PARANOIA
Are You a Clone, or Are You Reactor Shielding?

(written by Geoff Gander, forms DTP'd by Steve Criddle)


Side note to GM: Read everything in this adventure out loud that is in bold. Personal notes to the GM will be separated by a horizontal line, so if you happen to read something out loud that you're not supposed to, please terminate yourself, Citizen, for having disobeyed Computer regulations. Have a nice daycycle! 

Some elements of this adventure were taken from the Paramilitary sourcebook for Paranoia, by West End Games, and as such I credit the authors of that work.


Chapter 0 - Introduction:

Welcome, Gamemasters, to another fun Paranoia adventure! But then again, aren't they all fun? Of course they are! This adventure takes your unwitting players from an almost certain vacation into the jaws of the Armed Forces, and then into a quick Troubleshooter mission that has absolutely no relation to the rest of the adventure. The dominant theme in this adventure is forcing the Troubleshooters to adapt quickly to changing surroundings - otherwise they're toast! Those of you who have spent time in the military or any government institution may be familiar with this situation - just when things are settling in, something happens to destabilize everything. 

One thing you should remember for this adventure, though, is to keep track of all treasonous acts that the Troubleshooters commit, regardless of whether or not they think anyone is watching. You see, this adventure takes them to areas in Alpha Complex where the security cameras all work for a change, and a certain piece of R&D equipment they will be issued has a revolutionary multicorder hidden within it. Unless they're really clever, nothing they do will escape notice this time. Treat this adventure as a great hose job, one that will make them nervous for some time to come, as they begin to fear that the Computer really does have eyes everywhere. 

Oh, and a final note. This adventure was first written in 1996, and was playtested twice at CanGames '96, in Ottawa, Canada (Canada's version of GenCon, to those who know what I'm talking about). For those who don't know what I'm talking about, CanGames is a big roleplaying games convention, held annually. Anyhow, the players had lots of fun (like they had a choice), and the adventure was well-received. Feel free to email me with your comments, or interesting tales of what happened when you ran this adventure!

Read: 



You are all relaxing in the Troubleshooter lounge, enjoying your well-deserved break after having completed your Mandatory Totally Optional Bonus Duty, which was scrubbing the Food Vats in YAK Sector this time. Ahh, the relief of not having to do anything, of not having to be anywhere! Why, you think you could stay here all daycycle, concentrating on the dust mote resting on the table in the centre of the room. Nothing bad could possibly happen todaycycle....


All players should be making audible sounds of relaxation, and should be in a relaxed position. Otherwise, kill a few of the buggers. That'll calm them down sufficiently. Or if you're a nice GM, you could secretly assign each of them two treason points for being tense while on duty. In any case, once you've lulled them into a false sense of security, say the following loudly, and quickly:


"ATTENTION TROUBLESHOOTER TEAM 237/GH-THX-1138! PLEASE REPORT TO BRIEFING ROOM 56-B, ALONG SUBCORRIDOR C-456.78, IN CORRIDOR 14C2Q, IN BUILDING 3.14159268, DOA SECTOR! HESITATION IS TREASON! TARDINESS IS TREASON! ASKING FOR DIRECTIONS WHEN YOU HAVE ALREADY RECEIVED THEM IS TREASON! TREASON IS TREASON! AND HAVE A NICE DAYCYCLE!"


Bet that got their attention! If not, have one of the ever-present-yet-always-underutilized coaxial laser cannons in the room blast away some of the furniture near the players. No one gets injured, but the players should get the point that this is important. If anyone refuses to get moving, mention that one of the security cameras has turned in the clone's direction, along with a couple of laser cannons. If this doesn't work, blast 'em! Serves them right for disobeying an order from the Computer! As a side note, should anyclone ask for directions, have the Computer politely inform them that they have already received directions to the briefing room, and then It asks why they are 5 minutecycles late for this briefing. The Computer ignores the players' feeble attempts to explain that the summons was given too quickly, and only minutes before - just keep them all on edge.
 


Getting to the Briefing Room:

In any case, the team should head for the briefing room. How, do you ask? Well, seasoned Paranoia players know a hose job when they see one, and may try to write down the directions quickly. Make a note of who did this, and make sure they get wasted later on. That'll show them who's boss. Reward those clever martyrs who wrote the directions down by letting them get there without any hitches (that should make them REALLY scared, if they have any experience playing Paranoia). If they didn't write them down, take them for a ride. It doesn't matter how, and it doesn't matter where, as long as their stress levels go up. Have them end up at some PLC warehouse, or an R&D testing facility, but make sure no outside forces kill them - Troubleshooters don't need any help getting themselves killed. Finally, they should arrive at the entrance hallway to the briefing room, only to find:


You have finally reached subcorridor C-456.78, only to find that it appears to be Blue clearance, and the briefing room door looks quite Indigo, with a tiny Infrared button to the left of it, at chest height. The overhead lights flicker and crackle for a second, and in the distance you think you hear a muted explosion.


Ahhh, Research and Design never lets anyone down, does it? That explosion might serve as a bit of foreshadowing for what is to come. The main quandary is how the players are going to get into the briefing room. If they walk into the Blue subcorridor from the relative safety of the Red corridor, hidden laser cannons will mince them but good. If any of them think to request a paintbot to come in and paint a Red stripe up to the door, allow it to happen. Later events are difficult enough that you can afford to be fair here. Any attempt to repaint the entire subcorridor will land the requesting clone in a heap of trouble for the rest of his or her short life. If the players wait around and do nothing for a long enough period, a paintbot will come by and paint a Red stripe up to the door anyway, but you can determine when this happens. Let them sweat a while. 

Once the players make it to the door, mention how big and imposing the door is, now that they're up close to it. If anyone presses the button, mention how slowly the door grinds into the ceiling, making dangerous-sounding creaks and groans as it does so. As they enter the Red clearance briefing room, mention how the door looks like it could fall down and squish them as they pass under it. Nothing happens, but as soon as the last player crosses the threshold, the door slams down with incredible force, buckling the floor itself.


Chapter 1- The Briefing:

You enter the filthy, Red clearance briefing room in anticipation of grim news about yet another Commie Mutant plot to destroy your beloved Alpha Complex, which only you can prevent. Or some hideous monster that has escaped from the Food Vats to wreak havoc upon the unsuspecting populace, which you must destroy. Instead, you see a cheerful, crisply-dressed Blue clearance briefing officer smiling at you as he stands behind a podium, flanked by four Green clearance Vulture warriors, who are not smiling at all. One of them points to a badly rusted bench in the middle of the floor.

The players should immediately sit down to hear what Big-B-UDD-3, the briefing officer, has to say - in which case you should read aloud the next section. Otherwise, their actions are noted down by Big-B as treason, for which they will pay during the debriefing. If anyone tries to attack him, a blast shield (ALL 4 protection) drops down in front of the podium, and the Vulture warriors pull out their hand flamers (skill 13, F10 damage) to quell the disturbance. Once the clone replacements are brought in, Big-B continues as though nothing happened.


"Greetings, Citizens! Is it not a fine day to serve the Computer?!?", Big-B-UDD beams at you. "I have a special treat for you todaycycle, you lucky, lucky Citizens - you are all going on a vacation!!"


Smart players should be cheering and expressing gratitude at the appropriate moments when Big-B is speaking in the above section. He makes a careful note of anyone exhibiting less than optimum zeal; those unfortunates will be receiving a complimentary sanity test at the Brain Softening and Happy Fun Labs of DOA Sector just prior to the debriefing, so note those players down. Once the cheers have died down, read:


"Yes, Citizens," Big-B beams at you, "the appropriate paperwork for your leave time has been prepared for you in advance - all you need to do is sign your names where indicated, and you'll soon be on your way to lovely FUN Sector!" Big-B-UDD then passes a form on a clipboard over to you, as well as a Red clearance pen.


