Computer Skill

Robotics Skill

Technician Skill

  • Operating Computers 100% +10% per skill level.- 10% per computer level
  • Writing Programs
  • Defeating Security 60% +10% per skill level. -10% per program level
  • Bypassing Computer 30% +10% per skill level. -10% per program level
  • Displaying Information 80% +10% per skill level. -10% per computer level
  • Manipulating programs. 50% +10% per skill level. -10% per program level
  • Interfacing Computers. 30% +10% per skill level. -10% per computer level
  • Identification 100% +10% per skill level. -10% per robot level
  • Adding Equipment 100%
  • Repairing Robots 40% +10% per skill level. -10% per robot level
  • Activate/Deactivate 100%
  • Removing Security Locks 70% +10% per skill level. -10% per robot level
  • Listing Functions 90% +10% per skill level. -10% per robot level
  • Altering Functions 60% +10% per skill level. -10% per robot level
  • Altering Mission 50% +10% per skill level. -10% per robot level
  • Malfunctions
  • Operating Machinery 50% +10% per skill level.
  • Repairing Machinery 40% +10% per skill level.
  • Detecting Alarms/Defenses 60% +10% per skill level. -10% per alarm level
  • Deactivating Alarms/Defenses 40% +10% per skill level. -10% per alarm level
  • Opening Locks 50% +10% per skill level. -10% per lock level
Computer Skill:
There are eight separate subskills to Computer skill: Operate Computer, Write Programs, Defeat Security, Bypass Security, Display Information, Manipulate Programs, Interface Computers and Repair Computers.  Computer programs have levels from 1 to 6, depending on their complexity. Computers also have levels from 1 to 6, depending on what programs they hold. These levels are explained in the descriptions of computers in the Equipment section.  Computer specialists get only one chance to try a subskill on a computer. Success is automatic for some subskills under certain conditions. If the computer was built by aliens (not Dralasites Humans, Vrusk or Yazirians) the success rates for the subskills are modified by -20%.

OPERATING COMPUTERS
Success Rate: 100% + skill level - computer level

Before he can use any other subskill, the computer specialist must be able to operate the particular type of computer he is working on. The chance to successfully operate a particular type of computer is 100% plus 10 x the expert's level, minus 10 x the computer's level. A roll of 96-00 is not automatic failure. Once a specialist has operated a computer successfully, he can operate that computer anytime, unless it is modified.

WRITING PROGRAMS
Success Rate: special

Computer specialists learn to write their own programs. For every skill level the specialist gains, he learns how to write one computer program. The player should pick a program from the list of programs in the Equipment section. When a specialist writes a program, its level is the same as his current level, no matter when he learned the program. For example, a computer specialist that learned the Installation Security program at 1st level can write a 4th level Installation Security program when he reaches the 4th skill level. A specialist can continue learning new programs after he reaches 6th level; each additional program costs 4 experience points to learn.  A specialist that knows how to write a particular program can buy that program at half-price for his own computer. He gains a 20% bonus when trying to manipulate that program or detect security on it in any computer.

DEFEATING SECURITY
Success Rate: 60% + skill level - program level

If a computer has a Computer Security program, characters must break or bypass this program before they can perform any other subskill except repair. Defeating a security program involves a decoding process that can take a long time. Characters trying to break security must spend 1-10 hours working at the computer.  Also, before a specialist tries to manipulate a program, he must find out whether the program itself has any security overrides. A security override will sound an alarm if anyone tries to run, alter or purge the program without first defeating or bypassing the security override. A security override is the same level as the computer's security program. The referee should make the roll to detect a security override secretly, since many programs have no overrides on them.

BYPASSING SECURITY
Success Rate: 30% + skill leve/ - program /evel

A computer specialist can bypass a security program manually by rewiring the computer. This takes only 1dl0 minutes, but has several disadvantages: the chance for success is lower, it requires a robcomkit, and failing the roll will set off every alarm the computer has.

