The Betterverse

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betterwatchit
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The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Tue Nov 08, 2016 9:09 pm

This is my Mutants and Masterminds superhero setting, which is basically one big crossover. I doubt it'll be as detailed as the Crinoverse, but it won't be for lack of trying...
Last edited by betterwatchit on Tue Nov 08, 2016 10:21 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Tue Nov 08, 2016 9:10 pm

Betterverse Timeline:

1918: World War I ends in Allied victory. Centurion’s life-pod enters Earth’s dimension and lands west of Freedom City.

1938: First public appearance of Centurion. Justice Society of America founded by mystery men on the East Coast.

1939: Germany invades Poland, triggering World War II, the first major war to feature the use of superhumans in combat.

1941: U.S. enters World War II after their naval base at Pearl Harbour is attacked. Dr. Tomorrow arrives from the future the very next day, with the prediction that the Axis will win if history as he knows it remains unchanged. President Roosevelt announces formation of the Liberty League.

1942: Japanese submarine I-14 fires several shells at Fort Breckinbridge, near Emerald City. As a result, the Victory Squadron is formed.

1945: World War II ends in Allied victory.

1950: HUAC hearings force conscientious disbanding of the JSA.

1955: HUAC hearings force conscientious disbanding of the Liberty League.

1960: AEGIS formed.

1962: SHADOW launches the first Operation Inundation, where they tried (and failed) to take over 30 major Western cities.

1965: The First Terminus Invasion. The recently-formed Freedom League and Dr. Atom successfully send Omega back.

1969: First lunar landing from Earth, which attracts attention from Farside City. British government forms the Ministry of Powers to monitor superhuman activity.
1971:The Big Brain founds the Fraternity of Evil (F.O.E) in Emerald City.
1978: SHADOW attempt a second Operation Inundation, and fail as miserably as they did the first time.

1984: Franklin Moore elected Mayor of Freedom City. His first act was to make superheroes who don't directly work for the U.S. government or military illegal within the city. Freedom League disbanded.

1985: The vigilante group FORCE Ops is formed, fighting the corruption spawned by Mayor Moore.

1986: The Crisis of Infinite Earths, which resulted in the destruction of most of the multi-verse. Earth-Prime is the sole surviving timeline.

1991: Soviet Union dissolves, ending the Cold War in favour of the West. First appearance of Spiderman in New York.

1992: Michael O'Connor Jr. is elected as Mayor of Freedom City by the biggest landslide in the city's history. It is known that the successful exposure of the total corruption of the Moore administration by FORCE Ops was the key factor. They failed to get any evidence of Moore's own corruption, but so many of his staff were exposed that he never stood a chance. His whereabouts are currently unknown.

1993: Second Terminus Invasion. Centurion sacrifices himself to force Omega's retreat. Mayor O'Connor reacts by repealing the Moore Act, making non-government superheroes legal within Freedom City again. Governments around the world also loosen their restrictions on superhumans to varying degrees, if they had any in the first place.

1994: Freedom League reforms once again.

1995: The experimental space-plane America is saved by Superman in his first appearance. First appearances of Batman, Flash, Green Lantern and Wonder Woman. Justice League formed.

1997: Tabaluga appears in Berlin, and becomes a major celebrity in Europe, particularly in German-speaking areas.

2001: 9/11 terror attacks destroy the Twin Towers. Most mystics sense a major shift in the zeitgeist, a true end of an era.

2005: 7/7 terror attack on London's transport system, and first appearance of the new Britannia. The Ministry of Powers forms a new super-team, Heroes for London, but Britannia refuses to join them.

2006: The Infinite Crisis, triggered by parallel versions of Superman and Lex Luthor, brings about the multi-verse's resurrection. Superhuman Registration Act in the U.S. splits the caped community in two. As a result, the Initiative is born, creating a government-controlled super-team in every State of the Union.

2008: Darkseid triggers the Final Crisis, conquering and nearly consuming all creation. Every living super able to fight is involved, without exception. Batman has no choice but to violate his two most sacred oaths, by shooting and killing Darkseid, seemingly perishing in the attempt. Vandal Savage is exposed as Cain, the First Murderer. Renee Montoya manages to steal the Spear of Destiny from Cain, using it to help the Spectre and turn the tide of the Crisis.

2010: Secret Invasion. The Skrull race used the Initative to put one of their kind in every state. Norman Osborn, head of the Initative, is finally exposed as mentally unstable. Superhuman Registration Act repealed.

2012: Chitauri Invasion. The Avengers repel the Chitauri's siege of New York, which was led by Loki of the Aesir. Frank Castle AKA "The Punisher" dies while successfully killing Wilson Fisk, the "Kingpin" of New York. AEGIS were either unable or chose not to prevent the news from reaching the public, which inspired vigilantes across the globe.

