Dogs in the Junkyard
Things' descriptive tags
Weapons’ and gear’s descriptive tags fall into 3 categories. First,
the plain mechanical; second, constraints on when the characters
can use them; third, cues recommending something for you to
say about them.
In the listings that follow, 1harm, 1hot forward, +1sharp when eyesight matters, +1 to
going aggro etc.) (mechanical): adds to a particular stat or a
particular move’s roll, under the specified conditions.
Alive (cue): it’s a living creature.
AP (mechanical): it ignores its target’s armor, inflicting its full
Applied (constraint): it takes intimacy and uninterrupted time
for the character to use it. You’d better have a willing subject, or
restrained. Contrast tag.
Area (mechanical, constraint): its target or subject is an area,
not a person; it fully affects everyone and everything there.
An area weapon used against a larger gang inflicts its full harm,
provided that the gang is crowded into the area in question.
Autofire (mechanical, cue, constraint): at the character’s option,
the weapon makes an area attack (cf ), but must imediately
reload (cf ).
Close (constraint, a range): she can bring it to bear only when
she’s pretty close to her target or subject. If they could call to one
another and have a shouted conversation, they’re close enough.
Close/far (constraint, a range): she can bring it to bear at both
close and far range.
Far (constraint, a range): she can bring it to bear only when she’s
pretty far from her target or subject. If she can see the whites of
his eyes, they’re too close together.
Hand (constraint, a range): she can bring it to bear only when
she’s within arm’s reach of her target or subject.
Hi-tech (constraint, cue): it’s high tech, not the kind of simple
machine that can be easily manufactured in these crude
times. It’s also worth more than 1-barter, probably, but that’s
Implanted (constraint): it’s permanently implanted in its user’s
skin, body, or brain. Contrast worn.
Infinite (constraint): throw one away, the character has another
one, and another, and another; she has as many as she needs.
It’s important to distinguish an infinite thing, as one item, from
any one of its individual members. Take infinite valuable knives,
for instance: the character can throw one knife away and have
more, indefinitely, but if she throws all her knives away as an
item, they’re all gone. Similarly, it’s all her knives as an item, not
any individual knife, that are valuable. Treat any one knife as
disposable, transient, not even really a thing.
Intimate (constraint, a range): she can bring it to bear only when
she’s very close to her target or subject, close enough to hold,
kiss or grapple him. Arm’s reach isn’t close enough.
Loud (cue): everyone nearby hears it, and can potentially
identify what made the noise. It wakes up sleeping people,
startles people who aren’t expecting it, makes small children
cry, and is generally distinctive and unignorable.
Messy (cue): it’s loud (cf ). Furthermore, it might hit every person
in its area but might miss any given person in its area; and it
leaves a mess behind — cosmetic property damage, blood and
gore, barf or shit or other bodily produce, or some other kind of
mess as appropriate.
Refill (mechanical): using it uses it up. e character can’t use it
again unless she has a refill.
Reload (constraint): using it means the character has to take
specific action to reload or reset it before she can use it again.
Remote (constraint): the character can use it at a distance by
remote control, or maybe it can operate at a distance autonomously.
S-harm (cue): it disables its target without causing any harm.
Use it on a PC, and doing anything at all means doing it under
fire; the fire is “you’re stunned.”
Tag (constraint): the character has to touch her target to use it,
but only an instant of time, and there’s no need for the subject or
target to cooperate. Contrast applied.
Valuable (constraint, cue): it’s worth more than 1-barter.
Worn (constraint): to use it, the character has to be wearing it.