Each morph has an associated CP cost. It also supplies the character’s Durability and Wound Threshold stats, and may modify Initiative, Speed, and certain aptitudes and learned skills. A credit cost is also listed, but this refers to the cost of buying such a morph in gameplay.
Flexible Aptitude Bonuses: Some morphs have aptitude bonuses that may be applied to an aptitude of the player’s choice. This reflects that not all morphs are created equal. When assigning these universal aptitude bonuses, each boost must be applied to a separate aptitude; you may not elevate an aptitude that is already raised by that morph. Once an individual morph’s aptitude bonuses have been assigned, they are permanent for that morph (i.e., if another character resleeves into that morph, the bonuses remain the same).
Eyechat Open Channel: Morphs
- Cacophonous: Traveler’s guide Lonely Planetoid has posted their yearly summary and review of common morph models for the aspiring solar system egocaster. Since having the right sleeve for the job is so important for so many of our sentinels, I thought this might be interesting to share and comment on. Everyone has their faves as well as their horror stories and amusing anecdotes; let’s break ‘em out. Who knows, the collective recommendations might may make all the difference when an op goes terminal, or it may at least save you the pain of a coin toss. Please reserve the skin vs. shell debates for the open ﬂame channels; I’d rather focus on the advantages and disadvantages for each morph individually.
- Skinwalker: Oh, we’re all over this.
- Chiro: Skinwalker, I wouldn’t be surprised if you and your forks hadn’t tried every single morph listed here.
- Skinwalker: Not all, but more than a few. We have a few collective faves and a few I wouldn’t recommend to a desperate infugee. We also don’t always agree, of course.
- Just Mortal: That’s one reason I don’t fork. Why would I want to argue with myself? I’m an asshole.
- Psychscaper: I can edit that out for you, if you like.
- Just Mortal: No thanks. I like my ego, ﬂaws and all.
- Psychscaper: Yeah, I can ﬁx that glitch too.
- Qi: Can we get some geneticist crows in here? Particularly anyone who’s worked in morph design, uplift, or neogenetics? It would be nice to scan the opinions of people who actually have a handle on the source code, so to speak. Same goes for hardware engineers.
- Plasmid: I can help with that. I’ve dipped my paws in and mixed up the gene pool on a few occasions.
- Sequencer: Me as well. I have a background in genomics and I’ve dabbled in neogenetics.
- Callosum: I can speak to any neuroscience issues.
- Rivet: I’ve got a handle on synthmorph designs. The Great Red Spot knows I’ve had to put dozens of ‘em back together.
- Stitch: I’ve audited the code for a fair number of proprietary minifac mass production programs, and written a few open source schematics as well, so I can speak to the molecular-scale designs.
- Cacophonous: Excellent, let’s get this party started.
Eyechat Open Channel: Morphs Subtopic: Resleeving
- Cacophonous: While we're discussing morphs, I know everyone has a different approach to resleeving and choosing a new morph (when you have a choice, that is). I'm curious about everyone's personal take.
- Nezumi: Well the needs of the mission come ﬁrst, of course. Right tool for the job and all that. Necessities aside, I like to try out something different when I can. It's always good to walk a kilometer in someone else's bod, so to speak.
- Nevermore: That's not for me. I go for the sleeves that feel closest to home. It's just more comfortable wearing a skin that's like the one I grew up in.
- Scent.In.Hell: I'm with you on that point, but more because I don't like needing to adjust to a new body. I always feel like such a klutz or a noob. I'd rather just go with something that ﬁts, that feels right, that doesn't take getting used to. I already went through my toddler years, don't see the need to revisit that on a regular basis.
- Nova Vida: Bah, you ask me, a little bit of discomfort is worth it, if the morph is right. There's nothing like ﬂexing a nice new pair of muscles, breathing air that'd normally kill you, or seeing colors and wavelengths to which you're normally blind. I don't mind the acclimation when the payoff is worthwhile.
- Rivet: If you really want to play with new toys, though, shells have it way better than skins. More options, fewer limitations, harder to damage, easier to repair.
- Ruqinzhe: And easier to hack.
- Rivet: We all have our weaknesses.
- Das Frettchen: No metal frames for me. They're called the Clanking Masses for a reason. I'll take the grace and elegance of ﬂesh and blood over plastics and lubricant any day.
- Jake Carter: Your classism is showing.
- Das Frettchen: So is your lack of taste.
- Violet Perdido: I don't buy into the biochauvinism, but I do have to say that I'm not a fan of synthmorphs simply because I enjoy the biological aspects of life. I like eating, sleeping, and having sex.
