posted by Hostile V Original SA post

Here's a little relevant music:


Corporation is a RPG that began its run in 2009. It’s a d20 based game that is best described as a cross between the original Syndicate game and 2000AD’s progs set in the 26th century in a world where megacorporations and a unified world government control the Earth. The player characters are all humans who have been recruited by the major corporations of the world to serve as their Agents. Agents are chosen from people who are at least above average and then made better through the use of cybernetic implants and augmentations.

From the get-go, let’s talk about two problems I have with this game. The first is that the layout is kind of weird! The sections are (in order): The main issue I have is that you get the rules more than halfway through the book and some terms will pop up you won’t immediately be familiar with. The rules are far from complicated but the structure is definitely odd. So I won’t be presenting this book in printing order; I will be putting it in the order that makes the most sense to me.

The other major problem is that the game lets the players do a lot and there are loose guidelines for letting them do that (want to make money betting on professional sports? You can!). Also the rules are a bit cumbersome at times (like, for example, rules for item/armor conditions). There are a lot of books for Corporation that offer more and more things to do and buy and they also bring new guidelines to the table (“getting infections from stolen nanotech implants because the guy didn’t bake the plates properly and kill off the self-replicating ones” and “how to make money from selling clones” come to mind). The game really does run the risk of offering you Too Much but I do understand the idea behind it. It’s less “these are the concrete rules!” and more “maybe one of your players will have an idea to do this so we want to at least offer you a loose framework for how they can do it. This is assuming you want to make this be a part of your game or allow the player to do it”.

I do enjoy this game, I do think it has some interesting ideas and I have some appreciation for the fact that it’s not just a hardcore cyberpunk dystopia that has somehow existed for at least a century. It’s a bit like Transmetropolitan in those regards; the world is not in the best state but it’s better because when it was at its lowest, mankind almost wiped itself out for dumb reasons. Also I’m not one to quibble about the definition of “cyberpunk” but you are most definitely working for The Man and it’s really not that awful. It’s much more of a sci-fi espionage/action game with augmentation, alien technology and future shenanigans than cyberpunk. And on that note, let’s get into a proper introduction to the game and world proper.

A quick note on what I will and will not be including: I'll be including sidebars and pictures when appropriate. There's a lot of in-universe writing in the book sprinkled pretty liberally and while it's decent, I'm not going to focus on that and talk more about the mechanical content and descriptions.


Let's skip the section that explains what a role-playing game is. The year is 2500 and the world is united under the banner of the United International Government. Beneath the UIG are the five corporations that control large swathes of the world, enforcing their own laws and way of life. The five corporations are: The UIG came into power after the Corporate Wars of the 23rd century when the world governments were surpassed by megacorps who fought a global war against each other. Each corporation wanted to outright rule the world but all that happened was a terrible war of attrition that systematically destroyed swathes of the Earth and depleted all of their resources. The UIG stood up when the corporations fought each other to a standstill and made themselves the controller of the world. So why aren’t the corporations extinct? Well, all the UIG cares about is enforcing its rules and protecting its citizens. It cannot and will not get involved in corporate affairs. They rebuild their power and money by helping rebuild the world and now there’s an uneasy peace where one side waits for another to falter so they can completely take them over.

Players control Agents of a Corporation. You sign a contract and they turn you into enforcers and street-level executives for your corporation while trying not to attract the intervention of the UIG. It’s a lot like EVE Online and how Concord doesn’t give a shit about what you’re up to, you have broken the law and you need to be punished. Your jobs might be legal or illegal but completion gets you paid and brings benefits. Plus, playing by the rules grants you better perks of citizenship in the UIG, which gets you paid better. The threat in the field isn’t going to be some civilian and in fact you really shouldn’t use overwhelming force against normal people. The real threat comes from the fact that Agents doing other missions have the same basic strengths as you and won’t go down without a fight.


For starters, Agents are selected from individuals who are more skilled than the common person. When they sign a contract to become an Agent, their Corporation will outfit them with a collection of augmentations that are standard across all Agents for any corporation. They will also foot the bill for the price of these cybernetics and will pay monthly for their upkeep (plus if you lose them due to, say, total loss of body, they’ll pay for installation of new ones). Basically this is the starter pack that makes you more than human and no matter your employer you get these benefits that can’t be taken away from you. So in a straight or fair fight, a normal person isn’t beating an Agent. That’s okay because most of the time a regular person isn’t going to be the focus of an Agent’s aggression. I like how from the word go you have a Don’t Suck package mandatory for every player character, that is a good design decision and helps set them apart from a normal person.

