#Starfinder – Starfinder Month: CoCo Operative Loadout

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Art by Wonbin Lee

CoCo – The Corporate Cooperative – is a democratic corporate power with independent sovereignty over a number of corporate stations and facilities. They consider themselves an interstellar state, but many disagree. What is unusual about them is that all their employees are also considered citizens and, upon joining CoCo are given a number of shares in the company. Everyone shares in both its successes and its failures and members are permanently wired in to the company ‘chatter’. While CoCo maintains no standing military, it is alleged to have many ‘Q-Ships’ and its corporate operatives are found in many places, engaging in industrial – and conventional – espionage. Their gear is highly sought after and civilian versions are sold by CoCo to cash in on this popularity.

CoCo Body Suit

A jet black, microweave body suit with built in energy-dissipation and storage panels, the CoCo body suit is a good compromise for modern protection.

  • CoCo Body Suit I: Level 2, Price 500, EAC +3, KAC +1, Maximum Dex Bonus +3, Armour Check Penalty -1, Upgrade Slots 0, Bulk 1, Special: Ignore the first point of energy damage you take from each attack.
  • CoCo Body Suit II: Level 6, Price 4000, EAC +8, KAC +6, Maximum Dex Bonus +5, Armour Check Penalty -1, Upgrade Slots 1, Bulk 1, Special: Ignore the first three points of energy damage you take from each attack.
  • CoCo Body Suit III: Level 8, Price 10000, EAC +11, KAC +9, Maximum Dex Bonus +5, Armour Check Penalty -1, Upgrade Slots 2, Bulk 1.
  • CoCo Body Suit IV: Level 11, Price 25000, EAC +15, KAC +13, Maximum Dex Bonus +5, Armour Check Penalty -1, Upgrade Slots 3, Bulk 1

CoCo Carry System

Level 1, Cost 250

This intricate set of webbing uses various technological tricks as well as good design and a computerised weight-balancing system to help you secure your gear in the best possible way. This – which can be combined with a backpack – allows you to carry an additional 1 bulk of equipment, as though your strength were one higher. When built into armour (1 upgrade slot) it can carry 2 bulk of equipment and counts as a quick release sheath for any weapons attached to it.

CoCo Shadow Pistol

A simple projectile pistol which uses compressed gas to fire its projectiles, relatively quietly, and with an adaptable barrel which can fire any small-arm calibre round, or even ball-bearings or similar junk.

Level 6, Cost 6000, Damage 2d4 P, Range 50 ft, Capacity 12 rounds, Usage 1 (has a built-in compressor), Bulk L, Special: Analog.

CoCo Family/Stranger Networking

A pair of head implants, closely resembling small, folded ears, these allow you to connect wirelessly with CoCo data systems and to wirelessly hook up with other CoCo members within 100 ft. Indeed you must have this implant to join them. The antennae are constantly updated with CoCo information, fully encrypted, and as a safeguard are capable of delivering a lethal charge to traitors, straight to the cranium.

System: Brain, Level 5, Price 3000, Special: Wireless connectivity (you can also connect, wirelessly, to non-CoCo systems at a distance of up to 25 ft, Unit Cohesion: See below.

Unit Cohesion: If multiple people are connected via these implants they can share telemetary and communicate silently over a secured signal. This provides a +2 bonus to Perception and Initiative for everyone who is connected.

CoCo also produces a version of this cybernetic for the general public outside of their company. It can do all the same things but without access to CoCo secure lines, and it costs twice as much.

#Starfinder – Starfinder Month – Equipment

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June is going to be Starfinder Month here on the Postmortem Studios blog. I’ve been thinking of doing a Machinations of the Space Princess conversion and some rules modifications for the game and that’ll be the core of what I do this month. I’ll take some suggestions too though, so if you have a picture of a cool spaceship, alien or some sci-fi gear you’d like to see statted up for MotSP or Starfinder (or both), comment with a link to the image below!

This month’s content is going to be free for everyone, sometimes – however – I paywall what I write other than a preview. If you want to support me you can do so for as little as $1 a month on Patreon or 1 token a month on Minds.com.

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Starfinder has a believability problem when it comes to equipment. The level-limits on items make no goddamn sense and throw you out of your immersion. Why shouldn’t you be able to pick up that Caldarian Fusion Cannon and fire it just like anyone else? Now technically, you can, but this is used as a way to guide treasure, gear and everything else in the game. It’s certainly heavily implied that you shouldn’t go far outside these bounds, because of game balance.

The monetary limit goes a good way to controlling this as the more expensive items are beyond the reach of starting characters. Still, there has to be a better way to do this.

I think there is.

The kinks still need to be worked out, but modifying the bonuses available from certain gear seems to be the best way to about things. The way this would work is that when using gear at a level higher than yourself, you can, but you don’t have the full capability to use it that those of greater experience do – just like a layman might be nonplussed on what they’re supposed to do when handed any other piece of technical gear.

If you’re lower than the level of the equipment, say a weapon, you would get a lesser bonus or lower damage compared to someone of sufficient level. This also gives you a way to acclimatise and grow into weapons and devices – somewhat similar, if you will, to the way you acclimate to your cybernetics in Deus Ex, unlocking new capabilities as you develop.

Let’s take, by way of example, the Corona Laser Rifle from the corebook.

This ‘requires’ a level of 6, does 2d6 F damage, a burn of 1d6 and has a capacity of 40 charges.

If you’re lower than level 6 we could impose a -2 penalty to hit, and depending what level you were we could reduce the damage.

  • So, at level 6 you do 2d6 on a hit and 1d6 burn damage.
  • At level 5 you do 2d4 on a hit and 1d4 burn damage.
  • At level 4 you do 1d8 on a hit and 1d4 burn damage.
  • At level 3 you do 1d6 on a hit and 1d4 burn damage.
  • At level 2 you do 1d4 on a hit and 1d4 burn damage.
  • At level 1 you do 1d4 on a hit and 1d4 burn damage.

You’re better off using a n00b rifle (Azimuth) up until level 5, but you can use the higher level weapon – at a penalty – until you’re a more battle hardened veteran.

Armour, in a similar way, could retain any penalties but lose effectiveness until you learn how to wear it properly, higher level armour being more technical and requiring more involved wearing and set-up.

Taking Freebooter Armour II as an example,

At level 6 it is at full effectiveness providing +6 EAC and +8 KAC with a Max Dex bonus of +5

If we apply similar by-level reductions you end up with…

  • At level 5 +5 EAC, +7 KAC, +4 Max Dex
  • At level 4 +4 EAC, +5 KAC, +4 Max Dex
  • At level 3 +3 EAC, +4 KAC, +3 Max Dex
  • At level 2 +2 EAC, +3 KAC, +2 Max Dex
  • At level 1 +1 EAC, +1 KAC, +2 Max Dex

And so on.

Of course, this is maths heavy and involves a lot more record keeping, so simply tossing out the Level-limits wholesale, even as a guideline may work better.

When designing encounters it also seems like a good idea to stretch the equipment and gear of the enemy by an amount equal to the APL. So, if you’re in an Epic battle against CR 6 Stormtroopers (NPC troops across D&D compatible products tending to range from level 1-6 based on the old follower mechanics) they might be expected to have level 9, rather than level 6 gear.

EG: Plasma swords instead of duelling swords, Aphelion sidearms and rifles instead of Corona sidearms and rifles, and their heavy weapons trooper might have an advanced X-Gen in place of a tactical one and so on.

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