Shadows of Detroit
The bustling hub of Detroit, NuCenter is what most people think of when they think of “metropolitan Detroit”. Entertainment-towers yawn tens of stories high, the skyline blinks with thousands of multicolored lights, the streets hum with the thronging of traffic 24 hours a day – and all the while, the Knight Errant drones buzz by overhead like flocks of sparrows, the cameras watch on with the intensity of a devoted voyer, and gunmen lurk out of sight, barrels trained on “troublemakers” who appear threatening or out of place.
Because NuCenter is located in the East Side, it is subject to the three major parts of Detroit law – UrPro, Ares, and UCAS legislation. Like other districts in the East, along with the constant vigilence of KE, this limits NuCenter to faily pedestrian forms of vice and entertainment. For instance, prostitution is technically illegal and since it can be had so cheaply in the West, very few establishments bother to compete. Instead, these restrictions have carved out bizarre new niches for enterprising business men. “Electric-Meat Parlors” or “V-Meat Bars” are bars where “clients” can meet attractive women and then have sex with them in a virtual environment nearby. This blending of the virtual and the real offers a unique experience, one for those whom Matrix hook-ups have become too detatched. Of course, people on both sides of the equation consider it sort of pathetic, but that doesn’t stop them from being popular.
Absolutely no one lives in the NuCenter area; it isn’t zoned for it, and KE aggressively removes the homeless as they appear. Virtually all other forms of legal entertainment – dining, both fine and otherwise, arcades, AR arcades, strip clubs, non-strip clubs, rock clubs, and hundreds of shopping outlets – proliferate the area. Of course, it isn’t cheap – while almost any (legal) taste can be catered to, Ares and its employees live (marginally) better than West Siders. Costs fluctuate accordingly.
Ares Square, with its garden and immense mechanized, self-powered clock overlook the district. Hover vehicles are the locomotion of choice, and “barges” – mobile kiosks, some floating and some not – can be seen everywhere. Asian style malls and markets are not uncommon (though they are both smaller and more numerous in the Waterside), though lone shopkeeps are rare. Crime is extremely low, because the cost is very high – KE imprisons any theif caught, even petty theft, and the court system has a way of tying up such cases indefinately.