So recently Klomvp started a thread on Bionics and while typing a response to his thoughts on the Cybernetics system and conflicting with mutations it got me thinking about the Mutations system and while both the Bionics and Mutations systems could probably stand to get some work done (and possibly some new stuff…) Klomvp’s thread is about Bionics, this’ll be about Mutations. You can read his thread HERE (Following in his footsteps I’m gonna try and make this a bit more reading friendly than my usual long-winded threads.)
[size=12pt]Mutations and Self[/size]
Currently, the mutations system is more or less a random chance of gaining any mutation at any time. As you mutate towards one tier of mutations the chances of mutating further in that direction increase. This system is wonderful but as I understand it every mutation in that direction only adds one “weight” in that tier, and quite a few of the mutations are shared among the various tiers. Other mutations are something of a stepping stone to other mutations but without their weight can result in mutation in a different direction. What I suggest is having different weights for different mutations (if it’s not already implemented?) as well as a handful of “Filler” mutations to cover the overlap most of the mutations have currently. (I’ll make a spoiler hidden list at the bottom as for the ideas I have for new various mutations and their effects)
Another thing worth mentioning in this first section is a handful of the starting traits are also mutations, currently taking them doesn’t set you up for that tier of mutation. Personally, I find this to be a balance vs (and you’re going to laugh) realism issue. Mutation happens over an extremely long time naturally, however it’s not unreasonable to assume there are existing ‘seeds’ in a relatively normal human for future mutation. What I’m suggesting here is removing the ignore factor on traits as well as making purifier work on “also mutation” traits.
[size=12pt]Mutations and Clothing[/size]
Currently a great deal of mutations conflict with clothing in one way or another, destroying it, making it unable to be worn by the player, or causing issues. It’s not unreasonable to assume that some of these articles of clothing could be modified by someone with reasonable tailoring skill to work with your mutation.
Gloves for example, currently Talons, Claws, etc all cause you to be unable to wear even fingerless gloves (I think someone suggested this particularly fixed awhile back but I haven’t had a chance to check these two recently.) I don’t see why gloves can’t be modified to allow your hands to be warm while the talons are exposed. Webbed Hands are a bit trickier but I fairly confident you can have hand coverage with these as well. A handful of magnates added at a certain point in the gloves, while uncomfortable, should work.
Horns currently either block you from wearing some headwear or headwear that isn’t made of Fabric. To an extent this is true, Headwear designed for a (normal) human won’t work too well on a human with horns. That said with some (fairly invasive in some cases) modifications headwear could be modified to fit over or around horns, antennae, whathaveyou. Pointed Horns would just require a pair of holes drilled into your headwear of choice as large as the largest point in your horns, same for Antennae, Curled horns are considerably more tricky, but still fairly solvable, a pair of long holes that you could pull the helmet over would be required as well as some kind of strap to keep it on your head. That said, cutting those holes into the helmet would noticeable remove it’s protective capability and possibly require it’s own item rather than some kind of ‘mutation compatible’ tag.
Tails and Clothing are tricky. The Stubby tail is what it says on the tin, Stubby. You could probably wear pants comfortably with no modification. The “Long tail” which is based off a cat would (presumably) be half as long as you are tall, being a thin tail you could probably just cut a hole in your pants and stick it through the hole, no gameplay impact here either. The Fluffy Tail might require a special strap added that’s buttoned down (or something similar) on the other side of your tail, again being cat-based it’d be about half as long as you are tall. The Spiked Tail is where things start getting tricky; you’d need the tail strap here but because it’s bulky and hard it’d complicate driving (in a non-saddle seat) the question is do we assume the PC makes the necessary modifications to their chair (a hole from one edge to a little past the middle, trust me I’ve looked into and had to draw this kinda shit.) or do we make a driving penalty? (The Long, Fluffy, and Stumpy tails could all be either easily put aside or not need any adjustment, the Tail Fin would complicate things.) The “Club Tail” mutation would presumably work in the same manner as the Long tail but be a bit more bulky and in the same situation as the spiked tail.
Lastly, the Tail Fin. This is probably the most complicated out of all of them for one reason, it’s a bit more open to interpretation than any of the other tails. It could be seen as a fish-like tail, but that wouldn’t look exactly look right on a human, or be something akin to a dolphin’s tail (elongated and ending in a fin) Either way it’d require significant pants modification as well as driving complication.
Wings are another confusing situation. Wing Stubs wouldn’t really have a major gameplay effect, maybe make wearing backpacks unforgettable but that’s about it. All other wings present two problems: Armor and Backpacks. You cannot wear a backpack over wings (Well you could but it wouldn’t really work too well, incredibly uncomfortable as well as encumbering.) Clothing over wings is fairly simple, just a hole (akin to sleeves) but armor is different. You can’t armor a wing and have it do it’s job, that said with some wings (not insect wings) you might be able to specifically armor them and use them as something akin to a shield. It’s a bit absurd though, in all honesty it’s probably easier just to stick them in an armored box and leave them alone.
Beaks and Snouts, really anything that protrudes outward further than the human nose complicates any kind of mouth or face coverage, that said in most cases it’s fairly simple to fix, though it’d affect one’s ability to talk easily. Fabric clothing should be able to be worn over these things without any extra effort, hard things (Gas Mask, Survivor Mask, Filter Mask, Ballistic Mask, etc) would require significant modification.
Non-human ears complicate helmets, soft ears wouldn’t have too much an effect but anything harder (even slightly) than a human ear would require modification of some kind to hard objects before they could be worn over the non-human ear.
Tentacles are complicated and simple at the same time, you’d probably be able to pin cloth to them for warmth but that’s about it. (Wrap a rag around a tentacle and then use a safety pin to ‘lock’ it in place.
