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Cerebra of the X-Men 2099 (Marvel Comics) delivering a kick

Cerebra

(Shakti Haddad)


Power Level:
Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game

Context

Cerebra was a member of the X-Men 2099, which were part of the Marvel 2099 possible future. This cyberpunk  sci-fi setting endured from 1993 to 1998, and though it wasn’t always the best it had many interesting bits and characters.

This profile is for Shakti as she was for most of her run. I discount the events past X-Men 2099 #33, as the 2099 series were cancelled, and the writers were obviously trying to do a wrap-up, and were not concerned with little things like characterization…


Background

  • Real Name: Shakti Haddad.
  • Marital Status: Single.
  • Known Relatives: Zail Haddad (father), mother (unnamed).
  • Group Affiliation: X-Men 2099, Halo City Protectorate, X-Nation.
  • Base Of Operations: Halo City, California ; (former) Nuevo Sol Arcology, Mobile.
  • Height: 5’10” Weight: 130 lbs Age: 20ish.
  • Eyes: Green Hair: Black


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Powers and Abilities

Shakti Haddad has the ability to telepathically control the neural systems of other living beings. She can move a person against their will, activate any powers they may have, or simply shut down their neural systems, rendering them helpless. She cannot do this to many targets at once, nor can she do it over long distances, but within her limitations she is quite formidable.

She is also a trained fighter, and a brilliant medic and scientist.

Shakti will typically use neural control to take over a person’s body and simply hold them immobile. This is easiest for her to do. If necessary, she will knock them out so she can turn her attention elsewhere. She will rarely use people as puppets because 1.) it’s against her grain to do so and 2.) it’s more difficult.

She has never been seen to, for example, speak through a controlled victim, probably because of the complexity of the task.

Shakti thus would rarely made advanced use of her abilities, even though she ought to be capable of them. This is simply because there are better ways of strategically using her powers, as she demonstrated while sparring with Skullfire (She used her power to hold him immobile while she kicked the **** out of him).


History

Shakti was raised in her father’s (the infamous Red Marketeer Zail Haddad’s) bioshop. She learned at his elbow as he dissected corpses, and occasionally live specimens. The elder Haddad worked for the corporation labs, and for sale to those who needed replacement parts.


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On one occasion Zail locked his daughter in with the corpses, apparently overnight. This incident still causes Shakti grief to this day.

At some point she ran away to Hong Kong, surviving on the streets for an undisclosed length of time. Then her medical genius led to being recruited by Stark/Fujikawa for their own medical division. Then she met Xi’an Chi Xan, fresh from his Saigon epiphany. Haddad learned Xi’an’s vision for a post-corp society.

X-Men 2099

Unsatisfied with corporate life, and inspired by the charismatic Xi’an, she left her lab. She followed him into the desert as his first disciple.

It was Shakti who found and recruited the other members of the X-Men 2099. She acted as Xi’an’s right hand person. And though the road they traveled was rough and uncertain, Shakti’s faith in Xi’an’s vision has never wavered. Even when Xi’an turned against them, Shakti held out the hope that they could rescue him and begin again.

After the rescue at the Slaughterhouse, Shakti joined the others at Halo City. There they became the city’s mutant protectors. Shakti, however, eventually left the city to help Doom seek for the prophesied Mutant Messiah. Both believed would eventually show up there.

Shakti (briefly) became the leader and guide to a group of young mutants who became X-Nation before they were killed by Exodus. The series ended an issue later.


Description

Shakti had long straight hair, aloof, aquiline features, and green eyes. Her outfit was a black body suit with green, armor-like body segments, green thigh-high boots and gold bracers.

She always wore a sort of microphone attachment on her jaw, but it was never shown what it was for.


Personality

Shakti has been called the “Ice Queen” for good reason. She is cool, reserved, analytical, and logical at all times. Shakti is not emotional, but she does have feelings.

She is actually quite concerned for her teammates, and is not above expressing it. But she will do so in her own (cool, reserved) way. She has only ever lost control of herself once: when she thought her father was dead. Then she lashed out at the person responsible with a psionic  burst, knocking him out.

Despite the cool exterior Shakti is a bundle of neuroses with very strong drives and traumas. See her various DC Heroes RPG mental Drawbacks.


Quotes

“Before we can determine whether Xi’an is *beyond* redemption, we must first *find* him.”


