Dave's Muscle Concept

Yae Kvyr - nickname "Monster"

Playbook: Muscle. A xeno who loves to fight, and enjoys finding opportunities to do so. Undisciplined but loyal.

Appearance: 2.2m (7’2"), heavily but sleekly muscled. Skin-tone is gray-green (in part through a symbiotic relationship with fungus from his home world). Face is dominated by tapered/pointed ears, a set of dark ram’s horns, black eye pits, and many very pointy teeth. Usually wears a heavy black duster and a black slouch hat (he considers this being subtle); he always wears some sort of head covering, and by preference avoids the sun. His splay-toed, slightly dog-legged feet are usually bare.

Personality: A happy, if savage, warrior who would be happy to challenge you to a brawl, and then either buy you a drink after, help you to the med center, or pay the bartender to see that your remains are disposed with due respect. Despite his low-tech upbringing, he’s quite bright and quick to adapt to new worlds and concepts.

The words his crew mates dread hearing: “Ugh. Need to work out some kinks. Who’s up for some sparring?”

When it comes to “Being Strange” – well, he’s a 2m+ tall unique Xeno who laughs and punches a lot. He embodies strange, even if he doesn’t seem real taken with Way-based strangeness.

Do you have a personal code that you follow?
“If it can fight, fight it. If it can’t fight, protect it until it can.” That is the Way of the Free People.

Times you won’t apply violence no matter the cost?
Like the code says – violence against those who cannot defend themselves, with no point – that is not good. Just mean, dishonorable, a sign of being selfish and weak. Maybe, the foe crippled who will never fight again, then it may be a mercy to kill them. Or the defeated foe who will fight again and and do some evil against one’s family out of their own sickness, then it is for safety, and we drink to them. But, no, to be violent to those who cannot fight? It’s not good.

What caused you to throw your lot in with the crew and not seek employment as a soldier?
Being a soldier? In Hegemony? Bah. Too much standing attention. Too much obeying orders. Why, they even shoot people who hit their commander! For truth! My friends are much easier to get along with.

Heritage: Xeno (see below)

Background: Syndicate - spent several years as a mid-level leg-breaker, with some reputation for his ability, but never rising above that because of impulse control and not snapping to attention before authority.


  • Friend: Aya, an assassin. Another old colleague and fellow Xeno who went indie in the Procyon sector.
  • Rival: Chon-zek, a bounty hunter. The Syndicate has a long memory. So do former colleagues who don’t like to (repeatedly) lose fights.

Vice: Pleasure - Yae loves food. Coming from a world of mushrooms and primitive insect analogs, he remains enthralled with the variety of flavors and flavor combinations in the galaxy. He is not a gourmet, however: he would get as much pleasure (and has) pouring pickled okra, ghost peppers, and root beer into a bowl and slurping it cold as with the finest restaurant dinner on the Hegemony Throneworld. (This occasionally causes vehement protest from waitstaff or chefs; he’s happy to engage them in vigorous debate on the subject). He is constantly looking for something new and different, whenever possible.

The words his comrades also always fear: "Ah! This is new and different! You must taste!"


  • Abilities: Unstoppable [starting], Wrecking Crew [special]
  • Action Dots:
    Scrap 2 [playbook 2]
    Command 2 [playbook 1 + background 1]
    Scramble 1 [heritage 1]
    Attune 1 [extra 1]
    Skulk 1 [extra 1]

[Pretty much the “Gladiator” recommended build, plus 4 pips.]

PC Relations:
In general, Yae is likely to get along with anyone on the crew who gets along with him, though there’s probably an invitation to be a sparring partner somewhere along the way, and he’s best friends with crew folk those who take that invite. (Nor, in the event, does he mind losing – it’s just a challenge for next time). He considers the crew to be clan, and so worth protecting from others.

