Like many role-playing games, Sufficiently Advanced has rules that describe the characters in the game and what they can do. Each character is rated as to how much of the five different kinds of technology is built into their bodies, making them more effective. They also have a set of Core Values, which tell what they believe in and make them more effective in that area. Professional experience and the benefits of living in your particular civilization round out the character sheet.
However, SA also ranks characters on a story level. Is your character constantly embroiled in intrigue? Can she comprehend things that elude even genius-level intellects? Is she destined for fame or romance? Or does she somehow avoid all manner of deadly circumstances as if "Plot Immunity" were stamped on her head? Players can use Twists to activate these Themes, changing the game and giving themselves a greater chance of success - or, if you prefer a tragic story, ensuring that failure will dog your character all her days.
Characters are balanced across these two axes of power. Those with great physical and mental prowess will have less opportunity to use their Themes, while those who are less physically powerful become more important to the story. Thus, even a character entirely without technological enhancements can contribute to the game in a significant way.
When it comes to conflict, SA doesn't stop at physical combat. The same system is used for all levels of conflict, from throwing a punch to launching a political campaign. You can even change between conflict levels quickly and easily, so if your cold war is going badly, you can start a research blitz to beat your opponent to a new piece of technology - but watch out for their ad campaign to stop you! In SA, winning the battle can help you win the war.