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Cats in Mechs: The Milk Ring Conspiracy
Before their inauspicious disappearance, humans smugly believed they had domesticated cats. Human scientists speculated this occurred around 10,000 BCE; when mankind transitioned from hunting and gathering food to living in large cities. A lifestyle change that attracted rodents and necessitated some nimble pest control. Cats were taken in out of simple necessity. A simple means to an end. The humans didn't count on them being so gosh-darned cute and fuzzy.
The cats had no such delusions regarding their new hosts. In fact, they initially brought them their prey because they believed they were just crappy cats that were too stupid to hunt for themselves. (You can only begin to imagine what they thought of dogs.)
Eventually, mankind ascended beyond the realms of the physical body, allured by the metaphysical. In the year 2028 the Infobahn Revolution occurred, humanity en masse uploaded itself into the network. Mankind had transitioned to a wholly cyberspace based existence.
The cats that were left had evolved. Without humans in the way, they took their natural place on top of the food chain. Supplanting humans as the dominant species on Earth, or as we now know it Cataria V, they begin to look outwards towards space. Improving the technology of their former masters they quickly snagged every string and sandbox in the galaxy.
Now Cataria V is the native home of the Mau and the only planet where Catmint grows naturally. "Mint," as it is commonly called, is the single most valuable resource in the galaxy and the ruthless Dr. Priss VonTreat knows it. She'll stop at nothing until every last piece of cat mint is in her claws.
Only you and your motley crew of Mech pilots can save the planet!
"Cats in Mechs": Character List
Dr. Prissy VonTreat
Cataria V is the only place in the galaxy where Catmint grows naturally. Catmint is the staple of all Mau life, everything runs on it, everything somehow needs it.
Enter the once preeminent authority on the agronomics of Catmint production and disgraced star of the Sylvestrian Parliament Interplanetary Council for Enlightenment (SPICE). Dr. VonTreat was dismissed for ethics violations when it was revealed she conducted premature clinic trials of a synthetic version of Mint called Mentoid that later revealed itself to be a powerfully addictive and dangerous psychoactive compound.
When VonTreat learned the side effects of her formula become manageable or rather controllable when Mentoid and Mint are infused together, she is determined to perfect and prove its efficacy and what better place to start than Cataria V?
After lacing its milk supply with Mentoid, VonTreat is able to control much of the Mau population. As long as the planet keeps Minting, no one cares how that happens.
She does not know that Kit Corpo secretly aids the opposing Felix Resistance.
A naive idealistic innocent soul placed in the thick of the political conflict. Gata has no mech piloting skills to speak of, but she has a natural ability to scrupulously navigate the Sylvestrian political territory better than career politicians. Even though she is the daughter of the emperor himself, she has her own purpose and adopted a struggling planet’s future.
As long as Cataria V keeps Minting, no one cares how it happens. In fact, some actually prefer the mint production speed now no matter how many Mau lives it costs. It is by Gata’s secret aid, the Felix resistance has a chance to restore the catmint balance from the oppressive Tyranny of Dr. VonTreat.
If a misplaced kibble crate landed near a Felix safehouse, you can bet Gata was somehow behind the operation.
“Fettlefur Spankblaze the Third, Earl of Neo-Katgat, the Hungoverlord, Catmint Connoisseur,” commonly known as “Mike,” has been Prissy’s laboratory lackey for as long as he can remember. He’s still getting to know the ‘rules’ and frequently pokes fun or makes practical jokes.
It all started when Dr. Ketlinger started the multiverse experiments and reality-altering gravatronic particles to augment her powerbase and improve the softness of her fur.
Ketlinger did not originate the multiverse fracture, but she provided the gate to this one. What stepped (or rather oozed) through was far from feline and Prissy stuck cybernetics around it to keep it alive just out of sheer curiosity… including behavioral modification software. ‘Mike’ now tails her around to help with more experiments. He is often the first in line to get a drink of the newest batch of ‘Mint.
Mike is an avid catmint drinker—but also a brave warrior, able to survive a scuffle with Mace. Once Mike even dared to steal the only bottle of Fomorphic Green ever made from Prissy’s private bar, and she then installed a shock collar to limit the mischief.
Sometimes, the multiverse lab-gate flares up and Mike has stuttering conversations with his other selves while they’re dreaming with his outlandish sense of humor, almost ubiquitous usefulness in tricky situations. Other’s seeing this just assume its a programming glitch.
Mace is the blunt instrument of VonTreat. If there’s a catbox to be torn up, mace is the right cat for the job. There’s, however, some benefit to being Von Treat’s head lackey. He gets all the best cyberware hand-me-downs. He also gets to be the star in every experimental show, and there is no experiment too dangerous.
They say whatever doesn’t kill you makes you stronger and if that’s the case, Mace is indestructible. His blind robotic loyalty is often taken for granted while some say his DNA has been merged with rare K-9s stored in cryo-freeze from centuries ago.
