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what now? to punish the players or not?

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Shanfara

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« Reply #15 on: (18:33:17/09-28-10) »
First, thank you everyone for the suggestions

What's the country involved, anyways?

They're in Kitimat, in Tsimshian, Fall 2070.


The lack of obvious balance between mundanes and awakened casters enhances the game and encourages creativity and role playing.

Frankie the Fomori

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« Reply #16 on: (19:16:11/09-28-10) »
Quote
In history, the term protectorate has two different meanings. In its earliest inception, which has been adopted by modern international law, it is an autonomous territory that is protected diplomatically or militarily against third parties by a stronger state or entity. In exchange for this, the protectorate usually accepts specified obligations, which may vary greatly, depending on the real nature of their relationship. However, it retains sufficient measure of sovereignty and remains a state under international law.

All I have is the 6WA that has Tismshian as a protectorate of Salish, but if they use this as a general guideline then maybe the local Government would want the PC's to strike against the Salish, I really doubt that they are happy with the situation as of now. If on the flip side and Salish runs everything from government to military then they could use the PC to hunt down nationalists, maybe even make them seem like the good guys and leave a nasty tate in the runners mouth as they gun them down!!!!

Critias

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« Reply #17 on: (23:50:54/09-28-10) »
Really, I'd say it's wholly up to you how to proceed.  Canonically, the Tsimshian would be in crazy flux right now, and since some details haven't been fleshed out yet, it's really all in your hands.  I could see explanation A being that the country's been so rocked by turbulent times that the new government that's only been set up for a few years is still in the mood to "make examples" of folks who border-jump, so they could go in hard and ugly.  Likewise, explanation B could be that they know how fragile and exposed they are, the Haida who only recently gained power have a soft spot for underdogs and criminals who aren't actively damaging/killing anything, and maybe they'll just politely ask the team to leave (politely inasmuch that they'll offer them a ride and an armed escort, instead of just going right in guns blazing for a kill/arrest)...along with a stern warning.

Personally, I'd go for (b) right now, because it's a way to get the group back together (and nothing irks me like a split party, in a traditional face-to-face RPG).  Show up with overwhelming firepower -- a bunch of guys, a bunch of drones, the skies swarming with attack helicopters and spirits, a few obvious shaman-types, a couple "advisors" standing there with Sioux Wildcat patches on ready to commit horrible atrocities against them -- and a single nattily-dressed government Face who is their way out.  Show the party that resistance would be a bad idea, and give them a ride off to where ever their teammate got dumped/deported (after a few guns get confiscated, or some similar slap on the wrist)...

...then have 'em act like Shadowrunners to get back into the country and complete their mission.  They'll be appropriately aware of just what sort of overwhelming firepower a government (especially one that still has strong diplomatic and perhaps military ties to the Salish and Sioux) can bring to bear when it's properly riled up, and hopefully they'll be a little more covert about all this.  When that government has to wake up like a sleeping bear and can't -- hopefully! -- find them so easily the next time, they'll have a chance to sneak around and do their job...but with an appropriate level of tension/fear/wariness in the air.

A variation on all that would be the Tsimshian military (and some Salish and Sioux allies) swooping down on them like the fist of an angry god...but then -- after reuniting them with the wayward team member, again just to get "the band back together" -- demanding a job from them in exchange for _____ number of days to do their job.  Make 'em go on a 'run in order to get to go on a 'run.  Extra hassle (and karma) for everyone!
« Last Edit: (23:54:04/09-28-10) by Critias »

Juxtamon

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« Reply #18 on: (10:50:11/09-29-10) »
Does anybody here recall the Schwarzenegger 80's flick 'Commando'?  Military guy blackmailed into doing a dirty job with baddies holding his daughter hostage...and he goes completely off the rails, ignoring the job, and whacking his way back against the blackmailing baddies.  The suggested awesomeness of this thread sounds like the beginnings of this movie.
   Not that just going nutso against a whole GOVERNMENT is a good idea, but if the 'runners were instead captured and pressured by some lower-level, ambitious govt. agent fella who wants some job done on the sly...

    Yeah, okay, this is getting complicated for the group, perhaps, and for the GM definitely, and may take the original campaign direction in weird directions, but it sounds like plot-filled awesome fun!

   Man, you folks give me awesome ideas.
"Was it in Tahiti?  Were we on the Nile?"

