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Tabletop Game / Crimestrikers

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Crimestrikers is one of the series books from Cartoon Action Hour: Season 3. Created and written by Mark Lungo (except for the stats), and illustrated by various artists, the game centers on an elite team of international crimefighters who protect Creaturia, a World of Funny Animals, from a Rogues Gallery of Super Villains.

The story starts when Evil Genius Vance Coffin engineers a mass escape from the Quarry, an underground maximum security prison meant for Creaturia's worst criminals. He invites most of the escapees to join Outrage, the worldwide crime syndicate he once ran and intends to revive. CIPO (Creaturian International Police Organization), the setting's equivalent of Interpol, responds by forming the Crimestrikers, a team of eccentric but highly-skilled specialists who pursue both agents of Outrage and other, equally powerful villains all over Creaturia. The Crimestrikers are led by Diana Mastron, one of CIPO's best agents and an expert on Vance Coffin — because years ago, she almost married him.


Check out the character sheet (a work in progress) to learn more about the game's heroes and villains.

"No one's troping anyone today!"

  • 20 Minutes into the Future: The series has this feel due to all the sci-fi gadgetry.
  • Action Girl: Since the series has several female heroes and villains, this is a given.
  • Adventure Series: Like the other Cartoon Action Hour games, Crimestrikers evokes the feel of Merchandise-Driven action cartoons from The '80s (although it's slightly Darker and Edgier than most series from that era).
  • Agents Dating: The series has several relationships between Crimestrikers — and all but one of them is an Interspecies Romance.
  • The Alcatraz: The Quarry was meant to be this. Of course, even the toughest prison on the planet isn't perfect...
  • Alliterative Title: Two of the episode seeds are titled "Museum of Madness" and "Forest of Fear".
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  • Archnemesis Dad: Walter Mastron, Diana's father, is one of the leading members of Outrage and basically Vance's Dragon.
  • Artificial Gravity: The Gravity Glove is a small-scale example. It's a tricked-out glove that projects a "suspension beam", allowing the user to lift and suspend heavy objects for an extended time. It also works on living beings, which can lead to a high-tech variant of Unwilling Suspension.
  • Artificial Human: Roderick Norco's Flexiplasm clones, which are similar to the Synthoids from G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, down to the way they melt when they're destroyed.
  • Badass Crew: The Crimestrikers, each of whom is very formidable in his/her own way. They work together to save Creaturia on a regular basis.
  • Barefoot Cartoon Animal: Pretty much the entire cast, since Creaturians (like many anthro animals) usually wear full outfits, only without shoes. The exceptions are the villains who use Powered Armor (Forster Burns) or full body disguises (Commander Ahab, The Righteous One) and the robots.
  • Base on Wheels: Flaming Sword, the Crimestrikers' largest and most elaborate vehicle.
  • Bat People: The game features two examples. Crimestriker Nyx Marama is one of the nicest characters in the series. Vladimir "Steelwing" Kavas, a deposed dictator who wants his old job back, isn't.
  • The British Invasion: Invoked by the Wild Guesses, who are similar to bands like The Rolling Stones, The Who, The Yardbirds and The Pretty Things — except that they're Funny Animals (and have two female members).
  • Casino Episode: "Shrunk and Disorderly" is set at the Bona Fortuno, Creaturia's largest casino. Several Crimestrikers, trapped in Incredible Shrinking Man mode, use their reduced size to wreak havoc as they avoid Outrage agents who are hunting for them.
  • Cool Bike: Several kinds.
    • One of the standard Crimestriker vehicles is the Thrillseeker, a motorcycle that can convert to flying mode.
    • The Rapid Pulse, G.T. Overley's custom ride, is an enclosed cycle-like vehicle. It's inspired by Visionaries' Lancer Cycle and Shadow Strikers' Smokescreen.
    • Audrey Claymore has a hovercycle, the Prairie Protector.
    • Trix Condello has her own mini-hovercycle, the Trixter.
  • Cunning Like a Fox: The series pits two of these characters, The Hero Diana Mastron and Big Bad Vance Coffin, against each other. Hendrik Alquist isn't quite up to their level, but he's still a Genius Bruiser.
  • Detective Animal: The Crimestrikers, of course.
  • Drive-In Theater: Ray Hiltebrand's wife Laura owns the Harbor Lights Drive-In, which is threatened by Ray's old enemy Major Scorn in "10 Minutes to Showtime".
