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Tuesday, February 05, 2008

New York, 2040


Due to the pressures of globalization, the rise of new international powers, the effectiveness of the new bloodless form of cyber-information warfare, and the loss of American influence, New York City has become the capital of a semi-autonomous political entity called the New England Prefecture, which includes much of the former northeastern American states and eastern Canada. The loss of influence lead to the dissolution of both the American federal government and local state governments. The world is divided between Eurasia, India, China, and Japan now and and the NEP is a political franchise of Eurasia, basically allowed to keep its historic traditions alive but under contract with the Eurasian market. Global climate change has made Long Island and some of downtown Manhattan much like Venice except extremely poor and unstable. The government buildings and offices are based in Yonkers. In spite of the Eurasian franchise, the new business centers are primarily dotted with corporations from India, Japan, and Japanese Australia.

Society has been strongly divided with the progress of both genetic programming and cybernetics. While there is no law against having a child naturally (such children are called "godchildren"), society vastly favors people who receive genetic programming prior to fertilization. This has led to a major and sweeping division among social classes between those who had the means to receive genetic programming, which has become the certificate of reliability for all economic and social matters, and those who are godchildren. Even in the cases where the luck of the draw has lead to optimal performance, the fact that the person in question still speaks against them. Consequently, only geneticized people hold the top positions in society, while godchildren are chronically disadvantaged.

The other technology that has impacted society is cyberization. Thanks to new available surgical methods, many human ills can be taken care of through prosthetics and computer and cellular software can be installed directly into a person's skull case. Such components can access the web by wifi or through an external jack system. Cyberized individuals have enhanced computation and communication links, can display information and images inside their own field of vision and audio and can immediately link into most computer systems. Two important consequences from this are brain hacking, in which an outside source can download a virus into someone's cybernetics and make that person a puppet, and the new social mobility, where the only way a godchild can overcome to a substantial extent the social stigma attached to them is by getting cyberized. But this being very expensive, the only way it could be made available is by joining the military and serving in special ops, which require a full body cybernetic reconstruction for military purposes. As you can imagine, while cyberization bestows many benefits, it is very expensive to maintain, and cyborgs typically wind up working as security agents for corporations in exchange for regular maintenance.

In the future, crime has taken on new meaning, including both high level security issues, organlegging, data crimes, and political terrorism, all of which can count on the genius to exploit the new technological advances. Such crime calls for special police task forces and advanced hired militias. That is where your character comes in.


Your character has been assigned to the NYC Police Department Special Ops Unit, which is in charge of Cyber-crime and Cyber-terrorism. Your character is one of three possible archetypes:

Cyber-Detective: Your character is genetically programmed and represents the upper tier of society but has for some reason or another devoted themselves to police work. Your character is at least minimally cyberized with communication and computer access facilites and has the training t o make the most of these for security purposes. Your character also has leadership experience and functions as a liason between the unit and significant stakeholders in the unit's performance, such as higher ups, executives, and ordinary citizens.

Cyber-Specialist: Your character has benefited from some specialized service and is sufficiently cyberneticly and roboticly modified to accommodate that service, typically because of special circumstances such as military service and training, such as being equipped with built in tether wires for second story work or with a satellite synchronized camera-eye and robotic steady arm in order to be a sniper. Your background may be in some way mixed but your appearance is effected enough by your enhancements to make it socially difficult. You are not a complete cyborg and some parts of you are vulnerable to normal damage.

Cyber-Inventory: Your character came into the ranks from the street by joining the military special ops. Your character is completely cyberized but still designed to look as human as possible. However, some parts of you may not even look human (bazooka arm, scope eye, or tank treads) but that is pretty rare. Generally, your character is super strong, super fast, super destructive, and competent in basic weapons and tactics. Plus you have had great experience, usually more than most detectives, who the nevertheless have to serve under. They are also foreboding in appearance and often have to interact with polite society through intermediates. They do however, possess a great deal of street cred.


There are no stats in this game. The success of your character depends on how well you conceive of him. Pick one of the three archetypes and make it your characters own by tricking it out with specifics. Then tell a good story about how the birth of your character and how he eventually wound up working for the NYPD. Then based logically on your character's description, identify four "virtues" and two "faults" that your character has. They need not be moral virtues, the could also be intellectual or other virtues. Examples, Dick the cyber-detective lists GOOD WITH NUMBERS, LADIES MAN, HISTORY BUFF, and DIPLOMACY as virtues and SHORT-TEMPERED and FEAR OF HEIGHTS, which are all justified by the story he tells about his character. If the player wants a bonus in making a roll, he can get it by incorporating the mention of the virtue in the description of the action you are taking. This gives you a +1d6 bonus to your action. However, if the GM can invoke one of your faults in the description of a setting of your character's action, you get a +1d6 penalty to your action. Further, of the four virtues, pick one that is the best fit with your character. If you use that one, you get a +2d6 bonus.

Finally, add 2 free Mulligan points, and your character is finished.