Roleplaying Shadowrun

SR Location Seattle 2069

Shadowrun – Locations

Seattle in 2072

  • Size: Metropolis
  • Government: UCAS

Boring Factoids

Seattle’s a little more cosmopolitan than your average sprawl, which is a major plus for people in our line of work. Any ethnicity, metatype, ’ware, or outfit blends right into with the pavement-pounding downtown hordes. You really have to make an effort to get anyone to raise an eyebrow at your appearance, even in the exclusive high-sec corp enclaves (where you can look weird as long as you also look rich). It’s also easy to plug into whatever subcultural niche you prefer here. There are dozens of little ethnic neighborhoods and specialty shops where you can find anything your individual quirks desire.​

Linguachips and translation programs are ubiquitous these days, but your average Seattleite speaks at least two languages, even if they can’t write their name. The ones you’re most likely to encounter are English, Japanese, Salish dialects, Or’zet, Aztlaner Spanish, Russian, Korean, and Sperethiel.​

The Man

Each Seattle district (except for Outremer) is governed by a locally elected mayor. The Metroplex as a whole elects the governor and the Metroplex’s two senators and single representative; those last three serve on behalf of Seattle in the UCAS Congress. Relations between the Metroplex government and the various extraterritorial corporations that operate within the Metroplex are maintained by the United Corporate Council, which in turn answers to the Corporate Court. The current Metroplex Governor is Julius Strouthers, though he’s up for re-election this year, and faces stiff competition.​

The UCAS Federal government maintains offices in Seattle to represent the interests of the country as a whole and to cover anything that might fall under Federal jurisdiction. Federal and UCAS military presence has been increasing steadily in Seattle since the recent Crash, perhaps in response to the growing Independent Seattle movement.​

The Augmented Street View

Visitors to Seattle see a city of living crystal, with each building a massive polygon of multifaceted green gems lit from within. This is the much-hyped “Emerald City” AR overlay promoted by the Seattle Tourist Board, broadcast via thousands of participating nodes and networks right to your commlink. Most of Downtown Seattle, especially the looming corporate skyscrapers, has adopted the green, glassy AR theme to “skin” over their drab exteriors of concrete and mirrored windows. The street level overlay is more colorful and varied in appearance, though green and crystalline elements are still dominant.​

Rain City

Since the Pacific Northwest area around Seattle counts as a temperate rainforest, it’s no surprise that Seattle receives precipitation in excess of two hundred centimeters each year. Even when it’s not misty or drizzling, an unhealthy haze of smog keeps the city under an endless gray pallor. Being right on the ocean, though, there are times when the breeze comes in off Puget Sound and you can almost breathe something resembling air. Careful, though – the second the wind changes, you’ll get a lung full of ash from Puyallup or low-rad particulates from Glow City.​

Speaking of ash, get used to it. Ever since the quakes down in California, Mt. Ranier has been spewing a thin stream right into the clouds coming toward Seattle. The regular acid rain showers (or flurry of toxic sleet in the winter) bleach the buildings and eat away at the ferroconcrete, though many corp skyrakers sport expensive nano-material coatings to protect against the caustic elements.​

In the Deep End

Seattle’s virtual reality is pretty much like any other, though you’ll note the Emerald City design motif is standard here, too. The largest systems include Mitsuhama’s infamous Forbidden City host, the Aztechnology Pyramid, the NeoNET Constellation, and the translucent green apparition of the Arcology Commercial and Housing Enclave. Of course, no introduction to the Seattle Matrix would be complete without mentioning SeaSource, a popular public database and search engine.​

  • I whipped up a SeaSearch toolbar mod that allows you to simultaneously access ShadowSea, the local data haven. If you’re interested, let me know, I’ll zap it over.
  • Slamm-O!​
  • Public data-terminals and link-booths located Downtown allow anyone to access the Matrix in full VR. Public users are saddled with icy green golem icons that are so ubiquitous on the public grids that they’re nearly invisible. That can be an asset when you need to make an anonymous virtual meeting or scope out the public face of the corporate host you’ll be running against later.
  • Kat o’ Nine Tales​
Staying in Touch

