What do you put in your Nanocyte Gear Array?


Advice


Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I’ve built two Nanocytes, both still relatively low level, and keep struggling with what to put into their gear array.

I’ve read through Kremlin K.O.A.’s Nanocyte Handbook, but thought they could have given more advice on the gear arrays.

My two Nanocytes are as follows:

Xeb, Pahtra former lab experiment and iconic comedian / ventriloquist.
Level 5
Major forms (3): Vocal Modulator, Pulse Staccato Rifle, Thruster Heels
Minor forms (5): Admiral Lizard (his ventriloquist’s dummy), Holoskin, Portable Light Beacon, 800’ Adamantine Alloy cable line, Toolkit (Akinzi Resources grifter’s kit)

Cydney, Verthani Cyberborn cybernetic researcher
Level 6
Major forms (4): High-Density Data Jack, Voice Amplifier, Thruster Heels, Static Arc Rifle
Minor forms (6): Adamantine Alloy Cable Line, Chemlyzer, Grenade Scrambler Mk 2, Portable Gangway, Spotlight Portable Light, Subdermal Extractor

——

I’ve tried to make sure these are items that aren’t needed when they would want their Sheath array. When they get to level 7 for the secondary array, I plan to have some low level items specifically to use when the nanite primary array is something other than the Gear array.

Both of my Nanocytes have taken the Surgical Host knack so they don’t need a MedKit. One of them took the Versatile Nanites in order to get a bonus on Medicine checks when in Sheath array. This combination seems pretty effective.

So, what do you have in your gear array?

Second Seekers (Jadnura)

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Pathfinder Starfinder Society Subscriber

When choosing gear array choices, I opted for those things that are situationally very useful, but don't come up too often, as well as "off-weapons" to complement whatever my main weapon happened to be at that level (so, a weapon targetting a different AC, or with a different damage type, or that has a neat feature or does non-lethal damage, etc.) My nanocytes tended to not be "gear array as your main weapon" builds, and so their nanites are probably going to be doing something already during a fight; so I tried to shy away from "in-combat" items (other than those off-weapons.)

Here's what I had, at levels 1, 4, and 8:
Level 1 Major:Tactical Numbing BeamStandard Longsword
Level 1 Minor:Medkit (Basic)Engineering ToolkitBinder Restraints

Level 4 Major:Emotional Regulator, BasicBlindmark Rifle, Thunderstrike Ice Carbine, Subzero
Level 4 Minor:Dermal StaplerTetrad Certified Translator Radiation SweeperEngineering Tool KitTent, Mobile Hotelier

Level 8 Major:Charge Emitter, Impulse Dermal Plating Mk 2Reactive EcholocatorsWide-Spectrum Ocular Implants
Level 8 Minor:AutoclawMedical Lab (only via Surgical Host Knack) ● Electroviscous CloakRelaxuDermal StaplerEngineering Tool KitTent, Mobile Hotelier


Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

The Binder Restraints and Radiation Sweeper look like items I will want to keep in mind for next time I level. They are both rather situational and something that would generally come up out of combat.

I am sort of surprised that you put the Dermal Plating augmentation in your Gear Array, it is something that would only be used in combat. On the other hand, this is your Level 8 array so you can have two arrays active at once.

Thanks for sharing!


Maze Core Polyclub with small arm of your choice
Two weapons taking only one Major Form ;)

However, my real answer would be more than just one item per array... Seriously, I'd love to receive a feat that allow a Nanocyte to form 1 item/4 levels at the same levels in exchange of not using another gear array. What happened to "becoming a living and walking Swiss Army Knife" ?

If I could form more than one item per single array, I could get anothe rfeat that allows a Nanocyte to form an Armor Upgrade that counts as TWO Major Forms.


Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

If you are high enough level, you can already make more than one item from your gear array. It is one item per array, but at sufficient level you can have more than one gear or cloud array active at the same time.

—-

MANIFOLD ARRAY (EX) 7th Level

With your improved command of your nanites, you split them into multiple arrays: a more potent primary array and a weaker secondary array. Your primary array calculates its effects using your full nanocyte level, whereas your secondary array calculates its effects using your nanocyte level – 4. You can create and sustain multiple clouds or pieces of gear simultaneously, though you can sustain only a single sheath array at a time. You must use separate actions to direct your nanites into each array.

——

So at 7th level you could bring out two weapons, one of item level 7 or less and the other of item level 3 or less. If you had the hands for it and took the Split Manifestation knack, you could have up to four items (technically two pairs) at the same time.

The item levels are far lower than what you requested, but it doesn’t take any rules changes to do it.


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You are still limited to ONE piece of equipment per Gear Array, and what's problematic is that the item level system is actually hampering everything. The Cloud and Sheath Arrays are just "weaker" versions, but for the Gear Array it it is tied to your Forms.

Quote:
At 15th level, you can split your array into three forms simultaneously: a primary form using your full level to calculate its effects, a secondary form using your level – 4, and a tertiary form using your level – 8.

This means that if I want THREE Gear Arrays, one item can be up to level 15, the second has to be up to level 11 and the third up to level 7 maximum. If all my Forms are upgraded around level 15, I'm screwed. Furthermore, not every item follows a Gear Array's level scaling. It just becomes a huge mess. Just give me a feat that allows me to shape more than one form per array and you'll probably alleviate one of the biggest issues with the class.


Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

At level 15, you are going to have 6 major and 10 minor forms without taking any knacks to increase it. Keep two of those at appropriate levels so you can use them.