2016: Present day.

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Re: The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Tue Nov 08, 2016 9:11 pm

Morality: The Betterverse has room for all sorts of moralities, be they white, grey or black.
In terms of Ken Hite's Axes of Design (a fantastic tool for designing a superhero universe, BTW), the Betterverse's Axes are Red 2, Gold 2, Blue 5 and Black 3/4 (depending on who or what a story focuses on).
Traditions:

The Traditions are the unwritten rules that both heroic and villainous supers usually follow in order to keep governments from wanting to (seriously) crack down on supers, and a reputation based Complication will ensue for a gross or prolonged violation. The Traditions are as follows...

  • A super should keep an eye on their surroundings, and not use their powers if there's a risk of collateral damage (like fire-based powers near a petrol station).
  • Supers should respect other people's beliefs, except when those beliefs require harming another. Fundamentalists who get involved in superhuman activity usually end up either seeing the light and becoming moderate, or they go mad from trying and failing to understand something as flexible as caping about from an unchanging perspective.
  • It is considered to be highly pretentious to use titles and ranks in your secret identity if you haven't earned them in your real identity. For example: Captain Cold gets mocked regularly for his alias alone, but Captain America wouldn't be called out on it due to obtaining the position of a U.S. Army Captain as Steve Rogers.
  • Any super who knows the real identity or weakness of another super must never reveal it unless the super in question either allows it, goes mad/rogue or is found guilty in court of a crime. Everyone thinks that Doc Stratos is a complete and utter ******** for revealing Ray Gardner as Captain Thunder. If a super willingly divulges their identity to another, that is either a sign of trust, or a way of intimidating everyone in the room.
  • The Christmas Truce has been around ever since superhumans first appeared in the West. It means that no super, heroic or villainous, is supposed to initiate any violence or criminal activity during the Twelve Nights of Christmas (Christmas Eve to Epiphany, from 24th December to 6th January). This is one of the more important traditions. Someone who violates this tradition is often called a Scrooge. Similar truces exist in other cultures, the most well-known to the West being the Ramadan Truce amongst Muslims and the Yom Kippur Truce amongst Jews (which lasts for five days, with Yom Kippur in the middle).
  • A super's non-costumed family and associates are absolutely Off Limits if there's no proof they've done direct harm to another.
  • No violence is to be committed inside a location considered to be 'accorded'. Accorded locations include hospitals (due to a fight being very likely to cause an accidental death), schools (no one wants to be held responsible for hurting a child), holiday resorts (as both heroes and villains take a break in those places, and no one wants to disturb the atmosphere) as are any kind of pop-culture conventions (Due to cosplaying making it hard to tell the difference between friend, foe and bystander). When supers decide to negotiate, it's always inside an accorded area.
Anyone caught breaking the traditions on purpose is branded "A Man without Standards." The majority of those found to have broken tradition are either socio- or psychopaths (who simply wouldn't care outside of a selfish purpose) or freshly-empowered supers (who legitimately wouldn't know. They are told about the Traditions as soon as possible, in as clear a manner as possible).
And there's a very unofficial Tradition: It's okay to kill... only when you're facing a murderer. Killing a drug dealer who only dealt weed and harmed no-one would draw a lot of heat, while someone with the balls to kill the likes of the Joker would most likely walk out of court, assuming the matter even reaches trial.

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Re: The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Tue Nov 08, 2016 9:23 pm

Cape Slang:

