TINKERS

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TINKERS

MOVER

SHAKER

BRUTE

BREAKER

MASTER

TINKER

BLASTER

THINKER

STRIKER

CHANGER

TRUMP

STRANGER

Introduction

Methodologies

Hyperspecialist TinkersFocal TinkersLimit Tinkers

Binary TinkersCombat TinkersChaos Tinkers

Resource TinkerControllersMagi

ArchitectsMad ScientistsFree Tinker

     Fields of Specialty

Battalion

    Tinker Bonuses & Augments

The Tinker’s Tinkerings: Making Tinker Tables (Rewritten!)


    Secondary Tinkers

    Builds

Introduction

Tinkers are capes with powers that don’t work through the cape so much as they enable the individual to fabricate things.  By creating tinkers, the entities can explore options, taking powers that have been explored in depth and allowing it to be explored in more depth, or attempting to ‘crack’ the particulars of a field or specialty of a species from earlier in the cycle.

Tinker triggers involve a time component, specifically a longer period of time building up to the trigger itself, and an element of a problem without solution.  This isn’t to be confused with triggers where a bad life circumstance leads into a distinct event – in such a case every character would be a tinker.  The elements of the trigger build up over weeks or months, and are inexorably tied into the moment the character triggers.

The key factors to note here are the nature of the problem without solution and the key elements of the trigger itself.  The problem determines the tinker’s methodology.  This is how the tinker derives inspiration, builds, and the breadth of options available to them in building.  The key elements are the surrounding features, context, and details that determine the flavor of the resulting powers, the specialty itself.


Methodologies

For the purposes of this document, we loosely categorize methodologies into twelve sub-categories.  As previously established, each tinker trigger is different, and different circumstances lead to different sorts of approaches to tinkering, ranging from the combat heavy to the megaproject focused or the noncombat tinker.  The key focus in determining what the methodology is, as stated above, the nature of the problem the tinker faces, in the course of the trigger.

In brief, the categories and the circumstances that flavor them are:

  • Hyperspecialist – obsession regarding an object or goal.

  • Focal – Obsession on a singular behavior, pattern or path.

  • Limit – Obsession tied to a person or relationship.

  • Binary – Trigger involved a crossroads or a lose-lose situation.

  • Combat – Violence or threats extending over a long time.

  • Chaos – Triggers defined by a question mark or unsolvable problem.

  • Resource Tinkers – Triggers having to do with materialism, belongings.

  • Controllers – Triggers defined by personal/relationship aspect.

  • Architect – One man vs. the world, or fighting an institution, David vs. Goliath.

  • Mad Scientist – Facing consequences, often from bad risk/reward gambles

Not yet added are the…

  • Magi – Tinkers that focus on utility or self improvement

  • Free Tinkers – Who can build anything they dream of.

This determines the manner in which the tinker gets inspiration, the ease with which things can be researched, their breadth (or narrowness) of specialty, the breadth, range, and restrictions of what they can build, the resource costs, the bonuses and penalties, and more.

A given trigger, however, oft falls into more than one category, and GMs and groups are encouraged, if stuck, to identify two that apply, when and where that’s possible.  The following page gives a name to each of the combined categories, with rules and starting build lists.  The links on the next page go straight to the entries in question.

A number of example outlines are given in the example section at the bottom of the document.

Hyper + Hyper

Hyper + Focal

Hyper + Limit

Hyper + Binary

Hyper + Combat

Hyper + Chaos

Hyper + Resource

Hyper + Control

Hyper + Magi

Hyper + Arch

Hyper + MadSci

Hyper + Free

Straight H.spec

Heirloom

Reactor

Dexter

Brute

Inspired

Crude *

March

Obsessive

Mad Doc

Focal + Focal

Focal + Limit

Focal + Binary

Focal + Combat

Focal + Chaos

Focal + Resource

Focal + Control

Focal + Magi

Focal + Arch

Focal + Madsci

Focal + Free

Implement

Gentleman

Ranger

Excalibur *

Trick Pony

Philo

Gepetto

Mech

( * = On another doc )

Limit + Limit

Limit + Binary

Limit + Combat

Limit + Chaos

Limit + Resource

Limit + Control

Limit + Magi

Limit + Arch

Limit + Madsci

Limit + Free

Shackled

Catalyst

Executioner

Lens

Whip

Steward

Mastermind

Binary + Binary

Binary + Combat

Binary + Chaos

Binary + Resource

Binary + Control

Binary + Magi

Binary + Arch

Binary + Madsci

Binary + Free

Janus

Dual Weld

Necromancer

Combat + Combat

Combat + Chaos

Combat + Rsource

Combat + Control

Combat + Magi

Combat + Arch

Combat + MadSci

Combat + Free

Templar

Horror

Muster

Warden

Blood Knight

Chaos + Chaos

Chaos + Resource

Chaos + Control

Chaos + Magi

Chaos + Arch

Chaos + MadSci

Chaos + Free

Fieldtest

Golden Goose

Rsource + Rsource

Rsource + Control

Rsource + Magi

Rsource + Arch

Rsource + Madsci

Rsource + Free

Midas

Cell

Virus

Treasure

Control + Control

Control + Magi

Control + Arch

Control + MadSci

Control + Free

Alchemist

Magi + Magi

Magi + Arch

Magi + Madsci

Magi + Free

Arch + Arch

Arch + MadSci

Arch + Free

Citadel

Doomsday

Madsci + Madsci

Madsci + Free

Wretched

Free + Free

Hyperspecialist Tinkers


Hyperspecialists are tinkers with an emphasis on the specialty alone.  A flame-oriented hyperspecialist would be limited to fire-based stuff: tinkerized flamethrowers, flame grenades, pyrokinetic gauntlets, etc.  The hyperspecialist often gets an advantage in exchange for the narrower focus. Examples include…

  • The quality hyperspecialist.  They can’t build a wide range of things and can’t tap into other specialties, but the stuff they build is just plain better.  Other possibilities include the efficiency hyperspecialist, who can do a lot with a limited supply of material, or the speed hyperspecialist, who can build exceedingly quickly, building small items or repairing a tinkering in a few rounds in the middle of combat, and requiring far less time between sessions to build normal projects.

  • The reactor hyperspecialist.  They need to carry a large energy source with them, both a detriment and advantage; it accumulates charges which the tinker can spend to boost their gear, or it can power items built from fields outside of the specialty, at a high cost.

  • The brute hyperspecialist.  They build weapons and armor, with a leaning toward power armor or mech suits.  Optimal effect when building weapons/armor with specialist tie-in (ie. flame-brute hyperspecialist building an Inferno Mech Suit)

Hyperspecialists are generated when the problem the triggeree faces is a singular, all-absorbing obsession.  There’s one thing that takes focus at the center of this problem, and this is a discrete item or thing.  A dying man might need an organ donation with the sole confirmed match refusing to give up the needed organ, playing games, manipulating and milking him of funds while the organ is held out of arm’s reach.  A pair of thugs find a massive stash of drugs worth a small fortune, and agree to share the proceeds, but one moves the stash and things get tense as he turns to violence to maintain possession.  Both the person trying to maintain control over the stash and the person who wants it (and the funds it represents) could conceivably trigger as a hyperspecialist.  

The specialty would be linked to the item of focus in theme, rather than directly.  The organ and stash are the focuses, but the abstract elements would be desperate inability to get the organ for the former, and either paranoia/attention or violence for the latter.

Focal Tinkers

Dwells not on a single specialty, but on a single manifestation of their tinkering, one item that they build and rebuild, and expand on relentlessly, with multiple functions or very powerful functions, with other items being nonexistent or strictly peripheral.  A contrast to many other tinkers, who wield versatility as their chief tool, the Focal tinker might include the tinker who has a single laser cannon they always carry with them or a tinker with a time manipulating wristband.  Nuanced examples include:

  • The Heirloom Focal, who bears a single tinkering with a single specialty and a long list of modifications they can swap in.  Gets an advantage in terms of raw quality, cost, or production speed.

  • The Gentleman Focal, who bears a lower power focus item and an array of trinkets, limited-use items, and other tinkerings.  Reliant on using a broad suite of tricks and lesser items to problem solve their way through confrontations.

  • The Ranger Focal, who has one item with multiple modes, often transforming it between two very different states; a melee and ranged weapon, or high mobility vs. stationary turret.

Like Hyperspecialists, Focal Tinkers come about from a singular focus, but in this case the focus is not an obsession for an object, but around their own behavior, pattern, or path.  The tinker is caught, stuck in a rut, or otherwise doomed to repeat the same behavior over and over again.  A compulsive gambler breaks as he makes a bid to get enough money together to get his daughter a birthday present, the latest and perhaps most crushing disappointment in a long string of failures.  A young woman with an anger problem and history of being abused keeps picking volatile partners, every relationship ending with one or both parties in jail or seriously injured, and triggers as she stands over the corpse of the latest one.  A compulsive liar keeps the fact that he dropped out of University hidden from family and friends, but the lies build up and become pathological… until he can’t juggle them all and the house of cards comes tumbling down.

The nature of the item itself feeds in large part on the attitudes leading into the trigger and the critical moment of the trigger itself; use classifications to inform the item of choice.  The gambler described above might have a thinker trigger with notes of changer, a mask or suit with high feedback/information storage/use.  The woman with the anger problem gets a striker-esque sword or weapon set.  The liar, isolated, gets a Master drone or pet.

Limit Tinkers

The Limit Tinker is akin to the Hyperspecialist, with a primary field of specialty, but the lines are blurred.  While they do best in their field of specialty, they dip their toes into other waters, or even have to dip their toes to operate at their best, with optimal operation tied to peripheral objects, focuses, or added complexities.  Examples include:

  • [Heterodyne removed – description needed for another]

  • The Catalyst tinker, who is akin to a specialist, but who keeps their specialty secret until a critical moment.  Develops gear of varying sorts and a relatively low power level, but in reality is setting things up for a singular dramatic effect at the press of a button, where everything kicks over to another mode or function.

  • The Mastermind tinker, who is a specialist unaware of their specialty; they can build outside of it, but not well, or with misfire chances.  Every field test of varied, moderate-level tinkerings helps narrow this down.  Finding their specialty unlocks a megaproject or another bonus.

The Limit tinker derives from a situation with a singular focus or obsession, and this focus or obsession is either very abstract (touching on the blurred lines in the actual build/specialty) or, more often, relates to a person.  The relationship can be positive or adversarial, but is overwhelming and all-encompassing, and the situation tying into that relationship is often so intense that there is no rest or relaxation.  Other triggers tie into relationships, but there is a period of rest or a break from the situation.  Not so here.   A minister loses her faith and her life is consumed as she struggles to recapture it.  A teen is controlled by their father, homeschooled, diet constrained, clothing chosen, allowed entertainment pre-screened, until they feel as if they are suffocating.  A boy’s sister is kidnapped while they are traveling, and he carries out a vigilante quest to find her and make amends for letting her out of his sight, triggering when hospitalized for not eating or sleeping for days, fully aware he’s now lost the only lead.

The relationship is the key factor here in determining what the condition or outside factor is in enabling or optimizing the specialty.  The minister fumbles, blind, for faith, the specialty unclear to them as well – their limit is needing to figure it out.  The child is submerged and drowning in an ocean of parental attention/control, and thus gathers strength/focus to use non-specialist gear as they might fight to the metaphorical surface.  The vigilante puts health at risk in pursuit of their sister, and might face a risk of misfire when using non-specialty gear, mirroring that risk to themselves in much the same manner.


Binary Tinkers

The Binary Tinker breaks away from the more specialist tinkers described above, having two specialties.  Two fields of study, often with a touch of venn-diagram overlap.  Where nuances arise is in how the overlap occurs, the bonuses therein, or the dynamics between one specialty and the other.  Take, for example:

  • The Dexter tinker, who can build within two separate specialties, but when those specialties overlap, gets a bonus to two of the following (set at character creation): quality/power, cost efficiency of building, or time efficiency of building.  Cannot build outside of the specialty, and may be limited from scanning or drawing inspiration from outside sources, providing a fairly tight, limited toolkit.

  • The Amplitude tinker, who is akin to the Heterodyne tinker (A Binary Tinker/Limit Tinker combo), building within two specialties, with gear running at a lower power level at the outset of confrontation.  Utilizing confrontation (ie. successfully blasting enemies) or specific features in environment (more fire!), can step up amplitude of one specialty while stepping down the other.

  • The Necromancer tinker, who builds within two specialties.  Is restricted to only one or two items to begin with, as the further outside the center of the venn-diagram that tinker builds, the more reliant they are on power sources, special feeds or vectors.  In this case, the dead, dying, or comatose.

Binary tinkers arise from a crossroads, two major, long-term problems coming to a head, in a lose/lose situation or a compounding effect.  A gang leader is dying, but cannot afford to look weak or give others the opportunity of seeing him go to get treatment, so he lets his health falter.  A salaryman is being sabotaged/undermined in his career, and goes home every night to take care of a wife who has recently turned psychotic, stressing about what she’s getting up to at work.  If he stays at work, she gets up to trouble, but if he goes to take care of her, he accomplishes nothing while losing ground at work.  If the problem builds up until he cracks, that’s a lose/lose (minimal overlap), but if she storms into the workplace, raving, a convergence (strong interplay).  

Each problem informs a separate specialty, how they meet informs the dynamic & interaction at play in the Binary.  The specialties are drawn from abstract elements; slow degradation of health and a false strength and command for the gang leader touching on dual specialties of radiation and physical augmentation, with physically augmented radiation mutants in the venn, while the man at work might mix mind altering effects (problem: psychotic wife) and trap-making (problem: sabotage at work).

