Master Mines

We’re digging RPGs

Decommissioned: 5 Reasons to Expire

The idealized D-Com game that resides in my head is a satire of corporate life. It’s a sci-fi take on the mundane day-to-day, the dehumanizing jargon of Big Business, the repetitious mind-numbingness of the whole cubicle existence (hey… don’t you analyze me, suckah).

Here are five Goals I see players choosing for their PCs to pursue when they escape the Compound.

1. Online Connections
While Battlebots are in Sleep Mode between Missions, they spend their hours cruising The Grid, posting up info about their most recent missions, watching trids and chatting with other Bots. While The Corporations don’t ascribe gender to Battlebots, invariably, companionship and issues of gender arise. This B-Bot has found a love online and will risk it all to find them. Will it be requited? Does the object of affection even exist?

2. Got a Better Offer (aka The Headhunter Strikes)
On the back channels of the grid, a headhunter contacted this Battlebot and offered a retirement package for secrets. The Battlebot wishes to escape The Compound to join the competitor (who has promised freedom for those secrets). Is there freedom at the other end? What form would it take?

3. I’m Taking Them Down Myself
The Tech Masters have belittled this Battlebot or marginalized or mocked it one too many times. This Battlebot has decided that no matter what, the Tech Masters will pay with their lives in a blazing ball of fury. Hoo-ah!

4. Whistleblower
The Battlebot has seen the Corporation doing something awful. It has heard of human news organizations that tell the truth and decided to leave The Compound and tell them of the Parent Company’s wrongdoings. But are the news corps just another purchased entity?

5. I Draw the Line Here!
The latest mission for this Battlebot was too much. Either they were ordered to kill some humans (a violation of Asimov’s Laws or some such) or some petty Tech Master wanted to do harm to The Corporation. this Battlebot decided to disobey orders and now is fighting to survive to report this to its superiors.


What do you think about these potential goals?  Are they compelling?  Do they spark more ideas?


April 18, 2008 - Posted by | D-Com


  1. I like these quite a bit. Are they going to be a choice made at character creation? Will they have mechanical effects?

    Comment by robertbohl | April 20, 2008 | Reply

  2. Thanks, Rob.

    These choices are made at character creation. With only two stats and the time mechanic, I have not currently created a mechanical effect related to the goal. Right now, it drives the story and determines when the PC has accomplished what they said they’d do at the outset.

    Do you have any thoughts on how to incorporate it into the mechanics?

    Comment by orklord | April 20, 2008 | Reply

  3. I think doing that would make it an even more exciting decision to make.

    Perhaps you could provide a bonus to acting in certain circumstances. Maybe it counts as a Fuzzy Logic boost out of the gate with respect to certain areas of conflict? At first glance:

    Online Connections boosts when you are dealing with other liberated B-Bots.

    Got a Better Offer boosts when you deal with corporate forces other than those that own you.

    I’m Taking Them Down Myself boosts when you attack agents of your company.

    Whistleblower boosts when you deal with non-corporate though non-B-Bot people (civilians).

    I Draw the Line Here! boosts in resisting social pressure/programming intrusions.

    Comment by robertbohl | April 20, 2008 | Reply

  4. Rob, I dig these ideas, they are a nice simple way to incorporate mecahnics to the goals without creating new stats.

    Comment by orklord | April 20, 2008 | Reply

  5. Awesome! I’m glad they’re helpful.

    Comment by robertbohl | April 20, 2008 | Reply

  6. I like Got a Better Offer so much. It seems very inline with the setting.

    That’s all. Just wanted to give you an attaboy.

    Comment by commondialog | April 23, 2008 | Reply

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