Biological Control Powers

Biological control powers allow their wielder to manipulate organic matter - whether living or otherwise. Such powers can transform one kind of living tissue into another, change the organic into the inorganic, or simply direct organic matter to behave as is desired. There are forty known biological control powers in all, each of which is described below, for convenience.

A B C D E G H I M O P R S T V

A

Aciurgy
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: cure disease, detoxification, healing / others, resuscitation, regeneration / others.

Aciurgy is the paranormal power to modify living tissues. A sort of super-human medical ability, aciurgy can be used to perform procedures that generally require years of academic study and professional experience to execute competently. On the other hand, since it is of super-human effectiveness, aciurgy can also be used to indulge in medical behavior that is highly irregular - if not normally impossible!

While aciurgy is in use, the life force of its recipients (or victims) will be artificially maintained, its wielder able to engage in all manner of procedures both simple and arcane. Whether simply removing a sliver or temporarily disassembling his or her patient, the character with aciurgy can complete their work with the assurance that the subject of this power will not die in the process of it.

In other words, aciurgy itself doesn't cause damage, no matter how extreme the work done with it is. Of course, if someone with aciurgy completely takes the subject of its use apart and leaves them that way, said subject might be in a bit of a pickle! Such 'abandonment' can indeed cause damage, based on the nature of the work left undone (whether intentionally or otherwise), at the Gamemaster's discretion.

One can perform any conventional medical procedure using aciurgy, from liposuction to a heart transplant, with but a red power ACTION. When engaging in wildly irregular operations, including brain transplants and installing parts where they don't belong, an aciurgeon must pass a blue ACTION. This power can even be used to engage in cross-species transplants and unnatural modifications on a yellow power ACTION.

When using aciurgy, most conventional medical concerns are rendered moot. Whether rotating limbs around for fun or even installing body parts foreign to one's anatomy, everything is 'wired' such that it will work as if the end result was one's default state. Tissue rejection is simply not an issue, and an organism can persist and function indefinitely despite this power's use - assuming nothing else kills it, that is.

Aciurgy most definitely counts as a healing power for the purposes of metabolic overload, whether used to heal or to... modify. It requires one be in physical contact with the subject to work. Furthermore, should they wish to, subjects can resist the use of aciurgy by passing a Fortitude ACTION roll against its power rank value (assuming they lack resistance to metabolic or warping attacks).

Age Control / Others
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: age control / self, cure disease, decontamination, detoxification, healing / others, regeneration / others, resurrection, resuscitation.

Wielding this ability, a character can change the 'clock' on an organism, seemingly altering its age. Age control / others can increase or decrease a target's apparent age by a number of years that is equal to its power rank value. This power only functions within Very Near distance of its wielder, and targets may resist the power if they can pass a Fortitude ACTION roll against its rank value as an opposing intensity.

Age control / others can modify the age of its target as is desired, though the effects of such sudden, onset aging are rapidly debilitating. On average, a character will lose -1 RS of one physical and one mental trait for each decade of aging past their 'prime'. If reverting someone to a child-like state, apply this -1 RS for every four years before they reached adulthood.

Of course, there's also the lovely side effects that such extremes of age can bring, including brittle bones, being unable to reach the pedals, etc.

If a character is aged so old that they should be long dead and buried, or is rendered so young that their age would be a negative number, they will simply vanish in a puff of light and smoke. This doesn't actually kill the target, so much as file them and their mass away in another dimension temporarily, their existence having momentarily been rendered moot.

The effects of age control / others generally only lasts for a short period of time. A red power ACTION will let the power's effects last a number of turns equal to its power rank number, while a blue ACTION roll multiplies this amount of time by ten, and a yellow ACTION extends it to a like number of hours. It occasionally lasts longer, however, acting to permanently renew, revitalize, or hobble its target.

Occurrences of this stripe are most often accompanied by other weird happenings going on with the character at the same time, such as radiation exposure, Probability Fallout, and the like. They're not the sort of thing one can really bank on in play, they just sort of 'happen'; an instance of permanent age modification is most likely something the Gamemaster will use to advance the plot somehow.

Mind you, this effect can be obtained regularly as an extreme enhancement to age control / others. Such enhancements often take the form of revolutionary, futuristic aging treatments, the weird emanations of 'exotic' matter characters might blunder into, or other such oddities. Aging too far either direction in a 'permanent' state is considered a lethal attack, however - something to bear in mind.

Animal Control
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: 1d10 turns + maintenance, if desired
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: animal hybridization / others, biological sense, empathy, organism generation, plant control, summoning.

While animal sympathy allows one to 'speak' with non-sentient animal life forms of various kinds, animal control enables its wielder to actually direct their actions! This generally requires but a red power ACTION roll, since defeating an animal's Willpower trait is most often child's play, though such an ACTION is never considered automatic in nature. Special considerations might make this action considerably more difficult, however.

A pet, for instance, will not readily turn against its owner - assuming it is treated well. The act of turning such animals against their friends, however temporarily, requires a blue power ACTION. A special animal companion, one which engages in battle alongside its owner, can only be turned against that person on a yellow power ACTION roll - these animals are highly disciplined and especially attached to their human.

Alternately, an animal controller can attempt to take control of a large number of animals at once (a swarm of insects, a school of fish, and so on). This also requires a blue power ACTION roll, as touching the minds of that many animals is rather involved. This ACTION must be repeated each turn, or else the grouping of animals will rapidly resume control of their own destinies, such as they are.

At any rate, once control is achieved, an animal controller can direct his or her thrall(s) to perform any action desired. Controlled animals will perform these tasks to the best of their ability, and do not creatively interpret their instructions. This is why it's important for an animal controller to plainly explain, usually with small words, what he or she wants the animal to do. They're not intelligent, after all!

Control of an animal generally lasts for 1d10 turns per application of this power, unless its wielder specifically focuses on maintaining his or her influence for longer. It can affect any animal within Near distance of its possessor, unless said animal is some sort of special companion of their own; if this is the case, the range of animal control is extended to Middle distances.

An animal controller can significantly enhance this ability with limitations, if desired. A weak limitation might involve constraining animal control to a general animal class (birds, mammals), a strong limitation would restrain the power further (primates, spiders), a very strong limitation would only work on specific species (osprey, red frog crab), and an extreme limitation would work only on a specific animal (or group of such).

Animal Hybridization / Others
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: animal hybridization / self, animal control, gestalting, growth / others, plant hybridization / others, shrinking / others, topological control, transformation / others.

This potent ability allows its wielder to modify other life forms, namely by combining their inherent characteristics with that of animal life! When this power is first gained, one can only add the characteristics of one form of animal to others. This represents a deep familiarity with the physiology of said animal type, and additional familiarities (i.e., animal forms) can be obtained as power stunts.

Any living creature can be the recipient of such hybridization, whether it is a human, a dog, or even a tree. Such a transformation can be either partial or total, depending on the whims of this power's possessor. This can either give an affected life form the abilities of the new animal type, or change them fully into the chosen animal form (altering their physical traits, if applicable, appropriately).

Abilities gained by the target of this power will typically function at a maximum rank value that is equal to its own. They may operate at less, depending on the nature of the transformations it can cause, but are limited in such a fashion to represent the ability of this power's possessor to emulate their chosen form of animal life. Physical weaponry isn't normally affected by this limitation, however, since it usually uses set modifiers.

A vital consideration is the both the size of the target and the nature of a transformation, if it is complete. Turning a redwood tree into a fly would make for an immense fly, while transforming a cricket into a tyrannosaurus rex would create an absolutely tiny dinosaur. This problem cannot be bypassed without use of the growth / others and shrinking / others abilities (either as separate powers or as power stuns).

Another thing to bear in mind is that the target will retain whatever cognitive abilities it usually possesses, even if such a characteristic would normally be different in its final form. A tree transformed into a dog will be quite clueless about almost everything, at least at first, while a dog given opposable thumbs may take some time to figure out how to properly use them.

Wielding animal hybridization / others requires physical contact with the target. The target can avoid the effects of this power by preventing physical contact with its wielder - or having resistance to metabolic attacks. The effects of changes, whether partial or complete, take place almost instantly; the target of this power can be an attack dog one second and a sheep the next - which may confound it considerably!

Generally, the transformative effects of this power are transient in nature. On a red power ACTION, it will last for a number of turns equal to its power rank value, blue successes raise this to a number of minutes equal to the power rank value, and a yellow ACTION roll will extend the time such a transformation lasts a number of hours equal to the power rank value!

On rare occurrences, this power's effects can be permanent. The wielder of animal hybridization / others has no control over this; it's simply something that just 'happens' sometimes. Perhaps something occurred to that fern you turned into a rodent that caused it to remain in that state, or the tusks you gave that kid to amuse yourself agreed with their physiology so well that they just sort of 'stuck'.

The Gamemaster is the final arbiter of such instances, which occasionally gives him or her a tool to introduce quirky additions or alterations to the campaign.

Animal Sympathy
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: maintenance
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: animal control, animal hybridization / self, animal hybridization / self, biological sense, device sympathy, empathy, linguistics, object sympathy, organic circuitry, organism generation, plant sympathy, summoning.