Modern super-slang in the Anglosphere is mostly based off Internet slang, with a bit of street slang and military jargon thrown in. This section covers some of the cape-specific slang.
  • Accorded: Neutral territory. Normally used to conduct negotiations. The one place treated as neutral territory by every human being is the United Nations HQ in New York, with Walt Disney World being the largest area known to be treated as accorded. Other accorded locations include hospitals, holiday resorts, as are any kind of pop-culture conventions (Due to cosplaying making it hard to tell the difference between friend, foe and bystander).
  • Base Raider: Someone who goes looking for abandoned hero and villain bases, seeking to acquire super-tech or other methods of empowerment. The Mad Maple and the second Red Death are known to be successful base raiders.
  • Blazer, Hotfoot (WW2): One who uses fire-based abilities.
  • Candle: Any tower or other tall building used by fliers as a landmark or navigation aid. Known candles include the CN Tower in Toronto, Pyramid Plaza in Freedom City, the BT Tower and the Shard in London, the Berlin TV Tower, the Eiffel Tower and the Tokyo Tower.
  • Cape FM: The radio station (Complete with on-line stream) that covers the super-human community in general and Britain in particular. The studio's exact location is unknown. It is believed that Cape FM uses multiple transmitters both on land and sea. The station's hotline has a mobile number.
  • First Contact: The first time any non-native race arrives on Earth.
  • Flier, Propless Wonder (WW2): Anyone who can fly unaided.
  • Flying your colours: Making it obvious that you have powers. Certain metahumans can't help themselves in this aspect.
  • Flying your flag: Making your affiliations clear.
    Flying a false flag: Pretending to be affiliated with a certain group. Penalties are always as harsh as possible when discovered, to discourage such a grave offence.
  • Freezer: One who uses cold-based abilities.
  • Healer: Someone in possession of the Healing power. Healers are sought after by pretty much every group that gets involved in dangerous situations, mainly due because there's much less recovery time needed and you don't need to worry about a hospital telling the police why you're in there, which is useful for those who need gunshot wounds healed, for example.
  • Maxed-out: Under the influence of Max, a highly illegal drug which temporarily gives the user superhuman strength. The main reason it's illegal is that it's very addictive and about an hour after using it, the user becomes so exhausted that death is a real possibility.
  • Metatremors: A rare reaction akin to mild shock when something is real, but your mind's not accepting it. It usually happens the first time an affected subject actually sees superpowers being used near them. The first bout of it is usually the worst, but it tends to be less shocking each time, the more an affected person sees them, until they stop being shocked. It's sometimes mistakenly called a normal person's version of PIP. It's much easier to recover from metatremors than from PIP.
  • Ministry, The: Short for the Ministry of Powers, the British super-human government agency. Its detractors call it the 'Mop'.
  • Origin Chasing: Taking great risks in hope of triggering your metagene. Origin chasers often end up with severe or permanent injuries as a result, if not death. See "Spark Party" below to see why the authorities haven't been able to stamp it out.
  • PIP: Power Induced Psychosis. A very small percentage of people who gain powers (about 0.1% of powered people) risk losing their grip on reality as an unintended side-effect. Those who are most likely to lose their grip this way tend to be those who develop powers linked to a known phobia of theirs (The most quoted example being of an arachnophobe who finds they can crawl on walls like a spider) or those who spark up after a major personal tragedy (Half of those who acquired PIP this way claim their powerset could have averted the situation if they had it earlier). Professional psychiatric assistance and therapy is currently the most effective method of treating PIP, and the only one that is approved by governments.
  • Pipped Out, Pipping Out: Suffering from PIP.
  • Punisher: Term for any vigilante or any super who is willing to kill their opponents. Derived from Frank Castle's alias "The Punisher." Punisher-types have only proliferated since Castle died while killing Wilson Fisk, New York's "Kingpin."
  • Rager: A super who is prone to a berserker rage in battle. The Hulk and Wolverine are the most well-known ragers.
  • Sentai: The Japanese term for a superteam. Used in the West solely to refer to Japanese superteams. (Translates into English as 'Task Force'.)
  • Shocker, Livewire (WW2): One who uses electricity-based abilities.
  • Solo: To fight opponents by yourself. The greater the challenge that's soloed, the more respect you get if you can prove it. (I.E. Someone who solos Batman will get much more respect than someone who solos a street gang.)
  • Spark Party: Where a group of origin chasers get together to push their bodies to the limit in the hope of sparking up, be it through really extreme sports, 24 hour parties or other means to stretch your endurance. Spark parties aren't exactly illegal in and of themselves, but the activities needed for them to be any good are usually incredibly dangerous to the participants, and sometimes to bystanders. You can tell if an organiser is honest if they warn you in advance of the chance of not having a metagene to trigger in the first place. The main reason that no one's successfully stopped origin chasing or spark partying is that every so often, it actually works, which only gets more people to try it.
  • Spark Up: To trigger your metagene or to otherwise gain powers. "Did you hear about him sparking up last week?"
  • The Three M's: Short for "Machine, Magic or Meta?" which is what some people will ask when they want to know how someone got their powers.
  • Warlock: Any magician who practices magic for selfish or destructive ends.
  • Zoomed-out: Under the influence of Zoom, which temporarily gives the user superhuman speed. It's as illegal as Max for the same reasons. In Britain, any addictive drug that grants superhuman abilities is designated as a Class S controlled substance. 10 years minimum for unauthorised possession, maximum of life for unauthorised production or supply. Only the Ministry of Powers can authorise possession, supply or production of a Class S drug in Britain.
Last edited by betterwatchit on Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Tue Nov 08, 2016 9:29 pm

Superhuman Laws:


The existence of superhumans has created volumes of law and legal precedent over the years. These legal interpretations and precedents are followed in the United States and in most Western countries to one degree or another:

