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I've been working for a while to come up with a list of rules that I want to present to my GM about converting a character to a fully cybernetic being. For technical or inspirational references, think of Ghost in the Shell, and especially the Stand Alone Complex series of anime, where there is no real organic components left, and the essence of a person is downloaded into a cybernetic brain.

But for all of the advantages I've come up with, I really am hitting a roadblock on what detriments there are in regards to the process. I really don't want it to be a dodge around the rules for Cybermancy, but I also don't think that Cybermancy itself fits the drawbacks area. There's no risk of Cancer(No body to crate cancer cells), getting "lost in the machine" is equally unlikely as the machine is all there is. So I'm reaching out to the comunity for help on this one. I'll post the rules I've come up with so far, and everyone jsut give me whatever detriments you feel should apply. I'm gonna cut out the filler of the rules for now and go straight to the basics. I'll have a weblink up in a day or so with the detailed stuff.


1. Cyborg body cannot be purchased at Creation.

2. Requires access to a Delta clinic at least to download the mind.

3. Body cannot be fited with any Bioware.

4. Body can be constructed using the following values:
  • Intelligence and Willpower remain the same
  • All other Attributes start at a base of 1
  • Increasing an attribute from 1-6 costs 10,000 per point
  • increasing an Attribute from 6-9 costs 15,000 per point
  • Increasing an attribute from 9-12 costs 20,000 per point
  • All attributes save for Intelligence and Willpower have a maximum limit of 12. Intelligence and Willpower have the normal racial limit of the character's race.
Body has Essence of 8, however, the following cyberware cannot be taken:
Cybertorso, arms, legs, or skull(all are incorporated into the body already)
Strength enhancers or Quickness enhancers.
Move By Wire

Body adds +2 to all physical damage resistance rolls.
Mana based combat spells (Stunbolt, Manabolt) cannot affect the cyborg. However, spells such as Wreck or Ram(cyborg) can.
Illusion spells that affect only the mind fail, howver, spells which also have an effect on technological systems work normally and Artifical body gets a +1 to TN to resist them - James McMurray

Spells such as Heal, Treat, Stabilize, Hibernate and Oxygenate all automatically fail. All damage must be repaired in a facility or shop with the following requirements - James McMurray
  • Light Damage: 2000 per box of damage, B/R Electronics or Cybernetics test TN difficult 3
  • Moderate Damage: 6,000 per box of damage, B/R Electronics or Cybernetics test TN difficulty 5
  • Serious damage: 25,000 per box of damage, B/R Electronics or Cybernetics test TN difficulty 7
  • Deadly Damage: 100,000 per box of damage, B/R Electronics or Cybernetics test TN difficulty 9
  • Over-damage: Not possible Body has been too badly damaged. Replacement parts must be ordered for locations determined by GM. Cost is equal to Body cost / 5 per piece.
Brain can be hacked into especially with a head-mounted radio or telephone active (More to come on this) - Backgammon
James McMurray
The -1 TN for phsical illusions should be a +1 TN to pierce them. Having a cyborg around shouldn't make it harder for other people and cameras to see through illusions.

I would definitely give a serious charisma hit (even down to a max of 1). Being completely inhuman and made of metal has to have some major social drawbacks.

Healing won't work. Fixing damage requires a shop/facility and B/R Electronics & cyberware. Not sure what the cost should be, but it should increase exponentialy with the damage level. i.e. It should also require some fairly hefty skill checks.

Stress for cyberware rules should be used, perhaps even worse for cyborgs because all they have is cyberware. If a street sam's armware gets a little twitchy he still has meat and bone to use it with. If a cyborg's arm gets twitchy, he stuck with it.
I would at least triple the costs and step up the progression a bit.
6 point steps are too much leeway. try 2~3, 4~6,7~9, 10~12 and you'll more closely fit what's already published.

Also, i don't see the quickness being all that great.

What you are esentially describing is a Medium Anthroform drone with a great deal of online memory. I don't see these bodies being that much better than what's already possible with drone or cybernetic technology.
interesting concept, but i don't think it fits with SR's current level of technology.

if you're going with it, though, i'd keep the "lost in the details" problem. the person has effectively become an AI, a program; the chance that their program has no bugs or glitches is vanishingly small.
Um, you seem to have missed a restriction on CHA, say a cap of about 3.

1. No biological components, no pheromones.
2. No natural body language.
3. Empathic disassociation.
4. Its a machine, no primal or chemical drives

Essense should be 6, not 8, absolutely no justification for 8. Actually I'd like to see it be 0.01-ish base and use ECU/free essense slots (ie. cyberlimb/eye) for allocation of cyber essense costs.

Attribute costs are way too cheap. 24,000 nuyen.gif for a paragon body?

Body +'s should come from the fitted cyberware, not automatically.

Not trying to be too critcal, stick with it and maybe it won't be rejected straight away.
Ancient History
With the concept you describe, "cyborg" is an innappropos. Think ye rather "Artifical Intelligence in a Robot Body."
I did forget to mention that everyone who presents a solid idea will get mentioned both in this post and my final version. I'll be editing the original post to include the references.