NEXT TIME: We’re going to skip ahead some to chapters 8 and 5. After that we’ll get to chapter 1 proper and see what it’s like to build an Agent.

A stylized picture of a process socket.

CHAPTER EIGHT: The Game Section

posted by Hostile V Original SA post

CHAPTER EIGHT: The Game Section

Okay so I don’t feel like I have to go too in depth with all of this. Corporation uses its own d20-esque system (The Brutal Engine because this is by Brutal Games). The basic dice roll to do anything is 2d10 and you should roll under the target number. There are d6s and d20s and the other dice are used too, they’re just much more situational. Typically you’re rolling under a flat TN of Stat+Skill+penalties/bonuses or occasionally Stat+Stat or Skill+Skill. It’s up to the GM if you can attempt the roll again and there’s the old statement of “roll if it makes sense” applied.

If you don’t roll under the TN (meeting the TN counts as a success), that’s just a flat failure. Success is different; every point difference between the result and the TN is a point of Excess (XS). XS can be carried forward to a follow up roll if the GM finds it appropriate (“you Stealthed so well you get +4 to knocking out the guard” is the example used) or it can just be a stylistic flourish that makes you look good. Occasionally it can be redeemed in other ways but they’ll come up when they’re mentioned. Technically they have already been mentioned, but I’m doing this chapter out of order, so.

So why 2d10 if it’s basically a d20ish system? This is because critical successes/failures depend on doubles. Double 10s are always a critical failure and snake eyes always count as a critical success. There are some circumstances that will adjust your crit range (good quality weapons add to success, damaged equipment add to failure) but you always crit-fail on any double when using a skill you don’t know.

If you are using a skill and have another skill you can convince the GM is relevant, you might be eligible for a Sympathy Bonus because the two skills synergize in this situation. The bonus should be half the relevant skill rounded down and the GM should be picky about accepting this reasoning because otherwise it’s pretty easy to add a substantial bonus to your roll.

There are rules for multiple successes over time but basically they should be reserved for situations that need multiple skills or are really long and drawn out. Let's just move on to combat.


You know it’s kinda cheating to do this, but they put the entirety of the combat rules in a single little box and I’m just gonna use that.

But there are more concrete rules. Rounds are around 3 seconds each and combat continues until something major changes. Draws on Initiative go to the person with the higher Reflexes and anyone who initiates combat gets +4 to their first attack. You can also choose to hold your action and spring it at will during the round. Movement and actions are treated interestingly. Basically, as seen below, movement is considered to be an optional rule. Actions are limited by your weapon’s Rate which says how many times you can attack a round; you can willingly attack less to gain a bonus to accuracy for your other attacks (+2 per dropped attack). Finally, Defense. Your Defense is flatly equal to your Close Combat skill rank and it acts as a penalty to hit you. You lose your defense if you’re fighting in melee with a firearm or if you’re unarmed in melee and your opponent has a weapon. You can also divide your defense up among multiple attackers trying to get at you. Both the loss of defense in certain situations and dividing defense can be mitigated or eliminated with the proper training.


Crits on attacks act different than regular skill checks or other checks. In close combat, a critical failure gives the enemy a free single attack against you that bypasses your defense. In ranged combat your shot misses and the gun jams or malfunctions at the end of your turn. The next turn you have to spend an action to get the gun working again. A blast weapon failure exposes the user to 1/3rd of the blast. Critical hits are a lot simpler: roll damage twice, add and double it.


Dodging comes in Active or Full. Active dodge is declared on the start of a turn and you can give enemies up to your Reflexes in penalty to hit. However, this costs your actions, limiting the amount you can take that round to the remainder. Full dodge is declared before your turn and grants your Reflexes+2 penalty to hit you while you do nothing but dodge.

Blocking is for melee only. Blocking simply doubles your Defenses for a round while limiting you to just one free action.

In extreme emergencies you can attempt to Retreat by making a Perception+Agility roll with a -1 penalty for every attacker after you. Success means you get away clean, failure means you get away but everyone gets one free attack on you. And sometimes you just can’t run away.

Cover gives your enemy a penalty to hit you while you take half that penalty to attack from behind it.

Targeting is broken down into Aiming, Target Shot and Vital Shot. Aiming is simple: spend one action to increase the chance to hit and damage by +2 up to +6 for the next attack. Yes, this includes swords or melee weapons; you don't lose your Defense from aiming. Sniper weapons double that, starting at +4 and up to +12. A Target Shot is a called shot simply to target a specific item or a piece of a person. A Target Shot is a cinematic shot and doesn't do extra damage but if you need to, say, shoot a camera, shoot a gun out of someone's hands or ping someone to get their attention you use Target Shot. A Vital Shot is basically Power Attack crossed with doing extra damage on a headshot: take a penalty to hit and increase the damage dealt by that penalty.


