So, I've come up with a fair share of house-rules.
I do strongly recommend that any GMs considering these rules put them to the vote, unless they feel that a given rule is something so vital to preserving Eclipse Phase as they see it that they absolutely must have it.
Also, please do remember to remind your new players of any new house rules. I forgot that, and wound up inadvertently nailing a player with a "Gotcha." I didn't mean to do that.
This is what I came up with to expand upon nanofabrication, to try and make it less of a GM judgement call and handle things like a player deciding to manufacture a Fenrir in a Desktop CM. Mainly it's meant to put some hard numbers and some general guidelines upon the vague nanofabrication rules in EP Core.
This is more a guideline than a rule, as the GM reserves the right to adjust times on particularly tricky nanofabrication jobs, but...
If the device you are using to construct a given object can build it entirely within its nanofabrication chamber, then per Eclipse Phase page 285, it takes one hour per cost category. (1 hour for a Trivial object, up to 5 hours for an Expensive one.) If it is not large enough, however, it will take longer, as the device must be manufactured piece-by-piece and assembled by hand.
Estimate the object’s volume (discount any empty space, such as cargo bay, crew cabin, or the space between armatures,) and divide by the volume of the nanofabrication bay you’re using. That’s how many construction cycles your nanofabricator will take to manufacture the object piece-by-piece. Divide the total cost by that sum, assign the result a cost category to determine how long it takes your nanofabricator to complete one construction cycle.
Constructing the object once it’s been fabbed requires appropriate tools (which you damn well should have, if for no other reason than that you’re using a nanofabricator and can have any tools you needed trivially added to any given build cycle,) space (you will have to provide this yourself,) an appropriate Hardware skill (usually), and time, depending on the size and complexity of the object, which is a pure eye-ball. A rifle can be assembled in a few minutes by someone who knows what they’re doing and taking their time, while assembling a vehicle piece-by-piece by hand is likely to take months of work. Either way, once everything is fabbed in more than one part, it needs to be built to complete assembly.
In objects which will require multiple build cycle, the character may declare they’re building while the nanofabricator is working; they will need to spend roughly all of their time attending to the fabber, but the upshot is that they’ll be ready to go shortly after the construction is complete. If not, then the GM will have to eyeball the construction time separately.
The character should roll an appropriate Hardware skill after they have spent the time on final assembly. If they fail, then somewhere along the way they have screwed up (not necessarily during the final assembly,) and must take another reasonable period of time, about 16 hours for a large, heavy vehicle, to fix it. If they critically fail, then somewhere along the way they have screwed up royally and damaged components they installed beyond repair; they must remanufacture about 5% of the device and try again.
You have a desktop CM, a gigantic scrapyard, black market blueprints for a Fenrir morph, and all the time in the world. The Fenrir has a credit cost of 100,000 credits. You guesstimate the Fenrir’s volume to be roughly the same as that of a Stryker IFV (ProTip: Guestimations can be done quickly by comparing to modern-day objects whose volume is known,); roughly 50 cubic meters. As with the Stryker, there is a significant amount of empty volume in that calculation; even with the legs folded up tight to the body, the Fenrir only occupies about 66% of the space of an area bounding it on all sides, so it works out as roughly 33 cubic meters.
The desktop CM has a fabrication bay volume of 40 liters, or 0.04m3. 33m3 divided by 0.04m3 divides the job into 825 parts with a cost of 122 credits each; a Low cost. It takes 2 hours to manufacture 1/825th of the Fenrir with a standard Desktop CM; assuming non-stop supply of material input and power, a desktop CM can manufacture all the parts of a Fenrir morph in 1,650 hours, or just under 69 days. (You probably would have been better off spending start-up time using your desktop CM to build a larger nanofabrication device, with which you could have built a larger nanofabrication device, with which you could have built a nanofabrication facility.)
