Exhuman Rep Network?

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UnitOmega UnitOmega's picture
Exhuman Rep Network?

So here's an idea I bandied around a bit with one of my players. He's developing a "collared" Exhuman who has been taken in by Firewall and repurposed as an Asset, which basically puts him on the outs with any of his previous Exhuman colleagues. So obviously, there was the question of use of the Black Mark or Blacklisted trait to reflect this, but Exhumans don't really have their own social network.

But why not? Criminals and Firewall can manage to keep one. So he talked to me a bit about it, and I said I'd have a think on it, so I figured I'd come to the forums and other communities and maybe get a discussion going.

Personally, I've made some homebrew rep networks before (Including the gaming one I curated which I also posted here), and the rules say to produce them as needed (Also as seen with the additions of x-rep and u-rep). X-Risks section on Exhumans and Exhumanism definitely lends itself to the idea Exhumans can be social, supportive or to work with one another, both for good and for ill. An Adaptive might want to call up a predator for some genehacking help with a survival mod. A sublime might contract out some Predators or Adaptives to help recover a TITAN artifact. A predator on the run after somebody busted up their hive might call a Parasite to get them into a hab on the down-low.

It seems easy to write off such a concept as criminal rep, but Exhumans don't necessarily run in the same circles, nor would their network have the same social structure (I don't see many exhumans being about "face", for instance). And unless they're actively hurting people or capturing TITAN tech, groups like even the Titanian Commonwealth don't inherently prejudice against exhumans. Hell, some of the guys in the top of CID might even rate a little exhuman rep.

My current prototype for this is α-rep (Pronounced "Alpha-rep"), and the network itself would be something like "The Apex". Exhumans are trying to reach the top of whatever it is is their style or ethos. In my mind, I'm thinking of this Apex idea as kind of like a hybrid between the Guanxi and the RNA. If you've got your Exhuman chops, you might hear from a guy who knows a guy how to access the network. There various exhumanists might share research notes and ideas, trade favors, talk to others about concepts and ideas, share intel, etc. You could gain α-rep by sharing useful knowledge for others on their quest to walk their ultimate path, buddying up with other Exhumans for shared goals or letting others know about hazards coming their way (Like a Jovian Republic sweep of an asteroid cluster - with a torpedo cruiser). You might lose α-rep for going out of your way to be a dickbag to other Exhumans, even if your clade isn't inherently competitive, if you rat out Exhumans to non-Exhumans or in general aren't a good member of the exhuman community - whatever that is.

A network for all Exhumans and Exhumanist leaners: Predators, Sublimes, Adaptives, Parasites, Soul-Eaters, Singularity Seekers - even some Brinkers and Out'sters.

And if you think such a network of different interests wouldn't work, I'd like to remind everyone that in the book, Extropians, Anarchists and Titanians all share the same rep network. And as of AF 10, have yet to collectively strangle each other.

So, I open this topic for discussion, comments, questions and further developments.

H-Rep: An EP Homebrew Blog
http://ephrep.blogspot.com/

Kojak Kojak's picture
Well, for what it's worth, I

Well, for what it's worth, I think it's a really great idea. I almost wonder if they'd try to piggyback it off of g-rep, since exhumans, at least IMO, fall into a bit of a grey area between criminals and outright X-risks.

"I wonder if in some weird Freudian way, Kojak was sucking on his own head."
- Steve Webster on Kojak's lollipop

DivineWrath DivineWrath's picture
Here's a question. How does

Here's a question. How does the Rorty fit into this network? They've lost control over a gate (the Discord gate is now in control of Go-nin) in the sol system a while back and now can only be found beyond the gates. I don't think they've in contact with the rest of the solar system for a while. I think it would be hard for them to have a presence on this network.

There are other Exhumans beyond the gates, but they would have trouble with communication too, depending on how far Exhuman they've become.

UnitOmega UnitOmega's picture
Kojak wrote:Well, for what it

Kojak wrote:
Well, for what it's worth, I think it's a really great idea. I almost wonder if they'd try to piggyback it off of g-rep, since exhumans, at least IMO, fall into a bit of a grey area between criminals and outright X-risks.

Well, some Exhumans are definitely criminals, and some Exhumans probably are not. Some people with +Exhumanism are even probably upstanding people. And some people who might even be called exhuman run the Titanian intelligence agencies.

I suspect the directly criminal ones have regular g-rep, but as discussed with both the Guanxi and the Eye, there obviously needs and exists a way to conceal social networks from outsiders. I wouldn't be surprised if this "Apex" network was derived from existing designs and spaces in the Guanxi, which could be a good explanation of how and why it works. Sounds like a move from the Parasite clade - who are probably most likely to rig this kind of operation. It's very much trying to exist in the same space as transhumanity and surviving that way to me.

DivineWrath wrote:
Here's a question. How does the Rorty fit into this network? They've lost control over a gate (the Discord gate is now in control of Go-nin) in the sol system a while back and now can only be found beyond the gates. I don't think they've in contact with the rest of the solar system for a while. I think it would be hard for them to have a presence on this network.

There are other Exhumans beyond the gates, but they would have trouble with communication too, depending on how far Exhuman they've become.

