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achtungnight
Oct 4, 2014

Adequacy Achieved!

Poor guy, I know he's a junkie pyro bombmaker, but I can't help hoping things work out for him.

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JustJeff88
Jan 15, 2008

I AM
CONSISTENTLY
ANNOYING
...
JUST TERRIBLE


THIS BADGE OF SHAME IS WORTH 0.45 DOUBLE DRAGON ADVANCES

:dogout:
of SA-Mart forever

Between the very good writing in these games and the way in which Kanfy presents them, the overaching intrigue and the little stories are very compelling. I don't normally pay much attention to story in games, but these are an exception. I genuinely give a poo poo as to what happens next, and I've only felt that way about a few truly exemplary narrative games such as Let Us Cling Together and Torment.

Also, I genuinly thought that 'enhanced sensory experiences' meant (spoiler from the previous game, in case some haven't played it/read the LP) those chips that Kim was hooked on in Dragonfall. I didn't even think of chemicals until someone said something, but then again I haven't taken a psychotropic in my life so that's not too surprising.

bob dobbs is dead
Oct 8, 2017

I love peeps

Nap Ghost

every sr dealio has some btls in it including this one iirc. theres lots of source material about how normal drug peeps have to compete hard w btl peeps

wiegieman
Apr 22, 2010

Royalty is a continuous cutting motion




Also, BTL traffickers are goddamn monsters and need to be lined up on a wall and shot.

bob dobbs is dead
Oct 8, 2017

I love peeps

Nap Ghost

as opposed to the normal drug traffickers, who just up and made aztlan lol

DoctorTristan
Mar 11, 2006

I would look up into your lifeless eyes and wave, like this. Can you and your associates arrange that for me, Mr. Morden?

I had forgotten just how wordy this game is until now - the multiple updates Kanfy needs to get through the bits of between-mission dialogue really drives it home.

Kanfy
Jan 9, 2012

Just gotta keep walking down that road.


Topo Chico Debarge posted:

hey kanfy, nice to see you posting. i hope all is well, with everything going on in the world.

Hey, likewise. For my part I'm lucky enough to live in one of the more uneventful corners of said world so nothing post-stopping on that front so far. Summer wasn't very productive, but I'm trying to pick up the update pace again.

DoctorTristan posted:

I had forgotten just how wordy this game is until now - the multiple updates Kanfy needs to get through the bits of between-mission dialogue really drives it home.

Oh yeah, all three of the previous updates have required a bunch of commentary adjusting just to barely fit them under the ~49k character limit. For contrast, if I'm not misremembering, the sole update that hit the limit in the whole Returns LP was the Universal Brotherhood one.

For some more numbers trivia, despite only having this one appearance and no portraits, by my count Stephen and Lee's combined dialogue trees include about 250 player dialogue choices in total between them. Obviously most of them are overlapping between slightly different branches that only really differ in wording and flavor, but almost none of them are completely identical to each other either which is pretty impressive.

achtungnight
Oct 4, 2014

Adequacy Achieved!

Yeah, this is the second wordiest choice-full game I've ever experienced. The first being Tin Star, which is all text.

Nick Buntline
Dec 20, 2007
Doesn't know the impossible.



Kanfy posted:

For some more numbers trivia, despite only having this one appearance and no portraits, by my count Stephen and Lee's combined dialogue trees include about 250 player dialogue choices in total between them.

IIRC, doesn't Stephen show up again if you tell him to seek revenge at the end? Or does that BBS message show up regardless?

AceOfFlames
Oct 9, 2012


achtungnight posted:

Yeah, this is the second wordiest choice-full game I've ever experienced. The first being Tin Star, which is all text.

My dude, have you ever heard of a game called Disco Elysium

Kanfy
Jan 9, 2012

Just gotta keep walking down that road.


Nick Buntline posted:

IIRC, doesn't Stephen show up again if you tell him to seek revenge at the end? Or does that BBS message show up regardless?

