Welcome to the Data Haven

•December 2, 2008 • 13 Comments

Hello chummers.  ;)

My name is J, but I also answer to Insomniac.  This blog will soon be the home of all my Shadowrun stuff that I have scattered around the Net.  Primarily a place to grab run notes, I plan on reviewing sourcebooks, posting fan fiction and perhaps even commenting on the game itself.

If you’re not familiar with Shadowrun (in the P&P RPG style, rather than the video games), it is a near-future, dystopian, cybernetic future game where fantasy elements have been re-introduced to the world causing an interesting blend of magic and machine.  The storyline is in-depth and there are so many things going on at once that Game Masters should have no shortage of material.  However, if you find yourself short on material, hopefully some of the future posts on this blog will help with that.  :)

While I will occasionally pipe up like this, the bulk of my posts will likely be “in-character” as my grumpy, sleep-deprived sysop alter-ego, Insomniac.  He runs a board in the Seattle Matrix where shadowrunners can look for work.  He’s a no nonsense kind of guy, but he does welcome some discussion.  So if you’d like to comment on run notes, feel free to do so in character and become part of the dialogue.

Well, I think that’s it for now.  Hopefully, you’ll check back from time to time.

J.

>>Oi!  Who’s grumpy?  Anyways, I figured I’d step up and introduce myself.  The handle’s Insomniac and I run my own little corner of ShadowSea.  If you need work, I’m your guy…assuming legality ain’t a scruple you tend to have.  If you think the shadows might be the place for you, then loiter for a bit and see what’s around.  Who knows…maybe you’ll be the next best thing round here.  Or maybe you’ll end up as the next red stain on the asphalt.  Either way, these should be interestin’ times, omae.  Perhaps I’ll see ya round.
>> Insomniac
“The shadows never sleep, so why should I?”

Justice for Hire (Shadowrun)

•July 4, 2014 • Leave a Comment

The team is contacted by their fixer about a job from a Johnson they’ve work for before (Trojan Horse – Root of the Problem). He is an officer with Knight Errant and needs some covert work done. As per the last time they met with him, he would like to meet them at 9PM in the storeroom of the Bellevue Pour House.

Scene 1 – Back into the Dive

The Pour House hasn’t changed much since the last time the runners were here. The ring in the middle of the bar still has a pair of barely-clad, surgically-endowed women wrestling in a pool of cooking oil, while those gathered throw money at the women to try and coax them into a wardrobe malfunction. Moses, the ork barkeep, keeps his bar well stocked to give the establishment a redeeming quality. When asked about Mr. Johnson, he still staunchly refuses to let anyone loiter in his storeroom, but does tell them that he’ll offer them a discount on booze for being repeat “professional” customers.

As the meet time gets close, he will let the runners into the back room. With this becoming a more regular thing, a folding table and chairs have been set up in the back room. Mr. Johnson is already there waiting, wearing his police uniform as usual.

As per their last meeting, he looks at the runners with distaste, but makes no moves to go for his sidearm or commlink. “Thank you for coming. After the work you did for me in Hong Kong, I felt you were the team I could most likely trust with the matter at hand. There is a high profile murder investigation going on right now between a couple power players… the victim is the son of a Yakuza Shategashira (Lieutenant). One well liked by the Japanese community, with prospects to move up the ranks of the Shotozumi-rengo. Normally, this case would wrap itself up, either with a bloodbath between crime families or under the table extortion. However, the accused is an Ares executive, who is apparently wrapped up in an important project within the company. As a result, Ares is refusing to turn over the suspect and has demanded that Knight Errant make the problem go away.”

His distaste for the situation is apparent. “I’m not one to tow the company line. I don’t care who this guy is, or who he works for, justice needs to be done. Therefore, I want you to perform the investigation I’m not permitted to. Find out of this executive is guilty. If he is, deal with him as you deem fit. However, if evidence directs you elsewhere, document what you find and turn any gathered evidence over to me. If we can bring the suspect to trial, perhaps Ares will learn to loosen the leash a little. I’m offering you 7,500¥ for your assistance on this matter. Are you interested?”

Mr. Johnson is frustrated that he has to turn to runners to complete the murder investigation, but he fears that a retaliation from the Yakuza against a corporate citizen could spiral into something much larger. He’s willing to swallow his pride to see the matter resolved.

He will negotiate a little on price, but as far as he’s concerned, the job should be straightforward, if they don’t kick in the front doors of Ares. Once the runners are on-board, he hands over the casefile. It details several aspects of the case. The location of the murder, details uncovered thus far and names of the people involved. The victim is Yamana Taro and the lead suspect is an Ares executive by the name of Victor Walsh. He was found at the scene, with the victim’s blood on him and the murder weapon in his possession (though the knife used to kill Taro belonged to neither person). Before he could be questioned at any length, Ares swept in and sequestered him on a sealed compound for debriefing. The casefile contains holos, addresses for both the crime and where Walsh is holed up.

Mr. Johnson
Thresholds: Matrix (1), Corporate (2), Law Enforcement (2)

1 – Mr. Johnson is Lieutenant Chris Phillips, a six year veteran for Knight Errant.
2 – Lt. Phillips has an atypical view of law enforcement for an officer from Knight Errant. He cares less for the company’s bottom line and more for the pursuit of justice. His attitude has got him in trouble from the parent company on a couple of occasions, but the perceptions of the community have made him untouchable.
3 – Began working black bag operations two years ago, when a Yakuza boss got off the hook for crimes where evidence was overwhelming against him, but pressured the jury into a non-guilty verdict. Hired runners to “see justice done”. Knight Errant doesn’t condone his methods, but sees the work he does as good PR, so they give him a long leash.
4 – Rumour has it that he works with several underworld groups, but no one has managed to “buy” him yet.

Scene 2 – Digging Deeper

Armed with what little evidence the Knights dug up before the case was swept under the rug, the runners have a few avenues they can explore. They have the crime scene they can investigate, they can check out Victor Walsh’s home, or they can try and infiltrate the Ares Complex they’re keeping him at to try and talk to him directly.

Crime Scene

The crime scene has been taped off both physically and digitally. While pushing the physical tape aside is no major issue, the digital tape will loudly warn all active commlinks that the area has been sealed and that trespassing will alert Knight Errant. If the runners are willing to risk the response time, or can successfully shut down the tape, they can enter the building.

The crime scene is an abandoned factory. There is no logical reason that either the suspect or the victim would have for being in here, especially in the middle of the night. There are no active cameras in the building, but neighbouring buildings have cameras that have a view of the building. Those cameras show Walsh arriving first, about an hour before Yamana. If the runners go back far enough, they will see a homeless man enter the warehouse for a couple minutes before leaving again. A localized hack to the area could uncover the man’s commlink signature so the runners can trace the man down.

The man wasn’t homeless, but instead a low-level rat shaman and scavenger who goes by the nickname Fizzle (due to his mediocre magical ability).

Walsh’s Residence

Victor Walsh is a divorced man who lives alone in a nice house in an AA neighbourhood. The house is protected with a respectable and thorough alarm system. If the runners can gain access without drawing too much attention to themselves, they can sift through what’s left of the man’s life.

The man’s extensive electronic appliances betray his habits of late. He’s been watching a lot of late night TV, raiding the fridge at late hours and stocking up in high power stimulants (energy drinks, adrenaline shots and Long Haul). Victor had been keeping a journal, where he recorded hours of sleep and dreams he was having. His hours of sleep over the past three weeks have dwindled down to nothing and the dreams he was experiencing were vivid and terrifying. The dreams broke up his sleep and became so consistent, he gave up trying to sleep. Those times he did sleep due to exhaustion, the dreams told him the same story in the past week. If he went to some factory he had never seen before and “followed instructions”, the dreams would stop.

Going through Victor’s email reveals the company’s concerns over his declining job performance of late and before the sleep deprivation, he had been assigned to a top secret project. The company had nearly tripled his workload and had taken a blood sample for “routine testing” two days before the nightmares began.

Victor’s ritual sample never made it to the storage center and he’s been the recipient of Curse Rituals for the past several weeks. He got so delirious and desperate for relief, he ultimately followed the directions provided by his dreams and went to the factory.

Ares Complex

The Ares complex is a gated community that is heavily patrolled by Knight Errant. The houses are all identical copies of each other in a nauseating cookie-cutter manner. If the runners can outmaneuver the patrols and security net, they can go inside and talk directly with Walsh.

The man is haunted by his actions and three weeks of vivid nightmares. He seems unshaken by the runners appearing in his house, but more surprised that they’re there to ask questions, rather than put him to death. He tells them about the nightmares, his efforts to fend them off and avoid sleeping.

The day of the crime, he gave up trying to fight it. He took a cab, following the path he had seen in his dreams night after night and went into the factory. Inside there was nothing but a crate with a knife stuck in it. After waiting around for an hour, this Japanese guy walks in and starts asking him if he is the one with the goods. Victor asked if the Japanese guy had the cure to what ailed him. Neither seemed to know what the other was talking about and frustrations grew. Suddenly, Victor was overcome with rage, he snatched up the knife and threw himself at the man, stabbing him over and over again. After he got himself back under control, he recoiled from what he had done and blacked out. The cops found him collapsed in the warehouse beside the body, still clutching the knife.

If the runners mention the blood sample he donated (assuming they’d been to his residence), he tells them that he never heard about his test results. If pressed, he’ll tell them where the processing center is.

