Eclipse Phase: The Brown Jenkin

Feb 11, 2010

Biomorph: Brown Jenkin
Concept: Horde of malevolent ferrets with distributed intelligence. Optimized for havoc, mass extermination, and piecewise theft.

Aptitude Maxima: 20
Durability: 20
Wound Threshold: 4
  • Limber (level 2)
  • COO +5
  • SOM +5
  • Climbing +5
  • Fray +5
  • Freerunning +10
  • Infiltration +5
  • Palming +5
  • Tactical Network software (designed to coordinate swarms of semi-autonomous units)
  • Small, nimble targets (-20 to hit)
  • Low Pain Threshold (small mammal)
  • Neural Damage (dysfunction) (hyperactivity)
  • Basic Biomods
  • Basic Mesh Inserts
  • Cortical Stack
  • Cyberbrain (puppet sock)
  • Cyberclaws
  • Enhanced Senses
    • Direction Sense
    • Electrical Sense
    • Enhanced Hearing
    • Enhanced Smell
  • Grip Pads
  • Multitasking
  • Poison Gland (BTX)
  • Prehensile Feet
  • Skin Pocket
  • Skinlink
  • Swarm Composition (ferret-sized modules)
Swarm size: between 20 and 30 units

CP cost: 95 CP (Expensive (71,000), rare)

The Brown Jenkin bio-swarm was designed by a morph engineer and gene hacker on the payroll of a criminal cartel which traces its roots back to Eastern European crime syndicates of pre-Fall Earth. The engineer, known only by the handle CHON (found in comments left in the DNA and cyberbrain firmware) seems to have a wicked sense of humor and a love of small rodents. It is thought that he or she was a Fall evacuee given the fact that the Brown Jenkin was based up on ferret DNA and not an AI-assisted lazurogenesis of the species. While each unit in the swarm isn't large enough to host a full cyberbrain, the neuroelectronics of this morph were designed to distribute a single ego across the entire pack in much the same manner as a swarmanoid. Each Brown Jenkin is capable of a limited degree of volition but collectively they execute an implementation of the ego sleeving it. The purpose of a swarm is to wreak maximum havoc in minimum time, and CHON has succeeded admirably at this. The custom designed cyberbrains of a particular swarm are constantly connected to one another with a hybrid cognitive multitasking/tactical network which allows the mind to control the activities of the pack while sacrificing some of the functionality of a standard cyberbrain (there was no room inside the skull for mnemonic augmentation or access jacks). Also, the morph's genome still evidences the hyperactive curiosity of the original species (further evidence that actual DNA samples were used), which makes them difficult to control at best. Consequently, Brown Jenkin packs are not seen often.

They are capable of running on vertical and inverted surfaces with no difficulty and possess prehensile paws suitable for dismantling equipment, operating airwalled computers, and even performing delicate tasks. Their sensory systems are augmented well beyond those of un-uplifted mammals, which leads to stories of their being able to evade attacks and pursuit with astounding ease. If need be they can shred their way through most any material short of nanoreinforced smart barriers or synthetic diamond composite and interface with electronics with only a touch. They are also equipped with subdermal pockets capable of carrying objects approximately the size of two hot dogs and a venomous bite (useful for neutralizing enemy biomorphs should it be necessary).

Due to the fact that the Brown Jenkin uses a novel generalization of Shamir's secret sharing algorithm, a given swarm can handle the loss of up to one third of its component units before its processing efficiency begins to suffer. Loss of more units than that result in the controlling ego degrading to the point where it can no longer function in an effective manner.

Just like the game itself, this article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike v3.0 (United States) license.