There are no flags tied to the advice he's given and neither personal or BBS messages relating to the outcome that I've been able to spot. Of course there's a lot going on in this game and I'll inevitably miss some stuff here and there, so if you think that's the case here then feel free to PM me with the specific message that you're thinking of and I'll do a double-check.

Stroth
Mar 31, 2007

All Problems Solved


bob dobbs is dead posted:

as opposed to the normal drug traffickers, who just up and made aztlan lol

BTLs make a heroin habit look like a caffeine addiction.

wiegieman
Apr 22, 2010

Royalty is a continuous cutting motion




There is a theoretical maximum to addiction, and that maximum is BTLs. There is literally no worse drug to sell, and they're produced by taking simsense recordings of people whose brains are being destroyed by artificial sensory input.

achtungnight
Oct 4, 2014

Adequacy Achieved!

AceOfFlames posted:

My dude, have you ever heard of a game called Disco Elysium

The name is familiar. Iíll check it out.

Rogue AI Goddess
May 10, 2012

I enjoy the sight of humans on their knees.
That was a joke... unless..?


AceOfFlames posted:

My dude, have you ever heard of a game called Disco Elysium
See also: Fallen London.

KataraniSword
Apr 22, 2008

but at least I don't have
a MLP or MSPA avatar.
I am my own man.



AceOfFlames posted:

My dude, have you ever heard of a game called Disco Elysium

The difference between this game and Disco Elysium is that Disco Elysium doesn't have combat (not in nearly the same way, at least) and also Heoi is less of a shithole than Revanchol.

habeasdorkus
Nov 3, 2013

Royalty is a continuous shitposting motion.

Rogue AI Goddess posted:

See also: Fallen London.

And don't forget Sunless Seas and Sunless Skies. Those folks like their words.

JustJeff88
Jan 15, 2008

I AM
CONSISTENTLY
ANNOYING
...
JUST TERRIBLE


THIS BADGE OF SHAME IS WORTH 0.45 DOUBLE DRAGON ADVANCES

:dogout:
of SA-Mart forever

See also Planescape: Torment. I'm very fond of that game, but it is verbose.

GhostStalker
Mar 26, 2010

Guys, find a woman who looks at you the way GhostStalker looks at every bald, obese, single 58 year old accountant from Tulsa who managed to win $4,000 by not wagering on a Final Jeopardy triple stumper.

I apparently missed this dialogue tree in my playthrough, guess I didnít talk to everyone like I shouldíve. And yeah, BTLs are particularly nasty, Kong chips especially so.

As for the mention of the Nationalist War, that happened post Chinese breakup precipitated with the return of Lung causing earthquakes that wound up burying most of the PRCís nuclear arsenal in their bunkers. Taiwan gave up itís claim to being the Republic of China soon after, and the PRC was too busy breaking up to do much about it. One of the more powerful Chinese successor states is the Canton Confederation, encompassing most of coastal SE China, not including HK of course, all centered on Guangzhou as the name implies, which is your standard Sixth World corporate dystopia with Chinese Characteristics. They invited Taiwan to join, but the latter decided to keep going it alone although they traded heavily.

Then a couple decades later, the Taiwanese nationalist party decided to make a play for two provinces on the mainland that were part of the Confederation, Fujian and Zhejiang. Canton declared war to keep them, and managed to hold on to Fujian, but the fighting caused Zhejiang to splinter into microstates, with the area around Shanghai being an island of stability, as much as thatís possible with it becoming a pirate haven.

GhostStalker fucked around with this message at 11:55 on Sep 3, 2021

bob dobbs is dead
Oct 8, 2017

I love peeps

Nap Ghost

right? every single one of those sentences if it got to a prc censor would make em ban this thing immediately. but its just too under the radar

Boat Stuck
Apr 20, 2021

I tried to sneak through the canal, man! Can't make it, can't make it, the ship's stuck! Outta my way son! BOAT STUCK! BOAT STUCK!


As far as I know, all foreign games are by default "banned" in the PRC, as in they aren't allowed to be sold in Chinese physical stores and Chinese app stores, unless they're one of the very few that's gone through the governmental review process and been whitelisted for distribution in China. It's the same system as the one for foreign films.