First, free actions.

Two weapon fighting gives -4 to attacking without proper training. You can also dual wield two-handed weapons one-handed with Strength 10 which doesn't give you the standard extra Strength damage.

Wrestling...basically take Restraint Training.

Knocking someone out with a punch is -4 to hit and forces the recipient to make a Perception+Endurance test with the attacker's XS as a penalty or be KO'd for 1d100 minutes. Deals Strength damage and doesn't work against Agents. Great for civilians!

Executions deal maximized weapon damage that is then tripled. Alternately, the GM says it's an instant kill. You have to have at least 1 rank in a weapon's relevant skill to execute.

Opposed actions are just "specific roll-off and highest XS wins". This includes disarming, racing, challenge pissing.


Roll the relevant dice or inflict the relevant status effect (or do both, this might happen) on the successful use of a weapon. Armor and energy shields reduce the damage you take, shields before armor unless it bypasses a shield or under special circumstances. Specifically, armor is Always On and just subtracts damage, shields eat damage until they run out of juice to soak. You simply reduce the damage you take from your HP pool.

Mashing damage is different and worse. Basically every point of mashing damage causes catastrophic bleeding every round and is cumulative. Take 2 mashing damage one round, lose 2 HP, take one more point, lose 3 that round. You need a medpack or an Intelligence+Medicine roll to staunch it. Civilians take mashing damage all the time from every attack and as a result it is very easy to kill them.

Severing limbs! Severing limbs is an all-or-nothing affair with a melee weapon and substantially easier with a ranged weapon that severs on max damage. Pick a limb and attack with a penalty and if you deal the requisite amount of damage, the part is severed. If you miss, the attack does no damage, if you do insufficient damage you just hurt them but their parts stay attached. As you can see below, fingers are hard to hit and easy to cut off, a torso is easy to hit but hard to bisect. The damage is also inflicted to the victim's health pool. Considering how it's impossible to knock out an enemy Agent, it's considered effective to simply incapacitate them by cutting off both of their arms and making sure they're suitably restrained with their arms nearby. It's embarrassing as hell but it's non-fatal and if someone absconds with their arms, well they'll grow back in a few weeks.

Speaking of, let's talk health points. An Agent starts with Strength+Endurance+20 HP. A regular person has Strength+Endurance+10. If an Agent is reduced to 0 HP, they're incapacitated and their body starts to shut down. Unless you're wounded by mashing damage, you don't lose any more health at 0 unless someone walks over and does you more harm. The real threat is brain death; an Agent loses 1 Intelligence point a round unless someone stabilizes them or slaps them with a medpack. A stabilized Agent will regain their Intelligence at a rate of one point a hour. An Agent dies at Intelligence 0 or if their hitpoints go into the negative equal to their Strength+Endurance. A normal human starts to lose 1 Endurance point at 0 HP and will die when it's depleted and also need first aid or a medpack.

So we've talked about how to get hurt, how about getting well?

Medpacks are the fastest way to get well. Simply apply intravenously or physically to heal a set amount. They're basically on par with healing potions and are designed to minimize downtime. If you're out of medpacks, you can try Intelligence+Medicine (only heals 2 HP a pop) or just rest if time permits. But let's say you lose a limb and you don't want to wait for it to regenerate. You're in luck! Simply buy a can of Twin Snakes Medical's Compound H, spray the severed limb's stump, spray the stub on your body, attach the limb to your body and wait 15 minutes. In 15 minutes the wound will heal perfectly without a scar, giving you the lost HP right back immediately. It's not hard to get well again, which is quite nice.


You can hold your breath for 30 seconds per point of Endurance before you take 5 HP a turn. If you can breathe again, regain the lost HP at a rate of 5 HP a round.

If you're on fire, take 1d6 damage a round. Either make an Agility+Reflexes roll to roll around or have a friend spend a whole round to put you out. Fire does not stack, so if you're any more on fire you only take 1d6 damage a round. Also the game openly states that if you have Armor 6, it just eats all of the damage and you can basically be on fire harmlessly. Try to use this to your advantage!

If you're blind or blinded, whoops, that counts as Perception 0 for anything involving sight such as shooting a gun. Walking any faster than a slow, cautious walk is dangerous to you. This also applies to deafness or any stat being 0; if it's 0, you can't use that stat.

