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Crazy Conspiracy Theories for Earth-Prime?

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  • Crazy Conspiracy Theories for Earth-Prime?

    So, maybe you have a player who wants to do a character in the vein of the JLU version of The Question. Or perhaps you just want to sprinkle a little color or atmosphere in the campaign. But Freedom City, Emerald City, and all the other spots in the world are pretty strange. A lot of real world crackpottery wouldn't even cause someone to bat an eye over there. So, what sort of nutty yet plausible theories do you think are out there?

  • #2
    Re: Crazy Conspiracy Theories for Earth-Prime?

    Is the current Paul McCartney the real deal?

    How about Bob Dylan?

    Is flouridation tied to the rise of superhumans?

    (Thanks, Charlie.)

    Did they really save Hitler's brain?

    Is the Centurion really dead, or did he just end up depowered and go into hiding with his wife, the original Lady Liberty?

    Why didn't superheroes prevent <fill in your favorite tragedy>? Obviously, they wanted it to happen, because <fill in your paranoid conclusion>.

    Most importantly, what is the sinister purpose of aglets?
    Check out my new super hero/science fiction novel, [url=https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/618254]Unbelievable: A Tale of the Exotica Chronicles[/url].

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    • #3
      Re: Crazy Conspiracy Theories for Earth-Prime?

      Easiest way is to take something that everyone knows is true and to subvert it. For example, Captain Thunder, the claim is that he got his super-powers from from Dr. Stratos's attempt to sabotage his test flight, but what if he's actually one of the serpent people? Or if his powers are the result of his divine heritage and he's an advance scout for a forcible change in the separation of church and state? What if Hepcat is still alive and around, and is behind the latest pop hits? What if this world's leaders have been replaced by those of Anti-Prime? Etc, etc etc.
      [url=http://roninarmy.com/threads/996]My Builds[/url]

      [b]Current games:[/b]
      [url=http://www.echoesofthemultiverse.com/viewtopic.php?f=15&t=839]The J.V. Team (GM)[/URL]

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      • #4
        Re: Crazy Conspiracy Theories for Earth-Prime?

        The Newcomers weren't actually aliens. They WERE, however, bankrolled by aliens to prepare society for alien integration into mainstream culture.

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        • #5
          Re: Crazy Conspiracy Theories for Earth-Prime?

          Pretty any crazy conspiracy related to SH might fit in such an universe :

          - all metahumans are actually aliens/humans altered by aliens/mutants all conspiring to overthrow legit governments.
          - some or all superheroes and villains are actually government-sponsored agents. Their "battles" are cover-up for discreet execution of political dissidents.
          - Duncan Summers is longtime dead. The Summers who built the Claremont Academy is a doppleganger/a clone/a disguise master now impersonating the retired hero. The Academy is secretly handled by him or some other villain, and was created for much darker purpose than what it seems (indoctrination ? Breeding ? Livestock ? Genetic engineering ?).
          - Through unwise experiences, this is Dr Atom himself who brought attention of Omega to this world. He's hiding that fact now.
          - Doc Metropolis is not the spirit of the cities but the masterwork of the Foundry. Right now he's a dormant agent.

          No need to make thoses crazy stuff real, just put it in the mouth of a Rorschach-like vigilante crackpot.

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          • #6
            Re: Crazy Conspiracy Theories for Earth-Prime?

            There are thousands of conspiracy theories out there you can use as Davies shows in his reply, but few of them will have any real impact on the PCs. Conspiracies to work in a game have to be about something the players care about, have an element of uncertainty or a lack openness about what actually happened and/or a result that is unable to be proven. If it isn't going to be an element of your game who will actually care if the Queen of the UK is possibly a reptoid?

            They may care that the first Meta's on Earth were time travellers from the future but unless the truth will impact on the campaign is a significant way, will it matter if the players prove it or not?

            For example if a PC has a hidden past then others may develop a conspiracy that they are a double agent because they are obviously hiding a secret. They may believe that a war criminal is still alive either because their body was never found or the only evidence of their death were dental records (and the dentist was the subject of a break-in where nothing was taken only a few weeks before or was killed in a hit and run shortly after the war criminal died). Were the dental records swopped? Is the criminal still out there plotting to take over the world? By all means have hundreds of conspiracy theories but the only ones you have to develop any further are those the players are going to care about.

            The most common conspiracy theory in a superhero campaign is that some well-respected public figure is really a major super villain's alter ego.

            One tool I use with my players is to hint that there is a big secret that they don't know about, see what paranoia they start discussing and develop one into a real storyline complete with half a dozen red herrings and one real secret for them to uncover (which may lead to more secrets for the players to discover at each stage). Its also worth developing several conflicting conspiracy theories for each option and letting the players decide what is the 'real' answer...

            Good luck!

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            • #7
              Re: Crazy Conspiracy Theories for Earth-Prime?

              In the Adventures Assemble! game being run by Ysariel, our PCs have a few PR issues. One alien member (also a reformed super-criminal) - in a city that's suffered from an alien invasion not long ago. One son of a notorious villain. And mine has alien derived powers, though he's been hiding the details for some time for obvious reasons.

              And the mayor is a control freak who hates us. And being pressured by our master villain archnemesis to do his bidding. Thus, the Media Blitz episode was pretty much Mayor Cooper's attempt to do this to us through proxies.

              He clicks the remote and you are treated to grainy footage of your and Beykin's visit to the crashed alien ship, subtitled 'HEROES AND ALIENS MEET UNDER COVER OF DARKNESS'.

              "This shocking footage of a clandestine visit to an alien spaceship shows both heroes entering the vessel for unknown purposes. The heroes were apparently able to enter without using force and without being attacked by the ship's occupants. With fears of a renewed attack still high merely a year after the Invasion, claims are now being made that the city's remaining heroes are conspiring with aliens."

              Cut to a file picture of Locust, then video of Grotesk in action, fighting the Justice Foundation. "The heroes have long faced suspicion over their controversial association with Liam Taggert, son of the late supercriminal Locust, and the alien creature known as 'Grotesk', one of the city's most fearsome threats pre-invasion." Cut to press photo of Sunhawk. "Another of the heroes, Sunhawk, was not present during the Invasion, giving weight to allegations that he is associated with alien forces."

              Cut to video of a young Caucasian woman with blonde hair in the middle of a forest; it seems to be early morning, just after sunrise. "I'm standing at the site where the two HEROES visited the ALIEN SHIP," she says, gesturing to an area of level, bare ground behind her. The camera pans to show the area where absolutely nothing grows on the ground. "While there is no sign of the vessel, FORENSIC EXPERTS tell me that while the surrounding vegetation bears scarring consistent with FIRE, possibly from the ship's engines, the layer of topsoil has been COMPLETELY REMOVED such that no blast crater is visible. It's clear that SOMEONE or SOMETHING tried to DESTROY EVIDENCE that the ship was ever here. With the purpose of their SECRET VISIT a mystery, the citizens of Phoenix Bay can only wonder what else their heroes are hiding from them. From Channel 6 News, this is JESSICA SEWELL."
              Jessica is unimpressed by the skilled dodge. "Is it possible that FUTURE contact with such SUBSTANCES, for example in the course of being a SUPERHERO, might result in you being turned into a VIOLENT, UNCONTROLLABLE MONSTER?" she presses on.

              Other journalists join in, eager to get in on the latest scoop. "Mr. Taggert, do you have anything to say about claims that your father used alien technology in the serum?"
              And then there was this. Short words, our adorable Blue Lantern, talking, and hospital dog Corgi was insinuated to be a walking danger to the kids around him.
              Impeach the peach!

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