The loophole is that the international version of Steam is not (yet) blocked by the Great Firewall, and Chinese credit cards can be used as a payment method on Steam.

So Shadowrun:HK is in the same category as the vast majority of games on Steam: not officially approved for sale in China, but for now the government is turning a blind eye to things.

What people may be confused by, is that a few notorious games are treated as "sensitive phrases" on Chinese search engines and short video platforms, in the same way that "free tibet" is a sensitive phrase, so searches for those games will result in a message saying the results have been censored. This type of "ban" would only ever apply to big name games that end up generating a lot of controversy, like "gta v" or "battlefield 4".

The Chinese government isn't going to pay any attention to an indie English-only Steam game, certainly not enough to give it the "battlefield 4" type of ban. A lot of people suspect, however, that the Great Firewall is going to start blocking the international version of Steam soon.

Boat Stuck fucked around with this message at 03:37 on Sep 2, 2021

mortons stork
Oct 13, 2012


KataraniSword posted:

The difference between this game and Disco Elysium is that Disco Elysium doesn't have combat

Is that supposed to be...... bad?

The Lone Badger
Sep 24, 2007



Actually, no! Disco Elysium is a good game and you should play it.

Stroth
Mar 31, 2007

All Problems Solved


The Lone Badger posted:

Actually, no! Disco Elysium is a good game and you should play it.

It's also basically "What if Dostoevsky wrote a video game".

Very much a good thing, don't get me wrong. But people should know what they're getting into.

some plague rats
Jun 5, 2012



mortons stork posted:

Is that supposed to be...... bad?

I means let's be real: it's one of the best games ever made

mortons stork
Oct 13, 2012


It is! Not having combat should be a point in its favor. One of its strongest suits in fact.

AceOfFlames
Oct 9, 2012


Stroth posted:

It's also basically "What if Dostoevsky wrote a video game".

Very much a good thing, don't get me wrong. But people should know what they're getting into.

To the point that there's even a novel in the game that's meant to be a parody of Dostoevsky (or just Russian Literature in general). It literally hurts to read (mentally and physically) and your Pain Threshold loves it.

Daduzi
Nov 22, 2005

You can't hide from the Grim Reaper. Especially when he's got a gun.


Boat Stuck posted:

As far as I know, all foreign games are by default "banned" in the PRC, as in they aren't allowed to be sold in Chinese physical stores and Chinese app stores, unless they're one of the very few that's gone through the governmental review process and been whitelisted for distribution in China. It's the same system as the one for foreign films.

That used to be the case, but they relaxed the regulations a few years ago. There's now plenty of physical game stores.

girl dick energy
Sep 30, 2009

You think you have the wherewithal to figure out my puzzle vagina?


some plague rats posted:

I means let's be real: it's one of the best games ever made
GOTY every year, and the extended cut only made it even better.

Kanfy
Jan 9, 2012

Just gotta keep walking down that road.


Part 21 - Talkie-Walkie (Part 2)







Continuing from where we left off, our daily conversing quest stretched on for longer than expected due to our encounter with the supplier and the supplied, Handsome Lee and Stephen Dynamite. At our encouragement the latter is planning to head out to the desert to try and blow up his inner demons and we're here to report back to the former.



I wondered if I'd see you again. Is our friend Stephen's hunger assuaged?

I think that you're about to be out a customer, Lee.

A hard thing to celebrate... but if what you say is true, that is perhaps for the best. I was worried about Stephen. I'm here to sell experiences, not contribute to a man's early death.

In that case Stephen must've been one of the most "experienced" people we've met in a while. Hell, the guy was basically oozing experience out of all his orifices. Wasn't pretty.

Now, let's get back to business, shall we? What can Handsome Lee do for you today?

I'd actually like to talk about you. You said that you came from Taiwan... I want to hear more about that.

[He pauses for a moment, mulling it over. Finally, he acquiesces with a nod.]

If you like. We've worked together, in a sense... if Stephen hadn't sent you, he'd have sent someone else, and things might not have gone as smoothly. I suppose that I owe you for that.

