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Message no. 1
From: Assistant Fearless Leader <fro@****.MMLC.NWU.EDU>
Subject: ShadowRN Frequently Asked Questions (Part IIIa)
Date: Sat, 7 Jun 1997 07:03:41 -0500
ShadowRN FAQ, Part IIIa

Last modified March 14th 1997

Version 1.1
Frequently Asked Questions for SHADOWRN@********

Originally compiled, Adam Jury
With editing and additions by The members of ShadowRN
Based on past ShadowRN FAQ's and postings.

PLEASE NOTE: I am aware this is FAR from complete. I'm working on
it slowly but steadily.

The current version of this file can always be found as listed below:

The ShadowRN FAQ's are available at Fro's page:
You can also email <fro@***> to request the current version of
the FAQ
The web page will most likely be on the move soon, but notification
will be posted and the FAQ updated.

There is a copyright notice at the bottom of each section of this


Part III: Posting Pointers


1. General ShadowRN posting guidelines.
2. List history, slang, theme song!
3. Specific Beaten-to-death questions.


1. General ShadowRN posting guidelines.

While the topic of this list is specifically related to
Shadowrun, it has been determined that the topic encompasses
far more than the specific rules within the FASA manuals. Part
of the all-important part of any role-paying game is the
atmosphere that the players find themselves in. Often, this
cannot be adaquately explained within the written rules.

To this end, there is a very liberal posting policy with
regards to topics. This is to allow everyday babble and
observations to create a virtual society of sorts on the list,
and to give all who participate in and opportunity to explore
that society.

Thus, you will often see postings that are only vaguely related
to Shadowrun being posted. Often this has to do with politics
(especially information politics) or with recent technological
breakthroughs. While there are no hard-set rules with regards
to what off-topic postings are permitted, it should be reminded
that we all come here because of our interest in Shadowrun, so
postings should at the very least be of interest to all, and be
within the umbrella of being source material for the Shadowrun

Officially, the following actions will take place with regards
to off-topic postings.

1. Non-Shadowrun threads that live for more that 24 hours
will be pointed out by the listowners. At that time,
either make the thread once again Shadowrun relevant or
take it to private email.
2. If after 48 hours, the thread still continues, the
listowner will start deleting people from the list. If
that happens, you are free to come back, but at the very
least, the deletion will serve as a warning to stay

Persons who repeatedly violate the rules and disrupt the use of
the list by others will be be dealt on a case-by-case basis,
but action can include (but is not limited to): temporary
removal from the list (for example, six months), permanent
removal from the list or notification to the violator's
sysadmin or service provider.

Chain Letters

Do not send chain letters to ShadowRN. This includes the
good times virus, 'Good luck/forward this to 10 friends'
emails, etc.

File Attachements

NEVER attach a file to any document sent to the ShadowRN
list. If somebody wants to see a document you
wrote up, send it privately to those who want it. The
reasons for no attachements are very simple. Some people
pay for space on a server, and a 100K MS word document
would not ussually be appreaciated. The other reason has
to do with software and internet protocols. People on the
list use many different mailers on many different
platforms. Elm and Pine for Unix are both used, Eudora
for Win/Mac, Pegasus mail, Ms and several others are
all used. One of these programs sends an attachement, say
for the sake of argument it sends 'winmail.dat'.
Depending on the file type, and the protocol it was sent
under, it may not be decoded on the other end, or it
doesn't mean anything anyways when you get it.

This is what winmail.dat looks like on my system:

x>" ä è IPM.Microsoft Mail.Note 1
8 0 ÿ O + €Ÿ£ n Ý T
Discussion SMTP SHADOWRN@********.ITRIBE.NET 0 SMTP 0
SHADOWRN@********.ITRIBE.NET þ 0 'Shadowrun
Discussion' 0 " SMTP:SHADOWRN@********.ITRIBE.NET 9 @: ö
E8 RE: Orichalcum bullets. A Ì #
Ì + C ! 3A0B6146992BD011BE020040051D8A6B ë
# & ) . 6 @ 9 `Q?>À» p RE: Orichalcum bullets. q
»À>?oFa ;+ П @ k SMTP jhurley1
Ô e
2 . à LZFu:7Kÿ € ä ë P T ch
Àsetn2 Ã 2 F
pprq1 U ² } Ï

This file is sent accidently by many people using MS Mail.
Before you post to the list, check if its sending
attachements. Easiest way to do that is to send yourself
an email. If you still aren't sure, email me at
<fro@***> and I will help you out. Also several new
email programs can send messages in HTML. Please do not
do that, even on machines that can read it, it takes twice
as long to load the message, and on machines that can't
read it, it looks horrible.