Viewing cameras in the area of the processing center, they see the sample being delivered, but a homeless man interrupts the man carrying the samples and after a brief conversation, the deliveryman hands the man the sample case. The homeless man shakes his hand and walks away, while the driver records that the delivery was successfully delivered.

This homeless man is Fizzle, as per the warehouse setup. The blood samples would give him ample ritual samples for sending the nightmares off to Victor.

If the runners gather enough evidence, they will likely want to track down the homeless man that keeps appearing and question him as to his motivations for manipulating Victor into murdering Yamana. Asking around in the vicinity of the processing center shows that the man is a transient named Fizzle.

Fizzle
Thresholds: Matrix (3), Street (2)

1 – Some guy that’s fairly new to Seattle, rumoured to be some kind of mage. No known address.
2 – Fizzle rolled into town about a year ago. Appears to be a roaming vagabond, squatting anywhere he can cheaply or for errands. A relatively low-powered rat shaman, he offers his talents to anyone willing to pay in magical trinkets, food or nuyen.
3 – Has been working with the Yakuza and Mafia in Seattle, assisting where magical talent is low. He specializes in subtle mental manipulations.
4 – His real name is Gabriel Oates. He is wanted in the Confederation for extortion and blackmail, as well as practising illegal magics.

Scene 3 – The Rat in the Gutter

The runners could use any number of techniques to track down Fizzle in the Shadows of the Downtown Core. Asking the squatter population, or any Underworld contact can point them into a direction. Rumours in the area mention how Fizzle has been showing increased prowess with his magic lately and demonstrating a few new tricks. There are mentions that he has found a tutor that is helping him better control his gifts.

As the runners converge on the area where Fizzle is rumoured to be squatting, the Yakuza have been doing their own research into who murdered one of their own and Fizzle’s involvement has been discovered.

The old warehouse is home to dozens of squatters, who have turned to the shaman for protection. They don’t interfere with the runners, but won’t sell out their protector either. When the runners track down Fizzle, his eyes are sunken and he looks haunted, as if he hasn’t been sleeping himself.

Assuming the runners don’t just shoot him dead, he is apologetic that Yamana was killed. He never wanted to be an accessory for murder, only weaken the Ares Exec’s resolve so that he’d pawn off some company secrets to the Yakuza. The idea was given to him by his tutor and he now fears that his tutor was more malevolent than anticipated.

Before he can explain more about his tutor, the Yakuza burst in, guns drawn and calling Fizzle out. Moments after the Yakuza burst in, the locals begin to scatter and Fizzle’s “tutor” enters. The shaman has been taught by a free spirit: a Wraith, a form of Shadow that feeds on death, pain and fear.

When the fight gets started, have every runner make a Composure(3) test. Any who fail are influenced by its Homicidal Rage. They no longer distinguish between friend and foe, innocent or hostile. If they kill a target while raging, the spirit can make a test to siphon off any unspent Karma and inflicts stun damage for every point stolen. The spirit strengthens itself with each body count, so the runners will hopefully recognize what’s going on, locate the spirit and destroy it before they become serial killers.

Between the collected evidence and any collected footage of the battle with the Shadow, they should have enough proof for Mr. Johnson in order to get paid.

>> Wait a sec… working with the cops?  Isn’t that sacrilege?
>> Blitz

>> Happens more than you might think.  Despite what you might think, some cops are actually after justice and when the bureaucracy interferes they go to where there is no red tape.
>> Errant Knight

>> I sneaked a peak at the casefile in question (don’t ask me how) and there’s definitely something up.  If you’re one of those do-gooder types, this might be right up your alley.
>> Matlock

Trojan Horse – Marionettes (Shadowrun)

•June 4, 2014 • Leave a Comment

The runners are contacted by their fixer about a new job, whose Johnson has been quite up front about the job being related to their work in Hong Kong. The job may require some travel and promises decent compensation. The meet is on the fourth level of Dante’s Inferno at 9PM.

Scene 1 – The Meet

Dante’s Inferno is its usual busy self and showing up just on time will not be enough, as even with dropping Mr. Johnson’s name at the door, navigating the massive crowd will take time. The fourth circle of hell is about greed, so the room is made to be like distorted opulence. Several meets are already in progress here, but their Mr. Johnson is already at the table and waiting for them when they arrive. He is an athletic man of mostly-Caucasian descent (some distant relative may have had some Latino to compensate for the naturally darker skin tone the man has) in a suit that appears to have been custom made for him. Despite his obvious wealth, he comes off friendly and level-headed when spoken to.

Once the team has gathered, Mr. Johnson begins. “Welcome and thank you for coming. Since I know you will look into it anyway, I will tell you that I represent Ares and I’m here to speak to you about the work you did in Hong Kong. We have spoken some with Mr. Jarai, the man you liberated from the Triads and we are quite concerned about Evo’s technomancer project. After speaking to Mr. Jarai about his experiences, his tales led us to an installment in Khabarovsk. There were definite signs of technomancer activity there: faraday cages, high performance servers and signs of resonance use. However, Evo had evacuated the area before our teams arrived.

“We’ve been tracing their shipping activities out of eastern Russia and we think they’ve moved the bulk of the project into the Tsimshian Protectorate, but we’ve been unable to pinpoint their exact location. Our recon teams have been undermined each time they enter the area.

“Therefore, we want you to travel to Tsimshian lands, find the Evo project and steal the core kernel of their data. The project Mr. Jarai was working on was an offshoot of their research, but we want to see the original. From what we understand of technomancer threading, it is unclear whether this is the work of one or more technomancers, or whether they have access to a Well, but we suspect they do. Bring us the code, the hard drive…whatever you have to and we’ll pay you 12,000¥ apiece, plus traveling expenses. If there is equipment our company manufactures you would like instead of cash, we are certainly willing to pay you that way as well.”

Mr. Johnson is Brad Smyth, a well-established Ares black ops recruiter. His reputation is solid and typically only works with a small number of “elite” teams that he chooses personally. He is being vague about the recon teams, as the players are a replacement for one of the teams he already sent into Tsimshian, who fell prey to Evo and their countermeasures.

Mr. Johnson can negotiate some on price, due to the vagueness of the directions. If the runners sign on, he thanks them and provides them with his contact information and any cash advance they negotiated. He suggests looking in the major centers in the former Tsimshian nation, as the Evo operations will require a good power infrastructure in order to keep the technomancers connected.

Mr. Johnson (Brad Smyth)
Thresholds: Matrix (1), Corporate (2), Shadow Community (2)

1 – Mr. Johnson is Brad Smyth, a ten year employee of Ares.
2 – Mr. Johnson has built up a very positive reputation in the shadows as a good man to work for. In one instance where a runner team was double crossed by Ares, Mr. J logged onto Jackpoint and explained why the team had screwed up and told the other runner teams in the area to avoid making the same mistakes.
3 – Never married or had kids. Has had several dates, but seems to go out of his way to avoid attachments. Leading rumours are that he wants to avoid having another person being used as leverage against him.
4 – Has survived three assassination attempts and Ares watches him closely, as he is a strong shadow asset for the UCAS branch.

Scene 2 – Barren Tribes

Tsimshian was the textbook example of how a Native American Nation could go all wrong. One tribe called the shots, while others were repressed in the totalitarian regime that followed. They allowed the megacorps in unchecked and their country was stripped of all their natural resources. In a desperate bid to save their economy, they attacked the Salish Nation to try and get more land. Ultimately, the country collapsed under its own corruption, the megas pulled out when there was nothing left to harvest and the Salish Nation was awarded the land in an attempt to try and repair the damage.

Now, the Tsimshian tribe answers to the Salish law and the tribes formerly repressed now have their own areas they can rule unto themselves, however the damage is done. The massive forested wilderness that used to dominate northern British Columbia is a barren waste, where the Salish government has begun reforestation, but generations of old-growth trees are gone thanks to Mitsuhama’s greed.

As the runners begin investigating the Tsimshian landscape, they find the area is hostile out non-Natives (and even some Natives, depending on their tribe). The Tsimshian mistrust the Salish tribes and the Haida. The Haida loathe the Tsimshian. Anti-Japanese sentiment is high after MCT dismantled their country. With Evo coming into hostile megacorp territory, they would have their work cut out for them, but Evo’s culture of universal acceptance would help them, as well as their anti-Japanese slant. Upon investigating the culture, there are only two cities capable of housing a corporate need such as this: Prince George and Kitimat. Since Prince George was awarded to the Haida and they are staunchly opposed to anything corporate, Kitimat, the former capital seems the only alternative.

Kitimat was a town created for the aluminum mines in the area and before the separation of the Native Lands, the population capped out at 20,000 people. When the Tsimshian named the city the national capital, the population began to swell and when Mitsuhama arrived, the city exploded. Unable to handle the explosive growth, the infrastructure grew faster than it was supposed to, resulting in claustrophobic streets, inconsistent access to utilities and cut corners. Now the city is vastly vacant, with less than half of the boomtown population remaining in the city. Mitsuhama’s corporate facilities are left derelict, but since it had been built by the corporation, the structures are some of the most stable. As a result, the Salish government reallocated the buildings as residential and converted it to cheap housing for those who remained. The mine is barren and the trees are gone, but Salish is employing people in reclamation and rebuilding efforts, in hopes of stabilizing the region.

Evo has moved into a series of former independent commercial shops in an effort to maintain a low profile. In compensation to the locals for being allowed to operate in town, Evo offered to update the wireless infrastructure of the city, as it had barely been upgraded after the Crash. With Salish already struggling to afford the corrections to Tsimshian, they agreed.