A special note here. Take Form 1 (the Vacation Request Form), and place it directly on top of Form 2 (the Voluntary Armed Forces Notice of Enlistment Form), with a sheet of carbon paper in between. Then get each player to sign their names in the appropriate spaces. The carbon paper will transfer their signatures onto Form 2, thus enlisting them in the Armed Forces! Make sure no one lifts the top form to see through your clever ruse - assign hefty treason points if they do. You may wonder why this is going on, but what has actually happened is that the Troubleshooters have been assigned the wrong briefing officer! The one they were supposed to get died under mysterious circumstances in an exploding R&D lab, and Big-B-UDD was rushed in at the last moment, and was told he was recruiting for the Armed Forces. Hence the current situation. Anyhow, once the last signature is on the form, read: 


As the last of you signs the form and hands it back to Big-B-UDD, visions of fresh Cruncheetym Algae Chips and scenic vistas of power plants dancing in your heads, his face noticeably darkens, and he seems to double in size as he looms above you.

"HAHAHAHAHAHA!!!!!! Silly clones, do you not REALIZE what you have done?!?!?", and with that he tears off the form you just signed from the clipboard, revealing.........THIS!!!!!!!!


Show Form 2 to the players, and watch dismay cross their faces as they see what has happened. Before anyclone can do anything, Big-B waves his hand at the Vulture warriors, who close in on the players, and usher them out a previously unnoticed second door on the other side of the room. As they leave, the Troubleshooters hear Big-B mutter, "Welcome to the Armed Forces." If anyone tries to resist the Vulture warriors, they will not hesitate to use their hand flamers (skill 13, F10 damage) on the Troubleshooters. Clone replacements are then ushered along with the other Troubleshooters.


Chapter 2 - Basic Training:

You are escorted through the doorway into a long corridor, in which sits a large transbot. The Vultures push you all inside after relieving you of your belongings, and when the last of you enter, the door is slammed shut with a loud clang, followed by the sound of many bolts being drawn. The transbot then roars to life, and you feel the sensation of movement. You do not know how long the ride takes - there are no windows in this vehicle. After what seems like an eternity, the transbot comes to a halt, and the door bursts open.

Several Vulture warriors rush in and haul all of you out - slamming you on what appears to be synthecrete. Around you, you see high walls topped with laser cannons, and the great dome high overhead. Around you, you see hordes of downtrodden Red clearance clones rushing about amid shouted orders from higher clearance clones in all directions, and a maze-like network of buildings. Above it all, on a banner in large, friendly letters, is the sign, "Welcome to Fort RAN". Close by are roughly twenty Red clearance Citizens, milling about as you are.


Allow the players to get uncomfortable with their surroundings. Emphasize the tension in the atmosphere, how everyone seems to have a stamp of fear on their faces - especially the other Citizens milling about nearby. Talking to them will yield stories like, "I was walking down the corridor, and I felt a blow on the back of my head. Now I'm here...". Before anyclone can do anything meaningful, read:


Before long, you notice a hulking Indigo clearance Armed Forces clone approach you. He is quite a lot larger than you, and has no hair on his head, but instead has what appears to be a circular piece of Plexiglas affixed in front of one of his eyes, held in place by a constant squint. His deep voice booms, "Hallo, my friends! Und how are you todaycycle? My name is Kernalkl-I-NKK, und I vill be your zuperior officer for ze duration uf your shtay here! Ze Komputer hass ordered me to ensure zat you receive ze appropriate training for your future career in ze Armed Forces. Until you are told, you vill do nossing unless you are told to do so! Failure iss not allowed, und it iss treason! You vill enjoy your shtay at Fort RAN, ja?"


Smart players will have figured out by now that hearty agreement and obedience might help them survive this place. This is no less true with Kernalkl-I-NKK. Clones who do not exhibit extreme exuberance when this guy is around are in for a lot of trouble. But only for a very short time. Once everyone shouts agreement and if sufficiently submissive, Kernalkl-I-NKK leaves. Read:


Just as Kernalkl-I-NKK leaves, another clone marches up to you. This one is Red clearance, and is very short and squat. His uniform is crisp, the creases so sharp you could slice solid steel with them, and on each shoulder, beneath the Armed Forces shoulder patch, you notice what appears to be an insignia, shaped like a clone with his hands on his hips. He suddenly bellows, "Alright, you deeecants! Stand up straight front 'n' centre!! Move it, you miserable excuses of vat-slime!! Line up by serial numbers, move it!!!"


What? The Troubleshooters don't have serial numbers? Let them sweat, as this clone, Blood-R-GTS-4, moves down the line, bellowing at clones for having bad breath, for not looking cheerful enough, or for breathing without permission. Let them think it couldn't get any worse, until Blood-R comes up to the Troubleshooters, and finds out they have no serial numbers. Read:


"What?!?! No serial number!?!?! What in the Computer's name is going on?!?! Did you not pick up the documentation offered to you at the recruiting centre?!? Did the recruiting officer not tell you what your serial number was!?!?! Decants, this is rank insubordination of the worst sort, punishable by a full court-martial followed by summary execution!!! What do you have to say for yourselves, Decants?!? What can you possibly say in your own defence?!?!"


Let the Troubleshooters bootlick and plead all they want, let them see the expression on Blood-R's face change ever so slightly, and let them notice the tiny smile cross his face. I'll bet they think they're getting somewhere, but no, they're not. Regardless of what they do or say, Blood-R merely shouts "Kitchen Duty!!!!!!!!" at them, and continues his diatribe. Read:


"Now that this interruption has been dealt with, my name is Sergeant Blood-R-GTS. For the next eight weekcycles, I will be responsible for feeding, clothing, and training you worthless specimens of genetics! You will not speak unless spoken to! When you address me, the first and last words out of your miserable mouths will be my name! Do you understand?!?"


Smart players will shout out some variation of "Sergeant, yes Sergeant!!!" Award each player who does not do so one treason point for less than optimum zeal. 

The Troubleshooters are then marched over to the main administration building, where, after several hours of waiting, they are assigned to their barracks, and told to stow whatever they are carrying in footlockers at the foot of each bed. After this is done, everyone is marched of for their haircut. 

If you are a particularly sadistic GM, you might wish to have them make Agility checks each round to see if they march in step with everyone else. If any of the Troubleshooters fail a check, Blood-R whips out a laser pistol (skill 12, damage L8) and shoots at the boots of the nearest offender.


Haircuts:

Once you've tired of scaring them, you can humiliate them. As soon as they enter the barber shop, they meet the resident barberbot, Clippy-8000. It will ask the Troubleshooter what sort of haircut he or she would like, and then proceed to shave them bald. Since the haircut is so fast, and employs sharp implements, roll on column 5 for damage. Each Troubleshooter must also pay 5 credits for the haircut, and those that cannot pay are fined 350 credits for not having any money.

Innoculation:

Once this is done, everyone is marched to a drab, bullet-riddled synthecrete building, staffed by many clones in radiation suits. The recruits are poked and prodded, and tested for radiation poisoning. If you really want to make the players sweat, say that one of the technicians look over one of them, and then roll some dice meaningfully, wince at the results, and finally tell the player that the technician mutters "Hmmm, a little off the scale, but this one should hold out for a while yet....I hope. (nervous laugh)". Finally, the Troubleshooters are given their needles. Each player is given as many injections as you want (roll for random drugs in Acute Paranoia), and don't forget to include amusing side-effects and flashbacks later on, like when they are in a firefight. All clones also take column 5 damage from the needles (it's basically a pneumatic drill that's injecting them).