DISPLAYING INFORMATION
Success Rate: 80% + skill level - computer level

A specialist can use this skill to display any information in the computer's memory. It is especially useful for getting lists of programs that are stored in the computer, personal records, and raw, unprocessed data that is loaded and waiting to be fed into a program. A specialist gets a +20 modifier if he is trying to display information about a program he knows. He can automatically display information about programs he wrote in the computer. If a specialist displays an item successfully, he never needs to roll to display it again.

MANIPULATING PROGRAMS
Success Rate: 50% + skill level - program level

A computer specialist has a chance to successfully run a program, change it or purge it from the computer. The normal chance of success is 50% plus 10 x the character's level, minus 10 x the program's level. If the program is one that the character has learned, he gets a +20% bonus. A specialist can run a program automatically if it is one he programmed into the computer himself, or if he has run it successfully in this computer before. A specialist may want to alter a program before running it. For example, a life support program will not let someone shut down the life support system or release a poison into the air. The program could be altered, however, so it would let the operator do either of those things. The referee should note that a character usually must run the program successfully after altering it before the changes will have any effect. This subskill also lets a specialist try to wipe out a program from a computer's memory, either to destroy the program or to make room for a different program. A character can purge a program automatically if he wrote it in the computer.

INTERFACING COMPUTERS
Success Rate: 30% + skill level - computer level

This subskill lets a character try to link two computers together, either by connecting them with wires or through some communication system such as phone lines or a radio link. Once the two computers are linked, the computer specialist can perform all subskills (except bypass security and repair) from either computer. The chance to successfully interface two computers is 30% plus 10 x the specialist's level, minus 10 x the highest of the two computers' levels.

REPAIRING COMPUTERS
Success Rate. 40% + skill level

When computers break down or are damaged, they can be repaired only by a computer specialist. The level of the computer does not affect the specialist's chance to repair it. Computers are repaired according to the standard repair rule.

Robotics Skill:

A robotics expert specializes in robots. Robots are complex. mobile machines that are designed to perform specific jobs. Many types of robots are available. Eight common types are described in the Equipment section. The referee can create new types if he wants them. The robotics skill has nine subskills: Identify, Add Equipment, Repair, Activate/Deactivate, Remove Security Lock, List Functions, Alter Function and Alter Mission.  If the robot is an alien design, then the robotics expert has a -20% modifier on his rolls to perform these subskills. A character must have a robcomkit to work on a robot.

Robot Levels. There are six levels of robots. A robot's level indicates how complex it is. High-level robots can perform more complicated jobs.

Level 1 robots can do only simple jobs. They have been pre-programmed for some specific job and usually can not do any other job. They can not communicate, and often are nothing more than moving, self-operated appliances. An example of a level 1 robot is a maintenance robot that washes and waxes the floors of a building each night.
Level 2 robots can handle several simple jobs. They can receive and follow radio commands in binary machine language sent from some other machine, such as a robot brain or a computer. An example of a level 2 robot is a heavy machine that digs into and smashes up rock, then separates out flecks of gold.
Leve/ 3 robots can do more complicated jobs. In addition, all robots that arc lcvcl 3 or highcr can talk and follow verbal instructions. If these instructions disagree with the robot s programming, it will ignore the orders.
Level 4 robots can act semi-independently. Their programs are flexible, letting the robot accomplish specific goals using different methods. When asked, "How do I get to the starport?" one level 4 service robot might give verbal directions, while another might photocopy a city map and mark the proper route on it.
Level 5 robots can act independently and give orders to other robots (level 6 robots can do this also). For example, a level 5 security robot might decide to stop chasing a criminal because the criminal left victims tied up in a burning house. The robot could organize a rescue mission of other robots.
Level 6 robots are self-programming. They can change the methods they use and even their goals to account for changing conditions. They are almost, but not quite, living machines. A robot brain that runs an automated manufacturing plant and alters the manufacturing process in response to changing economic conditions is an example of a level 6 robot.