Even though his glance causes little kittens to cry, he’s really a softy when you bring him a can of tuna fish or peanut butter.
Old and loud and full of sassy things to growl. Mr. Pants has seen it all and always has something experienced, witty, and biting to contribute to the discussion and wild hairstyles. The more he sheds on someone, then that means he really likes them.
In the past, he led a special forces team where he was personally known as ‘Catain Pants. This feline has a very unorthodox style. Distinguished by his unflappable demeanor, even when in peril, his constant cigar-smoking, his half-mint pleather gloves, and his many disguises. He is a master tactician (although his plans rarely turn out as intended, they just “work”).
Even with his significantly oversized belly and sturdy girth, Mr. Pants is able to remain perfectly calm in even the most stressful times and help get the job done.
He loves it when a plan yarns together.
Catanna is in hiding. She is a textbook digital overachiever who excels academically and is described by Mr. Pants as a “very logical, upright and good little kit”. She charismatically documents every nanosecond of her life from several perspectives, and no social media Mewtube channel is safe from her influence. Catanna’s parents, two Mau of little notice, are a bit bemused by their odd daughter, but “very proud of her all the same.”
In the physical world, however, Minx is sometimes the target of bullies who’s rules aren’t influenced by the media, often being called a “little know-it-all”. She is often afraid of failure or been seen to fail in the public eye, beneath her online swottiness. A healthy tension exists between Sushi and Catanna who differ greatly on their views of public opinion.
The media influence is a direct threat to Dr. Von Treat’s population control power base, making her the team’s biggest annoying hidden asset.
Em is a trust fund socialite by day and secret Mech Pilot by night, she often brought the party in the evenings and spent much of the day connecting with her many social rings. She hails from the best schools with an aptitude in Fashion, Antiquities, and Piloting, but she is so intelligent that she finds most of the remaining education tedious. People from every social level connect with her in every world capital.
She is the only daughter of the First Cataria Bank Chairman, Ymir Fluffington, making her heiress to the family empire. Em was born Emilia Fluffington to wealth and power, often leading to periods of boredom. Too much idleness often leads into well-meaning mischief, but hearing of Catanna Minx’s support of the Felix Resistance has inspired Em to secretly participate.
Her social abilities and taste for the finer things have become a two-edged vibro sword because other Mech pilots don’t take her seriously… a fatal error her opponents often make.
An arrogant tomcat, Bristlepurr thinks of himself as a ladies man and is more often than not successful. He has anger management issues. There is a lot of sexual tension with Sushi and he thinks it’s just a matter of time. However, his roguish charm and over-inflated ego is often misplaced so people easily see through his catbox nuggets.
Originally serving as an infantry Soldier (thus earning a Combat Infantryman’s Badge) Oliver was commissioned as an Intelligence Officer assigned to support a Special Operations Force Team where he met his soon to be fugitive counterparts. He’s not fond of negotiations and would rather raise a pistol than a debate.
Oliver’s relationship with the rest of the team is that of a surrogate family. His relationship with Mr. Pants is built on respect and, while Pants sometimes has to order him to do things (usually by saying “Move it Catenant” in a stern voice), and gets called namesy when he is apologizing for something.
He enjoys harassing other cats, biting for no reason, giving dirty looks when disturbed, taking 8-hour naps, destroying paper products.
Brilliant mechanic and whiz with anything involving engineering. Has a lot of trouble with the ladies due to awkwardness and social ineptness. He has the ability to impress them with his intellectual and mechanical prowess when he’s not telling them about his online dating failures through caterwaul.com… which he perceives as successes.
Entering his garage is like crossing the boundaries of a new territory which he guards the borders very seriously. The language spoken revolves around grease stains and hydraulic lifts, but sometimes an understandable word comes out to keep attention on his mechanical wonders. Do not ask him to reveal his tech secrets lest enjoyment of hisses and cat growls.
Outside of his garage, Jack has very little hand-eye coordination and trips over his own feet as if his whiskers were tied together.
Rizzo Ratty Rat
Ratlings live on the lower levels of the megacities by the thousands and have to fight against segregation at every turn. This suave, smooth-talking, and hugely successful with seduction Ratling serves as the team’s con man and scrounger, able to get his hands on just about anything they need, and assuming a wide variety of personas and backstories as his scams require. Effectively second-in-command to Mr. Pants (although Jack outranks him), he is the one who arranges for supplies, equipment, and sensitive information using numerous scams and hustles. Rizzo is responsible for arranging the team’s weaponry, especially when off-world, often via highly illegal means.
He is the most gentle member of the main team, generally attempting to avoid conflict and reluctant to get into firefights. If nothing else he tends to avoid damaging his clothes and getting helmet hair, a contrast to the more gung-ho attitudes of Mitts, Mr. Pants, and Sushi., who are more typically seen to enjoy piling into a fight.
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