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Zereth
Jul 9, 2003



Ronwayne posted:

goons 2019: "The whole furry hate thing of the 2000s was massively over blown, especially compared to an age full of nazis, pepes, honklers, and other magical woodland creatures"

also goons in 2019: "That being said, loving CHRIST"
the mere existence of furries in the game is one of the least objectionable things about HSD, the libertarianism is doing the heavy lifting there

the backstory for why the furries exist is bonkers nonsense, tho

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Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!

Rifts Coalition Wars 4: Cyber-Knights posted:

Warning!

Hark, and take heed!

Rifts Coalition Wars 4: Cyber-Knights posted:

Violence, War, Magic & the Supernatural

Therein lies injury done harshly, the clash of nations, sorcery most foul, and monsters of a manner most unnatural.

Rifts Coalition Wars 4: Cyber-Knights posted:

The fictional world of Riftsģ is violent, deadly and filled with supernatural monsters. Other-dimensional beings often referred to as "demons," torment, stalk and prey on humans. Other alien life forms, monsters, gods and demigods, as well as magic, insanity, and war are all elements in this book.

Indeed, the fantastical setting depicted within these pages is full of injuries suffered, the cold grip of death, and filled with the awfulest of beasts. Many creatures crawl from worlds about, heretical deities and their spawn, and bewitchment, addled minds, and war most terrible.

Rifts Coalition Wars 4: Cyber-Knights posted:

Some parents may find the violence, magic and supernatural elements of the game inappropriate for young readers/players. We suggest parental discretion.

Dutiful mothers and fathers may find the spilling of blood, wicked enhantments, and strangest of matters found within thine pages not fit for little ones. We suggest you apply strict discretion in allowing their attentions to lie upon this tome.

Rifts Coalition Wars 4: Cyber-Knights posted:

Please note that none of us at Palladium Booksģ condone or encourage the occult, the practice of magic, the use of drugs, or violence.

Be sure to inscribe the words that follow: not a man amongst us hast any desire to tolerate things wizardly, strange elixirs, or harm done to a fellow man. So sayest we all.




Rifts Coalition Wars 4: Cyber-Knights, part 1 - "The cover: A Cyber-Knight with a pair of twin Psi-Swords battles a Coalition Juicer, Vibro-Claws drawn, in a mano y mano dance of death."

Have I got good news for you! If you want to know more about Cyber-Knights, we're not getting much on the war this time. It's mostly just Cyber-Knights.

However, I have some bad news. If you want to know more about the war, we're mostly just getting material on Cyber-Knights. It's mostly just Cyber-Knights.



Rifts tends to be coy when adding new splatbook-type material. For example, Rifts Sourcebook 3: Mindwerks gave us more on Crazies, Rifts World Book 20: Canada gave us more on Headhunters, Rifts World Book 22: Free Quebec went on about Glitter Boy Pilots. (When do we get the long-awaited Vagabond Non-Skilled book, Siembieda?) Well, like Juicer Uprising before it, Rifts Coalition Wars 4: Cyber-Knights wears its purpose on its sleeve. It's another Siembieda / Coffin jam, so be prepared for sudden shifts in style.

Of course, these aren't knights in the sense of serving a lord or even necessarily being mounted warriors. No, these are more of the medieval romance questing sort of knights, only they don't have a quest, they just go around righting wrongs. White knights, if you will, some kind of justice warriors for society. Signaling their virtue so they might act as examples. Believers in liberty, but who try to be correctly political.


"The focused totality of my phallipathy!"

This is another Siembieda trope, of course- the idea of wandering virtuehobos started in Rifts with the Cyber-Knights, but since then we've had many others, with Justice Rangers, Totem Warriors, and Tundra Rangers being the most prominent, people who live by itemized codes that direct them on being gooder than most people. How they actually get support and supply and live is fairly vague, however. Presumably they're supported by local communities, but it's not clear. Hopefully it'll be clear by the end?

Anyway, we don't have an introduction, and can go right into the opening fiction chunk. It's time to imagine those dulcet documentary tones once again as we get a letter from Coalition Sgt. Deon Canton to his wife. This has been apparently sent covertly (somehow), as to bypass the military censors. It seems he survived the "Sorcerer's Revenge", but recounts how the sudden Tolkeen assault surprised and overwhelmed them, turning things into chaos. His unit tried to surrender, and though a Tolkeen mage and some monsters set out to kill them anyway, a half-dozen Cyber-Knights stepped in to save the Coalition soldiers. In driving off the Tolkeen "Monster Squad", a D-Bee Cyber-Knight sacrifices himself for Deon. After geing rescued by the Cyber-Knights, and especially after having a D-Bee sacrifice himself to save his life, he's freaked out knowing how many D-Bees he's murdered. However, he's still with the Coalition army, and resolves to be ready for the next offensive. Finally, he asks her to destroy the video from Rifts World Book 3: Sorcerers' Revenge out of shame. I think you've got a lot more to be ashamed about, Deon, including your ongoing service...

Next: Nice Guys.

Alien Rope Burn fucked around with this message at 11:27 on May 25, 2019

Deptfordx
Dec 23, 2013

Mors Rattus posted:

Nope. Gotrek and Felix are two extremely big-name lore characters for the novels. Gotrek is a Slayer, and Felix is the human he's wrangled into following him around to record his deeds. The two of them are Thanquol's archnemeses and stars of a whole bunch of Warhams novels.