Throughout the local Matrix, Evo has inserted their psychotropic code in a field test of their latest project. As a result, if the runners start asking around town about Evo and their local operations, they will find a mixed bag of responses. Some will deny they are even in town, while others will misdirect the team. After the runners have moved on, they notify the corporation about the intruders asking questions. A group of police officers, under Evo’s grip will attempt to arrest the runners on a trumped up charge.

The runners will find themselves in a difficult place. These are innocent victims of Evo’s coding, but they will prove to be a major hindrance, as they might even intervene on the corp’s behalf. How the runners handle the brainwashed residents may result in the gaining of Notoriety. The eastern edge of the city is where Evo has set up their operations, scattered across several buildings. The decentralized nature of the facility and the lack of reliable intel may make infiltration tricky.

Scene 3 – Inside Evo

A retired commercial block on the edge of town is the location Evo selected to set up their operation. Straddling a tributary off the Kitimat River, the three buildings that make up the compound are connected by a series of above ground and below ground walkways. The Manufacturing facility is on the west bank, while sales and programming are on the east bank. The programming building doesn’t appear to be connected, but the underground pathway from manufacturing connects the building and allows security to move between buildings.

Evo Compound Manufacturing Security Layout Programming - Cameras Programming Security Layout Sales Cameras Sales Security Layout

Each building has been warded, sometimes several times, but there is no on-site mage and spirits are on standby, rather than actively patrolling. Matrix security is oppressive in the facility, with standard security on top of three technomancers and a native AI guarding the resonance well. Security on the ground consists of standard security (Professional Rating 2 from core book). What they lack in skill, they make up for in numbers. The lack of consistent employment in Kitimat means Evo was able to hire a lot of the locals to serve as security. Sensitive areas will be patrolled by Evo citizens. If the runners are detected, there is a group of Elite Security (Professional Rating 5) on site, who will guard the server room of the programming division from intrusion.

The runners have to tread a fine line with the compound. With the bulk of security being desperate locals, killing every guard could earn them a bed reputation for unnecessarily killing. Killing the technomancers could net them bad reputation in Matrix circles (and gain them rep with others).

For an added complication, the runners could run afoul of an Evo-friendly runner in the surgical ward, receiving his payment for work done prior, who could aid Evo security if he feels his payment is at risk.

>> Oh Lord, Tsimshian?  Why on Earth would I want to go to that hellhole?
>> Haida Seeker

>> Not a total wasteland… the Salish Council is doing what they can to undo the horrible things the the Tsimshian people did to that land.  Some aim to be already established when the region rebounds.
>> Tall-as-an-Oak

>> You mean what Mitsuhama did that that land, right, trog?
>> Haida Seeker

>> They only gutted the land because your people let them.  If you’re people hadn’t—

<<Users Haida Seeker and Tall-as-an-Oak were ejected>>

>> All right, enough of that bullshit.  If you boys can’t play nice, and leave your tribal quarrels in meatspace, I will show you what dumpshock feels like…
>> 1nsomniac
“The shadows never sleep, so why should I?”

>> Wasteland of not, there’s something definitely weird in the water up North.  Tread carefully up there.  Outsiders aren’t exactly welcomed with open arms these days.
>> Inquisitor

Trojan Horse – Root of the Problem (Shadowrun)

•April 28, 2014 • 1 Comment

The team is contacted by their fixer for a job that promises decent pay, however the fixer warns them about their potential employer. Though the Johnson has a clean reputation for contracting to shadowrunners, their fixer has never dealt with them and urges them to be on their guard. The meet is at 9PM in the storeroom of the Bellevue Pour House.

Scene 1 – Unconventional Conduct

The Bellevue Pour House is a dive that barely deserves mention in a district like Bellevue. It has been said that the establishment puts the “ass” in “class” and judging from the interior there would be truth to the rumours. There is a ring in the center of the bar were ork and troll bikers are hooting and hollering over two practically-naked women are wrestling in a vat of semi-congealed soy. The woman are surgically endowed and this is obviously not their first match here, seeing as they are less about proper technique and more about groping sloppily at one another in order to earn more money from the spectators.

If asked about the meet the barkeep, an ork that calls himself Moses, tells the runners that they’ll be allowed into the storeroom when the time comes, but not earlier, since he doesn’t want them mooching his stuff. Seeing as the bar is well-stocked with better alcohol than one might expect from the establishment, the argument isn’t totally devoid of merit.

Once the time for the meet arrives, Moses tells the team that they can go back into the storeroom, but not to touch anything. Waiting for them in the storeroom are two men: one is a scrawny human with his hands cuffed behind his back and the other is a Knight Errant Officer in uniform and armed. He makes no effort to go for his weapon, even if the runners do.

Welcome. I assure you that despite my instincts, I’m not here to arrest you. As much as it pains me to admit it, I am in need of your services. From what I understand from this man,” he says, indicating the cuffed man, “you are the people I want.”

This man is named Lorne Edwards, former associate of David Meath. According to Mr. Edwards here, Mr. Meath contracted your services under the guise of a neighbourhood watch to track down a certain type of BTL that was being trafficked into the city. While the way you dealt with the situation was… messy, it certainly stop the drug for the time being. However, the Triads won’t give up so easily, so we require a more permanent solution, so we don’t have this problem in the future. We want to dispatch you to Hong Kong to track down the source of this BTL and stop it for good. Knight Errant has no jurisdiction there, which is why we require you. We are prepared to handle your travel expenses and pay you an additional 6,000¥ apiece for you to locate the Triads’ source of manufacture, destroy it and determine who developed this latest software. A code snippet from their development server would be worth extra, though the code does not need to be functional.”

The Johnson does indeed want the BTL’s stopped and is willing to hire runners to get it done. Despite his obvious disdain for the team, he has hired runners before and has a good reputation for not backstabbing the teams he’s hired. Because he is hiring known felons he is intentionally low-balling the figure on payment.

Mr. Johnson is willing to haggle on payment, though he does not give the runners the option of turning down the job. After any negotiations are complete, he wires the team their flight itinerary. They have until 8AM to figure out their equipment and board their plane to Hong Kong.

Mr. Johnson
Thresholds: Matrix (1), Corporate (2), Law Enforcement (2)

1 – Mr. Johnson is Lieutenant Chris Phillips, a six year veteran for Knight Errant.
2 – Lt. Phillips has an atypical view of law enforcement for an officer from Knight Errant. He cares less for the company’s bottom line and more for the pursuit of justice. His attitude has got him in trouble from the parent company on a couple of occasions, but the perceptions of the community have made him untouchable.
3 – Began working black bag operations two years ago, when a Yakuza boss got off the hook for crimes where evidence was overwhelming against him, but pressured the jury into a non-guilty verdict. Hired runners to “see justice done”. Knight Errant doesn’t condone his methods, but sees the work he does as good PR, so they give him a long leash.
4 – Rumour has it that he works with several underworld groups, but no one has managed to “buy” him yet.

Scene 2 – New Ground

The runners arrive in Hong Kong to find the city a bustling hive of activity. Since most of their gear was likely left behind, due to customs, the runners will likely want to acquire weapons and equipment for the task ahead. As well as equipment, they are going to need information. However, the largest purveyor of information in the city are also those they are tracking down. Luckily, not all Triads play nice with one another and if the runners learned who was responsible for distributing the drugs in Seattle (Black Chrysanthemums), they can potentially find a Triad willing to deal with them.

The Red Dragons are the largest Triad in the city and have a dim view of their smaller rivals. If the runners are willing to jump through the right hoops, the Red Dragon will allow the gwailo runners to operate in their city. The Ten Thousand Lions are a small outfit, forged by the ruins of the Yellow Lotus Triad, which the Red Dragons destroyed years before. Heavy in the BTL trade, they seem like a good fit and they are currently working with the Black Chrysanthemums in some way out in Kowloon. The local Red Dragon contacts direct the runners to Kai Tak Night Market for answers.

The Kai Tak Night Market is a great place to fence goods and acquire all things illegal, but it is run by the Ten Thousand Lions and the runners will need to shake people down for information on the Desire BTLs. A firefight here could get ugly very fast. At either end of the old runway at Kai Tak Airfield are the Kowloon Bay Typhoon Shelters, which are obviously the way the BTL’s are leaving the city. The floating boat city is a rats nest of docks and moored ships. Finding a single smuggling ship here would be like finding a needle in a haystack. The locals at the marina speak a multitude of languages, including Cantonese, Hindi, Vietnamese, Bahasa and Filipino, just to name a few, so if the runners are familiar with other languages, there is likely someone here they can get information from (English and Mandarin are not readily spoken here though).

Whether they extract or bribe the information from someone, they learn of a chip manufacturing facility deep inside Kowloon. While the facility is relatively small, it employs a small number of the desperate under the watchful eye of the Black Chrysanthemums.

Scene 3 – Halting the Presses

The building in Kowloon is little more than a warehouse with an office block set in the front. The building is poorly maintained, but is still structurally sound. The Triad members will actively hunt down anyone who doesn’t belong at the building, so a fight is inevitable here. In order to keep the proper amount of fear over the employees, there is a basement level where a pack of ghouls wait for the next disappearance needs to be arranged. Not only does this building manufacture the chips, but it also eliminates the most severe of the junkies to avoid drawing the same attention the chips did in Seattle. The entrance to the basement area (old maintenance tunnels) is in the North corner of the office section, where the floor has collapsed.