Animal sympathy is the ability to mentally communicate with non-sentient animal life forms. One can usually tell whether or not this power will work on a given creature by the presence or absence of a Fortune trait - Fortune denotes free will, the presence of a soul, and all that business. The target of this power, then, can include beings ranging from amoebas to dinosaurs, though the more complex they are, the better.

More empathic than telepathic in nature, animal sympathy lets its wielder get inside the head of its target, to have a conversation of sorts with it. Since they aren't intelligent, animals will generally prove to be somewhat simplistic in communication. They can definitely share their impressions of the world and everything in it, such as they are, as well as pass on information about things they've experienced.

The quality of such recollections depend on how advanced an animal form is. Mammals of any stripe, being similar to one's own biology, can be communicated with on a red power ACTION. Blue ACTION rolls are necessary to speak with somewhat different life forms, whether they're birds or reptiles. One can even talk to insects and amoebas and the like, though such 'alien' life forms require a yellow ACTION with this power.

Animal sympathy generally functions within Near range of its wielder. Furthermore, it usually requires that the wielder of this power and its target can sense each other through mundane means as well. This is not necessary if the character with animal sympathy knows the target of this power, and its range is extended to Middle distance in the event of communications with a trusted animal partner.

B

Biological Vampirism
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 2 points per rank value
Related Powers: biological sense, decontamination, energy vampirism, psionic vampirism, spectral vampirism, super vampirism, thaumaturgical vampirism, vampirism.

A variant on the standard vampiric ability, biological vampirism allows its wielder to feed upon the living cellular matter of other beings, to rapidly recover his or her own, lost Health points. These tissues need not be physically connected to their source still, as can be the case with blood bank stores or organs freshly removed for transplant purposes, but must still be biologically functional.

For each ounce of living biological matter consumed (solid or fluid), a biological vampire can recover one lost Health point. This requires physical contact with the target, unless one is feeding on dislocated but still-living tissues, at which point a biological vampiric attack may begin. Upon the activation of this ability, the target must pass a Willpower ACTION roll against this power rank value, or they will be unable to resist its use.

This inability to resist most often takes the form of paralysis, or perhaps a mesmerized state. This is necessary because most rational beings will object to being bodily consumed in any manner. A biological vampire can process an amount of cellular matter equal to their power rank value in ounces each turn, though they may require accessories (such as fangs, or perhaps steak knives) to properly rend it from its source.

Many biological vampires prefer to feed upon the blood of their targets, for this is much easier to separate from them. A human body, on average, has ten pints of blood within, and can safely lose one pint (sixteen ounces) of blood at a time before serious symptoms arise. This means a biological vampire can feed upon others without causing them real harm - assuming they wish to preserve the lives of their prey.

Each ounce of lost biological matter costs the target one Health point, you see, which must be recovered normally (if possible). Luckily, lost blood recovers in the body quickly, and leaves little evidence of its consumption. A chunk of someone's arm, on the other hand, may never quite heal back - and leaves plenty of evidence that a biological vampire (or a cannibal, at the very least) is active in the area.

Once a biological vampire has begun to feed, he or she may continue to do so as long as they like, though their prey is allowed another ACTION roll to resist this ability each turn. If the target ever succeeds in this action, or the biological vampire is ever forced to stop feeding (instead of doing so of their own volition), the target will immediately acquire subsequent immunity to the biological vampirism of this attacker.

However, this immunity doesn't extend to the biological vampirism of other characters - or any other vampirism power the attacker may have.

When a biological vampire at full Health consumes his or her power rank value in ounces of their target's tissues, they receive a +1 RS to their Brawn, Fortitude, Willpower, and all of their power values save for this one (additional drains do not enhance them further). This boost lasts for 1d100 turns, after which point the biological vampire will return to his or her normal capability. Gaining another boost requires another feeding.

The risk in using this ability is twofold. First off, there's the danger of contagion. Killing a victim with this power (either through a loss of Health points or a killing blow caused by the location of feeding) will cause them to eventually arise as an undead creature, a biological vampire that cannot sustain its own physical processes without fresh infusions of flesh from many, many victims.

Secondly, if a biological vampire kills with this ability (either accidentally or on purpose), they must pass a Willpower ACTION roll against the intensity of this power value. If this ACTION roll fails, the biological vampire becomes addicted to the flesh of others, and will require it to function as well. While addicted, the character with biological vampirism suffers a loss of power each day they do not feed upon the living tissues of others.

This loss comes in the form of a -1 RS to his or her Brawn, Fortitude, and Willpower traits, as well as all of their power rank values (save for the biological vampirism, of course). To avoid this loss, the addicted character must consume a number of ounces of cellular matter equal to his or her biological vampirism rank value each day, and if at a penalty, a like amount to recover each -1 RS lost to such abilities.

The only way to shake this addiction is to go cold turkey - and that's not easy.

Withdrawal from the living meat of others causes the RS penalties to mount, until the character's indicated traits and power values reach rank value zero (0). This prompts a Fortitude ACTION roll, per a Kill result. If this ACTION fails, the character immediately dies, and will eventually rise as a biological vampire themselves. If it succeeds, he or she may attempt a Willpower ACTION roll to overcome their addiction.

If this Willpower ACTION succeeds, the character is 'cured', and may begin to recover lost trait and power rank values at a rate of +1 RS per day. If the Willpower ACTION fails, however, the character must wait another day, and repeat the Fortitude ACTION to see if they live long enough to attempt another Willpower ACTION to beat the urge. This continues until the character either dies or manages to get clean.

If a biological vampire has ever been addicted to the tissues of others, using the ability again may cause a relapse - even if they've recovered from the ordeal. Every time the character uses biological vampirism afterwards, he or she must pass a Willpower ACTION roll, the failure of which indicates an immediate relapse into vampiric addiction. If they pass this ACTION roll they'll be fine - at least, until the next use of this power.

Naturally, an undead creature dependent on the living cellular matter of others to persist cannot shake this requirement. This process only applies to still-living wielders of biological vampirism, and not its many victims.

Wielders of this ability have been documented in fiction throughout human history, and emulating them can allow for a variety of limitations to give it more 'flavor'. While any living tissue can fuel this power, limiting it to the same kingdom (animals) can be considered a weak limitation, while constraining it to but one species of life forms is considered a strong limitation - very strong if it's one's own species.

Similarly, limiting this power to just one form of cellular matter (like blood) to be consumed is also a weak limitation - or adds one step of limitation to the previous examples. Thus, one can generate the traditional, blood-drinking vampirism at a considerable discount (if solely limited to such), which leaves room for additional abilities to facilitate its use (physical weaponry and the like).

Body Control
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: maintenance
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: integral control, mind control, pain, sleep.

A perverse form of puppetry, body control allows its wielder to directly control the physical motions of a target within Near distance. This involves manipulation of the actual 'meat' of its victim, which means said victim must resist this power with his or her Fortitude, instead of their Willpower. If the target fails a resistance roll against body control, the wielder of this ability may control their motions however they like.

Victims of this power may find themselves dancing, possibly in ways they never thought possible (or desirable), running away as fast as they can, beating themselves senseless, freezing in place, unable to talk or move, or anything else the body controller wishes. Those under the sway of body control may attempt another ACTION roll to resist this ability each turn it is applied to their person.

A character using body control may manipulate the actions of more than one person at a time. Of course, each person added improves both the difficulty of manipulating everyone involved as well as the possibility of their breaking free of such insidious control. Apply a -1 RS for each person after the first that a body controller attempts to manipulate with this ability.

C

Cure Disease
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: aciurgy, age control / others, decontamination, detoxification, healing / others, integral control, mental repair, recovery, regeneration / others, resurrection, resuscitation.

Essentially the opposite of the disease power, one can use cure disease to eradicate harmful micro-organisms in its target. This power only works on physical contact with its subject, at which point its wielder can detect and eliminate any undesirable microbes, viruses, or fungal colonies. This requires a power ACTION roll made against the intensity (if any) of the offending biological invaders.

Upon the successful use of this power, its target is cleansed of such agents, though lingering damage they've caused must be healed normally. This can be done through natural means, or with the use of the healing / others or regeneration / others powers. The cure disease power does not count as healing for the purposes of such, since it technically works against the things in one's body, as opposed to their body proper.

This allows the immediate use of healing powers on the cured individual without Fortitude penalty.

Furthermore, with all these dead micro-organisms floating around in their body, targets of this power have an improved ability to form an immunity to whatever infections were cured inside them. Though cure disease doesn't instill automatic immunity to plagues, it offers its target a +2 RS to develop it on their own, simulating the effect a normal vaccine has on its recipients.

On the other hand, it's important to note that this ability does not work as well against inorganic invaders of the nanoscopic sort. Cure disease functions at a -2 RS against tiny creatures of the inorganic variety, whether naturally evolved or those that come in the form of atomatons. A powerful enough version of this ability can competently fight such invaders off, but they're much more difficult to combat.

D

Death Ray
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: reanimation, vampirism.

