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Messages - Laughing Penguin

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General Discussion / Re: Contract: Road Crew
« on: July 11, 2019, 06:24:53 PM »
So if the Takers use the gift spot - which they can't refuse accepting and costs them Bounty during negotiations - then they will get two negative rep spots and the Client's animosity for a potential job line? Doesn't that seem a bit much? My group would rather take a gift spot that involves a bullet to the chest rather than one that damages their ability to earn decent contracts on *at least* three occasions.

How did you come up with that?

General Discussion / Flapjack and Baz
« on: June 18, 2019, 03:44:42 PM »
One of the random legs in the book involves a trucker duo who offer to give the Takers a ride to their destination in return for riding on top of their truck and fending off casualties. I think i'm about to spring this one on my group, and looking for ways to spice up the combat that will take place on top of the trailers as they cruise past the various horrible legs that I had planned for on the ground.

Has anyone run this leg before, and if so what did you do to keep the ride interesting beyond a series of combat rolls?

We may not be playing it correctly (would like a rules check to make sure if someone has the book handy), but we've never had a case where a player can use more than one will on a single roll. So upgrade fail to a success = good. Upgrade a success to a Critical success = good. Upgrade a failure to a Critical success = NO GOOD.

Can someone rule check this for me?

General Discussion / Re: Swimming/Drowning mechanics?
« on: May 15, 2019, 07:26:34 PM »
I was on the boards and realized I never followed up on how this ended. So...

The Score was to salvage some bulk spices from a capsized cargo ship. The complications were a bunch of raiders in the area (river pirates are a thing in my game) who had a beef with local DHQS forces, and some sort of mutant underwater fish/creature. The legs heading in ended up being a lot more harsh than expected, with a scene where all but one player failed an important humanity roll resulting in multiple cracks and crumbles hitting the group before finding the ship. For some reason some of the group decided the best way to enter a half-sunken ship was to swim down and look at the hull breach that caused it to sink, not realizing until later that boats have doors. (To be honest, I thought that move was odd, but that they had some kind of plan in mind that didn't involve going in through more traditional means. They didn't.)

Originally we had a group of 5, 2 of which went underwater to enter the hold through the damaged hull, one which went full frontal assault on some raiders camping out on the ship's bridge, and two hanging back sniping away at the raiders. It was late so we wrapped the session here, but lost one of the underwater players due to a scheduling conflict. His character had just suffered a Crumble due a leg encounter gone wrong, so it was decided that he basically was too busy having a personal crisis to effectively contribute. The raiders were dealt with in a rather insane streak of good melee rolls and the ship was secure, but I did say they had to get the catatonic team member (the absent player) out of the darkened hold into safety.

Turns out that if you don't have Resistance, the drowning rules mentioned here are BRUTAL. Easily the most dangerous part of this Score considering they didn't take any precautions before hand.Players went into Killing damage from drowning pretty fast. From that point, a tough logistical challenge to get into the secondary hold where their cargo was, and the team mechanic came up with a clever way to open the bay doors rather than navigate the pitch black hold to allow them to go diving and haul up the buckets holding their prize.

Then came complication 2. An Aberrant I dubbed the Nautilus.

The concept was that a shipping container in the hold was smuggling people when it sank (props to the player who picked up on it without prompting) and one of them was infected. This would have resulted in a Ganglia normally, but the Blight doesn't transfer well in water, so to move from person to person the blight tendrills needed direct contact to spread, resulting in human chains of casualties stretching out from a central core. The casualties in the chain would grab onto a body allowing the blight to snake its way in and extend the chain. Multiple chains extended from the open cargo container throughout the water, and they were twitching. The main threat was again drowning, as being grabbed and held underwater was way more of a threat than any potential damage water-logged corpses could do - luckily the group Immune was the main diver.

Again credit to the players who called in their references to source some DDJs, and some lucky rolls later had the arms all cut off from the main core inside the container, allowing them to get as much bounty in goods as they could haul. Sure, the expense really ate into their profits, but it beat drowning, right?

Overall, a seriously brutal session.

General Discussion / Re: New Tough Spot- Resistant.
« on: March 19, 2019, 07:47:32 PM »
Yeah, Immune is a kind of stealth option. I think that Half-Off made it a big part of his story. But in a lot of games I've run nobody really mentioned it. In a lot of ways I'd be happy to give an Immune person a second spot if they're not as interested in the immune story as the not going zombie/at risk of capture.