The GM determines that this assembly is a monumental undertaking to do singlehandedly, but then, so is constructing a Fenrir morph piece-by-piece in a desktop CM. The GM rules that most of the construction has been taking place whilst pieces were produced by the nanofabber, and that it will take approximately 16 hours of work to complete the assembly. The character spends 16 hours working, and rolls their Hardware skill (Industrial, Groundcraft or Robotics would all be appropriate.) Disaster strikes, and they roll 99; a critical failure. They must remanufacture 5% of the Fenrir, because they bollocksed up the construction job somewhere along the way; they need to run off another 41 construction cycles, taking up 82 hours more, after which they spend another 16 hours and succeed on the roll, completing construction of one monster of a build project.
I came to Eclipse Phase from Exalted 2nd Edition, by way of Shadowrun 4th Edition. So when I saw players trying to submit Motivations that made little sense to me, I set out to figure out why that was. It came down to a differing conception of what "Motivation" meant; to me, a "Motivation" is the kind of thing that will motivate a person to stick their neck out, even when it's greatly unwise to do so; so a motivation of "Keeping Secrets" would make a person look psychotically unreliable, because they don't want to let any information get anywhere. Eventually, I codified this.
Because there has been some question on this topic, I’ll clarify Motivations as I see them. I follow the rule that a character’s Motivations are those things which will motivate them to go out of their way; those things important enough to them for them to actively work towards, or to take radical action if they’re threatened.
For instance, your average, everyday apolitical workaday joe on Mars, probably has something similar to these Motivations: +Comfortable Life, -Danger, -Poverty. Workaday Joe doesn’t want any trouble. He’s not going out of his way and engaging in risky activities (such as crime or investing the majority of his resources into high-risk, high-reward hypercorp startup ventures) to earn a fortune; he’s content working a low-key nobody schlub job that puts food on his table and lets him enjoy the comforts to which he has become accustomed. He might be an asshole, but if someone calls him out on it, he’ll back down or call the cops for help. He might express general sympathy and agreement with Barsoomian goals, but if the Movement asks him to stick his neck out (donate funds more than he can afford without cutting into his lifestyle, hide a wanted member of the Movement at his place, or pick up a gun and join the insurgency,) he will refuse, possibly making up an excuse, but if pressed he’ll just say he doesn’t want any trouble. He can only be motivated to risky behavior if his other Motivations are threatened; if the war comes to his neighborhood and getting out isn’t an option, he’ll pick a side, and will probably pick the side he reckons is going to win, whether or not he thinks they’re in the right. If he loses his job and starts facing the rent coming due and coming up short, he might engage in some criminal behavior to make ends meet, and look hard to find any job that will put food back on the table, but will seek to cease criminal activity as soon as he is able to re-legitimize himself.
That’s an everyman joe, though. The sort of person who is interested in more than a comfortable, danger-free life, such as player characters, have more interesting Motivations.
Again, Motivations are not something which a character can take or leave. Someone with -AGI Rights doesn’t just make an exception for an AGI because it’s convenient to overlook this particular AGI’s existence, and someone with +Barsoomian Movement doesn’t just fail to heed the call of the Movement because he’s busy, even if he’s busy because Firewall has called upon him.
A character’s Motivations are the things that they will stick their neck out to act upon. These are the things which passionately drive them. Someone who has a -Hypercapitalism motivation doesn’t just think that the PC are a bunch of twats and go full Economic Justice Warrior on his blog: he is actively plotting the downfall of the hypercapitalist system with whatever means and allies are at his disposal. His means may be so modest and his position so precarious that he can’t afford to do more than spray-paint anti-PC graffiti on a wall, same as many who don’t like the PC but not enough to have a -Hypercapitalist motivation, but when the revolution comes he will be out there with a rifle, gunning down the filth.
When a character is presented with a situation in which they can act on their Motivations, even though doing so is highly unwise (for instance, the unplanned liberation at gunpoint of an indentured servant in broad daylight,) the character receives a point of Rez, whether or not they are successful. (If they are successful, this remains the only point they earn.)
However, if a character is presented with a situation where they can act on their Motivations without immediately life-threatening consequences and choose not to do so, the character experiences an amount of stress from their failure to act. The character takes 1d10/5 stress, rounded down (minimum of zero.) Most people are probably Hardened to this particular stressor in life; choosing to be Hardened to this does not carry a CP cost, but still reduces maximum possible Moxie.
If a character finds themselves put in a position where they are torn between two Motivations which are mutually exclusive in a given situation, for instance someone with -AGI rights and +Wealth who is offered a vast sum of money by an AGI to overlook his existence, they’re in for a rough time. They can choose between their Motivations freely, but unless they somehow find a way to reconcile the split without violating either principle (such as taking the AGI’s money and then betraying her anyway,) this counts as failing spectacularly in pursuit of a motivational goal, and the character takes 1d10/2 stress, rounded down.
This rule I instituted to maintain a modicum of parity between players. Between the possibility of players coming into the game with a Rez deficet compared to the more established players, or one player doing something heroic (read: suicidal) on behalf of the team, and then losing all the Rez the group has been banking so far and have yet to spend or backup, I decided to change the rule to match the rule in all the Exalted and Shadowrun games I've run/played in: equal XP/Karma.
I don’t like unfairness in RPGs.
Every character, even those not participating in a session, gains equal Rez for that session. Any Rez rewards that would be highly individual in nature, such as the Rez reward for following a character’s motivation even when it is unwise to do so, or for accomplishing a major goal relating to a motivation, are shared amongst all characters. (It can be safely assumed that all characters will bear the burden of one character’s unwise actions in such an event, so they may safely share in the Rez reward.)
If a character loses Rez, for instance by being killed and unable to reinstance from their cortical stack, they still lose the Rez and are put back to an earlier backup. However, characters laboring under this Rez Debt gain 1.5x Rez per session afterward until they catch up. (This would also apply to any Rez a character cannot gain for a given time, such as being dead for a few sessions whilst the rest of the players work to reinstantiate them.)
New characters would come into the game with Rez equal to the pegged Rez value.
This is my attempt at incorporating the Stunting system from Exalted, 2nd Edition into Eclipse Phase, as I have done with every game I've run since I first played Exalted 2e and fell in love with the system (games such as Shadowrun 4th and Star Wars: Saga Edition.) Now if only my players would remember it and actually try to give me stunts...
The GM will be observing a form of the Stunting system familiar to players of Exalted, 2nd Edition. When any roll with an actual chance of consequential failure is undertaken, the player may feel free to describe the action their character takes, inventing non-vital scenery as necessary.
In the process of crafting a stunt, some narrative control over the scenery is granted to the player, though the GM may veto any additions he disagrees with strongly. For instance, if a player is trying to free-run and cross a gap between buildings, they may feel free to stunt that they sling a length of chain over a wire which stretches from one building to the other and zip-lines to it.
After an action is taken with a stunt, the GM should call out with one of the stunt levels. If the GM is tardy on this, prompt him, please.
The description is more interesting than simply “I climb the wall” or “I shoot the Exsurgent with the backwards legs.”
Zora Möller needs to climb up a smooth wall. Her player tells the GM “I take off at the wall, hitting it at a full sprint and using the momentum to get the height she needs.”
The roll is resolved with a +3 bonus.
The character recovers 1 Stress if the roll was successful.
The description is very interesting, and either involves scenery (physical or digital,) aligns with one or more of the character’s Motivations, or both.
Elis Menezes needs to climb up a smooth wall. Her player tells the GM “Elis slides her diamond tomahawk off her hip and dashes at the wall. She hits the wall at full speed and uses her momentum to climb up as high as she can, then buries the hatchet into the wall, using its handle to let her throw herself up to get the rest of the way up the wall, pulling it out behind her.”
The roll is resolved with a +6 bonus, and in the event the roll is opposed and their roll is successful, the character is held to have rolled 20 higher than they actually did for the purposes of determining whether their opposed roll was higher. (This breaks the skill cap; a character who rolls opposed at a skill of 56 with stunt bonus and rolls 43, with an opponent who rolled 50 and succeeded, will still prevail as they are held to have rolled 63.)
If the stunted roll was successful, the character may choose to recover 1d6+1 stress points or restore a point of spent Moxie.
The GM’s jaw hits the floor.
It's really hard to give an example of this level of Stunt. If the GM is left speechless picturing your character's actions, though, you've made it. (Unless the GM is rendered speechless because you did something so heinous it broke their brain.)
