Cyberpunk in 2042
The SD is set on Earth in 2042. For technology/setting, think Arika, Ghost in the Shell, Blade Runner, Appleseed, Sprawl Trilogy by William Gibson. Heavy on cybernetics, genetic modification etc, but with a basis in near future technology. Large space stations exist, but not space colonies or cities. Mining operations in the asteroid belt are conducted by automated vessels, sending back their valuable minerals to orbital transfer stations.
The world is a dystopian environment with areas of near environmental collapse and anarchy. Real animals are an expensive and treasured resource, with most wild animals extinct. Weather patterns are extreme and unpredictable outside the major cities. Most people live in sprawling urban landscapes, megacities much like those in blade runner etc.
In the major cities, technology is cheap and ubiquitous, a worldwide infonet connects the world, all major computer systems and forms a battleground for the underworld hackers who trawl the infonet and corporate hackers trying to usurp their rivals.
Mega-corporations: Most of the world’s money is in the hands of Megacorporations that arose from the economic collapse of 2022, small companies and businesses no longer exist. Corporations may produce anything toothpaste to tanks, offer services as extensive as legal advice to paramedic services. They engage in fierce competition.
They rule over the Corporative Enclaves, the most wealthy and advanced cities in the world. Among them are Sansungi, Hyundai-GGC, BAE-Vickers, Locus Solantus, Poseidon Industrial Co(made up of most former oil companies), Seyutel Cybernetics and Heckler KNA.
The Corporate Enclaves are megacities in themselves, often containing millions people, they are usually divided up into several zones based upon one’s place in the corporate chain. Immigration and emigration are based purely on your employment status, being fired or made redundant is equivalent to being deported, replaced by eager recruits from across the world, desperate for a life in an Enclave. Only by serving until retirement can only guarantee their place among the rich. For even the dregs of Corporate society are better off than those outside the Enclaves or so it would first seem. Most people work for years in offices located in polities in the hope of promotion to the Enclave, colloquially referred to as head office.
Corporations also to varying extents, rule over polities. Many an unstable realm has been pacified by Corporate Armies acting at the behest of the Board of Directors. There is no shortage of recruits willing to sign up to a contract and finding themselves serving in some battered African territory, pacifying the local populace so mineral resources can be extracted.
As a Corporation you can be based where ever you like. You’ll have offices in most major polities, but your actual megacity will be entirely fictional. You cannot be London for instance.
United National Nominate: A pathetic shadow of the UN, the UNN is a supranational organisation, supported primarily by socialist states who try to work within its framework to halt the environment degradation and unbridled profit above all else activities of major megacorps.
Federal Republic of Nordic Nations: Rejecting the rampant capitalism that infects most of the world, the Nordic Nations are one of the few socialist institutions in the world.
The BosWash Metropolis: The BosWash Metropolis is a single huge citystate formed from the urban sprawl of the northeastern corridor of the former United States of America. In the middle of the 21st century, increasing pressures formed the expansion of Boston, Springfield, Philadelphia, New York and Washington into one huge continueous high density urban area. Across the Appalachian mountains lies the Mid-American wastelands, a zone devoid of proper rule by any government. For this reason, BosWash maintains a highly developed military which is provided in part by Poseidon Industrial Co.
The technology of 2042 for the most part, is near future. Most armies have just begun to field power armoured soldiers though their flak jacketed companions are still just as common for now, though heavily cybernetically enhanced for the most part.
Armoured technology has witnessed the rise of electromagnetic, electro-thermal and primitive laser weaponry. Cybernetic and genetic modification technology is widely disseminated throughout the world, though perhaps less so in Africa. Most armoured vehicles are on the light side, so that they can be quickly airlifted to major troublespots, though most retain a cadre of heavy vehicles for protecting their borders.
The skies are now contested by a multitude of UAV and manned aerospace craft, which can fly low orbit for extended periods. Tilt rotor gunships and troop transports are common, as are more esoteric vehicles employing fuel cell powered tilting jet engines for pure power.
Transport takes the form of spinners(hovercars) for the rich, usually executives. Everyone else is resigned to groundcars and public transport.
Orbital technology includes the usual spy satellites etc but also laser defence systems, ground strike lasers etc.