Agents take 1 damage every 2 meters they fall while a human takes 2 damage every meter. A controlled fall lowers the range fallen by 2 meters and armor eats fall damage. If you hit the pavement fatally, a Strength+Endurance-4 roll can just set your HP to -5 and put you in a dying state.

Poisons have a level of potency and can be halted by a filter that blocks any poison/toxin equal to or lesser than the filter. If that doesn't stop it, whoops, defer to the poison's info.

There are also rules for dealing with mental stress.


Conviction is used to push the Agent when they really need it. You can only spend one point from your pool and you only get Conviction back by doing something important to the mission or your character. Your max pool is 5. Conviction is used to get +4 to your TN, reroll, boost a psychic power's rating by 2 for a round (max 10) or make a non-combat action while incapacitated/dying (such as plugging in the IV to your medpack).


Regular under-pressure driving is a simple TN. Unless you have ranks in the Driving skill and the proper training to fight and drive at the same time, doing that is a terrible idea. It's -4 to all rolls while trying to drive and fight at the same time. However, you can totally use the vehicle offensively. If you're using the momentum of the vehicle for drive-by close combat, add +2 damage to the attack for every 10 MPH the vehicle is going. You also deal 1d6 damage per 10 MPH if you ram with a vehicle. Basically hitting a normal person with a car going 40 MPH has a good chance of killing them. There are rules for vehicles taking damage earlier in the book but basically vehicles have armor and HP and yadda yadda.


You need the proper software to hack and a good connection. The amount of successes and difficulties depends on the level of security. Failure causes the GM to roll a secret d100 they have to roll under the percentage to activate a trace and get security after the hacker. There's no penalty for jacking out before you get caught.

Okay one big point in this game's favor is that the rules aren't super complicated at the base. They take up 13 pages and they're refreshingly brisk and comprehensible. The book also does a good job of formatting and making it easy to parse and get what you need.

CHAPTER FIVE: Character Advancement

The mission is complete and it's time to reap the benefits! Character advancement comes in two forms: experience and rank points.

Rank Points are how well the Agent has done in the eyes of the UIG and their corporation. You don't get a promotion without impressing the UIG. Now, the UIG doesn't like the corporations and it certainly doesn't like its Agents. However, the UIG can't just ignore people they don't like due to backlash and recording instruments monitoring its officers. As a result, Agents do get promotions in Rank if they can provide proof of their deeds and pass an interview though the UIG will be stingy with handing out Rank Points.

Gaining Rank is A Good Thing. Higher rank means more access to more licenses, more privileges and more money made per mission. Someone with Rank can command a non-UIG person two Ranks lower than them (one rank if in the same corporation). Ultimately the UIG have special authority over everyone with the exception of a specialist with special authority (a bomb disposal technician, for example). Ultimately, players should not surpass Rank 8/10 because past then we get into Running The Corporation. Agents start play at Rank 1. The GM should feel free to adjust gain of Rank Points as they see fit.

You can lose Rank, however. The easiest way to lose Rank is to get caught committing a crime or by acting irresponsibly. Remember how easy it is to kill a civilian? It's very easy to tank your rank with mass murder or fatal collateral damage, so make sure you have non-lethal options or punch to knock them out. Alternately, do not get caught. Your accumulated Rank Points will have the points deducted for your misadventures and you can lose Rank levels (remember, the UIG will drag its feet giving you Rank Points but will gladly take them away). If you hit -4 Rank level, you are classified as a criminal and Depersonalized. Being Depersonalized is a very bad thing: you are no longer protected by any laws and are fair game to anyone who might want to do something to you.

Experience Points are simply gained from playing the game and can be used to advance the character. You should get 3-5 experience points a session (or roughly 1 point a hour). You can adjust the gain of XP, but you can't punish players by taking that away (you can take other things away). XP totals are used to determine levels which are basically arbitrary ways to measure an Agent's combat effectiveness and how suitable certain threats are to them.


Payment is simple. Upon completion of a mission and depending on success, the base pay is at least Corporation Pay Rate times Rank. Depending on how things go and how important the mission was, the GM can add a bonus of 0 to 100% of the base pay.

But that's just straight credits. Corporations can't pay the Agents in Rank points and will sometimes ask the Agents to do highly illegal things the UIG can't know about. It's very hard for a corporation to cook the books for rank so instead they'll pay the Agents under the table for doing things discretely.

