Often roleplaying game hackng systems are designed in such a way that it is easy for hackers go off to do their thing while the other players are left sitting and waiting. The hacking and encryption system in Shadows Over Sol is specifically designed to help alleviate this problem.
Any computer system can be "brute forced" given enough time and processing power. This is theoretically effective, but usually requires too much time to be reasonable. After all, no one has the time to wait around a millennium as every possible input is attempted.
The key to defeating encryption in a timely manner is the acquisition of exploits. Exploits can be any number of useful pieces information which can be leveraged to gain access to a computer system. They include personal insight into the computer's primary user, technical knowledge of the system in use, corp protocols surrounding network use or anything else that might glean important information. Exploits are designed so that the entire party can help pursue them. One member may interrogate the computer's user, thereby gaining insight into her thought processes. Another member might dig into restricted corp knowledge to gain acess to their standard practices. Yet another member may test her knowledge of faulty computer memory management schemes.
Put all of these insights together, and the amount of time needed to compromise the computer system drops down to days, hours or even minutes. In this way all members of the team have the chance to feel like they participated and helped out. All players were able to remain engaged, rather than a single member going off to play the hacking subsystem.
Shadows Over Sol is our upcoming science fiction horror RPG. Its Kickstarter is scheduled to begin September 1st. In the meantime, you can download the free Quick-Start, or sign up to be notified when the Kickstarter is ready.