Thanks James. I don't have my books in front of me, but I had forgotten that everyone gets a resistance roll to illusions.

And Nikoli, I don't want to reinvent the wheel here. My GM and I have already agreed that there is enough information in Shadowrun already to create the body of an artifical being. But like there are rules for Cybermancy that go beyond the technical impressions, so too, do I want rules that go beyond just tossing points together. In my particular case, the drawbacks are going to be the determining factor in whether ornot my character(or anyone else's for that matter) can actually do this as we'll be RPing this all out.
Are you going more for the android in the Alien movies, or a cyborg without the -org(anism) part?
Botch, It's not 24,000, it's 240,000, and that's all before street index or anything else gets added. Just like in Cybermancy, it's not the ware or the IMS that's the expensive part. it's the process. With price tags ranging from a quarter million, to maybe 1.3 million nuyen per body, it's not going to be too uncommon to find a body availible or have one ordered by the mega corps for their clients. Getting the body is supposed to be the fairly easy part. It's getting into it that's the pain. I've got other rules going into how the mind is downloaded into an offline UV matrix host and the signals from the mind are calibrated into the body. But those rules have been pretty well hammered out. I'm just looking for drawbacks here.
The latter JRayJoker. Like I said, think Ghost in the Shell, where there really isnt a physical component left in the artificial body. chalk up the early references to cyborgs as too much Mountain dew in the morning smile.gif
Could be interesting, but the big question seems to have been left out:

Is this a robot running a simulation of John Doe, with autosofts for all his skills, a learning pool, and an extra autosoft for 'personality emulation of John Doe'?

Or is this really the 'soul' (for lack of a better term) of John Doe, trapped in the machine?

In the first case, no cybermancy stuff is necessary. You've just got a new hardware AI running around. In the second, you can't escape from the cybermancy rules, as the problem is that there is nothing to keep the soul anchored. If removing a bunch of tissue and implanting ware will cause the person's spirit to bugger off and make them die, then total replacement of tissue will do the same thing. There is nothing left that the spirit recognizes as 'John Doe'.

I have no idea that the essence cost of this would be. minus infinity? You've basically turned the person into a free spirit inhabiting a robot body, and yet able to make use of all of it's special toys.

I guess this wasn't much help. I don't think Shadowrun's assumptions are geared for this.
As another thought, ever look at the full-borg rules in the chromebook conversions at the plastic warriors site?
OK, so I should think of the base body as that of the android, er sorry, artificial person in Aliens.

Give them a +TN on all in-person social skill rolls and ettiquites, and limit their charisma to 1/2 the original PCs charisma (roound down) for all charisma based checks.

Don't allow them to dev their charisma beyond unmodified racial max of the race the PC started as, and make the karma cost to dev charisma 2-4 times normal (due to not being in their own bodies and having to overcome the new shell).
Well Lantzer it's the real soul. For a while I tinkered with the notion that the body is just a copy of the person's mental image and reactions, while their meat body was cryofrozen, but that presents a whole nother slew of rules to come up with.

I'm trying to avoid Cybermancy because the rules for that are effective, but also rather frustrating to roleplay out. What I'm looking for is something that has a lot of functionality as a person still(thinks, acts, has likes and dislikes, plans and hops still) but also has a number of physical problems with being an AC(Artifical Construct shall be the new phrase. So I have written so it sahll be smile.gif ), not just social ones.
QUOTE (=Spectre=)
Botch, It's not 24,000, it's 240,000, and that's all before street index or anything else gets added.

Sorry, cigarette packet maths stike again!

I've got other rules going into how the mind is downloaded into an offline UV matrix host and the signals from the mind are calibrated into the body.

Until I see those I get the feeling it can out munch a stoner after a week-long pot binge.
That's why I'm asking for some drawbacks here Botch. I want ideas on how to reign in the power some.
QUOTE (=Spectre=)
That's why I'm asking for some drawbacks here Botch. I want ideas on how to reign in the power some.

1) As mentionned, flush Charisma down the toilet
2) Constant high maintenance. You van't survive much longer than 2-3 months without serious maintenance
3) Electricity elemental effects 0wnz j00 (pretty major drawback)
4) No freedom. You are a massive investment someone keeps in line. Since you don't need sleep either, you're on the job 24/7
5) You can be hacked, since your brain is a computer
QUOTE (Jrayjoker)
Are you going more for the android in the Alien  movies, or a cyborg without the -org(anism) part?

Sounds more like the Robot/Cyborg in Satrun 3

Step 1. Kill original technician, take his place.
Step 2. Fly to Moon orbiting Saturn.
Step 3. Build Robot while ogling Farrah Fawcett
Step 4. Insert Brain
Step 5. try and take over the world, muhuwawa!
Good call on the hacking rule Backgammon. I don't have the rules in front of me, so I'll have to figure them out when I get home, but yes, the mind can be hacked. Even worse, if you have a head mounted radio or telephone, it can be hacked even if you aren't plugged into a datajack or the matrix.
Hm. Yes, by SR standards a full conversion body would have little to no Charisma.

