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Make ions/EMP stun.

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What the title says. Currently there is no way to nonlethally restrain or slow down any sort of synthetic short of lethals, meaning security must immediately escalate to lasers/ballistics to combat any synthetic threat. One could argue this is a weakness, but I doubt replacing ions/EMPs with a massive, maybe 10-20 second stun will make this matter much as it essentially makes killing them a choice so long as you've got the ion/EMPs. This is superior, in my mind, to the extremely high damage effective insta-kill that ion currently is and I feel dealing with synths could be much more interesting if you could truly "disable" them while permitting RP to continue without them being reduced to a brain.

It's important that the stun is long but not annoyingly so. It should be long enough to cuff or remove power cells at the very least, and long enough to render them inoperable with a maglight on hand at most.

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I don't know the full scale of what an EMP does to an IPC. I've had it used against me as borg and I felt it was relatively fair. I think when I played borg, I found flashes to be more OP than the ion rifle because at least that's one of a kind.

This is what I think an Ion rifle shot should to an IPC:

Stun them for 10 seconds or something long.

Drain half their max battery.

If Lord Fowl had traumas for IPCs then I would also suggest giving a random trauma to an IPC like split personality or something reasonable.

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I do agree that the damage the ion does to a IPC should be decreased and the stun should be increased.

However, it should definitely be possible to kill an IPC if you empty a ion rifle into one.

Or add two firemodes to the rifle. One which stuns a IPC and needs less charge and one that can kill a IPC, but needs more charge.

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I initially set about to go about fixing this issue some time ago but I never really had a solid, balanced idea that would've led to an enjoyable experience where there's reasonable counterplay without it still inevitably behaving like a hard counter.

That's basically what the present issue with ions is right now. If an ion rifle is on the field that you didn't initially dispose of, if you're synthetic, you lose. And there's nothing you can do about it without being the aggressor for the next time.

Ion rifles are generally much more extreme and their consequences are immediate, though. You can't beat the shit out of a guy with an ion rifle as a borg the way you can beat the shit out of a baton-toting officer with any tool or weapon at your belt.

And yet synthetics are so absurdly strong on the flipside when ions are not in play. They are immune to poisoning, suffocating, vampires, changelings, blood magic (except when EMPs and conversion happen, and the presence of each only makes sense when you apply it from a game balance lens), vacuums as long as they have a suit cooler unit, and they have general damage resistance. In general, IPCs are very strong. Borgs are also very strong unless statchecked by a flash or ion rifle. In short, you cannot assassinate an IPC the same way you could a human, unathi, or Tajaran. In fact, you must resort to highly visible and dangerous methods in order to kill an IPC in particular. Stealth goes out the window as an antagonist, you literally must have loud violence in your path of antagonism if there's an IPC on the manifest. No doubt one will latejoin anyway.

I went over a lot of things that could change with some synthetic players and less reputable """borg mains""" and the solutions provided often just created even more problems.

It was quite demoralizing and demotivating to the point where the project to change them just stopped in its tracks. I'm not sure if a toggle function to ion rifles will immediately or even progressively alleviate some issues of stigma regarding the associated balance problems listed above.

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