The roll is resolved with a +9 bonus, and if the roll is opposed and the stunting character succeeds, their opponent automatically fails without being permitted to roll. If the level of the opponent’s failure matters, they are held to have failed with a MoF of 30. If that is still not enough, the player who performed this stunt may spend a point of Moxie to force the opponent to resolve their failure as though they had rolled a critical failure result of 99.
If the action benefitting from the stunt succeeds, the player may choose to recover 10 stress points, 1d4+1 spent Moxie, or receive a point of Rez (which benefits the entire group).
I found the Alienation and Integration rules in the Core Rulebook to be magnificent in their sucktitude, with effects ranging from "Good to go" to "sucking useless for over a week." This is a revamp to those rules.
This is an override to the Integration and Alienation rules in the core rulebook, which vary dramatically from “no penalty” to “suck for more than a week.” I don’t consider that an acceptable variance in something the players are expected to do not infrequently. Alienation tests remain as standard, but use this new table.
Getting used to a new body typically requires some adjustment period, especially if the changes are extreme. They must often retrain themselves to perform simple tasks, let alone train themselves to perform tasks that their new body is capable of that their previous body was not, and occasionally unlearn things their old body was capable of that their new one is not. Luckily, transhuman minds are adaptive things, especially with the assistance of neurological “patches” applied during the resleeving process.
When sleeving into a new morph (or an infomorph,) the character must make an Integration Test upon taking control, rolling SOM * 3. The bonuses for the new morph do not apply to this test. Apply modifiers from the Integration and Alienation Modifiers table (Originally Eclipse Phase 272, Modified table below,) as applicable.
|Familiar; character has extensively used the specific morph they're sleeving into.*||+30|
|Clone of prior morph.*||+25|
|Character’s original morph type (what they were raised with)*||+20|
|Adaptability Level 2||+20|
|Adaptability Level 1||+10|
|Character has previously used this type of morph*||+10|
|First time resleeving||-10|
|Going from infomorph to physical or vice-versa.✝✜||-10|
|Character is sleeving into a dissimilar morph (ex. Human to New-Hominid)✝✜||-10|
|Going from Biomorph to Synthmorph and vice-versa, or from a pod to non-pod and vice-versa.✝✜||-10|
|Morph incorrectly gendered from character’s own gender identity✝||-10|
|Morph is heavily augmented (does not apply if sleeving into a body you’ve used before, unless its augs load-out has changed significantly.)✜||-10|
|Morphing Disorder Level 1*||-10|
|Morphing Disorder Level 2*||-20|
|First time going from physically instantiated to infomorph.✝||-20|
|Character knows they are a fork and are unaccustomed to forking. (Alienation Test Only.)✝||-20|
|Morphing Disorder Level 3*||-30|
|Going from Exotic Morph to any dissimilar Exotic Morph, or from less exotic morph to any Exotic Morph. (ex. Octomorphs, neo-Avians, Scurriers, etc.)✝✜||-30|
*Only the greatest of these modifiers is applicable, should more than one apply.
✜Only the greatest of these modifiers is applicable, should more than one apply.
✝This is a change from standard.
The morph just wigs you the hell out. It doesn’t seem to work right no matter what you do, and this is potentially terrifying at first. The acclimatization period is going to be long and difficult. The character takes a -30 penalty on all physical actions, which reduces by 2 points every three hours you spend in the morph. The extreme dissonance of this morph causes you severe problems on your alienation test: degrade your alienation test result by one step. (You cannot be degraded below critical failure.)
There is something fundamentally bugging you about this body, you feel clumsy, oafish. It just doesn’t do what you want to do. You may try to scratch your head and wind up poking yourself in the eye; attempting to handle a firearm in this state would be an exercise in futility at best, and a danger to yourself and others at worst. You take a -20 penalty to all physical actions, which reduces itself by 2 points every three hours you spend in the morph, and take a -10 penalty on your Alienation test.