  • Elites Are More Glamorous: In a non-military variation, the game focuses on a special unit within an international crimefighting organization.
  • Esperanto, the Universal Language: Shows up in a few places. The two major Hydreran characters, Donacina ("little gift") and Rasavanto ("racial savior"), both have Portmanteau names derived from the language. It's also used for some location names, such as the nation Alta Montejo ("high mountain"), the space station Stelamiko ("star friend"), the Windfall City casino Bona Fortuno ("good fortune"), and the two deserts, Senfina ("endless") and Ora Morto ("golden death").
  • Everything Sensor: The Scanscope, part of the Crimestrikers' standard equipment. The book states that "it can detect, scan and analyze anything the heroes need it to in each story." It's also a communications device.
  • Fake Band: Two of them, the Wild Guesses (from "Take a Wild Guess") and Weapons Lab Disaster (from "The Righteous Rock 'N Roll Rampage"), get their own episodes. The latter story also mentions several other bands in passing.
  • Fantastic Racism: Fuels the ongoing conflict between the Hydrerans and the surface world. In Creaturia's distant past, it was even worse: the dragons were hunted to extinction, although the species returns thanks to genetic engineering.
  • Fantastic Slurs: If you hate Hydrerans, they're "sea scum"; if you hate surface-dwelling species, they're "crawlers".
  • Fantasy Counterpart Culture: Creaturia has several nations, many of which are versions of actual countries.
    • Freeland is the equivalent to The United States.
    • Albria is Britain and Tamessa, its capital city, is London.
    • Alta Montejo is based on Russia and several other Eastern European countries.
    • Azania is South Africa and one of its major cities, Ikapa, is Cape Town. Unlike the other examples, both names come from Real Life.
    • Calebernia invokes the Scotireland trope, down to its Portmanteau name (a combination of Caledonia and Hibernia).
    • Norden is derived from the various Scandinavian nations.
  • Fish out of Temporal Water: Vance brings three historical villains (Black Knight Forster Burns, Pirate Mordecai Hackett, and Outlaw "Tombstone Tom" Thornfield) to the present; as the Time Terror Team, they continue with the chaotic violence that made them infamous. Fortunately, Vance also brings legendary Frontier Era hero Audrey Claymore along with Tom by accident.
  • Fish People: The Hydrerans, a race of amphibious humanoids who have a tense relationship with the land dwellers. They're returning to the world stage after a period of isolation, but evildoers such as Rasavanto and PARCH are threatening their attempts to make peace.
  • Fun with Acronyms:
    • H.A.M.R., the Heavily Armed Modular Robot, is one of the Crimestrikers.
    • Donacina uses a SEALS (Sea Emulation Atmospheric Life Support) helmet to simulate the Hydreran atmosphere during extended missions in hostile surface world environments.
    • PARCH stands for People Against Rampaging Criminal Hydrerans, although this meaning has decreased in use since most of the members have forgotten what it stands for.
    • I.T.T.T., the Individual Telepathic Transmitter Terminal, is an alien Mind-Control Device that's used in two episodes.
    • PLUS (Peace, Love, Understanding and Safety) is a movement that strives to create unity in the midst of increasing bigotry and supervillain activity.
    • Combined with Toilet Humor in the pilot episode "It All Began on Doomsday", when Jeff proposes calling the new group Fast Action Response Team.
    • A more serious example from "It All Began on Doomsday": Outrage threatens the world with a compound called DOOM because physical contact with it causes Dissolution Of Organic Matter.
  • Gadgeteer Genius: The Crimestrikers have several, including Esperanza Sixtos, Darian "DX" Xenos and Tanix Calvo. Their Evil Counterpart is Dolores Dedmond of Outrage.
  • Gender-Equal Ensemble: The Crimestrikers, more or less. The book has entries for ten women, eight men, and a male-identifying robot. Add team medic Calvin Statler, who doesn't get his own entry, and the ratio becomes 10/10.
  • Genetic Engineering Is the New Nuke: The specialty of Roderick Norco, a Mad Scientist who works for Outrage. In particular, he's obsessed with creating Super Soldiers, but most of his experiments have failed. Even worse from his perspective, his two most successful subjects have both become Crimestrikers: Nyx Marama (a bat who can make her body glow in the dark) and Arcana (the first dragon since the species was subjected to Final Solution in the distant past).
  • Global Currency: The SIMU (Standard International Monetary Unit), which is accepted all over Creaturia.
  • Great Escape: The mass jailbreak from the Quarry that kicks off the series.