The death ray, a popular attack in many forms of fiction, readily slays any living target it strikes. This is because it is a focused burst of entropic, anti-life energy that literally cancels out the life force (if any) of whatever it strikes. Death rays can function within Near distance of their wielder, and inflict their power rank value in Metabolic damage with each deadly, deleterious strike.

This entropic damage can be resisted as if it were Karmic in nature, which means most conventional protections do little against death rays - assuming their user can successfully hit with them. However, resistance to metabolic attacks protects against this power quite well; barring that, one might adopt specific resistance against essential attacks to avoid it, instead.

As a strong limitation, one can limit the effects of a death ray to contact only. This is then considered a death touch, and is also popular in fiction. Such an ability often denotes entropic alien beings, who wither flora and the like in their passing, but need not be always active in such a fashion.

Decontamination
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: age control / others, biological vampirism, cure disease, detoxification, energy vampirism, psionic vampirism, spectral vampirism, super vampirism, thaumaturgical vampirism, vampirism.

Decontamination works to purify a life form in the event that it is sullied by the taint of anti-life energies. This is most often the case when a body is subjected to one of the various vampiric abilities. Upon a successful power ACTION roll made against the offending anti-life power, decontamination can prevent the target from rising as an undead itself, whether it was slain by such abilities or just severely weakened.

When wielded against actual undead creatures of any stripe, decontamination inflicts direct Metabolic damage against them, its power acting to literally cancel out the energies that animate such beings. The only downside to this use of the power is that decontamination only works within Very Near range of its possessor, which means one must usually be directly exposed to such entities to combat them with it.

Related Powers: age control / others, biological vampirism, cure disease, detoxification, energy vampirism, psionic vampirism, spectral vampirism, super vampirism, thaumaturgical vampirism, vampirism.

Degeneration
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: 1d10 turns + maintenance, if desired
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: harm, regeneration / self, regeneration / others.

A slow but sure means by which one can dismantle their enemies, degeneration causes its target's very body to turn against itself! Should the target of degeneration fail a Fortitude ACTION roll against this ability's rank value, they will begin to lose Health points every round as their body breaks down. Degeneration continues for 1d10 turns, plus whatever additional time its wielder spends maintaining its effect.

The specific amount of Health lost is calculated in the same manner as regeneration. In other words, it's a number of Health points equal to the degeneration power rank value each minute, or one tenth that sum each turn. For example, a hapless villain afflicted with rank value 50 degeneration will suffer five points of Health loss each turn, for a grand total of fifty if it lasts for the full duration!

The victims of degeneration may attempt a new ACTION to resist its deleterious effects, after failing the initial roll, each time they suffer an amount of degeneration damage equal to its power rank value. If out of Health points while under the effects of degeneration, a character must pass a Fortitude ACTION as if affected by a Kill result, or will alternately lose a like amount of Negative Health points.

The only time degeneration gets tricky is when its target also possesses regeneration. In the event of such an occurrence, the higher power rank value between the two determines if one is stitching themselves back together or tearing themselves apart. Furthermore, the difference between the two powers' rank values will determine the rate at which the subsequent regeneration or degeneration is occurring.

Detoxification
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: aciurgy, age control / others, cure disease, decontamination, healing / others, integral control, mental repair, recovery, regeneration / others, resurrection, resuscitation.

Wielding the power of detoxification, its possessor can cleanse a living target - whether themselves or another - of impurities. The toxins so removed can be natural to the body or foreign materials. Thus, with this ability, one can remove fatigue poisons (allowing a person to bypass exhaustion ACTION rolls for a time) or otherwise toxic materials (to save someone's life).

The difficulty of such an ACTION roll depends on how much deleterious material one has inside their body. Red ACTIONs can take care of minute amounts of toxin (regular or fatigue poisons come to mind), a blue power ACTION roll is called for with considerable material (critical amounts of cholesterol), and yellow power ACTIONs are necessary when overwhelming amounts of foreign material are present (lungs full of sludge).

While it's great against regular chemicals, this ability doesn't work well against invaders of the electromechanical sort. Detoxification functions at a -2 RS against active foreign materials such as molecule-sized robots (atomatons). A powerful enough version of this ability can competently fight such invaders off, but they're much more difficult to combat than inanimate poisons.

Disease
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: barbs, claws, edges, fangs (teeth), horns, organic circuitry, organism generation, quills, razor skin.

This dreadful power allows its wielder to create and transmit microscopic organisms. It works similar to organism generation, though on a much smaller scale. One isn't creating pounds of pathogenic bacterium, after all, just enough to achieve the desired effect. As such, wielding disease does not cost its possessor Health points when in use, as (relatively) little energy is consumed while doing so.

To craft such diseases, one must study the organisms to be created. This process is similar to the memorization of blueprints one must perform with matter generation; one can 'memorize' an amount of microscopic life forms equal to their Intellect trait value. This can be done either academically (learning about them via reading) or empirically (learning about them by drawing them into oneself).

Once a character with the disease ability has 'learned' a plague, they can transmit it at will. This requires physical contact for the most part; while some diseases can be transmitted through the air, this power is only effective on touch. Upon contact with others, the disease carrier can infect their target if said person fails a Fortitude ACTION roll against this power rank value. The effects of such failure are immediate and dramatic.

While the symptoms of disease take time to manifest in real life, this ability bypasses that inconvenience, inflicting the full force of a plague upon its victim instantly. This causes power value Metabolic damage, as well as whatever problems said plague inflict (a nasty cough when infected with whooping cough, for instance). Similarly, such plagues will quickly run their course, and 'burn out' within 1d100 turns.

This has the effect of preventing further contagion. You see, the diseases created by this power are for all intents and purposes the real thing, but only have a transient existence. They, and any additional microorganisms that are created through their reproduction, will simply die off when the allotted time has expired. Even if one victim manages to infect another somehow, the disease is limited to the 'clock' set when first administered.

A curious side effect of this power's use is that there is a chance that the target, as a result of being exposed to the character's version of a plague, can develop immunity to the 'regular' variety of such. This can be achieved with a successful yellow Fortitude roll, though such immunity can only come after the disease has run its course.

Speaking of immunity, the benefit of this power is that its wielder acquires power value resistance to diseases. Its very nature entails the character analyzing microorganisms and figuring out how they work. As long as he or she can wield this power on any disease they're exposed to, they can make themselves immune to it - though if caused by another disease power, this may require passing an ACTION roll against its power value first.

E

Emotion Control
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: 1d100 turns + maintenance, if desired
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: charm, empathic hammer, empathy, mind control, mood swings.

While empathy merely lets one broadcast their own emotional states, emotion control actually allows its wielder to impose specific emotions upon other life forms. This ability functions on the Near range table, which is less than the scope of empathy, but then it's a much more active skill. Emotion control works against the Awareness of its targets, as opposed to Willpower (as is the case with mind control).

If the would-be target cannot pass an Awareness ACTION against the rank value of this ability, its wielder may invest any emotion he or she desires within said target, from hate to love to greed to whatever else turns their crank. Emotions tend to simmer, and an artificially induced emotion will last for 1d100 turns after this ability is applied, unless extreme circumstances act to change this emotional state.

Emotion control is otherwise versatile by design, but it may be taken in a limited form if desired. Restricting the character to but one emotion to manipulate (say, fear) is a strong limitation, adding +2 RS to the final power rank value (or reducing its cost by 2 points).

On the other hand, a broadcast form of emotion control can be taken. This is considered a strong enhancement to the power, since it normally only affects one person at a time, and adds two points to its cost (or subtracts -2 RS from the final rank). The broadcast version of emotion control can affect multiple targets simultaneously, but each doubling of victims applies a -1 RS penalty to the ACTION roll to control them all.

Empathic Hammer
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: emotion control, empathy, mood swings, psi bolt.

While the ability to control emotions is most often used in a subtle fashion to alter the behavior of others, it has other applications. In fact, this knack can be used in an offensive manner, rapidly and randomly altering the emotional state of others to cause general pain and confusion. Such a technique is known as an empathic hammer, and can be considerably debilitating.

If targeted by such an attack, the victim must pass an Awareness ACTION roll against the empathic hammer power rank value, or suffer like Karmic damage. Once struck by this power, the target will demonstrate multiple emotional states, seemingly simultaneously, as the changes roil through their minds. In addition to suffering this damage, the victim will lose the benefit of positive initiative modifiers for 1d10 turns.

The empathic hammer ability can strike any animate target within Near distance of its possessor.

Empathy
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: 1d10 turns + maintenance, if desired
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: animal control, animal sympathy, danger sense, empathic hammer, emotion control, hostility screen, mood swings, telepathy.

This potent ability allows one to read the surface emotions of other life forms. Though not as immediately direct as telepathy, empathy functions through a completely different process, interacting with the life force of a living being instead of their consciousness. This allows an empath to read the 'feelings' that others experience instead of their thoughts - which is arguably a more honest expression of their targets.

Empathy functions on the Middle range table. For example, a rank value 40 empath can read the emotions of others within eighty-eight sectors (two miles). An empath may attempt to read multiple targets simultaneously, but this reduces the ability's range by -1 RS for each doubling of targets, to a minimum of rank value 2. No matter how many people they try to read, though, empathy always has at least a one sector range.