Other rewards can come in various forms depending on how the mission went and what it was about. The Agent can regain Conviction for certain deeds, gain new Contacts they can lean on, get a mission-related reward or just give them general goods and perks.


But of course not all Agents are good children who do what they're told. Sometimes you have to punish an Agent or have the corporation rein them in. Basically, the punishment has to fit the infraction and depends on a variety of factors. You should not make the Paladin fall for accidentally giving an orphan a head cold. Factors to consider: Basically, remember that the UIG will punish the Agent for crimes and if you want the corporation to also punish them, make it fit the crime and do what feels right.


Downtime is the other means to advance your character. After every mission (or 2-3 sessions), the Agent should at least get a week off to cool off and do something productive besides a mission. Basically, the following options take at least a week and happen off-screen between games with GM approval. The things you can do during downtime will continue to be expanded on in future books (like the previously mentioned "clone things for profit" or "run a drug lab for profit" or "organleg for profit"). Downtime is a pretty nice mechanic, I dig it.

That's it for mechanics and character advancement. NEXT TIME we'll rewind back to chapter 1 and learn how to make characters.

CHAPTER ONE: Character Creation

posted by Hostile V Original SA post

CHAPTER ONE: Character Creation

The first thing you need to do is sit down with your GM and figure out if you're playing a cross-corporation team or all working for the same company. The former is totally possible and is often formed with UIG oversight. A group of Agents is called a Division and every Division has a Division Leader. The second thing you want to do is pick someone to be a Division Leader. The DL is in charge of giving orders and accepting responsibility (translation: get one extra Rank Point at the end of every session but run the risk of being the one with the most to lose). The third thing you need to do is take note of all of the free stuff you automatically get as starting equipment.

How to Build A Character That's all well and good on paper but let's break it down further.

Step One

Your Corporation gives you free bonuses depending on their main areas of focus. Step Two

Basically just talk to the other players and the GM about what you want to do and what role you want your character to play. The game also includes questions you can ask yourself to flesh out your character. You should also have a skill in mind that is integral to your character.

Step Three

Stats range from 0-10 with 0 being unusable and 10 being the peak human potential. 5 is human average. Agents cannot start play with a Stat below 5 or above 10; they were hired because they are average or above average in all forms. You can assign stats one of two ways: all stats are 7 and you can reduce one to pump up another or start all stats at 5 and spend 49 points to increase a stat at one point an increase. This is essentially the same thing. It's possible to take stats above 10 but it requires cybernetics, augmentations or drugs.

Step Four

Step Five

Skills! You don't have a pool of points to assign skills, instead you have slots to fit the skills you want into. The only limitation here is that your Professional Skill must be 7+ but this is a good thing. A professional skill can't crit-fail and if you roll any doubles on a success it's a critical success. Skills range from 1-10 and can't go above 10 naturally (meaning you need augmentations).

Skill List

Step Six

Trainings are specific areas of expertise that you might have to meet a prerequisite for. Some of these are character creation only and the rest can be purchased with experience points.

Noncombat Trainings Combat Trainings

Step Seven

Licenses are good for getting away with things. You have permanent licenses (which cost 500c and a week of work per level) or a temporary license which is a simple down payment. You can also get licenses as an award from your corporation. The point of licenses is that they can be used to do different, new things outside of normal operations. You get 8 points to spend on licenses as long as you meet the requirements like skills or Rank.

Equipment Licenses Authority Licenses Professional Licenses

Step Eight

Buy equipment with a starting budget depending on your corporation.

That's all there is to it, you're done! I helped some friends make some characters as practice exercises but if anyone wants to contribute an idea, NEXT TIME I'll build one or two to round out the group.


posted by Hostile V Original SA post


I won't be including the things the characters already get for free.

Ai-Jinn Stealth Specialist:

Caleb's idea is an Ai-Jinn Agent who infiltrates and has stylized himself to fight and appear like the Chinese hopping vampire.

HP: 34

Agility: 8
Endurance: 6
Intelligence: 6
Perception: 6
Presence: 7
Reflexes: 8
Strength: 8

Languages: Mandarin, Cantonese, Thai, Japanese.

Stealth: 8 (Pro Skill)
Athletics: 7
Close Combat: 6
Crime: 5
Light Firearms: 5
Attitude: 5
Corporate Knowledge: 4
Cybernetics: 4
Observation: 4
Street Culture: 3
Support Weapons: 3
Tactical Firearms: 3
Assess Tech: 2
Arts/Culture: 2
Looking Good: 2
Drive: 1
Lying: 1
Heavy Firearms: 1
Medicine: 1
Computers: 1

Trainings: Assassination, Underground Operations

Licenses: Security License, Powered Melee License, Vehicle License, Domestic License, Detainment License

Gear: Injector pistol, tiger claws, knockout grenade, customized reinforced clothing, field shield, lockpicks, stealth suit, suppressant gel, more handcuffs.