  • Heroes "R" Us: The Crimestrikers team is influenced by heroic organizations in 80s cartoons such as G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero, M.A.S.K. and C.O.P.S., as well as earlier examples such as U.N.C.L.E. and S.H.I.E.L.D..
  • Heroic Dog: Ray Hiltebrand (the Crimestrikers' Benevolent Boss) and his son Liam (a member of the subgroup Operation Overnight) both qualify.
  • Humanlike Hand Anatomy/Humanlike Foot Anatomy: All Creaturians have these, to the point of defying the Four-Fingered Hands trope — their hands have five fingers. (Their feet have only three toes, though.)
  • Human Resources: The leadership of Outrage ultimately plan to harvest the Life Energy from most of Creaturia's population with a Kill Sat, using them as Living Batteries to turn themselves (and a few carefully selected allies) into nearly immortal pseudo-gods — and killing their victims (who will include most Outrage agents) in the process.
  • Immune to Mind Control: In "I.T.T.T.", the titular Mind-Control Device doesn't affect the Crimestrikers because ther Bio Beacons block its effects.
  • Incredible Shrinking Man: One of Esperanza Sixtos' inventions is the Shrinksphere, a kind of reverse Pokéball that absorbs people into a sphere, where they stay in what amounts to a luxury hotel room. It's used to capture villains and smuggle the heroes into or out of enemy territory. In "Shrunk and Disorderly", a Phlebotinum Breakdown with the Shrinksphere causes several Crimestrikers to get stuck at 15cm/6" tall.
  • Ingesting Knowledge: Edu-strips, which are modeled on the breath strips sold in drug stores, allow users to absorb information (or have secrets implanted in their minds) by swallowing them.
  • Interspecies Friendship: Several, considering that Creaturia is a multispecies world. Especially prevalent among the Crimestrikers, who are True Companions.
  • Interpol Special Agent: The Crimestrikers are the Creaturian equivalent.
  • Killer Robot: Besides the Slaydrones, "Museum of Madness" has several of them disguised as statues of heroes from Creaturian history.
  • The Klan: PARCH, a terrorist organization dedicated to wiping out the Hydrerans (and the dragons, once Arcana appears).
  • Loads and Loads of Characters: The game book has entries for 19 heroes and 14 villains, and there are also several supporting and Recurring Characters.
  • MacGuffin Location: "In Search of Ancient Secrets" plays with this trope. The Unthinkable Archive is a secret storehouse for art, literature and artifacts that have been considered dangerous by oppressive governments over the centuries. Created by a Benevolent Conspiracy of artists, scholars and Persecuted Intellectuals who wanted to preserve the knowledge, the Archive's ever-changing location was lost to history until just recently. The story has the Crimestrikers helping to explore the Archive — and protect it from those who still seek to destroy it.
  • Mad Scientist: Two of them, both working for Outrage: weapons expert Dolores Dedmond and monster-making geneticist Roderick Norco. Their Good Counterpart, Esperanza Sixtos of the Crimestrikers, has the look and the personality, but is too heroic, ethical and safety-conscious to qualify.
  • Mecha-Mooks: The Slaydrones, the collective name for four varieties of Killer Robot that serve Outrage. The book notes that Vance likes to use them because "they always follow orders, never think for themselves, and can be deactivated between crimes."
  • Mixed Animal Species Team: Both the Crimestrikers and most of the criminal organizations they fight fall under this trope. The sole exception is Warlord Rasavanto's Torrent Troopers, an army of racist Hydrerans, and even then Rasavanto will ally himself with land dwellers (or go after "race traitors" from his own species who oppose him) to further his goals.
  • Multinational Team: Both the Crimestrikers and Outrage.
  • One-Word Title: The name of the game itself (which doubles as a Team Title), as well as the episode seeds "I.T.T.T.", "Abandoned" and "Schemata".
  • One World Order: Creaturia has a (mostly) benevolent world government, led by a parliamentary body-cum-Fictional United Nations called the Creaturian Council.
  • Only One Name: The naming convention among both the Hydrerans and the dragons.
  • Operation: [Blank]: Operation Overnight, the Crimestrikers' "night shift" subteam which is comprised of members from nocturnal species.
  • Our Dragons Are Different: Well, there's only one of them (at least for now) because of the dragon genocide in the distant past. Also, they were/are more like winged Draconic Humanoids.
  • Politically Incorrect Villain: Several examples.
