Monday, 18 January 2016

Electronic Criminal Hazards

This is the follow up to yesterday's electronic hazards table, covering all manner of electronic crimes to assail the players with as they traverse the mean city. 

This table was a lot of fun to write, and I think it shows. That said, it's tonally all over the place, ranging between inconsequential and funny to completely horrible or game changing. I'm still experimenting with all this!


1. Contactless Pickpocket: a pickpocket is scanning people's commlinks and contactless cards to extract money from their accounts. Characters with legal tender must make electronic security tests to avoid losing their personal data.

2. Personalised Trolling Drones: a local hate group has fabricated some cheap toy drones with speakers to follow the targets of their ire around and scream abuse at them. There is a 70% chance they have access to a public SIN database and are calling out the character by her (official) name.

There is a 30% chance that the drone is carrying balloons of yellow paint, skunk gas or urine to further harass their victims.

3. Gargoyle: a spook covered in surveillance gear is wondering the streets hoovering up passing data and selling it to information brokers. She will sell their locational information to a rival or record their conversations for sale on the open market.

4. Blackmailer: an electronic blackmailer is covertly monitoring the players through a variety of different means. She will target the most vulnerable player character for extortion, most likely threatening to pass their information to the paycops.

5. Spoof Tag: a very competent criminal on the run from the law or the syndicate realises that she has been tagged by a tracking device. However, she turns the tables on her pursuit by removing the tag and attaching it to the most vulnerable player character (or their vehicle). The tailing team now pursue the PCs instead.

If the PCs are tagged without becoming aware of it, the GM may wish to alert them by playing the track Igneous from the soundtrack to the movie Thief at very high volume.

6. False Positive Identification: an overzealous surveillance system identifies the PCs as a terrorist outfit - fine so far... - but the wrong terrorist outfit

Roll a d10.
1-2: the crew has been identified as a potential terrorist (wrong type of beard, etc.) and will be unsubtly encouraged to move on by the paycops or tailed by a drone. 
3-4: the system will believe the crew to be casing a target for an attack. Local paycops will move to interdict their activities, probably simply by moving them on and recording their faces. Bonus points if they actually were casing a target.
5-6: the crew is misidentified as members of an illegal operation whose members fit their profile. Heavily armed police will attempt to question the players.
7-8: the crew is misidentified as members of an illegal operation which has recently made specific threats. Police or federal agents will begin a tailing operation against them, hoping to locate their contacts, safe-houses and arsenals.
9: the police will misidentify the most suspicious PC as a specific terrorist. The local equivalent of Section 9 will attempt to make a non-lethal arrest.
10: a corporation will misidentify them as the perpetrator of a raid on one of their facilities and scramble a number of covert assault vehicles, helicopters and hired 'runners to capture or kill the team. Initial units will arrive inside of 10 minutes. Their exact approach will depend on local conditions.

Further bonus points if the team actually were the perpetrators, and the overzealous system has accidentally discovered them.

Assuming the players didn't violently resist, the police will generally apologise for the mistake and compensate for injuries (up to a point). Corporations will make the minimum restitution they can get away with.

7. War Driver: a criminal is searching the streets for a personal wireless network to piggyback. She targets the most vulnerable PC.

Roll a d6.
1-2: the criminal is simply trying to download a message, TV show or data without being traced.
3-4: the criminal is taking part in an ongoing 'op.
5: the criminal is currently being tailed by D3 covert ops vehicles and their attendant signal tracing drones.
6: the criminal is downloading/uploading illegal pornography.

8. A Pornographic Scanner Darkly: a gargoyle working for an illegal fetish site is scanning the body shape of people who fit the required profile for use in voyeuristic "amateur" pornographic videos, for politically motivated revenge pornography or fabrication into realistic sex-androids.

Roll a d6.
1-4: the gargoyle is sponsored by a gang or syndicate with whom the crew has beef and will transmit their information to that group.
5: the gargoyle is specifically targeting a character.
6: the gargoyle is specifically targeting a character on behalf of a team contact. 

9. EMP bomb: someone detonates an EMP bomb on the street, aiming at a passing vehicle or security system. The bomb will affect everyone in the blast radius.

Roll a d6.
1-3: the perpetrators were terrorists, and likely not physically present (unless they were hoping to assassinate a PC). 
4-6: the perpetrators were bandits hoping to carry out a theft, kidnap or assassination. They will immediately assault the blast zone, catching the PCs and medical responders in the crossfire. 

