GM's Introduction to Silent Night
A GURPS/Snowcrash Adventure
By Joshua Levy <email@example.com>
I strongly recommend playing this for laughs. The supply scene
(for example) is something right out of Paranoia's R&D Department!
The main purpose of this scene is to introduce the patron. You can
use any patron appropriate
to your world. I use the following patron, appropriate to mine:
Tony Torres, retired trailer home salesman.
ST DX IQ HT
(Note: the idea for Tony comes from Carl Hiassen's book STORMY WEATHER.)
The Supply Scene
Give the characters 4-9 of the following things:
A more complete description of these things is given in the supply.tbl
A couple of beat up looking "Roman Candles".
EMR jamming equipment
Software jamming tools
Turning Them Loose
Alright, so now the characters are fitted out, it is time for them
to earn their money. I generally let them choose their own targets
and methods, but some common ones are listed below. The Patron, the
truck driver, friends (at a bar), or net-research could suggest these.
Sample 1: Mall Central System.
Tired of listening to christmas music as you walk from store to store?
Get the mall's central music system!
This is probably a semi-automated system, composed of either an 18 inch
satellite dish or an internet connection, and a wire down to some electronics
in the back of the mall management office. There will be a (rarely
used) microphone there, and may be a DAT tape player. The management
office will be a couple of offices and a couple of cubes in an out of the
way part of the mall. The security station will be elsewhere, in
a more visible part of the mall.
This office will contain four groups of people, generally with 1-3 people
in each group, depending on the size of the mall:
The Mall Manager(s). Generally one person, although in larger
malls, might have an assistent.
Mall Marketing. This group is in charge of making sure that there
are lots of people in the mall.
Mall Sales. This group is in charge of making sure that
the mall's space is fully rented out.
Sample 2: Music Store (stand alone, big)
Sample 3: Music Store (in mall)
Sample 4: Radio Station
A radio station might be targeted because it is having an "all christmas
music" day, or because it has regularly scheduled christmas music hours
(in which case the hit had better come during that hour).
Sample 5: Syndication Office
Somebody has to package up all that christmas music into easy to broadcast
hours. That is the business of the syndicator. This company
supplies radio stations, malls, and individual stores with christmas "muzak"
by the hour. As luck would have it, one of these guys specializes
music. At the GM's option there will either be a sales office
or the head quarters located near by.
Or maybe one of each (in opposite directions). The christmas
music syndicators office would
make the ideal target for the group, so don't give up it's existance
for free. Make the characters
research to find it.
The sales office ...
The head quaters ...
Although their patron will insist that they claim credit for each hit,
weaselly charactors may
try to wiggle out of this requirement by notifying minor media outlets,
or potentially sympathetic
ones (like United Atheists, for example). Conversely.
gutsy characters may notify media
controlled by the Christen religious right, which will get them more
limelight, and also more
backlash (see below).
A sample TableMaster(tm) table of complications to through at the characters
as they attempt
to claim credit for a hit is in bl-cred.tbl. The less lucky the characters
are, the more likely the
GM is to roll on this table. Also, the more planning the characters
do, the less likely the GM is
to roll on this table; unless the planning is really bad.
As GM, you should keep track of how much media exposure the characters
get. If they get
a lot, their patron may try to contact them to congradulate them, or
just to gloat. If they get
a little media exposure, and are unlucky, they you can choose or roll
on the following chart
to create a "backlash". If they get a lot of media exposure,
then they'll get a backlash no
matter how lucky they are. Maybe more than one.
A TableMaster(tm) table of possible reactions is in reaction.tbl.
Ending The Adventure
Game masters can measure success in this adventure by considering the following
1. Were any of the characters caught?
2. Were any of the characters maimed or hurt?
3. How much media coverage do they get?
4. How much actual silence do they create? How much Christmas
music is destoryed?