Safety Guns

(Steve Criddle)


    The Computer has noticed how many Troubleshooter teams have been wiping themselves out in extreme demonstrations of loyalty. While this is proof that there is obviously a real threat from traitors, The Computer is distressed at how many Troubleshooters are being lost in these firefights.

    The Computer reasons that the problem is obviously being caused by a single traitor in each Troubleshooter team wiping the others out. The chances of having two traitors in a team are beyond even The Computer's processing powers to calculate. The logical solution is to disable all of the team's laser pistols except when they are actually required.

    Note that this is under the PLC section because this equipment is not optional - everybody has to have these. So PLC distribute them instead of R&D.

The Computer's Solution

    When the Troubleshooters enter the briefing room, take all their weapons away from them. Tell them that they will be issued with new pistols when they get to PLC. Let them keep their laser barrels, since they are of no use without the pistols. During the briefing, assign job titles of Team Leader and Deputy Team Leader.

    When the team get to PLC they are issued with new R&D-approved "safety guns". These operate in exactly the same way as normal pistols except that there is a manual override unit. Actually there are two - one for the Team Leader and one for the Deputy. The override unit is like a wristwatch and has two buttons, marked "+" and "-". Each button has a light behind it showing the status of the system. "+" means the guns will work, "-" means they won't.

    Operation is simple. Pressing the "+" button enables all of the pistols to be used. Pressing the "-" button stops them being used. The pistols have no indicator to show what state they are currently in. (If you find the Safety Guns useful, you may like to introduce a status light on the pistols in a subsequent mission).

    Holding down a button effectively jams the weapons in that state and stops the other unit from overriding it. Whoever presses and holds the button first wins. If the players simply press (and release) their buttons then it boils down to who pressed last (eg. the guns are enabled and immediately disabled again).

    Pressing both buttons at once does whatever seems appropriate at the time. Blow all the guns up, or disable them permanently, or make them fire themselves, or make them beep threateningly. It's up to you.

    While the safety guns may help stop the Troubleshooters from lasering each other to death, they won't help much if someone in the team has, say, a flamethrower from R&D. Nor will it help if a clone gets pushed off a ledge. And it certainly won't stop the clones trying to get hold of the control units by whatever means they see fit.

    If you decide to use the Safety Guns in subsequent missions, you might like to make them more common. Other teams (and bands of traitors) may also have them. Just think of the fun you could have if another team's wristband turned your teams weapons on or off when you weren't looking. Or even better, stage a firefight where the team discover that they can stop the opposition from shooting at them by turning the lasers off. (Of course, they will have a problem if they can't use their own lasers either).

    Fun for ALL the family. (All six of them!)

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