Outfitting:

The recruits are then marched off (are you still making them do Agility checks?) to the Supply Depot, where they are greeted by a surly Quartermaster, Agent-O-RNG-2, and his not-so-friendly Red clearance underlings. All of them are thoroughly unpleasant, and wish to get rid of the newcomers so that they can get back to watching Teela-O-MLY videos in the back room. Each Troubleshooter is given a uniform and a pair of boots. Roll 1d20 for each player, and if your roll is within 2 of the player's Strength attribute, they fit. If the roll is higher, the clothes are too big, and if the roll is lower, they are too small. Once this is done, they are all marched back to their barracks to change into their uniforms. They are then given their first inspection by Blood-R thirty seconds later. They all fail - read:

"What is wrong with you decants!?!? You're given thirty whole seconds to change and tidy yourselves up, and you can't even do that right!! Alright, no more Mr. Nice Clone!!! Go to the Mess Hall and report for Kitchen Duty, on the double!!!!!!"


Smart players should run to the Mess Hall (roll a Moxie check to see if they even notice the huge sign along the side of the building), and then roll an Endurance check to see if they all make it before collapsing - failure meaning they are forced to take remedial Physical Training the next morningcycle (those unlucky Troubleshooters have to get up four hours earlier than the others, and due to exhaustion will function at a -2 penalty on all actions until they get more rest). Anyclone who does not run right off the bat are shot at by Blood-R (skill 12, damage L8).


Chapter 3 - Kitchen Duty

As the Troubleshooters enter the Mess Hall, they will notice row upon row of gleaming tables, soft, comfy chairs, nice carpets, and delicious-looking food. This is the Officers' Dining Hall. Before anyone can do anything, a greasy clone wearing a filthy Red radiation suit will walk up to them and tell them to follow him. They will walk down a Red corridor, and enter the Enlisted Dining Hall. Read:

Horror wells up within you as you see row upon row of dilapidated tables and chairs, grimy floors, garbage strewn everywhere, and sullen clones eating what could loosely be termed food. "Inna da kitchen wit youse.", the greasy clone says to you.

The kitchen makes the dining hall look like paradise. Immense food vats, some of them six metres tall, with multicoloured, foul-smelling smoke billowing out of them, line this huge room. Suspended above the vats is a network of rusted catwalks, patrolled by clones in radiation suits. All of them carry laser rifles.

"Youse guys'll like workin' here," says your guide, "it's real safe-like." You suddenly hear the churning of foodvat effluvium, followed by a scream, which is abruptly cut off by a splash. "Well, almost safe."


The Troubleshooters should be uneasy by now. They are then ordered to put on a radiation suit (some of which are torn in manners suggesting that the previous owner encountered something nasty), pick up a laser rifle from a rack on one of the walls, and climb a rickety ladder to the catwalks above. They are also told to inspect the Stuff, as the effluvium is called, to ensure that its quality remains at acceptable levels. The Stuff is greyish-green, gritty in texture, and reeks of stagnant algae. The players remain on duty for as long as you want them to be, but you should roll on the following table once every ten minutecycles or so, to see if something interesting happens: 

"Stuff" Encounter Table

D20 Roll
Result
1-5
Nothing happens. Roll again.
6-8
Sudden rush of bubbles to the surface of one of the vats.
9-12
Ominous low-pitched growling from a random vat.
13-15
Green tentacle whips out and submerges again.
16-19
Same as above, but it grabs random NPC and drags him into a vat.
20
A PC is grabbed. Make a 1/4 Strength check to resist, new clone otherwise.

Once this has gone on long enough, the Troubleshooters are then called to dinner. Now they will actually have to eat the Stuff. Given their traumatic experiences, they may not wish to, but a carefully applied truncheon from a mess warden (skill 10, damage I8) should convince them that they are not getting all of their essential nutrients. Those clones that eat the Stuff must make a 1/2 Endurance roll or become violently ill, after which they will be fined 100 credits for having a dirty uniform, plus an additional 85 credits for getting sick while on duty, and an extra 30 credits for not eating. Once the meal has ended to your satisfaction, the Troubleshooters are marched back to their barracks.


Chapter 4 - The Confidence Course

I bet you thought that this adventure would be only about basic training. Well you're wrong, because todaycycle the Troubleshooters get to go on an Armed Forces obstacle course, but are saved from more military service by a mysterious High Programmer, who springs them from basic training for a more nefarious purpose. The Troubleshooters' fateful daycycle begins with the following, read:


Ahhhhh, sleep. What a nice idea, isn't it? Who would've thought that a whole six hourcycles of rest would feel so good? So peaceful....


If your players aren't making restful sounds, or sighing, give 'em all a few treason points. That'll fix 'em! Then, when they're complacent, yell out:


"Awright, you lousy scum!!!! Geddup!!!!! Geddup now before I'm forced to shoot all of you!! We've got a big surprise for you lot, yes we do!! Before I tell you, though, I want all of you on your Physical Training gear, all formed up nice an' pretty outside the barracks - in two minutecycles!! Move!!!!"


Make the Troubleshooters do Moxie checks (half Moxie checks for those who had to do remedial Physical Training) to find their PT gear, only to discover that they were not issued any. Gee, how inconvenient! Every other clone seems to have a set, so smart players will mug someone else and steal their stuff, and then they will only be two minutecycles late - just enough to be assigned 20 push-ups each by Blood-R, and an extra shift of Kitchen Duty that eveningcycle. Lucky for them, they will not be in the Armed Forces by that time (but don't tell them that!). Should any player show up in their uniform, they receive a 350 credit fine for being out of uniform, as well as a thrashing from Blood-R's truncheon (skill 11, damage I8). Regardless of how things turn out, read:


"Now that we're all nice 'n' ready," says Blood-R-GTS, "I can tell you chumps what we're doing todaycycle. We are doing the Confidence Course. Or, I should say you're doing it!! Let's go!"

And with that Blood-R-GTS marches you all down the road to a waiting transbot, which whisks you 30 metres down the road with a bare minimum of jostling and crashing. Finally, you are all forced out, and marched to a large open area, pockmarked with craters. The clones in front of you plod ahead, towards an opened gate. Just as you are about to enter that gate, you hear the sound of someone politely clearing their throat...


The players should be confused by now. Here they are, resigned to their fate, when all of a sudden something comes in to change things. Ask them what they are going to do, prod them if necessary. Those who turn around will see a tall High Programmer smiling at them. If they know what's good for them they'll cower in fear. Read:


You see before you a tall, immaculately-dressed High Programmer, every centimetre of him the personification of self-confidence, as though he knows that he is in control of his destiny. He glances disdainfully at Blood-R-GTS, and motions him away. Blood-R-GTS trembles and leaps to comply, ushering everyone away. "Leave those Citizens here, Sergeant, I have business with them.", the High Programmer says, pointing at you.


The Second Briefing:

Smart players should be behaving very deferentially now - why would a High Programmer want anything from lowly Troubleshooters like themselves? - they should be asking. Shoot them if they aren't asking themselves this question. Or perhaps you could casually point out to them that this is probably their only hope of getting out of the Armed Forces. As a side note, the Troubleshooters should heartily assent to whatever Generalc-U-STR-3 says. Or else. Read:

"Good daycycle, Citizens!," the High Programmer, whose nameplate reads Generalc-U-STR-3, "is it not a fine time to serve the Computer?"


