Part 23: Submergence (is harder than it looks)Submergence (is harder than it looks)
In Shadowrun (3rd edition) lore, there is talk of those gifted with the ability to enter the Matrix without a deck. They travel in the digital world with sheer willpower and mental harmony. Strangely, they are all said to be children. Some say it is because an older brain cannot be in tune with the Matrix any longer, but others say it is because the strongest of them undergo a process to join their minds with the Matrix, and leave their physical body behind. They call it Submergence.
There is only one thing left to do. Offer yourself as a sacrifice to the Black ICE and be reborn in the Matrix as the pure machine god that you have become.
With your stats and deck ratings is it actually possible to fail? Like, even if you're intentionally trying?
It is time for us to leave this world of meat and bone behind, and submerge into the Matrix.
And what better place than the server of the megacorp most known for their Matrix prowess?
The process is simple enough: we go onto the server, unload our Armor and Shield programs, and attack something to get a red alert. Rating 20+ IC has no trouble hitting us for decent damage, so it's just a matter of picking off the normal IC and leaving the Black IC. Which leaves us at...
Oh, right, we have two health bars. The upper bar turns out to be (in SR3 terms) our Stun damage track, and the lower bar our Physical damage track. Black IC doesn't actually attack our physical damage track, it merely bypasses our icon's health bar to deal Stun damage to us. Any damage that spills over - from either Stun or our icon's health - is converted to physical damage. So it'll take several attempts before our physical health depletes.
On the second attempt...
I let a Trace & Fry IC get an extended trace in, because I wanted to see if a fried chip was reduced by 1 or reduced to 1. It turns out that the Fry attempt failed and we had no chip damage. The successful extended trace did, however, send the cops after us, which was prevented by expending our anti-trace proxy.
So, on the second, second attempt...
Our physical health is down to 5%. This should be the end of us, either by extended trace or by spillover damage. And the winner is...
...the extended trace! The cops busted into our mansion, and we only had time to save the box. It's all we have left, now, so we're reduced to living in it again. (Though we kept our money balance, so we could upgrade again if we had the cash to do so.)
But it's okay! Icon damage spillover can also kill us, so we don't even NEED Black IC to do the job! Just gotta go into a server, take off our protective software, and... well, it still takes a while for them to hit us, because we have 25 skill and hardware, but eventually...
...oh, right. Our autodump feature on our biomonitor. Which saves us... every time I try again, because unlike the anti-trace proxy, it doesn't burn out. So... no, Slowjack can't die. Sorry.