Cybernetics and Genetic modification comes in several grades, so you can figure out how powerful and/or widespread they are. You should usually note on your units which grade of cybernetics you have given them.
Class A: Usually on special forces, or the bodyguards of high ranking officials and corporate directors sport these high level modifications. The ability to leap several stories in a single bound, run at speed comparable to armoured vehicles is not uncommon at this grade. Offensive modifications, may include subdermal weaponry, such as pistol, shotgun calibre weaponry, or claws implanted under finger nails. Electromuscle whips are also common for close quarter fighting, with the latest models capable of slashing even the toughest personal armour with their sharp monofilaments and causing damage to vehicle grade armour.
Class B: Standard militaryware that your average soldier will be equipped with. This includes ocular implants, to enable night/infra-red vision and enhanced range. Soldiers may also have artifical muscle implants to improve strength, as well as allowing them to jump twice their height. Implanted wireless communications are also common, allowing instant communication on squad, platoon and battalion level between all arms of the military. Other examples include ‘gecko’ filaments implanted in hands and feet to allow wall crawling etc.
Class C: Civilian level cybernetic implants are mostly in the realm of commication, info net access and life extension. Civilians have easy access to things such as artificial limbs, hearts and of course, cyberbrains which vastly augments the normal functions of the brain. Artificial limbs are often superior in strength and ability than their natural counterparts though not to the same extent as military grade replacements.
Genetic Modification is much the same, coming in Class A, B, C and perform similar functions.
Cyberbrain: Cyberbrains are an augmented brain where by the natural brain is integrated with electronic components. This allows the brain to interface with electronic devices, the infonet and other individuals with a cyberbrain. It increases normal neural functions, such as data analysis and to a certain extend, intelligence. It also allows for the electronic storage of memories and their instant recall.
Cyborg Body: Some people, due to horrific injuries or simple wish to increase their life span artificially are full body cyborgs, where by the organic parts of their cyberbrain are the only remaining original biological component of their bodies.
Exoskeletons: Exoskeletons or power armour, are only recently finding wipespread use, due to advances in mass production. While most are infantry forms, a few are on the larger side, up to 3 meters tall and function more like armoured vehicles. Most have thermo-optical camouflage systems. They require cyberbrains to function effectively, as no mere mechanical operation could have the reflexes required to operate properly.
Sansungi Type Eleven AME: The Sansungi Type Eleven is a prototype Armoured Mobile Exoskeleton utilising electromagnetic plating and leg mounted thrusters for extra mobility. Main armaments include an EM Anti-tank Rifle and arm mounted anti-personnel laser cannons.
The Hyundai-GGC Corporation M22: Featuring a 120mm Rail cannon as well as full electronic suite it has an automated turret design and onboard targeting computers. Anti-aircraft and anti-infantry fighting capability is provided by two internally controlled light 8mm caseless gel propellant machine guns one mounted on the turret and the other mounted on the hull. While its crew could be reduced to two, the design encompasses three personnel primarily for psychological reason and maintenance issues. Also included in its armaments is a radar system combined with a high powered laser used to shooting down incoming projectiles.
Corporation Creation (Credit to FBH for the rules system which I have modified):
Name: Slogan: Background:
You start with 450 Corporation Points.
• Human Capital Mooks in cubicles. Mooks in armoured suits as well. Suits and Ties. People.
Cost: 1 CP per 250,000 Human Capital
Starting Human Capital Limit: 20 million
The amount of human capital affects your draft pool.
ECONOMY Your economy is a wonderfully important part of your Mega-Corporation, since in terms of the SD, it governs how much shiny you can buy. Wealth is a guaranteed income based on long term and stable markets, while profit opportunities represent more risky business ventures.
• Wealth: Cost: 1 CP per 5 Wealth monthly Budget is calculated monthly.
• Profit Opportunities: Cost: 1 CP per D10 monthly Budget is calculated monthly.
Low: 0 CP Your Corporations level of cyberisation/genetic modification is below average, only the top echelons of the Enclave, the military or top quality police forces have access to most high end cybernetic gear or genemods. The Middle management may sport the average low level implants but the average person on the street while living in a world entrenched in cybernetics and genemods, has little access to them, besides perhaps one they have invested considerable money into.( comparable buying a brand new car today).
