Life Under a Tyrant

Life Under a Tyrant

Living With Cal

In last week's blog, we covered the new careers and species available to players within our forthcoming supplement for Judge Dredd & the Worlds of 2000 AD: The Day the Law Died. Keep your heads low and remember to praise Cal when approached by a Judge, as this week we take a look at what life in Mega-City One looks like under the whimsical decrees of the tyrannical Chief Judge Cal.

An insightful and reflective chapter, Life Under Cal examines the fraught existence that everyone in Mega-City One experiences during Cal's despotic reign. No one escapes his wrath and caprice - Judges, perps and civilians alike all suffer greatly under his dictatorial heel. Of course, the matter is only compounded by the fact that he has almost total control of the Judges through subliminal recordings that ensure they carry out his every bidding. Not that this means they escape his fury by any means. Even the Kleggs, who soon become Cal's favourite pets after their arrival, are not totally exempt from his shenanigans.

Serving as something of a timeline of events for the story line from the comics, this chapter breaks down major plot points, examines them and then discusses the effect each incident has on the city at large. There are also some very cool adventure seeds threaded throughout each event, which serve to act as great springboards for the GM to create their own adventures. (The book does come with some ready-made scenarios, more on those later.)

As an example, the following plot hooks are taken from the section relating to Dredd's assumed death in a vehicular crash. In honour of the momentous occasion, Cal suspends the law for twenty-four hours across the entire city. Instead of pandemonium, however, nothing happens. The citizens instead mourn Dredd's passing, which only serves to enrage the Chief Judge.

  • Judges: Dredd is gone. The great hope for Mega-City One’s survival has been eliminated. What do you do now? Throw in your lot with Cal and hope you don’t catch his eye? Or you take over where Dredd left off and organise a resistance however and wherever you can? Cal’s forces are at the peak of their powers. How do you avoid them? How do you try to pick up the pieces after Dredd’s demise?
  • Citizens: All hope is gone. Or so it seems. So how are you going to survive? Maybe its time to get out. You’re sure you can find a way through the wall somehow. Or go under it. Or over it. There’s dozens of ways to escape… there must be! You and your friends better start dreaming up interesting ways out of the city, and fast, because who knows what the tyrant is going to do next!
  • Perps: Who would have thought you’d have a new line of lucrative work open up to you. One consisting of smuggling people out of Mega-City One. But you do. You’re a coyote now, offering routes past the wall. Isn't that what they called them in the old days? Or at least, that’s what you say you’re offering. Who knows if it’s true!

Written by Richard August, this chapter not only functions as an excellent primer for this turbulent time period in the Big Meg's history but also provides plenty of inspiration for players and GMs alike.

That's it for now. Check back in next week as we take a look at the new range of equipment available to player characters during The Day the Law Died.

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