Surreality Bombs [GURPS 4e]

Surreality Bombs [TL13]

God help the Galaxy, but those Elder Races still around and in corporeal form all seem addicted to the ‘hobby’ of making a case of these things, then sending them to primitive (TL10 and below) star systems, just to see what would happen.  There’s nothing worse than a species that stubbornly won’t evolve to the next quantum level of reality — well, OK, there are: species out there that stubbornly won’t evolve and who seem to enjoy making less advanced species bleed.  Species deciding to play more or less nonviolent pranks seem relatively harmless by comparison.

By comparison.

A Surreality Bomb is usually an opaque globe that can’t be broken, or even scratched: it’s solid, practically weightless, and superficially nontoxic.  To activate one, simply grab it and wish for something. Surreality Bombs can’t change the past — although it can fairly easily ‘bring somebody back from the dead’ by healing the body (or fragments thereof), restoring all life functions, and somehow torture reality by having the electrical patterns in the corpse’s neurons somehow spontaneously reset themselves back to their pre-mortem configuration. Otherwise, it’s pretty much the ultra-tech equivalent of a genie’s wish.

But that’s not bad enough — or entertaining enough, from the Elder Races’ point of view.  No, what makes this item truly hysterical for them is that anyone within eyeshot of a Surreality Bomb when it goes off immediately gets the following Disadvantages for the next 24 hours: Charitable [-15], Curious [-5], Gullibility [-10], Impulsiveness [-10], and Weirdness Magnet [-15] (assuming that this Disadvantage is not already present in the campaign).  The points stack, for those who already have one or more of those Disadvantages; and the effect cannot even be mitigated without access to TL11 tech (TL12 would work better).  The good news is that the effects aren’t immediately and obviously fatal, but apparently sapient species are never going to get tired of watching other sapients make poor life decisions.

On the other hand? Getting ‘blessed’ with a Surreality Bomb package is usually good for one “Get Out Of An Omega Event Free” card for the star system in question.  Which is one reason why most star nations tolerate the practice, albeit with gritted teeth. The other reason? Well, these things come from TL13 cultures. Civilizations at a lower technological level can’t exactly do much about the situation anyway.

The material presented here is my original creation, intended for use with the GURPS system from Steve Jackson Games. This material is not official and is not endorsed by Steve Jackson Games.GURPS is a registered trademarks of Steve Jackson Games, and the art here is copyrighted by Steve Jackson Games. All rights are reserved by SJ Games. This material is used here in accordance with the SJ Games online policy.

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