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[SR6] Honourbound (Pirates' Code)

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greygriffin

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« on: <04-07-20/1811:57> »
My group has started our first SR6 campaign. I and another player will take turns GMing runs in a overarching campaign. We have decided to run RAW as far as possible for this campaign (using SR5 to rules patch where there are holes) and minimise house rules, GM banhammers etc until we are more familiar with the new system.

I and the other GM feel that Neg Qualities should come up proportionately to their karma value; a 10 Karma RP quality should come up as a major difficulty or inconvenience once or twice in a short campaign.

Two (of six) of the players have taken Honorbound (Pirates' Code). This reads as follows:

Pirate Code
Based on some of the ideals and concepts from eighteenth- century pirates, this changes from person to person, but these are some of the most common elements: Everyone on a team has an equal voice and receives an equal share; no stealing or dishonesty between team members; no abandoning the ship (i.e., stick with the team until the bitter end); and always be prepared.


The problem is I don't know how to test "Pirate Code" PCs' convictions, because this is how the characters act anyway. My PCs will make plans together, divide gear fairly, not steal from each other, and not leave everyone to die as a matter of course - both because our metagame says we cooperate, and because no one has rolled a character who's a selfish scumbag.

Has anyone challenged a Piratey PC's honour code in any meaningful way, and without horribly forcing a railroad of "you are separated from your party and they are in danger"?

Stainless Steel Devil Rat

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« Reply #1 on: <04-08-20/0014:30> »
Well, I'd say the problem is the code isn't well balanced.  In effect, all it says is you have to be good teammates to each other.  Even the disnified version of pirates were quick to betray one another as soon as the "pirate code" became inconvenient. 

Exhibit a:


Exhibit b:


and of course Exhibit c:


And that's the DISNEY, sanitized version of pirates :D

Now, if the horses have already left the barn and you're not going to re-tune the code so that following it actually causes party conflict rather than enforcing party harmony, you're going to have to incentivize acting against the code.  Have a contact approach one of the PCs with an offer to buy dirty secrets on another member of the team.  Make the offer juicy enough so that the player is tempted.  Have a Mr. Johnson offer to pay the party in goods that are only useful to one member of the team. If everyone's "paid" in the form of a single, juicy cyberdeck, the pirate decker may be tempted to say hell yes, let's do that instead of each of us splitting a pot of certified credit a paltry few thousand nuyen each...

Another idea on working in the downside of the quality as-is is hitting on the "equal voice in leadership" aspect. Make them choose between letting the face always do all the talking, or make them take turns "leading" the social rolls.
RPG mechanics exist to give structure and consistency to the game world, true, but at the end of the day, you’re fighting dragons with algebra and random number generators.