The best part is for most of the books they have no idea who Thanquol is. They foiled a lot of his plots in passing having no idea he was involved in the background. There's a fun scene where they actually meet and Thanquol is all "Aha, my deadly enemies. At last I have outsmarted you. Now you are in my power" and they're all "For me it was Tuesday" which only enrages him further.

Dawgstar
Jul 15, 2017

I cannot wait to hear about Lord Coake and how he is Very Mysterious Indeed and actually learn nothing about him. :allears:

Bieeanshee
Aug 21, 2000

Not keen on keening.


Grimey Drawer

Zereth posted:

the backstory for why the furries exist is bonkers nonsense, tho

Traditional furry worldbuilding.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!

Dawgstar posted:

I cannot wait to hear about Lord Coake and how he is Very Mysterious Indeed and actually learn nothing about him. :allears:

The "secret origin" of Coake is a trip, at least.

Bieeanshee
Aug 21, 2000

Not keen on keening.


Grimey Drawer

Alien Rope Burn posted:

The "secret origin" of Coake is a trip, at least.

Did a pre-Rifts bottle fall from the sky before him?

DisgruntledFerret
Aug 27, 2013

PurpleXVI posted:

So... you know what? So far it's actually a bit less retarded. It's not quite as intensely randian as the last time around, but, hey, let's give it some time. I'm sure it's going to get plenty loving stupid soon enough. Next time, we'll clean up the last of the lore and learn what exciting fursonas we can build!!!!!!!!!

So, in short... Space Robert Downey Jr. created living furry sex dolls, sulked when they got banned by the government, then decided to churn out furry ubermensch to replace humanity as an alternative, and sulked again when Earth tried to stop that too. Finally, Stark Industries just built up military power on Mars and declared war on Earth, since they were stopping their furry dreams from coming true. The entire planet and all of humanity were destroyed as a result, leaving Mars free to pursue a paradise made possible by corporate interests and eugenics.

Down to business, then: if you make a duck character, how much does the corkscrew cost?

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!

Bieeanshee posted:

Did a pre-Rifts bottle fall from the sky before him?

The gods would have to be crazy!

Nah, though. I wish.

Bieeanshee
Aug 21, 2000

Not keen on keening.


Grimey Drawer
That's two of us. :(

Dawgstar
Jul 15, 2017

Alien Rope Burn posted:

The gods would have to be crazy!

Nah, though. I wish.

"One day, something fell from the sky. Coake had never seen anything like this in his life. It looked like water, but it was harder than anything else in the world. "

And that's how Lord Coake discovered Mega-Damage.

Speleothing
May 6, 2008

Spare batteries are pretty key.

Cooked Auto posted:

The book is a little bit too old for that as it came out in 06.

The anti-Hillary bullshit started as soon as she ran for Senate. She has been smeared for well over a decade for the wrong reasons.

Cooked Auto
Aug 4, 2007

If you will not serve in combat, you will serve on the firing line!




Speleothing posted:

The anti-Hillary bullshit started as soon as she ran for Senate. She has been smeared for well over a decade for the wrong reasons.

Fair enough.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!

Speleothing posted:

The anti-Hillary bullshit started as soon as she ran for Senate. She has been smeared for well over a decade for the wrong reasons.

It was in there pretty much since the beginning as far back as 1993 when she was the face of the Clintons' push for public health care. By 1996, she was being blamed for multiple murders, Satanic cult activity, and worst of all, a "radical feminist agenda".

She's been the target of Republican ire pretty much as long as she's been in the public light, arguably going back to her time in Arkansas, though it was local rather than national at the time.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.
Still, it's something we see enough of in real life that if I thought it was intentional, I would absolutely buy the author going with 'there is a weird, irrational hatred of the one Elector Countess of this crop of Electors'. But it really isn't the intent; this isn't meant to be an unreliable narrator and the book is very much trying to make Emannuelle von Liebwitz out to be a stupid and empty-headed woman who is totally useless as Countess.

Despite accidentally describing a well-functioning city whose ruler seems to be benefiting it more on the whole than she is damaging it.

E: It would have been really easy, if the writer had wished, to say she does all this for Nuln at the expense of Wissenland, but with stuff like her trying to split off to be solely responsible for Nuln and leaving Wissenland to others as it is, there's none of that.

Night10194 fucked around with this message at 18:52 on May 25, 2019

That Old Tree
Jun 24, 2012

nah


Alien Rope Burn posted:

It was in there pretty much since the beginning as far back as 1993 when she was the face of the Clintons' push for public health care. By 1996, she was being blamed for multiple murders, Satanic cult activity, and worst of all, a "radical feminist agenda".

She's been the target of Republican ire pretty much as long as she's been in the public light, arguably going back to her time in Arkansas, though it was local rather than national at the time.

