Controls Puppets

Published January 6, 2014 by

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Where some see a tool, the Puppet Master sees allies. Through some wondrous means you are capable of turning existing numenera into minions with a single touch.

You probably wear thick clothing, maybe a trench coat or a cloak. Anything that looks like you could hide something in it, which you probably are.

Jacks make the best Puppet Masters, although Nanos also benefit from having someone between them and their enemies, and every Glaive appreciates having someone at their back.


GM Intrusion: No one likes the idea of their tools revolting against them. Many people are hesitant to let you within arms reach of them or their things.


Pick one other PC. Any numenera touched by this character can’t be turned into puppets, and any puppets he touches revert to their previous form after 10 minutes.

Additional Equipment:

You begin with one extra cypher.

Minor Effect Suggestions:
The duration of deactivation or control is doubled.
Major Effect Suggestions:
The duration of deactivation or control is extended to 28 hours.
Tier 1:

Puppeteer: You can control puppets. Puppets function in the same way as the Instant Servant cypher. In addition to this puppets are capable of using their inherent ability once, after which they shut down. You can only have one puppet active at a time. Enabler.

Build Puppet (2 intellect): Given 10 minutes for the object to change into its new shape you can turn any oddity (makes level 1 puppet) or cypher into a Puppet. Use common sense when limiting what can be made into a puppet (A pill that enhances your edge can’t be made into a puppet for example.) Action.

Tier 2:

Deactivate the Device (2 Intellect): You can deactivate/paralyze an inorganic being/device within 30 feet (9m). You must speak to it (your muttering just sounds like static to organics) and it must see you. It remains deactivated for one minute or for as long as you focus all your attention on it. The creature/device must be mostly (80%+) inorganic for this to succeed. Action.

Communication (2 Intellect): You can convey a basic concept or command (open door, close door to a door lock, etc.) to a device/inorganic creature. The device/creature can also give you a very basic answer to a simple question. The GM has final say over what you can accomplish with this. Action.

Tier 3:

Marionette: You create a level 3 creature out of spare parts to serve as your mount. While you’re mounted on it, the creature can move and you can attack on your turn, or it can attack foes when you do, etc. You and the GM must work out the details of the Marionette, and you’ll probably make rolls for it in combat or when it takes actions. The mount acts on your turn. If your mount dies, you can make a new one provided you have sufficient supplies and 1d6 hours. The Marionette does not count towards your puppet limit. Enabler.

Tier 4:

Machine Eyes (3 Intellect): You can observe the environment through the “eyes” of your puppet so long as it is within 1 mile (1.6 km) of you. This effect lasts up to ten minutes. Action to establish.

Improved Puppets: Now you can use Build Puppet on Artifacts. So long as they aren’t depleted, Artifact Puppets can be reactivated after they shut down by sacrificing an equal level cypher, or can be returned to their previous form. In addition your Marionette increases in strength to level 4. As a level 4 creature it has a target number of 12, health of 12, and inflicts 4 points of damage. Enabler.

Tier 5:

Puppet Swarm (5 Intellect): You gather any nearby scrap synthetic materials to make a swarm of tiny puppets or a single level 4 puppet to help you temporarily. These creatures do your bidding for as long as you focus your attention, but you must use your action each turn to direct them. If there is no scrap nearby this ability won’t work. Action.

Tier 6:

Control the Device (6 Intellect): You can control a calm device/inorganic creature within 30 feet (9m). You control it for as long as you focus all your attention on it, using your turn each round. Action.

Magnificent Marionette: Your Marionette increases to level 5. As a level 5 creature it has a target number of 15, health of 15, and inflicts 5 points of damage. Enabler.

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