RUIN, Life in the Undergrowth
In the city of New York, the survivors of the local cities have come together to survive. They are not welcome. As a result there are a number of enclaves around NY and from these there is the beginnings of peace.
This scattered population is divided into seven distinct groups:
The Low Teks or Tribals.
It is important to note that these groups are not highly separate and in opposition, though there are philosophical differences, for the most part, these groups are sub cultures to a new larger society. Most of these groups have leadership that are becoming the political leaders of the New Society. A bar may be filled with all members of all groups, even some Outsiders if they behave themselves. They may even talk to each other over cards. Adherence to these groups is not an all encompassing part of a person, but a set of beliefs or history that simply is. The exceptions to this are the Unity, whom all have a Unity Device, The Nanos who are genetically reinforced by nanotech and the Divine who share a common religious belief.
The Unity are what is left of the old world’s power structure. They have access to the old military and seek to unify the people under their control and according to their rules, which includes a ruling class and a worker class. The Unity enjoy the benefits of a great deal of old world technology. Their vehicles run on electricity, Hydrogen fuel cells and other similar technology. They have computers, a version of the Internet called the Network and excellent medical care. All members of the Unity are required to have a Unity Device, a Neuralware processor that allows them to access the Network. Through this they carry their identity, control finances and access their world around them.
The Unity advertise that though joining them they can build a new utopian society where order and togetherness will be the foundation of lasting peace.
Most citizens of the Unity believe in this promise and live among the Enclave going about their daily business as people would. Some travel the Wilds to search for things to add to the Unity, to find lost people and offer them hope or to try and bring organisation to lost tribes.
The Unity is currently under the guidance of the Council of Union, a Council of ten elected officials who among them elect a leader. The current President of the Union is Elizabeth Hastings.
Many find the Unity too stifling, and the thought of having your life controlled via a brain implanted device repulsive. The Unity also defends its borders most vigorously. Nobody is allowed to come into greater New York without a travel or trade permit or their Unity device. Interlopers are judged to be either thieves or spies and are dealt with as such.
The one weakness of the Unity is that they have not yet become self sufficient, they rely too heavily on trade to be a overpowering force. However many fear the strong ties that the Unity have with the Divine and the Industrials, as they may prove the allies that the Unity needs to become all powerful.
The Divine are a religious caste that see that their survival is a gift from God after the day of Judgement. This group is strongly aligned with the Unity, but there are those who consider themselves Divine who live among the other groups, simply spreading the word of God. The Divine are seen by many as either the orchestrators or the minions of the Unity. Either way, some of the Divine are part of the Unity, most are simply good faithful people, others oppose the moves of their hierarchy and simply preach.
The concept of GOD has forever been a source of great debate. The disaster and chaos of the Virus and the assumption that it was created to fight in the Jihad of the old world has created among the Survivors an idea that conflict based on the different religions is futile and dangerous. For members of the Divine, they see that GOD is whomever you choose him/her/it to be. There is one true god. He is the father of all religions and denominations, and any who preach hatred in his name is cast out from his grace.
For those that do not believe in GOD, the Divine seek to bring them to him. For those that have faith in something else, such as Buddhism or the ever growing popularity of Nature worship and Druidism, there is no hatred, and even some respect, as belief in anything divine is to believe in GOD as interpreted by the individual.
The Nanotechs are a group who have access to top of the line medical and cybernetic technology. Each Nano has one very specific genetic trait, cybernetic Nanogenes. Born from an experimental process to cure cancer before The Virus, a group of desperate scientists managed to create their own immunity by sending in medical nanobots to defend against the virus. These nanites are now a permanent part of their genetic structure. The Nanos have software packages that have to be installed via a cybernetic neuralware processor. Once installed, this turns most of the nanoware on and through this Nanos can access technology by touch and use nano-activated devices.
This nanoware interferes with Unity Devices and as such, no Nano can become a member of the Unity. Nanos are highly suspicious of this, as the Unity Device should interface neatly with their Nanogenes, and because it doesn’t, they fear there is more to the Unity Device than people are told.
Once a Nano activates his Nanogenes, they can interface with any technology that is designed to accessed via USB, Network, or similar. They can access a cell phone and control it from internal menus, but not a diesel engine. Many Nano vehicles and devices are built to have nano receptor pads on them that allow functions to be controlled by “thought”.
The Nanos are born from a group of scientists. Their leadership is based around an educated elite elected by the general population into a ruling body.
The Current leader of the Nanos is Arch Chancellor Ravi Anand.
The Industrials are those that know that foundational technology is needed and are seeking to recreate the industrial revolution. They have access to all the forges, and the heavy technology. Their vehicles are based around methanol powered internal combustion and they generate much of the power cells and tech the others rely on.
Industrials are organised into Unions, which operate more like guilds. They work to rebuild the world and will trade their raw materials for the food and high tech they need. The Industrials are made up of those that knew the trades before the Virus. Knowing that they have important knowledge and it value is core to them and they guard that knowledge. Many see the Industrials as paranoid, but they say they know the value of their information and need it to survive.
Industrials run the power plants and the foundries of the old world and make the tech for the new one. People of various trades are considered Industrials, so the Industrials are the most varied and diverse group of the New World.
The Industrials are rules by a voted congress of leaders in the trade unions. This council is equal in power and annually nominate a vote for a Chairman who oversees the projects run by each member. The Current Chairman is Donald P. Moore.
THE LOW TEKS
The Low Teks are those that have gone back to basics. These tribals live off the land and vary from hippy communes to Native American like war bands. They trade food and supplies for their basic needs. They have also mastered livestock.
Low Teks can be simple as those who farm using pre industrial age tech, or those that have sought to become one with the new environment.
A new form of Druidic faith has come up among this group, and this faith is in the balancing power of Nature. Some among these Neo-Druids believe the Virus was the world treating itself of its human infestation.
Low Teks can be of various types. Some disdain technology, others fear it, some simply choose to live without it. The definition of technology can vary as well. Some Low Teks still wear Kevlar armour, and have polymer ceramic blades, but no guns. A few may only use older bolt action weapons, but most wear leathers and fight with steel or similarly simple weapons.
Low Teks exist in small tribes, and each chooses it leaders differently. There is no central leadership.
Riggers are the petrol heads. These are generally seen as the good guys out on the roads. Riggers are specialists that focus on operating vehicles. They are free spirits who see that being able to be mobile as the true expression of who they are.
Riggers can be loners or travel in packs and gangs. The key part of who they are is that they generally operate for the betterment of others.
Many riggers are simply good at getting around inside the RUIN, or they are outrider patrols for the settelments. Maybe they are couriers that move information around the ruin. Whoever they are, they are best at home with a set of wheels.
Most Riggers are also Industrials, or Nanos.
There are some Riggers who come from the Low Teks, but these tend to ride animals, so technically are seen as different.
Riggers may be independent or part of other groups. They are mentionned here as they are a common subculture in other groups and will band together if they feel it is necessary.
OUTSIDERS & TRAVELLERS
The Outsiders. This is a blanket term for all the pirates, thugs, thieves, bandits and marauders that travel in packs and gangs picking off the weak. They come in many and varied types and styles. They are usually violent and take what they want.
Travellers are those who are mobile but do not steal or use violence unless forced. Travellers are gypsies who move around searching for whatever and keeping freedom.
Whether a person is a Traveller or an Outsider is usually not clear, so being allowed into a settlement is not always guaranteed.