gladiusdei
 member, 725 posts
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 03:33
Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
I've been thinking about trying to start a shadowrun game.  Since I have had poor luck in the past, I was thinking starting at the basic shadowrunner level with a group of brand new runners in a setting like the Redmond Barrens or other such gang controlled wasteland would allow for a bit more from the hip approach, and avoid some of the problems with the game getting bogged down in planning stages.

But a question I have is, is a game in such a horror filled, chaotic setting playable at the Mature level, or is it best left for an adult game?  I don't know if describing in detail a zombie gang's activities would be fitting for mature.
evileeyore
 member, 124 posts
 GURPS GM and Player
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 03:47
Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
I don't see why Mature wouldn't be appropriate.  As long as you're not describing graphic sex, rape, or getting into extreme gory details of violent acts, Mature ought to cover your bases.

Granted if you're worried, you can just slap Adult on it and then tell the Players that it's a 'just in case measure'.
nevermore98
 member, 14 posts
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 03:52
Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
If you're worried about it hit it with adult rating, but I have a secondary suggestion that you might find interesting.

Shadowrun has a hack for blades in the dark. (Appropriately called runners in the dark). In it the prep phase of the run is taken out entirely in favor of the flash back like mechanic that BItD has. It speeds up game play, and you can throw a party almost immediately into the action.
Novocrane
 member, 387 posts
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 04:30
Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
"Games which focus exclusively on [adult] content for their plot or which describe such content in graphic detail are required to display the Adult rating."

The Redmond Barrens are a harsh place, but the tone, focus, and level of detail can be twisted to suit a Mature rating. That still allows for "mature themes, strong language, drug use, and/or extensive violence".

Without outright changing system, I'd suggest turning the planning stage into limited flashbacks, using Edge to define how often PCs can use it.
gladiusdei
 member, 727 posts
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 04:40
Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
I don't know, I feel like the flashback model could lead to a lot of arguments about what a team would and would not have prepared.

I was thinking if the game focused on runs that were much less predictable in general, like going against gangs or organized crime, players would have a lot less they COULD plan.  No getting building schematics or security schedules or things like that.  They would have to go in expecting the worst and work from there.


At least to start the game and try to get it going in a good pace.
Novocrane
 member, 388 posts
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 04:59
Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
I think choking planning like that would need careful management to avoid players throwing up their hands and just treating it as an on-rails shooter/sneaker with nothing in the way of alternatives, but mmv.

Getting everyone on the same page before the game starts should do a lot to avoid arguments, regardless of the overarching choices made. Stability of game concept and mutual understanding work wonders, imo.
nauthiz
 member, 582 posts
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 05:29
Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
You could very well do it mature.  Adult gives you a little more breathing room if you feel like you might really want to explore the depths of human misery that are possible for the most downtrodden of people in a dystopian slum, but it's hardly a prerequisite.
Shaman
 member, 177 posts
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 05:33
Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
Pulling out the planning stage of any run even street level play could quickly sour the players.

Even having out of game discussions before play starts where everyone says they are on the same page agreeing to what has been laid out isn't a guarantee that it won't suddenly blow up.

Partial flash backs could work with allowed input and negotiations from the players including any required shopping. But you'd best be prepared then to just hand out all the legwork info up front and just forego all rolls so they have it all otherwise someone is going to get upset about not getting a chance to get the "material" was missed.

It can be done at a mature setting but then you'll need to downplay the depth of the setting to a degree.
gladiusdei
 member, 728 posts
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 05:36
Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
I didn't say I would remove the planning stage.  Just limit how much pre-planning can really be done.  I think there's a big difference in how much prep a team can do against an S-K corp holding, and a tenement building full of gangers.


I'm still just considering all of this.  I love the shadowrun setting but RPOL makes it really hard to run a good game.
evileeyore
 member, 125 posts
 GURPS GM and Player
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 05:48
Re: Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
Shaman:
It can be done at a mature setting but then you'll need to downplay the depth of the setting to a degree.

