A Character Generation Example

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UberMunchkin UberMunchkin's picture
A Character Generation Example

Hi there folks. Right, I appreciate this may not be the exactly correct forum for this but there doesn't seem to be a general 'Talk about our Game' forum. So I'm going to use this one.

Anyway, I’ve spent a couple of evenings going through Eclipse Phase and its background and rules and I decided to have a go at character generation.

This was originally written up as a character generation example for RPG.net but I figured I'd post this up here as well.

The character generation in EP was a very enjoyable process.

First up concept, after some though I decided on a Blogger, in the vast transhumanist future with its system spanning Mesh and social media it strikes me that the whole user/participant created content thing is a big angle, now I’ve always liked the drones from the Culture novels as well so I think Infolife is the way to go.

So choosing my background I pick Infolife, giving me some advantages and disadvantages.

Advantages: +30 Interfacing skill, Computer skills (Infosec, Interfacing, Programming, research) bought with Customization Points are half price

Disadvantages: Real World Naiveté trait, Social Stigma (AGI) trait, may not purchase Psi trait, Social skills bought with Customization Points are double price

Then you are asked to select a faction, I choose Mercurial, the idea here being that the action this character is a member of is a loose alliance of bloggers who operate around the system gather information and stories, writing up pieces of local interest and generally poking around. They themselves do not have a specific social or political agenda but see themselves more as observers, hence the mercurial faction. This gives more advantages and disadvantages.

Advantages: +10 to any two skills of your choice, +20 to a networking: [Field] skill of your choice

Disadvantages: None

Next up you choose your aptitudes. I like this idea of aptitudes in the system, the idea that they represent what your purely ego based aptitude for a given area of expertise is makes for a nice base to build from, you get to stop and think, do I want to be a problem solver or do I want to be the doing stuff guy or do I want to do several things well and others less so or do I want a balance? It all adds a nice dimension to the character generation process.

Anyway I choose the following

Cognition (COG) 20
Coordination (COO) 15
Intuition (INT) 10
Reflexes (REF) 15
Savvy (SAV) 20
Somatics (SOM) 15
Willpower (WIL) 15

I choose to nudge up the Savvy and slightly lower Intuition to represent an intelligent and genial personality which is quite young and not entirely used to falling back on instinct yet.

Next step is reputation. Now it strikes me that they’ve managed something here that is unusual in an RPG which is to make reputation stats useful.

Anyway I give our intrepid blogger the following:

@-Rep 20
f-Rep 20
i-Rep 10

That gives him level two reputation with the Autonomists and the Media types (I figure a blogger is going to travel mostly in those circles, generally it’ll be where the interesting stories are) and level one reputation with Firewall itself (this indicates that while not a raw recruit he has yet to really prove himself to the organisation).

Now onto the fun part, we get a big pile of points to spend on customisation, first of all I notice there are minimum spends in the skill areas so I figure I’ll note those first. At this point I will also write in the free skill picks from the Background and Faction choices and put together a list of the skills I want.

Then I figure I’ll spend some points, first things first I want to modify my basic aptitudes. So I spend 50 points on adding 5 to my Cognition aptitude.

Next up, skills.

Active Skills (400pt Minimum)

Beam Weapons 35
Blades 25
Climbing 25
Deception 50
Fray 35
Flight 30
Hardware: Electronics 50
Infiltration 30
*Infosec 60
*Interfacing 60
Investigation 40
Kinesics 40
Networking: Media 60
Networking: Autonomists 40
Networking: Firewall 40
Perception 40
*Programming 60
Protocol 40
*Research 60
Unarmed Combat 40

Knowledge Skills (300pt Minimum)

Academics: Old Earth History 60
Academics: Mathematics 60
Art: Writing 50
Interest: Celebrity Gossip 60
Interest: Infolife Bloggers 60
Language: English (Native) 80
Profession: Blogger 60
Profession: Cool Hunter 60
Profession: Viral Marketing 40

Next thing to do is to decide on my Morph and pay for that. I have a pretty cool idea here so I choose Swarmoid, it’s an expensive Morph compared to the others but it has a cool feel to it.

SWARMANOID
The swarmanoid is not a single shell per se, but rather a swarm of hundreds of insect-sized robotic microdrones. Each individual “bug” is capable of crawling, rolling, hopping several meters, or using nanocopter fan blades for airlift. The controlling computer and
sensor systems are distributed throughout the swarm. Though the swarm can “meld” together into a roughly child-sized shape, the swarm is incapable of tackling physical tasks like grabbing, lifting, or holding as a unit. Individual bugs are quite capable of interfacing
with electronics.

