Details of the Betterverse

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Details of the Betterverse

Postby betterwatchit » Sun Feb 03, 2013 3:31 pm

Betterverse Index

Timeline
Morality & Traditions
Cape Slang
Superhuman Laws
Power Types
Master Mage Candidates
Magical Weapons

European Supers

Cities:



Other Worlds

Underworld:




NOTE: Anything in a quote box like this is either breaking the fourth wall, or is otherwise not considered common knowledge within the setting.
Last edited by betterwatchit on Tue Apr 22, 2014 4:40 pm, edited 21 times in total.

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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby betterwatchit » Sun Feb 03, 2013 3:34 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. British government forms the Ministry of Powers to monitor superhuman activity.

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.

1971:The Big Brain founds the Fraternity of Evil (F.O.E) in Emerald City.


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 Britain, 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 Initative 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: 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.

2013: First appearance of the Griffin in London. Ponies from Equestria arrive on Earth by accident. Griffin and Ms. Magus successfully prevent a religious cult from killing the ponies during their accidental visit to Manhattan.
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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby betterwatchit » Sun Feb 03, 2013 3:50 pm

Morality: The Betterverse has room for all sorts of moralities, be they white, grey, black, blue or orange.

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.

    Any super who knows the real identity or weakness of another super shouldn't ever 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.

    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. Just ask Magog.
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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby betterwatchit » Sun Feb 10, 2013 4:44 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 Time in a Bottle is the most well known accorded location in Britain, due to the local magic making it effectively impossible to use any offensive powers or weapons inside. 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: One who uses fire-based abilities.
    Freezer: One who uses cold-based abilities.
    Shocker: One who uses electricity-based abilities.

    Candle: Any tower or other tall building used by fliers as a landmark or navigation aid. Known candles include 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. The "Of Two Worlds" story is one example of a First Contact.

    Flier: 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.

    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 always 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.

    The Ministry: Short for the Ministry of Powers, the British super-human goverment 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 for why the practice hasn't been stamped out.

    PIP: Power Induced Psychosis. A very small percentage of people who gain powers (about 0.1% of powered people) tend to lose 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 (especially where said power actually would have averted the situation if the sufferer had it earlier). Professional psychiatric assistance and therapy is currently the most effective method of treating 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."

    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 triggering their metagene, 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'll actually work, which only gets more people to try it.

    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 supplying. Only the Ministry of Powers can authorise possession or supply of a Class S drug in Britain.
Last edited by betterwatchit on Tue Apr 15, 2014 2:50 am, edited 20 times in total.

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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby Libra » Mon Feb 11, 2013 3:07 pm

Keep up the good work Betterwatchit! :D
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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby betterwatchit » Fri Feb 15, 2013 6:07 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 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 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's believed that in the event of every human on Earth obtaining an extra sense, evidence obtained through the new sense would count as admissible.

    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). The smarter railway companies actually paint the name of the station on the roofs of their stations, along with an arrow pointing out where the main entrance is.

    It is considered trespassing to land anywhere you cannot legally access on foot without good reason or to fly in restricted airspace (like airports) without permission from the controlling authority.
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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby Libra » Sat Feb 16, 2013 2:00 pm

Betterwatchit, This article on Legal Precedent concerning supermen has considerable potential to be useful; I shall keep it in mind when working out how the Authorities in any reasonable superhero universe would perceive the legality of a superheroes actions.

In short it is a fine article well-written. :D
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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby betterwatchit » Sat Feb 16, 2013 2:51 pm

It's based off the superhuman laws mentioned in Freedom City 2E. The last two are my original ideas.

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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby betterwatchit » Mon Mar 04, 2013 5:58 am

Location Key:

BC: Bandit Country. The more dangerous areas. Make sure you take every precaution possible before entering.
CC: Cultural Capital. These have more than their fair share of museums, monuments and media companies. They usually have a great deal of influence on the country's culture as a result. In the U.S.; Freedom City, Los Angeles, New York and Washington D.C. would be Cultural Capitals.
GC: Government Capital. Where the country's corridors of power are.
IC: Industrial Capital. Where one industry is predominant in the area.
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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby betterwatchit » Mon Mar 04, 2013 6:16 am

London (CC, GC):

London is the largest city in Britain. So large in fact, that it's a 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 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 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 sells Morphic Molecule Suits. Two qualities that make him well and truly valuable are that he stays bought (Unless you tried to sell something that's clearly stolen to him, in which case, you're getting handed over to the police), 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 London. 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 Britain.

    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 powered and 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 supers 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 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 for it!

    Heroes for Britain: This government-backed hero team is based in Barksdale Castle.
    It is believed that they have access to a Nightside entrance.


Hidden District:

The Nightside (BC): The Nightside is perhaps London's greatest secret. It is effectively a parallel version that's one big grey area when it comes to ethics, legality and morality. It's said that you can buy or sell stuff that even Antenna wouldn't touch and then party like God isn't taking notice. Just make sure you can actually afford it before buying anything, as merchants tend to take a very dim view of cheapskates and thieves. Access is normally through any London Underground station inside the Circle Line if you know which doors to open, but there are other routes if you can find them. There are no laws in the Nightside, and no justice for those who can't buy it or otherwise make it themselves.


People:

    John Taylor: Son of Lilith, and the current Walker, who is what passes for the law in the Nightside. Half the rich and powerful in the Nightside want him dead and gone while the other half want him to owe them.

    Suzie Shooter: John's wife and hard as nails bounty hunter, who operates solely in the Nightside. Signature weapon: A pump-action shotgun loaded with blessed and cursed buckshot. Harming an innocent near her is tantamount to suicide.


Places:

    Mammon Emporium: This shopping centre contains shops that sell anything from anywhere, even from parallel timelines and fictional worlds. You can get a Beatles rap album with all four members or a M41A Pulse Rifle there.

    Strangefellows: This is the oldest still-running pub in the world. The barman is always in a slightly foul mood, and only wears black because no one has found anything darker yet. He serves drinks that would blow your mind, like Shoggoth's Old and Very Peculiar or wormwood brandy (John Taylor's favourite for when a job's gone sideways).
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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby Libra » Tue Mar 05, 2013 4:46 am

Good stuff Betterwatchit - I'm particularly intrigued by some of the ideas you've hinted at in your article on London. :)
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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby betterwatchit » Wed Mar 06, 2013 4:46 am

Which ideas are you intrigued by, Libra?

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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby Libra » Wed Mar 06, 2013 3:38 pm

The Golder's Green Guardians for a start - they sound rather like a cross between Hellblazer and Attack the Block!
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Re: Details of the Betterverse

Postby betterwatchit » Fri Mar 15, 2013 6:40 am

Freedom City, New Jersey, USA (CC):

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 is still underneath it, waiting to be reclaimed...

    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.

    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: Details of the Betterverse

Postby Libra » Fri Mar 15, 2013 1:13 pm

It's always interesting to see where each creator places Freedom City in his or her setting. :)
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