Combat Tinkers

The Combat Tinker may be more flexible in terms of specialty, but the execution and approach of their tinkering is fairly linear, leaning heavily or entirely toward applications on the battlefield.  They often find themselves very good at those applications, get some added bonuses or options in their tinkering to make up for the lack of breadth or options outside of combat, or get secondary powers to complement their style.  Includes:

  • The Ironclad tinker, who is strictly limited to one specialty and to combat applications, but is exceedingly dangerous in combat, often with very durable gear and power armor that proves both potent and versatile, with lots of defensive modifications tacked on.

  • The Executioner, a combat-biased tinker with the ability to attach highly modular ‘blank slots’ to their gear.  Where other tinkers learn from scanning threats and scenarios and then taking their scans to the workbench, expanding their repertoire, the Executioner can ‘learn’ by defeating enemies, then immediately apply that learning to their gear, to varying degrees of effectiveness.  Oft touches on the Trump classification.

  • The Templar, a power-armor wearing tinker, with weapon options being primarily melee or very short ranged, forcing the tinker to get into the fray.  A shard-gear link allows the tinker to charge up gear for special actions by attacking in melee.

Combat tinkers arise from a threat to one’s person, of a physical nature.  Such threats exist over the long-term, but typically require a special element to make them into a tinker trigger rather than another classification with long-term context: the threat has to be present for a time, be relentless, or have a problem-solving aspect tied into it.  A little girl is physically abused by her father, and after being hospitalized by a recent attack, is told that the next knock to her head could cause brain damage or exacerbate an ongoing health problem.  A young man knows the physically abusive older brother he testified against is getting out of jail soon, is going to kill him when it happens, and he can’t find a way out, lacking funding or ability to leave the city.  Helplessness and frustration are common elements here, as are close relations to the attacker.

A key element here is the aspect of melee vs. range vs. defense, both in the long and the short term.  The girl’s father is always in close proximity, using his fists.  She triggers with a leaning toward melee and armor, especially with the health problems as a concern.  The boy who fears his brother has his brother as a distant threat, drawing nearer in the short term, and emphasizes armor less, with an emphasis on an array of guns and a few good melee weapons.

Chaos Tinkers

The Chaos Tinker doesn’t have complete control over what they build, how, or over the end product.  Chaos tinkers don’t generally have to give consideration to the same factors that other tinkers do, but the element of randomness takes the place of those factors.

  • The Inspired has a field of specialty.  On sitting down to build, they get their choice of several options in that field.  Over time, can touch on any/every base, or deconstruct items to keep aspects of them, leading to great breadth, at cost of short-term decision making.

  • The Lens tinker has no control over fields of specialty or item type, unless they can collect special materials, which enable the tinker to nail one or both down.  Starts off with a random assortment of gear, but once a source for these rare materials is obtained, the tinker can customize their own focus.

  • The Horror has some shifter/breaker ability.  At the outset of a confrontation, their body adopts one of a limited list of weapons and power sources.  Pre-built weapon housings and power sources (incomplete on their own) can be plugged into these morphed parts to be effectively completed, or, as an arduous process, completed standalone so as to be more reliable.

Chaos tinkers arise from situations where the tinker trigger has a high degree of confusion or missing information.  They face a long-term problem, and the problem can’t be solved because of a big question mark in the midst of it all.  For example, an agent of a high ranking agency figures out that they have a terrorist mole, putting the team in mortal jeopardy, can’t tell anyone without possibly informing the mole, their only option being to find the mole.  The trigger point is when they lose their last lead or when the mole makes their first (devastating move), and the identity of the mole still remains unknown.  A man who repressed his memories of childhood has his past catch up to him after he wins the lottery, with dangerous and abusive family members suddenly paying attention to him, and he can’t actively unrepress his memories and figure out who/what to watch for, because every attempt to dig or remember only triggers his defense mechanisms.

In creating Chaos Tinkers, very frequently a partial list of builds is given to the player, with the remainder being put into a table that the GM can roll on, providing options to the player when necessary.  Variations may exist, depending on the Chaos tinker’s other typing and specialty, if any.

Resource Tinkers

The Resource Tinker is a tinker who leans heavily on the question of materials for their creations.  The Resource Tinker has certain allowances, dependencies, or abstract  factors when it comes to the question of what they can build.  This could include needing no or far less resources to get started, needing certain very rare or specialized materials to build, or having the material be the focus of the tinker’s particular method.  Examples:

  • The Midas tinker, who can utilize exceedingly rare materials to produce special components; when used in crafting, by the Midas tinker or another individual, the component adds a powerful bonus augment.  A fairly subpar tinker if they can’t obtain their sapphire stolen from a museum (as an example), very powerful if they can.

  • The Crude tinker, a hyperspecialist who eschews all complex materials in favor of a ‘junkyard’ or ‘mad max’ build style.  They can build with bare bones minimum of materials, build quick ad-hoc stuff if they do have materials, or pile on extra materials to build hardy, but their work is heavy, loud, and noxious.

  • The Muster tinker, a combat tinker who doesn’t need many materials at all.  A given fist-sized node serves as a blueprint and an engine to slowly gather materials from the area and ‘summon’ a tinker device or armor around the node… with a time limit before the item falls apart.  Nodes gain ‘experience’ of a sort, retaining materials within, making for better quality and faster activation over successive uses.

Resource tinkers arise from long-term problems of materialism.  Money, possessions, greed, material needs and objects being the subject of other triggers factor into resource tinkering, being reflected in the needs, lack thereof, or the materials that form the focus.  Examples include a person married to a gambling addict, who fights a long, slow fight to get their spouse on the right track, only to trigger when they realize that their inheritance from their dead parent has been gambled away.  A person with a rare disease struggles to get the medical equipment necessary to stay alive after the one company that made it closes down.  A teenager who hit it big as a child actor finds that all their friends only want them for their money and cool stuff, not for them as people.

Often, the nature of the resource tinker reflects the trigger in that those that need are given tinkerings that need materials.  Those that covet special things are given powers that work off of rare components, and so on.  Specialties are oft drawn from the nature of the coveted item.

Controllers

The Controller is a tinker who creates drones as their primary field of specialty.  Drones come in a variety of shapes and sizes, ranging from the miniscule to the massive.  They vary in the form they take, and can range from insectile to humanoid, or even to gigantic creations.

  • The Alchemist is a devoted drone creator with no non-consumable offensive weapons that aren’t provided by his drones.  Drawing from a small handful of fields of specialty, the Alchemist uses vats or chambers (same idea with only aesthetic differences) to grow and customize their creations, who they then outfit and customize.

  • The Marching Orders tinker is a hyperspecialist controller who can build humanoid robots and give them simple directives.  He amasses squads and armies, his focus primarily on soldiers, which range from simple mooks to mooks modified to capitalize on the tinker’s specialty.  A Nuke spec M.O. tinker might have five humanoid minions with melee weapons and two upgraded ones that can self-destruct, or work to outfit minions with tinkerized rocket launchers.

  • The Geppetto tinker is a drone tinker who maintains a singular drone (hereafter referred to as the puppet).  They can move and attack, and so long as a hand is free, they can also operate the drone. The tinker’s tinkerings are primarily focused on augments, advancements, and weapon additions to their puppet, including some that give it some autonomy.

Controllers manifest from a trigger that is largely social and ‘cold’ emotionally in the sense that it deals with isolation, detachment, or depression, serving in large part as the tinker equivalent of a Master-Tinker trigger.  Noting that many Master triggers have some long-term effects in play, Controller triggers are usually very long term or involve a steady progression of worsening social problems over a more typical tinker-level long term.  Stuck working for the local gang boss’ three sons, a thug gets on the man’s bad side, and his successes and earnings are misrepresented, leading to him being shunned, then hated, and ultimately exiled over the course of a year, triggering when his former friends come for him (keeping in mind that even though it’s a high-temper situation, his personal feeling and the long-term circumstance revolve around the loss of his friends).  An agoraphobe might finds her condition worsens until she can’t even leave her room, the condition of herself/her surroundings steadily diminishing as she pulls away from society.

The nature of the social withdrawal, the consequences that unfold, and the surrounding elements inform the specialty, if any, as well as the nature of the minions.

Magi 

The Magi Tinker is a tinker who makes themselves the centerpiece of their tinkerings. The Magi Tinker alters themselves, operates a console, or tinkers with their self as one of the effective specialties. Examples include:

  • The Techhead surgically alters or irrevocably alters their head and brain, to affect their senses and way of thinking.  The goal and the benefit is to vastly increase their own capabilities, skills and awareness, with some secret weapons (face unfolding to reveal sudden laser blast), a growing assortment of secondary tech or weapons that operate with a thought, and a very high ceiling for development. Variants can exist, covering other bases (Lead Foot Tinker, for example).

  • The Witch is akin to a power armor tinker, but deals with an assortment of tools or weapons rather than armor. Damage taken will also see the frame's pieces break or shut down as the tinker loses random weapons or benefits. This fragile toolbox approach leads most to stay back and be artillery, and even those who don't are nonetheless forced to be selfish.

  • The Maestro operates a floating platform (economical) or control room (longer-term and range-limited), from which they direct drones, order bombardments or other environmental effects (weather control), and act as ops for their team, functioning as a real-time strategist. Relatively defenseless if someone reaches them at their control panels is a bigger concern.

Magi tinkers come about from a concern of the self, running over the long term. Their tendency to touch on changer, breaker, or thinker approaches relates to the various directions these things can take. Could involve someone dealing with the slow loss of vision and hearing over years, finally reaching a breaking point when they go see their favorite band one last time- and can neither see the stage nor make out the music. A woman goes from being a drug addict in her teens, recovering, becoming a gambling addict, recovering, becoming a sex addict, recovering, and realizes the loop is endless, that there will always be another trap to fall into. The nature of the problem with the self tends to determine how the methodology manifests. The particular details or nuances point to specialty.

Architects

The Architect is a category of tinkers who works primarily with megaprojects – massive, time-consuming constructions that demand a great deal of attention, not just from the tinker, but from the tinker’s enemies.

  • The Barracks tinker is a drone tinker who doesn’t build drones, specifically, but builds larger structures that churn out drones at a steady rate.  Limited gear/equipment outside of this window, general field of specialty flavors the individual drones and the limited equipment the tinker gets.

  • The Warden is a tinker who sports a more robust assortment of combat options and gear, aimed at being able to guard their very noisy/flashy/visible creations that are planted/set up and slowly scale up to activation or operation.

  • The Mech tinker builds a massive power suit, the size of a small building, with the assortment of upgrades and tools that they can add determined by their general field of specialty, among other, more core options.

  • The Virus works with computer screens and terminals, strictly noncombat, with an emphasis on tracking distant forces and manipulating the world with mouseclicks and keystrokes, specializing in a particular field and kind of manipulation, spreading through technology and then manipulating or transforming that technology and even the surrounding area.

Architects arise from a crisis tied to a particular location or institution.  Very frequently a ‘little guy against the system’ scenario or a ‘little guy caught up in the system’.  A young criminal gets stuck in the prison system, getting zero support, he gets released on parole only to be found in violation of that parole when he can’t find employment or accommodations, gets re-arrested, and then later released on parole because of overcrowding… repeating the cycle until he finally serves out the rest of his sentence… and is forced to commit crime to get by, leading to his arrest, re-entry into the system, and his trigger.  A religious nutjob struggles and fails to get his ‘church’ off the ground, fighting local government for the right to recognition, blaming them when no parishioners show, his efforts at streetside preaching are curbed by the police.  His message is so important, divinely mandated, it is him against the world, and the world is winning.

Abstract details and environment help flavor the specialty of the tinker and the nature of their megaproject(s), if and when that project isn’t defined by the subtype of the tinker.  Megaprojects often take a significant time to research and build.  See the ‘Megaprojects’ and ‘Megaprojects and Architects’ section below for more details.

Mad Scientists

The Mad Scientist is a tinker who is defined not by what they are limited to, but by the cost of their tinkering.  The risk/reward element is high, here, as they have more power, breadth of options or options in how the gear is used, but must pay a cost to obtain these things.  Examples include:

  • The Eccentric, who can research and then build a variety of things, but suffers from mental imbalance, hallucinations or other madness as a consequence of that research or initial use of gear, scaling down with practice, the cost of wrapping one’s head around the tinkerings being a deformation of that metaphorical head.

  • The Cyborg pays for their work with literal pounds of flesh.  Whatever they build is hooked into their body or replaces body parts, typically a conversion that can only be performed one-way.  What they do build, however, is effective, and has a secondary benefit of advancing their stats and capabilities.

  • The Wretched is the inverse of the Eccentric, above, and struggles to maintain a work-life balance.  Options initially limited, but can research more broadly.  When they delve too deep into the tinkering, they don’t always surface one hundred percent.  Their humanity slips away and what they lose is lost in the long-term.  While they build well and have versatility to spare, they have to choose what they research and work on and cherish that which they have built, knowing the cost they paid for it.

Mad Scientists come about from tinker triggers where things are entirely out of their control due to an (often desperate) decision they made – risk/reward played a factor here, and the risk proved worse than anticipated.  Stupidity, criminal activity, or the like may factor in.  As this is a tinker thing, there was a scenario that led up to this critical decision.  An internet troll is engaged in a bitter rivalry with another of his kind, a back and forth rivalry that sees one losing his job, another having his bank accounts locked.  Things go too far, however, when the triggeree gathers his ammo for the latest attack, pornography of the illegal sort on multiple counts, to be placed on the others’ computer, only to have the police knocking on his door.  A military commander who has seen far too many years of this particular battlefield makes a spur-of-the-moment decision to attack what intel says is apparently an enemy headquarters, only to realize it was a trap, and good soldiers are now dying because of it.

Mad Scientists have a tendency to be villains, due to the triggers that lead into them and the subtle control that the costs give the shards over the tinker’s eventual disposition.

Fields of Specialty

Fields of specialty are the areas of study that tinkers have available to them.  Not necessarily directly related to the trigger event, the fields of specialty draw on elements in the tinker’s life, little things that make their background stand out, and in an abstract way, on the elements at play in the trigger.  Much like a dream draws on events latent in our subconscious, the field of specialty is drawn out in a similar way.

