Welcome to Megacorpolis

Welcome to the Megacorpolis!
  The year is 2108 and most of the worlds remaining 5 billion or so remaining registered citizens (and quite a few unregistered slummers) live here. Smack in the middle of old Europe and built over the cities of the past, the Megacorpolis is a vast city of gleaming skyscrapers and forgotten slums. When nations fell, flooded or burned, the corporations of the world stepped in. The extinction of humanity was an unacceptable risk to the shareholder's next financial quarter and action was needed. They built the Megacorpolis - the first and greatest of all mega-cities.   The Megacorpolis is a city of the future, free from notions of nationality or patriotism. It is a city ruled by corporations, by profit margins and marketing campaigns, run by middle-managers and algorithms. All under the watchful surveillance of everyone's friend, The Computer. Come on into the greatest city the world will ever see.    

GimmeJava.gif

by Johny Mnemonic (with slight alterations)

   

Mapping The Metropolis

  The Megacorpolis is divided into 13 sprawling sectors, each one the size of a city. Corporations claim bits and pieces of sectors, but no one owns a whole sector - the last who tried found themselves in the cross-hairs of a rare cooperative venture from the rest. Sectors are mix of old earth cultures and corporate influence, merged into something new. Some wear the skins of these old relics proudly, as an old Wisconsinite farmer might. Others embody the sort of bland, generic cityscape that offends (and appeals) no one at all.  
 

GimmeJava.gif

by Johny Mnemonic (with slight alterations)


The corporations have worked very hard to erase any idea that this whole "nation" thing is worthwhile, but they're more than happy make money off it. The sprawling mega-city is built right over the riot-ravaged capitals of the old world and have borrowed anything from them that can make some money.   Even the places outside the sprawl haven't been safe, with entire landmarks dislodged and lifted off to a better (i.e more profitable) home inside the Megacorpolis.
  Corporate enclaves stand like castles in the sectors, ringed by office spaces and mercenary armies. Space is always at a premium so the city continues to build upwards, layering streets and highways upon itself. Anyone who's anyone takes great care to not end up at the bottom and forgotten when the next round of gentrification rolls around.    

A Day In The City

  The Megacorpolis is the kind of city who took a look at the tagline of "the city that never sleeps" and thought it'd do one better. Vast enough to span time-zones, Megacorpolis is a buzzing hive of activity at any time. It isn't a proper week in the city without an explosion and the locals have adapted in kind. With busy deadlines and credit payments that are due, there is no rest for the wicked. Most middle-managers think that the employees can sleep when they are dead; others find such laziness regrettable and look with great hope to the corporate laboratories that work to solve it.  

Technology is everywhere in the megacity. From the robots and drones to genetic science made manifest, to augmented reality advertisement plastered across every available surface. Only the most wretched hive of scum and villainy is without wi-fi.   Having learned at least one lesson from the past centuries, the city gleams with solar panels to fuel its appetites. Nuclear power plant supplies the rest, with the waste recycled endlessly. With almost endless power at their disposal, the city has made a good attempt to use it all.
 

GimmeJava.gif

by Johny Mnemonic (with slight alterations)

  Profit, productivity, marketing and advertisement are more fundamental building blocks of the city than steel, concrete or glass. Corporations own almost everything in the mega-city, including lives. People are born, raised, employed and buried all within a single corporation. Brand-loyalties lead to generational feuds and a lapse in production can spark Java addicts to riot. Ad agencies go to ever greater length to reach their audience and R&D departments fight tooth and nail to bring the next Hot Thing to the market.   The Megacorporations rule it all while your friend, The Computer, keeps the city running in accordance with the Algorithm.    

GimmeJava.gif

by Johny Mnemonic (with slight alterations)

   

The People and "People"

  The population of Megacorpolis broadly fall in two categories: citizens and non-citizens. Past that, things get a little more complicated.  

Citizens

  To be a citizen is to be born into the System, with a capital S. Chipped, employed and probably overworked, citizens enjoy all the luxuries and rights that the mega-city's corporate overlords see fit to provide. Employment is a coveted thing and the corporate loyalty displayed makes cults second-guess themselves.   Still, it's not all bad. There are thousands of ways enjoy life in Megacorpolis, at least one which was specifically engineered to put its hooks into you like the first puff of a future drug-addict. To those who can afford it, life has its perks as a citizen of Megacorpolis. Those who don't, well...

Non-Citizen

  It doesn't take much to fall from grace. Becoming unemployed can be a fast ticket to losing one's citizenship, while others rebel against the world and squat in the great slums between sectors. Others are born and raised there, outsiders looking in.   There's no real way of knowing how many non-citizens that live in the shadows of Megacorpolis, or at least no one has been willing to put in the effort. In a high-tech world where everything is at the disposal and whim of citizen chip and credit cards, those with neither are fighting an uphill battle with no arms and only one leg.
 