In addition to reading the emotions of others, an empath may also broadcast his or her own emotional state. This is not emotion control (the feelings are not imposed upon others) so much as a simple notification. This can be to a single person with a red power ACTION, or a crowd with a blue ACTION roll. Those receiving the empath's message will know who's sending it if they're at all familiar with him or her.

G

Gestalting
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 2 points per rank value
Related Powers: animal hybridization / others, corporeal gestalt, plant hybridization, topological control

When making use of gestalting, its wielder can combine two distinct life forms into one being. These two entities need not include the possessor of gestalting, though this is a perfectly reasonable use of the power. Unless both targets are explicitly willing to be merged into a singular entity, the wielder of gestalting must first pass a power ACTION against the greater of any unwilling beings' Fortitude traits.

Once merged, the targets of gestalting will assume a form that combines the characteristics of each, while possessing a size determined by their total mass. Merging two relatively similar things (such as a rhino and a bull) will craft a new being with relatively similar capabilities, while blending disparate creatures (perhaps an oak tree and a centipede) may very well create an entirely new evolutionary niche.

The behavior of things wrought with gestalting results from a combination of their two personalities, if applicable.

If one component of the gestalted entity is mindless (a plant or fungi), it won't really affect the decisions of sentient or non-sentient but animate entities. If a sentient and non-sentient yet animate creature are combined, the former will hold sway, though the latter will wield considerable influence. Combining two sentient beings leaves both of their minds intact in a singular body, though they share the equivalent of a mind link.

Due to the staggering array of potential combinations of things one can bring into being with gestalting, it may be difficult to prepare in advance for its use. As such, the Gamemaster may very well have to 'wing it' when patching together weird new critters from formerly distinct life forms, a feat which is best managed by having ready access to descriptions of most animals that may be encountered by those making use of gestalting.

Gestalting only functions on life forms within Very Near distance of its wielder for the most part, though this can be bolstered via power enhancements. The merger of mindless and/or non-sentient life forms is generally a permanent alteration to both beings, while a sentient entity can attempt a Fortitude ACTION against gestalting's power rank value every turn in an effort to break off this blending of minds and bodies.

There are two exceptions to this general rule, the first involving the wielder of gestalting ending a merger that he or she has created previously, which they may do while within range of their creations. The second comes into play when all the sentient creatures involved in a gestalting decide that they prefer a merged state to their previous existence, which makes their combination as permanent as they want it to be.

As always, individuals gaining new powers via gestalting must ultimately purchase them via Fortune, lest they become subject to Plot.

H

Harm
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: degeneration, healing / self, healing / others, regeneration / self, regeneration / others.

A direct attack on the very life force of another, harm allows its wielder to torment, or even kill, others at will. Those targeted by harm are allowed a Fortitude ACTION roll against its intensity to shrug off the effect. Failing this, they will directly suffer power rank value Metabolic damage as the anti-life energies summoned by harm work to cancel out some (or possibly all) of their own, inherent life force.

Those affected by harm momentarily evince a distressing aura as their bodies are assaulted by anti-life energies. This visible discharge rapidly fades as the living energy of its target, not to mention that of microscopic life forms clinging to their body, is cancelled out by harm's negative power. While excruciating, the effects of harm are only temporary, as long as they don't cause the outright death of their target.

Living beings cling to life tenaciously, after all.

Harm only works within Near distance of its target.

Healing / Others
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: aciurgy, age control / others, cure disease, detoxification, harm, healing / self, integral control, mental repair, recovery, regeneration / others, resurrection, resuscitation.

This extremely popular talent infuses the body of another with essential, recuperative energies, energies which allow them to recover lost Health. No matter what form the lost Health may take, from severe burns to brain damage, healing will undo the damage inflicted. Each application of healing allows its recipient to recover this rank value in lost Health points, up to his or her usual maximum.

While healing is good for a body, at least in practical terms, it is nonetheless taxing on the system. This vast pulse of regeneration should be used on someone sparingly - only once per day - or else it may push its target's system too far. For every additional healing a character receives in a twenty-four hour period, they lose one rank value of Fortitude due to metabolic overload - which must then be recovered normally.

Alternately, healing / others may instead be limited so that the Fortitude loss comes from the healer instead of the target. This assumes a more intimate, direct tie between the metabolism of the healer and the healed, and allows the former to take the brunt of the system shock instead. This means a healer can only do their thing a minimal amount, lest they quickly work themselves to death, but what they can do is miraculous.

Having this limited form of healing is considered an extreme limitation, and enhances this power's level by +4 RS (or reduces the cost by four points).

Either way, a target may resist being healed if desired (if they've already been patched back up once already) by passing a Fortitude ACTION against this ability. Note that if someone's Health is full, healing / others has no effect (and the daily penalty doesn't kick in).

I

Integral Control
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: maintenance
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: body control, cure disease, detoxification, healing / others, pain, resuscitation, sensory attenuation, sensory distortion, sleep.

This power allows its wielder to actively manipulate the integral physiological systems inherent to another. Such uses can be beneficial, but for the most part this ability is used to the considerable detriment of its targets. When wielded to harm others, integral control will inflict its rank value in SD Metabolic damage, and targets within its Very Near range may readily resist the effects of this power with their Fortitude trait.

Some of the more common (but by no means only) offensive uses of integral control include the following:

M

Mood Swings
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: empathic hammer, empathy, emotion control, mind control, sensory projection, thought projection.

Mood swings is a variant form of emotion control. It has a lesser effect on the feelings of others overall, but is a broadcast effect. When wielding mood swings, one can subtly alter the emotions of everyone within Very Near distance of their person. Would-be victims gain an Awareness ACTION roll to resist this power, opposed by its intensity, but its targets won't know the power was used - even if they successfully resist.

Uses for this power involve ratcheting down intense emotions in an area (such as fear in a burning building) or cranking them up a notch (such as trust at a political rally), among many, many other applications. It can be used to seriously change the emotional state of its targets / victims, but this takes several stages of mood swings - the amount of turns involved depending on the nature of the emotional transition.

O

Organism Generation
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 3 points per rank value
Related Powers: aggregation, animal control, animal sympathy, body doubles, device generation, disease, disintegration, eidetic memory, matter duplication, matter generation, nanotechnology generation, organic circuitry, plant control, plant sympathy, transmutation.

Organism generation is the power to create life itself - from seeming nothingness! Weaving one's personal energies together with ambient subatomic particles, a character with this power can actually generate fully formed organisms. The creations of this power can be alive or dead, as the organism generator desires, with each state of being having its own, particular uses in the grand scheme of things.

Characters with organism generation can use it to manifest a number of pounds, each turn, which is equal to their power rank value. To build a creature that is of greater size than this amount, an organism generator must spend multiple turns bringing it into existence. With rank value 20 organism generation, for example, creating a one hundred and fifty pound clone of oneself would take eight turns.

When building a new life form from scratch, an organism generator generally need only make a red power ACTION roll initially, upon spending the required time to do so. This assumes a conventional life form, however. If 'making up' an entirely new life form, this ACTION is blue in hue, and if attempting to create life using a strain of chemistry unknown to modern science, the required ACTION roll is of yellow difficulty.

One problem with this power, such as it is, is that its use is highly strenuous on the body. The personal energy lost with organism generation's use is equal to one Health point per turn, which isn't such a big deal when one is building small life forms, but can add up fast when you're trying to make a humpback whale. This Health loss must be recovered in whatever fashion is normal for the organism generator.

Another difficulty posed by organism generation is the potential transience of its creations. A black ACTION makes them last for a number of turns equal to this power rank value, a red ACTION lets an organism exist for a number of minutes equal to this power rank value, and a blue ACTION allows a created being to persist for a number of hours equal to this power's rank value.

If one rolls a yellow power ACTION roll upon the completion of a life form, it is considered a permanent entity. It will not discorporate at any point in the future - at least, not due to circumstances extant when organism generation brought it into existence. Such life forms can be slain normally if brought into existence in a living state, or can decompose if manifested in a freshly deceased state.

Organism generation functions within Very Near distance of its wielder, and then only within his or her direct line of sight. Wielding this power at rank value 6, for example, would allow its possessor to generate life anywhere within six yards of their person - assuming nothing lies between them and where they would like to make it. Such beings have no inherent velocity, but gravity definitely affects them immediately.

To generate an organism, this power's wielder must generally understand its biology. This requires 'memorizing' a life form, each form of such counting as one 'slot' in an organism generator's memory (of which he or she has a number equal to their Intellect trait) - unless they possess eidetic memory, that is. If one's memory is 'full' when trying to memorize a new form of life to create, they need only drop another.

Entities created by this power will generally behave as a normal member of their species should, though they will lack any memories to speak of - unless their creator has a mind handy to copy or transfer into it. Doing this requires the requisite powers involved with such; otherwise, the creations of organism generation are a blank slate, who only possess knowledge gained after their manifestation in the world.

