Fate: A World of Hurt
The Combat Zone
The Combat Zone. Every modern American city has one; Night City is no exception. A bumed-out sprawl of tenements, abandoned factories, boarded up offices and trashed shopping malls, occupied only by the desperate, the devious and the dead. During the light of day, the Zone sleeps under its industrial strength pall of smog. But at night, the Zone comes alive, for it is only then that it‘s most feared residents venture out of their sweltering sewer holes and rat-infested hovels to howl and prowl.
Night City’s Combat Zone lies somewhere south of the central City as shown on most Chamber of Commerce maps. For the first few miles, this region is mostly made up of residential areas; blocks and blocks of nearly identical tract housing interspersed with small businesses. Further south, lies the area actually known as the Combat Zone, with its blocks and blocks of burnt out wasteland. There is no clear definition between the residential area and the combat zone; things just tend to degrade gradually, getting worse and worse until the neighborhood is finally at the level of a post holocaust hellhole.
It should be noted the Zone seems to be growing yearly, and what was once marginally valuable housing one year is often now another pile of junk in the Zone a year later. There has been much discussion on whether or not Night City should wall off its Zone, much as has been done in Detroit (with its ubiquitous twenty foot concrete abutments established in the late 90’s). So far, no agency either civil or corporate, has been willing to take the initiative to begin such a massive undertaking.
The Combat Zone is never safe. Sure you’can get in and out again, maybe even twice, but even the high-rollers at the Hacienda wouldn’t give you odds on it. Entire security teams have disappeared in the Zone, and not even the
police are willing to go down there anymore. About the only professional organization that will enter the Zone, is Trauma Team, and even then only with state of the art firepower backing them up.
The only information most people can get about life in the Zone comes from thosewho have ”come back to tell the tale” (so to speak). People who are tough enough to survive the Zone don’t really care about small talk, so much of this information is gathered in bits and pieces. It is pretty well accepted that there is some form of hierarchy among the combat gangs, with the Blood Razors currently on top. It is also rumored that something called “RazorBall” is played at an abandoned ice-skating rink, once a month, and has a great turnout among the gangs.
The Zone is where Cyberpunks go to play. It‘s a place where there are no streetlamps to mar the shadows, no monitor cameras to watch illegal deals, and no cops to interfere. Of all the mean streets of the 21 st century, the Zone is the meanest. Firefights are a way of life. Drugs are a way of choice. Brutal, sudden death is a constant option. Because the Zone is such a nebulous region, no exact maps exist within your database. The Zone‘s entry is instead updated by running reports from Combat Cabb hacks, random fixers selling information, and the occasional solo with something interesting to report related to a job.