Missions. All robots have a mission. A mission is a set of rules that tell the robot what its job is. A robot's mission is the most important order it has, and overrides any orders that conflict with it. Functions: All robots have several functions that tell them how to accomplish their mission. Low-level robots cannot make decisions, so their functions must be very specific statements. Higher-level robots can make decisions for themselves, so their functions can be more general statements. For example, a level 3 security robot might have the mission: "Stop all unauthorized personnel from entering this building." Its functions could define "stop"' as giving intruders a warning, then using the Restrain program to keep them from entering. "'All unauthorized personnel'" could be defined as any person or machine that is not wearing a special badge. The robot must be given a function that defines "'this building," and another that tells it what areas it must patrol to look for intruders. Another function could instruct it to call the police and report the break-in after an intruder has been restrained.

IDENTIFICATION
Success Rate: 100% + skill level - robot level

A robotics expert has a chance to determine a robot's type and level simply by looking at the robot. The chance is 100% plus the specialist's level x 10, minus the robot's level x 10. Once a robot has been successfully identified, the expert can always identify that robot (unless its appearance is changed).

ADDING EQUIPMENT
Sucess Rate: 100%

A robotics expert can install new equipment on a robot himself and save the 10% installation fee.

REPAIRING ROBOTS
Success Rate 40% + skill level - robot level

Only robotics experts can repair robots. Robots are repaired according to the standard repair rules.

ACTIVATE/DEACTIVATE
Success Rate: 100%

A robotics expert can deactivate (turn off) a robot regardless of its level. The expert also can activate robots that have been deactivated. However, before a robotics specialist can deactivate the robot, list its functions, remove its security lock or alter its functions or mission, he must get at the robot's internal circuitry. This requires removing a protective plate, which takes one turn. (The plate can be removed in one turn even if the robot is fighting the character, but the character probably will take damage before he gets the plate off.) Once the plate is off, the robot can be deactivated in one turn.

REMOVING SECURITY LOCKS
Success Rate: 70% + skill level - robot level

If a robot has a security lock, the lock must be removed before someone can list the robot's functions or alter its functions or mission. A robot can be deactivated before the security lock is removed. Once a security lock has been removed it can not be used again.

LISTING FUNCTIONS
Success Rate: 90% + skill level - robot level

A robotics expert can learn a robot's exact mission and functions, as well as get a list of all the programs in the robot, by using this subskill. Once a character has successfully listed the robot's function's, he can always list that robot's functions.

ALTERING FUNCTIONS
Success Rate: 60% + skill level - robot level

A robotics expert can change one of a robot's functions at a time. The character must roll separately for each function altered. Changing an altered function back to the original also requires a new roll. Changing a function takes 1 d10 minutes. If the new function violates the robot's mission or requires programs the robot does not have, the robot will ignore the new function.

ALTERING MISSION
Success Rate: 50% + skill level - robot level

A robotics expert can try to alter a robot's mission. This takes 1d10 minutes plus the robot's level. Changing the robot's mission does not affect its functions; these must be altered individually. Once a mission has been changed, changing it back to the original mission requires another roll. If the new mission requires programs the robot does not have, the robot will still try to follow its new mission however it can.

MALFUNTIONS

Die Roll

Effect

01 - 25

No Malfunction

26 - 50

Program Destroyed

51 - 75

Short Circuit

76 - 90

Haywire

91 - 00

Explosion


If a character fails a roll to remove a security lock or alter a robot's function or mission, the robot can malfunction. When this happens, the referee should roll d100 on the Malfunction Table.

No Malfunction--The robot continues to function normally.
Program Destroyed--One of the robot's programs (picked randomly by the referee) has been destroyed. The robot can not perform any functions requiring that program. If all The programs in a robot are destroyed, the robot shuts itself off.
Short Circuit--The robot is still operating, but has been damaged. For example, a robot with a short circuit might stop suddenly every other turn, or rattle and spark while it works.
Haywire--The robot is completely out of control. It might attack at random, spin in circles, recite the Gettysburg Address, or do anything else the referee thinks fits the situation.

