This roleplay is oriented around an arcology known as the Nine Suns Tower, located in an alternate version of New York City. The overall feel we’re aiming for is an over-the-top action film with equal parts grit and camp, with an emphasis on cyberpunk aesthetics and vibe. While below is a list of Locations, Factions and possible Character Augmentations, you may submit your own or expand upon what is presented; however, all should involve entities that will be interacting within the Nine Suns Tower’s narrative.
Welcome to... Big Trouble in Neo-Chinatown!
2030: The Big Apple has rot to the core. 22 years after the First Contact War, New York City has yet to recover. Long gone are the days of the ball drop in Times Square or enjoying a glizzy at Coney Island. The luminous coastal sprawl has been condensed to a towering nexus of LED-brilliance; maglev transit systems and ten-lane skyways snake through miles of kenopsic cityscape.
Nine Suns Tower is a 200+story monstrosity built over the former Citi-Stadium and its surrounding neighborhoods. Meant as a replacement for the destroyed Chinatowns in Manhattan and Queens, Nine Suns Tower was conceived as one of several arcologies meant to address the irreparable damage done to NYC's boroughs following the First Contact War and its fallout; economic collapse; the rapid national privatization of public services; and remnant xenoforms that still roam the United States decades after the Sahara Incident. Desperate for financiers, a bidding war began to see the SKYRISE INITIATIVE realized. The result being much of the Nine Suns Tower's funding coming from the Ghost Shadows Triad through various shell companies and front organizations.
Four years after officially opening its doors, the Nine Suns Tower is a hotbed for criminal activity. Due to the insular nature of the arcology, tight-knit communities have developed across each Terrace (five story housing blocks). Overpopulation and mass unemployment following the diaspora of the American Interior coupled with volatile reactionary elements have seen living conditions plummet within the lower Terraces. Meanwhile the upper Terraces retain the splendor of the tower’s original design and host thriving criminal economies.
Every single subnet in the Nine Suns Tower buzzed with the news: a 黑人社会 (Black Society) Comac VTOL had just landed on the penthouse’s cantilever helipad. Rumors swirled for weeks that a 草鞋 (Straw Sandal) from the Mainland would be sent following months of bloody Terrace wars between the Ghost Shadows and the Yinglong.
This news has reached the NYDD through a series of intercepted transmissions. With only days to scrape together an operation, the Department has assigned one of their top task forces to the case. Their goal? To move in on the Nine Suns Tower and arrest the Ghost Shadows leadership during their meeting with the overseas emissary (with the seizure of their assets an added bonus for the NYDD's coffers).
Nine Suns Tower
A marvel of design, the Nine Suns Tower is a sino-wonderland that dominates the Flushing Bay in Queens. When approaching via Inter-Arc train the mind is dazzled by its exterior; a postmodernist amalgamation of a resplendent pagoda and the latest in bionic architecture. A photovoltaic layer of silicon-based solar cells gives the tower an eerie glow at night that’s accentuated by neon hanzi along its utility decks, cleverly disguised as the pagoda’s extended eaves that separate each Terrace. This solar energy provides power for much of the arcology’s infrastructure. Water is taken from the nearby bay, cleansed and desalinated through a unique polypyrrole mesh to meet the strain placed on an aging public works system. Several vertical turbines are designed into the penthouse atrium as a secondary energy source.
The interior of each Terrace is designed around verdant central courtyards where sunlight is channeled through transparent alumina columns running the length of the arcology. The courtyards originally served as a public square where denizens of the Terrace could congregate freely while also providing access to health-care facilities and other essential services. While this holds true for the upper Terraces, where life is a high-tech utopia filled with designer narcotics, endless diversion and red light districts; the lower Terraces are a different matter entirely.
These Terraces can be best defined by the pungent fragrance of densely packed bodies and old cooking oil suspended in humidity bordering oppressive; darkened hallways illuminated with luminescent graffiti; and the ubiquitous presence of MÜD: a powerful psychoactive that is most commonly sold in glimmering orange tablets.
☰ Ghost Shadows - Following the RICO crackdowns on organized crime in NYC during the 90s, the Ghost Shadows leadership went underground, waiting until they could return to prominence. During this time they were formally inducted into the Triad through the Wo Group after several high-profile massacres that were pinned on the competing 14K Group. Illegal gambling, prostitution, human trafficking and murder for hire are the pillars of their criminal empire while also being majority shareholders in prominent area property developers and transportation multinationals through front organizations.
