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I'll be running a Shadowrun 4th game soon and after a character jam we have a party that's heavy tech focused. Specifically a Street Sam (melee focused), a rigger (vehicle/drone specialized hacker), and a decker (more general hacker). I read in another thread that a good mission should have a mix of Magic, Matrix, and Metal, but I'd like suggestions on what kind of missions should appeal to this party arrangement.

This isn't to say that curveballs won't be thrown because, it's Shadowrun, but having a grounding on what to offer would help. Plus, this is the first time I'm running Shadowrun in years.

Edit: To go a little further, this is the group.

Street Samurai: Former gang member who screwed over his gang and ditched them. Loves knives and getting in people's faces and is addicted to Bioware. Promise him a physical rush and he'll sign on the dotted line.

Rigger: Currently incarcerated by a minor corp and is only let out of prison to make them money. Is being fed through tubes and carted around in a van. (Gotta admit I HAD to let this character in cause we all loved it for being insane)

Decker: A sentient AI programmed by the minor corp in the Rigger's background. Currently loyal, disguises as an attractive business woman, but is never seen. Most her contacts assume she just hangs out in the front of the van when she isn't doing her job.

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Pull some things from the parties backgrounds, mix them up with a bit of investigation and make sure each party member can do something in the mission to contribute. – Rob Aug 19 '13 at 15:30
Since Riggers in 4th edition are a subset of hackers. What could I do to really give each a moment to shine? Or is there a mechanical difference between the two? – Bigeshu Aug 19 '13 at 15:35
Combine your problems so they are busy all at once; a van that needs to be rig-steered as you hack the computer in the back and fight off the gang members coming in, for example. – Rob Aug 19 '13 at 15:48
I like that a lot. Think I'll try my planning with that. Thanks for the suggests. – Bigeshu Aug 19 '13 at 15:52
Also, it is generally good practice to wait 24 hours before accepting an answer. While Rob's answer is good, it gives more time to the community to express what they think about it, and, more importantly, doesn't discourage more answers to your question, which you honestly usualy want here. – kravaros Aug 19 '13 at 19:33
up vote 3 down vote accepted

I suggest you try putting together a Rescue/Salvage scenario, possibly in some exotic location.

You have to take in account two elements, to get everyone involved/interested:

  • invent/steal/design something technically oriented that is the core objective. Something requiring drones to find + remote-control robots to get out (from the ocean, a volcano, north pole, a small town destroyed during a ethnic purge in some backwater area).
  • add some rival team trying to do the same, or to steal from the characters immediately after they have recovered it (this will help getting everyone involved, and will not make the adventure excessively puzzle oriented or based on rolling for skills that the players do not have in real life).
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What I decided to do was an Extraction mission to kickstart the campaign. Get a guy out of a place, outdrive the pursuit, and break down the Kink bomb in the guys head to preserve some paydata as a nice bonus. There will be guys for Mr. Shiv to play with of course. – Bigeshu Aug 20 '13 at 14:30

Pull some things from the parties backgrounds, mix them up with a bit of investigation and make sure each party member can do something in the mission to contribute.

You can combine the problems so they are busy all at once; a van that needs to be rig-steered as you hack the computer in the back and fight off the gang members coming in, for example.

Mostly importantly (I've found) A good mission/adventure targets what the players can do before it targets the worlds capacities; put the flavour/magic/etc into adversaries and NPCs after you've figured out what the mission thread roughly is. (if you're not just sandboxing it) There's no point having a heavy magic based adventure if the party have absolutely no magic capacity (or allies) they'll get frustrated and lose a lot (unless this is part of a larger plot arc, see evil villains...)

There isn't a magic formula for a Shadowrun mission; it's better to pick out background items and stuff that the players like and their characters can deal with - that's when they'll enjoy it.

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Thanks so much for the general advice of flavor coming after party capabilities. I chose P. Marino's answer because it's a more direct answer, but this is great advice for most campaigns. – Bigeshu Aug 20 '13 at 14:29
No trouble at all; as was sensibly suggested, the longer you wait to accept an answer the more likely you are to get more and/or helpful ones. – Rob Aug 20 '13 at 14:59

Well two of your characters are severely limited: one can't get out of a van and the other is stuck in the matrix. They both have ties to a corporation. The third could be their hired hand... you know, when they actually need physical hands.

One of the massive down-sides to Shadowrun is that the archetypes don't really play well with each other. The melee guy isn't going to have much to do during the street-race. The van can't enter the elevator. The bot can assist and support in various ways, but is useless when you need to shoot a guy or apply pressure to a bullet wound.

If the team can establish and maintain communications then the drones and AI can follow the samurai. It's a definate weakness, but they can all participate if they keep connected. It's also a good reason why they have the bot and the samurai on the team. The bot keeps hackers from subverting the communications equipment, and the samurai is there for when it all inevitably falls apart. I suggest he invest in a winch and a whole hell of a lot of relays.

Let's say they're the corp's hit squad. Hard-entry, hard-exit. They burst in through the front gate, shoot/disable everything on the way in, the meat-space guy murders his way into the server-room and plugs in the bot. The bot does her thing. He gets her back to the van. The van plows through any re-enforcements they throw at you and you have a running battle as you haul ass back to corp-land.

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Gotta admit, that last paragraph is the best way to describe a mission. Thanks for the suggest. – Bigeshu Aug 30 '13 at 18:23

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