Mass Effect (Eclipse Phase'd)

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CodeBreaker CodeBreaker's picture
Mass Effect (Eclipse Phase'd)
ITT I slowly but surely throw up the different things I have been writing in an attempt to port parts of Mass Effect over into Eclipse Phase, keeping the original feel while changing them to fit in with the EP World. There have been multiple pieces already done, for example the occasional person has posted Morphs for the different races and the like. These are just my versions. First, an attempt at porting in Kinetic Barriers. For those of you not aware of what they are, or for those who need a reminder, a quick quote from one of the many resources available on the matter. “Kinetic barriers, colloquially called "shields", provide protection against most mass accelerator weapons. Whether on a starship or a soldier's suit of armor, the basic principle remains the same. Kinetic barriers are repulsive mass effect fields projected from tiny emitters. These shields safely deflect small objects traveling at rapid velocities. This affords protection from bullets and other dangerous projectiles, but still allows the user to sit down without knocking away their chair. The shielding afforded by kinetic barriers does not protect against extremes of temperature, toxins, or radiation.” Kinetic Barriers An example of some of the incredibly advanced technology left behind by the long dead civilizations found through the Pandora Gates, Kinetic Barriers have been adopted throughout the System by countless military teams, smuggler bands and terrorist organizations. Smuggled out from under the nose of the Pathfinder Corporation by an unknown benefactor, these alien devices have also found themselves highly sought after by many black market dealers, eager to cash in before one of the Hypercorp research facilities trying to replicate there effects makes any progress. Unlike armor, which reduces the amount of damage taken by its wearer, Kinetic Barriers are capable of completely absorbing a limited number of direct hits by many kinetic based weapons (such as classical firearms and rail guns) before temporarily overloading and shutting down. Each Kinetic Barrier has a pool of Defense Points representing the protection is applies against all kinetic damage. They have no effect on energy or psi damage. Whenever someone wearing an activated Kinetic Barrier takes kinetic damage, an amount of that damage up to the number of Defense Points remaining is absorbed, completely protecting the wearer from that absorbed damage. This absorption is determined before any protection offered by armor. For every point of damage such absorbed by a Kinetic Barrier it loses a Defense Point. Defense Points recharge overtime, however each time they absorb damage this recharge is delayed. At the beginning of each Action Turn, any Kinetic Barrier that did not take damage during the previous Action Turn recharged a number of Defense Points as determined by the particular make or model. While outside of combat a Kinetic Barrier recharges at a separate rate, also determined by the make or model of the device. A Kinetic Barrier recharged Defense Points even while deactivated. KB-Alpha – The first of a series of Kinetic Barriers found on an unknown exoplanet, the KB-Alpha offers the least protection, and as such is sold for the lowest price. Many of these devices have recently been discovered in the hands of low level criminals, and authorities are beginning to suspect that someone may have discovered the means of replicating them. Whenever the KB-Alpha is struck by a high speed projectile it flares blue, with a pulse of eerie light emanating from the contact point along the wearers body. Defense Point Pool: 30, Combat Recharge Rate: 1/Action Turn, Out of Combat Recharge Rate: 20/Minute. Cost: High (rare) KB-Beta – Although only slightly more effective than the KB-Alpha range of Kinetic Barriers, the KB-Beta goes for many times the price on the black market. Although few of these devices have been found on criminals and their ilk, there have been sporadic reports of Direct Action equipping several of their more prestigious units with them. Whenever the KB-Beta is struck by a high speed projectile it flares red, with a pulse of eerie light emanating from the contact point along the wearers body. Defense Points Pool: 50, Combat Recharge Rate: 2/Action Turn, Out of Combat Recharge Rate: 40/Minute. Cost: Expensive (exceptionally rare) KB-Gamma – Very few examples of these devices have been documented within the System, and many believe that they only exist in the hands of the exceptionally wealthy collectors of alien technology. Much more effective at protecting its owner than the KB-Alpha, the KB-Gamma has more than triple the defensive properties of those inferior devices. Unlike the other examples of this technology, when a KB-Gamma barrier is struck by a high speed projectile there are no light flares, the bullet simply seems to harmlessly drop to the ground before striking. Defense Points Pool: 100, Combat Recharge Rate: 3/Action Turn, Out of Combat Recharge Rate: 60/Minute, Cost: Expensive (minimum 100,000, exceptionally rare) (NOTE: Kinetic Barriers utilize a still undiscovered means of protecting their owners. All recorded attempts at replicating these devices by transhuman kind has resulting in failure, occasionally catastrophic failure. As such they can only be purchased, not created such as in a cornucopia machine.) Next: An attempt at Biotics, using advanced TITAN based technologies implanted into the Ego state of Psi capable characters to amplify their natural abilities towards Psi-Gamma like heights. But with consequences ranging from being driven insane to accidentally infecting your targets with a new strain of the Virus.
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CodeBreaker CodeBreaker's picture
Re: Mass Effect (Eclipse Phase'd)
