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/tg/ - Traditional Games

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Happy America, chummers! Or is it UCAS? Or Ares? Regardless, I come to you in honor of America to bring you more tales of America-San and his current erstwhile compatriots, The Clown, the Hippie, and the Mexican. The last run was long as hell. Extra-long, even. In game terms, it was two to three months of biweekly sessions. In storytime terms, we're looking at two, maybe three storytime threads, although I'll try to crank 'em out faster than usual while I am (hopefully) briefly unemployed. Congratulate yourself, friends: you've made it this far, and now it's the home stretch.

I've got about 10 pages of material prepped, and then I'll have to improvise off my notes. Expect a serious slowdown part of the way in, although that's probably for the best; I've got a lunch with GM (who is back in town from law school) tomorrow, but other than that I should be free to continue storytiming tomorrow what I can't finish tonight.

As usual, previous threads here: http://suptg.thisisnotatrueending.com/archive.html?searchall=shadowrun+storytime

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I've waited so long....
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Oh, also, standard commentary about "please freely post and comment because otherwise the board thinks I'm a spammer and autosages, Shadowrun Storytime doubles as Shadowrun General, et cetera, et cetera."

For this first section, I'd like if you could put on whatever "shit has hit the fan and everybody is dying" music you happen to have on-hand. My personal suggestion is http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uVefPPr69NU, but I'm also quite partial to DnB, so, you know, whatever works for you.
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Sirens rang through the night sky, accompanied by an AR bulletin, spoken by a soft-voiced, feminine announcer:

"Attention, Citizens. There has been a terrorist attack downtown. Large-scale police action is in progress. Please return to your homes immediately. Evacuate affected areas if at all possible; otherwise, locate the nearest authorities and they will direct you. Attention, Citizens. There has been a terrorist attackā€¦"

The gray SUV was burning rubber, making for the source of the explosion. Captain Danvers briefed his team as the driver, Perkins, dodges abandoned cars and fleeing people.

"Listen up, gentlemen. As of eighteen-hundred hours, Company 12 is active on the G contract. The finances are good; they've been cleared through shell companies in San Francisco and London and check out. We're moving into an active combat zone, but this isn't like Columbia, so pay attention. Our job is to get in, get the package, and get out, rendezvousing with Companies 3 and 8 if possible."

Bridges, Westlake, Jackson, and Ellis grunted in acknowledgement for Danvers to continue.

"Speaking of which: there are two packages, Priority Alpha and Priority Beta." Danvers brought up an AR image of two identical black boxes. "We want Alpha. Only difference between the two is that Alpha has a magical aura, so we'll put Westlake on that when we secure a package."

Westlake, the team mage, nodded and adjusted the hermetic power focus dangling from his rifle's receiver.

"Command says that Chameleon already made off with Priority Beta, so we're looking at less AZT resistance around Alpha, but that doesn't mean we're not really in the shit today. Corpers are still swarming the place--" Danvers paused as Perkins gestured for the team to hold on, and executed a tight turn through two stalled, empty police cruisers, "--and word is that Big Man is on-site."
These actually make fairly suitable climactic music.
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Danvers nodded to the combat hacker, Bridges, who saluted and then brought up a satellite image of a single orc wearing naught but an american-flag bandana, a UCAS Veteran Administration armor jacket, and a tattered pair of slacks. The orc was standing on the roof of the target building, surrounded by broken, exsanguinated corpses and the charred wreck of a helicopter.

"Report, Bridges."

"This is Codename Big Man, aliases Garrett Jordan, Dervish, and America-San. International merc, best of the best. Considered by command to be the second-most dangerous living entity in the Tir, after Hestaby. Augged to all hell, top-tier bioborg, capable of speeds up to one hundred and forty miles an hour, proficient in all firearms and guerrilla warfare, one of the reigning world masters of Sangre y Acero, and suspected to also be one of the leading experts in Krav Maga."

Jackson, a burly orc in full-combat gear, grunted.

"Did he do all that without combat armor?"

Danvers nodded solemnly.

"Before Company 1 went silent, there was comm chatter about him dodging bullets. You see Big Man, you mark him on the tacnet and shoot on sight. We want all eyes on this son of a bitch."

Perkins pulled the SUV to a stop amidst a parking lot in honking chaos, riddles with the car wrecks of various nobles and high-society wannabes who had tried to escape too fast. Gunfire sounded all up and down the block, brief spurts of overwhelming noise as small firefights started and ended in instants.

"We're making for the roof, gentlemen," said Danvers, knocking Ellis, the point man, on the back of the helmet. "Move!"
"Considered by command to be the second-most dangerous living entity in the Tir, after Hestaby."
>second-most after a dragon

I see these guys are severely underestimating Dervish's skills.
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The team slammed out of the SUV as a unit, navigating the mass of cars and scanning for potential combatants. The panicked civilians hit the asphalt as Ellis sprinted for the front stairs of the building, a regal old-world affair now missing most of its roof and west wing. Engines roared overhead as a gunship did a pass, pouring fire onto the roof. A single unguided rocket flashed out from somewhere in the building, exploding in the air as the gunship yawed to the side. Somewhere in the distance, a dragon breathed fire, and the night sky lit like a torch.


Ellis, only feet into the building, ducked behind a pillar as gunfire rattled from amidst the fancy dinner tables set up in the great hall, shattering champagne flukes and plates full of fois gras. Jackson breached next, laying down suppressive fire with his assault cannon while Westlake circled around. With a cry of effort, Westlake levitated the table that the tango was hiding behind, leaving him open to two shotgun blasts from Ellis. Ellis vaulted tables and ran to the target, kneeling over the prone body.

"Tango down. He's in combat armor, hispanic male, has some kinda weird braid hairdo."

"Aztec special ops," commented Danvers, "probably separated from his squad. Make for the stairs."

As the team approached the stairs, a lone kangaroo hopped by, looked at them awkwardly, and began hopping faster.

"What the he--"

Bend had provided all of the distraction that Dervish needed.

Westlake was the first gone, in keeping with Shadowrunner policy. He gasped as a blur of steel caught him through the throat at over a hundred and twenty miles an hour, sending a spurt of blood through the air and into Jackson's field of vision, broadcast to the entire squad simultaneously via tacnet.

"IT'S BIG--"

after a GREAT dragon. American-san is amazing, but putting him at or above a great dragon's skills is folly.
The kangaroo strategy is simultaneously awesome and hilarious.

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The team spun to begin firing, but by the time that fingers were even compressing triggers, the blur had caught up the Jackson, who gulped throatily as a blade lodged itself in his upper spine, protruding cleanly through his solar plexus. The milspec armor he'd invested so much personal money into tore like wet cloth. Jackson's death rattle sounded loud and clear over his subvocal as the blade tore out through his flank so quickly that his body didn't jar, roaring through his chest plating like a can opener.


Ellis, Perkins, Bridges, and Danvers poured rounds into Jackson's spasmodic, still-standing body as Dervish boosted his skimmers into a low roll, sliding underneath the tables. Mid-slide, he pulled his shotgun from his bandolier and, one-handing it, began firing. His cyberlegs bent backwards to right him at the end of the slide, catapulting him through a buffet table, spraying shrapnel and armor-piercing rounds.

Ellis squawked as three APDS slugs landed in his sternum, blowing baseball-sized holes out of his back. The remaining three survivors watched in horror through the tacnet as cameras pitched and biomonitors flatlined.


Danvers dropped his in-control attitude as he set his battle rifle to autofire and began shooting at where Dervish had been mere microseconds before, continuing to slaughter the broken corpse of the buffet table. His periphery vaguely recognized a gust of pink mist where Perkins had been, and then Perkins' camera tilted as two legs, severed at the knee, spiraled into Danvers' field of view. He pitched to his right just in time for a grenade to land behind him, turning Bridges' feed into static.

For a brief moment, Danvers saw a head wearing a brightly-colored bandana straight down his iron sights. So he fired.

And Dervish dodged.
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>Somewhere in the distance, a dragon breathed fire, and the night sky lit like a torch.
See >>25827226.
Did Dervish upgrade to Move-By-Wire or something? This seems fast even for him.
>champagne flutes

I stand by my statement. Dervish is good, yes. A great dragon is better. Maybe, MAYBE, with the entire team working together, the group could take down a Great, but it is highly, HIGHLY unlikely.
It'd still be a hell of a fight though.
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Danvers gasped as his gun fell in half, taking his left arm below the elbow and most of his right fingers with it. As he fell to his knees, the shirtless orc that was now standing in front of him grabbed him by the head with both hands, and spoke directly into his helmet cam.

"My name's not Big Man," said Dervish, calmly. "It's America-San."

Dervish leaned in so close that Danvers, quivering in shock, could smell his breath. It smelled like steak and overpriced champagne. The merc captains' vision blurred as he saw the protective cybereye covers retract, giving him a good look into Dervish's cold cybereyes. Dervish positioned his mouth over Danvers' subvocal.

"This patched into command, scrub?"

Danvers gulped an affirmative, letting out shuddering breaths. Dervish spoke softly.

"Feed me more mercs."

Dervish stood back, still holding Danvers' head, and his cybereye covers slid back into place.

"Wait no no NO--"

The feed blurred, spun, and then cut out as Dervish popped Danvers' head off like a bottlecap.

Oh, most definitely so. The Great would win, but it would perhaps be injured, maybe even scarred. It would certainly be a visually impressive encounter.
By this point he had Rating 3 Synaptics, full cyberlegs (raptor legs to be precise), and reflex recorders for the Athletics skill group, to say nothing of hitting augmented max agility.

I'm going to repeat that first part: Rating 3 Synaptics.
I have no clue about anything Shadowrun but I assume that Rating 3 synaptics is a pretty big deal.
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The voice of Terrence Jackson grated upon Wildcard. Admittedly, it grated upon everyone, but Wildcard was the one who was currently hiding out in the Seattle U off-campus housing. He'd tolerated Locke squatting in his suburban house until Locke had explained the full story of Felix Ramirez and His Departure from Aztechnology, at which point Wildcard decided that it was probably the best if he acted on one of his contingency plans, rented out his house to some subletters, and made for his backup safehouse. This was, of course, on top of the ongoing animosity with Knight Errant, which lead Wildcard to be certain that he took no chances. A little plastic surgery to look younger, a new fake ID, a cover story about getting a postgraduate degree in chemical engineering, and he was ready to assume the life of an exchange student at Seattle U until he was sure that the heat had blown over.

The only downside was the roommate.

"Dude! Bro! Dudebro! Runner dude!"

Wildcard fingered the nickel-plated Predator underneath his pillow, thought better of it, and popped his head up above the top bunk.


Jackson was wearing two polo shirts, and both popped collars formed something reminiscent of a Renaissance neck-ruffle. Today's porn vid, if the slight spill-over of sound from his headphones was any indication, was Big Elf Butts 15. It had been his favorite of late, Wildcard noted.
Best IP booster in the entire game, worth 80k per point of rating for the standard model. It's like Wired Reflexes that's always on and doesn't give you epilepsy (although that might have been Move-by-Wire).

Move at four times normal speed, forever. It's not like Wired Reflexes or Move-by-Wire: it's a specialized nerve cluster that is always "on."

The whole exchange actually happened in about 6-seconds in-game.
Okay yeah thats a pretty big fucking deal.
>Jackson was wearing two polo shirts, and both popped collars formed something reminiscent of a Renaissance neck-ruffle.
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"Tracey Ross from Delta Kappa is putting on this sick party, and--"

Wildcard hopped onto the ladder, and slid down to the floor. The Predator remained in its hiding spot.

"Yes, I recall you advertising the shindig as 'BJ City.' Suffice to say I won't be joining."

Jackson huffed.

"Aw man, I get this badass international mercenary cat all up and hiding out in my 'partment, and I don't even get to show him off none?"

"That's the idea, 'bro,' " chuckled Wildcard, sliding a holdout into the concealed holster in his armored coat (not the Mortimer of London one, which was for special occasions, but rather the gray one that he frequently used to impersonate city service workers) and zipping up his duffel bag. "Gon'ta be oot of the place for a few days. Hangin' wit the boys, then business. Don't break anything and I can get you that deepweed that you wanted in time for Valentine's Day."

