Tech Levels

Each StarCraft race has its own distinctive technological basis, and while it's possible for scientists and extraordinary individuals to employ alien tech, the understanding and operation of unfamiliar tech often presents a problem. GURPS handles this with TL-based traits, such as the High TL advantage and '/TL' skills.

For the purpose of GURPS StarCraft, all TL skills are specific to a particular race's technology; unless otherwise noted, all of a character's TL skills are specialized for his own race's tech. So a Terran's operation and repair skills (Armoury, Computers, Electronics, Gunner/Guns, etc) only work with Terran devices and vehicles; if he knows anything about the operation or repair of Protoss equipment, he must learn those skills (and all of their prerequisites) separately.

In order to learn the TL skills required to use another race's tech, a character must possess certain specific advantages and capabilities, as listed below.

Protoss: Virtually all Protoss technology is controlled by psionic interface — Protoss devices lack mechanical triggers, physical switches or keys, visual or audio output, etc. At the very least, this requires the psionic abilities Detect (Psionic Energy), Mind Reading, and Telesend (or some way to simulate them), to even attempt inputting commands or receiving output. In order for a Terran or Zerg to learn and use Protoss-TL skills (even at default), the character must also have High TL 4 (Terran-to-Protoss) [20]. This gives him the normal defaults (if any) for Protoss-TL skills, and allows him to put points into such skills, provided he meets all other prerequisites. Sufficiently-psionic Zerg can attempt to use Protoss tech at -2 to DX-based skills, or -10 to IQ-based (including defaults) — or at no penalty, with High TL 2 (Zerg-to-Protoss) [10].

Terran: Although the least technologically advanced of the races by many measures, Terran tech is sufficiently complex and robust as to present problems for aliens attempting to operate (or counter/subvert) it. Sending and receiving electromagnetic signals is trivial for both Protoss and Zerg, but dynamic broad-spectrum communication, hardened circuitry, sophisticated redundancy protocols, and quantum encryption all combine to make interacting with Terran systems non-trivial. Even with the necessary hardware interfaces (or reasonable facsimiles), a Protoss or Zerg attempting to use Terran-TL skills is at -2 to DX-based skills, or -10 to IQ-based (on top of normal default penalties, etc); they can buy this off with High TL 2 (Terran) [10].

Zerg: Zerg technology is almost exclusively biological — weapons and armor are part of the organism, or grown/secreted/produced by them as needed; "medicine" is individual Regeneration or Regrowth, albeit greatly accelerated within the Hive Cluster; and so on. However, it -is- based on technologies that both Protoss and Terrans can recognize and learn to control. For non-Zerg, interfacing with Zerg tech without being assimilated into the Hive (a process which 'installs' direct biological interfaces as needed) requires either psionic abilities identical to those required for Protoss-Tech, or an equivalent technological simulation (bio-cybernetic interface, psychotronic computer, etc). Normally, Terrans must buy High TL 4 (Terran-to-Zerg) [20] in order to learn Zerg-TL skills, or even attempt default use. A Protoss (or a Terran with High TL 4 (Terran-to-Protoss)) may attempt Zerg-TL skills at -2 to DX-based, or -10 to IQ-based, and may buy High TL 2 (Protoss-to-Zerg) [10] to eliminate these penalties. (A human with High TL 4 (Terran-to-Protoss) may buy High TL (Terran-to-Zerg) for only 10 additional points.)

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