  • Offensive powers are normally considered weapons, and using such a power against someone is seen as aggravated assault unless the wielder is acting either in self-defence or to prevent a crime.
  • Supers are not required to follow criminal procedures unless they are actual members of a law-enforcement agency. Among other things, this means superheroes don’t need to read someone their rights when making a "citizen’s arrest."
  • Supers can be charged with "excessive force" if they use more than the minimum force required to disable or restrain opponents (The absolute worst that one can do without breaking the law for certain is to knock someone unconscious). This is most often invoked in the case of vigilantes who kill or maim their opponents.
  • Costumed identities are recognised as legal entities, allowing costumed superhumans to engage in commerce, testify in court, or be sued without revealing their alternate identity.
  • Superhumans are public figures, subject to the same sort of media coverage as other public figures.
  • The use of Super-Senses and powers like Telepathy can be considered a violation of the Fourth Amendment prohibition against "unreasonable searches." No one can be forced to submit to a telepathic scan, and evidence acquired solely through extrasensory means is completely inadmissible in court.
  • It is legal to use railway lines and roads (Even toll roads) to navigate when flying (The precedent was when pilots flying early planes did the same thing, a couple of decades before supers became widespread). The smarter railway companies actually paint the names of their stations on the roof, along with an arrow pointing out where the main entrance is.
  • It is considered trespassing for a flier to land anywhere they cannot legally access on foot without good reason or to fly in airports or military bases without permission from the controlling authority.

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Re: The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Tue Nov 08, 2016 9:44 pm

London:

London is the largest city in Britain and its capital. It's so large in fact, that it's a whole county in its own right when you include the suburbs. Most superhuman activity in Britain happens here.

People:

Antenna: The top fixer of various goods and information relevant to caping about (either in a heroic or villainous manner) on the British Mainland. You want it, he'll fix it so you get it! For a price of course. He buys from or sells to anyone. Legality isn't a issue as long as the goods in question aren't fake or clearly stolen (don't expect him to buy a nuclear device, the Crown Jewels or any Starktech, but he'll gladly buy a load of guns you looted off a street gang with a smile on his face).

A persistent rumour has him having learnt at least some of his trade from the legendary Modesty Blaise. The rumour persists because, just like Blaise, he calls his group the Network, and he won't deal with drugs, human trafficking or prostitution. He can smuggle someone into or out of the country if they're willing to pay. That's among his most expensive services, but it comes with a valid UK passport and relevant documents. (The main difference between smuggling and trafficking people is that a smuggled person is travelling of their free will and is allowed to make their own way once they arrive, while traffickers trick and enslave those they transport.)

His shop, Cowl & Cloak, is also the only shop in Cardiff, London and Edinburgh that has the licence from the Atom Family to sell Morphic Molecule Suits in Britain. C&C is very well known for selling equipment that's better for extreme conditions. Two qualities that make him well and truly valuable are that he stays bought, and that too many people need his services for anyone in their right mind to harm his agents. His agents can be seen all over Britain. You can always tell an Antenna agent by the fact that they always carry two umbrellas in one hand.

His greatest achievement is the Antenna Network app. A pre-paid virtual grey/black market, where you can get goods and services that no-one else can sell on-line. Need to buy a gun, spend a week in a safehouse or leave Britain in a hurry? You can arrange it on there.


Places:

Barksdale Castle: This castle, located between the Tower of London and St. Paul's Cathedral is the home of the government-sponsored Heroes for London.

Basement 101: Britain's super-prison, located under the Tower of London. Any serious criminal with powers who has been found guilty in court, or anyone found to be both super-powered and completely insane is sent here. The Beefeater, who has been made the Queen's Jailer, makes sure that no-one breaks out.

BT Tower: The British Telecom Tower is used as a landmark by nearly everyone in London. It's sometimes known as the Candle, as it's been used by the local fliers as a beacon ever since BT installed the bright wrap-around screen at the top! The Candle also happens to be near Oxford Circus and Tottenham Court Road, the primary shopping areas in Central London.

St. Pancras International: This railway station serves the East Midlands, and is also the only Eurostar terminal in Central London, heading to Europe. It's often the preferred route into London from France and Belgium as it's usually cheaper than a plane, faster than a coach and ferry, the weight limit is relaxed in comparison (If you can get the luggage to fit on the racks without assistance, then it's okay with Eurostar), the station is inside the city (compared to airports in the outskirts of town) and the Customs men aren't as strict as they are at airports. At least one super keeps an eye on the station in case they see an European villain coming out of it.

