Today he has no means, he's alone and anonymous
But written in his cells he has got the marks of genius
I'm looking for this man to sell him to other men
To sell him to other men at ten times his price at least
I'm looking for a man who knows the rules of the game
Who's able to forget them to realize my aim
I'm looking for this man to make us rich and famous
Front 242, Headhunter V 3 0
"OK, let's run through it: Nash, Chang and FASS will organize the diversion on Dongjiaomin at 1800. Get them riled up and then disappear, ideally so that they think someone is trying something against the courthouse; there should be at least one controversial trial in progress. Don't get carried away.When making up a character it is often useful to have some examples showing "typical" characters and their skills as a help to figure out what (say) a lawyer ought to know. These are not character classes - characters can definitely mix elements from several templates (this is encouraged; each character is unique and personal) - there are nanohackers with engineering backgrounds, lawyers that are amateur polihackers and bodyguards with artistic inclinations.
Li, when you start to hear the sirens, activate the virus in the department computer and then stay in your office.
Xieling, Wen and Rebecca will meet in the lobby at 1805 and go up to floor five without appearing to know each other; take different elevators. At the reception desk Rebecca will ask for her appointment with Professor Rie, calling herself Linda Margrave; there should be a long delay and the others can queue up behind her. At 1810 all hell should break loose with sprinklers, a blackout and lots of alarms. Play panicked and rush into the corridor looking for an exit; there you should be able to use your IR glasses in the dark to sneak past the laboratory people to room 532; seventh on the left. Get as much stuff as possible into your bags, and then get down the stairs. You have around two minutes before you have to be in the stairwell. There should be plenty of chaos below too, so you should be able to split and get away along Third, Shuaifuyan and Dongdanbei respectively. Just get the stuff somewhere safe, mail Nan and lay low.
INT for perceiving the world well. CON and CHA are also important to spread the message of the artist.
Art is of course the most important skill. Various Crafts skills, Imaging (for visual artists), Computer Use or Biotechnology (for biotech and genetic artists) are important as techniques. Evaluation is important to use when selling the art on the Market and Media to understand how to get a good coverage for PR. Some artists have also studied arts academically (poor bastards) and are thus plagued by various Social Sciences skills (Art History, Literature History etc.)
Gifts for an Artist could include access to resources, a firm of his own, or contacts in the art world or backers. Faults could involve debts, enemies or being dependant on government grants (which may give the Artist resources, but also make his works subject to scrutiny).
Biohackers have no special attribute demands, even if patience (MIND) is a great asset.
Biohackers tend to be good at Biotechnology, often combined with some or all of Biology, Medicine, Chemistry and Ecology. Due to the huge amount of data known about the genome, they tend to cultivate Information Gathering and Computer Use.
Like nanohackers biohacker gifts can include equipment (labs, computers or even nanotech tools), mentors and revenue from sold products. Biohackers also have easier access to enhancing technologies. A good gift is to be employed by a legit academic institution, hospital or corporation where research can be done undercover (this can also be a flaw if the organization keeps track of its employees). As for faults, biohacking is illegal and a biohacker could get hunted by various groups (not just law enforcement). There is also the temptation of various drugs as well as risks from unsafe experiments.
Ability to observe and react quickly are paramount for a good bodyguard (INT and AGL), as well as a certain amount of cool (CON). Good physique is a definite plus, but not necessary.
The single skill bodyguards are hired for is Combat Experience, more specifically the ability to evaluate threats and react to them faster and better than the employer. Other combat skills aren't as important, even if it is useful to know them and they usually come with the package. Security and Stealth are common, and defensive Driving is often trained. Threaten is popular among certain bodyguards.
Bodyguard gifts could include enhancements, contacts with other people in the security/bodyguard world or special equipment. Faults could involve failed past missions, old wounds or paranoia.
Couriers need a lot of cool and planning ability so CON and INT are the most important attributes.
Management is important for the larger operations. Law for knowing what the FOG cracks down on. Skills like Security, Stealth and Underworld for moving the goods. Drive, Boating or Aerospace to move the goods yourself and of course at least some Social skills, like Manipulation or Brownnosing, to get by.
Gifts could include contacts, regular customers, legit company, "friends" at the customs or loyal helpers. One interesting possibility might be access to special channels, such as diplomatic mail or an especially clever smuggling rout. Faults include a criminal record, owing someone for a lost transport or a bad reputation, for instance.
