Seattle After Dark
...At Least the Noodles are Good.
Ever wondered what it might be like to live in a world where the USA has collapsed into a military state where the average citizen has no say, huge multi-national corporations have all the rights and none of the responsibilities of an independent nation, there are things that go bump in the night that will eat you as soon as look at you, and your main food source is soy and soy biproducts in many varying forms and flavors. Well now you can be one of the poor saps that does. Welcome to Shadowrun.
A Little Legwork
Shadowrun is a setting where the well prepared and adaptable get paid and maybe retire, and the impatient and rash just get retired. So you've got to excercise a little healthy caution backed by an ability to keep an eye on the prize and a just the right amount of bravado. An ace in the hole is always good, too. So, in order to put together a working group that's going to get the job done, and protect their fixer's good name, I implement the following "house rules":
1. I run Shadowrun 4th Edition. I like 3rd, and I understand that there is a lot more ruled source material, but 4th opens up a lot more options for players and games, in my opinion.
2. Character approval is by Player and GM Committee. Per the game setup of Serenity, where in characters must be a viable "crew" with a useful smattering of skills. I'm going to use this because Shadowrunners are hired for their variable skills and abilities, based on what is useful in their jobs and to create working team that, hopefully, won't get killed. It will, also, help represent the Fixer arranging a team that they think should be able to accomplish the task at hand. The GM and players are allowed to veto another players character no questions asked. If someone says it goes, it goes.
3. If you have the ability to, please pregen a couple of characters. If not, at least have a couple ideas in mind. Making characters for this game can take all night, if not longer. So, if you have a book, please have something to show for it before the game. This also helps me get a sense of your play style, makes rule #2 go more smoothly, and allows you to build a character who lacks any serious holes from last minute builds.
4. You must have at least four points in Contacts. Shadowrunners live by who they know. You'd never get a job if nobody knew who you were, and besides you can't go through life and not meet at least one person.
5. You must have at least 2 Active Skill Points and 4 Knowledge Skill Points allocated to what I shall call "life choices and hobbies". Your life doesn't just revolve on shooting people and running the shadows. Everybodies got a hobby, whether they admit it or not. Some even make for good cover and back stories.
6. I will require a backstory, physical and personality description, and goals for your character. Why exactly did your character start shooting people and running the shadows? How do they feel about it? What is their ultimate goal? Want to be rich, to be famous, or just to get out of the gutter? This, also, applies to rule 2. If you lack character information, you don't play that character, no exceptions.
7. Everyone must own a commlink! Yet another piece of equipment that EVERY shadowrunner must have to make his job worthwhile. "You'll never get a wiz job if your fixer can't reach you, omae."
8. I will be enforcing the starting rule for equipment aquisition. I.e. You may only have items with an aquisition rating max of 12.
So There I Was, Surrounded by Ghouls, When...
So you think you're the only dreg running the shadows trying to make the big time, omae. Well you ain't seen nuthin' yet. There are hundreds, maybe thousands, of razorboys just like you trying to make the most wanted list. Every group of shadowrunners has got a story, and only the good ones never actually make it on the trid.
Things To Do In Seattle When You're Dead
My first attempt at a chronicle style Shadowrun game. Hopefully a success. Results to be posted as it ensues.
" The most merciful thing in the world, I think, is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. We live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far. The sciences, each straining in its own direction, have hitherto harmed us little; but some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from the light into the peace and safety of a new dark age. " - H.P. Lovecraft
Bill has even been so kind as to provide a Wiki Shadowrun 4th Ed. character sheet.