Trafalgar Square: All sorts of events can happen in this legendary square. Cultural festivals, filming sessions, superhuman battles... All you need to do is keep an eye on the square and something interesting is going to happen sooner or later. One popular event happens every year in December, when the Norwegian people donate a Christmas tree to thank the British for helping them during World War 2.

The Spieler: This underground pub is frequented by various low-level crooks. Several villains often leave a note on the noticeboard when they need henchmen.
If only those crooks found out how many street-level vigilantes actually had the idea of hiding in plain sight...
The Time in a Bottle: British supers, both heroic and villainous alike, drink at this pub, located at one of London's many side-streets. Truce magic that prevents offensive powers and weapons from working inside has made it the best place in London to conduct diplomacy from the age of medieval knights to Victorian adventurers to modern superhumans. The truce magic also makes the pub the most well-known accorded location in the area.


Super-teams:

Golders Green Guardians: This hero team focuses on supernatural threats. They're usually called in for things like possessed houses, rampaging golems and zombie plagues. The saying goes that they find things that go bump in the night, and bump them right back!

Heroes for London: This government-backed hero team is based in Barksdale Castle. They are all sworn officers of the City of London Police, which means that they all possess the same authority to arrest you as an uniformed officer.

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Re: The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Tue Nov 08, 2016 9:52 pm

Freedom City, New Jersey, USA:

Freedom City is currently one of the major hot-spots for superhuman activity in the United States.

Places:

Claremont Academy: This private school has an unique focus: training superheroes. The current Headmaster is Duncan Summers, the original Raven.
Hidden somewhere underground is a ritual room, containing the true history of the Vervain family, of which Seven of the Freedom League is a descendant. It also contains the truth behind Lucius Cabot, who has been actively hunting the Vervain family over the years, and the means to kill him for good.
Freedom Hall: This is the home of the Freedom League, one of Earth's top-tier superteams. Given the occupation of the residents, the Hall has been designed to be highly resistant to superhuman attack.

Freedom Station: This high-speed railroad station serves the "Cape Coast" bullet-train that has become the main route from Miami to New York (Mainly as fares are slighly less than for the equivalent route by air, you actually arrive inside the city, passengers don't have to worry about TSA agents taking liberties with their luggage and travel times aren't too different). Bullet-train services are reservation-only to reduce crowding.

Pyramid Plaza: The three Pyramid Towers are the most valuable real estate in the city. A couple of years after they were built, a group of sorcerers mind-controlled the Freedom League into trying to destroy them. The Scarab sacrificed himself to break the mind control and free the League.
The Scarab's Lair has recently been reclaimed by Jennifer Regan, the Scarab Reborn.
Super Museum: The Super Museum is by far the most popular museum in the city. It has lifelike statues of supers, dioramas, actual donated costumes, and replicas of various super-gadgets and equipment.
Some of those 'replicas' are actually genuine super-gadgets that had apparently been deactivated. The only reason anyone found that out at all was the night when the janitor who would later become known as Scrounge was hired to steal several exhibits.
Superteams:

Freedom League: These very brave men and women are among the top-tier of the world's superheroes. Bolt, Megastar and Seven have recently accepted invitations to officially join the League.

Legacy of Freedom: The Legacy have recently formed, but they have shown potential. Their first case led to them shutting down a drug lab and taking down half of the Power Corps by themselves. They are noted for all having codenames - and powersets - of older Freedom City heroes.

The Next-Gen: Claremont Academy's official superteam. The Freedom League have recently recruited some of its graduates (see above).

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Re: The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Tue Nov 08, 2016 10:08 pm

San Francisco:

San Francisco is one of the most famous Californian cities. The city is home to Silicon Valley and the tech revolution, and is also the supernatural capital of the West Coast. It has recently been chosen as the launch site of Blume Corporation's ctOS 2.0.

Locations:

Alcatraz: Around 2000, the United States government began to rebuild the legendary Alcatraz island as a prison, specialising in the containment of super-criminals.

All non-trustees are equipped with explosive collars which track their location and are rigged to detonate, should they leave the island prison without the warden's explicit approval.
There were two reports of unusual activity on the island, first in 1996 and again in 1999, just before demolition of the old buildings. When ARCADE searched the place after both events, there were signs of celestial and infernal activity on both occasions. There were clear signs of conflict and struggle, but no idea who won.
Club Bewitched: This club is frequented by several occultists and other supernatural types, and is considered to be an accorded location.

Gary's Games and Glory: This old-school game shop next to Mission Dolores Park is the best place in town for tabletop RPGs and board games.
GG&G is also the perfect disguise for the home to the Mission Dolores cell of Dedsec SF, the premier hacktivist group in town.

