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Recently, I was running a game that went completely south in-game. the players are having a total blast, but a run just got FUBAR. They were sneaking into an arms manufacturing facility to steal the corporation's entry into the new UCAS main infantry rifle and replace the file. So at this point, our mage is currently suffering from a serious stun while sustaining an imp invisibility spell (he does NOT have a sustaining focus), our street samurai is crawling through the duct work with a couple of security riggers tracking him, while he has a pistol with eleven rounds in it. our decker has already been caught, having feigned a seizure from dumpshock (they pulled his cord just as he came out of the matrix).
As some background: their Johnson was the lead designer's rival who thought by screwing up his project, he's gonna get a huge promotion for a LOT of money (government contract and all). So he's going to submit the lead designer's submission as his own as a "Well, Fred screwed up, but I've got something that just might work!" kind of deal.

So my question is thus: Since it wasn't the fault of the players (bad rolls, sheer coincidence, etc) can anyone think of a feasible way to keep the group alive?

I'm leaning towards the fact that the Johnson is not sure that they had the chance to replace/ steal the file and possibly arrange for their release to make sure it's done? Or is it time that they fed the hellhounds and made new characters?
There's always this oldy but goody:

"Nice try. Now you've got a choice: We can feed you to the hellhounds, or you can do a little something for us. What'll it be?"
Personally, I'd avoid Deus Ex Machina if it's at all possible... the mage and sammy both have chances at getting out on their own, for one thing.

Out of curiousity..

What would happen if the Sam found his particular piece of duct work opening on the security rigger's room?

There's also the possibility of the duct work openning up on the hospital wing they've taken the decker to -- you can't just dump a siezure victim in the cells, they might die before interogation. Guarded, of course, but not heavily. One bored guard... watching the door. Turns around and the decker's gone.
Gerald Fitzgerald
Never forget the "a SECOND shadowrun team" out.

If this is some important arms to-do, surely there are more than just two corps involved. If one corp would be dastardly enough to send in a shadowrun team, it's not a far stretch to assume another corp would be equally as dastardly to send in a shadowrun team of their own.

So you could go with a power failure in certain areas as the other teams decker starts to cut off electricity.

You could have one hell of a gun fight as the other team decides to adopt the "guns blazing" approach- which some teams are very very willing to adopt.

A mysterious explosion is guaranteed to draw focus away from your team at a moments notice.

The other team might have had a face, leaving your captives in the hands of Mr. I Don't Know These Guys. He may not be willing to help you get the plans if that's what HE'S after, but he just might shove you out a back door.

These events, and many others, open a door for the 3 C's of a botched ShadowRun.


If the other ShadowRun team got the plans, which they should for not botching their run, this gives YOUR team a precious second opprotunity.

Pit them in a high speed car chase down Highway 1 with themselves, the other shadowrun team, the corp security and Lone Star. One car (or bike) has the plans. Your ShadowRun team may have to work together with the other team to keep them alive. The corp will most likely be willing to A-splode the plans than let the competition get their hands on it.

A-sploded plans do no one any good.

In the end, your team may meet a few other folks trying to make a nuyen.gif in the shadows and they also just might end up killing them.

The johnson is one of the employees of the corp being infiltrated; it's just a scheme to get him a huge promotion/ knock off a rival. But all the ideas are damned fine ideas regardless. thanks for the input.
Do they know who Mr. Johnson is?

Does their fixer?

Is Mr. Johnson sure that they can't rat him out? That may be enough reason for him to pull enough strings to have a chance to escape.

The fact that Mr. Johnson works for the target corp seems to be an exploitable opportunity. Are any of the security people on the scene loyal to him? Wouldn't he have arranged that?

Of course, since they're in an arms factory, there's the possibility that the sammie stumbles across something... useful before the rigger-guided guards get to him. "Faster guys! He's at the vent for lab B, where the Panther II prototypes are!" A little cheesy, but if cheese is your taste...
Gerald Fitzgerald
If the johnson has an on-going rivalry with this other guy, maybe the other guy is inside the complex when it comes under attack. If the runner team is obviously headed to where these top secret weapon plan are kept, said Other Guy might scratch his chin and think "waaaait a minute. I wonder if that douche bag Harrison is behind this."

Then he might round up the shadowrun team and pump them for information. Then he might pump them for the name of who sent them in the first place. Then he might pump them for fun. And after getting pumped over and over my Other Guy and the entire security team, the sahdowrun team might be used as mooks in bringing Mr. Johnson's head back on a pike.

So he can pump it.

Basically, what I'm getting at: when your shadowrun team is captured and things can't seem to get any worse... have the head security officer enter the room, excuse the other guards, unzip his pants and offer the runners a "back door" out of the situation.
I'm a hard GM, if they don't have the common sense edge then they barley get any help from me, i don't beleive in always letting them live all the time.
Sandoval Smith
In a situation like that, unless the PCs have gone out of their way to piss the corp off, like taking trophy ears from every secratary they come across, I have the crop's general attitude be that they really don't care about the Shadowrunners. Runners are an expendable resource that you hire off the street, and of little interest in and of themselves. What's interesting is the information about who hired them, and what they wanted.

Capturing the runners, pumping them for information, and then having them do a job for the corp they'd been running against seems like a perfectly reasonable plan. No need to even go the cortex bomb route. I like explosive collars myself. Quicker and cheaper than brain bombs (and kinder to the players, since they don't have to worry about getting those things out later). It'd be difficult enough to get off without the proper release that if the runners tried to do it themselves, at least a couple of them would be guranteed to get popped, and if the Corp is smart, the payback run is not one of critical importantce, so if the Runners split, they don't get burned.
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