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Black Market cybernetics
Make Rippers Great Again

So I've been away from Sindome for some time, and I've noticed a lot of things revamped and added. One thing that I notice in the game is most if not all cybernetics are available through licensed clinics and hospitals and the ripper option is pretty much "Sure if I have it or you bring it".

My Idea is the creation of a few cyberware modifications or implants that are deemed highly illegal and wouldn't be available in the normal clinics or hospitals, and also make it an option for aspiring Rippers to buy items so they can set up a seedy make shift ripper OR in their apartment (Like a medical table with straps, anesthetic, etc) Rippers would also have to go to a fixer source to acquire the black market warez and if caught get F'd in the A legally.

Some ideas for cyber itself include:

Cyberhand Derringers; Great incase you run out of ammo, Jam, etc or wish to not get caught carrying a gun around. Decide on a calibre and when the user makes a fist, aims it, pushes his finger into the palm hard enough it fires using pistol skill.

Cyberhand retractable blade; same concept and simmilar to nails only uses long blade skill.

Drug injectors: Perhaps let it be fillable with a few shots of your favorite combat stim so you can use them without losing a turn or risk being disarmed?

integrated nano/cyber detectors: Perhaps a cyber eye mod that acts the same as the in game detecors?

Just trying to toss around some ideas, back alley med school drop out illegal ripper docs are cool. If any of this already exists please let me know, k tnx bai

Yesssss +1

Cerb mentioned wanting to implement drug autoinjectors as a module for cyberlimbs very recently. Also I think at the town hall it was pointed out that one reason there are no back alley cybernetics is because no one is playing a back alley cyberdoc. To my knowledge there's no mechanical limitation forcing people to use legit avenues for any cyberware, they just have to get creative.

As for the arm blade, it'd be cool and themely but Nailz fill a very specific niche that is part of what makes short blade unique and it would be a shame to see long blade get a mechanically equivalent weapon. So like, maybe if it was sort of worse than Nailz or something. A secret sword, not a secret best sword.

It could also require a cyberlimb and therefore play into the cyberlimbs vs nanogenics idea. Same with the derringer thing.

Would it be a stretch to say though thast nobody is playing a back alley ripper because some of these cooler aspects to it don't exist? As far as I remember, you had to be in a certain place to do any operations. I think the "If you build it they will come" thing might play a role in that...

Oh, and for Petty people;

Suicide bomb: explosive wired to your heart beat, so when your heart stops, you go kaboom! Unable to corpse clone but would do maybe frag grenade damage to everyone in the room?

The short reason for no one playing a back alley cyberdoc is it's harder and less rewarding than being a legit doctor, which kind of disincentivices it in the first place. Why break the law if it's just going to make your life harder and less profitable?

The legit docs get their stuff directly from the source, and the only way to get it cheaper, assuming you don't have some amazing criminal fixer ties, is to kill people and rip their chrome out. Of course, being a doctor means you're dedicating ue to that and not fighting, yada yada (Of course, you can get an ally). It's possible by all means, just very very hard and barely any more profitable than the already competitive legit doctors.

Also, killing people/dead people's cybernetics as your main source of chrome is going to make you enemies with a lot of people very, very quickly. But I'd love to see more people attempt the archetype, it's real good fun :)

Source: Played a ripper doc pc for 2 years.

tl;dr Awesome ideas, I'd love to have them, main issue is few people will play a black market cyberneticist when it's easier and more lucrative to be a lawful one.

Exactly, JWimpeney! Something like this could only be available to the seedy underground docs becuase you are exactly right, in it's current state it's simply not worth it which is why nobody is doing it, in my opinion.

Well, the big issue we're seeing here is where's this illegal tech coming from? You either give the aforementioned illegal fixers even more power in controlling it, or (much more to my liking) you have cyberdocs able to craft their own stuff a la how the explosives system works.