As soon as Bill started campaigning nationally she was forced to eat immense amounts of poo poo for not being a homemaker

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

FATAL & Friends
Walls of Text
#1 Builder
2014-2018

Fangs at the Gate: Everywhere Else

The Black Winter Boneyard is an icy shadowland, dangerous, inhospitable, and full of undead monsters created by the necromancer-Lunar Smiling Rat. The icy zombies eternally patrol the borders, accompanied by ghostly raitons that fly back to their master at the center of the shadowlands to report on anything that gets spotted. Those that move past the zombie perimeter discover phantasmal beasts, skeletal siege engines and terrifying monsters pulled from the Underworld. Smiling Rat's warren at the heart of the shadowland is where he studies necromancy via asceticism and self-mortification. Every since the schism that turned most of the Northern Pact against him, he has few students, but he is more than happy to teach any necromancer that comes to ask, even if they aren't part of the Silver Pact.

The Shattersea Bastion is a chain of Shogunate fortresses across a number of rocky islands along the north shore of the White Sea. The port they once guarded is but a ruin now, where no living creature lives. The assassin Shadow-Rending Razor lives in these desolate islands at the head of a cult to Luna's aspect as the Bloody Huntress. Her students make pacts with moon-gods from the courts of Luna, calling on their dark blessings when they head forth to spread chaos and terror through the North. The nearest mortal settlement, a fishing village on the island of Ironfell, has no idea the school is even there, though they worship many of the same gods that pact with them.

New Dakuo, in the Northwestern foothills of the Saber River valley, is the oldest and most settled of the domains of the Shadow Fang Vanguard. After the Contagion, a renegade force of the Shogunate's Bitter Justice Legion helped a group of Lunars defend the city of Dakuo from FAir Folk, and the survivors made a pact to protect the region's mortals together. Today, the city of New Dakuo has high walls that overlook the diminished shadowland of the old city, and it's essentially a fortress, its people trained to fight for the Vanguard. Roads lead to small outlying fort-towns, where Dakuin soldiers fight bandits, wild beasts and each other in war games against other Vanguard domains. As part of the pact, the Lunar Rises-With-Fire and the eldest local Dragon-Blood serve as paired rulers, and the local Vanguard officially exempt the descendants of the Bitter Justice Legion from their vendetta against the Shogunate's inheritors. There's just one problem: Rises-With-Fire was recently killed by a Wyld Hunt, and the young Vanguard member that's tried to take over, Exquisitely Violent Axe, has found that the Dakuin are not very welcoming.

The Eye of the Killing Storm is a sacred city where the horse nomads of the Southeastern steppe meet to feast, negotiate and worship their patron, the Lunar Blood Nail. The Killing Storm, as they call themselves, have long raided the southern satrapies of Prasad and other neighbors, but Prasadi expansion has escalated the conflict. Now, it is not only the Prasadi soldiers that fight the Killing Storm - the monks of the Pure Way have learned about the Eye and plan to end its worship of an Anathema.

Mount Namas has been home to spirit courts of war and death since before human history, and in the First Age, it was home to a massive city of many names. The city was destroyed in the Shogunate's wars, plunging much of it into a shadowland. After the Contagion, the land was taken over by Tanisa Ring-Eater and Seven Obsidian Leopard, who got past the few FirsT Age defenses not dismantled by the Shogunate. Leopard still spends much of his time with the death gods on the mountain peak and the ghosts in the shadowland ruins. Tanisa prefers to live among the peoples in the foothills, who believe that Mount Namas is where the souls of the dead gather to ascend to an eternal afterlife as stars.

Luz Liura sits on a rocky plain in the Burning Sands, a small island of green thanks to a bordermarch that contains a circular river, with neither source or end. In the circle is the domain of Klesamra Lotus-Seed, the central palace-city surrounded by mud-brick villages staffed by her hermit crabfolk kin and hobgoblin servants. Klesamra has made deals with several fair folk of the South, which has caused great controversy. Three raksha nobles - Tethian Lion-Eye, Vespania of the Singing Wind, and the Red Tatterdemalian - have temples in Luz Liura and serve as Klesamra's agents. At her call, they and their minions raid the Realm's southernmost satrapies, spreading terror and devouring souls.

The Fortress of the Fulgurite Spire is a twisted fort-city in the islands west of Bluehaven. This is the home of Ul the Burning Eye and his thousand komodo dragonfolk servants. Each season, Ul unleashes new disease strains upon the people of the Fortress, though his sorceries and pacts with the local disease gods prevent most fatalities and help cure the sick once his experiments are over for the season. Ul extends his magical protections to visiting guests, but intruders are assaulted by the full power of his biological warfare. Despite its nearness to the Realm, no Imperial legion or Wyld Hunt has ever successfully assaulted the Fortress. Besides the ancient weapons and sorceries defending it, the fortress is also mobile, turning into the wind and lightning of a storm and arcing dozens of miles away to reform on a new island.

Star Jasmine Pavilion sits on a mountain over the Western port of Eldaj, wreathed in flowers, with great domes and turrets. This is home of Wings of Ivory, a shahan-ya renowned for his mastery of medicine, music and etiquette. He lives as a god to the Eldaji, occasionally going out to perform some act for the locals such as curing a plague, driving off pirates or raksha or negotiating with a neighbor. Otherwise, he remains in his manse, living in total luxury, with his every whem cared for his ternfolk retinue. Wings of Ivory has never cared about the war with the Realm, and indeed, he haded West because he wanted to get away both from the Wyld Hunt and the pressure from other Lunars to get involved. Today, he is enraged that Houses Peleps and V'neef dare to bring the conflict to his lands, and their captians are quickly learning to give his islands space, and plenty of it.

