Al Amarja is an independent island state in the southern Mediterranean. The western side of the island is covered by three interconnected cities(from north to south): the port town of Skylla, the slums of The Edge and the tract housing of suburban Traboc. Most of the population lives there.
Freedom City, the capital of Al Amarja, is on the eastern end of the island and was based on Washington D.C. It consists mainly of stately government buildings and the opulent homes of government officials, surrounded by the rickety slums that house the government employees. The only difference between Washington D.C. and Freedom City is here the drug dens and brothels are in the good part of town and are very exclusive.
The two ends of the island are linked by the "October 7th Memorial Highway" along the northern coast and "Freedom Road" along the southern coast. The rest of the island is undeveloped hilly forest, at the center of which lies an extinct volcano called Mount Ralsius.
The French version of the game (called Conspirations) shifted the position of Al Amarja to the Atlantic ocean, as the Mediterranean sea did not seem a setting exotic enough to French audience to the translators' point of view.
During its history, Al Amarja has been colonized and conquered in succession by Greeks, Romans, North African Muslims, Catalonians, Castilians, various Italian states and eventually the newly unified Italy.
The official history of the island states that on October 7, 1940, Her Exaltedness Monique D'Aubainne, the Current Shepherdess of Al Amarja and president-for-life, drove out the fascists with the aid of her bodyguards, the Loyal Defenders. In reality, she just bought the island from her lover, Benito Mussolini. She founded the new state and legislation after the war using the newly ascendant USA as a model.
Al Amarja is an independent state. It is not member of United Nations or any other international body. It does not maintain embassies anywhere in the world.
Al Amarja's official language is American English adopted following Her Exaltedness' wholesale embracing of American culture and enforced by the shadowy Language Police. Fearful of being considered disloyal, many 'Marjians translated their names into English or randomly selected English words from the dictionary as first or last names.
Al Amarjan patois (called 'Marjan) has numerous loan words from just about any other language in the world. A particular word or phrase might use various languages' versions of the word to imply subtext. An example would be the word "Yes" — the English "Yes" is used for simple confirmation, the French "Oui" is used to imply apathy or boredom, the Russian "Da" is used for dejected acceptance of the inevitable, and the Japanese "Hai" is selected for enthusiastic agreement.
Al Amarja gets its income from various sources — decadent tourists, private donations and investments, legal and illicit business, smuggled ivory and other forbidden animal products, lecherous sailors, expense accounts of various operatives and pirated products. Businesses like the lack of any copyright and trademark laws, absence of safety regulations, and easily-bribed law enforcement.
Guns, explosives and bulletproof vests are illegal. Only the Peace Force, the island's heavily-armed law enforcement agency, can carry guns and they enforce this law very vigorously. Drug laws are similar to those in Europe and USA but enforced only sporadically. Otherwise the police and government lets everybody do whatever they want unless it threatens the state or they have something to gain in stopping it.
Al Amarja is also a center of just about every kind of global conspiracy imaginable and all of them have their own operatives in the island.
Mixed history of the island means that locals look like a mix of various racial characteristics. Current population of Al Amarja has also been increased by a mix of Mediterranean, European, North American and some Asian and Sub-Saharan African immigrants. They also include mutants, maniacs, outlawed psychics, magicians, intelligence and conspiracy operatives, fringe scientists, unscrupulous businessmen, rich patrons and anything else. There are no accurate census numbers.
Al Amarjans – also known as 'Martians – are rough people. Self-expression is common to the point of self-indulgence. Instead of neckties, they wear a noose around their neck; nooses previously used to hang criminals are very prized. Knives and steel-reinforced boots are universal accessories. Street and bar brawls are common entertainment. Because of the common mutual hostility and suspicion, it is a custom to serve beverages and snacks in their original containers.
Al Amarjans practice just about any religion from Christian Science to human sacrifice. They include Satanists and "Sommerites", religiously oriented fans of rock star Karla Sommers. There is only one official but multi-religious temple in Al Amarja.
Source: Wikipedia, "Over the Edge Setting", available under the CC-BY-SA License.