Shadowrun House Rules

The following are my hours rules for my Shadowrun games:

  1. No accents; just speak naturally and we’ll all use our imaginations.
  2. Even after character generation, Karma and nuyen may be exchanged at a rate of 1 karma for 2000 nuyen and vice versa. This allows characters who rely more on one of these two advancement pathways to ensure that they have the resources they need. Karma earned in this way does add to a character’s Street Cred; donating a bunch of money to the local orphanage is a good way to make an impression as might be paying to repair the damage you caused to the local watering hole.
  3. Used Cyberware may be purchased at character generation.
  4. Initiations and Submersion are possible at character generation using starting karma.
  5. Hiding is a valid specialization of the Sneaking ability.  A Hiding Test uses Intuition and the Mental Limit instead of Agility and the Physical one.
  6. Omniscience is a Passive, Directional detection spell combining the effects of Clairaudience and Clairvoyance (p. 286, SR5) with a Drain of F-1.
  7. Rather than creating and maintaining full sheets for contacts, their skills are derived from their Connection Rating.  For more information, see Contacts by the Numbers.
  8. We’ve heavily modified the reputation rules.
  9. The GM reserves the right to call your character a Freak (see p. 123, Run Faster) for reasons other than those listed throughout Run Faster.
  10. In cases where spells, powers, gear, etc. are in multiple books, the core rulebooks take precedence.  Thus, the version of the Fashion spell on page 189 of Stolen Souls is ignored in favor of the one in Street Magic on page 119 of Street Grimoire.
  11. The Crack File matrix action can be performed either as an Attack action or a Sleaze action.
  12. Spells and spirit powers that would impact a character’s behavior for X number of combat turns (e.g. the Fear critter power) only do so for a number of combat phases. This means characters lose a number of actions, not whole sets of actions.
  13. Direct combat spells and similar complex forms have a base damage of Force (or Limit) divided by two round up. This makes them slightly more powerful than the rules as written but not so powerful that using them instead of indirect combat spells or simple Matrix Attack actions is the clear winner under all circumstances.
  14. We use the following fading damage values for the following complex forms:
    • Cleaner: L–2
    • Diffusion: L–2
    • Editor: L–1
    • Infusion: L–2
    • Static Veil: L–3
    • Pulse Storm: L–3
    • Puppeteer: L+1
    • Resonance Channel: L–3
    • Resonance Spike: L–3
    • Resonance Veil: L–3
    • Static Bomb: L–1
    • Stitches: L–3
    • Tattletale: L–3

I’m sure there are more that we’ve used over the years at my table, but these are the ones that we’ve bothered to enumerate. The others are usually GM calls made in the moment that aren’t consistent from session to session, though we do try to stay consistent within the same session.