Next time: Playing a Lunar

Xelkelvos
Dec 19, 2012

PurpleXVI posted:

The text also claims that a population of 180 individuals would be enough to prevent catastrophic inbreeding. I'm not sure if anyone has the biology chops to kick that one over, but it seems a bit low to my brain.


I believe the scientific consensus is a minimum of around 10,000 individuals in a species to maintain a healthy and diverse genepool. It's possible to have less without catastrophic inbreeding (and even among 10,000 it's not as though there wouldn't be any inbreeding), but it's obviously less healthy the fewer there is.

With regards to inbreeding, anything more distant than the First Cousin is genetically distant enough to be statistically indistinguishable from a complete stranger.

mllaneza
Apr 28, 2007

Veteran, Bermuda Triangle Expeditionary Force, 1993-1952




If HSD 2.0 is in play, I'd better get cracking on pt 2 of the Goblinville review. SOmebody has to be talking about good games !

Libertad!
Oct 30, 2013

You can have the last word, but I'll have the last laugh!

DisgruntledFerret posted:

So, in short... Space Robert Downey Jr. created living furry sex dolls, sulked when they got banned by the government, then decided to churn out furry ubermensch to replace humanity as an alternative, and sulked again when Earth tried to stop that too. Finally, Stark Industries just built up military power on Mars and declared war on Earth, since they were stopping their furry dreams from coming true. The entire planet and all of humanity were destroyed as a result, leaving Mars free to pursue a paradise made possible by corporate interests and eugenics.

Down to business, then: if you make a duck character, how much does the corkscrew cost?

So laissez-faire capitalism caused the death of Earth for far stupider reasons than climate change.

Ithle01
May 28, 2013

Mors Rattus posted:

Fangs at the Gate: Everywhere Else


One of the things that I really like about 3rd ed. is the new setting stuff they've added with just a paragraph and the rest for the ST to fill in. These Lunar blurbs are pretty cool and I wish they just did more of these short blurbs because they really give you a diverse set of NPCs to use in your games or show off the various idiosyncrasies of a diverse splat. And the short descriptions let you have some fun with describing places in the Wyld, like the ouroborus river.

Alien Rope Burn
Dec 5, 2004

I wanna be a saikyo HERO!

That Old Tree posted:

As soon as Bill started campaigning nationally she was forced to eat immense amounts of poo poo for not being a homemaker

A small correction there.

Joe Slowboat
Nov 9, 2016

Higgledy-Piggledy Whale Statements



Ithle01 posted:

One of the things that I really like about 3rd ed. is the new setting stuff they've added with just a paragraph and the rest for the ST to fill in. These Lunar blurbs are pretty cool and I wish they just did more of these short blurbs because they really give you a diverse set of NPCs to use in your games or show off the various idiosyncrasies of a diverse splat. And the short descriptions let you have some fun with describing places in the Wyld, like the ouroborus river.

I really like the longer write-ups as well, because they give rich plot hooks and cultural shape to regions. Iscomay would be much worse if we didn't know more about its government, religion, and budding empire- and then the places Iscomay threatens to overwhelm are themselves short rich setting descriptions.

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!
Hc Svnt Dracones 2.0



Who Can I Get Pregnant In This Setting?



You probably think the title's a joke, as we move into the section on what character types we can play(such as fursonas, robot fursonas and glittery fursonas), and the very first line is about Vector procreation.

quote:

All Vectors were designed to be able to successfully procreate without hybridizing, in order to ensure that the race as a whole would remain diversified rather than gradually homogenizing into a single, mixed creature who may encounter unexpected genetic problems which might lead to the extinction of the race.

So, I'm trying to figure this out. If you had two distinct breeds who could bang without hybridizing, for instance, if zebras and horses would only ever produce a zebra or a horse rather than a crossbreed. Would that not mean that a massive amount of recessive genes, which are often some awful poo poo, would suddenly have a much higher chance of popping up? I'm sure actual biologists would be able to tear into this much more, not to mention the fact that hybrids are apparently perceived as less fit when it's my understanding that fertile hybrids tend to be the distinct opposite. Not to mention the hosed up approach of "better keep these genes ~pure and pristine~." Like... if you had an invention that kept people only producing babies of distinct ethnicities, holy poo poo, you'd almost certainly be some sort of weird racist. Yet in this setting, this is apparently sane and normal science behavior.

In fact, this entire page on Vectors, our first real introduction to them as a chargen concept is more or less about who they can gently caress and get pregnant.

quote:

Birth method is determined by the father; if he is a male of an egg-laying species, the child will be born in an egg, regardless of the species of the child or the mother. Likewise, if the father is a live-birth species, the child will be born live regardless of its, or its motherís, species. This can result in a number of occurrences humans see as unnatural (cats laying eggs, birds giving live birth, dogs hatching out of a shell, etc.) but that the Vector community has been accustomed to since
the third generation.