"Dude, you the bomb!"

Wildcard gingerly handled a mil-spec helmet retrofitted with a custom bulletproof ceramic faceplate designed to emulate a snickering Punchinello. The eyes lit up as the inbuilt commlink booted.

"I know I am, Terrence. I know."
Rolled 17

holy fuck yes your back. I want to tell you that If I can get a group together, your stories will be the reason I got into shadowrun.
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"Ow, OW! Dang!"

Bend pulled his hand out of the slat in the talismonger's door, instinctively licking the spot on his wrist where Vulcan had drawn blood.

"Look, I'm not even here to buy anything magic," complained Bend, wiping a daub of blood off on his tie-dye T-shirt. "I just need a repair spell cast on my favorite smart jammer, it's got sea water in the wiring and you can't fix that normally."

"Same rules apply, same rules for everyone." Vulcan grunted from inside his bunker. "Your cred's good. I'll be done with the jammer in a moment."

"I swear, you're just like The Eyes," muttered Bend, kicking up Barrens rubble with his flip-flops.

"The Eyes? Psssh. Amateur." A third slat in the door that Bend wasn't even aware of before, hidden amongst the armor plating, opened, and the jammer slid out on a mechanized tray. "You have 30 seconds to get the jammer and clear the perimeter or else the turrets open fire."

"Nice doing business with you," sighed Bend, slipping the jammer into the pocket of his chonglers and jogging for the edge of the killzone.

"You now have 26 seconds," responded Vulcan through the loudspeakers, as a turret extruded from the roof of the bunker.
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That's great to hear! 4th edition is probably the easiest for new people to get into; we'll see how 5th turns out.



"I'm serious, man. You've gotta either go back home or find a new bolt hole," growled Dervish, searing a plate of real steak incongruously over an ancient, battered gas stove. "Sensei and I have a pretty sweet deal here and the last thing we need Aztechnology fucking it up."

"Can't," responded Locke, sitting at the "table" (read: fallen concrete slab too heavy to bother moving) in his full battle armor, periodically lifting the helmet to get a bite of his terrifyingly-still-good 1983 military MREs. "My safe house here in Redmond is docced, and Wildcard's pretty sure that they're watching his house right now."

"Well yeah," said Dervish, with a shrug (he himself was wearing a wife-beater that he had not bothered changing for two days straight), "but if they got pinged by Knight Errant, then they know about this place, too. And Bend's commune."

Behind an inch and a half of unbreakable plasteel, Locke's eyes widened.

"Fuck! I didn't even think of that! Is there an underground escape tunnel, a secret vault here? Wait, no, call Wildcard, we've got to go upstairs to the helicopter! I looked up this volcanic island in the Phillippines on my maps app, it said it was uninhabited so we can--"

"Calm the fuck down, Locke," said Dervish, with a light chuckle. He reached into the pan with his bare hand, grabbed the steak with the insulated tips of his fingers, and promptly crammed the whole thing into his mouth. He spat bits of cow as he continued to talk. "The guys are coming down anyway to hang out, and corps can't make big moves in Redmond without causing a stir. Consider it early warning."

Sensei finished a "shake" composed primarily of soy protein supplements, D-grade hamburger patty, and raw egg.

"What did you say was happening tonight, son?"
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"Trid night. We're gonna use Wildcard's nexus to hook up a local AR network, watch a bunch of trashy action flicks. You want in?"

Sensei blinked his blind, gray eyes at Dervish.

"Oh, don't you fucking give me that. You could have got cybereyes a million times over, you just like telling the story of how the Aztecs blinded you that one time in Sao Paulo, and how it 'just made you more in tune with the spirit of Sangre y Acero,' you damn windbag."

Sensei couldn't help but stifle a grin.

"Guilty as charged."

"How can you be so calm!?" Locke glanced at the boarded-up windows, ducking for cover from an imagined sniper. "There could be a team of Shorn Ones on their way here right now!"

"I got a haircut yesterday, but I'm not sure I count," said Bend, walking into the room with Wildcard and carrying a set of truly awful trid chips (TSUKIE REDFLOWER PART 0: ORIGINS). "Smart jammer's all fixed, so we're officially good to be back on the market."

"I jumped the gun on that one a wee bit," noted Wildcard. "Been goin' a little stir-crazy, so Brianna's set us up for something two nights from now. She says it's a great big one, S-K Johnson's lining up again, so get your suits laundered."

"Suits laundered!? We are UNDER ATTACK! We don't see it but they could be flying in a tactical drone this very instant!"

The entire team stared at Locke blankly.

"Look, Azzie," said Bend, miffed, "If I go sneak into your old bolt hole, and I don't find any Aztec warriors, can we put this conversation to rest?"

"For now," snapped Locke, but he followed it up apologetically with, "Yeah. That would help my state of mind. A lot."

"I'll be right back," said Bend, with a roll of his eyes, as he began donning his ruthenium-polymered suit of light milspec armor. "Send a watcher spirit first, see if it catches anything obvious."
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Felix's apartment block was only a thirty minute walk away, but Bend was nothing if not a consummate professional, and had snuck the entire way there, and then rather than beelining to Locke's bolt hole, was clearing the building room by room.

"Nothing in the lower building. Some weird magical trails, a mage might have been through here recently. If he's still in the building I'll report."

Finally, Bend worked his way up the hallway (literally, given that the whole building was tilted, Titanic-style) to Locke's bolt-hole. The door had been wrenched off its hinges, but that was nothing new.

Bend stealthed into the room, and did the unthinkable. The truly unfathomable. Preposterous, even. He did something that those who knew Bend would list as the single least likely thing he could ever do.

For the first time in his career as a spy or a shadowrunner, he tripped. As in, physically.

Bend caught his foot on a loose floorboard (wall-board?) and, his cat-like reflexes briefly abandoning him, he face-planted into Locke's kitchen.

He looked up to see a tiny Aztec face staring back at him, its tongue lolling obscenely.

Bend's heart tightened in his chest.

"Hi Bend! You're the second person in this room!"

Bend let out a whoosh of breath.

"Thank god, I thought you weren't one of Locke's spirits for a second. Wait--"

The second person in the room grabbed Bend by the throat, lifted him bodily, and slammed him into the wall, caving floorboards.
>"Hi Bend! You're the second person in this room!"
I love watcher spirits.
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>captcha: HIT tinabelt

Captcha, what I do with my girlfriend is none of your concern.


Bend found himself dangling from the outstretched arm of a man who was easily seven feet tall, dressed in a leather biker's outfit. But, as Bend paid closer attention (which was hard, as he was currently being throttled a cool one and a half feet off the ground), he realized that it wasn't a man at all. Its eyes were synthetic and uncanny, and didn't have the telltale pink where the edges of the eye meet face. The same could be said of the lips, which curved inward but then stopped at the teeth rather than continuing into the mouth; a plasticine mask rather than real skin. The texture of the skin was off, and on his throat Bend could feel a "cling" similar to a wetsuit. Bend's highly-sensitive ears could hear the servos in the arm whining as the figure continued to hold him up, displaying almost no strain whatsoever. Its preternaturally calm face showed no emotion as its doll-like mouth opened and shut, approximating the words that were actually issuing forth from a high-quality speaker in the back of its throat.


Bend gasped in pain, so the cyborg switched hands, easing up on his throat but using the other hand to shove against his torso, lifting him even higher against the wall. It repeated,


Bend choked out,

"I don't know what you're talking about!"

The cyborg's free hand split in half, the synthetic flesh rending as a rifle barrel extended from the forearm.


Bend felt a rib crack as he tried to struggle out of its crushing pressure.

"I don't know any Felix Ramirez!"

The cyborg trained its gun on Bend's head.


"I'm serious!"


"Stop asking that!"
Is Willie back?
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The cyborg paused for a moment, dipped its head in thought, and then let Bend fall down the wall again to continue throttling him. Recognizing that the thing intended to capture him, Bend drew his heavy taser, put it under the thing's chin, and pulled the trigger.

The cyborg shuddered spasmodically and sparks flew out of its ears and eyes. It froze in place, not letting go of Bend's neck. He continued to choke in its gasp, going blue. A synthetic "computer voice" issued forth from the cyborg's slack jaw.


Bend lifted his entire body up onto the cyborg's outstretched arm (he could feel his vertebrae stretching as all of his weight briefly rested on his neck), wrapped his arms and legs around it, and used the leverage to wrench his neck free of its grasp. He promptly fell off its arm and hit the floor hard, gasping for breath.


His screaming muscles running on adrenaline, Bend lifted himself out the window, sprinted to the edge of the building, and bailed down to the street below, pulling into a tuck and roll. He shapeshifted into a kangaroo, packed his gear into his female-kangaroo pouch (Bend believed that the utility made up for the body dysphoria) and made off as fast as he could, only turning around once to see the cyborg step into the streets, resolute.

A few minutes later, another watcher appeared in front of Bend.

"Hi Bend! Felix told me to go talk to the kangaroo because I couldn't find you the first time! What happened!?"

Unfortunately, Bend had a bruised trachea and two broken ribs, and did not much relish the thought of shapeshifting back now that the adrenaline has run out, just to talk. So, he scratched the words "FULL BODY COMBAT CYBORG" in the dirt and looked expectantly at the watcher.

The watcher helpfully shouted,


Bend tapped his kangaroo foot frustratedly at the words.


The watcher disappeared as it made back for its master.

Nah, in Shadowrun cyborgs and cyberzombies are two separate things. Cyberzombies are where you slowly replace a soldier's body with augs until there's nothing but augs left and no original body, but use magic to keep his soul stuck to the husk, whereas cyborgs are complex robots that use human brains as their processors.
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"He gave me words!"

Locke flinched and pulled his sidearm reflexively as the watcher reappeared beside him, even though he had known it was coming.

"And what did the words say?"

The watcher waggled its tongue in thought, and then scrabbled "EUL8ODYOOM84TOY8ORG" on one of the filthy windows. Locke blinked.

"Eulbody Oombat Oyborg?"

Dervish, Wildcard, and Sensei all winced. Sensei sauntered over to a nearby filing cabinet and pulled a pair of reigns out.

"Welp, I'ma take the old three-legged horse out for a spin for a few days."

Dervish grimaced.

"Yeah. Uh, yeah. You do that."

Wildcard fiddled with his keys.

"I'm goin' ta bring the car inside the complex then get the chopper warmed up."

Locke promptly set his gun's safety off.

"Oh. FULL BODY COMBAT CYBORG. I felt like an idiot there for a moment. Yep, the Philippines it is."

Bend ran naked into the room and immediately began packing his bags. Dervish looked at the bruising on his chest and neck and reflexively asked, "woah, what the hell happened?"

"My first mistake," grunted Bend, "was trying to help Locke. My second was getting spotted by a watcher spirit."

Dervish cringed.

"Bad day?"

Bend huffed.

"Really bad."
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Wildcard came over the team's comms as his car roared into the compound.

"Gentlemen, don't look now, but we have a visitor."

Bend glanced through the boards on one of the windows to see the cyborg pulling up to the barbed wire fence on a motorcycle. It made eye contact with Bend, and then walked clean through the fence.

"Fuuuck, this is like right out of 'The Terminator.'"

Dervish hefted his sniper rifle, making for a firing position as Wildcard ran back up the stairs, sprinting for the helicopter.

"El Terminador? I'd watch it."

With a cacophonic boom, Dervish planted an explosive round in El Terminador's skull, taking a long line of "flesh" and "hair" off of its scalp and exposing a di-coated titanium braincase. El Terminador lifted its arm and began laying down suppressive fire as Dervish hit the floor, covering his head on impulse from the shards of splintering wood. As the spinning of helicopter rotors began to disperse dust around the compound, Sensei rode his three-legged horse out the back.


"SEE YOU, DAD," yelled Dervish, as he popped up to plant another round in El Terminador's head, to equally dramatic but ineffectual results.

"Good to go," said Wildcard, arming the helicopter's weapons. "Getcher fat rears up here!"

Weighed down with duffle bags and firearms, the team sprinted into the helicopter, and as Wildcard lifted off the roof, he got a missile lock on the cyborg.

"So long, tin man."

The cyborg merely stared at the helicopter as the hellfire missile raced toward it.

The cyborg, missing all of its skin, its left arm, and a small portion of its torso, continued to stare up at the helicopter, its metallic eyes gazing unsettlingly through the smoky crater around it.

"Oh, you've got to be kidding me," said Bend, staring in disbelief through the cams.
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The sensors began blaring as Wildcard pitched the helicopter into a sprint away from Seattle, over the ocean. Locke's brows furrowed.

"What was that?"

"Oh, nothing. The Aztechnology pyramid just launched interceptors. A metaplanar portal would be nice."

Locke's eyes went wide.


Wildcard turned to stare at him, the voice modulator in his mask blaring unnervingly as, for the first time in their mutual careers, Wildcard yelled outright.


Locke's shell-shocked neurons connected, and he brought forth his Great-Form Guidance Spirit.

"That island we talked about with the mana boon! Now!"

Tonatiuh spun in the air and opened his mouth, beckoning the helicopter come inside, as a pair of missiles streaked through the skies over Elliot Bay.

In an instant, the helicopter was gone, and the missiles disarmed, deactivated, and dropped into the bay.

And, as the interceptors darted back to the Aztechnology pyramid, the day went on much as it had in Seattle.

Aztechnology, man.

My runners haven't actually done much against them yet... need to change that, honestly. Though they are definately on MCT"s shit list and depending on this job might get on SK's.
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Alright, I'm writing from my notes now. I'm planning to stick around at least until 2 in the morning, and then pick up again tomorrow.



After a lengthy metaplanar jaunt, the helicopter emerged, battered from spirit attacks and other metaplanar shenanigans, over the island in question. It was a volcanic rock with a jungle around it, old-school Bond-villain material. Wildcard breathed a sigh of relief, glad to be free of the Aztec metaplanes.

"This the place?"

Locke nodded wordlessly.

"Yeah. Set us down on that plateau?"

Wildcard gingerly eased the helicopter down, settling onto a mountain across from the caldera.

"Alright, gents. We've officially hit it big on AZT's shit list. Luckily, we're well out of their territory, the chopper's stocked with emergency food and water for weeks--"

Dervish tore a can of baked beans open with his hands and guzzled the entire thing.

"--for days, rather, and I can set up a connective hotspot to hit up some of our contacts for relocation. My personal suggestion is Italy or Germany, given that we don't want to blow off Saeder-Krupp Johnson. Anyone know German?"

Nobody raised their hands.

"Anyone know Italian?"

Only Wildcard raised his hand, although Bend gave an "eh" sideways hand signal.

"Italy it is."

"Let's hide out here as long as we can manage," commented Locke, who was eyeing the jungle warily out of the helicopter's window. "I don't doubt that nearly wasting that cyborg made me any LESS of a target."

Bend nodded.

"Agreed. Especially because it'll give us more time to lay low, ply the airwaves, work out our options."

Locke glanced at Bend. Bend looked at him, looked back at Wildcard, and looked at Locke again.

"I thought for sure that you were going to give me shit for getting us into this."

"I thought I would, too," sighed Bend. "I thought I would, too."

Dervish promptly opened his second can of beans, this time with his teeth.
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Did I miss something last Storytime? Why is AZT suddenly trying so hard to get Locke? They weren't putting much effort into it before...
First I feel I should get my fanboy gushing out of the way (Squeeeeeeeeeeeeee).
And now to the relevant part.
How did Locke manage to get a Great Form Guidance spirit? Isn't he an Aztec mage?
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On the note of Shadowun General, I got a question.
See, pic related here is from the On the Run module. I ran it for my group but never figured out what the hell "CM" and "PR" stood for on these statblocks. Could anyone help me out and explain what they signify?
CM=Condition Monitor

Condition Monitor.
Though I will note it appears to be calculated off.
Should be 8+ half body, round down which is 12, unless they have a cyberlimb or something.

Pr should be Professional Rating, its an npc stat that i have no idea what the hell it does.
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As Wildcard set up a field comm and opened up an encrypted wireless network, the team distributed disposable commlinks. They would all work their contacts for all they were worth, to make an international transition to Italy as smooth as possible. Wildcard hit up his old fixer, Luca, Bend called up Geppetto, Locke called Brianna's special line to let her know to postpone the Johnson meet as far as possible without angering the Johnson, and Dervish sat on the edge of the mesa and over watched the birds flying over the jungle.

"What," said Dervish, with a shrug to the rest of the team. "My only notable contact is sensei and he's busy riding away from Aztechnology on a crippled horse."

With a little collaboration (and promises of vouching and future favors), Luca and Geppetto managed to get in touch with a few capos of Don Feretti, the head of the Alta Comissione in Sicily. Geppetto arranged for a preliminary "parking spot" in Palermo for the helicopter, an empty lot guarded by corrupt cops (he snarkily closed his conversation to Bend with "don't call me again unless you've actually been shot"), while Luca ordered four fake SINs to be delivered upon landing, with the natural expectation that they would be paid off. He also reminded Wildcard that it was traditional to pay respects to Don Feretti upon entering the city, and that the team had best remain humble and on their best behavior.

Locke actually had the most interesting conversation, as Brianna let him know, a few hours later in the day,

"Funny you should plan on Italy. Mr. Johnson's employer is in Italy, and has decided to handle the meet personally. More information forthcoming."

The team was so preoccupied with planning that, even as they milled about their unoccupied rock, they didn't notice the small Japanese man approaching.
>small Japanese man

It's Trout, isn't it. I swear to God if this is Trout...

They didn't know where he was before. The moment that Knight Errant arrested him and his real SIN got put in a public record, he pinged and AZT knew he was right there, in the city.


I think I explained this in a previous storytime, where someone asked about Geppetto's black magic Guardian spirits. GM runs a fairly common houserule where you can switch out spirits with Initiations. Locke, IIRC, was thrice-initiated and had spent one subbing out Guardian for Guidance.
Oh Geppetto, you will always be my favourite.
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The man was bald, perhaps 5-foot-three, and wore an old-style kimono in a warm red. He looked between the three runners, his mouth hanging open slightly, as though doubting their existence. Dervish was the first to notice, and let his hand rest on his gun while he chipped the old Japanese 'soft from Neo-Tokyo.

"Hey guys, we got company."

There was a brief silence as the whole team stared at the old man in the kimono, who stared back at them. The old man waggled his arm experimentally, as though expecting the runners to act like a mirror. Finally, he spoke,

"What are you doing on my island?"

Locke, the only one without a Japanese skillsoft (who wasn't Bend, who was fluent), asked,

"What's he saying?"

"He says it's his island," grunted Dervish, turning back to the old man. "Look, this island isn't registered to any private or public ownership, so it's not yours. We're just squatting here for a few days, so how about you back off?"

The old man blinked and gawked at Dervish, looking more in awe than mad. Dervish looked between Wildcard and Bend. He said, in English,

"What's his problem?"

Bend frowned at Dervish.

"I don't know, I guess he's just a hermit and doesn't know what Shadowrunners are or something--"

In Japanese, again,

"I know what Shadowrunners are."

The old man looked at Bend, his facial expression one of utter confusion. He continued to look expectantly between the runners, as though expecting a reaction that he clearly wasn't getting. Wildcard tapped at the chip in the back of his neck, wondering if the translation was somehow faulty. These kinesics were weird.

"Okay," said Bend, forcing a smile, "You know what Shadowrunners are. Great. Well, we don't mean you any harm. We're just hiding out for a few days and then we'll be on our way. How about you go back to...wherever it is you live, alright? Hell, we'll even pay rent."
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"I don't want to be paid rent."

Bend threw his hands up in the air.

"Sir, is there something we CAN help you with?" He muttered in Sperethiel, audible to Locke, "This is so surreal."

"No. I don't need to be helped with anything. This is my island. I don't want Shadowrunners on my island and I think I've been very polite."

"Well, that's all well and good, sir," said Wildcard, his Scottish brogue butchering his Japanese, "and yes, you have been very polite, but there are extenuating circumstances and we can't leave. We're very sorry but we can't leave yet."

The old man gave Wildcard a thousand-yard stare, now entirely slack-jawed. He gesticulated at Wildcard, as though he expected the gestures to make something "click" that hadn't been accounted for. However, as far as Wildcard could measure, it was still just a tiny old Japanese man standing by their helicopter, acting weird.

"Alright, let's start again," said Bend, "We're just going to be here a while and we don't want to be a burden. I'm Sean, and these are Clarence, Garrett, and Pablo. What's your name?"

The old man stared directly into Bend's eyes, his expression completely blank. Bend began to realize what the expression was; he'd seen it in California before. It was the expression of someone used to being recognized...not being recognized.

"My name is Ryumyo and you're trespassing on my island."


>Great Dragon Encounter Count: 1
While we are still not sure if it was the best of times or the worst of times. We do know for sure it was the end of times.


Ooooooh fuck get the fuck off that island
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"Oh, WOW. We're sorry, sir, we didn't know that this was your private island, and we'd like to beg your forgiveness and that you please not eat us," babbled Bend. "Um, we were actually recommended to come here by some guys doing a really shady deal, so I think this was all a part of a double-cross and really, you'd be playing into it by killing us--"

Wildcard punched Bend square in the jaw, decking the infiltrator flat. Panicked, his voice took on more of his accent than usual.

"Yew're tryin' tae bullshit a Greet Dragonne, ya numpty poof! Don' try tae bullshit Greet Dragonnes!"

"How do we know he's real," yelled Dervish, "if he were the real Ryumyo he would have killed us by now!"

"Don't fucking TEST that," yelled Locke, who tackled Dervish as Dervish made for his gun. The team quickly devolved into two scuffles, as all involved parties tried to reciprocate panicked violence while desperately fleeing outright for the helicopter.

Ryumyo continued to blankly stare, looking more confused than ever, and slowly followed the team back to the helicopter.

"I'm not going to kill you."


"Felix, so help me, give me back my gun. I'm not going down without a fight."

Ryumyo repeated, with a roar in his voice this time,


The team went silent, and Bend removed his taser from where it was pressed against Wildcard's thigh.

"Oh. Well, that's nice of you."

"Yes," said Ryumyo, planting his face firmly in his palm, "yes it is. Please get back in your helicopter."

Bend put his hands up as he retreated into the helicopter,

"Sir, I'd just like to remind you how sorry we are--"

"I don't care. I have imbued your vehicle with the ability to temporarily move at exponential speeds. Please use it to leave and never return."

"Yes," said Wildcard, settling into the controls. "Yes, we'll do that."
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>GD Encounter 1 out of 5

I hope you guys noped the fuck out of there.
come on, nancy-boys, it's just a dragon. I've slain them by hundreds!


>clueless D&D player
You. I like you.
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The helicopter remained firmly in place.

"Ehrm," said Wildcard, fiddling with the course mapper, "where are we gonna go?"

"ITALY," said his other three teammates, simultaneously.

"Right. Italy. We're goin' there. Right."

With a sonic boom, the helicopter suddenly launched into motion in the general direction of Northwest.

As the helicopter slowed down from its brief stint of super speed a few hours later somewhere over mongolia, Bend reached into his duffel bag with a quivering hand, drew a joint, lit it, and began drawing frenzied breaths. Dervish was the first to say it:


"FUCK," agreed Wildcard, from his position at the controls.

"FUCK ME," said Bend.

"Fuuuuuck," Locke chimed in.

There was another silence.

About thirty seconds later, Bend physically jumped on top of Locke, screaming like a jungle primate through teeth gritted around the joint.


Dervish put Bend in a full nelson, although that only barely dimmed Bend's fury, who began to kick wildly at Locke with his legs while his screaming slowly devolved into a single, primal, bestial hunting cry, his veins protruding dramatically from his face and his eyes completely bloodshot. Dervish struggled to keep hold of him as he turned into a chinchilla, shed his fur, turned back into an elf, and proceeded to continue bashing Locke's head against the side of the helicopter.

Dervish put Bend in a sleeper hold, and looked pleadingly at Wildcard, who shrugged as Bend began to bite hard into Dervish's arm, failing to break the strengthened skin.

It was going to be a long trip to Sicily.
>"FUCK," agreed Wildcard, from his position at the controls.
>"FUCK ME," said Bend.
>"Fuuuuuck," Locke chimed in.


(i seriously hope things only escalate from here :D)

This, right here, Is a perfect example of how you are supposed to react to a dragon in Shadowrun.
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He's back!
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8:27 AM, JANUARY 21st, 2074, PALERMO, SICILY

The team, battered, bruised, sleep-deprived, and exhausted, settled onto the dirt lot in Palermo as two shady-looking men in Italian motorcycle cop uniforms waved them in. It had taken a few more calls to move all of the planning back to the day of, but it was done. However, the team owed their contacts a lot for this one.

Wildcard stumbled out onto the lot, bleary-eyed. He grumbled in Italian,

"Hey, I have a flight manifest and a list of goods, and our passports are on the way--"

One of the cops shook his head.

"You the guy?"

"The guy?"

"The guy."

Wildcard took a moment to think.

"I am the guy."

The cop looked at his partner.

"He's the guy."

"Yep, he's the guy."

Both cops put up a police barricade by the lot.

"Nothing to see here, people! Clear out! Just arresting these here international criminals right now! You didn't see nothin'!"

Wildcard sighed with happiness. It was refreshing to see authority figures so...complacent. He rapped twice on the side of the helicopter, hearing the groaning of his napping teammates inside.

"Would you gents mind escorting us to a restroom of some sort? We have our suits in the helicopter but we're all rather...disheveled."

One of the cops looked at his watch. The other clucked his tongue, nodding.

"Yeah. We don't got anything like that down at the precinct, so we'll just have to skip down to Don Feretti's villa."

The other cop agreed, his expression neutral behind his aviator sunglasses,

"Yes, I hear that Don Feretti is very generous about the use of his restrooms. Let's go there and not to the precinct, because the criminals need to use the restroom, and neither of us is aware presently of anything of that sort to exist at the precinct."

"And we wouldn't want to infringe upon their rights," concurred the first cop.

Wildcard could almost cry.
So, that's the first of these threads which I happen to see while they're still alive. Oh Joy!
Well, TwoDee, I wanted to thank you. You are a magnificient person that you take the time to tell us your story in this quality. Oh, and thank you, your fellow gamers and (probably most important) your awesome GM for playing such an awesome game.
Twodee, I just want to thank you for inspiring me to GM the Shadowrun game I've run for the past few months.

Admittedly, I still need to learn the rules, but I'm working on that one.
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GM's back in town, but he follows these threads regardless. Here's hoping that lunch with him tomorrow doesn't fall through...


I've gotta lose about 40 more pounds (and then promptly gain them as muscle) before that's me.


The meeting with Don Feretti was relatively uneventful. The Don was an old, dignified man, but lacked much of the haughtiness of power, and so took no offense at the rather eclectic gaggle of runners gracing him. If anything, he derived amusement from it; a change from the norm. With Wildcard facing, the team negotiated a brief, paid-for stay at the Feretti villa, with the team sharing two bedrooms between them. They were promised safety, security, and--most importantly--a stable contact base to operate in Italy. So long as they continued to pay, the helicopter would remain "a crime scene" and they would be under "protective custody" in the villa.

NOON, JANUARY 22nd, 2074

Only after a day of taking in the sights in Palermo (which did wonders to calm the team's rattled nerves) did Brianna get back to the team.

"I got in touch with Johnson's employer."

Wildcard put his mask down, answering the call and gesturing for the rest of the team to do the same. This point in time found the team having lunch at a roadside cafe, peoplewatching and playing "spot the goomba." The running ratio was one for every fifteen civilians.


"He's an old-school professional, says he Johnsoned back in the days of Seretech. And the one who got pulled off the job here isn't exactly an unprofessional Johnson; he's the same guy from the UO run. Which means we're looking at a big, big job here, if S-K's using two Johnsons as middlemen."

Dervish thoughtfully chewed on a piece of ravioli.

"You think it's him? Lofwyr, I mean? Calling the shots on this one?"

"I doubt it," responded Brianna, "but anything's possible. You boys have something of a reputation. Especially you, Dervish."

Dervish grunted.
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"Regardless," continued Brianna, "unless he comes out and says it's Lofwyr, don't ask. But you already knew that by now."

"So this new Johnson," said Bend, "what do you have on him?" Bend continued to pick at his terrible vegetarian panini, wincing with every wilted, dry bite.

"Not much to go on," responded Brianna. "Says he retired from Johnsoning decades ago, but got pulled back into this on a favor. Works as a professor now. Some kind of European, maybe German, maybe Italian, couldn't pin the accent."

"Any guidelines?"

"Old-school Johnson meets are a lot less formal; you'll like it. You're meeting him at the Fortunato al Pantheon restaurant in Rome in two days. Oh, and guys?"

Locke nodded reflexively.


"Get new suits. Really, really good ones."

"On your dollar?"

"You fucking wish."

Dervish laughed.

"Take care of yourself, Brianna."

"Likewise, guys. This is...this is the big one."
Sorry for the brief absence; something just came up. Regardless, I'm gonna see if I can't get through the Johnson meet.

No worries man. You're awesome and Storytime is awesome.
Hey, we waited some months for this, we should we be mad because some minutes? Especially as the story's really worth the wait.
Besides /tg/'s just loaded with amazing stuff these few months.
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The team decided to not fuck around for this Johnson meet, under the assumption that, as of the phone call, they were on the job of making a good impression. A fancy hotel room near to the restaurant was rented, four flight tickets to Rome were purchased, and the suits...suits were researched. Eventually the team settled on the Milanese A. Caraceni, a longstanding family business, with a "less is more" philosophy. The team assumed (perhaps correctly) that an old-school Johnson would appreciate such a hearkening back to old fashion mores.

...And they guessed correctly, as the team filed in to the back room of the restaurant, where they found, sitting across an intimate table, a lone, grey-haired dwarf, wearing an old-style, understated suit, much as they were.

"Greetings," said the dwarf, in his untraceable, vaguely-European accent. He had a warm smile, reminiscent of the pastel cells on an old Disney feature. "You gentlemen can call me Mr. Johnson. And none of that 'only the face talks' hoorah. We're going to have a nice dinner before we talk business."

"That's a surprise," said Wildcard, accepting a glass of wine from Johnson.

"It shouldn't be," responded Johnson, a little taken-aback. "This business used to be a trusting community, before the internet went and mucked it all up. Tell me about yourselves."

"Not much to tell, really," said Wildcard, "I'm a bank robber from Edinburgh--back when it still existed, yeah--and I got into the biz from organized crime. It's something of a thrill-seeking jaunt."

Dervish grunted.

"I'm Dervish. I woke up in an alleyway and don't remember shit. I'm in it for me, I guess. There's a bimonthly doujinshi about me called "America-San." "

Johnson chuckled.

"Yes, some of my students are familiar with your wacky antics. Tell me, are the stories involving the oni true?"

"What, the red one?"

Johnson shook his head.

"Blue, I believe. Apparently you hit him with a motorcycle."
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Don't stop by /tg/ frequently, can't tell if sarcasm...


Dervish scratched his chin.

"Nah, I never...the oni was red, and I...I really wish I'd hit him with a motorcycle, damn."

Johnson left Dervish to his reverie and turned to Bend.

"Bend. Ex-intelligence. Don't want to expand on it too much, Mr. Johnson. I figure information is an advantage..."

Johnson pursed his lips at Bend.

"Oh, please. Maybe in the Johnson meets you're used to, but here we're friends first and clients second. Honestly," he scoffed, "Americans. Thinking everyone else is out to steal up your little slice of the pie. If it makes you feel any better, I'll tell you a little about myself."

Johnson cleared his throat.

"I'm from Prague originally, and maintain a tenured position at the University there. Magical Studies, as it were; as you can tell from my then-unique physiology, I was quite 'on the ball' with the whole magic thing from day one."

Johnson laughed at a joke he hadn't made, and then continued.

"Suffice to say, my unique skillset got me involved with Saeder-Krupp, who I'm doubtless sure that you're aware you're working for, although my relationship with them was always transitory and on a by-necessity basis--" he took a sip of his wine, "--much as is your relationship with them, I imagine. I'm here now as part of a very big favor to a very old friend in the company, if you'll believe it, although that makes it sound much more ominous than it really is. And you:"

Johnson pointed at Locke,

"You are Felix Ramirez, famous fugitive. Are you aware that Aztechnology has put up wanted ads all over North America?"

Felix stared at his wine and mumbled,

"Well, I guess I'm happy that I'm not in North America, then."

Johnson laughed again, and an earnest one at that. He seemed to just be a very jovial man in general.

"Alright, gentlemen, now that introductions are out of the way, shall we begin?"

Locke nodded.

"The negotiation?"

"No, the dinner!"
I like this guy. He seems nice. I feel like he's also planning on murdering the team with a smile.
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The team enjoyed themselves throughout the dinner, humoring Mr. Johnson's many stories about the "good old days" of deckers and trenchcoats. Finally, over a horribly unhealthy cream dessert, and after everyone had partaken well of the wine, Johnson gestured for the servers to disappear.

"Now, regrettably, comes business, gentlemen."

"About bloody time, we're shadowrunners, we don't have time for fun," chortled Wildcard, causing a laugh to circle around the table.

"Now, I don't intend to be the flighty Johnson and withhold information, but some of this is on a need-to-know basis. That said, here's what I've been cleared to tell you."

Johnson brought up a mugshot of a handsome but nondescript hispanic elf. He actually rather resembled Locke.

"This is Rodrigo Alvarez, Aztechnology's foremost company man. He's one of the biggest runner-killers in the business, to say nothing of what he's pulled off on rival corps. Don't bother taking the picture to heart, he's a face-changing adept. Aztec tradition, likely, but don't discount Hermetic or Path of the Wheel."

Johnson pulled up another image, this one of a sealed black box.

"Speaking of magic and dealing with other corps, that's the crux of this job. My old friend--the one in Saeder-Krupp--had a very powerful item stolen from him by mister Alvarez. It should be kept in a special environmentally-controlled case, pictured here."

Locke raised his hand, and Johnson gestured for him to speak.

"Is it magical?"

"Very. But the case should hamper that somewhat. Regardless, you can still assense it to make sure it's in there, which is the important part."

Wildcard spoke up.

"What is it?"

Johnson grimaced.

"Need to know, I'm afraid. And, in fact, at great risk to your lifespans were you to."

"Got it," said Dervish, with a nod. "Assense the box, but don't look inside."

"That's the spirit," chuckled Johnson. "Now, my employer wants it back from Mister Alvarez, or whomever currently holds it."
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Dervish mocked "bracing for impact" against his fine leather-clad seat.

"The catch incoming, T-minus 5, 4, 3..."

"Oh, stop that," giggled Johnson. "But there is a catch, isn't there always? You see, Mr. Alvarez has gone AWOL. He deserted Aztechnology, whom are rather infuriated with this whole debacle, given that they were presumably the ones who orchestrated the theft. He's been underground for a month, but recently resurfaced, albeit very briefly, in Tir Tairngire."

Locke raised an eyebrow.

"You didn't get him then?"

"Tried, but missed the man and the object. A total botch. And this is Drake Prime we're talking about, to give you an idea of exactly how wily this snake is."

Bend asked,

"Any idea why he'd be in the Tir?"

"A hypothesis," sighed Johnson. "The Tir ball season is upcoming. Princes, festivals, expositions, people pouring in from far and wide, the whole circus--rodeo? Circus?"

"Circus is probably the better term," said Wildcard. "Go on."

"We think he plans to sell the artifact to someone, maybe one of the non-Aztec megacorps, maybe to an independent buyer, maybe to the Tir, and he's using the party season as a smokescreen. So, you're on a time limit, although regrettably I don't know what exactly that limit is."

"So," said Bend, "the mission is to enter the Tir, figure out who the buyer is, if there IS a buyer, beat Alvarez, and get the artifact to Saeder-Krupp without removing it from the case."

Johnson nodded.

"That is correct."

"And what do we do with Alvarez?"

"Irrelevant. Kill him if you must, but I'd prefer this be accomplished with at little violence as possible...although I fear that may be unavoidable."

Dervish snorted.

"You and me both, buddy, if a mega's involved. Got a pricetag?"

"Two hundred thousand plus expenses, an unlimited account to be cleared personally by me, paid-for airfare and lodging, and a negotiable bonus."

The entire team gawked. Locke put down his spoon with a loud CLINK.
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"You heard me," said Mr. Johnson. "The price, by the way, is non-negotiable, unless for some unearthly reason you wish to negotiate DOWN. Take it or leave it, that's the bounty for retrieving the the object that even Drake Prime couldn't."

Wildcard's eyes twitched in his head as he furiously browsed his internal commlink for some kind of precedent, while Dervish, Locke, and Bend continued to gawk. Finally, Locke commented, stupidly,

"That's a lot."

"Yes, Locke, it is. This isn't a setup for a paltry double-cross, either, as I hypothesize the artifact to be worth approximately one thousand times that value alone, albeit with the ticking time bomb of my old friend's animosity tied to its ownership. Take it or leave it, gentlemen."

Dervish nodded.

"I'm in."

Bend grit his teeth, but nodded as well.

"Me too."

Locke smiled.

"And me. Wildcard?"

Wildcard blanched in his seat, catatonic. Locke patted him on the back.


"What? Yes?"

The entire team looked at him expectantly.

"Er. Yes. Yes, considair me tae be in."

"It's settled, then," smiled Johnson, reaching a hand across the table to shake hands with Locke first, and then working his way around the table. "I'll book you the first suborbital back to Seattle, under your new Sicilian aliases for obvious reasons."

Everyone cringed when they shook Johnson's hand. His body temperature was very hot: not burning, but equivalent to a very high fever, and probably some kind of magical effect. Wildcard cringed more than his teammates.
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As the team left for the streets of Rome, Locke patted Wildcard on the back.

"I take it you found something out during the Johnson meet? What is it? It seems pretty big going by your reaction."

Wildcard brought up an AR window, and meekly commented,

"Found Johnson."

"Oh, hell no," gulped Bend.

Locke remained silent but began fiddling with his tie neurotically, just scrolling up and down the window as though he'd see something different.

And Dervish just laughed, and laughed, and laughed, bracing himself in the arch of a nearby doorway.

"The fucking old friend bit, he got us good," laughed Dervish, leaning on his knees.

It was a news article dating back to 2061, picturing a tall, handsome man with silver hair shaking hands with Mr. Johnson, the comparatively underwhelming dwarf. Both were being photographed in front of a podium, and the images of dragons had been superimposed behind them.

The article read,


>Great Dragon Encounter Count: 2

>Great Dragon Encounter Count: 3

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So which one of these dragons is going to be the one breathing fire in the background later?
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Well, there are supposed to be 5 in total, so there are two more which may be delinquent at this point.
It's going to be Zombie Dunkelzahn, isn't it.

I'll never tell!

Also bed. Bed now. Ideally more storytime tomorrow morning.

Well, evening, given that's when I'll be waking up.
>Don't stop by /tg/ frequently, can't tell if sarcasm...

No sarcasm, there has been some legtimitally fantastic goings on around here.

Holy shit son your GM wasn't pulling any stops was he?
>Never cut a deal with a dragon.
>There's a bimonthly doujinshi about me called "America-San."
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Jesus dick.

Those guys are fucked beyond all recognition.

Meeting two great dragons, in person, without getting eaten, burned, turned into a small furry animal or otherwise utterly screwed over? Gratz. Cutting a deal with the second, without even knowing it? Pic related.
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They're fucked. So fucking fucked. Not even the Great Unfucker itself, at maximum unfuck capacity, unfucking at 5,000,000 fucks per second, could unfuck this beyond-fucking-fucked amount of fuckitude.
I would have held Locke against the rotors. Forever.
Pardon my unfamiliarity with the Shadowrun setting, but what is it specifically about dragons that make them so feared? Other than the otherwise implied ancient age and immense physical and magical power that comes with it.
>other than the
as if it isn't enough.
Partly they're basically immortal. This means that if you fuck one's shit up, he can probably heal up, go about his business, then eat you in return. Secondly, they're big, both in the physical size sense and in the non-physical power sense. Lofwyr owns a megacorp. Third, they can and will happily hold grudges. One of the 21C edition handbooks has an entire team of shadowruners cut down just because one of them fucked a great dragon's daughter, was mindwiped, then tried to find out what the hell had happened. Fourth, they've got this whole "immense physical and magical power" thing going on. So yeah, great dragons (and even the non-great dragons) are to be feared, respected and generally stayed the fuck out of the way of.

Yes, captcha, "because augglaw". Definitely "because augglaw".
>Fourth, they've got this whole "immense physical and magical power" thing going on.

This also includes special shit like Twist Fate and sirrugs Entropy powers, and forgotten spells from bygone ages and tons of karma from being alive so long.
Minor armies of ally spirits, tons of quickened continent spells, the whole works.

Great dragons are SCARY AS SHIT.
Is Twist Fate the thing where they spend edge to let you spend edge without achieving anything?

Yes, but its also the one they can do to set up a neverending circlejerk of ally buffing with edge

By lending a point to someone else that is returned upon being spent, they are one of the most terrifying inspiring forces in SR4.
Shite. That's harsh.

Among other things. I think the only thing they honestly CAN'T fuck you over with with edge (which they have 12 of minimum) is that they can't keep you from BURNING edge... but they can burn edge, too.

Good luck, omae!
These bastards are really fearsome in SR.
I like that. Ah, I should seriously try finding/building a group again.

Personally, I've only ever heard of two groups ever killing a Great. One involved nuking THEMSELVES while they were fighting him, and the other had them drop a Ares space born weapons platform on them destroying the entire island they happened to be on.

It's more accurate to compare them to a D&D Demigod than the obvious comparison of the D&D dragons.

I mean, they're tough but not invincible. But they are really really stupidly tough. I can't remember stats off the top of my head, but I'm pretty sure anything short of an Anti-Tank weapon barely phases them.
Holy shit TwoDee, you saved my little shitscribble? Somehow this makes me prouder than I feel like it should.
>Personally, I've only ever heard of two groups ever killing a Great.

Three. I've been in one that managed to pull it off.
We didn't do it without a LOT of help, though.

Said great had attempted a xanatos gambit that failed, and left the entire spirit world pissed at them, as a whole. They were completely unable to draw on any sort of spiritual aid for the fight.
Also, due to the magical ritual bullshit they were trying to pull, trying to summon a Mentor/Totem spirit and kill it to take it's place, had to leave their base of power.

Didn't stop them from hiring a private army for the trip though. Dragons still have a LOT of money to throw around.

I need it to validate my enormous ego, anon.

More Storytime later. More sleep now.
I have a couple questions about what ever happened with characters if that's okay?

Namely what happened to Miss Kitsune from the Japan arc, and What happened to Trout after you turned him over.

Also a Shadowrun lore question, whats the lifespan of a drake? Is it the same as there base race, or longer. Can't seem to find that in the lore books.

The kitsune continued to live her Manic Pixie Dream Girl life, bouncing around Japan as her whims took her.

Trout is...you'll find out.

Also, I have no idea what the lifespan of a drake is.
basically a morale rating, determines how much it takes for them to break
Uh... could someone explain what Drake Prime is?

Lofwyr, I assume.

Also a link for reference:

I think Trout ended up in like a maximum security prison or something, but I haven't read SR Storytime in a long time, so I could be wrong
He did, but he was busted out. By this fine team of runners.
Busted out, and subsequently delivered to the distinguished organization that this fine team of runners currently find themselves working for yet again.
>Trout is...you'll find out.

>"Two hundred thousand plus expenses, an unlimited account to be cleared personally by me, paid-for airfare and lodging, and a negotiable bonus."

Wait, 200k each, or for the whole team? Because 50k just doesn't seem like that much for this level of risk, expenses and all aside.
>One of the 21C edition handbooks has an entire team of shadowruners cut down just because one of them fucked a great dragon's daughter, was mindwiped, then tried to find out what the hell had happened.

I would like to read this if anyone can remember a title.
"Tried, but missed the man and the object. A total botch. And this is Drake Prime we're talking about, to give you an idea of exactly how wily this snake is."

>"You and me both, buddy, if a mega's involved. Got a pricetag?"
He means megacorp, right? I thought he was talking about Drake the first time I read it.
I think I read the same story, but I only remember reading 4th edition's anniversary book.
I get why you wouldn't want to fuck with a dragon, but what's the reason there's the saying to never cut a deal with one?

>Also, most basic runner saying ever
>And these total pros just botched following it completely
It's in SR4A.

Just read it though, and the dragon wasn't holding a grudge or being a dick at all.
Posting in a TwoDee thread. Just to let you know that your storytimes inspired me to take up GMing for the first time ever and that me and my players have had a ton of fun with Shadowrun.
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That was Johnson saying it, about Alvarez.

Also, Drake Prime=the name of SK's big military wing. Think drake marines.


50k is...a lot. You can live a whole year on a posh lifestyle with that. Plus, negotiable bonus, and I am realizing now that I didn't make it clear: vehicle and otherwise expenses included paying off the rest of the debt on the team's attack chopper, and handling their lifestyle costs as long as they were on the job.



The team sat around the coffee table in a mid-price hotel room in Vancouver, milling through AR windows and E-paper bulletins. Everyone was coping in a different way: Wildcard had buried himself in the job, Locke had begun binge drinking at six in the morning, and Bend had called Emily no less than fifteen times to make sure that she was okay. Dervish was, well, Dervish as usual, and sipped a black coffee as he went through the plans with Wildcard.

"Okay, so we can't use our Sicilian passports; we need some kind of legitimacy at the border, is what I'm getting here?"

Wildcard nodded, his gleaming Punchinello eyes running over with data.

"From February to April, Portland locks down like a Catholic school prom. No immigration, no emigration, restricted travel, restricted trade...it goes on and on."

"I'm assuming there's exceptions?" Dervish looked over a number of fake SIN cards, all of Wildcard's ex-identities.

"Quite. Obviously there has to be some sanctioned trade, although tariffs raise considerably to discourage too much traffic. On top of that, Tellestrian Industries gets the full benefit of Tir Prince status, so they make a tidy profit acting the courier to interested parties during that time. Speaking of which, Tellestrian might be a good place to start if we could get Locke or Bend into there. Elf corporation, AA, handles most of the Tir's imports and domestic products."

Dervish chuckled.


"As all hell."
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Bend spoke up.

"What kind of events are we looking at? I'm sure there's a schedule of some sort."

"I've got it right here, but we'll have to narrow it down," responded Wildcard. "The sooner we can get into the Tir and get our ears to the ground, the better."

"I've taken the liberty of assuming that the trade-off is of the utmost secrecy, given our intel, which means it's likely going on during one of the major events, when there are enough people and factions around to provide a smokescreen as to who is doing what. So, we've got two clumps of events, one in early February, and one in late February and March," he continued. "It's probably going to be in the later clump, if this thing is as hard to sell as Johnson's made it out to be, but we'll want to do all our legwork regardless."

The first bulletin up was a Horizon event, a preview expo of all of the new media debuting during the upcoming year, on January 28th. It was run by Larry Zincan, a mid-level Horizon talking head and minor movie star. Invite-only, black tie.

"First, we've got this," said Wildcard. "It'd certainly be loud and flashy enough to cover up a sale, but it's damn short-notice and the invite-only tag makes it a hard sell. Think we could make it in?"