Honestly ripper doc would actually be played a ton more if you needed a doctor to remove (some?) cyberware from a corpse. How you can remove a microchip from someone's brain or a tiny inner ear implant without breaking it with no experience in cybermedicine still astounds me lol.

In conclusion you have cool ideas, but I think the system has bigger issues to fix before we can add your fun stuff, sadly.

Hey, that's another great talking point that I didn't even consider...cyberware removal! You're exactly right. All you need to do in game currently is have a cooler, snuff the guy or girl, and take their shit and run.

As far as the source; there are plenty of shadowy factions in the game that can handle that, and it would boost income and rp to their fixers, assuming we are talking about fixers in the manner of not some guy that can haggle good at the market.

I don't think the "We have better things to do" thing is worth not discussing and exploring ideas though becuase discussion usually leads to more or better ideas and allows the GM's admins to see/hear something they may also like and want to implement but just didn't think about it or didn't know the playerbase actually wanted it as priority. I think we all know the staff and players aren't sitting there twiddling their thumbs, they're doing good shit these days and a ton of it!

Yeah, my point was said shadowy factions hold a pretty massive monopoly on lots of produce, adding the cyberware market to their belt would make them even more powerful, although it's obviously subjective as to whether they're too op or not.

But yeah, you're right, you've had a cool idea, I shouldn't dump on it too much :)

"As for the arm blade, it'd be cool and themely but Nailz fill a very specific niche that is part of what makes short blade unique and it would be a shame to see long blade get a mechanically equivalent weapon. So like, maybe if it was sort of worse than Nailz or something. A secret sword, not a secret best sword.

It could also require a cyberlimb and therefore play into the cyberlimbs vs nanogenics idea. Same with the derringer thing"

I feel like I totally skipped over this too....My apologies, my origional thought should have been more clear on that...

These shouldn't be stand alone cyberware pieces, but rather modifications to existing cyberware, IE No derringer or retractable arm blade without the cyberlimb to support it.

I don't -think- you need to be in a specific place to do surgery, you just need a bunch of extremely expensive equipment that you get for free if you're in a legit clinic and even discounting all of that, certain factors mean installing most cyberware outside of a clinic is automatically going to be more expensive than doing it inside of one. There's literally no reason to go to a PC ripper doc unless you are public enemy #1 both topside and in the Mix, and that's an extremely rare and temporary circumstance. Also, getting your hands on that equipment illegally is a terrible pain in the ass and I don't know of a way you're expected to do it by design, which means it takes a ton of creativity, luck, and skill to even get started, much more than is expected of other archetypes.

From what I've seen there is plenty of black market cyberware floating around, especially now that people are actually murdering higher-powered/richer characters again. Most people buy it up and take it in to legit docs to have it installed. I don't think curtailing this part of the process would help, as it'd still be a cheaper proposition in most cases to buy a new part and have it legitimately installed than it would to have a ripper doc put in your crusty murderware for you. Legit surgeons charge fees at their own discretion (and make zero-effort shitloads of money doing so), ripper docs have unavoidable expenses, face mountains of danger, and don't collect a weekly paycheck for what they do.

It seem like the question is, how do we incentivize and support rippers in a player economy that doesn't?

To which the staff will most likely reply, Am I so out of touch?

And most likely conclude, No, it's the players who are wrong.

I haven't seen a Ripper Doc worth there sod in...probably four years. Does that mean it's impossible to pull of? I'm not sure.

I think a ripper doc automated support structure ala ripped organs for chy that played against the weekly cap could be interesting but only if it allied said ripper-docs with muscle to facility murder and RP. Otherwise, it's just a lot of code for a not-so-lofty alternative to running crates. Also, that only serves as a way to incubate ripper-docs. In order for them to prosper, they need to be able to provide a litany of services without GM-aide using possibly illegally modified equipment that every clinic under the sun possesses.

If you agree, What are those services?

Murdering people for automated organ money is a bad, bad idea that encourages the wrong kind of PVP. Also, what's with the sassy tone toward staff?

