biomorphs regarding the "building" was precisely that Pods would be "grown" in parts, then stitched together using cyberware to cover for the things that took too much time (like brains and the nervous system).
I always translated that to "you have several organs and pieces growing at the same time, balancing the number of each so you finish with a full batch of pods you can process continously", compensating the slower growing organs/pieces with more "printers", so for example you would have five hearts growing at the same time, but only one femur, so when the skeleton was finished you would have a full set of organs to put inside (and muscles and all that), and the next heart would be ready when the next cycle of one each was ready.

I think, however, that the building times are too abstract here. It's not the same thing to print a Spare synth than a full Reaper!

o11o1 o11o1's picture
Something like "Minimum time

Something like "Minimum time 1 weeks for the cyberbrain, then 1 week for every MP the morph is worth?"

Wait... Except... that's already very close to the existing rules. That actually is the rule for Synthmorphs, now that I check.

Pods are in months instead of weeks.

I guess at the point where we want to apply multiple fabbers, I would rule that the "+1 week" is in reference to the core cyberbrain and control parts that can't be split up.

In practice, any firewall agent working this hard to have a bunch of stuff working at once might need more problems thrown at them at one time. (or possibly less and just skip to the end where they have the thing in question).

Though having to explain why you're hogging all these fabbers might be a decent adventure seed in itself.

A slight smell of ions....

Xagroth Xagroth's picture
o11o1 wrote:

o11o1 wrote:

In practice, any firewall agent working this hard to have a bunch of stuff working at once might need more problems thrown at them at one time. (or possibly less and just skip to the end where they have the thing in question).

Bodybank bussiness require more difinition, since they should use something like this.

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
Can beta forks improve

Can beta forks improve themselves? Lets say that all alpha forks were destroyed, backups corrupted, and so forth, except a lone beta fork. Could this fork improve itself (like improve skills)? Would there be any special rules I should look out for?

CordialUltimate2 CordialUltimate2's picture
Beta forks are alphas with

Beta forks are alphas with selective amnesia. They can do anything Alpha can do and only get stats, memories modified.

Exurgents wanna eat your ass and you are low on ammo? Register to mobile gear catalogue at eldrich.host.mesh! ORDER NOW! FOR FREE PLASMA MINIMISSILE PACK! *explosive delivery options included

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
It looks like you can't

It looks like you can't resist psychosurgery any more. In EP 1, you resisted with you WIL. Also, you had to resist even if it was for something you wanted (which didn't always make sense). Perhaps its for the best that you can't resist anymore.

Xagroth Xagroth's picture
DivineWrath wrote:It looks

DivineWrath wrote:
It looks like you can't resist psychosurgery any more. In EP 1, you resisted with you WIL. Also, you had to resist even if it was for something you wanted (which didn't always make sense). Perhaps its for the best that you can't resist anymore.

There was an Advantage that would grant a +10/level to Pyschosurgery attempts for voluntary alterations... I'm guessing it was too much of a headache for everyone to manage the consequences of psychosurgery your own forks...

eaton eaton's picture
So, in prepping for Gencon I

So, in prepping for Gencon I'm finally getting a chance to realllly dig in and it's looking awesome. A couple of things that left me scratching my head:

Post-Mortem Uploads, page 3:

Quote:
To upload the ego from a corpse or destroyed synthmorph, the deceased morph:
  • Must have died within the last 2 hours if a biomorph (otherwise cell death makes the ego irretrievable).

  • Must not have died from damage that would destroy the brain tissue or cyberbrain (GM’s discretion).


For every 15 minutes after death, an ego recovered from a biomorph loses 5 points from a single skill (player’s choice). Putting a dead morph in a healing vat halts skill loss but doesn’t reverse losses from before then.

After several readings, I'm still not clear on how this differs from the process of popping someone's stack after they die and restoring them to a new morph. Is this for biomorphs that lack a cortical stack? (Hmmm, nope, Synthmorphs are listed…) The "must not have died from damage to brain tissue…" makes it sound like the cortical stack is just an interface, rather than a rolling backup as described earlier in the chapter. Finally, if I'm understanding it the way I think I am, there is now a permanent 5 point skill penalty for every 15 minutes that pass between death and resleeving from the recovered stack.

Overall, it looks like an interesting set of rule mechanics but I have no idea how it matches up with what's stated in the rest of the chapter?

Hailspork Hailspork's picture
Those are the rules for

Those are the rules for retrieving an ego from a dead morph. If you have the cortical stack, use the cortical stack rules, which don't decay.
With the lost skill points, I'm curious if psychosurgery could help with that? I guess merging could do it, though it doesn't explicitly say that.

Xagroth Xagroth's picture
eaton wrote:

eaton wrote:

Overall, it looks like an interesting set of rule mechanics but I have no idea how it matches up with what's stated in the rest of the chapter?

Rogue alpha forks galore! Or the dead brain seeking to recover the stolen complete alpha in the Cortical Stack, or forensic situations...

That's why it is so much interesting to carry a Farcaster :p

eaton eaton's picture
Quote:Those are the rules for

Quote:
Those are the rules for retrieving an ego from a dead morph. If you have the cortical stack, use the cortical stack rules, which don't decay.

Feels like it could use clarification on that point — cortical stack rules if the morph has a stack you can retrieve, "emergency uploading" rules if they don't have a cortical stack. A note in the paragraph to that extend would help clarify things a lot.
DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
Some clarity would be nice.

Some clarity would be nice. Knowing what the rules say thus far, one might be tempted to pop the stack from a severed head and resleeve (to keep all skills), instead of dropping the same head into a healing vat and regrow the morph.

I also think its note worthy to mention that nanobandage do not mention it will stasis a morph. Medichines does, but nanobandages nope. I think its an important distinction to make for us old timers (or for the devs to fix).