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 Character Concepts: Mage Hunter

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jo-chan
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PostSubject: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Mon Jul 27, 2009 2:14 pm

I was watching a fantasy show the other day and they had a person specially trained to hunt down witches and warlocks, very resistant to spells and could kill them in melee, and I thought 'that'd be an awesome shadowrun character'... so I sat down and made one...

Now, one thing I wasn't dead sure on was whether or not you actually had to be a mage to be able to use the counterspell active skill... I couldn't imagine that you could not be a mage, even though I can't remember reading anything that explicitly states that... please note that this character is not a caster, and is only a mystic adept as opposed to an adept so it can use the counter spell skill

Metatype: orc
Mystic Adept

Attributes
Body: 4
Agility: 5 (7)
Reaction: 5 (9)
Strength: 3
Charisma: 2
Intuition: 4
Logic: 3
Willpower: 4

Edge: 2
Magic: 5

Initiative: 13
Essence: 4


Qualities
+ Magic Resistance 4
+ Mystic Adept
+ Astral Chameleon

- Bad Luck
- Sensitive System


Skills
Athletics Skill Group 1
Influence Skill Group 1

Dodge 4
Unarmed 4
Counterspelling 4
Infiltration 4
Perception 4
Assensing 1
First Aid 1


Adept Powers
Astral Perception
Spell Resistance 2
Killing Hands
Critical Strike 2


Cyberware/Bioware
Reaction Enhancers 2
Muscle Toner 2
Synaptic Boosters 2
Reflex Recorder (Dodge)
Reflex Recorder (Unarmed)


Don't have the knowledge skills, Contacts or other gear in there yet... but as it stands that's 392 BP... what you guys think needs changing, tweaking or is just right? Tell me all Very Happy

So yeah, has 10 points worth of anti magic type stuff, so should be rolling 14 dice to resist most spells (if they are resisted by body or willpower)... has Astral perception and assensing to twll who is a Mage... and infiltration to keep out of sight of magi (since mages can't zap you if they can't see you)... I was half thinking of swapping out the 'Astral Chameleon' skill (there just to be more of a pain for mages) and putting in a Mentor Spirit that adds to counterspelling... but that felt to beardy...
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Mon Jul 27, 2009 9:32 pm

You have a start to what could be a really good character Jo-Chan, I see a few minor glitches that can lead to huge problems. First off you were right, magicians and mystic adepts can use the counter spell skill, but you have no points available to pour your magic attribute into., you've also created a mystic adept with no spells to use. Finally, I know you were going to address this, or you may already have and I didn't notice it, but you have no gear.

I see that your general idea was to simply use the magic as adept powers and essentially just use your skills and qualities to cover the rest, not that bad of an idea. The bad luck quality can be a major down turn though. As much as it doesn't seam to be that big of a deal, it can make a desperate trial for help into a worse situation that you won't be able to fix.

Your skills are all over the place, i see that you wanted to try to make your character somewhat decent in a lot of things, but this only hampers any ability you had in others. Think of it this way, don't make your character fit every possible style, but think of how the character would solve a particular problem. Take Phantom, he can't necessarily hack anything, but he has a high enough logic attribute to default a lot of things, and if all else fails, he 'fixes' the problem with his own brand of things. A helicopter high in the sky has you pinned down, he can simply use a rope to lasso a girder and climb up to kill everyone or fix the rope to a building and force it to crash, etc.

You definitely have a good start, just try to think in terms of the character, not yourself.
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wngd_phantom
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Mon Jul 27, 2009 9:47 pm

As a few side notes, I'm not quite sure what fantasy series you were talking about, but I would like to know for sure. But try to rework your qualities to fit the character better, Sensitive system does somehow work for this character, so i am very impressed with that bit of trickery. Signature is great, your signature can be really anything memorable that might be traced to your character later on. In Phantom's case, he is usually a person who leaves in his wake massive amounts of chaos, death, and destruction, and usually a person cowering in fear. An idea for a 'Mage Hunter', use addiction. Most people consider addictions to be a chemical or a purely physical thing, but they can in all actuality be very mental. I.E. Your character feels an absolute need to hunt magic users, she hates them with a passion and feels an utter gut-wrenching twist in her stomach when she has to work with one on a mission. Essentially you would have to make a resist test to make sure you don't pound your partner into dust, or kill the newly awakened kid that is trying to make a few bucks by panhandling with levitation tricks. It can be unique because this game is almost about what you can perceive the rules as being, nut just what they are.

