Spycraft Writeup

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Personal, RPGs

At the beginning of this week I was thinking about the Spycraft game we had played the week before and the upcoming Pseudohistorical Fantasy D&D game. As I mentioned in this previous post, there were a lot of issues I had with the pseudohistorical campaign that were making me wary of it.

As I was thinking about it, I realized just how well the previous week’s Spycraft campaign had went. Things started off fairly slowly: We had ended a previous mission to investigate a certain facility and retrieved information from a private computer that the man we were tracking was now in Japan. We then flew to Japan to track him, received some intel on his position, and took awhile planning out our course of action.

Once we had decided what we were doing, we set off in a Humvee to the undisclosed location where our target was hiding out. As it turns out, the place was infested with guards, but the cool part of this situation was that, while we were all in the car, some other guards came up to us and chased us around. This was my first introduction to the Chase mechanics in Spycraft, and it seems like a cool little system — Not too cumbersome, but a lot more interesting than a simple opposed skill check or other tactic. There seems to be an actual strategy that gets opened up via the mechanics that would normally be relegated to the realm of pure luck (via dice rolls). That’s pretty pleasing to me. Not to mention, we have a “Wheelman” class character and it was a real chance for him to shine.

After the chase we went about tracking down the target, who fled the scene as soon as our presence was detected. One of our members saw the direction his vehicle was heading in, and we tailed him to an airport where he boarded a private jet and took off. We were all pretty stumped at what to do at this point, as we really had no way of figuring out where his plane was going. I proposed a plan.

My character is a Telepath, using the class from the Shadowforce Archer book. Although I don’t really have very many abilities I can use at low levels, one of the things I can do is to receive telepathic impressions left on objects from past owners. The airport was guarded by several armed guards patroling the facility, but if I could make it to the vehicle our target was using I could try and get a psychic impression from the car perhaps revealing to me a snippet of conversation our target may have had on the phone relaying his destination to an associate. We devised a quick plan and executed it: Our driver crashed the gates, running over two of the guards. One of our soldiers began sniping at guards as a distracting, taking out two. A second soldier was in the car using a SAW to mow down the guards from within the vehicle. Meanwhile, in the chaos, my character rolled out of our Hummer as it came to a screeching halt near the target vehicle. Taking cover behind the vehicle, I managed to spend a few moments receiving a psychic impression and successfully identified the destination of our target.

I was extremely pleased with how well this plan went down. Almost everyone felt like they had contributed to the scene in a crucial way, and we didn’t have any serious problems that could have arisen (such as an untimely death). All in all it has me quite excited for playing the Spycraft campaign again. Best of all, this encounter was one that was entirely unplanned on the part of the GM. Although we could have, as he suggested after we completed our plan, called in with our parent organization to track the plane leaving from that airport, what we did was more entertaining in every respect, and made use of all of our character’s abilities.

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