The style of this game will be semi-serious, with bit of absurd Venture Brothers tossed around some good 'ole fashion action. However, I am not setting anything too much in stone. I like the game to be dynamic and evolve with the group. If the group's characters fit better in a serious world, a dark world like Watchmen, The Dark Knight or Sin City that's the direction we will take. If they are zany and colorful, we'll go with more a Venture Brothers or Marvel's Avengers take. I really want this game to center around the heroes and awesome stories, not around forcing a theme or setting on you the players. Thus, player input is critical and the city will mold around your ideas!
Known to many as Devil’s Den
, Pearl was founded as a railroad boomtown and quickly became a vice-town as a place for cattle-drivers and railroad labors to relax and spend money. As the railroad moved past Pearl, it sought to increase its reputation as the “Greatest place for Dice and Vice!” It gained a reputation as a rough-and-bawdy town, a place to prove that you can hold your own.A gold rush near Pearl saw increased development in the city, followed by a discovery of oil. Pearl continued to develop as a good-time town. Then, during the Great Depression, the city got hit hard. Most of its resorts and hotels closed, casinos boarded up. The city’s economy plummeted. It survived by the petroleum industry, limping through the Great Depression. As the economy begun to pick up during World War II and oil demands rose, a massive push to revitalize Pearl’s economy was made. The City attempted to get several large factories, mostly plastics production facilities, built in Pearl. The plants opened and workers streamed in. Pearl’s places of sin re-opened. All during World War II, Pearl began to reclaim its throne as the City of Vices. Then the War ended. With the War gone, the plants closed their doors and many of the workers moved away to start new, post-war lives. As the 50s and “small-town” suburbia America arrived, Pearl found itself being left behind. Matters were made worse when the oilfields dried up and the petroleum industry moved on. The city sunk into a deep depression. The economy slumped and once again the City started to dry up.
The City desperately tried new things to boost its dying economy. A major campaign was launched in the 60s and 70s that advertised the City’s “Relaxing Atmosphere”. It tried to cater to the new Hippie Culture and indeed there was some success. A large movement started, with the popular Westgreen Valley “hippie park” being its focal point. In the 80s, another push was made to prop Pearl up, this one billing its historical heritage and tourist attraction. However, the City couldn’t shake the labeling of a “cheaper, seedier Las Vegas”. It was always seen as the city that didn't quite make it. As one travel magazine stated, “This pearl turned out to be a fake”. However, a new economy was starting to rise up, one of illegal narcotics. As the rather large criminal underworld of Pearl saw demands for drugs increase, they were quick to capitalize on Pearl’s corrupt and weak law enforcement, the proximity to good border crossings and the major transportation hub that Pearl is. A powerful drug trade emerged. Pearl served as a point of distributing drugs that were smuggled in from the borders.Even though Pearl was a corrupt, twisted city, organized crime didn't seem to take a hold. Several times, the Mafia attempted to gain control of Pearl’s flow of drugs but was fought off by local criminal syndicates. In the 80s and during the Mafia’s waning years in the 90s, it managed to get a good grasp on activities but still Pearl’s criminal underworld was mostly ran by biker gangs and local syndicates. The late 90s saw heavy rises in street gangs as they attempted to control the drugs, prostitution and heavy gambling that was rampant in the city.
Today, Pearl serves as shaded beauty, a crumbling tower of former glory. Never reaching the lofty promenade it attempted to obtain, Pearl stands as a shadow of what it could have been. Fate hasn’t been kind to City and it now sits as a massive underbelly, a dark and gritty town that has tried desperately to shake that title. It is a city of mostly corrupt people and many wicked deeds. Violence is very high, as warring gangs fight for dominance. Most of the organized syndicates have left Pearl, leaving it vulnerable and in chaos. The cocaine trade, formerly controlled by the Mafia and local syndicates, is up for grabs. The biker gangs, who controlled the crystal meth labs, are starting to fall out of power as street gangs take over meth production. Gambling and prostitution is still legalized in the City and many second-rate bordellos and casinos are open on the City’s Grand Avenue. It is a dark, gritty city. TIME Magazine rated Pearl as the “#1 Most Foulest City in America”. Pearl is still a city where one can find a cheap good time. It’s still a place of the vices. Pearl still holds a reputation of being a place where you can prove your own. It is a true proving ground. A saying in Pearl goes, “If you can make it in Pearl, you can make it anywhere”. Fights, drinks, dice, needles and women can be easily found. Pearl earned its nickname “Devil’s Den”.
