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sockmerchant

Murderous PC's

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Hey guys.

 

So... four of my 6 PC's don't spare much thought for civilians. In fact, tonight they were keen to go back and "take care" of some civvies who saw them break into a facility

 

(I am incorporating some stuff based off the Shadows of a black sun into my campaign, so tonight they broke into a facility to steal the data that sets off the black sun story - only they are working FOR the black sun in my game.)

 

Anyhoo... I am looking for some repercussions for their actions. Got any suggestions?

 

The slicer droid rolled a despair wiring some extra money, so the syndicate he stole it from knows who he is. I am thinking that maybe a killed civilian was the boss's child and hires a bounty hunter.

 

None are force sensitive, but considering using some dark side stuff...

 

Any other ideas?

 

 

 

 

 

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There are both Criminal and Bounty obligations conveniently located in the obligation table. Black Sun might also start to be upset by the PCs if they draw too much attention to themselves, and by extension the organization.

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Yeah i have thought about introducing obligation, but i am reluctant to do so without saying "if you do X, it will have repercussions in the form of obligation. Are you sure?"

 

Especially as they are currently sitting at 90

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Just remember that PCs in this game are not shining lights in the darkness. When you can have characters that have Specializations like Assassin and Marauder, that should tell you that they are not required to play nice with others. And also, Han shot Greedo in cold blood. He's the iconic character for this game (along with Chewbacca, Boba Fett, and Lando), and he committed murder within his first few minutes on the screen.

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kinda depends, I think, on where you're headed as a GM. do you have an overarching story you're telling, or is it more episodic? to my mind, I'd say that if this is the story, the capture or arrest or execution of your PCs, then you may as well leave the Obligation stuff out of it and make it centre stage. make the story become how long your PCs can last with a huge crowd of people chasing them down for murder. give them a bounty, don't tell them about it and have them hunted down on any world they touch down on. have your NPCs track them, ambush them, trick them into jobs that lead nowhere, call the authorities on them, etc. tag their ship with a flag for space ports. make it impossible for them to trade. Etc.

if you haven't got an overarching story, let this be it. like a modern 'Young Guns'...

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Just remember that PCs in this game are not shining lights in the darkness. When you can have characters that have Specializations like Assassin and Marauder, that should tell you that they are not required to play nice with others. And also, Han shot Greedo in cold blood. He's the iconic character for this game (along with Chewbacca, Boba Fett, and Lando), and he committed murder within his first few minutes on the screen.

Trust me when I say these guys (well, four of them) make Han look like a space angel. eg, tonight they found an office full of admin geeks. Do they hold them hostage and have them transfer money into their accounts? No. They throw in a grenade and close the door, for no other reason than they can. (Well actually they rolled a despair and the door stayed open doing some damage to a few of the PC's... but the intention was there)

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kinda depends, I think, on where you're headed as a GM. do you have an overarching story you're telling, or is it more episodic? to my mind, I'd say that if this is the story, the capture or arrest or execution of your PCs, then you may as well leave the Obligation stuff out of it and make it centre stage. make the story become how long your PCs can last with a huge crowd of people chasing them down for murder. give them a bounty, don't tell them about it and have them hunted down on any world they touch down on. have your NPCs track them, ambush them, trick them into jobs that lead nowhere, call the authorities on them, etc. tag their ship with a flag for space ports. make it impossible for them to trade. Etc.

if you haven't got an overarching story, let this be it. like a modern 'Young Guns'...

 

 

 I am doing a semi-episodic story with threads that connect them. So yeah there is a general overaching story... but its changing constantly. 
 
I dont mind them going nuts... trust me they are, and we are having a lot of fun. But... their actions need to have some impact on the world. There needs to be consequences for their actions. 
 
At the moment I am leaning towards a bounty hunter that pops in and out causing mischief at the worst possible times. Within reason of course. 
Edited by sockmerchant

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There is an inherent benefit to leaving no witnesses alive - it actually reduces the likelyhood that you'll build up many types of Obligation. Bounties put out on "the unknown party responsible for the _________ massacre" are not too likely to be posted unless evidence can be collected (and CSI Outer Rim isn't too likely in most places).

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There is an inherent benefit to leaving no witnesses alive - it actually reduces the likelyhood that you'll build up many types of Obligation. Bounties put out on "the unknown party responsible for the _________ massacre" are not too likely to be posted unless evidence can be collected (and CSI Outer Rim isn't too likely in most places).

 

This only became a plan for them near the exit. Before that...they were just blowing stuff up, and murdering :)

 

Ultimately, they left several witnesses alive. 