This Factory, most likely inhabited somewhere in the 2050’s has been built using the flying star method of Feng Shui. For this building, water seems to be it’s element. Water in Feng Shui can also mean paths or roads, so it is applicable that the pathways through the factory are symmetrical and all aligned to the northwest corner. The layout mimics the “flying star” grid used to calculate the optimal direction for the building. In the front foyer there are dried up ponds, most likely once filled with Koi. A large divot in the front lawn suggests there was once a fountain placed there, most likely themed to the river and grid like layout of the building.

This scene is a measure of the pure level of destruction the runners can deliver to a facility. While the building and the equipment within it are all viable targets for destruction, many of the facilities are the downtrodden and desperate, who are under the oppression of the Black Chrysanthemums. Cutting down innocent civilians will earn the team Notoriety. The Triads, however, will not make the distinct between innocents and runners.

Use the stats for Organized Crime Gangs for the Triad members, though feel free to upgrade their equipment, as they are not in a part of the city that the police will come running to, should gunfire break out. Use the stats for Ghouls in the core book for the Ghouls in the basement, which will be released once the Triad realize they are under siege.

If the runners capture one of the Triads, or question one of the fleeing workers, they learn that, while the chips are printed in bulk here, the programming is done elsewhere. The Ten Thousand Lions have a software studio somewhere in Tsim Sha Tsui, where a legitimate software company covers up the Triad operation. However, they do not know the name of the front.

Scene 4 – Finding the Source

Tsim Sha Tsui is in the Yau Tsim Mong district of Hong Kong. The area is a spam zone, polluted with holographic advertisements, RFID scanners and people walking shoulder to shoulder in all directions, both tourists and locals alike. The area looks like the polished veneer of the Island skyline, but the Triads run an underground business pipeline out of the area and the tourist destinations run in all directions.

Finding which software company the Ten Thousand Lions has leverage on will require new information from local sources. There are several people the Triads have blackmail information on, but eventually one piece of information will float to the surface: a programming firm that that does contract work for Xiao-Renraku called Yau Guang Software Development had a recent addition to their payroll, but none of the regular staff know what project he is working on.

The mystery programmer is an abducted man named Temur Jarai, a Mongolian who had been working with Evo. He is a technomancer, who the Triad has leverage on and is trying to use recent knowledge acquired during his time with the megacorp.

Abandoned Warehouse - Kowloon Yau Guang Software - Upper Yau Guang Software - Ground

Yau Guang software development building was created using the “flying star” method of feng shui. It includes making a 9 square grid, the direction the building will face is determined by the years it is occupied. For the Yau Guang building the flying stars predict it should face east and that the building’s element is wood. The Eastern direction gives the front reception strong sun exposure in the afternoon/evening. The light bounces off the wooden walkway and is then channeled through the forest-like wood sculpture, that bores a path through the building guiding the light right to the core of the structure. The round splayed out design also represents the sun as It bathes the many trees and plants within with needed sunlight and brings the sun’s warmth and blessing to the employees within. The sculpture itself is of light pine, a softwood that is stained with a light golden hue, representing wealth, stability and monetary happiness. The many trees throughout the building are braided money trees, said to bring great wealth and good luck as long as they flourish. Many of the walls are decorated with a golden stained woven pine plank pattern, it acts as sound proofing and decoration. The cubicles and walls are varying shades of yellow, which in ancient Chinese culture has been equated with the color of gold. During the time of the emperors, yellow was reserved only for the emperor and his household, representing royalty and exclusivity.

The police will respond quickly, as Yau Guang is a legitimate company, whom the CEO owes a debt to the Ten Thousand Lions. Whether the police or the Triads arrive first is up to the GM. When they track down the imprisoned programmer, the runners can either extract the man or merely take what he knows. Evo has been experimenting with improving their IC by threading Resonance into the code to add new abilities into the existing code.

The runners will likely want to get the man free of the Triad’s grip (getting him out of Hong Kong somehow) and reporting back to Mr. Johnson. If they help Temur out of the city, the team can earn some extra Karma. Mr. Johnson defends his reputation and pays the runners so long as they can convince him that the BTLs have been destroyed.

Ten Thousand Lion-Funded Software Company
Thresholds: Underworld (2), Corporate (2), Regional Contacts (1)

1 – The Lions are prevalent in the Yau Tsim Mong district and have their hands in a lot of pots, thanks to their old ties from the Yellow Lotus days.

2 – While most companies are victims of the usual protection racket business, a few run software development for the Triads themselves to use.

3 – The most recent item on the Ten Thousand Lions resume is they recently kidnapped a programmer and recently put him to work for them.

4 – Yau Guang Software Development recently had a new employee added to the payroll, but no one seems to know his purpose in the company, except the president of the company.

>> I know better than to mess with the Triad’s stuff, especially on their home turf.  Combine that with working for Knight Errant and you can count me out.
>> Annarchy

>> Didn’t you lose someone close to you to BTLs, Annarchy?  That’s not enough incentive for you?
>> Informer

>> Fuck you, Derek.  Leave my feelings on drugs out of this.  I’ll deal with that in my own way.  You want to crucify yourself in some foreign city, be my guest.
>> Annarchy

Haywire Health (Shadowrun)

•March 3, 2014 • Leave a Comment

This adventure was the last convention run I ran in 2013.  There were a lot of hand-written notes on this one, which is why it took so long to produce.

The runners are contacted by their fixer in regards to a job that is time sensitive. The runners should show up ready to run and their fixer will meet them at Club Infinity at 8PM.

Scene 1 – A Quick Meeting

Club Infinity is a busy nightspot most evenings, but by the time the runners start arriving, the club is only just opening for business. The line-up outside is long and impatient, but a quick name drop of their fixer at the door will get them into the club. While there aren’t many people inside just yet, the steady influx of club goers would see the building packed in no time.

Checking commlinks for known contacts will show their fixer is already on the upper level, in one of the conference rooms. Once all the runners have arrived, he gets straight into his spiel.

Thanks for coming. I have a line on a job, but I will be upfront with you… the pay is a little below grade. Hear me out… my clients are a family who are trying to find their young son, who went missing from University Hospital a couple days ago. The police investigation is treating it like a runaway patient, but the family isn’t convinced. They are willing to pay 7,500¥ apiece for a ‘private investigation’, as they feel that Knight Errant are pursuing the wrong angle for the sake of convenience. They want you to find their son and bring him home.”

If asked what the kid was in the hospital for, the fixer tells them that he was being treated for a schizophrenic episode, which was unusually violent for a 14 year old. He had been in the hospital for about a month prior to his disappearance.

The parents are correct in that their son didn’t just wander off, but they have been lied to by the practicing doctors at University Hospital. Their son suffered from a sudden onset of AIPS (Artificially Induced Psychotropic Schizophrenia) and has become a Wild Technomancer. His abilities and what triggered them is of great interest and he’s been studied at length for the past month.

Once the runners are on board, the fixer tells them the boy’s name is Percy Foster and had been under the care of Dr. Carlos Diarno when the boy disappeared.

Matrix: The grid at the club is open and clear. The only factor that impacts Noise for any searches, is the distance of any remote hosts or devices they might search for. If they pursue a Matrix Search for information on the boy, his family or the doctor, information and thresholds follow:

Percy Foster
Threshold – Matrix (1)

1 – Son of Julie and Robert Foster. Younger of two siblings. No police record and decent grades in school.
2 – Two reports from school guidance counsellor about being bullied and the manifestations of stress in the boy’s attitudes in school.
4 – Known on the Matrix as “Mysfit42” in Virtual Shooter circles. Reputed to be a solid player and has been courted by online clans to “go pro”.
5 – Recent incident on one VS server resulted in a biofeedback blast being exchanged between a group of disgruntled players.

The Foster Family
Threshold – Matrix (1), Corporate (3)

1 – No major incidents with law enforcement or government officials. Robert works for Dolman Data Systems as a project manager. Julie is in PR at Soonan Simsense. James is the elder son and is currently applying for college. Percy is the younger son and was recently hospitalized for a psychological incident.
2 – Family not very involved in their community, though the parents work many long hours. James has taken over a lot of the home responsibilities, outside of nannies and other surrogates.
4 – Both parents work for Mitsuhama subsidiaries and the megacorp has paid for much of Percy’s medical costs.

Dr. Carlos Diarno
Threshold – Matrix (1), Medical (2)

1 – Doctor with good standing in the medical community. Specializes in psychological disorders and neuroscience.
2 – Two charges of malpractice, but both were thrown out, as cases of patients lashing out when treatment didn’t take (often due to patients not following doctor’s orders).
4 – Medical degree was at least partially sponsored by Mitsuhama when Carlos was still just a resident.
5 – University Hospital’s reining expert on AIPS and the virtuakinetic phenomenon. Has written numerous papers on Technomancers since they were first discovered.

Scene 2 – University Hospital

The first place the runners are likely to check out will be University Hospital, where Percy is reported to have walked away from. Walking through the facility though should prove to the runners that nobody could out of a hospital without someone seeing something.

Asking around with the staff in the lobby area, no one recalls seeing anything out of the ordinary. If the runners make it to the psychiatric ward without raising any alarms, the staff in the ward seems to be confused about Percy’s disappearance. Many of the staff claims they had no idea that the boy was to be discharged. Many were shocked to see the Foster boy not in his bed the next morning and when an internal investigation was done, the required paperwork for the discharge was found, signed by duty nurse Ingrid Malchus.