Medium: 25 CP Your level of cyberisation/genetic modification is fairly average, the majority of people have access to cybernetics of varying degrees, or have genetic modifications. The technology is fairly prevalent among the average members of society and it’s not uncommon for people to have cyberbrains, or be full body cyborgs.
High: 50 CP Your wired! Your Corporation is a centre of cybernetic/genetic modifications. The latest gadgets, the shiniest gear, it’s all easily available to anyone with a wage just above the minimum. Cyberbrains are common place, as are full body cyborgs or cat girls. Your military level cyberware/genetic mods are top of the range and highly prevalent.
While not all traits have truly tangible affects, they will heavily influence my decision making process when it comes to plans, stories etc that you wish to undertake. I will look far more kindly upon attempts to clone supersoldiers if you are a genetweaker and NPCs will react more favourably to somebody with a friendly face.
Extensive Diversification: Your Corporation meddles in practically everything to some degree. While lacking the benefits that specialisation brings, yours eggs are spread amongst immunerable baskets. Your Corporation portfolio could easily extend from Special operations Mercenaries, to stocking grocery stores in the BosWash Met. You gain one D6 to profit opportunity roles.
‘Mercenaries’: While most Corporations hire out parts of their military, your Corporation is especially well regarded for the quality of its service and the quantity. In general, this means you will earn higher rates for your services and have a generally larger military force (25%). However, your commitments are also greater and consequences will ensue should you fail to live up to them. In practice this means you start the game with a hired army out in the field.
Cybernetics Specialist: Your Corporation produces high end cybernetic technology for consumption by the wealthiest buyers. This gives you access to a limited number of experimental high end Cybernetic devices, which outperform even class A implants.
Gene-tweaker: From Chimera’s to supermensh, your Corporation has a specialised genetic division. Your people have access to latest genetic manipulation technigues.
Friendly Face: Your Corporation has an excellent PR department. Easily capable of turning that asset realisation campaign, into a humanitarian effort to reduce suffering in central Africa. It’s merely a coincidence the area is littered with mineral deposits.
Replicant Resources: Why scrap the barrel of humanity for recruits, when you have access to highly developed Replicant production facilities. Your Corporation is a prime producer of Replicants for market, either as a diversified subsidiary or its primary export. Lacking true empathy, independence and with peak physical capabilities, Replicants make excellent soldiers and servants.
Ninjas: You place a premium on the use of Special Forces. Special Forces & Elite Infnatry cost ¼ of the price and are all elite, but all vehicles cost double.
Other traits: Examples would include island building, or zero g construction etc. It’s up you to pitch something to me. I’ll decide its effect based on your fluffed up proposal.
ADVANTAGES Advantages cost points, and disadvantages give you points.
Polity Population (35 CP): You control a portion of a poor polity, most likely in Africa, Central or South America. 20 million population plus D10 & 1D10 of profit opportunity
Rich Polity Population (50CP): You control part of a 1st rate polity. 15 Million population plus D6 & 1D15 of profit opportunity.
Elite Military (75 CP): Your military is highly trained and capable.
Extra Elite Units (30 CP): You may double the number of elite units you start with, though they still cost as much as they usually do.
Loyal Population (25 CP): Your population is exceptionally loyal and hardy, and will support their Corporate government extensively in its actions.
Police Enclave (20 CP): A police Enclave is better able to keep secrets and is a nice counter to angry population, although it can't quite make up for it. You have access to the Secret Police Unit.
Hacking Experts (20 CP): Your intelligence network are excellent at trawling the infonet. The effects of this are determined by mod although they are generally not tremendous.
Fortified (30 CP): Your Enclave is easily defended. Whether it’s at the bottom of the sea, or surrounded by a state of the art defensive network others will have difficultly attacking.
Disaster Area (-25 CP): Some Enclaves exist near fault lines or are in the way of tropical storms or may be prone to coastal or river flooding. Either way, there is a chance that a major disaster may happen that will require relief funds and rebuilding.
Depression (-25 CP): Your Corporation is in troubled times, new wealth costs twice the amount to purchase.
Angry Population (-25 CP): Poor worker relations.
Pariah (-20 CP): Do you even have a PR department? Unlikely and if you do they are most likely poor workers or spies. You will be somewhat less successful (though not crippled) in diplomacy.
