The following new positive qualities are available to augmented
characters in Shadowrun, Fourth Edition. As with all qualities,
groups should consider their impact on the game before allowing
them into play. See Qualities, p. 77, SR4.
Cost: 10 BP
Something about the character’s body is exceptionally accepting
of either bioware or cyberware implants (choose one). Not
only are the implants not rejected, but they seamlessly fit within
the body, having less impact on its holistic integrity. In game terms,
the Essence Cost of implants of the particular chosen type are reduced
by 10 percent. This reduction does not apply to genetech.
This quality may only be taken once.
Cost: 5 BP
This character was genetically modified before he was born.
Since it is much easier to modify the genome at the embryonic
stage than to rewrite the genetic code of a mature body, genetic
modifications performed in utero are quicker and cheaper than
gene therapy treatments performed on an adult. In game terms,
any genetic enhancements (see p. 72) purchased at character creation
are reduced in Cost by 20 percent.
Genetic Heritage
Cost: 10 BP
Though genetweaking isn’t yet widespread, the technology to
successfully modify a metahuman genome has been around for well
over three decades. It is thus possible that children have inherited
genetically-modified genes from one or both progenitors. Such an
inheritance means the character can start play with one genetic
modification (see p. 72) for free. Such characters also possess an
unusually high tolerance to the introduction of foreign code into
their genome. As a result, the nuyen costs of transgenic genetic
enhancements for the character are reduced by 20 percent.
Type O System
Cost: 30 BP
Though exceptionally rare, a few lucky people in the world
have completely non-allergenic “type O” cells, meaning that they
can give organ transplants to just about anyone with little chance of
rejection. While the character cannot accept second-hand bioware
at all, their essential cell line is already cultivated as the generic
standard throughout the world. Off the rack, basic bioware is considered
delta grade for purposes of interacting with a type O body
(i.e., reduce Essence Costs by half, though nuyen prices remain the
same). Their bodies are also filled with universally transplantable
organs, so maybe they shouldn’t brag too much about this talent.
Wild Card Nano Prototype
Cost: 30 BP
At some point in the past, the character either volunteered to
field test prototype nanoware or became an unwitting guinea pig
for experimental nanotech. Fortunately for him, the prototype is
a state-of-the-art hard nanite system that can be reprogrammed
(see Reprogramming Hard Nanites, p. 107) with great ease. Wild Card is a Rating 3 non-specialized nanoware system (p. 108) that
can be reprogrammed to perform as any internal nanoware systems
also at Rating 3 (circumventing the normal limitations on reprogramming
hard nanites). If the character with this quality does
not possess a nanohive, the Wild Card nanoware will degrade as
normal. If the character possesses a nanohive, Wild Card counts
as one nanoware system it must support.
New Negative Qualities
These negative qualities are also available to augmented characters
in SR4 at the gamemaster’s discretion.
Augmentation Addict
Bonus: 10 BP
Some people can’t help themselves and become addicted to
the power rush and extraordinary abilities granted by cyberware
and bioware implants or other augmentations. This is typically
rooted in a sense of dissatisfaction with their natural bodies and/
or abilities. Such individuals develop a dangerous urge to seek out
better and more interesting body modifications.
Augmentation Addiction is psychologically similar to a
Moderate drug addiction (see p. 248, SR4). Over time, the character
will grow increasingly unhappy with enhancements he already has,
especially if they fail him in any significant way. He may suffer mood
swings or sudden outbursts about his inadequacies. The gamemaster
can periodically call for a Willpower + Logic (1) Test, though the
character will suffer a –4 dice pool modifier. If the character fails the
test, he must immediately work to obtain a new modification that is
either better or more exotic than any previous existing mods. If the
character cannot afford a new augmentation, he will beg, borrow,
or steal to get it—even from friends. The gamemaster might also
call for the test whenever the character comes into contact with a
wiz new piece of gear, such as seeing it in a bodyshop catalog or
witnessing an implant’s performance in someone else.
Biosystem Overstress
Bonus: 10 BP
Some people never really adjust to bioware implants, even
if these are cultured. In such individuals, the constant biostress
and the metabolic resources tied up lead to slower healing times
and faster onset of fatigue. Characters with this quality double the
normal interval for Healing Tests (p. 242, SR4) and half the base
period before Fatigue sets in (p. 155, SR4).
This quality is only available to characters with at least two
bioware implants.
Buggy ’Ware
Bonus: 5 BP per rating (max rating 4)
Some implants never should have gotten past quality control.
A few develop inexplicable glitches after implantation. Others are
just second hand and past their expiry date. Still others seem to
bring their users bad luck. All these are grouped under Buggy
’Ware. This quality increases the chance of glitches whenever that
implant is being actively used or modifies a test. Reduce the number
of 1’s needed to get a glitch (p. 55, SR4) by one per rating.
A specific implant must be specified as the Buggy ’Ware. The
gamemaster is the final arbiter of whether this quality can or cannot
be applied to any given implant. It is suggested that the quality only
be applied to implants that contribute to or modify dice pools.