Perhaps more than other sprawls, Seattleites have wholeheartedly embraced social networking technologies. Just peek at the PANs of any pavement-slapping pedestrians, and you’ll see each and every one is linked up to at least one social networking service, if not half a dozen. If you scan your vicinity for an interactive game partner, a fellow hobbyist, or a one-night stand, you’re sure to find one. Seattleites are so heavily networked that spontaneous, unplanned (usually) flash mobs are common when word hits the airwaves about some celebrity sighting, short-term bargain deal, or similar media spectacle or draw.​

​The Scene

Once upon a time, Seattle was known for suicidal, flannel-wearing grunge rockers and a popular chain of coffee houses. It’s got a lot more going on now, and interesting events always attract people who want to keep an eye on what’s new and hot. As a result, Seattle 2070 is the eyes and ears of the Pacific Northwest. It’s inundated with fashionistas, glitterati, paparazzi, cool hunters, and anybody that wants to be “in the know” or cash in on the latest trends. These cultural parasites also draw an even lower life form: marketing agents. There’s no better place to kick-start a new viral advertising campaign, music style, or targeted meme than by seeding it through Seattle’s subcultural tapestry and watching it spread. Neo-Tokyo and LA may be the hip places to watch, but you’d be surprised at how much originates from the Emerald City. Seattle has a way of mutating new artistic talent and trends for its own purposes, however, so there’s always even more that doesn’t escape into the corporate clutches.​

​Seattle City Services

  • Fire Safety – Franklin Associates
  • GridGuide – Mitsuhama Computer Technologies
  • Healthcare – City Health Services
  • Matrix Service – NeoNET
  • Police – Knight Errant
  • Power – Gaeatronics
  • Prisons – Lone Star Security Services
  • Public Works – Shiawase Envirotech
  • Sanitation – Eta Engineering

Points of Interest

The Seattle Metroplex covers nearly 4,000 square kilometers around Puget Sound (making it the second smallest state in the UCAS, after Rhode Island). It is divided into ten districts, including Seattle City, which is the downtown area, formerly the city of Seattle in old Washington State.​

Three major roadways – known simply as the North, South, and East Roads – lead in and out of the metroplex and also serve as the main arteries for traffic. The North-South Road follows the route of Interstate 5 and retains the I-5 designation within the metroplex, although it is no longer an interstate highway. Similarly, the East Road follows the former I-90 route and retains that designation within the metroplex borders.


Building Seattle’s Future

Auburn is Seattle’s industrial heart, home to many of the metroplex’s factories, refineries, and other manufacturing plants. It’s a blue-collar district, but don’t think that means it has nothing to offer! Auburn is home to plenty of local attractions and entertainment, including the district’s minor league baseball and urban brawl teams (the Auburn Cardinals and the Auburn Rumblers), and a day at the races at the Seattle International Raceway. In the evenings, the district’s restaurants, bars, and nightclubs offer a wide range of nightlife.​

  • In spite of efforts to brush Auburn with “blue-collar charm,” urban brawl is rapidly outpacing baseball as the entertainment of choice in the district, and no wonder; life in Auburn is crushingly routine. The people living in the district lucky enough to still have jobs work in the various factories doing things better suited to robots, but meat is still cheaper than metal in a lot of cases, and easier to replace. Nights are spent knocking a few back in the local watering holes watching something mindless on the trid (or slotting chips at home), maybe the occasional bar-brawl and bed-partner for the night, then back the next morning to start the whole thing over again.
  • Khan-A-Saur​
  • Auburn’s also got a lot of the ‘plex’s working-class orks and trolls, which leads to a fair amount of racial tension, further inflamed by a few drinks after work or a shouting match over some dumbass sports thing. Lone Star completely bollixed race relations in the district. Knight Errant has a whole new “outreach” program designed to convince the locals things will be different with them, but it remains to be seen if it’s actually anything other than corporate PR and spin. Any bets?
  • Ethernaut​​

