Personal augmentation technology comes in two general types. Cyberware uses electromechanical or other artificial means to augment a metahuman's natural abilities or replace organs. Bioware uses genetically engineered tissue to enhance a metahuman's natural organs. In general, bioware tends to be the more expensive, but also less effective of the two. Cyberware has a more damaging effect on a metahuman's aura, but also has a wider variety of uses.
Because cyberware replaces, flesh, bone, and nerves with metal, plastic, and composites, it causes certain fundamental changes in a character's psyche. Minor cyberware, like datajacks, chipjacks, and the like, very common in the mid-21st century, have few detrimental effects. However, more extreme cybernetics generally cause a dissociative effect; recipients feel distanced from normal people and inhuman. It has also been documented that cyberware damages a person's aura, making it much harder for them to receive beneficial magical assistance.
In game terms, each piece of cyberware has a PSY cost. When a character has a piece of cyberware implanted, his PSY is reduced by that amount. This PSY loss can be made up by using XP to raise the attribute again. If the cyberware is later removed, the PSY is not recovered; however, the lost points can be bought back for half the normal cost, as long as the attribute will not be raised by more than the maximum three points.
The concealability entry for each piece of cyberware is in two parts; the first number is the target number for a Notice roll by a person to notice that the person has that particular piece of cyberware. The second is a target number for a cyberware scanner.
Developed originally for patients suffering from degenerative bone disease, bone lacing has since been used to strengthen bones for other reasons. Non-invasive for the most part, bone lacing strengthens major bones, such as those in the legs, arms, ribcage, spine, and pelvis, with special plastics that reduce the chance of fracture. Minor invasive surgery is required for the initial work, with followup nanite and biochemical treatments completing the work.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Bone Lacing 1 40,000 7/4
Bone Lacing gives a character +15 Stamina, but also makes it harder to heal broken bones; increase the time to recover from deep wounds by 20%.
A more recent advance in reflex-enhancing technology than wired reflexes, albeit not as effective, boosted reflexes operate on a more distributed system than wired reflexes. Boosted reflexes, like wired reflexes, are heavily regulated by most governments, and recipients must be licensed and submit to a background check. However, unlike wired reflexes, many shadow clinics can install boosted reflexes because the technology is much easier to smuggle from legitimate labs. Despite being somewhat easier to install than wired reflexes, boosted reflexes still require minor invasive surgery to install the control modules in major nerve clusters, plus followup nanite and biochemical treatments. A final note; due to the nature of boosted reflexes, they cannot be removed or upgraded without a high risk of significant damage to the nervous system, making the removal procedure unavailable except under the most extreme circumstances.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Boosted Reflexes 1 150,000 8/5
Boosted Reflexes give a character one extra action in personal combat. Boosted Reflexes are not compatible with Wired Reflexes.
An early piece of cyberware, cybereyes are designed to replace natural eyes in patients who have lost their own, although they are sometimes an elective replacement. Cybereyes can receive a variety of enhancements, listed below. It is usual procedure for both eyes to be replaced during the same operation, even if the other eye is not damaged, in order to prevent disorientation; it is required if the cybereyes have vision enhancements like lowlight or thermographic. Implantation of cybereyes requires minor invasive surgery and nanite treatments.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Cybereyes 0 5,000 8*/4 Flare Compensation - 2,000 - Lowlight Vision - 2,000 - Retinal Clock - 750 - Thermographic Vision - 3,000 -
The concealability rating for cybereyes is only for cybereyes designed to appear natural; the price given is for replacement of both eyes.
Transys Neuronet pioneered the field of cybernetics in the 2010s with their cyberlimbs, the first prosthetics which met and even surpassed the abilities of natural limbs. In the present, cyberlimbs are some of the most common pieces of cyberware, mostly due to the fact that they are still considerably cheaper than having new limbs cloned from a person's own tissue (and are immediately available, unlike cloned limbs).
