Running Hot

Patrick Rose

In the near future, Britain is facing economic ruin. Following the success of the “Megacorp” experiment in the United States they attempt to do the same – they offer several multi-billion corporations the chance to buy a large part of the British landscape and create their own city state, where they can make their own laws if they wish.

Running Hot logo. Text reads 'Running Hot, a pre-Cyberpunk megagame by Patrick Rose


  1. Background
    1. What's the background
      1. Welcome to Procatorion
    2. Rules
    3. What do I need to focus on?
  2. Turn structure
    1. Setup Phase
      1. Job Postings
      2. Reconnaissance
    2. Action Phase
    3. Team Time
      1. Corporate Players
      2. Runners
      3. Other Variables
  3. Sub-games
    1. Council
      1. Establishing the Agenda
      2. Voting
      3. Custom Agendas
      4. Amending Agendas
    1. Research
      1. Earning research
      2. Spending Research Points
      3. Deck Customisation
      4. Custom Technologies
      5. Sharing research points / Technologies
      6. Copying / Stealing / Destroying Technologies
      7. Split Technologies
    1. Facility Defence
      1. Facility Types
      2. Protection Cards
      3. Buying Cards
      4. Installing Protection Cards
      5. Directing Security
    1. Runs
      1. Facility Choice
      2. Run Steps
      3. Successful Runs
      4. Timing
    1. Other Runner actions
      1. Mercenary work
      2. Contract work
      3. Recovery Actions
  4. Acknowledgements
  5. Glossary


This section gives a brief description of the general setting for Running Hot. For more information, please see the general lore description. This section is kept brief so that players who don’t have time to read the full lore have a vague idea at least as to what’s going on!

What’s the background?

Running Hot is a “pre-cyberpunk” megagame. Players will play either the corporations who are trying to make money and further their political agendas or the runners who are the deniable resources that the corporations may use to achieve said resources. This game takes a slightly different tack to most cyberpunk settings, in that the game will explore the beginning of the dystopia that is to be expected of the setting.

Welcome to Procatorion

In the far future, the economy of Britain is struggling. Government debt is at an all time high with no end in sight, GDP has tanked and unemployment has skyrocketed. Five years earlier, the United States of America suddenly had resurgence of their economic prowess from a similar situation which they attribute to the “Megacorp” experiment.

Several corporations paid a significant sum of money to the United State government to buy a parcel of land to create their own microstate inside Kansas called Pacital. Under international law, the state was treated as an extension of the USA but domestically they are treated separately - they have their own laws and their own government. Amenities and municipal works are controlled by the corporations.

Within 12 months the American economy recovered to a staggering degree - the ability for the corporations to write their own laws gave them considerable leeway to create new technologies and further their own global agendas. A significant proportion of the latest consumer goods have come from the Pacital.

But such unbridled capitalism comes at a cost. Rumours of illegal research, a cold uncaring state that chokes out all but the very rich from a fulfilling life and a constant threat of violence are whispered on the international stage. The Council of Pacital denies such rumours, though any attempts from global agencies to investigate (or infiltrate) have lead nowhere.

Britain is desperate. Against much internal pressure, it passed the “Megacorp Act” 6 months ago and 4 corporations paid a significant sum of money to buy several thousand square miles near Sheffield. Running Hot begins 6 months after the act is passed in Parliament. It is the opening day of the new state called “Procatorion” and the dawn of a new era in British history. Whether this will be a success or not is up to you.


As with many megagames, in this game there are some relatively simple rules that provide some framework and give players some universal expectations about the nature of how to play – but these are not the totality of the game.

As part of the simulation, players have the freedom to suggest actions to Control that are not obviously covered by the game rules. If reasonable, Control will typically give you the opportunity to do/try it at some cost and/or risk of failure. Player ingenuity that grows outside of this rulebook is not only anticipated, but very much encouraged!

Keep in mind however that while there is this flexibility in how you play the game this is not a game where “anything goes”. Random acts, doing things “just for laughs” or “just because you can” are really not in the spirit of the game. This kind of behaviour will have the same impact that it would have in the real world. Be careful – every action has reactions and (unintended) consequences.

What do I need to focus on?

This rulebook is separated out into several sections, some of which will be more relevant to some roles than others. Depending on the role you have, you should make sure you’re familiar with the relevant sections:

Corp CEO

You should read:

Corp Security

You should read:

Corp Research

You should read:


You should read:


You should read:

Other roles

You should read:

  • Turn Structure
  • Any of their special rules that were included your briefing

Turn Structure

Turns for Running Hot have three phases.

Setup (15 minutes)
This phase is the chance for players to do any setup that they need to do. Corporate players may also provide jobs for runners, by posting them on the official jobs board or by direct contact with the runners in question.
Action (15 minutes)
This phase is the chance for players to act out their machinations.
Team Time (5 minutes)
This is a chance for you to catch up with the rest of your team and discuss any future strategies that you may need to enact following the events of the previous turn. Any upkeep that is required will also be run by control.

Setup Phase

The Setup Phase is designed to allow players to prepare for the upcoming action phase. During this time players will buy equipment or prepare for any runs that are upcoming.

The council will meet to discuss any new laws that have been proposed.
You may buy and install protections for your various facilities.
You may discuss and trade with other researchers. You may also cash in any research points (see page 36).
You may buy equipment, either from the market or from other players.
Job Postings

This is also an opportunity for runners to pick up work. Any Corporate player can publish a job on the jobs board to request a runner and any runner may make contact with a Corporate player to receive further information about the run that they’ve posted. Players may skip the job posting step if they have a specific contact they wish to pursue.

