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"In the criminal justice system, the people are represented by two seperate yet equally important groups. The police, who investigate crime and the district attorneys who prosecute the offenders. These are their stories..."

Howdy guys,

Just wanted to share my latest Shadowrun campaign that's just getting going (after a 4 1/2 year hiatus).

The campaign is called Law & Order PCU (Paranormal Crimes Unit), and it features a pair of Lone Star detectives who investigate crime in 2060 Seattle. It centres around the guys trying to solve magic related crimes (murders by sorcery, magically aided rape, uncontrolled spirits, etc...) that happen in the metroplex.

The neat thing about this campaign is that the characters are forced to find methods of achieving their goals within the paramaters allowed by the law (ie no Mindprobe or Aura Assensing, because that violates the 5th Amendment).

I've always had a hard time getting my players to wrap their heads around the rigging and decking rules, and so this way, I can largely avoid the problems I've had with those rules in the past and focus on the gritty, investigative, mystery-solving adventures that we've enjoyed in the past.

In addition to dealing with all the eccentric characters they have as contacts, the guys will also have to deal with the issues of extraterritoriality (in the first adventure they come across counterparts of theirs from Renraku who are investigating a similar murder) as well as the diplomatic problems of living in a city surrounded by potentially hostile nations.

If any of ya have any comments on the campaign idea or suggestions for upcoming episodes/adventures, I'd love to read them here. smile.gif

I really like this idea.

A question though, well a few. Are playing with more than two players? I think you are, which means you're doing an SVU style game right?

How do you plan on handling a group larger than 2? I mean generally interrogations and investigations are done by teams of two right? I am hoping you have a really clever solution because I might use it in my own game for similar situations.

All in all I like this.
There is already a name for the unit that investigates magical crime... I believe it's DIPS or something like that. Check New Seattle.

How do you handle SINless people? You can't mind rape a citizen, but what about the SINless? You could add a huge sub-theme to your campaign with the SINless/SIN question. One of the PCs, interrogating a SINless, decided to mind-rape him to save time. It's legal, but is it moral? What if mind-raping could greatly advance the case to find a serial killer before he strikes again? Has he violated his duty as a cop by this abuse? Fun stuff!

Anyway, sounds like a reeeeally cool campaing. I agree that you can explore areas of shadowrun/cyberpunk in greater detail than with a normal game, especially the politics.
How do you handle SINless people? You can't mind rape a citizen, but what about the SINless?
The SINless are "Probationary Citizens", unlike other cyberpunk genres they still have rights, just not as many rights. It's neither Legal Nor moral in SR. Mind Probe itself qualifies as magical rape, although Compel Truth does not it's not admissable as it violates the 5th amendment.
QUOTE (BitBasher)
How do you handle SINless people? You can't mind rape a citizen, but what about the SINless?
The SINless are "Probationary Citizens", unlike other cyberpunk genres they still have rights, just not as many rights. It's neither Legal Nor moral in SR. Mind Probe itself qualifies as magical rape, although Compel Truth does not it's not admissable as it violates the 5th amendment.

In theory. But who's gonna take the side of a poor, probably criminal, SINless scumbag over a cop's? It might not be legal, but it ain't exactly illegal either... Of course it's immoral, but the point of cyberpunk is to blow a huge chunk of morality out of the water. Things can be rationalized.
I really like the issues the Backgammon brings up about the SINless. I haven't picked up Sprawl Survial Guide yet, but I'm thinking that it may have some extra info in it on the rights of the SINless and how they are monitored by law enforcement officials. While there may not be accurate info on them in the legal government records, no doubt corps like Lone Star keep private files on SINless offenders (such as drug dealers, pimps, and, oh I don't know, maybe....Shadowrunners). smile.gif

As for Paul's question, my own campaign only has 2 players, but I have a possible third who may be showing up. If this is the case, I'll just expand the unit, ala SVU, so that it will accomodate my players. I figure a unit like this would allow a fair amount of latitute to their officers. The only hard-fast rule I enforced on character creation was that the PCs had to have Astral Perception, either by virtue of being a mage or an adept with Astral Perception.

One other thing I did was allow the guys 40 points of Karma after character creation was done so their characters could get a couple grades of initiation. They both were required to join the PCU (or DIPS) initiation group, with an oath and a thesis as their first two required ordeals.

