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Qualities are things that describe your character. They may be skills that your character possesses, people you character knows, or things your character owns. Each quality will have a cost associated it, and you can take up to 10 at game start. You can also take up to 6 more points worth of qualities by taking negative-cost qualities to balance the cost. You can also take further negative-cost qualities, if you're into that sort of thing.

Some qualities will have prerequisites in order to take—these will be marked where appropriate. It will not be possible to take these qualities or gain them in play without having the prerequisite qualities first.

There are also some qualities which are incompatible with other qualities (usually because they represent opposite ends of a spectrum). These will also be marked where appropriate.

Qualities marked with a * may be taken multiple times.

You will be able to gain some qualities over the course of the game, either directly through your action, or as a side effect of your actions. In particular, skills will require you to take the time to learn them i.e. a major action, and will need someone who already knows how to do this, be it an NPC or another player, to teach you with a major action.

Clarification following session 1

When training others in a skill, you may train 2 people in one major action. The students must also put in a major action each.

Characters may learn more than one skill per turn (on separate actions), but may not teach a skill on the same turn that they learn it. Skills may be used in other actions on that turn (providing there is no specific reason that there would not have been time to teach the skill - e.g. you cannot learn Theft and go and steal something immediately after session ends). However, if the skill training fails for any reason, this will likely have consequences for actions where you try to use the new skill.

Skill training is not guaranteed to be safe. Skill training will take a solid couple of weeks of IC time, so if you're spreading knowledge that the guards don't want other prisoners learning, then there may be consequences. It is possible for negative qualities to hit during skill training actions, the same as any other action.

Giving details as to how you are going about the training may help to mitigate these risks, and will also let us write a more entertaining turnsheet response.

Other qualities are also obtainable in play, but there is no specific mechanism to do this.

Basic Skills

Combat (+2)

You have a basic understanding of how most weapons work and good understanding of how to handle yourself in a combat situation. Your experience is far from perfect, but you can hold your own in a prison brawl.

Creativity (+1)

Whether it's writing poetry, composing music, or creating a sculpture, you seem to have a knack for the arts. Obviously inside a prison these skills don't have much outlet, but maybe you can find a good use for your talents.

Investigation (+2)

You have the ability to notice when something is more subtly off or doesn't quite add up and to sensibly follow clues. Whether you are doing a thorough dissection of a single room or event, or coming to a snap conclusion, this will help you avoid any obvious red herrings and keep you on the right track. You know how to use investigative tools such as forensic kits where available, and have a good idea of how to structure an enquiry to good effect.

Medicine (+2)

You have studied and practised medicine. You understand the spectrum of injuries and a plethora of methods to maim and incapacitate. This quality enables you to heal physical wounds of all levels with a major action, provided that you have any requisite equipment or supplies. Healing wounds requires a major action from the medic and a minor action from the person being healed.

Planning (+1)

You are able to come up with sensible plans for more complex undertakings and foresee potential problems beyond what the average person could do. Putting them into practice is another matter, and even the best plan in the world is worthless if you can't convince people to go along with it. But it is a good starting point.

Psychology (+2)

You have an understanding of how the human mind works. You understand the human mind and the variety of ways in which it can be manipulated. This quality allows you to heal all kinds of cognitive strain with a major action. The person with the cognitive strain must include it as a minor action.

Stealth (+2)

You are able to move silently and in such a way that you're not immediately noticed, as well as having a grounding in the fundamentals of subterfuge. You're not going to be able to trick fancy computerised sensors without some interesting gadgets, but when it comes down to it, humans are deeply fallible. This will allow you to remain generally undetected, although using other skills sneakily comes off those skills, not necessarily needing sneaking.

Technology (+2)

Technology gives you a basis for understanding and manipulating technology. You can roughly jury-rig things together, and have a degree of competency with computers. You're not a technological genius, nor would have even been described as a whizz-kid back on Elysium, but you can keep things running well enough.

Polyglot - Telbau (+2)

Incompatible with: Tel1)

Despite being Elysian, you have leaned and are reasonably fluent in the Tel language. You can use this to hide your secret plans or eavesdrop on the conversations of others. To represent that your character is speaking in Telbau during session, hold your thumb and forefinger up in the shape of an “L”. Non-Telbau speakers must roleplay as though they cannot understand the conversation, apart from identifying proper nouns.