To place a job posting on the board, a Corporate player should inform Control (either by a direct message or in your specific team channel). A job posting will contain the following information:

The character that has requested the job
The amount that the Corporation is willing to pay
Job description
A description of the job. The amount of detail is up to player discretion.
Turn placed
The turn that the job was posted

Control will place the information in the Job Posting channel. Runners may then make contact with the Corporate player in question to request further details and accept the job.

The Job Posting channel is intentionally hidden from Corporations. Information on jobs that have been posted are visible only to runners, though runners may pass the information to Corporate players (but this cannot be in the form of a screenshot).

Control will remove jobs during Team Time of the turn after the job was posted - if the job in question should be treated as still active, inform Control and they will update the “Turn placed” information. If possible, Corporate players should ask Control to remove jobs from the jobs board once they are no longer relevant.


Players with the “Reconnaissance” ability may also do recon work during the setup phase to investigate a facility or Corporation. Their ability will specify any additional costs that need to be paid and how to perform the action. The basic types of reconnaissance are:

Facility protection
You pick a facility. If your reconnaissance action is a success, you may look at a number of protection cards as specified by the ability
Facility contents
You pick a facility. If your reconnaissance action is a success, you may look at a number of technology cards installed in the facility and receive a “Technology Location” card for any technologies you access.
You specify a Corporation and a technology. If your reconnaissance action is a success you are told which facility that technology is stored in and receive a “Technology Location” card (less powerful reconnaissance actions will give a selection of facilities).

Performing a reconnaissance action is also risky - if you don’t take care while investigating a facility then you might find that the relevant Security player has been informed about the breach and thus taken actions to make your information outdated. On the other hand, you might find that it’s much easier for you to hit your real target if Security think you’re going for something else.

Action Phase

The council will vote on the turn’s laws (page XX)
They will fend off any incursions from Runners (page XX)
The researchers will play the research game (page XX)
Runners will attempt to steal from Corporations (page XX) or take on other work (page XX)

The sub games are explained in more detail in chapter 3.

Team Time

Team time is the chance for Control to catch up and update the various resource trackers. During this time, allplayers must return to their team channels and remain there until the end of the phase. Control will do different things for different players.

Corporate Players

Control will update the following variables for each Corporation in turn. They will also inform you of any commands or feedback from your board of directors.


Your Income is based in part on your stock price, which will hopefully rise as the game continues. Your stock price can rise for all sorts of reasons, for example:

  • You successfully negotiated a contract with the UK government to supply the civil service with androids to man the phone lines.
  • You have recently started selling a new line of security systems.
  • You have begun a propaganda publicity campaign to highlight the good that your company does.

Of course, your Income could fall if bad things start happening to your company - perhaps you built the androids cheaply to maximise your profits leading to the government utilising a penalty clause in the contract to cancel the rest of the order and buy from a competitor, or your stock certificates have been stolen from your Corporate facilities.

As would be expected, the more Income you have, the more money you will receive each turn. After Income is updated, your team’s spreadsheet will be updated with the money for the turn.

A Corporation’s Income is considered to be Public knowledge as it is directly linked to your stock price, but your current assets - including the amount of money your Corporation has - are considered Secret.

As your Income is linked to your stock price, keep in mind that your stock price is heavily influenced by your general reputation - the stories run by the press may have a small impact on your Income.

Political Will

Political Will represents how much your Corporation is trusted and respected by the council members that are not represented by players. The more Political Will you have, the more sway you have in council decisions. Similar to Income, Political Will rises and falls based on your actions. For example:

  • You create a strategic partnership with another Corporation, where you provide the software and they provide the hardware for a new series of military bots.
  • You agree to move out of a certain market in return for another Corporation moving out of a different one.

Keeping your word is its own currency. Reneging on deals that have been made just because they weren't officially binding will lead to you having a reputation for being untrustworthy, whereas keeping your word will foster cooperation.

There is a difference between trustworthiness and being a pushover - having a strict stance in negotiations to protect your bottom line is to be expected and will not be penalised (indeed, not doing so would be looked down on by your board).

Press may also have an effect on your Political Will - if they continually run stories about you being untrustworthy, don’t be surprised to see this drop!


Control will update the following variables for you. They will also inform you of any of the goings on in Procatorion that you need to be aware of.

Gang Notoriety

Each runner is affiliated with a gang. The more Notoriety your gang has, the more people know who you are and respect you. As members of your gang successfully complete runs or perform other actions, the Notoriety of your gang will go up.

Although being known for completing runs is the main way for your Notoriety to increase, other actions could have a positive impact on your Notoriety:

  • You prevent “law enforcement” from extorting some local businesses
  • You scavenge some parts during a run and build some new technology that you can use on future runs

Being in a well-known gang may confer certain benefits, as dictated by Control when the time calls for it. If you believe that your Notoriety should have an effect on a certain interaction, make the case with Control.

Press players also have a significant impact on Notoriety - if the press are giving lots of good stories about you or your gang, then you can expect your Notoriety to rise. Likewise, if they consistently run bad stories then your Notoriety will fall. For example:

  • The Business Times running a story about how your gang has caused major havoc for one of the Corporations, increasing your Notoriety.
  • Th3 Undergr0und runs a story about how everyone in your gang left another one in the lurch, decreasing your Notoriety.
Wounds and Tags

During Team Time, you recover one Wound for free (you may do this manually by updating your spreadsheet).

