So, we’ve been catching up on the new version of Hawaii 5-0. First, I have to get past the whole idea that every single episode people pull out and shoot guns. But that is the point of this. The guys (including the criminals) in this show act more like adventurers than like cops, or even modern day soldiers. They shoot first and ask questions later, just like FRPG adventurers. So, is that bad?
Yep! Every once in a while I would like to see some guy give up before he’s got a couple of slugs in him. So getting past the morality of killing folks - Both the guys on this show and adventuring parties need to recognize that taking prisoners, you know the live talking kind, can be a great thing. Live prisoners can tell you what they were doing and why. They can point you to the next mission or clue or whatever. Dead guys? Well, they bleed. Is that useful? You know, you can loot living guys too.
A warning - Prisoners can add an extra level of complexity to game mastering. GMs need to be able to role-play what the NPC knows and how likely they might be to share that info.