Concept: “The fields. Monoculture deserts of genetically enhanced crops like wheat 4.6, ultra-maize, and soykin. Spliced to perfection. All earth is sterile. Killed by an unhallowed mix of unfiltered UV-radiation and the most potent poisons. Only hard fertilization keeps the masses alive and fed. Traveling through the cultivations is not without peril. Chemships puke their concoctions onto the plants; mechanic harvesters that have never seen an animal or human cut down all in their path.”
Content: A treasure trove of rules (miseries, glitches, mutations), gear, location/site summaries and generators, map hexes, random encounters, enemies, classes (“Mutant” and “Elektron Rohre”), job seeds/contracts, and even a dungeon to explore.
Writing: Intense, vivid, and wry descriptions that bring to life the sprawling wastes that surround Cy.
Art/Design: A mix of collage, pixel art, graffiti, graphical user interfaces, print reports, and more to frame each page/spread uniquely but feeling comfortably in line with the official/core Cy_Borg aesthetic. Map hexes provided as additional file.
Usability: Wide variety of layouts, font choices/sizes/colors, and organization can slow down reading and navigation (e.g., class info interspersed among NPCs), but hyperlinked table of contents aids with identifying desired details.
Concept: “404//SAN is the demented frontpage of the NET, where manifold rumors, advertisements, hoaxes, and conspiracies produce a worthless information sludge. Still, more than enough masochistic users flock to the site to be entertained by trolls or cheated out of their life's savings.”
Content: A one-stop shop for adventures/scenarios, NPCs, monsters, apps, cyberware and equipment, additional rules ideas, and more.
Writing: Every page provides dozens of imaginative and enticing ideas for inspiration, with many pages offering highly engaging in-universe descriptions or framing for their game content.
Art/Design: A variety of artistic and aesthetic styles that embody the artpunk philosophy. The browsing experience feels in line with the CY_BORG rulebook itself.
Usability: Requires close, and often slow, examination to identify and make effective use of content (text and image alike), especially when moving across very differently styled spreads–but very worth the effort.
Concept: “gutter_PUVNKS is a fresh supplement for CY_BORG. You'll get all you need to explore the city of CY, even if you really don't want to. Locations, encounters, NPCs, adventure, two new classes (BROKE CEO & CY_BORG), and a few odds and ends.”
Content: 48 pages of content: NPCs, cults, a radio station, locations throughout CY, random encounter tables, infestations, “broke CEO” and “cyborg” classes, and (amazingly!) more.
Writing: Tons of detail on each page to provide GMs and players with numerous possibilities; writing style oozes the essence of Cy_Borg: thematically grimy and vile and also compact rules/mechanics explanations.
Art/Design: Layout and aesthetic choices for each section are as varied and imaginative as the writing, contributing significantly to the fullness of immersion in the game universe and vibe.
Usability: “Consistency” is somewhat relative here–although there are many different layouts, aesthetics, etc., there are similar gestures throughout: highlighted headings/labels, text size to reflect hierarchical relationships between content, etc. so that navigation and identification of desired info is enjoyable rather than frustrating. Contrast is high throughout as well; only one page has a busy enough background to potentially slow reading.
Concept: “NEON BORG is rot, chaos, death, home. Millenia ago, ‘twas a fortress standing firm against the demon hordes. Then, the demons ate the humans and the world ended. When times began anew, NEON BORG became prison for the most feared. The kind of irredeemably debased scvm for which a death sentence was by far too lenient. Today, NEON BORG is subsidized housing. Filled to the rafters with aged corpkillers, filthy nanomancers, burned hackers, and you.”
Content: A solo microadventure that, like Dark Fort that inspired it, provides an immersive dungeon-crawling experience through the Neon Borg housing complex while escaping from corp harvesters.
Writing: Tight, concise descriptions maintain a sense of imminent danger and urgency to motivate and inspire the solo player on their journey.
Art/Design: Clean black-and-white layout with a portrait of the player character and a consistent design grammar distinguishing different blocks and types of content.
Usability: Easy to navigate and identify desired information that should minimize delays or questions about how to undertake the adventure.
Concept: “The director of the L.A.M.B. project, Dr. Seraphima, Had her brains blown out by a 1.4 petaelectronvolts proton beam. The parts of her brain which tethered her to reality and sanity, anyway. Now, she's the revered leader of an exponentially growing cult. Daily, Dozens of hopeful disciples enter the L.A.M.B. to have their craniums fried, hoping to awaken something that elevates them above NPC status. Through the usual back channels, Dr. Daevy hired disposable punks to take care of the situation in a violent fashion. Alas, for now, they all died or joined the CVLT of the Hadron Lamb.”
Content: 48 pages of jaw-dropping inspiration–a full adventure to seek out the head of a strange cult who keeps turning her enemies into acolytes, with tons of exciting seeds and ideas for further exploration.
Writing: Eichhorn manages to wield an impressive variety of styles and voices that provide impressive depth and nuance to the range of subjects covered from one page to the next.
Art/Design: Artpunk spreads that feel at home alongside the rulebook. Each set of pages evokes a distinct facet of the grimy cyberpunk aesthetic and philosophy that draws players to the game–it’s as easy to be drawn in to the intriguing layouts as it is to the writing.
Usability: For a quick skim-and-find experience, look elsewhere–but consider a shift in reading orientation. This adventure is deeply engaging and requires the reader to attend closely to the combination of writing and design if they are to successfully GM it.
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