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> 12 Angry Shadows, Legal Tampering as a Shadow Run
BlackJaw
post Aug 10 2009, 09:51 AM
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I've been playing Shadowrun 4ed for only a few months. The group I play in tends to rotate GMs from time to time. Not everyone runs, but I would like to try my hand at it, and I know I can count on my group to help me with some of the more nut and bolt workings of the game in play. What I'm looking for here at Dumpshock is some help planning out the run(s).

Before this get started, yes this idea is stollen from a TV show I watched. I don't want to duplicate the episode so much as steal the core concept: Trial Tampering.

Background: A criminal organization on the East Coast has been caught red handed and big trail case is going down. In the grand tradition of arresting criminal masterminds, they are being brought into court mostly on charges of tax evation. A number of high ranking members of the criminal group may go to jail because of this. An attempt to bring the case to trial on the east coast resulted in a mistrial due to tampering. In an attempt to get a fair trial, it has been moved to Seattle, where the criminal group has less influence. Unbeknown to the public, a third party, a AA or AAA Corp, has brought in a professional team of Trial Tampering Experts (calling themselves just "The Firm" as if they were lawyers) to ensure that any tampering in this second case will still result in a charge of guilty. The Firm brings in the Shadowrunners to be their deniable little assets towards that end. Meanwhile the crime organization attempts to bribe/blackmail/bully their way into an acquittal, or as they get desperate, into at least another mistrial.

I think I could get 3 or more good runs out of it as the The Firm's Johnson gets them to mess with various things over the course of months as the trial labors on. There are a lot of little ideas that could work here:
1) The first run is to extract, replace, and later return a key witness. The team is extracting the key witness, who is under protection in a hotel room in for pre-trial. A replacement (altered with surgery and gene-tech) is to be left in her place for a week or so while the Johnson uses a PAB (Unwired brainwashing machine) to to alter the witness's memory & opinions in a way that will completely pass lie detection or even magical manipulation. Then the team will need to extract the stand-in and put the brainwashed witness back into play before the trail gets going... again without the security detail being the wiser. As a complication/twist, the crime group attempts to kidnap (possibly even exacute) the key witness... which at the time will be the stand-in. The Runners will need to sort out the situation. Preferably before the stand-in is hurt, divulges that she's a fake, etc. A lot of fun can happen here with the players having to try and take out people that have learned the truth before they can get that information to the defense team/crime bosses... etc.
2) As the trail starts (well jury selection), the team is sent in to bug the court room, etc. Their client wants to be able to feed live video of the jurors into his mass of expert programs and sensors softs, so they can monitor the opinions of each juror. The court room, juror isolation/guarded hotel rooms, and the deliberation rooms will need to be bugged with various systems. Shortly after the bugging is put in place it becomes very clear to The Firm that someone is altering the behavior and opinion of one of the jurors (The crime org is leaning him via an obscure family connection... an illegitimate child maybe?) The team is sent it to remove this issue, maybe even twist it back around by putting their client in good standing with the juror for saving his kid (and letting them blackmail him into seeing things their way instead... wouldn't want the Mrs. knowing about little Billy after all.)
3) One piece of evidence in the trail needs to be altered. Specifically here it has to due with the Corp's involvement. While it won't likely sway the jury, the corp doesn't want their name attached to anyting in the trial. The Firm's Johnson reluctantly sends in the Runners to alter the evidence.
4) Some big clincher during (final) deliberation. I figure if the Runners are doing their job up to this point, the trail is swinging their way. The crime group may attempt some big move in order to try and get a mistrial. Blowing up the jury? Blackmailing the Judge or prosecutor? I want something with a big finish, and hopefully an excuse for a big battle.

I'm also going to avoid using any technomancers/AI references because our group is still running pre-emergence. Also, I'm the main hacker for our group, and so it would be smart not to make any of these runs Matrix heavy.

I could use some help coming up with which crime group and which corp to have involved in this plot, and how they are connected. I'm no master of Shadowrun Lore. Any help in working out my first run(s) would be appreciated.
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TheOneRonin
post Aug 12 2009, 12:48 PM
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It's a shame no one has commented on this. Personally, I've ganked the post and put it into my big bag of run ideas. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)
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McCummhail
post Aug 12 2009, 02:54 PM
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It appears as if you have a good bit of it sorted.
You may want to run at least the pitch or theme past the runners before they get too far into their character creation. Some of the tasks might be a bit rough for a group of loud sammies.

For the first run, the extraction/injection, you might need to tailor the building to the runners you have on the team. If they are all B&E masters then the mark could be stashed in a AAA corp bunker, or on the opposite end a hidden Lonestar/KE safe house that is using more subterfuge than heavy security to keep things under control.

I have gotten a lot of mileage out of maps 'borrowed' from the SR missions and other troves on the net such as what Knasser or Pavao have hosted on their excellent sites.

For your actual question
The Yakuza (Japanese gangsters) have a number of "gumi" around that are fairly well connected. The power has been shifting recently. There are some good resources on Yaks available as well.
Saito who ran San Fran is also a character of much mystery (San Fran was controlled by Saito as a regent of sorts for Japan and recently fell off the map leaving San Fran a very different place).
Either of these two combined with one of the various Japanese Corps (Renraku, Shiawase, Mitsuhama, etc) makes for a plausible conundrum.

Renraku (primarily matrix tech) - Depending on when you are running this, it could be tied into a scandal before the Renraku Arcology incident where Deus made his debut.
Renraku puts the squeeze on some guys trying to leak their info on AI.

Yamatetsu (now EVO) (primarily bio-tech) - may have had a number of dirty secrets spill when relocating to Russia. With a Japanese AAA corp moving to Russia expect some fallout between the Yaks and Vols culminating in a public legal scandal (the Vols have less scruples about 'fair play' so a public outing sounds like something they might pull.

