The City of Lost Angels
Okay, lets take a look at this.
A bunch of points.
- The beautiful beaches aren’t so beautiful. Back in the ’40’s, an offshore reactor exploded and LA’s waters still register as hot on geiger. Though the radioactivity has gone down in the last thirty years, other polutants have been spilled… all and all, you can get a tan on the beach, but I’d stay out of the water unless you own a pool.
- Its important to note that racial tensions between metatypes run deep in LA. Things are starting to get better in that department, but people who grew up in El Infierno remember the ork and troll ghettos, and even now that the PCC has enforced some form of equality for the past ten years or so, there’s an awful lot of anger. Especially in the older generation.
Okay, I’m not going to bore you with the long form of this, so lets talk about important events in LA’s recent past.
As you know, the US government fell to pieces pretty early on. One of the places to break free was California, forming the CalFree government, and LA was, of course, a part of that. However things didn’t last too well.
There’s the whole mess of a business with El Infierno, a portion of the city that was literally walled off to keep its inhabitants from getting out. Wasn’t quite concentration camp, but damn near close. I only mention it because things got so bad that in the Fall of 2056, a few local computer wiz-kid hackers decided to turn cyber-terrorist and lash out at the CalFree government, wiping data from a recent election out of the system and plunging the government into chaos.
In retaliation, CalFree sent troops into El Infierno to try to supress the terrorists, only to discover themselves in a quagmire, fighting a losing battle through the heart of an abandoned slum against gangs and home militia who knew those streets like the back of their hand. The result was tens of thousands of civilian casualties, and the eventual rout of California’s troops. Afterwards, CalFree told LA it was on its own and disowned the city completely.
For five years thereafter, Los Angeles was an independant City-State with no law but its own, until the Quake of ’61 struck and plunged the city into chaos. Without the resources to rebuild and with no outside power to appeal to, it looked like the City of Angels might be lost.
It was just about this time that a group of philosophers and artists in UCLA banded together to form the Horizon Project. They came up with the idea of calling on the aid of the Pueblo Corporate Council, which had territory to the east. The PCC marched in and, in a display of the utilitarian efficiency that its known for, began working on reconstruction efforts. For ten years since, the PCC has been in control of LA, and polls show that, in general, people are pretty happy with the way they’re running it.
Horizon’s quick answer to the Matrix Crash of ’64 catapulted it to the ranks of the Megas and since then, Horizon and its subsidiaries have been the driving economic force in LA, pumping billions of nuyen into its economy and slowly building it back to its golden years.
Last year, however, things went down. Literally.
There was another huge quake. Technically it was two quakes hitting at the same time, registering a 9.2 on the richter scale, it shook the city to its foundations, collapsing buildings and creating a tsunami which nearly swallowed the city whole. The death tole was monumental, in the hundreds of thousands. But fate had one more curve ball to throw at us.
When the smoke cleared, it seems like the city had fallen into the sea. The water that had flooded during the tsunamis never receded from many parts of the city. And measurements taken sinse show that the entire city is now lower than it used to be. In some parts, only by a few feet. In others areas miles wide had sunk over a hundred meters.
Thing is, the seizmologists tell us that if this had been a result of the earthquake, it should have been much worse than it was. As bad as the Twin Quakes were, something that caused a sweeping geographic change like that should have been down-right apocolyptic, setting off volcanos throughout the pacific rim and causing massive shifting of tectonic plates all over the world. Instead, the damage was localized. Scientists have labled it a magical phenomena and its since been called “The Fall”. In light of the discovery of Deep Lacuna, it seems like they’re probably right.
Los Angeles is a city caught between three very powerful forces: Horizon, the Pueblo Corporate Council and Aztechnology. The latter of them has been on the losing end of it for the past ten years, but they shouldn’t be underestimated by any stretch.
The dynamic is… interesting.
The PCC ousted Aztechnology from LA, in any official capacity, something they’ve been sore about for nearly ten years. But that doesn’t mean that they don’t have their influence in the city. For one thing, they’ve got a small army amassed in San Diego ready to march north at the first sign of weakness. For another, they’ve got a number of businesses unofficially owned by the Azzies set up in LA.
Then there’s Horizon. While they’re the new kids on the block, they’ve already proven themselves to be more than competent in the game of power. Horizon has a tendency of floating over the field of economic warfare and coming out ahead without really looking like they’re trying. They have pretty much treated the PCC like a doormat ever since they vaulted into Mega status, which has the PCC gnashing their teeth helplessly.
However Horizon knows all too well to toe a fine line with the PCC. After all, if they piss them of enough to pull out, Aztlan and Aztechnology (there’s really no point in splitting hairs trying to are just a few hours to the south, waiting for any opportunity to annex Los Angeles. And the Pueblo’s strength is pretty much the only thing keeping them out.
Magic in LA has always been a bit odd, but since the Fall… well.
In game terms, if you glitch, I get to be extra special creative with what goes wrong.
The Sights, the Sounds
I’ll put some stuff about LA’s features here.
The weirdest part of post-Fall LA is what has been dubbed Deep Lacuna by the adoring public. A network of underwater tunnels have been discovered under the city. Trying to figure out their extent and what else could be down there has proved… tricky. Drones, spirits, and divers have all been sent in. Sometimes they come out alright. Sometimes they don’t. There’s some sort of interference that has trouble relaying video information more than a few dozen yards and the tunnels seem to run deep.
But what’s down there? There are rumors of a sunken city deep in the tunnels but who knows for sure. All we know is the PCC and various corps are very interested and have been tight lipped about the entire deal. But people are free to speculate.