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[Necessary Evil] Juicer Drone

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  • [Necessary Evil] Juicer Drone

    I have been struggling to challenge my players with the fins and drones in my Necessary Evil campaign. I have hit upon the following idea - juicer drones. I am tinkering with the plot point adventure "Cult of the Space Gods" instead of having Davros using them to infiltrate supers he is luring the unwashed masses of Southpoint to his new church promising salvation during the End Times. Instead he is preying on their hopelessness and drug addiction to turn them into the next stage of V'sori drones. Drones augmented by drugs and cybernetics. Davros has become a cult leader and leads his flock to rebirth in his lab.

    Juicer Drone

    Race: Human

    Attributes: Agility d10, Smarts d6, Spirit d6, Strength d10, Vigor d10

    Skills: Athletics d6, Driving d4, Fighting d10, Intimidation d6, Notice d6, Shooting d10

    Pace: 8/8, Parry: 7, Toughness: 17(10), Charisma: 0

    Special Abilities:

    •Habit (Drug Addicted)(*): Supplied by the bio-comp and drug harness


    •Loyal: Utterly loyal to Reverend Davros.

    •Terminally Ill(*): Juicer Drones burn out quickly.

    •Super Powers: Gain the Super Powers arcane background

    •Combat Reflexes: +2 on Spirit roll to recover from Shaken

    •Fleet-Footed: +2 Pace; Roll d10 when running

    •Quick: Redraw initiative cards of 5 or lower

    Super Powers:

    •Aquatic•Device -1: Hero cannot drown, Swims at Pace, and adds +2 tp Swimming rolls

    •Armor(Lvl5)•Device -1: Your character gains 2 points of armor each time this power is purchased.

    •Attack, Melee(Lvl2)•Armor Piercing (x2), Device -1, Heavy Weapon, Lethal, One Arm: Hero has a special melee attack. Each level of this power adds +1d6 to their hand-to-hand attack damage.

    •Attack, Ranged(Lvl2)•Device -1, Heavy Weapon, Lethal: Hero has a ranged attack. The range is 12/24/48, the damage is 2d6, +1d6 per extra level.

    •Fearless•: Completely immune to Fear checks

    •Heightened Senses•Device -1, Low Light Vision: The character’s senses are heightened.

    •Regeneration(Lvl1)•Device -1: Make a Vigor roll every hour. If the roll is successful, your character heals one wound.

    •Stun•Strong: The hero can affect a Medium Burst Template up to 12” distant. Those within must make a Vigor roll or be Shaken.

    •Super Attribute(Lvl2)[Vigor]•: This power increases your character’s attributes one step per level.

    •Super Attribute(Lvl2)[Agility]•: This power increases your character’s attributes one step per level.

    •Super Attribute(Lvl2)[Strength]•: This power increases your character’s attributes one step per level.

    •Uncanny Reflexes(Lvl1)•: –2 or –4 to hit the aware character

    Personal Details: The juicer drone is the brainchild of a V'sori Hybrid scientist named Davros. He saw that the drones seemed to have limited effectiveness against superhumans, and so he combined the drone conversion process with his own experiments with the drug EZ to create a chemically altered super drone. These juicer drones tend to burn out quickly due to the toll the drugs and cybernetic enhancements do to their bodies. Davros doesn't care. He see drones and these new juicer drones as expendable assets. He has no shortage of volunteers flocking to his new religion in Southpoint. He has even captured a few resistance memebers that were sent to stop him. He can't wait to see what effects his process has on someone with super abilities already.

    Currently Davros has only the 12 juicer drones completed. He has begun the process on dozens of others but they are only partially converted. Most have been fitted with the drug harness and bio-comp . Treat these as juicer drones with only the super attributes, regeneration, and Fearless abilities active.
    Last edited by BrotherGrrrimm; 08-11-2017, 05:39 AM.

