Good Cop Score (or GC) is a number that represents a detective's standing with the force, and their general respect for rules and procedure. A detective that is kind to suspects and does everything by the book will have a high GC. A detective that is quick to abuse a suspect and has little regard for protocol will have a low GC.
All detectives start with a GC of 10. [This is not an upper limit: it is possible to later exceed this depending on what the detective does.]
Losing and Gaining Good Cop PointsEdit
Actions that step outside the bounds of the law (beating suspects, bribing, using illegal contacts, etc.) lower your score according to the severity of the action:
- Meeting with "Unsavory" characters: Underworld characters, be they local thugs, petty criminals or organized mobsters can give players valuable information about the seedy underbelly of the town or city. However, they will not cooperate with a detective unless that detective's GC score is 7 or less. There is no penalty for the first time that players meet with an underworld character or group each case. If they meet with the same person or group a second time, then the word is out, and every meeting after that reduces the detectives GC by 1 Good Cop Point.
- Partnering with a Renegade: If a player goes into the field with a detective that is "off the force", it costs that detective 1 Good Cop Point
- Bribing/Extortion: Bribes can be used to improve the chance of getting useful information from a witness in some awesome way [Needs to be addressed here and/or in investigation section]. Similarly, detectives can sometimes throw their weight around as a member of the police force and make threats. Such forms of extortion can sometimes gain them entry to locations they would normally be unable to enter or allow them to obtain information that would otherwise be inaccessible. Both bribing and extorting costs 2GC.
- Beating a suspect: Beating up a suspect, whether for shits and giggles or to get information, costs the detective 3 Good Cop Points
Stealing evidence[Stealing evidence counts as Fruit from the Poisonous Tree, and thus is not evidence. You might still obtain certain kinds of leads from information found, though.]
- Purposefully arresting an innocent is impossible. However, a detective may plant evidence (a convenient, unregistered weapon or some such) on a suspect to enable their arrest. While you'd never be able to get a conviction on such flimsy evidence, you will be able to hold them at the station for questioning. Planting evidence in such a manner costs 5GC.
- Trespassing or entering a private residence or business without the proper warrants costs 2GC. Furthermore, any evidence found while trespassing is not admissible. In general, Qs asked while trespassing are simply not admissible as evidence. However, if you manage to later legitimately enter, Qs asked during a warranted search are admissible (but this means you must re-ask Qs from when you trespassed if you want that information admitted). [You may set up an interview/questioning (no arrests though!) with people found while trespassing (if they are amenable to talking while you fucking trespass, you dick). Qs asked of a person while trespassing are not admissible
- Dealer's Choice: The GM can also declare that an action will cost the player some number of GC points, but must warn the detective before they make the choice.
The GM can award Good Cop Points at the end of every session to characters that displayed an unwavering commitment to the ethics of a Good Cop. Rewards may be as follows:
- Following Procedure: Unerringly sticking to the rules, even when bending them would have made the job easier. +1GC
- Self-Control: Resisting serious temptation of some sort. Maybe they had a clear chance to bribe someone and chose another route or they were faced with a backpfeifengesicht (German for "A face badly in need of a fist") and managed to resist its siren song. +1GC
- Results: Say what you will about ethics and justice---the higher ups love to see results. Managing to achieve a major break in the case impresses everyone on the force. +2GC
- Self-Sacrifice: Putting the good of society ahead of the self, at great personal cost. Possibly they risk life and limb in a shootout when they realize an innocent is in danger, or maybe they give up a chance to make a break in the case so they can do the right thing. +2GC
- Dealer's Choice: The GM can decide that some other action not listed above was an important ethical or moral choice, or just something everyone on the force would view positively. +1 to 3GC, depending
It is not necessary for the GM to give these rewards at the end of every session. If no detectives did anything deserving, no awards should be given. A detective should be given one or more of these rewards based on the weight and meaningfulness of his actions: simply being low on GC is not a reason.
While the GM should feel free to reward GC as he sees fit, a general rule of thumb is:
Over the whole, the average detective should receive no more than +2GC in a session. No single detective should receive more than +3GC in a session.
Off the ForceEdit
If a detective falls to a GC score of 0, that character is "Off the Force" ("Gimme your badge and your gun and get outta my sight!!"). Such characters can still come along on investigations (though doing so costs the other players 1 GC), and they still grant bonus Qs in any investigation they participate in. However, they suffer some penalty when trying to get information from a suspect or a witness (they don't have a badge to wave around, after all) [lose access to some tactic or another?].
If a SWAT team is involved in a raid, an Off-the-Force character cannot participate in said raid.
If all the detectives on the team are off the force, the team loses access to the morgue and forensics lab.
One bonus to being Off the Force is that underworld figures consider that character "legit". Characters with a GC score of 0 can issue reasonable orders to underworld contacts IF THEY HAVE MET WITH THAT CONTACT AT LEAST ONCE, and the GM determines that the contact would be inclined to assist the detective. Detectives that are Off the Force may request that their underworld contacts assist them with a raid. Whether they agree or not is up to the GM's discretion.
Should anything special happen if a detective manages to hit a super-high GC (13+)? Perhaps extra use of Forensics/Morgue? Similarly, should there be other losses for low GC than just Raids? Like losing access to Forensics/Morgue at 3?
Should GC loss be to all detectives involved in the action, or just the one doing it? If your partner beats the shit out of a suspect, are you culpable? Probably. But as guilty as him? Probably not. What if you purposefully arrest an innocent? It seems like both detectives are culpable. How can characters get back "On the Force"? Are they able to? They can't do paperwork to gain GC points.
-Perhaps if they are awarded GM GC points at the end of a session and are able to get up to... 3 points, they're reinstated (but on probation, of course) -D
Forfeit a day to gain +1 GC...Too easy? Too steep?
- I'm with Derek on this one. It seems like we're giving a reward to the player for being bored---not what we want. -V
-Seems too lame to me. Why reward players for 'sitting out'? Being a bad cop doesn't mean being a bad player. The game doesn't seem crunchy enough to have the balance of investigation and GC points be really interesting, so I don't see this being an interesting mechanic. Perhaps you could spend a day doing 'good deeds' for citizens, and while doing so you could ask them a few questions? -D