Wait for the players to finish grovelling. Read:


"Excellent! That's the spirit we like to see in the Troubleshooters! As you may guess, a clerical error occurred in the processing of your vacation time, which is why you have been sent to the Armed Forces instead. Rest assured the error has been terminated. As of this moment, you have all been reinstated into the Troubleshooters.

"This is fortunate, because I have need of your services. You are required to carry out a mission that will make the Computer very happy. You do wish to make the Computer happy, don't you?"


Again, hearty agreement will prolong the Troubleshooters' existence here. Generalc-U has a long memory, and he will not forget anyone who displays less than maximum zeal. Once the players quiet down, read:


"Excellent! You have already displayed your willingness to serve the Computer to the fullest extent! Obviously your training has not gone to waste. Well, here is what you must do: One of my esteemed associates, the great High Programmer Are-U-HPY-4, is being honoured by the Computer for his tireless service to Alpha Complex as a whole. You will ensure that nothing untoward happens to him. Or you will all die. Have a nice daycycle, Citizens! Report to DOA Sector PLC for outfitting."

With that Generalc-U-STR turns away from you and enters a previously unnoticed Ultraviolet autocar, which silently glides away into the distance.


Leaving the Fort:

Believe it or not, that was the Troubleshooters' mission briefing. They only have the word on a High Programmer that they have been entrusted with a mission, and he did not tell them where the mission would take place. Should any player try to ask him, before he leaves, for the location of the mission, he will snidely tell them that what they seek to know is above their security clearance. Should this happen, Generalc-U will radio for a 6-clone Green clearance Vulture Warrior platoon, armed with neurowhips (skill 12, damage E10), to administer a last bit of disciplinary action before sending the Troubleshooters out of Fort RAN. 

If they try to leave the Fort, they will be stopped on the way by an Armed Forces patrol, demanding that they first return all the gear issued to them. They also give each Troubleshooter a fine of 80 credits for attempting to steal Armed Forces property, and the Computer will give them each two treason points once the news is reported. It will take several hourcycles to return all the gear, unless the Troubleshooters intimidate their way to the front of the lineup at the Quartermaster's. Should the Troubleshooters try to return their Armed Forces gear before they leave, they will find the Quartermaster's offices to be closed. 

Once their gear has been returned, they may leave the Fort, but not before paying a fee of 15 credits each for consumption of Fort materials. Those who cannot pay are reported to the Computer for insolvency, and are fined a further 350 credits. Those that refuse to pay must face the wrath of four Green clearance Armed Forces goons, armed with automatic slugthrowers loaded with Dum-Dum slugs (skill 11, damage P9). Once the bills are settled, the Troubleshooters are shoved through the gate, to a large, empty lot, where one battered autocar idles. 

The autocar will take them to DOA Sector PLC, but not before a sum of 60 credits is paid to cover a damage deposit. The autocar's bot brain may be slow, but it knows Troubleshooters when it sees them. Unfortunately for it, the sum it is asking is far too low, and some careless clone left an Alpha Xpress Card lying in the back of the vehicle (normal Moxie roll to spot it). The card just happens to have 60 credits left on it. Too bad. Once the Troubleshooters board the autocar they are ready for PLC!


Chapter 5 - PLC:

You finally arrive at an imposing hangar, bearing the sign "Production, Logistics, and Commissary - Main Supply Station, DOA Sector" above the main entrance. Ah, glorious PLC! Those selfless Citizens who work long hours to provide you with the most efficient service possible, and who go to great pains to see that even the lowliest Infrared is clothed, fed, and equipped! Truly, you are not worthy of the honour of being served by them, is that not so?

You should be hearing declarations of patriotic fervour from your players about now. If not, give 'em some treason points. Once they have quieted down, read:


Of course, you'll all have a lot of opportunities to mull over the importance of PLC, because there's a lineup about half a kilometre long stretching from the front doorway.


If the players do nothing, their wait will last 1D8 hourcycles, after which they will finally reach the service counter. By this time they will be treasonously late for their mission, and an announcement will be made on the public address system, calling for the execution of a group of Troubleshooters matching the description of these clones. Game over. Insert new coin. 

Inventive players may try to intimidate their way to the front of the line, but you, Mr. GM, should halve their skills should they do so - everyone else in line is pretty ticked off, and there are a lot of itchy trigger fingers, too. Should they blow their rolls, and should a firefight ensue (hint hint), the players could use the confusion to make their way to the counter, where a heavily-armoured Red PLC staffer, named Fill-R-FRM-2, awaits customers.


The Bureaucratic Labyrinth:

Fill-R will offer the Troubleshooters the Equipment Request Forms they need, but only if they have properly stamped and filled-out Form Request Forms. Of course, the Troubleshooters do not have them. Oh dear, looks like a bureaucratic runaround is in their future. Read the following:

"What?!?", asks Fill-R-FRM-2, "You don't have properly filled and stamped FRFs? Well, you won't be getting your ERFs unless you fill out some FRFs at the PLCFRFAFBD!! Now go get some and fill them out, and don't come back until you do!!!"


For your own information, FRFs are Form Request Forms, ERFs are Equipment Request Forms, and the PLCFRFAFBD is the Production, Logistics, and Commissary Form Request Form and Autogyro Foot Bath Dispensary. Needless to say, the PLC warehouse is a maze of crates, corridors, cubicle mazes, and dead ends. The Troubleshooters will never be able to find the PLCFRFAFBD on their own, and so will have to find a way to get Fill-R to show them, since no one else is around. The players could try bootlicking (which will work on a successful normal roll), or bribery (the players must offer at least 50 credits, or Fill-R won't talk). Intimidation will not work, because Fill-R knows that the Troubleshooters' mission, and their lives, depend upon his co-operation. 

Eventually, the players should be able to get the information, which directs them along many twisting corridors. Once they arrive at their destination, read:


Your directions have led you through many bureaucratic obstacles and false leads, only to land you here, wherever that is. You find yourselves in a tiny, bare Red room, barely large enough to hold the forty clones lined up in front of you. The one in front of you appears very stiff, as though he has been standing here for a long time.


The clone in front of them died of natural causes some time ago, and if the players touch him, his withered body falls to the side, bones exposed to the fluorescent lighting. Should they wait, the Troubleshooters will once again be treasonously late, as described above (they will spend 1D10 hourcycles in line). Should they intimidate their way to the front, they will face similar problems as above, but should they succeed they will have Boss-Y-GUY-3 to contend with. 

Boss-Y knows that the Troubleshooters will not be able to get anywhere without the Form Request Form. This, and the fact that he outranks them, will make his daycycle that much more enjoyable. The Troubleshooters will have to bootlick and bribe (minimum 150 credits, or enough equipment to equal that amount) in order to get what they need. Eventually, Boss-Y will give each Troubleshooter a much-vaunted Form Request Form, stamp them once they have been filled out, and order them out of his sight. 

Once the Troubleshooters make it back to the main counter (with a waiting time of 1D4 hours unless the Troubleshooters do something like intimidate their way to front again), Fill-R will only be too happy to give the Troubleshooters their Equipment Request Forms, after having gone over each Form Request Form carefully. He will then watch the Troubleshooters like a hawk as they fill out their Equipment Request Forms, and, once they are passed to him, refuse to give them their equipment. After the Troubleshooters ask why, read:


"Well, it's quality control, you see. Think about it: What would happen if we just gave out the equipment that clones requested after they filled out their forms? Why, there would be absolute chaos, I tell you, and we'd have nothing in stock!! No, PLC can't allow just anyclone to get their grubby hands on Computer property! That would never do!! You'll have to get these ERFs stamped and approved at the PLC Bureau of Approval and Stamp Application Centre - just down the hall to the right, fourth door on your left. Have a nice daycycle. Next!"