Organism Generation is an expensive power, but may be taken with a variety of limitations to reduce that cost somewhat - on top of those that are already indicated above, that is. One such (extreme) limitation involves preventing the power from making more than one kind of creature - say, it can only make bats (or whatever). Another (weak) limitation might remove the potential of permanency from one's creations entirely.

P

Pain
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: maintenance
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: body control, illusion projection, image projection, integral control, mind control, radio wave generation, sensory projection, sleep.

This useful ability allows its wielder to generate subtle bio-electric signals, which resonate in the nervous systems of others within Very Near distance. These signals, when grounded in the bodies of others, cause them to experience great pain - albeit with no apparent source of injury. If one fails a Fortitude ACTION roll against this power value, they will suffer the effect of an inflicted Concuss result.

Naturally, the high and low pain tolerance quirks will modify this ACTION roll accordingly.

While in a pain-induced stun, victims of this power can do little other than react to the overwhelming stimulus. This may involve writhing uncontrollably on the ground, screaming in blood-curdling agony, or fleeing the scene in a panic. Those affected by this power may attempt a new ACTION roll to resist each turn, until the effect has ceased or they have left the area of its generator.

The pain power is a great way to neutralize opponents without physically harming them. Sure, they may not be happy about the use of this ability, but it beats broken bones and bullet wounds. Of course, seriously abusing this power can lead its victims to ultimately developing strange mental quirks as a result, but that's usually as a result of overexposure to its effects - not just day-to-day usage.

Pain itself can be used on either one person or on everyone within its area of effect. The latter reduces its intensity by -2 RS but otherwise works the same.

Pheromones
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: maintenance + 1d100 turns
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: inodoriferous, poison, redolence.

A large number of animal life forms make use of pheromones, special chemicals that may be emitted into the environment to affect the behavior of other members of their species. While the human receptor of pheromones, the vomeronasal organ, is essentially inert, some characters have the ability to generate pheromones so powerful that they can actually overwhelm this vestigial feature.

While pheromones do not have an odor that humans can ordinarily detect, those produced by this power can definitely manipulate the behavior of others who are exposed to them. Anyone breathing within Very Near distance of a character with the pheromones power while it is active must pass a Fortitude ACTION against its rank value, lest they be subject to that character's influence.

Think of pheromones as a chemically-induced version of the emotion control power.

Once individuals are affected by pheromones, they are influenced by them for as long as the character emitting them is present - plus 1d100 turns. While under their influence, the target(s) will feel as the character with pheromones desires. They will experience any emotion he or she wishes, ranging from love to loyalty to trust to rage to anger to hatred - though everyone present that is affected will feel the same.

The important thing to keep in mind is that pheromones don't affect beings without a sense of smell - or that don't breathe. Would-be targets using their own air supply are similarly immune while the integrity of their life support systems persists. Furthermore, using pheromones on beings not of one's species (or at least very close) may or may not have the desired effect - it all depends on how similar the target life form is.

Plant Control
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: animal control, organism generation, plant hybridization / others, plant sympathy, summoning.

While plant sympathy only allows one to 'speak' with various kinds of non-sentient plant life, plant control enables its wielder to actually direct the actions of flora! This generally requires but a red power ACTION roll, since most floral entities don't have a Willpower trait to speak of, though such an ACTION is never considered automatic in nature. If it is sentient, a plant is allowed a Willpower ACTION roll to resist.

Control of a single plant generally lasts for 1d10 turns per application of this power, unless its wielder specifically focuses on maintaining his or her influence for longer. It can affect any plant within Very Near distance of its possessor, though once control is achieved, it can be exerted anywhere within Near distance of the plant controller.

A trickier application of plant control involves taking control of a large number of floral life forms at once (a row of crops, a small grove, et cetera). This requires a blue power ACTION roll, as seizing command of that many plants is rather involved. This ACTION must be repeated each turn, or else the grouping of plants will return to their natural, uncontrolled state once more.

Once control is achieved, a plant controller may direct their thrall(s) to perform any action they desire. Since plants are by and large inanimate, this involves actually animating the plant forms in question, per the object animation power. Trees can be made to 'walk', vines can entangle foes, and so on. A plant controller can control any number of plants within range at once, but can only issue one specific command at a time.

This can involve anything from having a singular vine restrain an enemy to directing a gaggle of radishes to attack the farmer who planted them. Generally, plants can only inflict an amount of Bashing or Slashing damage that is equal to their weight (as an equivalent Brawn trait), with a minimum rating of rank value 2 - and a maximum amount that is equal to the plant control power rank value.

Alternately, a plant controller can induce rapid growth within their subjects. This can cause a plant to grow from something as small as a seed to its full, adult size in but one turn. Such an action can cause considerable damage, particularly in an urban setting (tearing up concrete, damaging buildings, and so on). It can also make a body appear like unto a miracle worker in rural or famine-swept areas.

A plant controller can significantly enhance this ability with limitations, if desired. A strong limitation might involve constraining plant control to a general type of flora (trees, algae, et cetera). A very strong limitation would restrain the power further (grains, cacti, and so on), while an extreme limitation would only work on specific species (maize, rose cactus, et cetera).

Plant Hybridization / Others
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: animal hybridization / others, gestalting, growth / others, plant control, shrinking / others, topological control, transformation / others.

This potent ability allows its wielder to modify other life forms, namely by combining their inherent characteristics with that of plant life! When this power is first gained, its wielder can only add the characteristics of one form of flora to others. This represents a deep familiarity with the physiology of said plant type, and additional familiarities (i.e., floral forms) can be obtained as power stunts.

Any living creature can be the recipient of such hybridization, whether it is a human, a dog, or even another plant. Such a transformation can be either partial or total, depending on the whims of this power's possessor. This can either give an affected life form the abilities of the new plant type, or alter them fully into the chosen floral form (changing their physical traits, if applicable, appropriately).

Abilities gained by the target of this power typically function at a maximum rank value that is equal to its own. They may operate at less, depending on the nature of the transformations it can cause, but are limited in such a fashion to represent the ability of this power's possessor to emulate their chosen form of plant life. Physical weaponry is normally not affected by this limitation, however, since it usually uses set modifiers.

A vital consideration is the both the size of the target and the nature of a transformation, if it is complete. Turning a humpback whale into a rose bush would make immense flowers, while transforming a beetle into an oak tree would create an absolutely tiny oak. This problem cannot be bypassed without use of the growth / others and shrinking / others abilities (either as separate powers or as power stuns).

Another thing to bear in mind is that the target will retain whatever cognitive abilities it usually possesses, even if such a characteristic would normally be different in its final form. Changing a man into a weeping willow might make for a very panicky plant, while giving a corn stalk poisonous thorns wouldn't cause much of a net change (save for those 'talking' to the corn via plant sympathy).

Wielding plant hybridization / others requires physical contact with the target. The target can avoid the effects of this power by preventing contact with its wielder - or having resistance to metabolic attacks. The effects of changes, whether partial or complete, take place almost instantly. The target of this power can be a human resources representative one second and a fern the next - which might be an improvement.

Generally, the transformative effects of this power are transient in nature. On a red power ACTION, it will last for a number of turns equal to its power rank value. Blue successes raise this to a number of minutes equal to the power rank value, and a yellow ACTION roll will extend the time such a transformation lasts a number of hours equal to the power rank value!

On rare occurrences, this power's effects can be permanent. The wielder of plant hybridization / others has no control over this; occasionally, it just happens. Perhaps something occurred to that rat you turned into a tiny orange tree that caused it to remain in that state, or the flowers you imparted on someone for romantic inclinations agreed with their physiology so well that they stuck.

The Gamemaster is the final arbiter of such instances, which occasionally gives him or her a tool to introduce bizarre additions or alterations to their campaign.

Plant Sympathy
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: animal sympathy, biological sense, device sympathy, linguistics, object sympathy, organic circuitry, organism generation, plant sympathy, plant hybridization / self, summoning.

The power of plant sympathy is the skill to communicate with non-sentient floral life forms. The vast majority of plant life falls into this category, though one can be sure if the given plant has a Fortune trait - the presence of such demonstrates sapience, or at least free will. As long as it's not intelligent, any plant can be the target of this power - though the more complex a plant is, the better.

Speaking (after a fashion) with trees, or perhaps a large area of vegetation, requires but a red ACTION. A blue power ACTION roll is necessary when one tries to communicate with smaller specimens, such as bushes, vines, mushrooms, or most agricultural products. One must usually roll a yellow power ACTION only when attempting to talk with incredibly simple plant life, such as single-celled plants or fungi.

Conversing with plant life is somewhat difficult no matter how complex the specimen is, considering that plants lack a nervous system entirely. Thus, to communicate with plants, one must attune their minds to working at the plant's speed, as it were. Once this is achieved, the plant sympathizer must then talk to the plant in such a fashion that he or she can actually gain useful information from it.

The difficulty in doing so is usually directly proportional to how relevant the question is to the plant's existence. For example, a tree may not normally 'notice' or 'see' much about someone who simply walked by it in the recent past, but if that individual broke a tree branch or split its bark at all, the flora might have a vivid recall of both the event and who was responsible.