    • Commander Ahab's PARCH and Rasavanto's Torrent Troopers are on opposite sides of the land-dweller/Hydreran conflict, and each group is motivated by its hatred of the other.
    • Vigilante Man The Righteous One and Outrage agent Willis Grubb are also bigoted against Hydrerans.
    • Back in the Creaturian equivalent of Dark Age Europe, Forster Burns of the Time Terror Team helped lead the anti-dragon genocide. In The Present Day, his fear and loathing of the species is unabated now that Arcana exists.
  • Questioning Title?: "Whatever Happened to the Dragons?"
  • Real Time: "10 Minutes to Showtime", in which the Crimestrikers have 10 minutes to find a bomb before it destroys the Harbor Lights Drive-In, uses this. The In-Universe TV episode has a digital countdown on the screen, while gamers are encouraged to use a timer while searching for an object representing the bomb.
  • Reformed Criminal: Car thief/Badass Driver G.T. Overley and Con Artist Beatrix "Trix" Condello, both of whom join the Crimestrikers to use their skills for good.
  • Rogues Gallery: Includes the forces of Outrage, Emperor Rasavanto and his Torrent Troopers, Commander Ahab and his PARCH agents, Steelwing, Major Scorn, and The Righteous One.
  • Series Continuity Error: Kali Kilbride's twin sister is referred to as Blythe throughout most of the book and Brigid in the synopsis of "My Sister, My Enemy". Word of God says her actual name is Blythe.
  • Shining City: Bonita Harbor, the exotic port city where both the Crimestrikers and the Creaturian Council are based. The book describes it as "San Francisco meets Auckland meets TaleSpin's Cape Suzette". It's also something of a Hub City, considering its political and cultural importance.
  • Sixth Ranger: Technically, any Crimestriker who joined the team after the original mission with the first five.
  • Some Kind of Force Field: In "10 Minutes to Showtime", the Crimestrikers can't just evacuate the endangered drive-in because Major Scorn has trapped everyone inside with a force field. One scene shows Liam Hiltebrand talking with his parents on opposite sides of the barrier.
  • Super Serum: Roderick Norco's Fantastic Drug creation Smash, which gives its users Super Strength.
  • The Syndicate: In the Back Story, Outrage was this until CIPO brought it down. Since the Quarry escape, Vance is working to revive the organization, but his plans are even more extensive.
  • Synthetic Plague: The titular menace in "The Hydreran Plague", which is bioengineered by PARCH to affect only Hydrerans.
  • Thou Shalt Not Kill: The Crimestrikers never kill anyone (or allow anyone to die) for any reason.
  • Time Travel: It exists, but it's very limited. Outrage discovers Tempestium, a rare element that makes time travel possible, and uses it to bring three historical criminals called the Time Terror Team into the present. (Audrey Claymore also makes the trip by accident.) But then...
    • Time Travel Taboo: Under orders from the Creaturian Council, CIPO rounds up all the Tempestium they can find and locks it away before it can cause more trouble. So the world is safe — at least until more Tempestium is discovered...
  • Town with a Dark Secret: The subject of "A Friendly Little Town". Outrage takes over the rural village of Pleasant Valley because it's the only source of a material they need. They maintain a facade of normality for people who are passing through, but most of the residents live in fear of their conquerors — at least until Trix Condello and H.A.M.R. show up to help the local resistance.
  • Tracking Chip: The Bio Beacon, a device surgically implanted in each Crimestriker's brainstem. It also functions as an In-Universe Life Meter, monitoring the health of each agent as well as their location.
  • True Companions: The Crimestrikers are unified by bonds of love and friendship as well as their mission to protect Creaturia.
  • Underwater City: Not surprisingly, Hydrera has several of them. The most prominent is the capital, Sharaneda, which is just off the coast of Bonita Harbor.
  • Weaponized Car: The Mob Mobile, an Outrage vehicle that looks like an ordinary sedan until its hidden weapons are deployed.
  • The Wild West: The Frontier Era, where Audrey Claymore and "Tombstone Tom" Thornfield come from, is the Creaturian equivalent.
  • World of Funny Animals: Creaturia, whose residents are all anthropomorphic animals.
  • Wretched Hive: Neondis, a nation ruled by corruption and bribery, is a country-sized version of this trope. Its capital, Windfall City, is a more traditional example.
  • X Meets Y: Crimestrikers is basically Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. meets Zootopia. Or, given the eighties cartoon theme of the system, possibly G.I. Joe meets The Disney Afternoon.


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