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Rules / Drugs

Drugs, Addictive Substances, and Toxins

Addiction and Withdrawal tests are only modified by the highest positive relevant modifier (Narcos’ +2 when already addicted does not stack with Nephritic Screen).

Toxin resistance dice pool bonuses from Nephritic Screens and other such ‘ware does not grant a benefit to resisting the Painade or the Fichetti Pain Inducer.

Drug Grades

If a character has an appropriate contact, they may purchase Street Cooked or Pharmaceutical-grade drugs according to the rules as written in Chrome Flesh. Designer-grade drugs are only available via appropriate Drug Cook contacts.

Awakened drugs are not available in Street Cooked, Pharmaceutical, or Designer grades.

Cooking Drugs

In addition to buying Street, Standard, or Pharmaceutical-grade drugs, characters so inclined may cook their own "shiny good goods" according to CF191, with some changes. Drugs cooked by player characters may only be various grades of existing, RAW-statted drugs. Characters may craft Awakened Drugs and the Magical Compounds listed in Chrome Flesh. Custom Drugs cannot be created by players. A Contact with a Connection of 5 is not required, but a Contact who could conceivably get you the tools and ingredients is required.

To cook drugs, player characters need the proper tools, and are limited by their tools.

  • A Chemistry Kit will allow the player to make Street-Cooked drugs.
  • A Chemistry Shop allows the player to make up to Standard-grade drugs.
  • A Chemistry Facility allows the creation of up to Pharmaceutical-grade drugs.

Ingredients, as RAW, cost 50% of the drug's Standard-grade price. Their Availability is equal to 75% of the drug they create, rounded up. For example, Kami is 4R and the ingredients would be 3R. The ingredients for Cereprax, at 14F, would be merely 11F.

As always, the sale of player-made drugs to other players is banned. Giving out the drugs you've cooked on a run is allowed, but if they are not returned then they are lost.

Weaponized Drug Use

Drugs have no impact on unaware or unwilling subjects except with the express approval of the GM on a per-run basis. GMs should only approve this in a limited capacity, such as slipping a drug into someone's drink, or dosing someone with a drug meant for offensive use, such as Memory Fog, Laés, or Zombie Dust.

Specific Drug and Toxin Rulings


Betel has an Addiction Rating of 6 for the purposes of addiction tests, and overdosing. Characters who use Betel will be automatically addicted at a Mild level, unless they have some form of bonus toxin resistance, in which case they make addiction tests as normal using the addiction threshold of 2 as given in Chrome Flesh pg. 188. Under no circumstances can a Betel addiction exceed the Mild level.


Reminder: The effect of this toxin differs depending on delivery method. If delivered via DMSO, the Resistance test is against Drain, not Toxin, and spirits struck with the coated weapon or capsule round cannot apply the Immune to Normal Weapons quality to the damage resistance test. Injection is the only delivery method which results in the affected being losing access to the manasphere.


Designer BTLs do not have drug interaction effects and overlap with other drug bonuses, without stacking. Only one BTL can grant mechanical effects at a time. BTLs are not drugs thus effects that generally modify drugs, such as Narco, do not apply. Effects that target addiction specifically, such as the Lightweight or Family Curse qualities, still apply.


Consider Deepweed to have an Addiction Rating of 6, and an Addiction Threshold of 2 until official values are released in errata.


These substances are treated as Toxins, and use the stats from pg 188 of Stolen Souls instead of the one from Chrome Flesh.

Neurostun 8-10

Neurostun's damage cannot overflow into physical anymore. Instead, living creatures with a full stun track take 1 point of unresisted Physical damage per minute after the first contact with the toxin.


Psyche reduces the sustaining penalty for Technomancers and Complex Forms, as indicated by the fluff text in RAW.

The ingredients for Psyche are 4R, and the threshold for successfully cooking it is 8.


It takes three doses per day for six weeks to receive the Karma discount. Addiction rolls are required at the beginning of the next session.


This substance is treated as a Toxin, and uses the stats from pg 189 of Stolen Souls instead of the one from Chrome Flesh.


This substance is treated as a Toxin, and uses the following Toxin stats instead of the Drug stats from Chrome Flesh.

Speed1 Minute
Duration12-Body hours, minimum 1
EffectStun Damage, -3 Willpower (minimum 1), -1 Social Limit

Soothsayer is resisted by Body only. Each dose a character is exposed to reduces the power of future doses by 1 (minimum 0).

Stim Patches

Multiple Stim patches apply overdose effects: [Rating] Stun damage for each patch, resisted with Body + Willpower.

Zombie Dust

Zombie dust is treated as a toxin with a power of 12 and a penetration of 0.


In lieu of official errata, use the German values for this drug. This drug has an Availability of 6R, and a Cost of 300¥ per dose. This drug is impossible to become addicted to, having an Addiction Rating and Addiction Threshold of 0.

