Mutant Future Horror- Artifact Side Effects

Derek Holland

Considering how old, buggy and decayed many artifacts are in Mutant Future, I would think many of the superscience items would have some rather gruesome side effects. So, for Halloween, I give you these:

Hallucinations tend to be either those that make others in the party appear to be monstrous/mind controlled or lead the artifact weilder to their doom. The latter is the artifact's AI dealing with an unwanted owner. There can also be subtle hallucinations that affect reaction rolls. They change facial expressions and/or body posture in ways that make the weilder seem much more aggressive than they actually are (yes, that means the hallucinations affect others). A GM could also use them to create an entire campaign within the head(s) of PC(s). When they are freed by a drained power cell, the characters find the world is very different from what they experienced.

The artifact may cause an Addiction or Compulsion. This could affect the AI or the wielder.

The weilder may find their bodies Aging but different parts at different speeds.

Pollution include light, sound, smoke, heat, etc. The artifact is on its last legs and it shows. But this pollution isn't like the real thing, it has some superscience twist. Smoke may permanently turn those within it purple and cause their hair to ossify (i.e. turn to bone). Light pollution may cause seizures in plants and others without eyes.

Altered Gravity is usually found in weather control or construction artifacts. 95% of the time, it can not kill or even gravely wound with this side effect. That doesn't mean that the wielder can have a fun time in .15 Gs.

Bad Weather is much more than blizzards, lighting and hurricane winds. It can include weird things like raining (tiny) monsters, hail filled with napalm or rain that transmutes lead into clam shell.

Dimmed Lighting is so common I considered not including it. Still, darkness makes for a difficult time seeing the monsters and dealing with hazards.

Animated Robot Parts (and Powered Firearms) are another hostile AI side effect. Robots made of non-robotic machines may result. A killer washer sounds funny but when it spins a PC to death, the player may not be so happy.

Fusion means the artifact burrows into its weilder, becoming an implant. This may sound cool, but the results may be anything but. An eye implant may put itself on a hand or near the heart. In both cases it is useless and in the second it will cause damage and eventual death unless it is removed. In some cases it makes Drawbacks worse.

Other Strange Implants may form when the wielder first touches the artifact. What they may do is up to the GM, but they usually involve the AI blackmailing the character.

Weakened or Negated Mutations/Strengthened Drawbacks aim straight at the heart of the game. A possibly worse version is a strengthened, out of control mutation.

The side effect could cause shapeshifting, effectively turning the wielder into a werecritter. The character is under the control of the artifact when in the alternate