An example might be a cryogenics tinker.  Their focus is on ice, on freezing, cold, and on stasis – very possibly, in an extreme case, to the extent that they stop time for those under the influence of the tinker devices.  The natural conclusions for devices are fairly obvious, and most players of Weaverdice have seen media where ice-based technology comes into play.  What, then, informs this sort of focus?  Those who are the focus of the technology might be slowed down, left struggling, losing inertia in a manner of speaking.  They might be stuck, unable to get traction, or outright paralyzed.  Alternately, they might be numb, unable to find the volition to move in the first place.  These states could mirror the trigger event, arising for characters who are trapped in a bad situation they can’t seem to climb their way out of.  Alternately, a recurring theme in the character’s life might be their job, which involves very cold temperatures – a freezer in a meat packing plant or a high-end server room.  The narrower the specialization, the more obvious the field of specialty might be.

Specialties are broken up into branches.  Like methodologies, there’s some crossover, and most will fit into two categories.  The ones that double down on one category are bolded:

War

Extra emphasis on combat & weapons

Specialties

Battalion – Powersuit – Tac Radar – Tank – Toxin – Loadout – Fire – Turrets

Ego

Tinker devices focus on themselves, self-augmentation and personal utility

Specialties

Powersuit – Narcissus – Visor – Jetpack – Graft – Connection – Alloy

Data

Information and information gathering, knowledge, skills and CPUs

Specialties

Tac Radar – Visor – A.I. – Navigation – Lifesign – Tutoring – Crystal

Travel

Movement and mobility.

Specialties

Tank – Jetpack – Navigation – Vehicle – Stimulant – Marker – Aerodynamic

Life

Healing, grafting, creating life, growth.

Specialties

Toxin – Graft – Lifesign – Stimulant – Organic – Vat – Wood – Cloning

Artifice

Tinker-focused tinkerings, esoteric stuff.

Specialties

Loadout – Connections – Tutoring – Marker – Vat – Modpack – Voltage

Elemental

Focusing on particular forms of energy, material or natural patterns

Specialties

Fire – Alloy – Crystal – Aerodynamics – Wood – Voltage – Steam – Radiation

Branches only really matter when methodology calls for it.  When a character is facing the prospect of expanding their options, the most common method is to expand into one of the matching branches.

An example of one specialty appears on the following page.

Battalion Spec.(War x War)

A specialty dealing primarily with weapons and armor plating, Battalion specialty Tinkers balance out an assortment of projectile weapons, energy weapons, missiles and personal augments.  The theme running through all of this is, simply put, ‘one man army’.  A living warzone, loud and violent.

Related Fields

Powersuit – Tac Radar – Tank – Acid – Loadout – Fire – Turrets

Example Items, Descriptions:

1H Gun

Infinity Pistol – semiauto pistols fires many inaccurate bullets, infinite ammo.

2H Gun

Charlie Foxtrot – Missile swarm hits foes & enviro. at random, undodgeable.

Melee

Rocket Propelled Melee – Hits especially hard, collateral & AoE damage.

B.Suit

Commando’s – Wound reduce vs. ranged attacks.  Provides second wind.

P.Armor

Warzone – +Collateral & Environmental damage done.  Easily navigate it.

Utility

Cover Generator – Forcefield reinforces & bulks up nearby cover/objects.

Drone

Gundog – Mechanical dogs bite, drag foes to ground, have inaccurate guns.

Cyborg

Mounted Gun – Body part houses retractable gun.

Pattern

#1

Suppressive- Weapon can be fired continuously, fires added bullets.

Defense provides bonus armor vs. ranged attacks only.

HUD allows seeing foes in cover, can drive them out of cover.

Pattern

#2

Shell – Weapon fires missiles at ? rate, shots explode, are unblockable.

Defense has bonus armor, bonus offense if armor broken.

HUD allows stacking bonus to hit for every miss, resets on hit.

Pattern

#3

Cluster- Weapon produces explosions with small radius within 10’ of hit foe.

Defense produces explosions in vicinity when wounded.

HUD allows more control over collateral damage.

Vehicle

Gunbike – it’s a motorcycle with guns on it.

Mega P.

Bombard Tower – Bombards an area.

Fitting Trigger Elements

Triggers might involve guns, warfare, harmed bystanders, explosions, frags/metal fragments, wreckage, ruin, frustration, rage, escalation (particularly of violence).

Tinker Generation

When a luck roll calls for a tinker power to be adjusted, it will often refer to the following categories: Power, Efficiency, Scope, Accuracy/Awareness (also Precision), Versatility,  or Quality of Life.

When making a change for a Tinker power in particular, use the following suggestions:

  • Power covers damage and raw effectiveness.  The end product of a tinker’s creations, oftentimes weapons, will do more damage.  Need not be a flat increase to wounds done, but could include more damage to terrain, staggering hit enemies, armor penetration, or the like.  Generally applies to the tinker’s primary focus, defaulting to weapons when this isn’t clear.  If a tinker cannot build weapons or only builds weapons as a secondary thing, but does create drones, then the drone’s attack output may be increased.  A Magi tinker who builds cyborg implants that increase their skills might gain more oomph on the skill front.

  • Efficiency covers the cost in time and money that goes toward building.  With increased efficiency, the amount of resources and time needed to build is reduced, or the tinker may get bonus % toward builds and research.  In the latter case, they would get, say, 133% build efficiency; the bonus % would carry over and every three builds they would get a bonus item created.

  • Scope generally means range, but in the context of a tinker, it applies to the range of things the tinker can build.  With increased scope, the tinker’s ability to push at the boundaries of their usual build options is increased.  For those with a limited range of fields or items available to them, it might simply relax the restrictions.  For others, this generates the same result as Precision, below.

  • Precision (Accuracy/Awareness) is the ability of the tinker to produce what they want. 

  • Versatility

  • Quality of Life 

Tinker Bonuses and Augments

The bonuses and augments exist to expand a tinker who feels incomplete toward the mid-point of character creation (after power is figured but before perks and flaws are rolled) and as a bonus option for some methodologies that might otherwise feel weaker than their counterparts.  It also serves as a tinker-flavored means of growth for those tinkers who reach milestones (if the milestones optional rules are used) to advance in a way that feels more tinkerish, rather than breaking from flavor.


Secondary Powers and Benefits

1

Fool

Two free skill points, then either +1 Dex or +1 Know.

2

Magi

Either master (That is, have 5 ranks in) the Crafting skill or Computer skill.  All things created and done are touched by the tinker classification and distinct as the character’s own.

3

Nun

The tinker and their passenger are in sync, both doing well to inform the other of what they want.  This is reflected in the tinker having the ability to research where they ordinarily wouldn’t be able to, having an easier time getting research done (requiring less time between sessions), or having more choice over what the research turns up (such as getting two ideas about what the research result is, and getting to pick one).

4

Lady

The tinker’s gear is aesthetically pleasing.  Armor comes with a free style addition, the tinker starts off with immediately better rep/first impressions, and so long as the tinker is fully geared up, the tinker can apply a +1 to any Social roll in a given encounter.

Alternatively, start with a mask built.  Comes with privacy boosting effects (helping to mask the tinker’s voice and identity) and either bonus immunities and protections against the tinker’s own work (Poison gas for a [Toxic] Tinker), immunity to blindness for a [Light] Tinker) or it comes with a once-per-day (or once per six hours, etc) activation effect, buffing or protecting oneself.  The mask is added to the tinker’s build list and more masks can be built/researched at half normal speed

5

Lord

Either master (That is, have 5 ranks in) the Weapon Specialization skill for an available tinker weapon or the Maintain skill.

6

Pope

Can build terminals to assist in work, or range/variety of available terminals is extended.  When operating a computer or terminal that is linked to another, to cameras, or to other tech, maintain a general awareness (with own Wits score -2) of surroundings, either in cone or radius, maintaining easy surveillance of own tech.  

Alternately, all defensive gear comes with a simple, baseline HUD upgrade providing awareness of surroundings (ie. radar) or a connection to other systems, in addition to existing hud upgrades or other benefits.

Whichever option is taken, can also opt to set alarms for when tech is approached or tampered, and gain Alarm trinket for consumable option of same idea.

7

Lovers

Starts with a small drone pet or A.I. helper, if the Tinker wouldn’t otherwise have access to one, or the first drone or A.I. created gets Wits, Social, and Know scores to match their creator, gaining the ‘Familiar’ label.  As a loyal ally and creation, helps the tinker get shit done.

If destroyed, the pet, companion or familiar can be rebuilt or resurrected as a standard project, but only after one session has passed.

8

Chariot

Gear is portable.  Workstations and other fixtures can be packed up and moved (including, with the help of a vehicle, sections of megaprojects) with ease, and lesser items are easily stowed, though it takes one round of interruptible action to put existing things away and take out items and rig power to them.

Alternately, starts with a utility item offering some mobility (ie. jetpack, hoverboard, insect arm wall-climbing backpack) or a half-built vehicle.  These items are available on the tinker’s list (expanding or adding to available capabilities) and are fractionally better.

9

Strength

Defensive gear is built with added protection against one damage type, reducing severity  from Critical to Moderate, Moderate to Lesser, and Lesser to Trivial.

Alternatively, start with defensive gear built, and defensive gear is always created one tier level higher.

10

Hermit

Gear doesn’t need to be maintained unless others use it, in which case it has only a 5% chance of breaking per session, 1% of that chance being a chance of misfire.  Repairs don’t require access to materials and are twice as fast to perform.

Alternately, the tinker can build a resource generator.  These generators are mid-level projects (requiring one block of time, as a gun or bodysuit might) and every three sessions/10 days (GM’s choice) the generator produces a special material relating to specialty.  Gear made with the special material has a tiny bonus feature (a minor quality to armor, or the last round in a fired clip of 6 offers a +1 to hit).  Other tinkers may pay hundreds to a thousand for these special materials, based on how open the tinker can be in selling it and their reputation.  Use/study of another tinker’s special material affords the usual bonus and instant progress in researching.

11

Wheel

Minor thinker power gives some peripheral awareness of tinker gear/activations or additional senses regarding the tinker’s field of specialty.  Side benefit is that created devices don’t/can’t harm the tinker, even on a misfire.

Alternatively, start with a lens with an attached HUD upgrade (see tinker’s available patterns).  Any lens created can be given one additional HUD upgrade, and the tinker can swap between various HUD upgrades at will.

12

Justice

Tinker-made melee weapons generate charges, gathering one charge per 3 successful strikes landed.  Charges expire after an hour, either disappearing or recharging a previously activated trinket.  Can be spent within this time window to revive a fallen drone or boost a tech somewhat.

Alternatively, start with a melee weapon built.  Either add melee weapons to list of available builds or melee weapons that can be built can have another pattern applied to them, switching from one pattern to the other with the press of a button (max once per 2 rounds).

13

Hanged

A set of trinkets, Concoctions, Grenades, or Traps are added to the tinker’s build list, extending the list that’s already there or augmenting it with another sort of option (limited to one of the four aforementioned options).  The Tinker starts with one of the items built, or swiftly builds it at the earliest opportunity.

14

Death

Pick one: Weak ranged weapon with limited shots/very slow accumulation rate of fire (ie. can fire once per 4 turns max) is built into melee weapons, weak ranged weapon (as described above) is built into defensive gear, serviceable melee weapon is built into ranged weapons so they can be used in a sudden melee scrap without being dropped or exchanged for another weapon, or serviceable melee weapon (as described above) is built into defensive gear.

Weapons do not have patterns applied to them, and are simply shoulder mounted shotguns/ray guns/whatevers, or wrist mounted blades, hammers, etc.

15

Temp’ce

Pick one: two-handed guns have grenade launchers attached for easier and longer-range placement of grenades (and a grenade is added to List C), guns don’t need reloading, or range increments are extended 25’.

Alternatively, start with a ranged weapon built.  Either add ranged weapons to list of available builds or ranged weapons that can be built can have another pattern applied to them, switching from one pattern to the other with the press of a button (max once per 2 rounds).

16

Devil

The tinker can overclock their gear, advancing its capabilities while introducing misfire chances.  Doing so can be done in advance, or modifications can be made with a round in combat.

17

Tower

When creating items or researching, also idly produce workstations and terminals in course of undertaking work.  Chance of building a terminal ranges from 10-50% as builds get harder, and produces a random terminal/workstation.  If tinker would build a duplicate of existing workstation, instead gain 33% progress toward upgrading that terminal to an advanced level 2 variant, or 20% progress toward upgrading it to an advanced level 3 variant.  Can dedicate time to finishing an upgrade, with cost & time spent decreasing if more progress was made earlier.  Effectively advances a top notch tinker workshop in the course of undertaking normal projects.  Long-term focused.

Alternatively, starts with a utility item offering some manipulation of environment (ie. forcefield generator) or means of generating charges.  These items are available on the tinker’s list (expanding or adding to available capabilities) and are fractionally better.  Short-term focused.

18

Star

The character has a minor secondary power in another classification, drawing on one of the subtler disciplines; Stranger, Changer, or Thinker.  The power may touch on the tinker’s specialization, and is more minor than most, often with a chance of misfiring or not working unless specific gear is made with an effort to encourage or channel the power (this is a modification to costume, one point in value).

Alternately, the tinker opens up a field of specialty touching on one of the aforementioned classifications (Oft relating known branches/specialties with Shroud, Ego, Psyche or Data).  Research and building in this peripheral area is 25% slower, research and building in prior areas is sped up.

19

Moon

The character has a minor secondary power in another classification, drawing on one of the wider-reaching disciplines; Shaker, Brute, Mover, or Master.  The power may touch on the tinker’s specialization, and is more minor than most, often with a chance of misfiring or not working unless specific gear is made with an effort to encourage or focus the power (this is a modification to costume, one point in value).

Alternately, the tinker opens up a field of specialty touching on one of the aforementioned classifications (Oft relating known branches/specialties with Travel, Life, Impulse, or Growth).  Research and building in this peripheral area is 25% slower, research and building in prior areas is sped up.