Poison
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: barbs, battle tail, claws, edges, fangs, horns, pheromones, quills, razor skin, redolence.

The insidious power of poison allows its wielder to secrete chemical compounds that are antithetical to most organic life. When this ability is first gained, its possessor may exude any one form of poison the player chooses. Additional forms of poison may be gained either as power stunts or as additional versions of the poison power - this only matters if one wants differing forms of toxicity now or later.

Each form of poison will affect its target at this power's rank value, usually prompting a Fortitude ACTION roll to resist. There are a wide variety of poisons, however, and a character with this ability must develop their own customized poison power based on three variables: the delivery mechanism, the effects the poison has on the biological processes of its target, and the onset time.

An inhaled poison is one that the target must breathe in to be exposed to its effects. The poisoner can typically emit poisonous particles from his or her body, whether the skin, their own lungs upon exhalation, or some specific body part. This form of poison can be avoided by not breathing it in, though a colorless and odorless poison may be difficult to detect - at least, until it is too late.

A contact poison is one that is absorbed through the skin to function. Such a toxin is typically issued forth from one's body or a physical weapon of some sort. This form of poison can be applied directly to the target or something they might touch, though in the latter case such a poison will lose effectiveness over time, as the elements, circumstance, or even its own molecular structure conspire to dilute its strength.

Injected poisons are those which must somehow enter the bloodstream to affect the target. This form of poison is often delivered through a hypodermic needle or perhaps a bladed object. Swords, arrows, and even natural weaponry excel for these purposes. An injected poison usually has a very rapid onset time, since it need not pass through the lungs or digestive tract on the way to its final destination.

Poisons of the ingested sort are those which must be consumed by the target to affect them. These can be the hardest to deliver in a combat situation, as one must generally force their ingestion, possibly with surprise. At the same time, one can most readily use this power on a foe when they are caught unawares, dosing the target's food or water supply when they're not looking.

The inhaled form of poison is considered the default mode of this power, and functions within Very Near range of others. Wielding a contact form of poison is considered a weak limitation, an injected form of poison is a strong limitation, and a poison that must be ingested counts as a very strongly limited power. This allows one to build a very deadly toxin, depending on how difficult it is to deliver.

Of course, one must determine what their poison will do once it affects the target. The simplest form of poison is one which inflicts non-specific, SD Metabolic damage. This is representative of a chemical that does damage to the target's organs and tissues in the course of moving through their body, though it isn't very detailed - which is on purpose, for those without a biochemistry degree.

If a player wishes to devise a specific poison, modeled on real life compounds, these can be researched and built appropriately. Such 'realistic' poisons will usually trade some of the previously described damage for different effects, as determined by the player and the Gamemaster. Cyanide might cause suffocation, while nerve gas will cause paralysis - these toxins and many more are possible using the poison power.

Finally, a player must determine the onset time of their poison. The standard mode of the poison power calls for an immediate effect. However, the power can be limited by delaying the onset time for 1d10 turns as a weak limitation, 1d10 minutes as a strong limitation, or even 1d10 hours as a very strong limitation. Such delayed onset times aren't very applicable to combat, but are great for harming others without notice!

R

Reanimation
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 2 points per rank value
Related Powers: death ray, fluid animation, image animation, object animation, resurrection, solid animation, vampirism, vapor animation.

Reanimation is the ability to instill a semblance of life into formerly living creatures. This works in a number of fashions, the end result being that the formerly inanimate biological matter reanimation was used upon has been given the ability to move again! Such reanimated creatures are under the control of their creator, and will usually do his or her bidding without question - they've instilled them with their new unlife, after all.

The difficulty of reanimating the dead depends on just how much of it remains. A fresh corpse (aside from minor damage, such as whatever ended its life) requires a red power ACTION. Blue ACTIONs are necessary when a considerable portion of the body is gone, or if it has suffered serious damage (dying in a fire, losing an arm). A yellow ACTION is called for when naught but a skeleton remains of the body.

Most often, the reanimated creatures will take the form of a zombie - a nigh-mindless humanoid. This assumes that reanimation was wielded upon relatively intact human corpses. The less intact a corpse is, the less Health it will have; a skeleton is a form of zombie that is mostly devoid of flesh, and has but eight Health points. If used on animals, characteristics for such must be worked out independently.

However, a reanimator can create more powerful forms of undead if they wish. This requires the use of additional abilities, but it is within the realm of possibility. For example, a reanimator who also possesses vampirism can themselves raise vampires. The only problem with this is that more powerful - and more intelligent - undead creatures are harder to control, and may actively plot against their recreator to gain their freedom.

Achieving control of one's undead creations requires a power ACTION against the Willpower trait of said creature. This is almost always successful against mere zombies, who have a rank value zero (0) Willpower trait. More powerful undead creatures may very well resist this control, however, and if they break free they might assault their recreator if they've been treated badly (either for real or in the undead's imagination).

The fun part is that this trick works both on undead creatures that a reanimator has created and those created by other reanimators. To 'steal' control of another reanimator's minions, a reanimator must pass a reanimation ACTION roll against the intensity of the other reanimator's reanimation ability. If successful, they can then attempt to control that undead as if they'd just created it (per the above).

A reanimator may create any number of undead minions to do his or her bidding, but can only actively control a limited amount of such at a time. The number of undead one can simultaneously command is equal to this power rank value. While reanimators can only directly command this many at once, other undead under their sway will continue previous tasks given to them - at least, until they've completed such.

Alternately, a reanimator can temporarily animate bits of dead bodies, much as other matter animators can handle their own areas of interest. This requires a red power ACTION, and allows a reanimator to control any deceased biological matter available like a macabre puppet master. This does not create new undead creatures at all, but simply allows the reanimator to make use of such 'spare parts' in a pinch.

Reanimation's major concern is that its creations are contagious. Almost all undead possess the means to create more of their kind, which is usually considered a negative consequence of their undead status (such as the Curse of the Zombie, or the Kiss of the Vampire). Indirect creations of a reanimator are considered theirs for the purposes of control, but if unaware of them they may become free-roaming undead.

And this never bodes well for a civilization... any civilization. So why bother? Zombies and the like are a great source of free labor, however smelly. Let loose in a factory, a zombie work force can continue to perform the tasks given to them indefinitely. And when you really need a horde of monsters to wipe out the neighboring town, why bother with the more skilled minions amongst your ranks? Send in the zombies!

Recovery
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: cure disease, detoxification, healing / others, healing / self, mental repair, regeneration / others, resurrection.

The power of recovery allows its wielder to rapidly replace lost trait and power values caused by a variety of circumstances, ranging from crippling injuries to power absorption to vampiric attack! The only reduction recovery cannot repair is Fortitude loss due to excess healing, as it is considered a healing power itself, and will in fact inflict a -1 RS to one's Fortitude if used on them immediately after a healing power.

Other than that minor caveat, recovery will immediately restore a number of lost points in its target's traits and/or powers that is equal to the recovery power's rank value. It can operate on as many different wounded traits or powers as its wielder likes, either focusing on just one or splitting its effect amongst many. The power can be used on its wielder or anyone else he or she is in contact with.

Regeneration / Others
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: maintenance
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: aciurgy, age control / others, cure disease, degeneration, detoxification, harm, healing / others, recovery, regeneration, resurrection, resuscitation.

This power allows its wielder to repair damage suffered by others over time. Instead of a massive, metabolism-taxing burst of healing delivered all at once, this ability will essentially grant others the power to regenerate while applied to their person. As such, it may be used to aid others as often as one likes, avoiding the infliction of Fortitude penalties for multiple uses.

When this power is applied to another, they can regenerate a number of lost Health points that is equal to its power rank value each minute. This number can be divided by ten to determine how much lost Health one can recover with it on a turn-by-turn basis. If one wielded this power at rank value 100, for example, the target would actually recover ten lost points of Health each turn!

Bear in mind that regeneration does not work if the recipient is suffering continuous damage. In the event of SD damage (potentially caused by rotting attacks and other Metabolic harm), regeneration will not function for a person, even if this power is still applied to them. One must wait out the SD effect or prevent its continued operation before the power will resume functioning for a wounded individual.

Resurrection
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 2 points per rank value
Related Powers: age control / others, cure disease, detoxification, healing / others, mental repair, reanimation, recovery, regeneration / others, resuscitation, revival.

This potent ability allows its wielder to raise the very dead. This is not reanimation, in that one is not creating near-mindless zombies and other undead to do his or her bidding, but the restoration of full life functions! There is both a physical and a metaphysical aspect to this ability, the former of which depends on how much of the dead body is intact, while the latter depends on how long a body has been deceased.

In other words, resurrections require two distinct ACTION rolls.

The first has a difficulty based upon how much of a corpse remains. A red ACTION can resuscitate an intact (or nearly so) body; this corpse has only minor damage, if any. A blue ACTION is necessary if the body is only partially intact, or suffered severe damage (died in a fire, or is missing one or more limbs). A yellow ACTION can restore life to a body that is mostly gone (skeletal remains, cremation, or frozen and shattered bodies).