Dervish patted Wildcard on the back.

"Yeah, I've got an in with Darius St. George. Swinging that wouldn't be a bad idea, and if we're right and the trade-off isn't happening there, hey, free movies."

"Excellent. You get on that, Dervish. Next up:"

Wildcard brought up a bulletin for the second event, an extremely exclusive invite-only charity ball held at Hestaby's villa on Mt. Shasta.

"Consider this one unlikely. Invite-only, and atop that you have to be invited by a Great Dragon, which is hostile territory for our man Alvarez."

Locke and Bend nodded as Locke transitioned from tequila to vodka, quite content to drop into a stupor.
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"Third event set off some alarm bells. This one's the mage's conclave, on the 6th. Hestaby WILL be there, but busy with her own side-conference. The mage's conclave is a publicly-sponsored brain trust between mages of varying magical traditions. They've rented out an entire hotel for the damn thing, albeit a very modern-looking one with big windows, lots of exposure, and little privacy. Not the best option, and still very soon, but if Alvarez already has a buyer lined up, then it's probably going down here so that he can blend in with all the other mages and magical artifacts."

Bend groaned.

"This sounds like a nightmare. Any ideas?"

Dervish jerked his thumb at Locke.

"We could enroll Fabio over there in the conclave."

"Under fake credentials? We can't use his real name; every Aztec in the building will be hunting him down like a dog."

Felix snored. Bend grabbed his half-finished mixed drink and took a swig of it.

"I'm beginning to see the virtue of constructing a consistent false identity for the entirety of the trip. And I know just the man to talk to about that sort of thing."

Dervish smiled.

"If this ends in us relying on that shady SIN dealer again..."

Bend shook his head.

"No, I'm talking about my old boss, Jordan Formic."

Wildcard paused.

"Wasn't he the bloke who mailed you a pipe bomb for Christmas?"

"Well, I mailed him a bottle of wine filled with cyanide for New Years', so we're even."

Dervish cocked an eyebrow.

"I thought you were a pacifist."

Bend made a 'psssh' noise with his lips.

"Well, it's not like he was going to drink it."
Hell yes, in the thread as it starts back up. Been watching these since sometime back as far as threads 1 to 3, and have seen two Shadowrun campaigns started in my group as a result.

>Plus the near constant SR general thread for the past several months
>"Well, it's not like he was going to drink it."

As always I wonder how much of this was yours, and how much came from session quotes, but I do love all of it.

Oddly enough, I did stumble across your GM talking about the first couple sessions and asking for advice on a SR forum a few months back (his posts were much, much older of course). Was interesting to see the two sides of the tale.
Seems every thread we have people jumping into SR, myself included(I started reading around thread 12).

I wonder how many people have started SR because of 2d's story? He is probably one of the most successful marketing campaigns CLG has ever had, even if they had nothing to do with it.
We started a group as well inspired by these threads, but it was very short lived.

Mainly due to issues with our own that guy, and trying to get the whole group around at any given point it kind of failed before the first official run was finished.

His stories convinced me to run, though I'd been in the business of shadowrun for some time beforehand. Still, got a group going. My players have managed to fuck themselves in so many ways, it's hilarious.

"Moving on to the second clump," said Wildcard, "We've got the charity gala at the Museum of Science and Industry on the 23rd. This one's open to the public with a cover charge, and is being double-hosted by Hestaby and Ares Macrotechnology. Ares has some fancy-schmancy new drone line that they're rolling out, all proceeds go to charity, you know the drill. Hestaby's there to get all the princes to clap when Ares unveils their new killer robot. That said, this one will probably be one of the all-around busiest, but also one of the events with the most empty space, so it's a contender."

"We could probably try to get hired on as security," commented Dervish. "Institutions like that tend to take on extra muscle in time for rich bitch season."

Bend nodded to Dervish.

"You want to handle that angle, see if you can't get hired on as a provisional?"

"Yeah, I can do that," agreed Dervish.

"Excellent," said Wildcard. "Next up, the Aztlan ambassador's ball on the 10th. This one's a real 'belly of the beast' scenario: no dragons allowed because there was some big nasty international incident with Sirrurg blowing up a town in Mexico, very hush-hush. If Johnson's wrong and Alvarez is making for AZT, he'll be here. Otherwise, it's a risky proposition."

Bend nodded.

"How many more?"

"Just one. There's a day-long festival gala on March 21st to celebrate the equinox. The streets are filled like mardi gras, everyone parties. This one's a big risk: Alvarez will have to hide out with the artifact for two months to make it to this point, but he'd have the whole city to hide him when he makes the deal."

Bend and Dervish looked at each other soberly. Wildcard commented,

"We have a beginning plan of action?"

"Getting new identities, to start. I like the idea of mid-level government employees, maybe bodyguards or investigators following our respective ambassadorial party. Problem is keeping it distant but reasonable."
This sounds really easy for your prey to slip through unnoticed, especially since you don't have a face to the name.
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As a general ratio, about half and half. Bend's player was more one-linery than the rest of us; basically everything during the El Terminador scene was direct transcription.

In the actual game, Bend actually skipped the Ryumyo section; I just put him back in there because it helped to reinforce his racist animosity towards Locke.


Shadowrun That Guys are killer. Literally. What'd he do?


Locke started awake.

"We should go as guys from the CAS."

Dervish put his hands up.

"Woah! He wakes! Any particular reason, champ?"

"They prolly have legacy positions for all the Tir's neighbors. Know the ambassador from UCAS, know the guy from NAN. Also, easier to cross-ref when they're right across the border. CAS is convenient. Far enough away to be a bitch to clear the alibi, close enough to be politically relevant. Plus it would explain how I'm Mexican."

Bend stared at Locke, who began to sway back in his seat again.

"We don't need to explain why you're Mexican, Locke. There are Mexicans outside of Aztlan."

Locke was unresponsive. Dervish put a finger on his chin, and asked,

"Is it just me, or was that a really well-thought-out and reasonable idea?"

Bend scoffed.

"Tequila must rejuvenate his dwindling jarhead brain cells."

Wildcard interjected,

"Back on topic, what's everyone's job? I'm going to be asking around the local infobrokers and networking team operations."

Bend said,

"I'm going to contact my guy in the Ghosts for assistance, and also to cover up. When Locke isn't drinking himself to death trying to forget that dragons exist, he'll try to make inroads into the mages' conclave."

"I'll gun for a gig at the tech museum," grunted Dervish. "Maybe ask TwoDee for help if I need to pull the Ares angle, although I don't expect it."

"All's in order," said Wildcard. "Now to procure some CAS SINs."

Dervish groaned,

"Oh no, not the shady fucking SIN dealer! I said that I hate that guy!"

Good ol' fashioned racism.

Speaking of, I have a question: Ghoul PCs. yes or no? Aren't most ghouls hunted down like beasts for a bounty>?
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Dervish grumbled, looking at his ID card as the team's newly-repainted black sedan made for the Tir border from the South side, up through the NAN.

"Honestly, is a 'John Smith' so fucking hard? Who names their kid 'Tex' anyway? Not Texans, I can tell you that."

"Quitcher bitchin," groaned Wildcard, adjusting his thick sunglasses as he pulled into the line of travellers held up at the border. "I've had to go a whole hour without my mask while getting into character as a Southern asshole."

"You've got the asshole part down," chuckled Locke.

"Ha ha, very funny, special agent Da Silva. Remember, we're an attache to Theodore Aimsworth, the Senator from Georgia. He's staying in the Portland Hilton."

A few minutes later, the team pulled up to the border checkpoint, where two guards in full military-police uniform stood at attention. On a hill in the far distance, a sniper scope gleamed.

"Name and reason for entering the Tir?"

Locke leaned out the passenger-side window and responded, looking disinterestedly at his datapad,

"I'm Vincent Da Silva, and these men are William Carpenter, Michael Hawkwood, and...Tex Strongarm."

Dervish cringed.

"We're with the CAS envoy; part of his attache."

The guard looked...skeptical.

"Can you back that up with the proper forms?"

"Yes, sir, right here."

Locke produced Wildcard's lovingly forged fake paperwork. There were some unknowns and guesswork, but the team was banking on the soldiers not knowing enough to check the fine print, so to speak.

"Um...this seems to check out, sir, but I'm going to need Mr...Strongarm to step out of the car."

"Everuh gawd-damned border," growled Dervish, in his best Southern drawl, "Thanks, Ma n' Pa. Ain't nothin' gonna go wrong namin' yer boy Tex Strongarm!"

As Dervish was escorted into the checkpoint kiosk, the inbuilt MAD scanner began blaring like crazy.

"Right, I guess I gotta declare my weapons."
>And Dervish just laughed, and laughed, and laughed, bracing himself in the arch of a nearby doorway.

>"The fucking old friend bit, he got us good," laughed Dervish, leaning on his knees.

Yep. America-san isn't intimidated by nothin'!

Also, about Ryumyo -- you've told us how the characters reacted to learning it was a Great Dragon.

But how did the PLAYERS react? Did they manage to catch on OOC beforehand? How did they feel about the encounter after-the-fact?

Same for the Schwarzkoppf deal. Did the players manage to catch on OOC before the characters did? And how did they react after-the-fact?

Was there any In-Character and Out-of-Character wild conspiracy theories thrown around along the lines of "Fuuuuck, I bet we're going to be meeting even MORE dragons!" "Now I'm not saying it was Dragons... but it was Dragons." etc ?
>>"The fucking old friend bit, he got us good," laughed Dervish, leaning on his knees.


Now wait a second...

How does Dervish lean on his knees if he has the Raptor leg mod?
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>"Right, I guess I gotta declare my weapons."

This should be good...

She kind of decided to play a Christian Robin-hood whitehat. In a group of blackhats that consisted of a cosplaying rigger unable to figure out reality was not a game of team deathmatch. a face that thought drugs were the solution to most problems, a street sammie and an infiltrator that was about as confident as spilt milk and newer to the business then a newborn kitten.

She was the only one on the team that was a pacifist, and unlike Bend did not even deal with it well, she through a fit OOC because the first mission involved wetwork. Wonderful way to start no?
>she through a fit OOC
It's "threw a fit".

Did she not talk about her character choice with the group/DM ahead of time?

Except in Asamando, yeah. They're basically seen as "oh, they're victims, but they're too far gone now. Better to just dispose of them quick!"



...yep, I made a mistake here. His thighs, I guess?


Ryumyo, we all caught onto really early in the meta because Locke had critically glitched his navigation roll and we all knew that we were headed for a disaster.

The Schwartzkopf thing was really the "OHSHI--" moment.

Also: the magic item, we figured out, and you can too if you read the Shadowrun fiction, but the characters never found out about it.


You must be new here. Although if it helps you direct your righteous defending-muh-tg anger, I was one of the catalysts for the new wave of frequent Shadowrun Generals.


Dervish put his briefcase on the table in the kiosk and produced a disassembled sniper rifle, a tactical shotgun, two heavy pistols, a machine pistol, and a holdout.

"I've also got two sets of cyberblades, a spur--government-issued, see--and an assault rifle back in the car. Here are my nine licenses."

The guard gawked.

"Sir, I'm going to need ALL of you to please come to the kiosk."

Between them, the team registered two assault rifles, a LMG, a HVAR, a burstfire pistol, five heavy pistols, four holdouts, a shotgun, a sniper rifle, an underbarrel grenade launcher, an underbarrel shotgun, and a riot-cop quality heavy taser.

Infuriatingly, however, they all provided relevant licenses and paid all relevant fees, and no matter how many times their SINs were scanned, everything checked out. Regardless, the guards put them through the rigamarole on principle, as a sort of punishment for making them do that much paperwork, but that was to be expected.

As the team reunited in the Super Getaway Hyundai and pulled back onto the road, Bend commented,

"I'm pretty sure that we've just landed ourselves on every Tir watch list. Speaking of which..."