Freedom of Information (-30 CP): The infonet permeates your Corporation at every level, information is cheap, freely available and wipespread.
MILITARY Each Corporation Point (CP) will buy you 100 wealth worth of units in your starting military. Each nation will also have half its annual Economy rating in half finished units. After the game starts, money can be used to purchase units although many units have significant build times.
Manpower Each batch of units requires manpower, which can be a maximum of 10% of your human capital, or 15% if you take Mercenaries. This is noted for each type of unit. They do not reflect just crews and front line personnel but also people in support and logistics and so on who are at risk near the front lines.
Replicants: 50% of your military can be Replicants.
Build Time When building units, the cost of the unit divided by 10 is the building time in months.
Infantry Units Militia Division cost: 10; manpower: 10,000 Usually drawn from outland territories, willing recruits eager to rise in the ranks. They are cheap and numerous and not much else. Most will lack extensive military cyberware.
Secret Police Cost: 40; manpower: 10,000 Secret Police are paramilitary forces who keep the local population in line or help enforce corporate rule in asset Reclaimation zones or Cordon Zones.
Standard Infantry Division cost: 40; manpower: 10,000 Normal skilled infantry, these are you basic soldiers.
Power Armoured Infantry: Cost: 100; manpower: 10000 Similar to Normal Skilled infantry, but protected by state of the art power armour.
Elite Infantry cost: 80; manpower: 2,000 Elite Infantry perform a wide range of highly difficult missions such as paradrop attacks, amphibious assaults, or spearheading difficult attacks. They are much more powerful than standard infantry in combat, but will not last nearly as long due to lower manpower.
Special Forces Cost: 80; manpower: 50 Cyberized/Genemodded to the max, Special Forces are at the top of their field. Whether its Anglo Union SAS, Hyundai-GGC TacOps or BosWash Navy Seals, these troops are excessively well trained and equipped and have the upmost motivation. Usually deployed behind enemy lines for special operations, such as data retrieval, sabotage etc. They’ll excel as line forces, but not without the full support of other infantry.
Heavier Units Light Vehicle Brigade cost: 40; manpower: 2,000 men; 500 vehicles These can be built in two ways and this should be noted in each unit. They can be: 1) APC's, in which case they each carry 10 infantry. 2) Combat vehicles, in which case they are IFV's and will comport themselves better in combat than APC's with the same add-ons.
Exo-Armour Bridage Cost: 60; manpower 2,000 men; 100 Vehicles Landmates. 3m Tall Mecha. Superior to tanks in heavy urban settings, inferior on the open plains.
Tank Brigade Cost: 40; manpower: 2,000 men; 100 vehicles Tanks. From light vehicles, to medium main battle tanks.
Heavy Tank Brigade Cost: 60; manpower: 2,000 men; 100 vehicles These are larger vehicles, which cannot be transported by air.
Self-Propelled Artillery cost: 40; manpower: 2,000 men; 100 vehicles These are artillery pieces generally with a large gun or possibly a cluster of anti-aircraft missiles
Heavy Self-Propelled Artillery cost: 60; manpower: 2,000 men; 25 vehicles Large MLRS's. A vehicle of this type can also be modified to carry those big mobile ballistic missiles.
Artillery Piece cost: 20; manpower: 1,000 men; 125 towed guns These are smaller standing artillery pieces and are quite inexpensive although they aren't very mobile.
Air Units Fighters cost: 60; manpower: 1,000 men; 24 aircraft Your basic air to air combat unit. They have limited ground attack abilities.
Advanced Fighters Cost: 120; manpower: 1,000 men; 24 Aircraft.
Attack Craft cost: 60; manpower: 1,000 men; 24 aircraft Tornados, A-10 Warthogs and the like
Strategic Bomber cost: 80; manpower: 1,000 men; 10 aircraft B-52s, B-2s and other large aircraft.
Transport Flight cost: 40; manpower: 1,000 men; number of aircraft varies The number of transports in a transport flight varies and they can be whatever type of plane you want, though it's usually assumed to be a mix. A transport flight can be built as tankers to double range on another squadron of aircraft or else be used to transport 1,000 men OR 20 light vehicles or artillery pieces, OR 10 tanks or self-propelled artillery, or some combination of the three.