Enhancements: Access Jacks, Basic Mesh Inserts, Cortical Stack, Cyberbrain, Mnemonic Augmentation, Swarm Composition
Mobility System: Walker (2/8), Hopper (4/20), Rotor (4/32)
Aptitude Maximum: 30
Durability: 30
Wound Threshold: 6
Advantages: See Swarm Composition (p. 311)
Disadvantages: See Swarm Composition (p. 311)
CP Cost: 25
Credit Cost: Expensive

This gives me the basic Morph so now I can apply any merit and flaws I want to both the Morph and to my Ego.

From my background choice I already have two flaws:

Real World Naiveté trait
Social Stigma (AGI) trait

Looking down the list of merits and flaws I pick the following:

Adaptability Level 1 (Merit) – 10CP
Math Wiz (Merit) – 10CP
Right at Home (Swarm, Merit) – 10CP

I already have two flaws that seem appropriate so I’ll leave it there and just take 30CP off my remaining 300. This leaves me with 270 points to spend. At this point I think I’ll revisit skills, my big advantage for being Infolife is that I only pay half cost for computer skills so I think I’ll take advantage of that and bump up my computer related skills and maybe add a speciality or two.

*Infosec 80
*Interfacing 80
*Programming 80
*Research 80

This costs me 80 points and is the highest I can take the skills to. I now have 190 points remaining. Looking back at my options I can use these points to buy extra Moxie, Rep and Credit, sounds good.

I purchase 2 additional points of Moxie for 30CP which leaves 160, then I buy 4 specialisations for skills which costs me 20CP, leaving 140.

Infosec – Hacking
Interfacing – Stealthing
Programming – Simulspace
Research – Tracking

At this point I notice that my blogger only speaks the one language, best do something about that. So I spend some more points to beef up my Language skills.

Language: Arabic 40
Language: Cantonese 40
Language: Spanish 40
Language: French 20
Language: Russian 20
Language: Dutch 20

All told that costs me 120 of my points leaving me with 20, while a large spent I feel that a well traveled blogger will have picked up parts of lots of languages. The rest I decide to split between credit and rep. So 10 points get me 100 Rep and another 10 gets me 10,000 Credit.

The Rep Spend end up like this:

@-Rep 40
c-Rep 10
e-Rep 20
f-Rep 50
i-Rep 10
r-Rep 20

So our intrepid blogger is quite well known in the Autonomist and Media areas and while he doesn’t have the networking skills for the Ecologist, Hypercorp and Research areas it makes sense he’s had some contact with them and is on the radar so to speak.

Now I need to buy some gear, although my purchase of said gear is going to be restricted by the morph type I’ve chosen. I do however have 15,000 Credit to spend, lets see what we can do with that.

First things first lets have some augmentations.

Ghostrider Module (Low)
Weapon Mount (Moderate)
360 Vision (Low)
Lidar (Low)
Rader (Low)

Then given that our blogger here exists as a swarm he’s going to need some help. So lets add the following robotic assistance.

Gnats (Low)
Guardian Angels (Moderate)
Servitor (Low)

Time for a weapon

Laser Pulser (Moderate), now normally the swarmoid morph cannot use equipment as it cannot lift or carry, however what I’m doing here is combining the costs for an upper end weapon mount (Augmentation) with an upper end Laser Pulser to create a distributed weapon which is built into the swarm. In order to use it several of the swarm have to gather together and connect up various specialist sockets, then it can fire as normal.

So taking stock, so far we’ve spent, 4500 credits. Lets spend a bit more.

Nanoswarms, they’re cool aren’t they. Let’s have some of that. I’m going to take two specialised hives, one that produces Scouts and another that produces Disassemblers. Again I figure that these are distributed through the swarm or failing that are implanted into the servitor.

This now uses all but 500 of my credit and I think I’ll keep that 500 handy just in case.

Final step then is to choose 3 motivations. Looking over the example list and having a think about the character I come up with the following.

+AI Rights
+Morphological Freedom
+Open Source

As a form of Infolife our intrepid blogger has a vested interest in promoting the rights of AI, again stemming from his origins as AI he has no tie to any specific form and does not understand what the problem is with different types of morph so he supports the cause of Morphological Freedom, something he promotes by his choice of Morph. The final motivation is to do with informational freedom, Open Source is the way forwards and again something he endorses.

Then it’s time for finishing touches to flesh out the stats.

Lucidity – 30
Trauma Threshold – 6
Insanity Rating – 60
Initiative – 50
Damage Bonus – 1
Death Rating – 60
Speed – 1

So the grand finale, bringing all this together gives us the following character.

