CYBERNETIC TALENT – CYBERNETIC LEG
When Leo Valdez, Captain of the Spectral Corsair, took a critical hit he knew things weren’t good. When he rolled 62 on the crit table he knew he was in real trouble, his leg shredded and life blood pumping into the sudden vacuum. That he was saved was a minor miracle, but at the cost of his leg.
When this happened I looked to the rules for cybernetic or prosthetic limbs, knowing that Valdez would probably need a replacement one day. But I found little to help so decided to work up some rules myself, leading to the talent below (although I have amended it slightly – see the footnote):
CYBERNETIC LEG – with OPTIONAL COMPARTMENT or CONCEALED HOLSTER
The cybernetic leg acts as a normal leg in all aspects with two notable differences:
- when a critical injury is rolled to the legs a roll is required to determine which leg has been hit, the natural or the cybernetic. If the cybernetic leg is hit the critical effect as rolled is ignored but the character takes a -1d3 AGILITY penalty until the artificial leg is repaired. If AGILITY is reduced to 0 or less then the character cannot move other than very slow crawling.
- the leg has a compartment to store items giving the player 2 additional gear slots;
- the leg contains a concealed and contractable scabbard or holster for 1 pistol sized melee weapon or firearm (ala Robocop) that can be drawn rapidly, as a free action.
If the cybernetic leg is critically hit any items stored in the compartment or concealed holster are destroyed.
For A alone: 5xp & 10,000 Birr
For A & B: 5xp & 15,000 Birr
For those of you who heard this first in Episode 4 of “The Coriolis Effect” you will have noticed that I’ve significantly upped the costs of the two versions of the Cybernetic leg. On reflection I felt that 7,000 Birr and 0 experience points was, in fact, way too low a price for a cybernetic leg that reduces your chance of being critically hit by (if my calculations are correct) a shade over 11%, and while you still take the AGILITY penalty, any character with AGILITY of 4 or 5 will definitely still be able to move, and one with 3 has a 66% chance of getting away with it. So the cost’s been increased to include 5xp and an extra 3,000 Birr for the basic leg. Then, if you want the extra compartment or holster, you pay an extra 5,000 Birr on top of that.
That feels like a better balance to me.
But, if you still wanted a simple replacement for the leg (one that gives no additional benefit other than getting your leg back – not a bad benefit in itself one might think!!), it might be easy to work up a solution under the Bio-sculpting rules, where you have a replacement grown in a vat and simply attached. This would take time (to grow the limb, for the operation, to recover from the operation and “re-learn” to use the limb) and cost Birr (looking at the Bio-sculpt talents they are very expensive, but do bring some damn-hot benefits – this simple replacement would be like for like, and thus 10,000 Birr for the whole procedure seems fair).
I wonder why you want to make the cybernetic leg impervious to criticals, yet still apply a separate critical result that doesn’t make sense, compared to the existing leg crits.
It’s only the Fatal results of 62, 56, 44 and 42, that should be ignored for the cybernetic leg I think, the effects on Infiltration and Dexterity makes more sense than 1d3 penalty to Agility in my opinion. I mean, why an attribute penalty? Why does my ranged combat effectiveness and piloting ability get reduced when a cybernetic leg is malfunctioning?
I’d say that any crit to the cyber leg ignores the Fatal effect, but movement is halved on the lower end of the crit table (default non-Fatal), and movement is reduced by 2/3 or 3/4 on the higher end of the table (usually Fatal.)
This way you make a point of the heavy malfunctioning cyber leg being defective and thus reduces movement, you could also apply an additional and cumulative flat -1 to Dexterity and Infiltration checks on top the critical table, to signify the weight and malfunctioning cybernetic. So, in other words: normal leg critical hit of 14 is -1 to Dex and Infl. The cyber leg would on a 14 crit be at -2. This is quite a drawback though. I’d probably stick with the movement reduction.
For the 23 result, I’d ignore Stunned for one turn on the cyber leg.