Well, I wasn't gonna say it.

Indeed. So. Where to begin?

[Handsome Lee's features soften almost imperceptibly.]

I grew up in a Taipei ghetto not unlike the Redmond Barrens. Worked my fingers to the bone to get an education.

Lemme guess. Art history.

[The corner of his mouth twitches upward.]

Ah... no. Not as such. I was studying chemistry. I was promised a job by a megacorp. I thought I'd found a way out. But that all vanished overnight with the war.

How'd you end up in Heoi, then? Surely your credentials gave you access to other options.

Like so many of my compatriots, I followed the trickle of immigrants to Hong Kong. In Heoi, I'm free to do as I please, and I don't get too many people asking unpleasant questions.

Like the questions that I'm asking you?

Your questions don't bother me. Ask whatever you want. And to get back to your earlier point, there was a reason why it "didn't work out." Indifference.

With the war raging around me, I went to the woman who'd wanted to hire me, you see. I begged her to use the megacorp's resources to get us out - me, and my family. I had a fiancťe. A widowed sister with two young sons. I had to get them out of Taipei before something dreadful happened.



It's no surprise corps only care about you for as long as they can profit from it, but straight-up laughing at someone looking to save their family? That takes a level of heartlessness that'll get you promoted to CEO one day.

That's cold. Where are your fiancťe and your family now?

[A shadow crosses Handsome Lee's elegant features.]

We were separated in the chaos. I scoured every rendezvous point that we'd ever discussed. I left messages. Nothing.

I'm sorry, man. I suppose Hong Kong isn't a bad place to hole up and wait for information.

[His jaw clenches for a second. Finally he speaks, somewhat bitterly.]

That's true. But I've long since given up. I respect that you've lived a rough life, yet still know how to hope.

Maybe. I'm stubborn that way.

[Handsome Lee bursts into laughter.]

I like your attitude.

[His face darkens.]

I had wanted to escape, pretend I hadn't grown up in poverty and squalor. Do you want to know why I chose to live here, in the shadow of the Walled City, rather than seek out more... legitimate prosperity?

I'm listening.

I loved the fine things I experienced when I seemed poised to enter the upper echelons of society. But it was all based on lies. And I love chemistry. I'm... very good at what I do. Here, I can still use my talents. Nobody gives a poo poo what I wear or how I speak, just so long as I deliver the high. There's something honest and forthright about junkies and their urges. The megacorps, on the other hand, are rotten with hypocrisy.

Truer words have never been spoken.

No. No, they have not.

Someone with more time and interest might opt for some sort of jab about hypocrisy and how megacorps and drug dealers both make their profits at the expense of the poor and vulnerable, but we still have some places to be, so...

Now... let's get back to business, shall we? I have a wide variety of happy experiences for sale. I've got family memories in a pill - they're almost as good as the real thing. Or a powder for those memories you'd rather forget. Whatever you might need, Handsome Lee is here to help.

Nothing right now, thanks. Bye.



As a small side note, Lee's selection does include one new type of stim that wasn't covered last time and which doesn't even get its own icon, Rilaxin. Adepts don't generally want to trade Strength for Willpower, but dedicated Mages get a minor accuracy boost from it for cheap. As with most non-AP drugs spending 1 AP for the effect is sketchy, but its (unlisted) duration is a lengthy 5 rounds so it's a decent pre-combat Mage buff in ambushes.



Going back to seeing the regular faces, Ten-Armed Ambrose is holding down the clinic-fort as usual. Doesn't seem too hungover to survive a short talk either.



Just looking to chat a bit. You're from the UCAS Midwest... How'd you land in Hong Kong?

[Ambrose bites one of his nails, and regards you with a hint of suspicion.]

Well... that's a long story. And kinda personal. It involved some jobs. A girl. A real good reason to leave Chicago. A whole poo poo ton of guns and money.

Guns and money were involved? Sounds like a good story... shadowrunning?

Yeah, stuff like that.

[Ambrose smiles. He seems to warm up, a little.]