Criminals have no special attribute demands.
The obvious criminal skill is Underworld: it deals with the culture they move through and some of the basics of criminal operations. Urban Survival is also important, since most criminals have to survive "dry spells" and learn their way around the streets. Area Knowledge is usually essential. The underworld is violent, and combat skills such as Brawling, Melee and Firearms are common. Combat Experience is still rare; criminals sometimes has a little, but not as much as real military people. Brownnosing and Threaten are the most common social skills.
Criminal Gifts may include groups of allies such as a gang or friends, individual allies or protectors, caches of valuable stuff, safe hideouts and channels to acquire hot goods or services. Faults can include drug addiction, psychological problems (even if you are mentally healthy before, a criminal life can be rather unbalancing), enemies of all kinds, debts, having a police record or even being a fugitive on the run.
Cypherpunks have no special attribute demands, although they tend to be bright and able to come up with convoluted schemes to code or crack messages (INT).
Naturally, the main skill is Cryptography. Most Cypherpunks are good at Computer Programming and Use as well as Mathematics, although the researchers spend more energy on the later. Some build special hardware for cracking codes and learn Electronics (or even Nanotechnology). Many are also involved in spreading the ideas of cryptoanarcy using Argumentation.
Gifts for cypherpunks could be access to major computer power (or even nanocomputers) or income from software. Faults could be being hunted by various agencies (not necessarily because they want to harm you, but because they want you to join), a bad reputation because of a past major mistake or "security paranoia"; by being so aware of all the devious possibilities for espionage and cracking, some cypherpunks become obsessed with security and secure routines.
The demands on doctors are usually more mental than physical (even if a certain endurance might be useful). INT is needed for diagnosing, MIND to learn well and stand the pressure of the work, CHA to deal with people and CON for those emergencies.
Doctors hopefully know Medicine well, and tend to acquire at least some Chemistry, Psychology, Biotechnology or Biology. Doctors at hospitals tend to learn some Administration (sometimes unwillingly). Since advanced medical technology is everywhere, Computer Use and Use Technology are cultivated. Among Concordat doctors (as well as others) mental techniques are sometimes learned. General practitioners and others who have to deal with patients tend to learn some Lemming Lore.
Doctors can have gifts such as access to medical equipment and facilities, lab space, pharmaceuticals and interesting databases. Some might have enhanced themselves in various ways. Faults might involve work, being suspected for having weird views, being involved in hospital politics or having the threat of a malpractice suit hanging over them.
Droners need to be able to keep track of many things at once (INT), remain cool in a crisis (CON) and react quickly (AGL).
Droners usually have Engineering and Electronics in their background, together with Artificial Intelligence if they control more autonomous robots and drones. Computer Use and Programming are natural. For droners coordinating teams Management is relevant, and if the situation often includes violence Combat Experience is necessary. Attention Training is a good idea.
Gifts for droners involve equipment (of course) and ties to manufacturers, law enforcement or robotics developers. A possible fault is drone addiction, similar to VR addiction: it is so much more easy and convenient to direct a swarm of semiautonomous drones from a console than move around in real life.
Engineers have no special attribute needs, even if some macho subdisciplines might promote STR and END, and the long study needed for an engineering degree work well with a high MIND.
Obviously, Engineering is central. Many engineers are also skilled in Repair (for quick fixes and field repairs), Use Technology and Computer Use. As a part of their education most engineers learn academic skills such as Mathematics, Chemistry, Physics, Electronics, Computer Programming, Artificial Intelligence or Economics. It is also not uncommon for engineers to also learn Crafts of various kinds, such as carpentry or metalworking.
Suitable gifts include having access to useful equipment or raw materials, industry contacts, owning a firm or patents. Faults could include a bad reputation for past mistakes (perhaps even involving an ongoing lawsuit) or work-related illness.
Decent AGL, DEX, STR, and END are important but CON could be essential to stay alive in a combat situation. Officers should have a decent CHA level. Specters need at least Great level in STR, AGL, END and CON.