Your skills could use a bit of tweaking as such: you don't have any specializations, which can save you a lot of cash, and some of them can lead to a lot of problems. Here was my idea.

Unarmed Combat (Martial Arts) : 3
Assensing (Aura Reading) : 2
Counterspelling : 4
Inflitration : 4
Perception : 4
Intimidation (Physical) : 1
Dodge (Melee Combat) : 3

This way you are much better at combat, you can still be stealthy, perceptive and good at dodging. Your use of the skill group for influence was a bit broad, I'd imagine this character isn't the best with people, and one of the best ways to mess with a magician is to rock their proverbial boat and keep them intimidated, in hind sight i should have went for a different specialization for phantom, but i'll deal with that in time. As for the athletics group, you have the agility score to default in a lot of things, so the only useful skill I could ever see you using would be gymnastics to help you dodge things better when on full defense.
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Mon Jul 27, 2009 10:26 pm

Less a comment on the character as it stands now, and more a 'where to go from here' - as the character advances, look at initating and picking up shielding, and/or some of the more advanced versions of shielding found in street magic. As an added benefit, shielding foci are cheaper then counterspelling foci. These can work together to produce a character that is nearly immune to magic - I took a direction somewhat similar to this for Odin for Something Went Wrong: Counter spelling 5, initation 5, shielding + reflection meta-magics, magic resistance of up to 6, high will, high body, and a force 3 shielding focus. He rolls up to 28(body) or 24(will) spell resistance before will/body boosts and spells he resist bounce back at the caster. Haven't actually had a chance to play with that aspect in game, but I'm looking forward to it.
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Mon Jul 27, 2009 10:35 pm

I see what you mean with the 'no points left for magic' thing... I originally thought that mystic adepts got astral perception as part of it... but then got informed that they didn't, so I put it in, without modifying other stuff to make it work... hmmm, that's going to be tough to fix up... need to get some 25 points from somewhere to put magic stat to 6... else drop most of his cyber/bioware... can't really drop any powers, except maybe the spell resistance... but that's the core character concept Neutral...

Essentially I was going for melee, sneaky, anti-mage... I didn't think at the time I was trying to be too many things, but maybe Neutral

The lack of spells was intentional... he's an anti-mage... on top of that he'd only be able to cast at force 2 anyway, and that would be overcasting... but if you wanted to insist on having something, maybe something like 'detect mage' (rather than a meta-type) or something... just a thought

As for the skills, I have to admit I got a little carried away with the 'easy to level up'... cause specialisations are remarkably cheap karma wise... the reason I took low levels in both influence and athletics is to avoid defaulting... for each of those skills it's almost like adding 2 points into... 1 skill, then also knocking off the -1 for the default...

The athletics one was completely in character, if he's hunting people down he'd need to be able to move around quickly... the influence one I saw as someone who knew they weren't good with people, so they studied the fundamentals of psychology or the like to be able to get by without making an arse of themselves. I kind of like the idea of him being intimidating... hmmm

But yeah, I guess it really depends on how you want o to shape the character...

As for the bad luck quality, yeah, I'm well aware that it can be a major issue... I mean it's 20 BP of bad, it's gotta be pretty bad... in fact I think it should be more, something like "either 1's or 2's count for glitches, whichever you roll more of" or the like, on top of what it's got already Smile ...

Man, that character you made Azon sounds... well... practically impervious to magic... not to mention catastrophic to cast at... not a good time to be a caster with him/her about Smile
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Tue Jul 28, 2009 2:40 am

Just spotted this thread, so apologies if anything I say is out of date.

Coutnerspelling is a magic-linked skill, which means you would need a magic stat of at least 1 to get it. Which essentially means you're an Adept, Mystic Adept, or Magician.

The three main 'mage-killer' archetypes I can think of would be an Adept with Astral Perception and Killing hands, with a high Counterspelling, a Combat Mage with a good weapon focus and high counterspelling, and a Street Samurai with high Magic Resistance.

Or an AI Rigger. AI Riggers have a pretty good chance at smoking anything in the physical.

Of course, mages aren't nearly so invulnerable as they are in fantasy worlds. There's no real reason to make a dedicated mage-killer. Anyone who's good at combat will be decent at taking on mages. And a sniper rifle with APDS rounds is nothing to play around with.

