As Dan Hope suggested, a Heat / Panic system is an excellent idea. With that in mind, I have created a simple system with varying levels of civil panic and a list of circumstances which might cause them - for example, an armed police unit or a SWAT van would certainly make curtains flap where I live. There are a range of levels from 'Everything is Normal' to 'Mass Hysteria' along with a range of consequences that the GM can throw into the game as a result. Hopefully, this should help the GM to add life to the city so that the players don't feel that they are acting in a vacuum.
Most of today has been spent creating the Random Crime Table - as many of you know - random tables are a crucial part of Corporation and something I've loved since 2nd Edition D&D. The Random Crime Table is comprised of three sections - Perpetrator, Crime and Location. It should be pretty easy to figure out how it works. I am debating a fourth section which involves special instructions such as 'No Firearms' or 'No bending the law' - which are optional add-ins to make the response more fun.
If you recall the part of Aliens where the marines were not allowed to fire weapons for fear of damaging the reactor - that's the kind of thing the special instructions are supposed to cover.
Today the last 'class' has been completed for Black Squad. This is the operator class and is the UIG's information specialist. Not only is she a highly skilled hacker and intrusion specialist, she also comes with a powerful internal A.I., a customisable A.I. companion and a droid of her choice (which makes a good vector for the A.I.).
The operator gains some unique hacking benefits such as being able to automatically complete low-level hacks and being able to apply on-the-fly for a UIG order to make a legal hacking attempt against any system.
They also get an installed signal booster meaning they can get wi-fi pretty much anywhere so they need never miss another episode of 'Wives of Magadan Spire'.
With the completion of character creation, I can now get my group to create characters in preparation for our Black Squad game - I'll relate it's progress on the Facebook group.
There have a been a tonne of fantastic suggestions about how to flavour a UIG game on the Facebook group and we'll be including most of them. Credit will be given to all involved. Huge thanks all round. :)
Mechwrights & Equipment
The last few days has seen the bulk of the work done on the Mechwright (Combat Mechanic). This is set to be a really fun profession where you are highly equipment focused and thus it's a great choice for those gearheads and techies who love messing around with lots of kit. The Mechwright gains some really potent pieces of gear upon completion of elite training such as including...
The CROWBAR cyberframe. A heavy, utilitarian cyberframe fitted with a range of industrial tools, some powerful weapons and a strongbox linked to a GET license so the Mechwrite can access his lockup from anywhere in the world.
He also gains a stock of demolitions, tools, barricades and disposables which are automatically restocked at the start of each mission.
Work has also begun on the equipment section. As well as reprinting some key UIG equipment from other books such as the Raven 220 Magnum, there will be lots of new stuff including mobile barricades, an integrated telepathic converger and a range of new UIG vehicles, because every Black Squad needs it's own APC, hover copter and tank.
TEOs were an interesting elite to design. They are not just potent telepaths, rather they are trained to counter other telepaths and bring them to their knees. Bearing this in mind it seemed prudent to put the advanced rules for telepathics from the Mind Unbound into the UIG book - namely Null, Mind, Psi Armour and Cloak.
I have often deliberated over inserting previously printed items into new books but overall I think it's a good thing as I don't want players to need to have all the books in order to enjoy the book they have just purchased.
TEOs also gain a host of goodies at the start of each mission such as Psitropine and Metapsitrophin. Whereas normal telepaths need to roll to perceive telepathic resonance, TEOs can see it by default and can even make rolls to identify telepaths (although the target will still have ways to hide their nature.)
TEOs will also gain the ability to nullify effects going off near them so if an enemy Agent is attacking civilians with Assault, the TEO will be able to use their Nullify power against the effect, even if they cannot see the telepath directly.
Finally, and a bit off topic - Drive-thru RPG's website seems to have gone haywire and repriced all the books at crazy levels. Some PDFs were over £20 and others only a pound or two. I've repriced them all so apologies if things looked a little mad, it 'should' be fixed now.
Your thoughts on reprinting existing elements from existing books would be appreciated.
Cheers - James
Writing the UIG book forces you to nail down exactly what the roles of the various Elites is. Rangers and Marshals had a certain degree of crossover before as they both operated as solo law enforcers. The role of each has now been clarified and they should be really fun to play.
Rangers - They are specialists in ranged weapon and traditionally operate on their own although this is obviously not true of Black Squad rangers as they need to work in a team. A ranger's primary function is to track down a target and either gather intel on them or eliminate them. You could thus think of them as slightly James Bond-like, travelling the world, sneaking about and if necessary, dispatching a few key kingpins.
Marshals, on the other hand, are masters of the modern city. Their main skills lie in the ability to understand the machinations, crime and structure of a new city in an incredibly short time. This unsurpassed ability to gather intelligence allows them to add anyone they have a conversation with as a one point contact. The idea behind this being that (much like Sherlock Holmes), they need simply cast their eyes over them to understand the way a person ticks - this gives them the leverage they need force them into compliance. Each subsequent meeting adds another contact point as the Marshal gathers more and more information about the subject.
I've been informed that posting about progress each day would be a good thing so here goes. :) Over the past few days, I've completed an overview of Common Residential Officers and how to create them as player characters. That's going to require a fair amount of testing and tweaking as it never pans out the way you plan. The main playable elites have been outlined and are as follows:
Malenbrach (Standard, Blackwatch & Juggernaut)
Kommandant (Squad Leaders)
Mechanic / Driver / Droid tech
Data Expert / Hacker / AI Specialist
This list is neither exhaustive or fixed.
At present, the Kommandant and Malenbrach have been completed but they will need testing. The Malenbrach is looking terrifying but there's no way around that really, if it wasn't, it wouldn't be right. Overall UIG Elites will be powerful characters and one of the main elements of the book will be focused on creating encounters which challenge the players without using Cyberlins.
I hope you enjoyed this, give it a like if you enjoyed it and I'll keep posting them. :) James