I can be as sassy as I want to be - staff can speak up for themselves if I offend. It's the bitch board. Ease up, quick draw mcgraw.

Is automated organ money bad? What if the pay-out is relational to UE expenditure of the corpse and we encourage people to take-on oldbies?

That doesn't make IC sense. High UE characters aren't necessarily healthier and it's still the wrong kind of PvP.

Killing someone because they made eyes at your girl, because they have a shiny cybereye and are too dumb to wear shades, because they are in a rival gang, or because they're corporate and you ain't? A+. All of this had RP around it and mattered.

Killing eight randos per week every week to fill your automated income quota? That's just boring hack & slash.

Reefer is a good dude and knows the system. We were both GM's at one point in our time here. I think he knows the digs.

As far as coded area's you have to do surgery in, unless it has changed, and it very well could have, you had to be in a room that met certain requirements (Ie you can't do surgery in the bathroom of the drome)

I'm not pushing strictly my idea here, I think Reefer gets that too, it's more of a , how do we make ripper docs in the mix great again? I personally think highly illegal black market cyberware that would get any legit clinic shut down for even possessing it is a decent start. What I don't think the correct attitude to approaching new avenues of bringing light to a pretty dead archtype is saying "There's no reason to do it because the system that is in place makes it not wise to do". That's very self defeating way to look at anything, really.

Since when is killing anyone random hack & slash? You kill anyone whether it's a NPC or PC there are repercussions. Maybe you start on park dogs and you have to kill eight of them because payment of dog parts only last a month in a human. Then you hire a solo to take on a ganger for spare partsbut things go bad and there friend come back to find you. Worse off, the dumb solo shot right through his liver which is what you were looking for to begin with.

Any other suggestion for how we make being a ripper meaningful and profitable?

My memory is a bit hazy too because I GMed from about 2010ish -2012ish pretty heavily, then took a break. I think the OR equipment was the actual need to do the operations and at the time they were only in hospitals. If they are(or were) made available to obtain to install and someone could open up their own chop shop, there is a huge potential for RP in that. Maybe Joe Ripper links up with The potato mafia and gets indebted to them for purchasing the items for his new ripper clinic, insuring their guys are to the front of the line? I don't think you have to be PEN1 to need a ripper. A solo may need all those modifications to be the best damn solo on the street. Removing cyberware should require a doctor, as previously mentioned, so that you can't just do rough alleyway surgery after you murder joe blow by typing "take all from corpse". If you bring a corpse to a legit clinic and say "Hey guys, this dude is dead and said I could have his warez, mind installing?" then they should call the WJF on your ass, where as a ripper simply states his price and gets to work. There really is alot that can be explored here that wouldn't really effect any corporate or licensed cyberware professionals.

Another interesting avenue to explore, would back alley cyberware clinics run the risk of getting you disease such as ebola or the other coded ones that don't get much circulation? Maybe some other dirty unsanitized effects?

It is pathetically easy to silently murder swarms of immies and non-combat characters without ever getting caught unless a GM gets tired of it and has to take time out of their busy day to send NPCs to stomp you out. Automated income is already pretty silly and I don't think the game needs more sources of it.

The number one way to put more ripper docs in the game would be to give people in these roles better access to tools and nanogenics without forcing them to rely on licenses or locking them to direct purchase from corporate vendors. I'm not sure if you need an operating table but IMO you really shouldn't as long as the other necessary conditions are met (bonus points if this makes it harder or introduces a chance of infecting the patient, diseases and bio tech are both underutilized).

It's a role that requires a ton of hustle and it shouldn't be something a new character can slot into right away. Spend some time as an EMT, a thug, a scientist, or whatevever else until you have the skills and connections to make it happen. Murdering dogs for six weeks to train up your ripper doc skills is silly.