  • He doesn’t have a lot of respect for bankers and paper pushers and money men (from his Syndic experience), but he does like money, so he’ll get along with our former Counter exec just fine.
  • He appreciates the sort of competition that racing entails as a distant cousin of his own nature, so he can respect our Pilot figure just fine.
  • He has an unusual wariness about Way artifacts and Ur remnants and the like, so really doesn’t understand our Scoundrel Archaeologist’s passion about it.


Yae is a Folian from Vil, a planet in the Spica Sector. Vil’s ecosystem is largely fungus-based – vast forests of fungal growths, reaching hundreds of feet into the skies, cover its land masses.

The Folians are a relatively primitive race, Bronze Age in tech level. While there are strong indications that they are not native to Vil (biological inconsistencies with the Villian ecology and genetic pool, low population numbers concentrated in a specific region, as well as Folian legends [see below]), there is no sign of a higher, space-faring tech base remaining.

The Folian culture is, as noted, low tech, and focused on small tribal groups not much larger than a few families, with a strong cultural pattern of inter-tribal and inter-individual conflict, both ceremonial and chaotic (the line between the two being difficult even for the very few Hegemony xenologists to study the Folians to discern). While battles (of either kind) can be fierce, they are usually followed by joint celebrations with all parties, where the living and dead are both celebrated, and, if a family or tribe has reduced in size beyond viability, adoptions and mergers are agreed upon.

Vil came to the attention of the Guilds approximately fifty years ago, certain of the fungi there having strong pharmaceutical possibilities (both as legal medication and illicit drugs). Guild pharma-mining crews moved in to exploit the resources wholesale, and ran into the Folians. Faced with an intractable, high tech enemy bent on destroying their tribal zones, the Folians did what came naturally: fought.

It did not go well.

While the Folians were more than a match for any given Guild merc (or even several at the same time), valor and fury do not render one immune to blasters, especially when Folian tactics tended toward uncoordinated wave attacks and poorly-maintained ambushes. The Folians were, within a few years, largely wiped out. It’s possible that there are some still deeper in the fungal woods, biding their time, but it’s altogether likely, given their already limited numbers, that they are too small of a genetic pool to be viable as a race.

Yae was a rare case (singular, to his knowledge): an adolescent, he was rendered unconscious during an assault on a Guild spaceport, and the leader of the merc team that was hired to protect it decided to up her take by selling him to some Syndicate contacts as "a strong guy you might make some money off of". By the time Yae came to (the buyers were warned to keep him tranqed until someplace secure), he was off-planet. He has never returned.

The advantage of an undisciplined culture is that, for the individual, forced adaptation to new things is relatively easy, and Yae took to his new life well, demonstrating in short order his suitability to directed acts of violence. While not always good at following orders, he became a mid-level leg-breaker in a short period of time, all the while learning about the galaxy, adapting quickly to technology … and pursuing his long-range plan, steadily taking assignments that would bring him closer to where he wanted to be.

Folian myth has it that they came to (what would become) Hegemonic space thousands of years ago, and did so through what Yae’s research indicates was the Hama (?) gate, the Ur stargate that has remained, stubbornly, unopened. Why they came here, why they settled so far from the Procyon sector (and on a world largely lacking in Ur ruins or artifacts), how they lost their technology, and why the gate is closed … well, the myths don’t go into that.*

Yae’s plan, then, is straightforward (just as he is): hang out in the Procyon sector until someone figures out how to open the gate, then go through it himself, find the progenitors of his people, and then see what happens.

A year or two ago, he left Syndicate employ in a fashion more informally and more alive than most ex-Syndies achieve. He used forged ID and his nest egg to travel to the Procyon sector. He took some odd jobs there as a muscle, eventually [insert TBD fun story here] becoming a member of the crew. He dropped his Syndicate alias (“Twigs” – as in, “liking to break bones like”) when he left that employer, using instead what his first hire called him: “Well, ain’t you an intimidating Monster?”

*Player speculation: They were running, and didn’t stop until they were well away from whatever they were running from and/or couldn’t go any further. Which, given the Folians, is a bit disturbing.