With regard to the morality of the characters, and the use of Mind Probe, etc..., it remains to be seen how the guys play it out, but I have my suspicions that the guy playing the hermetic will not use it indiscriminately, while the guy playing the adept will be roughing the SINless up left and right.

Thanks for the feedback! I'll keep you posted when the first session goes off!
The Department of Paranormal Investigation is better decribed in the Lone Star Sourcebook. There is however a precedent for a unit like this in Street Patrol or Homicide, or whatever...Thats actually how FRT was formed.
Now, I realize that this is thread necromancy, but after getting back on these boards again and starting to page through my SR books again, I'm thinking of resurrecting this idea again. sarcastic.gif

I really like the information on arrest prodecures and on law enforcement in general in the new SOTA book.

I'd love to hear some ideas for cases from the DS community, as well as any suggestions from any GMs who've run games like this before.
Sandoval Smith
Keep in mind the kind of resources that being part Lone Star will give the PCs access too. I've played in a couple of 'Legal' SR campaigns, and every now and then we would really throw a monkey wrench in the GMs plans by doing the sensible thing. In one case, playing PIs, we tracked the parties responsible for a heinous gang slaying to a warehouse, and rather than risk confronting the much more heavily armed group, we called a LS contact and told him, 'hey, do we have a tip for you.' Instead of some sort of tense infiltration (which is what the GM had been working toward) my character sat in a dumpster watching the place for a couple of hours until the HTR team showed up and took them out.

If it makes more sense to the PCs to sit tight and call in back up, expect them to do that. If they are chasing something big and scary, then they probably will call in for backup, and they should be able too. It'd get frustratung fast if everytime they called for help somehow, something came up to thwart it.
Sandoval, that's a good point that I hadn't thought of.

I think the way I'd get around that would be to emphasize the fact that because they're the DIPS, they are the guys that are being called in (with the exception being really big threats, like Insect Spirit hives).

The newest SOTA book mentions a pretty healthy dislike of the DIPS detectives by the rest of Lone Star, partly due to the elitist attitudes expressed by many of the DIPS detectives. I can see that animosity playing itself out as much of the mundanes on the force saying "hey, it's your job, YOU do it"

Another way around this would be to focus the campaign on the investigative side of law enforcement. While the world of 2060 is no doubt a more violent world than we live in today, I'm seeing very little combat in this campaign. I really like the social skill rules in Shadowrun and the game setting seems to lend itself to really memorable characters (I'm using films such as Snatch; Lock, Stock & Two Smoking Barrels; and Pulp Fiction; as well as William Gibson's books as inspiration for appropriately 'colourful' characters).

I'm going to be combining these to have the majority of the character's time spent racing around to meet with scenery-chewing NPCS, while trying to solve the crimes that stump the regular detectives (the first adventure involves a love triangle, a shadowrun gone wrong, and a vengeful ghost).
That said help may not always be easy to get.

I wouldn’t go so far as to deny it to them for no reason but if it is logical the opposition may jam the cell network. If they are investigating somebody with little or no regard for the law and a good Decker they may loose there mobile phones entirely. If they have a regular superior the delete there ID at LS won’t work however. There boss will just call in some people that he knows (incase his ID is also gone) and bring in the matrix crime squads.

On the other hand if they repeatedly stuff things up they may loose credibility and there boss will not want to mobilise an HTR based on there unreliable reports.

Occasionally the HTR groups may be busy elswear. I would only do this if at least 1 possibly 2 incidents happened involving the PCs previously that day.

Another way to mix that up is a hostage situation. The HTR will be there in 5 min but the perp is going to kill somebody every minute until his demands are met.

In addition, I see a lot of the combat situations that the characters will find themselves in will be things that are upon them before they know it (ie. they stumble upon the perp they're looking for unexpectedly and things go south).
Sandoval Smith
I wasn't suggesting that they should be able to summon up an HTR whenever they wanted (the reason an HTR showed up in my example was because the guys warrented it, and the Star already was trying to track down those responsible for the massacre). My implication was that if they end up in a situation where it would be sensible or prudent for them to call for help, there's a good chance they will (HTR, a patrol car, a few extra DIPS, etc).

That was one of the things I liked about the PI game, was every now when it looked like we were getting in over our heads, we could say, 'this is some serious drek. We should probably turn it over to the Star."
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