One of the driving factors of characters in Cy_Borg is the players debts to different shady organizations. This idea is fantastic for multiple reasons! It gives the players something concrete to focus on early in any game or campaign, can act as an entry point into any story, and provides the players a default inspiration for their characters to be out running jobs in the dark city. The best part is that the idea is easily transferrable to any cyberpunk/sci-fi/modern game!
While the idea is awesome, I wanted the debts owed by my players in my Cy_Borg games to feel a little more pressing. While playing, sometimes the debts started to feel like more of a default reason to run missions as oppose to something that was lingering over the characters lives. I worked up this short quick hack to keep the debts fresh in my players minds while they worked through missions to earn some creds.
As a nice bonus, the interactions between the players and the orgs/goons that they interacted with created some fun RP events. If you want to make the characters lives even tougher, you can combine the encounters from their debts with other missions to create high tension moments in your games!
Each day roll a d12.
If the roll is higher than current debt level,
increase debt level by 1.
|1-3.||Lieutenant or goons of the Loan organization will ask about |
the debt when spoken with or they see the Player.
Will loan the players Character more money if asked.
|4.||The pC receives a call from a FRIENDLY ORG goon to remind the |
PC that the org is eager to be repaid.
|5.||Org goons will find the pC and remind them about the debt, |
and tell them interest is going up.Add 200 creds. No more loans.
|6.||Org Lieutenant finds the pC and threatens them if the debt |
|7.||The pC’s house/crashpad is ransacked while they aren’t home. |
Credits or gear might be stolen.
|8.||Org Lieutenant demands the PC come to the org Hq to meet, And |
informs the PC that they better have some creds even if it is not
the full amount.
|9.||Org goons ambush the player and crew to beat the character. win |
or lose, the debt went up another 1000 creds.
|10.||Org lieutenant demands the PC performs a job. It’s going to be|
dangerous, and it needs to happen now.
|11.||The org attempts to kidnap the PC. after a good beating, gives|
the pc 1 more day to pay up.. or else.
|12.||Debt is sold to a collection corp. Death robots are sent to|
collect the PC’s Body parts to sell for change.
Using the Table
While debt levels are a specific value in the core rule book, it is used to reference the 1-12 value listed in the table above. On page 61. of the core rule book for Cy_Borg it lays out the rules for rolling your debt and who owns the debt. At the very bottom of the page it has a, “how bad do they want it back?” rating, but it is just a 1-6 roll with no other info.
How I use the sheet above is to have the players roll when they create their character the 1-6 as instructed, and then that becomes their ‘debt level’. This way, no one starts at a very high level. Once we start playing, then I use the roll each day rule from above and increase the value as necessary. I also normally only trigger the event on the table when they increase to that level. You can however just use the table for any cyberpunk game where your players hold debts!
With that said, make it your own! If you don’t like the suggestions, mold the table to the needs of your table!