Ingrid is off duty the day the runners are there, but Percy’s doctor, Carlos Diarno, is on duty. If confronted, he will be providing brief answers, as he still has his rounds to do. Despite being under pressure to keep moving, he will tell the runners that he knew of the transfer (but cannot say why, due to doctor-patient privilege), but did not approve of it. The boy was moved to a facility “Better suited to treat his particular ailment”. Dr. Diarno won’t mention what facility Percy was moved to, as he doesn’t exactly know, though he has suspicions.

If the runners track down Ingrid Malchus, she tells them that she signed the transfer order, out of obligation more than any desire to. She tells them that Mitsuhama is a major sponsor of the hospital and she knows better than to reject a transfer order when a sponsor comes knocking.

If the runners tap into the Matrix host for the hospital, they quickly learn that the camera logs have been tampered with, so that all evidence of the boy’s removal was missing (though archived copies still exist). The paperwork documenting the transfer is present, but it will take a Matrix Perception and an Edit test to notice a buried, hidden icon attached. The document, in order to be legal, must include the destination clinic, but someone had taken the time to encrypt the data, to make the location much harder to extract. The transfer location is Mitsuhama’s New Providence Research Clinic.

Matrix: Aside from the distance to the item being hacked, the Hospital is a busy place with doctor’s commlinks getting paged and the constant influx of emergency phone calls. The Hospital counts as a spam zone of 1.

University Hospital
Threshold – Matrix (1), Medical (2)

1 – University Hospital is one of the leaders in medical research in the Seattle Metroplex. Tied to the University of Washington, most students of advanced medicine get their feet wet here.
2 – The extensive research done by the hospital has attracted a lot of corporate attention. Many of the research projects have AAA sponsors and those sponsors monitor their investments closely.
4 – Dr. Diarno’s research involving the brain and Matrix interactions have garnered a lot of attention from Mitsuhama.

New Providence Research Clinic
Threshold – Matrix (1), Medical (3), Corporate (3)

1 – A new state-of-the-art facility Mitsuhama built in Downtown Seattle for Medical and Biotech research. Part private hospital and part research facility, it is labelled as the foremost authority in cybernetic surgery for the wealthy.
2 – The facility is rumoured to be a close partner with University Hospital, using some of the public hospital’s research in its procedures. Occasionally, doctors from University oversee surgeries that employ their techniques when New Providence attempts them.
4 – Often, if Mitsuhama patients at University contract a rare disorder, they will be transferred to New Providence for closer study, in order to develop advanced cures for the disease.
5 – The site of New Providence was re-tasked in recent years, as the site was originally branded as a facility for Mitsuhama’s technomancer project Rose Garden, which garnered a lot of negative press.

Scene 3 – New Providence

The New Providence Clinic is a pristine building of white stone, shined metal and glass. The building looks more like an office structure than a hospital. The interior lobby spills into a wide open space that indicates the research lab is on one side and the hospital is to the other. The receptionist wears a perfected smile and directs people where they need to go, but will not hesitate to notify security if she feels that anyone coming through the front door is at all sketchy.

Whether the runners sneak in or walk in the front door, they will notice that the security in the building has been heightened. As they probe deeper into the building, the runners will eventually do something that will alert the security forces that perhaps they don’t belong (a security measure gets tripped, the receptionist ratted them out, or they got seen carrying a weapon, for example). However, whether through Matrix investigation, physical reconnaissance or getting hospital staff to talk, they learn that the hospital was hit the day before and Percy Foster was the victim of an extraction from New Providence. Camera footage of the extraction is available, so the runners can get a look at the team responsible. As the runners are finishing their investigation, however they alert security, the powers that be move in to detain them. Let the runners decide how they plan to avoid capture.

Once they are away from the New Providence Clinic, they can begin tracing the movements of the team that beat them to Percy. Using whatever resources they have available, they will learn that the boy was taken into the Puyallup Barrens. Matrix tracking ceases to be effective once the other team leaves the civilized portion of the city and will have to rely on contacts, magic and whatever tools they have at their disposal.

They eventually learn that the other team has holed themselves up in an abandoned veterinary clinic in the Barrens with a local gang for additional protection.

New Providence Research Clinic

New Providence - Detail New Providence - Floorplan

Matrix: The New Providence Clinic is off of the Mitsuhama Global Grid and due to the high priority of medical work they do, there is enough Noise reduction at work that distance is the only real factor for hacking. If the runners attempt to use the Mitsuhama Grid, odds are they do not have permissions and will immediately begin accruing Overwatch Score.

Scene 4 – Under the Ashes

The veterinary clinic the runners have holed up in are set up in Carbanado. The lava flats that destroyed the mines and farms that once dwelled here dominate the landscape, with old burned out buildings jutting out of solid rock. The air here is barely breathable, as an ashen plume coats the area as it pours down off Mount Ranier.

The indigenous people of the area hide away indoors, away from the ash cloud that covers the area. However, the local powers that be, the Chulos, patrol the area around the clinic, apparently paid off to add additional security to the remote location. There is no Matrix presence here, save for the handful of crappy commlinks in the hands of the gangers. Even the runners have powered down their gadgets, due to the condition of their quarry.

The interior of the clinic is guarded by the four runners, a few gangers and a series of traps, rigged up by the team. If the runners try to use any wirelessly enabled devices, Percy’s mind reacts violently to the influx of Matrix traffic and causes nearby electronics to go haywire. Noise in the area is a +4 modifier normally, but shoots up to +8 when the Technomancer reacts to active devices.

The original map I had of the veterinary clinic has been lost, unfortunately.  I used a single story structure with narrow hallways and tight fighting quarters, littered with bombs and a crazed monowhip-wielding adept…

When the runners cut through the other team and the gang to find their target, they find him being defended by his older brother, James. James points a Browning Ultra Power at whoever comes through the door with unsteady hands and if not talked down quickly, will open fire (rather blindly). Fearful of what Mitsuhama might have done to his brother in the name of treatment, he decided to take his tuition money, hire a runner team and get his brother out of the clinic before he became another Mitsuhama experiment. They came to the Barrens due to the low amount of Matrix traffic and because one of the runners has friends among the Chulos.

The team will have a hard time talking James down and even if they convince him to surrender (or simply render him unconscious), they will have a problem telling the family that it was an inside job. Getting their payment may prove troublesome, as they refuse to believe their own son could do such a thing. The team he hired was less than professional and left a body count within his family’s company.

Matrix: There is no Matrix infrastructure in Carbanado. Leapfrogging off of commlinks and outdated and poorly maintained backbones is the only way to reach the outside world. A Noise Rating of 2 applies while in Puyallup, on top of distance modifiers.

Clash – Team Mage

Bod 3, Agi 3, Rea 3, Str 2, Cha 6, Int 3, Log 3, Will 6
Edge 2, Ess 6, Magic 6

Physical 4, Mental 5, Social 8

Skills

Con 6 (8), Impersonation 6, Performance 6, Etiquette 4, Leadership 4, Negotiation 4, Assensing 4, Binding (Spirits of Man) 6(8), Counterspelling 4, Spellcasting (Manipulation) 6(8), Summoning (Spirits of Man) 6(8), Pistols 4, Palming (Pickpocket) 4(6), Sneaking 4, Perception 4

Qualities

Focused Concentration: 3, Mentor Spirit (Raven), Allergy (Uncommon, Extreme): Nuts, Prejudiced (Common, Biased): Mundanes

Spell Focus 4 (Manipulation, Bonded), Bound Spirit of Man: (Force 6, Services 4), Bound Spirit of Beasts: (Force 6, Services 4)

Spells

Decrease Willpower (Health), Control Actions (Manipulation), Mob Mind (Manipulation), Levitate (Manipulation), Physical Mask (Illusion)

Gear

Fichetti Security 600
Concealable Holster
Spare Clips: 2
APDS Rounds: 60

Armor Vest

Commlink: Meta Link

Flashlight

Lightsticks: 4

Low Lifestyle

Personality

For Clash, everything is disposable. Possessions, living arrangements, acquaintances, contacts, team members and even friends, to Clash they’re all the same and any one of them will be sacrificed at a moment’s notice if it serves her needs. Full on sociopathic, Clash makes effective (often brutally effective) use of the “resources” at hand. Need to get the police off her trail? Mind control a child and run them into traffic. With Clash it doesn’t matter who suffers and how as long as she comes out on top.

When working with a runner team (always a short lived endeavour) she tends to work as an advance scout, arriving well in advance of the team in order to lay the groundwork for their arrival with a combination of carefully placed resources (weapons, stolen security badges, etc.) and sabotaged defenses (guards who mysteriously fail to show up for their shift leaving security short-handed). Once the team starts their infiltration she supports them from afar using a combination of spirits and astral over-watch.

Focused on her own survival above all else, if a job is going south Clash will walk away once it is clear that the odds have turned against her.

Tactics

Clash always operates with a pair of bound spirits to support her. The spirit of man will have standing instructions to immediately use the accident power on any group that attacks her. Whereas the spirit of beasts has instructions to engage any group who attacks her starting with their magical support (if any) and then picking off the physically weakest (low strength/body) of the group before moving on to the stronger members. After the initial use of the accident power the spirit of man will use Decrease Willpower on the physically strongest (high strength/body) member of the attacking group in preparation for a Control Actions spell from Clash. Clash will then use Control Actions or Mob Mind in the most destructive manner she can think up and then try to escape in the confusion. She will never stick around in a direct confrontation and will run away at the first opportunity, often using levitate to escape from seemingly impossible locations (tall buildings, dead ends, etc.).

