Player's Section

(last updated 03-JUL-24)

(Steve Criddle)
    A Troubleshooter got killed by being pushed down an incinerator chute.  His replacement turned up with no memory of what had happened.  The mission continued.

    The player later made the rather unfortunate mistake of saying to a team-mate "Why should I trust you?  You pushed my last clone down the incinerator".  A brief discussion followed, where the clone was asked how he could possibly know that.  This was followed by accusations of mutation and a (brief) firefight.

    The next clone turned up a few minutes later.  The player wasn't impressed.

(Steve Criddle)
    During one memorable firefight, a thrown grenade landed in the grenade box being carried by a Troubleshooter.  Everybody got out of there very quickly.  What they didn't know was the grenade was a dud.  (Yes, GMs do sometimes roll 20s).

    So everybody sat and waited - no boom.  After a while the owner of the box went to investigate.  It was at this point that one of his team-mates (who had telekinesis) decided to pull the pin from another grenade in the box.  There was certainly a boom that time!

    A very good "accidental death" in my opinion.

(Geoff Gander)
    There was this one guy - everyone hated him, so he once went through two entire clone families, and two bots, in one session (yep, that's right, four characters!).  The other players were placing bets on when he'd die next....

 (Geoff Gander)
    Not long after the group had finished "The People's Glorious Revolutionary Adventure", they soon found themselves in another mission - "More Songs About Food Vats", if I recall correctly.  The Troubleshooter team had been assembled (some of whom were holdovers from the previous mission - I tend to keep players alive a little longer) for their briefing.

    After the mission had been outlined, the group was "encouraged" to show its loyalty to the Computer before departing for PLC.  Everyone yelled out "Hail Friend Computer!", except one player, who yelled out "Hail Tovarich Computer!" (the Commie salute), and raised his left hand in salute.

    The others were shocked (including myself!), and, in response to the stares aimed at him, the player asked, innocently, "We're in Russia, aren't we?".  Shock and terror soon set in, as our soon-to-be-executed Troubleshooter began to realize that he had not grasped the idea that the team was no longer in Alpha State, and they were no longer Commies....

(Dan Stonely)
    In our group we had a player who was completely new to roleplaying and Paranoia.  Just about 20% into the mission he was already onto his 5th clone, 2 of these lost during the mission briefing.  I won't go through how he lost all of his clones but just 1 in particular.  After his first 4 clones had died most horribly his 5th one rejoined the mission:

    STUPID TROUBLE SHOOTER:  Right, now I'm angry because you lot have just killed of all my clones and you lot are still on your first clones!
    CUNNING TROUBLE SHOOTER:  How do you know that we killed all your clones?
    STUPID TROUBLE SHOOTER:  I don't know, I must have some sort of psychic connection with them or something!
    STUPID TROUBLE SHOOTER:  Frazzle frazzle *smell of fried trouble shooter*

    Let that be a lesson to all you new commers to Paranoia.

    One of the players, somewhat the junior member and unfamiliar with weapons of mass destruction, inquired to the GM what napalm ammo was.

    Quick as a flash the GM said; "Its a type of jelly."

    Oh, thought the player.  And then he decided it would be amusing to coat one of the other players in jelly, kind of like a custard pie in the face but fired from a slugthrower.

    Then, much to his suprise, the jelly burst into flames (as napalm usually does) toasting the other clone.

    Naturally, he was terminated for murder.  Well, unprovoked murder :)

(Steve Criddle)
    One character (who, rather appropriately, adopted the name Stu-O-PID) was a member of Death Leopard.  His society instructions were to destroy as much equipment as possible, but not to get caught.

    Stu-O-PID took this a little too literally, and figured that "don't get caught" meant he should commit the act in front of an audience and then run like hell (thus avoiding getting caught).  Apparently the idea of not being implicated simply hadn't occurred to him.

    On this particular mission, the team had a tracking device which they had to use to find a Commie radio station.  Stu-O-PID (who had the matter eater mutation) decided it would be fun to eat the tracking device.  Following his swift termination, one of his colleagues discovered some bits of circuit board amongst his remains (complete with incriminating teeth marks).