I'm going to play the devil's advocate regarding one of the suggestions that has been floating around, and say that because there are no active ripperdoc player characters, it makes no sense forcing us to procure one to steal chrome (a very important aspect of combat aftermath) from the corpse of our victims. No legal corporate doctor is going to accept a blood stained Mixer hauling a corpse to have its chrome removed. And at the same end of the spectrum, ripperdocs won't be always active and considering that chrome rots over time, it seems slightly unthemely to have to throw your chrome away because the single ripperdoc PC (or no PC at all) wasn't available. Of course there are NPCs for this circumstances but honestly I don't feel like we're doing the game a favor by adding this sudden huge workload to staff by having to puppet ripperdocs removing chrome from a corpse. And unless you don't know what you're talking about, you'd agree that stealing chrome from corpses happens all the time and is a major motivator behind combat.

I'm not saying it's a bad idea, I'm saying first you should make playing a ripperdoc easier before forcing the players to procure characters that don't exist in order to progress with their plots.

Instead we need to understand why there are no ripperdoc characters. So I'm going to lay out some common misconceptions according to my interpretation of the situation.

1) "No characters to do it" -- bullshit, characters have been constantly forced out of their comfy jobs in gold and green. However some players simply refuse to become a ripperdoc in the underbelly of society. It's not their playstyle. I would welcome the staff try to push some characters in this direction in more obvious ways.

2) "Setting up your own clinic is too expensive, no player has 350k to dump into ultra expensive gear" -- true but inconsequential and irrelevant. There are IC ways you can be a ripperdoc without paying a single chy. There's a very stablished, old and popular character in the game that could take your character as their mentor and let you use their clinic for a cut. Why aren't you guys pursuing this venue? Instead of bitching how expensive everything is? By design, setting up your own clinic is intended only for oldbies or corporates. When you want to start your own business you first start by working for somebody else, saving flash, learning, growing. The GMs will ALWAYS support your plots and your goals as long as you RP for it. RP for it doesn't mean slaving it away to buy each part of a clinic one by one. It means making the right contacts and earning the right favors.

With this being said I would like some of jwimpeney's and Grizzly666's suggestions to begin promoting the archetype:

1) Give more power to acquire chrome and nanos via illegal black market ways. This can be in the form of a NPC shop in one of the seediest, most illegal, shadiest places in the City (rings a bell?) or a vending machine or whatever, those would be naturally cheaper than buying it at the original corpie vendor. However this NPC must only sell to a certain list of players, i.e. certain types of fixers, or certain type of characters. If you don't like this just buy it from a fixer.

2) New type of illegal chrome would be awesome for the long term, given how difficult it is to add new types of chrome that's not just nanogenics but I totally love it and those would be obviously illegal and blatant in their appearance but also carry certain disadvantages. Higher PDS penalty points, upkeep, things like that.

Well said, Villa, thanks for your input!

Chrome chopped out of a body via get all could still have its bioconnectors stuck to meaty bits, and could require someone reasonably skilled at bio tech to prep it for install in a new patient. This lets non-rippers collect chrome, but they still need someone to make it usable for them.

A black market tool for reclaiming nanos from a (very fresh) corpse could be introduced. Bonus points if it gets blood fucking everywhere.

I like the idea of jury-rigging tools, but it's probably easier if people seek IC solutions via existing means as Villa mentioned.

Vera, your idea seems like a decent middle ground between giving combat characters the ability to steal and store chrome, and giving them the need to procure a ripperdoc. It wouldn't be too cumbersome on the GMs if they had automatic tools to "cleanse" chrome while also introducing a new layer of complexity for uprising surgeon characters. This might require a bit more code but I believe (and I hope I'm not wrong) some of the current suggestions can be implemented with the current tools the staff has at their disposal.

Legit clinics might also be able to use DNA fingerprinting to check if the bloody cooler full of gibs and 'ware you dragged in with a sob story about your last sleeve is actually a match for you.

