automation means automated failure

Malfunction: this word spells doom, humiliation and failure to all thinkers, inventors and artisans everywhere. Every time a device fails, roll 1d10 and consult this (oh so sweetly untested) table. If an entry specifies light, normal or severe damage, apply a penalty of -1, -2 or -3 to the following rolls on the same table until repairs are carried out:

  1. explode: the device explodes, spraying shrapnels of itself around, setting its combustible on fire and making explode what’s prone to go boom in the radius. Damage from 1d6 to 10d6 in a radius from 10 feet to 1000 yards, depending on power source, size, complexity. Device is destroyed, scraps worth 1d60% can be collected and recycled.
  2. misfire: the device works in the most damaging way to the user possible. Maybe the physiognomic lens aims wrongly, or the aetherodyne collector discharges during the wrong phase. Be creative: think Wile E. Coyote. Light damage.
  3. fall apart: a critical part of the device falls off, making the device inoperable. Normal damage.
  4. short, jam, leak: something (current, liquid, mechanical part) went where it shouldn’t really have. Severe damage.
  5. rattle: the device emits a horrible noise (possibly alerting nearby creatures of the device operation) but works as intended. Will keep on emitting the noise every time it’s used until repaired. Light damage.
  6. interrupt: the device doesn’t work at all and won’t work for the next 1d10 usages or 1d10 rounds/turns/hours, as appropriate. Repair (as per light damage, time halved) will make the device work again.
  7. oscillate: for the next 1d10 uses, the device will operate at varying levels of effectiveness, alternating between double and half of the norm. Repair (as per light damage, time halved) will make the device work again.
  8. weaken: the device works at half of the intended power.
  9. break: the device stops working. Severe damage.
  10. or more: fail: the device does nothing, except consume the resources needed to work. +1 to all following rolls.

Repair: time needed to fix a device is 1d6 rounds, turns, hours, days or months depending on the device complexity. If damage is light  or severe step time up or down accordingly, and quality of equipment available affects time accordingly. Repair will also eliminate penalties due to the related malfunction.