I was a hardcore vehicle rigger, back then... before Johnny Law cracked down on road rigs. Man, those were the cowboy days... freaky as hell, but great to remember.

[Ambrose gets a wistful look on his face.]



You do that in Hong Kong, you get auto-barricades and a missile enema. Crying shame. Anyway, uh... I needed to get out of Chi-Town. Spread my wings.

[A nearby spider drone fidgets.]

You know how that goes.

Sure, though our own wings have probably atrophied to little nubs by now with how we only ever seem go from one cage to the next. Just gotta hope this one won't turn out to be the canary in a coal mine kinda gig, heh.

You mentioned Chicago... are you following the news of the quarantine?

[Ambrose's face darkens.]

Yeah, I am. It's a terrible thing that's just happened there. My old 'hood is inside the Containment Zone. Lotta good peeps, locked behind that wall.

I read the postings on your wall last time... the ones about "bug spirits."

Yeah... some of the leaked material is pretty convincing.

[Ambrose shakes his head sadly.]

Mega-VITAS plague, bug spirits... I'm not sure which is more scary. Hell... maybe it's the walking dead. Think about it: we've got at least four HMHVV variants. I think it's only a matter of time until we get zombies.

[Ambrose gives a nervous shiver. The nearby robotic arms tremble briefly.]

I'd take zombies over these "bug spirit" things, tell you what.

No argument there, a blade to the neck'll probably drop a zombie but who even knows what kinda ghost bug spray you need to deal with something like that. Probably not the kind of juice they just hand over to random shadowrunners.

Hong Kong seems like a long way to go just to get a break from Chicago though.

[Ambrose smiles, but there's a steely look in his eyes.]

Sometimes, a guy just needs a change of scene.

And a girl was involved in you getting here, huh?

Yeah, there was...

[He shrugs awkwardly, as if to make light of it. His voice has a hint of strain in it.]

That's a story for another day. Look, it's grand digging up the wreckage of the past, Taz... but time's wasting. I left Chicago, I landed in the Kong. After a while of running the Kong shadows, I landed here - in Chrome Alley. That's really the gist of it.

Fair enough. See you later, Ambrose.



Club 88 remains as the one last corner of crimetown we haven't poked our nose in today. Its gatekeeper's keeping the gate outside as usual.



[He waves the shaken man inside, propelling him forward with a final pat on the back.]

People donít realize that you gotta check for internal weapons as well as external ones.

Yeah? And you know how to do that?

I've got it down to a science. You just need the right technique. Matter of fact, I caught a guy just last week with a phosphorous grenade in his leg compartment.

And what did you do?

Disarmed him, of course! Got it back behind the bar now. I'm gonna blow it off in the river. Impress some girls. You looking for a pat-down yourself?

Are you getting fresh with me?

Ha! You're all right. You need anything, you let me know.

Unless it turns out our foster father was just crashing at your place this whole time and you have a nightmare generator behind that bar as well, you probably can't help us with what we need right now. So let's just talk for a bit instead.

Are you a member of the family that owns this place?



Iím also the current record holder for the Club 88 Pitch-and-Toss. Which is to say, I throw deadbeats harder and farther than anyone else around these parts. High water mark is that piece of tape over yonder. Guy was an ork, too. Hefty. But he simply soared that day...

Are you running any business on the side?

Naw. I may take the occasional payment to look the other way or be in the can when a fight breaks out. But I have enough on my plate that I canít really take on much else. Training, you see. I love what I do, but you gotta work hard to stay in peak condition. Iíve also got some next steps in mind, so Iím working even harder toward that. Big plans. You just wait and see.

I also play the drums.

Why are you searching some people, and letting others in?

This is a private club. There's three kinds of people I let in: members, guests of members, and people who make a good case. The latter two get a really good search before they go in the door, unless they're with Kindly Cheng or the Emperor of Japan or something.



This is a no-assassination safe zone. Serious weapons go into the weapons check, unless you're a member. That way, if a big firefight ever breaks out, the members will have the upper hand. We keep the killings very rare. Most happen when some members get all fried up, and decide to settle score with box cutters or something.