    The debriefing for this mission was pretty interesting, especially when the evidence was produced.

(Steve Criddle)
    In the same mission there was a second member of Death Leopard.  Neither player knew there was another DL member in the group.  However, this player was smarter than Stu-O-PID.  He managed to be picked as team leader, and was able to get other people to destroy Computer property for him.  For example:  "Fellow team member, we need to get through this locked door.  Please blow it up with your cone rifle."

(Steve Criddle)
    In one mission, we had a brand new player.  Not only had she never played Paranoia before, she had never played any roleplaying game before.  She picked up the idea fairly quickly, but was a bit surprised when the other characters started shooting at each other.  (Which, for some strange reason, wasn't until well into the mission).

    At this point she passed a note to the GM asking "should I trust these people?"

(The Motive)
    The team of Troubleshooters were playing a mission that was published in "Polyhedron" Magazine (I forgot the issue number, sorry). In this mission the Romantics had discovered some Old Reckoning texts and had learned of an event called the "Hol-I-DAY". They had reinstated this old tradition of Hol-I-DAY (obviously named after some famous Old Reckoning citizen), during which citizens would give out gifts that would not explode...for some reason.

    The Troublershooters were to deliver a gift to the nearest Computer node as a sign of their loyalty (the gift ended up being argyle socks). Along the way, one of the players had used a computer terminal to ask for information on this "Hol-I-DAY". This information was classified, and when the player told the Computer that he was only a Red, he was asked to go to the nearest termination center. He did not do this, however.

    Halfway through the adventure, the character turned a corner and walked right into himself. Literally. You see, the Computer had figured that he had killed himself (as asked), and his other clone (#2) had been activated because of this. So, clone #1 figures it's a mutant shapeshifter or something along those lines, and a big firefight ensues. Eventually #1 was terminated because he didn't report to the termination center as asked.

(James Renken)
    I was recently the gamemaster for an Internet Relay Chat session of Paranoia.  I was playing directly out of Alpha Complexities, and when they got to the other side of a large chasm, they discovered that the only door there was of a higher clearance.  Having had some interesting experiences with clearances earlier (i.e. *ZAP!*), they turned to go back, and...oh, dear, the planks have disappeared.  The beams that they were on are still there, though...

    Two (yes, two) of the Troubleshooters decided to slide down the beams.  Twenty feet down, the beam disappears...*SPLAT* Easy kill.

(Kurt Schiller)
    I invented a short method of killing off Troubleshooters. A box, which contains a Cute Furry Pizza Eating Hamster, also contains an object of some importance. The hamster prevented the player from getting the object, since it would bite him or otherwise hurt him. In another box there is a pizza.

    Unbeknownst to the player(s), this is actually a PizzaBomb, and the hamster contains a detonator. When the player(s) gives the pizza to the hamster . . . . . nothing happens. Nothing, that is, until the trouble shooter attempts to leave. Once he gets more than 5 feet away from the hamster (after it has come into contact with the pizza) the bomb goes off. The bomb, naturally, has a 10 foot blast radius. I refer to this as the 'MatterANTITm Hamster' scenario.

(Joshua Moretto)
    In a recent session, where I ran the game for two players, I had them pick up a "tactical situation decision assessment device" from R&D, which for all intents and purposes was a Magic 8-Ball.  It supplied all the standard phrases ("Signs point to Yes", "My sources say No", "Reply Hazy, Ask again Later", etc.) as well as a number of unconventional ones ("My sources say Perhaps", "Signs point to Maybe", "Fnord").  What was truly amazing about this device was that the players LISTENED to it, and consulted it for practically EVERY decision despite its obvious spuriousness.  At one point, one of the players asked the same question twice in a row, having received the reply "Reply Hazy, ask again later" the first time.  Her rationale: it was later.  The ball's reply: "That was rhetorical, you bitch."

