|Race||Mostly Human (87%), Elven (5%), Ogres (5%) and other humanoid races (3%).|
|Gender||Male or female|
A Burster is a Master Psychic with dramatic psychic powers that manifest themselves in "physical" ways, most significantly in the ability of pyrokinesis, the creation and manipulation of fire. As the name suggests, these psychics can create fire out of thin air, causing things to simply burst into flames. This rather spectacular display of power has made the burster one of the most feared of all the psychic characters, second only to the Mind Melter. Although other powerful psychics may possess the Super-Psionic power of pyrokinesis, the abilities of the Burster far outstrip those of the fundamental ability. In addition to being able to create fire with a thought, the psychic can actually "burst" into flame. Flames that provide a warm and protective covering and which give the character a frightening visage and enhanced power.
Bursters are extremely passionate about..., well, everything. They feel their emotions and beliefs deeply and they are not shy about showing them. The more intense emotions, joy, love, hate, and anger, burn the hottest among Bursters and are most likely to elicit an intense reaction. Few Bursters are wishy-washy about anything. Most are steadfast and outspoken in their beliefs and quick to action. While some are quite literally "hot heads" with short tempers and explosive anger, most tend to be warm, sincere people who generally exhibit a fair amount of self-control. It's just that they are deeply committed to whatever beliefs, feelings and/or people they care about and are not afraid to stand up for them and fight those who stand against them.
Many observers have noted that Bursters are a study of duality and extremes. Most Bursters are either principled and scrupulous or miscreant and diabolic (extreme good or extreme evil), rarely anything in between. They are notorious for their hot emotions, terrible anger and powers of destruction, yet they are just as likely to be generous and kind to strangers in need, and amazingly loyal to friends and loved ones. A symbol of destruction and fiery violence, the Burster often seeks peace and order, and looks to build and nurture (a belief, place, people, ideal, etc.) rather than destroy. Good or evil, idealistic or sardonic, the Burster will be passionate about his position, purpose and goals, and enjoy what he does.
Part of this comes from the very nature of fire, one of the four ancient, mystical elements. Fire itself plays important dual roles in human life. It can be used to provide light, warmth from the cold, protection from animals, the power (through heat and chemical reaction) to change and shape other elements (rock, metal, water) into useful building materials or serve as a source of energy. In this capacity, fire nurtures, protects, helps and builds, but then there is the other side of fire, the destroyer. Fire can rage uncontrolled and destroy everything it touches. In this capacity, it becomes a wild thing that leaps from place to place and burns down that which it helped to build. It kills without pause and without conscience. It is a destructive force to be feared and from which to flee. Paradoxically, the Burster tends to be the living embodiment of fire -- a builder and destroyer, a warm and noble spirit who, if hurt or provoked, can transform into fiery wrath and cold-hearted destroyer.
As hot and extreme personalities, Bursters who choose an evil course are wicked in the extreme (miscreant or diabolic) and relish causing pain and suffering. They destroy that which offends or annoys them and, often, that which they cannot understand. On the other hand, a good Burster is often astonishingly virtuous and compassionate. They tend to stand up and fight for those who cannot do so for themselves and take up worthy causes, They fight with passion and conviction that is hard to find, and can be be as honorable and heroic as the best Cyber-Knight. Of course, there are those who don't quite fit the norm, but even among these characters there will be extremes. An aberrant aligned Burster will never waver from his (twisted) code of ethics. Anarchist individuals are likely to be selfish in the extreme or uncharacteristically lack conviction or purpose. An unprincipled character will be all too aware of his dual nature and constantly at odds with himself, always struggling to do the right thing despite emotions to the contrary.
- Excerpted from Rifts® Ultimate Edition™, copyright 2005 Palladium Books Inc. All rights reserved. Rifts®, Megaverse® and Palladium Books® are registered trademarks of Palladium Books Inc. and Kevin Siembieda. All other titles and names are trademarks of Palladium Books.
History of the Burster O.C.C.
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