Bend looked expectantly at Wildcard.
Another player in >>25840896 group. Yes, we all talked about who we were going to play ahead of time. Frankly, the assessment given of her was too kind. She had a massive problem playing a runner in the first place because she had a very high leaning towards moralistic tendencies in her games. Among a lot of other nitpicks with the setting. We had to get her to compromise with the robin-hood type on the implicit understanding that they'd still be a team player, or at least not cause any shit.

It didn't work out. IIRC, she actually had her character start raising a fit when they were meeting with their Johnson for their first job and learned it was wetworks. Right to the Johnson's face. That's when the OOC fit went down, and the game more or less died out after that.

"Yeah, I hacked the SIN register and wiped you from the cameras. Far as the Tir's concerned, you're a ghost again."

"Thanks. It'll make a good impression with Jordan."

"Speaking of which," continued Wildcard, "where were we taking you, again?"

"It's a cabin in Crater Lake National Park. Registered to a proxy of a proxy of a proxy of a proxy of Jordan Formic."

Dervish chuckled.

"You think the old spymaster's gonna be there?"

"No, but I do think he'll have left a series of increasingly preposterous secret messages and/or booby traps in the event that I ever 'came home.' "

Locke grinned.

"Was it always like that?"

Bend shrugged.

"Nah, Jordan was always very old-school. I think he watched one too many Mission Impossible flicks as a kid."

Dervish put down the window to let a fly escape the car's cabin, shooing it out with his hands.

"You think it might have rubbed off on you?"

Bend shot Dervish his best 'sassy metrosexual' look.

"Oh, and what's THAT supposed to mean?"

Wildcard noted,

"Let's put it this way: you never settle for walking down a hallway when climbing across the ceiling's an option."

"Or the vents," noted Locke.

"I'm pretty sure he does the Batman thing with his girlfriend and enters through the window," laughed Dervish, "how corny is that?"

Bend slunk into his chair, turning his nose up.

"Art cannot be constrained, gentlemen."

I find that it's a very good idea to gauge white-hat or black-hat from the start, and plan accordingly. For instance, I ran a game with a very white-hat mage and a very black-hat face, so I tried to play to the extremes and do jobs that were, for instance, wetwork where the target was a certifiably justifiable asswipe.

Also, I'm sorry. That sucks!

P.S. did your rigger get his character concept from a previous Shadowrun thread? I seem to recall recommending a rigger fluff "combat monster" like that a while back.
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>TwoDee thread

I was not the specific person who asked, but yes, I liked the idea enough that I shamelessly stole it, sorry.

Had fun with her while it lasted atleast....

And ummm the problem is we DID gauge at the start, and informed the player it would be blackhat. hence the accommodations.... but meh.

This is your story time, so we will let you get back to that, maybe my friend and I can cover more details on what exactly happened once you reach the end if any one is interested, sorry.
>Same for the Schwarzkoppf deal.
When did the players meet this Schwarzkoppf? I don't remember that happening at all.
I think that's who hired them.
Nah, it was Lofwyr who hired them, him being the dwarf, right? The other guy was Schwarzkoppf.

>It was a news article dating back to 2061, picturing a tall, handsome man with silver hair shaking hands with Mr. Johnson, the comparatively underwhelming dwarf. Both were being photographed in front of a podium, and the images of dragons had been superimposed behind them.

Well, rereading it doesn't make it very clear, does it?
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A few hours later, the team pulled up the dirt road to the cabin in question, which appeared well-maintained, if not necessarily in use. The porch lights were on, but the interior was dark. Bend gestured for everyone else to wait by the car, and began donning his tactical suit.

"So is this going to, uh," ventured Dervish, drawing burger after burger out of an interminably large fast food back, "take a while?"

"I don't think so, but I don't want to rush it," responded Bend, tapping his goggles and scanning for radar and sonar signals. As an act of sentimentality, he even donned his old Tir Ghosts beret.

"Well, this little detour is costing us precious time, so on with it," said Wildcard, gesturing wanly in the direction of the house.

Bend stood up, stretched, slipped a length of monofilament wire into his hand, and sprinted headlong at the house.

As Bend neared the twenty yard mark, he leapt for the surrounding trees, and began jumping and bounding off of them rather than touching the ground. Finally, he leapt like a frog for the exterior wall, adhered, shimmied to one of the windows, and carved out a small circular hole before unlocking the window from the inside. From there he vaulted up to the ceiling, and was gone from the team's sight.

Inside the cabin, Bend had a stunning view of a state-of-the-art laser grid and pressure pad system, highlighted by a custom software suite that he'd installed in his goggles. A Manservant drone--innocuous but probably weaponized--routed through the cozy living room, doing chores.

Leaping like a platforming hero possessed, Bend leapt for the robot, landed on its head, and used his inertia to keep going through a gap in the laser grid, landing in a tuck and roll behind the couch just in time for the embedded grenade to go off, blowing out the windows and leaving just the smoldering drone's legs standing.

An AR bulletin popped up on the home CHN:


As in, he called Lofwyr in to be Mr. Johnson
Sounded to me like the dorf was Schwarzkoppf, and the old friend he was doing the favor for was Lofwyr.
That explanation is clearer, thanks.

But wouldn't that still leave the Great Dragon Encounter count to just 2, not having encountered Lofwyr?
Maybe Lofwyr counts because that's who they're working for.
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Lofwyr hired Schwarzkopf to "problem solve," who in turn hired Mr. Johnson in Seattle to gauge the runners. When the runners booked it to Italy, Schwarzkopf decided that Mr. Johnson was no longer needed, fired him, and did the Johnson meet personally, on behalf of "his old friend," Lofwyr.

Also: spy music may be in order.


"Watch me, you James Bond wannabe," laughed Bend, spinning and shooting out the lock to the next room before bailing through in a diveroll, slamming it shut just as a pair of dragonfly hunter-killer drones deployed from the living room fireplace.

As the dragonflies ground against the door, slowly carving through, Bend took the liberty of sticking pieces of silverware in their rotors when they breached, promptly incapacitating the little monsters. Of course, not one to take chances, he promptly shot them each with one burst, then picked them up and baseball-chucked them out the window, in time for /them/ to explode, too.

Outside, the party sat on the hood of the Super Getaway Hyundai, staring awkwardly at the house as things exploded.

Past the kitchen was the basement door, which was where Bend was headed. The maglock/manual lock/retina lock was child's play. His sequencer, lockpicks, and a carefully sculpted image of an eye (he chose Formic's sister, knowing that Formic's own eye would probably cause it to shoot lasers or something) left the door hanging open, whereupon he descended into a basement wine cellar.

Searching through the vintages, Bend found what he was looking for: the very cyanide wine bottle that he had sent to Formic's disposable PO box for New Years'. Behind it was a lockbox. The puzzle seemed fairly straightforward, which is why it wasn't. Bend tied a long line of wire around the cork, hucked the wine bottle out the basement window, and yelled,


He yanked the cord, causing the chemicals in the wine bottle to detonate upon exposure to oxygen.

>He yanked the cord, causing the chemicals in the wine bottle to detonate upon exposure to oxygen.

That magnificent bastard.
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Yes, this. My clarifier was "directly or indirectly (IE: through agents)." Which means they don't end up meeting Lofwyr. OR DO THEY!?


Bend yelled, out the now-shattered basement window,


"NOPE," Wildcard yelled back.


Bend slunk back to the lockbox, turning it over for clues. It would be a simple matter to lockpick, but Bend knew how Formic operated. There was probably a capsule of acid in there or something, ready to release if he stuck a lockpick in.

Suddenly, Bend slapped himself on the forehead.

"Oh, of COURSE. The wine. Alcohol. The James Bond thing. Duh."

He climbed the stairs back up to the kitchen (or rather, climbed the ceiling above them, as every third stair had been hollowed out to hold a claymore mine) and, turning it away from himself, opened the martini shaker. No spring gun: a good sign. Bend waggled a frying pan over the martini shaker, which triggered the laser tripwire inside the martini shaker, causing a bullet to lodge itself halfway through the frying pan. Fool me once, Jordan...

With the trap fired, Bend reached into the shaker and retrieved a piece of old-school parchment. It read:


Bend calmly threw the parchment out the window as it, too, burst into flames with a tiny PAF.

Bend yelled,

This guy didn't watch Mission Impossible, he watched the entire works of Michael Bay.
Hey, could you tell us what the magic item is after the story? I'm bad at Shadowrun lore but curiosity is killing me.
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Sure! Straight-up, though, the final run isn't getting finished tonight. I am maybe--MAYBE--a third of the way through, assuming I reach the end of the meeting with Jordan Formic tonight.



The restaurant was a rather gimmicky affair, full of Irish "culture." There had been rather an influx of Irish culture ever since Tir Na Nog went into lockdown, and nowhere was it more evident than pubs, which were basically 2074's Starbucks.

Wildcard was busy on the phone with his old bank-robbing pal, Belfast, in talks to get the teams' milspec armor, explosives, and heavier spy gear (which, as opposed to assault weapons, COULDN'T get explained away with licenses) through the border by way of a smuggler. The issue of lodging came up:

"You're shitting me that you're in town!? Say that the authorities are gon'ta be too busy dealin' with pissy Princes to protect the banks!? Well, of course I'm down to catch up, we'll have dinner after I'm done not eating this dinner!"

Dervish grinned at Wildcard, glancing back to Bend.

"I think it's kinda cute how they've got their little bank robber pen pals thing going."

Wildcard continued,

"What? No, I mean, I'm going ta order the dinner here, but not eat it. Long story. Look, you just want to grab a McDonald's or something? I'm not exactly discriminating."

There was a pause.

"They sell wine in fast food restaurants here!? Well count me the hell in!"

"Hawkwood party, party of 4," grumbled the bored waitress. The team was led past a party of screaming blue-collars arguing over the latest urban brawl match, and into a corner booth.

"So, is there anything I can start you out with?"

"Actually," said Bend, "We're ready to order. We'll all have the house special. O'Malley recommended it."

The waitress started, nodded solemnly, and 15 minutes later, delivered four shepard's pies.
Yeah, I remember you saying its X-Box huge but I wanted to get that out there anyway. I appreciate it!
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Bend sniffed at his meal experimentally, cut a piece out, sniffed that, ran a scan on it, and then put it down on his coffee plate. He began slowly hollowing out his shepherd's pie, trying to get a good look at the bottom of the tin.

"Dervish, don't eat that, it's got arsenic and tranquilizers in it."

"Fuck arsenic and tranquilizers, I'm hungry," complained Dervish, finishing his second bite but wisely deigning not to continue.

"Aha, here we go," said Bend donning his goggles and lowering his head face-first into the pie tin. "Embossed by the serial number of the tin is the word 'upstairs.' "

Wildcard asked, amidst shoveling bits of pie into his napkin,

"You think it's a trap?"

"No, but the stairs probably are. I'm going to have to go up the long way."

Locke asked, handing his pie to Dervish, who scowled at him,

"Why not just shapechange into a bird and fly up there?"

Bend frowned.

"Well, it would work, but then I'd be naked for my dramatic reunion with my mentor, and frankly Jordan and I were never that close."

Dervish stared longingly at his pie.

"Why not just climb?"

"Yes, that's looking like the best course of action. Not the back alley, though. The front. Where he least expects it, and thus most expects it, and thus least expects it."

Wildcard boggled.


In a flash, Bend was changed into his tacsuit and out the door, followed by his curious team.
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Bend circled around to the front of the building, prepared to climb, and then circled around to the back of the building to climb in the alley because the table was probably bugged, PSYCHE. The rest of the party stared up in bemusement, sipping their mid-price Irish beers that they had casually carried out of the restaurant.

"We're just going to make sure you're okay, Bend, and then I'll go handle the smuggling thing. You get on that too, two heads are better than one."

"Shhh! You'll blow my cover!" Bend slipped up a drainpipe to the top of the building, spotting a man in chameleon-cloaked armor kneeling over the ledge with a sniper rifle. He moved to place his gun against the back of Jordan's head, then spun around to face the opposite side of the building because it clearly wasn't the REAL Jordan; that was too easy.

