Thursday, 2 March 2017

Savage Shadowrun Second Edition version 0.9 released!

Savage Shadowrun Second Edition Release 0.9 is here!

It has been some time since the last release, and a lot of work has been done on Savage Shadowrun SE in the meantime. The main focus of this update is the Matrix chapter, which now comes with even faster rules for having the Decker run the Matrix and break into systems at the table, without the rest of the group having the time to order and eat pizza!
A few adjustments have also been made in the Magic chapter, and some cyberware and equipment has been reworked. Check the changelog below for all major changes.

You can find the updated PDFs in the usual place, in normal, printer friendly light, and printer friendly versions. But wait, there's more! For all of you who want that extra bit of crystal-clear resolution there's now a 300dpi version of the PDF!
Also, if you missed the post on Google+, there is now a rudimentary character sheet available, both in normal and printer friendly versions. You can find them with the Companion PDFs.

Enjoy the shadows, chummers!

The changelog for V0.9:


Since Savage Shadowrun Second Edition does not provide any setting information which is not needed to explain the new rules and/or mechanics, it has been renamed to a Companion instead of a Conversion.

A ton of small errors (grammar, spelling, etc.) has been corrected

Character Creation:

Contacts and the Connections Edge are now seperate again. Contacts represent single persons a Shadowrunner knows and may call upon for help and usually has to pay.
The Connections Edge represent a group which can help the Shadowrunner.

This is no longer a seperate skill. Astrally perceiving/projecting characters now use Notice.

The Hacking skill has been renamed to Decking.


Reordered Magic Backlash into the setting rules, expanded the rules, and clarified Drain damage.

Elementals now only require an action to summon instead of a few hours, but Mages require a source of the respective element when summoning them.

Foci are now bound individually with Edges.
Spell Foci give a bonus to a specific power and now act like Trademark Weapon.
Power Foci give a general Spellcasting bonus, but come at the price of additional potential for disaster.
Weapon and Sustaining Foci remain unchanged in their function, but are now also bound individually with Edges.

-Ki Adept Powers
Many powers have been reworked to reduce redundancy with existing Edges and reduce overal complexity.


Initiative in the Matrix has been clarified and reworked. There are no longer boosters which would be redundant to existing Edges.

Prices have been adjusted.

Utilities have been completely overhauled. They no longer have an individual rating and now come at a flat price. They now provide the Decker with the capabilities of certain skills in the Matrix (Fighting, Stealth, Persuasion, Notice), or useful tools (Decrypt, Armour, and more). In any case the Decker rolls their Decking Skill, the Utility now simply enables them to do so in the respective situation.

-Actions in the Matrix
These have been reworked accordingly to the new Utilities. Matrix actions now largely work like real-world skills to make the Matrix more easy to get into for players.


Some cyberware has been reworked to remove redundancies to existing Edges and/or reduce overall complexity. For example, Wired Reflexes no longer copy the Level Headed Edge, but grant a flat bonus to Agility rolls when trying to interrupt an opponent on their turn.

Some equipment has been reworked to reduce overall complexity.

Sunday, 26 February 2017

History of my DIY Bennies - the road so far

I have been making custom Bennies pretty much from the start of my Savage Worlds "career". Right now I am able to produce Bennies tailored to every game I want to play in or run, but the road to get here has been a long one. Let me tell you the story of my making custom Bennies from the beginning.

The very first Bennies I used weren't actually something I'd call "custom Bennies". They were simple glass beads, which I sorted by colour and assigned one to each player. I got them from Amazon, in a big bag of mixed form beads.
They served their purpose, but they didn't really add anything to the game. They were markers for a meta-resource used in the game we played, not props helping us to immerse ourselves better in the universe we were playing in. I wanted to get some nice-looking Bennies, but the official ones were impossible to get in Germany for reasonable amounts of money. So I had to get creative.

The first step on the road to the great Bennies I bring to the table now was a rather small one. I had bought wooden disks to use as markers on a battlemap, about 1 inch in diameter. Through a lucky coincidence I found out there were sticker sheets available, pre-cut with circular cuts, which fit those disks. These became my first true custom Bennies, made for Savage Warhammer 40k (Dark Heresy) and Savage Deus Ex games. They had some big problems, though. As you can see, the Imperial Crest isn't truly centred, and there's a black line going through the cyberpunk Benny.

This happened because the sticker sheet came with an MS Word document to align the images on the page to where the pre-cuts were on the sheet, but they didn't truly align, no matter how I modified the printer settings or which way I inserted the paper. The idea was sound, but using the pre-cut sheets clearly didn't work for what I wanted to do.

The next step saw two major changes. First I changed from the wooden disks to actual poker chips. Those I could also buy in bulk, and they came blank. They also had an inner diameter of exactly 1 inch, which was perfect, as I could buy a circular 1-inch-diameter paper punch tool. Now I was able to freely design motives for the Bennies, print them onto full-sized sticker sheets, cut them myself and apply them on the poker chips. I used this method for a long time, producing Bennies for games I ran (Deadlands Reloaded, Savage Rifts), and games I played in (Saga of the Goblin Horde).

This worked well, but after a while I got frustrated with the plain look of the Bennies. Also the 1-inch print area proved to be rather limiting. I tackled these problems in two steps. The first step saw me switching to a different brand of poker chip, which came with a shiny surface and, luckily, a design that still fit the 1-inch cut prints perfectly.

While this improved the visual aspect of the Bennies, I still wasn't happy. By another lucky coincidence I stumbled across a paper punch tool with a diameter exactly equal to the inner area of the new brand of poker chips, 1.25-inch in diameter. I experimented with this new tool and the result was stunning in difference:

I lost the shiny border around the smaller 1-inch print, but I gained an incredible amount of area to put the actual Benny image on. I quickly started to replace my older Bennies with new ones, with better designs now that I had so much more area to work with.

This is my de-facto standard for producing custom Bennies right now. I am very happy with the outcome. They handle like poker chips, and if it wasn't for my cheap inkjet I probably wouldn't be able to tell the difference between mine and official Bennies.

If you want to produce high-quality custom Bennies for your own games, please watch this video I made explaining the whole process. You will also find links to the tools I use in the video's description: