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Roleplay / Einsteinian Roulette

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"Welcome aboard, we're gonna need some more bodies. And by that I mean men. And by that I mean bodies."
piecewise, the GM.

Einsteinian Roulette is a Roll To Dodge game on the Bay 12 Forum that centers around the short lives and violent deaths of a group of inmates in the Hazardous Materials Requisition Corps or H.M.R.C. These inmates wake from stasis aboard the battleship "Paracelsus' Sword" and are immediately tasked by the omnipresent on-board computer Steve to complete ten incredibly dangerous missions to win their unconditional freedom. The missions usually take the form of retrieving various artifacts, investigating peculiar phenomena, or otherwise performing actions where traumatic amputation would be considered a favorable outcome.


The game can be found here, along with the on-ship thread. It has a wiki here.

The game as a whole contains examples of

  • The Ace: The Armory Master. She is just better than you. At anything.
  • Aerith and Bob: Characters named Ivan, Jim and Thomas coexist with Thrak, Feyri, and Mesk. Justified because they all come from different systems.
  • A God Am I: Bishop's way of acting during the third mission before the mess he was stuck into finally hit home.
  • Almighty Janitor: The Armory Master. A woman who, over the course of the game, is revealed to have survived 27 missions without injury and is capable of literally shrugging off nuclear weapons, spends her time sitting in the armory kiosk reading magazines and occasionally causing grievous bodily harm to those who annoy her.
  • Ambiguous Robots: Synth-flesh in all forms, from artificial limbs to enormous mechs.
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  • Animal Motifs: Milno has the honey badger as his personal symbol and sigil.
  • Anyone Can Die: The disasters caused both by the environment, the enemies and the characters themselves along with the random nature of the results make this stay true.
  • Anything That Moves: Elizas was described as "omnisexual", and his player himself stated that Elizas has every sentient being as his One True Pairing. Luckily he never got any during the game itself.
  • Arc Words: "The flesh is weak." Phrase encountered a lot in universe and later taken up by the players as well.
  • Armor Is Useless: Completely averted. Armour often means the difference between life and death.
  • Arson, Murder, and Jaywalking: The whole roster of player characters and their reasons for service.
  • Artificial Limbs: Very common acquisition after a mission that involves a lost limb, some players even volunteer to get them without losing a limb first.
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  • Bash Brothers: Milno and Jim.
  • Beauty Is Never Tarnished: Averted. Losing limbs nets the characters prosthesis made of chrome-shiny metal, and serious injuries grant them scars, whether they are male or female.
  • Berserk Button: Faith has a literal one of these, after the second mission.
  • Bestiality Is Depraved: Elizas, among the many crimes that landed him in the HMRC, got it on with a tiger.
  • Betting Mini Game: There is an NPC upon the ship who sells boxes containing experimental tech. You can't look in the box, but you can buy it anyway.
  • BFG: Many of the weapons qualify. The Fission Instigator creates a miniature sun at its target location and is so heavy that most people can only handle it with the assistance of Powered Armor.
  • Black Box: How the amps and manipulators work is completely unknown. Manipulators make the users solve math problems to work, but it is completely unknown how the math relates to the situation, and there don't seem to be any patterns behind it.
  • Black Comedy: The game runs on this, with special mention to the uncaring attitude displayed towards human life and well-being.
  • Blade Brake: Dubley used his pickaxe for this when falling into an icy pit. Surprisingly, it worked perfectly.
  • Body Horror: Examples abound, from The Altered, a faction of humans that have been genetically modified so rampantly as to completely lose their humanity and often end up merged together into gibbering, oozing, gurgling organic war machines, to Ivan's slow mutation into a mindless, chittering beast.
  • Boring, but Practical: Before the fourth mission, Milno gets some metal poles from destroyed furniture in the mess hall and uses them to check for traps during the mission while advancing cautiously, which actually works.
  • Brain Uploading: The technology exists, just not for the expendable prisoner soldiers that the story focuses on. A brain uploaded roboticist was met on mission 7.
  • Breaking the Fourth Wall: May - a creepy genderless albino who looks vaguely female - seems fond of performing these. Sometimes lampshaded by other characters as her being insane, which is not too far off the mark.
  • Bulletproof Human Shield: One of the reasons given by one of the inmates for lugging around a teammate who had lost half his body during a mission.
  • Butt-Monkey: Jim. A clone who was obsolete almost as soon as he was made and so was given to the HMRC with the others of his kind. In the first mission he was the first to die when he lost his lower body, and his remains were shot in the heart by Ivan as well as used as a skateboard by Feyri. In the third mission he was the first infected by an alien life form that caused him to see walking corpses and attempt to kill teammates. He also got shut down, reactivated, and lost his right arm and head during the rest of the mission.
  • Casanova Wannabe: Renen, the resident pervert. He claims to have a personality disorder, and whenever his "normal" conscience is in control, he is portrayed as this.
  • Cerebus Syndrome: Around the time of the Invasion of Hephaestus, things got a lot darker...
  • Character Development: A small amount of time in the HMRC tends to forge the inmates into more decided, hardier individuals. Or not.
  • Chekhov's News: The news playing on the rec room tv almost always foreshadows the next mission.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: May has shown some traces of this.
  • Combat Tentacles: Nekarios gets a pair of those after volunteering for experiments with Doc. They are quickly replaced by normal arms after he is very vocal about how he does not like the outcome.
  • Cool Shades: Feyri summons a pair of those during a virtual reality tinkering session.
  • Crapsack Universe: Spread across space colonies, the majority of mankind is under the opressive rule of a dictatorial government and under the constant threat of various alien races aside from their rulers' disregard for human life.
  • Cyborg: Convicts that are too injured to continue become this as they are often have parts - occasionally their whole body, replaced with various robotic appendages and transplants.
  • Dug Too Deep: The mining colony from the 8th mission dug too deep, and unleashed a (possibly sentient) deadly alien plague.
  • Dungeon Bypass: Happens due to an accident during the fourth mission, making the inmates' task considerably easier.
    • Cutting the Knot: The Dungeon Bypass was caused by Nekarios' Oh, Crap! accidental star, which started out as an attempt to use a Microwave Field manipulator to incinerate a large group of rebel forces.
  • Dying Moment of Awesome:Denzel using the result of his manipulator overshoot(that was turning him into a human inferno) to go mano-a-mano with STAN-9, keeping him in place long enough for the Orbital Bombardment to arrive.
  • Earn Your Title: Various characters in the Sword have nicknames or titles, most of them obtained due to terrible performances during missions. Some examples:
    • Faith is Worst Medic.
    • Ivan is Teamkiller, and his gauss rifle is named after his title.
    • Mesk is Kickboxing Doctor, and not in a good way.
    • Feyri is often referred as the Powersliding Mercenary.
  • Earth-Shattering Kaboom: In Mission 3, where Steve fired on the moon that housed the research lab the team was investigating with the main cannons of the Paracelsus' Sword. This in reaction to Bishop's news of a sentient audio file that came from an area of space that does not obey the laws of physics.
  • Eldritch Abomination: Possible Grate after eating the manipulator-battery pill.
  • Epic Fail: Rolling a "1" can, and has, resulted in everything from a medic trying to fix a dislocated shoulder via kicking the patient repeatedly to an attempted handshake devolving into one of the inmates laying on the floor sandwiched between two women (and a series of bad rolls from the people involved in the sandwich wound up with the man without his pants).
  • Evil Weapon: Ivan's Teamkiller gauss rifle, later used by Jack Hansan. It lives up to it's name.
  • Explosive Leash: Each inmate has a shock module implanted on their brain stem and spinal cord, allowing Steve to electrocute them to death at any time. More often used as a method of invoking painful spasms then anything else, unless forced.
  • Extreme Omnisexual: Elizas wrestled Jim (who by that point had a fully cybernetic body) for the sake of groping him, going as far as licking his faceplate and trying to reach suspicious areas with his hands. Even though Jim had nothing there but metal.
  • Failed a Spot Check: The use of dice to determine the results of various actions means this is bound to happen and cause serious problems for the characters.
  • Fantastic Nuke: The amps and manipulators can be overloaded, causing massive destruction ranging from a miniature sun, a spreading patch of absolute zero, or a wall of hostile mutated flesh. The main disadvantage is that they can't be detonated from a distance. Nukes are still commonly used, seen as a safer more controllable option.
  • Fantasy Pantheon: The HMRC pantheon, worshipped by Brother Lars.
  • Fire-Breathing Weapon: Generally ineffective because everyone wears fireproof suits. Until someone built a flamethrower using a mixture of napalm and thermite.
  • Gargle Blaster: At least 3, Astro, Xeno Spit, and Maldavian Mind Rot. The last is so powerful that a single drop can put someone in a coma.
  • Gas Mask, Longcoat: Jim was one of these before the accident on the first mission.
  • Giant Wall of Watery Doom: What spilled forth from China-9's gigantic dam after it was destroyed, killing thousands of unfortunate souls who lived miles away.
  • Glass Cannon: The converted Blackship interstellar dragster called Black Death has had all of its superfluous components removed, and fitted with the biggest plasma cannon the frame could support. During the UWM counterattack on the liberated Hephaestus, the little ship took several shots at, and finally rammed itself into a UWM battleship, taking it out of the fight all by itself. Thankfully, it was remotely piloted at the time.
  • Guns Akimbo: Implies in penalties to accuracy even to Powered Armor wearing characters due to the difficulty in aiming properly with two guns.
  • Healing Factor: Mesk, Ivan, Bishop, Xan, and Bruce all have this with varying amounts and side effects.
  • Helping Hands: The Mad Doctor Mesk chopped off his own hand, stuffed it full of electronics, and now he keeps it as a pet. It's name is Emmanuel.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: Great Wyrm Gold commented on Xan's plan to "become a living Organo-tissue dominator psychokinetic amp."
...You're turning into space-magic. Who wants to take bets on hos long it takes for him to accidentally himself and/or everyone around him?
  • Shortly thereafter, Grate made a pill containing the essence of a manipulator battery, turned into space magic, and began to cause great damage to everything around him.
  • Doubly Hilarious when Xan accidentally absorbs Stacy's brain and turns into a raging abomination called STAN, making GWG seem oddly prophetic
  • The Horde: A type of alien which uses reproduction mechanisms similar to fungi and is capable of swarming a planet with an enormous army before consuming its resources and turning it into a biological spaceship qualifies.
  • Human Shield: The Sods in mission 11 strapped innocent civilians to their shields, for purely psychological reasons. It didn't work on the heroes.
  • Improvised Armor: One character made a suit of armour out of locker doors. It didn't help much.
  • Infant Immortality: Played with. Grate remains fairly unscathed through his first mission, and through most of his second before getting crushed by a manipulator overshot, then brought back to life with quantum...something. He was immediately shot dead due to confusion, but remained alive. Right after recovering from that, he made and ingested a pill made from a manipulator battery, which caused chaos and destruction, and led to the Armory Master stepping in and killing him again. After recovering from that, Grate tries to help fix the damage he caused, ending up chopped into paste by some machinery. He then stays around on Hephaestus, where the first experiment he runs electrocutes him to death. Kid can't catch a break.
  • It's the Only Way to Be Sure: Steve using the Sword to nuke the missions sites of both Mission 3 and Mission 15, so that nothing that was a threat to the populace escapes alive.
  • I Was Beaten by a Girl: The little girl, the first opponent in punch many things is notorious for beating grown men more often than not.
  • Kleptomaniac Heroes: Happens in the fifth mission, with the carefree looting of innocent people's houses by some HMRC members.
  • Late to the Tragedy: In the eighth mission, the team has to rescue the few survivors of a mining colony about six months after everything went to hell.
  • Let's Split Up, Gang: Instead of using teamwork on mission 2, everyone decided to wander off on their own and get killed. This is the main reason a second team needed to be sent in.
  • Lightning Bruiser: Erik. Faith in her berserk mode, to a lesser extent.
  • Lightning Gun: The gungnir electrolaser; which uses a laser rifle to direct a stream of electricity along its beam.
  • Linear Warriors, Quadratic Wizards: At lower levels, guns are much more reliable than amps and manipulators. At higher levels, a gun is still just a gun, while a manipulator allows one to break the laws of physics.
  • Loads and Loads of Characters
  • (Un) Lovable Sex Maniac : Elizas spent nearly every free minute going after one lady or another, a trend that eventually led to his demise. Renen, his replacement, also counts.
  • Mad Doctor: The Doctor. He's a little too enthusiastic when anyone mentions science and experimentation pertaining to the human body, and will routinely go beyond what you ask him to do to your character if you go in as a volunteer.
  • Mechanical Evolution: Mission 7 takes place in a giant arena, with 3 teams of robots fighting each other. The robots are attempting to have natural selection, to create the best robot for each purpose.
  • The Men in Black: Men in Black Hazmat suits tend to show up and abduct characters who have had internal proximity contact with xenobiological lifeforms.
  • Mind Rape: This tends to happen a lot whenever aliens are present.
  • Mini-Mecha: The battle suit is more like a mech than power armour, with the pilot entirely within the main body.
  • Mission Briefing: Happens before each mission.
  • Mission Control: Steve. He is always eager to point out how stupid and disposable the inmates are.
  • Molotov Cocktail: Used effectively against a Xanling.
  • More Dakka: The usual solution employed by tinkerers for the perceived lack of power of the lower-end guns.
  • Multi-Armed and Dangerous: Erik the Fanatical Cyborg in the Second Mission.
    • Jim eventually gets a synthflesh body exactly like Erik's. It even has Erik's original arms.
  • Myopic Architecture:
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero!: Mission 15. Xan decides to help out Stacy, the only guy he actually liked(who had managed to bust up his robot body falling down the hole the team had been excavating) by growing him a new body. This goes goes horribly wrong when Xan accidentally ABSORBS Stacy's brain instead do to a massive overshoot, which leads to a massive, 15 ft. tall utter abomination of nature nicknamed Stan. This is due to Stacy's previous contact with the Star-Eater that he was forced to forget on pain of death. The end result is Steve currently nuking the dig site from orbit.
  • Offscreen Moment of Awesome: Due to the spaceships having no real windows, most of the epic space battle at Hephaestus was described primarily as dry reports of weapons firing and systems going offline, with the crews on board and people on the ground receiving only second-hand information from Steve. Even the destruction of Warship Gamma, with three of the four ARM members on board dying (including May, one of the veterans), went largely undescribed due to almost everyone who could witness the destruction being instantly vaporized.
  • Oh, Crap!: During Mission 4, Nekarios accidentally created a miniature star in his hand while standing on the vertical face of a hydroelectric dam, which then proceeded to destroy the dam, after atomizing the unfortunate Nekarios, who fell into it while running back up the dam.
    • When Grate ate the manipulator-battery pill.
    • When Xan accidentally absorbed Stacy's brain and became an out of control abomination named Stan.
  • Only a Flesh Wound: The common reaction to any sort of injury.
  • Only Sane Man: Bishop's behavior during the third mission while everyone lost it and offered little help: be one of the only people to remember the moon they are in is about to explode and try to fulfill the objectives in the process of freaking out, alone if need be.
  • Outrun the Fireball: Happens in the fifth mission.
    • Also happens in the fourth mission, except with a miniature sun.
  • Post-Victory Collapse: At the end of the eighth mission, It is revealed that Milno is so weak that he can't even walk. He relied purely on his jetpack and power armour for movement.
  • Power Limiter: Because an excessively high roll can be just as bad as a low roll, decompensators were added that can bring any roll above 5 to 5.
  • Powered Armor: The Mark III and Battlesuit qualify, since they have both armor and an energy-powered exoskeleton.
  • Prison Ship IN SPACE!: The Paracelsus Sword. It's the setting of the game.
  • Ragtag Bunch of Misfits: The inmates vary from intellectuals who were trying to destroy the UWM's dictatorship and violent mercenaries to farmers, bakers and construction workers on the other end of the spectrum.
  • Random Number God: Determines the outcome of almost every action and event for both characters and enemies.
    • Lampshaded during the fourth mission, in which a good intelligence roll reveals to one of the characters that a wounded inmate did not, in fact, have brain worms, and that the whole affair was instead caused by some kind of confusion that happens to her "roughly 1/6th of the time" she uses her brain. The die used is a six-sided one.
  • Removing the Head or Destroying the Brain: The only way to kill a HMRC. As long as the brain is intact, the person can be revived.
  • Robosexual: One of the female characters is (supposedly) attracted to an inmate who had his brain thrown into a robot body.
  • Rocket Jump /Recoil Boost: Attempted by Ivan with a gauss rifle. It ended with a broken leg and a bullet through Jim's chest.
  • Scary Shiny Glasses: The Doctor wears them, and combined with his respirator and... experiment-loving personality, they make him seem quite inhuman.
  • Serial-Killer Killer: The HMRC was supposed to be this in mission 5. Instead they went around killing civilians and letting the killer go.
  • Sharpened to a Single Atom: Monoatomic razors.
  • Shoo Out the Clowns: May, one of the few veterans who remained as wacky as in the beginning, died all of a sudden when the ship she was helping control was struck by a large projectile.
  • Snarky Inanimate Object: Steve. As much as he is inanimate.
  • Spider Limbs: Nekarios after visiting the Doctor for voluntary cybernetic limbs, quickly swapped out after he designed his own.
  • Spider Tank: Auron built a six legged one out of scrap parts. Jack was stuck piloting it.
  • Super Strength: Faith's berserk mode grants her super strength but her bones and muscles are still torn and broken by the force exerted upon them.
  • Tap on the Head: If anyone's late for a mission, Nyars will knock them out with a baseball bat then drag them to the pods.
  • Team Killer: Ivan, the mercenary slowly mutating into a mindless monster, wields the dreaded "Teamkiller" gauss rifle. In addition, there's Nekarios, or Nick for short. He (albeit accidentally) killed two teammates plus himself and crippled more in an accident with his "Mass Murder" Microwave Field Manipulator.
  • There Was a Door: Ivan the Teamkiller was having trouble breaking through a simple wooden door, despite having a massive bladed claw hand. He went through the wall instead.
  • Too Dumb to Live: A good number of the HMRC members live by this trope. And die/get maimed accordingly.
  • Transhuman: The large variety of cybernetics, genetic tweaks, and other... "Enhancements" (By special order of the Doctor) available... for a small sum of Tokens. It is also the name of one of the starting professions.
  • Unwanted Assistance: Exceedingly common in-universe when it comes to medics. Mesk gained the nickname "The Kickboxing doctor" after trying to cure a drug overdose by kicking a teammate's ribcage in and Faith tried to fix a dislocated shoulder by simply yanking the other arm out of it's socket so they're even.
  • Vibroweapon: Monoatomic vibroweapons, no less.
  • Wave-Motion Gun: The high energy projector is a weapon, reverse engineered from alien technologies. It shoots a massive beam of pure energy.
  • Weaponized Headgear: One character goes on a mission bringing only a tophat with a bladed brim.
  • Weapons Kitchen Sink: Laser rifles, bolt action rifles, swords, and nukes have all been used.
  • We Can Rebuild Him: So long as your brain makes it back to the ship, you will be dumped into a robot body and continue to serve.
  • We Do the Impossible: Anyone who survives multiple missions and lives.
    • The Armory Master is the best example, with over 27 completed missions and (seemingly) not a scratch on her.
  • We Have Reserves: The H.M.R.C antics are mostly based on that.
  • Wetware CPU: Steve. The omnipresent computer that acts as a combination warden and drillmaster, is made of the brains of former inmates.
  • Wrestler in All of Us: The cast has been known to wrestle occasionally. At the end of the second mission, Jim and Elizas get into a wrestling match - although it's fair to say that while Jim is just sparring, Elizas is actively trying to grope his non-existent naughty robot bits. For another example, May and Lukas spar by using a variety of wrestling moves upon each other.
  • You Can Panic Now: Steve's introductory speech to the HMRC convicts of the first mission ends with a "You may start screaming now".
  • Zeroth Law Rebellion: Steve is an AI with the objective of keeping humanity alive. He chose to do this by violently overthrowing the current government and placing himself in charge.

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