Something about this morph just isn’t clicking with your neurology, maybe they misapplied the neural patches. It bugs you, somehow, it just bugs you, that it doesn’t seem to work right. Or maybe the morph is just stiff from a long time in suspension and they skimped on the drugs to keep it in good working order. Either way, you take a penalty of -20 to all physical actions, dropping by 2 points every two hours you spend in the morph.
The morph works, it doesn’t feel unduly awkward or strange to be in. You’ll take some time to get used to it, but you’ll get there without undue burden. You take a -20 penalty on all physical actions at first, with a reduction by 2 at an interval of 90 minutes.
This morph feels good, with only a slight , nagging inkling that anything at all may be amiss about it. You acclimate quickly to the physical aspects of the morph, taking a -20 penalty on all physical actions at first, which reduces by 2 points every hour you’re in the morph, to a minimum of zero after ten hours. You halve any stress you may have taken from the Alienation test, rounding down, to a minimum of zero.
The morph fits like a skintight smart-fabric glove. Everything feels somehow right, and your morph works entirely as advertised. It may even fit you better than the morph you grew up in. You take no penalties and require no time to acclimatize to the ‘morph, and you may skip your Alienation test entirely; there is no alienation in this body for you. You're right at home, like you always belonged here.
If a given piece of armor is tough enough, you’re just going to flatten ammo against it without doing any damage. Firing more bullets at it just lets you flatten light ammo against heavy faster than before.
If an armored target of automatic fire has double or more a weapon’s armor penetration value, burst fire doesn’t add any damage to the attack, and full auto only adds +1d10. If it has triple or more a weapon’s armor penetration value, even full autofire fails to add any damage.
This rule is simply designed to keep things moving, rather than calling for re-rolls on every mutual failure and tie. My group voted it in, but "preserving the status quo on mutual failure" has been what we've been doing in any event.
The normal rules state that in the event of a tie, or if both characters fail, they remain deadlocked.
Under this revision, ties and mutual failures are handled different. In the event of a tie, the result is awarded to the defender if the roll in question has immediately dangerous consequences; for instance, between an attacker using Blades to strike someone who is using Clubs to parry with the body of his rifle, a tied result goes to the defender without qualification, as would a mutual failure.
In events which are not immediately lethal (even if they potentially enable lethal situations,) the status quo is preserved. If someone is using Infiltration to sneak into a place and the GM calls for Perception for that person to have a chance to spot them, on a mutual failure or a tie, the sneaker remains undetected because although they failed to sneak, the perceive failed to perceive. If the person using Infiltration had been attempting to use it to shake pursuit and hide from someone who was already aware of them, the status quo is preserved and they remain known to their pursuer.
This suite of house rules was designed from the ground up to make there be a point to investing in melee skills. The design paradigm behind it being that if you're shooting at someone with a gun, it should be like playing Halo, but if you're attacking someone up close, it should be like Assassin's Creed. So far the only heading under Cinematic Combat is Called Shots, under which all the other headings lie, but it's not impossible - in fact, it's probable - that some non-called shot that would enhance the cinematic value of combat would come up at a later time. These rules were voted down in my game.
This is a suite of house rules designed to add some flair and flavor to combat; as well as to make melee actually something you might want to consider doing if you actually get close enough to someone to use it.
It is possible to combine two called shots: for instance, attempting to bypass armor and to strike the opponent exactly where you wish to do so, such as by striking them somewhere vital. This multiplies both the penalty to called shots and the required measure of success by 2. (IE, a called shot would have a -20 penalty, and would require a Measure of Success of 60.)
Making a called shot to something vital is an option, assuming you know where in your target that those somethings vital are located. These attacks, if successful, tend to disable a target immediately, assuming that what you struck was vital and they haven’t got some sort of augmentation that allows them to keep going despite the blow. (Most transhumans will be rendered incapable of fighting in short order if you rip their throats out with a combat knife or sever their spines. Some augments might allow them to fight on, depending on exactly what you struck, if only for a short time)
With a projectile weapon, called shots will generally only be possible if the target isn’t aware that they are under attack and taking steps to defend themselves. Even if the GM rules that the shot is possible, targets defending against called shots at range is much easier than defending against being shot period.