So I'm a member now?

You work for Kindly - as a shadowrunner, no less. That makes you a member. Remember the rules: No fighting. Unless, you know... it comes down to that, and you're ready to skip off the concrete. No killing either. If you've got legitimate killing business, go do it somewhere else. People come here to have a good time.

You're really just trying to minimize collateral damage, aren't you?

Pretty much.



Guess a free party pass is one perk of putting your life in danger for your criminal overlords on a daily basis. Not really the time to start tearing up the dance floor though, instead we strike up a conversation with a fairly eye-catching elf at the counter who wasn't here last time.



drat, and I was hoping for some classic cocktails.

[The woman snorts, and dips her pinky into her drink to fish out a stray gnatt.]

If you ask real nice, I think they've got some tonic water in the fridge. Aside from that, you're as likely to get drain cleaner as you are a splash of bitters. Even a simple Manhattan's probably beyond the means of this joint. Call me X-Floh, by the way.

[X-Floh regards you calmly, her eyes calculating. After a few seconds, she nods.]

Maybe we can help each other.

How do you mean?

I've got good eyes for people in the business, and believe me, you smell like shadowrunners and nuyen. Plus, everybody here's been talking about Kindly's new hired help. I'm out here for work. You need any backup, I'm available.

I already have a crew, thanks.

One that, critically, we don't need to pay from our own pocket. If we start hiring outsiders at what, 450 nuyen a pop or whatever you charge right now, we might as well not get paid at all for the actual jobs and that's just not an economic model that works in our favor.

Suit yourself. But I guarantee you none of 'em have the same set of skills I do. Mages and adepts are rare enough, but how many people d'you know that can combine the two?

[Holding up a balled fist, X-Floh grins widely.]

Mystic adepts are rarer than unicorns, my friend.

Where are you from, anyway?

All over, really. Born and raised in Sydney, but ever since I was fifteen, I've been traveling anywhere there's work. Not a whole lot of opportunities for a street kid whose only skills relate to beating people up. I've lived in Paris, London, Vladivostok, Caracas... Hell, I even spent a year in Johannesburg, but Azania is full of assholes.

Your Cantonese is pretty good. I don't hear an accent.

[X-Floh taps the base of her neck with two fingers.]

That's because it's chipped. My only concession to cyberwear - when you move around as much as I do, linguasofts pay for themselves pretty quickly. They're not perfect, but they get the job done.

That sounds like it'd be the exact phrase Kindly uses to advertise our crew's services as well.

How'd you get into this life?

I grew up on the streets, running with gangs. Turns out, if you get in enough street fights and have magical potential, things just naturally express themselves. Once that happened, I realized I could charge a lot more than the protection rackets I'd been running.

Besides, it's not like I know how to do anything else. I've never been to school. I'm SINless. What else am I gonna do, panhandle for change? Shake down Stuffer Shacks for beer money? No thanks, mate. I'd rather life fast, hit hard, and burn out.

And how'd you end up here?

I was running out of Guangdong for a while, but I was part of a team that lifted some SAM guidance software from Baihu Corporation. One of the team bit it during our escape, and Baihu got their military allies to track down the rest of the team.

[X-Floh shrugs, taking a long drink from her glass.]

When the hit team came for us, I manged to get out in one piece. Since I wasn't a full-time member of the team, they didn't have any way to track me. I still figured it'd be a good idea to get to the FEZ for a while.

Got any good runner stories?

[Running a hand through her hair, X-Floh leans back as she thinks.]

Yeah, I got a couple. There was this one time I signed on with some mercs in Eastern Europe. They had a job to do near Krasnodarski Krai, lifting some Abkhazian military software.



No plan ever survives first contact with the enemy, though. Turns out the Abkhazian army had contracted out base security to Winter Systems. We started getting cut apart before we'd even breached the first cordon.

Sounds like a suicide mission.

The mercs were in pretty dire straits, financially - it was a do or die situation for them, literally. They owed too many debts, and if they couldn't deliver, they'd have been killed. So we pushed in. We were down to five of us by the time we got into the main facility.