If the players follow the directions, they will find themselves in a broom closet, empty except for a rusting scrubot. If they search the closet thoroughly (a successful Moxie roll will do here), they will notice an air vent near the ceiling, about two feet square, from which sounds of voices come. Anyclone can make an easy Strength roll to open the vent, and a normal Agility roll to crawl in. The ductwork beyond the vent is a veritable maze, but it is easy to determine where the voices come from. Each Troubleshooter must make three successful Agility checks while in the ductwork in order to make it to the source of the voices without getting stuck. Troubleshooters who get stuck may find themselves blasted away by desperate teammates... Eventually, the Troubleshooters should be able to make it through, and once again enter a lineup. Read:


After what seems like an eternity of pushing and shoving through air ducts, you find an open air vent. Not wasting any time, you all file into the room. The Red walls are shabby looking, with peeling paint and rust all over their metal surfaces. There is nothing in this room except a battered service counter at one end, from which a long line snakes out to where you are now.


The same drill as before applies here, with a 1D6 hourcycle wait unless the Troubleshooters muscle their way to the front. When the Troubleshooters finally make it to the front, they will see none other than Fill-R behind the counter!! He will claim to have never seen the Troubleshooters before, and will suspect them of being traitors if they persist in claiming to have already met him, and will not hesitate to call the Computer to report these "obvious Commie Mutant spies". Should this happen, resume the encounter once the replacement clones arrive at the scene. 

After looking over their Equipment Request Forms for one millisecond, Fill-R will stamp them all and tell the Troubleshooters to be on their way. More than likely, they will walk towards the air vent from whence they came. Fill-R will notice this and yell:


"No, you fools!", shouts Fill-R-FRM behind you, "Use the door like everyclone else!!" Fill-R-FRM then points to a tiny Red door in one of the corners of the room, a corner so dark you could have sworn it was not there before.


The door leads back into the main service area of the PLC warehouse, where the Troubleshooters started oh-so-long-ago. This time, the line is very quick, and in 1D20 minutecycles the Troubleshooters will be in front of Fill-R once again. He will give them the equipment they want, and when the Troubleshooters have collected their last item, read:


Finally, you stash your last piece of equipment for your mission. Suddenly, a loud crash sounds from outside! A squad of burly, Blue clearance Vulture Warriors storms into the room, and the largest among them shouts:

"Alright! Where are those lousy Troubleshooters?!? Where are they?!? They're supposed to be at R&D right now!!! I'm counting to three, and if I don't see 'em, I'll get ANGRY!!! One. Two."


If the players don't tell you they are jumping up right away, the Vulture squad opens fire, killing 1D20 random clones each round. There is also a 45% chance per round that the Troubleshooters will be hit by various weapons of mass destruction. You should roll for each Troubleshooter each round to see if they are hit. Each Vulture warrior is armed with a cone rifle (skill 12), and they are firing off solid slugs (damage P13). The players decide to make themselves known to the Vultures, they will be ordered to follow them to R&D, under pain of death should they fail to comply.


Chapter 6 - R&D:

The Troubleshooters are marched for two blocks along one of the larger transtubes of DOA Sector, where crowds of clones abound. They will not have time to sightsee, though, as they are rapidly approaching the fastness of DOA Sector R&D. Read:

You are marching towards a very tall building, bearing the sign, "DOA Sector Research and Design" over the main entrance. Surprisingly, the building seems quiet. Before you can dwell on this, however, you are rushed past the Orange security guards at the entrance, and, after passing a radiation check, you are admitted to the inner workings of R&D. You are suddenly greeted by a profusion on bizarre contraptions, their purposes unknown, as they are dragged, wheeled, flown, driven, or bounced on their way to destinations beyond your security clearance. Also milling about is a veritable horde of high-clearance R&D techs, their labcoats flying about them as they rush around, seemingly oblivious to everything but their work. One such tech, a tall thin clone in a burnt Violet labcoat, approaches you - accompanied by four mean-looking Green Vulture Warriors.


The Troubleshooters will likely caper about and otherwise be annoyingly subservient to En-V-USS-4, if they know what's good for them and they have played Paranoia before. This is because, in many cases, R&D techs hold the power of life and death over the players, for they could issue the team dangerous (at least, more dangerous than normal - a scary thought!) R&D equipment for them to test out on their mission, should the Troubleshooters annoy them. 

En-V-USS is actually a very nice clone, who will always take the time to listen to everyone, no matter what their clearance might be. He is always smiling, and speaks in a gentle tone. This should scare the players half to death. The four Vulture Warriors will take them the rest of the way, given half a chance. They all carry laser pistols with Green barrels (skill 10, damage L8), and do not make any effort to talk to the Troubleshooters, nor do they do much of anything except glare at them, and finger their weapons meaningfully. If the Troubleshooters do nothing stupid (ie: they do nothing at all), they might just make it out alive. In any case, En-V will address the Troubleshooters as follows:


"Oh, at last, at last! You see, gentleclones," the Violet tech addresses his guards, "our trusted associates at Troubleshooting HQ did come through for us after all!! Come here, and serve the Computer, my friends!!", says the tech, eagerly beckoning to you.


Although En-V is a pussycat, the guards are not. If the Troubleshooters hesitate in obeying for even the slightest instant, they will be shot at. This reaction to Troubleshooter reticence will occur throughout this section, in response to En-V's questions. If the Troubleshooters are too slow in answering questions - ZAP! If they don't sound enthusiastic enough - ZAP! You get the picture. Of course, they will not try to kill the Troubleshooters, just maim them. After each sentence in the section below, zap and assign treason points to those Troubleshooters who show insufficient zeal. Read:


"Now I suppose you're all very eager to find out why you have been ordered here, aren't you? Well, you are going to test our latest innovations!! Won't that be fun, Citizens? Please step this way..."


En-V will not really listen to a word the Troubleshooters say, one way or another. He will just cheerfully spout a "That's nice, Citizen!" to whatever they say. He will lead them down a hallway, past some melted steel and piles of ash, and into a large room. Read:


You have been led down a long corridor, past piles of melted steel and what looked like clone-shaped piles of ash, into this room. It is large. Very large. Your echos get lost in the void whenever you speak. You cannot even see the ceiling. The only adornment in this huge room is a long stainless stell table, about 5 metres long and one metre wide, lit by a great spotlight high above. The table is covered by a Blue sheet.

"Citizens!", says the Violet tech, "I proudly present to you your mission equipment, courtesy of R&D!!" With that he whips off the Blue sheet, revealing an assortment of wonderful equipment!


Well, the equipment isn't that wonderful - this is R&D. En-V encourages (so do the guards) the Troubleshooters' enthusiasm over this gear. Clones who are not sufficiently amazed at what they see before them will find their existences remarkably shortened. The equipment is as follows: 

R&D Equipment: Portable Laser Cannon:

This is an interesting piece of work. R&D decided that the average Troubleshooter needs more firepower in their missions, and the obvious solution was to make the laser cannon portable. This weapon consists of a laser rifle with an extra large cone-shaped laser barrel welded onto its muzzle, connected by a cable to a portable power supply. The power supply is an actual laser cannon generator, with a handle welded onto the top so it can be carried. Unfortunately, the generator weighs approximately 30 kg alone, and combined with the weapon, the unfortunate clone to takes this thing will be adding almost 40 kg to his or her carrying capacity. There is a version with a wheeled generator, but if the Troubleshooters think to ask about it, they will be informed that it is classified as Blue security clearance. Too bad. 