Psi Bionics Psi-Bionics is handled in much the same way as normal Psi abilities, with only a few changes. First, to be able to learn Psi-Bionic sleights a character must first have the Biotic Conditioning trait, which itself has the prerequisite that the character have Psi(2). Unlike normal Psi sleights which the average transhuman brain is capable of rationalizing to prevent stress damage, Psi-Bionic sleights have crossed into the alien and trigger something within the transhuman mind that reminds them that something is wrong. Due to this, anytime an async uses a Bionic sleight any observers who have not themselves been hardened to biotic use suffer from 1d10/2 mental stress damage. During the conditioning that allows a Psi user to use biotics they themselves become hardened to this stress without losing the moxie point they normally would. Although the conditioning biotic users go through allow them to learn Biotic sleights, to make use of without causing massive damage to their own bodies they must be sleeved into a biomorph with specialist technology known as Biotic Implants. If they are sleeved into a biomorph that does not have these Biotic Implants they take an extra 1d10 strain damage any time they use a biotic sleight, and all skill rolls made using those sleights suffers from a -30 modifier. For an unknown reason pod morphs reject Biotic Implants, and they cannot be implanted with them. [b]Barrier (Bionic)[/b]
Spoiler: Highlight to view
[code]Psi Type: Active Action: Complex Range: Self Duration: Sustained Strain Mod: Special Skill: None[/code]The async can use this sleight to generate a field of increased kinetic friction around their body, greatly reducing the damage caused by high speed kinetic weapons. At the beginning of the duration of this sleight, the async may decide the number of kinetic armor points they want to generate. Each point of armor added increases the strain modifier by +1. This armor is cumulative with any worn or implanted armor, and does not count as an extra layer when determining encumbrance.
[b]Charge (Bionic)[/b]
Spoiler: Highlight to view
[code]Psi Type: Active Action: Quick Range: Self Duration: Sustained Strain Mod: +1 Skill: None[/code] While sustaining this sleight an async gains a noted increase in their movement speed, moving with unnatural agility and finesse. During the duration the async has a movement speed increase of +4/20, as well as a +20 modifier to any free running and fray tests.
[b]Imbue Ammo (Bionic)[/b]
Spoiler: Highlight to view
[code]Psi Type: Active Action: Quick Range: Self Duration: Sustained Strain Mod: +1 Skill: None[/code] Imbue Ammo allows an async to weave a portion of their own psi abilities into their weapons, enhancing the armor penetrating qualities when attacking opponents with them. Whenever an async makes an attack and hits their target while sustaining this sleight, that attack gains an extra -5 armor piercing that stacks with any it would normally have. This sleight only effects melee weapons or kinetic weapons fired at a target within 5m.
[b]Leap (Bionic)[/b]
Spoiler: Highlight to view
[code]Psi Type: Active Active: Automatic Range: Self Duration: Instant Strain Mod: +0 Skill: None[/code] The async focuses their power below their own feet, propelling themselves through the air with more force than they could ever otherwise produce using their own strength. The async makes a running jump, even if standing still, adding an extra 5 meters to the distance and an extra 3 meters to height. The async takes no falling damage from this jump. The async can also use this sleight while falling to reduce the damage taken by 2d10.
[b]Stasis (Bionic)[/b]
Spoiler: Highlight to view
[code]Psi Type: Active Action: Complex Range: Touch Duration: Temp (Action Turns) Strain Mod: +1 Skill: Psi Assault[/code] Entangle enemies in bindings created from an asyncs mind, restricting their movements and impeding their actions. A successful touch attack completely immobilizes an enemy, freezing them in place and making them unable to act during their own turn. Instead of acting, the target may attempt a (SOM * 2) test to escape from these bonds.
[b]Throw (Bionic)[/b]
Spoiler: Highlight to view
[code]Psi Type: Active Action: Complex Range: Close Duration: Instant Strain Mod: +2 Skill: Psi Assault[/code] Throw a target a great distance, smashing them into walls and objects. Opposed Psi Assault vs. (SOM x 2) roll, target thrown (Implant level per 10MoS) meters. If the target is thrown into another object using this sleight both the target and the object take (1d10 kinetic damage per meter) / 2. Increase the damage by +5 if an Excellent Success is scored.
Implant Level 1: The entry level bionic implant that has been used in the majority of Hypercorporate tests into the emergent field of Psi manipulation, this particular implant only gives the async access to their mental conditioning, offering little other protection against the mental strain caused by using any advanced bionic sleights. Cost: Expensive (Rare) Implant Level 2: Of better quality than the Level 1 bionic implant, this newly developed model has performed admirably in control tests, and users have reported that the technologies used seem to relieve some of the strain caused by using bionic sleights. When using any sleight labeled bionic this implant reduces the strain inflicted by 2. Cost: Expensive (Minimum 50,000, This implant is not available at character generation, Exceptionally Rare) Implant Level 3: The very latest of the three developed bionic implants, the Level 3 model has only recently been considered moderately safe for implantation and as such is found in very few subjects. Those experiments that have made use of it however have reported incredible results, with users reporting greatly reduced mental strain when making use of their bionic sleights. When using any sleight labeled bionic this implant reduces the strain inflicted by 4. Cost: Expensive (Minimum 100,000, This implant is not available at character generation, Near Unique) Biotic Conditioning (Ego Trait) Cost: 15 CP/Expensive (Minimum 50,000) during play. The characters ego has been specially conditioned to be capable of making use of Psi-Bionic abilities when combined with newly developed bionic implants. Due to the severe mental strain induced by this conditioning the character also suffers from 2 permanent mental derangements, either picked from the list on Page 211 Core or decided upon between the player and their GM. Unlike normal mental derangements, which are temporary at worst, these derangements cannot be treated by psychosurgery without removing the biotic conditioning that they stem from. NOTE: This trait is only available to characters who have already been infected with Psi(2). Next up, an attempt at the many Mass Effect races.
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rhat rhat's picture
Re: Mass Effect (Eclipse Phase'd)

