19 September 2020

Reality's Edge: Security Operations


... click...

Mr. Cliff, get a hold of the crew ASAP. The Network Management is deeply concerned with the continued interference of what is now confirmed to be an unshackled AI. Yes, Management confirm the adversaries you have have encountered is led by an AI - something powerful enough to have broken Turing Protocol and avoid deletion.

Your team will be dispatched to an industrial area in the Lower Neo-Kawloon District. There's a huge gathering of sprawl civis and more entering the scene at a constant rate. The AI has been detected in the area - their goal is of no importance to us at this time.

Management has been informed that a Network signed B-Minus-Rated Iduro is working at a central compound, helping drawing in a crowd. These is a clear breach of contract and Management want the operation shut down ASAP. 

Use of excessive violence and property damage have been approved. 

Anchorman out.

... click ...

Scenario and setup
We rolled up the Security Operations scenario and my regular adversary led på an Unshackled AI would play the Defence. As the scenario alteration we rolled an illegal card game - placing an extra crowd on the table. This also gave central bystanders a higher chance of panic.  The hitch for the scenario was an Iduro in the area - putting even more crowds on the table.

We quickly came up with the following story: The AI has arranged the gambling and iduro concert to draw in a huge crowd. The AI has an agenda using all the personal data devices and HROs for some purpose only the AI can figure out. The defending team is on ground for crowd control and security.

My enforcer and his gang have been called in by their 'big media corporation'. The Iduro is signed to the corporation and needs to be shut down.

The objectives in this scenario is four different targets that needs defending or smashing. We put up four computers (not CATs), something the AI needs as part of the plan.

For the board we placed a huge bunch of industrial scenery and ended up using every single crowd I've made from the start. ... So many bystanders in very little space. This was going to get messy quickly.

Turn 1
My crew takes the initiative in the first round. As seen in the above photos there's crowds all over the place. So there's no way around it, I'll have to pass through them. We're counting crowds as rough terrain, halving movement, unless you want to blend in with them.

I managed to activate my enforcer showrunner and console cowboy before initiative passes. My plan is to hit the side and back entrances at the same time with as much firepower as possible. Circuit my Console Cowboy haven't really earned his pay yet, so he's running towards the nearest C.A.T.

Initiative passes to my opponent, they start close to the objective, ready to get inside, wasting no time. The gang is led by a masque and he meets his personal motivation right away by blending into a crowd.

Two of the enemy crew members doesn't move towards the objective. A sprawl ronin runs on a flanking attack around the warehouse, getting towards the side entrance where I plan to attack. The drone jockey from my opponent moves around the other side of the warehouse, looking for a good flank with his hover gun drone.

Showrunning enforcer Sgt. Cliff, sprawl ronin Glitch Tanaka and new crew member drone jockey Sparrow - all running towards the side entrance of the warehouse - of cause there's a crowd in the way. Every move is gonna be slow.

Here's the enemy drone jockey on his flanking mission around to my position. Gun drone zooming ahead.

Before the turn is over, the enemy shadow avatar is already standing inside the objective. I've had a hard time with the overheat app taking out my guys in previous games - and sure enough - right away I start getting blasted by dangerous apps.

Turn 2
The turn starts with the enemy drone getting into position for shooting at me, a nice long and open firing lane.

For the first time the masques ability to jump from crowd to crowd comes in super handy. The enemy showrunner makes a quick jump from an outside crowd to the inside of the building. From his position hidden among the civilians the showrunner has a nice firing arc to both the side and back door - going into overwatch for a free shot.

Enemy hacker makes it inside as well and starts breaking into the C.A.T. - getting crucial INFO and more action points for the avatar. And with that bloody overheat app those extra AP are very good indeed.

Now new drone jockey Sparrow have also brought a hover gun drone to the show and it flies on top of some industrial silos. From this good position it has a clear view of the enemy sprawl ronin. On the ground my own ronin Glitch is moving in to get some melee action. Glitch is looking to meet her personal motivation - and for that she needs a kill.

And the the shooting starts inside the building. My crew makes it to the side entrance and breaks down the door. From inside the enemy crew consisting of masque and a couple gangers shoots from their overwatch state. And my guys fire back. Bullets all around.

The crowds breaks apart in panic and the enemy crew gets some heat - this will cost them a bit of REP after the game. On both sides hits start to get in and wound the crew members.

And the plan to take out the enemy ronin with my ronin Glitch fails - and he cuts her down. So that was not what I planned. At least I get to gun down the enemy ronin with my hover drone before it zooms into the warehouse to support my guys in there.

To support my guys on the inside, my gangers break in from the back door. My console cowboy Circuit is still working on the first C.A.T. terminal outside. But he's now in the firing lane from the enemy hover drone. I decide to let him keep working, he's not worth anything if he can't pull out any INFO for me anyways.

The last turns
The game turns into a long grinding shoot out for the last half of the game. Nearly all crew members pour into the warehouse shooting at one another, getting in cover behind tables, bystanders and computer terminals.

My biggest problem is getting near enough to the console and having the necessary action points to actually break them. Pretty hard to find time and calm to shut down an AIs plan, with a bunch of gangers shooting at them.

With a combination of nasty apps, better shooting and that Iduro constantly drawing in new crowds to hide behind my enemy turns out on top. In the end my crew is broken down, no guys left on the table. They are hurt, hiding, bleeding and trying to survive. It was a blood bath.

Whatever that AI was trying to achieve it made it, because my crew failed to stop them.

This was a brutal but fun game. The story we set up to fit the rolled scenario really worked. This was also the first game where the bystander mechanics really made a difference, because there was so many of them. The blocked shooting, cost REP, panicked, shot back and kept being summoned.

And the game was close. For the second game in a row victory was down to a few action point. Had I gotten the initiative at or not failed a single specific activation roll the outcome would have been to my side instead. Now that's great gaming - so tense.

After a game where your entire crew is Out Of Action it's really nerve racking to check the after game results. I spend must of my crypto currency to hire my drone jockey, nothing much in the bank.

In the end my crew made it out okay, no serious injuries. I got away with some INFO and decent rolls on my income. Most got used to pay bail and speed up healing. The remaining few CC was spend trying to convince my console cowboy to become a permahire - and I succeeded in that. This was a victory for me, as he gained a +1 CYB right away. After having spend three games not really hacking any C.A.T.s it'll make a difference I¨m sure.

The crew also found itself with enough REP to get some nice high value gear - a stab proof combat armor. A decent day - no money in the bank.

But after three games of Reality's Edge over crews are still equal, roughly the same amount of REP and crew value. My opponent had a good day, found some cool gear, got a ton of XP from personal motivations and had enough CC to hire on a cyborg for the crew.

Next game we'll go coop. We're taking a trip through The Solitude - a wasteland of abandoned Industrial complexes protecting a hovering noodle boat. at least that's the plan.


  1. Exquisite work as ever, Blodskägg! Top notch. Living the hobby dream with layer upon layer of details. :)

    1. Thank you. I'm happy with the state of the cyberpunk stuff. Still have ideas for more additions thoug!

  2. Wow cant wait for the next one! The narrative is so engaging, can't wait to see some nomad action 😉