Looking for a Crime RPG

Started by Swamplor, August 30, 2009, 01:58:16 AM

Previous topic - Next topic


   I'm looking for a game.
   (Hi, my name's Steve.  Been lurking here for years.  That's largely beside the point right now.)
   I've been watching a lot of Burn Notice and Leverage and similar shows and that's given me an itch to run something in a similar vein.  However, the closest thing on my shelf to what I'm imagining running is Shadowrun, and it isn't quite right.
   In my experience, Shadowrun games tend to devolve into extended planning sessions as the players try to come up with a perfect crime. The discussions tend to be only semi-in-character, with PCs defined more by their ultra-competence than any personality traits.
   What I'd like to find is a game that handles Heists/Runs/Whatever in such a way that the game can get right to the good parts.  I want there to be ways to fail in interesting ways that don't necessarily compromise the whole adventure.  I'd like a reward cycle that doesn't assume the PCs are just up for mercenary work they get from guys in bars.  I want people calling on their contacts, having to do and repay favors and worrying about their reps.
   So, does the game I'm looking for exist?  Are there things that are close that I can check out for inspiration?

-Steve Wampler


I don't think you are on the right forum for this kind of inquiry... But anyway, I'd take a look at Wilderness of Mirrors. It's short, simple and inexpensive. It's a game about spies, but the other himself admits in the book that this would make a good capers game.

Ron Edwards

Hi there,

For the discussion to continue, please provide a little bit more specific information about a Shadowrun experience of the kind you're describing. It doesn't have to be very detailed - perhaps some notion of who was playing, how long all those negotiations took relative to the time it took to play them out, and your general sense of why the session went that way.

Given only that small amount of orientation - and I'm not envisioning more than a couple of paragraphs - this could be a very useful discussion.

Best, Ron


Specifically in response to Ron's prompt:

The session of Shadowrun that stick's most in my mind involved a mission to protect a group of mages while they performed a ritual.  Some rival organization (a gang, I think, but this was well over a decade ago) was going to try to bump them off during the spell.
The PCs found a building where they could put the mages in the basement.  Then the players spent about 2-3 hours coming up with ways to make the place an absolute fortress.  The antagonists' attack on the place was resolved with a single remote detonation of some explosives in a small hallway.  There was more than one die roll involved, thanks to the Chunky Salsa rule, but only a single action by a single character.
I couldn't tell you anything about a single one of the characters involved in the mission.  None of them mattered. They were only mouthpieces for the players' ideas about fortifying the house.  Except for that one guy's demolitions skill, our sheets could have been blank.

I'm not saying it wasn't fun. It was a blast. But I did it already (and a hundred other sessions much like it) and these days I'm looking for something different from my play.

-Steve Wampler