Desert Hazards

Desert Hazards

Heat and Dehydration

Water is essential in the desert. The Gamemaster should feel free to inflict Stun Damage on any character who spends too much time in direct sunlight, overly exerts himself, wears improper clothing (armor) or doesn't drink enough water (4 liters/1 gallon a day, 8 liters/2 gallons for trolls). Dehydration and heat exhaustion can lead to confusion, disorientation, nausea and unconsciousness.

Scorching Sands

The desert sun can superheat sand, rocks and metallic surfaces to the point that they are dangerous. A character that comes in unprotected contact scorching surfaces must resist 6L Physical Damage or be burned. Even with good footwear, walking on such ground can be painful: apply a +1 modifier to all actions. Burns can easily become infected, so the Gamemaster can choose to inflict additional damage or lengthier healing periods.

Desert Travel

Most desert terrain can be considered Difficult Ground. Steep dunes, fine sand and rocky areas may reduce movement rates by half. Especially steep sand dunes may require Climbing (8) Tests. Ground vehicles can become bogged down in sandy areas or rockfields. Terrain is always Restricted or Tight, and may simply be impassable. The Gamemaster can impose Handling Test modifiers between +1 (gravel plains) and +4 (sand dunes) depending on the situation.

Sand and Grit

In the desert, sand and grit get into everything. Weapons, exposed cyberware and vehicles are especially vulnerable. For cyberware that is not internal (datajack, cybereyes, cyberlimbs, etc) and vehicles, inflict 1 Stress Point per day in the desert. If the cybered character provides daily maintenance and cleaning for his implants, or if the vehicle has hostile environment/desert adaptation, only inflict 1 Stress Point per week in the desert.

Firearms (and other gear with moving parts) may become jammed or gummed up if not constantly cleaned. Each day the firearm or item is used, roll 1d6. If the result is a 1, it jams and must be cleaned with an appropriate Build/Repair (4) Test with a base time of 1 hour before it will operate again. If the gear is not regularly cleaned, the Gamemaster can increase the likelyhood of a jam by 1 per day. For example, the gun will jam on a 1d6 roll of 2 or less. Gamemasters should time the jamming so that it occurs during a moment that maximizes the dramatic tension of the game.

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