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Gamorra Island (Wildstorm / Image comics)

Gamorra Island


Game system: DC Heroes Role-Playing Game

Context

The rogue island nation of Gamorra was an important fictional place in 1990s Image/Wildstorm Comics stories. Many big events took place there.

It was a weird mix of Marvel’s Madripoor, imaginary North Korea, a cyberpunk  dystopia, a Fu Manchu expy ’ empire, Marvel’s AIM, and more. Which I guess is useful, in a kitchen sink sort of way.


Location

Type :
Sovereign Country.

Situation :
Far East, Between Japan and Taiwan.

Area :
The main island is rather small, about 20 miles * 6 miles.

Land Boundaries :
None.

Climate :
Tropical.

Terrain :
Nearly half of the main island is covered by cities, the rest is half mountains, half tropical jungles.

Elevation extremes :
The two mountainous areas are called Utsuro mountains and Daraku mountains.

Natural resources :
Fertile soil.

Natural hazard :
The island is quite safe (when it comes to seismic activities). But the entire archipelago is surrounded by a nearly impassable coral reef.


Politics

Profile :
Throughout history, it has been a pain in the neck of the various global geopolitical movers, mainly focussing its subversive activities against Japan, home of the rulers’ family.

Nowadays, its main source of fame are the never ending conspiracies of its ruler against the established world order, and the various technological breakthroughs it had sponsored in the fields of weaponry, genetics, biowarfare and cybernetics.

It’s also a haven for all the scum of the Far Eastern seas.

Gamorra is obviously intended as a cross breed between Marvel’s Genosha and Madripoor.

Current Ruler :
Kaizen Gamorra of Clan Gamorra.

Current Government :
Absolute dictatorship.

Capital :
Gamorra City, also called Zodome.

Administrative divisions :
Some minor clans are allowed to exert power in Gamorra by Kaizen’s good will. They rule parts of the archipelago as vassals of Clan Gamorra. These are : Clan Rhees (central), Clan Kwans (southwest), Clan Stansfield (south).

Legal system :
There’s not much of a legal system in Gamorra. Kaizen has the last word on anything, and when he’s not concerned, it’s the strongest who’s right.

Executive branch :
Kaizen Gamorra.

Legislative branch :
Kaizen Gamorra.

Judicial branch :
Nobody, except when Kaizen’s is concerned, and it’s him.

Internal political activity :
Gamorran Political Underground (outlawed). All this absolute ruling has developed a rampant rebellion. It had to remain hidden as Kaizen has dispatched monitoring stations throughout the island to keep an eye on such subversive activities.

Otherwise, the minor clans are waiting for a bad move from Kaizen to take his position. But nothing overt, there again, it would mean instant termination or even worse (think back of how Hunter-Killers are made).

External policy :
As a sovereign country, it is represented in the UNs. Kaizen tries to use this at his advantage whenever he can. Nevertheless, Clan Gamorra makes a living of smuggling technology in and out of various countries of the world.

As those technologies are generally banned and outlawed in the western countries (we’re talking about biowarfare, genetic manipulations…), these nations consider Gamorra as a terrorist nation.

The Island itself had already been blockaded by the UN’s peace keeping forces. But things come and go and various important powers of the UN’s security council had interests in keeping such an outlawed nation alive.


Economics

Overview :
The backbone of Gamorra’s economics is the technology trade. All the rest is just subsidiary.

Tech level :
Very high, may be the best in the Wildstorm’s world.

Industries :
High tech products manufacturing and research (biogenetics, cybernetics, weaponry, transports, communications).

Agriculture :
There’s not much data on this, but I guess Gamorra is self sustaining. The soil is fertile and the lower classes (most of the population) feed on basic food like rice.

Imports :
Luxury goods for the upper classes, but the major imports, and we can assume it’s almost covert, are technologies. Gamorra wants the foreign discoveries to come in his country for duplication, modification and production.

Exports :
Technological finished products. Most of them have to be smuggled out (often forcing an UN’s blockade). They always involve forbidden products like synthetic drugs, bio warfare, weaponry, cybernetics.

Exchange partners :
Any nation that can’t afford to produce the above goods and is willing to get them anyway.

Currency :
There’s no specific data on a Gamorran specific currency, so we can assume that the USD is a common one. Proximity to Japan suggests the Yen too.


History

Origin

In 1543, the Clan Gamorra conquered the island, giving it its name.

The Clan Gamorra came from Japan under shameful circumstances. For this reason, they have plotted against Japan ever since. They eagerly assisted Russia’s attempt to conquer Japan, and later harbored a Soviet spy base.

Though Clan Gamorra established absolute authority over the island, they eventually learned to accept the presence of three other clans :

  • Clan Rhee from Korea.
  • Clan Kwan from China.
  • Clan Stansfield from Great Britain.