Heroes:

Gatekeeper: Kyle Vance is the most well-known lone hero in town. Kyle's been able to keep his identity secret, but everyone knows about him being a member of San Francisco's sizeable gay community. His job is to maintain the city's dimensional stability (see below).

Power Company: In the Embarcadero district, Josiah Power founded a team of metahumans for hire. These include Skyrocket (who wears a battlesuit), Witchfire (team mystic) and Bork (powerhouse).

Titans: The Titans are the most well-known team in San Francisco, with most of their members having ties to the Justice League. The Titans pay the rent for their Tower by helping the city escort superhuman prisoners to Alcatraz.

Zatanna: Zatanna Zatara is easily the most powerful magician to operate in San Francisco. It also helps that her emotional and mental stability is somewhat above-average for a magician. Her mansion, called Shadowcrest, is in a pocket dimension that only Zatanna - and those who she invites in - can access.


Environmental Hazards: Not only is the city built near the San Andreas Fault, but the peninsula itself is the centre of a naturally-occuring nexus of geomantic and "earth energies", ley lines and other mystical forces. When one of the city's famous fog banks appears from the west, it often also contains a slight interfacing or overlapping between dimensions in which someone can easily get lost. Missing person and "unusual incident" reports always go up slightly the day after a fog bank hits the town.
Last edited by betterwatchit on Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:50 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Tue Nov 08, 2016 10:15 pm

Chicago:

The Windy City is mainly known to people in the Betterverse for one of three things: Being the railway hub of the United States, being the first city to have its infrastructure run completely by the central operating system known as ctOS and for being very media-friendly (Seriously, you won't believe the amount of TV shows and movies filmed there).
What isn't public is the considerable supernatural scene.
Locations:

Mac's Bar: Everyone involved in Chicago's supernatural scene comes here, sooner or later. It's well known for its craft ales and for being the longest-lasting accorded location in the city, meaning that the super-scene in Chicago also comes here. Even Aiden Pearce, the city's most well-known lone wolf gets a drink here on occasion.

Rossi-Fremont: These housing projects replaced the notorious Cabrini-Green projects, and were ruled by the Black Viceroys street gang. After Aiden Pearce killed 85% of the Black Viceroys gang and their leader, Delford "Iraq" Wade, in a single night, the remainder either fled the city for good or joined another gang.

Union Station: This is the primary inter-city station in Chicago. You can take a direct train from Union Station to several major U.S. cities.

Heroes:

Harry Dresden: Harry is a magician of considerable power, believed by some to be descended from an offshoot of the homo magi. The type of magic he uses is such that technology more advanced than 60's-era levels has the tendency to break down around him. He is (quite rightly) considered to be one of the most dangerous magicians to walk the earth today, and has come close on multiple occasions to becoming a warlock.

Aiden Pearce is a vigilante who is able to exploit the ctOS to his advantage. Known tactics include using CCTV cameras to see around corners, forcing a commuter train to suddenly stop or skip a station, and raising or lowering stationary forklifts and cable hatches to maximise his available cover while ensuring that his enemies have none. He is known as the "Fox of Chicago" for being practically invisible to ctOS, and for actually lowering the crime rate more effectively than the Chicago PD. He is respected to the point that pretty much anyone who isn't a law-enforcement type found trying to inform on him to the police is to going be in serious don't-ever-come-back-here trouble with the people of Chicago. Due to Dresden being a Walking Techbane, Pearce won't go too close to him if he can help it.

Crime:

Marcone Family: These guys took over from the Vargassi clan a couple of decades back. Their leader, one "Gentleman" Johnny Marcone, is aware of the supernatural scene, and has had dealings with Dresden.

Chicago South Club: This organised gang had prospered from the use of ctOS, and had Mayor Rushmore in their back pocket. Most of their power was broken when Aiden Pearce leaked the video of Rushmore killing someone and hacked their leader, "Lucky" Quinn's pacemaker, making it go up to 180 BPM. The old man's heart completely gave out in under five minutes. Lucky's son, Niall, has since sworn to return the Club to the top of Chicago's underworld.

3rd Street Saints: The Saints took over from the Black Viceroys after Pearce wiped them out, and currently control the Rossi-Fremont projects. Their speciality is gaining powers on the cheap and the exploitation of ctOS. Dresden and Pearce both want their current leader, street name "Red", taken down.

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Re: The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Tue Nov 08, 2016 10:21 pm

Los Angeles

L.A. is the entertainment capital of the English-speaking world. Movies and music are the city's main exports, and the Port of Los Angeles is one of the largest in the country.