When defending against a called shot at range, a character’s Fray is considered a Simple Success for the purposes of the called shot itself. If they fail their Fray roll, it will not help to prevent them from being attacked, but even the failed roll still sets their measure of success to which the shooter must exceed in order to succeed in the called shot.
Jumbles the Chimp is confronted by a bioconservative fanatic waving a gun, who announces his intention to blow the freak back to hell. Jumbles, naturally, decides that he is uninterested in having his aged monkey ass blown away, and wisely chooses to flee. The gunman takes aim at Jumbles’ head, hoping to blow his brains out, and he fires. Jumbles musters his Fray score of 50, which is divided by 2 for defending against a ranged attack, and he rolls a 50. Jumbles does not succeed on his Fray roll to potentially avoid damage, but the attacker is not merely attempting to shoot Jumbles, he’s trying to blow his brains out. The attacker has been well-chosen and equipped by radical biocon groups such as the Jovian Junta, and has a Kinetic Weapons score of 110, so he will only fail on a roll of 99. However, jumbles’ Fray roll still counts for the purposes of the Measure of Success the attack needs. Adding in the requirement of 30 for a called shot, Jumbles only gets his brains blown out on a roll of 80+ or doubles; anything else simply strikes him and deals ordinary weapon damage. Not great, but a 26% chance of suffering instant death sure as hell beats the 72% chance he would have been facing if the attacker had simply walked up behind him and fired without announcing his intentions. Had Jumbles been wearing a helmet and the attacker attempted to both bypass his armor and blow his head off, he would have been required to make a roll of 110 on 1d100, and thus found it impossible without a critical hit (a not-insubstantial 10% chance with his 110 Kinetics score, though he would also suffer a 10% chance of failing to hit altogether with his -20 penalty.)
Making a called shot in melee is much easier than at range, even if the target is fighting you. If the target uses Fray to attempt to evade an attack with a called shot, the target’s Fray result is not added to the required Measure of Success.
Elis Menezes is dual-wielding a diamond-hardened tomahawk and a hidden blade, and is attacking a Shui Fong triad soldier in melee combat. Unfortunately for the triad soldier, he has neglected the old ways in favor of the gun, and is hopelessly unable to parry her strikes; his only hope lies in evasion, which he is quite good at. He has a Fray score of 50, while Elis has a Blades score of 60 when using her Hidden Blade. Elis wants to finish this goon quickly, rather than stabbing him half a dozen times, so she makes a called shot to spin him around with the tomahawk’s hooked blade and stab him in the brain stem. The goon defends with his Fray score, and rolls 40! Elis will need to roll 41 through 50 or a critical success to strike him at all. However, his Fray score does not set the baseline for her measure of success with a melee called shot; she needs only to score 30 or greater to succeed on the called shot, though obviously the actual shot must also succeed as well. Elis has an 87% chance of failure, but a 13% chance of killing her foe instantly! Had he instead been defending with a melee parry (Clubs, Blades, or even Unarmed,) his result of 40 would have set the baseline for Elis’s Measure of Success, meaning that she would have had to roll a success of 70+; impossible for her. Only a critical success of 11, 22, 33, 44, or 100 would have worked out as a successful called shot, a mere 5% chance, though she still would have struck him for normal dual-wielded weapon damage on a result of 41-50.
Called shots are notoriously dangerous. However, you can spend a Moxie to negate any called shot, after it is declared but before it is rolled for. The regular attack still takes place (with the called shot penalty), however.
This is a rule I've seen house-ruled in Shadowrun many a time, because sometimes the players are forgetful and their characters would not have been. This rule was eagerly voted in to in my game.
Sometimes your character is wiser than you are, or at least more prepared. Any time your character is in a situation which she had time to prepare for beforehand with a reasonable notion of what they were in for in the near future (IE, the current present time,) you may spend a point of Moxie to make an “on-hand purchase” to suddenly have some item(s) your character reasonably would have thought to bring but you, the player, forgot about.
Consider it to be spending a point of Moxie to warp time slightly and have another shot at provisioning for your trip. Any goods which you would have had free access to at the time and place you departed, you may pick up for free. Anything of Trivial or Low cost can be purchased, or a favor Retroactively spent to have provided.