Deadline – Adept Assassin

Bod 4, Agi 7, Rea 5, Str 3, Cha 4, Int 5, Log 1, Will 3
Edge 3, Ess 6, Magic 6

Physical 5, Mental 4, Social 6

Skills

Exotic Melee Weapon (Monowhip) 6, Longarms 6, Gymnastics 6, Sneaking 6, Perception 3, Etiquette 3, Throwing Weapons 2, Con 2, Impersonation 2, Performance 2

Qualities

Exceptional Attribute (Agility), Distinctive Style, SINner (Criminal), Allergy (Moderate, Uncommon)

Qi Focus 4 (Bonded)

Powers

Critical Strike 6, Improved Reflexes 2, Improved Combat Ability (Monowhip)

Gear

Monofilament Whip (with Hidden Arm Slide)
Ares Desert Strike (Imaging Scope, Shock Pad, Smartgun – External, Silencer)
Spare Clips: 3
APDS Rounds: 20

Chameleon Suit – Nonconductivity 3, Thermal Damping 6
Helmet – With Low-Light, Thermographic and Flare Compensation

Commlink: Transys Avalon

Gas Mask

Gecko Tape Gloves

Low Lifestyle

Personality

Deadline is a noted assassin in Europe and loves the thrill of the hunt. The only reason he left his original hunting grounds is evade capture and eventually, he will return to further his legend and terrorize the people who dare whisper his name. Clash approached him with a job offer to help eliminate key targets too dangerous for the mage to approach and he jumped at the opportunity to hunt superior game.

While having some respectable training as a sniper, Deadline prefers the up close kill with his monowhip. He relishes in stalking close to his prey, unsuspected and killing them in a single blow. He sees himself as untouchable and his ego can interfere with the task at hand, especially when hunting a specific target.

Tactics

Deadline is a lone wolf, who works with Clash and her team solely as a means to get access to choice prey. When dealing with Deadline, the bait and ambush technique works well, so long as the bait is either agile or can endure a possible monowhip attack. Deadline is quick, so anything that keeps the adept unaware or on the ropes will be the adept’s downfall. Deadline uses stealth to get in close, using the technology he possesses to find the route of attack that will disrupt line of sight as long as possible. He will then leap into the fray and aim for a quick decapitation to prevent his location from being betrayed.

KaBoom – Arsonist

Bod 4, Agi 5, Rea 4, Str 4, Cha 3, Int 4, Log 5, Will 3
Edge 5, Ess 2.3

Physical 6, Mental 6, Social 4

Skills

Demolitions 6, Gymnastics 5, Running 5, Swimming 5, Automatics 4, Throwing Weapons 4, Clubs 4, Chemistry 4, Hardware 4, Sneaking 4, Unarmed Combat 3, Perception 3, Survival (Urban) 2(4)

Qualities

Analytical Mind, Home Ground (Puyallup, Street Politics), Bad Rep, SINner (Criminal)

Implants

Cybereyes 3 (Flare Compensation, Low-Light, Smartlink, Thermographic Vision, Vision Enhancement 2, Vision Magnification)
Cyberears 2 (Audio Enhancement 3, Damper, Select Sound Filter 2, Spatial Recognizer)
Wired Reflexes 1
CyberGun – SMG

Gear

Extendable Baton
Ares Crusader II (Gas-Vent II, Smartgun – Internal, Concealable Holster)
HK-227 (Integral Sound Suppressor, Retractable Stock, Smartgun – Internal)
Spare Clips: 2 Crusader, 2 HK-227
Regular Pistol Rounds: 40
Explosive Pistol Rounds: 40
Regular SMG Rounds: 40
Hollow Point SMG Rounds: 40

5 Flash-Bang Grenades
5 High Explosive Grenades
9kg Rating 6 Foam Explosives
10 Detonator Caps

Armor Jacket

Commlink: Hermes Ikon

Fake ID 4 with Fake License 4 for Possession of a Firearm, Conceal & Carry Firearms, Non-Civilian Cybernetics)

Low Lifestyle

Personality

KaBoom is insane. He is a raving pyromaniac who sees explosions and the resulting carnage as an art form and that he is an accomplished artist . Once a member of the Chulos in Puyallup, the gang has increased the distance they maintain when dealing with KaBoom. His penchant for artistic flair and pure destruction caught Clash’s attention and she felt she could use his skills to wipe out her foes when they drew too close.

It is unclear where KaBoom learned to handle explosives, but he is rather skilled at it. He is a mid-range fighter, using automatic weaponry in a spray and pray mentality. Ideally, he’ll have had time to rig the place with a few charges and lure the enemy into the blast radius with a fighting withdrawal. He is not above going out in a suicide bombing if backed into a corner.

Tactics

KaBoom may be nuts, but he’s not an idiot. He prefers to rig the place he is defending with charges either to kill the intended target outright, or bring down the surrounding environment for the most possible damage. He will coax his opponents into the range of one of his pre-set charges and set them off, using the chaos that follows for him to move in and finish off any survivors with a hail of bullets.

>> Aww, some poor wageslave lost their kid.  Ain’t that a shame.  They aren’t offering enough for me to care.
>> Burn

>> While I’m not quite so mercenary as our ork friend here, I have to agree there’s very little to go on.  I mean, they named their son Percy.  Are we sure he didn’t just run away?
>> Skeptik

>> I dunno, the area around the hospital went a little nuts around the time of this kid’s disappearance.  Anyone know why he was in the hospital in the first place?
>>  Jestyr

>> An unspecified psychotic episode.  Details are a bit sketchy and right when doctors were starting to piece together events, this kid gets taken.  I think there’s something going on with this kid and someone wanted to disappear the kid before too many people figured it out.
>> Torrent

The Obligatory Excuse Post

•January 31, 2014 • 2 Comments

So, I haven’t posted anything in a while…

It’s not like I haven’t wanted to… honest.  I do have a couple runs worth of stuff to post, though gaming over the past couple months has been exceptionally sporadic.  Truth be told, my personal life got a tad busy and I have had an impressive lack of free time.  With the coming weeks, as I ramp up for my first Convention of 2014, I hope to post material more frequently going forward.  Despite opting to shelf the game, I find myself working on new CthulhuTech material, so I may have another one of those to post too.

Who knew?

Hope everyone had a happy new year and Christmas and the month of January… damn I suck…

New material soon.  Promise!

J.

Lost in the Sands (Shadowrun)

•November 20, 2013 • Leave a Comment

This adventure was designed for the 2013 Convention season and was run as a high-energy one-off to introduce players to the new Edition.

The team is contacted by their fixer for a job abroad.  The pay is promised as ‘competitive’ and the team will be compensated in both equipment and cash.  If they are interested in hearing the details, Mr. Johnson has a private room booked at Club Penumbra for 9PM.

Scene 1 – The Meet

Club Penumbra is subdued in comparison to most of the nightspots in the metroplex, but there are still enough people to allow the runners to fade into the crowd.  Of the private rooms in the back, only one is booked tonight, so finding where they are to meet Mr. Johnson is straightforward.

At the appointed time, the runners can go in and meet their employer.  He is a Caucasian man with a laid back attitude and a movie star smile.  “Hey guys!  Come on in and grab a chair.  Anyone want anything before we begin?”

Once the team has settled in, Mr Johnson maintains his casual demeanor, but his words carry the weight of his request.  “All right, down to business.  I don’t know if any of you are fans of the Desert Wars pay-per-view specials, but the original series is still the most popular.  Ares won the latest round of the Desert Wars and it was due to a prototype drone they deployed, they’ve called the Shrike.  It is a high-speed, low altitude reconnaissance drone that is equipped with an aerosol launcher.  While it is likely to be used as a gas crowd suppression unit, they used the drone to great effect in the Desert Wars to spray enemy units with RFID tags, to allow them to track enemy movements and ambush them accordingly.  However, during manoeuvres, a Shrike got shot and went down with the RFID dispersal unit still on board.  We want you to find that drone and retrieve what remains of it or its payload.

“During the off-season corporate soldiers are not allowed into the Sahara, which is where you come in.  We will equip you with the basics for survival in the desert and direct you to a nearby town where you can acquire a desert guide.  They will take you into the desert and take you to likely places of salvage and trade, so you can acquire the drone.  For this retrieval mission, I’m willing to pay you 12,000¥ apiece, plus you can keep the equipment we provide for your desert tour.”

Mr. Johnson works for Ares and is honest about wanting to retrieve the drone.  The drone, on top of the RFID dispersal unit, contains a state of the art sensor system, above what a drone of that size could typically use.  It’s the sensor unit he doesn’t want their rivals to acquire.  He is willing to negotiate a small amount prior to the mission, but on paper it is a simple retrieval mission.  Only the environment is the complication.

Once the runners take the job, Mr. Johnson smiles broadly.  “Excellent!  We will fly you out by private charter, so you can bring any reasonable equipment with you.  You’ll be flown out to Tunisia and then you’ll sail by ship into the ruins of Tripoli, where you should be able to slip into the desert unnoticed.  Your equipment will be given to you on the ship out of Tunisia.  Best of luck out there.”

Matrix – Club Penumbra’s ARO has a heavy outer space theme.  Despite how busy the club is, the Noise Level of the interior of the club is 0.  Once the runners browse outside of the club, they are subject to distance penalties and crossing grids, if applicable.

Scene 2 – Entering the Sahara

The runners can bring any weapons they can conceal going into the airport (they may be able to bypass customs, but belt-fed guns are still going to raise alarms).  The flight, aside from being long, is uneventful.  Once aboard the small ship in the Tunisian harbour, a humourless man of obvious military upbringing hands out equipment to the runners.