Nice work CB, you beat me to it on Shields and Biotics! :) Just one suggestion: if these technologies are being used in a crossover-game there is one important distinction to make about how shields and biotics work versus EP standard tech: they all use the "Mass Effect" fields generated by running a current through a material called "Element Zero" (eezo) to reduce the mass of an object or envelope of space (not clear from Codex which is happening).

If you are running a standard EP game, and would like to include these effects, then the big factor on price is your supply of eezo (should you choose to import it from ME too). The biotic powers, for instance, all require eezo nodes in the user's nervous system, and an amplifier to pickup the small mass effect fields made by the user, and turn them into proportionately larger ones using an external power source (iirc a battery of some kind). Without an amplifier, in ME biotics users can really hurt themselves trying to do big things. You can do without eezo in an EP game, but it is a convenient bit of explanation on how they work, should you decide to import it into your game.

However, if you are running a crossover game, Biotics and PSI are very different. Biotics in ME function on the same mechanisms as all ME technology, including their ships, FTL drives, weapons, shields, and artificial/anti-gravity devices. The Biotic individuals have merely got embedded bits of eezo in their system, and have gotten training to use it. Even with all of the powers they show in the game (except the anomalous "Dominate" power from Morinth), all they do is change the mass of things. Thus, the role of the person in biotics is to be a better system for controlling the complex interactions of masses, eezo, and the current running through it in a much more refined manner than any computer in the ME world is capable of doing (the computers do handle all of the weapons and ships, but those fields are limited to big simple things, like "go forward" and "stop"). Since ME is a world where AI is demonized, they don't have sophisticated enough control systems to automate the fine controls that biotic individuals use.

However, a canon example of how you can automate biotic powers directly is the "M-490 Blackstorm Projector" (commonly called the "black-hole gun"). It is super cutting edge experimental tech in the game (from the fluff anyway), and it replicates a power that normally only biotics can do: "Singularity" (something like a gravity well that you fling at something). In this case, however, since it doesn't require a living biotic to use the effect, the resulting "boom" is much improved by being automated.

Thus, in ME, Biotics and eezo are not really exotic or unexplainable, just difficult to control in anything but the most heavy-handed way given the technology level of that setting (AI is evil, outlaw most transhuman tech, etc). Given how PSI effects are supposed to be fundamentally alien, up to and past being explainable by the laws of physics, they are different beasts. Especially given how PSI can effect human minds and biotics cannot, as well as biotics being automate-able while PSI cannot work on a nonbiological brain.

Kudos again to Codebreaker for putting them together in a way that fits canon EP, but I'll see if I can't post a version that fits EP/ME crossovers (in other words, is based off of the mechanics of eezo).

EDIT: Last paragraph eaten by internet, put back below.