Western Federation Celebrity Agent

My friend Peter came up with a WesFed Agent who has a good public presence as an actor and celebrity on the missions that get turned into entertainment.

HP: 30

Agility: 9
Endurance: 5
Intelligence: 6
Perception: 8
Presence: 10
Reflexes: 6
Strength: 5

Languages: English, Spanish, Military Sign, Mandarin.

Lying/Acting: 8 (Pro Skill)
Looking Good: 7
Crime: 6
Drive: 5
Heavy Firearms: 5
Light Firearms: 5
Observation: 4
Stealth: 4
Tactical Firearms: 4
Street Culture: 3
Support Weapons: 3
Psychology: 3
Science: 2
Business: 2
Assess Tech: 2
Corporate Knowledge: 1
Computers and AI: 1
Close Combat: 1
Arts and Culture: 1

Training: Command, Interrogation.

Licenses: Detainment, World Database License, Search License (Domestic), Preacher's License.

Gear: Light combat armor, insulated shield, save the rest.

Shi Yukiro Bōsōzoku

My character, a gear-head who runs around with melee weapons and drives gaudy vehicles for the team's transportation.

HP: 34

Agility: 7
Endurance: 7
Intelligence: 9
Perception: 7
Presence: 5
Reflexes: 7
Strength: 7

Languages: Japanese, Mandarin, Russian.

Drive: 8
Mechtronics: 7 (Pro Skill)
Close Combat: 6
Light Firearms: 5
Cybernetics: 5
Medicine: 5
Athletics: 4
Tactical Firearms: 4
Assess Tech: 4
Crime: 3
Computers and AI: 3
Street Culture: 3
Support Weapons: 2
Heavy Firearms: 2
Pilot: 2
Corporate Knowledge: 1
Looking Good: 1
Stealth: 1

Trainings: Combat Driver, Jury-Rigging.

Licenses: Vehicle License (Domestic), Vehicle License (Military), Robotics License, Tactical Firearms License, Bounty Hunter's License.

Equipment: Machine pistol, combat chainsaw, stun pistol, light combat armor, heavy field shield, toolkit (advanced mechtronics), two cutting torches.

NEXT TIME: Chapter Two, the equipment chapter.


posted by Hostile V Original SA post


Before we get into weapon charts and such, we have to talk about a mechanic that frankly isn't very fun: Equipment Conditions. I would just cut this all out and not use any of it when playing. Basically when you buy your average gun or tool or vehicle, it's in new quality (condition 10). A Condition 10 item only critically fails on a double 10 roll. The GM can also decide that a critical failure will drop the condition another level, meaning it critically fails on a double 10 or double 9. The worst state an item can be in is Condition 1, meaning it can't critically pass and it critically fails on all doubles and falls to pieces. Normally a company won't sell people items that are in substandard condition unless someone insists or haggles. If you buy something of a lower condition, the price is reduced. Alternately, you can buy superior items that crit hit on higher doubles or have other benefits for an altered price (like making the weapon compact, increasing the clip size, etc.).

There are two ways to improve equipment. First is to bring it to someone and pay 10% of the item's new cost to increase the condition by 1 point. Essentially you can buy a condition 5 item for half off but if you want it to be new you have to pay the other 50% in repair costs. Second, you can use downtime to tinker in your workshop and gain one point a week for 5% of the price. The repair rules are the main reasons that the deterioration rules aren't very good or worth including because downtime is better spent doing something else and no matter what you're paying the full price eventually or more than that in repairs. I'm skipping a little bit of these other rules but that's because I don't really like this system.


These guns are common and available for sale from your corporation. You can also get rare or specialty weapons by buying direct from the manufacturer or by trawling the black market. Firearms come in Light (handguns, require 3 Strength to use one-handed but you're automatically STR 5, so), Tactical (sub machine weapons, rifles, two handed with 4 STR, one handed with 7 STR) and Heavy (biggest that can be carried, STR 6 to use two-handed, STR 10 to be used one-handed). Close Combat weapons come in Light (knives, brass knuckles, STR 3 to use and are really just one-handed), Tactical (swords and longer weapons, STR 4 to use one-handed, mostly one-handed unless specified) and Heavy (chainsaws, two-handed weapons, STR 6 to be two-handed and 10 to be one-handed). Rounding out the weapons are Support (grenades, explosives, mounted guns) and Thrown (you throw it but it doesn't explode).