    The best part was the fact that I managed to kill each of them TWICE with the same basic trick.  If you're unfamiliar with the old text-based game ZORK, it featured these wonderful creatures called Grues that only existed in the dark.  You'd enter a dark area, it would read "It is pitch black.  You are likely to be eaten by a Grue." and if you didn't get some light, you got eaten.  Well, while wandering down some disused corridors, one of the players came to an unlit section.  She got eaten.  Later, both characters, on the advice of the eight ball, wander down another dark corridor.  One gets eaten, the other flees.  Returning to the start of the corridor, she waits for the next clone, consults the eight ball, and then both of them head right back down the dark corridor and get eaten.  FINALLY they looked at each other and said, "You know, I don't think we should go that way."

(Alex Mora)
    A clone gets trapped in a large crate in the RAD Shipping area, when he finally escapes he finds himself in a strangely colored room filled with bald men in white robes.

    Greetings citizen, Where can I get one of those nifty robes?
    Hey, what color is that anyway?

    CITIZEN, you are in a restricted Area! This zone is class Ultraviolet!
    Your presence in this area constitutes Treason. Report to GOO sector for protein reprocessing!

    Clone: (begins to sweat profusely)
    Uhhh, NO.

    Citizen, Disobeying a high programmer is Treason!
    Treason is punished by death!

    Warbots are being deployed! Remain calm, the computer is your Friend.

    Computer, I cannot have possibly committed treason.
    FACT I am security clearance red.

    That is correct citizen.

    FACT, you just told me that this was an ultraviolet clearance zone.

    That is also correct citizen.

    Clone:  (Speaking quickly)
    FACT, allowing a person of red security clearance into a ultraviolet clearance zone is treasonous. FACT, the computer is the supreme director of Alpha complex and the beloved protector of all citizens THEREFORE responsible for keeping me from entering area's outside my security clearance as well as protecting the security, nay the very existence of Alpha Complex by protection the High programmers by keeping intruders out of ultraviolet areas. the clone takes a huge breath and continues.

    THEREFORE wouldn't YOU guilty of treason?

    The computer cannot commit treason.
    To doubt the computer is treason.

    I agree, the computer is the beloved defender of Alpha complex. The computer is my friend and would never do anything that would cause me to commit treason, THEREFORE I am not in an Ultraviolet zone.

    Primary logic core failure 1:209:144-4

    At my security clearance am I allowed in this location?

    That information is not available at your security clearance citizen.

    Is dispensing information about ultraviolet level security to a red clearance citizen treason?

    Computer:  (a trace of ozone flows from the terminal)
    Secdary lgic cre errr: n data fa:

    So if the Computer cannot commit treason and dispensing information about ultraviolet level security to a red clearance citizen is treason as well as being in an ultraviolet area is treason and this is an ultraviolet area then where am I and how did I get here?

    Secondary Logic Failure!
    A General protection fault has occurred in the module KERNEL.EXE
    A blue screen appears and the whole sector goes black.

    Computer, What is the security clearence of this area?

    Well, this didn't really happen like that in one game.  I usually wind up the one running the game and only rarely do I recieve the joy of a player that devious.  The general idea was kind of reconstructed from various incidents in games I have run/played in.  I actually only pulled this as a player once, I managed to corral the computer into trying to resolve a logical paradox.  The GM ruled that it crashed the local node of the computer logic core and the whole sector crashed.  Including the primary power grid...  and the pumps to the reactor core two levels below the building was in...  and the transport tubes leading out...

(Geoff Gander)
Troubleshooter Ga-R-LIC-1 was busily filling out an Equipment/Weapon/Vehicle Request Form at PLC (ie: a copy of the form you get with the GM screen), and, in reading the questions "Are you going to return this item undamaged?" and "Are you going to return this item?" decided to be a little too honest in his answer.

Instead of just checking off "Yes" or "No", our clever little Troubleshooter drew in a third box for both questions, with the words "Don't Know", and checked it off.  When the angry PLC staffer asked him why he had vandalized valuable Computer property, he merely replied, "I just thought I'd be honest."

As if that wasn't bad enough for the Troubleshooter, he also wrote in the section on the new Bouncy Bubble Beverage that he hadn't tried it because "It sucks".  Well, score 100% for honesty, at any rate....

(Leah Froelich)
I was running a game once where one of the players asked for several tubes of some really strong super glue.  I let him have it and waited to see what he was going to do.  They were on a mission to fix some equipment that had broken down, and which the bots didn't seem able to fix.