High Tech, High Class

​Located across Lake Washington from the Downtown district, Bellevue is the favorite retreat for Seattle’s well-to-do white-collar community. Even before the Awakening, the area’s wooded hills and lakeside views made it a popular place for real estate and home development. Even though manicured parks and condoplexes have replaced most of those woods, Bellevue retains a serene air of natural and architectural beauty.​

Expect to spend a day exploring Bellevue’s elegant shopping and business district. Lovers of electronics will enjoy all it has to offer, since Bellevue’s main industry remains Matrix hardware and software, with boutiques selling the latest commlinks, AR wearables, and grid-gear. You can also expect to find some fine designer fashions, primarily for the business-conscious consumer. In the evening, visit the district’s many fine restaurants and nightspots to wind things down with a nightcap or to kick off the evening with haute cuisine appetizers and top-shelf cocktails.​

  • Bellevue bills itself on its “everything is fine, everything is lovely” atmosphere, and goes to great lengths to maintain it. After all, the district shares a long border with the Redmond Barrens, with plenty of ferrocrete barriers, monowire, and patrol drones ensuring that the have-nots remain on their side of the line: outside looking in. Everywhere you look in Bellevue is some part of the façade: gated communities with biofabric domes to filter toxins out of the air and absorb some of that acid rain, quiet drones crawling along the carefully clipped green lawns or scooping up trash while keeping an electronic eye out for anyone or anything that doesn’t belong. The whole thing is like a real-life sim of what pleasant suburban life should be.
  • Glitch​​​
  • That’s the key to dealing with Bellevue: use the illusion to your advantage. So long as you look like you fit in, you do, since everybody is invested in not scratching too deeply beneath the surface. Of course, if you’re anything other than some flavor of human (or maybe elf or dwarf looking to pass), chances are you don’t fit in. But dress and act like a Straight Citizen and you might as well be invisible.
  • Danger Sensei​​​​​​
Council Island

Tribal Wilderness and Diplomacy

You don’t have to leave the metroplex borders to get a taste of the culture and history of the Native American Nations; it’s available right in the heart of Seattle on Council Island, situated in Lake Washington. The Treaty of Denver ceded the island to the newly formed Native American Nations in 2018, and it now serves as an embassy and tribal enclave in the Seattle Metroplex. The Salish-Shidhe Council also maintains the island as a nature preserve, allowing visitors to enjoy the unspoiled wilderness alongside displays of Native American culture. Visitors’ passes and tour information are available through the Grand Council Lodge.​

  • Visiting Council Island may not be as involved as getting a blue ticket to go into Salish-Shidhe territory, but don’t make the mistake of thinking you can just waltz in and out and go wherever you want. The whole island is a foreign embassy, and tribal law applies there. The Council personnel take security seriously; as an enclave in the midst of a potentially hostile foreign power, they don’t have much choice.
  • Mika​​

Where It’s Happening

​Downtown Seattle – what was once the city of Seattle – is still the heart of the modern metroplex. The Downtown district is responsible for the majority of the area’s economy, home of its central government, and at the center of its culture and activities. While there is much to see and do in other parts of the metroplex, none encompass the whole of the Seattle experience as well as the Downtown area.

Downtown Seattle, also known as Seattle City, is the heart of the metroplex. The main business district is also filled with shops, parks, theaters, museums, hotels, and restaurants, a wide variety of local attractions including the waterfront and market, and popular attractions like the Space Needle. It’s also home to examples of the metroplex’s diverse culture, from the International District to the Elven District, the Ork Underground, and the Capitol Hill neighborhood. You can see the Arcology Commercial and Housing Enclave (formerly the Renraku Arcology), one of the world’s largest buildings, as well as the spectacular Aztechnology Pyramid.​

​In fact, Seattle City has so much to offer, the Guide recommends a subscription to a service like GridGuide’s free Citywalk for AR guidance and directions on the best routes to maximize your visit and make sure you experience all the best sites along the way. ​

