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G-Com

Many adventuring hackers and techies face the dilemma of having to leave their precious computers behind as they travel. Luckily, there exists the G-Com. Short for Gauntlet Computer, this device is similar to a smart phone that you can wear on your arm similarly to a gauntlet, with the main arm support covering most of the forearm. It allows those skilled enough with it to hack just about anything, anywhere without lugging around big, heavy equipment wherever they go. It does have its own wireless capabilities for piloting drones or accessing systems without connecting through a Wi-Fi, but this range is limited to Medium at first.   G-Coms can be upgraded with a variety of software and hardware that provide additional security or enhanced performance. Most of these require a Computers check to install, but some require a Mechanics check instead. Some of them are ranked, meaning they can be applied multiple times, but you must first install the prior rank first. So, to get a Rank 2 upgrade you must first install Rank 1. In addition, each additional upgrade increases the difficulty by +d.  

Upgrades

 

ID Shield

  Type: Software   Difficulty: Average (dd)   Skill needed: Computers   Installation time: (1 x next rank) hour(s)   Ranked: Yes (Max 3)   This encryption firewall helps protect against attempts to identify where the user is. It adds b per rank to any attempts to trace the user.  

Wireless Amplifier

  Type: Hardware   Difficulty: Hard (ddd)   Skill Needed: Computers   Installation Time: (1 x next rank) hour(s)   Ranked: Yes (Max 2)   This upgrade increases the range of non-internet wireless activities, such as commanding a drone or hacking an aircraft, the G-Com can be used for. Each upgrade increases the range by one range band, so Rank 1 increases it to Long, and Rank 2 increases it to Extreme.  

EMPathy

  Type: Hardware   Difficulty: Easy (d)   Skill Needed: Mechanics   Installation Time: (1 x next rank) half hour(s)   Ranked: Yes (Max 4)   This upgrade is considered the "poor man's magic," as it has great versatility and flexibility in what kind of damage it does. It is a module that allows for a short-range electrical attack that can wreak havoc on machines and anything weak to Electric damage. The base damage of this weapon is equal to it's rank, and attacking with it requires an Easy (d) Ranged(Light) check. There are a variety of ways to affect how this attack deals damage, and they are described in a sub-list below. Note that some modifications require the module to have a certain rank before it can apply them, and most of them add difficulty to the Ranged(Light) check.  
  • Adjust Damage (Rank 1): This allows the user to adjust the base damage to a number no less than one, and no higher than the module's current rank.
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  • Stunning (Rank 1, +d): This attack gains the Stun Damage quality.
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  • Explosive (Rank 2, +dd): This attack gains the Blast quality.
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  • Overcharge (Rank 2, +dd): This attack's base damage in doubled. If it has the Blast quality, the blast radius is increased from Engaged to Short. If the original base damage is higher than 2, upgrade one d to c per damage point beyond 2.
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  • Melee Attack (Rank 3, +d): This upgrade allows the user to attack using their Brawl skill, adding the base damage to their Brawn stat. Since this attack hits those the attacker is Engaged with, it is highly recommended you not combine this with Explosive.
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  • Extremely Stunning (Rank 3, +ddd): This attack gains the Stun quality.
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  • Armor Crusher (Rank 4, +ddd): This attack gains the Pierce and Vicious qualities with a rating equal to this modules rank, the Sunder quality, and a critical rating of 2.
 

Golemancy Integration

  Type: Hardware   Difficulty: Daunting (dddd)   Skill Needed: Mechanics   Installation Time: 4 hours   Ranked: No   Golems are notoriously difficult to hack. While they operate similarly to a normal computer, there's so much magic involved that it's like saying an apple is the same as a carrot because they're both edible plants. This module allows a G-Com to work with, or possibly despite, these differences and take control of a nearby golem. When attempting to hack a golem, the hacker makes an opposed Computers vs Discipline check on the golem. If successful, the golem becomes controlled by the hacker, and the hacker may attempt one of two things: spending a maneuver directing the golem, or attempting to reassign ownership of the golem. The latter requires another opposed Computers vs Discipline check, with the difference that one more d gets upgraded to c.

Significance

Having an upgraded G-Com is a hallmark of good hacking or technomancy. Any techie worth their salt has at least a few upgrades to their G-Com.

Item type
Electronic / Cybernetic
Rarity
This item has a Rarity value of 3, and it requires a succsessful Easy (d) Negotiation, Streetwise, or Knowledge check to find, depending on the situation.
Dimensions
3-4 in. x 6-8 in.
Base Price
200 Credits
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Comments

Author's Notes

Is everything made clear? Does everything seem balanced?


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16 Dec, 2018 02:03

Things seem pretty balanced from a game point standpoint, but I have plenty of questions about the G-Com. Who manufactures them? Are they available in various grades of quality, does that have any effect on gameplay? How widespread is their adoption?   Wrist-mounted computers are cool, and the article should have a bit of that factor into it if you've got the time. Rules bibles are cool, but when you put just enough lore into it to make me buy into the whole thing, it's just that much cooler.

16 Dec, 2018 03:54

Thank you for your input! I'm thinking I'll just have them all manufactured by the same unnamed company for the sake of simplicity ingame. I will be writing up a group that uses them as standard issue in the coming days, so stay tuned!

16 Dec, 2018 05:17

Im the last person to talk to about balance. I made the system i use specifically so i don't have to worry about it lol but it is very clear and kind of cool as well. I really like some of the names too. EMPathy in particular cause it really brought out some intrigue as to what it is but its unique name kind of makes it stand out from the others which have more straightforward names that i know little about. It's a good article and if i run a campaign in a cyberpunk kind of world i may mine this if you don't mind. I may have missed it but what about price?

16 Dec, 2018 18:00

I'm glad you enjoyed it! If you want to use this in your own worlds, go ahead, just be sure to give credit where it's due. ;) I did put the price in there, it's on the side of the article.

16 Dec, 2018 07:27

How common are these things in the setting? Do they come with any particular antipathy (like people wearing google-glasses or a bluetooth in public)? Are there any especially notable manufacturer?   Can they be enchanted?

16 Dec, 2018 17:41

They are fairly common, about as common as smartphones in our world. They don't really have any antipathy like you're suggesting, and I haven't thought of any specific manufacturers because that's going to be a pain to come up with different prices. I haven't given much thought to enchanting them, I suppose one could, but I'm not sure why one would want to, as it's main purpose is to give players who wanna play as a hacker the power to do so without lugging 50 pound rigs with them everywhere.   I do appreciate your feedback, and I hope you enjoyed it!

16 Dec, 2018 18:13

ooop didnt see it my bad