  • #2
    Before I can assess anything, are you running NE using NE, or are you running your player characters with the SPC2 and your enemies using the baddies from Necessary Evil?
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    • #3
      Yeah I'm running NE with the SPC2 and the baddies from the Alien Update. The Juicer Drone is built on a Street Level Power Level (30 Pts)


      • #4
        Awesome. So, off the cuff, remember that you don't *have* to build NPC enemies the same way as PC characters—99% of the time, just give NPCs what they should have.

        But, it's worth knowing that if you built these as Street Level characters, normal drones are already basically Pulp Level heroes, with about 20 PP of abilities. From what I can see, Juicers are faster, more accurate, and way tougher, along with being far harder to hit. Their Stun is now an AoE Ranged Touch Attack, their vibro claws are more powerful, and their ranged attack is worse against armored enemies (but are now actually effective against Heavy Armor, oddly enough). I'd probably write it up in a more concise manner (in particular, listing the effects of powers in the style listed in the Alien Update, i.e. writing "[b]Stun:[/i] MBT, Strong, Ranged Touch Attack;" saves a lot of space).

        Compared to the original drones, these guys are gonna be a lot harder to put down unless your party consists of combat monkeys with tons of Attack, Melee or Attack, Ranged and lots of AP, and very high combat skills (Fighting/Shooting/Throwing). But, they aren't going to be hitting much harder than normal drones—their Strength is identical, as is their ranged weapon damage; honestly, these guys might have a harder time hurting your players than normal drones without the AP on their ranged weapon (and giving their ranged attacks Heavy Weapon eliminates the idea that "blades are for the tanks, guns are for the rest" that normal drones have to operate under). If that's what you're shooting for, then you nailed it.

        That said, since it is a supers game, there's nothing wrong with characters smashing through drones and fins like paper—that's exactly what they're supposed to be able to do. Drones aren't there to really hurt PC supers, they're there to whittle them down so that the heroes aren't in tip-top shape (bennies spent, maybe a wound or two) when the V'sori brings in the big guns. The best way to challenge super characters isn't by attacking their numbers or stats, but by attacking their Hindrances, or creating situations where powers don't help, like an environmental factor, or putting something on a timer. One of the most tense moments in my NE campaign was running the Trouble at Hydrobase 11 mission: they stole the v'sori submarine, docked with the station, but the explosive charges had been damaged before they got there—they had to plant their own C4 charges and detonate it with a wired detonator with the creature still inside (felt a lot like an Aliens movie). They armed the detonators and defeated the ProtoFin as it was trying to break into their sub, and then set the explosives off as they were leaving the station. They had to get into the sub as the station was flooding with water and disengage from the docking station as the hydrobase collapsed off the ridge it was built on and tumbled into the Marianas Trench, threatening to crush the sub under water pressure and either drown the heroes or crush them with it. That kind of challenge wasn't one they could punch their way out of, and it came down to a Dramatic Task that they barely pulled through on. That's the kind of stuff that makes the genre memorable.

        (As an aside, not that it matters, there are a lot of Device powers being thrown around that I don't think apply; if this is part of "juicer drone" armor, drones can't actually survive without their armor—it's what keeps them alive—so seeing as they can't actually *lose* any of those devices, the Device modifier isn't quite appropriate. The Regeneration power should also be level 2 to be able to do a wound per hour (though it's not really gonna come up in combat anyways so it doesn't mean anything really). If you're trying to crunch numbers on stuff, it's food for thought.)
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        • #5
          Personally, I find that creating more powerful enemies is rarely the best solution. One of the beautiful things about Savage Worlds is that you can actually run a combat with 50 enemies charging in and it won't take ridiculously long. Your players are shrugging off drone attacks? How about 20 Drones firing simultaneously? That's 20 attack rolls and 1 Wild Die for a group roll. Throw in a 'commander' drone with a couple of leadership Edges and it's a right recipe for slaughter.

          Drones are intended to be the mass-produced infantry of the V'Sori, not elite combatants. That distinction goes to the K'Tharen. So use them as mass infantry. Players love tearing through dozens of enemies like the superpowered badasses they are, and even the most powerful of players is going to blanch when you announce that 200 drones are marching on their position.