  • Downtown is “where it’s happening” in the shadows, too, for the most part; more runs focus on this part of the metroplex than any other. No real surprise, as there’s more high-priced, high-security corporate real estate per square meter here than anywhere else. Although Knight Errant technically has overall responsibility for security and policing the city streets, in reality downtown is an overlapping crazy-quilt of corporate security zones and extraterritorial borders. Some smart runners have even managed to slip pursuit by crossing the right boundaries – like cutting through embassies and no-man’s-lands – but pick the wrong one and you could be out of the frying pan and into the fire.
  • Danger Sensei​​

Ships, Planes, and Stormy Weather

The northernmost district of Seattle has long been known for “ships, planes, and stormy weather,” as Everett is located along the northern part of Puget Sound, bordering rural Snohomish and the SalishShidhe Council lands. It is famous as the home of both the Everett Naval Shipyard (UCAS Navy) and Federated Boeing’s aircraft construction facility. With the Snohomish River cutting through the district’s northeastern sector, Everett is also an area of natural beauty, close to hiking trails and rainforest vistas.​

  • Like Tacoma, Everett was on an upswing through the 2050s as the local government encouraged corporate exploitation of the area, but the Crash of ’64 completely fucked them: wiping out records of land ownership and creating a bureaucratic nightmare that’s still being sorted out almost ten years later. The UCAS military solved some of the problem by seizing “disputed” properties by eminent domain, backed by the metroplex government, and mollifying some of the corps that complained by redistributing some of the wealth to them. The small fry often abandoned properties in the area, letting squatters move in and claim them. Right behind them came the Triads to carve up the booming market in drugs, chips, and illicit sex while providing protection for the various “massage parlors” and strip joints that sprang up.
  • Riser​​​
Fort Lewis

Military and Magic

Although treated as just another district of the greater Seattle Metroplex, Fort Lewis is a UCAS Military Reservation, housing the Seattle Metroplex Guard, McChord Airfield, and the UCAS Army Pacific Command, Joint Task Force Seattle. This means much of the area is restricted, although tours of some of the military facilities are available. Contact the Fort Lewis Public Relations Center for information and times.​

​The main attraction for visitors, however, is the Fort Lewis Zoological Gardens—acres of managed wilderness with well-established trails and habitats for a wide variety of paranormal animals. Invisible ultrasonic fences and AR tags keep the animals in their established habitats and allow visitors to see them in their natural environment. You can easily spend a day or more walking the trails of the Gardens and seeing their impressive collection, which changes slightly year-round. The Zoological Gardens work cooperatively with Blackstone’s Zoo in Snohomish as well, loaning out parts of their collection.​

  • While not as interesting to the touristas, Fort Lewis is naturally part of the ‘plex where the shadows run deep and dark. Military black ops happen in and around the reservation, and plenty of international intrigue, as NAN, Tir, Japan, and other factions maintain surveillance on what’s going on with the UCAS soldierboys and Pacific Command. You can find work in Fort Lewis, but it is rarely ever a milk run, since the military types play for keeps.
  • Pistons​
  • Of course, one should not underestimate the potential value of the Zoological Gardens as both resource and target. They started out as a UCAS military installation for the study of paranormal and Awakened life forms, and they still collect a lot of research data that is valuable to the right people, to say nothing of the value of certain rare specimens themselves.
  • Axis Mundi​​
  • You want to talk about the value of the specimens; I know of at least one run on the Zoological Gardens aimed at stealing a rare Imperial Eagle and getting it outside the perimeter fence alive and well. The team made it to their rendezvous, expecting to meet up with some eccentric wizard or corporate R&D Johnson, or even TerraFirst! patron with an expense account, only to have the Eagle thank them for their help, leave them a few feathers, and fly off! Seems it was some kind of spirit trapped in that form and held prisoner, but able to magically contact some middleman on the outside. I guess those feathers fetched some nice cred, too.
  • Lyran​​​​



Splendid Desolation

​The eruption of Mt. Rainier in 2017 devastated much of what is now the Puyallup district of the Seattle Metroplex; lava flows and heavy ashfall from the volcano changed the course of the Puyallup River, wiped out real estate, and created the vast lava plains that now cover the area. Even today, Puyallup is subject to occasional tremors, geysers, and ashfalls from the still-active volcano and “Smokin’ Rainier” looms large over the horizon. ​

Hiking and even camping is permitted on the lava flats of Puyallup, but visitors must sign a special waiver due to the dangers associated with geysers, boiling mud, and similar hazards. For the less adventurous of us, businesses like Hell’s Kitchen Tours and Ashland Air offer spectacular aerial tours of the lava fields and geysers, with a view (on clear days) of Rainier and Salish-Shidhe territory to the south.

