Some musings on the setting

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Some musings on the setting

Post  Dani Potenza on Mon Apr 06, 2015 5:47 pm

Mat~, James, and I were talking about ways to fix problems with the setting, so for our reference here is a dump of conversation with the irrelevant things removed:

[16:56:30] <Midboss> the problem with looking up cyberpunkish art for inspiration is that none of the aesthetics fit and katanas are everywhere
[17:00:34] <Darya> I really struggle to think of Corp as being cyberpunk.
[17:01:43] <Midboss> It's anti-cyberpunk, it's all about glorifying the authorities who abuse the people while giving you a masquerade of "standing up against a higher power" with the UIG's really weird place in the world
[17:03:10] <Midboss> The UIG exists only to help make cross-corp games work and to give the GM a big stick to say "oh no you are doing things i don't like, here come the big supermonsters with bullshit tech to stop you"
[17:03:54] <Midboss> which is backed up in-setting by the way they don't really care at all about what agents do in conflict with other corps (i.e. the core activity of the game)
[17:06:18] <Midboss> and now I am thinking about this stuff Comoros are really weird. They're given authority in an attempt to reign in the other 4 big corps a bit, but this means that the schools are all run by the guys defined as being humanitarian psychic guerrilas who blatantly hate the UIG
[17:07:07] <Darya> Comoros actually make the least sense as a full Corp to me.
[17:07:18] <Darya> At least the others have obvious income streams.
[17:07:36] <Midboss> Mind Unbound presents them as a pretty solid coherent organisation... that has no connection to any of its corporate business
[17:07:46] <Midboss> They are only coherent if funded by the UIG who they constantly work to undermine
[17:08:47] <Darya> I assume the other corps pay them to ensure they have at least some education base in the populace?
[17:08:56] <Darya> But even that raises more questions.
[17:10:00] <Darya> Actually.
[17:10:11] <Darya> Thinking about how Comoros formed.
[17:10:23] <Darya> They should be the closest to a government.
[17:10:44] <Darya> Since they literally formed as an alligence between India and African countries.
[17:11:47] <Midboss> I do like the part where a humanitarian organisation had to go corporate in order to do anything about the evils of the corporations
[17:12:12] <Midboss> but it's one of those million things in the Corporation setting that would be far more interesting if it was relevant *now* rather than hundreds of years into history
[17:13:29] <Darya> Yeah. I'd personally move the entire setting back...maybe 250 years?
[17:13:36] <Darya> So it happens in 2250?
[17:14:00] <Midboss> Yeah, 23rd century feels about as late as it can really function in the way it tries to
[17:14:57] * HanJi (cgiirc@B411D787.BB233D89.A7ED587D.IP) has joined #oracle
[17:15:01] <Midboss> ...now I just want to totally rewrite the whole setting
[17:15:24] <Midboss> but in a way that's still close enough to not be original
[17:15:25] <HanJi> ...now thats an ominous thing to come into
[17:15:40] <Midboss> we were talking about how Comoros makes no sense
[17:15:54] <HanJi> In what way, precisely?
[17:16:08] <Midboss> [17:06:18] <Midboss> and now I am thinking about this stuff Comoros are really weird. They're given authority in an attempt to reign in the other 4 big corps a bit, but this means that the schools are all run by the guys defined as being humanitarian psychic guerrilas who blatantly hate the UIG
[17:16:08] <Midboss> [17:07:07] <Darya> Comoros actually make the least sense as a full Corp to me.
[17:16:08] <Midboss> [17:07:18] <Darya> At least the others have obvious income streams.
[17:16:08] <Midboss> [17:07:36] <Midboss> Mind Unbound presents them as a pretty solid coherent organisation... that has no connection to any of its corporate business
[17:16:08] <Midboss> [17:07:46] <Midboss> They are only coherent if funded by the UIG who they constantly work to undermine
[17:16:08] <Midboss> [17:08:47] <Darya> I assume the other corps pay them to ensure they have at least some education base in the populace?
[17:16:08] <Midboss> [17:08:56] <Darya> But even that raises more questions.