Tags are harder to remove without taking drastic actions. You may choose to pay 3 credits to Control to remove a single Tag during Team Time.


There are various other variables that exist in this world. Some of these will be updated during Team Time, while others will be updated as and when Control deems it appropriate.


Procatorion is very much an experiment by the UK Government. The wording of the Megacorp Act includes provisions for the UK Government to retake Procatorion if it the Corporations are causing problems.

As the day goes on, various actions will cause this to rise and fall. If this drops to 0, then the UK Government will begin taking steps to close down Procatorion. For example:

  • An undercover journalist writes up an expose on the weapons that a Corporation is building which have been exported to a country that has a reputation for suppression of speech. Stability decreases from 6 to 4, as questions are asked in Parliament.
  • The Council of Procatorion begin live streaming their debates, and they become a regular fixture on the evening news. The decorum and respect that the members show for each other is a stark contrast to the UK Government, and Stability rises from 6 to 7.

It is an open secret that the UK Government are trying to avoid taking an active interest in Procatorion unless they have to. The UK Government are willing to take a risk that the illegality and subsequent bad press that they have to endure will be worth it to bring the economy back.

Civil Unrest

Although Procatorion is not a direct democracy like the rest of the UK, the needs and wants of the general populace are not to be ignored. The Council of Procatorion have been given leeway to be the centre of all power and make decisions, but only CEOs of large companies have seats at the council.

If decisions are made by the CEOs which make the general populace unhappy, then Civil Unrest will increase, which may have negative effects on the Stability of Procatorion (and in extreme cases, riots may occur). On the other hand, getting the populace on side may help convince the UK Government to repeat the experiment and to keep their hands off Procatorion.


The various sub games are described in depth here.


The Council is split into two sections - the establishing of the agenda to be discussed (at the beginning of the Setup Phase) and subsequent voting (during the Action Phase).

Establishing the Agenda

At the beginning of the Setup Phase, each CEO player will take their place on the Corporate Council to discuss any current affairs and vote on the future of Procatorion. Control will begin by drawing 3 cards from the agenda deck and handing them to the Chair. The Chair chooses two of the agenda cards to be voted upon (the other is discarded).

These are read out to the rest of the Council and left in the Council Chamber to be discussed. Players may then leave the Council Chamber at will, or they may wish to stay and begin a round table discussion about another aspect. However, 5 minutes after the phase has started the Council will go into recess and players mustleave the Council Chamber.


During the Action Phase, the Council will then vote on the two agenda cards. To vote, write down the amount of Political Will you have and which way you are voting and submit it to the Chair- do this by typing it into the agenda channel. Votes are resolved by a simple majority, with ties being resolved by the Chair.

The Chair will, by default, reveal how each Corporation voted. Certain agendas may be treated as requiring a confidential approach, in which case the chair can state that they will withhold the vote’s breakdown. This must be done before any votes are submitted - if any player has submitted votes publicly the vote mustremain Public. Council members may of course petition the chair to make the vote secret.

Although attendance at the Council is not technically mandatory, it is considered to be a greatly disrespectful action to not take your seat at the Council. Failing to appear promptly for either phase will have a negative impact on your Political Will.

Custom Agendas

Players may craft custom agenda items during the Setup Phase. To do so, send a message to Council Control with your agenda items and the resolutions. They may add any additional remarks as they see fit. If both the player and Control are in agreement with the content, then the player can submit this to the Chair.

The Chair has the following options:

Accept as an urgent item

The item is to be considered of utmost importance, and must be voted upon this turn. Add the card to the list of cards that must be voted upon this turn. There may only be a maximum of 5 agenda items to be voted upon - if 5 are already up for vote this turn, this option cannot be taken.

Accept as an important item

The Chair does not believe the item should be voted upon urgently, but should be considered for future debate. At the beginning of the Setup Phase, the Chair may choose one item that was submitted previously to be added to the list of cards that must be voted upon.

Reject the card

The Chair does not believe the item should be voted upon at all. The player who submitted the card receives it back - they may submit it to a future Chair.

Amending Agendas

During the Setup Phase, the Chair may modify any resolutions mentioned on a card. The modifications to the resolutions can take whichever form you wish:

  • You can choose to add a new resolution to the list of options. Each agenda may have a maximum of 5 resolutions.
  • You may choose to remove an existing resolution from the list of options. An agenda card cannot have less than 2 resolutions.
  • You may modify an existing resolution to have different wording.

Any changes that the Chair wishes to make must be signed off by Council Control.


This subgame is for research players. During the Setup Phase the researchers will spend any research points that they have to create new technologies, and in the Action Phase will earn research points.

Earning research

During the Action Phase, research players should make their way to the research channel and Roll20 interface to play the research game. The object of the game is to create “equations” using their research deck and a collection of public cards.

Each player draws 5 cards from their private research deck, and 6 cards are dealt out to a public pool. A turn order will be decided by Research Control randomly. Players then begin playing, trying to make a balanced equation using at least one card from their hand and as many cards as they like from the public pool.

When your turn begins, you attempt to make an equation. To make an equation you must make two sets of cards where:

  • All the cards in a set have the same type of research ( / / / ). Some cards are marked as wild and can be used as any type; and
  • The number of cards in the first set is the same as the number of cards in the second set.