Though, I have to say, female Vectors' wombs must be working loving overtime if they can both give live birth, produce eggs and any other weird poo poo the animal kingdom comes up with.

quote:

There are suspicions among some Vector historians that this might also have been part of an attempt to ensure Vector reproduction didnít look too much like human reproduction. If Vector anatomy and reproductive organs were the only parts of their bodies to look exactly like human parallels, it would have implied from the beginning that the race was expected to cross-breed with humans. They were instead patterned roughly off their species analogs or modified into a custom arrangement in the case of non-mammalian species, which was seen as a middle ground that would allow Vector/human intimacy if a relationship formed without making it appear as though they were built with that destination in mind.

"Okay guys this isn't an RPG about playing your innermost fursona and getting up to furry porn. Now if you'll look at diagram A here you're going to see some shark dicks and diagram B will show how they can easily interface with human orifices..."

This is more explicit than the original! The original never told me about Vector's genitalia except that I could knock up a robot! Oh my God why would you write this, ever.

Anyway, after making me want to drill a hole in my skull and pour bleach inside, it then goes on to explain how superior Vectors are, that they never suffer muscular atrophy from zero/low-gravity and after a night in a new gravity environment they get a few cramps and then BOOM, MOTHERFUCKER, MUSCLES ADJUSTED. I would like to point out how incredibly dumb this is but I don't even loving know where to start. Don't write me a loving essay on your fursona's vagina and then expect me to give this sort of dumb pseudo-biology a pass. You're getting an F, Pierce Fraser, author of HSD 1.0, 2.0 and everything in between.

Maybe you don't want a fursona, though, maybe you want something tougher. Something more badass... a ferrosona. See because ferro. Iron. Metal. It's a brilliant pun, honest. Whatever, you can be a loving furry robot, too, a Cog.



So 70 years after Earth becomes a nuclear hellzone, Mars' population of give or take half a million(yeah, those original couple hundred vat-brewed furries were working overtime on the loving), decide that they need some sentient and sapient robots around and more or less just build them just because.

quote:

So when the Core Consciousness, the critical component of Cog sapience, was demonstrated and explained, they didnít look at it with a thousand years of human contempt for machines, or with the self-assured security of mastery over their land and pride in their cities which they had built on ancient tradition and principle. They looked with the eyes of a race barely three generations old who were still trying to figure out the sheer extent of what had to be done to keep themselves afloat, and who rather desperately needed an ally. A race of beings who were themselves engineered, and could drat near alphabetize their own genome. And mostly, a race that felt very small and alone, with nothing but files in computers to cling to for some grounding and explanation in the grand scheme of their design.

I don't even loving know where to begin. It's just such smug weird furry supremacist garbage. Now excuse me while I, a human, go and exercise my smug contempt towards a loving toaster. Because I guess that's what we do, us humans, be smugly contemptuous of machines. What the gently caress.

Now the hilarious thing about Cogs is that they're really, really lovely at being machines. They don't start with any pre-programmed knowledge or abilities, they gotta learn at the same pace as Vectors. They don't even like to swap out parts to have cool multitool bodies, for whatever reason, apparently only organics like cybernetics. They don't even start out finished, they literally start out with a child-sized robot body and then get slotted into increasingly larger bodies along the same plan because this is a normal and sensible approach to robotics design. These bodies are free, socialized upgrades and sometimes if they have any kind of dysmorphic issues with their old bodies, they swap for one that's more fitting their ideal. It's not mentioned here, but unless they changed it from the original, they're also literally robots that can drown and asphyxiate, because why not make them the shittiest robots ever.

quote:

Every Cog, regardless of registered gender, is entitled to the integration of reproductive anatomy. It isnít gender specific, or even limited to a single binary (though you do have to pay if you want more than what your hereditary code entitles you to). Typically this anatomy is established by the birth gender and present in every chassis, but not attached to any functional reproductive system.

And of course, the robots can gently caress.

quote:

When Cogs were invented the need to form families was considered an imperative to successful coexistence. Blood, even to Vectors, is thicker than water, and if they could not form emotional and physical bonds to their mechanical co-inhabitants, it would spell disaster for their chances of full integration. Visions of a hard dividing social line forced by sheer mechanical incompatibility demanded a solution. The problem was remarkably easy to fix, even if it did make for a disturbing reminder of just how ďartificialĒ Vectors were to begin with. From a human standpoint, anyway. The Vectors themselves thought the whole situation was pretty clever.

Even though this poo poo was in the original HSD as well, albeit phrased a bit differently, I still can't get over how loving stupid it is. It's like reading the whole drat thing over again. And it also still has the same weird... I don't know how to think about it. But basically, Vector dudes cannot knock up Cog ladies. But Cog guys can knock up Vector women. Because nano jizz, I guess. It just feels... vaguely greasy for no definable reason, like it's someone's fetish to get cucked by a robot or... something. Ugh.

Also they still die of old age for no good loving reason. "Hey boys, I made an immortal life form but programmed a bug that makes it die in like a couple hundred years!" "High fives all around, Wolf Joe. High fives." Except that when they die, their brains get uploaded to the Heaven Servers(tm). Okay so they have some other stupid name or concept, but it's literally the idea that there's no reason for them to die, they're just programmed to and their brains get uploaded to cyber heaven. It's extremely weird.



