A K.I.S.S. guide to cyborgs

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A K.I.S.S. guide to cyborgs

Post by SharonFish on 5/10/2009, 3:06 pm

What they are:

Fundamentally: Human beings that have a significant amount of their body replaced with mechanical parts that function as intuitively as the part they replace.

Practically: There are two classes of cyborgs. Those who are humans that have had a body part replaced, and those who have entirely mechanical bodies controlled by a human brain.

The first, called conveniently Class 1 cyborgs, can be found in all the nations of Aurenul. That said those found outside of the Itovan Empire function much less smoothly and their replacement parts are obviously mechanical. Normally body parts are only replaced to repair damages caused by either injury or disease, though there are those who willingly replace parts of their body in order to gain some super human feat. This is however something of a taboo and the cost is prohibitive for most.

Class 2 cyborgs are only made in the Itovan Empire, and their means of production are a closely guarded secret. They originally were designed to function as the grunt labor of the empire and were produced by taking brains from the dead and housing them in mechanical bodies specifically designed for the job at hand. In this process all knowledge of the brain's previous owner is lost, and it is reprogramed to accept the job at hand. Over time less of the actual brain was used and it was supplemented with a circuit board that allowed certain directives to be hardwired into the brain, such as a natural desire to serve and an absolute devotion to their owner. It is now the standard in the Itovan Empire for every citizen to surrender their brain upon death for use in a cyborg. Because Class 2 cyborgs have bodies custom designed to their job, they often have superhuman features, however a basic overall human shape must be maintained or the brain will reject the body. That said if you start with a basic human shape and gradually over time make it less human the brain will learn to adapt.

What they are capable of:

Class 1 cyborgs can choose to have their mechanical parts be superhuman in some aspect but this is unusual, and any sort of complex work would need to be Itovan craftsmanship.

Class 2 cyborgs are extremely versatile and are built for any number of jobs from personal valet to soldier. They always have some physical aspect that makes them better at their job than an average human would be.

Limitations:

Both Class 1 and 2 cyborgs occasionally require recharging from an external power source. This is an infrequent thing and even the most rudimentary cyborgs only need to recharge once a year or so, but no cyborg can operate infinitely without access to a power supply.

Class 2 only restrictions:

A Class 2 must have an owner and it must follow the orders given by that owner. The owner need not be a single person. It can be a group such as a family, a corporation, or the government, but in these cases a single individual is often selected as the "operator" or essentially as the one that gives the orders.

Despite their somewhat robotic nature, Class 2s need to both sleep and eat, though they need significantly less of both than the average human. They sleep about 2 to 3 hours each night and eat small amounts of high carbohydrate foodstuffs (as all they have to fuel with this is their brain).

Cyborgs and Society:

Class 1 cyborgs move amongst average humans as equals. In fact it is considered quite rude to point out cybernetic features. That said, if the feature was clearly added by choice not by necessity, it will likely be regarded as "freakish" by the general population.

Class 2 cyborgs are only found regularly in Itova and they are functionally slaves. The cyborgs accept this implicitly as the natural state of affairs and bear no resentment to their masters. New cyborgs can only be afforded by the very rich, however there is a thriving second hand market for them, and a cyborg of some sort is within the price range of the average middle class family. That said, most of the models that are predominately designed as playthings for the rich are often repurposed to more utilitarian functions by their second owner. For instance child shaped cyborgs originally intended as companions for children are favored by mechanics for their small size and ability to get into tight spaces to do repairs.

Class 2 Cyborg Psychology:

Though they have human brains, Class 2 cyborgs undergo so much programing that their thought processes can often seem inhuman. They are rigidly logical and often seem emotionally stunted. With the exception of those created to be personal companions, they will not voluntarily start conversations without the express need to convey information.

That said they are perfectly capable of feeling the full range of human emotion, but they are very limited in their expression of it, and the conditions under which they become deeply emotional are likely different from those of an average human. For instance, insulting a human would likely make them angry, while this would completely fail to raise the ire of most cyborgs. Or there is the fact that cyborgs receive emotional gratification from a job well done on a level unknown to the average human.

And just to reiterate it again, Class 2 cyborgs are deeply loyal to their owner and feel no resentment at all toward them.

Other interesting facts:

Class 2 cyborgs who work in groups of batch made cyborgs, such as soldiers and miners, have highly developed facial recognition skills. So despite the fact that every individual in the group has the same face to human eyes, they have no trouble telling each other apart.

There are Class 2 cyborgs made exclusively to fight one another in prize fights. These gladiators are ranked by class, with the highest quality fighting in the big areas in the major cities, and lower grade ones fighting in smaller arenas. The gladiators are the only Class 2 cyborgs that are made one of a kind.

While Class 2 cyborgs do not need to be anestisized in order to do repairs as they feel no pain, most find it the process deeply unsettling, and it is sometimes necessary for mechanics to suspend their ability to control their body in order to keep them still enough to preform the work.

Though there is a cyborg god in the Itovan pantheon, he is not worshiped by cyborgs, but rather by those about to die. Class 2 cyborgs are, by nature, irreligious.
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