Maybe nobody mentions it as an Immune, but it certainly comes up during standard play. If anyone outside of the immediate taker group sees the Immune get bit for example... you better have a real good story, a hacked testing kit to back it up, and quick reflexes to dodge the bullet so you have a chance to tell it. It can also easily come into play if they run into Stop Loss, Crusaders, DHQS or volunteer to run in a circus. Any of those will likely result in the Immune being hauled off for sale. In my game, there are also storylines and factions specifically geared to Immunes in the setting, and the one Immune player is often on their guard as a result. They earn the benefit of that spot.

General Discussion / Re: Swimming/Drowning mechanics?
« on: March 19, 2019, 07:42:21 PM »
Give them a "held breath" stress track with 10 charges. Every round underwater without surfacing they use one charge, with one additional charge spent whenever they perform an action which calls for an expenditure of rations (melee, heavy lifting, etc.).

You could then add a one-use SCUBA tank item (rechargeable if they can find and power a working compressor) that allows the Taker to spend charges from the tank instead of their held breath. Would also be useful for things like avoiding smoke inhalation damage or stuff like that.

I really like this one... if I hadn't already started using my previous idea I would have definitely adopted this rule.

I did specifically call out a request if they wanted to take any other precautions before they rolled out, and they didn't take time to consider being underwater. So no breathing apparatus, no protection for their electronics (specs, flashlights, etc) for the ones diving, and OF COURSE they decided to try and enter the ship through the damaged hull underwater rather than try to get in through a door on the deck. After it occurred to them that boats had doors, they felt kind of silly, but by then we had 2 takers navigating a pitch black hold under water while counting rounds until they drown. Good times.

Score still unresolved, we broke for the night soon after they entered the ship, I can come back with updates if anyone is interested. =]

General Discussion / Re: Swimming/Drowning mechanics?
« on: March 13, 2019, 01:42:43 PM »
Remember, you are the Market, and the Market has no mercy.

I don't really buy into the adversarial GM mindset, even for a game like Red Markets. Portray the world as harsh and don't pull punches, sure, but but don't go out looking to punish anyone for playing in your game. Strict but fair, ya know?

General Discussion / Swimming/Drowning mechanics?
« on: March 12, 2019, 08:01:59 PM »
In our upcoming session the Takers will likely need to spend some time underwater in the hull of a capsized ship. So I was wondering if anyone had rules they liked involving swimming and potentially drowning should there be, say. something really awful in the water that might make it hard to go back up for air in a timely fashion? I didn't remember seeing any rules around so was looking at what would be reasonable in-game.

I was thinking maybe they could hold their breath equal to something like STR + Resistance? Then after that take stun to the chest each round until they can get a breath, after which the clock restarts. Maybe really strenuous activity that round reduces that amount of time by a round (or is that too harsh)?

Was there some other rule out there I should be looking at instead, or is this a good start for a discussion?

General Discussion / Re: Unique/Weird Items
« on: January 24, 2019, 07:23:18 PM »
I'm trying to come up with similar costs for an item in my game: an expensive violin that one of the takers keeps as part of her backstory as a musician. Unfortunately her last Crumble has her seriously addicted to Soma, and now the upkeep cost has her thinking of selling it. Aside from the humanity hit this would involve, not sure how to gague it's worth in game terms...

General Discussion / Re: Pro-Immune groups?
« on: November 28, 2018, 10:20:21 PM »
So, the reply to this thread reminded me I never followed up, so I thought I'd share the results of what I came up with.

The Mollica Humanity Colaition ( also known as MHC) is a group who pre-Crash was mostly concerned with the physical and psychological well being of refugees and similar repressed people, who turned their efforts towards Immunes and Latents who suddenly became second class citizens or worse following the Crash, providing aid and information to afflicted people. They take political action, organize protests and set up services for the Infected Living and their families, mostly Latents since Immunes cannot publicly expose themselves.They do come under constant scrutiny for this, as well as occasionally harboring Immunes, but for the most part they are a legit organization.

The name is taken for Dr. Richard F. Mollica, MD, Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School, directs the Harvard Program in Refugee Trauma. MHC is also the initialism for The major histocompatibility complex, basically the body;s way of determining if cells belong to the larger organism as it relates to the immune response. I tend to like using terms like that to inform things... heh

Unofficially the MHC also sponsor CD4 (named after ‘helper’ T-cells that coordinate immune responses in the body) who act as a sort of ‘underground railroad’ for Immunes looking to flee to safety, often in pockets of Canada far enough North and West to be both light on Casualties and radiation. They're a more radical pro-Immune group that acts well outside the law, and will be the group that my Takers come into contact with. They're branded almost as terrorists in the media, and often catch the attention of DHQS when they surface.

