Twenty Questions, Revisited

They say the Devil’s in the details – and here you are in Hell’s Kitchen…

OK, Gang – for some of you this is a simple review. For others this is an incredible wall of text – but it outlines the level of character detail that you will encounter in this campaign, so you might want to take a closer look. It also helps you plumb some depths of your character that you might not have thought about before – and that’s not a bad thing. There are hidden benefits for you (and the rest of your team!) in answering these questions – so give it a few moments of your attention, right?

Attention: These questions should be answered in your character’s data file – not in these Forums. (I suggested HeroLab for a reason…)

  1. What is your characters Sex? Is it obvious?
  2. What is your characters physical size?
  3. What is the color of your characters Hair, eyes, and skin?
  4. What is your character’s general appearance (i.e., How does he dress, etc.)?
  5. Where was your character born (City, State, Hospital Name)? Do they even know?
  6. What is your characters date of birth?
  7. What was your character’s family life like?
  8. Has your character begun his/her/its own family?
  9. Where or how was your character educated?
  10. Has your character ever done anything else for a living?
  11. What are your characters beliefs on church and state?
  12. Describe your characters Moral code. Include how mercenary he/she/it is, whether or not he/she/it will kill innocents, etc.
  13. Does your character have any goals? What are they?
  14. Why does your character run the shadows? (Why does he/she/it run the shadows still, rather than getting a “real” job?)
  15. What kind of personality does your character have? (This should not necessarily be obviously stated in the background, as it is more important for actually playing the character, but it may color or add mood to their history…)
  16. What special qualities does your character possess? (This does not refer to skills, but rather at other things, such as How he/she/it gets along with other people, does he/she/it plan ahead, etc.)
  17. Are there certain things that your character can’t or won’t do? Why or why not?
  18. What things, people, or ideas does your character love?
  19. What things, people, or ideas does your character hate?
  20. What is your character’s name(s)? (Give both full birth name, as well as nicknames, street names, etc.)
  21. Determine what your character used to do, before becoming a ShadowRunner (very important). Tell me about it – jot a few notes down about it for me.)
  22. Decide why your character left his/her/its old job, if he had one. (Also important.)
  23. Come up with a reason for why your character became a ShadowRunner. (This very often will tie in with the previous question. This is not the same as question #14, but rather why he/she/it started running the shadows originally. What led him/her/it to it?)
  24. How did your character come to know his or her contacts? Contacts are an important part of ShadowRun: you must decide how and why you know them.
  25. Does your character have a SIN? Does your character actually use it? Or is your character one of the SINless masses? (This may be affected by your characters previous employment history…)
  26. Is your character a full-time ShadowRunner? Or does your character lead a Batman-like double existence?
  27. Which person(s) or group(s) does your character love the most?
  28. Which person(s) or group(s) does your character hate the most?
  29. Which person(s) or group(s) does your character respect the most?
  30. Which person(s) or group(s) does your character fear the most?
  31. What is your character’s favorite color?
  32. What is your character’s favorite food and/or drink?
  33. What place would your charatcer most like to visit?
  34. Which person(s) or group(s) is/are your character most loyal to?
  35. What pastime (that you participate in regularly) gives your character the most enjoyment? (WARNING: Answering Sex for this question can and will result in penalties to your character! Watch your step: you have been warned!)
  36. What pastime (that your character participates in regularly) gives your character the least enjoyment?
  37. What annoys your character the most?
  38. What (if any) is your character’s favorite form of art?
  39. What is your character’s greatest goal?
  40. What do you think is your character’s best quality?
  41. What do you think is your character’s worst quality?
  42. What is the most important thing your character has ever done?
  43. Which religion (if any) does your character follow?
  44. What is your character’s most treasured possession (and why)?
  45. What are your character’s three most common dreams?
  46. What is your character’s current relationship with his/her/its family?
  47. If your character’s family is still alive, what do they do, and where do they live?
  48. Does your character have a good luck charm? What is it, and why?
  49. What type of music does your character like?
  50. List any past serious relationships that your character has had, and give a brief overview of the relationship.
  51. Where does your character live? Why does he live there? [Hint: Google Maps is going to be your best friend on this one…]

Answering these questions gives you a shot at additional build points. I used to reward them on a 1-for-1 basis, back when there were only 20 questions. (How many versions of ShadowRun ago was that?) I have since encountered munchkins who saw this as a convenient exploit, and since the number of questions has increased to some 260% I have re-aligned and pro-rated list to provide a maximum 20 build point bonus. Duplicate and/or vague/non-sequitur answers do not count. The munchkin who answered “I don’t know.” to each and every question and then argued that they had all been answered was rewarded with a [negative] 25-point Quality “Amnesia”, with all the rights, duties, and responsibilities thereof. As always I — not your ShadowRun Manual (nor HeroLab) — am the final arbiter.

For you Math Nerds:

Every 2.6 completed questions results in a single additional build point awarded. Of course, you’ve probably already figured that out, so why am I taking the time to post this note?

Twenty Questions, Revisited

The Shadows from Hell's Kitchen The_Mad_Dungeon_Master