However, in the Ghost in the Shell source, the main character, Major Motoko Kusanagi, has scads of charisma and empathy. The GitS universe has the cyborgization process pretty much perfected, with few of the mental problems stemming from going fully artificial that Shadowrun has.

I don't think SR level tech is near that level yet. Heck, in GitS it's possible to copy a soul to several different bodies, though the copies are generally degraded and it eventually destroys the original.

Karma, you have nailed the effect that I want to get. The Artifical Construct is going to represent the next major leap in cybernetic technological development in the SR universe. Instead of constantly trying to reduce the essence cost and psychological effects of cyberware and bioware, the idea is to follow the thinking of an AI and pretty well remove the body from the equation. But it's nowhere near as comon as it is in GitS and GitS: SAC. Artificial construct implantation takes as much processing power as it does using a PAB unit to alter someone's memories if not a lot more.
QUOTE (Botch)
1. No biological components, no pheromones.

Pheromones' effects on humans are exaggerated in fiction. Not really an issue.

2. No natural body language.

Yes, natural body language will be present. The brain of the person was downloaded. Why should that stop at memories of working fractal equations in college and other 'higher' memories? I'd expect it to include muscle memory/reflexes, like those governing athletics, melee combat, and body language. It's all etched out in those neurons being encoded electronically.

The 'borg shouldn't need to mentally open pull-down menus and tap body language controls, that'd be lame. The brain-body interface for good cyberware - at least cyberware that's designed to mimic natural body functions, like limbs - should be transparent to the "user."

3. Empathic disassociation.

If the essence loss is high enough...yeah, I'll grant that one. Full borgs are going to be shy of essence.

4. Its a machine, no primal or chemical drives

A functioning software copy of a human brain is going to need duplication of those "primal or chemical drives," which are just more neurons and chemistry to encode electronically. This just means that the full borg gets wood because his Testosterone v1.3.2 software 'package' stimulated him, rather than some organic gland working on neurons. Same reaction in the end.

Or is this really the 'soul' (for lack of a better term) of John Doe, trapped in the machine?

GURPS: Transhuman Space has a LOT of fun with those kinds of questions. Different nations and religions have different answers about "ghost programs," and even if a nation recognizes that the ghost is legally the old person, friends and family might still be askance at the new "copy."
To get around the cybermancy restrictions, I have a few ideas.
1) Argubably, a person's "soul" can become a spirit under certain conditions. There is canon to support this. (Big D's Ghost)
2) Spirits can be bound to physical objects. (Homunculi, Hidden Life)

In normal Cybermancy, the "soul" is either tricked into believing that the flesh is still intact or bound to the body using unnatural magics. The latter is more likey than the former, as spirits that try to possess a Cyberzomibe become trapped.
To get around this problem, the bosd should be killed and the mages performing the procedure should facilitate the transformation of the "soul" into a Free Spirit (or other type of spirit) and bind it. Binding this spirit should be fairly easy since it shares the person's True Name.
Before the person is killed, all of his memories should be downloaded a heavily enchanted electronic brain in which all conductive metals have been replaced with orihalcum. This would allow the Spirit to interact with the flow of electrons in the electronic brain to access its memories and control whatever body with brain is implanted in.

It fails the procedure is far more risky than cybermancy considering that it means certain death for the character and a POed Free Spirit .
Well, here is how I look at.

You need a Deltaware clinic to pull this off, right? Well, why don't you just go through the BBB and M&M and see what a full set of Deltaware body parts is going to cost you. With whatever essence you have left, start getting things like the Mneumonic enhancer, MPs of memory, datajack (all at delta), whatever else you would need to replace your brain and other enhancements would be gravy.
Get your essence down to .01 this way, and you'll basically have what you want, at the appropriate cost.

I don't think it's worth it either way, but I think it's the only option if you wanted to stay within the rules.
Hyzmarca, you're definetly on the right track as well. Give me more on what you're thinking. I'm liking the orichalcum brain, especially considering that our game is post YotC.

CavnasBack, my GM suggested the same thng at first. But that's not what I'm looking at. I don't want to just be a mega cybered character. Cybermancy already covers that. As I said, look at ghost in the Shell and give me your thoughts.
I don't see a technological problem with this except for the ability to actually download a human consciousness. Shadowrun doesn't do that by canon, near as I can tell. You wanna, that's great. Give some serious thought to the ramifications, though - especially those that tie in to the Deus-Arcology situation. Think about how sad the riggers will be - and the deckers - when they're rendered obsolete. Think about whether Deus would waste his time with making otaku when he could download folks - and conversly, probably upload himself directly, rather than the whole NETWORK plotline.

Seems to me that if you want this tech available, in a small and neat enough package to put in a full-body conversion, then the tech is going to influence pretty much every element of information tech, cybertech, AI, etc etc. Not saying this is a bad thing in any way, but my players (for example) would not be okay with this kind of tech existing in a vacuum without a real good explanation.

edit: re spirit and orichalcum brain -

If that turns you on, sure. Personally it sounds like a cop-out to me, and I hate it - OMG IT WORKS CUZ ITS MAGIC!!11! never really appealed to me, and the example of Dunk's becomin' a spirit doesn't seem applicable - but whatever.
On the mantanace front. Us ethe vehicel mantance rules to keep it maintained. And you could add into that SOTA costs also. If your cyborg has a brain you could use the Riggers CRV as the interface between the brain and the machine.

hows it powerd? How often does it need to rechange or filll up?