Came out of that base with the thirty millimeter cannon blazing away. Our exit was down at the coast - a riverine patrol boat the mercs had on standby. It was some nervous fighting, but we managed to get out. A bit full of holes, sure, but we survived. And that's what counts, hey?

Thanks for the story. See you later, X-Floh.

[X-Floh lifts her glass in salute.]

See you. You know how to find me if you need me.



The grizzled dad of the establishment is "steering the ship" from behind the counter today as well. Nothing major rocking the boat today by the looks of him, but might as well say hello.



Spend some time in the navy?

No, not military. Was a merchant marine though. For many good years.

Sounds like you miss it.

Do I not strike you as the king of island nightlife?

At best, you're a duke. But I have yet to see you dance.

And you won't. So how can I help you?

What was it like, out on the high seas?

Mmmm. Better when I was younger. Things were simpler then, if not terribly profitable. Got my start on fishing trawlers, just barely scraping by. Good folk though. Over the years, I made a name for myself, as one does. Got more regular work, on better crews.

Eventually earned a spot on a tugboat. Spent the bulk of my years crewing oceangoing tugs for Wuxing. The big ships - the tankers, the bulkers, the container ships, the seabed miners - are all run by technical crews and computers, now. On the smaller merchant boats, there's still a little seafaring left, but not much.



The bin-what now? Honestly you could just make up fake nautical terms and we'd just smile and nod. Hoisting the undersails from the larrocks and loosening the halfrows? Sure, that all sounds perfectly boaty.

Why the change of vocation?

Why does a man give up drinking, or sell his trike, or throw out his porn collection? For a woman, of course. And I had me one hell of a woman. Still do. This place was her dream. A business. A home. For us, together. Hard to deny the worth in that, no matter how much I miss what I once had. No, ma'am. No regrets. No regrets at all.

That's great, we're just going to refrain from reading between the lines you could sail a battleship through and be on our way.

I'll leave you be.



This guy was one of the kids, Callum. Likes his drink and sells stims on the side, though as with all vendors he has no new goods today so this is purely a social visit.



We met once before.

Have we? I suppose one of us didnít make much of an impression.

I think I liked you better when you were plastered.

Well, here's to becoming a better man in your eyes.

[He takes a drink.]

How many shots does it take to lay out someone your size anyway?

Iíll let you know if it ever happens. Now, you in the market for something? I got Bliss, Jazz, Cram, Nitro, and a dozen other little concoctions that the West doesnít even have names for yet. Whatíll it be?

Iíd actually like to know a little more about you.

Me? Why would you want to know about me? Iím nothing. I sling poison to the dregs of Heoi.



Sure, I can fill out a suit like nobodyís business, but people see a troll in Armani like they see an organ grinderís monkey. No, this is the place for me. This is where I belong.

I'll just leave you be, then.



Starting to get the sense that the boys are feeling a little cooped up in their glitzy music box. All families have their own problems to deal with of course, and we sure would know.



Didnít catch yours either. Iím Taz.

Ermine Ka Fai. Pleased to meet you. We get a lot of passers-through. After their business with the dockmen or the Yellow Lotus, they get escorted here to relax and shop. Then they leave. Iím happy to never know their names. But youíre a different story, arenít you?

What have you heard?

Not much. Yet. So what can I do for you?

Tell me a bit more about this place.



We needed something more stable, and I needed a husband at home. So he retired, and we put everything we had saved into this place. The 88 stands for good fortune, and the club has proven worthy of the name. If only some people appreciated that success, instead of whining about things that will never be.

Have you heard of a man named Raymond Black?

I seem to recall a blurb on the news, but I didnít pay much attention. Not a name I know. And if it was a name worth knowing, Iíd know it.

Thanks for the chat. See you.



We leave the Ka Fais to their family business and return back to our own base of operations, because it's high time we got started on our next job.



Our job options have increased from before, we have Is0bel's request and Kindly has also throw in a couple of new runs on the pile, but for now we'll go for one of the initial three that we had available already the last time.