This weapon does L13 damage, and has a range of 200 metres (same as a laser cannon III). Its generator also enables it to fire every round. Unfortunately, every round this weapon is fired, there is a chance that the generator may overheat and explode. This happens on a natural 20, but goes down by one each time it is fired. Needless to say, this will never happen if the weapon is tested at R&D. Should the generator explode, all clones within 15 metres of the generator itself will take F12 damage.

RoboGear Mark 2.2:

The clone who signs for this is placed into this armoured suit by three Orange techs, and once inside cannot remove it without the assistance of at least two clones who make a successful electrical engineering roll. The suit itself is dull grey in colour, with wires, cables, and odd projections sticking out at odd angles. The wearer's weapon hand is covered by a metal sheath, upon which are mounted various gears, doodads, and other mechanical parts that have no purpose whatsoever, except to move about and make whirring and beeping noises at odd moments. One of the wearer's eyes is also covered by what appears to be an opaque multicorder lens, connected to a box (mounted on the wearer's head). 

This suit makes the wearer resemble a cyborg-like being introduced on a popular American science fiction TV show that cannot be named for obvious reasons. The suit makes the wearer move about in a slightly jerky fashion (he or she cannot run), and because the wearer's weapon hand is conveniently covered, laser pistols must be used in the off-hand (a penalty of -2 to -4 would be appropriate). The gears and doodads are sharp in some places, such that they can be used as a sort of knife (I5 damage), should the wearer hit an opponent with an unarmed roll. The suit itself offers ALL2 protection. The multicorder lens and box do in fact serve a purpose - this is a revolutionary, lightweight multicorder that will record whatever the wearer sees. It is also indestructible, and will survive the mission to be used in the debriefing, unless it is lost.

ThermaCap:

This article of clothing is Red in colour, and is made out of a fabric that stretches when under stress, such that it is always form-fitting, no matter who wears it on their head. The cap feels rough to the touch, and the clone who signs for it will feel quite warm when he or she puts it on. 

The ThermaCap is actually a woolen toque, which some R&D member of the Romantics managed to have issued to the Troubleshooters in order to see whether or not it actually keeps one's head warm. Needless to say, it provides no protection against any form of attacks.

Rapid Coiler:

This weapon is about the size of a slugthrower, and is obviously a projectile weapon, due to the fact that is has a very long belt of ammunition coming out of the side, just above the pistol-like grip for the trigger hand. There is a rather large barrel at the tip, which can rotate and has what appears to be three bore-holes at the end. This little number is the result of an all-night planning session, during which it was determined by R&D that Troubleshooters needed to be able to fire off more ammunition, rather than improve their marksmanship, in order to destroy the enemies of Alpha Complex. The Rapid Coiler (also called the Zippygun) has the fastest rate of fire of any weapon yet designed in Alpha Complex. 

In combat, this gun fires twelve shots per round, the ammunition belt streaks through with amazing speed, and the three barrels at the front rotate so quickly that they cannot be seen (there is a cowling on the outside that hides the fact that there are, in fact, three barrels - hence the extra-wide barrel look). Each shot does 8P damage, but a minimum of twelve shots are fired off each round. This is because the trigger is so sensitive that merely brushing it has a 50% chance of causing the weapon to fire once - one good pull shoots of twelve. The ammunition belt holds 60 rounds of ammunition, which is not much given the Rapid Coil's rate of fire. Also, the rounds are fired off so fast that the firer will not be able to spray at a bunch of targets with one trigger pull - at most he or she has a radius of 5 metres at the very edge of the weapon's 50 metre range. With such a high rate of fire, the Rapid Coiler jams on a roll of 16-20.

Jet Suit Mark 3.5:

This outfit was designed to allow the wearer to fly and otherwise move very quickly. The are about 100 tiny jet engines mounted all over the Jet Suit, which, according to R&D, is made out of fireproof materials and is reinforced to absorb the jolts produced by the engines. The wearer controls his or her movement through the use of a control pad embedded in the palm of the right glove, which is activated and operated through specific hand movements. When in use, the Jet Suit allows the wearer to move in any way desired on an x,y,z matrix - basically the clone is supposed to have the manoeuvrability of a hummingbird. 

In practical terms, the Jet Suit Mark 3.5 is a death trap. The control panel is so sensitive that even the slightest twitch from the wearer's right hand will activate the system, and potentially cause the unfortunate clone to rocket away at 250 kph. That's another problem, there's no speed control; it's either 0 kph or 250 kph - tough luck. Another problem is that while in flight, the clone is simply moving too fast to be able to manoeuvre with any degree of skill - things like walls, floors, and other hard surfaces soon become real hazards. Another hazard is the fuel itself; there is only enough fuel in the suit for about six rounds' worth of flying (any more would have made the suit too bulky, reasoned R&D), and any laser, projectile, or flame that hits the clone has a 50% chance of setting off the remaining fuel, creating a personal fireball that does F15 damage to the Jet Suit wearer.

Hoverboard:

Another innovation from R&D, this device is modelled after primitive-looking pedestals used during the Old Reckoning to ride water, and also snow. To improve on this basic design, R&D attached a prototype antigravity device on the bottom. When activated by a button near the tip of the Hoverboard, both board and rider will rise to a height of roughly one metre, and stay there. Then by focusing the antigravity beam from the device by putting weight on certain parts of the Hoverboard, movement can be achieved. 

This would not be a bad device, if the activiation button were placed somewhere else, or if it were smaller. The button is, in fact, about the size of the average clone's foot, which means that, while the Hoverboard is in use, the button may accidentally be pressed again, which would deactiviate the antigravity device and cause the board to fall, and none too gently (column 2 damage). Steering the Hoverboard is also difficult - the clone using it must make two Agility rolls every time he or she wishes to steer in a different direction, once to see if the board changes direction, and the other to see if the clone remains on the board (falling off does column 2 damage). The speed of the Hoverboard depends on the angle at which it is tilted; the greater the tilt, the faster it goes in the direction in which it is leaning. The fastest speed that the Hoverboard can travel is roughly equivalent to a run.


Of course, the Troubleshooters will be encouraged to test out the equipment in this large room. Make sure that nothing untoward happens while they are here - that the Law of R&D holds true (all R&D equipment works while in an R&D facility). For the Troubleshooter who signed for the Robogear Mark 2.2, have the techs who helped put the suit on suddenly vanish - you get the picture. Once this goes on long enough, read:


"ATTENTION, TROUBLESHOOTER TEAM 237-GH/THX-1138! REPORT IMMEDIATELY TO HANGAR 157 IN DOA SECTOR!"


The Mission:

The Troubleshooters should make their way to the hangar as quickly as possible. Should they ask the Computer, or anyclone nearby, they will actually get clear instructions on how to get there. This should frighten them. Once they get to Hangar 157, read:

You are immediately overwhelmed by the sheer size of this hangar. Stainless steel walls stretch up into blackness high overhead, and a pitted and scarred floor stretches out in all directions. Almost lost in the glare of flourescent light emanating high above you, you see several figures dressed in White. They appear ot be waving at you...