In the corridor of the faulty equipment, everyone put down their toolboxes and began to get to work.  The guy that asked for the super glue, glued another troubleshooter's toolbox to the floor.  A cleaning bot would come through the tunnel when a call button was pushed. Anything remaining in the tunnel was dissolved when the cleaning solvent touched it.  This person also knew about the call button, which was right by the exit, and he pushed it.

Everyone but the guy whose toolbox was attached to the floor got out.  He knew that if he left his toolbox there he would be terminated for losing his equipment.  So he was killed anyway.

After the cleaning bot left, the remaining troubleshooters went back in to continue fixing the problem.  He glued another toolbox to the floor and a repeat of the above happened.  Everyone started to get a lot more paranoid at this time.  When they went back in for the third time, he glued several people's feet to the floor, but in his rush to kill the other commie, mutants he got some on his hand too.

When he pushed the button he was stuck to the wall and his clone was killed along with several others.  After that all I could do was laugh when all of the players would request super glue AND super glue solvent at the beginning of any other missions.

They were paranoid about that for a long, long time!

(Magnus Ytterstad)
I was leading the ICK sector mission I found on the web, and the troubleshooters was taken to the sector in this really old  elevator. After the first couple of sessions, half the group was stuck in the elevator two feet above floor level in ICK sector. The elevator doors were stuck half way open when the floor in the elevator suddenly burst into flames (a mutant in the corridor thought this was nice).  The team had no way of getting out of the elevator, and so one clever clone thougth of the foam grenades they had been assigned. He popped a couple on the floor to extinguish the fire, and wham, the clones were even more stuck in a block of concrete. I decided to be nice, and so they were able to make air holes in the foam right before it turned solid.

Meanwhile, another clone, associated with PURGE, and in possession of a tac nuce grenade found the control room of ICK.  He decided to blow it up. He pulled the pin and bolted. Since they had not been able to open any of the steel doors yet, the control room and corridor leading to the elevator shaft was an enclosed space. Where would the explosion go? Well, there was a 2 feet gap underneath the elevator, so the elevator was forced up by the exploding tac nuke...

The troubleshooters in the corridor and control room were killed instantly by the blast, and the poor clones in the elevator (now a solid block of concrete) were forced up through the elevator shaft, through the roof of alfa complex. They got a really nice overview of the outdoors through their air holes, before crashing a couple of miles away...

(Matt Kehl)
I remember a mission I did once where the troubleshooters were sent to the outdoors to find evidence of a commie mutant uprising very near to Alpha Complex. The mission leader decided that visual conformation wasn't enough so when they ran into a tribe of aboriginal pacifists, he grabbed a small child and stuffed it inside his backpack. The only problem, their mission was to destroy the commie mutant menace. I had used an idea for a code 7 adventure out of the Acute Paranoia book and typed up a mission alert where all the letters typed were shifted on the keyboard one to the right (i.e. S was a D, T was a Y , etc.). They had translated half of the mission alert when he got impatient and told them all to get moving. Suffice to say he ended up losing two clones, one for holding treasonous material (the kid) and a second for killing other PC's for shooting the commie mutants (the IntSec trooper told the debriefing officer that the mission leader was trying to stop the mission from being completed and was helping the communist cause). Needless to say after six missions as team leader and nearly getting off scott free every time, (he has a knack for shifting blame) he no longer wanted to be mission leader.

(Philip Storry)
(Note: All names changed to protect the ignorant)

I was GMing a game of Paranoia, and a player got miffed because he'd just been killed by another player (again). The actual method of death had been forcible ejection from an airborne vehicle, leading to roleplaying of falling 2 miles downwards and scattering himself over a large area. Upon the receipt of his next clone, he sent me a note, reading:

"I was pushed - by Aaron"

Aaron being his name.