Cyberlimbs generally function exactly like a natural limb; enhancements can be built into the arm, but they cannot allow someone to lift a train over their head or anything nearly so extreme -- while the arm is built from myomers and advanced composites, it is still attached to a flesh and blood body and this places limits on their performance. Cyberlimbs are also generally made so that if the limb joint receives too much stress, the limb will simply pop off at the joint; this stress is generally in the range of three times the recipient's body weight, less for cyberhands and cyberfeet. Implantation of a cyberlimb requires minor (for cyberhands and cyberfeet) or major (for cyberarms and cyberlegs) invasive surgery and nanite treatments. Cyberarms and legs include cyberhands and feet respectively.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Cyberarm/leg 0 25,000 5*/2 Cyberhand/foot 0 10,000 5*/2 +1 STR Enhancement 0 50,000 --
The concealability rating for cyberlimbs is only for cyberlimbs designed to appear natural. Each cyberarm/leg adds +3 to a character's STA and +1 to his UD. The +1 STR enhancement adds +1 the character's overall STR (and this can raise UD/AD scores); this is cumulative for multiple cyberlimbs, so someone with two +1 STR cyberarms would have a +2 STR bonus; the STR enhancement can only be added to cyberarms and legs.
An encephalon is a small piece of cyberware implanted in the brain's central processing center to aid computation and information assimilation tasks. An encephalon also includes a datasoft link at no extra cost. Implantation of an encephalon requires major invasive surgery and nanite treatments.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Encephalon 1 110,000 -/5
An Encephalon provides one extra die for all skill tests based on the KNO attribute.
Constructed from state-of-the-art memory metal, fingernail razors consist of 4-8 centimeter blades which can be retracted into the finger when not in use. Although illegal in most places, these cyberweapons are becoming more common in the black market. Fingernail razors require minor invasive surgery and nanite treatments.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Finger Razors (1 hand) 0 8,000 7/5 Finger Razors (2 hand) 0 15,000 7/4
The concealability rating for Fingernail Razors applies to them only when retracted. Unsheathed razors are always visible. Fingernail Razors use the Unarmed skill and have a damage multiplier of UD+4.
A similar cyberweapon to the fingernail razors, these 8-12 centimeter blades emerge from between the knuckles of the hand. While more obvious than fingernail razors, they also are much stronger. Like fingernail razors, they are illegal in most places. Hand spurs require minor invasive surgery and nanite treatment.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Hand Spurs (1 hand) 0 11,000 6/4 Hand Spurs (2 hand) 0 20,000 6/3
The concealability rating for Hand Spurs applies to them only when retracted. Unsheathed razors are always visible. Hand Spurs use the Unarmed skill and have a damage multiplier of UD+7.
One of the increasingly common pieces of cyberware installed, headware communications gear is essentially a cellular phone or radio installed in the head, usually located just above or behind an ear. Various upgrade packages can be added to both options, mostly to boost signal strength or secure the communications. Options must be included at installation, except for subdermal microphones, otherwise the headware must be removed and completely replaced. Installing any of these options requires minor invasive surgery and nanite treatments.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Cybercomm Link 0 20,000 -/5 Headware Telephone 0 3,000 -/5 Headware Radio 0 3,500 -/5 Increased Range - 1,000/2 km Increased Rating - 2,500/pt Subdermal Microphone 0 2,000 -/6
Both the headware telephone and radio have a rating of -2/10 km; up to 10 km of extra range and 3 points of extra rating may be added to either one. A single cybercomm link or subdermal microphone can work with both a headware telephone and a headware radio.
