Origins Amper Adept Tuber Meta
Beckett CeeCee Angus Trudy Sarge
Tubers are the best Origin to play because they get strong natural advantages with no downside, can be just as skilled as an Adept, and if they want can get just as boosted up as an Amper. Its all about options baby.
Tubers, short for "Tube Baby", are genetically modified human beings. Their parents went to a fertility clinic where sperm and ovum were collected, genetically modified, and inserted into the mother's womb invitro.
However, eugenics is still more of an art than an absolute science and there are no guarantees.
While the geneticists can "predispose" a person to certain traits they don't have total control over who gets what.
Each Tuber has a unique Tuber Package that can grant them greatly improved statistics and abilities.
Of primary note, Characteristic bonuses gained via a Tuber Package increase Normal Characteristic Maxima for that Tuber, allowing them to be measurably superior to mainstream humanity in various ways.
The Tuber Package is discussed in detail below.
The focus of Tubers is on being innately advantaged via manipulated genetics. Raw Characteristics and Talents, plus the occasional semi-superhuman ability are their primary intended focus. Tubers can also be excetionally skilled in one or two areas, as represented by Super Skills.
The primary starting bonus for being a Tuber is that they are genetically enhanced humans and have a special Tuber Package applied to them at character creation. Tuber Packages vary greatly, but each has the potential for unusual, exceptional, and even amazing abilities that are not otherwise attainable. Furthermore, any Characteristic increases granted by a Tuber Package are not affected by Normal Characteristics Maxima allowing individual Tubers the potential for vast physical and mental capabilities.
Some "distilled" Tubers are extremely advantaged in narrow areas while others are more broadly capable, and others are not as noticeably advantaged. Lucky Tubers are among the most exceptional specimens of humanity on the planet and they can be a glorious site to behold in action.
However to keep Tubers from being a no-brainer choice for each character, a Player must commit a specific number of points toward playing a Tuber character up front, with a minimum and maximum buy in, and then all the abilities in their personalized Tuber Package are randomly generated. Thus while a Tuber has some natural advantages, they are indiscriminately determined and the character will have fewer points left over to spend on their professional abilities. These restrictions are explained in detail below.
The abilities each Tuber gains are completely random. The provided default Tuber Package Randomizer deals with this for you. Simply click the link and follow the directions to generate a random Package of your own.
A player may not alter a Tuber Package in any way. A GM may opt to modify a Tuber Package if they see fit, or reject a particular Tuber Package out of hand if they feel that it is too advantaged or too weak or otherwise inappropriate to their campaign, of course.
Tuber abilities consist of a series of Genetic Enhancements costing ten (10) points each. A Tuber must have at least three (3) Genetic Enhancements. Thus the default Tuber Package costs 30 Character Points and grants three (3) rolls on the Genetic Enhancement charts.
Players have the option to pay ten (10) extra character points each for extra rolls on the randomized charts, for up to ten (10) total rolls for a total cost of 100 Character Points.
The benefits of all Tuber Package slots stack where applicable.
There are ways to extend / alter this randomized process if a GM prefers.
The provided Tuber randomizer includes the concept of "Phenotypes" within the Tuber population, defined as: Extra Smart, Extra Strong, Extra Rugged, Extra Quick, Extra Capable, Extra Perceptive, Extra Personable, Extra Evolved, Extra Lucky, Extra Adaptable, Extra Enhanced, and Esper.
Using the default randomizer such Tubers represent a small percentage of Tubers. However a GM might take a different approach and redefine the Phenotypes as being the sum total of the Tuber population and either randomizing them (ignoring the default randomizer altogether), or even just allow players to choose the Phenotype they want and click the provided links to generate their semi-random Package.
The provided Tuber randomizer uses a branching logic / treeing approach and has built in complex probability controls. The odds of getting any particular slot, or combination of slots is thus irregular and not entirely statistically predictable.
A GM could opt to make their own alternate list and follow some other mechanism of randomization, such as the typical table / percentage approach used in many RPG's.
Thus if a Package grants several bonuses to the same Characteristic they add together. The more slots a player opts to buy, the more likely they will benefit from stacked slots and other synergies.