[17:16:59] <HanJi> Yeah, Comoros really need a redone income stream
[17:17:00] <Midboss> also the many ways in which the setting would make more sense if it was something like 250 years earlier
[17:17:22] <HanJi> Isn't it set in 2250?
[17:17:28] <Midboss> 2500
[17:17:48] <HanJi> Ah right
[17:17:55] <Midboss> Oracle's 2550 iirc
[17:17:56] <HanJi> Yeah, the tech levels are off
[17:19:02] <HanJi> Actually, you know what I would have done to Comoros as a revenue stream?
[17:19:10] <HanJi> I'd wrap food production into their remit
[17:19:28] <Midboss> That would be a good idea
[17:19:36] <HanJi> It totally fits with the whole humanitarian thing
[17:19:54] <HanJi> and also hits the terrorist angle since they can deny food to groups that oppose them too directly
[17:20:26] <Darya> I was actually toying with the idea of a Comoros/Order campaign where the player's organisation is getting into stuff like tower farming and the big bad is multimeat.
[17:20:27] <Midboss> it would make the UIG even more irrelevant, I can't say if that's a good or a bad thing
[17:20:43] <HanJi> Food is made by a bunch of minor corps
[17:21:01] <Darya> Large scale, it's only really multimeat I think
[17:21:26] <HanJi> It WOULD help to separate the UIG's authority to one strictly derived from tech and weaponry
[17:21:53] <Midboss> Yeah, Multymeat are basically *the* world food-makers, especially after they joined up as basically part of the UIG
[17:24:58] <Darya> I feel like the UIG should effect different Corps in different ways. So the basis for this idea is that the UIG cemented their power by offering to help rebuild the Corp's infrastructure and help their battered administration systems after the Corporate Wats.
[17:25:02] <Darya> Wars.
[17:26:05] <HanJi> You know, once we all become fabulously wealthy, and buy corporations IP from a bankrupt brutal games, we are totally gonna make this shit profitable :p
[17:26:26] <Midboss> The UIG is really awkward as a setting element, I am not a fan of the way they have super special ultra technology and a desire to make the world different and lots of authority but they don't do anything with it
[17:27:02] <Midboss> I know there are excuses, but it ends up just feeling like they're there to beat down PCs who step out of line by dropping malenbrach squads with phasing guns on them
[17:27:34] <Darya> And so actually the UIG is embedded in all the Corps running, and is just undermined in different ways. EI and WF have supplemented the administration and population control sides respectively, the Ai Jinn has a much more respectable front put up over their deeds, ect.
[17:27:43] <HanJi> I think they're basically there to be an excuse for why the corps fuck around with agents at all, rather then just going to war
[17:28:44] <Darya> Comoros basically acts as a government in and of itself, and as such is the most independent of the Corps, but is also as such the most resource stretched as they don't have the UIG picking up the strain, hence why they are so poor.
[17:29:46] <Midboss> that does make some more sense for sure
[17:34:15] <Darya> If we are rewriting the setting, then I'd probably make SY be going into decline.
[17:34:29] <Midboss> At the end of the day, it's because of the sheer amount of time that CoG took to happen
[17:35:21] <Midboss> I would just straight-up remove the Shi Yukiro and leave their various sub-corporations in existence as minor corps
[17:35:25] <Darya> They were the first of the Mega Corps to really form, and during the Corporate war they were punching wayabove their weight thanks to their focus on defense and copious WMD usage.
[17:35:55] <HanJi> I actually prefer the idea of SY being less of an actual corporation, and more of a collection of Little corporations?
[17:36:14] <Midboss> I like that idea
[17:36:23] <HanJi> Like a trade guild, almost
[17:36:36] <Darya> However, now that there's peace, they are struggling to handle it, since they are super easy to blockade and stuff like that, so they are losing cash rapidly.
