You may have a fearsome arsenal at your disposal, but if you cannot get it to where you need to exercise it you may as well be stuck with just a broken peashooter. But how to transport the goods to the site without attracting too much undue attention which would spoil the surprise? You might be tempted to charge in with as much haste as you can muster, but more often it would be better to exchange secrecy for speed, especially if you are hoping to coordinate efforts with multiple members on a team. It may seem tedious, and it might wear down your concentration, intent as you are on finalizing the bloody work, but it may be the most essential thing to do to guarantee that you will face he final conflict with the overwhelming force you require.
- Change your profile. If you are wanted in ninety-nine precincts and your face is subject to instant recognition by anyone you pass, you probably should not be the one running the secret broadsword-smuggling operation. Either invest in some elaborate disguises, or, preferably, get your brother-in-law whom nobody recognizes or thinks ill of to do the legwork for you. The drug runners are masters in defeating the art of profiling criminals, choosing octogenarians and pregnant lasses to do their mulework, and you can take inspiration from their successes.
- The art of misdirection. Ninety-nine percent of effective concealment lies not in the layers of material covering your guilty secrets but rather in the skillful management of perception which leads the observer's eye astray. Sometimes it is just an elegant turn of gesture you need, sometimes a more elaborate illusion of something which is not there. If you can control the levers of perception, you can walk through a town square with your hardware out in the open without anything looking amiss. Often it is best to spread out the effort of distraction among the members of a team working in close synchronization like a dance troupe.
- Bit by bit. Sometimes the best way to smuggle a bulky item like a rocket launcher is to break it down and conceal the individual pieces, reassembling them when they are gathered together again on site. This assumes that your operatives have the technical wherewithal to remember how to put the item back together without any leftover bits and without mangling anything in the process, perhaps a lofty goal. Consider enlisting the aid of intelligent nanomachines if the humanoid kind performs poorly in drills.
- Poof. If your arms smugglers are caught, take the precaution of having measures which ensure that the precious goods do not fall into your enemy's hands. A simple booby-trap to surprise the recipients may be enough (best is the kind that the smuggling crew itself does not know about), or you may prefer to hook up a dead-man's switch to destroy the cargo if it is separated from your henchmen. Enough adverse incidents in the past have taught us the painful lesson of leaving this step out.
Strokes of genius
- Bare hands. The ultimate in undetectability is to incorporate your weapons into your own body, whether stock equipment or enhanced with body modifications. From retractable claws to skull-mounted laser beams, the range of possibilities to someone willing to go under a military surgeon's knife is vast.
- Transdimensional rifts. As is probably apparent from some of the other wiki pages we love this technique here an awful lot. Simply open a portal out of the mundane three spatial dimensions and sidle your payload over into another bunch to which presumably nobody is paying any attention. For some very bulky or inconvenient sorts of weapons (Swiss halberds, howitzers, Fire elementals) this may be the only practical means of concealment at your disposal. There are certain places in our world where at any given time you will find dimensions 7 through 9 nearly chock-full of Tommy guns and other armament, so popular is this technique.
- Remember the accessories. It does not speak well of your attention to detail if you succeed in transferring your weapons over but forget to bring along the things you need to make them work. So don't forget to make a special effort to conceal and transport ammunition, power cords, syringes, duct tape, or whatever details you need to have ready at your fingertips at the other end.
- Inflatables. The smart folks in the weapons labs have made great advances lately in inflatable weapons technology, so that not only edged weapons but handguns, grenades, and even rocket launchers can fit into a tiny fraction of their final dimension, needing only to be pumped up when it's time to use them. Another attractive aspect of this technique is that it avoids being nabbed by metal detectors.
Traps for mere fools
- Nervous chit-chat. If you are confronted in mid-transfer of some exceedingly lethal and incriminating gadgets, it is nearly impossible to maintain the level of calmness and detachment it takes to make convincingly idle small talk. If this happens to you, your best bet is to ramp up the misdirection by staging some kind of diversion, even an imaginary one, so that the telltale signs of guilt and excitement will not be as evident to your observer.
- What was that sound? Do not concentrate so fully on making your weapons invisible that you forget that there are four other senses which need to be clouded. Wrap metal objects in tape or foam so they won't clink against one another, put vapor-tight barriers around plastic explosives so that bomb-sniffing dogs will not be alterted, and try to portion out your radioisotopes into small enough parcels that they will not be noticeably hot to the touch.
Precious and needful
- Dimensional portal. (two required)
- Trifold full-length mirror.
- Padded underwear.
- Self-replicating nanomanipulator robots.
- Wooden leg.
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- Image credit RenFaire07_272 by lymang
- Image credit Classic Bond by Dunechaser
- Image credit 217/365: Sometimes you have to zap trees by DavidDMuir
Created by: GrinningSkull. Last Modification: Wednesday 12 of August, 2009 16:24:17 EDT by .