Drug and Addictive Substance Usage

Using Addictive Substances

Each time you take an addictive substance, you will immediately make an addiction test (Pg 414 SR5 CRB). For psychologically addicting drugs, the test will be [Logic +Willpower +(11 - Drug's Effective Addiction Rating) +(other modifiers)]. For physiologically addicting drugs, the test will be [Body + Willpower + (11 - Drug's Effective Addiction Rating) + (other modifiers)]. For drugs that are "Both", the test will be the worse of your two dicepools for the above. Only permanent attribute augmentations apply to the dicepools for this test. If you fail the test, you immediately suffer the effects of a failed addiction test.

On a failed roll, the Addiction worsens by one level (Mild to Moderate, Moderate to Severe, Severe to Burnout), or the character gains the Addiction quality at the Mild level if not yet addicted. Afterwards, the character doesn’t have to make any more Addiction tests when taking additional doses of the same drug in that session.

Drug Interactions

When a character takes a dose of a drug while already under the effects of that same drug, or a drug with shared effects (e.g. both drugs increasing the same Attribute), they take Stun damage with a DV equal to the sum of the overlapping drugs’ Addiction ratings, resisted with (Body + Willpower). Even if a character passes out from the Stun damage, they gain the benefits of both drugs, but the benefits count as coming from the same source for the purposes of bonus stacking - that is, they overlap instead of stacking.

GMs may make players roll drug interactions with toxins if applicable.

Addiction Quality

Characters with the Addiction quality may suffer from the effects of Withdrawal. Depending on their level of addiction, they must make a Withdrawal test (this is a Standard Addiction Test) as shown in the table below. The GM may call for this Withdrawal test at the start of the Run or at any appropriate Thematic moment.

Current Addiction LevelWithdrawal Check Frequency
MildEvery Other Run
ModerateEvery Run
SevereEvery Run; 2/Run if >1 week
BurnoutEvery day (of active run)

Remember that if a character takes a dose, they must make another Addiction test to see if the Addiction gets worse (see Using Addictive Substances, above). The dose can be taken at any point during the session. Once the dose has been taken and takes effect, the Withdrawal penalties no longer apply.

Getting Rid of an Addiction

If a character wants to get rid of an Addiction, they must stay clean and suffer through a Withdrawal period. This means they must not use the drug they are Addicted to in any form for a number of real-life weeks equal to the drug’s Addiction rating.

During that time, characters are still subject to the Withdrawal checks, as described above. If the character fails this test, they must either use the drug, thus ending the attempted withdrawal, or suffer the withdrawal penalties (see Addiction Quality, above).

Once the character has made it to the end of the withdrawal period, they make a Withdrawal test, however, Edge may not be spent. If the character succeeds on their Withdrawal test, they can buy off one level of the quality (from Burnout to Severe, Severe to Moderate, Moderate to Mild, Mild to no Addiction), spending the appropriate amount of Karma.

If they fail on the Withdrawal Test, the quality remains. In this case, the character can immediately start another withdrawal attempt.


Addiction Test

Sally Street Sam takes Jazz. As Jazz is both Physiological and Psychological, they make a single test - the lowest of either her Body or Logic, in this case her Logic using their [Logic + Willpower]. Using Jazz’s Addiction Rating of 8, the final dice pool calculations come out to [Logic + Willpower + 3], and rolls against Jazz's Addiction Threshold (3). Edge may be spent on this test. If either test fails, Sally Street Sam gains the Addiction quality at the Mild level.

Withdrawal Test

Johnny Decker is a Moderate Psyche addict. During every run, a GM may call for a Withdrawal test - this can be before the meet or at any Thematic time in the run, as deemed by the GM.

Psyche is a Psychological addiction with Addiction Rating 6, so Johnny Decker rolls [Logic + Willpower + 5] plus their highest rating modifier to drug Addiction rolls. They must meet the Addiction Threshold of Psyche (2) or they will suffer withdrawal until they have a fix, taking, for a Moderate Addiction, -4 to all mental-attribute based tests.

Upon taking a dose of Psyche, whether suffering from Withdrawal or not, Johnny Decker must roll an addiction test. Using Psyche's Addiction Rating (6), Johnny Decker calculates his Addiction Test dice pool as [Logic + Willpower + 5] and rolls it in an attempt to hit the Psyche's psychological Addiction Threshold of 2, potentially increasing the level of their Addiction. As usual, Edge may be spent on this Addiction test.

Drug & Toxin Classification

Use this table for determining immunity with qualities such as Natural Immmunity, as well as any other case where a character needs to know if a drug is natural or synthetic.

Drug or ToxinPageType
AconiteHT 192Natural
AtropineHT 192Natural
Caldwell Lily ExtractSS 188Natural
Chloral HydrateSS 188Synthetic
ChloroformSS 188Synthetic
CS GasCRB 409Synthetic
CypherBB 21Synthetic
DreadBB 29Natural
Gamma-ScopolamineCRB 410Natural
NarcojetCRB 410Synthetic
Nausea GasCRB 410Synthetic
Neuro-StunCRB 410Synthetic
Pepper PunchCRB 410Synthetic
PicrotoxinBB 20Natural
RetroBB 20Synthetic
RocuroniumBB 20Synthetic
Seven-7CRB 410Synthetic
SlabCF 182Synthetic
TetrodoxinHT 193Natural

Page last modified on March 19, 2023, at 11:14 PM