Blinking neon lights and cigarette smoke, smell of whisky and gun powder, bodies laying in the moonlight and blood washed out in the rain…
RETROCITY Into the Long Night is a noir game of urban action and investigation in a dystopian version of America in 2050. An adult and realistic game based on gritty mood and narrative tension.
Players incarnate police officers, beat cops or detectives, going through their daily routines, within the walls of the nefarious and tormented Retrocity. The city feeding on the souls of its inhabitants.
Set in a near-future heavily influenced by the 80’s, RETROCITY Into the Long Night is a tabletop roleplaying game created by author and illustrator Bastien Lecouffe Deharme based on his 2011 graphic novel Memories of Retrocity.
WHAT DO WE PLAY?
Whether they are rookies coming straight out of the Academy, or veterans who have been walking the streets and the back alleys for more than 20 years, the characters in RETROCITY Into the Long Night are police officers from the Retrocity Police Department.
Guardians of the remnant of some kind of justice, the Officers are not immune to the City’s corrupted influence. Retrocity itself is triggering their worst inclinations, leading them through a hidden path within the maze of the streets, toward their own perdition.
Beat cops, officers on patrol, detectives, or members of the special unit called The Watch, the players will experience the reality of the everyday life as cops, leading their career within the massive American ultrapolis of 2050: Retrocity.
THE PAST OF RETROCITY
In the 1940s, the US government turned a prolific city into a political, social, and scientific experiment. A massive wall was built around the city and no citizen allowed to leave. Brother and sister James and Lucy Hover, both renown scientists, were nominated at the direction of the city. They created the Hover Corporation.
1942, official start of the experimentations. In the shape of a green fog, mood altering substances were sprayed in various neighborhoods.
January 15 1947, The Black Heart, a massive building of black stones with no doors or windows, appeared at the center of Retrocity.
In the 1950s, the experimentations in the City were going full speed.
Every product for sale was now branded Hover. Hover cars, Hover socks, Hover toothpaste, Hover cigarettes…
June 22 1958, Dr. Strauss diagnosed the first official case of Retroprocessus: Picture Man. A disabled 53 year old man had “blended/merged” with his color TV monitor.
Strauss’ report is as follows: “The man and the TV can not be separated without destroying one or the other. They are a one and unique thing. The TV monitor is occupying the right section of the man’s torso, stuck asymmetrically between shoulder and hip. There are veins running through the monitor and electric cables within the man’s body. The man’s voice changes as we switch the TV channels and there is light coming through his eyes. Unplugging the Man/TV has no effect. The man is still hungry and has kept his digestive functions. However, his mind is affected to a point where it is difficult to dissociate casual conversation from TV commercials.”
Evolving on its own, separated from the rest of the world, the City remained stuck in the spirit of the 50’s.
Cases of Retroprocessus multiplied in the city. The Retroprocessus was officially classified as an “Affliction”. Affecting 10% of the population.
Two other types of Afflictions appeared then: Ghosting and Hollowing. One sees the physical envelope of the individual disappearing, and the other affects the mind, leaving the body empty.
1962, under the supervision of Lucy Hover, a team of scientists figured out that the Afflictions were affecting human inclinations. Separating humans from their primordial needs and instincts were suspected to act as a remedy against the Afflictions. Mechanical implants in the flesh of the Afflicted individuals would appear to stop the Retroprocessus. The more machine an individual becomes, the less Afflicted.
Implantation of mechanical parts into the human body is, to this day, considered the only cure.
Biomechanical implants and prosthetics had become the new trend in the City.
1965, mysterious disappearance of Lucy Hover.
James Hover sent the request to have statues of her built all over the city.
Alone at the head of the Corporation, missing Lucy more than a brother should miss a sister, James Hover dove into a deep depression.
Life in Retrocity was at its worst. The Afflictions were spreading, the Corporation watching and controlling the citizens in their every move. The Watcher haunting the streets in their long black leather coats. The human body had become a business. Citizens were almost all infertile. And half the city lost power.
In 1968, the US government fully separated itself from Project Retrocity, removing it from the maps and the books. The wall still standing strong and the gates remaining closed, only to open when someone was thrown into the city, as an alternative to jail or death row.
The world forgot Retrocity, and the City forgot the world.
The graphic novel Memories of Retrocity took place in 2004. At the time the city was stuck in some kind of alternative 50’s. “Into the Long Night” is set in 2050, and Retrocity evolved toward the 80’s.
THE WORLD IN 2050
The collapse and the Big Blackout of 2031 did put America and the rest of the world into economical failure. While cities were collapsing, Retrocity remained protected, surviving on its autonomous economic system and resources.
With the climate changes and lack of care for the infrastructures, the outside world was officially declared “Hostile” by the government in 2033. It is today referred to as The Wastelands.
The US government claimed back ownership of “Project Retrocity”, asking the Corporation to open the gates of the walls in order to welcome American citizens from all over the country. The US government and the Hover Corporation now share the political power of the City.
The city that was once a highlight of America’s dark history is now a symbol of salvation and hope for the population. A massive influx of people forced the US government to extend the city and build outside the old walls. A new wall was built around the reformed city, to protect if from the outside world.
In 2050, Retrocity is referred as an ultrapolis.
But the City has not changed. It is starving and hungry for souls to devour. And the Black Heart remains.