Advanced Skills

Note: These skills require other skills to unlock them. The requirements are listed by each skill.

Commanding (+1)

Pre-req: Planning

You have a commanding presence and people will tend to do what you order them to do. You'll be able to react well to sudden crises and instruct crew and others calmly and confidently in such times. You better be certain that your plan is a good one, as this will only help making people follow it through, not necessarily realising flaws in it.

Cybernetic Engineering (+2)

Pre-req: Technology & Medicine

In the slim overlap of mechanical know-how and medical skill lies the subtle art of installing, maintaining, and manipulating the physical aspects of Cybernetics. This knowledge allows you to install cybernetic implants into willing (or perhaps, more accurately, non-resisting) participants, and fix broken ones. You will need the tools and resources to do this, however, and this won't mean you're any good at programming the augmentations.

Disguise (+2)

Pre-req: Stealth

You are able to convincingly disguise yourself as a generic member of any group; there are enough prisoners and guards in the facility that no-one will recognise all of them, though, obviously, good luck trying to claim you're the Warden! Passing as specific people will be tough if people have met them, as you will obviously look different.

Engineering (+2)

Pre-req: Technology

Using your understanding of engineering, you are able to create, repair, and sabotage familiar technology. This on its own won't allow you to create fantastic new gadgets, but by linking things together you can create interesting new effects. While this skill provides you with the ability to make technology, it doesn't give you the materials, and these will need to be sourced in play. You may be able to do some Cybernetic repair, but this will be limited to the physical aspects of the components rather than the interface with the body or the on-board systems.

Hacking (+2)

Pre-req: Technology

You can hack and manipulate computers to attempt to make them do what you want. This includes offensive and defensive hacking against prison systems, and Cybernetic implants, though in most cases you won't be able to access the computer systems remotely. You may be able to do some Cybernetic repair, but this will be limited to the on-board systems that control the implants, rather than the interface with the body or the mechanical components themselves.

Melee Combat (+2)

Pre-req: Combat

You have a strong understanding of melee weapons and how to use them effectively in a fight. In a hand-to-hand combat situation you can handle yourself well. You'll do fine in a boxing match, or indeed in a chainsaw fight… that being said, beware of the old adage about knives and gun fights.

Ranged Combat (+2)

Pre-req: Combat

You have a strong understanding of how handheld ranged weapons work and can handle yourself well in a ranged combat situation. For instance, you'll do fine in a ranged gun battle down a corridor, and can throw grenades with good accuracy. With supplies what they are, you'll be well advised to keep a close eye on your ammo—if you manage to get hold of any in the first place.

Research (+1)

Pre-req: Investigation

You are able to look through documents and data to find out something that is otherwise unknown. This won't help you learning new skills, but will help you uncover information from documents others would simply brand “tl;dr”2). Of course, simply having the information doesn't necessarily mean that you'll know what to do with it next.

Theft (+2)

Pre-req: Stealth

You can steal from others quite effectively, so long as nothing is being employed against you. You can get in, take what you're looking for, and then get out again without being noticed. There is, however, no reason why your victim cannot track you down and steal it back from you.


Connections (+1)*

You knew a guy who knew a guy who knows a guy—look, who cares how you know them: they owe you a favour. You have a connection in the Facility, who you can either ask for a little information here or there, or perhaps one big favour. Ask for too much and they may refuse. This can be with someone in a different gang to you, and could be with one of the NPCs listed on the wiki (although if nothing fits then suggest someone else). Specify your idea and the nature of connection in your application.

Favour Owed (-1)*

Sometimes, when things look like they're about to go to shit, life gives you a helping hand. However, in the criminal underworld hands come at a price. This person may have helped you out in the prison, or maybe your history goes back before you were incarcerated, but you owe them big time, and sooner or later debts must be paid.

Enemy (-2)*

We all have that one person we don't get on with, only in this case there's a reasonable chance they'd consider killing you if the opportunity arose. This is far more personal than gang rivalries, and will probably end with one of you biting the dust. Describe how this rivalry started (maybe there's some personal history; maybe one of you looked at the other funny).

Gang Standing (+2)

Even in a family, there are some members who are more respected than others. You are in good standing with your gang. If you happen to be in multiple gangs, specify which one this quality applies to.

