One common feature of near-future or “cyberpunk” settings is the ability to recover from incredible physical trauma through the use of cybernetic implants and prosthetics. In a near-future Fate campaign, cybernetics may be a common way to recover from consequences taken in physical conflicts. And for the most serious consequences, they may be the only practical way.

Under this campaign rule, whenever you attempt to recover from a severe physical consequence, the difficulty is Epic (+7) if you are trying to use traditional therapies, reconstructive surgery, etc., but only Superb (+5) if you are replacing a damaged body part with cybernetics. In place of Lore or whatever skill provides medical treatment, you can use Resources or Contacts to hire or recruit a talented surgeon.

Once the consequence has been treated and begins to recover, rename it to indicate the period in which the patient adjusts to their new prosthetic. Then, at the end of the next scenario, the implant is fully operation and becomes like any other part of the character’s body.

That is, unless the player wants to alter the character’s aspects to reflect the new prosthetic. This can be done with the benefit of a minor milestone after the consequence is recovered. Any aspect other than the high concept can be changed to reflect the new implant. That aspect can be invoked or compelled to represent capabilities or malfunctions of the prosthetic. (An extreme consequence can also be used to cement an implant in aspect form, but the adjustment period may last longer than a single scenario.)

Effects of Implants

Beyond the normal uses of fate points, the new aspect can be invoked for effects other than simple +2s and rerolls. By spending a fate point, you can access features of an implant that go beyond the abilities of an unaugmented individual. Here are some examples:

  • Cybereyes: Invoke to ignore scene aspects that represent darkness, smoke, etc., for the scene. Your eyes include special optics that overcome such barriers to natural vision.

  • Cyberlegs: Invoke to travel two additional zones for free or to overcome a single barrier to movement without rolling as you run faster or leap higher.

  • Dermal Armor: Invoke to ignore all physical stress from a single source. You create a situation aspect to reflect your clothing being torn to shreds or bullets simply ricocheting off or your skin and hitting other targets. The source of the stress (or the GM) gains one free invoke of this aspect.

And so on. Effects should be roughly on par with the bonuses you would get for the cost of a fate point, but the exact benefits are up for negotiation between player and GM.

Removing Prosthetics

If you come to a point where a cybernetics aspect is more of a hindrance than an asset, you can rename it to remove the prosthetic as a defining feature. This also takes the benefit of a minor milestone. (If you took a cybernetics aspect as an extreme consequence, you have to wait until at least the next major milestone to remove it.)

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