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The Investigation skill spotlights large-scale inspections, ranging from wide collections of interviews to long information tours. The Investigation skill is used to “canvass” an area (i.e. interview many people in a short time, seeking information about specific topics or suspicious behavior). It’s also used to tell whether someone from wide collections of interviews to long information tours. The Investigation skill is used to “canvass” an area (i.e. interview many people in a short time, seeking information about specific topics or suspicious behavior). It’s also used to tell whether
Combat Actions: None.
Dramatic Conflict: Manhunts.
Sample Knowledge: Police procedure, criminology, information databases and think tanks around the world; mystery novels; effective web surfing and navigating the Dewey Decimal system.

Canvass area check

(Cha; Secret; Language)
Time Varies (Take 10/Take 20) • Base Error Range 1

This check is used to hit any area or gathering in Search of information. When you make this check, you must define the area to be canvassed and whether you’re seeking information about one or more topics or just general rumors (the latter would include a heads-up about suspicious behavior). This information, coupled with the danger the public faces for answering truthfully, determines the time required to make the Canvass Area check, as well as your DC and error range, as shown on Table: Canvass Area Checks.
You may reduce your Canvass Area DC by 5 and error range by 1 each time you increase the money dedicated to eliciting responses from the populace by its base minimum. This may not reduce the DC below 20 or the error range below 1.

Example 1: When canvassing a narrow area for general rumors and information that presents extreme danger to anyone who reveals it, the base DC is 40, the base error range is 1–5, and the base cost is $1,000. Reducing this to DC 35 and error range 1–4 costs $2,000, reducing it to DC 30 and error range 1–3 costs $3,000, and so on.

With success, you gain 1 statement from the people in the area. Further, for every 5 by which your result beats the DC, you gain 1 additional statement. These statements contain the most pressing or prevalent information about your specified topic or happenings in the area (from the public’s perspective). The GC is encouraged to have a short list of statements and rumors on hand each time the action shifts to a new location, so he doesn’t have to make these statements up on the fly.
Availability of Information: The Game Control or the mission outline determines whether any desired piece of information is available from a target area or gathering before this check is made. The GC never tells the players whether the information is available; they only find out for sure if it is and their check succeeds.
Cooperative: Yes (maximum 5 helpers).
Synergy Skills: : Bureaucracy (when in a corporate or government environment), Cultures (when in a focus area), Impress, Networking, Sense Motive, Streetwise (when in a city).
Retry: Yes, unless you suffer a critical failure.
Threat: You gain a friend or two in the community. Your error range with each Canvass Area check made within the target area decreases by 1 (minimum 1). This effect lasts until the end of the current mission or until you fail a Canvass Area check in the same area (whichever comes first).
Critical Success: : If you’re asking about general information, you find all available information that won’t put anyone at more than mild risk. If you’re asking about a specific topic, you find all available information, even if it might threaten the public’s lives.
Error: You gain a few enemies in the community. Your error range with each Canvass Area check made within the target area increases by 2. This effect lasts until the end of the current mission or until you succeed with a Canvass Area check in the same area (whichever comes first).
Critical Failure: You rub community leaders or busybodies the wrong way. You may not make a Canvass Area check within the target area for the duration of the current mission.

Table: Canvas Area
Scope/CircumstanceTime RequiredDC/DC ModifierError Range IncreaseCost
Area or Gathering
Confined (e.g. 1 building) 4d6×10 minutes 40 +3 $20
Narrow (e.g. 1 city block) 1d6 hours 30 +2 $100
Open (e.g. 4 city blocks) 2d6 hours 20 +1 $500
Wide (e.g. 16 city blocks) 4d6 hours 15 +0 $3,000
City (e.g. New York, London) 1d6 days 20 +1 $20,000
Nation (e.g. U.S.A. or U.K.) 2d6 days 30 +2 $200,000
Continent (e.g. North America, Europe)* 4d6 days 40 +3 $2,000,000
Desired Information
General rumors and sightings 1/4 base time** +0 +0
Broad topic (e.g. information available to nearly everyone) 1/2 base time** +0 +0
Focused topic (e.g. information available to many people) Base time +5 +1
Narrow topic (e.g. information available to few people) 2 × base time +10 +2
Obscure topic (e.g. information available to select cadre) 5 × base time +10 +2
Unique topic (e.g. information available to one person) 10 × base time +20 +3
Risk of Answering
None –10 +0 1/4 base cost**
Slight (may prompt ridicule or social sanction) +0 +0 1/2 base cost**
Moderate (may prompt mild retribution or minor criminal charges) +5 +1 Base cost
Extreme (may prompt a personal vendetta or moderate criminal charges) +10 +2 2 × base cost
Deadly (may prompt attacks or major criminal charges on self, friends, or family) +20 +3 5 × base cost
* You may not make a Canvass Area check targeting more than one continent at a time.
** Rounded down.
 

