Wednesday, June 6, 2012

V&V Vednesday: Intercrime

(a counter-post to last month's C.H.E.S.S. entry, this time showing how I've tweaked in my games the classic V&V bad guy organization for my own ends)

No one is exactly certain just how long Intercrime has been around - even most of its operatives are ignorant of the group's full history.  The best intel that C.H.E.S.S. has been able to gather indicates that the organization has its roots in the latter 19th century, specifically the British criminal organization created by the Napoleon of Crime, Professor James Moriarty.  Said organization continued to thrive after the Professor's death, in no small part due to the 'computing devices' that Moriarty had developed (based on the designs by Charles Babbage) before his death.  Moriarty's legacy became an international organization after it was taken over by the French criminal mastermind known as Fantômas.

Intercrime, as it was now known to a select few, operated quietly throughout much of the 20th century.  It wasn't until the proliferation of superhumans in the latter half of the century that some of the organization's various operations became better known to various world governments.  They also came to the attention of the newly-formed U.S. government agency known as C.H.E.S.S.  The enmity between these two groups was as quick to form as it would be long-lasting.

The classic M.O. of Intercrime (as detailed in the V&V rulebook) stayed fairly consistent throughout the last days of the 20th century.    As with so much else, the events of 9/11 changed things for the criminal organization. Intercrime had sold Al Qaeda the experimental psionic scrambling devices that helped to prevent precognitives from foreseeing the terrorist attacks.  This was initially considered a huge boon for Intercrime, helping a low-tech terrorist organization to make such a striking blow against the world's most powerful nation.  However, the reprisals against Intercrime by various superhero groups were plentiful, and the organization became severely weakened as a result. Eventually, the criminal organization fractured into two competing groups, both laying claim to the name of Intercrime, something that isn't common knowledge even to most superheroes. 

The first group concentrates on building financial power quietly and in such a manner as to hopefully draw less attention from C.H.E.S.S. and those ever-present superheroes.  Violence is still very much a tool in their arsenal, but theft, blackmail, drug dealing, and money laundering, once scorned as 'lesser' crimes, is now very much a part of the first group's day-to-day operations.  This group seeks to return to the model of the early 20th century, when Intercrime held great power, but stayed behind the scenes: they wish to control the world's various governments, but not in an overt manner, preferring to be the 'power behind the throne'.

The second group prefers overt, flashy crimes, the sort that leads to open chaos, terror and destruction.  The overall goal here seems to be weakening the various world's governments to the point that a direct takeover can be accomplished.  The latter group is more likely to draw attention from C.H.E.S.S. and various superheroes, but they are also better connected to various supervillains.

The two groups are in a vicious war with each other in hopes of claiming the name of Intercrime in a decisive manner.  For the most part, this war has been fought 'off the grid', but it has occasionally lead to the deaths of various innocent bystanders.  The two groups have ways of identifying themselves among each other by signal and countersign, but an outside supervillain, even if they knew of the organization's dogmatic split, would be hard pressed to know which group they were dealing with.

To make matters even more confusing, there are now two individuals calling themselves Crimelord, identical to each other in virtually every way possible, each leading one of the two splinter cells of Intercrime.  The common theory within both factions is that cloning (something Crimelord has dabbled with in the past) is involved; both sides believe that 'their' Crimelord is the original, and that the other faction's leader is the clone.

(artwork from Intercrime: Hostile Takeover by Monkey House Games)

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