I want to respond to and expand my thoughts upon a few ideas presented in the thread itself and also from the log of the discussion.
1. - chatter for topside explosions
This is a great idea to let the ambient population react by pulling in a way from other scripts available and we've seen it in action, I think, today. It's a positive outcome from the game and certainly helps since we're low on staff right now.
2. - possible automated NPCvNPC crime for PC judges to respond to
I don't think this would end up a positive addition. I think this works when it's puppeted and for unique situations, but making this automated and frequent events will lead to it becoming repetitive, boring and more of a drain and drag on WJF PCs than anything else. It's exactly what happened when shrouds weren't allowed but there were shrouded NPCs being spawned (which we should now reintroduced!). It's a well-intentioned system, but it's not an engaging system. And often times will interrupt meaningful RP between PCs.
3. - make macguffins take people to more areas, like the badlands & make macguffins status leakable via chatter
First of all, I've been very outspoken in I don't think the current macguffin system works well. I love the concept and the idea of the macguffin system, but more often than not it feels as if it leads to actions mostly being done by in-house corporate PCs. I'd really love if we revisited my suggestion in reworking the corpshare market as a whole which would better integrate the macguffin concept and encourage corporate warfare. You can find my post here: https://www.sindome.org/bgbb/game-discussion/new-game-features/corpshare-stock-market-384/ By crashdown at Mar 15, 2022 12:15 PM
Right now the corpshare is a numbers game and can only be won by three people can it's got very little to do with corporate sabotage. By reducing the quarter length and reducing the prizes individuals get and rather making the majority of a prize (maybe new and unique each month) available to the whole PC roster of a corporation, you're encouraging and enticing every corporation to go after each other by making the pool of players participating with a chance to 'win' bigger.
There ARE IC tools available to find out more about a macguffin and how to take it. You'll have to ask around, but people do know and it isn't to my understanding something you need a GM to intervene with at all. I don't think adding macguffin location to chatter is needed at this point, but rather more people need to utilize these tools first and then maybe if that still isn't working chatter could be something looked at?
4. - PC WJF on Green more often to increase response time
I get the intent here but this is a bandaid and not a fix for the issue. I don't think the issue is WJF response time. I think the issue is people don't often create distractions or ways to impede WJF PCs.
There's a former staff member who once did a walk through on an idea on how to stop/delay the WJF from responding. Right on xooc. The response was lackluster and complaints that it wasn't viable because you'd need a vehicle, while ignoring there are multiple jobs where you can access a free vehicle right away.
NPCS have tried to teach players how to do this and other methods. PCs of all kinds have tried to teach crime-oriented PCs how to do this, either by directly telling them or indirectly doing so with major hint drops.
When you had to xhelp before crime, the complaint was you had to xhelp. Now that you can do some crime topside without xhelping, the reasoning is that the response time is too fast. I've said this before in xooc but it feels in this area the goalposts are always being moved by those who want to commit crimes.
And I'm absolutely 100% understanding it can be frustrating to get caught. But if you're doing a one step crime plan, I think there should be an expectation that it might not go your way. There's so many ways to delay and distraction WJF PCs. You want them on Green so you can commit a crime on Gold? Give them a reason to go to Green. And vice versa. Box them in with blockde. Use means to disrupt or disable their means of transportation, even if only for a few minutes. And yeah sometimes that'll mean spending a little extra money so the distraction is actually real so you can pull off your intended and real crime, real goal.
Also, Reefer touched upon it in the discussion, and I'm thankful. I know I did in the last guided-discussion. But PC vs NPC crime. I get why some people do it but longterm and impactful, it isn't generally engaging. I know there was some people who pushed back against this or the idea of it and world response to it, but I want you to look at it from the other side if it was reversed. Reefer brought up that would gangs respond more if you killed an NPC versus a PC, because it's the same vein. But look at it like this: Corporate security and WJF, especially WJF, can kill Red sector NPCs without a second thought. It'd be very easy to consistently and constantly target Red faction NPCs when there's a reason to hate or seek revenge against those factions or PCs within those factions.
But it doesn't happen often. It's very rare, in fact. Why? Because it isn't engaging for anyone, really. In the moment it is, sure. And in the leadup in the PCs planning to have those NPCs targeted, sure. But for the PCs in the faction/sector of the NPCs being targeted, it isn't engaging afterthefact. Targeting PCs has a lot more emotional impact and doesn't require a GM to be puppeting someone after a death to talk about how upset, angry, etc they are about the fact they died. Or getting their friends angry at you either. PCs can do that at will because they're played by people.
Also Coral brought this up, IIRC, about mentors. Sometimes you have to ask people you think would never, ever actually tell you. You have to warm up to them or have them warm up to you. It might take time. You may have to pay them for the information. You may have to give them a reason to tell you. But sometimes even the people you least likely expect might help you learn to do crime, will help you do crime.
Some might even create fake personas to talk to you about it on the phone when they're making contacts.
I'd like to hear the thoughts of others, from those who were at the discussion and who weren't but wanted to chime in.