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“Organic life is a potent force, yes, and it has spread from star to star, jumped galactic gulfs, and established its presence across the universe. However, it has only occupied and explored a mere fraction of what the universe is; jumping to a handful of rare warm rocky bodies, or huddling inside tiny pockets of warm and air of its own making, ignoring the vast cold and the turbulently hot. By merging the instinct, intuition and passion of the organic with the ready adaptability and resilience of the machine, we can create future generations that can embrace the universe in its entirety, not select fractions of it. “

“As a free cyborg entity I am no more enthralled with you self-declared ‘robolords’ enslaving humans than I am with humans enslaving sentient machines! My answer is the same! *click* Do you think you can dodge plasma?!”

“When we rescue somebody from rogue AIs, doctor, we’re supposed to repatriate them back to their homeworlds...not use them as test subjects.”

“Bah! What better way to thank us than to prove the validity of my work?!”

“Whattya mean ‘Change me back!!’? Why would you want to go back to what you were before? You’re perfect now! You can walk on the bottom of the ocean, walk on the moon, you’re bullet- and laser-proof, you need never worry about junk in the trunk, zits, the common cold, or STDs, and you’re virtually immortal! Girl, you don’t appreciate just how lucky you are right now! And then there’s the transformative abilit--I still don’t get you. ‘Nobody will love me now!!’? I’ve so often heard people complain that their significant other cares more about their personal vehicle than them! Well, you can turn into just about any personal vehicle you can imagine! You get your boyfriends coming AND going! You have the best of all possible worlds!. You ...You’re crying....You’re still confusing me...”

---Chromite Cybomaistro Wyzb’ng, to one of his test subjects.

Chromites[]

Chromites
Parent Tribe(s) None
Where First Encountered Three Galaxies, Central Allaince
Tribe Size 80,000
Tribe Organization Meritocracy
Tribe Composition
Female % 47
Male % 53


Neshemar Nearly All
Highest Caste Class Unknown
Tribe Facts
Home Environment Earth-Like Worlds
Technology Level Advanced
Relations With Outsiders Indifferent
Relations With Other Shemarrians Open
Prefered Mode of Combat Techno-Attack
Prosperity Self-Sufficient

aka 'Chromians', 'Chromalites', 'Chromalite Order'

The Chromites are a fringe tribe that started as a cyberpunk pseudo-cult in the Three Galaxies that believed that the destiny of sentient organic life was to merge with its machine technology to create a perfect immortal hybrid lifeform capable of exploring and colonizing the megaverse. 

Origins[]

The early Chromites were largely dismissed as cranks, or at worst borderline traitors to their species given the backlash against AI in the aftermath of the Automaton Wars. Even advanced bionics were viewed with suspicion in some quarters, and the ideas of the Chromites saw little support, in spite of their reasoned arguments with regards to more practical implementation of their ideals. The Chromites managed to survive, however, thanks to the bankrolling of a number of wealthy investors who saw bionic conversion as an attainable form of longevity, if not immortality, and were using the Chromites to further research in that direction. The Chromites also attracted a number of avant-garde cyberneticists and robotics experts to assist them with their research, if not wholly join the Chromite cause. 

The Chromites ultimately fled the Human Alliance and the CCW because of their beliefs and actions, which included experimenting with Artificial Intelligence and nanotechnology, absolute no-nos given the paranoia amongst HA members with a memory of the Automaton Wars. They wandered the Three Galaxies before settling in the Central Alliance. It was here that they encountered the Shemarrians, and became enamored of the sentient android culture. Once they saw their first NeShemar Vada Transform, they knew they’d found their future path. They merged with several other smaller groups of cyborg-fetishists, but quickly divested themselves of the mere hangers-on, thugs, and machine-worshippers, in favor of a more intelligent and motivated member base, working towards perfecting cybernetic and bionic technologies. The Chromites also began volunteering to help the Shemarrians in their various activities, seeking a two-way exchange of ideas and resources. It was considered a great achievement and honor to the Chromites when they were invited to sit on the Low Council (jumping over several more vigorously-petitioning, but less promising, candidate groups), and allowed to immigrate into Shemarrian-held space. Since then, the Chromites have begun adapting various aspects of Shemarrian culture, with their female members taking the most enthusiastically to the Shemarrian aesthetic, and activities such as Warmount-riding. 

Relations[]

Despite the portrayal in the popular media by some members of the Human Alliance, the Chromites are NOT machine worshippers, but sincerely believe that organics and machines are meant to be equals in meld, combining their respective strengths. The advantages of evolution and directed design, of individual initiative and networked cooperation, or passion and logic, must be combined and perfected, to create a workable ideal. Chromites believe that sentient machines should be held accountable for their actions as much as any organic, and thus refute the idea that machines are innately superior in their logic, or that organics hold eternal control over the self-aware products of their intellect. 

On the positive side, this means that Chromites are sympathetic to AI rights, go out of their way to befriend and assist machine cultures like the Machine People, and are also fearless fighters against those machine cultures that do NOT respect sentient rights. Ironically, their very understanding of AI makes them some of the most effective anti-robot and anti-AI fighters around.

On the minus side, the Chromites have been accused of performing experiments in bionic and nanotech augmentation, as well as mind-transferrals, on innocent beings, either without their full knowledge of the risks, or entirely against their wills. The Chromites have also been accused of being knowing accomplices or unwitting patsies in supporting a number of controversial researches into nanotechnology, A.I., and robotics. 

Though initially having been a pacifistic organization, more interested in pursuing research than personal power or combat, the sometimes violent persecution the Chromites have been subjected to, as well as the dangers faced on their long exile journeys, have made it necessary that they become effective soldiers. Though the Chromites would describe themselves as lovers or thinkers, rather than fighters, their hard-won defensive skills have served them in good stead when they settled in the Central Alliance, and helped smooth their adoption into the Shemarrian Star Nation. The more aggressive and outgoing Chromites may hire themselves out to deal with rogue robots and AIs, though they just as often manage to subdue and capture their targets as destroy them. 

Though initially humanocentric, the Chromites have been gradually opening their doors to other species, especially machine-oriented ones, starting with the Machine People, and extending to the Kremin and Malvoren.

Purpose[]

The Chromites are interested in bionics, nanotechnology, magic/psionics associated with machines, and transformative processes that can be applied to bridging the organic and the inorganic. They are aware of the Crysallians, for instance, and are fascinated by the exotic virus/fungus that transforms them into crystalline beings. The Malvoren ability to integrate with machinery also intrigues them no end, as do psionic abilities like Telemechanics and Telemechanic Possession. Some Chromites would even like to study the Mechanoids!

Since joining the Low Council, the Chromites have had occasion to visit other universes as guests of other tribes. This has allowed them to sample the technologies of other cultures and universes, and experiment with them. Of late, they’ve become enthused by some of their observations of Heroes Unlimited-style alternaties, and the superpowered transformations they’ve witnessed, especially those with machine-related powers. Some of what they’ve learned, they’ve already applied to nanotech augmentations. 

Within the Shemarrian Star Nation, the Chromites function virtually as a think tank and private research group. Though law-abiding both within the charter laws of the SSN and the general concordances of the Three Galaxies, the Chromites have had their incidents with more enthusiastic evangelical members ‘spreading the faith’, or the more aggressively eccentric researchers (mad scientists) of their group breaking laws to acquire desired resources or conduct experiments (such as transformative nanotechnology). 

Statistics[]

Motif[]

Silver chrome hand with a galaxy cupped in its palm

Origins[]

Wannabes; the Chromites started out as a fringe cult dedicated to pursuing the goal of perfecting immortal organic-machine melding.

Where First Encountered[]

Three Galaxies, in the Central Alliance, where they’d immigrated from the CCW. They remain based there but have since traveled to other universes as well. 

Tribe Size[]

Modest; 80,000 members. There are another possible 1d6x10,000 affiliates in the Central Alliance who have not gone fully over to join the Shemarrian Star Nation. 

Tribe Organization[]

Meritocracy. The best, brightest, most motivated, and most productive lead the Chromites. This hasn’t always led to the BEST leadership for a given situation, but as the Chromites are a pretty mellow bunch (and heavily augmented), there hasn’t been too much trouble in sorting things out. 

Tribal Composition

Not applicable with regards to traditional Shemarrian caste-configuration. The Chromites can be considered a mix of OCCs with bionic bodies, or machine-related OCCs such as Mechanical Engineers, Cyberpsychologists, CyberDocs

They’re also home to a few exotic types, like TechnoJackers (or equivalents-See Splicers RPG), or Heroes Unlimited-style Supersoldiers or Experiments. 

Species-composition is roughly 77% human, 23% other. The Chromites would like to attract similar thinkers from other species. 

Highest Caste Class[]

Not applicable. Individual members range in physical configuration from indistinguishable ‘hidden’ cyberhumanoids to massive ‘think tank’ robot-body cyborgs.

Gender Division[]

53% Male, 47% Female

Home Environment[]

Currently favors Earth-like worlds to facilitate recruiting, but the Chromites aim to become ‘citizens of the universe’, with ideal cyborg bodies able to withstand the rigors of just about any environment in the universe. For a time, before their exile from the CCW, the Chromites lived and worked on several high-gravity worlds seen as marginal by other humans, and thus considered to be effective sanctuaries for the bionically-enhanced Chromites.

Technology Level[]

Advanced; the Chromites are among the better-informed and knowledgeable about bionic technology and AI systems. They are particularly advanced in their use of nanotechnology, but have gone to lengths to protect themselves and assure others that they’re not about to unleash a ‘gray goo’ crisis on the Three Galaxies. 

Since immigrating into the Shemarrian Star Nation, they’ve received some basic help in the form of Assembler Forges and CyboFabs, access to Progen, and the templates of basic Warmounts. They’ve also acquired a few base-model Shemarrian starships (such as the Goshawk and Rhinochon), though they retain several conventional generic transports to allow them to move about elsewhere in the Three Galaxies (and beyond) without advertising their affiliation to the SSN. 

Relations with Outsiders[]

Indifferent; the Chromites can be regarded as cold and impersonal to those who pigeonhole them as machine-worshippers, but by their own lights they claim their attitude stems from past unjust persecution. To those willing to listen to their philosophy with open minds, they are friendlier and more forthcoming.

The Chromites are on very good terms with the Central Alliance, but are still on shaky ground (thanks to several warrants) with the CCW (ironic, because the CCW has consulted the Chromites, through several middlemen, on matters of nanotechnology, such as T’zee weaponry and defenses against it). 

The Chromites have never met the Denlech, but have heard enough about them to know that the two peoples should probably NEVER meet. 

In their travels in the Manhunter universe, the Chromites managed to pick up a few extra adherents, but also managed to make enemies of both the Manhunters and the Church of the Void. In several other universes, they’ve gotten several machine species riled at them, and gotten more than a few individual humans suspicious of their motives, if not outright peeved at them, after several Chromite experiments without full consent. 

Relations with Other ‘Shemarrians’[]

Open; the Chromites are enthusiastic about most Shemarrians and affiliated parties, but are not slavish in their adoration. They have their doubts and reservations about some members, such as the Lost Eclipse and the Ghost Riders, seeing in them echoes of the darker scenarios bandied about the Chromites themselves. They are cultivating working relationships with Clan Vespa (also interested in nanotech transformation), the Silvermoons, and the Wayfinders (who may seek to curb the more extreme Chromites). They have attempted to approach Clan Scelptor, seeing in the megabuilders the sort of great galactic engineers they’d like to be, but the reclusive Scelptors have largely ignored the Chromites. 

Purpose[]

To become the perfect merging of flesh and machine, and explore the megaverse. Some Chromites see nothing wrong with acquiring a radically optimized form (akin to something like the Pyashche Probes), while others want to retain their baseline appearance (and see transfotmative nanotech as the solution). Some of the more eccentric/extreme Chromites want to uplift the general populace of sapients to ‘the next stage of directed bio-technological evolution’. 

Preferred Mode of Combat[]

Techno-Attack; when engaged in combat, the Chromites prefer more subtle means to attack opponents, including hack-attacks, anti-tech monkey-wrenching, and application of nanoweaponry to overwhelm and undercut opponents. Being that they’re almost all full-conversion cyborgs, Chromites are also fair hands in individual combat, especially since many members love tricked-out combat bionics (especially concealed weaponry).

Unique Attributes[]

Unique Technologies[]

The Chromites are experts in bionics, and have improved on the Vada Transformation. Their version(s), which can be considered roughly akin to the Heroes Unlimited Experiment (see Heroes Unlimited) or Supersoldier class (see Powers Unlimited Two) will tend to have as (one of) their Major Power selection(s) APS Metal, APS Plastic, APS Mercury, or Techno-Form.

Combat Knowledge[]

Chromites are so familiar with cybernetics, bionics, and robotics, that they have unique insight into dealing with such systems. Individual Chromites may apply a +1 to the bonus categories of Strike, Parry, or Dodge, when facing cybernetically/bionically-enhanced or robotic opponents.

Prosperity[]

Self-sufficient. The Chromites trade in cybernetics, bionics, and some nanotech, and almost all their profits are plowed back into R&D. They have enough resources to meet their needs, but have little left over. 

Origin Tribe[]

None; Evolved Tribe. They have received some patronage from both the Wolf’s Path (who see in the Chromite shared network software echoes of their own pack mentality) and the Silvermoons. 

Cyberization[]

99% full conversions of one type or other, including what are effectively HU Experiments with powers like APS Metal or Techno-Form, or powers that be explained by supertechnological means. Any member of the Chromites who isn’t already a cyborg, is waiting to become one, by one means or the other.

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