I just ran a one-shot of Paranoiafor my main gaming group; session report here.
As you can see, this is the second part of my Paranoia RPG hack. Part 1 can be found this way.
The New Enemy of the State
This may seem like a bold move and possibly even blasphemous for hardcore Paranoia gamers, but I just couldn't see the whole traitor and commie thing having the same impact now as it did in the 20th century.
So, instead of using words like traitor and commie, I used terrorist and communism itself was swapped out for terrorism - especially since Alpha Complex itself is knowingly communist.
The only risk I could see was that terrorism is a very real and extremely scare threat all over the world right now. I didn't want to trivialize it or make the game any more of a downer than it should be (given the dystopian setting). Thankfully, there were no problems. After about 20 minutes, the players took to using "terrorism" and "terrorist" as Alpha Complex vernacular.
Attributes & Skills
Personally, I found all the Paranoia attribute names a little bit silly and redundant way back in the early 90's. Today, Venger's got no time for junk. So, to make things easier, I went with the standard D&D array.
Everyone rolled 1d20 for each score. And I decided to get rid of any modifier, bonus, or penalty based on attributes. All those skills went right out the door, too.
In order to accomplish something, you had to roll a d20 resulting in the relevant score or under. If you roll over, you fail. Want to fire a laser? That's dexterity. Want to punch someone? That's strength. Want to talk your way out of a jam? That's charisma. And so on...
For Health, I gave the players a choice - use whatever you already rolled for constitution or roll again. In future, I'd probably just have them repeat their constitution score rather than an additional, optional roll. After all, with this Paranoia hack, character creation is pretty quick and easy. Why not keep killing clones until they have to generate whole new characters?
I gave the PCs a 2 in 6 chance of having a mutant power, and merely rolled randomly for that mutation. Players rolled another d20 to determine the power level of their mutation. Again, roll that number or below to successfully use it.
Since I love mutants so much, I decided to give the Alpha Complex adventurers at least one chance to acquire a mutation during play.
In last night's game, only 1 out of 5 PCs had a mutant power. 2 out of 6 if you count Daniel having to create a whole new character after burning through his remaining clones.
Here's a list of slogans at the ready. I only remembered to roll on this table once, but that's only because I was busy juggling half-a-dozen unfamiliar balls throughout the scenario.
1. Terrorists are poisoning the purity of Alpha Complex!
2. If you see terrorism happening, shoot it!
3. From each according to his ability, to each according to his needs.
4. Work makes freedom!
5. Total happiness has been obtained!
6. The Computer is your friend.
Weapons & Armor
I didn't get a chance to introduce armor into the equation. Again, I forgot.
For weapons, I used the standard fixed numbers given in the book. While that was fine, I'm wondering if I shouldn't have used a range, like 2d6, instead. The added randomness seems more in keeping with Paranoia.
That's it. Hope you enjoyed my little rule tweaks and setting changes. Thanks for reading/sharing and keep your laser handy!
Authored by Venger Satanis