Ghosts differ greatly at which skills that are important. Combat Experience is a skill that most Ghosts possess but also Teaching, since they often have to gain manpower by recruiting local personnel. Think of what your Ghost's assignment is. If he is in logistics he should prioritize Management and Administration. If he is in artillery he should prioritize Heavy Weapons. Many Ghosts possess at least some Combat skills, but not all. For instance the information warfare specialists (the wraiths) specialize in Information Gathering, Management, Evaluation, Financial Analysis and Computer Programming. The commandos of the Ghosts, the so- called Specters are specialized in long range reconnaissance and sabotage behind enemy lines so they need Firearms, Melee, Martial Arts (most prefer Krav Maga), Demolitions, Stealth, Wilderness Survival, Athletics, Thrown Weapons and Security.
Gifts could include rank (which means that you own more shares in the company) and special issue equipment. Faults could be an old battle wound, which most certainly debilitates you and places you in logistics and management or as a wraith.
Interfacers deal with people all the time, and hence have good use of CHA. Being observant and quick-witted is often useful (high INT).
Evaluation is the core skill for Interfacers: how much is it worth and to whom? Information Gathering is important since the Market runs on information. Financial Analysis and Administration are relevant for evaluating and organizing cells on the Market. Interfacers with more traditional business background often have Economics, Management and Law, while others know the Underworld. Social skills are popular, including Languages and Etiquette. It is fairly common to have some special skills (like Politics or Biotechnology) to specialize; this way the interfacer can make better evaluations.
Interfacer gifts can include having amassed capital, running their own firm, useful contacts and backers. Having a good reputation is essential; gifts and faults that affect reputation can be interesting. Faults can include debts, having police records, enemies and contractual obligations that have to be fulfilled.
Investigators are usually fairly perceptive (high INT) and good at working under pressure (high CON). For investigators doing physical investigations physical attributes (esp. AGL, DEX and END) are useful, while the more cerebral investigators rely on MIND. Some instead rely on information at its source, focusing on CHA.
Investigation can be done in a variety of ways. Information Gathering is of course important, but real investigators dig up information that cannot be found using ordinary means. Security is practical for getting access to it, and Imaging is quite useful for documenting what is found. A physical investigator can have great use of Athletics and Stealth. Many investigators have some combat skills, but usually they are rather light. Brinists and other high-tech investigators/spies often rely on Computer Use, Cryptography and Artificial Intelligence, while crackers of course need plenty of Computer Programming. The best investigators know a bit about what they look for, in order to realize when something is important of not - an investigator who often deals with economic crime should have some Economics, while a cracker acquiring genetic information should at least have some Biotech.
Investigator gifts could be special information channels such as leaks or contacts in law enforcement, intelligence, government or other knowledgeable organizations, backdoors into certain databases, advanced surveillance devices, alternative identities or loyal helpers. Faults could be enemies, knowing too much, having a police record or being recklessly curious.
CHA to communicate the stories to an audience. INT to perceive and evaluate a news story and lots of CON to stay on the beat.
Media, of course, but seldom Journalism. Imaging, Computer Use, Information Gathering, Area Knowledge, Urban Survival and Law are the tools of the trade and of course all the different Social skills. Journalists often specialize in one area of interest that could be: Underworld, Use Technology, Official View, Lemming Lore, Mumbo- Jumbo, Political Correctness, Activism, Politics, Financial Analysis etc.
Gifts include web of contacts, informers in the right places, favors to call in, credibility to the public, access to information or helpers. Faults include enemies, debts, mediacorp affiliation (which means that your work is scrutinized and may get spiked) or a bad reputation.
MIND is the most important attribute, in order to learn all the facts in the massive information flow, followed by INT to make quick decisions and evaluate information.
Media often have a mix of skills like Journalism, Media, Computer Use, Law, Management, Official View, Political Correctness, Information Gathering, Politics, Philosophy, Lemming Lore, Evaluation and perhaps some Social Sciences skills.
Gifts include influence, allies in important places that stand by you, and resources to pour from. Faults include bad reputation, enemies or mediacorp affiliation (which means that your work is scrutinized and may get spiked).
CHA is important to negotiate properly. INT to understand the conflict and CON to understand what is right and to stand by one's decision.
Argumentation and Law are the most important skills when mediating, but Evaluation, Psychology and Philosophy are also important to understand the parties. Most mediators also possess Information Gathering and Languages.
Gifts include a web of contacts, regular customers and investigators (to receive information for an objective judgement). Faults include bad reputation, being enmeshed in an ongoing conflict the character cannot disentangle himself from or even enemies.
There are no special demands for attributes for nanohackers, but most tend to be bright (high INT).