Return Reciepts and High Priority

When posting a message to the list, do not request a
return reciept. It can get kind of hairy when 200 people
send you one! Also, do not raise the priority of your
message above normal. Both of those are unnessesary and
just cause more hassle.

2. ShadowRN Slang, Theme song.

Common Net.Speak

These are some common acronyms you are likely to see on the list:

IMO : In My Opinion
IMHO : In My Humble Opinion
IMNSHO : In My Not So Humble Opinion
LOL : Laughing Out Loud
ROFL : Rolling On The Floor Laughing
AFAIK : As far As I Know
IIRC : If I Remember/Recall Correctly
RTFM : Read the F&^%$# Manual (Can also mean read the FAQ)
YMMV : Your Milage May Vary

Shadowrun Lexicon of Common Terminology
Compiled by: Doctor Doom
Edited by: Adam Jury

What follows is jargon frequently seen on the Shadowrun List, along
with definitions and histories, in order that one may be assisted in
familiarizing one's self with this discussion mailserver.

Common Term Definitions

The Freedonian Aeronautic and Space Administration. The
company which produces our own beloved Shadowrun, as well as
Earthdawn, another game with important ties with the
Shadowrun world. Discussion and reviews of recent FASA
products are fairly common upon the mailserver, as are
commentary regarding various rulings from The Dark Lord(Tom
Dowd, though now Mike Mulvihill).

The name Freedonia comes from the European country depicted
in "Duck Soup", a Marx Brothers film, in which Groucho Marx
portrays Rufus T. Firefly, President of Freedonia.

Fearless Leader

Term for the listowner, Mark Imbracio, and Fro, who is
Assistant Fearless Leader.
Coined in homage to the Rocky and Bullwinkle television
show; Fearless Leader was the man that Boris and Natasha
reported to.

Either noun or verb. Munchkinism is exhibited in two
primary forms of expression, that of rules
interpretation/implementation and power.

Munchkins tend to interpret rules in either the broadest
possible sense or such that benefits shall be
disproportionately bestowed, especially in exclusive favor
to their character. They consistently push the envelope of
the letter and spirit of the law in an effort to gain the
greatest (sometimes individual) latitude. Usually, areas
targeted for such pressure are instances where the published
rules are particularly vague or may not specifically apply,
i.e., loopholes.

Besides this, Munchkins are quite willing to take leave of
the game system to achieve their desires and demonstrate a
great willingness to alter, augment, or eliminate the rules
without paying due consideration to alternatives to or the
ramifications of their actions.

As has already been implied, the end product of all
Munchkins efforts lead to one thing: Power. Munchkins are
driven by the desire to become the most potent player in the
group/setting/world in which they are playing. Further, any
questions as to the believability (within the genre) or
feasibility of such exceedingly potent characters or are not
salient to the Munchkin. Also, Munchkins are generally very
reticent to create serious obstacles or problems for his
character, and typically they exhibit most grievous vexation
should the Game Master or other players frustrate his plans.
In line with this, they energetically seek to avoid any
disadvantages or costs in an effort to achieve their goals.
A Munchkin EXPECTS to win all the time.

True, it may be argued that the above behaviours are merely
natural tendencies, but they attain a certain fanaticism in

"Inside Joke" at the offices of FASA. According to them, it
originally stood for "Nothing Ever Really Pleases
Steve/Scott", although no particulars as to the identity as
to Steve or Scott were given. Appeared in FASA products as
early as Virtual Realities (p. 81) possibly earlier. Has
now taken on a life of its own.

NOTE: Despite the natural tendency to interpret NERPS as a
jibe to Steve Jackson Game's product, GURPS, such
speculation is without foundation.

NERPS are the ultimate placebo. They may serve as a cure
(almost) for anything one might care to name: From the
common cold to nuclear war. NERPS are commonly used to
contend with Munchkins and just about anything else that
springs to mind.

Also a series of Shadowrun net.books, and a companion
mailing list at iTRiBE.NET

The sound a wet carp makes when someone is struck with it;
also the act of striking someone with a wet carp.

The term was first used in the latter part of the year the
list became operational, when our Fearless Leader, Robert
Hayden, was experiencing considerable problems with his
mailer, such that all were receiving several copies of EVERY
posting he dispatched.

Howls of discontent were heard across the node. Tempers
were raised. Flames were exchanged.