  • There is a desert camouflage suit (12 Armor) that has been modified with insulation and environmental seals.  They are given a helmet with polarized HUD (+2 Armor) and fabric to seal the wind out from their neck.
  • An environmentally sealed Ares Predator V to keep the sand from getting into the weapon and causing it to jam.
  • A cooled canteen for storing water.
  • Water purification tablets and radiation pills (even though Libya was nuked roughly 65 years before, there are still pockets of fallout in the desert).

The soldier tells them to head toward the town of Al Qaryah (about 300km south of Tripoli) to meet a guide named Rashad and acquire last minute supplies.

Al Qaryah is little more than a ghost town, filled with merchants and entrepreneurs who have opened restaurants and shops catering to the soldiers in town for the Desert Wars.  The air is full of the sounds of commerce and smells of local cuisine.  Corporate logos from each of the Big Ten are present here and soldiers from rival companies seem to be willing to rub shoulders at this particular watering hole.  The runners will need to be careful not to mention the salvage operation in the Sahara near corporate soldiers, or find themselves being detained by the forces stationed here.

In a remote bar on the outside of the village, they find a hovel that soldiers don’t frequent.  The runners will find it recommended by those who don’t dare enter the desert.  Inside the meet a man named Rashad, who has been weathered considerably but is vastly regarded as one of the best guides in the country.  For a fee of 2000¥, he will take them where they need to go.  Upon leaving the bar, a group of Saeder-Krupp soldiers accost the runners and their guide, calling out the guide for leading yet more people into the desert.  Leave it to the runners to decide if they choose to resolve the matter diplomatically or with violence.

Matrix – What remains of Libya was absorbed by Egypt after being nuked.  While Egypt has its own grid, they have not extended the grid into Libya fully.  Access is spotty at the best of times.  Within Tripoli, where the corps have established a port, the Egypt grid is accessible.  The ARO looks like the architecture of ancient Egypt.  Noise is 2, due to outdated hardware piping in the Matrix.  Outside of Tripoli, the Egyptian grid is only accessible by bootleg retransmitters.  Noise is 6 in Al Qaryah.  Outside Al Qaryah, in the desert, Noise as high as 14 due to there being no infrastructure at all.

Scene 3 – The Sandy Wastes

Leaving behind the small desert town, the runners are faced with the extremes of the desert; scorching hot during the day and very cold at night.  Rashad turns out to be a good guide and highlights several tricks he has learned over the years for finding waypoints through the desert.  While GPS devices work in the desert, all satellite images of the Sahara have been blocked, to prevent teams from gaining an unfair advantage during the events.  The Bedouin have placed buoys in the sand that record everything from wind movements, sand depths and any passersby.  Rashad knows the encryption key to these buoys and uses them to trace the movements of the nomad encampments through the desert.  After two days in the desert (see Hazard Pay for rules on exposure), the group finally happens upon the Bedouin encampment.  They are set up along the shores of an oasis; roughly a dozen tents have been erected.  There are people patrolling the camp’s outskirts and the runners can make out what appears to be a scrap heap at the heart of the camp, where the nomads have set up a bartering shop.

If the runners show up to deal, the Bedouin refuse to deal with them, because they detest Rashad.  They refer to him as a blasphemer and that he split off from their band to form his own group.  If the team presses Rashad, he tells them that he decided that there was more money in being a guide than a junk dealer he those who agreed with him left the group.  It will take a solid Negotiation roll to be allowed into the camp.  If it comes down to a fight, the nomads are Professional Level 1 as per the Core Book, but instead of pistols, possess Automatics and are armed with AK-97s:

If the runners either defeat the Bedouin easily, or manage to Negotiate with them a rival runner team descends on the camp, after something else the Bedouin have supposedly unearthed.  The runners should be at least Professional Rating 4.

Low Tier Runner Team (Grunts)

Agi 4(6), Bod 4, Rea 5(6), Str 4, Cha 3, Int 5, Log 3, Will 5

Ess 6, Edg 3, Init 10(11) + 1D6(2D6)

Phys 6             Ment 6             Soc 6

Skills:  Athletics 4, Close Combat 6, Pistols 5, Automatics 7, Perception 6, Sneaking 5, Survival 5

Augmentations: Cybereyes (with flare compensation, smartlink, low-light), Muscle Toner, Wired 1

Gear:  AK-97 (smartlink, shock pad and gas-vent 2), Ares Predator V, Erika Elite, Armor Vest with insulation

For an added quirk, through in some local wildlife.  It is an oasis after all and all desert life is drawn to water (options are scorpions, snakes, camels and paranorms like Nova Scorpions or Sand Chameleons).

After clearing out the camp of hostiles, if the Bedouin are alive and willing (or incapacitated and forced to talk), they tell the runners they don’t have the drone they’re after, but gives them directions and guideposts to another location to the southeast.  They can provide guideposts to line the way.  If the runners killed everything that moved, Rashad will find some information in the tent of the camp elder.

The journey to the second site can be fraught with perils previously unused at the Bedouin camp (runners/corp team, paracritters, having to cross irradiated dunes, etc) at GM discretion.

The alternate site is strewn about the sand without much organization.  The area is at the edge of a rocky outcropping, leading into a series of rocky chasms.  The winds have shaped the dunes into a bowl-like clearing.  The wreckage here is typically larger than the Bedouin salvage yard, including half a downed attack helicopter.  Searching the field will reveal a few things to the astute:

The drone they’re after is here.  They are not alone, but these junk collectors act like predators stalking prey.  There is a strange magical presence here, that with an assensing test over the site, any magicians will notice an eerie, off-feeling power and a coppery taste in the back of their throat.

This band of junk collectors are working with a blood mage, who is slaughtering trespassers in order to power magical rituals to conceal the site from Desert Wars groups.  When the runners find the Shrike, they also find a band of Renraku soldiers laying dead around the drone.  The hunters attack when the runners find what their after.  If the runners are being cautious and keeping their eyes on the surrounding dunes and rocks, the enemy mage will craft illusions to keep the runners off their guard.

The enemy mage is their guide Rashad.  He is a high level blood mage and his last ritual is running out of fuel.  He has lured the runners here in order to kill them and use their lives to power the illusion that conceals the site during the PPV specials.

Using the stats for the Bedouin nomads, replace pistols with Longarms and increase the skill to 5.  They nomads are using weathered Ruger 100s to snipe the runners from the rocks surrounding the site and from under the sand behind them.  Once the grunts are wearing out, Rashad unleashes his Dust Storm spell and raises the dead Renraku soldiers as Homunculi.

Bedouin Blood Mage – Rashad

Agi 5, Bod 3, Rea 4, Str 2, Cha 3, Int 5, Log 3, Will 5

Ess 6, Edg 4, Mag 6, Init 9 + 1D6

Grade 4 Initiate – Masking, Sacrifice, Flexible Signature, Centering

Physical – 4                 Mental – 6                               Social – 6

Qualities

High Pain Tolerance

Reduced Sight (one eye)

Wanted

Moderate Addiction (Psyche)

Prejudice (Caucasian, Biased)

Skills

Spellcasting 9                                                  Egyptian Theology 7

Counterspelling 9                                            Anatomy 7

Summoning 9                                                  Magic Theory 9

Binding 7                                                        Local Area Knowledge (Sahara) 7

Blades 7                                                          Arabic N

Assensing 7                                                     Ancient Egyptian 4

Perception 7                                                    English 7

Survival 4

Navigation 4

Tracking 4

Spells

Hydrate, Rot, Sandblast, Detox, Trid Phantasm (aka Mirage), Mist (aka Dust Storm), Increase Reflexes, Shape Earth

Gear

Egyptian Ceremonial Knife (Apotropaic)

Renraku Sensei w/ AR Gloves, Biometric Reader, Subvocal Mic

Armor Clothing

Desert Goggles, Desert Tent, Desert Survival Kit, Snake Mesh Socks, Thermal Air Bag (all from Hazard Pay)

Image Link, Vision Enhancement 3 (in Desert Goggles)

Squatter Lifestyle

Rashad will kill any runner whom he can, but will try to incapacitate any magically active runners, as they will fuel the ritual for longer.  Once the team has dealt with their assailants and finished off their duplicitous guide, they will need to harvest what they can from the drone (hopefully getting what the Johnson wanted) and then they will have to find their way out of the desert without a guide before they expire from the elements.

They could possibly make some extra cred from offering up the location of the drone graveyard to any corp with a stake in the next Desert Wars.

>> What’s so important about a flying aerosol container that warrants sending runners into the fuckin’ desert?
>> Burn

>> A few friends of mine in the corporate sector tell me there’s some sweet hardware packed into that casing that isn’t even on the market yet.  Something that could bankrupt some poor R&D middle manager in a real hurry if the competition got it.
>> Phantom

>> I’ve seen enough of the Desert Wars to know that the Sahara isn’t just some boring lump of blowing sand.  There’s a lot that can go wrong out there, even if you’re properly prepared.  I’ll stick to the hazards I’m used to here in the city, thank you…
>> Wraith

>> Seen or participated in, Wraith?
>> <Anonymous User>

Green Plan (Shadowrun)

•October 15, 2013 • Leave a Comment

Scene 1 –Meeting the Employer

The runners are contacted by their fixer and tells them that he has a lead on a high-profile protection gig that could open up some doors in the corporate sector. If they are willing to meet with Mr. Johnson, he would like to meet them at Club Penumbra for 8PM.