  • “Splendid desolation” is a pretty apt description for Puyallup, although the Guide makes it sound like nothing but endless lava plains and mud flats. In fact, the district is some thousand square kilometers and home to half a million people, most of them SINless, many of them metahumans displaced by the Night of Rage, all living in the shadow of an active volcano that could erupt again any day, spilling tons of ash and rivers of molten fire across the area. But, of course, none of those harsh realities are “reasons to visit,” so who cares?
  • Riser​​

Life on the Wild Side

  • So here the Living Planet™ Guide had little to say (surprise, surprise). I’ve lifted some bits and pieces here and there, but mostly I’ve called upon our own Kat o’ Nine Tales, who did such a nice survey of Seattle a while back, to dig down and give us the details on the Barrens districts of the ‘plex: Redmond and Puyallup. This is the real Seattle, people, the part you’re not going to find in the guidebooks or talked about anywhere but sites like ours.
  • FastJack​

Looking for something a little different from your Seattle experience? Head down the 405 and get off the exit at Redmond for a walk on the wild side. While local authorities and UCAS travel advisories warn against going too far off the beaten track in this district of the metroplex, along the 405 bordering Bellevue you can find some of the most exciting nightspots in Seattle, and other cooperative businesses run by local residents, some dating back thirty years. Just be sure to check in with Knight Errant traffic and activity updates on KnightWatch before you make your plans.​

  • Of course, the Guide is talking about what most Seattleites refer to as “Touristville,” the only part of Redmond outsiders generally get to see, the place to go for a taste of “life on the wild side” without getting too wild or too real. For the actual scoop on the Redmond Barrens, check out the details added to this document.
  • Butch​
  • That “dating back thirty years” figure? That’s the Guide’s way of mentioning the displacement of metahumans during the Night of Rage without, you know, actually mentioning it in such a fashion as to upset or remind anyone. Redmond has a pretty big population of orks and trolls, and some dwarfs, who provide a lot of those “quaint local crafts.”
  • Sounder

​Redmond used to be one of the wealthiest and most successful communities of greater Seattle. In the 20th century, it was a major center for the burgeoning computer industry. Huge office complexes and skyscrapers sprang up along with suburban homes as businesses expanded and moved into the area.​

In 2013, a partial meltdown of the Trojan-Satsop nuclear plant contaminated Beaver Lake and the surrounding area for several kilometers, creating what would come to be known as “Glow City.” A lot of Redmond residents began leaving the area for greener (and less glow-in-the-dark) pastures as property values plummeted. Then came the Crash of 2029. Redmond’s primary industry vanished overnight. Some eighty percent of local businesses collapsed. A large number of residents simply left, leaving behind defaulted and foreclosed homes and businesses. Lured by the abandoned apartment buildings and condoplexes, numerous war refugees and Seattle’s homeless began moving into Redmond. This led to further violence, more flight, and more empty buildings, repeating and reinforcing the cycle. In the space of a few years, Redmond became a virtual ghost town, inhabited by criminals, transients, refugees, and those unable or unwilling to get out. The metroplex government shifted focus away from shoring up Redmond to “containing” it, effectively walling it off (literally, in some spots) to keep it from “infecting” the rest of Seattle.

