Hax
Hax has been around for centuries, and everybody's heard of it - probably you too, even. Originally a competitive gamer drug, it expanded elsewhere for hunters and trackers, artists - anything that requires fast fingers and a really good eye. Hax sharpens your eyesight and visual processing centers to unnatural heights, and makes your fingers fly while you work out logical puzzles. Great for hackers and puts you in a good mood, too. That's how you know I'm never on it.
  • Cost: 1500 creds
  • Uses: 1
  • Requirements: Be a human
  • Stats: +2 perception
    +1 hacking
    +1 speed
  • Duration: 3d6 turns
    Effects start at the beginning of the next turn.

Hax puts your brain - and fingers - into overdrive. It gives you a light high, so you feel jovial - without any impaired judgment. It is, in short, the perfect drug for hacking… or playing multiplayer video games. You'll feel insanely fast, solve logic problems in mere moments, and, perhaps most importantly, you'll notice the tiniest details. For a short while you'll feel like a hawk - you'll see things so tiny you never even though about them before. It sharpens your eyesight and lets you see things that for most humans wouldn't even be possible.

Side effects while active

Side effects only take place for the duration of the drug, and stop afterwards. Side effects can stack between drugs. Some effects may be immediately obvious. Others, the GM may record privately and must be discerned by the player.

100% Hunger Someone on hax, or addicted to it, is known to be unusually hungry. The narcotic raises their body's metabolism, making it easier to lose weight - but they also feel compelled to eat. If they do not, or cannot eat in the first 10 turns or more (if the effects last that long), their mood may decrease dramatically until they find a snack.
85-100% Jovial mood Provided they aren't in a bad mood from hunger, a person on hax is more jovial than usual. They may find things amusing that they might not normally, and may make jokes (often bad puns). The effect of the drug isn't euphoric, but close to it. They may gain an optimism they didn't previously have as well.
20-50% Headache from light For the majority of users, bright lights can cause a headache. They may want to dim computer screens, and may feel averse to going outside, and for good reason: all their actions may have a -1 penalty in daylight. The GM will not inform the user whether this is in effect, but the dislike of bright lights is universal.
20-50% Joint stiffness Some users may find their joints feeling particularly stiff. They can usually tell something's "not quite right" with their knees, elbows, and shoulders, often feeling compelled to sit down. When they aren't sitting, they have a -1 to agility.
5-35% Fear of discovery A small percentage of users find themselves thinking that others will judge them or ostracize them for using hax - this is often referred to as a "bad trip", as far as hax goes. They may not outwardly show many signs of it, but their internal fear will be quite strong.

Overdose effects

If you take too many different drugs in a short amount of time, you have a chance of receiving the side effects of any of them. These last for the duration of the longest-duration drug you've taken. Those that last other lengths will be noted. Continuing to take drugs past this point may result in death. Some effects may be immediately obvious. Others, the GM may record privately and must be discerned by the player.

85-100% Abusive behavior People that overdose on hax are known to be highly, highly toxic - they'll rant, rave, abuse, and attempt to belittle and humilitate those around them - most often allies. For non-allies, they can put it aside, for a time, thus keeping them from taking a charisma penalty.
85-100% Urge to take more Overdose produces a very strong desire to take even more hax, as the consequences seem much less likely to them at the time. If hax is not available, they will take something else. They roll a willpower save to determine whether they can control themselves.
5-35% Suicidal tendencies In a very small percentage of those that overdose, they'll find themselves suicidal. Reasons vary widely, but are most often accompanied with a sense of horror of permanence - a feeling that the effects of the drug would never wear off, or if they did, nothing would be worth it anymore. If a method of suicide is immediately available, they must make a willpower saving throw in order to avoid it. Failure results in suicide. The GM will not inform the player of the results of this roll until it takes effect, which may happen at any time during the overdose. Feelings of unhappiness are near-universal.

Withdrawal effects

If you take too many drugs over the course of one or two missions, there's a chance you can become addicted and experience withdrawal symptoms. Some effects may be immediately obvious. Others, the GM may record privately and must be discerned by the player. Still others may happen at random for the duration of withdrawal. Withdrawal can be mitigated by taking another of the particular drug at some point during or before the next mission - or you can try waiting it out for a mission or two, until it goes away.

  • Duration: 1 month (1 full-sized misison). May increase due to withdrawal effects.
100% Increasing duration Every time waiting out the withdrawal is put off, the duration of the withdrawal increases by one month, meaning it takes even longer for the effects to subside.
85-100% Aversion to eating Thanks to likely nausea and stomach pains, the user feels quite averse to food. They may not eat for days at a time, and if they do, it may not even seem to help. If it gets bad enough, they may begin seeing occasional penalties to their actions.
35-65% Nausea If a hax addict finds themselves nauseous, they may begin vomiting at a rate of up to 1d3 times per full-sized mission. The GM will not inform the players of this roll. Just pray you aren't wearing a helmet when it happens.
35-65% Stomach pains The nausea and aversion to eating are often accompanied with severe stomach cramps and pains. This does not cause any effects to stats, but must be roleplayed.

History

Hax has an extraordinarily long history - at least by the standards of modern-day popular drugs. Hax was first created sometime in the early third millennia following the rise of video gaming as a popular sport. Eventually television channels began showing video game competitions regularly, and the prize money gradually rose until video gaming as a sporting career became more profitable than more traditional outdoor sports. During this transition, people began to look for ways to "get ahead" so that they could walk home with not only the prize money, but also obtain more sponsors and thus increase their overall wealth.

This is when Hax entered the mix. While it has undergone many different changes in its millennia-long history, as well as stages of disuse, the overall goal has remained the same: get the fingers moving rapidly on their own and help the mind figure out complex tasks, as well as, and especially, helping with reflexes.

The drug was originally known as Alice, possibly due to the influence of one of its creators. It didn't obtain the name "hax" until it had been around for nearly a decade. It's not particularly easy to recognize symptoms of Hax while in use, as there aren't many outward signs; people quickly began relying on their intuition, and then their suspicions, when determining whether someone had taken Alice. If an individual was thought to be cheating in some fashion, a cry of "He's cheating! I call hax! Hax!" would often be heard, and "Hax" soon became synonymous with "Alice" before replacing the name altogether.

Ingame example

Ingame example


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