I don't think any topside clinics should ever install used chrome, even if you can prove it used to be yours. They are about making money - largely from rich people. Why wouldn't they be all like, "Sorry, would have to send your chrome to an authorized SK vendor to verify it's integrity. And honestly, after paying for the check it's probably just cheaper and safer to install fresh chrome. Faster too. We have new XXX right here. No need to wait for the check." Maybe it's bull but it's the kind of money making, cover your own ass lie that places like that would stick with. And I could see SK pushing this with all their might - again for the money.

Maybe a sob story could work in Red sector but only if you have a relationship with the doc as, should they get caught, they should face consequences. And I doubt any NPC docs in Red Sector would be willing to risk their asses for you. Installing used chrome, in my opinion, should primarily be in the realm of ripper docs. And I doubt they'd care if it really was yours or not.

I also really like Vera's suggestion about having chrome harvested from a corpse be unusable until it is cleaned up and prepared for reinstallation. It seems a great middle ground. Another potential middle ground option would be that the degradation timer on chrome doesn't start until it is removed from the corpse or the corpse had degraded to a bad enough state. This would give you time to find someone to remove the chrome safely.

I also don't think that it would be a bad thing if chrome is much harder to harvest then it currently is. Right now, should you get any kind of visible chrome, you are basically painting a target on your back as everyone knows that, once dead, that chrome is easily harvested and reused. Compare this to nanos. As it stands, no one will kill you to get your nanos because they cant. So they are, in some ways, a safer investment.

I think that if things gown a path where it is usually chrome vs nanos then this disparity should be looked at. Perhaps chrome should be far cheaper than nanos, have a far greater effect or be harder to remove/resale then it is right now. Perhaps some kind of nano extractor should be introduced as Vera suggested that makes recovering nanos just easy and profitable as recovering and reselling chrome is. Not sure what the best solution is. Heck maybe things are the way they are now for reasons I don't understand!

I like a lot of the ideas I'm seeing here. The key element is to provide a reliable independent source for ripper docs to get their chrome/nanos from (as Villa mentioned) because I think that's why no one plays the role. You could go mentor with an established NPC like Villa said, you can get topsiders selling their used chrome on the cheap to fixers by following Grey0's suggestion of having topside clinics only install new chrome, you could have a doc required to clean the chrome as Vera suggests, but unless the client and the doc both know that someone can call them up, ask them for a hemo injection or a cyber eye and bam, they can get it, I don't think the archetype will have legs.

As far as making it harder to recover chrome from a body without a ripper doc, let's think about how that would play out. It would certainly disincentivize killing someone for their chrome, since now you either need to bring a ripper with you, have a skillsoft for it, or take the body somewhere. All of that would actually create more RP, it would make things harder and less profitable for the killer (which we don't necessarily want) but assuming that ripper docs exist in sufficient supply and you go to one, you've now created an evidence trail, since someone else knows about the murder. This creates dilemmas: does the ripper keep mum, or try and sell the info? Does the killer ace them to avoid the risk? Or, does the killer use a proxy/runner/face to take the body to the ripper, etc. Round and round.

I like the idea because it ads texture and complexity to the crime. However, we'd have to realize it might hurt some of the more interesting characters in the game, like solos, for whom grabbing chrome easily adds additional income, and most solos need income to offset what they lose when they inevitably die.

To touch on something Vera said earlier, I don't think anyone would go around just murdering immies for their body-parts, for the same reason that no one goes around murdering immies for anything else. People are able to draw an OOC line about what's acceptable behavior, and if they're not, staff are there to remind them via horrible IC consequences. Most immy murder occurs via other immies, IMO, or horrible decision making. Having said all that, knocking an immy unconscious, dragging them off somewhere and cutting out their kidney? Think what an amazing experience that'd be for the person it happens to, their need for revenge, etc. That'd be the whole payoff of pushing ripper docs, for me, is like, damn, someone just stole your internal organs, bro.

There used to be, or is floating around somewhere, some SD short stories or something to that effect where one was about a guy, posing as an "immigrant greeter" and led the immigrant to a back alley and pulled a shotgun on him and his buddy knocked him out with the intention of stealing his SIC chip (It being fresh without a criminal record) and switching it out with his SIC chip (An extensive criminal record).