For example, the following can be treated as equations:

  • 7 / 3
  • 6 1 / 3 9
  • 7 8 / 5 10

If you successfully create an equation, then:

  • You draw cards from your deck to replace any used from your hand
  • For each card from the public pool that was used, draw a card from the public deck and place into the pool.
  • You score your equation. Scoring can and should be done while other players are taking their turns.
    • For each equation, you earn research points in one of the suits that you used to make the equation (your choice if more than one), equal to the sum of the card values of that set. For example:
      3 / 3
      Either 3 or 3
      12 / 34
      Either 3 or 7
      13 / 22
      Either 4 or 4
      1 1 / 124
      Either 2 or 16
    • For each “balanced” equation (i.e. both sides of the equation have the same total sum) you receive bonus research points depending on how many cards used to make the equation is:
      • 1 on both sides: 1 bonus research points
      • 2 on both sides: 3 bonus research points
      • 3 on both sides: 6 bonus research points
      • 4 on both sides: 10 bonus research points
      • And so on

      You may take these bonus research points in any combination of suits that you used to create that equation.

You continue to play turns in the research game until either:

  • You have no cards left in your deck when you try to draw up your hand limit at the end of your turn. You may choose to leave the research channel if you wish (e.g. to speak to another player - though most are likely to be resolving some action at the time!)
  • The phase end is called. If it is currently your turn, this is equivalent to your timer running out.
Spending Research Points

After earning research points in the Action Phase, you may then spend research points to climb the tech tree. Each Corporation will receive their own tech tree at the beginning of the game, which will contain various research possibilities for you to pursue. Each item is made up of several attributes:

The name of the research (for example, “Laser Porridge”)
A brief description explaining what the research proposition is (for example, “Test whether a laser could be used to heat up porridge safely”)
How much the research will cost, in the 4 types of research points.
Prerequisite technologies, if any.
Required Facilities
If a specific Facility will be required to house the resulting technology

During the Setup Phase, you may spend the research points specified by updating your spreadsheet. You must then place this in one of your Facilities.

Each Facility can only store a certain number of technologies, equal to 2 multiplied by the number of Corporate Facilities you have. If your Facilities are full, you will need to build more before you can research more technologies.

Each technology will have a different benefit to you. For example, if you are the first to create “Self heating porridge”, then you can begin cornering the market in that which will surely Boost your profits. If you focus instead on security then the fruits of your labours can be used to protect your Facilities and potentially even your rivals if they’re willing to pay for the schematics.

Deck Customisation

Each Corporation’s research deck begins as a fairly basic deck. You may instead spend your research points on adding cards to your deck or upgrading your existing cards. This will allow you to have a slightly more control over your research focus - for example filling your deck with more cards will make it easier to gain research points, or upgrading your existing cards might mean they provide more research points when used in an equation.

The costs for this are denoted in your tech tree, and should be handled as if you are researching any other technology.

Custom Technologies

The tech tree is not considered the totality of the possible research available to the players. You may build custom research proposals by speaking to Research Control. They will set a cost and it is will be added to your tech tree.

Sharing research points / Technologies

Players may freely trade their research points between different Corporations. Whilst the amount of research points a Corporation have is semi-secret, players may trade however they wish (whether that be for other research points or money), by inputting it as a transaction in your spreadsheets.

Players may also share technologies with other Corporations by speaking to Research Control.

Copying / Stealing / Destroying Technologies

Technologies may be destroyed or stolen from other Corporations. As technologies are stored in Facilities, a Run can be initiated against the Facility in question. A Runner may then make a copy of the technology card, destroy it or steal it.

  • If the card is copied, the copy can then be stored in a Facility, and can be traded in to Research Control for a discount on the research cost (as decided by the strength of the copy)
  • If the card is destroyed, the card can no longer be used by the Corporation who owned it (though they may be able to salvage their research afterwards).
  • If the card is stolen, the Corporation that had the technology can no longer use it. The Runner can give this to a Corporation - the Corporation that now has the card must store it in their Facilities, and it can be shown to Research Control for a 50% discount on the research cost (rounding the resulting cost up).

Copying technology is easier than stealing or destroying it, and stealing/destroying technologies require slightly different niche skill sets and gear - expect Runners to charge more for those services. For more details, see Successful Runs

Split Technologies

Some technologies are split over multiple cards. These technologies are treated differently:

  • The Corporation that owns this technology can use it as long as they have at least one of the pieces for this technology
  • If another Corporation steals or copies the technology, then they cannot use the technology until they collect all the pieces and research it

Facility Defence

Security players are primarily concerned with making sure that the research and technologies that their colleagues have built are kept safe from prying eyes. During the Setup Phase, Security players will create the defences that Runners will be attempting to break through. During the Action Phase, they will be able to make some additional decisions against the Runners based on the Protection Cards that they have installed (see page XX).

Each Corporation will begin with a number of Facilities and some basic Protection Cards.

Facility Types

Each Facility has a type:

The more Research Facilities you have, the easier it will be for your research colleagues to research technologies. Certain technologies need to be housed here, specifically ones that would require precise conditions to keep them stable.
The more Security Facilities you have, the easier it is for you to protect other Facilities. The more security Facilities you have, the more cards you can install in each of your Facilities. Military technologies will likely need to be housed here.
This Facility is equivalent to your headquarters. The more Corporate Facilities you have, the higher your Income and Political Will is and the more technologies can be stored at each Facility .

Facilities take a turn to build. To build a new Facility, the CEO must add a transaction for the cost of the Facility during the Setup Phase and inform your Control who will begin building the new Facility. It will become available during the next Setup Phase.