Each clan has different objectives, but the Gamorra Clan has found it more profitable to work with them than against them – so long as Clan Gamorra’s supremacy is unchallenged.

The criminal island

Over the centuries, Gamorra continued to deal in all illegal activities. Such as slavery, opium, smuggling, and general war profiteering. Its political involvement with the outside world was rare, except when Gamorra joined the Allied in WWII to spite Japan. Grateful for its assistance, the USA turned a blind eye on the nation’s crimes for decades after the war.

Still, as the 20th century progressed, Clan leader Kaizen Gamorra felt that his nation was falling behind. He decided to start a new national industry : bio-engineering. It remains unrevealed where Kaizen found the funding and scientific resources to start this industry.

Yet the backward country changed almost overnight into a technological marvel, especially in the fields of genetics and cybernetics. Kaizen’s most frightful development was the Hunter-Killers, warrior cyborgs mass produced for sale to neighboring dictators.

Rumbles

When some of Kaizen’s oldest and most loyal warlord families protested his new schemes, he worked ruthlessly to suppress them. The surviving members of these families joined the struggling Gamorran Political Underground, a revolutionary group that still dogs the Clan Gamorra.

In more recent times, the UN finally heeded the protests of Japan and declared Gamorra an outlaw nation. Still protesting its innocence, Gamorra continued to do business despite the blockade.

Then came the “Fire From Heaven” episode. Gamorra was the field of the most epic battle between the most powerful beings of the Wildstorm’s World. To thwart the scheme of Kaizen and Damocles they had to join with the rebellion to overthrow its ruler.

It ended with a gigantic tidal wave (resulting from Damocles moving the Moon closer to the Earth) that washed the city of Zodome. And the exposure of John Colt’s imposture on Kaizen.


Site overview

Gamorra is an archipelago made of a main island and about 10 smaller ones. The main island has two larger parts joined by a small isthmus. Most of the northern part is made of Gamorra City, the rest being the Utsuro mountains and jungle.

Going south, we step on the isthmus, making the Kokkyo City. On the southern part, most of the land, at the center, is made of the Daraku mountains, flanking its side to the Northwest is Ryu City, to the Southwest is the Itami Jungle, to the Southeast is Nanto City, the East side dives in the Kaizoku bay.

Major cities :
Gamorra City (Capital), Kokkyo City, Ryu City, Nanto City.

Ports and harbors :
Gamorra Port, Kaigen port on the East side of the Northern part, Kaizoku Bay, Nanto City.

Airports :
Gamorra City’s international airport.

Sites of interest

  • Ashur Island. Headquarters of the scientist Heinrich Richtoffen. His complex was destroyed in WildCATs #5.
  • Chikushu Island. It is rumored that this island houses biological experiments too dangerous to be contained on the main isle. SOTA weaponry surrounds the island to prevent outside scrutiny.
  • Isle of the Dead. Where the Gamorran buried their dead.
  • Kaizoku Bay. Controlled by Clan Stansfield, it is the largest and most lawless port on the island. Kaizen Gamorra unofficially tolerates its excess so long as drugs are smuggled out and wealth and technology are smuggled in.
  • Parousia Island. Former sight of a Hunter-Killer factory operated by Parousia. It was destroyed by Cannon of StormWatch.
  • Gamorra City (“Zodome”). The largest, most prosperous, city on the island. It represents the modern, civilized image Gamorra tries to present to the world. It is the center of all legitimate international business.
  • Kokkyo City. Also called “Border City”, it is located on the isthmus of the island. This is the City of the Korean Clan Rhee.
  • Nanto City. A small, respectable looking city and port. It reflects the proper image Clan Stansfield wishes to project to the world. The clan’s real business, however, is concluded at nearby Kaizoku Bay.
  • Ryu City. Located on the Southwest of the island, this is the city controlled by Clan Kwan. Easily the smallest of Gamorra’s four major cities. It is more like a large open market than a metropolis. Nevertheless, some of Gamorra’s oldest secrets are said to be hidden in its quaint shops.
  • Noble House Kotei Gamorra. The house of Clan Gamorra. It is modeled after the Japanese Imperial palace. Its location to the Northern tip of the isle provides easy access to Gamorra City, easy defense, and easy escape in case of a siege.
  • Noble House Kwan. A traditional Chinese structure. It has no apparent defense and is the smallest and most beautiful of the four Noble houses of Gamorra.
  • Noble House Rhee. An unornamented fortress, reflecting the practical nature of the residents. This clan has sworn to uphold the stability between the four clans.
  • Noble House Stansfield. A Victorian mansion, that hides many rooms, tunnels and traps. They portray themselves as a civilizing influence but are actually an ancient line of pirates.
  • Vandalia’s lab. Hidden in the Utsuro mountains, this is where Vandalia did his top secret research, including his construction of Cybernary.
  • Daraku mountains. An unexplored region of the island, it is a host to many unexplained disappearances and deaths. Nonetheless, many criminals take refuge there because it’s one sure place to lose pursuers. An ancient beast-man is said to reside here.
  • Gamorra port. Lying south of Gamorra City, it is an industrial port that is far less beautiful. Much smuggling takes place here, but under Kaizen’s supervision.
  • Shitamachi Ridge. Once a beautiful city, it is now a giant shanty town for Gamorra’s many impoverished citizens. Traditionally ignored, it is believed to be the center for the revolutionary group.
  • Kaigen Port. As large as Gamorra port, this Northeast complex houses Gamorra’s military operations. It is a heavily guarded, highly restricted area.
  • Minotaur’s Clutch. The secret stronghold of Minotaur, Kaizen Gamorra’s freelance assassin. Is is composed of several islands North of Kotei Gamorra.
  • Scimitar Reef. Gamorra’s deadly barrier reef completely surrounds the island and made it a hazard for centuries. Modern sonar and navigation allows most ships to avoid it with some efforts. However, the reef has secretly been outfitted with hidden defenses that make it deadlier than ever.
  • Utsuro mountains. Located at the center of Northern Gamorra, mostly barren, they are dead hollow volcanoes.

