PDX 2077

The City of the Future

While I am still DMing my fantasy ShadowDark campaign, there is always time to get ready for the next thing. I decided to go with something a little different and dive into Cities Without Number. CWN is a Cyberpunk rulebook from the exemplary mind of Kevin Crawford, author of the sci fi Stars Without Number and fantasy Worlds Without Number rulesets. It is an 'OSR' ruleset, so the core concepts are familiar to a Dungeons and Dragons player. I also appreciate the lethality Kevin built into the system, as I believe a good Cyberpunk campaign should have the threat of death always around a neon lit corner. 

As part of the creating the new campaign I decided to share my vision of PDX 2077 with you all. Set in a cyberpunk future, this adventure will focus on the city of Portland, Oregon in the year 2077. I am quite familiar with Portland, having grown up near it, and it is big enough to be recognizable, without being so massive as to become unmanageable for a campaign setting. I will be following a mix of my own creative process and the tools details in the CWN corebook.  

I plan to cover factions, NPC, locations, and anything else that comes up as I get the campaign ready for my players to explore. 

Creating PDX 2077

To start the process I rolled up two city problems. I got:

Anarchy: The region has spent some time in a state of ungoverned lawlessness, a condition that might still persist. Local authority rests with those who can provide resources or who can bring violent force to bear. Numerous would-be governmental groups fought to lay claim to the area, and very harsh arrangements might be tolerated so long as they bring a modicum of social order to people’s lives.

Industrial Spill: A large-scale industrial accident caused grave damage in the region, a calamity that still exerts a presence in current affairs. There may be valuable salvage left in the contaminated zone, or refugees may still be a problem in neighboring areas, or resentment over the accident may still be causing reprisals and violence among those affected.

With this I decided that some sort of industrial spill poisoned the Willamette and Columbia rivers that flow through Portland. The rivers remain to this day a toxic green flowing sludge. This horrific disaster caused a period of anarchy and civil unrest, as various groups tried to control pieces of the poisoned city. Today the local city government of Portland has regained control of the general populace, and is determined to take whatever measures necessary to prevent any more uprising in the future. 

This is the stage that our adventures will be set, with tensions high as the government and megacorps strive to maintain an image of control while the prevalent and once powerful criminal underground feels the heat of a zealous police force.