Well, the Gates are an obstacle to all forms of communication. I suppose the question would be are extrasolar Exhumans from before or after the creation of the Apex network. The Pandora Gates were discovered a few years after the Fall, so it's possible Exhumans would take a networking system with them. That said, without access back to the Solar System such networking would obviously end up out of date and the protocols or fashion of such a thing could be different. This could lead to interesting confusion or conflict even among Exhuman groups beyond the gates - if one was making a game playing to these concepts.

About the Rortians themselves, my memory of their weird fork/ego gestalting ideas into their combat dreadnoughts and the like makes them seem a bit like a cross between Sublime and Soul Eater clades, and their style of "conquering the solar system" probably means that they wouldn't be well regarded by other Exhuman groups anyway. Especially since they use cyberbrains for this.

For some reason I feel like as a whole Exhumans would roll their eyes (possibly with a hint of irony) at those who accidentally go too far and either end up with TITANs for brains or are just gibbering lunatics prattling about GALACTIC DOMINATION! When you fuck up and stop making moves which make sense for your ultimate survivalism, you're kind of slipping outside the edge of Exhumanism into just plain crazy. Exhumanism is supposed to be about the ultimate logic of rational evolution.

H-Rep: An EP Homebrew Blog
http://ephrep.blogspot.com/

ThatWhichNeverWas ThatWhichNeverWas's picture
Confusion!

Silly question, but why wouldn't they have thier own rep network? I was under the impression that pretty much every group can have it's own internal Rep system, and the Official networks are just the biggest/most useful.
I also thought that they aren't "coherent" systems but dynamically formed from the thousands of social networking programs, chat boards and so on used throughout the system.

In the past we've had to compensate for weaknesses, finding quick solutions that only benefit a few.
But what if we never need to feel weak or morally conflicted again?

emobob emobob's picture
OuterLink Rep Network

This seems like the perfect excuse to actually write up the rep network I've been kicking around in my head for a while. It isn't exclusively for exhumans, but they're part of it.

Spoiler: Highlight to view

Network Name: OuterLink

Rep Name: o-rep

Networking Field: Outsiders

Factions and Others: brinkers, exhumans, out'sters, and ringers

OuterLink is a loose aggregate of hundreds of different minor or informal rep networks created and used by isolationists, loners, outcasts - anyone who shuns transhumanity as a whole in favor of forging their own path. It is the least organized of the rep networks, and is replete with pseudonyms and false identities, though the sheer sprawling nature of it, combined with the pragmatic and survivalist nature of its users (and the occasional execution of offenders), limits opportunities for rep gaming.

Of all the rep networks, OuterLink incorporates the most diverse array of unconventional evaluation methods - understandable, since its users are diverse enough that any given brinker might violently hate a sizable portion of their fellow users. There is a constant struggle to balance the privacy of its users with accountability and trustworthiness. Groups and subgroups drive the network, and the data available about a given user is generally limited by mutual trust. A user might be able to view data about a close associate comparable in scope to a Circle-A List profile, while a complete stranger's profile will be limited to aggregate scores and a list of anonymized recent transactions and reviews.

As with CivicNet or Guanxi, reputation is not the be-all-end-all of OuterLink interactions. Anyone with a high rep who strolls into an out'ster hab and expects to live like a king off of their rep will be swiftly (and perhaps painfully) diappointed. As individualists and survivalists, outsiders are willing to help each other when necessary, but those who need constant help to survive are leeches and will be abandoned. Trade of all sorts is crucial: credits, feedstock, goods, information - these are the currency that drives outsiders. The universe is cold and unforgiving, and it is foolish for a hab to risk its survival by wasting resources on charity with no real likelihood of repayment.

Laskeutua Laskeutua's picture
Re: outernet

I like this. Given that in a writeup I've done I posited an ideal of 'Weakness is a Crime' as an informal motto for such groups, your description of this network fits in really nicely with how I view the brink.

emobob emobob's picture
Thanks

Thanks! I based it on the Rimward writeups for the various factions, as well as extrapolations of survivalists in media. The original impetus was wanting a mechanical reason for the frequency of exhumans and brinkers collaborating, given that they didn't really have a network in common. It made me realize that a lot of the isolated factions didn't really have a network that fit. Sure, they could use varying combinations of @-rep, g-rep, and r-rep, but those felt like they would be secondary, like c-rep would be for a gatecrasher. Plus it has the happy side-effect of making players maybe think twice before giving their exhuman predator that SAV of 1!

UnitOmega UnitOmega's picture
The Outsiders/OuterLink

The Outsiders/OuterLink functions a lot like the idea I wanted to get across - and Brinkers and Out'sters are noted as trading and even working with Exhumans for goods and services. It also honestly makes sense in the setting, too - unless you are a 100% self-sustained isolationist (which is really hard to do), you still need to be able to look into people and get help and a Network system is the ideal way to do that.

Depending on what your GM wants to do, you could easily allow either ideas (o-rep or α-rep) at the table - though I probably wouldn't use both for the sake of overlap

H-Rep: An EP Homebrew Blog
http://ephrep.blogspot.com/