Hey all. First time poster here, long time Spycraft follower. Anyway... why I'm posting is I have an idea for a campaign and I'm just wondering if this will honestly work.
More thoughts, questions or concerns after this background.
The players work for an organization called SHADOW. Unlike most 'normal' espionage organization, SHADOW is primarily made up of former criminals and malcontents who have for whatever reason joined this very 'black' organization. No one is sure where SHADOW falls on the good/evil axis. In fact, for the most part SHADOW could be considered to be a bit more evil than good. Although they aren't interested in world domination, SHADOW has done some things that would be considered against good moral judgement.
SHADOW was created shortly after World War II by then United States Army General Thomas L. MacDonald. MacDonald, now the head of SHADOW, believed that in order to fight the criminal underworld and Communist aggression, it was necessary to bring those same elements to bare. In other words, set the criminal world against itself and see what happens. Along with criminals and malcontents, MacDonald met and recruited a few former Third Reich officers into his core group which he would later regret.
Throughout the next few decades, SHADOW had many operations throughout the world that both helped and hindered the cause of freedom. MacDonald, now retired from the military, moved into the private security sector. He created Black Knights Enterprises, a world security firm offering former military personnel a chance to carry on with their occupations after leaving the military. Black Knights is still a front for SHADOW and as part of the recruitment process, SHADOW picks out those who would be considered a good fit for the organizations. The others continue on into a mercenary career.
SHADOW's goals has changed over time. At first, it was meant to be a small black ops organization that would do the dirty work that no one else wanted to do. The United States government did not know of SHADOW's existence and if they did, would probably want to shut it down immediately. SHADOW has done some things that if made public knowledge, would make the world community cry in outrage.
At first, SHADOW fought the criminal elements throughout the known world. With criminals in its ranks, it was thought that this would be the perfect way to fight crime etc. However, over time, the goals of SHADOW changed. Instead of fighting criminal elements, SHADOW began to target both sides of the Cold War (both the US and USSR). It began to turn itself into an organization where 'the ends justified the means' and the Third Reich mentality from WWII (see above) began to seep into policy.
Three years ago, MacDonald's death (reports say it was a heart attack) caused massive chaos within SHADOW. Lieutenants underneath MacDonald (including Dr. Lewis von Hassen, Colonel Victor Valish and billionaire Melinda Tellinger) began to fight for control of the organization. At this point in time, no one has truly gained control of SHADOW itself.
So... there you have it. Let me explain where the characters come in:
1 - They would be former criminal or malcontents, possibly former military, scientists who did questionable research etc. They may not be truly 'evil' but are definitely true blue and good at the same time. Very grey is where I would put characters on the idea of white vs. black (good vs. evil)
2 - They would be working for SHADOW itself. The war going on within the organization right now will cause chaos and players may have to ally with one faction or another within the organization as the game progresses. Depending on who they ally themselves with may determine how SHADOW is recreated down the road.
3 - Missions are similar to normal Spycraft missions but with a much darker tone. Here, players may actually be working against the good guys (helping criminals escape etc.) or fighting against truly despicable people that even SHADOW won't ally themselves with.
4 - Campaign qualities that I can think of that would work:
- Allegiance, Clandestine, Corrupt, Faction, Paranoid, Tense, Thriller
5 - Character level would probably start at 4 or so... not sure yet.
Anyway.. I know this may sound like a mish mosh of stuff, but I'm just wondering if this could fly.