Monday, October 29, 2018

Doctor Futurity and the League Universe (Cypher System)

The League Universe is the official unofficial setting that I have run all comic book-styled super hero campaigns in for the last 33 years. These adventures include events from the 1985-1987 era of Crossover Earth (a play-by-story post I ran in the eighties), numerous DC Heroes Mayfair System (MEGS) adventures from the late 80's and early 90's, the lengthy DC Heroes 3E campaign I ran in 1992-1993ish, a medley of Mutants & Masterminds 1st edition campaigns, and more recently my Cypher System Superhero adaptation. Here's the basic timeline (so far), and the key NPC protagonist/patron, Doctor Futurity (thanks to Philip K. Dick for his novel of the same name and my friend from way back when, Quentin Long, for using it as one of the names of the fragmenting Liberty League that became the basis for all that was to come....)

The League Universe

This world had a few major events in recent decades:
·         In 1986 The Liberty League fell apart when a gang of villains conspired to kill Captain Liberty; his sidekick became Arbalest, an assassin who hunted down many of the League's old villain roster and killed them before being captured.
·         In 1988 The League reformed to face a major threat, as dozens of heroes fought off an invasion of other-dimensional Cthonians, mythos-like monsters from beyond the stars who invaded New York. After this the world's most powerful occult hero Dr. Futurity went AWOL for many years, to appear only occasionally.
·         In 1992 The new Liberty League fought an invasion of other-dimensional "bug men" and won.
·         In 1995 heroes of Earth were kidnapped by galactic pirates and sold into slavery as gladiators, eventually winning their way free and impressing the Empress Theda of the Thiir Star Empire. They contacted the Star League, a coalition of worlds working against Thiir and other oppressors. Some of these heroes became secret envoys to the star League; word of this reveal was kept hidden, top secret.
·         In 1996 Dr. Richard Desorius discovers the secret to transgenic modification and accidentally splices his genes with a reptile, becoming Saurian. He is later recruited by the ancient secret society called Eschaton.
·         In 1998 the League disbanded, not to be restored until after 9/11
·         In 2001 the new League was formed by a UN council and became the World League, led by American Agent (the first true super soldier success), fighting terrorist organizations such as Project Titan, PYTHON and others. It lasted until 2009 when American Agent was killed in Afghanistan and the League quietly disbanded. An independent organization, Agents of Steel (led by a hundred year old hero named Talbot Steel who may have become immortal after drinking from the Holy Grail) picks up the slack.
·         In 2002 The Metahuman Intelligence Agency is quietly formed to track methuman appearances and activities, and to either recruit from or seek to apprehend meta criminals.
·         Between 2001 and the present many scientists notice a steady decline in the number of new metahumans appearing. 
·         In 2007 The Metahuman Intelligence Agency (MIA) uncovers an incursion from the Bleed beneath Hell House in New York. The occult team code-named Eclipse is formed to defeat the god Typhon from exploiting the rift.
·         In 2014 evidence of a stellar war in neighboring Alpha Centauri was observed. In 2016 Project Titan becomes funded through backdoor channels my MJ-12 to observe and capture metahuman specimens for an army they are recruiting. 
·         In 2017 word arrives that a flotilla of refugee ships from Centauri are on the way, fleeing a threat from a conquering force called the Marauders. Word of this is kept hidden from the general public, but it is getting harder to conceal the information about dangerous advanced stellar civilizations. Project Space Force is publically announced as an ingenious cover to the actual Space Force which will take engineered tech from the Star League to prepare for the arrival of a fleet of aliens, and possible interstellar war. Behind the scenes, MJ-12 is tied in and using Project Titan to recruit, though no one knows this.
·         In 2018, Doctor Futurity reappears in New York for the first time in nearly twenty years....

Doctor Futurity (known alias Devon Maxwell)
Superhuman (Arcane Origin) – Level 8 (24)
Motive: protect the world and the timeline, no matter the cost
Environment: Wherever trouble arises
Health: 80
Damage Inflicted: 8 points or 11 with ranged Onslaught attack
Armor: 1 or 4 (arcane armor)
Movement: short; flying long
Modifications: Arcane Powers at Level 10, Intellect Defense Rolls at level 10, +3 damage with Onslaught Attacks (ranged, 11 damage)
Powers: Doctor Futurity can call upon arcane sorcery to project illusions, manipulate time, create devastating force blasts, hover and fly, and teleport around the world. His power set includes:
Illusions – intellect defense roll level 10 to penetrate the illusion
Time Shift – Can project himself forward or backward in time; can project forward or backward in time up to 10 targets. This is a lengthy shift (not minutes, hours at minimum).
Teleport – Can instantly transport himself and up to 9 others to any location in the world.
Sorcery Immense: Futurity can call upon and use any identified power in the core rules that an Adept would be able to deploy, including tier 6 powers.
Ally: Alan Morn, MIA Operative (Secret Agent template for stats)                                

Doctor Futurity is one of the premiere investigators and occult sorcerers in the world. He has worked with numerous organizations, though most famously the League in its various forms, and is said to have first appeared in the mid nineteenth century as an occult investigator, though his chronomantic time magic allows him to appear during any epoch of history.

Futurity is noted for his tendency toward a red/white/blue motif in his costuming, and his suits never appear the same twice. He is prone to changing his fashion over time to reflect the era in which he appears, but he always wears some form of mask and is otherwise unidentifiable; he has a persona when incognito that is a man of middle years with greying temples named Devon Maxwell, but this is also assumed to be a false image.

Futurity’s main purpose is the protection of the timeline from extra-dimensional occult threats, but his greatest challenge was the Cthonic invasion of New York in 1988, when he aided the League in stopping the mythos invasion. However, he paid a price; the cthonians left Earth alone, but he was forced to agree to a pact of limited interference going forward. Some think much of his power is focused on insuring the barriers in the Interstitial Dimension are kept strong to insure the cthonians do not return.

Today, Futurity conspires with MIA (Metahuman Intelligence Agency) operative Alan Morn to keep track on the activities in the mortal realm, and has provided him with one of Futurity's unique disk-like artifacts that lets him contact the sorcerer telepathically in the timestream and interstitial realms. Agent Morn is a tall, middle aged operative who was recruited into the MIA after an enounter with the legendary Hell House of Maddison County, NY, leading to the revelation that it was in fact a paranormal rift into the bleed from which the nebulous dimension of Purgatory had gained purchase. In 2007, during one of Futurity's rare visits to his home plane of existence at Morn's request the two managed to stop the ancient Titan Typhon from entering the mortal realm through the rift beneath Hell House, with the assistance of the Unknown Soldier, Adam the Created Man and the Fire Below (in her last incarnation). For a few months they were known as "Eclipse," a code name MIA assigned to the occult adventurers who worked to stop Typhon's incursion. 

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