I like him. Sounds like he’ll be a blast as part of the crew. From the description and your love of Phil Foglio’s artwork though, it’s hard not to imagine him as a Jager from Girl Genius. But that might have been what you were going for too.

Well, Yae Kvyr (“Monster”) is, in fact, a Vil Folian.

I knew there was a reference in there, I just couldn’t find it. Now I feel dense. :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:

Well, you spotted the connection faster than I’d expected, so I think you’re doing fine.

To be sure, this is not a joke character… I was inspired by the Jaegers as a different sort of Muscle, but did make an effort to craft an interesting and usable backstory. :japanese_ogre:

I like it.

I’ll pick a different first name for my character (Yae - Yao can probably lead to confusion).

I’m curious if they encountered each other in their respective Syndicate days.

Oops! My apologies… I didn’t even think to check out other names. Sorry about that.

While it’s a big galaxy, it’s altogether possible they ran into each other in the past. We can certainly play on that in the context of how they ended up on the same crew, too.

I was logging in to request that somebody changed their first name to take it easy on the name handicapped GM. I will also note that I love the idea of you guys knowing each other beforehand.

In fact, if you guys are in some way shape or form actually kind of close, being yae and yao would actually be sort of cool… Hmm.

Mmm, the “how they met” flashback. I love those scenes.

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Okay, that clip gives me an inspiration (when time permits) (though it should wait for a moment that will help in some case, no?)

Updated Abilities/Actions, and Friends/Enemies.

I can’t help but imagine this scenario when thinking about a bounty hunter rival and someone like Monster.

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Typically the flashbacks are used to explain how you prepared ahead of time for the thing that just happened during the job, so it’s usually a more nearby flashback, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use a flashback to instead explaining how you’re prepared for this eventuality due to something to happen far in your past.

I’m going to start fleshing out a bit my Cast of NPC Characters (“Deadly Friends”), comment-by-comment (to allow for some linking from the Master Character List).

Shod, a weapons dealer.

“Monster! Always good to see you walk in my door. Buying or selling today?”

“Friend Shod! Selling, yes?” Monster puts down the large crate on the floor with a rattling thud.

“Funny, ever since I known you, back in the gang, you always seem to have a lotta weapons to sell.”

Yae smiles, teeth gleaming. “You know how things turn out. Lots of former owners not having use for them any more. Or maybe not until out of rehab. Waste not, want not, yes?”

Shod is an older, bald human, a former Syndicate muscle and weapons expert who bought out his Syndic membership by becoming a weapons dealer. Shod has a relatively legitimate (or at least bribe-protected) weapons shop, both new, used, and pawned. He also does some more large quantity deals for trusted customers, both buying and selling.

(Shadowrun art, source unknown)

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Chon-zek, a bounty hunter.

“Dammit, Yae,” he screams. “I’m trying to kill you! Stop enjoying this!”

The xeno’s grimace turns upward slightly into a broad grin. “No!”

Chon-zek stomps his foot. “See!? This is exactly why I’m trying to kill you!”

Chon-zek is a human bounty hunter, from a family with long Syndicate ties. Slight of build, highly professional in demeanor (aside from his Ahab-like obsession with Yae), dressed well and well-equipped with weapons and defenses. His pride is usually his weakness.


(For more Chon-zek, see here.)

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Yazu, a crooked cop

“Friend Yazu!”

She looks up from her table in the café. “Crap. You I need in my port like a third arm.”

“Might help you fight better.”

“I fight just fine.” She raises an eyebrow. “There’s still a warrant on you since that brawl at Kilamahali.”

“Simple misunderstanding about seasoning experiment. Cook was very narrow-minded.”

“You folded him in half, Monster. The wrong way.”

“He did have knife.”

“I should take you in.”

“Or … could take this,” he says, grinning, tossing the credit stick to her.

She catches it deftly, gives it a glance. “Or, yes.”

“Double or nothing for one throw?”

“I know you, xeno. You’re not talking about dice. Either way, the answer’s no. I like my money, and my spine.”