Maybe, though, dog dicks and robot anuses don't provide exactly the level of fetish stimulation you need, then you can be... a Blip. Basically someone went "gee golly willikers, designer organisms have only destroyed civilization one time out of two if we count Cogs not having ruined us all yet! Let's make more!" And so they did except this time they did drugs first and the idiot result is a Blip. Basically an organic one-off with no particular theme so you can be as much of a loving sparkledog you want. Attached ten pairs of rear end wings. Be one of these monstrosities shown above. Whatever. Your parents couldn't be any more disappointed than they already are.

Usually they're made by really rich people or mad scientist types. Apparently it's both pretty easy and reasonably cheap to make one, but the warrantees needed for maintenance in case your abomination child develops sickle cell anemia or a brain tumor or has five heads or something apparently require some pretty heavy lawyering up. That's literally the book's explanation for why they're not all over the loving place. Also they're apparently also all sterile, because making robots that can knock up your wife is cool, but little sparklefairies with tentacles that can do the same? Not so.

Historical Lore

Earth

So, just to recap things. Humanity is gone because of a massive nuclear exchange on Earth, this deepest lore brings up Hydra as the starting agent for this again. In the last corebook, and this corebook, it was hinted at as a MASTER HACKER or an EVIL CYBERVIRUS but in the LORE SUPPLEMENT it's revealed that human scientists found an evil alien glyph by shooting lasers into another dimension until the other dimension started shooting back. No, really. Then they, being intelligent creatures, started carving this glyph into everything they could. Even computer code! Then the glyph code became an evil computer virus that took over Earth's nuclear arsenal and nuked Earth. As you do.

But it's cool because years after Earth has been nuked with literally everything in the human nuclear arsenal and then some, the water's all potable again and it's described as a "Garden of Eden." This prompts the surviving humans, all, like, 500 of them or something, the book is really vague on whether there's 500 or "a single family." I guess it could be one very large family, to go to the Moon, and then Earth. Because why not. They do this despite "massive monsters" being seen roaming the remnants of Earth from orbit. Spoiler, these monsters are evil slendermen with eyes on their rear end, and evil slenderdragons, and evil slenderserpents that have a pointlessly overcomplicated biology involving needing interspecies loving to reproduce, and they're programmed to kill furries. Humans made them, because humans bad.

Anyway all the humans get eaten by these monsters and are thus conveniently gone from the setting, surviving only as myths, stories and date rape drugs. No, really. Human voices are basically hypnotic to furries in this setting. So recordings of human voices that survived are used as date rape drugs. This is played off, in the lore supplement, as wacky teenage hijinks.

A few years later the Vectors on the moon then decide to send a couple of expeditions that all get killed mysteriously, because why not. Now, in a setting like Eclipse Phase, Earth is a powerful draw because it's got ancient cultural treasures, possibly Titan/Exsurgent goodies and the Sol system has nowhere else that, even after total destruction, is quite as easily habitable to baseline humanity. Here the furries already have hyper-advanced technology, perfectly terraform planets overnight and basically have no real use for Earth. Earth only exists to provide vague and mysterious antagonists and a place for NPC's to die during the lore section. Anyway, the furries keep going to Earth and until they really gently caress up and actually come back.

Because it turns out that they're full of bloooooood ghoooooooosts.

No, really.

So like half the expedition that comes back to the moon colony just explodes into blood ghosts, which make other furries explode into blood ghosts when they punch them. The author tries to make them sound spooky and... well, just read it for yourself.

quote:

Large mouths but tiny voices that hurt to listen to, and blinding speed. They appeared at once solid and brittle, faceted and fluid, and dove headlong into the bodies of their enemies like living spears. Sometimes they would erupt out of the other end in a flood of viscera, and other times they would seem to vanish altogether, as though diving into the victimís blood and dispersing into nothing.

Going "at once X and its opposite, Y!" doesn't make them sound mysterious, it just sounds like you have no idea what concept you're going for, Pierce. Have another F. In fact keep having F's until you drown in them you hack. F F F F F F F F F F.

So anyway, blood ghosts reach the Moon, the Moon dies. Blood ghosts reach Mars, but Mars survives, yet is now also infested with butt-eye slendermen. Meanwhile, Earth turns into a giant evil space crystal. No, really.



That's a huge loving crystal. Like really huge. Like I don't think the author understands scale huge.


It looks scary, but in HSD 1.0 we learned that a gecko, not a gecko man, a gecko-sized gecko, with a folding chair could own them with near-zero effort at chargen

Mars

A bunch of the setting's dumber lore is hidden away in the Mars section, for instance... Owls. So when they were making the Owls, they got their hands on the evil space glyph that made Earth, and decided to etch it into their genome. Because why not. Hail Satan. And then the Owls all went insane and killed everyone they got near, because that's why you don't gently caress with evil space magic.

There's also THE LEDGER. Ha ha gently caress the Ledger. Let me show you what the Ledger is.

quote:

The Ledger is developed by a student on a bet. Rampant inflation and a lack of a stabilizing force have been making the Credit dangerously unstable. The Ledger is a piece of personal investment software that counteracts the myriad of Marsís hidden micro-transaction fees and countless expenses through its own constant exchanges, effectively turning each person it is attached to into their own business and monetizing their very existence. MarsCo adopts the system and uses it to link the Credit to Solís population, providing much needed stability to its value. Support for the Credit increases, and certain cost-prohibitive R&D projects are able to resume.