The World of the Hero
Allies and Foes
The world is slightly different then our own. People of extra-ordinary powers exist on Earth ever since it's beginning. These men and women possess incredible abilities that far surpass anyone's imagination. Such people have been labeled meta-humans by the community. Some meta-humans use their powers for good, others use it to gain fame and glory while a few attempt to control the Earth. Alongside the meta-humans are costumed adventurers, vigilantes with incredible talents or a simple courageous hearts. While they may not have powers, they employ techniques and gadgetry to give them in an edge. Together, these individuals are called superheroes and supervillians. Super-heroes and super-villains have been around ever since early history, creating legends and myths that surround popular culture. Great battles have waged for control of the Earth, but good has always managed to thwart evil. With the help of world governments and well-doing people, superheroes have kept the world from utter destruction. The world has been brought to the brink numerous times by the metas; Hannibal the Unstoppable, the Cuban Missile Crisis, the North Korea controlled by meta Kim-Jong Il, the brilliant and powerful Osama bin Laden. Each time, government metas, heroes or other groups have saved the world. It's just the way it is. You get used to it after awhile...
The world has grown darker and more distrusting. The time is 2016 and meta-humans face a tough chapter in their history. Governments have begun to distrust beings with incredible powers. Fat men who talk in long speeches have passed more and more laws to limit these meta-humans. In some parts of the world, supers have been heavily restricted or outright banned. Some countries have ruled that all supers are governmental property. The idea of metas existing alongside humanity is beginning to be eroded away. While groups of metas protest their rights are be taken away, still large privacy and social rights groups demand that metas be regulated and controlled. In this social chaos more and more metas begin their campaigns for global domination. With some heroes regulated or even losing interest in the fight, villains are making inroads. Violence is escalating, the world seems darker still.
In the US, the country is facing a turbulent presidential election. Here, supers face only limited laws, requiring charters to act as a citizen constable. Even here, enemies of the supers are amassing in great numbers and rumors spread. Laws keep coming to the Senate floor to restrict the supers even more. Bills requiring supers charters to only work in their chartered. legal territory are argued over and debated ad nausea. Fear-mongering organizations hype any mistake supers make. Some believe that the supers' greatest enemy could be the political arena. The gathering of all superheroes in North America, largest organization of meta-humans and costumed adventurers in the world, is starting to take a more active role in politics. The Altruist Kinship is sending lobbyists to Congress as the supers watch the political scene, particularly the election, with a careful eye. Canidates are forming opinions and staking claims in the arena of meta-humans as opinion polls show America heavily divided on the issue.
In Pearl City, the well-liked superhero team known as The Lightkeepers has managed to obtain a charter in the largest and most prestigious circuit of the superhero world; New York City. With the announced departure of the competent Lightkeepers team, Pearl City has erupted into a fresh wave of crime. The Smile Syndicate and the Russian Mafia battle each other for terrortial control of the many Pearl casinos while they attempt to regain power of the lucrative drug trade from the street and biker gangs. Small-time meta-villains plague banks and casinos while at night, soldiers from the aristocratic vampire families and gangs of wulvers war over the city. Meanwhile, a corrupt police force and a puppet city government spin the city deeper into debt and ruin.
Taking over this charter is a new group of meta-humans and costumed adventures. They are up-and-coming heroes, finally getting a shot as real official superheroes. The charter runs along half of Pearl City and the outlying areas. It is not a popular charter. There are little rewards, few publicity shots and what seems to be an ungrateful city. The other half is under charter by another superhero team, the morally ambiguous Devil's Hounds. They face many challenges and obstacles in a crime-ridden city whose citizens aren't as enamored of supers like most of the world is. This is their chance to make it big in the superhero circuit, to make a real difference. Will they succeed? Or will they succumb to temptations, power, and greed?
This is a world where bank guards carry machine guns and hotdog vendors strap on Kevlar and carry a Glock. This a world where construction companies are on standby to repair damage from a massive meta battle downtown. This is a world where the paranormal is normal and the weird is average.
Welcome to Pearl City.
There are 638,918 souls within the limits of Pearl City. How many will you save?
The massive assembly of meta-humans and costumed adventurers that provides a unified voice to all chartered constables within North America. Almost all chartered groups are members of the Kinship, sending representatives to the yearly meeting. Each superhero group has a Delegate that votes for the group in the Kinship. The charters are gathered under eleven different regions. Each region elects it's Cord, usually a powerful meta-human. The Eleven Cords are the prime policy makers of the Kinship and often travel to Washington to make the Kinship's voice heard. Each Cord serves for seven years. Overseeing the Cords is the Patron, the leader and representative of all metas and costumed adventures. Ever since the Kinship formed in the early 1700s, the Patron has been the all-powerful Oldfather. The Altruist Kinship takes the role of powerful pro-super lobby, union, legal advocacy, health insurance, training and more for superheroes. Dues are paid for by all members. Almost always, membership in the Kinship is required for hiring of superheroes.
