[Shadow-Hack] Oldschool Hack Meets Mr. Johnson

Well, after quite a bit of work, I've completed an alpha document of "Shadow-Hack", my Shadowrun - Oldschool Hack mashup. It's obviously incomplete, but I want to put it out there before I go out of town for three weeks starting tomorrow. I still want to add a few more classes, fill in the place holders, and add more content. I haven't finished the hand-outs or the token sheets yet either, but I'll get around to those as I get some free time here and there. It's almost a complete game but you may still need to figure out a few things on your own, so keep that in mind. Anyway, let me know what you guys think.

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  • Neat! I've been itching for some Shadow-fun so this might well be just what I need.

    Fair to assume that the classes that're coming up are The Adept and the Shaman?
  • I'm keeping an eye on this with great interest!
  • Cool! I like what I see so far. This is shaping up very nicely. Thanks, Zachary!
  • Holy crap this looks awesome.
  • Very nice! You published this literally hours before I wanted to start up a game with it.

    One suggestion I'd make is to have the inherent class bonuses be advantages instead of key abilities. For example, there's no way to have any character other than a decker go into the matrix, even if they get a cyberdeck as equipment; the decker's inherent ability is what lets a character get stuff done online - at least from what I understand. In this instance, would it be fair to say that anyone with a deck but who's not a decker can still try, but with a reduced bonus?

    Also, if you want to include astral combat and matrix combat, I think it's a really short step further. The combat system is already perfectly suited for it, as combat zones can become matrix nodes and enemies can become IC. Using the same system would also allow everyone to act at the same time, but across different layers of reality.

    Keep up the good work! I'll definitely be trying to get a game started with this system shortly.
  • This is great, Zachary. Will you be adding in other classes? Like someone mentioned, Adept, Mystic Adept, Face, possibly some of the more niche ones like Rocker, ex-Star, etc, etc?

    I run a weekly SR4a game, and I'd love to give my players a crack at this. I also thought it might make a good way to introduce people to the Sixth World, without having to go through the heavy process of explaining the rules (which I had to do a few weeks ago to a group of non-gamer friends that were looking for something to do late at night).
  • I'm happy to see you guys are digging it!

    Classes: The upcoming classes are going to be Shaman, Adept, Mercenary, and Ganger. I'm planning on making the Adept a physical adept (not planning on a mystic adept). I'd love to do The Face, Rocker, Body Guard, Investigator, and Bounty Hunter as well, but we'll see if I ever get around to it.

    Non-Deckers: I agree with you Alexandre. Perhaps the decker's inherent should be automatic possession of the necessary equipment and flat bonus to electronics? That way, if other classes pick up the required gear, they too can use the Matrix but without the bonus. Same goes for riggers.
  • That sounds great, Zachary! It makes sense to apply it to riggers as well.

    Out of curiosity, what tools did you use to make the character sheets? They're really slick.
  • here's the first question for your FAQ: WHERE DO I SEND MY MONEY?!
  • Thanks for all the props guys! If I wasn't so busy with work and school and baby and family and moving and all the other crazy stuff that's going on, I'd get a game going with my buddies. But alas, it's nigh imposible. So please, somebody play it and tell me what's right and wrong. When I finally do get a game going, maybe it could be nearly complete.

    Havoc, you mentioned astral and matrix combat. On my first pass through, I had started working on a page called "alternate realities" which covered just those things. I hit few snags trying to make it awesome and decided not to let it slow me down, so I shelved it for the moment. Since you confirmed my belief that it would be a really neat feature, I'll try to bring it back in. Combat in three different realities using the same combat system is a pretty dope concept. Any thoughts on a vehicle combat system?

    As for how I made it, I know I'm not using the best methods but this is the only way I know how to get it looking decent as of right now. Basically, each page is created in photoshop at high resolution, then I go into Open Office and set the PSD to the background of the current page. I need to pick some people's brains for better options definitely, but it works for now. The biggest problem I see is that the text is not selectable. Each page is just a big image which limits the special features like search. I'll need to port it eventually to a real PDF creation system like InDesign or something else.
  • As a former graphic designer, I'd definitely recommend InDesign - it's perfect for this kind of work, and you can likely just import your PSD directly and take it from there.

    I'm meeting with my colleagues tomorrow to talk about how to work out magic and matrix combat along those lines; I'll toss in vehicular combat as well! I'd try using the same kind of combat, but having the zones be temporary. For example, in a car chase down a freeway, the center lanes could be an open zone while the right-hand edge could be a tight zone and the oncoming lane could be a hazardous zone. If the cars take an exit, the zones change and merge, making for some impromptu attacks or maneuvers to avoid crashing. Something like that!

    I'm planning to run this in the SR4 timeframe (meaning wireless world), so I may alter the decker a bit to make him able to hack into enemy's weapons to make them backfire and other neat "techno-rogue" tricks.
  • Awesome Alexandre! I've taken a brief crack at InDesign a few years ago and didn't have a lot of success, but I know that's probably the best way to do it.

    I really like your suggestions on vehicle chase combat. Sounds like these alternative combat rules will work pretty seemlessly. Let me know what comes out of your meeting.

    I'm going to start working on a new class sheet tonight, hopefully, if my evening pans out the way I'm expecting it to. I went to sleep early last night so tonight I can probably stay up later and try to get to work! :D
  • I really like what I see here. Hope this goes complete as soon as possible as it looks like it will be a lot of fun playing it. Thank you for sharing!
  • Thanks Darcadia! Almost finished a new class sheet and I made a few corrections in the text. The next class is The Fixer, designed to fill the role of The Face, with a cooler name.

    Havoc, did you manage to get that meeting going regarding the magic and matrix combat?
  • Zachary, we finally managed to get it going after numerous failed tries. We didn't touch on magic combat (it won't be used initially in our game), but we did work out some base rules regarding matrix. Here's what we have so far:

    - Buying a cyberdeck automatically grants you an attack program, which you pick just like you would a starting weapon (melee weapons become local attack programs, while ranged weapons become remote attack programs)
    - Additional programs can be purchased just like weapons and armor with the same rules (ballistic armor becomes remote defense, while impact armor becomes local defense)
    - Matrix combat takes place at exactly the same time as normal combat for all initiative purposes to preserve ease of gameplay

    Do you think this makes sense? I'll let you know how it works in practice once we try it out!
  • This is awesome! I had similar ideas myself. Having real-world combat taking place simultaneously with astral and matrix combat? Bad ass. I'm still dying to playtest this game for real. The Mom's Basement playtest was useful. I definitely need to clear some things up and finish the FAQ.

    Thanks for the input Havoc!
  • This looks fun. Ditto on the similar thoughts. Also ditto to the hopes of the Adept and Shaman coming on board.
  • This sounds awesome. I tried to download from the Wordpress posting but link to the PDF is broken. If someone has a copy, can you email it to me. Just private message me for the address. Thanks!
  • Thanks for the compliments guys! Sorry about that Lor, looks like the link broke. I'll fix that straight away.
  • Links have been fixed! Thanks for pointing that out. You should have no problem downloading the PDF now. Enjoy! :)

    PS: Working on the FAQ, Black Market, and Shaman.
  • Glad this is still going.
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