Cyberware

(reprinted from Savage Cyberware, http://getsavaged.blogspot.com)

The Basics

To acquire cyberware, you must first purchase the Hardwired Edge. This represents both the surgery and other preparations for enhancing the body cybernetically. You may take this Edge immediately without having to level, but you commit your next advancement to this Edge.

At this time, you must also acquire a Neural Processor, a piece of cyberware installed at the base of the skull that serves as the connection between cybernetic components and the brain. The surgery is out-patient and not terribly complex (it is the only cybernetics surgery that uses only local anesthetic), and largely subsidized by the companies that produce cyberware, so the Processor itself is free, and the surgery only costs one fifth of the normal fee. However, replacing a damaged Processor costs the regular list price.

Cyberdocs

Every time you purchase and install a new piece of cyberware, you must have it surgically implanted, and like all surgeries, there is some inherent risk and expense involved in this process.

First, you must find a cyberdoc to perform the operation, someone with the Cyberdoc Edge. Cyberdocs charge fees depending on the level of their Healing skill. Most have a d8 ($3000) or d10 ($5000) in Medicine. Those with a d12 ($8000, with an additional $100 for each +1) or higher charge hefty fees, but they can afford to do so because the odds of error are very low. Finding a Wild Card cyberdoc is certainly wise, but of course they charge double the normal fee.

By law, cyberdocs are required to keep records of all cybernetic implants they install, meaning your information will be stored on the internet somewhere. In worlds with a heavy police presence, this may not always be to a character’s liking. Cyberdocs as a general rule will not jeopardize their careers by offering to install black market cyberware.

The least expensive cyberdocs are sometimes called “ripperdocs” because they don’t have formal education, lack sophisticated medical equipment, and have a larger margin of error, sometimes operating out of a grungy basement or mobile van. However, many people use ripperdocs despite the danger because they are very inexpensive and are willing to install black market cyberware. In addition, they work “under the table,” so there will be no traceable record of the surgery, which many find preferable. A ripperdoc with a d6 in Healing will charge $2000 for his services, while one with a d4 will charge only $1000.

A player character with the appropriate Edge can perform this surgery, but they will need access to a lab with surgery tools valued at least double the cost of the cyberware to be installed. Obviously, the surgeon cannot implant his or her own cyberware.

Surgery

Once the fee has been paid, it is time for surgery. For all implants (except the Neural Processor), the patient

must be given general anesthetic, which lasts 2d6 hours (upon awakening, the character will be at -2 to all Trait rolls for another 4d10 hours).

The gamemaster then rolls the cyberdoc’s Healing check to make sure the surgery was successful. It might help to make this roll in front of the player, or even allow the player to make the roll themselves (though they cannot spend Bennies on this roll).
  • If the roll is a success (a raise brings no added benefit), the cyberware was successfully installed.
  • If the roll is a failure, the implant is installed but the character takes 2d6 damage.
  • If the roll results in a 1 on the Trait die, the character takes 2d6 damage (dice can ace) against his Toughness and the cyberware was not successfully implanted. The character will have to try again in order to acquire that implant, after recovering, of course!

Most cyberdocs are willing to refund surgery fees for botched surgeries, but ripperdocs can be notoriously cheap. One failed surgery might result in the ripperdoc dumping the wounded, anesthetized body in a remote location and keeping the money.

Damage to Cyberware

If a character is the victim of a successful attack specifically targeting a cybernetic device (like the eye, hand, etc.), use the “Breaking Things” rules on page 65 of Savage Worlds Explorer’s Edition. Most external implants have a physical Toughness of 10, and internal implants a Toughness 8. However, any time a character with implants suffers electrical damage from any source, the damage must be calculated against each of her implants. Cybernetic devices have only 6 Toughness against electrical damage. If damaged, they cease function and must be repaired, which costs 50% of the device’s initial price. Most devices are located inside the chest cavity unless otherwise noted.

Humanity

Pairing the organic mind with inorganic machinery has a tendency to cause a noticeable decaying effect on the soul, an effect commonly called loss of humanity. The amount of cyberware a character can acquire before beginning to lose their empathy and mental control depends on his or her Spirit. Characters can install a number of cybernetic implants up their Spirit attribute (or half, if cyberware is uncommon in your game). The Neural Processor does not count toward this limit.

Thus, a character with a d6 in Spirit could have six cyberware implants safely installed, and no more, before her humanity would start to suffer. Subsystems are not counted toward this maximum—for example, a cybereye would count as one implant, but the Low Light or VideoCam enhancements do not. However, the costs and risks of surgery would still apply.