A fairly common implant usually placed behind or over one of the ears, a headware GPS receiver can give a character his exact latitude and longitude with about 5 meters of error. Unfortunately, the GPS receiver's small size limits its ability underground or within jamming -- generally, if a character is more than 5-10 meters underground, the receiver will not be able to make accurate judgements. If the character also has a mapping datachip slotted or transferred to headware memory, the GPS can point out a location on the map where the character is located. A headware GPS receiver requires a datasoft link, and its implantation requires minor invasive surgery and nanite treatment.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Headware GPS Receiver 0 5,000 -/6
Some of the most common cyberware today, headware interface gear covers all cyberware used to interface the human mind with computer technology. The datajack does this literally, allowing cybernetic interfacing with computers; deckers use them to connect to cyberdecks, and riggers use them to connect with their vehicles. Chipjacks allow the reading of optical chips, including skillsofts and datasofts, and a datasoft link allows the brain to interpret those chips (and interface with some other types of headware). An induction datajack is a newer improvement of the normal datajack, lying completely underneath the skin. Headware memory is an internal datastore, capable of storing as much information as three optical chips; it requires a datasoft link to use. A data lock is a rare piece of cyberware, used by secure couriers mostly, which makes a person physically unable to read the contents of his own headware memory until a chip with the proper key is used to unlock it. It must be installed at the same time as the headware memory module it locks. Installing any of these items requires minor invasive surgery and nanite treatments.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Chipjack 0 2,000 4/2 Datajack, Standard 0 1,000 4/2 Datajack, Induction 0 3,000 8/4 Data Lock 0 2,000 -/8 Datasoft Link 0 2,000 -/8 Headware Memory * Mp x 150 -/5
A character using DNI to control a vehicle equipped with vehicle control gear receives a +1 bonus to all Piloting rolls. Headware Memory costs 0 PSY for up to 150 Mp; beyond that, it costs 1 PSY for every 600 Mp or any part thereof.
The advent of knowsoft technology in the early 2030s was a tremendous breakthough; a person could learn a language or how to solve complex equations just by slotting a chip. Skillwires were developed in the late 2040s; consisting of a control module in the small of the back (usually accompanied by one or more chipjacks) and leads run to major nerve clusters, skillwires override natural training and reflexes to allow a subject to "learn" an active skill rather than just inherent knowledge. Unfortunately, because these override natural ability it is nearly impossible for a person to use skillsofts and skillwires to learn a skill for real. Skillwires require major invasive surgery with followup nanite and biochemical treatments to correctly implant.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Skillwires II-III 0 * -/4 Skillwires IV-V 1 * -/4 Skillwires VI 2 * -/4
In order to use activesofts, a character needs to have Skillwires with a minimum rating at least equal to the level plus the Complexity of the activesoft. In addition, skillsofts are rated by the total Mp of activesofts they can use at once (see the Skillsoft entry in the Gear Catalog for how to compute the size of an activesoft). To figure the cost of a set of Skillwires, use the following formula: (Rating x Max Mp x 500Y).
Originally developed for the military, a smartlink is an implant consisting of two parts; an interface in the hand and a small control module located on the back of the head. A smartlink, when used with a weapon equipped with smartgun technology, makes the gun far more accurate. A permit and background check is required for smartlink implantation. Minor invasive surgery, plus followup nanite and biochemical treatments, is necessary to implant a smartlink.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Smartlink 1 25,000 -/5
Characters with an implanted Smartlink receive an extra die when making Small Arms or Heavy Weapons tests with a weapon equipped with smartlink technology. In addition, all called shot penalties are reduced by one.
Originally developed for the military, vehicle control rigs have become more and more common in the commercial sector. Going beyond mere DNI control of a vehicle, vehicle control rigs perform a great deal of preprocessing and other tasks which improve the subject's control of the vehicle as well as awareness of possible problems. In addition, a vehicle control rig allows control of multiple drones through multitasking. The actual hardware for a vehicle control rig is located along the back of the neck, with tendrils of conductive fiber which stretch throughout the spinal cord; a datajack is required to interface with a vehicle or remote control deck. Implantation of a vehicle control rig is still a fairly complex procedure, requiring major invasive surgery, as well as nanite and biochemical treatments.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Vehicle Control Rig 1 60,000 7/4
When a character uses a Vehicle Control Rig to control a vehicle, he receives one extra die when making Piloting skill tests and also an additional action in vehicular combat. The character also receives the normal +1 bonus to Piloting rolls when using DNI to control a vehicle.
Wired reflexes is the most invasive and most effective reflex-enhancing cyberware available. As such, most countries require all owners of wired reflexes to be licensed and pass a background check, and the procedure is generally only available at government or corporate cyberware clinics. Drastic invasive surgery to the spinal column, as well as followup nanite and biochemical treatments are necessary for proper implantation of wired reflexes. Recipients of wired reflexes tend to be jumpy and hyperactive, often acting on pure reflex to sudden sights or sounds.