No-Brain = IA of sorts
Guys, delta grade cyberlimbs, torso and skull. Cost you about 6.75/2=3.375 Essence. This gives alot of ECU to play with. I know Delta reduces the ECUs but it is my opinion that a delta grade pice of ware would reduce the ECUs it takes up by an equal amount. (If making something better reduces its space then it does so all the time, not just when its detrimental to the player.)
Cynic project
Essence should be -. It is not a living thing anymore than your car is.

Move by wire,is something that should be up for grabs, but it shouldn't be as harsh on them. After all move by wire is a spin off of the Fly by wire, witch works rather well in planes. Not that the flying wings we use today are not possible with out it.
Wounded Ronin
I'm happy to see this thread. Years ago I had thought about GITS style characters for SR and decided they were unworkable.
edit: re spirit and orichalcum brain -

If that turns you on, sure. Personally it sounds like a cop-out to me, and I hate it - OMG IT WORKS CUZ ITS MAGIC!!11! never really appealed to me, and the example of Dunk's becomin' a spirit doesn't seem applicable - but whatever.

Of course it is a cop-out. But, this is Shadowrun. Magic is an integral part of the game and, to an extent, an integral part of the cyberware rules. Magic is why you can't make a full cyborg by canon, therefore lawyering around the laws of magic is the only viable solution. Anything else would be even more of a cop-out.

Spectre, I really hadn't though it out very much but such a brain would obviously be a unique creation. It would have to be manufactured and, more importantly, enchanted specificly for the subject. It would be a unique enchantment but it would follow the same rules as most other foci.
Mental attributes would be limited by the brain's force. This is decided at the time of manufacture and cannot be raised.
Like a Cyberzombie, a Ghost-in-the-shell is a dual-natured being. It can see astral and combat astral beings as any other duel natured creature.
Spirits and magicians cannot be attack the brain directly in Astral combat. But, the brain must combat any wards the Ghost-in-the-shell attempts to cross, using (Force + Willpower). The brain can loose force points and be destroyed this way, making wards very dangerous for a Ghost-in-the-shell.
I would also play it that the creator of the Enchanted Brain has a great deal of control over the Cyborg. Like any foci, it must be bonded to a magician. If that magician dies, or chooses to sever the bond, it becomes inert and the Cyborg dies.
If you don't like that, you could say that it is bonded to the Cyborg's spirit, at a very high karma cost.

This being is literally a "ghost in the shell" and has magical limitations to reflect that.
Technically, speaking, the electronic brain itself is an imitation of a human brain. It has digital interfaces but is purely analog in function. It is a maze of billions of interlocking electrical pathways. These pathways are not static, they are fluid. The constantly rearange themselves on a microscopic scale, severing old connections and creating new ones. The result is a combonation the most powerful artificial processor ever made and the largest acctive memory array ever made. Literally, it is a brain made of orihalcum.
Unfortunatly, it is comepletly useless without a soul to animate it. Memories just aren't enough, it needs that ineffable spark of life which drives all orginisims.

Attched to this brain is a multi Terapulse OMC array which stores long-term memories as full-spectrum simsense. These memories are indexed and serchable. They do have rating 6 (or better) encryption, but they can be erased or digitally altered by anyone who could break the encryption. The orihalcum brain itself cannot reliably store long term memories. It was deisgned to immitate the active functions of the brain, memory storage was not a priority since it can easily be replicated by existing technology.
In addition, the brain has a specialized integrated VCR/datajack. This VCR provides no vehicle bonuses, but is designed to allow the brain to interface with an anthroform drone in the same way a human mind interfaces with its body.
The Ghost-in-the-shell cannot take any cyberware. All of its bodies are specially modified anthroform drones. These bodies can be changed at any time, but they are very expensive. Custom bodies can be made for different occasions. Heavily armored combat bodies used during the day can be exchanged for ultra-realistic leisure bodies when the GitS returns home in the evening.
In addition, the Ghost-in-the-shell can use the VCR to interface with normal drones and vehicles using normal vehicle rules without the benefits that a standard VCR supplies.
move-by-wire cyberware should not work on a completely robotic character at all. it's based on the physical brain; you'd have to figure out how to put an AI into a seizure, and the mechanism for doing so will be completely different for the one that puts a physical brain into seizure. moreover, move-by-wire mucks around in the AI's code, which makes the AI even more unstable than it already is. if anything, the penalties for MBW should be increased for this type of character.
Cynic project
MoVe by wire works on the idea that the seizure is the faster form of mussle movement. The Quick snap,and not wasting time with sending messages along the nerves. It tells the body to move in every direction at the same time,and then stops it from moving at all. The when you wish to move, it stops, stoping your body.

By the way, if you can't get something like Move by wire in a robot, then you can't get fly or drive by wire. It is the same idea, just slightly different in the means of causing the controlled seizures.
Crusher Bob
A fully kitted out delta grade body, with eyes, ears, voice modulator, olfactory booster, a guardian angel nano system, and some other odds and ends comes to 4 essence.