Once a character has surpassed his natural ability to “absorb” the impact of cyberware, he begins to see a rapid decline in his ability to deal with others. Every time a new piece of cyberware is installed, the character automatically takes a permanent -1 penalty to Charisma. In addition, any time his emotions start to run too high, he has to make a Stress check to see if he can maintain his mental hold. This roll is a Spirit roll similar to a Fright check, but triggered instead by extreme stress (pinned down in a gunfight, jumped in an alleyway, cyberware taking electrical damage, a phobia being triggered, a close friend killed in front of you, betrayed by a loved one, etc.). A success means the character is able to suppress a bad reaction, but with a failure he must roll a d20, adding the amount of cyberware he has over his limit, then check this table:

Stress Check Failure Table
  • 1d20….Effect
  • 1-4…..Adrenalin Surge: The hero adds +2 to all Trait and damage rolls on his next turn.
  • 5-8…..Shaken: The hero is Shaken.
  • 9-12….Panicked: The character is Panicked.
  • 13-16…System Shutdown: Character unable to take any actions until he passes another Spirit roll.
  • 17-18…Temporary Cyberpsychosis: Go Berserk as per the Edge (although the character is still able to use the Shooting skill).
  • 19-20…Mental Breakdown: Go Berserk as above, plus hero permanently loses 1 Charisma.
  • 21+.....Cyberpsycho: Character totally loses his link to humanity and becomes a soulless NPC.

Characters cannot become used to these conditions to avoid future Stress rolls.

New Edges & Hindrances

Several new options are available to characters in campaigns that use cybernetic enhancements.

Cyberware Edges

Cyberdoc Requirements: Novice, Knowledge (Medicine) d8 You may use the Healing skill to surgically implant cybernetics. In addition, you gain +1 to Knowledge (Electronics) checks regarding trends in cybernetics.

Hardwired Requirements: Novice Your body has been prepared for the addition of cyberware, and a Neural Processor has been installed at the base of your skull to interface with installed cybernetic devices. You may now gain a number of cybernetic enhancements up to your Spirit die (for example, a character with a d8 Spirit can install up to eight cybernetic devices) before suffering penalties.

More Human Than Human Requirements: Novice, Hardwired You were born for cybernetic enhancement, and find it quite natural. You may install one more piece of cyberware than your Spirit die would normally allow, and you do not add the number of cyberware over your limit when making Stress checks.

Hindrances

Old School (Major) For some reason – trauma, a distrust of computers, a religious abhorrence for the unnatural – cyberware and you just do not get along. You see people with cyberware as inherently untrustworthy and you prefer to stay away from them. If you have to deal with them, you do so with a -2 Charisma penalty. Should you ever decide to get cyberware yourself, you may install two less implants than your Spirit die would normally allow, due to feelings of body horror.

Next-Gen (Major) To you, cyberware is the wave of the future, and the allure of silicon and chrome is more attractive, more clean, than all that nasty meat. You find non-cybered bodies repulsive, so you deal with people without cyberware at a -2 Charisma… when you deal with them at all. This is cumulative with other Charisma loss, such as loss caused by excess cyberware. In addition, you will always choose the nearest (apparently) non-cybered person when a Stress check causes you to go Berserk.

Cyberware

The following list of cyberware is fairly complete, though gamemasters may wish to add to it. For the sake of brevity, each implant is given only a short description. Gamemasters and players are encouraged to develop personalized details for cybernetic devices.

Cyberware costs are going to vary wildly based on how common cyberware is in a campaign, the predominant currency and character rank, and various economic or political factors. Thus, the prices below are given as categories, instead of dollar amounts. The categories range from A, being the cheapest, to E, being the most expensive. Gamemasters can then assign prices that fit their campaign models.

A sixth category, F, indicates items that are cutting edge and thus are generally not available, except to military sources. Characters should not be able to purchase these items without great effort. In fact, obtaining it might even be the subject of an entire adventure.

Suggested Prices
  • A…....$5000
  • B…....$10000
  • C…....$20,000
  • D…....$50,000
  • E…....$120,000+
  • F…....$500,000+

Cyberware with an asterisk (*) is black market. Only ripperdocs will willingly install these items. Characters caught with black market cybertech face jail time.

Some cybernetic implants have the same function as existing Edges. Unless otherwise noted, if a character has both the cyberware and an overlapping Edge, there is no additional effect.

All cyberware is powered by the user’s own metabolic system, or contains a built-in battery with a long life (usually at least 1 year).

One last thing: There are several corporations who make cyberware, allowing players to choose how much money they are willing to invest in quality. Three major corporations dominate the industry. The most prominent, Takagi Industries, makes the most common cyberware, which has become the industry standard. All the entries in the list below are written to Takagi standards. Close on their heels is Enhanced Cybernetic Systems (ECS), who make top-of-the-line models that cost a lot more but are more reliable. ECS cyberware have +2 Toughness, but cost 20% more than the list price. Third in the industry is CyberWorld Electronics, a Chinese company which specializes in affordable, but weaker, cyberware. CyberWorld implants cost 25% less but have 1 less Toughness and only a 5 Toughness against electrical damage. Unless the player specifies a brand, it is assumed all cyberware is Takagi make.

Cyberware 1 Cyberware 2 Cyberware 3 Cyberware 4 Cyberware 5 Cyberware 6

Cyberware

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