10. Robot Vehicle Malfunction: a driver-less car suffers a navigation malfunction and hurtles straight at the PCs (who will likely assume it was an intentional attack) (maybe it was).

11. Robot Vehicle Sabotage: a large robot construction drone has been sabotaged by a hacker and immediately goes on a rampage. On d6 roll of 6, the PCs are very specifically the target. On any other roll, the new programme identifies them as a source of potential resistance and assaults them anyway.

If this happens repeatedly, the unknown hacker will rapidly acquire a super-villain nickname among the local gutter press. The players should make this up.

12. Optic Nerve: a private investigator targets characters possessing cyber-recording devices/smartphones/gargoyle rigs with a virus that co-opts those surveillance systems for her own uses, in the hopes of locating one or more of their contacts as part of an investigation. 

13. False-False Flag: a hacker working for a syndicate or corporation at war has been researching the characters in order to trick them into unwittingly taking part in a deniable operation. She feeds them fake information designed to convince them to attack her organisation's opponent. To do so she co-opts passing advertising systems, directed sonic advertising and so on to feed "clues" to the player team.

14. Subliminal Art Terrorism: a group of hackers have hijacked the local AR, advertising and wireless systems to carry out an "action" against the corporations, the state, the state of art, the state of the art, etc.

Roll a d10.
1-3: the action occurs at just the wrong time, seriously impeding an important meeting or purchase in a blizzard of surrealistic AR imagery, electronic disruption and Throbbing Gristle tribute music.
4-5: the action includes an EMP bomb.
6-7: the action is directed against an offensive piece of public art. The resulting explosion inconveniences the player characters.
8-9: the characters are an unwitting part of the art piece. Their actions when confronted with Throbbing Gristle, fear gas and magnetic bombs is being broadcast to a teenage cult in Slovenia. 
10: characters must test against the brown note. 

15. Drone Tagging Contest: a pair of gangs are competing for visual control of the area using drones armed with squirtguns and airbrushes loaded with neon paint in gang colours. The gang have moved from targeting walls to moving vehicles and moving player characters. 

16. Electronic Car Hijacker: a hacker makes an attempt to remotely hijack a vehicle or drone in possession of the team, hopefully when they are driving it. If no PC vehicle is available, she hijacks a truck nearby, causing it to act in a dangerously erratic way.

17. Car Bug: a bug in a car's firmware causes the vehicle's engine or navigation system to cut out suddenly, rendering it inert. It may or may not come slowly to a halt in the middle of the street first. It may or may not lock all the doors, trapping the occupants. 

If the team are in a vehicle, the bug affects their vehicle or the vehicle immediately in front of them. If they aren't, the bug causes havoc in their immediate vicinity. 

18. Signal Sweep: the police or paycops have deployed a number of covert vans and surveillance drones to detect anomalous signals coming from this area, threatening the PCs or their contacts. 

19. KillBot: a hateful group or individual has deployed a terror drone to strike at citizens displaying certain visual ethnic or gender characteristics. The terror drone has switched off all links to the outside world and is operating under a simple "fire single shots at opportunity targets/keep in cover" program from amongst the roof-tops and aerials along the street. The drone is booby trapped with a phosphorus grenade in the nose-cone and will carry out a final kamikaze run when it runs out of ammunition.

20. Rough Music: a rival of the PCs has hired a hacker to propagate an image, fact or recording the character would rather not become public across the city. This information may or may not be real.

Roll a d6.
1-2: the revenge broadcast is mildly embarrassing. The character suffers a minor drop in their reputation which can probably turned into a joke or waved away. 
3-4: the revenge broadcast is very embarrassing, revealing details of their sexuality, political affiliations or past that they don't want revealed. It may well be pornographic in nature and cause serious problems with family, employers or contacts.
5: the revenge broadcast exposes their relationship with a sensitive contact, exposing that person to reputation damage or serious legal repercussions. The character suffers a major reputation hit as her other contacts start to worry about her opsec and discretion.
6: the revenge broadcast accuses the character of a serious crime.

In any case, the broadcast will likely cause internet hate mobs to descend on the character, while her new reputation may proceed her. The effects of this attack are proportional to her reputation and the seriousness of the allegation - the better known she is to start with, the longer the effects will linger.

1 comment:

  1. As a GM of a SR Space campaign, I could create some measure of fun with these. Cheers mate, good work.