Shanfara

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« Reply #19 on: (18:33:43/09-29-10) »
Really, I'd say it's wholly up to you how to proceed.  Canonically, the Tsimshian would be in crazy flux right now, and since some details haven't been fleshed out yet, it's really all in your hands.  I could see explanation A being that the country's been so rocked by turbulent times that the new government that's only been set up for a few years is still in the mood to "make examples" of folks who border-jump, so they could go in hard and ugly.  Likewise, explanation B could be that they know how fragile and exposed they are, the Haida who only recently gained power have a soft spot for underdogs and criminals who aren't actively damaging/killing anything, and maybe they'll just politely ask the team to leave (politely inasmuch that they'll offer them a ride and an armed escort, instead of just going right in guns blazing for a kill/arrest)...along with a stern warning.


To be fair, I think I'll go with option B with a twist. Overwhelming show of force>drugged>wake up sans equipment in the barrens, just on the Seattle side (instead of the Salish side) with a "shoot on sight" status in Tsimshian. From there the players can decide to sneak back into Tsimshian to finish the run (made harder by their earlier screw up) OR scrub the run, take the loss of reputation, and 1)learn that you must have the skill to use the skill and 2) a simple data search or two does wonders.

The lack of obvious balance between mundanes and awakened casters enhances the game and encourages creativity and role playing.

Kontact

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« Reply #20 on: (02:28:30/09-30-10) »
Players grease a few palms.

Problems go away.



I don't understand why you would punish a player (much less the rest of the team,) for not knowing things that his character should know.  Does his character have some sort of flaw which would have inspired him to behave like an idiot?  If not, it's better to assume that the player, as he is not a criminal mage working covert operations in a balkanized world of weak governments and totalitarian corporations, just doesn't have the kind of information that his character would need to survive.  Therefore, you as the GM provide him with the information his character should have so that these things don't happen.

Shanfara

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« Reply #21 on: (09:55:39/09-30-10) »
@Kontact

I see what you're saying but it doesn't completely agree. I would look at this differently if this was a new player or if there were other circumstances. In this case, the players made a series of severe missteps culminating with one character essentially telling the authorities where the other characters were hiding out while being obviously dishonest with said authority figure, passing a fake SIN, and being an unregistered awakened going through customs. In other words, player(s) screwed up and there must be negative repercussions. My language of punishing them makes it seem a bit more personal and sinister than it is)

To make an analogy, players buy equipment in character because they need various tools for the adventure. They need  weapons, armor, directional jammers, etc.
If the players don't have the foresight to buy the appropriate equipment, their characters get into sticky situations and deal with the consequences. The GM generally lays out what the players need. Usually this info reaches the players from the GM OOC ("you guys really shouldn't do fight a troll with a lint roller") and from player investigation ("I ask my contacts/do a data search to learn how people fight trolls. do they use lint rollers?") If the players fail to do either of these things; ask the GM OOC or do any role playing, as the GM, to keep my game enjoyable in the long run for me and the players, to keep the challenge level up, a hammer has to fall.

The players, one player in particular, went into a situation without giving any thought to the repercussions of his words or actions, not unlike choosing to fight a troll with a lint roller. He could have asked me OOC "what's going on here?" or he could have used several IC means to gain knowledge and didn't.

I'm not the sort of GM to purposely kill characters or really punish players, but this is a game and the GM is a kind of referee/story teller. I wouldn't be true to myself or my game if there weren't negative repercussions to the players for this blunder. The trick is making the negative repercussions such that they're enjoyable for all.

As for greasing a few palms, I think that's possible, but its going to be a lot of grease, applied judiciously.







The lack of obvious balance between mundanes and awakened casters enhances the game and encourages creativity and role playing.

Lord Scythican

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« Reply #22 on: (17:33:54/09-30-10) »
Greasing Palms doesn't make a good adventure. It gets your original adventure back on track and that's it. Where is the drama in that? Shouldn't the players believe that their mistakes can actually impact the course of the game? If you take away this, then they are going to start feeling that this is a linear game adventure. "Gee...I screwed up big time, but no matter the GM will let me buy my way out."

He didn't have the knowledge of proper procedures for entering foreign countries, but now he does. The player learned something about the game and you should roll with it. Seriously, what better way to make the game feel nonlinear than to completely derail the story because of some player mistakes?

Put them in individual small rooms. Send in your Agent Smith character and give them an offer, "Go into this jungle and retrieve this person and package from John Doe. If you don't you can kiss your freedom goodbye." When they enter the jungle, they find more than they bargained for, plus a nice juicy bit of info that can be used against the people who forced them into this situation. Now if the player's kept their mouths shut, it is possible they could still run into telekinetic that was snatched from City A and dragged to City B. Perhaps the authorities of City B haven't quite acquired the telekinetic yet and it is these same authorities that have hired the PCs to snatch and grab the target, the same target that the player's are already trying to get!  ::)


mortonstromgal

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« Reply #23 on: (19:41:12/09-30-10) »
Greasing Palms doesn't make a good adventure.