There is so much potential for ripper docs to make fun shit like that happen. Sure, that scenario may drive off a fresh and new player, but it might also make a fresh and new player who is really down with the RP and theme of SD to be like "Oh snap".

As far as wanton violence against immigrants, I don't think that was the suggestion, and as stated Immigrant on immigrant violence or immigrants attempting to wrestle Mp-11's out of NPC's hands is the leading cause of death amongst immigrants, not really other players who have been playing a minute and get the flow of the game. I don't see how this may change that.

As far as kidney harvesting goes though, that is a very interesting Idea that could also be explored. Would the kidneys serve some purpose? Or would it be strictly RP based and the "payer" just disposes of them afterwards? Would that open up the human organ black market that you have to worry about when you drink too much in mexico? A lot of avenues to this!

”No legal corporate doctor is going to accept a blood stained Mixer hauling a corpse to have its chrome removed.”

I’m just here to say, as someone who has done the hell out of that specific role, that any legal corporate doctor who is NOT willing to do sketchy-as-fuck shit for extra money is winding up much less rich, connected and influential than themely character ambitions and tactics call for.

That’s from the in-character point of view. From the out-of-character point of view, it tripled the volume and tripled the thrill of RP I got involved with, too. And to me, that’s what playing Sindome to win is about. The only reason it’s about ICly pursuing money, reputation and power is because of the OOC rewards of playing that way.

Source: former legal corporate cyberdoc who tripled my IC income by doing work beyond the riskless wait-for-people-to-save-their-allowance-and-then-come-order-off-the-price-list approach.

Another chrome idea brought about by someone suggesting that seeing who is sniping at you is a skill check...

The Boomerang! A little history on these...they already exist in practical form. We used the first models in Afghanistan, they were attached to a vehicle and when shot at, a robotic voice would come across the cab of the vehicle and say some shit like "Shot, north, 300 meters". It was calibrated based on a number of things that can detect where a bullet came from and when it did work it was usually accurate. This probably wouldn't be a high demand ware, but a cool and novel one. 80 years in the future to be perfected, it could be a tiny antenna that sticks out above your ear and lets you know on your heads up display as to where the shot came from as well as calibre.

Exmaple: A bullet whizzez by your head with a loud *snap*. Your Heads up display displays the following message : 9mm, Roof, New Rose"

Also to add: Experimental Cybernetics- why not introduce them through shady means?

Maybe SK developed Muscle Grafts II but couldn't release it until the bugs were worked out (slight chance or getting Aids II/Decrease in Random Stat/ Nothing at all happening) and some cases of the experimental nano had been stolen and ended up in your friendly neighborhood rippers alley way clinic who has no qualms about injecting it into you?

Another thing I am personally a fan of is people who go full cyborg. PDS be damned, load yourself down with chrome until you feel like the Terminator. More chrome=this possible. Also has a need for Cyborg specific weapons (Weapons that are so heavy they require cyberarms, etc to operate. For example: )

More chromez!

More Chrome idea's:

GPS TRACKER- Functions like a tracking beacon but only you can't remove it! Could be useful for finding your corpse after you re-clone (For a variety of reasons) Or it could be used by corporations/WJF/ FETISH FREAKS to track their people at a moments notice.

Internal radio: Send and receive transmissions without needing a radio. Also could be used after a kidnapping and forced install in conjunction with a GPS tracker and cortex bomb to make sure your meat puppet does what you want!

Scrambler - Stops cyberware scanners from getting a read on you. Mind your fucking business chummer!

foreskin watch: This is obviously a joke, but about as useful as the current skinwatch :D

It's fore o'clock, chummer.

Some kind of finger-lighter/integrated flarelighter pretty please!.

An integrated terminal or eye addon for grid/feed overlay would be nice.

Integrated toolkits, like having a rotary arm that has mechanics, electronics or handyman's tools installed in them. These would be pretty popular if they were cheap, I think.