Cybernetics... Doskvol-style?


#1

So, a while back, the Cutter in my group overindulged their Vice and was cut off. After the game, the player and I discussed the replacement Vice, to which the player quipped, “have you ever watched Tetsuo: The Iron Man?”

And here we are, about to wrap Season 1, and we still don’t have a system that the player and I can agree upon. Has anyone tackled cybernetics appropriate to the genre? (My touchstones are Thief 2 and Death of the Outsider.)


#2

I haven’t watched Tetsuo, no :smile:

Are you combining Vice with… abilities? Something?


#3

The way I’ve drafted is the following, in short:

  • to replicate the idea of it being powered by a soul vessel, my recommendation is a one-time inflicting of a Trauma.
  • the other side of the equation is using Stress to pay for the use of augmentations. These would serve as a non-zero floor to their Stress track until the augment was removed. For example, the augment “mechadendrite” is a tier III asset. While the augment is installed, the character spends 3 Stress, and that Stress bumps the thread hold for overindulging Vice up to 3.
  • there are new tags that might apply to the augments, like “Grotesque” which signifies that it might make normal social interactions difficult if not impossible (but intimidation efforts are a different story).

The player has put forth a different approach. Basically, everything would be “paid for” as Harm, and acquiring the assets would be expensive to obtain. I’m fine with the latter, but the former is… I’m having a hard time working with that. Harm, after all, can cascade upwards if a certain row is full, and I have to always consider if that harm would come into play. It seems counterintuitive to have a tool that allows for special abilities but also might make you lose dice or need assistance to do other jobs. And you’d still need to see a physicker afterwards? Huh?

The lightest approach is just to crib the Xeno powers from S&V, but the player didn’t like that idea.


#4

Maybe they need adjusting by a physicker after they’ve been heavily used?.. idk.

I think you’re overcomplicating things :smile:

IMO just make them as Veteran abilities, have them pay for them with XP as usual. Maybe let them change the abilities by doing a Surgery project either with a physicker or the group Leech or something.
If you want to make it more advanced, have them “eat” a Spirit Bottle or Electroplasm Vial when they use the power (or pull it from other sources, with added risk!). Done! :smile:

You could engage the crafting rules and go through the questions there when you design the power.


#5

I really like this idea! I’ve passed it onto the player to see if they are ok with it. Thanks!


#6

You can use the fiction to inform consequences and positions later as usual. Like, if they have a huge camera eye-piece that lets them see in the dark, maybe that will make it more difficult to get a good price for a hamburger? Or walk the streets at all? :smile:
Maybe the consequence for the Prowl roll is that a hydraulic oil cable in their arm comes loose and now they drip all over?

That’s stuff that doesn’t need rules though, and that’s a good thing :stuck_out_tongue: