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So, this is a campaign idea that has been brewing in my mind for as long as I have had SR4.

Characters (as well as other runner teams) are hired to find a certain magical box that they should return to Mr. J. The said J is actually working for an immortal elf that has memories from the 4th world. His beloved wife, a powerful wizard on her own was killed then and manalevels getting low the said elf could not bring her wife back from the dead.

Now he is going to do it. In the box that PCs are hunting was a very powerful magical crystal that could be used to call back the elf's wife from the dead. Obviously the same item can be used to boost a lot of other spells too, so in effect it can be quite dangerous weapon.

Coincidently the said item is not in the box and another hunt starts with new players (can you say corps?) stepping in to race.

The idea is to keep the campaign running at the background visiting it occasionally and giving PCs not related runs between those connected to the item.

Now, what do you think? Any bad clitches with canon? Any other comments?

I hate Immortal Elf plots.

Having said that, if you and your players think they're cool, then no problem.
I also hate them, and am less permissive. But hey. As lnog as yhou don't com near my players.
There should be no items who bring back the dead, no matter what. Don't let Shadowrun deteriorate into a D&D clone with guns.

Make the McGuffin something more mundan-like, so that everyone might want it, and not only the magically interested parties.

Like for example an experimental quantum-computer prototype, some sort of power fusion core or other more revolutionary thing than your standart-superpowerfoci that could only interest some wage-mage. Though in the end, the McGuffin is of few relevance.

As a side-note, Immortal Elves hopefully won't ever be mentioned again in future SR-publications, because they're neither cool, nor did they enrich the SR-background lore at all, and only tied SR with Earthdawn in a crossover nobody really liked, safe perhaps 10-12 people.
Aw, they have potential, you just can't let them stomp about like Gojira on NeoTokyo. Limited Elves make for happy non-ELves.


I have two on the new Tri Council of Princes. One is Sean Laverty, the lone Immortal of the Old Guard, unwilling to take the role of teh High Prince... he has better things to do.

The other?

Some slender Elven fellow, name of Cambell Q. Harlen, who hails from the Puyallup section of Seattle. Never looks good on the trid, tho ... seems that he *hates* makeup. Something of an airheaded playboy, he brought a bunch of Elves in from Seattle to set up shop. Nobody's quite sure what strings he pulled to get in, but, Hestaby about laughed herself to death when he showed up. Must not think too highly of him.
I meant to originally write more, but was pulled away.

I *think* in Earthdawn you could revive people, so I'm guessing that's where the 4th Age IE looking for his artifact is coming from.

In order to keep some semblance of street level shadowrun grittines, I wouldn't involve the megacorps. How are they supposed to know about 4th age artefacts, anyway? You'd have to involve Loftwyr and the highest level of corporate power... Might be your cup of tea, but I would find it extremely distasteful and unbelievable.

I would scale down the power level. It can still be cenetered around a magical artefact, but just make it coveted by private parties. A rich Elf individual, an old rich New Orleans family and a Hermetic Order spearheaded by a rogue member of the Diviner's Guild all after the same artefact. You can then have a unique opposition signature from each: the rich Elf likes to send Awakened mages-for-hire to tangle with the team, the New Orleans send southern-type thug squads, the Hermetic mages thing they are doing what's right while being manipulated for personal gain by the Diviner.

That way, you keep your opposition suitably low-level, keep a magical item plot, and can even hint at, though never confirm, that the elf is an IE from the 4th age (he could try to impress the runners with such a tale). It'd be up to the players to decide who to trust.
Talia Invierno
I *think* in Earthdawn you could revive people, so I'm guessing that's where the 4th Age IE looking for his artifact is coming from.


Where I've dealt with high level NPCs, I've done best when doing no more than hinting that they might be more than they seem; and keeping their machinations in the background. It's been a hard learning -- players don't generally like feeling like complete pawns ... whatever the reality.
Thanks for the feedback, guys! Although most of you didn't like it the critique was mostly constructive and this is why I posted my idea here.

A few points.

1) I have quite an extensive background of playing Earthdawn hence my liking to link those two games even loosely.

2) As said, I am a newbie here and to SR as a whole so I don't have all that background info that you guys have. That's why critique is very welcome.

3) I don't intend to make reviving people a common occurance, rather it's suppose to be dramatic event that underlines the fact that it can't be usually done. After getting this idea I understood that it was a bit similar to Dracula (the movie where Gary Oldman was the Dracula).

4) I have used purely technical devices quite a bit in my CP2020 games and they will most likely feature in other runs. But in this game I'd like to keep this magical flavour, too.

5) Good point about keeping the corps out. Those examples were wonderful and I really liked the idea of each faction sending their "signature" teams after the item.

6) The item is a one time item only. Especially if it is used for something large effect like reviving someone.

7) The only reason why I needed the immortal elf was only he would remember things that happenede way back.
Okay, first off, I think the idea has great potential (Even though I too hate immortal elves) and would point out that for just that same reason the IE wants, everyone would want that crystal.

Imagine, if you would, Damien Knight, aka Galvin (Or Gavin or whatever his real name was back when he was in with Mirage fighting Crash 1.0. Course, knowing my memory, it's probably Ted). We know him as cool, heartless, and militaristic. But he is an old man around now, someone who lost many friends along the way to the chaos that was the early days of the sixth age. What would he give for such an item?

Or, what would someone from Aztechnology give for such an item, that could allow them to refine there own sacrifice techniques so that they might be able to capture one's soul?

The list goes on, and the only question would eventually become who doesn't want to play a hand or two in the game for this item.

But just remember one thing: No one ever really knows what they have till they chip away at the paint. Until then let them wonder: Is it really gold, or just a hunk of lead.
Talia Invierno
Or, if it were me designing the details -- allow the IE or Damien Knight or whoever to finally gain the item (with or against the team's help); and at the very moment of apparent victory (preferably in the midst of a firefight), perhaps even as he is invoking it: have a random bullet shatter it into a million shards.

Of course, then you have a ready-made shedim opening ...
Exactly. Item like that tends to attract powerful persons and organizations. That leads to a lot of conflicts, deals and backstabbing while still trying to keep the lid on because noone wants more players to the field. That is probably the core of this campaign idea, escalating conflict, confusion, hard decisions, perilious missions!

At first only this one person, IE, knows about the item. When runners start to use their connections to find the box (where the item at some point was) rumors start to spread. The more precise info they (the PCs) start to gather and ask, the more accurate rumors start to spread thus attracting other player to game finding the item.

Item itself can be used various ways and I kind of like the idea that in the end noone really get a chance to use it.

Now, I might still go with the original idea but are there other ideas than using IE? I'd still like to use this magical aspect and that the original Mr. J would want the item for bening reasons (just to make players wonder if he really is actually a "good guy" after all).
Or let them have the item, but then learn (the hard way) that it doesn't quite work right any more (since the mana levels aren't where they were in ED's time, by a longshot, magic doesn't work that way again). Their loved one's body comes back from the grave, just as promised -- but with a Bug or a Shedim or something nastier inside, not the spirit they were after.
Crusher Bob
In addition, there's no giant sea of lava acting as death's prison, so no more coming back from the dead.

The other thing to watch out for in this sort of plot is to make sure that enough of the plot goes on on-screen for the PCs to know about. Intricate plots and back-room deals that only occur in the GM's head don't add to the game at all. On the other flipper, don't break suspension of disbelief by having the PCs gain too much info (insert mental of Lofwyr saying, "Come now, I'm not a republic serial villain.")
You know, I think we're all ignoring a very simple way to get around the whole "immortal" thing.


That great ancient mage? He just woke up in the body of a 18-year old spoiled corporate brat. No established power base, magic doesn't work the way he remembers, and the constant, imminent threat of being "disappeared" by the corporations if he sticks his head up too far.

But he does carry an affinity for the ancient magical artifacts that he created, and can tell (generally) where they are.

See? No immortals. Also no need for extraordinarily intricate plots.
Or it is not a reincarnation but the ghost of an ancient mage that used a temporary wild magic effect to posses a normal metahuman.
Or a spirit that believes he might be the ghost of an ancient dead magi from the past.

In SR, everything goes in regards to delussions or insanity. nyahnyah.gif
Very nice ideas! I have to think about them...
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