The Redmond Barrens are practically lawless, where possession of the smallest amount of food or the least valuable trinket can be a reason for someone to kill you. Weekly convoys of armed trucks deliver food to the district’s few stores and charitable shelters, frequently attacked by roving bands of squatters and gangs looking to steal the shipments.​

Around half a million live in Redmond today. The actual number is difficult to determine, since most of the population is SINless and it’s impossible to do an official census. Backgrounds are diverse, but the percentage of metahumans is relatively low, owing to violence from the Night of Rage and similar incidents, and metahuman flight to Puyallup. Orks make up the majority of metahumans in the district, followed by various changelings, still a relatively new phenomenon, and somewhat more evenly spread throughout the metroplex. ​

The Mafia and the Yakuza run Redmond far more than the local government. Since even legal goods are difficult to get, the black market is massive, including daily necessities like food and medical supplies, followed by entertainment ranging from pirated trid, simchips, and BTLs to booze, porn and similar money-makers. Arms sales tend to be small unless the mobs are arming their own gangers and soldiers for some kind of war, which they do frequently. Neo-feudal allegiances to the syndicates are a common way for people to survive, so long as they don’t draw too much attention from the other side.

Yakuza and Mafia recruiters keep their eyes out for promising new talent in Redmond, especially from the local gangs. Working with the syndicates is one way out of the gangs and offers the promise of wealth, respect, and hitting “the big time,” although most prospective “made men” get nothing but a body bag at the end of the day.

​Redmond’s terrain is mostly flat, with a few hills in the southern part of the district. The winding path of the Snoqualmie River dominates almost a third of the district. The river is filthy, choked with toxic sludge and other refuse (including the occasional bloated corpse). Packs of devil rats hunt all along the shoreline, some of them further mutated by whatever is in the water.

​Apart from kilometers of abandoned buildings, the cracked and deteriorating streets, and the vast slums and squatter “towns,” the most distinctive features of the Redmond landscape are the “toxic castles,” the various factories and corporate manufacturing plants. Plenty of them do look like techno-Gothic structures of rusting metal and soot-covered brick, surrounded by high walls topped with razorwire and moats of their own poisonous filth. Armed guards patrol the ramparts to keep the facilities safe from squatters and roving gangs while most plants ship materials in and out via helicopter or tilt-rotor these days, to avoid having to bring trucks through the streets.

  • The Matrix in Redmond is spotty almost to the point of non-existence in many places. Static rules supreme pretty much everywhere but Touristville, which is mostly one big spam zone. The only tags you’ll find beyond Touristville are either corporate castles or gangs marking their territory. There are a few pirate jackpoints scattered around the district but a lot of them are so old and out-of-date that they’re more likely to fry your wetware than anything you’ll meet in VR.
  • Glitch​
  • The ethereal plane of the Redmond Barrens is in a similar sorry state. The radioactive and chemical contamination, coupled with generations of crushing hopelessness and violence, have combined to make the astral atmosphere positively toxic.
  • Ethernaut​​

A Place to Call Home​

​Although Renton has a reputation as a sleepy bedroom suburb of the metroplex, the discerning visitor should not write it off. Renton offers both a pleasant environment, combining natural beauty with modern architecture and communities, and wonderful retail opportunities, with shopping centers, specialty boutiques, and high-end stores. It features a spur of green hills and ridges, including Cougar Mountain and Tiger Mountain, along with a chain of small mountain lakes.​

  • The bedroom communities of Renton are among the most conservative parts of the metroplex, alongside Fort Lewis and some of Snohomish. This district is the heart of Governor Brackhaven’s social support (as opposed to his support from business, centered in Downtown and Everett). Humanis types may not be wearing white hoods and whipping up torch-wielding mobs (at least, not much anymore), but that doesn’t mean they’re gone. Instead, they’ve traded white sheets for business suits and lynch mobs for comprehensive mailing lists, public referenda, and social networks. If anything, that makes them more dangerous than ever. Personally, I feel safer on the streets of Redmond late at night; at least there, you know where you stand.
  • Butch​​​

Rural Seattle

Although known for urban sprawl, Seattle is not without its greener pastures. Snohomish is the metroplex’s breadbasket, with numerous aquaculture and agribusiness farms along the Snohomish River and in the surrounding countryside. This makes Seattle farm country the ideal place to visit for a quick getaway from the hustle and bustle of the metroplex. You can take a picnic lunch or purchase one at many of the fine local restaurants and food co-ops. There are also plentiful opportunities for dining in and shopping for gourmands.​