On Thursday, 22 October 1992 (21:03:17 CET), Hayden, in an
attempt to soothe the raising ire of the other members as
well as offer an apology, infused a bit of levity in his
requesting pardon for the inconvenience, to wit:

"You can thwap me with a wet carp if it will make you feel

And thus the concept was born. Immediately many list
members latched upon this rather novel idea. The first
actual THWAP was invoked by Doctor Doom on 22 October 1992,
15:31:00 CST, rapidly followed by Harlequin and Flare. A
legend was begun...

Since then, its has been used so frequently that the idea
took on a life of its own, and it is now a legitimate term,
even if only jargon. Thwaps are generally brought to bear
upon especially bizarre, silly, or Munchkinous ideas,
although their invocation usually indicates a degree of
levity and good-spiritedness. Thwaps are not meant for
spite--that purpose is served by flames.

TOLM WAPPERs (archaic)
Generic term for the denizens of the Shadowrun list.
Initially stood for Those Other List Members Which Are
Presently Perplexed at this Esoteric Rambling.

Other users are also collectively referred to as simply "the
list" on occasion.

Commonly Utilized Abbreviations:

DLoH : The Dark Lord on High
FAQ : Frequently Asked Questions
GM : Game Master, also called DM, Referee, or Administrator
Grim : The Grimoire (1 & 2), also simply G
NAGNA : Neo-Anarchist's Guide to North America
NAGRL : Neo-Anarchist's Guide to Real Life
NAGEE : Neo-Anarchist's Guide to Everything Else (independent
publication, composed of non-official information)
NPC : Non-Player Character
PC : Player Character
RBB : Rigger Black Book
SSC : Street Samurai Catalogue (1 & 2)
SR : Shadowrun, also known as the Blue Book
SR2 : Shadowrun Second Edition, also the Black Book
S-Beat : ShadowBeat
S-Tech : ShadowTech
(the) Tir : Tir Tairngire, or the sourcebook of the same name
VR : Virtual Realities
VR2 : Virtual Realities 2.0
POaD : Portfolio of a Dragon: Dunkelzahns's Secrets

Common Slang for Various Character Types
With considerable input and assistance provided by: J Roberson

Street Samurai : Cyberknight, Techwarrior, Street Sam, Sammie,
Street Pizza, Street Op, Combat Gumby, Muscle,
Razorboy/Razorgirl, Slasher, Strongarm, Killer
Decker : Technomancer, Matrix Runner, Net Runner,
Net Junkie, ICskater, ICbreaker, Hacker,
Jacker, Data Thief, Console Cowboy
Rigger : Driver, Flyboy/Flygirl, Jockey, Wireman
Magic-Users (General) : Magician, Magiker, Spell-Chucker, Spellcaster,
ManaMan, Witch/Warlock, Wiz, Wu Jen
Mage : Thaumaturge, Magician, Magiker, Sorcerer, Wizard
Physical Adepts : Ninja, Warrior, Numbskull, Blade
Shamans : Priest, Nature Boy, Chosen One
Druids : Blood Mage, Lineman, Leyseers

"ShadowManiacs," the official ShadowRN mailing list theme song

by former Assistant Fearless Leader, Doctor Doom

It's time for ShadowManiacs!
And we're posting to the max!
So, set your keyboards in your laps
You'll type 'til you collapse
We're ShadowManiacs!

Come join the Fearless Leader
And his Dread Executor, too
They're the ones who admin this crazy mailing zoo
They bring their carps down,
Whenever things come unglued,
But threads break loose
Flaming ensues
And now you know the mood!

We're FASAmaniacs!
Hayden is cute while Doom give threads the axe.(1)
J.D. Falk packs away the FAQs
While Bill Clinton plays the sax.
We're ShadowManiacs!

Meet Damion and Gurth, both named "guru" on a lark,
Cornholio demands t.p.; Doom thwaps him with a carp
Whistler grumbles daily, and then the arguments start
Oh, no -- FASA's goofed
Here come the spoofs
See how the rules can warp!

We're ShadowManiacs!
We want play-test-ing contracts!
We're discordant to the max (fnord)
There's contention on the facts
We're ShadowMain-y
Totally insane-y

*You'll never be the same-y!
*(insert gripe book) sure is lame-y!
*Who's to blame-y?
*Go ahead and flame me!
*Our SysOps complain-y!
*The Dark Lords maintain-y!
*Not Quickenings AGAIN-Y!

Those are the FAQs.

Further Reading

If you enjoyed reading about ShadowRN Frequently Asked Questions (Part IIIa), you may also be interested in:


These messages were posted a long time ago on a mailing list far, far away. The copyright to their contents probably lies with the original authors of the individual messages, but since they were published in an electronic forum that anyone could subscribe to, and the logs were available to subscribers and most likely non-subscribers as well, it's felt that re-publishing them here is a kind of public service.