Twenty Scenarios for an Espionage Game


Twofold purpose in setting these out. First, is to provide examples of play. If we lay out how we want things to happen, then we can make sure that the mechanics reflect them and are best suited for what is envisioned. Second is to lay out the scope of the game. Twenty is an arbitrary number, but if there are a couple handfuls of different scenarios that lay out the scope of what can be in the game, we’ll have more direction and a richer setting to work from.

I’m purposely keeping everything very generic in this. I don’t know if we want to have the final draft in this form, or if we want to strongly embrace the inter-Iron Curtain dance (and by extension Le Carre et al.) There are advantages either way. For now, I suppose I’m leaning toward the generic, but I can be convinced otherwise.

Differentiating between countries and powers. Differentiating between allies, agencies, departments, subsections, etc. CONTROL is not monolithic at all. Agents may report to more than one CONTROL. Paired agents may report to differing CONTROLS.

Agent X is attempting to get the secret document from the safe in Doctor A’s office.

Agent X is expendable and her own people are trying to kill her.

Agent X is chasing operatives who work for Doctor A.

Agent X is trying to infiltrate into an unfriendly foreign country.

Agent X wants to go after Doctor A, but his superiors, Station Chief Y and Director Z won’t allow it.

Agent X is trying to smuggle another person across a border (checkpoint).

Agent X wants to take over operation of the office run by Station Chief Y.

Agent X needs to make contact with an allied agent while working in a foreign country.

Agent X is being pursued by agents from an allied power who think he is working for an unfriendly power.

Agent X learns that Station Chief Y has been turned and is working as a double agent.

Agent X is set up to fall into unfriendly hands in order to support/discredit information the unfriendly power has obtained.

Agent X must arrange for planted information to get into unfriendly hands.

Agent X wants to set up unfriendly Agent B so that she is arrested as a traitor.

Agent X wants to prove that Station Chief Y was set up by unfriendly power to be discredited, but Chief Y is really innocent.

Agent X is working with an allied agent on an assignment, but superiors have indicated that the allied agent is expendable.

Agent X has to kill Diplomat B.

Agent X has to arrange the killing of Diplomat B without it being attributable to her own agency or allies.

Agent X has to meet a defector who has information (which is a trap), and escape alive and with the information (From Russia with Love).

Agent X has to foil a megalomaniacal scheme (Goldfinger, et al).

Agent X has to get a secret device across the border and out of an unfriendly country.


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