Explosion--The robot's parabattery explodes, causing 2d10 points of damage multiplied by the parabattery's type to the robotics expert.

Technician Skill:

There are five Technician subskills: Operate Machinery, Repair, Detect Alarm/Defense, Deactivate Alarm/Defense and Open Locks. A techkit is needed for all these subskills except Operate Machinery.

OPERATING MACHINERY
Success Rate: 50% + skill level

Operating a vehicle includes starting it, driving it and using it to do anything it was designed to do. The chance to succeed includes the possibility that the technician may need to bypass a locked ignition to start the vehicle. Obviously, if the vehicle is damaged or out of fuel, it will not start until it is repaired or refueled. A technician gets one chance to operate an unfamiliar vehicle. If the technician has driven this type of machine before, he can start it and drive it automatically. A technician can try to operate any ground or water vehicle, regardless of his level. At 2nd level he can fly a jetcopter. At 4th level he can fly an aircar, and at 6th level he can operate rocket-powered machines.

REPAIRING MACHINERY
Success Rate: 40% + skill level

Technicians can repair vehicles, large and small machines, and electrical equipment (including video and communication devices). They can not repair computers or robots. Technicians use the standard repair rule. Besides repairing vehicles that have been damaged in combat, the referee can include mechanical breakdowns on random encounter tables. This is recommended if the characters are on a long cross-country journey, where a breakdown is likely and the nearest repair shop is several hundred kilometers (or light-years) away. When a vehicle breaks down, roll 2d10 on the following table to determine what has happened:

VEHICLE

BREAKDOWNS

Dice Roll

Problem

2

broken axle or hoverfan*

3-5

broken driveshaft or transmission*

6-10

minor engine failure

11-15

minor drive train failure

16-17

broken suspension

18-19

major engine failure, repairable*

20

blown engine, unrepairable**

 

* This breakdown takes twice as long to repair as a normal breakdown
** A blown engine can not be repaired in the field. In a shop, it takes four times longer to repair than a normal breakdown.

DETECTING ALARMS/DEFENSES
Success Rate: 60% + skill level - alarm level

Technicians have a chance to detect security alarms and defenses. The following table lists the types of alarms and traps and their levels. This same table is used with the Open Lock and Deactivate Alarm/ Defense subskills.

SECURITY DEVICE LEVELS
Simple Mechanical and Electrical = LV 1
Motion and Pressure Sensitive = LV 2
Infra-red Beams and Sound Sensitive = LV 3
Video = LV 4
Heat Sensitive = LV 5
Personalized Recognition Devices (fingerprints, voice patterns, etc.) = LV 6

DEACTIVATING ALARMS/DEFENSES
Success Rate: 40% + skill level - alarm level

Once a technician has detected an alarm or defense, he can try to deactivate it. If the character fails, the referee must decide whether the alarm goes off; if the roll was missed by only a small amount, the alarm might not have been triggcrcd.

OPENING LOCKS
Success Rate: 50% + skill level - lock level

A technician can try to open locks without the necessary "key." The level of a lock usually is the same as the level of any nearby security devices, but the referee may change this. The referee should reduce the chance to succeed if the lock is on a safe or security vault.
 

MISCELLANEOUS TECHNOLOGICAL SKILLS
ACOUSTICS
Success Rate: 10 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: Physics, techkit or proper tools and facilities

This skill allows the character to build and repair white noise generators, noise insulators and bafflers, and sonic-protection gear (headphones, helmet liners, and so forth). No more than one item can be constructed per week, but the price in materials is 10% less than the normal item cost. When repairing acoustic devices use the standard repair rule.

COMMUNICATION DEVICES: OPERATE
Success Rate: 20 % + 10 % per Skill Level 

Any character can operate a chronocom, radiophone, poly-vox, or progit-linked communication device. This skill allows the character to identify and operate the larger audio communication devices, such as subspace radios, space beacons, and broadcast stations. Operating a comm-device includes turning it on and using it to do anything it was designed to do. It also gives the character knowledge of standard signal codes and jargon used by professional communications men. The chance to succeed includes the possibility that the character may need to bypass a locked power switch. Obviously, if the machine is damaged or unpowered it will not start until it is repaired or repowered.