If this first ACTION is successful, the body has been repaired and is ready to receive its spiritual inhabitant. If this seems too difficult (a character makes a point of raising the long dead, or their allies have a habit of being eaten alive) one could make use of abilities like the conjuration spell to iron out the kinks here, and restore the body to pristine condition (thus only requiring a red ACTION to get the body prepared).

Once the shell is ready, the resurrector must give it the spark of life, and reunite the body with its lost essence. If the body died within the last year, this is a red power ACTION, while a blue ACTION roll is required if it died within the last century. Reaching back further than this requires a yellow ACTION, as the corpse's spirit has long since moved on to the next stage of its existence, whatever that may be.

If successful, this will draw the lost anima from wherever it had gotten to and fuse it anew to its former body. The resurrected entity will be disoriented for 1d10 turns, during which time it will acclimatize itself to its renewed state of life. After this, the resurrected character (or animal, or whatever) may do as it wishes, not at all being bound by the will of their resurrector (though likely grateful, for the most part).

Resurrection can be a powerful tool for adventurers, as it mostly negates the threat of death, but there can be consequences.

Generally speaking, a body will not remember what occurred to it after its death. However, the longer a body has been resident in some afterlife or another, the more likely it is to have memories of some sort about that time. Even more likely, the individual entities in charge of said afterlife will take notice if one of their charges has been ripped from their care after a couple of centuries.

On the other hand, a character that has been resurrected many times may irk the ire of whatever death god(s) hold sway over them. They may be tired of repeatedly losing one of their prizes to the resurrector, and may pay him or her a visit. One never knows if this will involve a stern talking to about the nature of life and death, or instead taking the resurrector's soul in the place of the resurrectee's.

Similarly, dice rolls to the contrary, it may be impossible to raise a person from the dead if their spirit has been irrevocably changed after leaving the body. This can involve anything from becoming one with the universe to transforming into mythological creatures such as angels or demons, or even having one's essence consumed or destroyed somehow. If this happens, the resurrection will fail.

Not that the resurrector may necessarily know this. When this ability is used on a being whose anima has been transformed or destroyed, it's possible that someone may take notice and insert something else instead of the soul in question. If this occurs, the wielder of this ability may attempt an Intellect ACTION roll to determine if something has gone awry; if successful, the resurrector will at least know what has happened.

If it fails, they'll be none the wiser (and hilarity may quickly ensue).

Most of these concerns involve edge cases, though, and usually won't be a serious problem to the wielder of this ability. For the most part. But it does pay to avoid raising people from the dead willy-nilly, or else one might end up like Asclepius. He raised the dead for fun and profit, until Zeus struck him down for his perfidy. Sure, he was eventually elevated to godhood himself, but it was a rough road getting there.

Resuscitation
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: aciurgy, age control / others, cure disease, detoxification, healing / others, integral control, mental repair, regeneration / others, resurrection, revival.

Resuscitation is something of an extended first aid power, in that it allows one to revive those who have recently died. A lesser form of resurrection, resuscitation can be used to, well, resuscitate those who have just passed, whether due to injury or illness. Generally, the power can restore the spark of life to its target if used within a number of minutes equal to its power rank value.

The difficulty of restoring life to the recently dead depends on how damaged the body was upon its demise. Red ACTIONs can resuscitate an intact (or nearly so) body. A blue ACTION roll is necessary if the body is only partially intact, or suffered severe damage. A yellow power ACTION can restore life to a body that is mostly gone. In addition to restoring life, resuscitation repairs just enough damage to sustain it.

A resuscitated character resumes life with a maximum number of Health points equal to this power's rank value. He or she must then repair any further damage (read: Health and Fortitude loss caused by their injuries) in any other way they can. The only problem there is that resuscitation counts as healing for the purposes of metabolic overload, so such powers cannot help for at least twenty-four hours after one is resuscitated.

Not safely, at any rate. This is because the resuscitated character, having lost all of their Fortitude rank values previous to the use of this power, is resting at rank value 2 Fortitude at the moment. The -1 RS Fortitude penalty for additional healing might repair more of the damage to their body, but the strain of such may kill them (again) in the process (make another Kill check, this time at rank value 0).

Rotting
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: barbs, catalysis, claws, corrosion, disintegration, horns, poison, quills, razor skin.

The power to rot involves inducing organic matter to die and rapidly decay. A variety of mechanisms can produce this effect, the end result being damage to or the destruction of organic materials. Against living entities, this ability will cause power value SD Metabolic damage each time it is applied, which its targets may avoid by preventing physical contact (it requires such to function).

When used against non-living organic matter, whether clothing or rope or a corpse, rotting will destroy it if it fails a material value check against its power rank value.

Matter affected by rotting, whether living or dead before the power is used, will show signs of advanced decomposition. This may confound physicians when used against the living, and wounds inflicted by it will heal - though they might leave gnarly scars. Products made from organic materials appear to be much older than they should be when affected by rotting, if they're not destroyed outright by this ability.

This power can be avoided with resistance to metabolic attacks - or just resistance to corrosion or rotting. The entropic effect of this power inflicts -3 RS damage against inorganic targets (it works, just less effectively).

S

Sensory Attenuation
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: 1d10 turns + maintenance, if desired
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: illusion projection, integral control, jumbling, sensory distortion, sensory projection, sleep.

Sensory attenuation is similar to powers such as inodoriferous or invisibility, in that it prevents others from sensing something its possessor prefers they would not. It differs, however, in that this power does not affect any properties of its wielder - instead, it actively screens the perceptions of others to ensure they do not experience certain sensory input whatsoever.

When successfully used against another, sensory attenuation will 'switch off' one of their senses, doing so for either 1d10 turns or for as long as its wielder concentrates on keeping the power active. Additional actions may be made to deactivate further senses if desired, though a character can only 'mute' a number of senses equal to the amount of actions he or she can simultaneously concentrate upon.

The power of sensory attenuation can function on anyone within Near range of its wielder. However, the target of this power is allowed a Fortitude ACTION roll to shrug off its effects beforehand. If this ACTION is successful against an intensity equal to the sensory attenuation power rank value, it simply won't work (that time). Similarly, resistance to metabolic attacks serves to blunt or negate the effects of this power.

Sensory Distortion
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: maintenance
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: illusion projection, integral control, sensory attenuation.

A lesser form of illusion projection, sensory distortion allows its wielder to twist the existing sensory input a person experiences. While one won't see things that aren't there while under the effects of sensory distortion, he or she might perceive something close as far away, hear sounds at the wrong pitch or from the incorrect directions, and might find the floor seems to be at a wholly wrong angle.

The 'technical' effect of sensory distortion is to inflict a -2 RS penalty on all physical ACTIONs attempted while one's senses are so scrambled. This because it's hard to hit someone when you're actually seeing them somewhere they're not, walk normally when the ground is apparently shifting underfoot, or doing anything when one's clothes feel lined with razors. Awareness ACTIONs are made at a -4 RS under the influence of this ability.

Sensory distortion itself lasts as long as one concentrates on maintaining the effect, and can affect anyone who fails a Willpower ACTION roll against its power value. Of course, one can try to resist sensory distortion anew on each subsequent turn. This ability can be used upon anyone within Near range of its wielder.

Sleep
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 1 point per rank value
Related Powers: body control, crowd control, daydreams, integral control, mesmerism, pain, sensory attenuation.

The sleep ability allows its user to rapidly neutralize a large number of people - without directly harming them. When invoked, sleep shuts down the conscious minds of all sentient beings within Very Near distance, if they fail a Willpower ACTION against its value. Those affected will usually lose consciousness within a second or so, having just enough time to lie or sit down before passing out.

The effects of sleep last for 1d10 turns, though unlike a lot of mind-altering powers, the targets do not gain an additional ACTION roll to resist each turn. This is because a state of sleep is somewhat fickle, and can be readily interrupted by external forces. Such interruption can come in the form of sudden stimulus (loud noise, a slap, noxious odor) or even something as simple as vigorously shaking the sleeping individual.

Summoning
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: special
Cost: 2 points per rank value
Related Powers: aggregation, animal control, animal sympathy, finding, linguistics, mind control, plant control, plant sympathy, teleportation / others.

Summoning is the ability to draw forth living creatures, whether sentient or otherwise - and bind them to your will! It can be used to make manifest creatures native to one's world, alien beings from across the cosmos, or even enigmatic entities from beyond the universe. A summoner may bring forth one creature or many, to be directed towards any task they are capable of... assuming they're strong enough.

Once the summoner has decided what he or she wishes to call forth, they must roll a power ACTION against the Willpower trait of their target. If this ACTION roll is successful, the creature will appear before them, and can be directed to perform one task. Once this task is completed the summoned entity will disappear, the summoner's hold upon it broken, and will smartly return from whence it came.

This assumes that only one creature was called by the summoner. If the summoner wishes to bring about multiple creatures, each doubling of such subtracts a -1 RS from their effective summoning rank value. This may not be a huge deal when conjuring up a cloud of Africanized honey bees (who have no Willpower rank value to speak of), but summoning a horde of pixies might be the last thing the summoner ever did.

