The following backgrounds are inspired by characters from many sources, films, novels, and especially the stories of William Gibson. They are typical of the type of people that the Japanese zaibatsu recruit from the Street to carry out their illegal operations. They each have an automatic skill. Team-members should select different concepts to ensure that their team has a wide range of skills and equipment. Alternatively, select any six skills but take no initial equipment.


BURAKUMIN (Street Gangster)
A burakumin is a streetpunk, a tough and nasty gang-boy with a loyal gang following. As a senior member of the street gang he can call on their violent and criminal services once per game. The gang may be intelligent and sophisticated, or nasty, tough and brutal. Obviously the gang will not recklessly endanger itself unless there is a great reward at the end of it. The gang has a bond, and the player character is a

part of that strong bond. SKILL: Bujutsu. GEAR: Three Bujutsu weapons.

The illegal sale of replicants (clones without memories or identities) is the business of the clone cop who tracks down replicants and terminates them. He tries to locate the buyer, the seller and the manufacturer. He uses a Voigt-Kampff Machine (like a lie detector) to test suspects, as well as his own judgement. He is a good investigator, and has been recruited by the zaibatsu because of his skills. If a genetics corporation, then he has been bought-out by the 'bad-guys'. SKILL: Body Language. GEAR: Voigt-Kampff Empathy Machine (VK Machine).

You are a rebellious college drop-out. Maybe you were kicked out.

Like most anime heroes, you are quite brilliant, if a little hung-up sexually, but you know all the gangs, the streets, and you are a talented whizz-kid in your particular field. You are not afraid of the bad guys, in fact you may treat everything as a big game! SKILL: Cyberspace, and a suitable technical subject. GEAR: Amstrad C-22 Cyberdeck with two pieces of software (not Icebreakers).

You are a slick and smooth con-man who sets up scams, infiltrates

organizations and uses his different IDs to steal, blackmail, kidnap and almost any other crime involving deception and infiltration. SKILL: Deceive. GEAR: Disguise Kit.

You are a loser, a street-corner hustler, drugs dealer and fixer who never quite makes the big score. You know anyone who's anyone in your neighbourhood, and you are on good terms with the local Yakuza: you have to be. You're smart, cool and ready for action. Watch out Tokyo!

SKILL: Deceive. GEAR: ¥20,000 worth of designer drugs.

The investigator may work for the police, an international force, a large company, a two-man office in downtown Tokyo, or a one-man outfit struggling to survive. He can dig through datafiles and question people in order to find information pertenant to a case. SKILL:

Com-Tech. GEAR: Bug Unit and Three Bugs.

KURUMA (Getaway Driver)
You are a professional driver, for a zaibatsu, the cops, the Yakuza or whoever. You know the city, escape routes, and the fastest ways from A to B. You are an expert in evasive or pursuit driving and have been in real scrapes and firefights, but always kept cool, despite the vehicle being full of bullet holes! You could also be a courier for the Yakuza or other gangs, shipping illegal items around Tokyo. SKILL: Stunt Drive. GEAR: Lightly Armoured Sedan Car.

A student of a martial arts school, you are a committed devotee, devoting mind, body and life to the pursuit of excellence. You probably care little for material things and have had to work humble jobs to pay for your own upkeep. SKILL: Chambara and at least one Martial Art skill.

GEAR: None.

You are a tough cop always on the edge of suspension for excessive use of force, improper procedures etc, yet you always seem to succeed enough to ward off the suits from the legal department. You have had lots of partners who were killed. SKILL: Willpower. GEAR:

Concealable Kevlar Vest.

NINJA (High-tech Burglar)
You are a security expert, knowledgeable about burgalry, intrusion, deception, disguise and surveillance. A super spy. You may work freelance, or be a veteran of a zaibatsu who has left the company behind him. SKILL: Counter-Security. GEAR: Cardlock Decryptor.

You were part of a criminal gang that made its money kidnapping people and surgically dismembering them. Their organs, eyes, arms, hands, genitalia and other body parts were then sold to the many underworld body banks around Japan that supply the organs to legitimate hospitals and clinics. The job is grim and dark, involving kidnapping, killing and surgery (or butchery). SKILL: Meditech. GEAR: Riotgun or Bullpup.

You are a technical wizard, always taking things apart and putting them back together again. You keep all kinds of junk in case you can modify it or use it to customize something else. Pirates are technological scavengers, obsessed experts, hoarders of new equipment and tech as well as brilliant and resourceful engineers. Technology allows a pirate to adapt a piece of technology for a different purpose to that intended. New gadgets, technical sabotage or just plain repairs are your hallmarks, either college learned, self-taught, zaibatsu trained, or ex-military. SKILL: Technology. GEAR: Multi-Purpose Tool Kit and workshop.

You are an agent working for a genetics company that reposseses failed clones. Clone insurance gives the wealthy the chance to live again in young bodies, but the treatment is still experimental and there are many problems. All the clients require confidentiality, and the zaibatsu cannot afford its mistakes to be made public. Perhaps they got two minds mixed up, or the client died in an unusual place and his head needs to be returned to the zaibatsu so the mind can be scanned into the new clone. You know all about the clone business. SKILL: Meditech.

GEAR: Riotgun or Riot Pistol.

You are a bomb expert who puts his talents toward overthrowing the system, you are a religious, left wing, or right wing fanatic. Or you might be an extortionist who has been part of a gang trying to get money out of the government or the zaibatsu. SKILL: Demolitions. GEAR: Two Limpet Mines.

SAMURAI (Bodyguard)
You are a professional bodyguard, skilled in escort and protection duties, probably for a zaibatsu. You can work as a team-member or alone, can react quickly, and you are able to spot trouble before it opens fire on you! SKILL: Awareness. GEAR: Concealable Kevlar Jacket.

SARARIMAN (Corporate Troubleshooter)
You are pure sleaze, a real smooth operator. Slick and well-polished, you can arrange deals, set-ups and a wide variety of other tasks. You have contacts, and are able to predict future trends and cater for them. SKILL: Zaibatsu. GEAR: Amstrad C-22 Cyberdeck and two pieces of software (not Icebreakers).

SOFTWARE JOCKEY (Computer Hacker)
You are a freelance hacker and data pirate, raiding rich zaibatsu

computer systems and selling your gains on to elements in the underworld. Alternatively, you could be working for a zaibatsu as a systems operator, or be an eraser, specialising in erasing identities and creating new ones. This last occupation is a risky one, including bodyguard work and plenty of street action! SKILL: Cyberspace. GEAR: Toshiba Paraline 3030 Cyberdeck with two Grade Three Icebreakers and one Grade Five.

Ex-military elite soldier, commando or counter-terrorist agent. You might have been kicked out, retired from the service or left in a fit of dissillusionment. SKILL: Heavy Weapons or Demolitions. GEAR: Two LAWs or two Limpet Mines.

You are an unlicensed street doctor, selling drugs, organs and treatments illegally. You work for criminal elements operating on gunshot wounds or overdoses, retrogenic treatments stolen from the zaibatsu or special chemicals. You might have once been respectable. SKILL: Meditech. GEAR: ¥20,000 worth of designer drugs.

YAKUZA (Gangster)
You are an underworld enforcer for the Yakuza (Japanese Mafia), a

thug, bodyguard and street soldier led by your "oyabun", or godfather. You are tough, vicious and very, very nasty. SKILL: Yakuza. GEAR: Autopistol, Riot Pistol, Riotgun, Bullpup, Laser, Dragon, or Flamer.

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