If all your forms are upgraded around level 15 when you just got to that level, something is wrong,

Quote:
When you gain a nanocyte level, you can replace one of your major forms with a new major form and one of your minor forms with a new minor form.

At level 15, you will have a maximum of one major and one minor form of level 15. If you have both of those, the next highest level item is going to be 13 because you didn’t gain any forms and in order to upgrade to 15 it had to have been 14.

That said, it is certainly possible to get into a situation where you don’t have any forms of low enough level to use in a third gear array. Don’t do that. There are some nice things at item level 7 or lower, keep one or two in your minor forms and decide if you would ever want to use that with a major form.

——

This discussion has reminded me that I need to start noting item levels on my gear array.


Point is that both the Cloud and Sheath Arrays simply get stronger/better as you level up, but the Gear Array does not, at all. Sure, you can upgrade your forms, but the array itself does not change as you level up.

The Cloud and Sheath Arrays increase in strength at 3rd, 7th, 11th, 15th and 19th. The Gear Array does not.


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Pathfinder Starfinder Maps, Starfinder Roleplaying Game Subscriber

I disagree. Having 10 free items of double-digit item level to select from is certainly better than only having three level 1 items to choose from.

In any case, it would be good to hear from others what sort of things they found to be useful in their gear arrays.


Well I don't really have an issue with the Gear array as is since it is something which does improve every level if you let it, as in the gear upgrades and the number of gear you could generate also upgrades every few levels.
The cloud basically just gets bigger as it upgrades unless I spend a resource. It's improvements as you level are rather mild compared to a damage increase every few levels assuming you keep 1 weapon at a decent level.
Sheath array is a small boost to a couple skills and Reflex. Again, with a resource spend to pain some HP.
Personally I think its funny that a jump of +1 to 3 things is perfectly fine but generating an extra dice of damage over the course of a few levels isn't.
Expecting the Gear array to give you more then 1 bit of gear at a time (Without Manifold) would be like expecting a Standard Solarian to have both Pistol and sword or the Evolutionist to have both weapon forms (Melee/ranged). If my main focus is using gear array, I get 1 free weapon at relevant level, just like a Solarian (Numbers may vary).


Wesrolter wrote:
Expecting the Gear array to give you more then 1 bit of gear at a time (Without Manifold) would be like expecting a Standard Solarian to have both Pistol and sword or the Evolutionist to have both weapon forms (Melee/ranged). If my main focus is using gear array, I get 1 free weapon at relevant level, just like a Solarian (Numbers may vary).

The main issue is that the Nanocyte may need more than just a second weapon, such as an implant that improves their combat abilities. It's like you need a custom implant that is literally Iron Man's armor in nanite form or something.

Oh, and your fully-attuned Solarian CAN have 2 manifestations at once, so there's that.

Dark Archive

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My Nanocyte focuses more on the Cloud array (with Sheath as second) and carries a Melee weapon with him. I only use my Major Gear Array to store back-up weapons with different energy types in case my bought Hammer doesn't do damage.

I have far more use for my Minor Gear Array forms though. They include the following (lvl 7 currently):

- 40 ft collapsible ladder (lvl 1)
- Magnetic Jack (lvl 1)
- Eldricarnum (lvl 4)
- Portable Gangway (lvl 5)
- Elite Hoverchair (lvl 6)
- Antigravity Belt (lvl 7)

Especially the Ladder and the Portable Gangway have been really good, because for a Nanite Surge you can place them as a swift action. The sudden mobility of my melee character (and the other melee characters) felt really good. Although I have now reached the level where everyone and their entire family flies, they were still useful during escort missions.

I also used to have a Tent (mobile hotelier), until I realized that I cannot use it for its intended purpose, for I can't sleep in it...

Nanite Array wrote:
"...The nanites maintain their array until you direct them into a different array, you fall unconscious, or you end your turn more than 10 feet from the array..."


Asleep and unconscious are different formally defined conditions and one doesn't impose the other. To be unconscious you have to "knocked out," usually from going to 0 HP.


The second form is a character choice and requires special situations (Which isn't hard to get) while a Nanocyte gets the Manifold array which gives a second item, Sheath or Cloud, without sacrificing a class ability.
As a core, Solar Manifestation is 1 item, a Gear array is 1 item. Yes there are class ways to generate a second, difference being the Nanocyte doesn't sacrifice an ability for the second.


Wesrolter wrote:

The second form is a character choice and requires special situations (Which isn't hard to get) while a Nanocyte gets the Manifold array which gives a second item, Sheath or Cloud, without sacrificing a class ability.

As a core, Solar Manifestation is 1 item, a Gear array is 1 item. Yes there are class ways to generate a second, difference being the Nanocyte doesn't sacrifice an ability for the second.

The difference is that for a Solarian, both manifestations are at the same CHARACTER level, while a Gear Array doesn't, as it's tied to the ITEM level. It's 0/-4/-8 and then 0/-2/-4 at level 19th. At level 15th (when you get a tertiary array), no Major Form item at maximum level 7th is going to be viable.

Furthermore, for a Solarian, their manifestations are for ONE purpose: melee, ranged, armor or shield. That's it. For a Major Form, it's about weapons, but also cybernetics, which are more numerous and varied. You might need specific implant and weapon combos to work well in a fight, but the item level can nerf that.

Finally, limiting the Gear Array to only ONE form is pretty dumb. It could have been 1 Major and 1 Minor, or as I hoped for, using 2 Major Forms to make a stronger item like an Armor Upgrade.


The free gear here is terrible, and such small portions.

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