Heroes:

John Carlton AKA Johnny Cage is well-known for his martial arts films. When he was accused in the 90s of not being a real fighter and faking his stunts, he entered the Mortal Kombat Tournament, which is known on multiple worlds for its sheer brutality... And won. During the tournament, Johnny met the Special Forces soldier <b>Sonya Blade</b>, who he would later go on to marry.

Their daughter, Cassie Cage, followed in her mother's footsteps and joined the military, where she was also selected for the Special Forces. She's known for having a mouth like her father and her mother's ruthless fighting style. She isn't afraid to bring guns to a fistfight or any other fight for that matter.

Zauriel is the guardian angel of Los Angeles. Media types don't like him and claim that he's a delusional metahuman, but everyone else in L.A. considers it to be a good idea to listen when he speaks. His weapon of choice is a blazing sword of pure halosteel.


Villains:

The Clique are a tight-knit sorority of surprisingly efficient and elusive metahuman thieves. Neither mercenaries nor dissidents with a clear agenda, the Clique is motivated almost entirely by materialism. They simply take what they want, when they want it. Their primary opponent is Gimmick the Gadget Girl, who left the Clique to become a hero.

S.E.L.F.I.E: S.E.L.F.I.E's creator Elric Marshall moved from Emerald City to Los Angeles, to benefit from the greater media presence. S.E.L.F.I.E's first actual fight was against Zauriel. Both S.E.L.F.I.E and Elric maintain that they let Zauriel win.
The reason S.E.L.F.I.E actually lost to Zauriel was due to him having a higher PL, and he also had Favoured Environment: Air where she didn't. And S.E.L.F.I.E doesn't know about the kill-switch that Elric built into her. If it looks like she'll actually kill a living being, Elric will turn her off remotely.

Underworld:

For the past two decades, the alliance between the African-American Grove Street Families and the Hispanic Varrio Los Aztecas has dominated the Los Angeles underworld, fending off challengers such as the Ballas, the Bloods, the Crips, the Russian Mafiya and the Vagos. Their latest opponents are the legendary 3rd Street Saints.

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Re: The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Tue Nov 08, 2016 10:23 pm

New York City

The Big Apple is one of Earth's greatest and most well-known cities, and a capital of superhuman activity.

One recent event that's shaken the city is the death of the vigilante Capt. Frank Castle, USMC (Ret.) AKA The Punisher. He went out after killing Wilson Fisk, the Kingpin of New York. Word getting out about Castle killing Fisk has inspired vigilantes across the globe.
Conspiracy theorists are still wondering if AEGIS allowed word of Castle killing Fisk to get out... or if they were somehow prevented from keeping it quiet.

Locations:

Central Park: This famous park is known all over the world, an oasis of green in the island of Manhattan. It isn't exactly an accorded location, but attempting to initiate violence or cause property damage within the Park can damage the reputation of those responsible among New Yorkers.

Leo's: Leo Zelinsky is the only independent tailor in the Five Boroughs who'll work with superhuman costumes. Because of this, his shop is publicly known as an accorded location. Messing with him means that every super in town is going to be all over you.

Manhattan Museum of Superhumanities: This museum is one of the city's most famous museums, tied with the Super-Museum of Freedom City for the most popular superhuman museum in the U.S., with a particular focus on heroes based in the Five Boroughs.


Solo Heroes:

Ms. Magus: Cass Valentine of Brooklyn is a magician of serious power. Quite a few New York capes can call on her for backup if they encounter something supernatural.

Raven III: Elliot Allen, previously known as Elite, has graduated from Claremont Academy and moved to NYC. He has the blessing of Callie Summers and her father Duncan (the two previous Ravens) to use the Raven alias.


Teams:

The Avengers are known worldwide, with their most famous feat being their victory over the Chitauri Invasion of 2012.
What isn't so well known about most of the Avengers are their personal issues. Iron Man's on the wagon and always close to falling off (and still quite a jackass), Captain America hasn't completely adapted to modern times, the various events that Black Widow got herself into during the Cold War often come back to haunt her, Bruce Banner still has his anger management issues and Thor often has to deal with his family back in Asgard.

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Re: The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Mon Nov 14, 2016 10:59 am

Technology:

APEX Ammo: Armour-Piercing EXplosive Ammunition is considered to be the height of conventional bullet technology. It's available for 12 gauge slugs, .50 BMG and other large rifle and shotgun calibres.
In game terms, a firearm loaded with APEX ammo has ranks equal to its Damage in Penetrating and Improved Critical 1. This makes sniper rifles loaded with APEX incredibly dangerous, even to those with enough Impervious Toughness to survive a conventional round.
Drones: Use of camera drones by news companies is on the rise, particularly for violent events such as riots and battles (both superhuman and military). After all, a shot-down drone causes less drama - and costs less in total - than a shot-down helicopter (and is less likely to distract any heroes stopping a threat). Most media companies and the military now require helicopter pilots to be proficient in drone piloting, with one pilot on the chopper and another on the drone. The first civilian helicopter designed to deploy drones, the Nest, is in high demand among media companies. The Nest's military version is known as the Aerie, with armour and a mounted LMG to make most fliers back off and to wreck enemy drones.