[17:36:39] <Midboss> Gives them an identity as something other than terrible stereotypes, lets them focus more on the high-tech angle
[17:36:48] <Midboss> that is supposed to be there but kind of isn't
[17:36:49] <HanJi> using the fact that they control so much specialist stuff to hold some negotiating power
[17:37:08] <Midboss> plus it lets them have a more international powerbase rather than Impenetrable Fortress Japan
[17:37:14] <HanJi> Exactly
[17:37:25] <HanJi> even if you keep the main headquarters in Japan
[17:37:34] <HanJi> Also gives them a goal other then turtling
[17:37:41] <Darya> That works better,
[17:37:52] <Midboss> The Shi Yukiro Group wouldn't have big territory, just build up towns in unoccupied land around their facilities and fill them with workers
[17:37:57] <HanJi> "Aqcuire other small corps into their corporate alliance" thing
[17:38:46] <HanJi> So you could have a SYG campaign structured around altering negotiations to bring, say, Gemini, into the group in SYG's favour
[17:38:57] <HanJi> fucking with stockholders, that sort of thing
[17:39:33] <Midboss> That is a cool idea
[17:40:11] <HanJi> It also gives the possibilities for big internal division
[17:40:26] <Darya> I'd get rid of the BIO ban on Earth and give Gemini Australia.
[17:40:54] <Midboss> replace the BIO ban with heavy restrictions outside of Australia
[17:41:13] <HanJi> Like, the WF's weakness is the American Underground, The SYG's could be a thing where Takata and, say, Shinjitsu control most of it, but rub up against a bunch of other, non japanese corporations in the group
[17:41:35] <HanJi> So other corps could have missions trying to exploit tensions in the group
[17:42:48] <Midboss> so now I really want to run a Corp game
[17:46:52] <Darya> Okay, so. SY trade federation, Comoros more like a government/linked to food supply, UIG more involved at the administrive level, Gemini controls Australia.


[18:26:41] <Hugo_> Huh
[18:26:43] <Hugo_> I like the SYG
[18:33:55] <Darya> It's a really cool idea.
[18:35:39] <HanJi> It's something that really should exist, i like the idea of a collective of smaller corporations trying to essentially unionize against the larger ones
[18:49:35] <Hugo_> I like the idea that the SY could have been a fascist society slowly falling apart, and then gets hit with a Tsunami and then, drama and time pass and it becomes the SY Group, with only some old families and some lands having this weird racial purity bullshit if you really wanted to get into it... And ignored by everyone else as merely not being profittable
[18:50:24] <HanJi> That would be a way of keeping a lot of the original elements while having them actually fit
[18:50:28] <HanJi> into the setting
[18:50:53] <Hugo_> And just be drastically less idiotic than the SY
[18:51:03] <HanJi> Yeah
[18:52:38] <Hugo_> Australia exists as it is because Mad Max.
[18:53:24] <Hugo_> Which is a nice thing, but australia needs a lot of work. I like it being a land for the NIMBY stuff. POwer stations, pollution, garbage, BIOs, Prisons. Keeps the same aesthetic while giving it personality.
[18:54:02] <Midboss> My one problem with Australia is... do we really need 2 freestates?
[18:54:21] <Hugo_> Why not?
[18:54:37] <Hugo_> One is a Mad Max Free State and the other is [CONTENT REDACTED].
[18:54:45] <Hugo_> I mean, we know nothing about the SAFS
[18:54:51] <Hugo_> So, maybe we do need two!
[18:54:53] <Hugo_> Who knows?
[18:55:11] <Midboss> or we can consolidate the freestates into one if there's a different idea for using one of those areas
[18:55:42] <Hugo_> Well, Australia is fucking huge. It can be a.. ...new thing.
[18:55:46] <Midboss> I'm not saying it has to be changed, but I like the idea of Australia as Gemini's landbase
[18:55:53] <Hugo_> Gemini already has Siberia.
[18:56:03] <Midboss> ...siberia?
[18:56:09] <Hugo_> And I like Australian BIOs, that fits into established tropes nicely.
[18:56:20] <Hugo_> Yes, their corp headquarters in in Siberia.
[18:57:08] <Midboss> Siberia is a terrible enviroment for testing life in, though. And sure, Miller-Urey exists, but I like the concept of moving some of it to Earth as a final testing area-type thing
[18:57:10] <Hugo_> But Australia is there for psot apoc mad max shit. Surely, you should put Gemini in South America.
[18:57:43] <Midboss> Australia's got the ocean as a barrier, and then New Zealand and the like can be full of soldiers to scramble and kill anythign that slips out
[18:57:47] <HanJi> See, I'd put Siberia as a Weapons testing ground, actually
[18:57:56] <Hugo_> Also, lol that Australia is more hospitable than Siberia.