Name PSY Cost Conceal Wired Reflexes I 2 100,000 6/3 Wired Reflexes II 3 300,000 6/2
Characters with Wired Reflexes I receive a +1 bonus to Combat Sense rolls and an extra action in personal combat. Wired Reflexes II gives a +2 bonus to Combat Sense rolls and two extra actions in personal combat. Wired Reflexes is incompatible with any other type of reflex enhancement.
Bioware is a more recent development than cyberware, first appearing in the late 2040s, reaching the market in the early 2050s. Unlike cyberware, which uses artificial materials to enhance the abilities of a metahuman, bioware is genetically designed tissue, completely organic. This provides a number of advantages over cyberware; bioware is almost undetectable, barring a detailed medical exam, and it is self-healing as much as any other body part. However, the downside is that bioware tends to be less effective than cyberware and generally has more side effects. In addition, the metahuman body can only support so many bioware implants; if too many are implanted into a person, they run the risk of a condition known as biosystem overstress that can result in heart attacks and other fatal conditions.
In game terms, each piece of bioware has a System Shock cost. For each point of System Shock cost, one box at the end of the character's System Shock meters are added to a "red zone." Each time the character takes a wound that pushes either of his System Shock meters into this red zone, he may suffer biosystem overstress. The character must make a HEA test against a Threshold of 6; this test is modified with a -1 penalty for each box of System Shock taken in the red zone. If this test fails, the character suffers bruise damage equal to MoF x12 (if this wound pushes the bruise damage System Shock meter into the red zone, it does not cause another biosystem overstress test). Note that normal wound penalties do not factor in to this test.
For instance, if the character has a System Shock of 5, and a red zone of 2, and then the character takes 2 deep wounds, he would now be 1 box into the red zone and be forced to make a HEA test with a -1 penalty. If the character rolls a 3, he would suffer an x36 bruise wound.
The concealability entry for each piece of bioware is the Threshold for a Medicine test (complexity 3) to determine if the bioware is present after a thorough medical exam (including a blood test).
A rare and still very much experimental piece of bioware, a cerebral booster consists of an extra layer of neural tissue implanted along the frontal lobes of the cerebrum, as well as additional ridges and furrows, increasing the higher-level functions of the brain. While a risky procedure, it has shown dramatic results in the patients who survived. Implantation of a cerebral booster requires drastic invasive surgery, biochemical treatments, and gene therapy.
Name SSC Cost Conceal Cerebral Booster 1 150,000Y 8
The Cerebral Booster gives a character a +1 bonus to all CRE-based skill rolls.
The enhanced articulation process was originally developed to help patients suffering from degenerative joint diseases such as arthritis and bursitis; a series of procedures coats the ends of the subject's bones with a lubricating film, reducing friction, while tendons are rebuilt to allow greater flexibility. This allows a wider and smoother range of motion for the subject, translating into greater athletic and gymnastic ability. Unfortunately, the full-body modification of a subject's joints requires major invasive surgery, as well as followup nanite and biochemical treatments.
Name SSC Cost Conceal Enhanced Articulation 1 125,000Y 8
Enhanced Articulation gives a character an extra die with all AGI-based skill rolls.
Another piece of neural bioware, the mnemonic enhancer is a highly concentrated neuron cluster attached to the hippocampus region of the brain which enhances the memory center of the brain. A person with a mnemonic enhancer has a near-photographic memory, allowing them to recall previous experiences in great detail. Implantation requires major invasive surgery as well as gene therapy.
Name SSC Cost Conceal Mnemonic Enhancer 1 25,000Y 8
A character with a Mnemonic Enhancer receives an extra die in all KNO tests to recall information about an event or object they have previously witnessed.
While not entirely organic, muscle augmentation is a generally non-invasive enhancement which was developed for keeping muscles strong in low-gravity environments and assisting patients who had suffered severe muscle atrophy for a variety of reasons. Tailored microorganisms are introduced into the blood supply which weave long myomer fibers into the muscles of the arms, legs, and torso, giving them a great deal of increased strength. The implantation procedure requires minor invasive surgery, plus nanite, biochemical, and gene therapy treatments to ensure that the body does not reject the myomer fibers.
Name SSC Cost Conceal Muscle Augmentation I 1 50,000Y 5 Muscle Augmentation II 2 125,000Y 5
Muscle Augmentation gives a character a +1 STR bonus and an extra die for all Athletics and Hand-to-Hand skill tests per level.
