Death may Die
Arcane drafting software
Arcane Drafting Software
Proper arcane drafting software is a requirement for efficient and effective arcane drafting. Without proper drafting software, the process for arcane drafting involves not only excessive tedium but overexposure to the existential uncertainties of the arcane sciences. The original arcanists of Exedyne produced very simplistic procedures, and often suffered some significant mental, social, and physical health consequences as a result.
It was the work of Macroware, in conjunction with Exedyne, that produced the first major arcane drafting suite, ArCAD. First released in 2036, it simplified the process of ensuring all parts of the system function properly. It doesn’t do the work for you, but it makes the work far more readily doable. However, prior to this people had been knocking back simplifying processes using spreadsheets, visual design aids, and the like.
Since then, other companies have published their own design suites, tailored to specific purposes or just generally designed to be better.
Across most of the world, there’s special licensing requirements for getting arcane drafting software. This isn’t directly represented in Death may Die simply because it’s bookkeeping that doesn’t assist the game, but as something heavily monitored it requires spending a point of Access just to make the attempt to purchase. The prices are very high – purchase difficulties start at 7 and go up.
In most parts of the world, one needs a professional license to legitimately own a copy of an arcane drafting software suite. The United States is one of the slow ones at the bat, and even its laws are relatively lax. Still, across most of the world, owning or using arcane drafting software requires specific professional license moderated by professional associations authorized by the law.
This is to say that hacked copies are rather common, and have a lot of mileage. Legitimate copies require heavy licensing and cost over ten thousand 2077 dollars. Illegitimate copies might not cost anything, though usually there’s a fee paid for the “service.” They also don’t require a license. Obtaining such a copy is a particularly daring Dealing task (1d8+1d6 difficulty).
These are some of the more popular software suites available.
ArCAD 60 )+(
Producer: Macroware, though heavily modified after market
Purchase Difficulty: 6 (quasi-legal – must spend an additional Access to obtain)
‘’60-ummo’’ is a user-modified form of the 2060 version of ArCAD that functioned exceptionally well and with great stability. Unfortunately, between then and now there have been major upgrades both in computers and in arcane science.
However, several independent users have “unofficial mods” that update ArCAD 2060 to modern standards. Called ArCAD 60 )+(, this requires a number of jogs and loops through the Internet and commerce to obtain. Getting a legitimate copy of ArCAD 60 is a questionable concern as it’s no longer officially distributed by Macroware. It may take a Dealing roll (at 2d4 difficulty) just to get a legitimate copy. Then you have to go through and mod it, finding the user mods that compose the )+( package.
The result is a relatively useful and stable system. Unfortunately, it bears one remaining flaw inherent to its algorithms. The system wants to perform Chamberlain-type schemes, and doesn’t want to use anything else (PEAR Labs dynamics are about as far from the standard Chamberlain as one can go). The base design difficulty is d8, but it becomes 2d8 if the procedure doesn’t use a Chamberlain-type Scheme or something that incorporates the Chamberlain-type.
Purchase Difficulty: 9
ArCAD has remained in service, update after update, for over forty years. The current version is oddly “stiff” – it doesn’t react well to user-generated procedural elements, and it may crash if you try to make it work outside its predesigned confines. On the other hand, within those confines it’s actually pretty solid.
The base difficulty for arcane procedural design is d8 using ArCAD 77. However, if the procedure does not use a Scheme, the difficulty is 2d8. This same difficulty applies if using an illegal Scheme or effect, as well as any procedure with Medical Sciences or Weapons of Mass Destruction as a design skill. While it doesn’t monitor or tattle, it’s designed to be an obstacle to the more dangerous procedures.
Producer: Quest Systems
Purchase Difficulty: 10
This bit of software handles some of the most sophisticated procedures imaginable. Its principle purpose is for medical arcanists. Since many biomedical modifications using arcane procedures are unique to the person being affected, this means that medical arcanists spend a considerable amount of their time in design. This, in turn, means they spend a considerable amount of their time in rehabilitation therapy from APF.
Quest Lacing is an attempt to overcome this. It works exceptionally well with any procedure that requires Medical Sciences as a design skill. For those procedures, it generates a difficulty of 2d6. For any other procedure, it generates a difficulty of 1d10+1d6. Although intended for medical purposes, a great many people utilize it to design tulpas.
Producer: Hewitt Industries
Purchase Difficulty: 12
This arcane software suite is rarely the subject matter for an individual arcanist. This design suite handles the multi-layered process of designing a system that will manufacture arcane devices. It really doesn’t cope with much else, but conceivably it could be useful for designing procedures that “enchant” objects. If the GM rules that the procedure counts, then the difficulty is 1d12. Otherwise, the difficulty is 2d6, but the practicality of what it will design is questionable at best unless you’re a multi-million dollar corporation with money to burn.
Producer: Gray Faces
Purchase Difficulty: 6 (very, very illegal; because of the multiple user-mods required to make it function at all, it takes an additional Access Point to purchase)
The Gray Faces are the anocratic successors to the equally-anocratic Anonymous. They’re just as efficient at damaging their own causes, they’re equally immature, and they’re equally skilled at causing the problems they hate the most. Also like Anonymous, they are goal-less, motive-less, and generally only work to one-up the insanity of their fellows. Some Gray Faces maintain the political notion, but many of them abandon politics in favor of pseudo-anarchist ideals.
One of the crowning achievements of the Gray Faces is Arcanoid. This bit of software is a “free” version of the arcane drafting suites publicly available. Indeed, it incorporates code from many of them. It’s widely available and equally useful in its various applications. It’s also buggy, and requires a large amount of additional content to get it to function properly.
This piece of software also has no bars preventing illegal usage, and is the most widely-used software suite by criminal arcanists. It was the existence of Arcanoid that eventually motivated most of the hold-out nations to impose licensing restrictions on arcane design software.
Design of any procedure in Arcanoid faces a 1d10 difficulty. If it requires a Design Skill, then add a 1d6 difficulty. If it requires a Design Skill of three marks or more, then add a 1d10 difficulty rather than a 1d6 difficulty. Additionally, it’s highly probable that if you download this software, you will be exposing your computer to malware.