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Currently, I am delving into playing a Technomancing Rigger, but part of his whole deal is the hacking bit (because seriously, why the heck not?!). While reading complex forms, I hit a beehive of questions I thought I had already answered.

Primarily, the Complex forms are the issue at hand. I have noticed that they serve like programs built into the character. Does this mean that they shouldn't also be able to grab a software program and go to town digitally as well as with their avatar (as long as they aren't Full VR)? Or even with it? When using a living avatar, do any abilities/skills factor on top of the complex forms?

Let's not even discuss how Sprites come into the equation, because I feel that they are extremely straightforward (since they are written for the technomancer at large). Some of the rigging rules might be a question from me for later but that will obviously be another topic.

EDIT 1: To clarify, can Technomancers use software and complex forms simultaneously? Can they even use their living persona/avatar simultaneously with software?

EDIT 2: Lastly, does using a living avatar allow the use of stats with complex forms?

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I'm sorry but I am not exactly clear on what you are asking. Do you want to clarify that Technomancers can use gear and software like a non-Technomancer? Do you want to know if Technomancers can appropriate software instead of using Complex Forms? – Runeslinger Aug 14 '12 at 7:55
up vote 1 down vote accepted

I have not had to deal with this personally. In a review of the rules this evening, I cannot find anything in the sections in Shadowrun 25th Aniversary Edition (SR4A), Unwired, or the Shadowrun FAQ that preclude a Technomancer from using both Complex Forms and Software, providing they have the appropriate gear, resources, and actions available to store and run the software.

Providing the right conditions exist to implement both approaches, the results can be handled the same way as a hacker using multiple agents and multiple devices.

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Actually a hacker, whatever his style, can use any commlink he wants to connect to multiple nodes. You could buy a billion commlink to overload nodes, slowing CI, Analyze program etc... So yeah, a technomancer can use his living persona and the one from his commlink at the same time.

You could enslave your commlink to your living persona to avoid having to manage two personas at the same time, which can be difficult (don't know any rule for that).

BUT a technomancer who uses his complex form interacts with the Matrix in a very personal and intuitive way, so the skills to do so are not suitable to do the same thing with programs. So if you want to use your Scan complex form and you Encrypt program (at the same time or not, it doesn't matter), you must have TWO different Elecrtonic Warfare skills.

Or you could buy an Agent to use programs, the only downside being that agent never can use hacking skills (and they have no edge).

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Agents can use hacking skills if you get them unrestricted. – the dark wanderer Jan 8 '15 at 6:57

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