[18:57:56] <Midboss> except, of course, when they fail and adventures happen
[18:58:06] <Midboss> Australia is more varied than Siberia
[18:58:18] <Midboss> I think?
[18:58:21] <Hugo_> I.. guess..
[18:59:06] <Hugo_> I'm just saying, turning a whole continent into a BIO paradise seems like a waste...
[18:59:10] <Midboss> and not bordering onto other corps' land does make a big difference
[18:59:56] <Hugo_> Especially when Australia could be changed from a Free State into a... Rentable Land Holdings Company or something.
[19:01:03] <Hugo_> Like, it's overseen by a company that rents the land and keeps the NIMBY shit on it's own continent, and rents out hundreds and hundreds of miles of land for companies to rent or buy as they wish
[19:01:31] <Hugo_> That way you get your trash heaps, your mad max shit, plus escaped BIOs and lands for genetic testing, plus whatever else.
[19:01:40] <HanJi> Actually, I could see THAT as being a UIG thing
[19:01:41] <Midboss> Australia's big enough to be both
[19:02:04] <Hugo_> UIG rent out Australia?
[19:02:15] <HanJi> Yeah
[19:02:23] <Hugo_> Well, the diea would be that Gemini rents, not.. owns.
[19:02:49] <Hugo_> Or they could jsut straight up buy, I guess, but I'm talking in pieces, not a whole continent.
[19:03:27] <HanJi> I imagine they buy some pieces, but rent additional territory on a case by case basis
[19:03:32] <Midboss> Them renting usage makes sense in terms of giving the UIG a little more actual relevance
[19:03:36] <Hugo_> That is a nice idea.
[19:03:48] <Hugo_> UIG has the forces to maintain Australia
[19:03:54] <Hugo_> A nice fat revenue stream
[19:04:13] <HanJi> It's also a better place to put your fucking government headquarters then Antarctica
[19:04:14] <Hugo_> Nice place to put UIG prisons, and the non-UIG prisons..
[19:04:43] <Midboss> and then you have The Seven Cybersamurai being recruited to help out a community of Australians whose town is due to be rented out to Gemini and razed for BIOcow grazing fields
[19:04:50] <HanJi> ...
[19:04:56] <Hugo_> Yeah
[19:05:16] <Hugo_> Or the company that jsut wants to do land speed tests for their new bike, and whoops, Gemini left the graboid worms there.
[19:05:50] <Midboss> I like that Australia is left undefined and mysterious and full of potential because every setting needs lots of that
[19:05:59] <Midboss> but the point is then for groups to fill that in
[19:06:18] <Hugo_> Well
[19:06:24] <Midboss> and I feel like having A Thing that is visibly involved in Australia helps tie it in to the rest of the setting
[19:06:25] <Hugo_> The real problem is the SAFS
[19:06:34] <Hugo_> Besides some border towns, what the fuck is it?
[19:06:44] <Hugo_> Australia, you can sort of glean maybe something
[19:06:44] <Hugo_> but
[19:06:56] <Hugo_> They hate the WF there... ...????
[19:07:12] <HanJi> I always assumed SAFS is where most minor corps are based
[19:07:18] <HanJi> at least for their secret stuff
[19:07:20] <Hugo_> A lot of them are.
[19:07:26] <HanJi> cause otherwise, where the fuck are they
[19:07:28] <Hugo_> But what's there?
[19:07:35] <Midboss> There is the issue of not having the legal protections to stop other corps assaulting them
[19:07:41] <HanJi> telepathic cows?
[19:08:12] <Midboss> the timespace warp causes the rest of South America to be vague and unmemorable as a psychic defence to stop humans probing it
[19:08:25] <Hugo_> A xu continent
[19:08:33] <Midboss> D:
[19:11:21] <Hugo_> I like the idea of somewhere, land being.. rentable. Of land changing corporate hands without violence.
[19:12:09] <Hugo_> And somewhere where a bunch of people could hope to buy a bit of land away from prying eyes and corporate bullshit
[19:12:20] <Hugo_> until the BIOs, raised rent...
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Dani Potenza

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