12 Apr 2015

Test Run - Slashing Cortex+ for Reboot

Or do I mean Hack?

Slash is the blue one on the left, Hack is the red one on the right.  Or, Hack is on the right and Slash is on the left.

Anyway, since the last test run where I used the Valiant Universe RPG to create a Guardian, I've been working on creating a hack for MWP's Cortex Plus, as seen in the Firefly RPG.  I'm still working on it.  Part of the slowdown is that I need to create a number of Distinctions, such as Guardian or Low Clock Speed, and their triggers.  It's taking far more time, especially with other writing that I'm doing, than expected.  I did discover that there is one character that I could build right now without having to create a new Distinction - Captain Gavin Capacitor, a.k.a. the Crimson Binome.

A right dashing software pirate the Net has ever seen.

Here's a sneak peak on the post I'm preparing:
Captain Gavin Capacitor, aka the Crimson Binome:  Capt. Capacitor is a Software Pirate, leading his scurvy crew on raids of systems on the Saucy Mare.  Turns out, Things Don't Go Smooth does have Pirate Captain as a Distinction.  Gang Member from the core book also fits.  Things Don't Go Smooth also has Handlebar Mustache, which works for the Crimson Binome.  No Distinctions need to be created.  The Saucy Mare does count as both a ship and a signature asset for Capacitor.
Things Don't Go Smooth is a supplement for the Firefly RPG, detailing how to create challenging adversaries for PC crews with a few samples.  The appendices include new Distinctions that can be used by PC and NPC alike.  I've also created two PCs in the past, Tanya and Frankie, so I'll get down to the digital tacks.  Let's create us one of the Net's most feared software pirates!

Step 0: (Not mentioned in the book) Concept
The quoted section above was the main brainstorming for the character.  Capacitor is a feared software pirate, having raided many systems before meeting his match in Mainframe.  Dot showed him that he could have a higher profit margin if she became his partner than through raiding, but old habits are easy to fall back on when Mainframe is offline.

Step 1: Choose Attributes
Since Capacitor doesn't strike me as being smarter, stronger, or more charismatic, I'll give him a d8 across the board.  He is a compelling character, but none of the three attributes stand out.

Step 2: Choose Distinctions
Already done in the quoted section above.  Gang Member can be found in the appendices of the core /Firefly/ rules, Pirate Captain and Handlebar Mustache are from Things Don't Go Smooth.  For those wondering why I didn't take Gang Boss, I felt that the Distinction was too rough and tumble compared to Capacitor's genteel manners.  He's a software pirate, not a virus.

Step 3: Choose Distinction Triggers
Beyond the base trigger for each, I choose the following two:  From Pirate Captain, Boarding Action, with the note that "defended installation" also includes systems like Mainframe with its extensive defenses and Principal Offices, even in systems that aren't ready for viral incursions.  From Gang Member, Strength in Numbers, which fits even his first appearance in "The Crimson Binome".

Step 4: Step Up Skills
First, I step up the skills provided from the Distinctions.  This puts Craft at d6, Fight at d10, Fly at d6, Labour at d6, Shoot at d8, and Sneak at d6.  Spending the nine bonus points puts Fly at d8, Influence at d8, Know at d6, and Notice at d6.  Fly could have gone higher, but Capacitor isn't usually at the helm.  Shoot is lower than Fight; he prefers his sword to any gun, though swords in Reboot can shoot containment bubbles.

Step 5: Choose Specialties or Signature Assets
First, let's deal with the Know specialty Capacitor gets for having the skill at d6.  He's sailed the Net, been to many systems and ports, so let's give him The Net as the speciality.  Spending the five point, I'll add Command as a specialty of Influence, take the Saucy Mare as a d8 Asset, Capacitor's pegleg as a d6 Asset, and add Swords as a specialty of Fight.  Capacitor's relationship with the Saucy Mare harkens back to Captain Kirk's with the Enterprise, right down to his loss when the Mare is used to ram a viral weapon*.

Step 6: Biographical Info
There's a Reboot wiki page with greater detail.  Better still?  Watch "The Crimson Binome", then everything in the third season from "The Episode With No Name" to "End Prog"**.

One software pirate captain, ready for use!
Name: Captain Gavin Capacitor, the Crimson Binome
Background: Software pirate and captain of the Saucy Mare

Mental: d8        Physical: d8        Social: d8

 Craft        d6
 Drive        d4
 Fight        d10    (Swords)
 Fix        d4
 Fly        d8
 Focus        d4
 Influence    d8    (Command)
 Know        d6    (The Net)
 Labour        d6
 Move        d4
 Notice        d6
 Operate    d4
 Perform    d4
 Shoot        d8
 Sneak        d6
 Survive        d4
 Throw        d4
 Treat        d4
 Trick        d4

Pirate Captain: d8
   Gain 1 Plot Point when you roll a d4 instead of a d8.
   Boarding Action - when storming a ship or defended installation, spend 1 PP to reroll 1s.

Gang Member: d8
   Gain 1 Plot Point when you roll a d4 instead of a d8
   Strength in Numbers - when outnumbering opponents, step up Fight; when outnumbered, take an Outnumbered d8 Complication.

Handlebar Moustache: d8
   Gain 1 Plot Point when you roll a d4 instead of a d8

Signature Assets:
  The Saucy Mare
  Extendable pegleg
To use Capacitor as the antagonist, as in "The Crimson Binome", use the above, then add Capacitor's Crew d6 and Princess Boola d8.  To make the crew tougher, step up the dice for both them and Boola.  Only two sprites have ever escaped the Crimson Binome, so Capacitor should be a difficult foe, though he isn't out to delete anyone.  Just rob them.

Feedback is more than welcome.  Let me know if there's something I missed.

* To be fair, the scene of the Saucy Mare burning over Mainframe was taken from the destruction of the Enterprise in Star Trek III: The Search for Spock, including the dialogue.
** An even better suggestion:  Watch the entire series.  Well worth the time.

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