Expanding the Season 4 mission finale (SRM 04-11 Election Day, Dirty Tricks...)

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  • Chummer
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« on: <06-20-23/0431:28> »
My previous threat about fixing an SRM 4 mission didn't receive much attention. I'm hoping this time it will go better.

I'm running my group through the Orc Underground side of the season 4 missions, and much of it is absolutely brilliant, but there's also stuff that I don't see working.

For example, SRM 04-11 Election Day revolves around Edmund Jeffreys, and having a bunch of small missions where the players slowly get to cobble together a bunch of evidence is a great idea. But the hooks of many of these missions don't sound like hooks my players would respond well to.

For example, things start with a job to cause a riot between protesters at a polling station in an orc-heavy neighbourhood, in order to "accidentally" get Edmund Jeffreys killed. After a whole year of increasing tension around prop 23, riots, fire bombings, etc, I really don't see why shadowrunners who've been through all that, and are sympathetic to the Orc Underground, would want to stir up the flames more. And at a place where it's likely to hurt prop 23's chances. Not to mention that a riot is a very unlikely method to get a specific target killed. The mission would have more chance if the players were hired to assassinate Jeffreys, except Jeffreys is meant to escape. The setup with the lost briefcase is interesting, but the whole setup to get there has far too many problems. I need a better hook. Maybe they're hired to do something in that restaurant, Jeffreys recognises them, panics and flees, leaving the briefcase.

For the second job, having Jeffreys hire the runners seems extremely unlikely, given their history. Wouldn't he panic if he sees McCallister's favourite runners? The same people who were framed in previous missions, and therefore not entirely unknown? Maybe Jeffreys needs a middle man here. Maybe it's their own fixer who calls them on that commlink.

But maybe I need to take a bigger approach: the mission contains a few suggestions to expand the adventure with a ballot-stuffing scheme by Jeffrey's accomplice (though I don't really see how that fits in yet).

I've also been thinking about involving Seth Dietrich somehow. He's an FBI agent on a secret mission that's detailed in Dirty Tricks, and resolves in the 5e Shattered State adventure, and I've been thinking that might hit harder if the players know Seth Dietrich beforehand. There's tons of reasons why they would: Seth is working closely with McCallister's son Tauren, and is investigating stuff that's related to what the players are working on.

Another issue is that the basic plot of Election Day looks too much like that of Shattered State: the players accidentally get their hands on a commlink, and suddenly everybody wants to talk to them.

I love the idea of having the players connect Jeffreys with a bunch of crimes (the Alamos 20k firebombing in Ashes, Mathers and the Copycat Killer, the bombs in Burn, the missing commlinks (which I haven't even mentioned yet; maybe I should do that first), but the way Election Day approaches it doesn't look like it's going to work for me. I need different ideas, and if we could tangentially involve Seth Dietrich, possibly even his disappearance around this time, that would be awesome.

But how? Anyone got some cool ideas for me? (I'll update this thread later with my own ideas to help the GMs of the future.)