Club Penumbra is quieter than many of the clubs in Seattle these days, but the place still sees quite a bit of runner activity. Stepping inside, a local group is on the stage with a blend of electronic music and spoken word. Mr. Johnson doesn’t show up until a few minutes before the meet is scheduled to begin. Flanked by a couple professional bodyguards, Mr. Johnson’s demeanour is one of projected confidence, though anyone trained in reading body language shows that this is an act and the man is extremely nervous.

He settles into a chair that faces the main exit with his bodyguards covering his back and he gets straight down to business with the runners. “Your fixer assures me that your team is professional in their conduct, so I will get right down to it. There are certain criminal elements in this city that are unhappy with how a recent product of my employer’s worked. As a result, death threats have been made against several people in the company, myself included. However, where others have been sent threatening messages, the threats made in my direction have continued and escalated. Out family pet was recently butchered and notes have been left at my children’s school. I am therefore forced to assume that threats against me are very real. The company has assured me that they will keep my family and I safe, but I have concerns about a public meeting I am expected to attend tomorrow. I will leave my family’s security to the company, but my personal safety, I would like to hire additional security to be certain. To hire you for 24 hours of protection, starting tomorrow morning at 6AM, I would pay you each 8,000¥. I hope that the threats have escalated as far as they are going to and you will make easy money for a dull day, but I must be sure. Will you take the job?”

Mr. Johnson is a man named Damian Rodriguez, a PR executive for Aztechnology. It’s his job to smooth things over with the general public when Aztechnology gets bad press in the Seattle region. The poorly received product he refers to is a type of fertilizer made by Austrafarm, one of their subsidiaries. The fertilizer created greater yields from crops, as promised, but when it reached the ground water, the by-product was toxic to the local fish. Many in the ecological circles have vocally protested and some orchestrated shadow ops to leak evidence to the media, that Aztech knew about the toxic properties, but launched the product anyways, hoping only to sell the product to inland farmers, but naturally retailers were happy to sell the item to anyone who would pay.

If any deckers in the group learn of who Rodriguez works for and of the environmental violation being held over their head, they could use that (and his desperation) against him to leverage a little more money out of him, however, this private security detail is coming out of his own pocket, so his means are limited.

If the team signs on, he nods in appreciation. “Thank you. Meet me at the Glaston Motel on 8th Street for 6AM sharp tomorrow morning. I will provide instruction on where we are expected at that time.

Matrix: The ARO of the Penumbra is an outer space theme, with everything that is a part of the club tied into the theme Noise level from the club is insignificant, so the only Noise modifier will be due to distance from the hack source.

Mr. Johnson (Damian Rodriguez)
Threshold – Matrix (1), Corporate (1)

1 – Mr. J’s name is Damian Rodriguez. He’s a PR firefighter for Aztechnology.
2 – Local to Seattle, he is a master of spin doctoring and downplaying Aztechnology’s travesties in the public eye.
3 – Normally put to work on the company’s military campaigns, he is out of his element in dealing with an environmental disaster.
5 – Local environmental activists have been targeting Rodriguez due to his aim to sweep this latest breach under the rug.

Austrafarm Incident
Threshold – Matrix (1), Environmental (1)

1 – Austrafarm worked on a new fertilizer that ended up being toxic when introduced to the water table. Despite producing greater yields to farmers, the product is due to be pulled from the market for reevaluation.
2 – Evidence has been leaked to the media that shows the upper executives at Aztechnology knew of the environmental impacts, but launched anyways.
3 – Aztechnology is preparing a media blitz for their new product in consumer goods to distract the public from the incident, while their PR team goes to work.
4 – Some say Aztechnology will continue to sell the product privately in very small quantities to the target farmers, away from major water sources.
5 – Austrafarm has been targeted by threats of a terrorist attack for their role in designing the product (though they didn’t have a hand in its public sale).

Scene 2 – Public Dismissal

The Glaston Motel is a coffin motel; a far-cry from what Mr. Johnson is likely accustomed to. It is a sure sign of the level of paranoia the man has reached in terms of his safety. He is escorted out by his bodyguards, and is led to a waiting car. If the runners insist on Mr. Johnson riding with them, the guards reluctantly agree, but will follow close behind in their own vehicle.

The Seattle Metroplex Convention Center is where Damian is giving his press conference to the media and the public. There will be large civilian presence in the building, which will complicate matters should violence ensue.

It turns out that Mr. Johnson’s fears are justified. The local TerraFirst cell has been activated and sent to wipe out Aztechnology’s spokesman. If they succeed, they will put the Aztechnology executives into a state of fear. If they fail… well, they’ll have a diversion for what else they have planned.

There are three cell members in the crowd. One is a simple gunman, who will go for a gun taped under a chair and try to put a bullet in Mr. Johnson during the Q&A session. The second is an eagle shaman, who has replaced a member of the Aztechnology security staff and will exploit the chaos created by the gunman’s failed attempt. The third is a member of the convention center’s staff, who has arranged for explosives to be set up along the escape route that Mr. Johnson is likely to take.

The fight should be chaotic, as the people in the center attempt to flee once the fighting starts, breaking up lines of fire and causing enough distractions that the runners may be hard pressed to both keep Mr. Johnson safe and deal with the assailants. If the runners are able to detain one of the would-be assassins, they can check the commlinks of those detained and if they can crack the encryption, find evidence of a plot to steal a truck. Hacking the tag associated with the note, they can learn more about the plan.

Terrafirst has stolen a tanker truck full of the contraband fertilizer, rigged it with explosives and it is currently on the road, heading for the Aztechnology building where many who received the death threats work. The truck is moving through several busy neighbourhoods on route to its ultimate destination, in order to dissuade anyone from assaulting the truck.

Unfortunately for the runners, the Johnson’s family was relocated to the facility in order to provide protection for them and with the amount of fertilizer in the truck, the blast will destroy more than just the compound. The vehicle has been wirelessly disabled, so they can’t hack it remotely. Sending a spirit would spook the terrorists to trigger the panic button that would destroy the truck early. It falls to the team to try and stop the truck before it arrives.

If the runners threaten to walk away, as it wasn’t part of the original contract, Mr. Johnson will plead with them to save his family, offer them as much as he can (an additional 2,000¥ each) and offer them each a favour in the future. However, this will likely earn them notoriety, knowing that the blast could kill hundreds but walking away anyways.

Matrix: The runners can gain access to the host of the SMCC just by asking Aztech security. They won’t be thrilled opening up the system to runners, but they aren’t willing to sacrifice Damian’s safety either. If the runners use the SMCC host to try and pull any information not relevant to their current job, the system will revoke their privileges and unleash IC on them.

Host Rating 7
Attack 8, Sleaze 7, Data Processing 9, Firewall 10

Available IC: Acid, Blaster, Crash, Jammer, Killer, Patrol, Probe, Track

Scene 3 – Rolling Bomb

The runners have the route the truck is taking through Seattle, but they don’t have real idea of how far along they are along the route. As they set out, the truck is already about halfway to the target. It will pass through a residential neighbourhood and a busy commercial district before smashing through the gate at Aztechnology and exploding in a disastrous manner. The truck is being escorted by two motorcycles and two sedans with gunmen on board. The passenger of the truck is armed with a grenade launcher and has services from a loaned spirit (a toxic earth spirit (Sludge), though the passenger doesn’t know the spirit’s true nature).

If the driver feels he has no recourse, he will hit the panic button installed in the dashboard to blow up the truck. With luck, the runners will stop the truck first, or have a capable decker to prevent the transmitter from sending the signal. If the panic button is pressed and the truck doesn’t explode, the driver will set the autopilot (which means the truck then runs wirelessly) and head out to manually trigger the device. If the runners shoot him, there is no one left on the truck to stop the vehicle and they will need to get aboard the runaway vehicle to ensure it doesn’t arrive at its destination.

As long as the Johnson isn’t killed and the truck doesn’t explode, the runners will get paid what they were promised.

Conestoga Trailblazer with Trailer
Hand -3, Speed 3/2, Accel 1, Bod 20, Armor 10, Pilot 2, Sensor 1, Seats 3

For the TerraFirst members protecting the tanker, use the Gangers and Street Scum stats, though substitute the pistols skill for Automatics.

Sludge Spirit (Force 5)

B: 8, A: 4, R: 7, S: 8, C: 5, I: 5, L: 5, W: 5, Ess 5, Mag: 5
Init: 12 + 2D6

Skills: Assensing, Astral Combat, Dodge, Exotic Ranged Weapon, Perception, Unarmed Combat
Powers: Astral Form, Anaphylaxis, Binding, Engulf, Materialization, Movement, Sapience, Search

Optional Power: Accident

Anaphylaxis – Causes a system-wide allergic reaction. Treat as an inhalation vector toxin attack With Speed: Immediate and Damage 8P. Armor does not help, but air filtration devices will. If the damage is not fully resisted, the victim goes into anaphylactic shock: muscle spasms and systemic failure unless treated. The target takes an additional box of damage every turn until they die from cardiovascular breakdown unless treated by First Aid (2) with the appropriate medication, or an Antidote, Detox or Heal Spell.

>> Do I really care about some corporate dweeb and his family getting killed?  Bout time one of em saw things from our side.
>> Burn

>> Heart of gold, like always, Burn.  His money’s as good as anyone else’s.  Why should one person be held responsible for his company’s mistake?
>> Glasgow

>> That’s just it… holding some PR rep responsible makes no sense.  There’s something else going on here…
>> Pyramid Watcher

 
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