20

Sun

The character has a minor secondary power in another classification, drawing on one of the more intense disciplines; Blaster, Striker, or Breaker.  The power might also touch on Trump, but only rarely, and only if the tinker’s methodology suits it (ie. Free Tinkers).  The power may touch on the tinker’s specialization, and is more minor than most, often with a chance of misfiring or not working unless specific gear is made with an effort to encourage or focus the power (this is a modification to costume, one point in value).

Alternately, the tinker opens up a field of specialty touching on one of the aforementioned classifications (Oft relating known branches/specialties with War, Artifice, Elemental, or Law).  Research and building in this peripheral area is 25% slower, research and building in prior areas is sped up.

21

Judgment

The existence of a tinker is a high-maintenance one, with heavy demands for time, resources, and to have one’s own gear on hand during a crisis.  With all of these little drawbacks, the tinker has found a way to put them to rest.  Pick one:

1. The tinker has found a way to avoid needing to sleep.  More time slots available/term.

2. The tinker has found a way avoid needing to eat/maintain hygiene.  More resources/money available.

3.  The tinker has found a way to access their gear, teleporting it to them, keeping the costume in a subspace package the size of a brick, or some such.  Accessing their gear is quick.

4.  The tinker has shored up mortal weaknesses and either augments a stat by one point or takes a one-point costume quality and appends it to their physiology.

The first one is free.  Either the second one is free but is accessed with the tinker’s next milestone, or the tinker can take multiple, with a requirement of 4 time slots & $5000 for the second (first remains free) and the amount doubling for each thereafter.  Each can only be taken once.  Time slots invested can be broken up over multiple terms and need not be consecutive.

The mechanism by which these things are achieved may involve technology that is built into the tinker, which could be damaged if suffering a mortal wound (torso/head) or break (limb), or it could involve a need for regular intake of drugs or power.

22

World

Take the other option (if multiple options are rolled) or roll a power perk.




Making Tinker Tables

Tinkers are unique in that they use time outside of combat to prepare their things, which determines their capabilities.  They might get a chance to build something ad-hoc and incomplete in their first session (typically an accelerated build using what they have at hand, with incomplete abilities or options), or they might wake from their trigger haze to realize they’ve built something.

To help players determine what they can build, we devise tables from which to build – lists of components that are put together.

GM Todd is running a game for two players of his, Esme and Ali, and both are tinkers, because the campaign involves tinkers trapped in a pocket dimension during a Toybox meet gone wrong.  

Esme plays an abused young man who kept running back to the boyfriend who beat him, until he lashes back, wounding but not stopping the boyfriend.  The trigger touches on themes of violence and obsessive fixation on the course of action that led to it.  The group works out the trigger, looks for hints and details in the wording and flavor, and it’s decided that Esme’s character is an Excalibur tinker, with a powersuit focus.  They visualize a young man in mechanically-augmented heavy armor, the vast majority of which is engineered to help them wield a ridiculously massive melee weapon.  It doesn’t particularly matter what the melee weapon is, so they ask Esme, and she suggests an axe for her character.

Ali’s trigger touched on themes of obsession toward his path and a question of the material.  The character pursued a degree in physics and promised money that family was supposed to give them never turned up – Ali suggests making it a female character, what with the lack of women in STEM fields.  – She triggers as she cuts so many corners to scrape by that she gets scurvy.  The lack of resources and the impact on herself flavor the tinker.  She manifests as a resource x hyperspecialist tinker, with a specialty of ‘volt’ – electricity and energy.  She’s put down on paper as a Crude tinker.  Her work is rough-edged, to put it lightly, but in much the same way that a maul is rough-edged and crude people still don’t want to get hit by one.  Such sums up her approach.

Todd uses time between the character creation meeting and the first session to hammer out the lists.  It’s best, he knows, to start with the broad strokes.

Tinkers can build some (generally not all) of the following item types: guns, melee weapons, battlesuits (costumes), power armor (heavy armor costumes), utility items (problem solving, alter environment, provide supplies, provide mobility, etc), drones, cyborg alterations to themselves, vehicles, and megaprojects.

These basic item types are generally referred to as the ‘List A’ items in the material elsewhere in this handbook.  The tinker starts out with knowledge of some mix of 3-8 list A items.

When creating the build lists, the GM identifies the list A items that fit that tinker approach.  Most tinkers will get some basic supplies that enable them to function in combat – a gun and a bodysuit.  That leaves 1-6 items to fill out.  In short, we’re asking ‘what do they build?’  ‘What’s the approach?’

Esme’s tinker, nicknamed an ‘Axecalibur’ tinker by the group, is a [combat x focal] tinker; such tinkers aren’t about having a ton of options on List A.  She makes power armor, she makes huge axes with special features, and everything else plays off of this in a secondary way.  Normally she wouldn’t even have the powersuit – only a weapon that she put everything into.  But she has the powersuit specialty, and this gives the flavor and style.

GM Todd puts down the following for Esme to start:

List A: Axecalibur

Axecalibur Weapon #1 (Power)

Axecalibur Weapon #2 (Cunning)

Axecalibur Weapon #3 (Brains)

Power Suit #1 (Offense)

Power Suit #2 (Defense)

The power suits are secondary, so he offers only two options, but he definitely wants Esme to feel like she has options for customizing her primary weapon and getting a lot out of it.  Those options will be spelled out later.  For now, he wants to differentiate them, so he decides the three axe options.  The first is offense/combat focused, the second focused around options, tricks and utility, and the third axe focused around integration, tactics, and strategy.  The power suits can be differentiated into an offense-based suit and a defense-based suit.  He knows he’ll probably make the power suits more ‘core’ for now.  They’re an extra that got thrown in because a powersuit specialist without powersuits doesn’t make any more sense than a pyro-tinker without fire.

He hammers it out a bit more.  The power axe is named ‘Red Cleaver’ before he even knows for sure what it does, but he visualizes a great meat cleaver with a blade longer than a man is tall, glowing red, and puts it down on paper as a weapon that can charge up and likely cleave through everything short of a reinforced bank vault.  The ‘cunning’ axe is now the unfolding axe.  Inspired by Monster Hunter, GM Todd spells out an axe with the feature of being able to fold up into a compact size… and maybe unfold explosively to help launch the tinker to better vantage points.  He dubs it the Unfolding Axe.  For the final option, thinking about data, he wants to keep the general destructive nature, but have something more tinkery, so he figures on an axe that can be plunged into a computer or electrical system and rather than destroy it, has components that reach out and interface with it.  He also names the two armors and gives them basic rules befitting standard offensive and defensive power armor.

Turning to Ali’s Crude Voltage tinker, he knows that this is a very different approach.  Ali’s scurvy-ridden student is a hyperspecialist, she’s limited strictly to stuff relating to electricity and energy.  She can build guns, crossbows, rifles, and cannons, so long as it shoots electricity.  She can also build electrically charged swords, knives and gloves, body suits that shock people who touch her, probably some utility items focused around utilizing electricity.

He starts with the following options:

List A: Crude Voltage

Gun #1

Gun #2

Melee weapon

Utility Item

Bodysuit #1

Bodysuit #2

He’s not sweating the particulars of the items or how to differentiate them; Ali has a lot of options that go down very different roads, and should probably get one or two more.

Good thing that the crude voltage tinker doesn’t stop there.  She can dip into drones, cyborg parts, power armor, and vehicles, so long as, again, they shock, spit lightning/electrical energy, harness lightning, or anything in that vein.  She could even take it to the extent that she builds a megaproject… but more on that later.

The cyborg parts, vehicle, power armor and stuff is somewhat niche, GM Todd knows he doesn’t want to spend the time writing it up when it’s something that Ali might not ever want to dip into.  This stuff is available for Ali’s tinker to research, but for now most of it is off the table.  The only thing that GM Todd really likes is the cyborg alteration.  He notes the scurvy, the damage to the tinker’s body, and decides to throw it on the list.  This gives Ali’s tinker seven items they can build to start with.  Research can readily and easily add more.

After some thinking, GM Todd decides he wants a lighter gun – something one-handed, and then a heavier weapon.  He starts to clarify the list he sketched out with a shock pistol and a lightning cannon, but inspiration strikes.  He thinks of a taser, and decides to scale it up to an arbalest with a cord attached to transmit any power.  He wraps up by figuring out what the utility item does – allowing the tinker to freely manipulate what non-tinker items are powered and unpowered within a set range, with a gesture, or shut down a target object & the utility item with a localized EMP pulse.  He figures out the cyborg part, which provides some mild benefits like being able to sustain oneself on electricity alone (thinking of the scurvy) while offering limited ability to turn the implanted body part into a limited breaker state, and then distinguishes the bodysuits.  The two lists now look like this:

List A: Axecalibur

List A: Crude Voltage

Red Cleaver (Axecalibur Weapon)

Unfolding Axe (Axecalibur Weapon)

Machine Hatchet (Axecal. Weapon)

‘Viking I’ Power Armor

‘Thane’ Power Armor

Shock Pistol

Harpoon Launcher

Shock Staff

Utility Item: Power Switch

‘Live Wire’ Bodysuit

‘Shock Jockey’ Bodysuit

Breaker Jack (Cyborg Part)

‘List B’ is the list of things that modify or are plugged into the List A items.  List B items primarily fall into two categories: patterns and augments.

Patterns are basically an encapsulation of the energy, theme, style, and specialty within an item.  They’re inspired by the specialty, primarily.  Looking at the Crude Voltage List A above, we see things like Shock Pistol.  All ‘Shock Pistols’ have a set description and rules; they fire a blast of energy at a target that leaves them shocked and momentarily stunned.  Plugging different patterns into the ‘shock pistol’ would keep that basic premise alive, but apply different effects.  A cryogenic tinker might plug in a ‘glacier’ pattern, and have a shock pistol that fires blasts of energy that materialize into large chunks of ice, crusting on a target.  A poison tinker might plug in a ‘miasma’ pattern that creates small clouds of poison on impact, while shocking targets so they’re less able to get away from said cloud.

When an item is built, if it can have a pattern inserted into it, it will generally come with a pattern made.  The tinker can later research and build another pattern, and spend roughly fifteen minutes to an hour tearing out the old one (saved for plugging in elsewhere) and inserting the new one.

The number one way a GM can get bogged down while making lists is to spell out too many things for patterns.  A good way to approach it would be to spell out limited offensive benefits (this is the damage type if damage types aren’t otherwise specified, this is the special effect it delivers on hit), and then defensive benefits for any armor it is plugged into (often a basic, limited defensive effect and then a special rule, a stronger but conditional benefit, or a limited use ability that isn’t usable all the time.

GM Todd looks at the Axecalibur tinker and figures that she needs a few options.  Patterns are inspired by specialty, and as a ‘power armor’ excalibur tinker, the patterns would be inspired by the power armor end of things.  For the keywords, he just needs to come up with basic flavor and ideas that are sufficiently different from one another.  He decides on:

  • Hydraulic – the machine equivalent of ‘muscle’.

  • Indomitable – the basic idea of a guy in machine-powered armor marching forward, being unstoppable.

  • Ironwall – the machine equivalent of flesh/exterior, protection.

Esme’s Axecalibur Axes and power armor suits can receive benefits, so each pattern has an offensive and defensive side.  GM Todd spells out some quick rules.

That handles the patterns for Esme’s tinker.  Now, the crude voltage tinker is a similar case.  He’s one-note, but even that note has variations.  GM Todd figures that ‘lightning’ is at the dead center of things.  There are a few directions he can go from there.  Something lighter/faster in the lightning spectrum, something heavier, something more chaotic, something more restrained.  There are other options, touching on the general theme, pushing the boundaries.  Ideas relating in a vague sense to lightning or voltage; cloud, energy (general), electromagnet, AC/DC, impulse, and EMP.

He pens down some ideas: Jolt (light), Thunderbolt (heavy), Storm (chaos), Ionize (controlled), then puts the last set of ideas aside.  He might dig them up later, if Ali’s crude voltage tinker decides to research more patterns and broaden their horizons.  For now, he’s quite content to give Ali’s tinker three patterns.  He decides on the light, medium and heavier lightning variants.

Augments, however, are simpler.  They’re flat boosts, a tilt in how something is built to emphasize certain aspects or open up options.

Augments are broken down by the same delineation as character stats:

  • Augment: Power – Damage, combat ability, strength (Brawn)

  • Augment: Boost – Limited use abilities, stamina, movement (Athletics)

  • Augment: Utility – Items, options, tools, # attacks (Dexterity)

  • Augment: Targeting – Accuracy, reflex, navigation, maps (Wits)

  • Augment: Relay – Reserved for use with drones, enhance capability, communication. (Social)

  • Augment: Data – Connection to other tech, computers, increase depth. (Knowledge).

  • Augment: Heavy – Durability, toughness, weight.  (Guts)

Augments are normally only granted to characters who really specialize in something or where patterns don’t fit.

Augments, for example, are an option for vehicle tinkers who want to customize their vehicle more, for controllers with drones that can be customized or given additional abilities, or for focal tinkers with one item they work well with.

Giving flat stat boosts is strong, but drones can be made initially weak and then given room for one or two boosts (ie. a stat line of 2/2/2/2/2/2/2, with a +1 to one stat via. An augment), and vehicles need to be piloted and are limited in their own way.  A mech-pilot tinker could easily stack several stat boosts on their armor and have well above baseline stats, but they’re restricted in where they can go and how they can operate, and they’re a little clumsier than an ordinary individual.

For focal tinkers, options include either changing the parameters of the item (increasing damage, charges, options, accuracy, range, depth, durability) or the capabilities of the  tinker using them.  This should be done with caution, and shouldn’t go too far.

GM Todd has given Ali a lot more in the way of options than what Esme got.  Versatility counts for a lot, and the crude shock tinker gets a side benefit in terms of their resource focus, while Esme is just supposed to build one thing really well.

With this in mind, he sketches out several augments for Esme, and points out that she can have two augments attached to her axe weapon, chosen at the time of creation.  He gives the tinker five to start and renames them with axe-themed names.  Execution, Raid, Chop Chop, Hack, and Hew.


GM Todd wraps up the work.  The Crude Voltage tinker doesn’t get augments, so he can finish list B items as such.  The Crude Voltage tinker needs a bit of attention, but the crude voltage tinker also gets a special feature, wherein they can build cheap, using limited raw materials to produce the usual amount of work.  Alternately, if materials are in ample supply, they can can build heavy variants.  The downside is that even their polished gear is never pretty.  For now, he’s content to put down the list B items as such:

List B: Axecalibur

List B: Crude Voltage

Augment: Execution

Augment: Raid

Augment: Chop Chop

Augment: Hack

Augment: Hew

Pattern: Hydraulic

Pattern: Indomitable

Pattern: Ironwall

Pattern: Zap

Pattern: Lightning

Pattern: Thunderbolt

List C items are the final bits, bobbles, and baubles.  List C is the miscellaneous stuff.  It isn’t modified much, it isn’t really complicated, and a lot of list C items are minor items; they’re built at half the cost and in half the time.  Most tinkers will build two list C items around the same time, or use any bonus progress earned to build a list C item as a throwaway build.  List C items include trinkets, grenades, traps, concoctions, ammunition, lenses and masks, as well as terminals and workstations.

Trinkets are the first and most common consumable.  They’re hand-held devices the tinker produces that are generally either spent or which lose their charge & are then recharged on their return to their workshop.  Grenades are thrown & explode, with an effect in the area, while traps are set in place, triggering if someone comes within 5-10’ or if the object they’re fixed to is tampered with.  Concoctions, meanwhile, offer a temporary effect; they might offer a beneficial effect with a drawback or a purely beneficial effect, if the tinker is someone who dwells heavily in the province of concoctions.  Ammunition is made specifically for ranged weapons, which otherwise come with enough ammunition for three full uses.

Some items utilize these list C items.  Guns obviously use ammunition, but grenades might well be made for use with a tinkerized grenade launcher, some weapons produce gas with effects based on the concoction they’re linked to, and so on.

Lenses and masks are minor items that provide some limited protection against the tinker’s own tinkering (smoke, poisonous gas) while securing their identity.  Some lenses and masks can offer some minor benefits or bonuses, if the tinker needs a little boost.

Finally, workstations and terminals are things added to the tinker’s workshop.  They improve the tinker’s efficacy at building, researching, utilizing materials, scanning, or using computers.

Gm Todd doesn’t see much need to add much to the repertoire of the tinkers.  He gives each a charge trinket, which boosts the next tinkering used or recharges one without power, a scan trinket which will help provide boosts toward research if they can scan an active parahuman signature, and data trinkets, which help them access computer systems and act as personal data devices.  Ali’s Crude Voltage tinker gets some notes on their crude builds in list C, as well as a note regarding surgery, which is a process unto itself..

Finished Axecalibur Tinker, Annotated

Finished Crude Voltage Tinker, Annotated

Megaprojects

Megaprojects are a major, large scale, or high-end endeavor on the tinker’s part.  Some tinkers (Architects) are built around creating megaprojects, while others have it as an option, and yet others do not have the ability.

Megaprojects have to be researched in multiple stages, and during the research process, the tinker will be able to outline the kind of project they want to make, in keeping with their specialty and methodology.  

Generally speaking, megaprojects are gamechangers.  They’re a quest unto themselves, and on completion, they give the tinker a massive edge, while becoming a quest or focus for others.  Examples of megaprojects include…

  • A gun turret mounted atop a skyscraper, shielded to prevent incoming ranged attacks and flying enemies.  The turret is capable of shooting anyone/anything in the city.

  • A massive cannon with a target chosen at the time of its creation, capable of wiping a city off the map or taking a chunk out of the moon.

  • A bomb capable of nuking a city and nuking all electronics within a 2000 mile radius.

  • Skyscraper-sized mech.

  • A building that manufactures and produces an endless stream of humanoid robots.

While a different sort of megaproject, it could also include, say, a halberd that can disintegrate anything struck.

When creating megaprojects, a GM should outline five prerequisites.  Bonus points to the GM if they can come up with things that push the tinker’s limits, in terms of difficulty or on a moral level.  The entities want conflict, and here they provide the tinker with a massive, incredible idea, but they ask for that conflict as a part of the price.

To get underway with the megaproject, the tinker needs to meet three of the five prerequisites.  They get a bonus to their contraption as they meet a fourth or all five prerequisites, but it’s really a ‘here are five options, pick three’ scenario to begin with.

This is the tinker’s quest, so to speak.  Should they complete it, they can devote some time to building and complete in a short while (GM discretion).  At that point, it becomes a focus for others to deal with, while the tinker reaps the reward of their own hard work.

As an example, let’s look at what Ali’s tinker might make…

The one-shot became a campaign, the tinkers have found their groove, and GM Todd has as well.  They play in the session, and between sessions, he’ll give them the opportunity to build, provided they have resources lined up.  Most of the time, if they can’t build or don’t have anything they want to build, they’ll just research.

Ali has been saying that he’s researched everything he wants to use in the next while, and with this in mind, it comes as no surprise when the GM sends reminder emails about what the players want to build and research between sessions, and Ali says he’s interested in moving toward a megaproject.  Todd gives the A-ok, and they have a short back and forth about what this project will be.

Ali already has something in mind and his thought process is as follows: his tinker is a resource tinker, utilizing raw material, usually crude electronics, and she is an electricity tinker, so what if she made an engine that lets her turn electricity into material, and material into electricity, over wide areas?

GM Todd thinks this is fair, but has a few stipulations.  The produced matter is going to be ugly, crude, and noisy ‘junkyard’ style material much as the crude voltage tinker’s stuff is, and the mechanics of the project is a specialized generator that’s hooked into the ‘grid’, allowing Ali to create the matter at will, at the cost of blacking out the surrounding area, with the radius of the blackout depending on the scale of the material created.  His reasoning is that this power drain is a principle already established on the tinker sheet, and it provides a kind of counterplay – the generator has to be protected in a general sense, though it can be hidden.  The tinker can’t affect any area with an isolated power grid.  Turning matter into storms of electricity operates by the same principle, but in reverse; more material consumed, bigger storm, and it takes time to exercise.

Ali checks that he could connect his special ‘grid’ to an isolated point with wires he brings, and GM Todd agrees.  They negotiate a balance on how large the creations will be, and work out something there as well.

GM Todd outlines the first three objectives out of five.  He wants to push Ali’s tinker out of her comfort zone, and so far, the crude tinker has been fairly combative.  He sets one objective up to push her to do things differently, and then picks another to put her at odds with the powerful shaker in town that she’s been steering clear of.

  • Place a data trinket on a central control panel or a computer with administrator-level privileges on the grounds of one of the city’s power plants.  If it is discovered before the device is completed and activated, this prerequisite fails.

  • Set a scan trinket to continuously run on a cape capable of creating matter.  Said cape will likely have to be restrained.  If they escape before the device is completed and activated, this prerequisite fails.

Whichever the tinker decides to do, there’s an adventure hook present.  For the first, either stealth or a social angle with capes being hired to get the tinker into the facility will be key.  The second requires a challenging confrontation and will make enemies of the shaker’s allies, while forcing the tinker to watch over their shoulder or devise a means of restraining the opponent.  And for the third option, given that it’s a crude tinker and is special in that it does without fancy materials in favor of rough and ugly…

  • Use $50,000 in material, with raw, broken material being worth double.  Creation produces pollution (both noise and environmental) equivalent to one modern city of 250,000 people.  Can take this option multiple times, but each time it is taken, the cost in raw materials doubles and the amount of pollution doubles (exponentially).  Comes with corresponding increases in attention from authorities.

Ali is left to choose which of these he wishes his tinker to pursue.  He opts for the third, and raids multiple junkyards and department stores for materials. Authorities take note, and his tinker pacifies them with some social play, promising to take care of a mutual enemy – the shaper she’s intent on kidnapping.  As the session ends and Ali plans the confrontation in question, his tinker gets the opportunity to build and research again.  Ali decides to research two more possibilities, because he really doesn’t want to break into the local power plant or hydroelectric plant – both are guarded, and it’s too unreliable to risk that the trinket could be discovered last minute.  

GM Todd, following the second stint of megaproject research, spells out two more options.  This time, for inspiration, he thinks more along the lines of the shards wanting conflict.  How badly does Ali’s tinker want this?  Is she willing to go down a slippery slope?

  • Create an electrified bath or set of sarcophagi, and place ten individuals within simultaneously.  When the breaker is thrown, the individuals will be uploaded in breaker form to the tinker’s megaproject, occupying it as a kind of living electricity.  They ‘haunt’ the city’s power grid thereafter; any blackouts coincide with cut off statements from the individuals, flaring power, electrical storms (including those created by the megaproject), and manifested matter may (often briefly) resemble or imitate the dead people, and so on.  Raises authority alert level above and beyond the usual.

For the last option, he decides to lay some obvious bait with something seemingly easier. 

  • Create a tinker generator 25’x25’x25’ across, with roughly $10,000 in materials from computers, electronics, or large appliances.  If this option is chosen, then from the moment it is finished, electronics throughout the city will start buzzing and fritzing periodically, raising the level of alarm on part of authorities.  The generator remains a weak point.

Ali has to accomplish three of the five total options.  He can accomplish more to enhance the power of the end result, or even accomplish three now, activate his project, and then accomplish a fourth or even fifth later on to boost it.  But either way, the goal is set.

If he completes the project, he effectively gains a new, boosted powerset – he can turn any building or vehicle into an electrical storm, giving enemies ~just enough~ time to get the hell out of dodge before electrical hell rains down on them, and he can create massive, building-sized constructions out of nowhere, so long as there’s power to draw on.

Megaprojects and Architects

Architect tinkers generally play with the rules outlined above.  Where not otherwise outlined, they’ll need to meet only one prerequisite to get underway, and they’ll get some tools to help them achieve that, ray guns and laser swords – so they aren’t entirely useless before their project is up and running.  From that point, they’ll need to achieve one additional objective per two sessions (or two weeks, whichever is longer) or their project will fail, up until they have three completed prereqs (as per usual).  The power of the megaprojects will generally scale as follows:

Prereqs Met

Efficacy

1

25%

2

50%

3

100%

4

150%

5

250%

A normal tinker with access to megaprojects, comparatively, would only be able to get started once they reached 100% efficacy, or three mini-objectives completed.

A Note on omni-specialty tinkers

What do you do when your tinker can build anything and everything under the sun?

Don’t.  

That’s bad, and it’s a lot of work for the GM.

Did it already?  Just make them sit down to research options.  If they want to build X, then they sit down and they work it out, and it takes time.  Versatility is counterbalanced by a slower, staggered progression.


Secondary Tinkers

Electric Hand.jpg
Electric Hand.jpg

Those with a primary power and only a minor tinker influence, or multi-triggers, may get powers such as those which are listed here.  Most tend to fold back into the primary power.

Secondary Tinkerings take two time slots to build (~6-10 hours), for normal items, and half a time slot to build for secondary items such as grenades, or traps.  Normal items cost ~$200 in materials and secondary items cost ~$50. (Gray text below simply is redundant rehashing of this info).

Examples include:

Sidearm – Secondary power has informed the parahuman of how to create a one-handed gun.  Where possible, gun will draw on the parahuman’s power as a fuel source, channeling it into shots.  50’ range increment, one shot a round, inflicts moderate wounds and an effect based on the power.  If the power cannot supply fuel or material, then the sidearm will often shock or burn.  Takes two time slots to build, ~$200 in materials.

Suit Up –  Secondary power has informed the parahuman of how to create a costume.  They have two ranks of crafting for the purposes of making their costume, and in designing their costume, they can elect to apply a major costume augmentation that provides a defensive outlet for their power (this takes up a slot on the armor).  See bonuses and augments lists, where possible, for the defensive features (often Strength, among others) that the classification might be able to offer.  This power or execution is only possible while the suit is worn.  Takes two time slots to build, ~$200 in materials.

Booster –  Builds a booster pack or wingpack.  Allows the parahuman to fly for short distances.  Has ten units of fuel.  Can spend one to add 20’ to jump height, spend one to add 20’ to movement distance, but stagger at end of move & get knocked down if hit before next turn, or spend one to arrest fall/stop in midair if thrown.  Spend two points to fly up to 40’ as a full-round action, though the parahuman must land before the start of their next turn or they fall.  Takes two time slots to build, ~$200 in materials.

Battery – Serves, essentially, as a storage point for the passenger to gather energy or hold an effect in limbo so it exists in the parahuman’s reality and does not need to be pushed through the parahuman to take effect.  Will typically take the form of a backpack-like container with a swirling nexus of energy within its housing or a chest mounted panel that glows and surges as the parahuman uses their power.  The backpack gathers a charge per hour, to a maximum of two.  Charges can be spent in conjunction with the parahuman’s primary power to:

  • Boost raw Power, for one use of the power.  This takes the basic, main element of the power and ramps it up.  Damaging powers deliver more damage, movement powers move further, minions produce better minions, thinker powers produce better results.

  • Boost Scope, for one use of the power.  This extends the area effect of the power, extends the range, increases numbers, where the power would produce multiple projectiles, multiple effects, or multiple minions, or increases the number of targets.

  • Boost Efficiency, for one use of the power.  This reduces the costs of the power, either in time (to use, recharge), duration, materials or resources expended, or in the degree of sacrifices made and drawbacks suffered (thinker headaches, self-harm).

For those with a tinker primary power, the charges can be expended in the same manner as a charge trinket, or to make a spent trinket (repair, scan, data) trinket ‘live’ again.  Masters may lose one of the above options if they can’t be properly parsed, but gain the ability to touch a fallen minion and use a charge from the battery like one might use defibrillator paddles to revive a fallen minion.

The drawback is that the battery must be on the parahuman’s person to be used, and forms a kind of glowing weak point.  Chest/back mounted batteries can be targeted at a -2 at any point.  Backpack-like batteries can only be targeted if the parahuman is unaware, unable to change their facing, or flanked, but attacks against it then only suffer a -1.  If the battery is damaged, roll a d3:

  • The battery loses a charge and can’t be used for the 2d2 rounds.  It remains active and can be targeted again.

  • The battery breaches.  The parahuman takes a minor wound (often burn or shock, or related to power) and is thrown 10’ away, with a 4+ Ath check needed to avoid being knocked down.  The battery loses all charges, but needs only minor repairs before it starts accumulating charges again.  Further attacks against the battery can threaten to destroy it (see bullet point below) but can’t breach it again.

  • The battery takes critical damage.  It needs extensive repairs taking $100 and half of a time slot before it works again.

Takes two time slots to build, ~$200 in materials.

Controller – Serves as an external frame or device that helps the parahuman focus their other power.  Will often take the form of gloves with flickering points at the palm, lenses or visors, rigging along the parahuman’s body, or a larger device that encapsulates one body part, like a helmet or megaman-like blaster.  The device flickers, lights up, or flares with intensity at set points.  Drawing on the device taxes it, and after each such use, the parahuman rolls a 1d3 (1d6 for mild uses).  On a 1, the device is spent.  They can push through, but doing so risks the well being of the device or the parahuman.  The following are uses of the device:

  • Boost awareness/accuracy, for one use of the power.  Offensive powers get a bonus to hit, effects are easier to place where the parahuman wants them, or there are better optics, with the parahuman being able to more clearly gauge results (whether an individual was affected by an emotion-altering power), see the area around where the power took effect, track those who were touched by the power for a short time, or provide some (added) information about them.

  • Boost control, for one use of the power.  While hard to define for many powers, will typically take one aspect of the power that would normally be outside of the parahuman’s reach, and then provide a measure of ability over it.  Where effects would normally be randomly placed or random, the character might be allowed to decide or nudge the placements by leveraging the controller device.  Blasters might get the ability to sway their projectiles, strikers (or any other offensive power) might get the ability to pull their punches, shakers might be able to exclude people or objects in their area of effects from being touched by the power and eliminate the chance of friendly fire (also applies to some blasters), and changers could be able to adjust their changes and thus customize their form as they might customize their weapons or armor.  In other forms, where rolls are made, the parahuman may roll an added die and keep the highest (mild use unless multiple rolls are made & affected in this way).  If a control effect cannot be determined, then just take another versatility effect, below.

  • Boost versatility, for one use of the power.  Work out a close ‘sister’ power to the base one.  This sister power can be used at the cost of straining the device.  Blasters might get an alternate blast form or an alternate-but-closely-matching element (From lava blasts to flame blasts or obsidian shard blasts), a thinker might gain a clairvoyant alternate use of their main power.

For tinkers, charges can be expended to remotely control devices (Drones might be temporarily mind controlled, a vehicle summoned) or access alternate functions (A pistol could be thrown and then targeted with a charge of the controller suit to force it to overload, detonating it like a small grenade.)

Must be worn, does not count as a costume, but more an accessory.  If the Parahuman is wounded and the enemy rolled a 6 to hit, or if the device is spent and the parahuman uses it to squeeze out an emergency charge, the controller is damaged.  Roll a 1d3:

  • The threshold for the device being spent in the future is increased by 1.  (1-2, then 1-3).  No effect if already spent.

  • The rigging is damaged and fritzes violently.  Each use of the power, even when the controller isn’t used, has a 15% chance of backfiring/misfiring.  In such a case, the parahuman suffers a lesser wound and the power hits them instead where possible, they suffer a lesser wound and mental pain for an hour if a thinker or thinker-like, or they take a simple moderate wound.  The device can be shut off by taking a full round’s actions to dismantle and deactivate it, or a partial action and 5+ Brawn check to tear it off and discard it.

  • The rigging is destroyed.  It requires extensive repairs requiring $100 and a half time slot before it works again.

Takes two time slots to build, ~$200 in materials.

Grenade –  Can build two different grenades.  Non-multitrigger cases may see the grenades themed after the power.  Grenades are thrown items that use a Dexterity roll, suffer a base penalty on attack, but can still catch enemies in the periphery of the resultant effect if the enemies only dodge by 1 or 2.  Options are:

  • Lethal grenades deliver damage (typically a moderate wound) and a mild effect, while damaging terrain and cover.

  • Nonlethal grenades will deliver a temporary wound at most (recovered from quickly) with a strong area effect.

Parahumans will get two different grenade types.  Can be two lethal, one lethal and one nonlethal, or two nonlethal, with parahumans that have more offensive powers getting more nonlethal, parahumans with no offensive powers getting more lethal grenade options.  Each grenade takes half a time slot and $50 in materials to build.

Snare –  Can build two different traps.  In non-multitrigger cases, traps may be themed after the power, such that the parahuman’s senses might be able to detect the victims, their power might be better at taking advantage of the trap, etc.  Traps in general will be built, placed, and activated.  After a one round delay, they’ll trigger if someone moves within 10’ of them.  Other settings are possible – the parahuman can design a trap (at the time of building) to have a tripwire, narrow the trigger effect, or rig it to a piece of machinery (including doors, containers) so it goes off if said machinery is tampered with.  Trap types include:

  • Offensive Trap – Inflicts a moderate wound, and either impedes movement or has some knockback.  A controlled explosion that throws the target away, an unfurling mess of barbed wire, or spikes that stick through the ground surrounding the trap are possibilities.  The subject either recovers quickly and then has to move through the affected area with caution, or it takes them a few moments to collect themselves.

  • Nonlethal Trap – Doesn’t wound, but greatly inconveniences.  Might lock down an area for a longer period of time (electromagnet seals all metal doors/objects in place, slows/pulls at parahumans with metal gear, gas floods area) or puts the person who triggered the trap in a disadvantageous position, inflicting a condition, slowing them, or priming them for a follow up attack.  Examples might include sonic pulses that disorient and confuse, soaking an area/individual in oil when the trapper’s primary power is fire, brilliant flashes that blind and leave a lasting Wits penalty, or a snare trap that disables a target’s legs for a short duration.

  • Utility Trap – Doesn’t directly affect the parahuman that activated the trap.  The most common example is the alarm trap, which alerts the parahuman about anyone who triggers it, allowing them to safeguard their flank or guard their hideout.  May come with cameras that the parahuman can look through while at a computer, may tag those who trigger it so they can be tracked remotely, or both.  Other utility traps may activate machinery, hatch small lifeforms or create holographic projections.

Parahumans will get two different trap types, usually covering gaps their main power does not provide.  Each trap takes half a time slot and $50 in materials to build.


Methodology Examples

The Straight Hyperspecialist                           (Hyperspecialist x Hyperspecialist)

Can’t build a wide range of things and can’t tap into other specialties, but they get a leg up.  Referred to in descriptions above as the ‘Quality Hyperspecialist’, can fall into a number of categories.  Either pick one based on tinker personality or roll a d6:

  • Boosted Hyperspec. – (On 1-3) – Roll on the Tinker Boosts & Augments list.

  • Quality Hyperspecialist (4) – Quality is increased, more oomph/higher tier.

  • Efficiency Hyperspecialist (5) – Every 3rd creation is free, material-wise.

  • Speed Hyperspecialist (6) – Every 4th non-trivial creation is built in ? the time.

List A

List B

List C

1H Gun +B

2H Gun +B

Spec. flavored gun +B

Melee weapon #1 +B

Melee weapon #2 +B

Spec. utility  

Spec. utility  

Spec. Bodysuit #1 +B

Spec. Bodysuit #2 +B

Spec. Bodysuit #3 +B

Spec. Pattern #1

Spec. Pattern #2

Spec. Pattern #3

Patterns are plugged into +B items on list A, lenses on List C.  Bases to cover are Offense (guns, melee), Defense (bodysuit) and minor HUD bonus (mask).

Trinket, Charge

Trinket, Scan

Trinket, Data

Mask #1 +B

Mask #2 +B

Workstations

Difficulties

Anything already appearing on the lists above is free game, research will unveil a new weapon, utility, suit, pattern, trinket or mask at 125% efficiency (leftover % carries over, and on totaling 100%, produces a random idea, from a random one of those categories.  Alternately, at 50%, next research action takes half the time).  100% efficiency if the character knows what they want, specifically (negotiate with GM).

Other specialties cannot be researched or picked up with scans.  Scanning parahuman effects unrelated to specialties will produce weapon, utility, bodysuit or mask ideas (research % focused in one or spread among several).  Scanning a distinct parahuman effect relating to specialty produces a new pattern and research % focused in one of the aforementioned categories/spread among several).

Power armor, Vehicles, and Megaprojects can be built, but must be researched, are always Specialty related (ie. specialty power armor, specialty vehicles), have room for +B patterns where available.  Medium vehicles have room for one, large vehicles for two.

The Heirloom Tinker                                                                    (Hyper x Focal)

Works with one item and one specialty.  In comparison to the Implement tinker, who builds one specific item in one of a few fields of specialty, the Heirloom tinker is far more fixated on the field of specialty they work in, but gain some breadth in terms of what they do with the item, both in the form that item takes and in the ways that item is modified.  Gets tinker bonus or augment, in addition to a boost in quality or efficiency.

The item the Heirloom tinker works with fits into a broader category, be it two-handed guns, one-handed guns, melee weapons, utility items, armor, drones or pets, and with one field of specialty.  The exact nature of the thing is not nailed down, however.  A Heirloom Tinker who works with two handed guns and the Crystals field of specialty might be able to build a Crystal Shotgun, a Crystal Machine Gun, or a Crystal Rocket Launcher.  Power armor tends to be hard to differentiate, but could include very different options, be it brute offense, highly mobile, being a long-ranged artillery platform, or being utility focused.

List A

List B

List C

Rolled Category Option #1

Rolled Category Option #2

Rolled Category Option #3

Rolled Category Option #4

+AAB or +ABB
(The item can have a combination of two augments and one pattern or one augment and two patterns plugged into it.)

Item. Augment, Power

Item. Augment, Boost

Item. Augment, Utility

Item. Augment, Targeting

Item. Augment, Reception

Item. Augment, Data

Item. Augment, Heavy

Spec. Pattern #1

Spec. Pattern #2

Trinket, Charge

Trinket, Repair

Trinket, Data

Lens or Mask (no List B)

Weapon (no List B)

OR

Bodysuit (no List B)

Simple & weak, intended to assist implement type.

Difficulties

New items in the right category are researched at 125% efficiency. Leftover % carries over, and on totaling 100%, produces a new, random item variant, augment, or pattern).  An existing focus item can be swapped out for a known variant as a minor project, two augments/patterns can be changed as a minor project.

List A items that aren’t in the right item category cannot be researched, scanned, or built, nor can Megaprojects.  The exception exists for the minor List C addition, which provides supplementary options.  These options are twice as difficult to research and build (count as mid-level projects despite being minor in efficacy).

New augments are researched/scanned in at 100%.  New fields cannot be learned.

The Implement Tinker                                                                  (Focal x Focal)

Possesses one single item that is modified a great deal with a variety of options in a single spectrum of fields.  Roll on the Tinker Boosts/Augments list for secondary benefits/bonuses, then roll a d6 to determine the item type:

  • Melee weapon (and roll again on the Boosts/Augments list)

  • Body suit & Harness (and roll again on the Boosts/Augments list)

  • Ranged weapon●  Power armor

  • Vehicle●  Drone Pet

Three variants of the rolled item are available initially, and are of the same type (ie. sword, shotgun, missile launcher, humanoid pet).  The type of rolled item is locked after rolling.  The item is then modified using augments (always on) and patterns (tinker can toggle to a different pattern as a partial action).

List A

List B

List C

Rolled Item #1

Rolled Item #2

Rolled Item #3

+AAB or +ABB
(The item can have a combination of two augments and one pattern or one augment and two patterns plugged into it.)

Item. Augment, Power

Item. Augment, Boost

Item. Augment, Utility

Item. Augment, Targeting

Item. Augment, Reception

Item. Augment, Data

Item. Augment, Heavy

Item. Pattern #1

Item. Pattern #2

Item. Pattern #3

Trinket, Charge

Trinket, Repair

Trinket, Data

Lens or Mask (no List B)

Workstations

Weapon (no List B)

OR

Bodysuit (no List B)

Simple & weak, intended to assist implement type.

Difficulties

New item variants are researched at 150% efficiency, but will keep to the same general item type.  Leftover % carries over, and on totaling 100%, produces a new, random item variant, augment, or pattern).  An existing focus item can be swapped out for a known variant as a minor project (ie. a High Impact Shotgun for a Semiauto Shotgun), two augments/patterns can be changed as a minor project.

List A items that aren’t variants on the item type cannot be researched, scanned, or built, nor can Megaprojects.  The exception exists for the minor List C addition, which provides supplementary options.  These options are twice as difficult to research and build (count as mid-level projects despite being minor in efficacy).

Patterns initially known fall into one branch of fields (for now, see Detail sheet – might include three options in War), research in this category is 100% efficiency.  New categories are 75% efficient – learning to scan & scanning targets is 100% efficient and unlocks related branch.  New augments are researched/scanned in at 100%.

The Gentleman Tinker                                                           (Focal x Limit)

Not a high power tinker by any stretch of the imagination, the Gentleman sacrifices raw oomph for versatility.  Designating one item as a favored one and bearing a suite of tricks and trinkets, the Gentleman does best as a problem solver, rather than a direct combatant.

The Gentleman Tinker manifests with some indirect bonus, either one drawn from the Tinker augments & bonuses list, or a passive bonus like the fact that all of their items are concealable/look like a common item at first glance, or a boost to their focus item, wherein they get added effect if opponents are hampered by a lesser device.