Population

Census :
Around 100 000.

Demographic data :
It’s a Far Eastern country, with all the likely data generally associated with. A good comparison could be Cambodia. Though, many outlanders migrate here to flee their country’s law. As long as they have a purpose to Kaizen, he tolerates this immigration.

Apart from the noble houses, who are outstandingly rich (particularly Gamorra), and the citizens living in Zodome (after all, it’s Gamorra’s showcase), the rest of the population is extremely poor. Life in the cities is rough with a high crime rate. Life in the ever shrinking country is tough as the peasants are under constant oppression.

Religions :
Buddhism.

Languages :
Japanese, Korean, Chinese.

Military data :
The Gamorran military, while small, is one of the best equipped in the world. The army is made of Hunter-Killers (H-K), supported by the best hardware available. They have a defense satellite ready to fire on any intruder. The Scimitar Reef houses efficient Anti-Air defenses and radar and monitoring stations are located on many strategic points (though half of it are pointed inward).

The police forces are made of human manpower, mostly renegade foreigners that enlisted for a living. But they are equipped with the best gear the technology can afford, and have some superhuman officers.

Notable individuals

  • Borgia.
  • Chang. Senior Vice-President for Gamorra Industries. Whether he is linked with Team 7’s Chang is not clear
  • Cybernary.
  • Deathtrap. Leader of the MERCs mercenary SPBs team that often opposed StormWatch.
  • Gila. Cyborg crony of the Minotaur, he commands his own unit of H-K.
  • Guggen. A small gnomish man, he worked for Kaizen until Chang fired him. He now arranges deals for the Scavengers to sell their goods to the Techno-Dwarves.
  • Minotaur.
  • Miranda.
  • Scavengers. Bestial men who dwell in the catacombs beneath the island. Each one is stamped with a three-digit code. They sell goods to the Techno-Dwarves through Guggen. They have their own guttural dialect.
  • Techno-Dwarves. They dwell beneath Gamorra. They work outside the Gamorran government. They live on bartered, jury-rigged equipment.
  • Vandalia.


Game Stats — DC Heroes RPG Print Friendly

Tell me more about the game stats

The Coral Reef

Passing the coral reef outside of the established navigation corridors requires an action check using Vehicles (Sea) as AV/EV against an OV/RV of 08. Using Sonar lowers the OV/RV by AP of activated sonar but then, it can be easily detected (GM’s discretion). On any failed roll the boat suffers an attack of 08/08 on BODY/BODY.

Hunter-Killers

See Clan Gamorra’s writeup for Hunter-Killers stats.

Techno-Dwarves

They are gnomish people highly skilled in any technological field (weaponry, computers, bio-engineering…). They have developed their own working tools and use them efficiently. They buy useless scavenged equipment, repair or update it and sell it for a higher price, mostly to Clan Gamorra. They live in galleries below the island’s surface.

Dex: 02 Str: 02 Bod: 03 Motivation: Mercenary
Int: 06 Wil: 05 Min: 03 Occupation: Jury-rigging
Inf: 02 Aur: 02 Spi: 02 Resources {or Wealth}: 005
Init: 010

Powers:
Shrinking (Always On): 01

Skills:
Gadgetry*: 06, Scientist*: 06, Medicine*: 06

Advantages:
Genius, Area Knowledge (Gamorra’s underground).

Drawbacks:
Strange Appearance.


Bibliography

See Clan Gamorra’s profile.

By Nicolas Lemaçon.

Source of Character: Image Comics (Wildstorm Universe).

Helper(s): Template based upon CIA — The World Factbook, thanks to John Colagioia’s guidance, Cybernary #1-5 appendix at the end of the books.

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