Others

  Humanity is no longer alone in the world but to the disappointment of tinfoil enthusiasts everywhere, their companions in sapience came no from the stars. No, they were conceived in boardrooms and created in laboratories to fill demand or make a buck. Creatures made from genetic engineering and robotics, smart as a human (and, looking at the world, some would say smarter) but with all the rights of a vacuum.   Most people are happy to ignore the obvious implications and try not to think about it. Every year, that gets more difficult to keep pretending.        

The Things Going On

  While citizens go about their daily lives, Megacorps duel over market share and consumer reach. These duels sometimes include guns, explosions and all the high-tech devastation that corporate R&D can cook up with an unlimited budget and no ethnics committees breathing down their neck. Citizens sometimes get in the way or swept up in the action as offices are raided or marketing campaigns include heavy machine-gun fire.   There's no escaping the corporate machine. Those who fight the power do so with weapons produced by corporate factories and often corporate sponsorship, always lining one pocket or another. Like pawns on a chessboard made out of money, everyone and everything eventually comes back around to the Mega-corporations.   Well... Almost.    

TheMorrigan_3

The City At A Glance

  The Megacorpolis can be an overwhelming place, full of things that compete for a citizen's attention and disposal income. Where to even start?   Well, here's a few suggestions!    
Java, the brew of the world!
Item | Jun 5, 2021

Java makes the world go around. Consult your doctor before consuming this delicious caffeinated beverage. Terms and conditions apply.

 
The Illuminaughty
Organization | Sep 10, 2019

A heavily armed mercenary-advertisement agency, not afraid to engage their consumers at gunpoint.

   
There was once a 14th sector; actually the 13th one - unlucky numbers, turns out, sometimes matter. It is a scar that runs jaggedly through the side of the city, full of crumbling buildings and other scenic bits of post-apocalypse.   Why it isn't rebuilt is a question asked just about every day across the Megacorpolis, before people shrug and get on with it. It must be for the best, surely, or the algorithm would have seen to that stuff along ago. Surely.
   
The Omega Tower
Building / Landmark | Jan 11, 2020

The immense tower-chassi that houses the worlds most advanced and trust-worthy AI, 'the Computer'.

 
The Big Green
Geographic Location | Sep 9, 2019

The biggest techno-agricultural complex in all of Megacorpolis, the Big Green's horde of robot-farmer will probably never rebel.

   
Although it often pretends it is, the Megacorpolis is not the only power left in the world. While most nation-states have long since crumbled away, some remain.   The Canadian Empire rule swathes of the northern hemisphere in unfailingly polite yet brutal ways, while the quickly sinking remnants of the United Kingdoms are still trying to complete their Brexit. To the south, the African Union is entering an golden age of technology and to the east, nations are still clawing their way back from nuclear devastation.
   
Raffleraptor
Species | Nov 30, 2020

CONGRATULATIONS, CITIZEN! YOU HAVE WON A FABULOUS PRIZE!

 
Cybiders
Species | Jul 21, 2019

Spiders! Ahhhhh!!!

   
Much of the world outside the mega-city has been consumed by nature. Sprawling farms have been replaced with towers-farms that precisely regulate temperature, light and nutrients. Meat is grown in factory-laboratories rather than on a cow who'd rather keep hers.   There are no more suburbs, no more little towns and villages. Oh, sure. There are still hold outs, eking out a life in the sticks without wifi and so on. But as a whole, humanity has become a wholly urban breed.
   
Low English
Language | Mar 14, 2020

Low English is either an evolution of the language or a degeneration into low-brow humor and complete gibberish, depending on who you ttyl45|< :(.

 
Brain-Box
Item | Mar 14, 2020

Neural-Interface devices that help provide emotional depth to AI simulation by using the most plentiful resource on the planet: humans!

"It could always be worse" is the motto of almost every denizen of the Megacorpolis, whether spoken aloud or merely considered while recovering in the gutter. Usually with the anticipation that it will.


Cover image: by Artur Sadlos

Comments

Author's Notes

Thanks for checking out the Megacorpolis! Please leave a comment and let me know what you think or if you have any feedback on the article :D   If there's anything else you want to see about the world, anything you are curious about, or anything I haven't gotten around to writing about yet, let me know!