Protection Cards

Protection Cards are an abstraction of various methods of defending your Facilities. Cards are either “physical” defences such as guards or doors, or are “cyber” defences. A Protection Card has the following characteristics:

The cost of buying this item
The type (“physical” / “cyber”)
Which skill a Runner will need to use to break this, and a difficulty. The higher the difficulty, the more dice you will roll
The consequence to a Runner for not breaking this
An additional consequence you may force the Runner to pay if the Runner does not succeed

The various effects are covered on page 77.

Buying Cards

Security players will receive a list of cards that will available purchase at the start of the game. These will broadly fall in the following categories:

  • Protection Cards that are available now
  • Protection Cards that are rumoured to be in progress (and will become available later in the game)
  • Protection Cards that require specialised research (and thus will not be available for general sale)

Other Protection Cards may exist, but will only become available after certain game conditions have passed.

There are two methods for obtaining Protection Cards:

Corporation Shop

The Corporation shop will be open during the Setup Phase. Control will announce the cards available for sale in the relevant Discord channel. These can be bought on a first come first served basis.

Control may also decide to auction Protection Cards - in those cases the Security player who pays the most will receive a copy of the card.

Research Cards

As part of the research that your research player is doing, they may uncover new Protection Cards. Researching a new Protection Card will grant you one copy of that Protection Card for free. You can install or trade these cards as you wish.

You may also research that technology again (at a discount), which will allow you to gain more copies of that Protection Card.

Installing Protection Cards

You may install a limited number of Protection Cards into each of your Facilities. By default a Facility may have 3 “physical” and 3 “cyber” Protection Cards. For each Security Facility you have, you may install 1 more of each type of Protection Card in any given Facility you own.

Installing a Protection Card into your Facility is free, but it must go on the outsideof your Facility (if you have 2 cards and wish to install a 3rd, then this card will be encountered by the Runners first).. However, you are only allowed onecopy of each Protection Card (by card title) in a Facility.

The order of installed Protection Cards is important and may not be changed without payment. If you wish to reorder your Protection Cards, you must pay 1 Credit for each Protection Card you wish to move. For example, if your Protection Cards are currently ordered A, B, C, and you wish to move A to the end, so that the order is B, C, A, the cost is one Credit, but if you wish to move both Protection Cards A and C, so that the order becomes C, B, A, the cost would be two Credits.

You may also remove Protection Cards from your Facilities. On each turn, the first card you remove from a Facility is free - every subsequent card from that Facility costs 1 Credit.

For the purposes of installation, your “cyber” defences are considered separately from your “physical” defences - installing a new “cyber” card places it at the outermost “cyber” slot, installing a new “physical” card places it at the outermost “physical” slot. Runners will encounter your “physical” protections first before your “cyber” protections.

Directing Security

During the Setup Phase, Security players should decide where they will be Directing Security and set a security budget for each of your Facilities. To Direct Security, check the "Directing Security" box on the Main tab of your spreadsheet in the row containing the desired Facility

Directing Security at a Facility has two main benefits:

  • Any “Charge” consequences may be used
  • You may “Boost” the strength of a Protection Card

Any portion of your security budget that is not spent is returned to you at the end of the Action Phase. To set a security budget, fill out your Facility spreadsheet with the appropriate value.


This is the primary conflict for Runners and Corporate players. The aim is for the Runners to get through the Facility, first breaking through the layers of physical security, then through the cyber security.

Runs can be conducted by a single Runner or by a group of Runners. The more Runners there are, the easier it is for the defences to be broken though of course any rewards will need to be split. If a group of Runners are joining together to break into a Facility, then they must appoint a Run Leader (if the run is being conducted by a single Runner, they are considered the Run Leader).

Facility Choice

At the beginning of the Action Phase, Runners will make a decision about which Facility they are running against. To do this, in the #run-organisation channel use the !run-Facility command.

Multiple groups may run against the same Facility, though the slower of the two groups may find that the Facility defences are already warmed up or the items they are looking for have already been stolen. Groups may voluntarily cede their run to the other group (or be otherwise monetarily convinced), if not then the Runs are ordered using the following priority:

  1. The group with the fewest people goes first
  2. The group with the most players from the gang with the highest Notoriety
  3. The group with the highest combined Brute
  4. The group with the highest combined Hack
  5. Whichever group’s Run Leader has the highest Brute
  6. Whichever group’s Run Leader has the highest Hack
  7. Whichever group’s Run Leader rolls the highest number on a d8

After the Facilities to Run against are chosen, the Runners will go to each Facility and try to break through the security. The Run is considered successful if the Runners break through all the Protection Cards (first the physical, then the cyber). If they do not, then they are unsuccessful.

At the beginning of the Run, Alerts are generated based on the number of Runners and the amount of Tags they have:

  • For each Tag that opposing Runners have, an Alert is generated
  • A number of Alerts based on the number of Runners in the group
    Single Runner
    No bonus
    2 Runners
    1 Alert
    3 Runners
    2 Alert
    4 Runners
    4 Alert
    5 Runners
    7 Alert
    6 Runners
    11 Alert
    More Runners
    This will be calculated automatically by the spreadsheet

Runners may use items to assist them during runs. These fall into 3 categories:

These items must be equipped at the start of a run by playing it using the !play command. Your equipment is also limited:
  • You may only equip 3 permanent items
  • You may only equip one copy of each card (by title)
This run
This card’s effect lasts for the duration of the run. Afterwards, delete the card from your spreadsheet. These can be used as you encounter Protection Cards.
Single use
This card’s effect is immediately applied. Afterwards, delete the card from your spreadsheet. These can be used as you encounter Protection Cards.
Run Steps

A Run is made up of the following steps, repeated until either there are no more Protection Cards for the Runners to break or the Runners choose to back out.