This group is in fact a gathering of High Programmers. They have been waiting for the Troubleshooters to finish up at R&D and meet them here, so they can impart what they wish to share about the upcoming mission. Needless to say, the Troubleshooters should rush to meet the High Programmers. Unfortunately, this hangar is very big (roughly 2 kilometres wide), and the High Programmers are roughly 1.6 kilometres away. Roll two 1/2 Endurance checks for each Troubleshooter, with success in both checks meaning that clone successfully runs the entire distance. If both checks for a particular clone were rolled really well (say,a natural 1 or 2 for both checks), then not only did that clone make it across first; he or she did not even break into a sweat. Should this happen, every other clone will be fined 100 credits each by the High Programmers for being late, and for being out of shape. Should any clone fail either of the 1/2 Endurance checks, he or she will collapse from exhaustion, which will make the High Programmers very displeased. Nothing untoward will happen, though by all means have your players think something horrible will happen to them. 

Once the Troubleshooters are all across, read (and remember, assign appropriate penalties for less than optimum zeal on the part of the Troubleshooters):


You see before you twelve stern-looking High Programmers. One of them comes forward to address you:

"Good daycycle, Citizens! Is it not a wonderful mission you are on? Ah, good! That's what we like to see, happy Troubleshooters on fun missions! Well, I suppose you are all eager to get started on your mission of utmost importance, so I will not detain you long. As you no doubt know, the honoured High Programmer Are-U-HPY-4 is being honoured for his tireless service to the Computer and the Alpha Complex as a whole. The ceremony is to take place in this hangar tomorrowcycle, and you are to stand guard outside his personal quarters to ensure that nothing untoward happens to him. You will also escort him to this hangar, where he will receive his award. Your duty commences immediately, and will end tomorrowcycle. Under no circumstances will Are-U-HPY-4 come to any harm, and under no circumstances will you disturb him. Do I make myself clear?"


Smart Troubleshooters will fervently agree with this High Programmer, and will promise to do their utmost to fulfill this mission's requirements. As a note to you, the GM, none of these High Programmers are wearing nameplates, and none of the Troubleshooters will have seen these clones before. In any case, once the Troubleshooters have finished capering about and grovelling, the High Programmers will give them each an authorization form that gives them permission to be in the corridor outside Are-U's quarters. These forms are valid until the time of the ceremony, and are only appliccable to that one corridor. 

Once this is done, the Troubleshooters are directed to the corridor in question, and told to make their way to the location as soon as possible.


Chapter 7 - Guard Duty:

Read the following to provide some ambience:

You have finally made your way along the Ultraviolet corridor, to find yourselves in front of a steel door, with the name "Are-U-HPY-4" embossed on its shiny surface. Directly in front of the door, on the pristine White floor of this corridor, is a Red carpet, measuring roughly three metres square. The hall is deathly silent; the usual commotion and hubbub that you are all used to is absent here, save for the occasional clanking noise of a bot wandering somewhere on an errand. Noises seem to carry farther here. The lights dim slightly as eveningcycle approaches, and the soft voice of the Computer declares in the distance "Curfew in three hourcycles".

This section of the mission is very simple. Whenever you feel like it, just roll on the table below to determine what the Troubleshooters encounter while they are guarding Are-U's residence.

Guard Duty Encounter Table

D20 Roll
Event
1-5
Nothing happens.
6-8
A scrubot comes by, cleaning the corridor.
9-10
Same as above, but the scrubot is a Corpore Metal member, and attacks the PCs with scrub brushes (skill 5, I7 damage). It has L2 armour.
11-12
Commie posing as technician comes by and asks to enter Are-U's quarters to do some repairs. If the PCs let him in, Are-U is found dead the next morningcycle. The End. The PCs must find a way to stop him, but the Commie's documents are well-forged (1/2 Forgery check to detect the forgeries). He has a laser pistol with a Yellow barrel (skill 12, damage L8).
13-14
Five Death Leopard punks pass by, defacing the corridor walls. They are armed with slugthrowers loaded with solid slugs (skill 11, damage P7). Any attempt to stop them will result in a firefight, though any PC members of Death Leopard will be secretly signalled to help them out.
15-16
Footsteps are heard, the noise building to a crescendo, but nothing is seen...
17-18
Four unregistered mutants (Mental Blast, Pyrokinesis, Electroblast, Telekinesis) amble down the corridor, using their powers on random objects. PCs should blast them for being the traitorous scum that they are - otherwise the Computer assigns each Troubleshooter 5 treason points for collaborating with the enemy (there are security cameras here). The mutants will use their powers to protect themselves.
19
A slimy tentacle (ALL3 armour due to slime) whips out of a nearby air vent and grabs a random PC (doing I2 damage each round unless the PC makes a successful 1/2 Strength check to break free). If the PC does not escape within four rounds, he or she is dragged into the vent, and the other PCs have two more rounds to act before their companion is eaten.
20
Six Commies (L4P3 armour), carrying slugthrowers loaded with solid slugs (skill 10, damage P7) charge into the corridor, screaming Communist propaganda (skill 2). Any PC who does not fight gets blasted at the debriefing for not being loyal in the face of Commie aggression.

As GM, you are free to run these encounters as many times as you want (in fact, I strongly encourage you to run the last one several times). After enough time has gone by, and the Troubleshooters start getting penalties for being tired (stage some battles when they are tired, the extra penalties should make life interesting for them...), Are-U emerges from his quarters, and immediately berates the Troubleshooters for being too noisy during the nightcycle (even if they were quiet), and then he reports their gross incompetence to the Computer. Nothing bad comes out of this, of course, but it should serve to keep the players on edge. 

Once the Troubleshooters are suitably paranoid, Are-U orders them to escort him to Hangar 157 for his ceremony. The walk to the hangar is quite brisk, read:


Finally, your ordeal is over! Before you, as you emerge from the corridor, you see the hangar looming all around you - so brightly lit and festooned with ribbons and streamers way above your security clearance! Citizens of all clearances are gathered here, their cheering voices drowning out everything else in the hangar. Suddenly, booming martial music fills the hangar - the DOA Sector Armed Forces Band is here! It fills you with such partiotism to be here - why, it even makes Are-U-HPY-4 sing the Alpha Complex Battle Hymn. He looks at you meaningfully as he begins...


This is a not-so-subtle cue for the Troubleshooters to sing, too. If you have the Paranoia gamemaster's screen, the lyrics are available. Make your players sing along, too. Won't this be fun? If you do not have the GM's screen, shame on you! Put down this adventure and go buy it right away! I'll wait for you to return. Have you got it now? Good, let's continue... 

Every player who stands up and enthusiastically sings the Alpha Complex Battle Hymn should have their treason point total reduced by three points. Those who do not should gain an extra three. Patriotism pays. Once you are done, read:


Ahhh, the pageantry! Doesn't it make you feel so happy? Finally, you finish marching your charge up to the great dais that has been set up for the occasion. A nearby Vulture Warrior instructs you to stand behind Are-U-HPY.


The Troubleshooters should comply quickly. Failure to do so will land them in deep trouble at the debriefing.


"Fellow Citizens," says a High Programmer at the front of the dais, "we are gathered here on this daycycle, in Year 214 of the Computer, to commemorate the dutiful and tireless service of a respected Citizen. He has selflessly increased his workdaycycle to an unbelievable three hourcycles; he has cut his financial incentives to a mere 70,000 credits per weekcycle; and he has personally decreased food consumption in DOA Sector by 47% through the now-popular Manditory Recreational Euthanasia Program, thus increasing food stocks in DOA Sector by an unprecedented 450%!!" The crowd erupts in jubilation at the news of Are-U-HPY's accomplishments.



The Troubleshooters should be cheering too. Give each unenthusiastic Citizen three treason points.