To amend those mechanics to include eezo, I'd suggest removing the coupling to the PSI powers, and instead making it a separate power line. Something like buying additional training over time:

  1. Biotic-Conditioned Morph
  2. Biotic-training (Basic; weaker powers)
  3. Biotic-training (Average; utility powers)
  4. Biotic-training (Advanced; offensive powers)
  5. Biotic Specialist (really advanced things like area-effect Pull or some such)

It may also be appropriate to make the biotics take damage physically (via feedback to the nerves from implants) instead of causing them to go insane. The intense concentration should still go and cause mental stress. But, they didn't get these powers via crazy alien infections, rather via purposeful training and/or surgery, so I don't see a need to take 4 derangements right out the door.

rhat rhat's picture
Re: Mass Effect (Eclipse Phase'd)
Here's some stuff that I think might be closer to the ME version of biotics. It boils down to needing a bioware implant just to get EEZO nodes, then a pair of cyberware implants to control what kind of effects you get to use. Below is a really rough outline, so feedback is appreciated: Bioware: - Element Zero Nodes * required to do biotics at all * Very expensive in ME world, plot-grade expense for EP (requires at least ~1kg of EEZO) * Doesn't allow you to do anything at all without implant and amplifier Cyberware: - Biotic Implant * contains talent list, places cap on effectiveness of powers. * does not function without amplifier * Talent List: A list of effects that the implant supports, for instance, Barrier, Throw, and Warp. Unsupported effects cannot be done with an implant, so general power usage is limited to only the effects that the implant supports (this is why biotics cannot just be used as general Telekinetics, but only specific kinds of effects). * Power Capping: regardless of how skilled the user, the implants cannot control biotics beyond their programming. These caps represent the maximum skill level (before any modifiers are added) that the user may roll when using this device to activate a particular "Talent". For instance, a device with Barrier capped at 40: an unskilled user with less (say 22) than 40 would roll their unskilled check (in the case against 22), but a skilled user (say with 63 in Biotic Control) would still be limited by their cap of 40. - Biotic Amplifier * controls literal power-output/duration/cooldown * Supports only a list of powers, other powers unusable. * is only compatible with certain Biotic Implants (due to manufacturers controls) Skills: Biotic Control: Used to aim/deploy/maintain powers Repeated use of "Biotic Control" can cause stress, and critical failures cause destructive feedback. -- Example: In order to be a Biotic from the ME game, you would need to buy: Element Zero Nodes + Biotic Implant + Biotic Amplifier and put skill points into the Biotic Control skill. Example Equipment: Alliance Military L3 Implant (Biotic Implant): This implant is considered safe to use but low powered, and is standard on all most human Adepts (ME1) Talent list: Barrier, Throw, Warp Capping: Activation difficulties, Barrier(40), Throw(30), Warp(30) Alliance Military Melee Amplifier (Biotic Amplifier): This amplifier is designed to allow operatives to bypass enemy cover, and protect them while entering close quarters Works with Implants: Alliance L-series Talent list: Barrier, Throw Effects: * Barrier: (see Codebreakers' Kinetic Barrier for KB details) Defense Points Pool: 50, Combat Recharge Rate: 2/Action Turn, Out of Combat Recharge Rate: 40/Minute. Maximum Duration 5 minutes. Cooldown 10 minutes. * Throw: Maximum load 4 tons, deals 2d10+5 if used directly on person or object (if they don't hit anything), range 10 meters, cooldown 4 turns. Example usage: PC with above and Biotic Control skill of 60 wants to: * Raise Barrier prior to combat: Roll under 40, success means you've got 5 minutes of coverage before you need to cooldown. * Use Throw against object: Roll under 30, success means you can throw an object weighing up to 4 tons up to 10 meters. * Use Throw against NPC in combat: Roll under 30, contested against Fray, success throws NPC, dealing that much damage as above if they don't hit anything (treat as called shot by PC using Throw, adding negatives after Capping), but dealing proportionately more damage if they get smacked against a solid object like a wall.
Thunderwave Thunderwave's picture
Re: Mass Effect (Eclipse Phase'd)
This is awesome. I was considering putting together a Mass Effect RPG with the EP system mechanics. EP seems to have most of what you need right off the bat if you're willing to do a little leg work. I was just being distracted/lazy thanks to other things taking precedence. I'm glad to see I'm not the only one with this train of thought.
CodeBreaker CodeBreaker's picture
Re: Mass Effect (Eclipse Phase'd)
If you do use my stuff remember that it is not really intended to be used in an actual Mass Effect game, more in an Eclipse Phase game that takes inspiration from ME for fun stuff. If you want to run ME, rhats stuff is probably better.
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Thunderwave Thunderwave's picture
Re: Mass Effect (Eclipse Phase'd)
CodeBreaker wrote:
If you do use my stuff remember that it is not really intended to be used in an actual Mass Effect game, more in an Eclipse Phase game that takes inspiration from ME for fun stuff. If you want to run ME, rhats stuff is probably better.
Eh. You both have very good points and ideas. The benefit of a number of people thinking on the same topic is that you can listen to, weigh, evaluate, and try ideas from everyone. After I get some sleep tomorrow (working tonight, unfortunitly, for Black Friday), I'll throw up some of the ideas I've got kicking around for Morphs (alien species).