Weapons in Detail



Armor has some simple rules. First, it reduces damage received in the area it's worn by a certain amount. Second, the armor values only stack if they're in different areas and not overlapped. A helmet, flak jacket and shield is 3 AV for the whole body. The except to this is cybernetic armor; cybernetic armor always stacks no matter where it's implanted. You can't have an AV higher than your Strength and some sets have a maximum Agility you can have while wearing the armor.


Hard Ion Shields are what I've been calling Energy Shields. A shield is maintained by a generator worn on your person that projects a visible field around you and stops high velocity objects. Inert objects or slow moving objects will pass through the field, so the shield stops lasers and bullets but a sword, a fist or a vehicle are not fast enough to make the shield react with stopping power. Also if you're a meter away from someone, the shield just plain won't react in time to deflect high velocity attacks. An Agent can only have one shield on at a time.

Shields have their own HP and will automatically deduct max damage that the attack can deal if the user is hit. For example: a Black Cougar handgun deals d8 damage, so the shield eats 8 damage. When the shield's HP reaches 0 or less, the field discharges and is depleted until it's recharged. A 20 HP shield is shot three times by the Black Cougar, so it takes 21 damage and shuts off. An active shield can take a total of double its HP to protect the owner; if the damage falls short of double but is more than the regular HP the shield simply turns off, if it's double or more the shield generator is destroyed and the owner takes the remaining damage. To recharge a shield, simply put it in a plug and let it charge 1`HP per minute.


A dose affects one target. A canister fills a 10x10x10 meter area and can be piped into ventilation. Potency indicates what kind level of filter will keep the substances from affecting the person in contact with them. Class D drugs are unrestricted, Class C are illegal in some territories, Class B are usable by select individuals and Class A substances are highly illegal and carry hefty punishment for possession. Certain licenses remove the legal risks of C and B but Class A substances are always super illegal.


A lot of these items are self-explanatory. I'll be going over the ones that aren't.


Let's talk about the hole in the back of your head. That hole, the process socket, is capable of slotting chips that provide you with a certain level of a skill depending on the chip. The basic process socket holds only one chip, can only take up to a level 5 chip and lets the info be fully accessible in a hour. The advanced process socket takes one chip, can take up to level 10 and readies the info in 5 minutes. The dual process socket has two advanced sockets. Process Chips are skills only and range from 1 to 10 with a variety of price. There are also Task Chips, which focus on one specific, narrow thing (interpretive dance, bar trivia, industrial lathe operation, 19th century culture, maps of Australia). All Task Chips are 2k each and give a flat 10 at the cost of being about that one specific thing.


I got more pictures, yo. Basically the thing I love about the rules for vehicle modifications is that you can pretty easily turn the party's vehicle into a truck covered in heavy armored plating capable of flying at 260 MPH thanks to its antigravity generators. This is of course assuming you have the money to create a flying brick of a truck.


Cyberlin stands for Cybernetic Elimination Unit. They're bipedal robots that range in size from 20 to 200 meters in height and have a pilot that controls them. Originally Cyberlins were designed as "clean" weapons of mass destruction in the Corporate Wars. Now Cyberlins are used for heavy industry, defensive purposes and more. A Cyberlin is basically a headless body with tools or weapons where the arms would be, the pilot residing in the chest. Common variations of Cyberlin involve replacing the legs with treads or multiple legs or augmenting the torso into segmented platforms to carry workers or supplies. Most Cyberlins are produced by Ai-Jinn.

The rules for Cyberlins are pretty incomplete and intentionally so; they're found in the Ai-Jinn sourcebook. In a basic mechanical sense, the pilot controls them and can unload as many of their weapons as they want at a single target; the more advanced a Cyberlin's AI, the more targets it can attack in one turn. Not coincidentally, advanced AIs are more likely to become self aware and turn the giant robots into sentient machines. The basic frames of Cyberlins are Battle, Slave, Watchdog and Ranger with Hunter, Predator, Ruin, Ocean, Raider and Scout Cyberlins being models created from modifying the base form. What do those names mean? Not a damn thing right now.