Except for the screaming and so forth.

This is because, if the summoning ACTION fails, the called creature(s) might answer the summons anyway. Those creatures that do so may act as they please, no matter what the summoner demands of them. And the more uncontrolled creatures one calls forth, the more creatures there are to vent their frustration upon the summoner for attempting to drag them away from their lives to do someone else's dirty work.

The chief problem with summoning is that the summoner does not know if a creature is truly under their control until it disobeys them. Powerful creatures love to take advantage of this loophole in summoning to try and wring something out of the summoner in return for services rendered. Alternately, they may threaten him or her with bodily harm after the task is completed, if they are not bargained with beforehand.

On the plus side, if they've indeed taken control of the called creature, a summoner can ignore this posturing... unless it learns enough about a summoner to find them afterwards. Or can resist the summoning power's banishment of it after it has completed the task the summoner called it to perform. Some entities truly lack a sense of humor, and can bear a grudge for a very, very long time.

T

Transformation / Others
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 2 points per rank value
Related Powers: animal hybridization / others, plant hybridization / others, topological control, transformation / self, transmutation.

The power to transform others is the ability to drastically alter the physical makeup of living beings. It works on them in the same way transmutation does, and usually involves an atomic or molecular change in the target. The difference is that said living beings are not changed into an inert mass of material; instead, they are altered such that they can function despite their brand new composition!

When this power is first gained, its wielder will know how to change a living being such that it can act in one new form. This can be any one kind of matter, regardless of its state, or even energy if desired. He or she can acquire the ability to transform others into additional substances either as a power stunt of this ability or by acquiring this ability again (player's choice).

To transform another living being in this fashion, physical contact with the target is required. The target can avoid the effects of this power by preventing contact with its wielder - or having resistance to metabolic attacks. The effects of changes, whether partial or complete, take place almost instantly; the target of this power can be an ordinary human one moment, and made out of titanium the next!

Transforming others into a solid material gives them an effective material value (and thus, body armor) equal to its normal m.v. or this power's rank value - whichever is less. While in this solid state, characters so transformed may move about and behave as they normally do, even if constructed of something especially rigid. However, if one's m.v. is higher than their Brawn, they can only move as if such were only rank value 2.

A fluid transformation allows the target of this power to flow as can any liquid, easily working their way through tight spaces and around objects as is required. A character in a liquid state can readily alter their form, pooling up in any shape desired. Furthermore, this molecular configuration allows its recipient the benefit of 1 RS of damage reduction against physical attacks, as their energy partially passes right through such beings.

Characters transformed into a vaporous state gain the movement benefits of the liquid form, along with the power of flight. While in the form of a gas, characters can fly at an air speed equal to this power value. Gaseous bodies can either condense their form to an approximately human size and shape, or extend their mass out to cover an entire sector. They receive 2 RS of damage reduction against physical attack.

Transforming others into a coherent field of energy is also possible. This allows a being so changed to generate energy at this power value -2 RS, matching that which they've become. Possessing little or no mass, an energy being also has the power to fly like a gas form, but can do so on the space table instead of at air speed. Finally, energy life forms benefit from 3 RS of damage reduction against physical attack.

In addition to the above, transformed characters possess special abilities derived from their new composition. A bird made from plutonium would rapidly contaminate a wide area with radiation, while a rat made from sulfuric acid would wreak havoc in a foundry. Powers granted due to a being's new chemical composition are generally limited to this power rank value in effectiveness, unless physics would override this constraint.

Light generally doesn't slow down for anyone, after all.

On the other hand, characters so transformed are similarly hamstrung by their chemistry. While they may gain the power to emit cold after being transmogrified into a block of ice, the target is suddenly quite vulnerable to fire and heat. Any sudden 'weakness' the character has due to a state of chemistry should be treated as a level 1 allergy quirk (or, in other words, affects them at a +2 RS).

When taking damage in a transformed state, a character can visibly show serious damage, and even be split apart, but can be transformed back to a normal state as long as they're not slain. They may be a bit worse for the wear upon changing back (Health point loss, and so on), but such damaged characters will otherwise be fine. A transformed character's 'core' usually rests with the largest mass of their material.

If not changed back by the wielder of this power, a transformed entity will last in his or her altered state for an amount of time determined when the power is used upon their body. A red power ACTION allows transformations to last a number of turns equal to its power rank value, while a blue ACTION will extend it to a like amount of minutes, and a yellow ACTION roll allows a transformation to last a similar number of hours.

While biological processes may or may not function in this altered state, the benefit to its target is that they are not necessary, strictly speaking. While transformed, the character so changed may go without eating, drinking, breathing, and even sleep as if they wielded environmental independence for the duration of their change. This makes the power a great emergency life support mechanism in a pinch!

V

Vampirism
Type: Biological Control Power
Duration: instantaneous effect
Cost: 2 points per rank value
Related Powers: biological vampirism, death ray, decontamination, energy vampirism, psionic vampirism, spectral vampirism, super vampirism, thaumaturgical vampirism.

In its basic form, vampirism allows its wielder to drain the life force of another, to recover lost Health. Vampirism always requires contact with the victim, and cannot be used at range. Upon touching the target, a vampire can drain an amount of their Health equal to this power rank value, assuming the target cannot resist; vampirism can be fought off by passing a Willpower ACTION roll against its rank value.

If this ACTION fails, the vampire may drain their victim as much or as little as they wish. Every additional turn they do so, the target is allowed another ACTION to resist. If this ACTION is ever successful, the victim immediately repulses the vampire and gains immunity from this form of their assailant's vampirism, but doesn't protect from other characters with the power, or other forms of vampirism the assailant may have.

If the character with vampirism is at full Health when they drain an amount of Health equal to their power rank value, they receive a +1 RS to their Brawn, Fortitude, Willpower, and all their power rank values save for this one (additional drains do not enhance them further). This boost lasts for 1d100 turns, after which point the character with vampirism will return to normal. Gaining another boost requires another feeding.

On the flip side, a vampire may instead bestow a gift of Health, at a loss of their own. This works in the same fashion, though an ACTION roll usually isn't required (most critically wounded individuals welcome healing), but if the target resists, the same ACTION as the above applies. Upon healing another via vampirism, the wounds so repaired will appear on the body of a vampire, a visual expression of the transfer of Health.

The risk in using this ability is twofold. First off, there's the danger of contagion. Draining a body of its Health completely is considered a lethal attack. If the victim of such an attack fails their Kill check, they will begin to lose Fortitude rank values until either first aid is administered or they die. If such an individual dies, they will rise again as an undead creature, an essential vampire that requires the life force of others to live.

Secondly, if a vampire kills with this ability, whether accidentally or on purpose, they must pass a Willpower ACTION against the intensity of their own vampirism rank. If this ACTION roll fails, the vampire will become addicted to the essence of others, and will require it to function as well. While addicted, the character with vampirism will suffer a loss of power each day they do not feed upon the Health traits of others.

This loss comes in the form of a -1 RS to their Brawn, Fortitude, Willpower, and all their power rank values (save for the vampirism, of course). To avoid this loss, the addicted vampire must drain an amount of Health equal to their vampirism rank value each day, and if at a penalty, a like amount to recover each -1 RS lost to such abilities. The only way to shake this addiction is to go cold turkey - and that's not easy.

Withdrawal from the life force from others causes the RS penalties to mount, until the character's indicated traits and power values reach rank value 0 levels. This prompts a Fortitude ACTION, per a Kill result. If this ACTION fails, the character immediately dies, and will eventually rise as an essential vampire themselves. If it succeeds, they may attempt a Willpower ACTION to overcome their addiction.

If this Willpower ACTION succeeds, the character is 'cured', and may begin to recover lost trait and power values at a rate of +1 RS per day. If the Willpower ACTION fails, however, the character must wait another day, and repeat the Fortitude ACTION to see if they live long enough to attempt another Willpower ACTION to beat the urge. This continues until the character either dies or manages to get clean.

If a character with vampirism has ever been addicted to the essence of others, using the ability again may cause a relapse - even if they've physically recovered from the ordeal. Every time the character uses vampirism afterwards, they must pass a Willpower ACTION, the failure of which indicates an immediate relapse into vampiric addiction. If they pass this ACTION they'll be fine - at least, until next time!

Naturally, an undead creature dependent on the Health of others to live cannot shake this requirement. This process only applies to still-living wielders of vampirism, and not its many victims.

In this form, vampirism is the basis for numerous other permutations of the power. Everything ranging from 'traditional' vampires (who gain strength from the blood of others) to energy vampires (who feed on power, whether in nature or within people) to even spectral vampires (who feast upon the souls of others) - and more - have their basis in this ability. Which leaves a Textbook character with vampirism a choice.

He or she may choose this iteration of the ability or any of the others when it becomes available during character generation. Characters with vampirism in any form need not begin play as an undead creature (those monsters have to originate somewhere, after all), but can with the approval of the Gamemaster; this approval is necessary as it gives the character many additional abilities along with the inherent weaknesses.

On top of all the complications of playing such an entity.

Return to the Textbook Character Treatise!

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