☰ The Yinglong - A confederation formed by a variety of tongs and gangs across the lower 20th Terraces. Their illicit activities run the gamut from illicit data havens to old-fashioned extortion. While having no true leadership, the strongest voices in the organization would be the 荆棘 (Thorns), the 8th Terrace Tong and the 红色公会 (Red Guild).
☰ Holy Knights of Terra - An unclassified anti-alien hate organization based in the old subway system, the Honorable Knights of Terra try to influence politics to keep NYC free from any deviations in humanity and, albeit less openly, engage in more direct means of combating what they view as an alien infestation of their planet.
☰ Discorporate Productions - By far the largest for-profit organization on the planet, with a net worth measured in the trillions, this corporation is on the fast-track to owning much of the western world. Apollo Amon is Discorporate’s shady CEO.
☰ New York Defense Division - Once the city’s primary law enforcement agency, the NYDD (formerly the NYPD) has seen itself consolidated into one precinct following over a decade of disbandment after the FCW. Now a quasi-nationalized police force suffering from low recruitment numbers and high mortality rates, the NYDD may be on the chopping block as more corporate entities begin to fill their role as “peacekeepers”. Dwindling budgets see the NYDD engage in civil asset forfeiture to stay afloat.
☰ Tribe:Barrio - The Tribe are at the forefront of street crime in a Post-Contact world. With an elevated hood mentatily, their members are notorious for utilizing cybernetic and genetic enhancements to mimic the beneficial traits of apex species. With the mindset of survival of the fittest and a power vacuum following the FCW, the Tribe have proliferated and are your go-to for a good time outside the arcologies.
☰ Technology - In the aftermath of the First Contact War and with help from The Red Technocracy, Earth underwent leaps and bounds in the advancement of technology, with teleportation, space travel, energy barriers, and antimatter missiles all augmenting global arsenals. While these high-end utilities are not available to the public, society still benefits in the forms of pollution-free energy, limited space tourism, and an almost unlimited assortment of body augmentations—all compliments of the mega corporations and cartels that effectively run modern Earth’s society.
☰ Magic - On Earth, real magic, historically, is incredibly rare and almost always stems from mortals forming contracts with spiritual beings, such as demons, in order to obtain power; seldom is this to their ultimate benefit. However, recent interaction with alien species have reinvigorated research into this area and, as a consequence, the line between magic and technology considerably blurs with respect to psionics research and the application of bioforce.
☰ Bioforce - This fundamental force has been known under many names throughout human history. The Ancient Greeks knew it as aether; the alchemists as quintessence; the Chinese harnessed it as qi; while Polynesian cultures conceptualized it as mana. Bioforce is the spiritual energy that permeates the universe, fostering life in its myriad forms. Practitioners usually begin by harnessing their own personal pools of bioforce through rigorous training of their mind, soul or body.
» The character sheet is intended as a guide and is not a mandatory format.
» Characters must have a corresponding aesthetic to or, if not, explanation for being in the Nine Suns Tower or NYC.
» You aren't required to select from the Factions list.
» You are welcome to create your own faction, or even location from which your character hails as long as it fits the established lore.
» While characters may have powers, they cannot be game breaking, limitless, nor elevate the character beyond the setting.
☰ C | I | M | P | T
Characters in this setting should not be omnipotent, omniscient, nor omnipresent, so we enforce a scale where the more of one type of power a character possesses the less they have of another. Thus, along five manifestations of power (clout, intellect, magic, physical, and technological) scaled from 0, indicative of an average person, to 5, indicative of a superhuman, we allow the allocation of 5 points for player characters, with no ability surpassing 3 without GM approval.
As an example, someone with a great deal of money (i.e.: clout) might buy an advanced machine, but they won't necessarily know how to use it: such is true of Apollo Amon, the CEO of Discorporate Productions; he is reasonably smart but also the richest and most well-connected individual on the planet, thus he would rate a clout of 5 and an intellect of 2.
> real name, nicknames, or call-signs.
> gender, age, height, weight, coloration, tattoos, markings, clothes, items typically in their possession; essentially anything another person would notice when they see your character.
> trade skills, political alliances, personal associations or overall reason for being involved in the story.
> a brief rundown of your character’s background at the very least.
Out of the Ordinary
> # C | # I | # M | # P | # T
> skills, powers, abilities, pull, wealth, education, augmentations, and anything else the character can do or possesses that sets them apart from the average human.