Focus items are always of the same type, but some variants on that type are made available (ie. variants on a tinkerized bow or on tinkerized grenade launcher) with more made available via. research.  With augments, slightly better than ordinary tinkerings, but not so much so that it can be wholly leaned on.  The Patterns available to be plugged into the focus item (or some field-of-specialty trinkets) fall into two related specialties.  Lesser items fill out List C. and lean toward the non-damaging sort (ie. effect only traps or grenades), all built at half the normal effort.

List A

List B

List C

Focus Item Variant #1

Focus Item Variant #2

Focus Item Variant #3

Bodysuit #1

Bodysuit #2

(Item gets 1 pattern and 1 aug applied on creation, max 2 aug)

Item Augment #1

Item Augment #2

Item Augment #3

Item Augment #4

Item Augment #5

(Usually not power, heavy)

A Spec. Pattern #1

B Spec. Pattern #2

Trinkets, All Types

2-3 variants on 2 of the following:

  • Concoctions

  • Grenades

  • Traps

  • Spec. Trinkets

Plus ‘random ___’ for ea.

Difficulties

Item variants, augments and patterns can be researched at 125% efficacy.  Leftover % carries over, and on totaling 100%, produces a new, random item variant, augment, or pattern).  List A items that aren’t variants on the Gentleman’s focus item or a bodysuit cannot be researched, scanned, or created.  No megaprojects, power armor or vehicles can be built.

Gentlemen have two options for List C items, determined at character creation (ie. Traps and Concoctions).  Research and creation are conducted at 133.3% efficacy (Every three creations/researches, create a free, random type).  Other minor items can be created, but are researched and built at 100% efficiency – even after researching a Grenade, a Trap/Concoction Gentleman will make them at only 100%.

The Shackled Tinker                                                               (Limit x Limit)

Limited to one specialty, but with work and successes, can slowly branch out.  While initially limited to a specialty, starts with a taste of another field of specialty.  With each milestone achieved, unlocks another field, of the same branch of one that is known. Scans can supplement or help with this. Given time and achievement, can become very broad.

Determine what the initial field of specialty is, then determine a random secondary specialty in one of the related fields.  For now, the Detail Sheet is a good resource: if the first option was [Toxin], in the War and Life branches, could roll a d10 – a 1-5 would be one of the War options, a 6-10 would be one of the Life options.  A 9 would then be the fourth Life option, [Stim].  For the table below, Toxin would then be A Spec. Pattern #1, A Spec. Pattern #2 and Stim would be B Spec. Pattern #3, etc.

List A [+B to all]

List B

List C

1H gun

2H gun

Melee weapon #1

A Spec. Weapon/Utility #1

A Spec. Weapon/Utility #2

A Spec. Bodysuit #1

A Spec. Bodysuit #2

B Spec. Weapon/Utility

B Spec. Bodysuit

A Spec. Pattern #1

A Spec. Pattern #2

B Spec. Pattern

Trinket, Charge

Trinket, Scan

Trinket, Data

Mask #1

Mask #2

Workstations

Difficulties

Anything already appearing on the lists above is free game, research will unveil a new weapon, utility, suit, pattern, trinket or mask at 100% efficiency.  75% efficiency if the character knows what they want, specifically (negotiate with GM) – leftover % carries over.

Scanning unique parahuman effects will produce weapon, utility, bodysuit or mask ideas (research % focused in one or spread among several) in addition to 16% toward a related specialty.  Thus, every six scans can turn up a related field.  As a parahuman would need to scan six individual pyrokinetics to learn [Fire], only those with access to a wealth of resources would turn up much.

Power armor, Vehicles, and Megaprojects can be built, but must be researched, are always related to a known specialty.  These items have room for +B patterns where available.  Medium vehicles have room for one pattern, large vehicles for two.

The Catalyst Tinker                                                                (Limit x Binary)

Akin to a specialist, but the Catalyst keeps their field of specialty secret until a critical moment.  Develops gear of varying sorts and a relatively low power level, but in reality is setting things up for the press of a button, where everything kicks over to another mode or function.

Determine the Catalyst’s primary and secondary fields of specialty, going by their trigger event.  In the case of the crossroads that determine their trigger, one problem is liable to be more obvious to the world, the other hidden.  The latter informs the second field of specialty.

Appearing to be a hyperspecialist (drawing on the obvious specialty) with less raw oomph (items are 75% as effective baseline), the Catalyst tinker can activate a trigger.  A Depths|Toxin Catalyst Tinker might activate a signal to activate nanoparticles in the torrents of water they’ve dispensed to turn that water into an acid that sears flesh and melts objects.  A Tac Radar|Pyrotechnic tinker might mark every foe they’ve successfully hit on their HUD, then unload a stream of flaming projectiles from their backpack, homing in on those targets.  Successful use of a trigger generally requires that defensive items be struck or offensive items successfully hit a target or the environment.  Bodysuits can either have the A. spec defensive benefit built in, always on, or have powerufl short-duration B spec benefits, used after the trigger is pulled.

The trigger effects are either activated in the moment or short in duration.  Typically have a one hour cooldown.  One trigger trinket can be used multiple times.

List A

List B

List C

1H Gun +B (A spec)

2H Gun +B (A spec)

A Spec. flavored utility

Melee weapon +B (A spec)

Bodysuit #1 +B

Bodysuit #2 +B

&

B Spec. Activation Item #1

B Spec. Activation Item #2

A Spec. Pattern #1

A Spec. Pattern #2

A Spec. Pattern #3

B Spec. Pattern #1

B Spec. Pattern #2

Trinket, Trigger

Trinket, Scan

Trinket, Data

A Spec. Nonlethal Grenade

Lens #1

Lens #2

Difficulties

No megaprojects or vehicles.  Research is conducted at 100%.  Scans will reveal new weapons, bodysuits.  Scanning powers relating to a specialty will reveal patterns with bonus % toward research if A spec & new activation item options if B spec.  Can choose a specific sort of activation item and research toward it at 75% efficacy.

The Janus Tinker                                                                 (Binary x Binary)

Dual specialty, the two specialties aren’t necessarily in the same general branch.  Determine the two specialties by the trigger event or by random rolls.  The tinker’s production is below average in terms of effectiveness (75%), but the tinker gains a charge of [Specialty A] on inflicting damage, taking damage or utility item being used effectively.  The charges are only gained in direct conflict/when used to garner an advantage in a conflict, and thus cannot be charged prior to battle or outside of a conflict.  At four charges, can use a special function or a double-strength effect of a [Specialty B] item (150%, as it’s double the 75%). The inverse is true (swap A ? B), but gaining a charge of one field lowers the charge in another, encouraging lopsided use of one vs. the other.  Use of a boost spends charges.  

Eg. A tinker with the [Flight] and [Explosion] specialties builds a glider board, a flying skateboard with a flight pattern built in for evasion/deflection purposes and for some extra speed.  The board allows flyby attacks, moving past foes and slashing at them/knocking them around.  After the fourth such attack, he lobs an explosive with bonus effect.  Converse to this, he might lob explosives round after round, and when the opponent draws too near, flies off at 150% the speed.

List A

List B

List C

1H gun

2H gun

Melee weapon #1

Melee weapon #2

A Spec. Weapon/Utility #1

A Spec. Bodysuit #1

B Spec. Weapon/Utility #3

B Spec. Bodysuit #2

A Spec. Pattern #1

A Spec. Pattern #2

B Spec. Pattern #1

B Spec. Pattern #2

Patterns are plugged into +B items on list A.

Trinket, Charge

Trinket, Scan

Trinket, Data

Grenade +B

Workstations

Attempt to give every weapon a ‘charged’ variant.

Difficulties

Anything appearing on the lists above is free game, research will unveil a new weapon, utility, suit, pattern, or trinket.  50% efficiency if the character knows what they want, specifically (negotiate with GM) – either ? speed or requires prior scans.

Other specialties cannot be researched or picked up with scans.  Scanning parahuman effects unrelated to specialties will produce weapon, utility, bodysuit or mask ideas (research % focused in one or spread among several).  Scanning a distinct parahuman effect relating to specialty produces a new pattern and research % focused in one of the aforementioned categories/spread among several).  No vehicles, power armor, or megaprojects.

The Dual Weld Tinker                                                         (Binary x Combat)

The Dual Welder is a combat specialist who avoids heavy armor, favoring a more mobile, offense-heavy style of fighting, with a great deal of encouragement toward dual wielding weapons, each favoring a different specialization.  Each weapon effect, while not particularly strong on its own, will offer a bonus effect if an affected opponent is struck by a weapon of the other type.

Example, Narcissus|Wood Dual Welder has twin swords.  The former:

>Gall Pattern [Narcissus] – Weapon hits grant 2 (ranged) to 3 (melee) rounds of regeneration if the wielder is more hurt than their struck target, inflicts a bleed if the opponent is more hurt than the wielder.  If a [Wood] tinker effect is active when the opponent is struck, both effects activate.

Going without proper armor, the Dual Welder wears ‘Spec. Shrouds’ that each come with a mobility enhancing or evasive component built in, themed after a particular aspect of one of the two specialties.  Each one has a utility, defensive, or mobility enhancing aspect plugged in by way of a List B Pattern.  Harder to nail down and hurt than the average tinker, they are not quite as tough as a tinker in power armor, and are more reliant on ambush, cover, timing, luck, and their sheer ability to take enemies out of combat.  Shrouds always have evasion or concealment built in.

List A

List B

List C

1H Gun #1  +B

1H Gun #2  +B

Light Melee #1 +B

Light Melee #2 +B

A Spec. Shroud #1 +B

A Spec. Shroud #2 +B

B Spec. Shroud #1 +B

B Spec. Shroud #2 +B

A Spec. Pattern #1

A Spec. Pattern #2

B Spec. Pattern #1

B Spec. Pattern #2

Trinket, Defense

Trinket, Scan

Trinket, Data

1 of Concoction, Trap, or Grenade

Difficulties

List A items are purely limited to one handed items that can be dual wielded and shrouds.  Research/scanning is conducted at 100% efficacy, but scans in particular are reliant on scanning parahumans who fit in with the tinker’s specialties.  Those scans that don’t will provide ideas for one-handed weapons (if offensive leaning) or shrouds (if defensive or utility oriented) 50% of the time, and the remainder of the time will produce ideas for the Concoction/Trap/Grenades (decided at character creation).

Can build vehicles, but at half the usual rate, and without much fanciness.  Cannot build power armor or megaprojects.

The Templar Tinker                                                          (Combat x Combat)

A general specialist with access to a branch of tinkertech, the Templar is a combat tinker through and through.  Emphasizing short ranged tools and weapons, the Templar has exceptional power armor, melee weapons, and a small assortment of ranged weapons with a maximum range of 20’ or so.  Use of melee weapons and meeting certain other combat-limited criteria generates a charge, which the tinker can use to get a temporary advantage or activate special features.  Depending on the melee weapon or criteria, the Templar may generate a charge every hit or every two hits.  Not all items will have a way to utilize charges.

Draws on a specialty, dipping into related fields.  The tinker’s power armor is potent, always having the Armor and Heavy qualities, giving 2-3 additional wounds by way of armor.

List A

List B

List C

Melee weapon #1 +B

Melee weapon #2 +B

Melee weapon #3 +B

Charge Weapon #1 +B

Spec. Utility/Combat Item

Mid/low range gun #1 +B

Mid/low range gun #2 +B

Spec. Power Armor #1 +B

Spec. Power Armor #2 +B

Spec. Power Armor #3 +B

A Spec. Pattern #1

A Spec. Pattern #2

B Spec Pattern

C Spec Pattern

Patterns are plugged into +B items on list A. Only Offense (guns & melee) and Defense (armor).

Trinket, Repair

Trinket, Scan

Trinket, Data

Grenade +B

Workstations

1-2 weapons have a ‘Charge’ use.

Difficulties

With the exception of the utility/combat item, the tinker has no difficulty building anything on the above list.  Said item typically deviates from the tinker’s combat focus somewhat – being a drone, vehicle, or the like.  Researching new melee weapons and power armor is 133% effective (carries over, will unveil a free, random weapon/armor after three builds), new guns and patterns are 100% effective, and new utility/combat items are 75% effective – generally drawing on excess % from prior builds or taking several goes to perform effectively.

Branch specialties can be researched or picked up with scans, to limited effect.  Scanning unique parahuman effects will produce weapon, armor, gun or utility item ideas (research % focused in one or spread among several, 50% effect for utility), Alternately, will unveil a new specialty if the effect is related to branch, or give progress to a branch spec if they aren’t related to branch.  Megaprojects cannot be built.  Vehicles only if they’re the combat/utility item.

The Horror Tinker                                                                (Combat x Chaos)

The Horror Tinker leans heavily into the realms of shifters or breakers.  They craft only half of the devices they use, primarily weapons or power sources for weapons, and the shifter/breaker power modifies their body to provide outlets or connections to supply power to the weapons, or weapons to plug created power supplies into.

On creating the horror tinker, the group/GM should figure out three baseline weapons and three baseline patterns (drawn from 1-2 fields of specialty) that the character randomly generates on manifesting their powers and entering into a conflict.  Then they roll 2d6 to determine which manifest (reroll doubles or just take the next option on the list in case of doubles):

  • 1: Weapon #1 (ie. Shotgun)●  4: Pattern #1 (ie. ‘Hologram’)

  • 2: Weapon #2 (ie. 1H Pistol)●  5: Pattern #2 (ie. ‘Shatter’)

  • 3: Weapon #3 (ie. Tentacle)●  6: Pattern #3 (ie. ‘Dazzle’)

Patterns carry a special one-shot (per confrontation) effect usable only when the tinker combines a built weapon casing with a grown pattern, or if combining a grown weapon casing with a built pattern.  It is possible to grow a weapon casing and pattern and combine them to fight in combat when otherwise unarmed, given luck, and to build a weapon casing and pattern that has no need for being plugged into one’s own body (albeit with no special activation effect).  Finally, trinkets have a personal use benefit when jacked into altered body.  Spent trinkets are recharged after 3 combats.

