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Geist

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Everything posted by Geist

  1. I'm due to start a new 2026 campaign soon and have been considering adding some sorely needed extra detail to Night City. I've got the sourcebook and run several campaigns there over the years and my players are familiar with it, but there has always been something missing. It's not exactly The Sprawl, is it? And don't get me started on v3… I've been reading CyberBear and Destecado's vision of New York and I like it a lot. If I had more time I'd probably go with their source material. I've also been studying Tokyo via the net and what makes it tick as a sprawling, urban metropolis - the crowds, the warren-like back streets, the unmappable nature of the place, the different areas each with their own feel and lifestyle (toyed a bit with the idea of setting the campaign there…). So, what I'm asking is, taking the canon setting as outlined in the sourcebooks, how would you add to and improve Night City as an urban setting? How would you go about making the place feel more real? Or should I just use a real world location and futurise it? All opinions and ideas very welcome!
  2. I've used the standard 'guns-for-hire' ploy on occassion with some success, but, as you rightly point out, there always seems to be something missing. Interweaving the lifepaths can add more of a dimension. Also, have each PC already know one other PC very well, creating a chain if you will. I have had success with groups that knew each other before. In my music biz campaign, I had a PC rockergirl as the group hook. She was a loose cannon and wanted out of her DMS contract. The other 5 PCs were her crew/entourage/support consisting of solo security specialist, DMS trouble shooter, medtech, borged fixer and an ex-cop that made a nice living bootlegging her latest material. These players were under immense pressure from DMS to make sure their artist turned up, sang, looked happy for the fans etc. She caused unbelievable problems for the rest of the group. Took them a while to figure out that she was in self-distruct-mode whilst on a world tour. And to complicate matters, DMS wanted to kill her off at the peak of her career… Right now, I'm hanging a new group around the party fixer. He has all of the other PCs over a barrel, having dirt on each of them. But it won't be long before they get to strike back. The group consists of (provisionally) the sneaky, manipulative fixer, an undercover cop investigating the fixer's 'investors' and the fixer is aware of this, a major biotechnology company corporate blackmailed by the fixer to get his hands on the latest biotech, an emancipated juvenile netrunner about 14 or 15 years old, twin vat-grown solos illegally smuggled into the states from some nasty African warzone (both played by the same player) and, at this stage, possibly an undercover freelance media masquerading as a drug dealing thug. Oh, and the fixer's prime motivator is The One Last Big Score so he can 'retire'. I won't be running the traditional 'black ops' style missions for this one. So, on top of the screwed up group dynamic and the fixer's desperation, they will be looking to make as much as they can in an unforgiving world. And we all know how that plays out… Still at the planning stages though. I'd better get on with it though as I have about six weeks to throw this bad-boy together…
  3. It's an intuitive thing. I'm always aware of avoiding overloading a player and also aware of what pushes my players' buttons. To be honest, half are gun-monkey power players, the others are more the immersive type. I run with what they are most likely to appreciate and respond to. If they aren't likely to get a kick out of it and really use it, I won't waste my time. And they've come to see this stuff as maybe holding useful info for the game as I really do play on the life-path as well as in-game stuff. There are no hard and fast rules. If it adds to a player's (and my) experience, it's all good. I know that's a little vague, but, like I said, it's intuitive. If the players are newbies, I'd hold back on this kind of information overload and trickle stuff through in-game, with pointers/suggestions on how best to use the info. Hope that helps. Paul Old school!
  4. I checked out your sheets not so long ago. Love the style. There's some stuff on there I don't use but overall they're really slick. Was tempted to use them regardless, but my players would be asking too many questions about the unused portions. I may do a 'lite' version for my own use if that's okay with you? As for the files, they contain the standard 2-side sheet, life-path written from the PC's perspective, the aforementioned CV (maybe), the PC's take on the other PCs and NPCs in the group which includes some 'skewed' perspectives (I roll PCs to tie them in to the campaign, otherwise I find the game drifts), the netrunner's software, contacts lists for fixers, cops and netrunners, work schedule for cops, corporates and the like, and so on. Contracts are good too. I pack as much as possible into them to really give the player a lot of hooks and tools to call on in game. They then add to that as the campaign progresses. I ran a game centered on a PC rockergirl once ('Angel Vision' - DMS starlet and loose cannon) and included things like the upcoming tour schedule, staff list, hotel guides, city guides, security arrangements etc. all on DMS and Skinjob Records™ letterheaded paper. At the moment I'm basing a new campaign around a PC fixer, so he will have most of the stuff mentioned plus lists of facemen, his businesses, bank accounts, debts etc. Basically a lot of genre fluff that they can pick through to find an advantage (or not!). The netrunner will also have a hardcopy of the amended netrunning rules too (based on the command/target idea I think you had a hand in). Paul
  5. Jesus! That's a lot of kit. I thought I took my 19 years GMing CP2020 seriously until I saw your set up. My essentials are: 1> The official GM screen, although I have been known to custom build my own with genre style artwork on the players side. This is where I BS my rolls, away from prying eyes. 2> My black binders. I have several black ring binders with all my extra rules, ware, guns, NPCs, maps etc. 3> The box o' books. I have a file box with my collection of Cyberpunk supplements. 4> My handouts. I'm a graphic designer/illustrator by trade, so I make extensive use of images, maps, business cards, calendars, logos, company hard copies, scream sheets etc. The screamsheets are always popular and I fill them with red herrings, side plots, PC mentions (if they've been stupid) and so on. Acetate handouts are always good too. 5> Paper is a must. And all character sheets are in slick plastic folders. Sort of like fax flimsies. I've done character CVs too - Infocom or Merril, Asukaga & Finch branded files. 6> Dry wipe pens and a white acrylic board for those messy combats where PCs need to know where they are. Used to use miniatures but could never find ones I thought were cyberpunk enough. 7> Cigarettes. Lots of cigarettes. 8> Mood music is a must. But not invasively loud! I'd love to use a laptop. Just bought my eldest daughter a nifty silver Samsung, so that might come in handy… Although we do have a desktop next to our gaming area. I'd prefer a Mac though. The iPhone idea is sweet. My new campaign's netrunner player (an emancipated juvenile PC by the way - see Mockery's site) has got a new touch screen phone thingy running Windows. I may start using SMS for passing messages to him. Top idea, and one so easily overlooked. Could do the same for my group's fixer. Hmmmm… Used weapons a couple of times but found my players tended to piss about with them rather than stay focused. But I like your use of sound effects. May try that. And I've run games under blue lights, low lights and multiple TVs on static. It hurt my eyes. So, this is my humble list of GMing essentials. Now, must buy a briefcase… Paul
  6. I'm no expert, but could it be a Finnish or other northern european edition? The seller's location is Finland according to the listing. As a graphic designer, I'd love to see an English language 'reimaging' of the CP2020 rulebook - improved layout, new contemporary artwork, full colour throughout, glossy stock and a quality hardcover. Maybe I'll put it together myself when I win the Lotto jackpot!
  7. I concur - as a forum 'noob' and a 20 year CP GMing veteran, I can honestly say that this particular thread has reinvigorated my desire to start a new campaign, moreso than any other. Kudos to ya Cyberbear - keep up the good work!
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