Bogotá has been caught in the middle of a protracted international conflict between the two superpowers of Amazonia and Aztlan since 2049, when the two nations first sent their respective militaries into and absorbed Colombia and Venezuela. Their actions eventually left a large segment of disputed territory around the former capital of Colombia. From 2049 until 2072, the region existed in the state of a Cold War fear, prepared at any time for widespread hostilities to resume between the two occupying forces. Hostilities began to rise during the Year of the Comet, when both sides misinterpreted the SURGE phenomenon for an attack launched by the other side. There were more casualties between those two nations during the Year of the Comet than there had been since the two nations ceased hostilities in 2049.
Aztlan antagonized the fragile peace further when it learned of the Sangre Del Diablo trees, a rare, SURGEd tree specimen. Due to the tree’s carnivorous nature and hardened physiology, Aztlan decided it could be a natural barrier against ground incursions from Amazonia that could threaten its presence in Bogotá. Between 2062 and 2063, Aztlan covertly spread the seeds of the Sangre Del Diablo tree throughout the rainforest surrounding Bogotá. The trees, affected by the extraordinary growth of the Awakened rainforest, rapidly altered the ecosystem surrounding the Bogotá area and took over, killing off other native plants and fauna. Aztlan was reckless with the seeding of the Sangre Del Diablo trees, and today there are several sections of Bogotá that are uninhabitable due to dense infestations of the Sangre Del Diablo trees inside the city. The bark and sap of the Sangre Del Diablo trees are deep red in color, and the trees are highly resistant to fire and magic. In addition, the wood is a hardened material, resistant to most types of physical damage. The trees possess the power to influence individuals into approaching it; it then snags the victim within its branches and engulfs them in a corrosive sap. Due to the presence of the trees, foot travel through the forest around Bogotá is highly discouraged. Travelling in a ground vehicle is the safest way to approach Bogotá from the rainforest.
The threat of Aztlan making yet another alteration to the ecosystem and thereby altering the balance of power between the two nations unnerved Amazonia, and they were pushed over the edge by rumors of a secret weapon being worked on in the heart of the Aztechnology Business Complex. The rumor was false, but Amazonia did not learn that until after they launched an attack. Once that happened, the United Nations and the Corporate Court were powerless to stop Aztlan and Aztechnology from declaring war on Amazonia, which they acknowledged had a right to defend their interests from unprovoked attacks. The war has altered the landscape of groups and organizations operating in the area, and it is important to understand these groups in order to be able to recognize them as potential friends or foes.
A staunch supporter of Aztlan in the area is the David cartel. Working with anyone from this cartel is risky at best, as intel from that relationship can be passed onto Aztlan. The Olaya and Andres cartels with operations in the area are sworn enemies of the David cartel, Aztlan, and Aztechnology, particularly after Aztechnology bombed their tempo fields around Bogotá. Their assistance may be expensive, but they are reliable. The Catholic Church is active in Bogotá and is actively opposing the Aztlan regime out of its own religious and political agenda. The Catholic Church’s agenda does not conflict with Horizon’s objectives for this mission, so its members could be a reliable source of support and assistance. There are political groups, members of the Colombian Liberation Movement, that could provide reliable assistance to runners during their mission. Although they do not care for either Amazonia or Aztlan, given their promnent view that both nations are foreign occupiers, if runners let them know they are in the area to cause significant problems for Aztlan, they should win over their support.
Since the war began, there is an increasing toxic shaman and spirit presence in the area. A majority of these beings has been actively assisting Aztlan in defeating Amazonia so that they can spoil and taint the rainforest that Amazonian forces have so staunchly protected. These toxic shamans should be handled with extreme prejudice. In addition to the presence of the toxics, there has been a sizable increase in the number of shadow spirits around the Bogotá region. Over the past two years, attacks involving shadow spirits (particularly shades and wraiths) are up by thirty-five percent. Horizon agents are currently investigating this phenomenon. Should runners dispatched to Bogotá encounter a shadow or wraith spirit, they should treat them with extreme prejudice. If any such spirits are captured, Horizon will pay reasonable compensation.
While in Bogotá, operatives should avoid the Aztechnology Business Complex. There is a high probability that assigned missions will not directly involve the complex, and it has two major Aztlan military complexes. The first, which is used by Aztlan ground troops, is based in the teocalli of Tezcatlipoca. Intelligence reports indicate there are close to five thousand troops stationed in the teocalli at any given time. The second military installation, the El Dorado airport, has air assets stationed at the base, including fighter jets, aerial drones, attack helicopters, and LAVs.
If operatives decide to adopt a disguise of Aztlan military personnel, they first must be issued etcher nanites. Aztlan uses etcher nanites to produce unique metallic patterns on their soldiers’ humerus bones. These markings confirm that they are in fact Aztlan soldiers and also identify their specific duty station. Etcher nanites will not be made available to runners until they receive specific instructions to infiltrate a military installation. Obtaining etcher nanites on the black market or from unreliable contacts in the region is a risk, as the nanites may be ineffective and/or harmful. There are two types of etcher nanites: the kind that leave permanent markings in the bone and the kind that leave temporary markings. All etcher nanites used by Horizon leave temporary markings that fade over time. If permanent etcher nanites are used, the only way to remove the resulting markings is through time-consuming and painful surgery. The mission-specific gear provided to assets in Bogotá includes weapons and armor are sanctioned for Aztlan military personnel to use. Operatives should only carry these weapons when they are infiltrating a military compound.
There is a chance that runners’ cover identities might be challenged. They may be asked where they received their basic training and who their instructor was. Responses should be as follows: Eight-week basic training was given in Ensenada under the supervision of Drill Sergeant Miguel Ortega. After that, operatives were transferred to San Antonio for an additional four-week advanced combat training regiment under the instruction of Drill Sergeant Santiago Carlos. Both of these individuals are Horizon infiltrators inside the Aztlan military and will be able to back up operatives’ cover IDs should any Aztlan soldiers attempt to contact them for verification purposes.