 

Not to mention left a trace to themselves when they transferred money to their personal account.(from despair) 

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I think it's fine to tell your players that their actions are going to start costing them in Obligation--representing the consequences of the players' decisions and their characters' actions is part of what the mechanic is there for. In their case, if they continue to behave this way, they will soon find that no one--not Black Sun, not Jabba, not no one--is willing to farm out work to a mob of rampaging loose cannons. It's just bad for their profiles, and it's bad for business, and these are businesspeople we're talking about, however seedy they may be. Unemployed and running from an Imperial bounty large enough to draw serious hunters is a situation that should give reasonable players a little pause. If they aren't reasonable players, well, there are natural consequences for that as well.

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I think it's fine to tell your players that their actions are going to start costing them in Obligation--representing the consequences of the players' decisions and their characters' actions is part of what the mechanic is there for. In their case, if they continue to behave this way, they will soon find that no one--not Black Sun, not Jabba, not no one--is willing to farm out work to a mob of rampaging loose cannons. It's just bad for their profiles, and it's bad for business, and these are businesspeople we're talking about, however seedy they may be. Unemployed and running from an Imperial bounty large enough to draw serious hunters is a situation that should give reasonable players a little pause. If they aren't reasonable players, well, there are natural consequences for that as well.

This is a great way to go. I had a particularly murderous "hero" at my table once while I was running a Shadowrun game. It only took one truly terrifying corporate-hired sniper and a very close player kill to send the message home. He was obnoxious on an appropriate level after that, but refrained from throwing grenades into every diner, public restroom, and gas station the group passed.

 

Load 'em up with bounties and obligation. At 100 their behaviour will change rather quickly, I would think :)

Edited by Keeop

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Yeah I think i'll just give them a warning that massive collateral damage (that does not stem from my planned story)  may have obligation attached.

 

I had them blow up a truly massive space station (owned by the black suns) as part of an insurance scam (for the black suns). there was still a lot of people on there when it blew. 

 

I may even use this in time, but... seeing as I started the campaign with them having already set the charges... I wont hold that against them :)

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I was thinking about this a little more over breakfast, and if you feel like picking up some fun movies, there are a few that might give you some ideas:

  • Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid ("Who are those guys?"): A decent account of what can happen when a pair of outlaws go too far and end up with the most implacable group of bounty hunters you've ever seen riding their tails. Also pretty funny in places.
  • Young Guns and Young Guns II ("I'll make ya famous!"): Don't watch them as an accurate history of Billy the Kid. Billy and his cronies remind me a lot of your players as they go from quasi-legitimate enforcers to expendable lives, largely through a series of over-the-top, loose-cannon decisions (Billy almost always chooses the most violent possible solution in any situation, and his buddies seem not to know when it's time to cut loose).
  • Serenity ("I aim to misbehave."): If you haven't watched the Firefly series, it's well worth it, but the movie can mostly stand on its own. All Mal and his crew do is harbor a pair of fugitives, but the Alliance wants them bad and sends in an Operative who enacts a scorched-earth strategy against all of their contacts, associates, and hideaways in an effort to smoke them out.

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There is no such thing as "leaving no witnesses".  It's pretty hard to get away with in our society, where a high-res camera can fit on your shirt button, imagine Star Wars tech with little insect-droid cameras everywhere.  One of these times they're going to mess up and get spotted and you don't even have to pretend you're out to temper them, it's just "what happens".  If they're in Imperial space, the Empire probably isn't going to get too worked up with criminals going after criminals, but if civilians get offed they're going to take a dim view of it.  So you have at least 3 sources of ire (family, Black Sun, the Empire) all of which could have deep pockets...

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I would go over the GM's section about law and whatnot. I would absolutely be giving them obligation for these acts.  And don't forget, while this game isn't shadowrun, there are still alot of cameras out there. Flagrant murder is still a very serious crime.  I would make it very clear that such actions have dire consequences.  At the very least that level of damage is going to draw some sort of Imperial response, probably including Imperial Intelligence. Don't forget the Rebel Alliance either.  They are just as disinclined to tolerate such behavior as everyone else is, including most of the criminal element.  As stated before, Black Sun tends to like keeping things descrete, so any "cover" the PC's feel they are owed could certainly vanish.

 

At the very least I'd have everyone in the party or assign the party itself an obligation of 5 or 30 for the group either bounty/criminal or something.  If they are upset, explain to them the situation regarding their actions, the murder/damage, and ask them to suggest an appropriate response.  If they truly feel there should be no consequences for their actions, then accept their decision and use it against them.  have many of their contacts and associates end up dead.  Contacts stop seeing them, jobs dry up, if they press to find out way, simply inform them that their actions are too much of a liability.  Or have the BS Burn them, give them a job that is a huge setup, only to have a strong Imperial presence show up.

 

Senseless death doesn't serve anyone's purpose.