DC Universe History

The future-X-Men are kind of like the old X-Men. They’re fairly world-specific. See Kansas Jim’s Mutant History for details.

However, if your world includes the mutant problem, they are just the future incarnation of a mutant equality team, just a little more activist.


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Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

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Cerebra

A 1100 Point Character

Dex: 07 Str: 03 Bod: 04 Motivation: Responsibility of Power
Int: 10 Wil: 06 Min: 06 Occupation: Adventurer, medic
Inf: 06 Aur: 05 Spi: 05 Resources {or Wealth}: 004
Init: 025 HP: 045

Powers:
Control: 15, Detect (Metahumans): 10, Life Sense: 10

Bonuses and Limitations:

  • All Powers: Restricted Range 5 AP’s (-1), Contingent On Control (-1).
  • None of her Powers will function on characters with no mind or neural system : energy beings, zombies, etc. In order to be affected the target must have an organic neural system (-2) It is not known if her power works on animals.
  • Control is subject to Difficulty modifiers based on how strenuous or complex the task is, at the GM’s discretion (-1).
  • Detect: (Metahumans) Power Always On (+1).
  • Life Sense: Power Always On (+1) but has Specific Life Form (-1 – Metas she has “scanned” before).

Skills:
Acrobatics: 05, Gadgetry*: 10, Martial Artist: 06, Medicine*: 10, Scientist*: 10, Thief (Escape Artist, Security Systems, Stealth): 05, Vehicles (Air Vehicles, Land Vehicles): 04

Advantages:
Area Knowledge: City [Hong Kong], Attractive, Iron Nerves, Scholar (Genetics; Biochemistry), Sharp Eye, Genius (Anything related to the medical field).

Connections:
X-Men 2099 (High), X-Nation (High), Doom 2099 (Low).

Drawbacks:
Dependent (Father, Zail Haddad), Exile: Voluntary, MIH (Her father), Public Identity, MIA (Find the Mutant Messiah), SIA (Responsibility of Power).

Equipment:
NEURAL JACK [BODY 03, Telepathy: 06, R#: 2, HP Cost: 41. Notes : Telepathy: Only for Computers, may only be used if “jacked in” to a computer or remote terminal, The neural jack is implanted in Shakti’s skull and cannot be targeted separately].


Previous Statistics

Shakti remained very stable across the (admittedly brief) run of 2099. However, for her pre-X-Nation appearances, take away the contact to X-Nation and Doom, and her Guilt. While leader of X-Nation, she didn’t have the Guilt.

Neural control manoeuvres

A sample of the Difficulty Mods might be:

  • Stunning or Holding a Chr in Place: No mod (A chr who is merely held may break free, though).
  • Simple range of motion (grasping or holding an immobile object, pressing a button or moving a lever, dropping a weapon) Challenging (+1).
  • Complex ROM (Walking, mimicking Shakti’s own motions, typing or using fairly complex tools) Difficult (+2).
  • Extremely Complex Actions involving not only ROM, but concentration (Speaking, running, striking a target, Activating or using a person’s powers) Strenuous (+3).
  • Insanely complex tasks (including aiming and firing at moving targets, fighting a fairly mobile opponent, playing a musical instrument, programming a computer) Extreme (+4).

It ought to be noted that any task higher on the Universal Modifiers Table than Challenging should also require Shakti herself to give up her own Automatic actions for the round, as the degree of concentration required is so extreme. Any action higher than Difficult and she also ought not to be able to use her Movement action for the round as well.


Reduced Range (-1 FC)

This limitation is used to simulate an effect that is far in excess of its Range. (i.e., Cyclops’s Optic Blast may be 13 AP’s, but no way can he fire it at a range of 8 miles) This limitation normally halves the number of AP’s used to determine range, rounded where necessary (up or down is up to GM/Player decision, based on the needs of the game a/o player) E.g., Cyclops has Energy Blast 13, his range is 6, about 200 yards.

Shakti has a special version of this, Restricted Range, which sets a maximum range less than ½ the AP’s of power. Restricted Range is still -1FC, simply because it is not really any more of a limitation than the other version.

By Pufnstuff.

Helper(s): Gareth Lewis, Mark A. Ayen, Sébastien Andrivet.

Source of Character: Marvel Comics (X-Men 2099).

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