Early Warning Aircraft Group cost: 80; manpower: 1,000 men; number of aircraft varies AWACS and stuff like that. What exactly it is can vary, but you had better protect them.
Gunships cost: 60; manpower: 1,000 men; 50 aircraft Laser Apaches, Hinds. These are exceptionally good for tank hunting and can provide tremendous firepower on the ground. If given +1 transport capacity, they can carry ten men each.
Utility Helicopters cost: 40; manpower: 1,000 men; 100 aircraft Generally scouts, they can, with added abilities, become transports, anti submarine aircraft, or the like.
Naval Units Attack Submarine cost: 60; manpower: 1,000 men; 8 ships Hydrogen-Electric submarines. These are very, very quiet, subs and make excellent raiders and costal ‘guards’. They lack the range and staying power of larger subs, however.
Large Attack Submarine cost: 80; manpower: 1,000 men; 4 ships Larger versions of attack subs. They can operate further from home and can actively extract hydrogen from the water for their fuel cells.
Ballistic Missile Submarine cost: 80; manpower: 1,000 men; 2 ships These subs carry a load of ICBMS to deploy from the relative safety of the ocean depths.
Corvette/Attack Craft cost: 40; manpower: 1,000 men; 25 ships These are primarily coastal warships that can be produced in large numbers quickly. However, they cannot generally ship out overseas and are reserved for coastal functions. They require significant upgrade to carry out combat as well.
Frigate cost: 60; manpower: 1,000 men; 6 ships Frigates tend to be light, fairly short range warships with some blue water ability. They can be threatening if armed with good missiles or laser weaponry.
Destroyer cost: 80; manpower: 1,000 men; 4 ships Generally several thousand tons and large enough to be threatening. Highly multipurpose and very useful escorting larger ships against submarines. They are the smallest surface ship that can be nuclear. Most destroyers carry a Helo or two at the back.
Cruiser cost: 100; manpower: 1,000 men; 2 ships True cruisers are serious business. They pack tremendous armament and are typically very well defended against air attack.
Light Carrier cost: 100; manpower: 1,000 men; 2 ships These are cruiser sized hulls modified either to be landing ships, in which case they can carry significant troops and vehicles, or else very light carriers, in which case they can expect to throw a couple dozen aircraft in support.
Carrier cost: 120; manpower: 2,000 men; 1 ship Real carriers can put a few dozen aircraft into the air. They are large targets and take a long time to replace and thus should be well defended. Some nations like to be funny and throw big missiles onto their carriers like the Russians did. Either way, if you want good ones, start with them or they will take years to build.
Pre-Tend Cruiser cost: 120; manpower: 1,000 men; 1 ship Monsters like the Kirov fall into this category. They are not merely cruisers no matter how much they think they are. They are prime candidates for armour or heavy missiles.
Supercarrier cost: 240; manpower: 5,000 men; 1 ship Nimitzes. They will put over a hundred aircraft into the air and are exceedingly powerful command bases. They are also hideously expensive and difficult to replace.
Other note: none of these have add-ons nor require manpower. Elite Training Elite training is a special, limited edition, 200% multiplier. Nations only start with a maximum of one elite unit in each service (army, navy, airforce). It’s a squadron filled with aces, a tank company full of the best tankers, or a ship commanded by a modern Nelson. The presence of an elite unit on the battlefield can substantially alter the result. They are also very hard to kill.
Satellites cost: 60; 5 satellites You must choose whether they’re spy or communications satellites when you build them. You may not start with satellites
ASAT weapons cost: 10; 10 missiles Air launched missiles capable of hitting space based super weapons and satellites
UPKEEP Military Upkeep Each unit grouping (ie every 10,000 infantry, every 1 carrier, every 4 destroyers etc) requires by default, 10 wealth upkeep per year in peacetime and every month in combat.
Civilian Upkeep 10 wealth must be paid annually per 1,000,000 population. Or 10,000 Secret Police annually per 1,000,000 population.
There is often additional civilian upkeep during war if it is conducted offensively. This is especially the case if population is small and per capita income is high or if you have Angry Population. Large populations of less prosperous people have an easier time keeping large armies in the field. This is of course, waived if you are being invaded.