Author Topic: World savers?  (Read 284 times)

PauloAM

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World savers?
« on: (20:59:04/09-05-17) »
Hello chumers,

In the Shadowrun Returns game series, the runners always end up saving the whole city from some menace, thus becoming "heroes", albeit unsung ones. But Shadowrunners aren't really heroes, they're actually criminals trying to score heaps of cash. So how does that fit with the scenario?

I wanna know how do YOU gms out there finish your campaigns. What was the  last goal? The final battle? Was it epic?

ShadowcatX

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #1 on: (07:37:38/09-06-17) »
I like some of both. Some good deeds are done purely out of self interest. I especially like putting runners in positions to stop terrible events that they have helped cause.

Sphinx

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #2 on: (10:09:29/09-06-17) »
I've been playing Shadowrun since First Edition, run campaigns in four different states and online, and I don't think I've ever played with a team of PCs that viewed themselves purely as "criminals trying to score heaps of cash." Most groups were more like "The A-Team" or "Leverage" -- criminals and mercenaries, maybe, but still trying to do the right thing more often than not. After all, most players  want to be the heroes of the story, not the villains.

Jack_Spade

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #3 on: (11:00:23/09-06-17) »
Right,
also you can't help but wanting to save the world - after all it's where the runners keep all their stuff.  ;)

Usually, runners don't become runners because they want to get rich (in that case they could become mercenaries in war zones), but because they are dissatisfied with the norms of society.
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PauloAM

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #4 on: (12:56:25/09-06-17) »
Yea, i guess this all makes sense. Maybe i should settle and call runners "anti-heroes" ? They're not necessarily evil, just rebels and survivors, and since saving the world is not much of a tough choice if you wanna stay alive...hell, let them save the world!

Tecumseh

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #5 on: (14:31:30/09-06-17) »
For what it's worth, Jordan Weisman - one of the original creators of Shadowrun - answered a similar question during a Reddit AMA five years ago. Here's what he said (emphasis added):

I enjoy creating and telling stories in complex worlds with shades of gray rather than stark black and white because it gives the writer more legitimate and compelling points of view to work from. ...
Shadowrun has it's own version of what honor and duty means. While an RPG allows and encourages each GM to create their own version of the world they are playing in, in my version of Shadowrun the runners are classical anti-heroes meaning that they are totally outside the "law" doing things that disrupt society but they do live by an internal code of honor and duty to each other and to the SINless, the poor souls without system identification numbers that live in the slums and are prayed upon by gangs and corps with equal abandon. In my version of the game the runners are often the only hope the SINless have.[/quote]

PauloAM

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #6 on: (19:35:22/09-06-17) »
For what it's worth, Jordan Weisman - one of the original creators of Shadowrun - answered a similar question during a Reddit AMA five years ago. Here's what he said (emphasis added):

I enjoy creating and telling stories in complex worlds with shades of gray rather than stark black and white because it gives the writer more legitimate and compelling points of view to work from. ...
Shadowrun has it's own version of what honor and duty means. While an RPG allows and encourages each GM to create their own version of the world they are playing in, in my version of Shadowrun the runners are classical anti-heroes meaning that they are totally outside the "law" doing things that disrupt society but they do live by an internal code of honor and duty to each other and to the SINless, the poor souls without system identification numbers that live in the slums and are prayed upon by gangs and corps with equal abandon. In my version of the game the runners are often the only hope the SINless have.
[/quote]

Wow, no better answer to have than the creator himself!  Thanks for sharing this!

SunRunner

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #7 on: (08:52:34/09-07-17) »
Just look at comic book super heroes. Most of them are in fact wanted criminals or at least have very tense relation ships with law enforcement at least. One of the tropes I use is doing the right thing for the wrong reasons. Here is the catch saving an orphanage full of innocent kids is still a good act, and lord knows it will play well with the locals and earn you heaps of public respect in the surrounding neighborhood. But if the team was only there because they were getting a paycheck and were totally willing to walk away and let all the innocent children be killed by the local gang if they were not paid means they are not totally good guys. Also doing a run they know is totally illegal and they are only doing it because they are paid does not mean they dont stumble upon the insect shaman and his hive in the sewers with 100s of flesh form merges less then an hour away from hatching. When they make the choice to engage the Hive because they know no one else can get here in time to stop another Bug City event they are still heroes. Sure it might be mostly motivated by self interest as they know they are likely to be in blast radius and or fall out zone when the Thor shots and nukes start landing but it dont change the fact they engaged an established insect hive and saved a lot of civilian lives in the process.

