Sunday, January 5, 2014

Tracy-Verse

Okay Mongoose Traveller can run supers (after a fashion.) This set up is a little easier for it. Dick Tracy!

Dick Tracy was my all time favorite strip as a boy. I picked it up in the '60's Space era, a time when fans either applauded or loathed the story arc. I couldn't read yet and it looked like a acid trip to a five year old. I was especially amazed and fascinated by the Space Coup and the Moon People.

Sadly the strip waned in popularity over the years and eventually was dropped from local papers. After I got on the internet I checked it out occasionally over the years and hated it after Max Collins was taken off writing. I started checking it out again few ekes ago and discover that Joe Staton and Mike Curtis had taken it to new heights (they brought the Space Coup back!) In fact the strip won the 2013 Harvey award for best syndicated strip or panel.

What really caught my ey was the crossovers. In the course of a year Tracy dealt with 1) a villain who was implied to be related to the Penguin 2) phoned Oliver Warbucks (Annie) to check on a criminal's background claims 3) had Mary Perkins (On Stage: Mary Perkins) and 4) vacationed with Popeye and Olive (though both were just glimpsed; I mean how do you draw Popeye and in the Tracy style?)

So what about a setting made up of Tracy's City (is the Tick operating somewhere around there too?) and other classic strips? You could add in virtually any sort of realistic strip and throw a few not so realistic for cutaway gags. (I actually had Popeye do a walk on in a World War 2 supers game. The reaction from the players was shock, laughter, and kudos.)

Dick Tracy, America's best known and most decorated law enforcement agent fights crime in his City. Tracy heads the Major Crime Unit as well as the Tracy Detective agency (the Tracy Agency might need investigators hook #1.) Gotham City has the vigilante known as the Batman to fight their more colorful so-called super villains. Many people have copied the Batman's methods leading to the International Club of Heroes. Star City has the Green Arrow who also inspired the Green Arrows of Many Nations (though many consider him to be merely one of Batman's imitators.)

Piracy, slave trading and terrorism are world wide threats. The only thing necessary for their victory is for good men to do nothing. Fortunately good men are far from uninvolved. A team consisting of Flash Gordon, Mandrake, Punjab, and the Phantom operates under UN auspices and with ties to major law enforcement agencies such as Interpol and the FBI and is funded covertly by Oliver Warbucks and Diet Smith.

In terms of technology: most of Earth is TL 7 though it has many more miniaturized and combined versions of equipment. The major governments have access to TL 8 prototypes. Smith Enterprises and Warbucks' Industry has built a number of TL 9 prototypes (such as the Space Coupe which has a unique maneuver drive.) Flash Gordon also has she access to TL 9 gear from his space adventures.

Mandrake and Punjab's 'magical' powers can be explained by the core psi rules (Punjab's magic items are focii that enable him to use his teleport power (cloak) and store extra psi points (sword.))

Any contributions to the setting are welcomed.