List A

List B

List C

Weapon Casing #1

Weapon Casing #2

Weapon Casing #3

Bodysuit #1 +B

Bodysuit #2 +B

Shroud or External Armor

A Spec. Pattern #1

A Spec. Pattern #2

B Spec. Pattern #3

Trinket, Repair

(Also self-heals)

Trinket, Charge

(Also 1 round move boost)

Trinket, Data

(Also 1 round skill boost)

Difficulties

Research & scanning for weapon casings or patterns is slow/ineffective, at 50% the usual rate, and requires that research stations, scanning stations or scan trinkets be built in advance, but a researched weapon casing or pattern is added to the list of possible rolled weapons/patterns at opening of confrontation.  Speed to research/scan is increased to 75% if there’s a point of reference (close similarity to already known work or scanned power fits into one’s own specialty).  Research/scans for bodysuits, shrouds/external armor (worn over bodysuits for added evasion & defense, respectively) or utility items is normal speed, but still requires the aforementioned resources.  Vehicles, power armor and megaprojects cannot be built.

The Field Test Tinker                                                           (Chaos x Chaos)

Typically the shard handles the backend during the building process, using senses the human doesn’t have access to in order to assist and provide the actual tinkertech part of the builds.  In this case, the shard has more say, and the tinker tends to tune out, build aesthetically or find themselves unaware of the end result.

The tinker’s build options are very general – they decide one of the options on List A – a general category, though they do not know the exact form that weapon will take, nor the augment that is attached to it or the pattern that is connected.  A free augment is attached to all items, putting the Field Tester a step above other tinkers in general.  On completion, one of these elements will be revealed to the tinker.  On testing outside of combat, another will be revealed.  On testing in the midst of a conflict, the tinker will get the complete sense of what their weapon or armor does.  In these cases, guns may not fire if a valid target isn’t identified, making it hard to identify if it’s a lightning cannon or a railgun, as an example.

Finally, the tinker gets to roll on the list of Tinker bonuses and augments, and any item they build has a 12% chance to have a special feature, determined in secret – the tinker can attempt to uncover/activate a special feature, but being wrong means a general, catastrophic misfire.  Attempting to trigger special feature in a serious confrontation doubles the chance the special feature exists and never destroys the item, nor will it directly harm the tinker.

List A

List B

List C

Unknown 1H gun

Unknown 2H gun

Unknown Melee

Unknown Utility

Unknown Drone

Unknown Vehicle

Unknown Suit/Armor

Unknown Augment

Unknown Pattern

Patterns are drawn randomly from one of three different specialties.

Unknown Concoction

Unknown Grenade

Charge trinket

Repair trinket

Data trinket

Workstations

Difficulties

Cannot research, cannot scan.  Megaprojects cannot be built.  Armor is buildable, but only by chance, with roughly a 10% chance on doing the [Unknown suit/armor] project.

On testing/completion of items, can remove augments & patterns to replace existing components.  Removing augments also removes special features, plugging that augment into another item gives it the special feature, or a close analogue.  Accumulates a wide assortment of components over time – dismantled items need only a tenth of the maintenance, making it easier to maintain a collection of options.

The Golden Goose Tinker                                                    (Chaos x Resource)

The Golden Goose tinker is a tinker who has virtually no need for conventional materials.  With just a nominal investment, the Golden Goose tinker can produce a material station.  The station will thereafter produce one unit of material per day.  Use of these prefabricated parts and materials will make projects far faster and further reduce construction time and costs by 33% (multiplicative) while appending a positive, typically noncombat quality (often improving reputation gain), with a maximum of one such quality per item.  The caveat, however, is that items are temporary, falling apart even with maintenance, which gets the tinker out of the workshop, and any time a component takes damage, broken components are left on the battlefield, oft easily selling for fair sums (2d6 times $100).  

It is the seemingly inevitable fate (to the point it’s likely the shard’s design) of the Golden Goose tinker to find that others covet their material – and especially covet the sources of those materials.  Should others get their hands on them, material stations work for a period of time (5% chance of breaking/day if not maintained) while churning out materials (double above value on open market) and provide 5x the value in materials if simply destroyed/looted on the spot.  If they sell their own materials, however, they oft find that inspiration stalls (100% chance they can’t build for 24 hours, 50% chance each day until tinker’s block is broken) and/or that unscrupulous individuals start tracking them down and kicking in the door to their workshop.

Each material station has either specialty or item type locked in (determined randomly) and the other is random each time it produces something (ie. might produce [Smoke] gun part, [Smoke] bodysuit part, or might produce [Smoke] gun part, [Fire] gun part]).  Draws on three specialties in a branch.

List A

List B

List C

Gun (1H or 2H)

Melee weapon

Utility  

Utility

Drone or cyborg part

Bodysuit #1

Bodysuit #2

Pattern #1 (Specialty #1)

Pattern #2 (Specialty #2)

Pattern #3 (Specialty #3)

*Material station*

1 of Grenade, trap, vial

1 of Grenade, trap, vial

Trinket, Charge

Trinket, Scan

Trinket, Data

Workstation

Difficulties

Researches occurs at standard speed.  Building takes twice as long unless component is used.  25% research speed for power armor, drones, vehicles.  Researches megaprojects as normal, but their megaprojects are beautiful.

The Midas Tinker                                                               (Resource x Resource)

The Midas tinker can utilize exceedingly rare materials to produce special components; when used in crafting, by the Midas tinker or another individual, the component adds a powerful bonus augment.  A fairly subpar tinker if they can’t obtain their sapphire stolen from a museum (as an example), very powerful if they can.  Example component:

Carmine Steel: Requires an athlete of sufficient talent to be olympic caliber to be deconstructed and reconstructed in a sarcophagus that also contains top quality steel, combining the two into a unit of living steel or biosteel.  An item crafted with Carmine Steel temporarily attaches to the wearer/wielder, granting the wearer +1 Brawn, one maximum wound, and either increases damage or provides a modest attack option to an item incapable of doing damage.  Takes a minute to pick up/don or put down/doff.

A tinker will often utilize the same type of item; one tinker might always need gemstones, another might use computers and steal reams of data from computer servers, then distill that data into material form.

Starts with two specialties in the same branch.

List A

List B

List C

1H Gun 

2H Gun 

Melee weapon #1 

Melee weapon #2 

Utility  

Bodysuit #1

Bodysuit #2

Unique Material #1

Pattern #1 (Specialty #1)

Pattern #2 (Specialty #2)

Grenade, Trap, or Vial.

Trinket, Charge

Trinket, Scan

Trinket, Data

Workstations

Difficulties

Standard rate for researches, building.  25% research speed for power armor, drones, vehicles.  Researches megaprojects as normal, megaprojects often have one prereq being gathering two special materials.  Special materials have added benefit for megaprojects and combine together in unique ways.

Either materials nominated are ones available in the tinker’s area (researched as normal, shard nominates the material), or the tinker can turn their attention to a specific priceless or irreplaceable item and research possibilities to turn up a result.

The Cell Tinker                                                                  (Resource x Controller)

The Cell tinker often appears to be a subpar tinker for a stretch.  They can build some things, they aren’t exceptional, and may fight an uphill battle to be at an even keel, and then they have a ‘breakthrough’.  The rare Cell tinker jumps straight to this so-called ‘breakthrough’.  Either way, things might progress smoothly for a time, until people start getting curious about the number of missing people.

The Cell tinker uses people as a component in their creations, giving their creations a degree of autonomy and a measure of added targeting and responsiveness.  Drones literally have people contained within, the drone tapping the person for select brain patterns, awareness, and even inspiration.  Power ‘cells’ (literally cells in that they hold people within) provide a set number of one-time boosts per day, for the tinker’s non-drone gear in the field.  Taking captives and plugging people in gives the tinker up to three potent augments for a drone or augment-like buffs to gear via. cells.  Victims must often be chosen selectively, in ways that might echo the trigger, and the trigger is further echoed in the two related specialties the tinker draws on.

Given the cross-reference between abandonment and materialism in the trigger, very often the first victim is the focus of the trigger, the bullies that made fun of the poor kid, the spoiled and distant stepchild, the gold-digging wife who wants to live off of the husband’s winning lottery ticket.

List A

List B

List C

‘Capturing’ melee/gun

Gun #1

Gun #2

Melee

Bodysuit #1

Bodysuit #2

Drone, Combat

Drone, Utility

Drone, Specialty

Augment, Power 

Augment, Boost

Augment, Utility

Augment, Recon

Augment, Relay

Augment, Data

Augment, Heavy

Pattern, Specialty 1

Pattern, Specialty 2

Three trinkets (any)

Workstation, Power ‘Cell’

Workstation, Construction

Workstation, Research

Workstation, Data

Difficulties

Power level is ~20-25% weaker than standard if not using human materials, is normal if using poor materials, 25% better if using good ones, and 50% better if using exceptional, choice materials befitting the trigger.  Research drones at 150% speed, everything else at 100%.  Can research other specialties, but must be related.  Need research station linked to a human-powered power cell to access more esoteric things like power armor, vehicles, megaprojects, but this is done at standard speed if criteria is met.

The Alchemist Tinker                                                 (Controller x Controller)

The Alchemist is a devoted drone creator with no non-consumable offensive weapons that aren’t provided by his drones.  Drawing from one field of specialty, the Alchemist uses vats or chambers (same idea with only aesthetic differences) to grow and customize their creations, who they then outfit and customize.

Typically dependent on having an established workshop for their vats/chambers (effectively the same thing), the Alchemist can freely develop loyal minions once the vats have been made, and can readily customize them on a case-by-case basis.  Vats take two time slots to build and require a power source, and serve to adjust brew time, stats and capabilities, as well as the number created.  The ‘seed’ then determines the base stats, number of limbs, and additional base capabilities (natural weapons, etc), and augments are appended to the creation, typically focusing on three of the following Augment categories: Power, Boost, Utility, Targeting, Data, and Heavy.  While the tinker knows some patterns, they are mostly reserved for use with the tinker’s consumables.

Very reliant on their drones, the Alchemist tinker does not have weapons or gear to augment their combat capabilities, instead relying on consumable grenades, trinkets, and other expendable items.

List A

List B

List C

Vat, Large [12h, 1x large, 1A]

Vat, Norm. [6h, 1x med., 1A]

Vat, Churn [12h pack of 2d3]

Spec. Grenade +B


3x Seeds (Of quadruped, flier, humanoid, clone, warrior, worker, hulk)

Augment A (ie. Brawn) #1

Augment A #2

Augment B #1

Augment B #2

Augment C #1

Augment C #2

Spec. Pattern

Trinket, Leash

Trinket, Self Defense +B

Trinket, Scan

2x of [Either Trap, Concoction, Grenade]

Mask

Workstation, Generator

Difficulties

Research proceeds at 100%, 150% if the tinker scans a power signature relating to their field of specialty.  They can use two study periods to extend into a known branch relating to their starting field, but once that branch is chosen, the tinker can only reach out into that one branch (ie. if starting out as a Tutor spec. tinker, they can choose either Data or Artifice and lock into such).  Cannot make, scan, or research weapons, defensive gear, or vehicles, but can R&D seeds for mounts.  Can make megaprojects, which are typically massive vats & correspondingly large creatures.

The Wretched Tinker                                                                (Mad x Mad)

Initially a narrow specialist with a limited build list, the Wretched Tinker (hereafter referred to as the Wretched) can research very easily, with something of a price.  When they delve too deep into the tinkering, they don’t always surface one hundred percent.  Their humanity slips away and what they lose is lost in the long-term.  While they build well and have versatility to spare, they have to choose what they research and work on and cherish that which they have built, knowing the cost they paid for it. 

On waking from the haze of their trigger event, have automatically created one item; a melee or ranged weapon, or a utility item with some combat use.  They do not research or scan to open the way for more items to be created, instead declaring to the GM what they want to build in loose terms (ex. a syringe gun).  Based on how related the desired item is to what they have already built, they get hit with a minor penalty (one degree of separation), a major one (in same branch), or catastrophic one (1d3 minor and 1d3 major, if the item bears no resemblance to already built items).  

A Wretched rolls for penalties to three of the seven stats.  A penalty always involves a stat change (-1 for minor, -2 for major), and either a mutation for physical stats, or a mental change for mental ones, though GMs can be creative and surprise a metagamer.  The effects are initially severe to moderate and scale down as the stats recover, at a rate of 1 per session.  The theme of mutations and madness will draw from both the stat and the tinker’s past builds.  Mutations always leave some permanent mark: stretch marks, benign tumors, or scars where a wriggling tentacle was cut away.  Mental afflictions may leave permanent effects on the psyche, at player discretion, else the GM may lean in favor of the player’s life crumbling around them.  The effects are cumulative overall.  Catastrophic penalties involve permanent severe, moderate or minor mutations, depending on rolls, will never ‘unlock’ options, and have a 50% chance of the device misfiring and destroying itself in the process.

Example: Hank triggers as a Wretched tinker, and wakes with a Hermes Cannon, which is a two-handed cannon that draws from the [Tank] field of specialty.  If he sought to build tank-based power armor, that would be a minor penalty (rolls 1d3, gets social: hyper-aggressive, ranty, and swears incessantly).  An Acid Cannon would be similarly minor, as it’s still separated by one degree of separation (is a Cannon) and is in the same branch (War, Toxin) but an acid powersuit or acid utility item would be moderate (rolls Brawn, swells up, veins visible against skin glow molten).  A time machine would be so far removed as to be catastrophic, and could kill him or leave him with tank tread legs.

The tinker may roll for a boon/augment on the list.

Difficulties

Can build vehicles with 2 builds in a given field.  Can build megaprojects with 6.

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