ShadowcatX

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #8 on: (09:12:40/09-07-17) »
Just look at comic book super heroes. Most of them are in fact wanted criminals or at least have very tense relation ships with law enforcement at least. One of the tropes I use is doing the right thing for the wrong reasons. Here is the catch saving an orphanage full of innocent kids is still a good act, and lord knows it will play well with the locals and earn you heaps of public respect in the surrounding neighborhood. But if the team was only there because they were getting a paycheck and were totally willing to walk away and let all the innocent children be killed by the local gang if they were not paid means they are not totally good guys. Also doing a run they know is totally illegal and they are only doing it because they are paid does not mean they dont stumble upon the insect shaman and his hive in the sewers with 100s of flesh form merges less then an hour away from hatching. When they make the choice to engage the Hive because they know no one else can get here in time to stop another Bug City event they are still heroes. Sure it might be mostly motivated by self interest as they know they are likely to be in blast radius and or fall out zone when the Thor shots and nukes start landing but it dont change the fact they engaged an established insect hive and saved a lot of civilian lives in the process.

This makes me think of the firefly episode Jaynestown.

SunRunner

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #9 on: (12:12:35/09-07-17) »
That would be a good example of what I am talking about ;)

Tecumseh

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #10 on: (17:16:11/09-07-17) »
I haven't seen that episode, but my coworker is wearing a Jaynestown t-shirt today. He came over to talk to me while I was reading this forum post. I saw Jaynestown on my screen and looked right and saw Jaynestown on his shirt. Small world, I suppose.

The Wyrm Ouroboros

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #11 on: (21:47:08/09-07-17) »
Remember that 'saving the city' does not automatically mean 'altruistic' - because 'The City' and 'The Country' and 'The World' are all likely places that the PCs live; they're not just saving a place or something, they're saving their own asses, homes, friends, contacts, stuff, etc.  They may also be trying to make sure that their names are not on some atrocity that would get large amounts of heavily-armed individuals hunting for the perpetrator - which is another way of saying once again that they're trying to save their own asses.

That said, just because they make their livelihood by doing bad things and committing crimes doesn't automatically mean that they're psychotics without compassion.  As Zangief said, "Just because you are 'bad guy' does not make you a bad guy."  Sometimes you just can't stomach doing something quite as nasty as Johnson wants you to..
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Crimsondude

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #12 on: (22:13:24/09-07-17) »
I haven't seen that episode, but my coworker is wearing a Jaynestown t-shirt today. He came over to talk to me while I was reading this forum post. I saw Jaynestown on my screen and looked right and saw Jaynestown on his shirt. Small world, I suppose.


#gamergate

Reaver

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Re: World savers?
« Reply #13 on: (22:08:57/10-19-17) »
I have an example of a run my GM threw at us recently.

We were hired by a Johnson to go in and add several lines of pre-generated code to a specific file on a Corp server located in downtown Seattle. The company name was pretty non descript: Atherton Enterprises, so at first we didn't think anything of it. The run came with all the usual caveats: No death count, no noise, no alarms. They wanted no one to know that the file had been tampered with. The job had to be completed in the next 5 days.


For our team, this is right up our alley, as 3/4 of the team is about infiltration. (the other 1/4 is all about maximum firepower, but they are not totally inept at stealth either)

SO we got to work with the usual legwork. Background checks on Johnson so we know exactly who or what we are dealing with when the run is over. Background, company history and specialty of Atherton Enterprises. Scoping out the building and security, and finally examining the code pack we were to insert. (you don't actually trust your Johnsons, do you?!?!?)

The Johnson was just that, a Professional talent scout for a AAA Corp by association. (For a Medtech Corp, owned by NeoNet)   
Atherton Enterprises turned out to be a real hassel to track back, but we eventually discovered that it was a private Corp, owned by a Louise Atherton, and it was involved Cancer research.
The building new, but the security was actually very sub-par. Atherton Enterprises had very little extra security that the building owners didn't supply, and the supplied security was... marginal.
The code pack was a huge puzzle for our Techno to pull apart and figure out what it was to do. But eventually she worked out that it's only purpose was to invert some numbers in a complex formula, but hid the inversion from being noticed. What this would do, we had no idea.

Getting in and into the secured computer was more of a challenge then we thought (Nothing goes as planned. EVER.) but we got our techno in and she went to work - or so we thought. While we were all sitting on our thumbs covering her for what should have been a 10 minute job, ended up taking 30 minutes (requiring the team to improvise several distractions to keep security from finding her, but not so much of a distraction that it raised alarms.) Turns out she was studying what the code packet would do, and what the file was about and not actually inserting it!

Turns out that Atherton Enterprises had figured out a treatment for childhood lymphoma that increased survival rates to 95% even if treatments were started in the second stage the cancer progression. The code packet changed the treatment and made it toxic. So toxic that it would actually speed up the progression of the cancer and make it untreatable. To make matters worse, it was scheduled for human testing the next month after having completed animal and simulation testing the previous year. There was 10,000 kids lined up to be treated with the drug in the next 6 months.

Once we found out, we walked out. refunded 75% of the deposit, and told the Johnson to never contact us again.




« Last Edit: (22:17:27/10-19-17) by Reaver »
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