Smile Syndicate's main business plan is to move into an area and quickly eliminate criminal leadership with brutal and rapid contracted killings. They then begin to expand by hiring muscle and buying out the arms market in that area. The Syndicate moves in heavy weapons and specialists in an area of major resistance. Once they have an infrastructure in place, they pull off several high-profile crimes to intimidate local merchants. The Syndicate then moves into territory, establishes extortion rackets and snaps up business. The Syndicate tries to control the drug and arms trade, with extortion being the third priority. In drugs, the Syndicate mostly deals in cocaine and ecstasy. They attempt to control it via extortion of local street gangs and dealers. In arms trade, they provide local gangs with imported heavy hardware who franchise themselves to the Syndicate. Criminals and gangs who resist get destroyed by extremely well-armed and armored foot soldiers. They are well-known for their yellow suit-and-tie wearing henchmen with smiling face masks.
The Russian and Italian mafias are present, controlled by their local families. The Russians are mostly focused on control and extortion of the massive casinos. The Italians are attempting to dominate the drug trade. A group of businessmen and casino owners, the Union of Lights, exploit financial and white collar crimes. Meta-humans are employed by all the groups.
Street gangs plague the city. Biker gangs still control the meth production and sales, while anarchists firebomb government buildings and vehicles disappear for chop shops. Some mutant groups roam the streets, finding and killing metas as often as they can. There are also rumors of Lycan Clans, werewolf packs that are vicious and untamed.
Organization of Helpful Concerned Citizens is a worldwide pro-supers group. The American-based OHCC is the most powerful legal rights association for meta-humans. Its members include both metas and normal humans. OHCC has been in thousands of legal battles for metas and provides free legal defense for all chartered meta-human groups. They also aid the Kinship in political lobbying.
People's Movement of the Ordinary is a rabid, extremist group who has called for complete and total banishment of all supers and mutants. Some have said that the PMO is calling for genocide of a species but the PMO maintains it simply does not want Meta-humans to exist alongside normal humans. The Global Liberty Watch and Privacy Protection Association are also anti-super groups. The GLW and PPA are worldwide watchdog groups who claims that supers interfere with private liberties of others. They both lobby for increased restrictions and regulations. Other anti-super groups include ACLU, Amnesty International, and Human Rights Watch; they all maintain that metas infringe on human rights and civil liberties for humans.
Department of Meta Affairs
A cabinet-level position created in 1984, the Department of Meta Affairs is a large department that handles all meta-human services. They grant charters, provide legal services, mop-up the aftermath of a meta-human battle and generally act as the public governmental handler for supers. They are also responsible for policing out-of-line metas, tracking dangerous villains and handing the general registration services. They compete with the newly created Department of Homeland Security for their law enforcement and security related duties, with several agencies recently transferred over to DHS.
National Extraordinary Incident Agency
The NEIA, once an agency of DMA, is under the Department of Homeland Security. They are a small, fairly unknown agency that deals with direct and indirect action against and for meta-humans. They keep intelligence records of meta-humans, conduct research, assist superhero groups in defeating villains and gather intelligence on belligerent meta-humans. They work closely with NSA, CIA, FBI and the Armed Forces.
The other superhero team, the Devil's Hounds have a charter that runs through about 55% of the City. Led by Mistress Shade, the Hounds have been surrounded in a number of controversies regarding them and accepting bribes from the Pearl City Police Department. They have a harsh, bleak form of justice, often accidentally killing individuals and causing substantial damage to the city. The Kinship has passed three resolutions condemning acts by the Hounds but the group still maintains its charter and membership
This group is a collection of villains and is considered the counter-part of the Kinship. They employ their own foot-soldiers and can provide support and assistance to member villains. Numerous attempts to bring down and dismantle the Dominion Society have failed. The Society always seems to be one step ahead of any government or meta-human attempts to bring them down. Some believe that the Society is actually tolerated since it regulates and controls its members more carefully than non-regulated villains.
Game starts on Monday!
Review what you need to do!
- Mikey CTS
Alternate Identity (Secret): Lillith Noire
Powers: Fear, Shadow
- Captain Carrot
Alternate Identity (Secret): Amanda Simmons
Powers: Gravity Control
Alternate Identity: Raz
Powers: Cosmic Energy Control
Alternate Identity: Calloway King
Alternate Identity: None
Powers: Regenerating Shapeshifter
Alternate Identity: Freddie "The Tooth" Barbaro
Powers: Magical Battlesuit
Alternate Identity: None
Powers: Master Nanite Thief