Monster sighs. “Ah, well. Must find other entertainment, then.”

She takes a drink of short beer, then cocks an eyebrow. “There is a drug gang hanging these days at the Happy Barrel.”

He shrugs. “Eaten there. Not impressed. And don’t use drugs. Kills taste buds.”

“I’d consider it a favor if the gang members got, um, folded up, too.”

That perks him up. “Weeellllll, for old friend …”

“Just … don’t mention my name while you’re doing it.”

“Am model of strong, silent type. Maybe you return favor …?”

Yazu snorts. “Fine. I’ll get the warrant killed. You were never here. See? No trail of destruction.” At Monster’s grin, she snorts again. “No trail of destruction yet. Give ‘em a kick for me.”

Then she goes back to her beer.

Yazu is a female police detective, casually crooked but not a bad person for all that. She’s interested in keeping the peace (fewer headaches that way), but not above supplementing her income along the way.

“Kiriban - Valeria” by Yip Lee @DeviantArt

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Aya, an assassin.

A few years ago …

“Heard a rumor today. Seems there’s talk we’re lovers.”

“Love spending time with you, Aya, so yes, of course. Xenos, in humanspace Syndicate … of course are stick together, but enjoying it.”

“I think they were talking about other sorts of ‘sticking together’.”

“What, like breeding lovers?” Twigs cocks his head. “Do not think that is biologically possible with you.”

“Humans always seem to ignore inconvenient facts like that. They see two non-humans who enjoy one another’s company, and their minds go all kinky porno.”

“Have seen what they do for breeding? Seems very … unsanitary.”

“And all of it for only a handful of offspring at a time. Wasteful.”

Yae raises an eyebrow. “Anyway. am glad not every race as obsessed with breeding exercises as humans.”

“Oh, agreed, agreed.”

They sit in frustrated silence for a while.

At length, Aya reaches over, lifts a rocket, and slides it across the matrixboard. “Threat. Win in four moves.”

Yae grins. “Ha! Now gets interesting!”

Aya is a female xeno, a bipedal insectile form, though she nearly always wears a full body environmental suit / armor, a distinctive red in default color (though it has camo circuits all the way to Predator-style “invisible”).

She and Yae struck up a friendship in the Syndicate back in the human Core Worlds, and still do each other favors from time to time.

via Halo 5

For more Aya, see here and here.

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Krieger, a blaster pistol.

[Yes, the pistol is one of the “Deadly Friends”]

“Foolish,” Aya’s electronic voice says. “Sometimes you do need a blaster.”

Yae makes a face, but finally sighs. “Yes. But usually when is realized, are some guns scattered on ground.”

“You can’t just trust any weapon you pick up, idiot, especially if it’s ended up on the ground because of you.” She makes what might be a disapproving clucking, or perhaps a less human utterance. “Fine. Take this.” She pulls a weapon – slowly – from a holster from her lower thigh, and hands him a worn but quite serviceable blaster. “Buckdot HH47, a Mark 83. Reliable, powerful, deadly.” She makes another noise, probably laughter. "Sort of like you.”

“You turn head.” He takes the pistol, professionally checks the charge, the blast chamber, hefts it in each hand, pulls out the pack and grounds the chamber out, then takes a couple of dry shots at the floor before reloading. “Looks nice.”

She whuffs, an odd sound through the helmet’s mic. “It is nice. Hard to find any left these days, since Buckdot chose the losing side in the Ascension Wars. Promise me you won’t lose it.”

He grins, broadly. “Don’t promise will use. But promise will keep it near heart. Or lower digestive organs, as may be case.”

Krieger is a large hand blaster pistol, matte gray (as though any finish has been stripped off), showing the wear of a weapon that has seen regular use (and regular care). Monster carries it on a right thigh holster. Sometimes he even remembers to use it.

By Flycan

This has such an interesting effect. Because having a friend help you with something is +1d, the blaster is effectively fine quality. If it also has the fine quality (can’t remember), that means you get +2d then using it.

It’s more dice all the way down.