This body would have 'effective' str and quickness of 7 (without paying the rediculous essence costs), have the subjects natural body +4, and have plenty of psace left over in the cyberlimbs.

In addition, it could be healed by magic :o.

Here's a quick sample villan:

La Legion

A physad, lvl XX initiate with the following cyberware

Pair Syn Cyb Arms(D) E:1.00
Pair Syn Cyb Legs(D) E:1.00
Synth. CyberSkull(D) E:0.38
Synth. CyberTorso(D) E:0.75
Datajack(D) E:0.10
Eyes, Cyber Replacement(D) E:0.10
+ Eyes, Flare Comp(D) E:0.05
+ Eyes, Image Link(D) E:0.10
+ Eyes, Light Systems(D) E:0.10
+ Eyes, Low-Light(D) E:0.10
+ Eye, Rangefinder(D) E:0.05
+ Eyes, Thermographic(D) E:0.10
Ears Cyber Repl(D) E:0.15
+ Ear Dampener(D) E:0.05
+ Ear Hearing Amp(D) E:0.10
+ Spatial Recognizer(D) E:0.10
+ Sound Filter [5](D) E:0.10
+ Ear High Freq(D) E:0.10
+ Ear Low Freq(D) E:0.10
Olfactory Boost [6](D) E:0.10
Voice Modulator(D) E:0.10
Smartlink II (Int)(D) E:0.12
Guardian Angel Nano System (D) E:.15
Vehicle Control Rig 1 (D) E: 1

Essence 1.0

Since the whole body is effectively just a 'flesh bag' the legion can appear to be just about anyone (by replacing the outer coving of the cyber body). Add a new form of masing that allows it to match it's aura to it's appearance and...
In addition, it have a VCR so that thing you are fighting that you think is the legion, might just be it running a drone...

The total cost of the cyberware is only around 8mil (?).

For a fully borg body, you'll have to decide what the research objective is, these would not really be commercially available (they cost millions). One possibility is that they were created as an expirement in immortality. Damien Kight got a brain tumor, or something, so they built this new brain for him... Assuming you have acutally got the brain working, there's no real need to have what it plugs into look human. Or to keep to the originals appearance (change race, gender, whatever). Did you always want to be a talking horse? Now you can.

Considering that you are paying a huge pile of money for your new brain, the comparatively miniscule cost of very high level encryption for it is no big addition.

Sorry I had to go all, I switch computers around 3-4:00pm when I head home, and World of Wacraft is hard to resist. But to take things back to topic, I'll go to your posts since I've been gone.


I'm liking the orichalcum brain not because it is magic. but because it opens up a lot of additional drawbacks that a normally cybered character won't have. After all, having a million nuyen chunk of metal in your head makes for an attractive target alone smile.gif


Good thinking. I really wasn't comfortable with the hodge podged rules for repairs I came up with before. But I couldn't think of anything else along those lines.

Also, I'm thinking of an internal hydrongen fuel cell for power, not much different from the ones they're trying to put into Hydro-electric cars now. Small, lightweight, powerful, and no emissions.

SpeedFreak and Crusher Bob:

As I said before, I'm not looking for already published material here. I'm not trying to shoot down anything you say, but that ground has been gone over before. I do want there to be distinctions between the AC and a normal cybered person, both good and bad.

Cynic Project:

Again, a good thought on the zero essence rule. I'd love your opinions on what the positive and negative effects of being a zero essence spell or elemental/spirit effect target would be.


You're right on Move By Wire. Technically, from a purely cheese perspective, the body qualifies for Drive or Fly By Wire, but I don't want someone else taking an AC body, 4 levels of MBW and forever outclassing the party in terms of combat and stealth. And seeing as MBW does specifically say that it throws the body into a seizure, I don't think the corps will be working on fixing that just yet. Maybe in 2080 when the new sets of Wired Reflexes hit the market.

And last but not least, hyzmarca:

You're going a little off track with the dual natured essence. I don't doubt that magic of some sort will be required, but I don't think that creating the spirit of the person in the AC will be viable, as it smacks highly of cross-over munchkinism(not only am i cybered up monster, I can also kick your rear in Astral space). Though I am liking your thoughts on things like wards and the brain, just with the wrong medium.

I did have a thought regarding Decking/Rigging. Seeing as so much effort has been put into keeping the spirit , I don't see how it will be simple as ever to just go diving into vehicles and the matrix. I think there should be some rules for going out of the body, and then getting back into it, rules that make it harder and a bit more dangerous for the person in the AC.
Herald of Verjigorm
I understand roughly what you intend, but how is this different than an anthroform drone with an EFC power supply and an alternate control system?
Instead of a drone or robot pilot, it has something that is, as far as it cares, human. Since you aren't using the "brain in a jar in a drone" idea, you don't need to worry about the life support, but enviroseal may still be a good idea.
For some reason when I read this thread I started thinking more along the lines of Robocop, than Ghost in the Shell.