  • Activate
  • Challenge
  • Consequence
  • Breather

Each Runner in the Runner group may use one card (either a “This run” or “Single use”) during these steps. For example:

  • Ryan is running solo. During the Activate step, Ryan uses a “Boost” card. They can not use another card until the next Activate step.
  • Adal, Erin and John are running as a group of three. During the Challenge step, Erin uses a “Surge” card, but still fails the check. During the Consequence step, Adal plays a “Flare” card to avoid the Tag. Neither of them can play any more cards until the next Activate step, though John can still play a card in the Breather step if he wishes.

Some Protection Cards may have ambiguous targets (for example, a Protection Card may target the Runner with the most Tags). In these cases, unless otherwise specified the Run Leader makes the final decision.


At the beginning of the Action Phase, all Protection Cards are Inactive. Protections card become Active when the Runner(s) reach that card during a run.

To activate a Protection Card, use the !play command to display the card to the Runners. Activating a physical Protection Card has no base cost, but activating a cyber Protection Card costs the number of already active cyber Protection Cards (so the first cyber Protection Card is free, the second costs 1, the third costs 2 and so on).

Any activated Protection Cards remain active until the end of the Action Phase. If there are multiple groups running against the same Facility, later groups will face the same cards which may have already been Activated and/or Boosted.

If the security player is Directing Security from this Facility, they may choose whether they wish to activate the current Protection Card. If they are not Directing Security, then they will attempt to Activate this card - if they are unable to pay the cost from the budget provided at the beginning of the Action Phase then the card will remain Inactive.

The challenge strength can increase during the Run:

  • For each 2 Active Protection Cards already passed by the Runners, the challenge strength is increased by 1. For example:
    • The first and second active Protection Cards receives no bonus strength
    • The third receives 1 bonus strength (as the Runners have now passed 2 Protection Cards)
    • The fourth also receives 1 bonus strength (as the Runners have passed 3 Protection Cards, not 4)
    • The fifth and sixth active Protection Card receives 2 bonus strength (as the Runners have now passed 4 Protection Cards)
  • As the number of Alerts rises, the Protection Card strength increases.
    • At one Alert, the strength is increased by 1
    • At three Alerts (ie, 2 more), the strength is increased by 2
    • At six Alerts, the strength is increased by 3
    • And so on
  • If the Security player is Directing Security from this Facility and the Protection Card is Active, they may choose to Boost the challenge strength of this card. The first Boost of each card costs 1 Credit, the second Boost costs 2 Credits, the third Boost costs 3 Credits and so on. Each Boost increases the challenge strength by 1 for the rest of this phase.

If the Protection Card is Active, then the Runners attempt to break the Protection. If it is not, then they move on to the Breather step.

To break the protection, the Run Leader rolls dice equal to their skill that is being used to break the card in question and counts the number of dice that score a 5 or higher. If the Run Leader has at least one Wound then they roll d6s, otherwise they roll d8s.

If there are other Runners taking part in the run, then they add more dice to the pool. If they are not Wounded, they add half their skill to the pool (rounding down). If they are Wounded, they add a quarter of their skill to the pool (rounding up).

At the same time, the Security player rolls a number of d8s equal to the Challenge strength and counts the number of dice that score a 5 or higher.


If the Run Leader rolls more successes than the Security player then they are successful and move to the Breather step. If they do not, then the Runner(s) take the consequence.

The Protection Card may have an optional “Charge” ability. If the Security player is Directing Security from this Facility then they pay the designated “Charge” cost to add the additional consequences.

Unless the Protection Card states otherwise, the consequence must be taken by a single player, decided by the Run Leader. The consequences are usually one (or more) of the following:

Each alert is converted into a temporary Credit that can be used to activate/Boost/charge other Protection Cards. Alerts also increase the strength of Protection Cards.
For any future runs, a Tag generates additional Alerts. Tags also mean that Corporation players may be able to take out of run actions against you.
Your dice pool is made up of d6s (instead of d8s) or add a quarter of your skill (instead of half) to the dice pool. If you have Wounds equal to or greater than your Body, you are incapacitated, instantly leave the Run (with no notoriety effect) and any permanent Equipment that you played on this run will be given to the Security player of the Corporation you are Running against.
After the Breather step, you move back to the Activate step.
End the Run
The Run is immediately treated as unsuccessful. If you wish, you may instead take Wounds and Tags to replace with a Retry effect. For each “End the Run” that you have ignored (including this one), you take 1 Wound, 1 Tag and 1 Alert.

Note that unless a Protection Card has an “End the Run” consequence the Runners will move to the Breather step.


This allows the Runners to consider whether they wish to continue or not. Each Runner, starting with the Run Leader may take this opportunity to leave the run. If all Runners have left (be that voluntarily or due to incapacitation) then the run is treated as unsuccessful.

Leaving a Run when the rest of the group continue may have an effect on your gang’s Notoriety but does have the added benefit that you’re still alive. You should weigh these two options up.

If the Run Leader decides to leave the run, a new Run Leader is chosen. If one cannot be chosen democratically, then it should be chosen randomly.

Successful Runs

If the run was successful, then the Runner(s) may access anything stored in the Facility.

