Founding and Background
Every Runner may use the services of the Runners’ Guild. It provides pricing suggestions (although, of course,
every deal is negotiable in its own right), as well as a code which all Runners are expected to follow (foremost
of which is “Don’t open the package.”) and encourages Runners to meet at established locations in each town
to exchange their knowledge of what services can be found where. Many towns even have a building dedicated
to the Runners’ Guild, set aside by the town to gain favour.
The Runners’ Guild was formed as a way to improve conditions for the Runners themselves. A small group of
Runners, who managed to stay alive long enough to retire, decided to share their amassed wealth to provide
information and services to other Runners in order to increase their chances of survival. They provided maps
of the various Zones, a code, a guide to being a successful Runner and a price list of what should be paid for
each delivery, depending on time and distance. This proved so effective that the Runners’ Guild grew until most
towns had a branch of the Guild.
The Guild’s representative in each branch is usually a volunteer from the population of that town, who is
rewarded in Brass for their services by visiting Runners. The Guild representatives are there strictly to provide
support to Runners. In practice, Runners are answerable to no-one – the only hold that you can have over them
is withholding their promised Brass, but that can cause the town to be blacklisted! Each Runner carries a copy
of which towns have been blacklisted with them at all times.
The Runners’ Guild has no true leadership. Each Runner is responsible for their actions, their business and
The Runners’ Guild is usually able to arrange accommodation for a visiting Runner but most Runners are
used to sleeping rough anyway, so they will not generally expect it. However, some smaller villages that wish
to gain favour with the Guild have been known to offer room and board to visiting Runners. This is done with
the hope that the Runner will spread the word of their hospitality, increasing the Runner traffic to these remote
The few Runners who survive long enough and gain enough Brass from working can retire. It’s most common
for such individuals to assist with the running of the Guild in their chosen location, rather than abandoning the
Guild entirely: it has been a part of their lives for so long that most who reach this state believe they must give
Many people see being a Runner as a way to gain a quick amount of Brass. It is, however, extremely
dangerous! It’s estimated that 80% of Runners perish on their first journey. Even so, the lure of wealth and
comfort continues to draw many young people to the profession.
For those wishing to sign up, the Runners’ Guild outpost will provide them with a package and a map. They are
not usually paid well for their first few deliveries, but trust can be earned on Gaia relatively swiftly.
The Runners’ Guild doesn’t put effort into maintaining a good relationship with anyone – it’s more that other
factions seek its favour. Runners never guarantee delivery – Gaia is a dangerous place – and when a package
doesn’t make it and the Runner is not heard from, the worst is usually assumed.
Runner work closely with the Defenders, carrying news of likely targets for both Infected and Raiders to
Defender bases on behalf of the threatened settlements.
Defaulting payment or otherwise upsetting a Runner is one of the few crimes that is widely recognised by most
towns – the Runners’ Guild is able to blacklist a location, effectively cutting it off from all services. As a result,
most towns which are blacklisted become abandoned swiftly – even the Defenders sometimes refuse to work
with a town that is blacklisted. This means that even if towns do not believe they receive good service from
individual Runners, they will not risk antagonising them: no town can be blacklisted and hope to survive for