It can, but much like your interrogation example its much more out of the box. I played in a Vampire game where we all were stuck in prison for 6 sessions, we still talk about how awesome it was. The GM has to be enthusiastic about it and think of ways to keep interest though, its not an easy task.

Lord Scythican

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« Reply #24 on: (20:26:04/09-30-10) »
Greasing Palms doesn't make a good adventure.

It can, but much like your interrogation example its much more out of the box. I played in a Vampire game where we all were stuck in prison for 6 sessions, we still talk about how awesome it was. The GM has to be enthusiastic about it and think of ways to keep interest though, its not an easy task.

Well that is a lot more than greasing palms. When I read greasing palms, I pictures the characters dropping some Nuyen in the port authorities pockets so they could continue with their adventure.

Kontact

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« Reply #25 on: (05:25:28/10-01-10) »
All good points.  I just usually think of corruption as a central part of a dystopian setting.  I guess it's harder to do when you're caught with lights flashing and lots of witnesses at a boarder check.  That really is a bonehead move.  Then letting a paranoid government know that there's a team of, frankly, international terrorists and thieves in their country to do some work, is a double bonehead maneuver.  Something is warranted.

Typically though, I would warn a player that his character should know better.  Unless he has Uneducated, he should know enough to think that walking through a heavy security checkpoint glowing like an astral beacon is just a terrible idea.

Shanfara

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« Reply #26 on: (10:08:50/10-04-10) »
I wanted to let everyone know how it went.

Last we left the players the mage had been deported to Seattle while the rest of the party did what they could in Kitimat.  As the deported mage had drawn the Tsimshian defense forces attention to the party during a bungled pass through customs, it was only a matter of time before the government moved against the runners.

While out scrounging for a few pieces of equipment that the runner's had forgotten in Seattle, The party's pistol adept noticed he was being followed by a drone and got suspicious. A quick scan and some hamfisted hacking on the fly by the party's technomancer led to an extended fight within the drone's node with a Tsimshian security consultant(read: tank sprite summoning technomancer) for control of the drone. After determining the origin of the drone and scrubbing its mission, our technomancer logged out.

This led to our technomancer fleeing the hotel where the runners were staying and moving to one coffin hotel, then another a few hours later. The Pistol adept and the party's driver (the one who scanned the drone) hid in crowds in the mall until bars opened up.  Using the pistol adept's kinesics and social skills they arranged escape from Kitimat on a freighter (with the help of the Dogmen) bound for Bellingham, then back to Seattle.

Long and short of it: The run was scrubbed and the character's escaped with their skin.

The lack of obvious balance between mundanes and awakened casters enhances the game and encourages creativity and role playing.

FastJack

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« Reply #27 on: (11:50:49/10-04-10) »
And they learned a valuable lesson. ;D

Shanfara

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« Reply #28 on: (13:19:09/10-13-10) »
Boy did my admonition work well.

We had our next run last weekend.

Very simple:
1-Go to LA
2-Find some Aztec Operatives consulting a shell company
3-kill them all

I should add that this was the last run for one of our players who is moving away, so I wanted it to be fairly violent, straight forward, and completeable in one session.

The players got to LA and did a ton of research. The players were bouncing many different ideas off of each other as to 1)what they needed to know and 2)how they needed to approach the attack. I was very happy to see them planning and researching such that the run went off without a hitch, the Aztec operatives all being killed in one pass of gunfire/spirits of man with manaballs. I almost feel like I should have given the Azteccies more of a chance, but I think it all worked out in the end.

So, yay for letting the players fail so they'll do better next time.
The lack of obvious balance between mundanes and awakened casters enhances the game and encourages creativity and role playing.

FastJack

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« Reply #29 on: (13:29:22/10-13-10) »
Boy did my admonition work well.

We had our next run last weekend.

Very simple:
1-Go to LA
2-Find some Aztec Operatives consulting a shell company
3-kill them all

I should add that this was the last run for one of our players who is moving away, so I wanted it to be fairly violent, straight forward, and completeable in one session.

The players got to LA and did a ton of research. The players were bouncing many different ideas off of each other as to 1)what they needed to know and 2)how they needed to approach the attack. I was very happy to see them planning and researching such that the run went off without a hitch, the Aztec operatives all being killed in one pass of gunfire/spirits of man with manaballs. I almost feel like I should have given the Azteccies more of a chance, but I think it all worked out in the end.

So, yay for letting the players fail so they'll do better next time.
Sometimes that failure is required to get them in the right frame of mind for Shadowrun. Too often, they are used to the D&D "charge in and kill 'em all" routine. Or even worse, the video-game "there's no retreating!" mentality as well. What I usually tell players to do before getting a campaign going is to sit down and watch some A-Team/Leverage/Ocean's Eleven to get an idea of how to think through the adventure.