The High Programmer continues, "I know that we would all like to thank Are-U-HPY in our own way, but our friend the Computer has a much better idea! The Computer, in Its infinite wisdom, has decided that Are-U-HPY will receive the never-before-awarded Really Meritorious Service Medallion, 1st Class! Yes, Citizen Are-U-HPY-4, this is your reward for your selfless deeds and your impeccable service! And now, is there anything you want to say to the Citizens assembled here todaycycle?"

Are-U-HPY walks away from you and towards to other High Programmer, takes his award, and steps up to the microphone. Though you cannot see the expression on his face, he must surely be overcome with emotion. You hear him clear his throat, and you hear:

"Death to the imperialist Computer, and its filthy capitalist lackeys!! Glory to the Infrared masses!! Smash the Complex!!"


No, Are-U did not say those words; a Commie traitor in the audience did. Even so, the Troubleshooters might think he did, if only because they cannot see his face from where they are standing (behind him). If the Troubleshooters do decide to waste Are-U, they will not live long enough to enjoy their deed - there are 12 Vulture Warriors up on the dais with them, all of whom have semi-automatic slugthrowers loaded with dum-dum slugs (skill 14, damage P9). We'll see if they can outlast the firepower of angry Green Vulture Warriors - serves 'em right for being trigger happy. Resume the action when the clone replacements arrive. 

This is the final battle of the adventure, by the way. Make it big. Make it exciting. You know - cast of thousands sort of thing. Have Mark IV make a cameo appearance, bring in the Giant Cockroaches from Outdoors - you name it! As soon as those words are uttered by the unknown traitor, 12 Commies hidden in the audience will begin to fire upon the High Programmers on the dais with cone rifles, slugthrowers, grenades, and laser rifles (skill 10 in each, damage L8 for laser rifle, P8 for grenades, you choose the slugs and shells for the cone rifles and slugthrowers - napalm is nice). Since the Troubleshooters happen to be near the High Programmers, they will be shot at, too. The Vulture Warriors will shoot back, but as is standard in any adventure, they will not hit any of the enemies - just innocent bystanders. The Commies heard about the ceremony, and sent a crack assault squad in to assassinate some top Citizens, in order to demoralize Alpha Complex. So many High Programmers bunched together is irresistible to them. 

The Troubleshooters should be trying to protect Are-U from the assault. If they do not, he will be killed in the first round or two, frozen with fright. Even if you decide to roll for each attack, with 12 assailants his death is almost a certainty. So will the Troubleshooters' if this comes to pass. A successful Moxie roll will allow the Troubleshooters to locate the source of the shots, and good hit rolls should be able to peg off the Commies (if they miss, roll on the Random Victim Table in the DOA Sector Travelogue rules supplement, if you have a copy - otherwise use your imagination). 

Allow the battle to continue as long as you want, but before too many rounds pass (say, five or six), the surviving Commies leap out of the crowds and storm the dais, guns blazing. This is where the Troubleshooters get to martyr themselves. Any Commies in the Troubleshooter team should take this opportunity to blast their teammates, Are-U, and any other High Programmers who happen to be nearby. If the Troubleshooters get killed, any surviving Commies (including Commie Troubleshooters - they will be urged to follow) will run down a side corridor, never to be seen again. If the Troubleshooters manage to kill off the Commies, give them about two rounds to get their bearings before reading the following:


"ATTENTION TROUBLESHOOTER TEAM 237-GH/THX-1138! REPORT IMMEDIATELY TO DEBRIEFING ROOM 26786.4B, NEXT TO DIP SECTOR REACTOR CORE #45!"


Chapter 8 - Debriefing:

Once again, in an effort to hurry the Troubleshooters to their ends, the directions to the debriefing room will be amazingly direct and accurate, should the Computer or any Citizen be asked. This should make them feel even worse. Soon, they will find themselves in front of a Green door in a Red hallway, with an Orange button just to the left of the door. One of the clones has to press the button to open the door, and whoever does it will receive one treason point for touching an item of a higher clearance. Too bad. 

Once inside the shabby Red debriefing room, they will be greeted by a Green debriefing officer, by the name Vicious-G-UYY-5. He is very brisk in manner, and will never seem to be interested in what the Troubleshooters have to say. This is because he has better things to do than listen to a bunch of Reds whine about their mission. Read:


You find yourselves in a shabby Red room, no more than 4 metres square. At one end of the bare room is a battered Green chair and desk, behind which sits a bedraggled and sour-looking Green Citizen. At the other end is a rusty Red bench.

"Alright, you lot, sit down and don't make any fuss!", says the Green Citizen, whose shiny nameplate reads 'Vicious-G-UYY-5'. "So," he asks, "tell me what you've accomplished."


Let the players express themselves any way they want. Let them accuse each other of treason, let them inflate their own roles in the mission, let them say anything they want. Heck, you can even let them shoot each other (Vicious-G has a blast shield built into the desk). Why? Simply because it doesn't matter what they say, the Computer's omnipresent security cameras recorded everything. Even if the cameras were destroyed, the clone who was issued the RoboGear has an indestructible multicorder built into the headgear (which is taken, as soon as the clone in question sits down on the bench, by a Yellow R&D tech who pops out of a previously unseen hatchway - and then vanishes into it again). 

Once the players have finished bloodletting, have Vicious-G clear his throat, calmly pull out a portable vidscreen from behind the desk, and set it on its surface. He then pulls out a tape, inserts it into a slot on the screen, and presses a tiny button. This tape, by the way, was just manufactured by R&D, using collected footage from security cameras and the multicorder in the RoboGear, and delivered through a hidden chute behind Vicious-G - isn't science wonderful? The vidscreen then lights up and shows the Troubleshooters over the course of their mission, doing any of the treasonous things you noticed, such as: 

  • Troubleshooters entering higher-clearance areas, or handling/touching higher-clearance items - even for a second

  •  
  • Troubleshooters displaying less than maximum vigour (this is subjective on your part - as if your players will stand against you!)

  •  
  • Troubleshooters committing any act of treason, or doing anything that could remotely be considered treason

  •  
  • Troubleshooters destroying Computer property in firefights, especially during their guard duty outside Are-U's quarters

  •  
  • Troubleshooters damaging R&D equipment

  •  
  • Troubleshooters shooting innocent bystanders, or High Programmers, during the final battle

  •  
  • anything else you can think of
The Troubleshooters will have to answer for all of the treasonous or semi-treasonous acts caught on film. Let your players act out their bootlicking rolls, have them plead for mercy. Even if they try to pin their crimes of teammates, it will not matter, especially if any High Programmer was injured through their actions, or their inaction. If any High Programmers were injured or killed, every Troubleshooter will be executed, on the spot, by coaxial laser cannons that pop out of the ceiling. Resume the debriefing once the clone replacements arrive. 

Vicious-G will also ask the Troubleshooters to report on their R&D equipment (pass out R&D Experimental Equipment Testing Report Forms if you have them). If any equipment is damaged in any way, and the Troubleshooter in question is proven to be at fault (quite likely), then Vicious-G will assign an appropriate fine (anywhere from 500-3000 credits - your discretion, as always). 

Once all this is done, tally up every Troubleshooter's treason point total, and execute the buggers who have more than 20. You should also count up commendations and other bonuses to see who gets rewarded, or even promoted, as the case may be. 

Once all this is dealt with, send the poor sods back to their barracks at Troubleshooter HQ. Let them go back to their lounge, and have them resume what they were doing. Ah, such is life.


THE END - FIN - ENDE


Paranoia and The Computer logo are registered trademarks of West End Games
Authors of submitted items are indicated where appropriate
All other text and graphics by Steve Criddle