The World Of Paranoia
Paranoia is set in the near future as imagined by the near past. If you take every
dystopian future Sci-Fi movie from the 70's and 80's and mix them all together, you get
something like the world of Paranoia.
There was a catastrophe, maybe a war. All the survivors had to move into a great
underground city called The Alpha Complex.
Not that you're aware of this, it all happened a long time ago. The present year is year 214 of The Computer.
The Alpha Complex is run and maintained by The Computer. The Computer is perfect. The Computer demands
your loyalty. Trust the Computer, it does not make mistakes. Failure to obey The
Computer is Treason.
In a bureaucracy this big, there are bound to be a few snafus, (crossed wires, missed
shipments, wrongful terminations). When something goes wrong, it was the fault of a
Commie, a Mutant or a Traitor. They could be anywhere. Commies, Mutants and
Traitors are constantly trying to subvert The Computer in many different ways -
interrupting missions, stealing supplies, blinking too frequently. Being a Commie,
Mutant or Traitor is Treasonous. Secrets are Treasonous. Belonging to a Secret
Society (these do not exist) is Treasonous. Treasonous Citizens will be fined,
reassigned, given mandatory bonus detention, lasered, stretched, tortured,
burned and pulped in accordance with the severity of their crime.
In order to keep Citizens loyal and happy, The Computer has prescribed drugs
intended to suppress treasonous urges like sexual attraction, free thought and
unhappiness. Happiness is Mandatory. Every Citizen is happy, androgynous and
To help every loyal Citizen learn and understand reward and punishment, The Computer
has implemented a color-coding scheme that helps each Citizen know at a glance what
items are available at his or her Clearance Level. The Clearance Levels Are (from
lowest to highest): Infrared (Black), Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo,
Violet and Ultraviolet (White). ROYGBIV can help you remember these.
If an item, hallway, document or piece of clothing is painted or colored with a color
above your Clearance level, you had better have the proper forms or face charges of
Treason. If a Citizen of higher clearance gives you instructions, you had better follow
those instructions or risk charges of Treason.
Citizens wear jumpsuits that match their clearance level. These jumpsuits are made of
Reflec, a special kind of armor that protects the citizen from treasonous attacks by
lower-ranked citizens armed with laser pistols. Each troubleshooter (that's you) is
armed with a laser pistol. The pistol consists of a handle (universal) and a barrel. The
barrels are color-coded for your clearance level (they only work against your
clearance Reflec and lower).
The Computer provides 6 Free Clones of each Citizen. If a clone dies, MemoMax
technology is used to upload the previous clone's last memory backup to a fresh clone
(these are usually 5+/- minutes out of date). Every Citizen has a Name, Clearance
Level, Home Sector and Clone Count. A Red clearance Citizen named Alfred, from
Sector EFF, on his second clone, would be designated Alfred-R-EFF-2.
Paranoia has three modes of play - Straight (very serious), Classic (Only a little serious)
and Zap (not serious at all). We will be playing in the Classic style of play.
When you look at your character sheet, you will see a skill listed (like Energy Weapons) with a number next to it (like 13).
If you roll that number or lower, you succeed. The lower you roll, the more successful you
are. If you roll a 20, you have critically and catastrophically failed (this is usually
fatal). For Example, if you want to Shoot Team Leader In The Back you would roll a
die against your Energy Weapons (13). If you rolled a 15, you failed to Shoot Team
Leader In The Back. If you rolled an 8, you succeed and you Shoot Team Leader In
Sometimes you want to take actions that you don't want the other players to know about,
like Shoot Team Leader In The Back. When you want to Shoot Team Leader In
The Back, pm me stating what the action is. Then I will reply telling you
What You Need to do To Shoot Team Leader In The Back.
When do you something funny, clever or brilliant, you will get Perversity Points.
Each point may be spent to alter a single die roll by one.
Say you are trying to Shoot Team Leader In The Back, and you roll a 14 on your Energy Weapons.
You can spend a point to change that 14 to a 13 so that you Kill Team Leader. Alternately, Team Leader can
spend a point to change that 13 back to a 14. Other players may join in the bidding
war, and in this way you can Gang Up On Team Leader to Shoot Team Leader In
If you perform your duties well, you may receive a commendation. The following is a list
of the most common commendable actions: Being extremely happy; Completing a
mission; Completing a mission successfully; Risking your life to serve or rescue a Citizen
of higher clearance, to save Alpha Complex or to serve The Computer; Terminating a
traitor with sufficient evidence; Turning a traitor over to Internal Security; Unctuous
flattery; determining that Your Team Leader Is A Traitor.
If you behave in a manner not fitting a loyal Citizen of the Alpha Complex, you may be
cited for Treason. The following is a list of some treasonous actions: Asking a
question irrelevant to a mission or duty; Asking whether a particular hypothetical
question unrelated to a mission or duty would be considered insubordinate or
treasonous; Being out of uniform or sloppy; Being unhappy; Failure to Get Team
Leader any equipment for which he or she holds the proper forms; Failure to Shoot
The Traitor Before He Gets You; Evading Internal Security or Computer surveillance;
Excessive impoliteness; Failing a hygiene inspection; Being accused of treason; Falsely
accusing a citizen of treason; Arguing with the Game Master; Assaulting a Citizen;
Damaging, destroying, or losing assigned equipment; Demonstrating knowledge of the
PARANOIA rules; Failure to defer to a citizen of higher security clearance; Framing a
citizen of lower clearance; Lying to the Game Master; Failure to respond to the question
"What Are You Waiting For??!?!?"; Possessing unauthorized food, info, or equipment;
Refusal to take a prescribed drug; Theft of equipment, possessions or files, including
filesharing; Threatening the physical or financial safety of another Citizen; Unauthorized
destruction of higher-clearance property; Disobeying an order; Failure to complete a
mission, or failure to file a proper completion report; Refusing to accept a mission;
Suspicion or proof of mutation possession; Confessing to, suspicion of, or proof of secret
society membership; Knowledge of Communist doctrine; Being a Communist;
Terminating a citizen without sufficient evidence; Conspiring to Shoot Team Leader In
The Back; Spitting.
You should Now be able to get a sense of the kind of behavior The Computer expects Before It's Too Late.