Admiral Duck Sauce 2018-02-27 12:21:31
I upped Tim's digital intrusion, updated wiki.

I would prefer not to split the party (although primarily for game-handling/comprehending reasons, less so for fictional ones), and the Hamburg video gave the best impression of the city.

So far I think I get the system mechanics, which puts me one step up on Shinobi j/k. I like our group and PCs but I'm having trouble as admittedly a casual player trying to keep everything straight. While I can follow a technothriller as an observer, I let a lot of the details wash over me and passively allow the important bits to float to the surface because it's all too much. The problem is, when it comes time to participate and create, I don't grok those details and so find it extremely difficult to muster the same kind of verisimilitude. I'm tactical, not strategic, if that makes sense.
Gatac 2018-02-27 12:33:04
I hear you on keeping details straight. I tried (just as I did for Shinobi) to have at least a rough idea of what's going on documented in the Wiki, but it starts to slide really quickly and I don't get around to keeping it updated. That said, look at this (very in-depth) rules explainer for Night's Black Agents:


You don't need to read it, but it's great for looking up the "wait how does that work again" things.

Among a lot of other advice for players taken from the sourcebook, it describes "adversary mapping". This reflects the understanding of the overarching conspiracy by the player characters. (The actual shape of it is described by the so-called Conspiramyd, which is a GM tool and TOP SECRET EYES ONLY KEEP OUT.) Doing this does grant you tangible benefits in game via point pools you can use to target people whose relationship to the larger conspiracy you have uncovered. Nice, subtle bit of bribing the players to do the work. :) Perhaps someone would like to set up a shared mindmap or something of the sort?
skullandscythe 2018-02-27 14:40:49
I'll see what I can whip up re:conspiracy corkboards later tonight.

For Blake's points, I'm going to re-assign 1 point from Health and 1 point from Stability into Disguise, and add one more point for a total of 3 in Disguise, since I suspect we'll need to do more infiltration in Hamburg and Tim might be cracking the Cyber-Steranko or something. I'll spend two more build points in Surveillance and 3 more into Shooting to round out those two skills at 8. Lastly, I have three Investigative points I haven't spent since chargen, and I'll spend two to gain 1 point in Negotiation and 1 more point in BS Detect. Edited the wiki sheet to reflect this.
MikeS 2018-03-11 00:07:02
Added 4 points to Weapons, one point to Conceal, and one to Notice. Holding points in reserve as before.
skullandscythe 2018-04-18 17:41:03
Let's talk infil real quick.

While it looks like we'll all be inside eventually, I see initial infil will basically boil down to either sending in one guy who then opens the door for everyone else, or just straight up replace a team with us.

The one guy approach is mostly advantageous for being easier to get inside and probably better to handle low-key sabotage/hacking/other set-up that occurs or needs to occur before they open the door for 'obvious' 'terrorists' to come in scaring folk and stealing our flash drives.
Getting that team in, though, that's probably the rub.

The team approach seems to be more advantageous for not having to let anyone in from outside, but I can't imagine accomplishing anything low-key without splitting up, and of course there's that whole issue of replacing a team and what do we do with them.

That's how I see it working, anyway. Feel free to weigh in with your thoughts and suggestions how to go about this.
Admiral Duck Sauce 2018-04-23 10:54:13
I think we need to case it first - either remotely through hackery or surveillance or a combination. Maybe modify the social engineering "inside person" idea to just "plant a tracker/bug on someone going inside".
punkey 2018-04-26 14:35:27
We really need to get eyes on before we make a concrete plan. I'm wary of planting bugs just because a place like that is gonna have counter-surveillance out the ass - we're probably going to have to go in.
Gatac 2018-04-26 14:43:49
Gathering some preliminary intel on K-Group's HQ will require that one or more of you guys test vs Surveillance. I'll set the difficulty at 8 to represent K-Group's countersurveillance efforts; results beyond that yield more intel, as does tagging investigative abilities. Among you, Blake is the surveillance expert, so he's probably best suited to this. You can of course also cooperate on the test if you don't want just one agent spending points.
skullandscythe 2018-04-26 17:08:52
Blake is pretty much always up for intel-gathering.

Robert: would I be able to apply the "For Your Eyes Only" cherry to this, should the check succeed?
Gatac 2018-04-27 01:01:57
I should add that this will take up some time. It will be assumed that when you're not doing other stuff, you're staking the place out. Information will trickle in throughout, you'll have the full dossier (and its mechanical benefits) in place when it's go time.
skullandscythe 2018-05-07 09:41:02
It is (kinda) done! Here are the links for the conspiracy map for Operation SWITCHBACK:


Hopefully this will make it easier to keep abreast of developments.
Some notes:

I've done the map this way because I anticipate that conspiracy maps for any given op will end up as a tangled web of conflicting factions and interests - so, for clarity, the arrows explaining connections between parties are links, leading to a spreadsheet line. All the factions and individuals have similar links to bios as well. We can then expound on the ties between certain parties at length without worrying about covering the map in text boxes, and we don't compromise clarity with terse boxes that only explain half the connection. Things will get cluttered enough just mapping the factions and connections.

Also, this was done in Google so people besides just me can go in and edit these maps, in case I'm not available or - quite probable- I missed something as well.

Anyway, feel free to go in and have a look. I've not settled on this format yet, but I need feedback on what you guys need/want before I make any changes or try a new setup.
Gatac 2018-06-02 17:33:07
I hope we lost nothing substantial here. Anyway, the FF 1 thread should summarize everything now. I've tried to reconstruct char sheets to take into account both the upgrades after Amsterdam and the current state of play. Please check and tell me if anything looks wrong.
skullandscythe 2018-06-02 21:54:27
I was leery of sharing this on Discord because there wasn't a good place to tuck it in where it could be easily referenced, but here is a conspiracy map for the goings-on in Hamburg (yes, this is current!). Most everything in the Map has a link to the List that explains the importance of the personality, organization, or connections between, done to help keep the Map from being unreadable clutter:

Conspiracy Map for Operation SWITCHBACK

List of Important People and Orgs

There are no links from the list to the Map, at least not yet - I'm not sure I want to stick to this format yet. As Robert before me has done, I, too, beg you to look it over and give me feedback. I do this to make it easier to keep up with the game, and the one thing I don't wish to do is make it worse!

Hopefully, this will make landing on our feet for the game easier.
Gatac 2018-06-03 04:31:43
This is also a good time to mention that having a conspiracy map likes this gives you one free spend of an investigative ability targeting an entity on the map. This is shared between you all, so an entity can only be tagged like this once, but still, it might prove useful. My thanks of course to Ross for his efforts - as we discovered while we chatted about this, there doesn't seem to be a free software that does easier sociograms, so putting all this together by hand is a good deal of work.
Gatac 2018-06-04 04:39:12
Ross reminded me that van Roemburg mentioned PALE RAINBOW. Added to the summary.
Gatac 2018-06-28 14:53:53
Finally done with housekeeping. Have a wrap-up post for the day, everyone!
Gatac 2018-07-13 19:35:30
And that concludes Hamburg Day 1.

Same procedure as last time: Athletics, Driving, Hand-to-Hand, Piloting, Shooting, and Weapons fully refresh. Three more general abilities of your choice also refresh. Investigative abilities do not refresh.

New IC thread to follow.