PCs find some Space Alien gear? It might work, but chances are it doesn’t — it’s been sitting around exposed to the elements, is eons old, was near ground zero of a gamma ray bombardment, etc. Roll 3d12 (one die per column) and consult the Why Yo’ Space Alien Bling all Broke an’ Shit? Table:

1

overheated

transverse

casing

2

displaced

cobalt

vent

3

corroded

polarity

buffer

4

punctured

particle

coil

5

fused

flux

lens

6

perforated

improbability

carriage

7

fractured

dilithium

capacitor

8

disentangled

quantum

inverter

9

ruptured

multi-phasic

damper

10

de-laminated

tachyon

manifold

11

shattered

positronic

resonator

12

vaporized

Σ field

matrix

Assemble results to ascertain the problem. The highest number rolled determines the requirements for repair. Total of all numbers rolled is the % chance each attempted use results in an explosion; it is up to the DM whether the device is obviously damaged, or if PCs will have no warning as to its dangerous condition.

1,2 – Can be repaired by any reasonably intelligent being, in the field and with no tools.

3-6 – Can be repaired by any Space Alien or exceptionally intelligent being. Spare parts, common tools, and a suitable workplace required.

7-10 – Requires diligent servicing by a Space Alien expert technician. Rare tools, scarce parts, and a specialized facility are required.

11, 12 – Can only be repaired in a Space Alien domed city, star base, mothership, or similar facility; all lesser requirements apply.

Example. The PCs scavenge a tricorder from an abandoned Space Alien research station; it is non-functional and appears damaged. DM rolls 3d12, getting [6] [9] [5] – a perforated multi-phasic lens. It requires diligent servicing by a Space Alien expert technician, with rare tools & scarce parts in a specialized facility. There is a 20% chance it will explode if used prior to repair.

Additional thoughts:

  1. Use 1D instead of 1d12?
  2. Scale for circumstances: devices found unattended in intact but abandoned facilities use 1d4, devices found in a crashed saucer use 1d8, devices found in a crater use 1d12 and generate 1-3 separate results.
  3. Devices repaired in sub-optimal conditions work but still have a chance of exploding, maybe 1/2 of the pre-repair chance?
Sorry for the big, ugly table – I don’t know how to format them on Word Press. A more svelte, similarly ugly table is contained in the ‘CARCOSA Optional Rules’ .pdf in the download widget in the upper right. I will update that document with new charts, rules, character classes, etc. as I crank them out.
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