If you do take some time to experience Snohomish, don’t miss out on Blackstone’s Museum and Zoo, a privately owned attraction with a variety of paranormal animals, most of them in free-range natural habitats, providing fun for children and adults alike.​

  • Snohomish is a hotbed of conflict between the back-to-the-land types and small farmers versus Big Agribusiness. More than three-quarters of the farms in the district are owned by agricorps, whether you can tell just by looking or not, and most of the aquaculture along the river is done by companies like Ingersoll, Berkley, and Farm-the-Sea. Of course, you do get some crossover, with businesses like Aqua Arcana, combining ecological and capitalist priorities. Still, don’t think that “farm country” means you’re dealing with hicks, or that there’s no biz to be had here.
  • Lyran​
  • Actually, you are dealing with hicks in Snohomish, the kind that tote shotguns and slip on the white hoods when too many of “those people” come into the area, looking to work the land or, worse yet, protect it. There have been plenty of incidents of violence against metahumans and the Awakened in Snohomish over the years and, in spite of efforts by activists, no sign of it getting any better, either. Be careful who you talk to and even who you look at around there if your ears aren’t rounded.
  • Tarlan​​​​
  • While Snohomish does produce a large quantity of food products, it comes nowhere near to satisfying the metroplex’s needs. Seattle still imports the vast majority of its food, something the Native American Nations and the metroplex government both keep in mind, should trouble ever arise.
  • Mr. Bonds​​​​​​​

The Green Heart of the Emerald City

Tacoma was once considered Seattle’s poorer southern cousin, and its heavy industry often led to jokes about “the Tacoma aroma.” Since the formation of the metroplex, however, Tacoma has seen considerable technological and economic development, while preserving its charming, turn-of-the-century downtown area. Visitors can see the district’s busy docks and new corporate business centers, but the main attraction is its downtown and various shopping centers, including the Tacoma Mall and Villa Plaza.​

​If you are arriving in the metroplex via bullet train, you will disembark at Charles Royer Station and can easily plan to spend an afternoon exploring Tacoma before you move on to other destinations in Seattle. Likewise, you can catch the train south to San Francisco, or an air-taxi ride to SeaTac Airport or other points in the metroplex.​

Visitors interested in history can enjoy the district’s downtown area, and may want to visit the Crying Wall, a monument to metahuman victims of the infamous Night of Rage, created by ork and dwarf sculptors. ​

  • What the Guide doesn’t tell you is that Tacoma’s economic prosperity, on the rise in the first half of the century, has been in a long, slow decline since the late 2050s. The Nicaragua Canal has diverted shipping from the area, and corporations have found greener pastures, leaving some newly minted office parks largely vacant (except for whatever squatters that have moved in). The district focuses on pouring money and effort into keeping that “charming” downtown area charming for the tourists, while trouble brews in the more industrialized parts of Tacoma.
  • Riser

​Seattle History

  • 2017 – The Great Ghost Dance causes Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Adams, Mt. Hood, and Mt. Ranier to erupt simultaneously. Refugees flee to Seattle even as lava flows destroy most of Puyallup.
  • 2018 – The Treaty of Denver ends the Ghost Dance War; under one of the treaty provisions Seattle and its satellite communities are retained as UCAS territory.
  • 2019 – Flooded with refugees deported from the new Native American Nations, Seattle Mayor Lindstrom “the Conqueror” facilitates the incorporation of surrounding towns and cities into Seattle.
  • 2020 – The President of the UCAS signs a bill dissolving the state of Washington and forming the Seattle Metroplex.
  • 2029 – The Crash of ’29 destroys most of Seattle’s computer industry, driving Redmond into a slow decline.
  • 2036 – The Night of Rage sweeps Seattle as simmering racial intolerance against metahumans boils over into widespread violence.
  • 2055 – Knight Errant Firewatch teams burn out the Universal Brotherhood headquarters and the insect spirit hive infesting it.
  • 2059 – The Renraku Arcology is mysteriously cut off from the outside world, with hundreds of thousands trapped inside.
  • 2061 – UCAS forces complete their recovery of the Renraku Arcology.
  • 2064 – Crash 2.0. The Seattle Matrix grid is completely destroyed.
  • 2065 – NeoNET installs Seattle’s new wireless Matrix network.
  • 2066 – The Seattle Metroplex and the Salish- Shidhe Council win a joint bid to host the 2076 Summer Olympics.
  • 2069 – Earthquakes in California trigger renewed volcanic activity in Mount Ranier, subjecting Seattle to frequent showers of ash and acid rain.​

