CBMs vs Anesthetics

Hadn’t played for a while, but the balance between CBM’s and the ability to install them seems odd now.

I’m drowning in CBMs from various shocker/tech/sci zombies, but the anesthetics required to (maybe) install them seem_very_ rare. Maybe get one pack in a doctor’s office, and one or two in an entire hospital.

Seems like the CBM’s themselves should be somewhat rarer - I usually get 2-3 per zombie, and that’s at pretty low (4?) survival skill, while the anesthetics should either be a little more common, or better yet, craft-able from the piles of painkillers you tend to accumulate in the mid game?

At this point in my game I’m literally going to have to start leaving piles of CBMs by the side of the road on account of volume/weight considerations in my vehicle. :smiley:

Not “somewhat” but SIGNIFICANTLY rarer and harder to get.

Why is this a problem?


See discussion here.
tl;dr painkillers aren’t anesthetics, some anesthetics are reasonable to craft but no one has done it.

Agreed. I’d say something on the order of ~5% chance of recovering a CBM intact per level of survival skill when dissecting, or something along those lines. So if you were dissecting a regular shocker zombie, with a chance at 2 mods, at survival 4, you’d end up with a 64% chance of getting 2 ruined CBMs, a 32% chance of getting 1 CBM, and a 4% chance of getting 2 CBMs.

By the time you got to 6 survival (currently pretty hard to do via training), you’d be looking at 49% 0 cbm, 42% 1 cbm, 9% 2 cbm results.

Given that shocker/technician zombies are pretty common even fairly early in the game, these drop rates seem likely to give you at least as many CBM’s as you’re likely to dig up anesthetics to install - though you won’t have so many that you can trivially optimize WHICH cbm’s to install.

As it stands now, by the time you get to a lab and its store of CBM vaults, they are unlikely to be interesting at all - I had so many that the vaults were meaningless.

Well in terms of immersion it gets weird. CBM’s are near magical future tech involving nanites, ultraminiaturized electronics, neural interfaces and all kinds of hand-wavey crap.

Meanwhile basic anesthetics were invented in the 1700 and could be mass produced cheaply by the kiloliter.

But in the current apocalypse, CBMs are taking on the value of ground litter, while simple chemical anesthetics are like gold.

In terms of game balance its pretty messy, because you end up being able to very easily pick and choose exactly which CBM’s you’re going to install, because none of them are rare finds any more. Installation is the only challenge, and by the time you have the skills and anesthetics for even the most basic installation, you’re going to have 3 fusion blaster arms, 8 time dilations, 30-odd power storage, 5 nanorepairs, etc, etc, etc, etc to choose from.

I mean, sure, it can be that way - but don’t try to convince me it makes sense. :smiley:

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The idea of crafting anesthetics seems straightforward, given that many of the early anesthetics were quite simple, chemically speaking. Far simpler than anything our advanced mutagen crafting survivor is already capable of, certainly! Pretty much just high-school chem or underground meth-lab level stuff.

The problem is that CBM drops were already fairly prolific before, and with the new dissection action they appear to have become a LOT more common, so if anesthetics are made craft-able (which they probably should be), there won’t be any difficulty at all achieving full cyborg conversions fairly early in the game.

There’s also the odd bit where now that we’re using an auto-doc for most installations, one wonders where the electronics and first-aid skill actually come into play? I mean, you’re now literally unconscious for the entire procedure, so I’m not sure what my skills are necessarily doing?


My main survivor is up to about 10 anaesthetic kits. And like everyone else, has a good pile of cbms. I personally love that I am going to have to be super selective now and not have 2000 power.

Does the pain dulling CBM still allow for CBM install without anesthetic? I would imagine that if you couldn’t feel anything surgery would not be too much of an issue(just don’t look down!). Or medical mutates who are deadens could maybe install without anesthetic. Also there is plenty illegal trading of anesthetics (ketamine comes to mind) so it might be reasonable to find some when you find those dead bodies full of drugs.

I mean cocaine is literally an anesthetic

Well we’re talking about numbing versus inducing unconsciousness, right? That’s how I’ve perceived the anesthesia kits, as something that actually puts you out for an invasive surgery.

IE: Sure, cocaine can be used locally to numb and was used for surgeries. But they wouldn’t do a long, protracted surgery diving into the torso with just cocaine. They’d put you out with ether.

I also think that the kits should be a little more common. Like everyone else is saying, I have a giant stack of CBMs (most of which I’ll never use). However, I’ve not found very many kits, even after playing for many hours.

That’s the flaw I see with this system. Installing CBMs is gated behind RNG. It’s RNG to find a CBM worth using a kit for, and it’s RNG to find the kit in the first place. I haven’t been enjoying it, so far. That said, it IS a new thing and I’m hoping it will be tweaked over time.

While the current changes may not be perfect, they do help to offset the sheer game-balance-shattering nature of CBMs. I was sorry to see the initiative around limiting how many CBMs could be installed get moved to the bac k burner.

IN general I would like to see ways of flattening the hockey stick power growth curve thats comes about about from raiding a library/school->building the best armor and melee weapons all in the first two weeks of spring, followed by a game week of building your deathmobile and then Lab Spelunking for mutation literature and equipment and cyborging out at the same time.