Fulton System: The Fulton Recovery System was originally designed by the CIA for the rapid airborne extraction of their assets. The design principles have since been worked out by other parties allowing variants of the Fulton System to appear worldwide. Modern variants allow for pickup by plane, helicopter and there are even handholds for it which allow a flying superhuman to make the pickup.

Head-up Display (HUD): The HUD has come a long way from being the exclusive province of the military. The most popular consumer-grade HUDs include Abstergo's AnimusOS, Google Glass, the MarsTech Monocle and StarkSight. All HUDs have flight overlay apps available, displaying which airspace is legal for civilians (including most supers) to fly in and which airspace restrictions are in place. Prototype HUDs - like those in Devices - have even been known to allow alternate modes of vision, with low-light and thermographic vision being the most popular.

Modules: USB devices that allow a computer -especially a mobile device - to perform abilities it normally wouldn't be able to. The most well known modules allow for receiving TV or radio signals or authorising the use of high-end applications. The most popular mobile modules include commercial radio reception (AM and FM are the most popular and easiest to find), CB transceivers, receivers for Airband, Marine and Amateur frequencies, biometric scanners (which are compulsory among members of security services) and the usual battery chargers.

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Re: The Betterverse

Post by betterwatchit » Mon Mar 06, 2017 1:04 pm

Magical Weapons

Some of the world's most-desired magical artefacts are weapons that have been enchanted or are otherwise able to kill beings that a conventional weapon of the same type cannot. Here is a list of some unique weapons that may be encountered.


Ace of Winchesters: This Winchester lever-action rifle was made by a mystic who saw service with the Texas Rangers during the days of the Wild West. He saw that the idea of "Manifest Destiny" and the genocide that it brought to the prairie had spawned... things that could not be fought with mortal weapons, not with the Indian's tomahawk nor with the white man's revolver. The mystic sold his soul for the expertise and means to forge a gun from halosteel and Hades-gems, bound with ivory of saints, that could blast the life out of fiends. It was last seen in possession of Tommy "Hitman" Monaghan of Gotham City, but since he's been dead for more than a decade, no one knows where the Ace went. Anyone who finds the Ace - and its enchanted bandolier - would certainly be in possession of a deadly weapon indeed.

Justice is the name that some people have taken to calling the shortsword that's currently wielded by the Griffin, which resembles the Roman gladius in appearance. It is forged out of pure halosteel, allowing it to strike spirits and other intangible beings like they were solid. It also possesses a mono-molecular edge, capable of cutting through tank armour... or superhuman flesh. The sword's scabbard is designed to quickly detach from the sword-belt and remain attached to the blade so the Griffin can use it in non-lethal combat, which helps reduce collateral damage and any resulting drama.

Moonslayer & Sunslayer: These original model Colt Peacemakers were enchanted in the 19th century. Moonslayer is designed to fire silver bullets, and Sunslayer is designed to fire wooden bullets that explode into flames upon impact. Both revolvers have had both an Affects Insubstantial (Full Effect) and an "Infinite Ammo" enchantment placed on them.

The Realiser Ray was brought to the world by the being known as Quirk (or as one member of the FCPD called him, an omnipotent jackass). The Ray gained its name due to what it does. You fire it at anything fictional that's being visually depicted (animation cels, comics, computer games, film, manga, posters, TV and video footage have all been confirmed as valid targets), and it comes to life right there! Successfully killing a being created by the Ray will disintegrate it without a trace. The Toon Gang of Freedom City are an example of the Ray in action.

Spellblade: This sword currently belongs to the Red Mage of the Golders Green Guardians. He personally enchanted it with the ability to deal elemental damage and to strike more telling blows than before.

Three-Flames Katana: Lord Tegamusha created this katana at the start of the Sino-Japanese War in 1894, forging it in fires fed by the bodies of 300 Chinese prisoners and tempered in their blood. The blade gained infamy in its use against soldiers and innocents alike until Tegamusha himself was slain by a sniper’s bullet in 1895. The current wielder is Kimiko Ranaga, the current Crimson Katana, who is trying to keep her father from possessing her. Her father, the second Crimson Katana, enchanted the sword to store his spirit, ready to possess his daughter if she uses the blade to draw blood or if she suffers a moment of mental weakness (as in badly failing a Will check).

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