COMMUNICATION DEVICES: REPAIR
Success Rate: 10 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: Communication Devices: Operate, techkit

This skill allows a character to repair all communication devices. This kill does not allow for the repair of vehicles, computers, robots, or machines that are not communications related. The skill is used with the standard repair rule.

COMPUTERS: PROGRAM BODYCOMP
Success Rate: 20 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: Computers: Access & Operate, robocomkit

A character with this skill can use the progit reprogrammer device to alter or purge a progit. Since progit programs are relatively simple, both the manipulating and writing abilities have been combined into one skill. Once a progit has been purged, a new program can be written into it by the progit reprogrammer using another already established progit. It is left to the referee's discretion as to the content and time it would take to write a new progit program. It should not be more complex than any progit already listed. A progit can be erased in one hour.

COMPUTERS: REPAIR BODYCOMP
uccess Rate: 20 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: Computers: Access & Operate, robocomkit

When a bodycomp computer or a bodycomp's processor pack breaks down or is damaged, it can only be repaired by a character with this skill.  The size of the bodycomp or processor pack does not affect the character's chance to repair it. Both are repaired according to the standard repair rule.

COMPUTERS: REPAIR MAINFRAME
Success Rate: 10 % + 10 % per Skill Level -10 % per computer level)
Pr: Computers: Access & Operate, robocomkit

When a mainframe computer breaks down or is damaged, it can only be repaired by a character with this skill. Mainframes are repaired according to the standard repair rule.

COMPUTERS: REPAIR SPECIALIZED
Success Rate: 10 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: Computers: Access & Operate, robocomkit

When a specialized computer breaks down or is damaged, it can only be repaired by a character with this skill. Specialized computers are repaired according to the standard repair rule. 

CRYPTOGRAPHY
Success Rate: 10 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: If a language code or cipher is used, character must know the language it is in.

This skill allows a character the chance to decode an unknown cipher or code. If the code is a specific language, then the character must know the language before attempting to break the code. Almost all of the civilized systems use the same mathematical system for ease of trading and manufacturing, so mathematical codes (which are the most common) are easier to decipher.

ENGINEER: ALTERNATE ENERGY
Success Rate: 10 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: Physics Level 2, proper materials, tools, and facilities

A character with this skill has knowledge of solar, wind, hydro, chemical, fossil fuel, electrical, and planetary thermal generators and plants. This knowledge includes how to use them, how and why they break down, how to repair them, and how to design new generators and power supplies.

ENGINEER: ARCHITECTURAL
Success Rate: 10 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: Physics Level 2, Engineer: Civil

A character with this skill has knowledge of most normal architectural and construction practices, including the location of plumbing, wiring, ventilation shafts, etc. This skill also allows a character to design buildings.

ENGINEER: CIVIL
Success Rate: 10 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: Physics Level 1, proper materials, tools, and facilities

A character with this skill has knowledge of most major methods of road, sewage, canal, dam, harbor, and bridge construction including pipe and sewer layouts and passages.

ENGINEER: HYDRAULIC
Success Rate: 10 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: Physics Level 1, proper materials, tools, and facilities

A character with this skill has knowledge of fluid mechanics and theories, including how to use hydraulic machinery, how and why there are hydraulic leaks, how to repair them, and the how to design hydraulic generators, machines, and power supplies. The time, material, and financial requirements, along with the statistics of a hydraulic machine (use, fluid usage, etc.), are left to the referee.

ENGINEER: MECHANICAL
Success Rate: 10 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: Physics Level 2, proper materials, tools, and facilities

This skill gives the character a chance to design and build normal machinery not covered by other skills. The time, material, and inancial requirements, along with the statistics of the machine (use, energy usage, etc.), are left to the referee.