If the implant is removed, this negative quality must be
bought off at a cost of (10 x Rating) Karma (see p. 265, SR4).
Bonus: 10 BP
Only characters with an exceptionally low Essence attribute
(1 or less) should be allowed this quality. Individuals suffering
from this condition become detached and distanced from the
world around them. They seem to experience social interactions
and strong emotions one step removed and are often subject to
sociopathic or psychotic impulses. A character inflicted with
cyberpsychosis incurs a –2 dice pool modifier to all Social Skill
Tests. Furthermore, if the test glitches, the character acts inappropriately
or violently overreacts. If the test produces a critical glitch,
the character suffers a psychotic break and becomes temporarily
insane—immediately becoming an NPC until such time as the
gamemaster deems he has received sufficient psychiatric treatment
and has returned to a semblance of normalcy.
Gene Freak
Bonus: 10 BP
The Sixth World is full of things that endanger normal genome
expression, including Awakened dangers, environmental
pollution, unpredictable mutagenics, and secret experimentation.
Gene freaks are the extreme result of such genetic tampering,
whether hereditary or accidental. Characters with this quality suffer
an unexpected genetic disorder that manifests as ugly and visceral
physical deformities. The character suffers a –3 dice pool modifier
on all Social Skill Tests not done via the Matrix and a +2 dice pool
modifier for all Intimidation Tests. The character and gamemaster
should negotiate to decide on a deformity that is suitably negative.
Gene freak characters might also have developed personality quirks
or aggressive behavior from years of social rejection.

High-Maintenance Implant
Bonus: 5 BP
This option is only available to characters who possess at least
one cyberware implant. A particular implant possessed by that
character suffers from some sort of unfixable glitch that requires
constant vigilance and maintenance and periodically causes it to
fail and shut down. The high-maintenance implant should be
one that has an active function, rather than some sort of passive
support (ie. wired reflexes but not bone lacing). If the character
does not take the time to perform maintenance on a weekly basis,
requiring a Cybertechnology + Logic (8, 1 hour) Test, the implant
will simply cease to function. At the gamemaster’s discretion, the
implant may also fail at other inopportune times, such as rolling a
glitch on any test affected by the implant.
If the implant is removed, this negative quality must be
bought off at a cost of 10 Karma (see p. 265, SR4).
Implant-Induced Immune Deficiency
Bonus: 10 BP
Cyberware and bioware users sometimes suffer from a number
of health problems as the natural balance of their metabolisms is
thrown off by modified organs and systems. The demands of their
augmented biologies and the body’s continuous attempts to adjust to
the implants can lead to decreased immunity to pathogens, poisons,
and other compounds. Characters with this quality suffer a dice pool
modifier of –2 on all Body Tests to resist the effects of diseases, drugs,
toxins, and other compounds (including Physical Addiction Tests
and Disease Resistance Tests). This quality is only available to characters
with bioware or cyberware implants and an Essence of 5 or less.
Mystery Mod Noise
Bonus: 5 BP
This option is only available to characters who possess at
least one cyberware implant. A particular implant possessed by
that character emits an intermittent and subtle but annoying noise
even when not in active use, akin to a metallic whir, high-pitched
whine, gas-like bubbling, or something similar. A particular implant
must be chosen to suffer from the condition and should be
an externally-accessible implant with moving parts, like a cyberarm.
The noise may not be eliminated, no matter the repairs or
lubrication efforts, though it may be muffled with heavy clothing
or Silence spells. The gamemaster determines when the irritating
noise is active. The noise applies a +2 dice pool modifier to any
Hearing Perception Tests made against the character.
If the implant is removed, this negative quality must be
bought off at a cost of 10 Karma (see p. 265, SR4).
Nano Intolerance
Bonus: 5 BP
Some immune systems react more strongly than others to
nanoware. This may be because of some DNA quirk that makes
protein-matching imperfect or simply the immune system’s hypersensitivity.
Regardless, the character’s natural immune system and
metabolism rid themselves of free-floating nanoware much faster
than usual. Nanoware systems in nano-intolerant characters degrade
1 rating point every 4 days (instead of a week). This quality
may not be taken at character creation by characters who possess
nanohives. If the character has a nanohive implanted, the quality
must be bought off at the cost of 10 Karma (see p. 265, SR4).
Temporal Lobe Epilepsy
Bonus: 10 BP
A fortunately rare problem among highly-cybered individuals,
temporal lobe epilepsy with complications (TLE-x) is a
chronic degenerative condition believed to be caused by neurological
stress caused by excessive cyber implantation. Characters
who take this quality start play with the TLE-x disease described
on p. 132. If the character ever undergoes corrective gene therapy
or brain surgery to correct the condition, the quality must be
bought off at the cost of 20 Karma (see p. 265, SR4).

Next: Runners Companion

Chapter: Creating a ShadowRunner

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Shadowrun: Throw Back Arleigh