The central skill for nanohackers is of course Nanotechnology. In addition, Chemistry is very important. Academic nanohackers tend to be well educated in Physics and Mathematics, while the more application oriented nanohackers learn Engineering. Since advanced simulation tools have to be used, Computer Use is often quite essential.
Suitable gifts include having good equipment (a lab, big computer system, MC or even a nanolab), a more skilled nanohacker mentor, recipes bringing in revenue or access to hot research files. Being hunted by various law enforcement agencies (and others) could be a serious Fault. Some nanohackers tend to become more paranoid than is healthy, and are constantly on the lookout for enemies.
Polihackers need to be alert (high INT) and good at handling people (high CHA). A good CON is also useful, things do not always work out the way they are planned, and stress is endemic in politics when it is really moving.
The core skill is of course Politics. Other high-priority skills are Information Gathering, Etiquette, Social skills such as Argumentation, Manipulation, Brownnosing and an understanding of Political Correctness and Official View. Polihackers often specialize in different areas, making skills such as Economics, Financial Analysis, Media, Psychology, Social Sciences, Law and Philosophy useful. For the truly devious or advanced, mental skills such as Doublethink, Attention Training and Emotion Control become relevant.
Gifts can include connections into various select circles (or even better, to their aides, secretaries and partners), information networks of all kinds, the protection/support from a VIP, blackmail material or an official position. Faults can include enemies of all kinds, being blackmailed, being dependent on somebody's goodwill or having some dark secret that if revealed could wreck one's political career/access to the political world.
No particular attribute is necessary, but most have decent CHA for interpersonal interaction.
The single most important skill is Lemming Lore. How to introduce the Concordat ideology in the cultural mainstream? Of course, all Social skills are also important and so is knowledge of the enemy (Official View, Activism, Mumbo-Jumbo and Political Correctness). Some specialize in Use Technology and Teaching to better introduce new technologies or Management and Politics to keep track of Concordat friendly organizations. The party-fixers are a specialized kind of Popularizers that arrange the big parties that have descended from the 20th century raves. They often have the Art, Management, Use Technology and Repair as skill mix.
Gifts include membership in an organization, credibility to the public, influence or media ties. Faults could involve being branded as a kook (a very severe Fault). Another Fault is being specialized in interacting with one particular group of people. You may be very good at popularizing Concordat economics to economists, but try explaining neo-Austrian market process analysis of government intervention to a drunken skinhead. Being known to the opponents is another danger; they might want to attack or smear you.
MIND and CON are the most important attributes to learn and apply these techniques, although psychotechs tend to cultivate all their mental abilities (and often their physical too).
The most important skills are all the mental techniques, or a specialization in just one. Most Psychotech also possess Teaching, Psychology and Biology (or Medicine). They often cooperate with researchers so they also possess Information Gathering. Sociology and Computer Use are sometimes used for group psychological or human-machine interaction studies.
Gifts could include access to psychology research lab or academic connections, having a group of students or volunteers, income from courses or books. Faults include quarrels with certain researchers, interventions in research or being hunted by someone.
Quite naturally INT and MIND are essential; many become scholars because they are bright, and the constant mental challenges provide ample opportunity for training.
Most scholars focus on Academic skills, sometimes to the exclusion of all others, but occasionally showing unexpected second talents such as music or politics. It is quite common to specialize into a very narrow area, such as pre-rafaelite art or nuclear physics, with skills related to this at high levels. Information Gathering is often essential. Teaching is unfortunately (for the students) optional for scholars.
Suitable gifts may include academic connections, influence by being a trusted expert in the area, access to a lab or other useful equipment. Faults can include all the problems of academic politics such as needing to seek grants all the time, being the victim of an academic quarrel, bureaucratic or political interventions into one's research or having to teach much of the time or lack of experience with "the real world".
A good security expert is devious (high INT) and good with manipulating electronics and other small devices (high DEX). Having a good CON is useful when disarming alarms (and bombs).
The primary skills are of course Security and Electronics, with Engineering (or Repair) as a close third. This can be supplemented by computer security (Computer Programming, Cryptography), spy cameras (Imaging), Demolitions or Underworld.
Gifts can include access to sota security devices, owning a legit security firm, access to local or international security networks, knowing about backdoors into certain systems or law enforcement / underworld ties. Faults could involve having a police record, debts or contracts that cannot be broken.