I've never been in a Shadowrun game that I feel needed the Adult tag.




gladiusdei:
I love the shadowrun setting but RPOL makes it really hard to run a good game.

In what fashion?
gladiusdei
 member, 729 posts
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 05:58
Re: Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
well, a couple of ways.  the first is that players tend to all approach games with different expectations, different experiences with previous games.  And while trying to flesh out YOUR game's expectations before the game starts is a must, you can never really cover everything.  So often you end up with players expecting something different than what they get.  That tends to lead to players slowing in posting rate, 'waiting their turn' instead of taking initiative, or just outright disappearing.

I've also never had a good experience with a player decker being able to keep up with a game.  and because of that, it leads to players expecting all sorts of data from their decker, and either having to wait long enough for it that the game begins to stall, or it becomes an NPC decker, in which case it really makes it hard to balance what the team should be able to accomplish in the matrix with players expecting more.

third, players on RPOL tend to try to design the most effective character they possibly can, often pushing the limits of the system they play.  But that leads to players all trying to max out numbers in a few areas, while basically not caring about trying to get the game running well.  They are often more focused on just how much damage they can do, or how they can bypass the next hazard with their cool character gimmick, instead of worrying about whether or not the team as a whole is actually working together, or if the game is running smoothly.

that last one isn't just shadowrun, I've seen it in D&D and other number heavy systems.  But in shadowrun, it often leads to players just walking through, on a rail shooter like was said above, waiting for their turn to roll their big dice pool instead of actually playing out a character in a story.

I'm sure much of this would be mitigated by finding a steady shadowrun group to play consistently on RPOL with, but I can't do that without trying to get a game running and moving forward.
evileeyore
 member, 128 posts
 GURPS GM and Player
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 09:01
Re: Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
Not a single thing you've said is unique to RPoL*, however this bit here:

quote:
third, players on RPOL tend to try to design the most effective character they possibly can, often pushing the limits of the system they play.  But that leads to players all trying to max out numbers in a few areas, while basically not caring about trying to get the game running well.  They are often more focused on just how much damage they can do, or how they can bypass the next hazard with their cool character gimmick, instead of worrying about whether or not the team as a whole is actually working together, or if the game is running smoothly.

Is pretty unique to PbP.  I've seen in one-shots as well (when they aren't pregens).  Since PbP takes so long to advance characters (usually) and one shots are, well, one shots, Players want to make the Character as 'badass' as possible right out, so they aren't either waiting 4 years to get there, or never seeing it (in a one-shot).



* Which since your complaint named RPoL, I thought you might have something unique to this set of forums, not just PbP in general.  No worries though.
nauthiz
 member, 586 posts
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 09:07
Re: Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
The most successful shadowrun game I've played here on RPoL in terms of quality of the game was one where the GM started off a handful of lower level runners and ran each through some solo gameplay before making moves to bring them together as a group.

This was helpful in that it did weed out the usual few players who start out strong and then ghost or otherwise drop out of a game after the initial newness wears off.  It also allowed players to get a good feel for their characters as people, rather than strictly as numbers with which problems are solved, since much of that gameplay was "slice of life" stuff.  The sort of no dice rolling required role play that happens between runs or before you get that contact labeled "Mr. Johnson" in your rolodex, and which most Shadowrun games I've played in both online and around a table don't really bother with.

That not only was a benefit to character development but also helped players and the GM have time to really gel and get to know one another as well as help reveal any issues that in a more traditional "getting right to the run" game could have caused everything to screech to a halt and then fall apart.

So it's possible to achieve what you're trying to do, though I can't comment on success probabilities, work loads, or commitment levels to make it happen at this point in time.
PCO.Spvnky
 member, 373 posts
Wed 10 Oct 2018
at 12:37
Re: Shadowrun in settings like Redmond Barrens: Mature or Adult?
I always run adult games merely because I do not want the headache of checking each and every post to see if it fits into the guidelines of a mature game.  Its kinda like a firearm or a condom "I'd rather have one and not need it than need it and not have it."  LOL