Detect Search check

(Wis; Secret; Vision)
Time Varies (Take 10/Take 20) • Base Error Range 1

This skill check is used to look for signs that someone has searched one or more 5-ft. × 5-ft. squares or frisked one or more characters. It requires 1 full action + 1 additional full action per square or character to be inspected beyond the first.
With a successful Detect Search check, you determine whether the character or square was disturbed and if so, locate any relevant clues about who or what caused the disturbance. Your base DC for this check is 15 + 5 per square or character to be inspected beyond the first.
If the square or body was searched more than once, this check reveals only the most recent search
Cooperative: Yes (maximum 5 helpers).
Synergy Skills: Analysis, Notice, Search.
Retry: Yes, but your error range increases by 2 each time. Unless otherwise stated, all Detect Search error ranges reset at the start of each mission.
Threat: The time required to complete your inspection is reduced to 1/2 standard (rounded down, minimum 1 half action).
Critical Success: You determine the time elapsed since the Search — to the day (if the Search occurred more than 1 day ago) or to the hour (if the Search occurred within the last 24 hours).
Error: You incorrectly determine whether a Search was made in the target area (determining there was a Search if there wasn’t and viceversa).
Critical Failure: You’re oblivious. You may not attempt another Detect Search check until the end of the current scene.

Research check

(Wis; Secret; Concentration, Language, Vision)
Time Varies • Base Error Range 1

This check is used to scour remote, unused, or uncataloged parts of libraries, Computers, and the Internet for information (i.e. clues). Any clue that the GC decides is easily found simply by sifting through the result of standard web and index searches requires no check, but is rather found using a core command (see page 374), or with triple the same time using manual methods (e.g. paper, card, or book indexes).
The time required and your DC are determined by the nature of the information and where you’re looking for it, as shown on Table: Research Checks.
The Game Control or the mission outline determines whether any desired piece of information is available from a target source before this check is made. The GC never tells the players whether the information is available; they only find out for sure if it is and their check succeeds.
With success, you glean one remaining clue from the information source.
With failure, you gather no Intelligence from the information source.
Availability of Information: The Game Control or the mission outline determines whether any desired piece of information is available from a target source before this check is made. The GC never tells the players whether the information is available; they only find out for sure if it is and their check succeeds.
Cooperative: Yes (maximum 5 helpers).
Synergy Skills: Analysis, Computers (when using a computer), Investigation, Notice, Search
Retry: No (though you may attempt to find the same information n from a different source).
Threat: The time required to complete the research is reduced to 1/2 standard (rounded down, minimum 10 minutes).
Critical Success: You glean 1 additional remaining clue from the information source per action die spent to activate the critical success (maximum 5 clues).
Error: You glean 1 inaccurate clue from the information source (per the GC’s discretion).
Critical Failure: Your mistake leaves you feeling falsely secure. In addition to the effects of an error, your error range with all Research checks increases by 3. This effect lasts until the end of the current scene or until you succeed with a Research check (whichever comes first).

Table: Research Checks
Scope/CircumstanceTime RequiredDC/DC Modifier
Source of Information
Personal library 2d6 × 10 minutes 15
Town library 4d6 × 10 minutes 20
City library 1d6 hours 30
National library 2d6 hours 40
Personal computer 1d6 minutes 15
Business network 2d6 minutes 20
Government network 1d6 × 10 minutes 30
Internet 2d6 × 10 minutes 40
Desired Information
General information 1/4 base time* +0
Broad topic
(e.g. information related to many other topics)
1/2 base time* +0
to several other topics) Base time +5
to a few other topics) 2 × base time +10
to one other topic) 5 × base time +10
to no other topics) 10 × base time +20
* Rounded down.