Monday 2 June 2014

Rewired Revised by R.E. Davis is tasty Cyberpunk. OM NOM.

Rewired Revised by R. E. Davis is not the "Quick and Dirty Cyberpunk RPG", it is "The Free Cyberpunk RPG of perfect proportion". A solid system, well written, well presented and lots of support. Join me in a punk voyage from brain-jacked cortex static to Irish Stew. Yes, Irish Stew...

The taste of character

Before jacking your punk up to the retinas, you need slam down 13 points across your Chrome (strength), Wires (reflexes), Signal (influence) and Data (intelligence). They're attribute carrion to Awareness, Initiative, Toughness, Defense, Firewall (cyberspace rating), Carry Capacity and Edge. Not yet washed out by cortex static? Slap down mad skills, pick some perks; they'll turn you from forgettable Joe to gutter celebrity in a heartbeat.

Perks can be things you are, mental powers or upgrades to your festering carcass. That's all preamble to your gear. Guns, armour, vehicles and drones; mods and hacks aplenty. Get tooled or fall - and fall fast.

The feel of system

This ain't no 8-bit hash, this is a salted 256 SHA. Its genes are spliced from the rain soaked streets (WyRM, RAG) and glimmering corporate enclaves (FATE). Cut and shut by a backstreet game hacker street preacher called Rev. Lazaro. Don't ask where he got the parts, just be happy that it all works together.

Snatch your cubes and chuck three D6, add skill, add mods and best a target number, or some other gutter lunatic rolling against you. Best wins. The bigger your diff, the more it hurts. And it will hurt bad. Death is easy. Stun will make your fall over, wounds mean you don't get up again. It's passionate combat scrawled in charcoal across virgin paper.

If lady luck elopes with your best friend, burn your Edge to chuck another cube, absorb some hurt or demand your own story. The toxic consumerist eagle is fed with wealth and the law is laid down for hot car chases.

The look of punk

Rewired is a looker. Easy on tired eyes; lifted with enough glyphs to remind you tired post-modern middle aged spread what punk is. The GM (who's a corporate sararīman) gets drugs, NPC generation, hacking and help with awarding those poor player suckers with points they crave. The book? Neat. Navigable. Paged. Cover. Credits. No contents, no index, not needed. His cyberspace site has tonnes of content.

The scream of data

Ever heard a 56K modem? That's data in pain. Rewired's system is solid. You could hack it into any setting and for me, that's its Achilles. Renaming attributes isn't Cyberpunk enough. When I need a hit of Cyberpunk, I need the system to feel like the grim, gritty, high-tech dystopic nightmare. It's ragged in places but only in typography, not in heart. I want my Cyberpunk to be further into my future, not Gibson's; I'm already in his future. I prop up gin soaked bars cursing Cyberpunk 2020's identical entropic fate.

The smell of success

Rewired is the Irish Stew of Cyberpunk roleplaying games. Enjoyed all over the world under a million different names. Filling, familiar, dependable. Call it Scouse, Goulash or Burgoo it's still a meat stew. You recognise all the ingredients, so you can get on with just stuffing your face. OM NOM NOM.


Michael Taylor said...

This looks very good! If I print it, it will be only the 3rd game I've printed based on your reviews.

But I didn't find any 'tonnes' of Cyberpunk content on that site - only the game itself.

Rob Lang said...

There used to be more! I'd keep track of the blog because R. E. Davis is still producing: