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Kagetenshi
In any discussion of proper Shadowrunner behaviour, inevitably two points come up; the idea that if you fire a gun, the mission is a failure, and the idea that if you render an enemy unconscious rather than dead that your life will be easier in the long run. Let's take a closer look at these ideas. I shall first address this tendency towards pacifism.

Several explanations are given for why it's a good idea to incapacitate rather than kill: it garners less enemies, it's the right thing to do, it achieves the same effect.

"It's the right thing to do". Perhaps. Consider also that the right thing to do is to not actually be Shadowrunning in the first place. Let's make this very clear, Shadowrunners ruin lives. Joe SecGuard allowed the Face access to the building, failed to pick up on the falsified security passcode the Decker was using, and was completely blindsided by the Mage. It wasn't his fault? That's possible. It also makes no difference. If the run resulted in meaningful losses, odds are overwhelmingly that the guard will get heavily reprimanded, and it's not at all unlikely that he'll be fired. Even if he retains his job, his chances of promotion anytime in the next decade or so probably approach a Planck quantity. If other guards died, were fired, or otherwise were affected as a result of his actions (or even if not), you can bet his time at work isn't going to be too pleasant. You have ruined his life, and quite possibly that of his family, if any. The same applies to Billy Burnout the Corp Cyberdemon. Big Billy cost a lot, possibly millions, but he can't even protect against a couple of Shadowrunners. Unless he's an ultra high-end model, he's probably looking at early retirement. The kind where they take out all of the augmentations and don't put anything back in.

"It garners less enemies". Consider: Jane SecGuard, husband to Bob Miscellaneous, with two kids (one twenty and at college, one sixteen), is killed in the line of duty. Who is going to be the enemy? Bob? The kids? In all likelihood, none of them have fired a weapon more dangerous than a taser, at least not outside of a shooting range. What are they going to do? They're probably law-abiding corporate citizens, without the remotest idea how to start looking for street contacts. The only way they'd have a description of the runners is if the corp has it and gives it to them, the latter part being extremely unlikely. Consider on the other hand what happens if Jane is merely tasered or gel-rounded into unconsciousness. She wakes up to reprimands, the scorn of her fellow employees, possibly termination. She goes home to face the family that she's no longer supporting, or that at least she has no meaningful chance of increasing her support to. She is not only motivated, but she actually has weapons training of some variety. She also has a decent chance of having seen the Runners she's after. At best, the situation is the same (no ability to effectively pursue revenge). At worst, the runners now have a motivated enemy with the ability to actually harm them on their tail. This applies doubly for guards without family.

"It achieves the same effect". Any guard who is merely unconscious is one stimpatch away from coming after you again. A dead guard, or even one who's been patched up at twelve boxes of Physical, isn't going to come after you again. All it takes to restore a guard with ten boxes stun to the fight is a stimpatch.

Now, on to the idea that a gun fired ends the Shadowrun: this one is at least vaguely more arguable. A gunshot does not mean a failed Shadowrun. However, except for circumstances in which you can be very assured of the shot remaining unheard, you should not fire until you're ready to leave. Even guards take time to respond. If the alarm goes off while you're shooting your way back out of the secret lab with barely two minutes between you and the door, there isn't going to be any meaningful human opposition in that time. That being said, know your target: sentry guns, containment doors, and some drones don't have that same delay. Regardless, in almost every run, there is a point at which opening up with the weaponry not only fails to harm but actually enhances the likelihood of undamaged survival. Obviously this point cannot be exploited in every run (especially those with uncertain opposition or those in which secrecy is a requirement), but with the exception of places capable of destroying you in under a minute regardless of where you are at the time or places with equipment such that you cannot escape them once they've gotten a lock on you, it will exist.

I suppose I should also talk about the question of bystanders. I've got no problem with killing them, but remember not to let it distract you from your objective. Some Johnsons will look down on it as unprofessional, others will look at it as the height of professionalism (that is, as long as you're eliminating witnesses rather than actively hunting down ordinary people to kill). Those are the risks you take. This should mostly be a by-character decision. Remember, though, if an innocent bystander attacks you or can identify you, they're not an innocent bystander anymore.

I'm most certainly not arguing that Runners should be utterly devoid of morals. No, the idea that I find absurd is that Runners both have morals and follow them. It's a pretty twisted morality (or one that revels in ignorance) that will be fine with 'Running. Your mileage may vary, but I've always found that it's a lot more fun to have a character who wouldn't think of killing innocent bystanders (say, a fourteen-year-old boy and his mother), but who, when faced with the situation, guns them down anyway because he was scared, didn't realize they weren't a threat, was afraid they'd identify him, whatever, rather than someone who just runs on past saying to himself "see how moral I am?"

If we can move on from the idea that leaving witnesses and potential enemies around is "professional", I think we'll all be doing a lot better.

~J
Demosthenes
I see where you're going...and I agree, to a certain extent.
I'd argue the following:
An ideal shadowrun is one where you get in, do the job, and get out, without having to employ unnecessary violence.
That is professional.

I think the problem you're addressing is that a lot of people are forgetting that the words 'unnecessary' and 'ideal' are both present in that sentence.

Belle Anderson
QUOTE (Demosthenes)
I see where you're going...and I agree, to a certain extent.
I'd argue the following:
An ideal shadowrun is one where you get in, do the job, and get out, without having to employ unnecessary violence.
That is professional.

I think the problem you're addressing is that a lot of people are forgetting that the words 'unnecessary' and 'ideal' are both present in that sentence.

Gotta agree here. There is biz and then there is personal, if you can get the job done with out leaving a trace AND not doing any destruction/killing/havoc that is unnecessary, kudos to you.

I think there is a big difference between finding yourself in an unavoidable firefight with guards, and allowing the huge troll with the huge gun run rampant destroying everything in sight.
Talia Invierno
QUOTE
Consider also that the right thing to do is to not actually be Shadowrunning in the first place. Let's make this very clear, Shadowrunners ruin lives.

Slight rephrasing, maybe: because not all Shadowrun involves shadowruns; and because at least some of us have played purely defensive characters. (There's actually one of these -- not mine -- currently active in LitS.)

Also, in some cases, what's involved in the actions of shadowrunning (especially per the idea you address that a gun fired ends the actual run) is actually less destructive of the lives of others than what the character was doing before becoming a shadowrunning. In those cases, shadowrunning still won't be the optimal moral choice, but it may be a closer approximation than the PC's previous life.
Kagetenshi
If you wish, just drop the capitalization. You can play Shadowrun without going on shadowruns, but you won't be shadowrunning.

And either way, there are still moral issues to think of before "should I kill people?"

~J
Penta
Kage, you forget something.

Killing someone opens you up to a murder charge.

Incapacitating them means an assault charge at best.

Thus, it is infinitely more practical to just wound someone.

Now, granted, if your assignment is to kill someone, that may not make much difference. But if it's a B&E?

I would disagree.
Mr Cjelli
Runners aren't paragons of virtue. Realistically, every runner is going to have to kill someone who really doesn't deserve to die, or be complicit in said murder. I think your argument that firing a gun doesn't end the shadowrun is spot on. But I think you're overlooking something when you argue that incapacitating a secguard will get said guard fired.

I do not think a corp would fire Joe SecGuard because he got duped, ko'ed, or otherwise defeated by shadowrunners. For corps, the bottom line is credit, and secguards cost money: guards need to be trained, and if you fire a guard you need to train a replacement. A corp will fire a SecGuard when he becomes a liability: he'd have to demonstrate such incompetence that it'd be cheaper to fire him and hire a new guard than to keep him on. If every guard was terminated for failing to stop a shadowrun team, then the corp security industry would have a ridiculous turnover rate.

As an aside, killing or incapacitating earns you enemies depending upon who you're shooting at. I imagine the corps as a whole don't mind you killing their people as much as costing them money. Of course, gangers and organized crime types will probably be a lot more vindictive if you shoot up a couple of their soldiers.
Backgammon
QUOTE (Penta)
Kage, you forget something.

Killing someone opens you up to a murder charge.

Incapacitating them means an assault charge at best.

Thus, it is infinitely more practical to just wound someone.

Now, granted, if your assignment is to kill someone, that may not make much difference. But if it's a B&E?

I would disagree.

While I agree to that, that's only half the story. If you incapacitate someone, he can maybe give cops a description of you. If he's dead, that's not gonna happen.

And I'm CERTAIN you'll be facing MORE than an assault charge if caught. All that illegal cyberware, guns, stealing, B&E, etc.

If you're caught, your career is in deep trouble. Unless you're SINless. In which case you don't even make it to jail.

So there's hardly any point to avoiding the murder charge. Both pretty much mean the same to you.
DrJest
Depending on what you did whilst you were inside, however, enforcement is a lot less... enthusiastic... if you knocked the guards out with gel rounds instead of putting big holes in them.
BitBasher
QUOTE (Penta)
Kage, you forget something.

Killing someone opens you up to a murder charge.

Incapacitating them means an assault charge at best.

Thus, it is infinitely more practical to just wound someone.

Now, granted, if your assignment is to kill someone, that may not make much difference. But if it's a B&E?

I would disagree.

Less-lethal rounds fired at a person could still bring charges of attempted murder. There's no such thing as nonlethal, only less-lethal. Those things are still quite lethal. Shoot someone twice with gel rounds at 4 net sucesses each and they're in overdamage. it overflows.

Also, the number of laws an average SR violates just for walking down the street is enough to put them away for a long while, not even counting the number of laws they broke on the run not even counting the murder.

You can morally justify it to make yourself feel better, but you're starting at felon and heading only up from there just for doing the job in the best case scenario.

also:
QUOTE
I do not think a corp would fire Joe SecGuard because he got duped, ko'ed, or otherwise defeated by shadowrunners. For corps, the bottom line is credit, and secguards cost money: guards need to be trained, and if you fire a guard you need to train a replacement. A corp will fire a SecGuard when he becomes a liability: he'd have to demonstrate such incompetence that it'd be cheaper to fire him and hire a new guard than to keep him on. If every guard was terminated for failing to stop a shadowrun team, then the corp security industry would have a ridiculous turnover rate.
Major corps and government agencies believe in scapegoating. They may not fire him, but his career is over, he'd be relegated to low security positions with no chance for promotion forever. Other guards and scientists will blame him. His quality of work environment is screwed.
Kagetenshi
QUOTE (BitBasher)
Less-lethal rounds fired at a person could still bring charges of attempted murder. There's no such thing as nonlethal, only less-lethal. Those things are still quite lethal. Shoot someone twice with gel rounds at 4 net sucesses each and they're in overdamage. it overflows.

There is nonlethalů but heaven help the runners if they get caught and they used magic (Stunball) to do the job.

~J
Sharaloth
Two stunballs can still kill, just like gel rounds.
Kagetenshi
Come to that, you're right. I'd forgotten that you can upstage a stunball.

~J
BitBasher
QUOTE (Kagetenshi @ Apr 7 2005, 10:46 AM)
QUOTE (BitBasher @ Apr 7 2005, 12:42 PM)
Less-lethal rounds fired at a person could still bring charges of attempted murder. There's no such thing as nonlethal, only less-lethal. Those things are still quite lethal. Shoot someone twice with gel rounds at 4 net sucesses each and they're in overdamage. it overflows.

There is nonlethalů but heaven help the runners if they get caught and they used magic (Stunball) to do the job.

~J

Right, but not really, I mean if the runners fail to knock them out in a single deadly then have to cast a second stun spell (which happens) then they'll run that physical damage right up into critical levels.

EDIT: Damnit too slow.
Nikoli
Although it gives me a funny concept for a short story. A sec. guard that is duped by a face, get moved to a less glamorous job, same team, different bypass, he gets moved again, to a non-glamorous and now hazardous job, same team, gets knocked out, gets fired. by this time he pretty much knows the team on sight. He's finally relegated to working as a cashier at a Stuffer shack, sees the team filling up their truck and taints their slushies with dishsoap or something, making them all sick and they get caught. Only to find out they were going to do a run on the company sec. guard database and wipe it clean for some reason, thus they would have restored his chances at having a good paying job, instead they all develop horrible cramps and bowel issues and get caught by the guards.
BookWyrm
On some of my old runs, I tried to emphasize the aspect of NOT killing unless there was no choice; like many here who agree, it does mean a lesser charge if/when captured, and with the right shyster on your side, this can be pleaded down.

Sleep & stun spells are great when you have a mage or shaman, and Narcoject pistols also help. Getting your decker to hack the building & turn the building's security systems against your opponents helps, especially the fire-suppression system. wink.gif
Smoke & flash-bangs are also a good idea.

But having a disguise, even a pair of ultra-modern sunglasses can be usefull (Guard #2: "Hey, I said it was a elf or human in black, with really cool shades. That's when the fire-foam hit us. I wasn't able to get his home-phone number."
Chief: "Do you know how many people actually fit that description?!"
Guard #2: "..... more than five?" )
Kanada Ten
QUOTE
Consider also that the right thing to do is to not actually be Shadowrunning in the first place. Let's make this very clear, Shadowrunners ruin lives.

This is false logic. Corps ruin lives, breathing ruins lives, lives get ruined having nothing to do with running. Whether something is RIGHT or not has nothing to do with individual lives being ruined.

Consider this. Runners are hired by a reporter to steal a biological weapon and evidence proving a corp is producing it and using it to clear villiages so they can buy the land rights. This action, the theft, is illegal and may result in many ruined lives, but yet is right for it exposes a greater evil. Or maybe they are both wrong. It hardly matters.

Killing and not killing make no difference. After recieving wounds, physical or mental above their proffessional level the secguards flee - they no longer present a threat.
Penta
QUOTE (BitBasher)
QUOTE (Penta @ Apr 7 2005, 09:06 AM)
Kage, you forget something.

Killing someone opens you up to a murder charge.

Incapacitating them means an assault charge at best.

Thus, it is infinitely more practical to just wound someone.

Now, granted, if your assignment is to kill someone, that may not make much difference. But if it's a B&E?

I would disagree.

Less-lethal rounds fired at a person could still bring charges of attempted murder. There's no such thing as nonlethal, only less-lethal. Those things are still quite lethal. Shoot someone twice with gel rounds at 4 net sucesses each and they're in overdamage. it overflows.

Also, the number of laws an average SR violates just for walking down the street is enough to put them away for a long while, not even counting the number of laws they broke on the run not even counting the murder.

You can morally justify it to make yourself feel better, but you're starting at felon and heading only up from there just for doing the job in the best case scenario.

It's the difference between a really long prison sentence and lethal injection.
DocMortand
QUOTE (Kanada Ten)
Killing and not killing make no difference. After recieving wounds, physical or mental above their proffessional level the secguards flee - they no longer present a threat.

I disagree with that. If the secguards got a good description of you, then even when they flee they are still a threat - just not an immediate threat.

Of course, using that logic is shaky as well - how does a runner know whether a fleeing secguard has a description, or is just panicking and fleeing because he got hit? Shooting him in the back has always had a negative connotation.
Nikoli
Well, except when doing an infiltration...
wear a breather-mask.
Wear baggy, oversized clothes
dye your hair beforehand.
full-body electrolosis except for eyebrows, and hair on head (or other hair based on character preferences) cuts down on left-behind dna
exfoliate before the run, cuts down on dead skin cells
if possbile arrange for ammonia or bleach dispersion grenades to ruin any stray evidence
have the decker hack the maintenance drones to start cleaning just after you leave and immediately empty their bins into the building incinerator if possible
wear gloves when handling your weapons everytime
get shoe inserts to give you a discreet boost in height
wear "flats" for the job, discard them as soon as possible, including the shoes.
wear goggles or sunglasses
apply a temporary tatoo or tan spray, nothing permanent or long lasting.
Tanka
QUOTE (Penta)
QUOTE (BitBasher @ Apr 7 2005, 12:42 PM)
QUOTE (Penta @ Apr 7 2005, 09:06 AM)
Kage, you forget something.

Killing someone opens you up to a murder charge.

Incapacitating them means an assault charge at best.

Thus, it is infinitely more practical to just wound someone.

Now, granted, if your assignment is to kill someone, that may not make much difference. But if it's a B&E?

I would disagree.

Less-lethal rounds fired at a person could still bring charges of attempted murder. There's no such thing as nonlethal, only less-lethal. Those things are still quite lethal. Shoot someone twice with gel rounds at 4 net sucesses each and they're in overdamage. it overflows.

Also, the number of laws an average SR violates just for walking down the street is enough to put them away for a long while, not even counting the number of laws they broke on the run not even counting the murder.

You can morally justify it to make yourself feel better, but you're starting at felon and heading only up from there just for doing the job in the best case scenario.

It's the difference between a really long prison sentence and lethal injection.

Proof?

Let's take your average run (get in, grab this, get out, casualties are unimportant). Same scenarios all the way around. One with killing, one without.

After the meet, they all go about and gather information on the run, the J, the goods and their teammates (if they've never run with them before).

Most contacts or FoFs need something to put off the fact that, if they're caught helping an illegal act, they'll get fired/put in jail. So usually it's a hefty sum of money -- also known as bribery. Repeat this with several individuals. That's 1.

After gathering information, they all get in touch and setup a meeting spot to plan. Conspiracy to commit an illegal act. That's 2.

After planning, they scout the area out to get a guard count, positions of cameras, turrets, easy access points and entries. Trespassing. That's 3.

Next they act. They break in, manage to get past security, grab the item and go. Tack on 2 for trespassing again and grand theft. (After all, who steals small things?) That's 5, total.

Here's where they differentiate.

Group 1 meets some resistance. Instead of stunning everybody, they open up. A Fireball or two, some APDS, some EXEX. Makes a bunch of guards pretty mushy, huh? Why don't we say a dozen counts of manslaughter just to be nice. That's 17. Tack on two more for the two Force 6 Fireballs. We've got a count of 19.

Group 2 meets the same resistance. Instead of killing, they all break out the gel rounds, unarmed combat and stun spells. Now they have 12 counts of assault. 17. Tack on another 2 for the two Force 6 Stunballs. That's 19.

Alright, now let's make a checklist:

(Group 1/Group 2)
Assault: 0/12
Manslaughter: 12/0
Trespassing: 2/2
High-Force Spells: 2/2
Conspiracy to commit an illegal act: 1/1
Grand-Theft: 1/1
Bribery: 1/1

OK, so the numbers are even. That's great. Sure, manslaughter is worse than assault. So?

They're on Corp territory.

Whoa. Woops.

The runners get geeked. The runners' contacts get whacked. The J gets blacklisted by his employers. The Corp gets the item back.

By actually killing people to reduce the chances of being identified, you reduce your chances of being caught.

No matter if you kill or assault, you're on Corp territory. It's their rules that apply, not the UCAS, or CAS, or Tir or NAN.

So the question is... Would you rather make it easier for the Corp to get a good description of you or would you rather live with a dozen murders on your already black conscious?
wagnern
eye witness acounts are unreliable, and that little corp security badge could very well hide a small camera. Dead men can talk.
wagnern
eye witness acounts are unreliable, and that little corp security badge could very well hide a small camera. Dead men can talk.
Tanka
Which is why you strip down anybody you killed if you have the time.

If not, well... Masks and goggles go a long way towards helping your hidden identity stay hidden.
DrJest
QUOTE
So the question is... Would you rather make it easier for the Corp to get a good description of you or would you rather live with a dozen murders on your already black conscious?


I'll take "Makeover and You - How Not To Get Caught" for 10 points, Bob.

But then I'm still stuck in the 80's, when shadowrunners were at least one-quarter Robin Hood biggrin.gif
Tanka
QUOTE (DrJest)
QUOTE
So the question is... Would you rather make it easier for the Corp to get a good description of you or would you rather live with a dozen murders on your already black conscious?


I'll take "Makeover and You - How Not To Get Caught" for 10 points, Bob.

But then I'm still stuck in the 80's, when shadowrunners were at least one-quarter Robin Hood biggrin.gif

That still leaves the "Hey you seen this guy?" window open. If they hunt hard enough, they find the doc that did your surgery (unless two of the runners are docs, in which case they preform surgery on each other and everybody else) and get him to give them the new description.
DrJest
Mmm, actually I was thinking of the spell Makeover. Some outrageous styling on the way in - purple mohawks and red tribal facepaint, for example - coupled with the basics of goggles and breathers will render you, realistically, unrecognisable. Everyone will remember the purple and red, bugger all will be able to pull the real you out of a lineup.
Nikoli
They have that, it's Physical Mask
Cain
Physical Mask is visible on the astral, identifies you as a mage, reveals your astral signature, and can be dispelled. Makeover has none of those drawbacks, if you take the time to prepare.
Cain
Attack of the double-post!
kackling kactuar
Kage:

There's a difference between screwing over someone's professional reputation and flat out killing them. Forsaking one part of your morality doesn't mean that you have to forsake the rest. A shoplifter isn't always a child rapist. So yeah, the argument "it's the right thing to do" does hold water, though whether or not it's the smart thing to do is debatable.

Also, charges aside, Lonestar will no doubt bring down more heat on you if you massacred every single guard in the place as opposed to just knocking them all out.

That said, there are reasons why Pacifist is listed as a flaw instead of an edge, and you've pretty much hit all of them.
Shadow
Lets not forget ammo cost money! That 20 rounds of EXE you burn through on full auto cuts deep into the profit margin.

Are my characters cold blooded murders who kill anything that gets in tehre way? no. But they arn't afraid to either. I think that if you can pull of a run with a zero body count and no one knew you where there, then that is a success.

If you ahve to get into a fire fight to get out, well it sucks, but that doesn't mean the run is hosed.
BrazilRascal
Everything dpeends on the situation and each particular run, but I believe that keeping it less-lethal does, in the end, help. Just think: If some crazy kid walked into a 7-11 and tazered all the patrons, it would get minor headlines and a "Isn't is amusing, wacky kids these days, Connie MacPrettyAnchorette?" line on the evening news. If the same kid took an AR-15 and gunned everyone down, there'd be breaking news across all channels, lines of pundits wanting to posthulate on the violence of the inner city, on how vide games and RPGs are behind it all, and plenty of worried voters writing their congressmen demanding better security.

It's a flawed analogy, of course, but I think some of the rationale still applies. Less lives lost means that the corp doesn't have to pay life insurance to maybe dozens of guard families. Johnsons might appreciate the team's ability to keep misisons from becoming Waco-style bloodbaths. And shrewd execs like Miles Lanier might recognize proper use of force even when employed against them, and try to learn/profit from it.

Remember, corps know that shadowrunning is a factor. If they mass-fired their security staff every time there is a break-in or an extraction, their operations would soo turn chaotic. I think a more realistic approach would be a stint in re-training, maybe a heavy reprimand to the guards who might have comitted the most glaring slip-ups, and re-working the system to make it always less vulnerable.


Also: unlike governments, corporations are not really accountable to anyone on what they do to "criminals". That cuts both ways; jus tlike the runners can't count on the fair trial by a jury of their peers (Hell, they won't even get a phone call), it also means that the corp just might thing "Very well, there will always be shadowrunners around, and the next team that hits us probably won't be as slick as this one. Maybe it will pay off if we send them on a few trial runs, bugged to the ears and under blackmail, and start recouping those damages."

In a way, runners can be like the researches they so often extract from other corps; just because they were working for the opposition doesn't mean they can't be rather useful to their former-target corp.
frostPDP
It all depends on the type of run and who its against and which guards get killed.

Killing a few border guards at the Trans-Polar Aleut border tends to make you a wanted felon there. Period, provided they have any chance of getting your DNA (And they do.)

Killing a few Shiawese security forces will make Shiawese not like you, but it won't be a death sentence.

Doing both in the same run can get ugly. Not killing them, though, doesn't make your legal situation any better. You've basically commited a terrorist incident one way another, lethal or not. If your job is to break a prisoner out of jail and you do it without killing anyone, that's great - But if that prisoner turns around and kills people later, you're still liable for an accessory charge.

Shadowrunners ARE, as has been pointed out, a walking jail sentence. By the nature of their gear, spells and actions you're lucky to get off with twenty years. Corporate policy basically says to treat all runners (even those who have proven to be relatively rational) as potential threats.

So the bottom line? Do whatever makes sense to you! If you have a gun drawn on you, its either fight back or go to jail - And going to jail might well equate to death, considering you've got the same amount of rights as a slave in the 1800's. Killing old ladies is wrong and unnecessary, and thus gets you visted by far more heat unless the old lady is a witness to your killing twenty Renraku guards. If you've already commited a helluvalotta crimes against Renraku, chances are killing a few more of their guards means nothing in terms of the great balance of crap.

And as for ruined lives, you don't dump a million nuyen into a guard and fire him unless he's a titanic screwup. Simple math - He's gotta be pretty good to warrant the surgury, unlike the beat cop who scrounges three paychecks for Boosted 1. We don't impeach the President based on one mistake (unless of course its overt treason or the like...) but then again, maybe we should...LOL sorry, I'll refrain from that in the future.
kevyn668
1) There are no rules for long (or short) term investigation. If LS catches you based on foresic evidence its GM fait. Period. (if your face is on the sec cam...well, ya pays yer money and ya takes yer chances.)

2) There are no rules, that I know of, that handle crimimal prosecution. Lots of Negotiation, perhaps?

3) Being SINless does NOT mean that you get a bullet to the noggin.

4) Kage is 100% right. Shadowrunners ruin lives. Corps actually do provide services that are used by the general populace. They may be heartless but someone has to hook you up with cable and SloppySoy™ (and clothes, and a job, and health care, and a place to live, and drugs to make you work more, ect...)

So what's the beef with killing people? Its what shadowrunners do. They're criminals. Ends justify the means and all that.

I don't know if Kage's post was supposed to be saitre or not or if I missed the real meaning but I always snicker when I see the Shadowrunner with the Pacifist flaw or the Heartless Killer with the "No women, no kids" thing.

Its cool if its your RP vision of your character but its a little played out. Shadowrunners are MERCENARIES. Like in Gross Pointe Blank, they kill for money.

Look at it as an occupational hazard. smile.gif

Using non-lethal methods doesn't let you slide. Think of like this way: if you taser (or NS7 or whatever) someone in the course of a Shadowrun you didn't just stun that person. You are a TERRORIST.

Geek 'em all. Let the Maker sort 'em out.
Kagetenshi
My post was entirely serious. I think parts of it are being misunderstood, which I'll clear up after I'm done running the session I'm in the middle of, but you appear to have gotten most of the idea.

~J
Pthgar
Blame Twist.
fistandantilus4.0
Darn Twist.


I see where your coming from. I see most runners more like the characters in Sin City (great movie BTW), than comic book heroes (except maybe good ol' Wolverine). Do what they have to when they have to. If they cared so much about such things, they'd likely be dead or behind a desk.
lorthazar
Actually from the standpoint of a Player/GM who would like to see ShadowRun get back to it's roots a little more. I say I have to agree with the main message of this post. Use the most efficent method of making sure you don't get caught. If that means blowing up the building and including Humanis Policlub fliers, so be it.
Sharaloth
Yes, back to the way I played Shadowrun when me and my friends first got our hands on a copy of SR3, and thought the whole point was killing every poor NPC who got in our way and didn't offer to pay us. When even the thought of hiding our identities only occured in passing, since we were going to kill all the people and trash the computer system anyways. A body count of 300+ after the second run, most of them harmless R&D wage-slaves, and man was it ever a ball.

Ah, the memories. The horrible, horrible memories.

edit: Yeah, I was being slightly sarcastic, but really, I like what Lorthazar said, if you're going to blow the building anyways, why not plant evidence to direct attention away from you? It's only good sense.
Kagetenshi
Not all killing is unprofessional. Not even most killing is. That does not mean that killing is never unprofessional.

Edit: you're right, though, misdirection is definitely a tool I'd like to see used more often. Target is a meta? Plant Humanis stickers! Target is the CAS? Plant Azzie gear! So on and so forth.

~J
ef31415
Yup. Its the big fun problem of Shadowrun. Unless you're just nasty, you play people in a nasty business trying to live with themselves at the end of the day.

That's the big reason not to kill everything in sight -- the person looking out from the mirror the next morning.

Very noir-ish. The dark knight, that walks in the muck but keeps his head above it.


Critias
Or, alternately, the disassociated killer, whose long-term training and combat augmentations make ending another human life (when his life is even tangentially threatened) a trivial thing to him, but who feels genuine human guilt over everyday little stuff, otherwise, and who has a nagging concern that he's done something wrong if someone he cares about sees him maim, murder, and kill.

That's the route I took, at least.
Glyph
The fun is Shadowrun is playing characters whose moral code conflicts with some of the things they have to do. I agree that it's too simplistic to think that merely not killing the guards makes the character a good guy. Shadowrun is a game where the bad guys can have a soft side, and where the good guys have to do bad things for the greater good sometimes... or even do bad things just to survive. It's fun, though, to play characters who think they are "good" guys, so that you can explore their rationalizations and little inconsistencies.

Also, not every "good" guy will be a pacifist. Some of the more idealistically-motivated runners might be more likely to kill the "jackbooted thugs working for the foul corporations who despoil mother earth!". wink.gif
Demosthenes
QUOTE (tanka)
Group 1 meets some resistance.  Instead of stunning everybody, they open up.  A Fireball or two, some APDS, some EXEX.  Makes a bunch of guards pretty mushy, huh?  Why don't we say a dozen counts of manslaughter just to be nice.  That's 17.  Tack on two more for the two Force 6 Fireballs.  We've got a count of 19.
<snippage>
Alright, now let's make a checklist:

(Group 1/Group 2)
Assault: 0/12
Manslaughter: 12/0
Trespassing: 2/2
High-Force Spells: 2/2
Conspiracy to commit an illegal act: 1/1
Grand-Theft: 1/1
Bribery: 1/1


I'd just to address two of Tanka's points:
1 - iirc MiTS mentions that the courts consider any use of magic that kills (ie Fireball) to be Murder in the first degree. So tack on x counts of Murder 1, where x = the number of poor slobs geeked by the fireball.
And consider that the prosecutor for Team 1 might well try to tack killing the sec guards onto the conspiracy charge, which would make all those counts of manslaughter counts of first degree murder, as well as aggravate the conspiracy charge.

QUOTE
OK, so the numbers are even.  That's great.  Sure, manslaughter is worse than assault.  So?
They're on Corp territory.
Whoa.  Woops.
The runners get geeked.  The runners' contacts get whacked.  The J gets blacklisted by his employers.  The Corp gets the item back.
By actually killing people to reduce the chances of being identified, you reduce your chances of being caught.
No matter if you kill or assault, you're on Corp territory.  It's their rules that apply, not the UCAS, or CAS, or Tir or NAN.
So the question is...  Would you rather make it easier for the Corp to get a good description of you or would you rather live with a dozen murders on your already black conscious?


2 - Not all shadowruns take place on corp territory. Those that do take place on corp territory do not all take place on extraterritorial corp territory. If you're on a run on non-corp territory, then the relevant laws and possible prosecution do matter. Moreover, who's to say that the UCAS mightn't decide to frag you over for a crime committed in Ares corporate territory, if they can get an indictment and evidence?

(Just because Ares says their territory isn't UCAS jurisdiction does not mean that the UCAS courts will accept that crimes committed in Ares jurisdiction cannot be prosecuted in UCAS courts...though that's getting into murky legal water...)
Critias
All of which is why you don't get caught, as opposed to why you don't commit crimes.
Capt. Dave
QUOTE (kevyn668)

2) There are no rules, that I know of, that handle crimimal prosecution. Lots of Negotiation, perhaps?


Page 120-122 of the Lone Star source book has the game mechanics of going to court. It's actually pretty easy to win a case with a lawyer who has a high Criminal Law skill.
Demosthenes
QUOTE (Critias)
All of which is why you don't get caught, as opposed to why you don't commit crimes.

Indeed.

I'm just pointing out that there's a golden mean between the two extremes, here.

There's no point setting out to kill people if you're not paid for it.
At the same time, there's no point using a less-effective means of dealing with opposition if you're not being paid for a 'no casualties' run.

And while you should definitely plan to not get caught, it's well worth considering damage limitation in the event that you are caught.

It's also worth considering that there's more to shadowruns than the 'sneak in and blow shit up' model - any op where you have your Face fast-talking his way past the guards pretty much guarantees that you have to leave the potential witnesses alive, at least for a while...

(Note that at no point have I said that there's no point in killing people if you're not paid for it: just because killing people is sometimes unprofessional does not mean it always is - or vice versa, or however you want to say it.)

As to going to court - I think a lot of the LoneStar stuff was hashed out again in SOTA 2064.
hermit
Well, whoever runs in a way that his face can be easily recognised is not too professional anyway. A mage with the physical mask spell should be a minimum requirement for infiltration runs.

Also, as mentioned above, not all shadowruns are hit-and-run, infiltrate and blow shit up, or get item and shoot your way out. When on a bodyguard mission, gunning down anything that moves may get you not paid at all (bad publicity of some higher-up's bodyguards mow down his entire audience). When sneaking into somewhere and changing some stuff, like production data in a factory, as opposed to blowing that factory up, not being detected at all is crucial. When doing a reconnaissance mission, not being detected is even more crucial.

Of course, that depends on your group's style of game. If you favour in-and-out-and-blow-stuff-up ops solely, and that doesn't get stale for you, go for it. I surely do think that's boring, and tend to play otherwise (and with people who share my style). Ultimately, that's what it all comes down to.

But yeah, for the nitial point, Shadowrunners = god guys just doesn't fly. It's not what cyberpunk s about anyway, being as antiheroic as it is.
Critias
In a way it can be a somewhat "heroic" game -- remember much of the early stuff (even in cyberpunk, not just Shadowrun specifically) had a very Robin Hood feel to it. If you were to go out of your way to play up the inhumanity (rather than businesslike efficiency) or megacorps, the brutality (rather than "normal guy with a crappy job") of Lone Star, and the desperation of the general populace... you could probably pull off that same sort of game, even today.

If you wanted to.

But where's the fun in being the good guy, anyways? wink.gif
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