Naturally, as GM, this is nothing to do with me. What do I care who pushed him? So, I did the only logical thing - I routed the message to the loyalty officer. The loyalty officer showed great interest in it. Firstly, how could the new clone know? Secondly, how could this be proved? He went to the Communications guy, who just handily had captured the whole event on tape.  The new clone was confronted by the Loyalty officer, and terminated for the crime of knowing that his former clone had killed himself - obviously a secret society spy in the group had informed him of this. Much rhetoric was spoken, and the traitorous secret society member was identified and also terminated.

Sadly, the video evidence - which never existed anyway - was wiped by the accidental detonation of an EMP grenade by a clumsy troubleshooter, who was then terminated by the loyalty officer. Who had detonated the EMP grenade with his telekinesis.

One note, badly written, caused much mayhem.

As an aside, the very same guy that "pushed himself out of the transport" had to have a new character generated halfway through the game, as he ran out of clones. The more amusing deaths he suffered were at the hands of an ejector seat as it roared upwards from the vehicle (A helicopter - sliced troubleshooter anyone?), and explosive decompression after he chose to hit the BIG RED BUTTON UNDER THE LOCKED PLASTIGLASS PROTECTIVE COVER. Apparently he thought it was a cunning bluff. He was also executed for killing the rest of his team after he opened fire on the enemy when attacked. Sadly, he neglected to remember that his team was in a very thin corridor, and he was at the back of the column they formed. Still, the experimental fully-automatic napalm cannon worked like a dream, so I posthumously assigned him two loyalty points for doing his duty.

Strangely, Aaron seemed to like being killed this frequently. I had no problem with this - I like it when I can make someone happy without doing much work... ;-)

(T'n'T Nixon)
Whilst running a simple scenario I decided to try out the better living through chemistry ideas, and issued each of the red troubleshooters with bottles of coloured pills. Each character received red pills except for one, who the computer generously gave little green pills. The player, who was only just getting to grips with paranoia, decided to make a big show of how he was obeying the computer by being very flamboyant about taking the pills. he was subsequently shot for having pills above his security clearance. Unfortunately he was on his sixth and final clone at a critical point in the proceedings. So to speed thing up he simply changed the name on the character sheet and his "New" clone strolls up to the party. Whereupon another player remarks how much this new clone looks like a previous commie pill stealing traitor. To which the new clone replies "I'm his brother"..*zap*.

(Jason Baldwin)
I was running a mission with a troubleshooter who had the electroshock mutation. Throughout the first half of the game, he had become pretty adept at using it. He'd casually put his hand on the shoulder of a fellow troubleshooter and, after rolling, would incapacitate him.

Of course, things got ugly later in the game. In the heat of one combat situation, the troubleshooter would grab one player in particular -- his secret society rival -- and indicate to me he wanted to shock him. I'd tell him to roll, and he'd get a 20. His power backfired, and knocked his smouldering body to the floor, unconcsious and incapacitated. When he was revived, he went right for his rival again, and did the same thing: grabbed him on the shoulders and rolled. He got a 20 again. Same results. After the THIRD time this happened, the rest of the team determined the RIVAL was a mutant with electroshock power, rather than the first troubleshooter who REALLY had the ability. Sadly, that didn't matter to the first troubleshooter because the third time his power backfired ultimately killed him. 

(Jason Baldwin)
I was running "The Iceman Returneth" for a group of four players. It was late in the game, and each of the players' secret societies had contacted them with URGENT orders to apprehend the high programmer they had thawed out AND, most importantly, a box of computer discs he had with him. They were told above all to get the discs at all costs. So, after staring at each other for a few seconds they each, as casually as possible, tried to get the discs from the programmer. Player 1, a polymorph, was successful by just knocking the programmer to the floor and grabbing the discs from him. Player 2, the team leader, had a good idea of what just happened,  drew his laser and ordered Player 1 to "hand them over."

"Hand WHAT over," Player 1 asked.

"Whatever's behind your back," Player 2 said.

"I don't have anything back there."

By this time, Player 3 stood alongside Player 1, while Player 4 was with Player 2. Neither had drawn their lasers. However, Player 3 had replaced his RED laser barrel with an ULTRAVIOLET laser barrel, spraypainted red.