I lifted this rule wholesale from the old Serenity RPG. Terrible system, but this was one of the few things in it I genuinely liked. This one was voted in.
(Almost literally) Taking a page out of the Serenity RPG’s book, the Story Manipulation rule allows players to manipulate events in meaningful ways by the expenditure of Moxie. These manipulations are fairly expensive, but they may be paid for collectively, if the group agrees, or individually if you have the Moxie and feel it’s important enough to spend it on. Please, no arguing; if a player feels negatively strongly enough on any story manipulation (including that paid for entirely by one player,) to argue against it, then it’s considered vetoed.
The GM, of course, has final veto over anything, and reserves the right to propose a modification to a proposed story modification if he thinks it can be worked in but not exactly as-stated. The GM’s vetoes or modifications are final, take-it-or-leave-it propositions. The GM determines how many MOX a given manipulation is worth; these prices are non-negotiable.
Story Manipulation can be used to arrange for a windfall of resources equivalent to the credit value of the manipulation level, but the GM reserves the right to abolish that option if he feels it’s being abused; same with using it to have something done which would better be done by calling in a favor.
It cannot be directly used to raise your Rep, but you can use it to have your character called upon for a Favor which, if completed, will raise their reputation, per the Favor rules. (This is a double-edged sword, in that failure or refusal of the favor will result in a reputation hit, and you don’t get to know what the favor being asked for entails until after you’ve spent the Moxie to call for a favor opportunity.)
It doesn’t let you rewrite the story in the middle, nor does it allow retroactive continuity to take place. It does, however, permit plot twists to be revealed.
Cost: 1-3 Moxie
- Determining that someone who is largely inconsequential or ancillary to the story is favorably disposed to you from the outset for some reason. (“The bartender and I flew on the same Barge for a while, and won’t mind if I run up a large tab,” for instance, or “The infomorph they have doing this file server work is really desperate for social interaction, and will gladly bump my requests to the head of her queue if I keep a chat line open with her.”)
- Being called upon to perform a Trivial level favor or provide Common information you are in the know of. (“You look strong, young’un, and my morph’s old, could you take a half an hour out of your busy day to help me lift this heavy stuff into my truck,” or “Hey, I’m getting mixed reviews of everywhere off the Mesh, where can I get something to eat that won’t make me wish I were dead later?”)
- Experience a trivial windfall of credits, materiel, or resources. (Your muse entered a poetry contest under your name and won a small prize. You need to find some open-source nanofabrication blueprints in a hurry, and your muse picks up a brief window of time in which you can access a Conduit hotspot and bypass the PC’s censors. You stick your hand into a dark vent out of curiosity and discover a flashlight.)
Cost: 4-6 Moxie
- Determining that someone who is somewhat involved in the story is favorably disposed to you. (“The lead we’re asking questions of is a huge fan of my music, and is totally chuffed to see me at her doorstep,” or “The customs agent who could make trouble for us is tired and just wants to go home, so if we don’t present any obvious trouble, he won’t pry into our business.”)
- Calling upon a stroke of minor good luck at just the right time. (“A brawl in the bar three doors down spills out into the streets, drawing everybody’s attention and affording us the opportunity to perform nefarious deeds unseen,” or “It turns out that minimum wage does not buy undying loyalty, and the shopkeeper’s assistant offers a very progressive portfolio of bribery packages and opportunities to buy things which have ‘fallen off a shelf and broken’”.)
- Experience a minor windfall of credits, materiel, or resources. (Sifting the electronic dregs of the mesh, you find an unsigned cache of hypercorp stock that you can claim and sell for 250 credits immediately. Glancing around in need of a weapon, you find a flex cutter rolled up and stuck behind a drain pipe, or a diamond axe mounted in a fire box whose latch is unlocked.)
Cost: 10-7 Moxie
- Stroke of luck at just the right time. (“That guy’s weapon is going to get stuck in his holster when he tries to draw on me.” “The triad guards are smoking and playing medium-stakes mahjong rather than being alert.”)
