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Old 09-28-2016, 06:09 AM   #1
vicky_molokh
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Default Semi-realistic Regeneration and corresponding Increased Consumption

Greetings, all!

Due to closer scrutiny towards certain mutations and biomods, I'm interested in making the Regular Regeneration (1HP/hour) biomod at least semi-realistic in my campaign. That's an approximately 50-fold increase in natural healing capabilities compared to an average human (24HP per day instead of ½HP per day). Now, a person eats 3 GURPS meals per day, but most of that isn't spent on healing HP. So the question becomes: assuming that the process of regeneration has an impressively high coefficient of efficiency, just how much extra food would be required when the organism kicks into such a high gear? I'm assuming at least some of the damaged-but-retained biological material could be recycled by the nanites/weird-phagocite-and-mobile-stem-based-repair-cell-system, though I'm not sure at which point the semi-realistic turns into outright physics-defying. But even while building materials can be somewhat recycled, energy needs to come from somewhere - just how energy-intensive would be a 50-fold boost of healing, in terms of extra food consumption? Finally, how much of a buffer can be retained by using additional internal storage of nutrients/slow energy, purely through improvements to the biochemistry of storage (i.e. without resorting to making the person fat)?

Thanks in advance!
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Old 09-28-2016, 07:11 AM   #2
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Default Re: Semi-realistic Regeneration and corresponding Increased Consumption

I'm reminded of a kid who was born with the disease that he constantly generates skin cells. I imagine regeneration of this magnitude would be similar in idea. The person in question has to eat thousands (It was an absurd amount... something like 8,000 to 12,000?) of calories in protein a day or die.
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Old 09-28-2016, 03:09 PM   #3
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Default Re: Semi-realistic Regeneration and corresponding Increased Consumption

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Originally Posted by GodBeastX View Post
I'm reminded of a kid who was born with the disease that he constantly generates skin cells. I imagine regeneration of this magnitude would be similar in idea. The person in question has to eat thousands (It was an absurd amount... something like 8,000 to 12,000?) of calories in protein a day or die.
I think that's a bit of a misdirection as he obviously was not using all that protein for fuel. So the caloric density means little as he used it for building materials.
No normal sized human could breathe fast enough 24/7 to oxidize 12k Calories worth of food a day. Just imagine breathing five times as fast as you do normally but constantly.
I remember the poor guy you're probably thinking of. Feeding tube during the night to ingest the sheer volumes of pure protein slurry needed. Even the dual facts of his constantly red cracked sloughing skin and that he swam in the salty ocean made me cringe.
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Old 09-28-2016, 03:48 PM   #4
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Default Re: Semi-realistic Regeneration and corresponding Increased Consumption

I played around a bit with the ideas here and my own, and got this:

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Regeneration Bio-Mod (Regeneration (Regular), 25; Temp. Disad., Confused, -10%; Temp. Disad., Extra Sleep 4, -8%; Temp. Disad., Increased Consumption 2.5, -25%; Temp. Disad., Short Attention Span, -10%; Temp. Disad., Slow Riser, -5%; Temp. Quirks, Alcohol Intolerance & Nervous Stomach, -2%) [10]

You recover 1 HP/hour, but have higher maintenance requirements to go with the faster healing. You must sleep 12 hours per day (and are groggy after waking); much of your remaining time (~9 hours) is occupied with eating the equivalent of 18 normal meals per day, leaving only 3 hours for independent efforts. Food is metabolized quickly, so the body is more vulnerable to toxins (whether alcohol or decay products). Since most bodily energy is focused on the healing process, mental acuity and attention diminish significantly for the duration.
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Old 09-28-2016, 06:08 PM   #5
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Default Re: Semi-realistic Regeneration and corresponding Increased Consumption

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Originally Posted by Celti View Post
Since After The End introduced Long-Term Fatigue (which I've been using for a lot more than just AtE games), I've been treating (semi-)realistic Regeneration as costing 1 LFP per HP, which very handily abstracts away levels of Increased Consumption, etc. into “your body is expending lots of resources on healing, so you're tired and need to rest, eat, and drink a lot to make up for it”.

