To run this scenario the GM will need to do a little preparation. First, this game works best if played in the dark with nothing but flashlights, so a fresh batch of batteries will be needed (not included). Second thing that would be helpful is some background noise. Personally, I prefer an album by The Anti Group Company called Digitaria, but almost any subtle noise will work. Instrumentals also work as well.
Any number of players will work in this game, and any type of character should work. (the original group consisted of solos, a corporate, a medic and a prowler in the first run and there weren’t any problems.)
This scenario was designed around the premise that the characters have made an enemy of a rouge AI, that they work for some corporation and that Genetic Manipulation is a reality in your game. If not, then you will have to make some alterations to suit your needs.
Part one: (Friday)
The characters are gathered in a meeting room at the corporation where they are currently employed. The announcement meeting was rushed, but didn’t seem overly urgent. In typical fashion a couple of "suits" walk into the meeting room, at exactly the prescribed time as noted by the memorandum. The head suit, the edgerunner’s "boss", sits at the head of the table and turns on the vid screens present at every seat on the conference table.
"This is Dr. Frederic Solomon, Prominent BioScientist at BioWorks Inc. Thursday, at age 68 he has died of a heart attack. We would like to provide a delegation from our company to show support and solidarity to a company that we have had many dealings with in the past. You have been chosen to be that delegation. Most of you have dealt with their company directly and are known to many there. We feel sending some
‘Familiar faces’ to the proceedings would be more beneficial than sending some ‘faceless entourage’.
Your limousine will meet you at the front door at 5:30 p.m. It is a one hour drive to the complex, and the dinner will be served at 7:15 p.m. Dress is formal.
You will be there for the duration of the event, which ends with the funeral
Saturday afternoon at 3:00 p.m., so be sure to pack accordingly. That is all."
(GM: if a character in the party is a BioWorks creation, Dr. Frederic Solomon will more than likely be the Scientist that helped create them.)
If asked what BioWorks does, they will be informed that they are in the business of combining human and animal DNA together and then producing clones (for more detail, come to www.paper-dragon.com and check out the rules for genetically altered animals under the BioWorks logo)
The Characters will have 6 hours to prepare for their little trip. They will need to acquire some formal wear if they don’t already own some (the company will pay for rentals if that is the way the edgerunners want to go). If they can't fit it in a duffel bag they shouldn’t be taking it. If they ask about weapons, they will be checked at the door. It is not impossible to smuggle some onto the property, but it will be difficult. Officially only security personnel will be allowed to carry a side arm. (GM: be sure to get a detailed list of what is brought by each character!)
The trip to the BioWorks complex is uneventful; once the building comes into view the first thing the edgerunners will notice is that the complex is massive. It is out in the middle of nowhere and surrounded by razor wire and electronic surveillance. The light gray structure looks to be 6 stories tall, but it is hard to tell because there are no windows on the outside.
Once the Limo pulls around to the front door, a young man in a lab coat greets the edgerunners. He offers the group a cart to put their luggage on and then escorts them inside. Once in the lobby the runners are asked for any weaponry they may have be turned over. There is an obvious detector located at the entrance to the remainder of the facility. All weapons taken from the characters will be stored behind the counter in the security booth.
The entryway to the remainder of the complex is blocked by an electronically activated, mechanically sealed vault door. While open it can be noted that the door is over 6" thick with four 3" bolts that secure it to the frame when closed.
After the PCs are through the door the hear the 1000lb. Door close and bolt shut, echoing through out the hallway. They are then guided to the elevator and then lead down the hallways to their respective rooms.
The guest rooms are identical. Each has a bathroom, a bed, a dresser, an intercom system, a television and a closet there are no windows.
Once in the rooms, the Characters are told over the intercom that dinner will be served in 30 minutes. 5 minutes later the lights flicker and then go out (GM: this is your cue, flip that light switch OFF!). If anyone checks any of the electrical outlets they are dead as well, same with the intercom system. It is pitch black. And it is getting stuffy, as the air circulation system isn’t working.
A few minutes later you hear a bullhorn echo down through the hallways:
"There is no need for alarm, do NOT leave your rooms, stay in your rooms until we fix the problem" then there is silence, save some heavy footsteps moving through the hallways. If someone shouts to find out who is there they will receive no answer.
A little time after the sound of the footsteps there will be a blood curdling scream, and shots fired.
(GM: Eventually the Characters will want to leave their rooms, if nothing else out of pure boredom if they don’t however you may have to bring the action to them)
If the characters brought some flashlights with them they will be able to use the ones the GM provides, otherwise they will be "in the dark" until the figure out the need to find some sort of security office or supply room (or whatever else they may think of that would be appropriate), Rather conveniently the room they search for is found within a couple of minutes of searching.
(GM: there is no layout to the building, that’s because it doesn’t really exist, see the notes below).
While walking be sure to work on the characters paranoia, if one is carrying a bag of some sort, have their laptop thumping up against something inside. Once they clue in where the noise is coming from have the screen come on and show the face of the AI they have been tracking for a while. Then later have them remember that they were last working with information concerning the AI. Have them walk in circles, change floors etc. just don’t make it too obvious.
Eventually the characters will meet up with the mutated creature(s?) that got loose in the outage. It uses hit and run tactics, hitting the group when it is doing something "important". It has razor sharp claws that seem to rip through metal. (GM: build this however you feel appropriate, remember you are in a genetic alteration lab, maybe they have found a way to modify a praying mantis or some other such creature. build it so it will be a match for the group)
If one of the characters gets hurt badly, they will no doubt look for a first aid office of some sort, when they do they will find it on the next floor (doesn’t matter if it is up or down). There will be a "glow" around the door (like there is a light on the other side). When the door is opened (GM: this is your cue, flip the light ON!) they will find a brightly lit room, with a middle-aged man sitting behind a desk reading a medical journal (he may or may not be someone the characters one knew, its all up to you), he will take the injured and say that it will take some time to get them fixed up, and to please wait out here while he "patches them up". In what seems like an instant (though all indications show that the proper amount of time has transpired) the character will come out looking none the worse for wear, the wounds are still present but the look masterfully tended to (GM: give them back at least half their wounds back).
Eventually the monster will hunt them down and kill at least one of them. Once that happens they will wake up in a bright lab (GM: Turn on the light!) they will be hooked up to a Braindance simulator, there will be technicians working frantically to get "a hold" of the situation, quickly one sees that the group is back among the real world. And will start probing and prodding and asking questions.
GM note. Starting from the very beginning of this the Characters are in a braindance, originally designed to help evaluate and teach the edgerunners ‘proper’ diplomatic skills. Once inside the complex the rouge AI takes control of the program and causes much grief. The scenario doesn’t end until one players dies. the AI will give them ample opportunities to get themselves ‘fixed up’. He will also play on their emotions by modifying characters without their consent. Example include, adding more cyberware to
the guy already on the edge, replacing a cyberarm with a meat one (especially cruel for the character who didn’t want the cyberarm but didn’t have a choice because of compatibility issues). The AI isn’t trying to kill the characters, in fact the only long lasting effects from the braindance will be nightmares.
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