I got a bit of a wild sell but hopefully someone else will get attached to the idea.
Keep in mind the name is a work in progress as with everything else, ideas are subject to change.
Maltesevale Basic Premise
Maltesevale is a game taking place in a recreation of Prohibition Era United States with a sci-fi framing device allowing for multiple races to allow for liberties in technology and to allow some slightly more ‘inclusive’ concepts.
Brief Synopsis and Goals
You are an immigrant, being teleported to a planet known as Oldboy to live in the singular city-state the planet has, Maltesevale. The planet is under a import ban, all modern technology and recreational goods are banned and thus the city has to remain self-sufficient. You select your characters race, gender, and reason for coming to Maltesevale.
You can go down multiple story paths after becoming acquainted with the city. The biggest players in influencing the city are:
The City Government and Police, referred to as ‘The Feds’ attempting to eject the criminal elements of the city to reform Maltesevale into a peaceful place to live and remove the import ban on the planet.
Sleuth and Associates Private Investigations, an independent PI firm led by Peter ‘Sleuth’ Sternwood that attempts to take down the criminal elements of Maltesevale without being bogged down by red tape.
The Noire Gang, criminals of the lower class that focus on bootlegging, extortion, and gun running. They want to keep Maltesevale’s Prohibition in place and profit off it, while valuing loyalty and appearing sympathetic to the community, making the best of the planet’s situation.
The Ritz, a mafia backed by a mysterious and rich don that appeared after a many Maltesevale citizens were ‘gassed’ and gave them unsettling transformations to their biology, forming a gang of professionals and outcasts that have unknwon, but large plans for Maltesevale. Specialize in trafficking technology and drugs, as well as larceny and assassination.
There will be an in-game option at the start to read up on the history and races of Maltesevale in more detail.
Races and The Player Character
Maltesevale features four playable races that all populate the city and will all be briefly described here. Keep in mind these are ‘nutshelled’ descriptions of each race, taken from what I have already wrote down in more detail.
Pericarps, also known as Carps, are a mono-gendered race with no sex organs that reproduces from cloning. Pericarps looks can depend on the DNA used, but will always have a solid segmented carapace that makes them hardy. Traditional pericarps have black or dark gray carapaces, while ones with DNA from other races used in the cloning process have colors ranging from white, soft pink, light blue, and other features such as fangs or small horns, and rarely hair. They are native to Oldboy, their race declaring war against the Quitillians in a bid of expansion and attempted to overwhelm them with sheer numbers but were defeated and quarantined on their now ruined homeworld until they are ‘safe enough to be reintroduced to the galactic community.’ While having no traditional gender roles, some carps like to fashion themselves under one after exposure to other races with multiple genders. This also bleeds into their concept of relationships, as the closest thing they used to have to love was having trusted lifelong friends. Concepts such as taking alien lovers and the idea of a sexual relationship itself will confuse as many pericarps as it disgusts.
Quitillians, or Quttles/Quitties, are a sea-faring race that is a three-gendered race, as hermaphroditic traits are common enough to the point where being born with only male or female sex organs is more of the minority. They are a slick skinned species with tiny scales and ‘hair’ resembling that of tentacles that can often also include barbs or suckers. They are a colorful race whose scales often vary in many pastel and stark colors. They are a big player in galactic politics, having a rich culture of both art and science that make them have a dominant presence in space. Pericarps waged war on them to expand on their fringe colonies, and after numerous attempts to make them surrender Quitillians proceeded to unleash some of their worst weapons on the species, making their homeworld a wasteland in the end and putting a martial law on the planet to try and re-educate the species into a more peaceful presence. Despite technically owning Oldboy now, they are the least common members of the population due to a lot of bad-blood between Pericarps and Quittilians. Due to their open-minded nature, they have no issue with romancing any gender or species, though don’t often take on lovers for life.
Shaggiths, or Shaggi, are a humanoid-like species with insectoid features that can include fangs, horns, feelers, wings, claws, and many more unique genetic mutations. They have leathery skin that is uniquely durable and thick, with colors ranging from light and dark gray, as well as grayed blues, greens, and reds while their hair is monochromatic, being anywhere from stark white to pitch black. The species is dual-gendered, with females being born naturally stronger, larger, and with longer lifespans, forming a matriarchal society where females tend to dominate positions of leadership. Shaggi, regardless of gender, are often fiercely independent, violent, and competitive. This led to the literal detonation of their planet under civil war, and many Shaggi were granted asylum to Oldboy. Maltesevale, after many years, became a popular place for the displaced species to live and is now considered the ‘second home’ of the species and are the second most common members of the population. Same-sex relationships are common among Shaggi, and while many view relationships with aliens with disgust, their darwinistic society makes them more open to ‘strong’ or ‘worthy’ aliens being taken as consorts, lovers, or partners.
Humans are a diverse species despite their dual-gendered biology. With a variance of skin and hair colors and unique bone structures depending on race, they understandably pride themselves on independence. They are a controversial species, but share an amicable relationship with Quittilians. Humans were offered the first of their kind to immigrate to Maltesevale because of this, hoping that the continued diversity brought by them will make Maltesevale a more accepting place by letting in this small slice of outside galactic society inside. Understandably, humans only make up to the third biggest population on Maltesevale, and it’s arguable if their presence in it was for the better. They are divided on relationships with other species, as many hating the concept as many as others are accepting of it.
All species have their own takes on romancing aliens, but homosexuality is more commonly accepted to not alienate some players and also for the sake of simplicity. The player character themselves can identify as male or female for all races, non-binary for pericarps and humans, and quitillians are allowed to pick their pronouns should they play one with both sex organs (or go with they/them as well.)
Currently, as knowledge of CS is built, the base mechanics are still being worked on. But the current ideas is that stats are only determined by five base stats and relationship values with groups, individuals, and more abstract things like public opinion on your group. While there will be some stat influence, the aim is to not alienate people into unwinnable situations because of them or force them into a certain playstyle other than one they build in their head.
Boisterousness is your strength stat. Determining your usual feats of strength as well as endurance. It also influences your close quarters combat ability.
Savviness is your knowledge of things both esoteric and practical. Common knowledge in no specialized field as well as your street smarts and ability to think quickly on your feet.
Swankiness is your stand-in charm stat, used for negotiation, charming, and lying, as well as generally looking cool.
Enfilading is your knowledge of firearms both traditional and obscure, as well your ability to use them and lower the chances of them successfully being used on you.
Skullduggery is your ability to do the nefarious. Lock-picking, sneaking stealing, and all other means of shady practices.
I also have written down multiple notable NPCs, including romance options, but decided to not count my chickens before they hatch. If you’re interested in hearing of some of the denizens of this setting, please tell me so.