Having given a description of our future-Sydney, Metro East, in last weeks post, lets take a look at some of its inhabitants. Building factions is collaborative in Karma in the Dark, and you can basically make as many as you like. With our team of ne’er do wells inhabiting an abandoned building down near the flooded districts and the industrial zones, that strongly influenced the flavour of our factions, and Karma gives you a lively nest of vipers right out of the gate.
The Marine Patrol Corps (Police Faction)
A municipally funded force has the primary function of keeping a lid on any crime and unrest in the city’s vital aquacultural centres. Painfully underfunded and thinly stretched, the MPC would have their work cut out for them if it was just jittery unions they had to worry about; with the continuing campaign of sabotage perpetrated by the Circle of the Tides they are beginning to get desperate. Their shows of force might not be enough to stop the situation from boiling over… they need up to date gear and boots on the ground, fast, and they are getting rapidly less picky about who supplies those.
Drive: Order, Goal: Acquire Up to Date Hardware, Methods: Shock and Awe, Crackdowns
Relevance: 5 (Pervasive, Protective)
The Circle of the Tides (Arcane Faction)
A loose conclave of mystics, beast speakers and environmental extremists who have taken the Outbreak’s mission to annihilate technology as their own, seeking to defend a natural world that each day grows more complex and dangerous with each day. With extensive knowledge of the city’s flooded districts, powerful magic and a bestiary of awakened animals at their disposal, they seek to rid the coastline of exploitative resource extraction and return to the world to a state of balance. Viewed by some outsiders as misguided and others as a deranged death-cult, the Circle nonetheless continues its mission in places where those same outsiders would struggle to survive.
Drive: Defend the Natural World, Goal: Disrupt the Kelp Farms, Method: Secrecy, Hit and Run
The Circus Maximus (Entertainment Faction)
The Circus is a loose alliance of celebrities, entertainers and their myriad support staff, driven by the whims of the Oligarchs’ patronage and sharpened by their precarious position. With the favour of the great clans comes some of the benefits they enjoy, including the coveted biotech and longevity treatments… as long as one can hold the spotlight. Their power comes from being able to make or break reputations, and cultivation of powerful friends… though some whisper their attempts to secure monopoly rights in the burgeoning international market are their first step in replacing the nobility they have imitated for so long.
Drive: Power, Goal: Acquire an export monopoly, Method: Social Engineering
Relevance: 5 (Pervasive, Trendsetting)
Circus Maximus Agent: Clint Burgundy
Clint was one of the beautiful people once, but that was a long time ago. With the good life of sex, drugs and loud music having turned him into something of a greasy walnut of a human male, he clings on to his place in C-Max as a broker, enabler and troubleshooter. The team has landed on his Shit List due to their cover-up activities… if there’s a PR clusterfuck looming, Clint wants to be the one in control of it.
The Tailor’s Union (Crime Faction)
In Metro East, the rich get access to tailored bioware, and the finest medical care that can be found. For everyone else… there’s the Tailor’s Union. Where there is a demand a supply will surface soon enough, and the Union have a strong hand in keeping the city’s poor and desperate alive, running the black clinics, pharmaceutical smuggling and illegal cybernetics that keep the human element from breaking down. The fact that they cement this position with a merciless network of blackmail and a small army of augmented assassins has not done anything to hurt their reputation.
Drive: Expand criminal empire, Goal: Inflitrate the MPC, Method: Secrecy and Terror
Relevance: 4 (Consuming)
Tailor’s Union Agent: “Doctor” Francis Pierce
A quiet, almost monkish demeanour hides the scalpel sharp mind of “Doctor” Pierce, with the willowy troll being perhaps the most capable surgeon ever to have their license revoked. Not cruel, or malicious, they might best be described as efficient, whether in an improvised operating room or aboard a smuggling sub… and they owe the team one, on account of some help with some personal problems…
Artemis Pharmaceutical Futures (Corp Faction)
The local branch of APF has seen better days… a long way from their patron’s heartland, the lab has been struggling to produce the results that they need to avoid being written off as a loss come next review. The Head of Research is going to need to get creative… especially after a rather nasty chemical spill that they may or may not have been responsible for. There’s a lot to worry about, but Artemis aren’t to be written off just yet; they might not be a big lab, but their parent corporation doesn’t like competitors messing with their assets…
Drive: Secure more funding for research, Goal: Cover up recent accident, Method: Market Manipulation
Relevance: 4 (Protective)
Tune in next week, and we’ll meet the team!