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Social Engineering based game play

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After attending a recent workshop on corporate security, I’ve been wondering about how best to incorporate Social Engineering into a cyber punk\Mega corp game. For those that don’t know what social engineering is then I’ll give an example scenario. You want to gain access to Mega Corp head offices, the front doors have the latest biometrics scanners and locks that utilize time based encrypted security codes, in addition to hidden multi spectrum cameras, and armed guards on the inside. Of course none of that matters as you just put on a nice suit, and stood outside talking on your cell phone while holding a cup of coffee and followed an employee in who nice enough to hold the door open for you at 9am. Now what I’m trying to figure out is how to incorporate a rules based approach that lets the player overcome obstacles using social engineering. Utilizing skills, gear and props, situational factors. What factors do you feel would be needed to make social game play fun and effective? Would you want helper skills to make it easier? Like a sense ability that provides you info on the persons reactions, personality, and interests? So, it would tell you that the person you are trying to get on the good side of is a football fan; you could then use that to your advantage by increasing your football knowledge. Thoughts?

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What about the idea of gambits or "special moves" that have EXTREMELY long recharge times and very flavorful names? You could, for instance, have the "Lost Puppy Routine" which gives you a set of conversations options which make you look pathetic / sympathetic so that bleeding hearts will help you. Or you might (stealing from Eraser) have "The Ol' Foaming At The Mouth Antacid Trick" which makes you look like you need immediate medical attention.

These could then be paired with types of characters that enter and exit the building or non-secure environs (like nearby coffee shops or parking structures). Characters could have 3 or 4 icons associated with them, things like mean faces or a heart weeping tears, which indicate their disposition. If characters travel in groups or solo the gameplay would be identifying the type of character your move would work on and then spatially positioning yourself so that you can intercept them with the move without another character with hostile icons interfering. For instance, let's say that the the puppy routine will work on a naive character, but she always meets up with another character with a high BS detector before going into the back entrance of a facility. The second character will disrupt your action, so you want to do whatever your gameplay allows to prevent them from meeting. Maybe you assassinate the wiser character, or hack the traffic grid to delay him. Point is, if you're successful you simply get a fast result of your actions with flavor text describing why you're now in a location you normally could not reach.

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