About "sadism/cruelty"; "phobias":

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About "sadism/cruelty"; "phobias":


GMs unite!

I was wondering if stuff like "sadism/cruelty" could be treated, ruleswise, as a (negative) Trait OR a Disorder - which one (if any at all)?
What a-bout "phobias" (same question)?

What do you think?


nezumi.hebereke nezumi.hebereke's picture
Re: About "sadism/cruelty"; "phobias":

If it's a compulsion you have difficulty controlling, sadism can be a disorder. Acting out sadism (without consent) may invite a Black Mark. But having a personal taste for sadism doesn't seem any different than anyone on 4chan. As long as you don't walk around dragging chains and iron collars, no one cares what you do in your bedroom.

Arenamontanus Arenamontanus's picture
Re: About "sadism/cruelty"; "phobias":

I would run them as either; rules-wise there is not much difference. From a psychology standpoint there might be a difference between a personality disorder (you really are a sadist in your deep core self) and something learned (you learned how fun it is to hurt people while working for the Go Nin Offensive Psychology Unit), but the result is roughly the same. Both might be curable with enough psychosurgery (but in either case the sadist will likely say they are fine and in no need of a cure).

Phobias would be minor 5 CP things unless they are major impairments ("No, I can't leave my room, I might meet a spider!")


Re: About "sadism/cruelty"; "phobias":


Thanks for the input!

I only ask this because one of my players asked "where are the phobias?" & the other one's core concept is "a cruel sadist"... You know the type...

Trying to dissuade, or at least accomodate, if all else fails (LOL)!


CodeBreaker CodeBreaker's picture
Re: About "sadism/cruelty"; "phobias":

My table ended up house ruling in phobias as a negative quality because one of my players would not shut up about it (Shadowrun player who used to stack them all to hell so that they could grab those negative points.) As such, I made them fairly powerful.

Phobia (Ego Negative Trait)
Bonus: 10CP
You suffer from a deeply ingrained fear of a particular object or situation. This could range from being scared of the dark, to being terrified of the color blue. Anytime you encounter the subject of your phobia you must roll WIL*3 to resist temporarily losing yourself in your fear. If you roll a success on this roll you manage to ignore the source of your fear. If you fail this test you are subject to a -10 modifier to all actions that do not directly contribute to getting yourself away from the source of your fear. On a critical failure you are completely subsumed by your fear, gaining the Hysteria derangement for as long as you are exposed to the source of your fear.

Prolonged exposure to your phobia is mentally stressful, and potentially dangerous. For every hour that you are exposed to your phobia, you must roll a WIL*3 check to resist taking 1d10/2 SV. Every continuous hour of exposure inflicts a -10 modifier to this roll, up to a maximum modifier of -30.

GM Note - Before allowing a player to take this negative quality, make sure to approve the object or situation that provokes it. The subject should be something that the player might encounter reasonably rarely, but enough that it has the potential to be a detriment. Being scared of vacuum while playing a space station campaign might only be provoked while performing space walks, and as such is more than suitable. Being scared of wide open spaces while playing as Martian Rangers is perhaps less so. If the player is dead set on having a particular fear represented as a mechanic, consider changing the CP Bonus accordingly. (20CP for a Phobia that will almost constantly be provoked, 5CP for a Phobia that might only be provoked once every few sessions.)