Recently, a rich investor by the name of Liu Hua decided to expand his manor house on the outskirts of Tai Po. Too much money, not enough space for fancy parties. He hit a snag with local government officials, however - they suspected the land his estate was built on may have premodern archaeological artifacts buried beneath it, all of them dating from the Song Dynasty. Consequently, I was contracted as an archaeologist to oversee the excavations and ensure everything was properly recorded and cataloged.

Sure enough, we were only a few days into the excavation when we discovered a series of tombs lying beneath the site. The scope of the tombs was far beyond anything Liu or I had expected - several acres of catacombs, at least, and untouched relics throughout. What's more, they're certainly older than the Song Dynasty - they may even be from the previous cycle of magic. Before I could make my report to the Free Enterprise Zone authorities, however, Liu called in his allies in Tan Tien Incorporated.



Liu has continued his excavations, using Tan Tien contractors to expand the dig. What he didn't know is that I bugged his commlink before he fired me. Based on what I've heard, something strange is going on in the lower levels. Workers have been disappearing, only to be found dead several days later. Whatever is down there is too dangerous to be left in Liu's hands.

Liu must have found my dataline tap, though - I stopped receiving any information three days ago. The last thing I heard him talking about were a pair of ancient texts that workers had discovered. Then he issued an order that further excavation should be halted until he can secure the subterranean areas. I'm betting those texts are the cause of whatever's killing the workers.

I have quite a bit of experience with these kinds of dangerous excavations, but an operation of this scale is beyond me. I need a team that's tough enough to get in and survive, aren't afraid of making a mess, and who can get out with the books and whatever else they can carry.



I've included a catalog of likely items to help the team appraise the most valuable ones. They don't need to be subtle - in fact, I'd prefer they make it look like a common robbery. Tell them to smash and grab what they can. Let me know when you find a suitable group of shadowrunners.



We've mostly been doing vocal work recently, so a bit of smashing and looting sounds like just the kind of change of pace we need to keep our edges sharp.







No time like the present, let's head on out.





The bench grows ever wider as we now have a full five crew members to choose from but the same old three slots to fill. Fortunately we have a thread to relegate these kinds of difficult decisions to, and as a result of a vote that used to be on this spot, our museum robbing crew will consist of Is0bel, Gobbet and Gaichu.

Kanfy fucked around with this message at 09:28 on Sep 24, 2021

VolticSurge
Jul 23, 2013

Just your friendly neighborhood photobomb raptor.





Considering the sorta job it looks like we're doing, I'm gonna vote for Is0bel, Gobbet and Duncan.

Gun Jam
Apr 11, 2015


Is0bel, Gaichu, Gobbet - Always bring a decker ; And since I don't remember much of this mission, the rest's rotation.

Cythereal
Nov 8, 2009



Is0bel, Gobbet, Duncan

FoolyCharged
Oct 11, 2012

Somebody call for an ant?



Isabel, goblet, and gaichu

achtungnight
Oct 4, 2014

Adequacy Achieved!

Cythereal posted:

Is0bel, Gobbet, Duncan

This.

Rogue AI Goddess
May 10, 2012

I enjoy the sight of humans on their knees.
That was a joke... unless..?


Is0bel, Gaichu, Gobbet

We're going underground, so it makes sense to bring rats and ghouls.

BisbyWorl
Jan 12, 2019

Knowledge is pain plus observation.




Is0bel, Gaichu, Gobbet

Space Kablooey
May 6, 2009





Kanfy posted:

Part 21 - Talkie-Walkie (Part 2)

I've got it down to a science. You just need the right technique. Matter of fact, I caught a guy just last week with a phosphorous grenade in his leg compartment.

And what did you do?

Disarmed him, of course!

But he had a leg compartment! :v:


Cythereal posted:

Is0bel, Gobbet, Duncan

wiegieman
Apr 22, 2010

Royalty is a continuous cutting motion




Is0bel, Gobbet, Gaichu

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bob dobbs is dead
Oct 8, 2017

I love peeps

Nap Ghost

bring gaichu on no combat heacy runs and every social heavy run imo

isobel gobbet racter

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