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Martial Arts and Combat Styles

Jalan Pikiran

  Jalan Pikiran (Indonesian: "the way of the mind") is a recently-developed martial art, pioneered by cybernetically-enhanced Brinkers from (placeholder). The tradition of honor duels began to falter with the dawn of augmentation, as the wealthier competitor could simply buy an advantage to guarantee their win. Instead of allowing their art to die, Jalan Pikiran supplanted it, adapting to augmented life. Today, the art has practitioners spread across human space; most notably, Jalan Pikiran instruction is a component of Revenant combat training, adapted to the battlefield and to multiple enemies.   Jalan Pikiran operates on a simple assumption- with the power and accuracy of modern weaponry, the one who shoots first is the one who walks away from her fight alive. Simply quick-drawing like the cowboys of old Terra is insufficient; human components alone can't draw, aim, and fire fast enough to beat a machine. Jalan Pikiran instead embraces the machine; the user directs the web of sensors within and around them to find the greatest moment of advantage, relying on their enhanced bodies to perform the single strike. Attack and counterattack are processed and planned for, with contingencies placed upon the slightest twitch of the opponent's hand. As each combatant's plan piles up, so to do their countermeasures; faked tells, electronic countermeasures, and even direct hacking are all allowed in most environments. The operator becomes the predictor in a machine relying solely on hard data, and on an even technological ground, the better predictor comes out ahead.   Jalan Pikiran duels are often rather boring events to the observer. Two opponents will square up, weapon in hand but lowered to their side, and wait. Planning, counter-planning, and countermeasures pile up in a hush of deathly silence. When one combatant finds the upper hand, the blow that goes unmatched, the combatants burst into action. In the blink of an eye, the duel is done- one walks away, the other is carted off on a stretcher, or to reclamation.   Some practitioners favor a less-lethal method, such as the use of electroshock weapons instead of firearms. However, "traditional" Jalan Pikiran relies on large-bore, long-barreled pistols, loaded with a single shot with no reloads available. If a combatant can survive their shot, they have all the time in the world to line up the perfect counterattack- a tactic taken advantage of in the competitive circuit. Jalan Pikiran practitioners using standard firearms exist, and those who apply the art to real warfare naturally make use of them; these practitioners rarely hew to the principles of the art, instead simply employing the tools of the trade to give themselves a perceptual advantage.


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