Thursday, December 15, 2011

The 12 Days of Blogs-mas: Part Deux

On the announcement via that Facey-Page website that I was going to take requests I did indeed receive one from a long time friend of mine. He wanted me to write more about a particular table top RPG that I'm currently involved with. What one is that you ask?

Well for those not up to date on what Shadowrun is please go to this website and read up on it a bit. Also if you decide to check out the forums (which are generally friendly and full of helpful shadow geeks) tell the moderator FastJack I sent you.

Now that you have a general grasp of the game and setting I will say that its a cool concept. A high fantasy/high technology future earth. Its something that can inspire some very interesting stories to tell, characters to create, new dialects to bring into being, etc., and so on. And did I forget to mention you are playing a criminal.

There is no way around this. It doesn't matter what you're character history is, it doesn't matter what your own personal moral code is when you play Shadowrun you are playing as a criminal. The term 'shadowrunner' is a person who is hired because of special skills they posses to perform jobs that bend or flat out break the rules of society. Yeah, you could be doing some kind of run that the end result of is for the greater good. Lets say retrieving an artifact of immense magical power from a group of known eco-terrorists who will use that to cause a catastrophic event on one of the major cities. To get that back you may have to do reconnaissance by hacking into a private corporations data base ( a crime), kidnap and interrogate a known accomplice (crime), purchase black market firearms because your guns don't make big enough boom (crime)....see what I mean? If you want further proof go back and read some of my posts from the game I play in.

This notion of being a criminal though is pushed aside as this is only a fantasy game and these incidents are not actually happening. I don't see cybernetic trolls beating the crap out of corporate hit men in my own personal slice of America (yet). Its for that reason why the game is fun. We're letting go of normal conventions of morality and doing whatever it takes to complete the run. It's a freeing feeling. I actually like forming plans for our team's capers. I want to see how far I can push the envelope and do it without a body count (if possible) and without being caught. And hearing about those exploits of the runners is quite enjoyable and probably more relate-able than ones from a strict fantasy setting. We all know what a car chase ensues, we've seen shoot-out between the cops and criminals on TV. Nobody here has stopped an demi-lich from obtaining the soul of a fallen angel to help it become a dark deity. We all know what hacking is though.

A nice collection of more well known lurkers in the shadows came out by Catalyst Game Labs back around August of this year. It highlights some of the background history of quite a few of the more well known and infamous NPC characters in the setting. It also has stats for them as well if you need them for your game. Heck its got stats on some of the great dragons running around.

Its an appropriately named title for this book.

 Street Legends is a good read, a fun read. It gives you some interesting ideas for your own foray into the world of Shadowrun as well as how people that have been doing it for years they survived. Its not all heroic either. Some stories are down right tragic. Read the entry on Bull "The Best Ork Decker" and tell me that living this life is glamorous. Its downright suck-tastic.

But it doesn't matter how bad things get in Shadowrun cause in the end its a game and if you have a good group of people playing and a good GM running for you even the worst case scenarios will be fun for you and all around. Yes, even the ones when you're dealing with a cyber-zombie brother of one of your own crew. It was fun.

Was this what you wanted Scott? Hope you liked it. Any other requests for blog entries for the 12 Days of Blogs-mas? Leave them in the comments and I'll do what I can.