Runner Comments on Seattle

  • Of course, half of the shops are corp-run chains that you could find in any sprawl. There isn’t an ethnic culture, counterculture, or lack of culture out there that the corps haven’t figured out how to commodify and subsume into the monoculture. So despite the melting pot pretenses, you might as well call Seattle “McCity.” At least until you get out of Downtown.
  • Dr. Spin
  • Yeah, but the food’s good. From high-end Azanian barbecues serving imported freshly slaughtered zebra steaks to your local Vietnamese take-out on the corner serving soy noodles, fried recombinant krill, and 4-ounce bottles of Kirin 2.0, there’s something for everybody!
  • Traveler Jones​
  • The influence of Japanese culture on Seattle cannot be overstated. Outside of the AR anime, seizure-inducing games, wacky trid shows, and idoru idols, your standard Seattle salaryman goes through the ritual of exchanging e-paper business cards, and bows are more common than handshakes or high-fives even among the middle class.
  • Mihoshi Oni​​
  • Gah, what a depressing, drizzly, toxic hellhole. Kiss the sun goodbye when your sub-orbital drops in, because you won’t see it again until you get out.
  • Kane​
  • The Metroplex government is bought and sold by the corps and the syndicates, from the mayors on down. Every once in a while a politician or public servant forgets they’re on a leash, but that only lasts until they find themselves losing the next election, scandalized on the news-feeds, or floating in the Sound.
  • Kay St. Irregular​​
  • Just FYI, Seattle’s only unique holiday is Awakening Day, celebrated on the second Monday in December. The magical fireworks and illusions are neat.
  • Snopes​​​
  • It isn’t that bad … well, most of the time. Outside of the Barrens, you can get by without a respirator – new lungs are cheap these days, anyway, right?
  • Beaker​​​​
  • Alongside all of the Emerald City-related tourist kitsch – everything from munchkin persona avatars to flying monkey toy drones – street hawkers all over downtown peddle AR software that will change the green monoliths to purple pyramids, massive trees, or even giant golden dildos if that’s what you want. It’s your reality, make Seattle look however unreal you want it to look.
  • Traveler Jones​​​​​
  • The latest fashion is to be part of a meshed tribe. Some exclusive ethnic groups were the first to take advantage of the networking to bring themselves closer together, particularly some AmerInd and Polynesian groupings. Some of them are quite particular about who they allow as members, going so far as to require DNA scans to determine your ethnic background, or excluding certain metatypes. The trend has expanded beyond ethnic demographics to a myriad of urban tribes with no historical or cultural precedent. You’ll find everything from Japanese feudal clans and a couple of neo-Celtic and Germanic tribes (with an unfortunately high number of neo-nazis) to corp crews, Klingons, and neo-raver Spiral tribalists.
  • Mika​​​​​​
  • And then there are the “secret” tribes that people don’t even know they’re a part of – like The Exchange.
  • Icarus​​​​​​
  • News broadcasts from Seattle are accessed around the Pacific Rim. Try not to get caught on camera or your mug’ll be on the air from Hong Kong to Vladivostok.
  • Snopes​​​​​​​
  • Shadowrunners can make a nice living, if they don’t mind dealing with slick corporate managers and the brain-dead, addicted, fuck-anything-that-walks crowd laughably defined as “talent.”
  • Kat O’Nine Tales​​​​​​​​

By thedarkelf007

I am a long term gamer, I run 6 RPG's a fortnight, host board game, card game and LANs each about once a quarter and have an addiction to buying more games. Games I am currently running are Pathfinder (1st and 2nd Edition) and Dungeons and Dragons (5th Edition).

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