The Runners access cards stored in the Facility, depending on the number of Runners in the group. For each Runner in the group, they receive one access.

To access a technology, choose a card from the selection installed in the Facility. The Security player/Control will reveal it, and the Run Leader will then have 3 options.

  1. Copy the card
  2. Steal the card
  3. Destroy the card

Each action will take a skill check (explained below). If the skill check fails, then the card goes back to the list of cards you may access. You may attempt to access it again.

Runners may have received information about the location of a certain technology. If a Runner has a “Technology Location” card from control then one of their accesses can be to use this card. If the technology in question is in the Facility, they access the card. If not (either because the information was wrong or the technology has moved), the access is wasted.

Copying technologies

This is treated similar to a Protection Card challenge, where the dice pool is equal to your full skill level (the combination of your Brawn and Hack) - other Runners may add their ability scores as before (if they are not Wounded they add half, if they are then they add quarter). Unlike Protection Cards, there is no opposing roll or consequence for failure. The more successes you roll, the better the copy is.

  • If you roll no successes, your copy attempt fails
  • If you roll some successes, you create a “weak” copy that gives a 25% discount to anyone who wishes to research this technology
  • If you roll four successes, you create a “good” copy that gives a 50% discount to anyone who wishes to research this technology

No matter the outcome, the card is returned to the list of cards that you access. If you wish to create multiple copies of a technology then you must access the card multiple times.

Destroying Technologies

Anyone can attempt to destroy a technology, though only those with specialist equipment or skills will be able to fully succeed.

The Run Leader and any other members of the group roll dice equal to their skill level and attempts to get successes.

  • If you roll two successes, you partially succeed (but leave enough traces for the Corporation to research this again at a hefty discount).
  • If you roll four successes, you moderately succeed (but leave enough traces for the Corporation to research this again at a moderate discount)
  • If you have destroy equipment/skills and you roll 8 successes you moderately succeed (but leave some traces that allow the Corp to research this again at a slight discount)
  • If you have destroy equipment/skills and you roll 12 successes you overly succeed and destroy the technology and all useful traces.
Stealing Technologies

Stealing technologies is hardest thing to do. To steal a technology, one of the Runners in the group must have a Steal ability or have brought gear that can be used to steal technologies.

The Run Leader and any other members of the group roll dice equal to their skill level and attempt to beat the “Steal” score of the technology. If they succeed, the Run Leader receives the technology card.

Stealing Credits from Facilities

Each Facility will also have a “Credits” card. Accessing this card gives the run leader a number of Credits related to the number of Protection Cards that were installed (not activated) in the Facility:

5 cards or less
The number of cards
6 cards
7 Credits
7 cards
8 Credits
8 cards
10 Credits
9 cards
12 Credits
10 cards
15 Credits
11+ cards
An additional 3 Credits for each card over 10 (so 11 gives you 18, 12 gives you 21 and so on)

You also receive a number of Credits related to the number of technologies (including the Credits card) stored in this Facility:

1 technology
2 technologies
3 technologies
4 technologies
5 technologies

And so on.

Facility-Specific Effects

Runners may use one of their accesses to activate a special effect of the Facility:

You may secretly choose a Facility and be told which technologies are stored there
You may either (1) secretly choose a Facility and spy on its security layout or (2) receive a blackmail file from the vault. If you choose to spy on a Facility, select a Facility and Control will tell you which Protection Cards are in the Facility and you may choose to look at up to 3 cards. A blackmail file may have plot information for you to act upon, or can be sold to a Corporation at an agreed-upon price.
You may steal either a stock certificate from the Corporation. Stock certificates may harm the Corporation’s income, or give you a passive income, and can be sold to Corporations or other characters.

Other Facility types may be researched during the game. The effect for new Facility types is not revealed to a Runner until they complete a successful run against them (though Runners can share the results of their “research”).


A run must be completed during the Action Phase - if the end of phase is called and you have not yet been successful then your run is treated as unsuccessful. With that in mind, you should take steps to speed up the Facility game where possible:

  • Quickly decide which Runner in your group will take the consequence.
  • Calculate how much your skills will add to the dice pool beforehand if you are not the run leader (there will be helper sheets available on the day).
  • Security players should decide budgets at the beginning of the phase as quickly as possible.
  • Security players should not linger over charge or Boost decisions if they are Directing Security which would end up delaying Runners.

Other Runner actions

Runners may take on other work or perform other actions instead. This is a list of generic actions that all Runners are able to take part in - there may be other actions unveiled during the game that you may be able to join in with (and of course you can always create new actions by speaking to Control).To perform any actions, use the relevant channel in the Runner-actions category to notify Runner Control.

Mercenary work

Although most of the work that Corporations will give you will be in the form of Runs against a Facility, there is always other work available. Since there is no dedicated police force, Runners may choose to take part in general “peace keeping”.

To do so, roll your Brawn ability. Similar to a Run challenge, you roll d8s if you are not Wounded (d6s if you are) and count any dice where you roll a 5 or more. For each success, you will receive some Credits depending on the Civil Unrest in Procatorion.

You may choose to group up and do mercenary work together. If you do so then unlike a Run Challenge, you all roll your Brawn abilities separately and share the Credits between you equally (rounding up).

Contract work

Sometimes a Corporation may require some contract work to help build their networks, design websites or similar. This works similar as Mercenary work, though the amount of money will have been negotiated up front.