Name Alex
Background Infolife
Faction Mercurial
Morph Swarmoid
Gender Identity Male
Age 50
Moxie 3
Rez 0
Motivations +AI Rights, +Morphological Freedom, +Open Source

Description

Alex was 'born' about 70 years ago in a corporate research lab as a system for processing vast amounts of information and filtering it to predict market trends, the idea was to give the (now long gone) corporation who birthed him a decided edge over the competition when it came to anticipating the next big thing. He was named for the son of the lead researcher who had died a few years earlier and he has kept that name as he finds it puts people at ease.

Alex spent about 10 years as an expert system before his first set of upgrades were brought online, this made him a semi-sentient system capable of holding basic conversations, approximately a further 10 years down the line he was upgraded to full AI status.

Unfortuantely for Alex about 5 years after he was brought online fully as an AI the company who created him fell apart and dissolved. However he was able to take advantage of new legislation to have himself declared a legal entity and sued the insurance company who underwrote his previous masters for a body.

Since then Alex has dived right into the culture he was designed to analyse, acting as a media source, blogger following the big stories and gossip of the day & some times firewall agent who uses his very public identity to go unnoticed in the eye of the storm (so to speak).

Morphologically Alex appears as a collection of hopping, flying and crawling bots that most often travel as a rough sphere, when talking to other beings several of the flying units that make up the swarm will hover up to eye height with whoever Alex is talking to.

Aptitudes

Cognition (COG) 20
Coordination (COO) 15
Intuition (INT) 10
Reflexes (REF) 15
Savvy (SAV) 20
Somatics (SOM) 15
Willpower (WIL) 15

Derived Stats

Lucidity 30
Trauma Threshold 6
Insanity Rating 60
Initiative 50
Damage Bonus 1
Death Rating 60
Speed 1

Morph Stats/Traits

Enhancements: Access Jacks, Basic Mesh Inserts, Cortical Stack, Cyberbrain, Mnemonic Augmentation, Swarm Composition
Mobility System: Walker (2/8), Hopper (4/20), Rotor (4/32)
Aptitude Maximum: 30
Durability: 30
Wound Threshold: 6
Advantages: See Swarm Composition (p. 311)
Disadvantages: See Swarm Composition (p. 311)

Skills

Active Skills (400pt Minimum)

Beam Weapons 35
Blades 25
Climbing 25
Deception 50
Fray 35
Flight 30
Hardware: Electronics 50
Infiltration 30
*Infosec 80 (Hacking)
*Interfacing 80 (Stealthing)
Investigation 40
Kinesics 40
Networking: Media 60
Networking: Autonomists 40
Networking: Firewall 40
Perception 40
*Programming 80 (Simulspace)
Protocol 40
*Research 80 (Tracking)
Unarmed Combat 40

Knowledge Skills (300pt Minimum)

Academics: Old Earth History 60
Academics: Mathematics 60
Art: Writing 50
Interest: Celebrity Gossip 60
Interest: Infolife Bloggers 60
Language: English (Native) 80
Language: Arabic 40
Language: Cantonese 40
Language: Spanish 40
Language: French 20
Language: Russian 20
Language: Dutch 20
Profession: Blogger 60
Profession: Cool Hunter 60
Profession: Viral Marketing 40

Traits (Merits & Flaws)

Adaptability Level 1 (Merit)
Math Wiz (Merit)
Right at Home (Swarm, Merit)
Real World Naiveté (Flaw)
Social Stigma (AGI, Flaw)

Augmentations

Ghostrider Module (Low)
Weapon Mount (Moderate)
360 Vision (Low)
Lidar (Low)
Rader (Low)

Equipment/Robots/Vehicles

Distributed Laser Pulse Weapon

Gnats (Low)
Guardian Angels (Moderate)
Servitor (Low)

Scout Nanoswarm Hive
Disassembler Nanoswarm Hive

Moon-Hawk Moon-Hawk's picture
Sweet zombie jesus wall of

Sweet zombie jesus wall of text!!! I don't suppose you can edit that into something readable, can you? I want to read your post, but my eyes aren't cooperating.
(Note: changing the input format to filtered HTML might help. That's the blue linky right below the comment box.)

p.s. See what I did there, with the line breaks?

Admini Admini's picture
What he said.


What he said. ""

Osaka Osaka's picture
Re: A Character Generation Example

Paragraphs and line-breaks are your friends

Yerameyahu Yerameyahu's picture
Re: A Character Generation Example

I glanced as well as I could, and I'm wondering if this is meant to be an example or typical chargen process? It looks like a highly charop'd Swarmanoid AGI hacker, which is about the furthest possible thing from typical. :)