Footwear over Hooves and the other foot-mutations are slightly complicated. I don’t really know how to fix any of these issues, or if it’s even possible. Though I do have an amusing mental image of a player sitting by a metalworking setup forging horseshoes for themselves. XD
Skin-based mutations basically amount to having to refit your clothing, you could probably get away with not having to modify them further past (fits) Quills and Spines however could probably stand to be reworked so that as long as the player isn’t wearing hard clothing they should work, in theory if they’re hard/sharp enough to hurt an opponent they’re hard enough to pierce your clothing.
[size=12pt]Mutations and NPCs[/size]
Currently, Mutations have no effect on NPCs. And I’m aware NPCs are rather buggy at the moment, but I felt what I have here was worth mentioning. NPCs should be able to be affected by mutation, those affected by mutation should (probably) be a bit more open minded towards other mutants. (Though it could be fairly amusing to find a self-hating mutated NPC, or one seeking Purifier) Beyond that, most if not all the mutations currently carry assorted flags that affect NPC interaction. I’m fine with this, it should stay. That said, it might be nice if NPCs had a bit of variation (Some being more tolerant/accepting of mutants than others)
[Size=12pt]Mutations and World[/size]
As it stands there are only a handful of mutations that affect how you interact with the world, specifically how you move through it. I feel there should be a handful of mutations that affect your resistance to electrical damage, fire damage, chemicals, as well as a few that reduce the effects of rough terrain, I’ll elaborate more at the end of the post.
[Size=12pt]Mutations and Your New Limbs[/size]
Currently, your new limbs don’t affect your overall ‘hit area’ or warmth. I’m not certain if it’s possible to code it at all, but Tails and extra limbs would likely require clothing of their own to keep you warm.
[Size=12pt]Mutations and Dreams[/size]
Currently there’s a dream system in place for mutations, more or less these “dreams” are nightmares, some seem that they’re supposed to be so jarring that they’d wake the player. Why don’t they? On a related note if this is implemented I’d love to see the dreams affect morale, more as the dreams get ‘worse’ that said, a trait that makes the player less likely to receive a morale drop, or an increased one. See below for explanation.
[Size=12pt]New Mutation, and Trait Ideas[/size]
[spoiler]Thick Tail (Visibility 8, Ugly 2) [Lizard]
“You have a long, thick tail. Like that of a lizard. It improves your balance slightly, making it easier to dodge but it’s size makes it a more effective weapon.”
+2 Dodge, +Bash Attack
Wolf Muzzle (Visibility 8, Ugly 4) [Beast]
"Your face has reformed into a muzzle. It’s a little fearsome and makes wearing face and eyewear difficult."
Need to modify clothing to continue wearing face and eyewear.
Bovine Snout (Visibility 8, Ugly 6) [Cattle]
"Your face has reformed into a cow-like snout. It’s damaged your looks and makes wearing things on your face and eyes difficult."
Need to modify clothing to continue wearing face and eyewear.
Red Eyes (Visibility 4, Ugly 8, Trust -2) [Troglobite]
"The whites of your eyes have turned red, other than making you look considerably less trustworthy they have no effect."
Weaker form of Terrifying?
Rectangular Pupils (Visibility 6, Ugly 4) [Cattle]
“Your Pupils have reshaped into a rectangular shape, similar to a goat. It has no effect on your vision but is weird to look at”
Snake Eyes (Visibility 6, Ugly 4) [Lizard]
"Your Pupils have reshaped into slits, similar to a snake’s. It has no effect on your vision but people might look at you weird."
Same as Red Eyes, just a filler mutation
Fruiting Branches (Visibility 10, Ugly 6) [Plant] [Requires Leaves]
“Your branches seem to be bearing fruit. The colorful flowers are exceptionally noticeable but you occasionally produce edible fruits”
Accepting (Cost 2) (Needs a better name XD)
“The world is changing, you might as well change too. Less prone to morale loss from mutation dreams.”
“Your grip on your humanity is pretty loose, Chance for small morale boost from mutation dreams or from mutating.”
“You’re terrified at the thought of losing your humanity. Mutation nightmares affect you greatly, as does mutation.”
Bat Wings, Nearsighted, Echolocation, Fangs, Insanely Perceptive, Disease Resistant, Lightly Furred, Light Bones, Very Light Sensitive, Badly Deformed
"You occasionally let out a nearly silent call, allowing you to make out your surroundings by listening for the sound bouncing off objects. Allowing you to make out your surroundings even in total darkness, like a submarine."
Naga Tier (Bare with me here. Snake was the original idea but you kinda need your arms… And legs really, but I’ll get to this…)
Serpentine Lower Body, Scales, Fangs, Poisonous, Poison Resistant, Insanely Dextrous, Badly Deformed, Very Heat Dependent, Forked Tongue
Serpentine Lower Body (Visibility 12, Ugly 8)
“Your Legs and most of your body below your stomach have shifted into a massive snake-like tail. While it makes moving over railings, windows, and climbing ropes and ladders almost impossible your ability to move over rubble or otherwise unsafe ground has been greatly improved as well as slightly improving your swimming ability. It also makes wearing shoes or pants impossible.”
+1 Swimming, Double Time required to move through Windows, Railings, and over non-aisle car parts. No penalty for moving through rubble, brush, or mounds of dirt. Protection from moving though scrap. All damage done to any Leg area is distributed evenly to both “Leg” areas. Restricts the player’s legwear to Dresses and socks
There, BEHOLD MY MIGHTY WALL OF TEXT AND ABSURDITY. TREMBLE BEFORE IT’S CONFUSING LOGIC AND POOR GRAMMAR.