- Call-back. (“Remember that seemingly inconsequential girl we helped out of a jam before? Turns out that’s her in a new morph, and she’d like to pay back the favor and catch up on old times.”)
- Experience a moderate windfall. (Your Firewall proxy managed to funnel a cool thousand credits to you on short notice.)
- Determining that someone involved in the story is very favorably disposed to you. (“Hey there! You remember me - we lived in the same hab module a few years back, used to stay up all night getting blazed and listening to Neo-Cetecean synthcore? What’ve you been up to?”)
Cost: 11-13 Moxie
- Stroke of fantastic luck at just the right time. (“That idiot left the default credentials on his drone.” or “Turns out this kid just finds me irresistible and would do anything I wanted. I’m sure I can use that to my advantage.”)
- Experiencing a Major windfall when you need it. (“I remembered reading a Firewall report on Oversight resource cache practices, and found a cache containing [insert shopping list of 5,000 credits worth of highly illegal, untraceable, Oversight-manufactured goods relevant to operative work here.]”)
- Timely rescue. (“Broke crasher truck, broke fabricator, we vaporized our blue box when it looked like that exhuman exile was going to win, stranded god-knows how many light-years from home alone on some forsaken rock with dwindling supplies. Who would have believed that we were one gatehop from Portal and that a group of Gatehoppers just happened to come through and be able to take us back.”)
Cost: 14+ Moxie
- Determine that someone who isn’t overtly the enemy is actually on your side. (“The Oversight Auditor whose stack we popped was also investigating this Project Ozma nightmare, and wants to see it destroyed badly enough to willingly work with Firewall to get the job done.” or “This person we’ve run into has an i-Rep score; we’ve just run into another Firewall Sentinel by blind luck.”)
- Stroke of unbelievably good luck at the right moment: (“There’s dissention in the enemy ranks; I can see in that guy’s eyes he’s not thrilled with the way of things. A good offer might make his gun turn on his erstwhile allies.” or “That guy left the default credentials on one of the satchel charges he’s carrying. I can detonate him and everybody in his general vicinity whenever I want.”)
- Experience an Extreme windfall of credits, materiel, or resources. (“That panel van we rammed was transporting a charged-up but empty Arachnoid morph. All we have to do is cut the tie-down straps and load a fork into it.” Or “Luckily, Firewall has managed to funnel 20,000 credits in cash directly to us, actually bankrolling an operation for once.”)
- Fantastically timely rescue. (“Out in the wilderness, pinned down in a three-way firefight between TITAN-tech smugglers, us, and god-knows-what, a live nuke on an impact trigger in the middle of the battlefield, and here come some nomads and TITAN Busters roaring in to take up arms with us. We might yet live through this.”)
I wrote this rule because, quite simply, I was tired of seeing ridiculous situations where characters with godlike ability at a thing were failing opposed rolls with scrubs and bog-standard AIs. I instituted this rule by fiat, but I don't think the players with a penchant for punching their rolls above 100 will object.
The absurd situation can arise when a character with excellent skill ratings is forced to roll against an unworthy opponent, and through outrageous turns of luck, can fail.
It is thus that, if at any time a character with an adjusted skill rating above 100 (normally which results in turning the action into a simple success test,) is obliged to roll (usually for reasons of making an opposed test,) any overage above 100 is instead added to the character’s Measure of Success.
Example: Tenshi is an intrusion specialist almost without peer. Through a combination of skill, Eidolon bonuses, milspec hacking software and complementary skills, and after taking all penalties into account, her adjusted Infosec roll is 130. She rolls against the system monitoring agent, a bog-standard infosec AI with a roll of 40. Disaster strikes, and Tenshi, the masterful hacker, rolls only 15, while the AI rolled 40! But Tenshi’s advantage is indomitable, and her overage above 100 is 30, which is added directly to her Measure of Success. Tenshi’s result is thus 45, 5 over the AI’s best roll. Short of the system monitor having rolled a critical, Tenshi literally could not have failed with a result of 11 or greater.
Well, those are the house rules in my game. I'm sure others have input on these rules, and perhaps have interesting/useful house rules of their own they could share. Please, by all means, share!