Mostly they covered it in Robocop 2, that the reason that Murphy was the only real success they'd had in creating a Robocop were the specific personality/miscellaneous traits of Officer Murphy himself. Just taking any dead cop and trying to redo robocop resulted in many many failures.

The way I see Cyberzombie rules from SR, this is the 'mass production' of a robocop. You're forcing someone who even if they verbally agreed to it, doesn't have the innate personality/life/miscellaneous factors that would allow them to deal with the dehumanizing, beyond-death kinda existence. Which is why you need magical mumbojumbo and the like.

Maybe talking to your GM about special cases, cyberzombies without the innate penalties of cyberzombies, (Cancer, getting lost, etc) but with some of the other disadvantages that were listed.

Downloading the brain, as it were, may be out of the range of SR tech, but keeping the brain in a jar like they did the psychocriminal guy in Robocop 2 before they put him in the heavily armored Robocop 2 form, or keeping a reinforced version of Murphy's head/brain may be more likely.

On something of a side note. Originally when I played RIFTS I was all about making full conversion borgs. Ooh powerful! I could have a mininuke in my chest that powered my beam weapons, etc. Then after a few games, I started thinking "What must it be like to be a full borg?"

The idea of never having conventional sex again, enjoying things like kisses or embraces or sun/wind/whatever on your skin...that has to be pretty frickin devastating. In SR things are a little better, as you can trick your mind via simsense, and advances in receptors that allow even metal people to have a degree of tactile sensation or pain awareness, which keeps them connected to the world. But even still, if you're COMPLETELY replacing your meat body, forget about ever having human relationships. You're the ennuch/best friend/lonely monk.

Those are mostly RP type disadvantages. Still have to think of more tangible ones.

QUOTE (=Spectre= @ Jan 20 2005, 01:16 AM)
And last but not least, hyzmarca:

You're going a little off track with the dual natured essence. I don't doubt that magic of some sort will be required, but I don't think that creating the spirit of the person in the AC will be viable, as it smacks highly of cross-over munchkinism(not only am i cybered up monster, I can also kick your rear in Astral space). Though I am liking your thoughts on things like wards and the brain, just with the wrong medium.

I did have a thought regarding Decking/Rigging.  Seeing as so much effort has been put into keeping the spirit , I don't see how it will be simple as ever to just go diving into vehicles and the matrix. I think there should be some rules for going out of the body, and then getting back into it, rules that make it harder and a bit more dangerous for the person in the AC.

Actually, I saw it as being highly vulnerable in Astral. Since its drone body body is not megical, it would have to rely on its CHA for Astral combat, any magical potential would be lost in the process, so no sorscery or conjuring and, correct me if I'm wrong, there is no overflow in astral. Deadly astral damage = death. Also, don't forget the fun of facing astral beings with astral inititive while being limited to physical inititive yourself.
Also, because the brain is a focus it would be vulnerable to wards in a way that no other being is. Losing a contest with a ward means permenant mental attribute loss. This is a character that should stay away from hostile magicians and spirits.

But, if you don't like the idea feel free to modify it. I'm just throwing something out there.
Like Voran I see Robocop written all over this thread and not mere Cyberzombies.

I've recently come up with a creation I call a Sentinel. It's the latest in Ares Macrotech soldier anthroform. Basically, it takes the central nervous system of a metahuman, with all it's mental attributes in tact, and turns this into a version of a drone. Of sorts.

Basically, the system I've come up with is thus:

A metahuman's brain, spine and eyes (the central nervous system) are removed from the body (ala Robocop and Robocop 2) and placed inside a 'jar'. This jar has interfaces to other known systems and is designed to be sort of plug and play. The brain holds the consciousness, as the jar itself is magically fortified to prevent the soul from leaving. It's similar to cybermancy here, but since the soul is inhabiting it's body still it is less reluctant.

The jar itself, known as the CNSSU (pronounced can-su), Central Nervous System Sustaining Unit, can be inserted into a specially modified anthroform drone which functions, to all intents and purposes, as the metahuman's body. This means the Sentinel can perform any function, using modified cyberlimbs and other body parts or have a completely seperate body for purposes of undercover work or full fledged combat.

I've not worked out a cost for this, because I'm not planning on having this available to PC's - it's an NPC only thing at this point. But for the drawbacks, it is essentially the same as cybermancy except it doesn't have a risk of cancer and doesn't make the person dual natured. It also applies a very large modifier to all charisma based skill checks (save intimidation). I'm not sure what I'm going to do with willpower, since the body is technically at 0.000000001 Essence, but I'm thinking about making this part of the creation process and making it test related.

Magic is used in the creation of a CNSSU, and after some of the suggestions above about Force and spirits, that may well solve my problems in terms of will reductions - limit it to the force of the CNSSU. Also, another major drawback is going to be a 100 times increase in the price of the drugs needed - it's now fuel for a microsized fuel cell in the CNSSU and it costs a lot to buy it and actually add it to the module. Another drawback is the neural interfacing software. This will have a rating, and that will limit skills. Since it's all encrypted it'll be costly, something like 35,000 nuyen per rating point.

