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> Lone Star and you, How to keep them away when on runs.
Emperor Tippy
post Sep 29 2007, 06:10 AM
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One of the worst things that can happen to a shadowrun is Lone Star showing up. They can and will bring more resources agaisnt you than you can ever hope to defeat, multiple FRT's, SWAT, drone surveillance, armed helicopters, etc. And all of that is the standard response to a shadowrun in progress report. Lone Star knows that your average shadowrunner is cybered to the gills, has magical support, and is generally better armed than the average Lone Star Patrolman and maybe even a FRT.

So how do you deal with this problem? The obvious solution is to ensure that Lone Star is never called until after you have finished the run. But any plan that assumes everything goes right is a stupid plan.

First I will deal with the preemptive measures that can delay or stop Lone Star from responding.

The same officers generally patrol in the same area every day (so that they can spot problems faster). If you hack that areas comlinks a day or so before you can upload a simple agent with an edit program that will intercept all calls from dispatch and send fake responses. Dispatch gets a call about a robbery in progress and tells the cops in the area to check it out. The agent intercepts the call and responds by saying it's a false alarm. This agent can also forward all communications to your team, so you know when a Lone Star response in in route. Another use for this is to hack a cops comlink who is in a very different area from where the run is to happen and fake an officer down/ shadowrun in progress call to dispatch. Lone Star responds to such calls with pretty much everything they have, meaning you can delay the response to your run by at least a few miniutes.

Lone Star also keeps drones on overwatch. You want to take these down or hack them before the run starts. But if you only take out the drone watching the area of the run then Lone Star will be suspicious and send back up. One of the easiest ways to take out a drone is to use a little Fly Spy that carries a small explosive load. Use 10 or so and have them take out separate drones all at the same time. This is expensive but is useful on very lucrative runs where a quick response is expected. Hacking a drone is much cheaper but can be detected easier.

The third way to get Lone Star busy else were is to higher Shadow Runners to do other runs in other areas at the same time. Give the cops an anonymous tip from a disposable comlink and the other team deals with the Lone Star response.

The fourth way to keep Lone Star busy is to call in bomb threats, robberies, kidnappings, murders, etc. all over the sprawl and all at the same time. This works best if you have planted a few bombs in trash cans or cars before hand (after the first one goes off they will take the rest seriously). Drop a couple bodies in places they won't be quickly discovered and call those in as well.


Well now onto how to get away once the police start chasing you. One of the best ways is to use take a FlySpy with a bit of plastic explosives on it and fly it into the wheel well of the cop cars in the area pre run. Once the cop starts chasing you, you send the signal for the drone to explode and all the sudden the cop car loses a tire.


Now what if the worst should happen and you get caught inside the building when Lone Star shows up. Well hopefully you didn't kill all of the guards/people inside. Hostage situations are much preferable to Lone Star storming the place. Now hopefully you remembered to bring the explosives. Sit the hostages in a room with a few kilograms of explosives and tell the cops that the explosives are linked to the bio monitors everyone on your team is wearing. Make sure to mention that the biomonitors send a continuous signal and if its cut off (say fro ma jammer), the bomb detonates.

Now Lone Star would most likely just charge the building and blame the deaths on you. To avoid this you should set up an automated message to be sent from a disposable comlink in the event you don't contact it before a certain time. This comlink is to call every news service and let them know about the hostage crisis (and that the bomb will only detonate if one of us is killed). With the media on site Lone Star is alot less likely to just charge you.

It's best to let Lone Star know that you have planted bombs all over the Sprawl and all are on timers (its a good idea to actually have these bombs in place, or at least a few to use as examples). It never hurts to mention a few bio weapons as well.

So now that Lone Star takes you seriously it's time to get out of the country, because you won't be working in this Sprawl for at least the next several years. First up you ask for a lot of money on certified credsticks (a million :nuyen: a person is a good starting level), spread up over several sticks and without any tracers (and let them know you have the gear to find any bugs they plant on the sticks). Now tell them that a van is going to drive up and evacuate your team. The hostages will be left in the building but the bomb will have numerous triggers set to not disarm for the next 48 hours, and your death will naturally speed the process of the detonation. After you are safely out of the country the location of the explosives placed around the sprawl will be sent to them, but if you don't make it they will unfortunately detonate as well. If you detect anyone following the van the explosives detonate also.

Now you walk out, get in the van, head to a stash house, change SIN's, use the large nanopaste container to change appearances, change vehicles, and head to the docks where you board a vessel headed to Hong Kong or the like. Before every run go to a ship captain who plans on leaving that night/ the next day and promise him 500,000 :nuyen: if you show up before he casts off and ask to come aboard. Pay him 500 to a 1,000 :nuyen: in advance as a retainer.

The odd's of getting away after Lone Star corners you are low but you would be dead anyways so it's worth the chance. And if it works you can retire fro ma life of shadowrunning with enough money to get the full new identity treatment (DNA, prints, retinal scans, facial features, the works).


So feel free to offer comments, improvements, criticisms, and anything else you have to say. I hope this helps you avoid Lone Star when you run.
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Nikoli
post Sep 29 2007, 06:25 AM
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By the time you've gotten to a hostage situation, you're already fragged.
Telling them about the biomonitors means they now know to intercept and spoof the signals.
To conteract this, make sure all communications are coming from the commlinks on your hostages. Have the biomonitors on them as well.

Your team should be running silent, comm wise before this point, aside from your hacker/technomancer pulling the strings.
Don't put all the hostages in one room. Take a page from a great use of a hostage situation. Split the hostages up and move them from room to room, slowly adding your team to the hostages. Once the Star has thier spoofs in place, have the hacker cut communications and delete all contact info for each other on the links you are carrying. The link that was the access point for the communications should be operated remotely as well, and pop as the doors are breached (thanks to a physically linked explosive device).

They'll round up the hostages, team included. (helps to have no walking felonies on the team as well as iron clad SIN's same goes for anyone lacking social ability) Any such individuals (read: liabilities) should not be on the run, or held in reserve in case the inside team gets pinched.

Using armed drones to be the muscle of the hostage situation is handy for getting your team into the mix as hostages, however it might be too obvious and even the Star might pick up on it.
I'm not certain how to get your team out of the interrogation as they likely will be mind probed and heavy resistance to it will be seen as culpability.
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Emperor Tippy
post Sep 29 2007, 06:55 AM
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QUOTE
By the time you've gotten to a hostage situation, you're already fragged.

Pretty much.
QUOTE
Telling them about the biomonitors means they now know to intercept and spoof the signals.

Not really. A single mistake and the bombs go boom. And go with dual use bio monitors as well (wear 2). It's doubtful that they will intercept both. But jsut incase they do, connect a camera to a disposable comlink thats connected to the explosives (all by wires). If the camera sees anyone enter the room besides you then it sets off the bomb.
QUOTE
To conteract this, make sure all communications are coming from the commlinks on your hostages.  Have the biomonitors on them as well.

Well I always carry a few of the cheapest comlinks around as disposables. 250 :nuyen: a piece.

QUOTE
Your team should be running silent, comm wise before this point, aside from your hacker/technomancer pulling the strings.

Running silent has lots of disadvantages. And you should have the resources to make your com channels virtually uninterceptable. Everyone should have a comlink that is 6's across the board and running 3-4 agent's armed as IC. You should naturally be running rating 6 encryption with changes codes every second and using what amounts to 1 time pads. Make up a custom ling soft that has about a hundred different noises for each word in english (chosen randomly) and give everyone a copy. As you communicate it is translated into this "language" and then encrypted. Even if the enemy intercepts and decrypts your com's they still can't understand them or send fake messages.

QUOTE
Don't put all the hostages in one room.  Take a page from a great use of a hostage situation.  Split the hostages up and move them from room to room, slowly adding your team to the hostages.  Once the Star has thier spoofs in place, have the hacker cut communications and delete all contact info for each other on the links you are carrying.  The link that was the access point for the communications should be operated remotely as well, and pop as the doors are breached (thanks to a physically linked explosive device).

See, your assuming that the star will attempt to rescue the hostages. If they come at you you won't ever make it out alive. My plan is to make them so afraid of the collateral damage that they won't come in after you. Once you detonate the first car bomb in the sprawl they will take you seriously.

QUOTE
They'll round up the hostages, team included.  (helps to have no walking felonies on the team as well as iron clad SIN's same goes for anyone lacking social ability)  Any such individuals (read: liabilities) should not be on the run, or held in reserve in case the inside team gets pinched.

Using armed drones to be the muscle of the hostage situation is handy for getting your team into the mix as hostages, however it might be too obvious and even the Star might pick up on it.
I'm not certain how to get your team out of the interrogation as they likely will be mind probed and heavy resistance to it will be seen as culpability.

See. Thats the thing. IF you are in star custody you wont' get out, even with rating 6 SIN's.

The only way to walk away from the hostage situation a free man is to make them fear what will happen if they don't do exactly what you want. The star recognizes that by the time you reach the hostage situation you have nothing to lose. Your team will be wearing explosive vests, will fight to the death, will get all the hostages killed, and bring down a few of the star forces as well if they attempt to capture you.

And if you really do have bio weapons or bombs planted around the sprawl then it might just takes thousands and maybe millions of people with you. And a terrorist attack on that scale will cost Lone Star a lot of contracts.
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WearzManySkins
post Sep 29 2007, 07:33 AM
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The jammers can be directional ie blocking signal coming out. Using RF linked explosives asking for Murphy to come and bring all his relatives.

If you scare Star badly enough, they might let you go, but the the Hunters that get sent will not be nice at all. Those Hunters will not care what country you hide in.

FYI there have been some Shadow Adepts posted here that would walk right into the area you are in, and remove the issues.

For communications use fibre optic lines with a flat black finish with catalyst stick coating. Each team member can have a reel of fibre optic line.

Massive bomb threats with or with out diversion bombs Star will keep a reserve, they have seen the same movies you have.

Wait one Star could a High Level Adept cast "Turn Explosives To Play Dough", area effect.:D

WMS
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Cthulhudreams
post Sep 29 2007, 11:46 AM
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SR encryption doesn't support one time pads. They clearly have a way of solving large datasets into underlying infomation very quickly and very effectively. We don;t, but they do.

But anyway, the real reason you are boned is they are just going to find your bombs - which have to be matrix connected devices so they can hack and disarm them. This isn't even particularly hard. The test to find the devices is quite achievable with co-ordinated teamwork amongst a group of hackers, and then they just have to disarm the devices. Quick, painless and easy. Then they kill you.

In fact that don't even have to hack the devices. All the need to do is spoof a valid signal. Once they do that for every device they just kill you. Might take an hour or so, but they can also direct a team of 30-40 hackers to do it - pull them in nation wide for a high profile situation

So assuming the HAXORS are armed with Scan 6 programs, and a skill of 3, they average 3 successes. So the star locates all your bombs and ALL other devices in one combat turn. This is going to be SOP

Then (assuming you have 10 bombs), they split into teams of 4 and run decrypt and spoof actions. Again, assuming the 'team leader' has a skill of 4 and the rest have 3, they get 12 successes vs the bombs (assuming they are 6/6!) 4 successes. Now they are in your biomonitors reporting for your brain.

But wait! There is more! With a simple spoof action - again which they suceed, they disarm and disable the bombs.

Cha ching. And your hacker carn't really stop that due to the teamwork factor. He doesn't even get to roll an opposing check.

So in four combat turns (12 seconds!) the star already owns your bombs, and has disabled them. It's not really a roadblock to them if they want to stomp on you. It's not even a speedbump. They can also read all your teams communications too due to their agents running undetectable Intercept and decrypt actions.

Once the all clear is given, then the HTRT team is going to go in while your commlinks (assuming a team of 4 runners) are then attacked by 160 rating 6 agents (using the same logic that gives organised criminals 3-4 agents each), and 30 hackers.

Again this is going to go much like this - you will be buried under the electronic storm.

Now, thats using a version of the star that can pull resources across the nation (which it can, clearly, being a multinational organization) for a high profile 'situation'

Also, I'm using/abusing your logic that 3-4 agents will be in everyone's possession.
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Irian
post Sep 29 2007, 01:55 PM
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QUOTE (Emperor Tippy)
The same officers generally patrol in the same area every day (so that they can spot problems faster).


I'm not sure about this: Doesn't make Routine you slower? How is it in reality? Do cops always patrol the same area or are the areas changed regularly?

QUOTE (Emperor Tippy)
Another use for this is to hack a cops comlink who is in a very different area from where the run is to happen and fake an officer down/ shadowrun in progress call to dispatch. Lone Star responds to such calls with pretty much everything they have, meaning you can delay the response to your run by at least a few miniutes.


Doesn't work if it's a "very different area", because Lone Star doesn't only have one headquarter where all cops are waiting for something to happen. Cop down in Tacome doesn't mean anything for the Cops in Everett.

QUOTE (Emperor Tippy)
The third way to get Lone Star busy else were is to higher Shadow Runners to do other runs in other areas at the same time. Give the cops an anonymous tip from a disposable comlink and the other team deals with the Lone Star response.


Will give you a bad reputation very soon - people are not stupid, the DO notice things like that. "Someone sold us out." "But who?" "Don't know, but Team X did a job in the same area..."

QUOTE (Emperor Tippy)
The fourth way to keep Lone Star busy is to call in bomb threats, robberies, kidnappings, murders, etc. all over the sprawl and all at the same time. This works best if you have planted a few bombs in trash cans or cars before hand (after the first one goes off they will take the rest seriously). Drop a couple bodies in places they won't be quickly discovered and call those in as well.


Can work, the problem is that you need to make these calls BEFORE you are noticed. And again, all over the sprawl doesn't help that much.

QUOTE (Emperor Tippy)
Well now onto how to get away once the police start chasing you. One of the best ways is to use take a FlySpy with a bit of plastic explosives on it and  fly it into the wheel well of the cop cars in the area pre run. Once the cop starts chasing you, you send the signal for the drone to explode and all the sudden the cop car loses a tire.


Expensive and there are probably more cop cars than drones - and as soon as you start using explosives, they'll shoot you down.

QUOTE (Emperor Tippy)
Now what if the worst should happen and you get caught inside the building when Lone Star shows up. Well hopefully you didn't kill all of the guards/people inside. Hostage situations are much preferable to Lone Star storming the place.


If you are to be in a hostage situation: Surrender. It doesn't work today and it surely doesn't work in Shadowrun, where the cops will have not many problems with killing some of the hostages and blame you for it.

QUOTE (Emperor Tippy)
It's best to let Lone Star know that you have planted bombs all over the Sprawl and all are on timers (its a good idea to actually have these bombs in place, or at least a few to use as examples). It never hurts to mention a few bio weapons as well.


Forget it. As soon as you are in such a situation you will be against cops who are...

- more clever than you
- have more men than you
- are better equipped than you
- have seen all of this before

You're screwed if you let that happen. I would only consider a hostage situation as a bluff to give me 30 secs or so - try to make them think that you're in there and keep hostages while you take a back door that you prepared before. But as soon as you start to talk to the cops, you're dead meat.

QUOTE (Emperor Tippy)
So now that Lone Star takes you seriously it's time to get out of the country, because you won't be working in this Sprawl for at least the next several years. First up you ask for a lot of money on certified credsticks (a million :nuyen: a person is a good starting level), spread up over several sticks and without any tracers (and let them know you have the gear to find any bugs they plant on the sticks). Now tell them that  a van is going to drive up and evacuate your team. The hostages will be left in the building but the bomb will have numerous triggers set to not disarm for the next 48 hours, and your death will naturally speed the process of the detonation. After you are safely out of the country the location of the explosives placed around the sprawl will be sent to them, but if you don't make it they will unfortunately detonate as well. If you detect anyone following the van the explosives detonate also.


You're dead already. Perhaps you still walk around, but you're dead already, you just didn't realize it. You will never even see a border.

QUOTE (Emperor Tippy)
Now you walk out, get in the van, head to a stash house,


Boom. The van exploded. The news will tell everyone that you probably made a mistake with your own bombs. Perhaps the hostages surive, who knows? If they don't, you're the one who gets blamed, not the cops. And that's just one of the many possibilities how the cops will get you.

Sorry, but as soon as you get surrounded by cops in a building, you should REALLY have a backup plan that doesn't involve hostages :-)
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eidolon
post Sep 29 2007, 03:29 PM
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There are a few things in your list that would and wouldn't work in my games, but the biggie is that you're treating the Star as a police force that's all about serving and protecting. The biggest mistake in that is that you assume hostages and collateral damage would matter to them.

They should storm the building, shoot everything that moves, and then come out and blame any civilian deaths on the runner team.

Of course, if any of the runners live, that could make for an interesting game later. Track down any surviving witnesses, record them telling you what "really" happened, and then merge that with your eyecamera video of the shootout. Then, take it to one of your Knight Errant contacts (or use the opportunity to make one). Offer it to them for favors or cash. Of course, you're scum, so Knight Errant will promise you all kinds of things and then set out to kill all of you. Or maybe, just maybe you'll end up with a solid contact and a real, bona-fide deal with KE, and they use you to pressure and harass the Star, and to deliver pieces of the video (just the parts where LS gunned down "civilians") to politicians that control the police contract. LS of course will have it out for the team once they realize what's going on. Etc, etc.
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Cthulhudreams
post Sep 29 2007, 03:49 PM
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I reckon you are underestimating the effect of wireless connective and fast media in the shadowrun age Eidolon! Look at the riots in burma today, infomation is leaking out despite the regime banning journos and locking down the internet.


In SR it's going to a billion times worse. Say I'm a journo and I get wind of this hostage situation before everything goes bad, and assume someone in the assault force the assault force is transmitting from his gun camera or whatever to tactical command. Hell, the journo is probably got an agent actively listening in to lone star channels *all the time* for this purpose exactly, so he will get wind of it. Ambulance chasing for the 21st century.

So our journo now wants footage of the incident!

The journo can get that imagery very quickly. Lets assume a rating 4 agent with rating 4 programs across the board is the journo's info gathering tool, and the journo knows that the star radio back gun camera footage routinely.

So he jumps into some public access node, in the area, then isolates a swat team members commlink -> 6 seconds assuming the agent buys successes.

Then the agent intercepts the signal, Thresshold 3, our guy averages almost 2.66 successes, so say he takes 2 attempts -> 6 more seconds

Then it decrypts the stream, target number is 12, buying successes, 6 combat turns - > 18 seconds.

So within 30 seconds of SWAT arriving on the ground (cause his agent watching the police scanner radioed that one through), the journo has someone's gun camera footage. Thats not even enough time to make popcorn to watch along.

Unless you are acting covertly, it's hard to do anything that everyone won't know about!

If you really don't like journos having rating 4 agents, note that with rating 2 agents and rating 2 programs (which are basically free) the same effect can be achieved in a tight time frame too, just that it will probably take closer to 2 minutes, as all actions except the interception will double in time - but the inception requires 3 hits on 4 dice, so that will take quite a few more attempts as it only succeeds 5% of the time. Optimal results for the journo is probably lots of rating 2 agents, and programs, but with the sniffer program for that annoying intercept test being much better (atleast rating 4!)

Anyway, the point of all that was thus: Unless people are saying things in person in rooms without public recording devices, and hell, as http://www.securityinfowatch.com/online/CC...tems/4628SIW427
gunshot recognition systems are taking off, you don't even know if there IS a mic, EVERYONE is going to know about what you just said if someone has a reason to look.

And as there is a reason to listen to 'police radio' the cops are going to have be above board.
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Tarantula
post Sep 29 2007, 03:57 PM
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QUOTE (Emperor Tippy @ Sep 29 2007, 12:10 AM)
Lone Star also keeps drones on overwatch. You want to take these down or hack them before the run starts. But if you only take out the drone watching the area of the run then Lone Star will be suspicious and send back up. One of the easiest ways to take out a drone is to use a little Fly Spy that carries a small explosive load. Use 10 or so and have them take out separate drones all at the same time. This is expensive but is useful on very lucrative runs where a quick response is expected. Hacking a drone is much cheaper but can be detected easier.
...
Well now onto how to get away once the police start chasing you. One of the best ways is to use take a FlySpy with a bit of plastic explosives on it and  fly it into the wheel well of the cop cars in the area pre run. Once the cop starts chasing you, you send the signal for the drone to explode and all the sudden the cop car loses a tire.

A couple things. Firstly, the FlySpy with explosives on it. Its a mini-drone. The size of a large insect. The largest insect in the world (source: http://ufbir.ifas.ufl.edu/chap30.htm#weight) weighs a mere 71 grams. I highly doubt the drone could carry even 1kg of plastic explosive, but assuming it can, its hardly going to be enough to take out a drone, or a police car (and losing a tire isn't that much of a penalty... -2 on handling tests).
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Emperor Tippy
post Sep 29 2007, 05:02 PM
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QUOTE
The jammers can be directional ie blocking signal coming out. Using RF linked explosives asking for Murphy to come and bring all his relatives.

Your thinking backwards. You don't send a signal to detonate the bomb, the signal getting shut off detonates the bomb. If they jam the signal goes bye bye and the bomb goes boom.

QUOTE
If you scare Star badly enough, they might let you go, but the the Hunters that get sent will not be nice at all. Those Hunters will not care what country you hide in.

Yes but you have a better chance beating the hunters than you do living out the day if you don't scare the star badly enough.

QUOTE
FYI there have been some Shadow Adepts posted here that would walk right into the area you are in, and remove the issues.

How? They can't kill you. They can't knock you out. They can't block your radio. And even if they manage to free the hostages in some way, that isn't the big problem. Your explosives around the city are the problem.

QUOTE
For communications use fibre optic lines with a flat black finish with catalyst stick coating. Each team member can have a reel of fibre optic line.

What would just takign the finish off some fiber optic line do?

QUOTE
Massive bomb threats with or with out diversion bombs Star will keep a reserve, they have seen the same movies you have.

Sure. What movie? The point of the diversion and calling in all of these multiple crimes at all these different places is to get the sra to question the real one. Hide it in the chatter.

QUOTE
Wait one Star could a High Level Adept cast "Turn Explosives To Play Dough", area effect.:D

WMS

It's still LOS.


QUOTE
SR encryption doesn't support one time pads. They clearly have a way of solving large datasets into underlying infomation very quickly and very effectively. We don;t, but they do.

It's impossible to crack a one time pad generated randomly. It's akin to me calling you up and saying "Hey Bill, want to go to the bar after work?" and really meaning "My coms are tapped, evasive plan 3, safe house 1".

No matter the tech the shadowrun universe has you can't solve it.

QUOTE
But anyway, the real reason you are boned is they are just going to find your bombs - which have to be matrix connected devices so they can hack and disarm them. This isn't even particularly hard. The test to find the devices is quite achievable with co-ordinated teamwork amongst a group of hackers, and then they just have to disarm the devices. Quick, painless and easy. Then they kill you.

How many comlinks are connected to the matrix in Seattle alone? Finding one that happens to be wired to a bomb isn't that easy.

QUOTE
In fact that don't even have to hack the devices. All the need to do is spoof a valid signal.  Once they do that for every device they just kill you. Might take an hour or so, but they can also direct a team of 30-40 hackers to do it - pull them in nation wide for a high profile situation

So assuming the HAXORS are armed with Scan 6 programs, and a skill of 3, they average 3 successes. So the star locates all your bombs and ALL other devices in one combat turn. This is going to be SOP

Your assuming that these bombs are connected to my comlink and actually exist.

QUOTE
Then (assuming you have 10 bombs), they split into teams of 4 and run decrypt and  spoof actions. Again, assuming the 'team leader' has a skill of 4 and the rest have 3, they get 12 successes vs the bombs (assuming they are 6/6!) 4 successes. Now they are in your biomonitors reporting for your brain.

So they are within 1 meter of me?

QUOTE
But wait! There is more! With a simple spoof action - again which they suceed, they disarm and disable the bombs.

Your assuming that they are in the roof with the bomb. And the hostages in the room don't matter. They won't phase Lone Star much at all. It's the bombs you supposedly have all over the city that are a threat. The ones they have no idea where are and can't ever hope to find in time.

QUOTE
Cha ching. And your hacker carn't really stop that due to the teamwork factor. He doesn't even get to roll an opposing check.

Perhaps.

QUOTE
So in four combat turns (12 seconds!) the star already owns your bombs, and has disabled them. It's not really a roadblock to them if they want to stomp on you. It's not even a speedbump. They can also read all your teams communications too due to their agents running undetectable Intercept and decrypt actions.

Not really. The bombs that they can find are the ones inside hte building. Those don't matter at all. The bombs supposedly spread about the sprawl are what matters. And thsoe can't be found or stopped and Lone Star knows it.

QUOTE
Once the all clear is given, then the HTRT team is going to go in while your commlinks (assuming a team of 4 runners) are then attacked by 160 rating 6 agents (using the same logic that gives organised criminals 3-4 agents each), and 30 hackers.

Good for them. And one of us presses the wired detonater to the explosive, killing all the hostages.

QUOTE
Again this is going to go much like this - you will be buried under the electronic storm.

And if they do the bombs go boom and LS looses its contract.

QUOTE
Now, thats using a version of the star that can pull resources across the nation (which it can, clearly, being a multinational organization) for a high profile 'situation'

Possible.

QUOTE
Also, I'm using/abusing your logic that 3-4 agents will be in everyone's possession.

15K for a rating 6 agent. An hour to break the copy protection. 6K or so for a rating 6 response comlink. Everyone on my team will have them. Lone star might or might not.



QUOTE
I'm not sure about this: Doesn't make Routine you slower? How is it in reality? Do cops always patrol the same area or are the areas changed regularly?

Cops generally patrol roughly the same area. The idea is for them to recognize what that area is normally like and its normal inhabitants so that they can tell when something out of the ordinary is happening.

QUOTE
Doesn't work if it's a "very different area", because Lone Star doesn't only have one headquarter where all cops are waiting for something to happen. Cop down in Tacome doesn't mean anything for the Cops in Everett.

Yes. But every police spy drone in Seattle goign dark at once works.

QUOTE
Will give you a bad reputation very soon - people are not stupid, the DO notice things like that. "Someone sold us out." "But who?" "Don't know, but Team X did a job in the same area..."

Yes, but that is just 1 way and isn't one you should use often.

QUOTE
Can work, the problem is that you need to make these calls BEFORE you are noticed.  And again, all over the sprawl doesn't help that much.

It does if you make enough of them.

QUOTE
Expensive and there are probably more cop cars than drones - and as soon as you start using explosives, they'll shoot you down.

The point is to get that cop car that you know will eb chasing you. Not to use it when you have 10 on your tail. And it just looks like a tire blowout.

QUOTE
If you are to be in a hostage situation: Surrender. It doesn't work today and it surely doesn't work in Shadowrun, where the cops will have not many problems with killing some of the hostages and blame you for it.

Hostage situations work when you have a big enough hostage. The problem isn't the hostages in the building, LS will just kill them and say that it was your fault. The problem is the bombs and potentially bio weapon that you claim to have placed about the sprawl, all on timers to go boom if you don't deactivate them within the hour. That si a threat and hostages that LS can't take the risk is actually valid.

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Forget it. As soon as you are in such a situation you will be against cops who are...

- more clever than you
- have more men than you
- are better equipped than you
- have seen all of this before

None of that matters. It isn't me or my team thats teh problem. It isn't even the hostages in the building with us. It's the bombs and/or bio weapon that we claim to have placed around the sprawl and that will detonate independently of us.

QUOTE
You're screwed if you let that happen. I would only consider a hostage situation as a bluff to give me 30 secs or so - try to make them think that you're in there and keep hostages while you take a back door that you prepared before. But as soon as you start to talk to the cops, you're dead meat.

Again, not really. The only point of taking the hostages inside the building is to give the journalists time to show up and to get the police to talk for a bit.

QUOTE
You're dead already. Perhaps you still walk around, but you're dead already, you just didn't realize it. You will never even see a border.

Maybe, maybe not. Depends on how much they bought your threat.

QUOTE
Boom. The van exploded. The news will tell everyone that you probably made a mistake with your own bombs. Perhaps the hostages surive, who knows? If they don't, you're the one who gets blamed, not the cops. And that's just one of the many possibilities how the cops will get you.

And Lone Star takes the risk that I'm bluffing? If those bombs exist and go off then LS will lose the sprawl contract. Knight Errant will make sure of that. And your last will and testament that starts popping up everywhere a week later will really frag people off. A list of all the jobs you pulled with who you were working for. The footage of cops taking bribes.

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Sorry, but as soon as you get surrounded by cops in a building, you should REALLY have a backup plan that doesn't involve hostages :-)

Your already shafted. You will never fight your way out of that building. And you won't live to see trial, you will have an accident on the way to jail. And even if you make it to trial you will be executed.



QUOTE
There are a few things in your list that would and wouldn't work in my games, but the biggie is that you're treating the Star as a police force that's all about serving and protecting.  The biggest mistake in that is that you assume hostages and collateral damage would matter to them.

No. I'm treating them as a corp with stiff competition who has a contract that they can't afford to lose. Collateral damage doesn't matter in and of its self to LS. What matters is that they weren't able to prevent a terrorist attack on the sprawl. And Knight Errant would make sure that it was played to the hilt.

QUOTE
They should storm the building, shoot everything that moves, and then come out and blame any civilian deaths on the runner team.

And risk a bio weapons attack on the sprawl? Or that bombs would start going off all over the city?

QUOTE
A couple things.  Firstly, the FlySpy with explosives on it.  Its a mini-drone.  The size of a large insect.  The largest insect in the world (source: http://ufbir.ifas.ufl.edu/chap30.htm#weight) weighs a mere 71 grams.  I highly doubt the drone could carry even 1kg of plastic explosive, but assuming it can, its hardly going to be enough to take out a drone, or a police car (and losing a tire isn't that much of a penalty... -2 on handling tests).

You have never seen what a few grams of explosives can do? It won't take otu a car but it will take out its tire. And a car thats traveling at high speeds that has a tire blow out stops chasing you.

You don't take out the drone, you knock out its camera or antenna.
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Irian
post Sep 29 2007, 05:08 PM
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Probably Lone Star gets bioweapon threats almost every day. And probably dozens of people have tried to send out many, many false alerts to cover their actions. They're not stupid and they have more experts than you've connections :-)

Claiming something doesn't help you.

There are many ways to save your life, but "threatening Lone Star" is none of them. As soon as you have to negotiate with Lone Star, you should probably hope that they take an "Would you please not kill us if we surrender immediatly?" offer :-)
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Emperor Tippy
post Sep 29 2007, 05:45 PM
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QUOTE (Irian)
Probably Lone Star gets bioweapon threats almost every day. And probably dozens of people have tried to send out many, many false alerts to cover their actions. They're not stupid and they have more experts than you've connections :-)

Claiming something doesn't help you.

There are many ways to save your life, but "threatening Lone Star" is none of them. As soon as you have to negotiate with Lone Star, you should probably hope that they take an "Would you please not kill us if we surrender immediatly?" offer :-)

They may. Or they may not. But yours happens to be a credible threat. Lone Star knows shadow runners have resources and backers. They know that you have nothing to lose and are an amoral piece of drek who brakes the law on a daily basis. And once you set off the first bomb they have even more reason to take you seriously.

You think Lone Star will keep their word? The only plus is that it would be a federal matter and you would be dealing with the FBI and not Lone Star.
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Irian
post Sep 29 2007, 05:47 PM
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Keeping their "word"? Of course they will. Why should they kill you? As long as you're threat, they will surely kill you without thinking twice. But after that? Then you're not threat any longer, you're an arrested criminal. Of course they will not be NICE and you can expect loosing teeth, but killing a prisoner? What would they gain from it? They're a corp, not a hate-driven village Sheriff.
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Emperor Tippy
post Sep 29 2007, 05:58 PM
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Shadow Runners are considered terriorists. Your street sam is most likely committing a dozen felonies just when walking around
-No SIN
-Fake ID
-Possession of a Firearm (multiple counts)
-Possession of explosive devices without a permit (bullets)
-Illegal Cyberware (multiple counts)
-Conspiracy to commit X (X can be any number of felonies)
-Entering the country illegally
-Possession of stolen goods (most likely)
-Squatting
-Robbery (if your house has power)


Now that is all if the star just pick you up for something like a speeding ticket. On a shadowrun you are talking another dozen or so felonies. Many of them death penalty offenses.

So you will be in jail the rest of your life or get the death penalty. And thats if you make it to trial.
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Jaid
post Sep 29 2007, 05:58 PM
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QUOTE (Irian)
Keeping their "word"? Of course they will. Why should they kill you? As long as you're threat, they will surely kill you without thinking twice. But after that? Then you're not threat any longer, you're an arrested criminal. Of course they will not be NICE and you can expect loosing teeth, but killing a prisoner? What would they gain from it? They're a corp, not a hate-driven village Sheriff.

could be they work like public schools, where people in their jails are even worth money to them =D
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eidolon
post Sep 29 2007, 06:11 PM
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@Cthulhudreams:

Shadowrun can be a game of GM vs. Players one-upmanship. The GM will always "win" if the game is run this way, however. The journalists always know what's going on. The cops always have you dead to rights. The corps always know what's going on. Your enemies can just ask the Matrix where you are and come gun you down...oops, but you asked the Matrix where your enemy was...oops but he knows that...

If literally everything anyone ever does ever is 100% transparent and known, what's the new point of the game? What would be the point of Shadowrunners? Would they be able to exist? Would the world of SR be able to exist? Yes, if I wanted to screw the players, and in the process screw myself out of tons of good plots and stories and runs and fun, I could run a hyper-aware, hyper "realistic" world. But as I don't care to, I won't. :)
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Irian
post Sep 29 2007, 06:15 PM
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QUOTE (Emperor Tippy @ Sep 29 2007, 12:58 PM)
Shadow Runners are considered terriorists. Your street sam is most likely committing a dozen felonies just when walking around

...

So you will be in jail the rest of your life or get the death penalty. And thats if you make it to trial.

Yes... And? That doesn't mean that you have to have an "accident" while in custody, because Lone Star would loose one convicted prisoner in their statistic - and what do they gain? Nothing at all.

@eidolon: A GM shouldn't (imho) play against his players, but that doesn't mean that Lone Star is stupid. Personally, a professional enemy makes the game much more interessting for me. And of course you can avoid being arrested by Lone Star - but if you maneuver yourself in a situation where you've got hostages and NO good plan (threatening with bombs/bioweapons is NOT a good plan), then you should find it hard to avoid being shot or arrested, imho.
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eidolon
post Sep 29 2007, 06:28 PM
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Irian,

I agree with your sentiment 100%. More on this in a tic.

I just disagree with what CtD seems to be implying, which is that you can never get away with anything, ever. Apologies if I'm misreading CtD's post, and I certainly think that with enough time, yes, a journalist could call in a favor from a competent hacker, and if the situation continued to go on for a while, potentially gain the type of information and access that CtD proposes.

More: A professional enemy is far more interesting than a group of bumbling idiots. However, just as LS is professional, they're also not happy fuzzy bobbies with sticks that are going to ask you to "stop again" if you don't. And as this is Shadowrun, and not happy fuzz land, LS isn't going to flinch if they "accidentally" gack some "fine upstanding citizens" in the firefight, and they will do whatever necessary to pin that blame on someone else. Including finding out that that journalist has footage of what really happened, and either killing them off and doctoring/stealing the information back, or hiring another team of 'runners to do so.
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Emperor Tippy
post Sep 29 2007, 06:30 PM
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If you are in a situation where Lone Star is outside the building and you are inside a building their is no possible good plan. If you surrender one of the following will happen.
1. You die is custody.
2. You get the death sentence
3. You get life in a maximum security federal prison where you spend 23 hours per day is solitary confinement.

The only way to even stand a chance of getting away a free man is to threaten somethign so drastic (and convince them it's true) that they let you walk. It isn't likely that you will get away but it is more likely than if you take any of the other available options.
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Irian
post Sep 29 2007, 06:43 PM
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Death Sentence is only likely if you run around and kill people. If you stay nice, just stun people, etc. you won't get a date with the electrical chair.

As I already said, LS will normaly not kill you in custody, there's no profit in that.

But the positive aspect is: You have the chance to get a great lawyer and so only a very long prison sentence. Better than getting shot.

But of course, the best way is to avoid arrest - but threatening LS is not a good way. You have to avoid Lone Star at all costs, not try to deal with them.

So personaly my advise would be:

1. Know your enemey: Know Lone Star. Know their procedures, know their response time, know their equipment, etc. - and try to avoid ever having to do with them. You plan should include avoiding getting near Lone Star. If you set off an alarm, you should really consider running away instead of fighting your way out. Never forget: Your life is your most imporant resource.

2. Don't undererstimate your enemy. Concerning Lone Star, you have to assume that they have dealt with more clever, more dangerous and better prepared criminals than yourself. Never expect that they'll fall for a simply bluff - if they do, it's probably a trap.

3. Never play straight. No matter what you do, Lone Star should never know what to expect. If you want to reach the border, do NOT rush towards it. Trying to negotiate your way out with hostages/bombs/lies is no option - except to conceal your REAL escape plan, that's already running!

4. Always have a backup plan, especially concerning escape. The moment you don't know where to go or what to do is the moment you loose. As long as you don't need it, you can probably recycle your backup plan - but make sure not to many people know about it.

5. Always have backup plan for you backup plan. And no, Plan Ultra-B (keep fireing as long as anyone is still standing) is NO backup plan.

6. Make your plans SIMPLE. If your plan depends on seconds or involves complicated details, you will surely encounter the flaws - all of them. Simple plans are the best plans. Remember: KISS - Keep it simple, stupid.
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Emperor Tippy
post Sep 29 2007, 06:54 PM
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QUOTE
Death Sentence is only likely if you run around and kill people. If you stay nice, just stun people, etc. you won't get a date with the electrical chair.

Shadow Runners are considered terrorists. Even with stun rounds you have somethign around 10 counts of felony assault with a deadly weapon. Thats on top of the breaking & entering, the illegal cyberware, the fake ID's, the illegal weapons, etc.

Death Sentences aren't that far out of the norm for your average shadowrunner who gets picked up by the cops. The only plus is that you will be a federal case and out of Lone Star's hands.

QUOTE
As I already said, LS will normaly not kill you in custody, there's no profit in that.

Who ever said it was Lone Star? And if you have ever attacked a cop, run agaisnt a LS subsidiary, have interesting cyber, or any number of other things you can very easily be "disappeared".

QUOTE
But the positive aspect is: You have the chance to get a great lawyer and so only a very long prison sentence. Better than getting shot.

Even with the best lawyer in the world you will be in jail for the rest of your natural life. You will most likely get at least 20 years just for the cyber in your body if your a street sam. Add in the Firearm's, terriorism, assault, fake SIN, and numerous other charges and even serving your sentences congruently you will be in jail for 20 years or so at least. And it's most likely more like 50 years at least.

QUOTE
But of course, the best way is to avoid arrest - but threatening LS is not a good way. You have to avoid Lone Star at all costs, not try to deal with them.

Yes, you really should avoid Lone Star. But this is after you have already failed to avoid Lone Star. When you really have nothing to lose and could potentially gain a lot.
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Irian
post Sep 29 2007, 07:04 PM
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Depends on your case. If you're running around with storm cannons and assault rifles, of course. If you're just wearing pistols, it's a totaly different matter. Illegal Cyberware can be a problem, but most things are only R, not F. Even Wired Reflexes and Smartgun are R, not F.

So if you're clever and try not to get catched with REALLY bad stuff and blood on your hands, you can probably expect to get free after some years, esp. with a good lawyer.

Personally I wouldn't invest time in preparing for the worst case, because even with preparation you're almost surely toast. Invest your time in preparing to avoid the worst case. If you got a company, would you invest much of your time and money for the "What if the company goes bancrupt" case? Or would you invest your time and money to prevent that from ever happening?

Edit: Funny, why is bone lacing F? Guns are R, Smartgun is R, Wired Reflexes 2 is R... But Bone Lacing is highly illegal *g*
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post Sep 29 2007, 08:13 PM
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I can't help but think of the classic movie, Die Hard. Sure, there's lots of cliches and such, but the overall plan of the baddies? They make it look like they want to negotiate and use the hostages. Meanwhile they have an escape plan already planned out that does not involve using the hostage (ambulance decoy to get out) and in fact, they planned to make it look like they died in explosions along with the hostages on the rooftop.
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kzt
post Sep 30 2007, 03:49 AM
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The reality is that no police force in the US would let hostage takers escape. Talking to the local SWAT team the absolute last thing they are going to allow is a mobile hostage situation. They have destroyed buildings to prevent mobile hostage situations. If they promise you a vehicle it's a trap. If they provide you a vehicle it's a trap. If you get in the vehicle it's a trap.

Consider all the things the someone could do to screw any plan you could come up with and realize that the cops have dealt with lots of clever crooks before, they analyze what people have done, have teams of people who's job it is to think of ways to deal with really bad situations.

Consider that inside a vehicle kindly provided by the cops they can ensure they have transmitters within 1 meter of anything you have. They can listen and watch anything you do and can flood the vehicle with whatever they want whenever they want. Plus they can kill the entire vehicle dead whenever they want, wherever they want, or override the controls and make it go wherever they want.

If you engage in a prolonged shootout with anyone in most public urban areas you are going to get a police response. If you hang around after the alarms go off you are going to get a police response. If you are still there when the cops show up things are going to go bad. If you are still there when they get done setting up the perimeter you are in deep kimche. If you are still there when the response teams show up you are just screwed.

Response teams can and will draw on national forces. Like magicians. Very powerful magicians with honking big spirits, who can arrive on scene really fast. When the invisible force 12 spirit materializes and cast mob mind "Freeze" I kind of suspect that it's 24 dice will probably get more successes than your will. And you'll stand there motionless until it tells you to disarm the bombs and surrender to the nice officers one by one.
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toturi
post Sep 30 2007, 04:38 AM
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The GM is not supposed to be against the players. But it is difficult for the GM to not identify with his NPCs. The GM can Deus Ex to make sure the PCs do not survive whatever scenario they find themselves in. But GMs have to remember that there are often more players than GMs. Most GMs do not survive being jumped on by his players on the rugby field.

QUOTE
Response teams can and will draw on national forces. Like magicians. Very powerful magicians with honking big spirits, who can arrive on scene really fast. When the invisible force 12 spirit materializes and cast mob mind "Freeze" I kind of suspect that it's 24 dice will probably get more successes than your will. And you'll stand there motionless until it tells you to disarm the bombs and surrender to the nice officers one by one.

Ahhh, but that assumes that the PCs are not even more powerful magicians with bigger honking spirits. When the F12 spirit even comes in, he is hit with Background Count and then it needs to get pass Shielding and Counterspelling and not to forget, since the PCs are soooo badassed and so bloodthirsty, they have their Bloodzilla ready too. So the question you want to ask yourself is this: If I take the PCs down, will my players string me up naked in the college football field?
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