Informant (+2)

If you know who to talk to, it's easy to get a few perks. You can get the guards to overlook a lot if you let them know about, say, next week's riot. Information is a valuable commodity. You have a rapport with some of the guards, and if you needed to you could probably get them to look the other way on occasion.

Snitch (-2)

However, if you get caught, things go pretty badly. No-one wants to associate with a snitch, and now you've been outed, friends are hard to come by.

Troublemaker (-1)

Whether you've been actively causing trouble or just happen to be in places when things kick off, the guards know your name. When something goes wrong in the prison, you'll likely be one of the first people they'll turn to for answers.

Personal Traits

Addiction (-2)*

See the page on Drugs. Specify which drug your character is addicted to in your application. Taking this quality does not mean you have a supply of the drug. Not taking your drug of choice will cause withdrawal.

Obvious (-1)

Incompatible with: Unnoticeable.

You are noticeable. For some reason, people tend to pick you out of a crowd. Perhaps you are slow to look away, or have a distinctive demeanour. Perhaps you are three heads taller than anyone else. In any case, whether it’s for a team sport or a random strip-search, you seem to be picked a disproportionate amount…

Unnoticeable (+2)

Incompatible with: Obvious.

You often go unnoticed. Maybe it’s your quiet demeanour, your ability to hide behind others, or simply a vague expression, but while others are being selected, you seem to escape attention.

Strength (+1)

Note: this can be taken as a Cybernetics Quality

There are many ways to make an entrance, but if you want to truly strike fear into your enemies' hearts, the best way may be smashing through the wall. Obviously there are materials that even the strongest person can't get through, but you're certainly able to do more damage than the average person.

Athletics (+1)

Note: this can be taken as a Cybernetics Quality

Sometimes it's best to outrun your problems, although your current prison sentence demonstrates this isn't an infallible solution. You're rather adept at getting from point A to point B, whether it's a simple as sprinting, or requires a more inventive approach, such as parkour.

Bullet Magnet (-3)

You've given up trying to understand why, but whether it's an exploding canister, a shattering glass pane or an actual bullet, you seem to take the hits and reap the injuries more often than by sheer chance. Your acquaintances are in luck; you are resigned that, once again, the one piece of flying shrapnel that is sharp enough to pierce skin is going to promptly embed itself into you.

Incompatible with: Glass Cannon.
Note: This can be taken as a Cybernetics Quality

For whatever reason, you've always been a little tougher than the average person. Physical wounds are likely to be less severe than they should be.

Glass Cannon (-3)

Incompatible with: Tough Cookie.

You've never been one to roll with the punches; even the smallest wound can leave you out of the action for a couple of days. Physical wounds are likely to be more severe than they should be.

Mental Resilience (+3)

Incompatible with: Not Suited to Prison Life.

Perhaps it's innate, or perhaps it's experience, but after stressful circumstances, you are able to maintain rational thinking to a higher degree than most other people you've met. You keep your head while those around you panic, and you can resist torture… for longer, anyway. Cognitive strains are likely to be less severe than they should be.

Not Suited to Prison Life (-3)

Incompatible with: Mental Resilience.

This life stresses you, and you do not stand up well to bullying or under torture. Recuperation is more difficult for you than for others. Cognitive strains are likely to be more severe than they would otherwise be.

Tel (-1)

Incompatible with: Polyglot - Telbau3)

You are a member of the Tel. This may or may not be obvious. There will be many people who won't react well to this fact. While Telbau is your primary language, you are also fluent in Elysian, to great mastery or reasonable competency. Although all Tel receive some education in Elysian, you may wish to describe why you are fluent as part of your backstory. To represent that your character is speaking in Telbau in session, hold your thumb and forefinger up in the shape of an “L”. Non-Telbau speakers must roleplay as though they cannot understand the conversation, apart from identifying proper nouns.


Cybernetic Enhancements (0)*

You have cybernetic implants of some description. Fortunately, due to the complex laws surrounding cybernetics, removing them is technically illegal, and so you've been able to keep them after your trial. These will not have any mechanical effect in game unless you take/acquire other qualities to represent this. They'll be hella cool though.