To do so, you roll the ability in question and try to get as many successes as required. The contract will require a number of successes - if you roll that many successes then return the contract to the relevant person who will pay you the required amount. If you fail, then mark the number of successes that you created - you can retry on the next turn assuming that the contract is still available.

You may choose to group up and do contract work. Unlike a run challenge, you roll your abilities separately.

Recovery Actions

If you did not perform any other actions this turn, you may take a recovery action.

At the beginning of the game, you will have few options for recovering - as the game goes on then more recovery options may become available to you (or options may be removed):

NHS - free
At the beginning of the game theNHS is still active in Procatorion. You recover 1 Wound for free. For each other Wound that you have, roll a d6 and attempt to roll greater than or equal to the number of dice you rolled (for each success, you recover a Wound). For example:
  • You have 1 Wound. You recover the Wound for free.
  • You have 3 Wounds. You recover 1 Wound automatically and roll 2 dice, recovering a Wound for each dice that you rolled a 2 or higher.
  • You have 5 Wounds. You recover 1 Wound automatically and roll 4 dice, recovering a Wound for each dice that you rolled a 4 or higher.
  • You have 7 Wounds. You recover 1 Wound automatically and roll 6 dice, recovering a Wound for each dice that you rolled a 6 or higher.
You may optionally choose to roll fewer dice for a higher chance of recovering more Wounds.
Private Healthcare - 3 Credits per Wound
If you’re willing to pay, you can pay to recover as many Wounds as you like.
Safe house - free
Sometimes, you need to lay low to avoid a Corporation’s retribution. A safe house will remove a single Tag.
Identity Scrub - 3 Credits per Tag
If you’ve got too many Tags that you need to remove quickly, then you may pay to remove as many Tags as you like


A designed game is never the direct result of a single person. Although I can take credit for the idea, it would be remiss of me to not mention few people

John Mizon
For the help with wording to encourage player creativity, since I was stuck for a decent period with trying to make that work
Alex Beck
Alex Beck is the designer for Mirrorshades, with which this game shares a theme. Although I’ve not played Mirrorshades, the AAR from Becky Ladley and Last Turn Madness podcast episode gave me some clear indications about what problems the structure of the game can have, which prevented me from going too far down a dangerous rabbit hole.
The Sheffield Nationals Committee
This was a crazy idea that was greenlit by Lucie and Alex just after the game passed the first play test. I’m indebted to them for letting me try this!
The playtesting team
This game would almost certainly have been a mess without play testers. Special thanks to Adam, Josh, Harry and Peter for their initial playtest suggestions, and Jerry and Oliver for their further feedback at later stages.
Pennine Megagames
The Pennine Megagame team were an invaluable resource in finding potential logistical problems with the various games, as well as giving great suggestions during playtesting.
Daniel White
For a significant amount of proofreading.
Suit Iconography
The symbols are used from Font Awesome, which is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International license. You can find the licence at

A. Glossary

This section is a quick explanation of various terms used in this rulebook.

Active (Protection Card)
This protection can be encountered by a Runner. A Protection Card begins Inactive, and is usually Activated when the Runner encounters it.
For each Alert, the security player receives 1 temporary credit. These Alerts and temporary credits are removed at the end of the Run
If a Security player is directing security at the Facility that this Protection Card is defending then they may increase the challenge cost of this card.
Corporate player
A player with a CEO, security or research role.
The decision making body for Procatorion. The CEO players will spend their time discussing any laws that will apply to Procatorion.
Council Chamber
The area where the Council meets.
During a run, if the runner(s) fail to break a Protection Card with a Charge effect and the opposing security player is directing security at that location, the Security player may pay the indicated cost to also give the Charge consequence to the runner(s).
The US mega-corp experiment
Directing Security
The security player has chosen to take an explicit interest in this facility’s defence. They will be able to Boost or Charge Protection cards.
End the Run
The Runners are unsuccessful in their Run. They may choose to instead take one each of Wound, Tag and Alert.
A location owned by a corporation. This will house Technology Cards and be defended by Protection Cards
Inactive (Protection Card)
This protection can not be encountered by a Runner.
The amount of credits you receive each turn.
A measure of how well-known and successful your gang is.
Protection Card
A defence installed by a security player to protect a facility. Runners face these during the Run sub-game
The setting for Running Hot - a city state inside Britain.
Political Will
The amount of "sway" you have within the Council. The higher your Political Will, the more votes you have in the Council.
Public (knowledge)
All other players can see this information directly (either by in game notifications or asking Control).
A line of inquiry that a research player may dedicate resources to in order to produce a Technology Card.
An action taken against a Facility by a Runner.
A member of one of the gangs inside Pacital.
research points
A specific currency used by research players to buy Technology Cards.
Secret (knowledge)
This information may never be explicitly confirmed with other players (by showing tokens etc). Players may discuss this information but are not bound to be truthful.
Semi-Public (knowledge)
This information is considered public to some players, and secret to others.
Semi-Secret (knowledge)
This information is considered secret to other players. However, it may be revealed and confirmed with the relevant tokens if a player so wishes.
How secure and stable Procatorion is. If this drops to zero, the British Government will begin taking steps to shut down Procatorion.
At the beginning of each Run, each Tag present will generate one temporary Credit for the security player. These credits disappear at the end of the Run. Corporations may use Tags to take out of run actions against specific Runners.
Technology Card
A card which may provide the Corporation with a new Protection Card or provide some other benefit. These are normally stored within a Facility.
While the Runner has at least one Wound, they roll a d6 instead of a d8