What do you all think?

A scam done during negotiation is not the same as the pre-work tasks you can do to get info on a job. A scam is part of the negotiation even if narratively it's done as a flashback that takes place before. Even playing with work/life balance shouldn't be able to get a Taker an extra scam somehow. Considering that a poor Leadership role means that some Takers might not be eligible to run a scam anyway, would this mean they'd potentially lose that action they gave up their vignette for? It just doesn't work within the rules.

When it comes to work/life, life = vignettes and work = look for a job/find price of a job/find competition for a job/details of a job. Takers give up one of those options to pursue some other venture.

That all said, if the group is just selling off haul they got from a single mission I generally just let them do it at the end of a contract. It's generally not worth the effort to micro manage emptying out the random bits of junk they scavenged, just pass the Networking roll and collect bounty. Unless they're setting up something bigger, like a full fledged estate sale with a few weeks' worth of scavenged goods - more of a flea market than a trip to the pawn shop - it's probably not important enough of an event to warrant taking away a work/life action.

General Discussion / Re: Gear and Jobs Card Deck Clarifications
« on: September 25, 2018, 09:30:38 PM »
I'll expand my thoughts later, but the general gut feeling I have is that the Jobs deck is trying to do too much. It feels crowded as a result, and it's hard to really pick out particular information quickly. I feel like it would be a more useful tool if it had fewer items laid out in a clearer manner so I could deal out a few to generate a job on the fly.

Like Interlude - I don't know if that is a common enough thing to need on the card, and not something I'd really need handy if trying to generate a quickie scenario on the fly. It only comes up when players specifically make it happen or if the Market feels a need to introduce it.

Encounters seems off too in that there isn't enough there to really run with, but it takes up a lot of space. If anything i'd replace the gear/casualty/goods with a description of Critical Misfortune so the user wouldn't feel a need to look that up in the moment.  The gear on hand is easier to make up on the fly, and listing a single bit of kit like 'axe' doesn't feel like it's adding much.

I do like the idea of having dice on the card so a deck can act as a die roller, but associating it with a random leg on the card doesn't mesh well when the job in question lists 2 legs. Maybe just have the dice be their own thing somewhere aside from any mention of legs and people can consult the table as needed.

Just in general I think I'd try to focus more on the job aspect, and consider if you'd need to generate enclaves and encounters with the deck.

All that said, I do love the idea. If set up so I can toss down 2 or 3 cards to get the bare bones of a job (and the die rolls for legs!) would be a great way to set up a quick session.

General Discussion / Re: Pro-Immune groups?
« on: September 20, 2018, 02:54:46 PM »
unless they are normals / latents who are working as a witness protection relocation thing.

This is sort of what I was getting at. Something on par with Amnesty International, BLM or even the people from Greenpeace who interfere with Japanese whaling boats. Even with the kind of vaguely bleak future of Red Markets, there is no way some group of people wouldn't organize to try and enforce the basic human rights of people who were Immune and make a lot of noise about it.

The "openly pro-immune" group with actual immunes in it also seems inevitable in the face of canon groups like Triage and The Chosen. Membership would be a lot riskier, but do you really think it wouldn't exist? Consider the whole hook of the contract where An Incident was playing. Have some high-profile public figure representing it from a remote location and maybe some of the Immune population wouldn't be so willing to accept their fate as mere marrow donors...

General Discussion / Re: Pro-Immune groups?
« on: September 19, 2018, 02:56:43 PM »
You do know that all outed Immunes are harvested for Suppressin right?

Having a Pro Immune or Openly Immune Group seems a tad suicidal.

I am *very* much aware of this, but given how getting rounded up for medical scavenging is a mandatory excersize, I don't see any way that some kind of pro-immune activists wouldn't spring up in the setting. Some radical branch of the ACLU or similar, not sure how I'd want to present them yet.

Church of Holy  Communion likes to harvest Immunes blood for religious purposes and is canon.

That kind of goes in the other direction from what I was looking for... heh. I do have a nasty faction of these guys operating in the area for my campaign though. The team's Immune is really on edge about them...

General Discussion / Pro-Immune groups?
« on: September 18, 2018, 08:14:03 PM »
I don't have my book handy right now, and I'm drawing a blank otherwise...

Are there any openly Pro-Immune or Immune Rights groups in the official RM setting? Asking because things are brewing in my current campaign where I'll need such a group soon, and interested in seeing what lives in canon before I start writing something up.

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