Cyberweapon, Ranged (+2)*

Pre-req: Cybernetic Enhancements

Normal guns are one thing, but having one built into your hand—that's what all the cool kids have. Part of your cybernetic enhancements include a ranged weapon. Weapons can take two forms: requiring physical ammo, or utilising some other resource to create projectiles. In the cases where ammo is required, this will have been removed from you before entering the prison4). For other things, the weapon will have been deactivated, and the status of the weapon is monitored by your collar, however it may be possible to restore functionality to your weapon during the course of play. Describe what form this weapon takes.

Cyberweapon, Melee (+2)*

Pre-req: Cybernetic Enhancements

Whether a stun-glove or just a fancy sword, your Cybernetic implants include some form of melee weaponry. Luckily, the laws regarding the removal of implants mean you've been able to keep them when you entered the prison. Describe what form this weapon takes.

Cybernetic Utility (+2)*

Pre-req: Cybernetic Enhancements

Having equipment to hand is useful for pulling off crimes, and fortunately, due to cybernetics laws you still have access to such devices in the prison. These can vary anywhere from the useful5) to the bizarre6), but will by necessity be integrated to your cybernetics systems, which may come with interesting repercussions if used carelessly. As with all things, while you may have these items, if a guard catches you attempting to use it then they can always use the collars, so discretion is advised!

Enhanced Senses (+2)*

Pre-req: Cybernetic Enhancements

You have some form of cybernetic enhancement to one of your senses. Pick a single sense and suggest how you would like to enhance it (this is very much subject to GM approval). Note that these enhancements are designed with some safety-features in place in the event that the enhanced sense gets over-stimulated.

Updated antivirus (+2)

Pre-req: Cybernetic Enhancements
Incompatible with: notavirus.exe.

When getting your upgrade, you didn't skimp on costs. Opting for stronger components and in-built antivirus measures, these things are designed to last. Malfunctions are likely to be less severe than they should be.

notavirus.exe (-2)

Pre-req: Cybernetic Enhancements
Incompatible with: Updated Antivirus.

Those knock-offs were bound to come back and get you eventually. So what if you got one of the knock-off brands of implants - how much worse can they really be…? Malfunctions are likely to be more severe than they should be.

Gremlins (-1)

Pre-req: Cybernetic Enhancements

Cybernetic enhancements are supposed to be reliable, but for some reason yours are temperamental at best. Whether it be a weapon discharging at some random time, or your arm freezing up for no apparent reason, your cybernetics have a tendency to stop working at just the wrong time. You've looked into seeing if you can make them more reliable, but everyone you've shown says they should be working perfectly fine. You guess you'll just have to live with it.

Other Qualities

Luxury item (+1)*

You have an item or a supply of a luxury item; most likely this is contraband and secret. Specify what it is, how you obtained it and how you keep hold of it. Examples include drugs, an unloaded gun, or some medical supplies. Note that you cannot take ammo as a Luxury Item.

Faulty Collar (-3)

You know why the collars are there - so that when there are guards around you can't attack them. However yours seems a little off - any act that comes off as aggressive triggers the collar, freezing you in place regardless of where you are and who's around. While you have learned to be careful and work around this, should you get into a fight it will be nigh impossible to fight back…

Falsely Imprisoned (+1)

Incompatible with: Repeat Offender.

Maybe you are a criminal, maybe you're not. But that thing you were imprisoned for totally wasn't your fault; you were caught out, in the wrong place at the wrong time. Or maybe you are a mass-murderer who got sentenced for tax evasion. The point is, a lot of the information​ the authorities have on you is wrong. When writing your criminal profile, it will only have to accurately cover 4 points worth of your qualities7). The rest can be filled out with crimes you were falsely accused for. (You can still have committed other crimes, but the one(s) you were convicted for you didn't actually do…)

Repeat Offender (-1)

Incompatible with: Falsely Imprisoned.

You've been in before and you'll no doubt be in again. You can't help living a life of crime, and your criminal convictions could fill up a large book. When writing your criminal profile, it must cover 12 points worth of your qualities8) (if you have fewer than 12 points of Qualities, then just cover them all).

Mystery Flaw #5 (-3)

Take this at your own risk. No, you're not missing Mystery Flaws 1-4.

1) , 3) By taking Tel, you are already able to speak Telbau
2) too long, didn't read
4) Note: you cannot take ammo as a luxury item
5) such as a grappling hook
6) electric can opener
7) , 8) positive or negative, see criminal profile for details
qualities.txt · Last modified: 2017/04/26 16:48 by gm_michael