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Sithspawn's Net Guide to Slicers & Computer Matrix Combat.

 

What is the Matrix?

The Matrix is the Information Galactic Highway.  From the smallest personal computer, to the Holonet, to the super computers of the Imperial fleet.  

But what is it?

The MATRIX could be described as a living computer entity.  It is an infinite world made up of billions of smaller computer systems.  

 

Slicers or Hackers, or computer geeks.  Whatever you call them, be they hacking from home or be Corporate Sector Wage Slaves, these are the ones who know how to 'surf' the Matrix.

How the Matrix appears to your PC's is up to you.  Personally I have each System be designed according to it's owner.  So Knight Industries system may well look like a Medieval Castle, Reg's Speeder may appear as a Speeder Lot, while Big Dick's home system could be.. well, anything.

When a character enters the Matrix they can usually choose their own form, though this may well depend on the system they are accessing from.

Pocket Computer (100 credits)  - these have limited access capabilities.  Full Matrix access is not possible as pocket computers don't have neural connections.

Cyber-Deck (500 credits - 2000 credits with implant connection) - these are the tools of the true Slicer.  Two kinds of access is possible.  A Neutal connector is placed on the users temples, not requiring any implants, or via a direct Cyber-jack implant.  Either way transfers the users consciousness into the Matrix.

Corporate System (20,000+ credits) - As per a Cyber-Deck, though usually much more powerful giving it's users extra abilities and access to nearly unlimited software and Cyberpunk Programs.

 

Layout of the Matrix

CPU (Central Processing Unit) - this is what controls the system and is usually well guarded.  Large Corporations or Imperial systems will often have many defenses.  Once the CPU is accessed the Slicer can do whatever he wishes to a system.  The CPU can only be Accessed by characters with Computer Engineer (A).  They will have to make an opposed roll vs. the CPU using their Advanced (A) skill only.

CPU Access Modifiers  
Dump all users  none
Delete all Patrol Software  +5
Shut down system  +10
Virus infect the system  +15

Security Gate / Security Alert - in other words, 'What is your password?'  The Slicer must roll their Security skill to by-pass Security Gates & Alerts.  If the Slicer rolls 3 less than the difficulty for a Security Alert then an alarm will sound to the System Administrator.

Data Store - this is where the info is.  It's the same as a Windows directory or folder, though in the Matrix it could appear as anything from a house to a blue ball.  Just because you can get the data though doesn't mean that the file isn't passworded or in code.

Access Terminal - whether from a pocket computer, Cyber-Deck, or the on desk office terminal, this is where you access from.  Some access terminals can be remote access, connecting the small system to the Computer Matrix. 

Patrol / Guardian / Sentinel - these are defense programs.  They can either sit in one location to protect a Data Store or the CPU, or roam the system looking for intruders.  Without proper access codes these defense programs will always attack, their aim being to dump Slicers from the system.

 

A Simple Computer System

It works like this:  This system can only be accessed via one of four Access Terminals.  The user must first pass the Security Gate (Moderate difficulty for a Slicer).  The user can either access the first Data Store (Directory/folder) or continue to one of the next two Data Stores.  However, the System Administrator has invested in a Patrol Program.  Unauthorised users would need to destroy the Patrol before proceeding.  There is then another Security Gate that needs to be by-passed to gain access to the Data Store or the CPU.  This would be an Easy to Moderate system for a Slicer to access.

You may not want to always draw the system, especially for large Corporations that have thousands of Access Terminals and Data Stores.  A Small area of the system could be drawn, or describe it as it is viewed

eg. As you exit the blue grass valley a castle only seen in fairy stories, and on the Knight Industries corporate logo, looms before you.  As you approach you find that the Draw-Bridge to the Castle is raised.  To your right is a computer post with four buttons requiring the correct four digit sequence (This is a Security Gate: Moderate Security is required).  You now find yourself in the courtyard with many smaller buildings in perfect order (Data Stores).  You hear the sound of hooves, what do you do (PC "I hide" - roll dice).  Sorry, you failed to move quick enough.  Before you now is a magnificent white steed, it's rider dressed in resplendent Knights armour wielding a menacing looking Mace.  (This is a Guardian - roll combat).

 

Data Store Access Difficulties / System Costs / CPU Rating

Type of System Access Difficulty System Cost CPU
Personal computer  V.Easy- Difficult  100 cr - 1000 cr 1D-2D
Small Business  Easy - Moderate  5,000 cr - 20,000 cr 2D-3D
Large Corporation  Moderate - Difficult  100,000 cr - 1,000,000 cr 4D-9D
Local Government  Difficult  100,000 cr - 1,000,000 cr 3D-5D
Imperial Military  Difficult - Very Difficult  100,000 cr + 5D-10D

 

Security

Security Gate      Moderate     500 cr

Security Alert      Difficult       1,000 cr

 

Computer Guards

Computer guards and intelligent programs that can either wait for hackers or surf for the intruder.

  Search Security Computers Computers (A) Cost
Patrol  4D  4D  5D  none 5,000 cr
Guardian  7D  8D  7D  2D  15,000 cr
Sentinel  10D  10D  10D - 15D 3D - 5D  30,000 cr

 

Software

These programs may be purchased, though restricted on some worlds, to help access to computer systems.

Cyberpunk Programs gives the Slicer a bonus onto their Attack or Defense skills when in Combat.  Slicer Programs give other bonus's.  Shadow software is used to hide from Patrols or other system users, Skeleton Keys give a bonus vs. Security Gates & alerts while Smart Bombs are simply that, bombs that can be used against all patrols of a type or against an individual (such as the system Administrator who is trying to kick you out!)

Cyberpunk programs

Attack 

 +1D 300 cr

+2D 500 cr

+3D 1000 cr

+4D 2000 cr

Defence

+1D 200 cr

+2D 400 cr

+3D 750 cr

+4D 1000 cr

These are expended once the character disconnects from the system. Being dumped therefore wastes the program.

 

 

 

 

 

Slicer Programs

Shadow Prog.  (Hide/Sneak)

 +1D 200 cr

+2D 300 cr

+3D 500 cr

+4D 750 cr

Skeleton Key (Security)

 +1D 300 cr

+2D 500 cr

+3D 750 cr

+4D 1000 cr

Smart Bomb  (dumps all guards of a type or used as a weapon against a single target)

vs. Patrol 500 cr

vs. Guardian 1000 cr

vs. Sentinel 2000 cr

vs. All 10,000 cr

Damage 3D 200 cr.

Damage 5D 350 cr

Damage 7D 500 cr

Each program can be used only once. Using a vs. All Smart Bomb clears the system of all Computer Guards. However, it would only take a moment for someone to reload them and does not dump users.

 

Combat in the MATRIX

It's got to happen.  It will happen, the first time you encounter a Patrol.  MATRIX combat is much like normal combat, though no one really gets hurt, just dumped from the system.

Skills required: Computers & Computer Eng (A)

MATRIX Combat Skills

Computer Attack / Defense Total - this is the users Computers + Computer Eng (A)

You can play Computer-wounds as per 2nd Edition rules, or if you like my hit-point rules roll Computers to a Computer-Stamina Point total.

Strength / Damage - This is your characters Computers skill (do not add Computers (A))

 

Computer Combat

Each character declares their actions (see below).  Most of the actions are for Advanced (A) skilled characters.  The Advanced (A) skill is added to the combat roll.  In order for the move to be successful the character must move difficulty number with their Advanced dice only.  I therefore recommend using different coloured dice for the Advanced.  All dice are counted for the attac total.  Descriptions of moves are below.

 

Attack Actions

Move Blaster / Melee / Brawl

Difficulty none

Damage +0

 

Move Bolt of Lightening

Difficulty 5

Damage +1D

Effect Character form a bolt of lightening in their hand, firing it at their opponent

 

Move Cyber-Tera Kasi Kick Combo

Difficulty 10

Damage +1D+2

Effect Character levitates and delivers a multitude of kicks at the target

 

Move Sphere of Doom

Difficulty 15

Damage +2D to all nearby targets

Effect Creates a sphere of energy around character that explodes outwards in all directions

 

Move Hack / Virus / Dump

Difficulty Opponents Computer Eng (A) +5

Effect Dumps opponent from the system

 

Move Unauthorised Access / Alter opponents form

Difficulty Opponents Computer Eng (A) +10

Effect Either alter Opponents appearance or their Access so they too are deemed as an Intruder.

 

Defense Actions

Move Slow-time dodge

Difficulty 5

Effect If difficulty is made Roll an extra 1D for this Dodge or Parry & count 6s as in a Wild Die (ignore 1s)

Move Lesser Shield / Great Shield

Difficulty 10 / 15

Damage +1D / +2D Armour

 

Program Terminates...