"Let me see your hands," Player 2 ordered. Player 1, smiling large, brought his right hand around from behind his back, palm open. His left remained behind his back, holding the discs. "Let me see the other hand, too," Player 2 said, growing ever more frustrated. Player 1 put his right behind his back and brought the left around, palm open. "LET ME SEE THEM BOTH," Player 2 said. At this point, Player One used his power, created a pouch on his back and dropped the box in there. Player 2 was dumbstruck.

"Can he do that," he wrote in a note to me. I just nodded.

Player 3 then reached over and patted Player 1 on the back, only to discover the pouch. His eyes went wide and then he smiled big as well, realizing what was going on. He drew his laser and pointed it at Player 2. Player 4, the loyalty officer, drew his laser as well and pointed it at Player 3, in an effort to protect the team leader. Alliances had been formed. 

Player 2, being smart, turned to the programmer and asked if he was missing anything. The programmer confirmed he was in fact missing a small box.

"Give me the box you took from him," Player 2 told Player 1.

Now, this is where it gets dicey. Player 1 reached behind his back and made ANOTHER power roll in an attempt to shape his hand into a replica of the box that could be detached. I explained to him that he could on two conditions:

  1. That he needs to get the "box" back quickly after detaching it or he will be without a hand for the rest of his clone life.

  3. That he absolutely needed to roll a one to do it. 
He rolled a one.

And then he GLADLY handed the "box" over to Player 2 and Player 4. The duo ran off quickly, and once out of sight of their rivals, Player 2 shot Player 4 square in the head and killed him. So much for alliances.

And then the box turned back into a hand. Player 2 failed his subsequent sanity check (after all he was holding a box that just turned into a hand that was wiggling around like crazy) and Player 1 came around the corner, quickly retrieving his hand. Player 3 quickly dispatched of the now-insane Player 2. For his loyalty, Player 1 dismembered Player 3 with a force sword and got the discs to his secret society.

(Andrew Blatch)
I GM'ed "Vapours Don't Shoot Back" with some guys at college.  One of the players had been informed by his secret society (PSION) that the group contained another PSION.  This player was a bit trusting and passed a note to another player with the, rather straight talking if somewhatdumb, question " Are you my Psion friend?"  The recieving player was 100% more nefarious, and replied on the same sheet of paper "Yes". First player took this at face value and was shocked, angry and confused as to who ratted on him to the Computer.

Vapours don't shoot back.

(John Spann)
In Paranoia, the Computer generously handed out a 6 pack of BBB. Now I have the Compleat Troubleshooter, and I made sure everyone read their MBD description.
The Equipment Guy was tired of the Hygene officer offing him, or trying to perform an SCS on him, so he insisted on "Checking" his BBB can for an EEC (Emergency Equipment Check). Shook it real good to "check" it. So he hands it back to the Hygene Officer, who turns to the Team Leader and offers to give him his BBB. The Leader said "Sure!" He wasn't paying attention. So the can went 'Bwoosh' all over him, the Hygene Officer terminated him for being covered in BBB,  the Team Leader dropped his can, GM rolled a 20.

So it exploded on the Loyalty officer. Who was promptly terminated by the Equipment Guy, for misuse of equipment. Who fell on the Equipment Guy. Who promptly terminated the Hygene officer before he finished the "SC... zap!" So the Equipment Guy whips out his Hygene kit, before the HO could show back up.
So that a 3 body count, over two cans of BBB.

(Mike Kubat
Way back in '85 I was GM-ing a group of friends on their first mission.  They were all D&D veterans, so they got right into it once the game started.  At one point, two of my players accidentally locked themselves inside an immobile hovercar.  Realizing that they couldn't open the doors to get out, one of them decided to blast the doors open with a grenade.  No sooner were the words out of his mouth when he realized the sheer stupidity of such an action, as did his cohort who shrieked, "You're going to blow us both up!".  The other player begged for me to let him throw the 'stupid' player on top of the grenade, hoping to somehow shield the effects of the blast.  I let him roll for it.

Suffice it to say, they were both incinerated.

On a positive note, the 'stupid' player had a Secret Society mission to kill the other player, so, in a roundabout way, he made the ultimate sacrifice and accomplished the task.  I awarded him accordingly...

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