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Khai and Jack's Adept Musings

Adepts are generally worse than everyone else at their specialties, but better than what everyone else is worst at. Remember to keep your mind as flexible as your powers. Picking and choosing what abilities you should have active before you enter a situation is 90% of the fight, and can score you a victory where you would ordinarily have none (see HELP ADDPOINT). Powers can be indirectly or directly useful to the situation or playstyle, and there's a lot of them to choose from. They can also fill a support role.

On the subject of unarmed combat: Yes, adepts have a variety of interesting and unique unarmed combat powers. However, because an adept can only have so many powers active at a time (capped by magic rating), these powers have a high opportunity cost in exchange for relatively low benefits to the adept's combat effectiveness. That said, killing hands 4 + penetrating strike 3 + titanium bone lacing is effectively the same as a (STR+7)D weapon, which is a much higher damage code than any melee weapon available in the game. The cost for this is 6.25 power points, some additional point(s) due to the essence cost of the bone lacing, no reach, and no weapon focus.

On the subject of cyberware/bioware: Yes, they do reduce an adept's magic rating, and thus limit the total adept powers that can be active at the same time. But the magic lost from cyber/bioware can be substantially less than the magic cost for keeping a power active. If there is some bonus that you want to keep permanently active, it is well worth looking at 'ware options, even in chargen. There are also a variety of 'ware bonuses that do not have an adept equivalent.
NOTE: To determine total magic lost, add together the essence costs of cyberware and half the bio index costs of bioware.
NOTE: Adept improved sense powers are considered natural, whereas cyber vision mods are considered artificial and thus aren't as effective against lighting conditions.

Here is a comparison of magic cost for a few adept powers vs magic loss for equivalent bonuses from 'ware (assuming cultured or beta grade). In addition, it may be possible to stack adept powers and 'ware together for even higher totals.

Bonus Adept Magic Cost 'ware Magic Loss Stackable? Notes
Quickness 0.5/rating 0.15/rating yes
Strength 0.5/rating 0.15/rating yes
Body 0.5/rating 0.3/rating yes 'ware options can also give ballistic/impact armor, or other bonuses, in addition to body
Initiative 2/3/5 (various) no essentially every 'ware option is more efficient than increased reflexes

The caveat is that if you only need a bonus/power active some of the time, then an adept's ability to deactivate powers and activate other powers is a more flexible use of their magic rating than losing points for permanent bonuses.

Some notable 'ware where adept powers do not provide a similar effect:

  • anything decking or rigging related
  • smartlink (If you're struggling, this is cheap essence and nuyen wise, and this with a gun can carry you through encounters)
  • enhanced articulation
  • trauma damper
  • anything that increases ballistic armor

NOTE: while bioware damage compensators will limit the effectiveness of trauma dampers, the equivalent adept power, resist pain, is fully compatible with dampers.

Some notable adept powers where 'ware do not provide a similar effect:

  • astral perception
  • side step (+dodge dice for cheap)
  • counterstrike (+melee combat dice when defending)
  • magic resistance (+dice on resistance rolls)
  • pain relief (heals stun damage, cannot use on self; the only way possible of doing this without waiting)

Notable adept powers that are far superior to any bonuses available elsewhere:

  • kinesics
  • rapid healing

Kinesics provides a massive boost to the adept's ability to perform all charisma-related tasks, including negotiating for cash or obtaining high grade gear without suffering through availoffset.
It is very much worth grabbing the maximum rank of kinesics in chargen because the extra money you gain over time will pile up. Similarly, you don't have to have it active all the time. Throw it on when doing an autorun turnin or purchase, shut it off for combat. Aliases can help with the tedium.

khai_adept.txt · Last modified: 2022/11/19 14:09 by khai