- Moxie Harper: They have sims for that. You can pretend to have all of the great biological functions you want, and skip the nasty and gross ones. Win win.
- Voight-Kampff: Well, if you're going that far, why not just ditch the physical altogether?
- Qi: There's something to be said for the infomorph lifestyle. It's very freeing, like your mind is unbound. There's so much potential, so little time wasted on the mundane aspects of existence.
- Just Mortal: Sure, until you need to go somewhere there's no mesh coverage.
- Qi: That's why Jupiter invented puppet socks and cyberbrains.
- Moxie Harper: I do sometimes wonder what my router is smoking when I ﬁnd out what they've lined up for me. I understand, resources are limited, we have to make do with the stock that's on hand, yadda yadda. I know they've read the mission specs—heck, they put them together—and sometimes I have to wonder if they really expect me to take on this threat with a budget synth or a neotenic or are they just fucking with me?
- Stitch: As a router, I always try to get my sentinels the best options, and I especially try to get them morphs that match their skills and strengths. That said, I also tend to give them options to choose from, when I can. I'm fairly sure some of the sentinels I send out go for the high-end skins and shells, though, simply cuz they feel it's on the company's dime.
- Parallax: This is one of the reasons I always try to line up my own morph when I can. This way, my picky self is more likely to be happy and there's less hassle all around.
- Expat: I avoid resleeving when at all possible. Sometimes it's necessary, but the process still sorta squicks me out. There is, quite honestly, a part of me that wonders if the real me died a long time ago, in my ﬁrst body, and I'm just a very delusional and/or egotistical program that carries on, oblivious.
- Cacophonous: Biocon rubbish. Let me ask you: even if that were true, would it matter? Has your quality of life changed?
- Expat: Would I know if it had?
- Ruqinzhe: I've never minded resleeving—in fact, I like it. These days, I get bored with my morph pretty quickly, to be honest. I change bods the way some people used to change hairstyles.
- Nevermore: That's nothing, I know people that resleeve as much as others change clothes. Cyberbrains make it really easy to evacuate a body. To say nothing of the folks like Skinwalker and Chiro, who fork, sleeve, merge, and do it all over again.
- Chiro: Guilty as charged.
- Skinwalker: There's too much life to live; one of me can't do it alone.
- Psychscaper: I admire that sort of plasticity, the ability to take on and discard new morphs as easy switching an outﬁt. Too many people have their self-image and self-worth intermeshed with the physical form they are wearing. You are not your morph, any more than you are the fabric you wear or the things you buy. It's all just surface detail, what really matters is what's under the skin.
- Sun Bu'er: Who's to say we are just one thing? Why is our personality not as malleable as our shells? When I sleeve a reaper, I become a killing machine. When I'm in a pleasure pod, my interests are more ... salubrious. I'm capable of both. We are multi-faceted creatures, and sometimes our exteriors just help us to shine even more.
Biomorphs are fully biological sleeves (usually equipped with implants), birthed naturally or in an exowomb, and grown to adulthood either naturally or at a slightly accelerated rate.
- Cloud Skate
- Lunar Flier
- Martian Alpiner
- Ring Flyer
- Venusian Glider
Pods (from “pod people”) are vat-grown, biological bodies with extremely undeveloped brains that are augmented with an implanted computer and cybernetics system. Though typically run by an AI, pods are socially unfavored in some stations, utilized in slave labor in others, and even illegal in some areas. Because pods underwent accelerated growth in their creation, and were mostly grown as separate parts and then assembled, their biological design includes some shortcuts and limitations, offset with implants and regular maintenance. They lack reproductive capabilities. In many habitats, their legal status is a hotly-contested issue. Unless otherwise noted, pods are also considered biomorphs for all rules purposes.
- Basic Pod
- Flying Squid
- Pleasure Pod
- Security Pod
- Specialist Pod
- Vacuum Pod
- Worker Pod
Synthetic morphs are completely artificial/robotic. They are usually operated by AIs or via remote control, but the lack of available biomorphs after the Fall meant that many infugees resorted to resleeving in robotic shells, which were also cheaper, quicker to manufacture, and more widely available. Nevertheless, synthmorphs are viewed with disdain in many habitats, an option that only the poor and desperate accept to be sleeved in. Synthetic morphs are not without with their advantages, however, and so are commonly used for menial labor, heavy labor, habitat construction, and security services.
All synthmorphs have the following advantages:
- Lack of Biological Functions. Synthmorphs need not be bothered with trivialities like breathing, eating, defecating, aging, sleeping, or any similar minor but crucial aspects of biological life.