The Ledger is the single dumbest thing in this entire game full of incredibly stupid poo poo. It's not the fuckbots, or the blood ghosts, or Earth turning into a giant blood sausage, or the slendermen with eyes in their assholes. It's this loving trash.

We also learn that in 200 years, a population of 100,000(calculated from the game's rough numbers), has exploded into 3 billion on Mars. I mean it's doable in ~6 generations assuming everyone is sexually active, there are no homosexuals, an even number of men and women, and all women are okay with popping out four kids and all four kids survive to adulthood, by my very back-of-the-envelope calculations that don't account for parents still being alive at the same time as their kids or the gigantic loving plague that breaks out 100 years prior but apparently doesn't slow anyone's fuckin' stride. Apparently, comparatively, it took humanity some 500 years to grow from just half a billion to two billion, which doesn't account for the Vectors starting out at a much higher standard of living and education which has, historically, somewhat slowed population growth in most nations.

I'm sorry, it's a stupid spergy aside but I feel a need to pick at everything it feels like this idiot author gets wrong. Someone please feel free to correct my math aggressively.

There's also this baffling bit:

quote:

Deimos is destroyed in an accidental AI oversight and is subsequently replaced by an apology space station. Whoops.

"Whoops we destroyed a moon so wacky lol." What? Apparently an AI casually decided to grind it up for building materials and just did so overnight. I mean, sure, okay. What else can the furries do casually now? Terraform Venus? Oh, wait, they did.

quote:

Surrounding Mars is an glass-like particle stream designed to catch and reflect light while maintaining a uniform density. It forms a halo around the planet used for a combination of orbital information, landing assistance, advertising, and holo- artistry.

Because filling your planet's orbit with fancy detritus is so much more efficient than a loving HUD for the pilot on approach. Sure. Why not. gently caress this solar system up more. Every paragraph in this book has something new and bafflingly idiotic, and I'm taking a break and tossing the rest of it in this thread when I feel like hating myself more.

NEXT: The Vectors create/unleash yet another existential threat by being loving idiots

The Lone Badger
Sep 24, 2007


Shouldn't you be running a pizzeria somewhere?

Ithle01
May 28, 2013

Joe Slowboat posted:

I really like the longer write-ups as well, because they give rich plot hooks and cultural shape to regions. Iscomay would be much worse if we didn't know more about its government, religion, and budding empire- and then the places Iscomay threatens to overwhelm are themselves short rich setting descriptions.

Long write-ups are basically just a waste of time as far as I'm concerned because I'll end up changing at least half of it. If they keep it short I can more easily fill in the details as I go without having to think about what's already written down because my players might end up reading that and make assumptions on things I've changed or subverted. For example, in a recent game I told my players not to make assumptions about setting stuff regarding cosmic lore because I'm making serious changes, they did anyway, and then ignored or misdiagnosed poo poo constantly to the detriment of pretty much everyone.

Dawgstar
Jul 15, 2017

HSD gives me so many questions, none of which are worth the asking and every one an ice pick into my brain.

ReiDuran
Oct 6, 2014

PurpleXVI posted:

Birth method is determined by the father; if he is a male of an egg-laying species, the child will be born in an egg, regardless of the species of the child or the mother. Likewise, if the father is a live-birth species, the child will be born live regardless of its, or its motherís, species. This can result in a number of occurrences humans see as unnatural (cats laying eggs, birds giving live birth, dogs hatching out of a shell, etc.) but that the Vector community has been accustomed to since the third generation.

The only reason to ever say that it's the male, literally the only reason I can think of, is that the writer of this hellspawn has an oviposition fetish and wants to make sure that whatever poor furry lady he slams is gonna pop out eggs. I wish I could physically poo poo on the author as I'm clawing my own eyes out.

DisgruntledFerret
Aug 27, 2013

PurpleXVI posted:

Now the hilarious thing about Cogs is that they're really, really lovely at being machines. They don't start with any pre-programmed knowledge or abilities, they gotta learn at the same pace as Vectors. They don't even like to swap out parts to have cool multitool bodies, for whatever reason, apparently only organics like cybernetics. They don't even start out finished, they literally start out with a child-sized robot body and then get slotted into increasingly larger bodies along the same plan because this is a normal and sensible approach to robotics design. These bodies are free, socialized upgrades and sometimes if they have any kind of dysmorphic issues with their old bodies, they swap for one that's more fitting their ideal. It's not mentioned here, but unless they changed it from the original, they're also literally robots that can drown and asphyxiate, because why not make them the shittiest robots ever.
...Wait. Hold on, no. No.

Why are there socialist programs for robots in this ultra-libertarian future where megacorps are the only government?

Lynx Winters
May 1, 2003

Borderlawns: The Treehouse of Pandora
I don't know if it's in the new version, but the first edition used the Ledger to create UBI because nothing owns libertarians like themselves.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.
Are we going to see a return of Senor Gecko, Demonslayer?

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

FATAL & Friends
Walls of Text
#1 Builder
2014-2018

It looks like the only thing that really improved was the quality of the art.