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There is an inherent benefit to leaving no witnesses alive - it actually reduces the likelyhood that you'll build up many types of Obligation. Bounties put out on "the unknown party responsible for the _________ massacre" are not too likely to be posted unless evidence can be collected (and CSI Outer Rim isn't too likely in most places).

 

This is partially true.  But keep this in mind.  They already have 90 obligation.  They are already relatively well known.  Any moderate town they land in is going to have at least a couple people that recognize them or their ship.  Maybe just some scrub living in an alley way, but someone is going to know them.

The day after they leave town word starts to get around that a warehouse (criminally owned) of innocent employees (average citizens just trying to make a buck to feed their families) got leveled.  That drunk in the alley connects the dots, hits the bar, spreads the word. It's just a lot of talk, rumor and speculation at this point, but a smuggler at the bar hears the stories before hitting the hyperspace lanes.

A couple of stops later he's sitting in the docking bay overseeing some cargo being offloaded when the ship that drunk was talking about lands nearby.  The next day he wakes up to a story of a Imperial barracks being attacked.  In the commotion of the battle, the cities only water supply was damaged intentionally by an unidentified member of the group that attacked the barracks.

The smuggler is convinced that the same people were responsible, and shares his theories over a few rounds of blue milk at the cantina.

 

Before long, the hutt mob bosses and the imperials are starting tohear the stories and connect the dots, and bounties are starting to circulate.  Not long after that the players are denied docking privaleges at a major port (where they were supposed to drop some goods off).  Now they haven't made their delivery, and the crimeboss they were working for figures they've stolen the goods.

 

Word can get around even without direct eyewitnesses, and bad things can happen because of it.  You could even reward players for behaving kindly to innocents.  The players free some slaves and laeve some innocents alive....and one turns out to be the relative of someone you owe.  Karma steps in and reduces what you owe to that obligation.  Your characters could slowly become folk heros to the fringe planets, or dark omens who's presence indicates death and destruction is going to follow closely behind.  Either way, people are likely going to start noticing the connections.

 

That brings up an interesting story hook.  The players obligation is high enough that they start to take the blame for stuff they haven't done.  Their obligation starts to skyrocket and they need to find out who's framing them.

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Murder hobos in spaaace, is best handled at the people level.  Trying to solve a game mechanics or playstyle issue in-play is kind of like trying to fix a squeaky hinge on a door by yelling at it like a tusken raider*

 

*due to quantum theories and general chaos in the universe there is probably someone in Ohio that has fixed a door this way.

 

If every living being in your version of Star Wars is simply an untapped source of arterial paint, and the galaxy is your canvas?  Keep on keepin' on.  Otherwise just mention out-of-game to the players that it's less than fun for you to GM for a game where every diplomacy situation devolves into that one scene in every Quentin Terantino movie.  The players may also mention some stuff that you are or aren't doing that has resulted in them acting this way. 

 

I've run into this kind of problem in the past because of: play-style differences, my inexperience with a rule-set, or being absent myself and failing to come up with ways of hooking the players' attention.  It's kind of like a puppy chewing a piece of footware.  Sure the little bugger might have really wanted to eat your shoe just to say ----- you!  Or, maybe the little dear just need something to chew on and all it had to hand was your purple suede thigh-highs (yeah like you don't have a pair...don't judge me). 

 

Maybe your players just need lots of mooks and enemies to put holes and laser burns in @sockmerchant.  So, have the Star Wars equivalent of ninjas drop out of every ceiling and leap from behind every door...otherwise your poor little rodian IT nerds are going to bear the brunt of the assault ;).  But the only way to know for sure is just to talk with your table-buddies.

Edited by Callidon

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There are both Criminal and Bounty obligations conveniently located in the obligation table. Black Sun might also start to be upset by the PCs if they draw too much attention to themselves, and by extension the organization.

 

This.  No criminal organization wants that kind of attention.  Even if linking the players to Black Sun is difficult, the organization itself likely would not condone such blatant and public mass murder.  If it were my game, Black Sun would have either punished them severely, or killed them outright.  When planning out what to do, just think realistically.  No one just gets away with murder forever.  Eventually they will piss off the wrong person/people, and end up on the receiving end of a carefully planned ambush.

 

Hell, even the Empire, pitiless as it is, does not take kindly to bands of thugs disrupting order and murdering civilians.

Edited by GalenParatus

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Hell, even the Empire, pitiless as it is, does not take kindly to bands of thugs disrupting order and murdering civilians.

 

Exactly. The Empire promises safety and security, and it looks bad when it doesn't deliver. Imperial law enforcement and Imperial bounty hunters (and, depending on who and what the PCs blow up, perhaps the military as well) would be all over mass murderers and plunderers like white on rice.