As an added enticement for going all in, there is a 10% chance built into the Tuber Package Randomizer to generate a special "Phenotype" Package for Tubers with ten (10) slots; these Phenotype Packages are particularly distilled and are mildly superhuman in their capabilities, rivaling Metas in some ways.
The player must commit all of the points for their Tuber Package prior to rolling for any of their abilities, and all decisions and rolls are final.
Tubers can have "Super Skills", special Talents that represent unusual, cinematic, and otherwise exceptional abilities over and above what is possible by the mainstream. Many Super Skills are built as Powers (typically with the Required Skill Roll Limitation), but the Special Effect of the ability is that it is the result of a trained ability, or in the case of Tubers perhaps an ability they are innately good at due to their genetic advantages, rather than an actual superhuman ability.
Combat Luck and Deadly Blow are considered Super Skills (per the Campaign Assumptions).
Tubers can have up to one (1) Super Skill per 150 character points, rounded in their favor.
Super Skills always require GM approval.
It is important that Super Skills be depicted in a "Cinematic Realism" fashion and not as super powers.
Tubers can start with BodyTech, but in addition to paying character points they must also pay the going market rate for them out of their starting funds.
However, common sense applies as some abilities a Tuber gains from their Package may preclude certain types of BodyTech. For instance, a Tuber with Aural Acuity (Targeting w/ Hearing) would lose such an ability if they took CyberEars, since that entails taking Physical Limitation: Deaf which would nullify their hearing.
A key consideration is that BodyTech makes normal humans better, but Tubers are already better in many ways; sometimes substantially so. Its entirely possible that they are naturally better in certain areas than BodyTech would allow a normal person to be even after augmentation, and thus the Tuber themselves gain little to no benefit from such BodyTech.
Generally speaking PharmiTech and Biofeedback Training are useful for Tubers, and BioWare usually is, but Cybernetics require some judgement and consideration of the nature of an individual Tuber. GM's and players should use their best judgement.
PharmiTech can be a particularly potent means to power for physically oriented Tubers, and a GM may want to exercise some judgement in this area.
As a flavor guideline that has no game effect, it is common for Tubers to focus more on Characteristics and natural abilities than on learned Skills, but ultimately that is a decision that is completely up to the player.
However, for the value of an individual Tuber's Package to be realized a Player must be flexible in their character design and play into any synergies made possible by the random abilities generated for their Package.
For instance, to fully realize the advantage of a boosted Characteristic from their Tuber Package, a Player should buy the Characteristic up to its Maxima level.
For GM's that want more "racial" diversity, the Tuber Origin can be replaced or expanded to serve as a gateway for alternate "Race" Packages. This could be used for parallels to "meta races" such as Trolls and Dwarves (if going for a Shadowrun approach), or human variants genetically engineered for some purpose such as to survive in some extreme environment.
Tubers are engineered pre-conception. If the GM allows genetic science to be more advanced, characters could instead be modified as adults via gene therapy. This is substantially higher tech than the default setting assumptions, but a GM could certainly opt to go this route.
Personally, I would treat such augmentations as another form of BodyTech, but a case could be made to make it an Origin as well (perhaps only some people are candidates for such procedures, and also starting bonuses could help offset costs similar to the Amper Origin).
This could also be used to allow "Furries", i.e. people that have been genespliced with animal DNA to make cat-people and so forth.
If the GM wants to advance the setting a bit they can decide that humanity is in contact with one or more Alien species, and might allow them as playable characters. This would certainly represent an Origin, and a Race Package should certainly be involved for each Alien race.
If the GM wants to advance the setting's technology beyond the default assumptions, they can allow for artificially created biological entities, similar to the Replicants of Blade Runner and other synthetic humanoids of other scifi source material.
The Tuber model of genetic superiority serves as a very strong parrallel for this (and in fact can be used as is with just a name change), though a GM might prefer for such Synthoids to be less random. If the GM is including Artifical Intelligence in their version of the setting, then Androids are also possible, but the basic idea remains the same for both.
Since the Characteristic bonuses from their Tuber Package are not affected by NCM, this essentially represents a kind of point break for the character and if leveraged can result in a very powerful character.