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18 Feb, 2020 11:50

*snort* *laughs*   Ok, I can type.   I think the best I can say is :   "Java morning stand-up meeting notes to you!"   This is ... just wow ... brilliant. What else would I like to see... ?   Ok, since you mentioned genetic engineering above ... how many of the corporations have taken to the use of undersea settlements? Lots of rich mining there. And if so, did they genetically alter humans to be amphibious to better work in such a climate?   What corporations hold sway?   Are there companies that specialize in security that basically acts as the police?   Have there been any OTHER dino projects outside of "Raffleraptors"? Say done by the black market for instance ( even though the black market is probably really legal and just how corporations conduct "fire sales" of old equipment ... but you never know! )

— The wolf of Tales of Justice, Creator of Legends of Elohey, Star Wars: Shards, Fiven Chronicles and more!
26 Feb, 2020 14:33

Haha, thank you so much! <3 I'm really glad to hear you like it - Megacorpolis is a lot of fun to work on.   They haven't necessarily done huge genetic modification like that on humans *yet*, but it's probably coming. Right now, robots, drones or genetically engineered cyborg spiders (called Cybiders) are more economical.   I'm going to do a full list of the Megacorps that rule eventually. The real answer is that I'm not sure! I have a few names, but only one true Megacorp in the work so far: Centurion Arms & Armor, a conglomeration of old-world arms developers.   Are there companies that act as police?   You bet! They're even calling themselves Justice Corporations, Law Enforcements for Hire and similar things. They're basically law and order; on the higher end of things, the same great corp might run the cops that arrest you, the court that prosecutes you and the prison that jails you. Which goes about as well as you might imagine.   They're a corporate category all to themselves and expect to see more about them! :D   Yes! In the Gaia Park Sector, t here's entire populations of dinosaurs. For a while, the entire world went a little dino-crazy, so marketing tried to cram dinosaurs into pretty much everything. From Raffleraptors to T-Rex Burgers to real life Jurassic Parks. There's a ton of revived dinosaurs around still. The entire thing was called the Dino-Crisis of 20XX, and that's why there's a bunch of dinosaurs around :D   Thank you so much for reading and commenting! <3

11 Jul, 2020 13:55

Yup. I'm in love.   Not sure why this new creation of your has hit a deeply personal chord with me--but I love this idea.   Maybe because it sounds like a human version of Clockworks City.   ...on Cocaine. ...and 64 shots of Espresso.   I want to go on a ride now. Where would someone go who is trying to escape the boredom of their own spent life--and they wanted to find excitement and adventure in Megacorpolis?

JAIME BUCKLEY
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11 Nov, 2020 17:03

Ahaha, thank you so much :D   MegaCorpolis is a lot of fun to write for, it's my light-hearted dystopia. And for fun..   There's any number of subcultures that try to have their fun. Sinners Syndicated, my latest article, is a MegaCorp dedicated to selling 'a good time' all across the city. There's the nation-sized city park of Gaia Sector, or the Sahara Nature Reserve. Or you could book a flight to the moon!   Or sign up to go hunt the chipless in the abandoned Sector 13, but make sure to bring your geiger counter for that one. Java drinking competitions, or things like the YetiCon, or any number of other festivities are all around the place... All equally madcap and money-hungry :D

20 Oct, 2020 20:02

Bro, this look extremely cool please keep it up!

24 Oct, 2020 10:16

Thank you! I definitely will!   If you want to see more of it, there's a whole bunch of Megacorpolis articles here, and a lot more to come. :)

10 Nov, 2020 23:10

How have I only just found this?? This is brilliant! Can't wait to read more of what to expect in the future... I mean... More of this *totally* made up world that could never *really* exist.   Amazing work Q!

11 Nov, 2020 09:39

I have a lot of worlds, lurking in the shadow of Araea :D   And thank you! I'm glad you like it - it was my focus for Summer Camp, so there's a bunch of stuff ready to read (in various state of rushed disrepair, haha) <3

22 Nov, 2020 02:05

I have already told you, but I love Megacorpolis. My reading list progresses slooooowly, but my ram-devouring list of open tabs increases fast each time I take a quick glance to Megacorpolis' homepage.   Somehow, this futuristic dystopian has been incredibly useful as a source of inspiration for writing my smol, medieval fantasy down-to-earth world.   Keep up the amazing work!

24 Nov, 2020 09:46

Haha, thank you <3 I'm hoping to do a lot more Megacorpolis stuff for WE! Lots of corps, lots of crazy... It'll be fun!

28 Nov, 2020 09:29

I'm newish to world anvil and I got to say, this world has really inspired me to make a cyber punk/dystopia style world! :D   The articles are also awesome, I love Indestructible Inc btw!

28 Nov, 2020 13:37

Welcome to World Anvil! :D I'm glad I could inspire and happy to hear you are enjoying the world. Megacorpolis is a real fun one to write for :D

Sage SailingOcelot
Sailing Ocelot
3 Dec, 2020 23:22

Looks great! Wouldn't wanna live there. Please, no. But, you've created a very strong introduction to the setting through this article, and it feels very 'rounded' - the right amount of information on a various topics.

~~~~~~~~ SailingOcelot