An enhancement of the spleen originally developed to assist patients with autoimmune disorders, it has since seen wide use with disease researchers who are often exposed to dangerous pathogens. The modified tissue increases the production of leukocytes (white blood cells), giving the recipient a much higher disease resistance. While side effects are few, there have been a small number of isolated cases where patients have been diagnosed with hyperimmune disorders after implantation.
Name SSC Cost Conceal Pathogenic Defense I 1 50,000Y 6 Pathogenic Defense II 1 125,000Y 6
Pathogenic Defense gives a character a +1 bonus to all resistance rolls against disease per level.
Symbiotes bioware was originally developed to aid patients with autoimmune disorders and those undergoing chemotherapy. It is a collection of tailored microorganisms injected into the bloodstream, tuned to accelerate the body's healing processes and increase the body's resistance to pathogens and poisons. The trade-off for is that a person with symbiotes requires a great deal more food to maintain the same level of activity (in order to support the symbiotes in their bloodstream). Other than this, however, symbiotes are extremely low-impact, making them safe even for the most infirm recipients. The cost for symbiotes includes the injection procedure (which is essentially identical to most nanite treatments).
Name SSC Cost Conceal Symbiotes I 0 20,000Y 4 Symbiotes II 0 60,000Y 4
Symbiotes I reduces healing time to 80% normal and increases the character's food requirements by 60%. Symbiotes II reduces healing time to 60% normal and increases the character's food requirements by 100%.
Developed as an alternative to boosted and wired reflexes, synaptic accelerator bioware consists of extra neural tissue implanted along the spinal column to add more "bandwidth"; in addition, followup treatments encourage the growth of additional myelin along the rest of the body's neural pathways, speeding the transmission of neural impulses throughout the subject's body. While this is much more subtle than cyberware reflex boosters, it is only about as effective as boosted reflexes and is much more expensive. Synaptic accelerators require major invasive surgery, with followup biochemical and gene therapy treatments.
Name SSC Cost Conceal Synaptic Accelerator 1 200,000 8
A character with Synaptic Accelerator bioware receives an extra action in personal combat. It is not compatible with Boosted or Wired Reflexes.
An outgrowth of efforts to degenerative muscle diseases, including those of the heart, the synthcardium consists of an extra layer of artificially enhanced muscle implanted around the patient's heart that increases heart strength and endurance. The downsides to this procedure include increased risk of high blood pressure and its attendant problems, such as aneurysms. Implantation of synthcardium requires major invasive surgery and gene therapy.
Name SSC Cost Conceal Synthcardium 1 15,000Y 5
Characters with Synthcardium receive a +1 to all Athletics skill tests and a +1 to all HEA tests to resist cardiovascular diseases.
Part of the second wave of "elective bioware," this augmentation consists of enhanced pheromone glands implanted to replace the patient's original glands. The new glands have been tuned to produce more of certain types of pheromones, giving the person a great deal more influence in personal situations, in a way much more subtle than magical manipulation; even an experienced negotiator will likely have no idea that his or her perceptions are being altered. Implantation of tailored pheromones requires minor invasive surgery and gene therapy.
Name SSC Cost Conceal Tailored Pheromones 1 40,000Y 7
Characters with Tailored Pheromones receive a +1 bonus to their INF when in close personal situations. The character would receive the bonus when involved in negotiations with someone across a dinner table, for instance, but not when talking to someone via telecom or when addressing a large crowd.
Developed to assist patients with liver damage, the toxin extractor is a cultivated cluster of cells which increases the efficiency with which the liver pulls toxins out of the bloodstream. Unfortunately, this can also reduce the effects of beneficial drugs (such as anesthetics), which has been known to cause problems. Implantation of a toxin extractor requires major invasive surgery and gene therapy.
Name SSC Cost Conceal Toxin Extractor I 1 50,000Y 6 Toxin Extractor II 1 125,000Y 6
A Toxin Extractor gives a character a +1 bonus to all resistance tests against blood-borne substances per level (it would not be effective against chemical weapons gases, for instance, but would be effective against alcohol or ricin).