I would also love to see some exclusivity between mutations and bionics (how does a human-oriented wired reflexes work when you have tentacles, wings and multiple arms?)

The problem right now is how to challenge a survivor with CBMs or mutations.

Game balance wise a vanilla fully survivor equipped character with decent skills (6+), can mostly deal with any threat pretty easily save for a hulk, and even that isn’t too bad if you have a good weapon/martial style - there are of course chicken walkers, but their weapons are so powerful that it doesn’t really matter too much what your build is in most cases, you simply don’t want to trade fire with them.

Game kinda needs some late game threats that bridge the gulf between Hulk/Shocker Brute, and the insta-gib capable Chicken Walkers. The new rifle armed security bots are a nice addition in that category. There are some semi-threats like the flaming eyes and I guess the Shoggoth? But you almost never encounter those so… Not quite sure where the Jabberwock actually sits in the overall threat range. Most of these just never show up though, and even finding an environment where they might show up is difficult, and generally offer no story or reward draws to encourage you to go to them.

Like, sure, you CAN go wading into a triffid forest, but I’m still unclear on why you’d ever bother other than just to test how strong you are against some of the bigger ones.

The sub-hulk range has filled out a lot lately with the shadows, juggernaughts, and some upgraded versions of the low level zombies, but post-hulk is still slim pickings - and that’s where any CBM/Mutate character is looking for challenges. Until that end of the rogue’s gallery starts to fill out some more, I’m not sure it matters how the CBMs and mutations are balanced?

Autodoc is not an AI. It is highly advanced robot capable of conducting complex operations, but it still needs to be manually configured prior to use. Player has to enter various data about patient and about CBM he is planning to install.
Autodoc is not fully automatic despite its name, hence the confusion.

This is already in the game.

Aw man did they nerf CBMs into the ground? Is there an “old” CBM mod so I can install stupid amounts of power and cbms, or do I have to recode my game? It’s frustrating coming back to Cataclysm and seeing “x y z nerfed to be unfun” instead of “added content”. It was annoying enough dealing with the one-hit usually insta-death crap from the acid or corrosive zombies, and needing pain resistant so you’re not 1/2 speed, 1/10 speed, dead facing basic enemies.

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Do you have any idea how much content has been added in just the last month or two? Even the CBM changes have added content.

Also, your comment confuses me. I’ve never been insta-killed by an acid zombie of any flavor and I generally regard crippling pain (like what one would experience standing in acid?) as something that would rightly slow a character down.

But is it content between the previous content or extending it out of that? And it sounds like there’s tons of anti-fun nerfs while font rendering is buggy. Last time I played it would took me 2-3 cities minimum to get the things to craft a hacksaw because there wasn’t one or a forge. My longest games I went through many, many labs looking for a CVD machine, and there wasn’t a single jungle temple for many miles. The reason all the CBM abuse was needed because the game has way too many “oops you died” mechanics because the enemies were overpowered. There’s a reason I trained up to 14+ dodge AND turned on CBMs for it to fight the amigara horrors.

I’ve been in a mall and if you don’t have anti-corrosive boots (normally had massive encumbrance) you could walk around a corner, get hit by a corrosive/acidic zombie on your feet, and suddenly a zombie you can melee in two hits turns into guaranteed death when you have no/damaged legwear, -4 dodge, -to-hit, -strength, etc and can’t move because when you move you still take damage, and you get another 5 hits to the face, or you could stand in acid again. I’ve always taken pain resistant because pain used to be the #1 cause of death. 100-200 pain was easy to have, I’ve had over 400 pain before, and lived, only because it wasn’t from an enemy.


Are you sure we are playing the same game? You can PWN anything, from specials, to hordes and tanks drones by just having skills high enough and carefully composing your lodout of gear, and thats with 8/8/8/8 character, no mutations and CBM/s. If youre feeling hardcore enough, you can even resign from survivor gear. Things like stats through skills or infinite CBM slots remove all challenge that is left. And acid pools instakilling survivors when there are enemies nearby? To me its more like 10pain/turn with bare foot and 5pain with light survivor boots. Nowhere near instakill. Sure, acid is dangerous, and for lategame characters it is still dangerous while pure melee encounters are not anymore, but you have options for them too. Survivor firesuit/divesuit and boots, firefighter entry suit or armored ANBC suit, with dodge 11 and quick/fleet footed starting traits you can overcome effects of encumbrance and be baisically immunue to everything. And then you have powerarmors and RM13 armor.

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I have recently been doing a frail play through, and even then you just need to do some careful planning about how to kite zombies. Also you should always peak around corners, so you shouldn’t be running into zombies. Also you should always have a escape plan (adrenaline syringe, nearby vehicle, zombie pheromones, belt fed rifle, etc). If your not planning right then you die, and even still you can always save scum if you feel like it was a cheap death(these are usually due to explosions for me, or driving like an idiot).

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A few dozen versions ago, I prepared the props you said, and then I almost died like pingpong. (until I used the time CBM).