- Pain Filter. Synthmorphs can filter out their pain receptors, so that they are unhampered by wounds or physical damage. This allows them to ignore the –10 modifier from 1 wound, but they suffer –30 on any tactile-based Perception Tests and will not even notice they have been damaged unless they succeed in a (modified) Perception Test.
- Immunity to Shock Weapons. Synthmorphs have no nervous system to disrupt, and their optical electronics are carefully shielded from interference. Shock attacks may temporarily disrupt their wireless radio communications, however, for the duration of the attack.
- Environmental Durability. Synthmorphs are built to withstand a wide range of environments, from dusty Mars to the oceans of Europa to the vacuum of space. They are unaffected by any but the most extreme temperatures and atmospheric pressures. Treat as Temperature Tolerance and Vacuum Sealing.
- Toughness. Synthetic shells are made to last—a fact reflected in their higher Durability and built-in Armor ratings. Their composition also makes their physical strikes more damaging: apply a +2 DV modifier on unarmed attacks for human-sized shells and larger.
- Cloud Skimmer
- Steel Morph
- Xu Fu
Outer System Morph Variants
Many morphs previously described in other Eclipse Phase books are used in outer system environments, often tailored with modifications specific to the locale.
Biomorphs with Cyberbrains
The cultures of the outer system are far more accepting of forking and regular resleeving. For this reason, many biomorphs in the outer system are equipped with cyberbrains rather than organic brains by default. This makes the resleeving process quicker (less than a minute as opposed to an hour) and makes it substantially easier to fork. The drawback is that cyberbrains are vulnerable to hacking.
Biomorphs with this option have Access Jacks, Cyberbrain, Mnemonic Augmentation, and an optional Puppet Sock. Increase CP Cost by 5; Credit Cost remains the same.
Biomorphs on Ceres must be capable of handling the ammonia content in the water in addition to the pressure.
- Cerean Aquanaut: As the aquanaut biomorph, but equipped with hydrostatic pressure adaption. CP and Credit Costs remain the same.
- Cerean Neo-Cetaceans: Neo-cetaceans modified for survival on Ceres also have gills, hydrostatic pressure adaption, temperature tolerance (improved cold), and toxin ﬁlters. Increase CP Cost by 10; Credit Cost remains the same.
- Cerean Octomorph: Favored by the Hidden Concern, Cerean octomorphs are equipped with eelware, hydrostatic pressure adaption, temperature tolerance (improved cold), and toxin ﬁlters. Increase CP Cost by 10; Credit Cost remains the same.
Various biomorphs have been adapted to survive in the intense pressures and deep cold of the subsurface Europan waters.
- Europan Aquanaut: As the aquanaut biomorph, but equipped with hydrostatic pressure adaption. CP and Credit Costs remain the same.
- Europan Uplifts: Neo-cetaceans and neo-octopi are natural fits for the Europan environment. Any of these morphs (including the takko) can be modified for survival on Europa, adding hydrostatic pressure adaption and temperature tolerance (improved cold). Increase CP Cost by 5; Credit Cost remains the same.
- Europan Orca: The greatest success to date is the Europan orca, a cetacean uplift that upgrades the neo-orca with carapace armor, eelware, enhanced vision, hydrostatic pressure adaption and temperature tolerance (improved cold). Increase CP Cost by 10; Credit Cost remains the same. These are especially useful as undersea guards or mercenaries.
Almost all of the common biomorphs have been adapted by one party or another for survival in Mars’s partially terraformed outdoors. Martian versions exist for exalts, furies, ghosts, mentons, neo-hominids, olympians, sylphs, and all of the varieties of pods, among others. These “red” variants have the following changes:
- Implants: Add Enhanced Respiration and Temperature Tolerance.
- CP Cost: Remains the same.
- Credit Cost: Remains the same, but add 10,000 when not on Mars.
Outer System Synthmorphs
Given that social attitudes toward cases and synths (and similar low-end shells) are not as prejudiced in autonomist and some other outer system cultures, gamemasters may wish to disallow the Stigma: Clanking Masses negative trait in campaigns based primarily in these areas. To balance this out, gamemasters may require these morphs to take the Uncanny Valley negative trait instead.
Commonly encountered morphs on Titan include:
- Titanian Fliers: Lunar fliers augmented with temperature tolerance (improved cold). CP and Credit Costs remain the same.
- Titanian Olympians: Often used by athletes and outdoor workers, these are standard olympian biomorphs augmented with temperature tolerance (improved cold). CP and Credit Costs remain the same.