That's it for the equipment chapter. I like the variety of guns quite a bit. NEXT TIME is Chapter Three, Cybernetics. Cybernetics are quite neat and fun. I might also squeeze in Chapter Four, Telepathics. That is a very short chapter.


posted by Hostile V Original SA post


There is absolutely no downside to your Agent's well-being or state of mind if they decide to get cybernetics in Corporation. The developers have admitted to disliking the idea of a Humanity stat because they believe it restricts the fun of making your characters more powerful. There are some limitations, sure, but you're no less human for getting augmented. Hell, there aren't even limits to how many of these things can get installed in one part of your body at once. Also, somewhat importantly: most of these cybernetics can't be wirelessly hacked or hacked at all. If they can be hacked, it generally requires someone to plug into the part in question to do it.

The big limitation is the price of augs and needing to get them installed and maintained. Basically you need to decide if you're going to have another player install them or if you're going to go to a doctor to get your installations. If you go to a professional, that's it, done deal. If you have them installed by an ally, you save 10% on the price that was already included as an installation fee. The downside to having another player install them is that you basically want them to have an idea of what they're doing and have the proper tools. If they don't, then rolling comes into the situation.

Of course, sometimes cybernetics break. Every 7-15 sessions (I would just outright say every 12 sessions), the Agent should get some maintenance done on their augs or else the installed items will drop one level of Condition. Maintenance costs 10% of your total value of upgrades (remember, your corporation maintains your starter package for free as part of your employment) or 5% if another player does the inspection (this doesn't go into their pockets, this is used to hand-wave purchase repair materials). It's honestly not the best system but I don't hate it; the fact that you get augs cheaper if another player installs them means someone will dip a little into the proper skills and those are enough sessions for them to not have to start play with a cybernetic surgery license but work towards it.

Condition 9 cybernetics are illegal to be fitted and would require some black market skullduggery and a friend to get them installed. Basically what happens when an implant has less than Condition 10 is that the GM rolls a d100 at the start of each session and each level of Condition has a chance of failure. A failure means that the implant is functioning at basic non-beneficial levels for the session until it's repaired; there's no real detriment besides it not working unless the GM rolls doubles on a failure and the implant is rejected by the body. Repairing and upgrading the condition of a cybernetic implant costs 20% of the new level's price (only 10% if a friend does the work) and can't really be done in the field. EMPs also lower the condition by 1 and negate the benefits of the implant until fixed.

So ultimately the real downsides to getting cybered up are the costs of the parts and the costs of maintenance and repairs, which can be substantially lessened if someone knows their way around a wrench. Less mechanically, the Agent might draw the attention of the Cult of Machina (discard flesh, wear metal loony types), your upgrades have to be listed and registered on your ID and it's just kind of obvious how much of you is machine now. Those are more roleplay oriented, however.

The mechanical stuff is out of the way. Now we can get into the actual cybernetics.

Unlike the other companies, Liberty Black can't be ordered through corporations or stores. You either have to contact them for delivery or visit their plant in Minsk for purchase and installation.

That's it for cybernetics! I really like Gemini because they use crazy/weird means to enhance people and I just dig how blasé they are about "peel back your skin and shoot your muscles with a lasers a whole bunch". You might be thinking to yourself "huh, this is kind of thin". Well, it is. More cybernetics come in the upcoming books but I do feel like they put together a solid basis and got the most important stat-boosting pieces in. The other books do contain some fun options, like replacing your entire arm with an anti-vehicle artillery cannon, retractable knuckle chainsaws, x-ray vision, swiss-army fingers or having a video game console installed in your arm. And since we have space...


Telepathics are basically magic in Corporation but you can be augmented to hell and back and have no bearing on your Telepathic ability. You need Telepath training to use any powers and you should also have the licenses for the powers you know. Using telepathic powers is a simple task: roll beneath Intelligence+Endurance and spend the TE at the level you want to use the skill at. If you're not in combat/under pressure, just spend the TE points to make the power happen. You only require the roll under pressure and failure just expends the points. A double 0 is a crit fail, a crit hit means you don't spend TE for the roll. You can also guarantee the power will happen by spending double points, have the power activate as a free action at the beginning of your turn by spending double points or maximize possible effect automatically by spending double points.

The only way to increase TE is to spend a max of 1 XP at the end of each session to raise your pool. The only way to increase a skill or learn new telepathic skills are to pay the XP cost.


And that's it for psychic powers. They're pretty simple and yeah, they're not really the best thing in the world to use. If you want a dedicated telepath, you really have to build for one (Comoros Agent, the training that gives you +20 TE). The big upside is that they only cost XP to improve their powers as opposed to money and Assault can be a handy emergency weapon, but telepathic powers aren't vital in the slightest.

NEXT TIME: we'll skip 5 (already covered) and go to Chapter 6 to learn all about the corporations.