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BlackJaw
post Aug 12 2009, 05:28 PM
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The really interesting part of the first extraction is that it is a swap. The players are supposed to take the real target and leave an imposter. That means some subtle work will be needed. When the calls comes from the Fixer I'll have to make sure that's made clear.
Most of the other players have been at this for a long time (going back to 1st ed) and they each have a few different characters to pick from. Some are subtle, some glow bright blue and carry lizards. My biggest worry is that a lot of magical backup will be brought out. I'm not up to par on magic in Shadowrun, but then I'm the new guy.

The trouble with tying this to San Francisco and Asian crime groups is that San Francisco isn't part of the UCAS so there wouldn't be any reason to move a San Francisco court case to Seattle. I was looking for an East Coast crime gang because it made more sense for the court case to be moved to Seattle that way. Is there a good book on the criminal groups in UCAS I should borrow?

Part of what I'm looking for here is something the other players haven't messed with much, so I don't step on any of their story lines. One guy is running a nice string of Beoing vs Aztech, there is a run in post-bug city dealing with smugglers and possibly Ares, and another has somethings going on with the local seattle mob vs triad (we stole a mob boss's favorite chair so the traid head could be sitting in it for their meeting. Wacky but fun.) I need a crime organization and AA or AAA company that won't get in the way of other people's plot lines... thus something East coast (or the east coast branch of a family/group) is what I'm looking for.

Oh and I'm doing the run in Seattle because we live in Seattle, and we like doing runs with the odd refrence to places we know. Most of our characters are in the Shadowrun community.

I'm at work now, so I can't write out my more recent (detailed) throughts on the intial extraction/imposter but I expect the target to be under protection in a nicer hotel in downtown. I haven't put too much thought into where/how of the second rescure (of the imposter from the crime gang) but I'm leaning towards using a boat, just to make it interesting on the players.
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McCummhail
post Aug 12 2009, 06:16 PM
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I don't know that there is a current book focusing exclusively on UCAS, but if you are up for a bit of reading:

Corporate Enclaves gives solid look at LA (which is West Coast) and a glimpse at Manhattan.
There is an actual release that is just looking at Manhattan if that peaks your interest (the rotten apple supplement). Also, the current SR missions being in NY those might have some usable info.

Runner Havens gives lots of new info about Seattle including some profiles of the major syndicates, gangs and corps.

If you are looking for a reason to extradite the legal case to Seattle the UCC (United Corporate Council) is a decent reason. With possibly multiple corps having an interest in the outcome of the trial I could see it being moved here so one corps alone wouldn't be able to have it's way unimpeded (and yeah San Fran being independent would be troublesome).

Sometimes I wish I loved in Seattle so I could have that familiarity with the city, but on the flip side I can bring that knowledge to Tokyo and some of the other Asian spheres of influence, so I have my own bias.

Hopefully some of this helps.
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BlackJaw
post Aug 13 2009, 09:24 AM
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I'm actually looking for more information on the criminal organizations, not on the UCAS government.

Page 53 of SRA has a short list of criminal elements. I think the Vory may be the better fit for my plans. As a European originated gang they will fit in well with the the East coast, and I don't think the guys I play with have done much with them in a while. They will also allow for the use of bad accents, which is often fun. A little Google action and I found out the most state side Vory activities have taken place in and around New York. Perfect!

Back Story:
Nicolai "Ctapnk (Oldman)" Solonik is head of the New York Vory. The UCAS FBI (or whatever they are called now?)
Organized Crime Division has been out to get Solonik for years and has recently brought up charges against many of higher ranking
members of the Vory. Apparently through a five year operation they were able to get financial documents linking the
illegal funds to the even the "Old Man" himself. The case first went to trial a few months ago in New York, but scandal rocked the closed courtroom. Details were not made public, but there was talk of bribery and extortion. The case was a mis-trial. A reset trial was moved to Seattle as a tactic to reduce the influence the Vory were having on the process. All major witnesses, evidence, etc has been moved to Seattle and the Jury Selection will begin in about 3 weeks.

Now let's say the New York Vory were involved primarily in black market medicine. Organ smuggling, illegal retro-viruses, genetic modifications, and other fun. They were even making good use of some highly placed men in Evo's new home office in Russia. Evo, cleaning their own house, may have even played a key role in the take down of the Vory... but they definetly don't want any press tying their company to the Vory (even if it was/is true.) Taking the Vory Black market down is in their interests... but they would like it done in a way that doesn't pain Evo in a bad light. Enter the legal firm of Coopers, Johnson, & Nayzaki. Not a real Legal Firm, they bill themselves a special legal consulting firm that helps ensure clients get the legal system to work for them. In short, they rig trial. Evo has retained the firm to ensure that the retrial does suffer a similar fate to the first one. In fact, they were brought on in the middle of the original trial and are responsible for it becoming a mistrial instead of the sweeping farce the Vory had arranged in New York.

Among the main witnesses for the prosecution is Jessica Mathers, an accountant that stumbled upon the money laundering. She is a single mid thirties wage slave, and
currently she is in a secure location in Seattle, under FBI guard. Her testimony is not only on the finical matters, but also the
threats of violence (including the slaying of her boyfriend Roger Young) by the vory when they found out she new something. She
is key to the first part of the run. The firm intends to upgrade her memories of her boyfriend's killing (he was run over by a
car) by adding some minor but important details, like the face of the driver. They will also be editing out some finical details from
her memory... those linking the vory to Evo. They will be doing this with a PAB unit (unwired 189) but even this simple alteration of
memories will require a week of work... and the feds will notice her missing.

The Firm has altered a woman to match Jessica's appearance and voice. She won't hold up in court, nor would she fool Jessica's friends or family, but she should be able to sit in a safe house with some feds for a week without anyone getting too curious. The Firm's plan is to switch the real Jessica for the fake, brainwash Jessica for a week, and then swap them back again. The fake Jessica also has Sim Rig implanted so her experiences during the week can be implanted into the Real Jessica to help with the PAB.

Enter the Runners:
The Firm is not use to operating in Seattle, but they know enough to use local expendable assets. People that know the city, the players, and the shadows. They put a call out through the city's fixes (using their New York fixers to broach the market.) The Players are the ones that answer the call. The Firm doesn't yet trust the runners so they won't tell them any more then the need to know (which is very little.)

The fixer (I'll have to find out which one of the team fixers would most likely get this kind of work) will put out a call for Runners able to do subtle work. He has an out of state client needing a local extraction, and although he doesn't have details, it sounds like there is some odd complication expected, and that this out of state client will be in town for a while and expects to have future needs.

The meet is at an office building down town. The players will arrive to a somewhat older building, and go up to a specific floor. The floor will look furnished well, with a simple AR/holo receptionist program behind the desk. The players will be let into a nice conference room just back from the reception desk. The female Johnson (all business, red head) will arrive and give them some basic outlines of their work. "There is a woman named Jessica. Jessica knows some important things. We need to alter her memories of those things. Not erase it, just tweak it a bit. We have people very skilled in such things and can do that in as little as a week, and she won't even know it happened. The problem of course, is that people will notice if Jessica goes missing. She knows important things afterall.
In order to prevent this from becoming an issue, we will replace the real Jessica with a temporary replacement for the week. We have people very skilled at these things too. Your job is simply to pickup the real Jessica and drop of our temporary Jessica, and then a week later, switch them back." Base pay for the run will be $2000 (for each runner at the start of the run... she will offer it as a lump sum, but my number will be based on group count. Not everyone plays ever week) for the initial swap, another $2000 for the swap back. If the players agree she will give them a few more details, like Jessica is being guarded by Feds, and where, etc. If pushed she will offer the group a bonus of $1000 (each) for a successful run at the end, and will also (if pushed) put $2000 upfront for expenses (like an extraction vehicle, etc) that will be deducted from the group's overall pay at the end.

The Johnson won't divulge why Jessica is being protected by the Feds, beyond that she is not dangerous, but players might figure it out (Knows important things = witness or informant) or run some good
browse checks to figure out who Jessica is. If they ask the Johnson, she will admit it is related to a legal mater. If they ask they ask which side her client is (government or vory) she will say "Does it mater?" if they push, she will offer "for an extra $1000 each, does it still mater?" In all likelihood the player will think they are working for the Vory at first, but the Johnson is just trying to keep the Runners from wanting to dig into why they are extracting a person from the Feds if they are trying to help the feds... which might lead back to Evo, their real client.

The office they are meeting is a false front. The lobby, receptionist desk, and conference room are all that is there. Runners with radar systems and other wall penetrating sensors will note that the rest of the floor is empty. Even without such sensors it will be noticeable that no other people or sounds are around. The real location for the firm (which the PCs might see in later related runs) isn't too far away. This is just their semi-legitimate address while the work in Seattle.

Job DetailsThe Firm has and will tell the PCs:
The Johnson will give them an address where they can pickup the fake Jessica (a house in West Seattle where she and the doctors with the PAB wait) at any point in the next 4 days. This also the where the real Jessica is to be brought. The doctors would prefer the real Jessica not remember much if any of the extraction and the Johnson will agree to provide them with tranq patches if need be. The Fake Jessica is a trained actor/agent but has little value outside her acting tallents and will need to be ushered into place by the PCs. About a week later the PCs will be contacted when the Doctors have finished, and they will be able to retrieve a tranq'ed Jessica at the house and then swap her back. Her mind will be wiped of all events leading up to this point, so it's best they don't wake her durring
the return swap.

The Johnson also knows where Jessica is and indicates they have eyes (a biodrone pigeon nesting in a tree nearby). The feds have stashed Jessica in a house in magnolia. It's drapes are all drawn, and the inside walls were recently repainted with WifI blocking paint. 3 Fed agents are stationed with Jessica. Jessica does not ever leave the house, or even go into the front yard, but she is allowed into the fenced off backyard with one of the feds. She has no Comlink, but the Feds give her one once a week so she can call her mother, although they likely monitor the calls. Some days Jessica is driven down to local fed building, other days prosecutors come to visit her, but most days she sits around watching trids. One of the feds goes and picks-up takeout each day, and every few days one of them goes to a Stuffershack and gets basic necessities.

Guarding Jessica / What the Fed know:
The house where Jessica is staying is relatively normal, aside from the recent wifi paint and added encryption on the house computer. All comm signals going into and out of the house are routed through a proxy to conceal they are running through a Fed network. Only the feds and their special prosecutors know she is here... as far as they know. A lightly armored car is in the garage. It has government plates, but most people don't notice. The house has 3 bedrooms. The master bedroom is for Jessica, the other two are shared by the 3 male agents guarding her. There is always at least one person awake, present, and on duty, even at night. White noise generators and installed throughout the house.

The three agents guarding Jessica are two veteran agents of the fed, and a rookie member. They all wear cheap suits of ballistic clothing and keep a handgun in their should holsters at all times.

Agent Mark Hollister:. Age 43, with a datajack and internal smartlink and cybereyes with some enhanced vision. Mark thinks he's pulled an easy job and lounges about inside as much as possible. He doesn't think anything will happen on this job, and will quickly get very very angry if something does happen. Anything that will require paperwork angers him, and anything that might risk him getting shot really angers him. You wouldn't like him if he's angry. Mark pulls seniority to prevent from having to take the graveyard shift awake and on guard duty. Because the Vory didn't come after Jessica in the first trial, he doesn't think they will come after her this time either.

Agent Joshua Brown is a black-ork in his mid 30s. A consummate professional, he takes the work seriously. He is currently going through a nasty divorce and gets regular calls from his ex-wife's lawyers which he will often take in the backyard. Some of these devolve into screaming into his commlink. Joshua and Mark have worked together for years, and get along alright despite their differing work ethics. They are not friends, but are friendly. Joshua has some protective implants making him harder then normal to kill, even by Ork standards. He also has an implanted commlink, but uses glasses for his smartlink.

Agent William “Willy-greenhorn? Maclaster is in his mid 20s and fresh out of the academy. This is his second case. He looks like he doesn't know much about what he's doing, and Mark constantly tells him he's screwing up. (Joshua actually tries to teach him sometimes.) As the newbie he's most often sent to pickup food, take the graveyard shift, etc. He has an implanted commlink and is a skilled hacker in the wireless world. He setup and monitors the comm traffic at the house and it was his idea to have it painted with wifi blocking paper before they moved Jessica into it.

What the Runners, Firm, and Feds Don't Know:
Yuri Radev, a ranking soldier in the Vory who was not linked to the case, is now working to get his friends and family off the hook. He and some of his minions have come to Seattle to throw off the case. Unlike New York, where they had crooked cops, judges, lawyers, etc in their pockets... they have little to work with now, and will be resorting to more direct methods. They arrived in Seattle about a week before the meet. Within 2 days they had secured a meeting with the local Seattle Vory and come to an agreement. The Local Vory, not really on good terms with Ctapnk because of his business in the distasteful body trade, will only provide a few local contacts for Yuri, but no real resources. Yuri grudgingly accepts this. After a few more days of buying weapons, securing a hideout (a warehouse with access to the Puget Sound... and a stolen boat), and scouring for information, he begins looking for ways to weaken the case against the Vory. Among other things he is able to find Jessica through a prescription that William has been picking up at the pharmacy at the Stuffershack. One of his men noticed the armed man in a bad suit, with government plates, filling the prescription (he had been sent to at least three pharmacies already before getting lucky.) He followed the car back to the house.

About 3 days after the Runners swap Jessica for the fake, the Vory team launches an attack on the house. Assuming the Players aren't interfering, they strike while William is out getting take-out for dinner. They plow a stolen car through the front window of the house (remote driving it) then charge through the damaged wall with SMGs and wearing masks. They shoot up the two agents, tranq the Fake Jessica, and drive off in a different stolen car before Lonestar arrives.

Mark is killed. Joshua is injured and ends up in the hospital. William was picking up take-out and missed the whole thing (He may get used down the road). They take fake Jessica to their hideout where Yuri realizes he's got the wrong girl when he runs a MAD scanner on her looking for bugs and finds a lot more implants then the real Jessica would have... and then does a DNA bioscan and finds she's genewiped. Lacking a sophisticated hacker in his limited crew, he begins looking for a hacker to break the defenses on her internal commlink so he can find out who she really is. It will take him 2 days to find a snot nosed hacker on ShadowSea, another day to meet with and negotiate with the hacker to get the data out of the Sim Rig, and on the fourth day, if the players haven't done anything to stop it, he will know a bit about the firm, as well as where the real Jessica is... and launch an attack on the house full of doctors in West Seattle.

Of course the Firm knows something has gone wrong when their biodrone sees a car plow through the house. It tries to follow the getaway car, but it isn't fast enough. The Johnson suspects the Vory, but she doesn't rule out the Runners having intentionally or unintentionally having given away the location. She will contact the fixer, mostly yelling. He will assure her that the runners are trustworthy, and then contact the players to let them know they will need to deal with the situation, and ask them if they did something stupid.

The Johnson will pay them $3000 each to retrieve the fake Jessica alive, $1000 dead. She also increases their pay for getting the real Jessica back to the feds to $4000 each if they can do so in a way that will still allow her to appear in court. She will remind them that the fake Jessica knows where the house in West Seattle is... so at the very least they will need to protect the house in order to secure their payment for the "second swap." She doesn't say so out loud unless asked, but if the players don't get the Fake Jessica back alive and mostly intact, they will only get partial payment for the second swap. Trained agents with altered features and voices, and lots of little cyber toys implanted, are not cheap or easy to replace.

The Vory:
Obviously the Vory should be well enhacned from a bioware standpoint, as that is the kind of work that is getting them arrested. Yuri should be a nasty character, and one that hopefully escapes to be the villian of a few other runs associated with this plot line. I may even find a way to keep him from being physicaly present at any the point the PCs are involved here, and instead just use Vory minions and sub-bosses. I'm not sure how to setup their base of opperations, build them out, etc. I should come up with a few interesting members of the gang and give them angles. I should also flesh out a little more of Yuri's personality/history/etc.
I'm figuring they will make use of the water to get around in Seattle, with various safe houses accessible by boat... but that's more details for downt he road.

EDIT:
I've just checked out page 87 in Runner's Haven and it's a nice little bit of info about "the Tsar of Seattle" (Aleksander “Terminator? Bilotkiy). Their territory is around Tacoma. I might be able to use this as Yuri calling in favors with Aleksander, but because their reach doesn't extend into Seattle Downtown, he's having to do a lot of it himself. It does make his access to a hacker and digital data a little harder to hand wave off given the local Vory are big into matrix crime.
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McCummhail
post Aug 13 2009, 03:10 PM
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Yeah, fortunately Runner Havens has syndicate info. Whereas the Manhattan release is bare of such info much to my dismay (I was looking at an extended series of runs in NYC).
The local Vory in Seattle may be big into cyber-crime using off-shore muscle, but with the loud commotion Yuri is raising in town combined with little to no incentive to help, I can see Bilotkiy denying Yuri access to his hackers on principle.
Possibly even trying to gain leverage.

