23 Aug 2010

Design Notes – Surgical Prep

Filed under: Design Notes, Ere Be Stuff

It’s a fact of life in Gorkamorka: Mobsters get hurt. Sometimes quite badly. It’s not entirely unexpected in a world where everyone has guns, knives and ammo hanging off them pretty much twenty four seven. Hell, with that amount of weaponry going around, I’m surprised people don’t need trips to the hospital every time they sit down and accidentally blow their own legs off from the grenades in their pockets.1130overkillweapons When we designed the Dust Rats we looked at them from the perspective of the Muties versus the Diggas. The Diggas fight like Orks but with some puny weaknesses that hold them back. They even go to Da Dok and get all manner of weird bioniks attached to them, something a normal human torso just cannot cope with. On the flip side we’ve got the Muties who indulge in humanity’s desire for superior firepower and are depicted as being sneaky, underhanded and just downright scary at times. They also didn’t have a method of healing themselves, something I hope to remedy soon. You’ve probably seen the original preview of the Mutie healing rules and formed your opinions about them. But it’s not that I want to talk about.

No, I want to discuss serjery on squishy ‘oomans, by other squishy ‘oomans. The Dust Rats dok table, affectionately dubbed the “Field Hospital” rules is nearing completion and release as well and I hope that they provide what the other healing rules provide as well: making your mobsters harder, better, faster and stronger (on average) than they were before they went in.

To try and portray a reasonable view of effective human surgery in a society much more advanced technologically than our own, I’ve taken some licence. I assume its possible for high quality prosthetics to be made, though not necessarily in bulk or cheaply, which can interface with human nerves and act just like a real limb. I’ve assumed that they have things to worry about like infection by ork spores or that the human mind is a much more fragile thing than the Orkoid view that “Walkin’ towards da bullets meanz I’s closa to ‘ittin ‘im!” philosophy of being under fire. I’ve also assumed this is a proper sci-fi universe and weird special tech does exist Though again, it can be rare. Also you’ll notice the none-too-subtle references to several movies that are made in the list.  I can never resist an in-joke, especially when it comes to naming. You should see some of the names we have for the upcoming Tagz system, debuting in reputable (and several disreputable) forums as we speak. Once community critique is collected, those are going up too.

On the plus side, it still works exactly as a normal trip to Da Dok, except generally speaking, the mobster wakes up with all his teeth still in his mouth. After all, who’d accept those weedy little teef as currency?

Some possible key differences should be noted here then. There are less weapon based abilities in here and they focus more on boosting the power of weapons already in your mob and the individual soldiers themselves. The head wounds results table has polar opposites of making pinning more and less likely.


“Mecha Body” result was discarded. Too anime.

There’s also no “Cybork” skill, something I tried to replicate correctly in the Mutie healing rules because Muties are likely to engage an ork, no matter how tricked out her is. The Dust Rats however know the appropriate response is to fall back, take up position and focus fire on it until it blows up or goes away. This has been replaced by the Super Soldier result which stacks on a set of bonuses but also does not give any way to override the stated maximums. That means a soldier the top of the table won’t benefit greatly from it at all but on the other side, it can turn a plank into a reliable killing machine for a maximum of six teef.

Battlefield medicine also makes an appearance here with the addition of the Stimm-Injector which gives you a nice beefy power boost for your current turn and the enemies next one and the Chem-Inhaler which adds a reliable way to remove flesh wounds during a game, something no other mob has.

A full version of the Dust Rat Healing Table will be released alongside the complete Dust Rats mob listings.


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