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I haven't played Shadowrun quite yet, but I've been reading the 4E core rulebook and I have been trying to build a character. I've been working on a Technomancer, but for character fluff I was thinking of making him mute but able to communicate via sound bytes and voice clips cut to make the phrases he intends to say, projected from either a Commlink device he carries for the purpose or from any other sort of speaker system he manages to control. Thing is, I'm not sure if this just be a roleplay thing or if I would need to buy certain skills in order to make it plausible in-game. Would this affect character creation or not?

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up vote 6 down vote accepted

Already had a mute character at my table (gobelin ninja was his name, quite sums it up). In 2070 it's so easy to fix physical mutism that it can't be compensated with points. It's also very cheap and easy to get a voice simulator (most humanoid drones come with it). So it's really a matter of personal choice. That said, if you persist with your idea, and you have an open minded gm, he could reward your interpretation with karma, and he should inflict you social malus for the awkwardness of your character, maybe -1. Also, an Edit complex form should help you cut and assemble sound, but sound editing is so easy, gm should not ask for dice roll.

EDIT : you have to think of your persona (your reflection in the Matrix) too, doo you speak the same way in RA and RV that you do in meatspace ?

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I suppose that would make sense; although it wouldn't really require any special skill to talk how he does, it would be kinda cool to build his abilities around the idea of hacking and controlling devices to fit the theme. And I suppose his voice wouldn't always have to be voice edits; I imagine he would use a Stephen Hawkings-esque synthesizer for normal speech but sprinkle in edits and other sound bytes if he so chooses. – Cobalt May 10 '13 at 22:24
Never used one, but you could look for a voice changing smartphone app or device, that would be fun and really improve the immersion. As for the speaker, if you carry a commlink (and you should, see why here :…) you could use it, or nearby speakers but as an hacking attempt, your GM could ask you to roll, and speakers in PAN are as hard to hack as the commlink firewall. – Trajan May 11 '13 at 5:38

No skills would be needed for anything that the character owns and has usual access to. If you wanted to project from someone else's commlink or device that would start getting dicey.

I would probably ask your GM what the cost for a wirelessly enabled speaker-system to carry on your person. If your character had a hardware skill, you could probably build one as well.

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Truth be told, it's all in the GM's style. Ultimately, I would personally classify it as an RP issue as you are never far from a device with a speaker. Now, should someone go through painstaking preparations to not let a decker/rigger do anything then that would make for an interesting session.

Mechanically, I cannot seem to find anything that would prohibit your character from speaking specifically from the negative qualities unless your character has a Phobia of speaking.

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Now that you mention that, a Phobia would probably be a good way to describe why he won't speak... if the only effect of his phobia was that he would never speak under any circumstances, how many points would it be worth? – Cobalt Jul 19 '13 at 23:40

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