Right now, it's very basic since it's not for PC's and I've only generated so much to explain it in terms of the story arc it's part of. But perhaps it has something which will work for you here.
The fun thing will be when the PC's try to rationalise how they should be 'transferred' into a prototype optical-electronic orichalcum-laced enchanted robot-golem that costs as much as several small countries. The estimate for the cost is based on how much unique research equipment costs and the fact that a small nugget of orichalcum has a couple of megas competeing for part of Dunkie's will. And you thought ordinary cybermancy was hard to get a hold of...

There's like 6? delta clinics in the world, and not all of them are cybermancy-capable. There would be, maybe, only one that could do this work. And it would probably be under the personal supervision of either Lofwyr, or whoever is current top dog among the Azzie blood mages.

I wouldn't _want_ to be the guinea pig, no matter how munchie the game stats were.
QUOTE (Lantzer)
I wouldn't _want_ to be the guinea pig, no matter how munchie the game stats were.

I would :o)
Is it scary when you're smart enough in a class to be able to teach that class on the fly without the teacher's help? Anyways, on to todays thoughts by other people. One more note: Though I am somewhat partial to my ideas regarding how thigns are so far, I'm perfectly willing to re-write them for a better idea if someone gives it. This part of the process, with the advantages and disadvantages, is wholly open to discussion and re-interpretation. So just because you see something here, but think you have something better, don't be afraid to send it out.

Herald of Veriigorn:

There is a difference between the two. The anthromorphic drone for one does not have the raw memory space to house the brain. That's in part why the brain must first be run through a Psychotropic UV host to facilitate the transfer. The carrier signals and synaptic responses have to be pattern-matched to the digital brain. There just isn't any more free memory space in the brain and digital control system to handle error checking or debug. This is also why there will in fact be personal influences in the AC. Putting the brain into the AC is an all-or-nothing proposition. You can't chop out sections like bad habits, personality quirks or facial tics because you don't know what will happen to the core memories and responses as a result.

The body itself will have a number of separate gigapulse memory stores to handle specific tasks(movement, memory recall, speech, pattern recognition, probablility determination, sight, sound, taste and touch information), so something like enviroseal will probably be factored in already(though this sure isn't gonna make it buoyant smile.gif )


Well as for the cyberzombie part, that's not what I'm looking for. I do believe that being a cyberzombie was the first step in the evolution of this concept, but it was a purely R&D perspective. They saw what happened when you twisted the rules using a sledgehammer and went back to the drawing board saying "Okay, we did it. We beat the status quo. Now let's figure out how to twist the rules using a regular hammer."

On your side note for a minute, I've played Rifts as well(still love my FQ Imprimer that's on diploatic duty in the NGR) and while I like their borg setup, they really glossed over a lot of details. the biggest one, as you mentioned is overcoming the reality adjustment. However, in Shadowrun, that has been kind of sidelined. the spirit of the person(and since I can't tapdance around it anymore, I'll just call it 'ghost' Please don't sue me shirow smile.gif ) still resides inside the machine. much like it does in the person. The brain is running a full matrixx sim that patterns their reality senses(sight, smell, hearing, taste, touch, heat and cold, etc.)

Along this line however come certain restrictions, one of which I think you may have helped me with. The reality matrix inside their brain really can't differ that much from what they know. The body still has to have two arms, two legs, a head, a body, ten fingers, ten toes, two eyes, two ears, a nose and a mouth as well as...''other' bodyparts. smile.gif Part of the reason people don't go insane with cybernetic implants is because they can generally see and feel something that is similar to their real body parts. You can get a cybernetic arm that has a gun and hand razors inside, but it still looks and acts like a normal arm. But if you go the cyber route and get say an SMG stuck on in place of a hand, there's no connection to it. You don't have any reality to fall back on for having a gun instead of a hand, and it bugs you out faster.

In the same turn, an AC, which just has simsense impressions from the host of your brain., is far more susceptible to what seems too inhuman. So, to represent this, once a month, you must make a Willpower check at a TN equal to the total Essence cost of your impalnts, rounded down. Success and nothing happens. But if you fail.....hmmmmmm. I want to say you lose a point of essence, but that smacks of Cyberpunk 2020's humanity loss. Anyone have a thought on this one? Maybe a stress point for it, though I'm not sure how to justify it?

And back to Hyzmarca:

What I'm trying to do is create a system that has very little to do with cybermancy itself. In cybermancy, you're doing very little with the actual body(from a gamepoint stand. I won't get into the masses of Astral quests needed smile.gif ) It's kind of like taking a car with engine mounts for a V-6 engine, and stretching the body and frame so it'll handle a slightly more powerful engine.

The AC construct goes in the complete opposite direction. Instead of building the engine around the car, you build the car around the engine. Instead of trying to shoehorn more cyberware into the meat, you're taking the meat out of the picture. That comes with a new set of problems and benefits.

Try this on for size instead of dual naturing in regards to a magic disad. How about instead of just a +1 to spell resistance for physical spells, we do a progressive difficulty based on how heavily cybered the body is. Let's start at the base essence of a normal body 6. and say impose a penalty of +1 TN to resist spells(Note: this doesn't refer to dodging them, just resiting them) for every full point of Essence(rounded up) you go over 6.
Umm, wouldn't this meganuyen robot include nanite healing?