Bend found himself pointing his gun at the head of his old boss from the Tir ghosts, a dignified-looking black-haired elf who was, himself, pointing his gun (a Walther, SHAMELESS) at Bend's head.



"Please, call me Sean."

"You got my message, Sean."

"You got mine."

The two spies embraced, but not before engaging the secret handshake to ensure that the other one wasn't an insect spirit or otherwise compromised.

"Ah, Tir Tairngire," said Bend, taking in a huff of the night air, "it's been awhile."

"Too long," agreed Jordan, "but like any classy lady or liqour she ages well."

"God, you've just gotten worse," chuckled Bend.

"And you," said Jordan, looking Bend up and down, "you've gotten...better."

They both stared meaningfully into each others' eyes before Jordan looked down and spotted the running team.

"--Could you--"

"Oh, yeah."

Bend cupped his mouth in his hands and yelled to the team,


Locke shrugged.

"Not our fault if Formic pushes him off."

Dervish downed the rest of his beer.

"They're elves. They land on their feet. It's how elves work."
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"Elves don't...fuck it. Fast food tacos?"

Dervish and Locke high-fived.

"Fuck yeah. I am always down for the extra cheez."

As the party went their separate ways, Formic asked,

"So what's up with them?"

"Well," said Bend, who was standing manfully beside Formic at the edge of the building, "the Scotsman is running off to get drunk with an irishman, and the Mexican and American are running off to get fast-food tacos, of which the American will eat four peoples' worth."

"Such stereotypes," observed Formic.

"Indeed," concurred Bend.

"So what brings you to Tir Tairngire?"


The two spies stared into the sunset, hands on their hips.

"What kind of business."

"Intrigue business. The kind that I need you to cover for me on."

"Define 'intrigue business.' "

Bend turned to face Formic.

"Two great dragons are after an Aztec with a 10 million nuyen box."

"Oooh..." cooed Formic, "...that IS intriguing business."

"So you'll help?"

"Welcome back to the Ghosts, special agent Colby."

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>Bend cupped his mouth in his hands and yelled to the team,
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Guess I can wait...
I love you so much.

Too bad it'll be all ogre soon.
One of my players, his character was called Donovan, took the enemy quality for a guy called O'malley, he also took vendetta, and both the character and O'Malley had a penchant for explosives.

Whenever O'Malley was to make an appearance I tried to come up with new and inventive ways to kidnap the character, one time the player had mentioned wanting to put in an application at this security firm in the building they were going to be hitting later on I had O'malley send a resume in for him and unbeknownst to the players this particular security firm, Sekigahara Securities, had a little initiation that involved knocking the applicant out and then dropping the prospect into an extremely dangerous location and seeing if they would survive in this case a ghoul infested part of the Barrens. When Donovan woke up he was in a warehouse and there was a cart with a wrapped box complete with bow on top of it with his guns in it. He then heard ticking and chucked the box which then exploded into confetti, and then he heard more ticking coming from the cart, he dove behind some rubble just before it exploded and thus drawing all of the nearby ghouls to his location. After he managed to avoid getting murdered/turned by the ghouls he checked his person for any other supplies, particularly booze, and found a flask when he opened it he realized it was not whiskey but nitro and carefully placed it on the ground, at which point it exploded because I'm too nice to my players/forgetful and so it did not blow him up during the firefight, his hand however was useless at that point due to boom which meant he could only shoot one of his two SMGs and then the massive piles of debris began getting tossed around. At this time the mage remembered how quickly he could move in the astral and got to him in time to save Donovan from the large troll-ghoul. I wish the character were still around so the party could get to deal with all of the beautiful traps that Bend just had to go through.
Hey, how do your players and GM arrange all these little moments?

Like the parts where Bend knows what to do and what not to do, and the arsenic and tranquilizers, and guessing at the end that he should turn right around because Jordan would be right behind him, etc?

It's like a perfectly choreographed fight, except doing spy things instead of battle.

I mean, I can't imagine that the player would always be able to guess exactly what the GM planned.

So there has to be an element of cooperation involved -- but also an element of challenge.

So how is all that handled? How do you manage to come up with a beautiful end result that looks like a choreographed fight?

How do you know when to start playing the spy-game and looking for the traps and challenges -- since, I mean... the challenge could come at the parking near that restaurant, or there could be other stuff, etc...

I mean, it could just be something like "I'll roll this stuff to see how well I do" and then its all described afterward... Or it could be co-op story telling -- "Hey does it make sense that Jordan would place the message in the martini thing, because of the whole James Bond theme?" "Sure, why not."

>Outside, the party sat on the hood of the Super Getaway Hyundai, staring awkwardly at the house as things exploded.

Oh, this is awesome.

>This guy didn't watch Mission Impossible, he watched the entire works of Michael Bay.

I know, isn't it great?


Ah, bank robberies... Good times.

There's an element of nostalgia and reunion in this, with both Bend and Wildcard harkening back to their roots. That sounds cool.

>"Dervish, don't eat that, it's got arsenic and tranquilizers in it."

>"Fuck arsenic and tranquilizers, I'm hungry," complained Dervish, finishing his second bite but wisely deigning not to continue.


There's a lot of elements of cooperative storytelling, although less than you'd think. Mostly I've just parsed out the numerous, numerous, NUMEROUS grueling perception rolls, but also, the GM was very open to us adding bits onto the story if it made sense, and he always had veto power.

The message, incidentally, was initially in the wine cellar itself, hidden. You called the embellishment on that one.

An exception: this actually was done MORE during fight scenes. The Bend-and-the-cabin scene was MOSTLY, despite embellishments, just healthy Bend paranoia and a bunch of security knowledge checks.
Any idea on the next storytime?

Sooner than the gap between the last two, that's for sure. Likely later in July.

Unemployment, woo!
>Also: the magic item, we figured out, and you can too if you read the Shadowrun fiction, but the characters never found out about it.

Its now Dawn of the Artifacts crap, is it?
What other games and campaigns have your group been playing?

Is there any chance of a Storytime about those in the future?

Or at least maybe a general summary about them, or a highlight of some best parts, or something?
What 4th Edition books would you recommend to someone wanting to play? All I have so far is the 20th Anniversary Edition

None with GM playing, as most of those have been fairly dysfunctional for assorted reasons, with the GM periodically acting as part of the problem (if you're reading this, M, no offense. I was part of the problem too). However, I've got an ongoing Pathfinder campaign with Dervish, Geppetto, GM's girlfriend, my girlfriend, and a close friend that I intend to storytime at some point after I finish it.

There's also the story of Gorum's Gambit, which was a big pathfinder pvp event that Geppetto, Dervish, the other guy mentioned above, and I put together, basically like a team-based "Hunger Games" set on a hex grid and played with time-coordination. Trout shows up in that story to get paired with two newbies who instinctively recognize that they're getting the asshole handicap, I volunteer to jump on the grenade and be their team's GM, there's a giant flareout where Trout flips out that one of the newbie's characters got killed (Pathfinder PvP event, Trout, it's there in the title) and proceeds to criticize me, the GM, for letting the enemy team kill his teammates, he makes up a bunch of bullshit about how he was never on board with the game in the first place because he's a pacifist and how dare we, and then he magnificently self-destructed and threw a (mild) tantrum in front of Dervish.

There is a happy ending to that story, however, namely that the newbies have fun once Trout leaves, and both of them come back to play in the second one, one of them with the same character. The Story of Gorum's Gambit also involves Bend's summoner pioneering the Skydiving Eidolon Team Charge, but I'm getting ahead of myself.

I also had a short-lived Shadowrun netgame that I ran and which lasted for about 6 months. It was really fun, but kind of petered out slowly (one of those game deaths) and so it wasn't really remarkable enough to Storytime.

I'm also trying to put together a group for some old-skool Vampire: The Masquerade, so we'll see how that goes.

In order of "you need this:"

>Street Magic
>Runner's Companion

If you intend to play something weird, Runner's Companion gets bumped to just under Arsenal. Seriously, Arsenal is the best supplement. It's literally just page after page of guns, cars, gun and car mods, and miscellaneous gear.
Excellent, How many real life weapon analogues are there? 'Cause there is one gun I really want to try and find/make

Ooh, Dervish also ran a magnificent run of "Council of Thieves," the Pathfinder adventure path, a while back, although that's worth a nod more than a storytime because it's not like we spectacularily derailed the module or anything. There was also the Eberron game that he ran, although that was one of those "epic boss battles separated by a lot of party dickery and stupid player bullshit" campaigns, so if I sum that one up it's just getting a highlight reel.

In both games I did what I always do in Pathfinder if I get the chance (save one run as a wizard and one as a cleric), and that's to build a preposterous combat build and then try to build the character's personality around "what kind of insane dysfunctional person would even have this combat build?"

SR Storytime GM also ran a series of highly successful FATE System and SoIaFRPG games, although I recall only sketchy details on the SoIaF games and all but one of the FATE games at best. Plus the first of the SoIaF games is a cavalcade of gamer ignorance and a bit of a shame on my part, because it involved me initiating interparty conflict without asking and engaging in other dick behaviors, and a really unfunny, really gross molestor-y That Guy...suffice to say it was bad.

Regardless, know that even once Shadowrun Storytime ends, I'll continue storytiming for quite a while.

They've probably got something roughly approximating it. Most of the guns are of fictional brands and designs, but can be roughly considered equivalent to certain real world guns.

If you're looking for ACTUAL real world guns, I'd suggest looking through the otherwise-ignorable Runner's Black Books, which both feature "outdated" drones and weaponry from the real world, like Predator drones and Sig Sauer handguns.
Well, I'll go do find some copies that fell off the back of the internet before perusing and hope I find it.
>If you intend to play something weird, Runner's Companion gets bumped to just under Arsenal. Seriously, Arsenal is the best supplement. It's literally just page after page of guns, cars, gun and car mods, and miscellaneous gear.

I have to disagree with this.

While runners companion gets a lot of shit for having all the wierdo-edge-case stuff...
the new Qualities are fricken essential for any character you want to make with a decent backstory and interesting things beyond the simple stuff in the core book.
Expanded Lifestyles and Group Contacts are also amazing.

Those three things, with the rest of the dumb stuff doled out in moderation, are excellent additions.

My list would be
>Core Book
>Runner's companion

>Diversifying into specific but good things
>Street Magic (If a mage or adept, or a gm wanting to expand on astral security and shit)
>Augmentation (Samurai's mostly benefit, but anyone can benefit from ware)
>Unwired (contains headaches but required for technos, )

>Niche but Solid products
>Way of the Adept
>Way of the Samurai
>Digital Grimoire

Surprisingly Good
>Running Wild
>Rigger 4

Attitude (the best of the bunch, but some surprisingly breakable stuff)
Spy Games
Hazard Pay (cold weather guns own)

You're absolutely right about Runner's Companion. I'm letting SURGE taint my vision of it.

I personally have a huge guilty pleasure spot for Attitude, mostly because it's almost all fluff (aside form the few, ludicrously imbalanced pieces of gear, and that damn mech suit). I incorporated a lot of the media details from Attitude in my game. The corp guide is also a pure-fluff book that's great for fleshing out the world if you're running the game.

I also love Safehouses, just because it's damn funny and the expanded lifestyle system was one of the best parts of Runner's Companion.
Corp Guide?
>You're absolutely right about Runner's Companion. I'm letting SURGE taint my vision of it.

Its easy to get jaded about it.

I love attitude as well, and its one book from the post-war writers that I genuinely enjoy and think is amusing - even if the telltale touches are there in the gear formatting and wierd rules writing and stuff.

If you think the mech suit is bad, try the clockwork dragon on for size.
Instead of Special Machinery: flamethrower, they gave it a Weapon mount.
A weapon mount, my god.
On a minidrone.
The analogue-only/no wifi by default are EASILY fixed by throwing money at it.
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YAY! Storytiem for ages to come! You're the best TwoDee!
If you're wondering what books to get, fear not! I have all of the important ones here: 20th Ann, Arsenal, Augmentation, Unwired, Street Magic, Runner's Companion, and Safehouses for flavor.

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