ENGINEER: NUCLEAR
Success Rate: 10 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: Physics Level 3, proper materials, tools, and facilities

A character with this skill has knowledge of nuclear reactors and plants, including how to operate them, how and why there are radiation leaks, how to repair them, and how to design nuclear generators and power supplies. The time, material, and financial requirements, along with the statistics of the nuclear device (use, energy usage, etc.), are left to the referee. 

MATTER TRANSFERAL DEVICES
Success Rate: 20 % + 10 % per Skill Level 

A character with this skill has a chance to operate bap bins. Bap bins are matter transferal devices that are relatively new creations. This sound they make when "beaming" cargo or creatures is similar to "bap," hence the name. They act instantaneously, but the character knows he has been bapped. The transferal requires a bin to be at both the departure and arrival point to work. The current maximum range between bins is 5000 km.   The cost of bapping is extremely high, about 10,000 Cr for a one-way trip for a single character.   Techexes who operate these devices for a living must have Matter Transferal Devices skill level 9. A White result on a skill check means that the transferal did not work at all, but the character is safe. It is only on a roll of 98-00 that the item or character being transferred was molecularly scrambled and lost forever.

OPTICS
Success Rate: Skill Level
Pr: Physics, techkit, or proper tools and facilities

This skill enables a character to build and repair optical equipment (scopes, visual aids, etc.). No more than one item per week can be constructed, but the price in materials is 10% less than the normal item cost. When repairing damaged optical devices use the standard repair rule. 

PHYSICS
Success Rate: 30 % + 10 % per Skill Level

A character with this skill is schooled in the science dealing with the properties, changes, interactions, etc. of matter in any form (gas, liquid, solid, and plasma) and energy (electricity, heat, optics, mechanics, etc.) and atomic, nuclear, and solid-state physics.  This also includes knowledge of momentum, velocity, reflection, refraction, and gravity.  Only a physicist can use an Electro-CAS or a Magnetic-CAS.  Physics is a prerequisite skill for other fields of knowledge (Acoustics, Optics, etc.).  In addition, this skill also allows the character to inspect a damaged character, structure, or ground and determine what kind of physical force cased the damage (heat from flamethrower, laser damage, sonic disruption, etc.).

POWER READ
Success Rate: Automatic
Pr: Power read gauge

A character with this skill can check microdiscs, powercylinders, powerclips, and parabatteries for leakage and wear. Using a power read gauge, the character can tell how much energy is left in a power container and translate that information in either minutes of use left if it is powering a device or the number of shots left if it is powering a weapon. The skill also allows a character to use a power recharging device, cutting the cost for recharging by 20%.

ROBOTICS: ROBOPSYCHOLOGIST
Success Rate: 10 % + 10 % per Skill Level
Pr: Robotics: Alter Functions and Robotics: Alter Mission, of at least the same level as this skill

This skill allows a character with Robotics: Alter Functions and Robotics: Alter Mission to use those skills verbally when dealing with the higher levels of robots that can speak, listen, and think. The success rate is that of this skill, but it cannot exceed the level of the Alter Functions or Mission skills. For example, a character with Robotics: Alter Functions Level 2, Robotics: Alter Mission Level 1, and Robotics: Robopsychologist Level 3 would have a chance to verbally later a robot's functions as Skill Level 2 or alter its mission as Skill Level 1 because those are the lowest skill levels for those tasks, even though the character is a third-level robopsychologist. Robopsychology allows the character to speak and argue with a robot and try to tap its memory and learn information from it or get it to change its programmed way of thinking. The robot and character must be able to hear each other and the robot must not be attacked during the conversation. This can sometimes be very dangerous for the character, especially if one of the robot's functions is to eliminate organic lifeforms, capture a robotics expert, etc. On the other hand, some of the higher security robots require so much time taking their progit security plates off and removing security locks that the risk may well be warranted.  A robopsychologist can also detect by conversation if a robot's programming has gone awry or been tampered with. 

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