Both I and my players love the reduction in bookkeeping, etc. that this brings on while maintaining verisimilitude.
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I played around a bit with the ideas here and my own, and got this:
Both of these posts are Solid. Freaking. Gold. I just had to pop in and say that. I normally don't. But these are awesome.
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Old 09-28-2016, 06:34 PM   #6
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Default Re: Semi-realistic Regeneration and corresponding Increased Consumption

I now know the mechanics when my players have the Jaffa that have allied with them wounded. I hadn't realized that I needed that.
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Old 09-28-2016, 07:14 PM   #7
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Default Re: Semi-realistic Regeneration and corresponding Increased Consumption

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Both of these posts are Solid. Freaking. Gold. I just had to pop in and say that. I normally don't. But these are awesome.
I'll second that.
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Old 09-28-2016, 10:02 PM   #8
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Default Re: Semi-realistic Regeneration and corresponding Increased Consumption

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Originally Posted by Flyndaran View Post
No normal sized human could breathe fast enough 24/7 to oxidize 12k Calories worth of food a day. Just imagine breathing five times as fast as you do normally but constantly.
In high school I worked out 3-5 hours per day and ate 6000 kcal per day. And that level left me athletic but nearly without body fat. I'm sure actual athletes ingest and burn even more each day. So i think your assumption was flawed.
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Old 09-28-2016, 10:11 PM   #9
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Default Re: Semi-realistic Regeneration and corresponding Increased Consumption

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Originally Posted by DemiBenson View Post
In high school I worked out 3-5 hours per day and ate 6000 kcal per day. And that level left me athletic but nearly without body fat. I'm sure actual athletes ingest and burn even more each day. So i think your assumption was flawed.
Yeah, right now I need about 3kcal per day or I become extremely weak and disoriented. In high school I needed about the same amount. Also when I was unloading/loading trucks and doing asset protection/bodyguard work. I may be big, but I have a very high metabolism.
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Old 09-28-2016, 08:42 AM   #10
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Default Re: Semi-realistic Regeneration and corresponding Increased Consumption

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
Due to closer scrutiny towards certain mutations and biomods, I'm interested in making the Regular Regeneration (1HP/hour) biomod at least semi-realistic in my campaign.
I always like looking at this sort of thing. It's an interesting mental exercise.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
...just how much extra food would be required when the organism kicks into such a high gear? I'm assuming at least some of the damaged-but-retained biological material could be recycled by the nanites/weird-phagocite-and-mobile-stem-based-repair-cell-system, though I'm not sure at which point the semi-realistic turns into outright physics-defying.
Recycling material almost certainly involves some scary waste products - diseases like malaria and ebola rapidly dismantle cells, which produces a lot of chemical byproducts. Doing it quickly overwhelms the liver and kidneys (which both diseases make worse by directly attacking of course, but we'll assume the magic regeneration thingies have the sense not to do).

So you'd probably have a requisite of a boosted liver and kidneys if you want to go this route.

You also need to reclaim fluids that have been leaked into places they shouldn't go. That can be tricky, you'll be fighting the bodies natural inclination to swelling. There's also the cell-filled fluids and tissues that are flat out not in your body any more so there's limitations.

Quote:
Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
But even while building materials can be somewhat recycled, energy needs to come from somewhere - just how energy-intensive would be a 50-fold boost of healing, in terms of extra food consumption?
Faster than the digestive tract can help with if you're hoping to get it by eating after the injury, I suspect.

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Originally Posted by vicky_molokh View Post
Finally, how much of a buffer can be retained by using additional internal storage of nutrients/slow energy, purely through improvements to the biochemistry of storage (i.e. without resorting to making the person fat)?
If you're not storing it as fat, then you must be storing it as sugars, which is pretty unheard of for mammals (tetrapods in general I think) but I don't see why you couldn't do it in genetic engineering or with nanites or with a sugar-water fuel tank or whatever. But you need more than just energy - you need all the nutrients, because that's what people are made of and you'll need to rebuild things.

If it's "only" a hole poked in you or a cut, then you need to build the scaffolding for new tissue, new tissue, and new blood volume (where's the water coming from?). We'll handwave how the nanites align your tissues correctly and keep them that way while healing without you being strapped in place.

If you've had major tissue damage (fire, chemical burns, the kinds of trauma that takes flesh right off you even if it's not a GURPS amputation that you need Regrowth for) then you need to magic that material out of somewhere. And the logical place for that is your other bones and muscles.

The most obvious way to store the reserves is extra-heavy bones and excess "unsupported" muscle mass that is dismantled by the nanites and relocated to where it's needed.
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