The book 'contacts and adventures' has an entry for a low-level Vory contact,
but I wager you could use almost any goon squad for your Vory hit team.

It does seem that you have a lot of the details almost ready to run.

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BlackJaw
post Aug 18 2009, 09:22 AM
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Ok... The bad guys.

So let's say Yuri is a Lieutenant in the New York Vory. He's actually got an active warrant (well by now he's a fugitive) on him related to the ongoing case, but he is among the handful of ranking Vory members to have alluded capture. He's managed to get himself smuggled into Seattle, but is being forced to keep a low profile. His buddies and minions are not high enough up the food chain to be sought by police, so he will mostly be using his minions to run various errands while he remains safely just off shore most of the time. I shouldn't need to stat him out yet as he will not be physicaly present for this run, but he will be a foe of the players evenutaly. His bioware may include features that make him hard to identify, like the face altering bioware (False Front), genewipe, etc. His hideout will be an old yatch located on the West side of the Puget Sound. His men use a few boats to get to and from him as needed. He rarerly comes into the city itself, although he did come in person to visit with Bilotkiy (who rejected him.) His naturaly paranoid tendancies have only been further reinforced by his numerous near captures.

His right hand man, Vitali Kostych, will be the main mover and shaker on the ground on this first run. Vitali is augmented mostly with blackmarket bioware. He is mostly a killer and is a bit unhappy at having to be the point man on shore. He defers to Yuri regularly via Commlink when things don't happen as planed. He will have a distinctive poision he is known for using, which it will turn out he secretes from an implanted gland onto a cyberspur. He will also have the synatpic booster (extra intiative passes) and some basic physical improvements I intend to give many of the Vory. The rarity of a cyber-spur with that particular poison (yes, will need to pick one) is a strong link to various murders in New York and trail to Yuri's crew for those able to track it.

While none of Yuri's crew are decent hackers, at least one of them should be a spellcaster. A female member of his crew, maybe a sibling or family member of Yuri's that is only allowed in the male dominated Vory world because of her rare magical gifts and protected because of her family relationship to Vuri? God-daughter might be a good fit... She provides magical protection and concealment for Yuri, and some basic assitance (Spirits sent to act as Astral Overwatch on some hits, even though she is too valuable to go personaly.) I don't know much about magic in Shadowrun yet, but I can at least get her a name... "Katerinka Doubkova" is a more or less random name off the internet. She will be unaugmented, and most of the rest of Yuri's bio-enhanced crew view her as weak and fragile because of this... aside from her magical power which causes them to call her "the witch" but not in front of Yuri or Katerinka.

Most of Yuri's Vory soldiers will be like those listed in Contacts and Adventures (p. 14) but with some enhanced biotech. Suprathyroid glands and Ortho Skins all around will make them generaly tougher, faster, and stronger then the average street thug. They will also have 3 ranks in Automatics, and be using SMGs. There will only be a handful of these loyal vory around. Some helping Vitali, some with Yuri. On the first run where they take the (fake) Jessica, they will have tazers (using their club skill) for taking her alive.

Yuri (well mostly Vitali) will have hired on a local gang for extra man power, at least on this first hit. The Ragers (page 92 or Runners Havens) make a good fit. Orcs and Trolls that are invovled around the Tacoma Docks, and that the Vory were already talking to. A few contacts among the gangers might have been all that Bilotkiy was willing to do to help Yuri's cause. They will be opperating well outside their standard territory for this, but it gives me a place for Fake Jessica to be returned to, and a good explination why the Vory are working from the water.
The Gang leader dealing with Vitali is a troll named Bellows. He's happy for the paycheck the vory are paying him and his crew, and is extra delighted to get to rip up a nice high class neighborhood like Seattle's Magnolia neighborhood. Bellows knows Vitali answers to some other man with a Russian accent, but he doesn't speak russian, and won't even know Yuri's name even though he met him once (when selling him the stollen yatch hideout.) He knows the Vory are using the waterways to get around and hide out, but since having sold them some boats and guns he doesn't know where they are. When the gangers go on their assult on Magnolia, they go on boats, bypassing a dangerous trip through land full of rival gangs. It also makes tracking them tougher on the players, and explains how gangers and russian mob were able to pull such a broad stunt in such a good neighborhood.
Bellows's brother owns a dive bar near the docks (Gruff's Landing), and it's a hub of activity for the Ragers Bellows often hangs with. After the fake Jessica is captured, and when Vitali realizes something is wrong, he has Bellows hold her there while he talks with Yuri about what to do, and they set about trying to find a good hacker to break into her cyberware. The players will need to rescure her from this bar within a few days to prevent this.

Other people Yuri will deal with in Seatle while on this run:
1) The smuggler that got him, his men, and some light gear into town. I might just use Novacane or his crew, an NPC albino smuggler commonly used in our games for smuggling and arms dealing. Novcane would have dropped the Vory off near enough to Tacoma for them to get in the rest of the way on their own. They may also have arranged the purchase of some special gear, some of which would be nautical related, but he doesn't know where they are.
2) When or If thigns get to a point where Yuri and Vitali need to call in a hacker, they will be forced to look beyond Bellows or NovaCane for such expertise. They will first try to get some help from the local Vory, but be rebuffed again. The vory, specializing info-brokering, will have a few out-of-state (or even country) computer experts who will turn be able to get them in contact with a local shadowrunenr hacker using the handle "Trance Daemon" in local hacker and shadowruner communities. He is orginaly contacted by Vitali, but demonstrates some impressive hacker talent by tracing things back to Yuri and negotating with him directly (via commlink) before agreeing to meet with Vitali and extract some files from the well secured systems of the fake Jessica. Yuri had planned to double cross Trance, but Trance holds out his location blackmail, saying if he should go missing, Yuri's location would quickly be sent to harbor patrol. Impressed by the boldness and talent, Yuri decides he likes Trance. If he needs hacker help in the future he will go to Trance... assuming the players didn't do anything that prevents them from meeting or living through this adventure.
3) Yuri has very spicific tastes in women, and has a few prostitutes from Tacoma brought out to his yatch every few days. None of them are allowed to know or speak Russian. None of them know his name, but they talk about an apperently rich russian on a yatch if pressed. Despite being bio-augmented himself, Yuri much prefers "pure" women without even tattoos or peircings, let alone any enhancements/alterations. At least one prostitute was battered early on after Yuri arrived in town because she didn't meet his standards, although compensation to her "manager" was arranged to smooth things out. Players that can learn enough about Yuri and his habbits might be able to use this habit to track him down.

Starting to come togeather!
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BlackJaw
post Aug 20 2009, 08:27 AM
Post #9


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Ok, so let's look over the general plan (and I'm writing this somewhat for myself, but posting it so others can use it too). Here is the nearly complete plan. I will add to it as I need to via Editing instead of replying to myself over and over as I have been doing.

12 Angry Shadows Run 1: A Double Extraction Swap


Plot:
The general plot is that Evo has hired a special firm to fix a trial for them, and to remove any sign of their connection to the original wrong doing. The trial in this case is the UCAS Feds (Organized Crime Division) trying to take down the New York Vory. The trial was attempted in New York a few months back, but it turned out that the Vory were bribing most of the officials involved and a mistrial resulted. The trial is being moved to Seattle for a fresh start. The Runners are being brought in on behalf of the fixing firm Evo has hired. The firm will be in for a bit of a fight as a still at large Vory lieutenant has also come to Seattle to ensure his bosses don't go to prison. The first battle will be over a key witness.

Non-player characters and factions:

Nicolai "Ctapnk (Oldman)" Solonik was the Tzar of the New York Vory. He was arrested months back along with nearly every ranking member of his faction. The UCAS Federal Bureau of Investigation's Organized Crime Division was able to bring down his illegal organ and biotech smuggling rings.

The Legal Firm of Coopers, Johnson, & Nayzaki (The Firm) is the cover identity of stone cold pro trial fixing organization. The players will mostly be dealing with “Ms. Megan Johnson,? a young thirties red head in a nice suit. She will be augmented a bit. Her right arm will have a MAD scanner in it, and she will posses some of the more common social boosting augmentations. Clearly she is the company face. The firm has setup two semi-linked offices in downtown (linked through an underground passage... there are a number of sub-ground and service passages in down town Seattle even in modern times. I use to work in a building with one,) and a Safe House in West Seattle.
The Firm was secretly hired by Evo's press core. A few bad apples at Evo's new russian home office were connected to the Vory Smuggling ring. They want the Vory taken down, but any evidence of their connection to the Vory removed too.
The “main office? is in a sky scraper on 5th ave downtown. A nice but not too nice place. They have the only office on the floor, and they have an automated (AR) secretary, and a confrence room. Beyond that the office is full of white noise generators, thermal conditioned astral screens, and false radio comm nodes in an office space otherwise bare of even carpet, let alone people. It's designed to look like a real office from the outside, except deliveries, and look like something secret is going on there. Employees of the firm go in and out here. Inside, they then take the freight elevator down to the sub-level A, and take the underground passage to another near by office building, where their real office is setup in a sub level room.
The safe house in West Seattle is a basic house with garage. During this run one of the rooms is occupied with a PAB unit and medical gear, and the house is full of related techs and medics, along with a couple of security guys, and the Fake Jessica. Player are given a code for the garage, and a comm code for the tech in charge of this part of the operation here; “Doctor Memory.? They are expected to make transfers through the garage (to keep it out of sight) and will not be welcome if they pull up in busted down, shot up, or obviously problematic or illegal vehicles.

Jessica Mathers was an accountant for a Vory front company, not that she knew that when she took the job. One way or another she stumbled upon the money laundering trail and clues as to what was happening at the company. The Vory got word of what she might know and leaned on her, including killing her long term boy friend Roger Young. One of the fed undercover agents got word that she was a liability to the Vory and got her into protection. She is a big witness for the prosecution, and currently being held at a safe house in the AA neighborhood of Magnolia. At least in our Shadowrun Seattle it's a secured area, and also mostly owned by Evo. The feds are using a seized house in the neighborhood to keep Jessica out of sight. She makes a secured call to her mother once a month, but otherwise remains in the house only dealing with the three agents guarding her, sometimes being brought into the downtown fed office or court house. She has a minor prescription for an allergy spray, although it is a semi-uncommon prescription that must be filled weekly.

Agent Mark Hollister is an early forties agent for the Feds. He's a bit of an asshole and know it all. He likes to pull rank in order to keep from having to do his fair share of the work, and he gets away with it. He likes his current job because it's easy. He spends a lot of his time watching trids. He pulls rank to keep from being sent to pickup dinner, or even take the graveyard watch shift. He has some slightly old school cyberware: Datajack and implanted Smart Link for his gun, along with cyber eyes with decent vision modes.

Agent Joshua Brown is an African American ork. He is very professional but differs to the senior agent (Hollister). He pulls his fair weight of the work. He often takes comm calls from his wife or the lawyers involved in his divorce from her. He tends to take these calls into the backyard so he can yell or cry privately. He has some bioware designed to make him tougher and stronger, and while a good shot, he's better with his fists.

Agent William “Willy-G (Greenhorn)? Maclaster is a young Asian agent, fresh out of the academy. This is his first real field mission, and he's eager to prove himself. As the low-man on the power scale he gets the “gopher? jobs. He picks-up Jessica's prescription once a weak, and gets dinner most nights. The dinner schedule is more or less set in a rotating schedule. The two senior agents and Jessica each get to pick 2 days a week's dinner, and Willy-G gets to pick one. They tend to stick to their favorites almost as a schedule. Agent Maclaster is a computer wiz, and has setup some extra digital precautions on the home network, the semi-armored car, etc. After things go wrong, Agent Maclaster might make a good contact for the Players, (if they don't tip their hand too much about trying to alter the the trial instead of simply wanting to help, or having a grudge vs the Vory and/or Ragers) as he is looking to get even, show himself, and make a splash internaly after being a bit shamed by failing on his first case. He would make an especialy good way to get the Real Jessica safely back to the feds without raising too many eyebrows.

"Fake Jessica" is an agent used by the firm for impersonations. She is a human that has a host of biometric countering cyber, bio, nano, and geneware. She has the facial mimicry bioware, the the vocal enhancements to go with it. She is genewiped, has a nanohive with fingerprint altering nanites, cyber eyes with retinal duplication abilities. She also has an implanted commlink, and laser transceiver built into a finger. She is equipped with a Simrig as well. Her cyberware is heavily defend with a high class firewall and databomb. Her job this time around is keep the agents occupied while the real Jessica has her memories worked over with a PAB unit. She will also need to send out a Sim recording of her time being Jessica so it can be used to fill in the time gap for the real Jessica's programing.

Yuri Radev is one of the few ranking New York Vory left at large. He and some of his crew have recently got themselves smuggled into Seattle. Turned away by the local Vory Tzar in Tacoma (Aleksander “Terminator? Bilotkiy, page 87 Runner's Havens), turned to the Ragers, a troll/ork gang in the docs. He is now hiding out on a Yacht somewhere in the Puget Sound while his right hand man and crew follow his orders on land. Yuri is heavily modified with biotech. He has a preference for human call girls with no modifications, and occasionally has one brought to his yacht.

Vitali Kostych
is Yuri's right hand man, and a skilled killer. He handles most of the on-shore actions for Yuri. He is modified with a toxin producing gland that is connected to a cyber-spur, among his other modifications. His toxin is somewhat rare.

Katerinka (The Witch) Doubkova
is Yuri's young-ish god-daughter, and the only female member of the crew. She is a talented mage, but is considered too physically weak to be allowed to go on missions herself. She remains on the yacht with Yuri, providing protection from tracking magic, and spending a spirit to provide magical protection for Vitali on missions. Their might be some sort of romantic link between Katerinka and Vitali, but they keep it hidden from Yuri out of fear.

Bellows is ranking Troll member of the Troll/Orc gang the Ragers (page 92 of Runners Havens). He and his crew are working for Vitali. They are hired muscle and also a source of stolen boats, weapons, etc. They hang out at dive bar near the Tacoma docks (Gruff's Landing.) The Ragers wear their gang colors (Black and Gray) on these hits, making it possible to track them back.

Trance Daemon
is a local elf hacker that Yuri will deal with if he captures the Fake Jessica. Trance actually backtracks Yuri to his stolen boat and slightly blackmails him early on in the negotiation, a tactic that earns him respect from Yuri.

The Time Line (assuming PCs don't mess things up):

Many Months ago – The feds arrest Nicolai and much of the rest of the New York Vory and place Jessica into protective custody.
2 Months Ago – The case against the Vory becomes a mistrial due to the involvement of the Vory and The Firm manipulating proceedings. The case is moved to Seattle.
3 Weeks ago – Jessica is moved to a house in Magnolia. The Firm setups a temporary Seattle Office and begins tracking down local information, and contacting Fixers via East Coast Connections.
2 Weeks ago – Yuri is smuggled into town by one of NovaCane's (smuggler contact in our game) men. The Firm places a pigeon biodrone in a tree outside Jessica's safe house.
(Thursday) 9 Days ago – Yuri's crew cuts a few deals with Bellows and move their operation onto the water. Some of Yuri's crew start going to various pharmacies looking feds picking up the allergy spray Jessica uses.
(Saturday) Day 0 – Run Begins for the Players. Fixers contact the Runners about a job for an out of state professional. Word is that it's an extraction with some complications. Only professionals able to work with subtlety are requested. A meet is planned for the next day downtown.
(Sunday) Day 1 – The meet with Ms Johnson. If they accept the job, they may pickup the Fake Jessica at any point past midnight. They must have the real Jessica to the safe house by Wednesday night in order for the doctors to have enough time to complete her memory alterations with enough time for her to make a court appearance a week from next Thursday.
(Tuesday) Day 3 – One of Yuri's men spots Agent Maclaster picking up Jessica's prescription, and manages to tag the car/prescription/agent in order to track him back to the safe house. He reports this back to Vitali almost as it happens (making it hard for the runners to prevent the Vory from being informed even if they encounter the vory thug while he works.) This is part of the Runner's swap time period so they might encounter part of this.
(Wednesday) Day 4 - The Real Jessica must be to the Safe House by this day in order to get the PAB brainwashing done (Unwired 189). Her memories of her boy friends death will be made stronger and given more details making a stronger connection to the Vory. Her memories of the acounting trail that tipped her off in the first place will be cleaned of Evo connections as well. Sim Rig info from Fake Jessica will be filtered and fed back into her to accurately replace the time she spends in brainwashing. She will remained drugged durring this weak in order to facilitate faster work. The Doctor works nearly 16 hour days to get it all done quickly, but he is a profesional and get's it done by the deadline.
(Thursday) Day 5 – Vitali, +2 vory thugs, 1 Spirit, and 5 Ragers take a boat around to a oceanside mansion in Magnolia. They tie off on a private doc, shoot the owners, steal 3 nice cars, and drive over to the safe house just before sunset (the golden hour) while Agent Maclaster is picking up pizza. Vitali and a ganger stay with the boat/house. The rest drive a stolen SUV through the window of the safe house, shoot both agents (Brown lives but is rushed to Harbor View), tazzer Jessica/Fake Jessica, and then drive back to the mansion and escape in the boat. While on the boat, Vitali runs a scanner or two over his girl. Fake Jessica's cyberware leads him to think he's got a decoy and contacts Yuri. Yuri has her diverted to the Rager bar while he begins looking into getting a hacker to get at what's in her head.
(Friday) Day 6 – Early in the AM, Agent Brown gets out of surgery, having survived the gunshots. He remains in ICU but wakes up before noon and gives a report to the feds. Agent Maclaster is present for this, and dispondant about his failure.
(Saturday) Day 7 – Vitali contacts Trance via some ShadowSea contacts.
(Sunday) Day 8 – Trance traces things back to Yuri, and offers his services/blackmails for the job.
(Monday) Day 9 – Trance shows up at the Rager bar and hacks Fake Jessica's cyberware. He immediately provides the info to Yuri. Unless something prvents him, Doctor Memory finishes the bulk of his work and let's the Runners know they can pick up the Real Jessica at any time. He will continue to update her "coverage memories" each day they wait to come get her. He recomends picking her up at night as he fills in each day up to her going to sleep.
(Tuesday) Day 10 – Early in the AM Vitali, some crew, a spirit, and some Ragers hit The Firm's Safe house in West Seattle using a similar tactic to their hit in Magnolia. They raid the computers and take away Dr Memory after killing the rest.
(Wednesday) Day 11 – Jessica is due in court.
(Friday) Day 12 – A Lonestar informant tips off the Ragers that there is a Fed/Star Raid coming down on the docks. All evidence is disposed of (Fake Jessica and/or Dr. Memory is exacuted) just hours before the raid happens. Both the Vory and the Ragers get away with everything.

Pay Scale:
Ms. Johnson will pay a lump sum of around $5,000 for the runners to show up at the meet, as payment for “both their time and their discretion, even if they refuse the work.? This will come out to $1,000 each at run start.
If they agree to take the job, they may get an advanced (take out of their final pay) of $1,000 each with a Negotiation.
If the Runners push for more information about the court case, they will be offered $1,000 each to loose interest. (Negotiation).
They will be paid $10,000 for each successful swap as it is completed ($20,000 total). That works out to another $4,000 each or $5,000 total without bonuses.
If the Runners push for more money (Negotiation), they may get another $5,000 ($1,000 each) set asides for a successful full run. If they fail anywhere (not getting Fake Jessica back for example, or if there are troubles with the real Jessica's story because of their actions or in-actions) they forfeit this bonus.
If/When the Fake Jessica is taken, she offers another $10,000 ($2,000 each) for Fake Jessica's safe return on top of allowing them to still earn the previous amounts for getting the real Jessica back to the feds some how. Total pay without negotiation bonuses is now $9,000 each, or $11,000 each with all bonuses.

Aftermath:

If the runners do a good job, Ms. Johnson will let them know there may be more work for them in the near future, and may hint at some work with Jury selection. (A future run)

Yuri, Katerinka, and likely Vitali live through this encounter for use in future related missions. Bellows might live through the end as well depending on how things go down at the bar. He will be very vindictive if his brother Gruff is hurt or killed. Even if the story never gets to a point where Trance is brought in, Yuri might contact him for hacker help in later missions, but if contact between Yuri and Trance happens, he will impress Yuri enough that he will be brought in on future runs as needed. If the players raid Gruff's while Trance is present, he may be captured or injured, and if so he will refuse to work with Yuri again. Of course if he gets killed he won't be around later either.

If the players bring Maclaster in things and give him a chance to redeem himself in the eyes of his superiors, he will be very thankful and may slide them information in the future, or come to them for help later. If they let slip about The Firm to him, things will get stranger as he attempts to dig up who they are, who they are working for, and what's really going on.
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BobRoberts
post Aug 20 2009, 11:59 AM
Post #10


Moving Target
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Nice write up there!

Thinking about the impersonator, having her as an initiated adept might make sense, so she can mask her aura... although that makes her a considerably more advanced character. And all those treatments might shank up her magic somewhat.

The extraction side of the operation sounds potentially tricky! But fun. (IMG:style_emoticons/default/smile.gif)

Like the Vory crowd you have there - sound like excellent prime runner material.


An idle thought... I'd reckon that publically revealing the fake Jessica should totally blow the trial - fakes, simrigs and so on really ought to discount the witness? Would the Vory consider doing this in some manner? Also, if they get much info from fake Jessica, would they be taking revenge on Evo/The firm?
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BlackJaw
post Aug 25 2009, 05:16 PM
Post #11


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The Vory are out to silence the real witness. Finding a Fake in custody would most likely trigger Yuri's Paranoid side. He would think he picked up a plant. That's why she wouldn't be brought back to the Yacht for full interrogation. (The Vory don't have too many details on what is going on in the Seattle Trial yet. New prosecutors are involved seeing as half the old ones were bribed or blackmailed.)

I actually ran this last night and the players surprised me by breaking out impressive hacking skills. They managed to hack a ton of stuff on the first part of the run, and then a lot more during the Vory hit. They managed to save Fake Jessica, keep Agent Brown from being nearly as shot up as he would have ended up, and to get 3 of the Ragers captured (well 2 captured, 1 dead.) It changed up the ending a bit, but not too much.

I also mentally ratcheted up Vitali on the run to make him seem like more a dangerous man. The Players didn't do much more then hack his comm and turn a hacked sprinkler system on him while watching through a biodrone, but they got the impression I wanted them to have of him.

Other then some smart hacking tricks, the group did things mostly by the numbers. They completed the swap by learning the background on the 3 agents, even making Maclaster into a bit of a contact for getting Jessica back into Fed hands without revealing their overall interest in the investigation.

I shouldn't have any trouble bringing this over into the next mission involving a Juror's family.
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