Cybertech worthwhile in SFS?


Advice

Grand Lodge

I was thinking about making a character who is obsessed with replacing as much of themselves as possible with cybertech.

Maybe built around an exocortex mechanic character...seems fitting.

Would the cost of the cybertech be worth the investment in SFS, or would I be handicapping the rest of my gear by spending too much of my funds on cybertech upgrades?

Thanks


Slyme wrote:

I was thinking about making a character who is obsessed with replacing as much of themselves as possible with cybertech.

Maybe built around an exocortex mechanic character...seems fitting.

Would the cost of the cybertech be worth the investment in SFS, or would I be handicapping the rest of my gear by spending too much of my funds on cybertech upgrades?

Thanks

Actually, Starfinder assumes that you will be using augmentations; if you're not using a portion of your wealth on cybertech and the like, you aren't playing up to your potential.

You really don't need to upgrade your weapon very often; I was fine with a level 2 pike until I could buy a level 7 yellow star nova lance, for example. Armor does require upgrade every 2 levels or so if you are going to be taking any heat at all, but that still leaves plenty for augments.

Completely aside from the Personal Upgrades (which are practically mandatory), you get augments to shore up weaknesses, free up gear slots, and play to your strengths. It also makes for great roleplay.

My vesk armor storm soldier got dakvision capacitors so he could dispense with the infrared scanners in his armor and use that slot on stuff that helps in combat, like Thermal Capacitors, and his Speed Suspension is great because moving fast is important in this game for a melee soldier. He is most proud of his Wildwise, though, because it allows him to talk to animals and sometimes avoid a fight with them.

Some good character concepts revolve around augmentation; the Augmented Archetype is cool, especially for soldiers who don't give up much and want to be street samurai. The Verthani race gets an extra upgrade slot. The Biotechnician theme gets an extra biotech augmentation slot at 12th level, and the Geneturge mystic connection can also get an extra slot (a Verthani Augmented Geneturge gets *3* extra slots eventually).

I wouldn't necessarily use Augmented on a Mechanic, because you lose nearly all of your mechanic's tricks, but you can still get much of the same feeling with just investing a lot in augmentations (also 1 level in Geneturge mystic for the special brain augmentation is a huge upgrade for a mechanic if you pick Computers or Engineering, gaining the ability to always take 10).

Remember that as you go up levels in Society, you get a lot more money per adventure. After a certain point, you can afford to just kit yourself out with low-level augs which you can then upgrade to taste.


They're a very good investment, especially at the lower levels when the armor and weapon upgrades are kinda meh.

The trick is you don't want to get the +10 foot speed to legs, and then upgrade to the 20, and then upgrade to the 30, because then you're just burning cash. Pick one, wait for it, and get it.

Same with your armor. Don't upgrade it more than you have to. if you're in the back? you can live with second skin till 7th (when you're upgrading for the radiation protection more than anything else)

Grand Lodge

Can you not upgrade cybernetics? Someone told me you can upgrade the personal upgrades, I figured that would be the same for the rest of the cybernetics as well.

I was imagining the character trying to eventually get some kind of cybertech for every system slot. Having to wait until higher levels for things like Dermal Plating, which has 7 tiers, would kind of suck, and throw off the build a bit.


Slyme wrote:

Can you not upgrade cybernetics? Someone told me you can upgrade the personal upgrades, I figured that would be the same for the rest of the cybernetics as well.

I was imagining the character trying to eventually get some kind of cybertech for every system slot. Having to wait until higher levels for things like Dermal Plating, which has 7 tiers, would kind of suck, and throw off the build a bit.

You can upgrade Personal Upgrades by just paying the difference in costfrom the lower level to the higher, but you can't upgrade any other augmentation without paying full price. I don't think you can even sell back your old one, because it is keyed to your genetics.

What you can do is swap out upgrades by just buying and installing a new one. You're never stuck with something forever, so you could get Resistant Hide at 2nd level and then scrap it for Dermal Plating later (though I personally think that you should only get Dermal Plating Mk.1 because it is enough to stack with Enhanced Resistance (Kinetic).


Is there a social element to this? A person with the right cyberware is always armed. Always. That might mean there are some important places they can't go into because they do not allow weapons.

And are there social advantages to eschewing cyberware?


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Amaltopek wrote:

Is there a social element to this? A person with the right cyberware is always armed. Always. That might mean there are some important places they can't go into because they do not allow weapons.

And are there social advantages to eschewing cyberware?

Starfinder is the Wild West. Everybody is always armed, except in very specific circumstances.

There might be RP benefits to eschewing cybernetics, sure, but there are also RP benefits to being a chromed-out bladeboi. I tend to side with the group that gives me massive mechanical (har) advantages.

And, real talk, the anti-cybernetic movement in this game is about one step away from racism against androids and SROs, and I'd prefer not to go there.


Are biotech augmentations equally worthwhile?

Also, why does duplicating a cybernetic effect with a biotech augmentation cost 10% more and require an additional item? What's the mechanical advantage between cyber and bio versios of XYZ?


Amaltopek wrote:

Is there a social element to this? A person with the right cyberware is always armed. Always. That might mean there are some important places they can't go into because they do not allow weapons.

And are there social advantages to eschewing cyberware?

Unless you're going to make vesk wear a lot of bubblewrap to a business meeting it's a bit of a moot point.

Grand Lodge

I just like the idea of playing a character who is addicted to modifying and upgrading themselves. Kind of like Kroenen from Hellboy. Starting off a normal member of their species, and slowly turning themselves more and more mechanical, to the point where it blurs the philosophical lines of whether or not they are still themselves or even the same species they were originally.

I'll have to play around with the numbers a bit, see if the WBL allows full on cybertech addiction while still staying relevant with weapons and armor.


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Slyme wrote:

I just like the idea of playing a character who is addicted to modifying and upgrading themselves. Kind of like Kroenen from Hellboy. Starting off a normal member of their species, and slowly turning themselves more and more mechanical, to the point where it blurs the philosophical lines of whether or not they are still themselves or even the same species they were originally.

I'll have to play around with the numbers a bit, see if the WBL allows full on cybertech addiction while still staying relevant with weapons and armor.

Call me Theseus?

Grand Lodge

Pathfinder Starfinder Maps Subscriber

Augmentations are awesome. I have not gone crazy on them, but all my characters have them!

Hmm

Second Seekers (Luwazi Elsbo)

The sentient biological being is a machine just like any other. Unlike most it is capable of self awareness and self improvement. We use training to build muscle and muscle memory, education to build knowledge and understanding. But we also use books, weapons, tools, and load lifters to expand our abilities. There's no reason cybernetics shouldn't be a part of that.

Despite the slight increase in price I prefer organic upgrades. We are organic beings after all, and other organic substances interface better with the existing hardware, which you can't alter without... well not being you anymore.

So far I've invested in improved tendons for running, prehensile feet (foot suckers), Improved hearing, improved vision... not being nightblind i merely needed to instal a tapetum lucidum, and then the universe had a sense of humor and I wound up with a pair of functional wings, granting more than a passing resemblance to a species of bat. I've been using computers so often I invested in a datajack, my tail is the USB drive.


Xenobiologist wrote:

Are biotech augmentations equally worthwhile?

Also, why does duplicating a cybernetic effect with a biotech augmentation cost 10% more and require an additional item? What's the mechanical advantage between cyber and bio versios of XYZ?

They're not vulnerable to the various mechanic tricks and spells that affect technology. I dunno if that justifies a 10% price increase, but it's something.


Amaltopek wrote:

Is there a social element to this? A person with the right cyberware is always armed. Always. That might mean there are some important places they can't go into because they do not allow weapons.

And are there social advantages to eschewing cyberware?

Areas where you wouldn't be allowed because your cyberware might be dangerous, as well as areas where there would be social benefit to not having cyberware, would seem to be GM contrivances. If your GM is going to the trouble to decide for or against cyberware, then they should also be doing the reverse by having in-game solutions to the in-game problems they created, rather than "Sorry, Jim. I know you have cyberware in your Trox. Your character has to wait outside the (building.)"


Biotech is worth it for xenodruids and other nature-lovers to not pollute themselves with chrome and wires. Some character options (notably, Biotechnician) reward use of biotech over other augmentations.


Garretmander wrote:
Xenobiologist wrote:

Are biotech augmentations equally worthwhile?

Also, why does duplicating a cybernetic effect with a biotech augmentation cost 10% more and require an additional item? What's the mechanical advantage between cyber and bio versios of XYZ?

They're not vulnerable to the various mechanic tricks and spells that affect technology. I dunno if that justifies a 10% price increase, but it's something.

Something needs to specifically affect augmentations in order to affect cybernetic implants

Once installed, they become a part of your body and generally can’t be affected by abilities that destroy or disable objects or target technological items or creatures.

Dataphiles

The ignoring of weapons that is prevalent, is a bit immersion breaking for me as well. Strict things of not ignoring it are often regarded as unnecessary minutia. Players who have built the power suit, heavy weapon wielding characters often get offended that they should be 'penalized' for making their character.

For those who desire a more reasonable in-game rp atmosphere, I'd suggest one of two things. One, find like minded people to play with. Or two, come to terms with the incontinuity. There are often more meaningful 'battles' to choose like metagaming, so it is better to just let it go.


I feel I should clarify what someone previously stated. the game does assume that you will at least be spending a portion of your funds on augmentation. At the very least you will be getting personal upgrades. However a lot more love has been given to biotech and magitech. as someone who also has a not one but two cybertech themed society characters, this has been most frustrating. Biotech even has adaptive bio trains that lets you treat any other augment as a biotech augment. Meanwhile my data file operative is stuck with spinal struts and speed suspensions. All the cool stuff goes to biotech and magitech.


And necrografts!


BigNorseWolf wrote:
Garretmander wrote:
Xenobiologist wrote:

Are biotech augmentations equally worthwhile?

Also, why does duplicating a cybernetic effect with a biotech augmentation cost 10% more and require an additional item? What's the mechanical advantage between cyber and bio versios of XYZ?

They're not vulnerable to the various mechanic tricks and spells that affect technology. I dunno if that justifies a 10% price increase, but it's something.

Something needs to specifically affect augmentations in order to affect cybernetic implants

Once installed, they become a part of your body and generally can’t be affected by abilities that destroy or disable objects or target technological items or creatures.

So Adaptive Biochains actually gives no advantage to justify the price and level hike?


There is if biotechnician is your theme. Adaptive biochains at that point lets you get what is normally a cybernetic augment at a slight discount. Otherwise it's flavor. I honestly don't know why there is no cybernetic equivalent. I'll pay a ten % mark up if it means I can have a synthetic, cybernetic version of things like dragon gland or venom spur.


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Xenobiologist wrote:
So Adaptive Biochains actually gives no advantage to justify the price and level hike?

So far yes.

And they don't really affect the level of the biochains. near as i can figure they either have no effect or set the minimum level at 3 rather than adjusting the level.


Yeah, it's only a 'level hike' for level 1 PCs.

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