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here is an idea :

 

When you consider an evil action from your so called "heroes", play the "Dark Side Point gained" music from KOTOR and take a Destiny point from the light side pool.

 

It all depends of the type of game you (you=group of players, PC+GM) want at the table. You should discuss it, and everyone should be ok with that. Do you want a group of bloodthirsty killers or mobsters with a heart of gold ?

 

Bloodthirsty killers: just have fun and don't bother them too much with consequences.

 

Mobsters with a heart of gold: Destiny point, reccuring nightmares, fear checks related to what they did, vigilante asking questions about their next of kin killed by players, guilt trip, etc... but the easiest way would be to talk about it with players if it's not the type of story you're looking for, instead of punishing them.

 

Just my two centimes,

 

Perfidius

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Haven't read any of the replies but here's what I think! :)

I love the idea of slicer droids repercussion. Knowing who he is will be huge in tracking him and down. Also, knowing what he is, the syndicate could probably plan on capturing him, attaching a restraining bolt and forcing him to work for them. Slave droid?

 

The bounty hunter is a good one. Makes for a random boss fight when the players are not well prepared for it. Probably once a mission is done, and the characters are ready for some rest. Returning to the ship to find it has been landlocked, or there is a stow away waiting in the cargo hold. Maybe even in one of the smuggling ducts.

Another idea is to have their ship sabotaged. The bounty hunter has been watching them for a few sessions. Maybe infiltrated their ship, rewired a few things forcing their ship to eventually just idle in the middle of space.

You could have them randomly fall out of hyperspace, stopping in the middle of nowhere, out of contact range, and their ship become a derelict a bit. Something like in one of the last episodes of Firefly where the engine and life support are destroyed at the worst time possible... When the ship is way out of range for contact. Could send out a beacon. But that's saying someone just so happens to also be roaming around out here, avoiding Imperial patrol.

 

And lastly, remember that the players are not the law. Even a Bounty Hunter has to answer to authorities. Have the local law enforcement start ENFORCING the law. ;)

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I think it's fine to tell your players that their actions are going to start costing them in Obligation--representing the consequences of the players' decisions and their characters' actions is part of what the mechanic is there for. In their case, if they continue to behave this way, they will soon find that no one--not Black Sun, not Jabba, not no one--is willing to farm out work to a mob of rampaging loose cannons. It's just bad for their profiles, and it's bad for business, and these are businesspeople we're talking about, however seedy they may be. Unemployed and running from an Imperial bounty large enough to draw serious hunters is a situation that should give reasonable players a little pause. If they aren't reasonable players, well, there are natural consequences for that as well.

 

More importantly, the few people who *are* willing to give them jobs are going to be exactly the sort from whom no *sane* person would willingly entertain a job offer, much less actually accept the job itself.  There's organizations out there that make the Hutt cartels and Black Sun look down right law-abiding, and cuddly.

 

Depending on just how dark you're willing to go, they could be introduced to a shadowy sort of figure who wants them to plant some explosives somewhere one night.  They can take the job, and then find out *afterwards* (or give them a chance to discover it *during* the job), that it was a day care facility of some sort.  If that doesn't properly encourage a less murder-happy outlook on the characters' part, then you might want to re-think the plans you have for the adventure content going forward.  :(:huh::blink:

Edited by Voice

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Exactly. The Empire promises safety and security, and it looks bad when it doesn't deliver. Imperial law enforcement and Imperial bounty hunters (and, depending on who and what the PCs blow up, perhaps the military as well) would be all over mass murderers and plunderers like white on rice.

 

Sure, but this is the Edge of the Empire.  This particular Star Wars offereing is going to offer a lot of cracks to hide in and rugs to be swept under.

 

But, as much as I hate quoting Phantom Menace "there's always a bigger fish."  If you are going to retaliate against PCs in-game (first put on your hip waders because it's going to get s---y and turn into a game of one-upsmanship with the players but...whatever.  Talking to people is over rated):

  • One of the lol-worthy bystanders that gets capped just so happens to be the child/cousin/sibling of the kind of person who takes a dim view of those who harm their peeps...and tend to retaliate in such a way that leaves entire bloodlines erased from the face of the galaxy.  Screw bounties.  This is Keyser Söze s---.  Someone's getting shot and then set on fire.  Unleash the dugs of war
  • OH crap that's no civilian!  One of the bystanders just so happens to be a nemesis level foe.  Who may have buddies on the way.
  • Good luck getting off world.  Elude the authorities and other gangs all you want.  At some point you're going to want to engage in the Star part of the Wars and then it'll get super hairy.
  • Patsies patsies everywhere.  Since the PCs will be making a name for themselves as a group of nerf-minded ninnies, one of their Obligation holders sends them on a "job" that is simply designed to draw all kinds of heat down on them while another more sane crew does something useful.

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