Fit a nanite hive pre-loaded templates of the fitted cyberware and link all together with routers to create a basic healing package.

This could lead to strange eating habits as the robot has ingest odd "nutrients" and help keep the controlling personality sane as he/she can still eat, drink, etc.
Actually Botch, you may be on to something there. What about isntead of ingesting nutrients, the AC must ingest base metal construct bars which effectively supply the raw materials for the hive to continue repairs.(Gotta give side credit to Vorna for this one, as his RIFTS reference made me think of the Machine People from Phase World and their eating habits of ingesting raw metals to sustain their fully metallic bodies.)
the same concept is introduced in GitS:SAC, in the second season. the more highly-modified operators snack on what are essentially compressed wafers full of inactive nanites. the nanites are activated during consumption, and repair the robotic parts. they're harmless to humans, and i believe they do supply a minimal amount of nutrition for non- or lightly-cybered beings, but they apparently taste terrible. (mmm, titanium molecules encased in inert nanite bodies!)
QUOTE ("hyzmarca")
Of course it is a cop-out. But, this is Shadowrun. Magic is an integral part of the game and, to an extent, an integral part of the cyberware rules. Magic is why you can't make a full cyborg by canon, therefore lawyering around the laws of magic is the only viable solution. Anything else would be even more of a cop-out.

yeah, well we've all got different ideas of what Shadowrun is. For me, it's a lot closer to Cyberpunk (except without the sucking). I think this problem could be solved without resorting to magic (data image of a metahuman brain, in a fully non-organic tech-based system) and if I wanted borgs, this is how I'd go about it. And of course, a lot of my players (and myself as well) are scientists, for what that's worth - we enjoy the magic aspect, but don't necessarily enjoy MAGIC CAN DO ANYTHING OMG! that some systems / games / GMs are into. Not to diss or anything; it just wouldn't work for my team.

I'd also note that it doesn't matter so much whether you can fully transfer a metahuman brain/soul/spirit - just whether you can transfer it well enough that the mind in question *thinks* it's the real deal. And I'm certain this question will come up as my players get lost in the Arcology (yeah, I'm a few years behind canon).

QUOTE ("=Spectre=")
I'm liking the orichalcum brain not because it is magic. but because it opens up a lot of additional drawbacks that a normally cybered character won't have. After all, having a million nuyen chunk of metal in your head makes for an attractive target alone

Agreed. But the problems I have with it are that it doesn't seem internally consistant, to me. A good GM and a good role-player can always come up with awesome drawbacks to keep things interesting. As always, your milage may very, but my group would hate it.
i like the brain-to-AI conversion featured in Rudy Rucker's 'ware fiction: basically, you have to physically chop the brain up into its component parts and record each part, to fully convert it. obviously, the brain doesn't survive the process.
Douglas Adams:

"I thought you said you could read his brain electronically?"

"Yes, but we have to get it out first. It'll have to be treated."
mmh...first of all, I like the whole cyborg (AC, sorry spectre) thing. I also like chaotic combinations of electronic devices no rulebook ever suspects.
And I built a heavily-cybered char recently...ex-military girl, all limbs full metal jacket and insides...and waaaay fun to play. Don't know the dates since i'm currently at work (teehehehehe), but I think she can kick ass. so? she's a poor slob after all,doomed to do such dirty work forever. but that's not the point.
the real fun when building a character like this starts - like stated above - at the idea of becoming a cyborg (AC, damm!t *g*)
Mages ask: How can a sane human being implant cold metal into its living flesh?
Others ask: How can a sane man let someone tear it's limbs apart to replace it with a machine? (this is where my characters live...most times)
IMHO only really insane characters would freely give up limbs or stuff to get metal cause it's more reliable or perfect or just stronger.
On the other hand, shadowrunning really is dirty work. with firearms. *gg* so you could end up loosing limbs. what then? get a new organic one? or maybe that shiny, skullcrushing, beat-the-crap-outta-the-sucker-who's-responsible-for-this-O-Matic? Depends, I think.
But getting back to the real cyborg...AC...whatever ;)=
Stick to it, have fun playing it. Any explanation is as good or bad as another one...well, maybe it doesn't have to do something with magicks. i don't like magick.
"Magic can do anything but save your sorry butt" as a wise man prophecised long ago.

And I think the AC (gotit!) should get a CHA attribute. it's learned stuff, but I would also limit it to 3 or so...

btw...would the body be covered with skin? *g*

The inital bodies will be pretty much replicas of human bodies. I figure it'll take another decade or so before they advance the circuitry enough to leave enough room for interpretation sofware to allow for non-human moving and looking borgs.

As for Charisma, I'm gonna leave that as a free attribute. Charisma isn't linked to any one hard or fast thing(how pretty you are, how forceful your character is how persuasive) Again, going by GitS and SAC, being put into a metal body doesn't remove yoru personality from the equation. And that's the essence of the Artificial Construct initiative. To leave a much more mentally stable and cognizant individual after putting them into their new body.
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