LatwPIAT
Jun 6, 2011

PurpleXVI posted:

quote:

All Vectors were designed to be able to successfully procreate without hybridizing, in order to ensure that the race as a whole would remain diversified rather than gradually homogenizing into a single, mixed creature who may encounter unexpected genetic problems which might lead to the extinction of the race.

This is baaasically the white supremacy "human biodiversity" pseudoscience argument. You know, the one that says that race mixing is bad because it makes everyone the same which is bad for species health. You know, like in dogs, where as we all know, purebreeds are the healthiest.

(Which doesn't necessarily mean the author is a Nazi because the entire point of calling it "human biodiversity movement " and not "KKK's anti-miscegenation plan" was to make the idea sound more reasonable so it'd spread among non-Nazis, but, whew. Literal white power propaganda, in print. Not a good look, to say the least!)

PurpleXVI
Oct 30, 2011

Spewing insults, pissing off all your neighbors, betraying your allies, backing out of treaties and accords, and generally screwing over the global environment?
ALL PART OF MY BRILLIANT STRATEGY!

DisgruntledFerret posted:

...Wait. Hold on, no. No.

Why are there socialist programs for robots in this ultra-libertarian future where megacorps are the only government?

Please, sir, how dare you imply that a corporation that owns an entire planet, requires subscriptions to its services from its employees and provides benefits packages for them with the resulting money is in some way copying the mistakes of overreaching, nationalistic governments. This is simply the free market at its apex and has no similarity to taxation and government services.

Seriously though give Libertarians enough words and they'll parody themselves into the ground, it seems.

Night10194 posted:

Are we going to see a return of Senor Gecko, Demonslayer?

I'm actually somewhat curious to see if the system's seen any major overhauls, by the time we get to it. Because the writing has, uh, not. It's summarized some of its "thoughts" more succinctly, has slightly less words wasted on wank over how superior corporations are to governments(so far...), but ultimately it feels like it's much the same up to this point, even to the extent of making sure we know the original lore supplement is still canon for this edition. Of course, that doesn't mean there might not be additional lore supplements for 2.0! Oh God please don't let there be more supplements for 2.0.

Mors Rattus
Oct 25, 2007

FATAL & Friends
Walls of Text
#1 Builder
2014-2018

Also, I want to note, I think the funniest thing so far is definitely the Ledger, because it is the jankiest, dumbest attempt to patch and unify the two strains of libertarianism that fight over whether FIAT CURRENCY IS EVIL, BACK ALL WITH GOLD is correct or whether BITCOIN IS THE FUTURE is correct.

Ratoslov
Feb 15, 2012

Now prepare yourselves! You're the guests of honor at the Greatest Kung Fu Cannibal BBQ Ever!

Given that the list of Things Vectors Invented goes like:
1. Robots you can gently caress
2. Socialism, but in a stupid backwards sort of way
3. So many apocalypses

I think we can only assume that both the Cogs and The Ledger are destined to try and kill everyone. Possibly by a Cog trying to gently caress The Ledger.

Zereth
Jul 9, 2003



Bieeanshee posted:

Traditional furry worldbuilding.
I mean, when they have a backstory for why they exist rather than just "This world is populated by animal-people, who gives a poo poo let's watch these idiots bumble around in school or a coffee shop or whatever"


Also "the furries didn't look at the robots with human prejudices" VECTORS ARE MODIFIED HUMANS WHO WERE BORN IN HUMAN SOCIETY jesus christ they should still have a lot of baggage from human poo poo


And it's hilarious how the finance is the most completely stupid bullshit thing in this game with blood ghosts and slenderowls and everything


LatwPIAT posted:



This is baaasically the white supremacy "human biodiversity" pseudoscience argument. You know, the one that says that race mixing is bad because it makes everyone the same which is bad for species health. You know, like in dogs, where as we all know, purebreeds are the healthiest.

(Which doesn't necessarily mean the author is a Nazi because the entire point of calling it "human biodiversity movement " and not "KKK's anti-miscegenation plan" was to make the idea sound more reasonable so it'd spread among non-Nazis, but, whew. Literal white power propaganda, in print. Not a good look, to say the least!)
I don't think they're doing that intentionally, it's just that they want to draw like, Dog-Mans and Tiger-Mans and Shoebill-mans rather than, since this all grew from a mere 180 starting population somehow, Weird-Mishmash-Hybrid-Mans across the board

I mean, they did land on it, but probalby not on purpose

DisgruntledFerret
Aug 27, 2013
There's also another thought experiment with the question of how they're keeping track of the Ledger's billions of calculations per second, since the sentient AI created by the enlightened furry superhumans of the future are explicitly slow and stupid.

Night10194
Feb 13, 2012

We'll start,
like many good things,
with a bear.
I like the Ironclaw approach, where it's just 'Look, we got this instead of elfs and poo poo, do you want to be Shakespeare Lion or do you prefer Fencer Jackal?'

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Dawgstar
Jul 15, 2017

ReiDuran posted:

The only reason to ever say that it's the male, literally the only reason I can think of, is that the writer of this hellspawn has an oviposition fetish and wants to make sure that whatever poor furry lady he slams is gonna pop out eggs. I wish I could physically poo poo on the author as I'm clawing my own eyes out.

That would probably tie into why only the male robot-furries can knock up the organic female furries.

Every day we stray further from God's light. Yikes.

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