In Fantasy stories, a Mage-killer is a necessary thing sometimes, because you have wizards who can literally rewrite reality going around out there. When you can't simply flick your wrist and stop time, or turn the ground under an enemy's feet to lava, then you're not on the same level as you are in fantasy.
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Tue Jul 28, 2009 3:17 am

A few thoughts: Rather than going with an "addiction" (I think it would actually be compulsion, which is a bit different) for the explanation for his anti-mage behavior... when I think "witch-hunter" I think of the inquisition. And when I think of the inquisition in the 6th world, I think of the Order of St. Sylvester. It can be found in the Street Magic book. If you need to be hooked up, let me know.
Imagine a holy acolyte, his/her purpose in life being to cleanse the world of those unholy and malignant forces who would abuse God's gifts for evil. Such a character wouldn't even need to be a rabid anti-magic sociopath. They would simply be a person who sees themselves as being gifted by God with the power to save innocents and souls by cleansing the world of those who use magic in the service of the Devil.
Also, since you've already got a bit of a martial arts focus, why not spring the points for Tai Chi? It helps in making willpower rolls. It's found in Arsenal. Again, if you need the book, let me know.

If you're scrounging for points Jo, I would suggest trimming points off of the augmentation. Augmentation in game simply requires money and time, and you can get that fairly easily off of one game. No need to go for it at character creation if you're hurting for points. Also, buying a few more low quality flaws can add up quickly.

Now, not to pull you in a completely different direction, but if you want to kill mages effectively, snipers have always had the best shot (pun not intended, but there it is.) They can hit the wiz-kid from a distance from which the hapless mage won't be able to easily perceive them (assuming the first shot doesn't put them down). They're always sneaky on top of that, so even if the unluckly awakened doesn't go down with the first shot, they still have to find the fellow before they can retaliate... which will most likely give the sniper a chance at another shot. Buying the long-arms skill would be costly at this point though, so maybe leave that for later if you want to implement it at all.

Phantom's right on bad-luck... it's really an albatross. Big time. I'd go with something a bit different. Addiction and Allergy are over-used flaws... but that's because they offer the best points to consequences ratio in the books. Buying them both provides a healthy dose of BP for any character.
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Tue Jul 28, 2009 10:05 am

4th ed specifically says mystic adept or magician for counterspelling, not a regular adept.
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Tue Jul 28, 2009 11:51 am

Also one tiny itty bitty little flaw with the positive qualities: you can't take magic resistance with adept, mystic adept, or magician.
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Tue Jul 28, 2009 2:04 pm

Oh really?... damn... That was basically one of the main concepts behind the character build (the magic resistance thing) Neutral... arh well. Sounds like you're better off just making a sniper really...
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Tue Jul 28, 2009 2:16 pm

Don't give up so easily, Jo. It's a really cool concept. Magic resistance really isn't that necessary. It was more or less put in to give Sammies and tech-boyz some protection vs. the various mana-slingers out there. A magic character who's designed to take out other magic users is a different concept, one that the boys and girls at Fanpro likely didn't think of, and still workable within the system even without the resistance. Basically, you just need to have a few jacked-up stats rather than relying on it.
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Tue Jul 28, 2009 2:30 pm

that and, snipers are not the greatest, most spells have an unlimited range and no clip size. And an effective mage can easily out maneuver any gunner. Levitation can lift 200kg per point of force at an unlimited range (you just need to see them or whatever they happen to be on.) so you could simply fling an air conditioner at them and crush, or rip them in half, or rip the gun to shreds.
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Tue Jul 28, 2009 4:08 pm

I think this could be a very interesting character concept. Throw in the magic resistance, keep him as a non-magic user, and give him some really good abilities in melee. Maybe even throw in a melee weapon like a sword or staff. Going with the archetype of something similar to a face with magic resistance could get you close enough to a mage that doesn't know your coming. And on top of all that, not having astral perception means you don't shine like a beacon in astral space, remember, if you can assence them, they can assence you too.

In essence, get close enough to your magic using target, and hit em quick before they can really get any spells off. I had a similar character concept once that relied on blending into crowds (I believe there is a quality of blandness or the like) sneaking when needed, and generally just gradually getting closer to the target, then something like taser rounds or shock pads in the hands were used to subdue the mage. Stun damage to a mage can be extremely potent, especially if they start losing their drain rolls. And if you can knock them out quickly, strap on a mage mask and some bindings, and you can take em back to your Johnson, or just kill them while they are down. They are of course, less than human in the mage-hunter's eyes.
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Tue Jul 28, 2009 5:28 pm

You know... *fished out his witch hunter robin dvds* I haven't watched these forever. Thanks for making me think of them.
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PostSubject: Re: Character Concepts: Mage Hunter   Wed Jul 29, 2009 6:40 am

heh, you're welcome Smile
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