CWIN Vol. 2, No. 1
Arena Watch
Water Tower Duelpark
Chicago, Illinois

Written by Michael Drennon

Web Posted January 13, 1999
Updated August 05, 2000

The Water Tower Duelpark is an open-air arena situated just off the shores of Lake Michigan in what was once the downtown section of the great city of Chicago. The Windy City has seen its share of changes since the Grain Blight and subsequent social unrest. Like all great cities, Chicago is staging a tremendous comeback. New neighborhoods are being reclaimed from the rubble and the stubborn gangs that call these wasted places home. One of the most stubborn gang strongholds is centered in what was formerly called the "Loop." There is also a heavy organized crime influence in the area, so watch what you say, who you say it to, and keep a powerful sidearm handy. The waterfront district has been rebuilt, including heavily defended Meig's Field, and the resulting shipping trade has fed new money into the area. The Duelpark is the result of this new influx of money, and an attempt to push into the densely infiltrated Loop area for further reclamation efforts. Seeking to recapture some of the fame and pride that Chicago once had in its Buckingham fountain, the Watertower Duelpark has to be one of the most aesthetically pleasing combat arenas in existence.

Fountains. Modeled loosely after its predecessor, the Duelpark has five main fountains that shoot jets of water anywhere from 30 to 50 feet in the air. Driving (not jumping) over these fountains is a dicey situation. While any external fires have a 4 in 6 chance of being extinguished, there is a 1 in 6 chance that water may enter the vehicular compartments and short out a power plant or stall an ICE. Such vehicles are effectively out of competition, and should start thinking of surrender. Waterproofed vehicles do not suffer this fate, however it is a D3 hazard to drive over the fountain for any vehicle. Jumping vehicles suffer an additional D2 upon landing from the force of the water jets. Anywhere else there is water on the field (ramps, main floor, tower floor), the water is considered to be 6" deep, and the usual hazards from traveling through water apply (this makes that climb to the tower interesting).

Entrance Platforms. These structures are made of concrete and are considered indestructible.

Arena Floor. The main floor of the arena is covered in fine gravel to make maneuvering more challenging.

Central Tower. The most notable feature is the central tower, complete with a majestic fountain of water shooting 50 feet into the air. Vehicular access to this fountain is denied by a crash barrier that surrounds the main fountain. Water covers the entire surface of this tower and the excess cascades down the access ramps and over the sides of the 60-foot tower to the main arena floor below.

Jump-Boxes. Surrounding the central tower are four "jump-boxes" that house 30-foot fountains of their own. These towers do not have the protective crash barrier, and vehicles are free to drive or jump over them.

Other Features. The arena walls, central tower walls, and access ramps are considered indestructible.

Special Rules. In the AADA events held here, vehicles must complete one jump over each of the small fountains before they receive fire clearance from the arena officials.

Arena Events

AADA Survivor Dueling. The standard AADA divisional events are held at the Water Tower Duelpark. They are typically held as survivors event, with the exception of the need to collect the four fountain jumps before allowed to engage any targets. Vehicles enter the arena from one of eight randomly selected gates at 40 mph. As the field of competitors narrows to three combatants, the arena officials call a cease-fire. At that time, the remaining vehicles must break contact and head for a separate access ramp to the central tower. Combat begins again when the last vehicle begins climbing an access ramp. Once a vehicle has chosen an access ramp, it may not back down and choose another. Combatants have seven seconds to choose and reach a ramp or face disqualification. The remainder of the event is fought out on the central tower platform.

Winter Dueling. As Chicago natives are not ones to wimp out at weather, events are run year round, rain or shine. During the winter months, the field is left unplowed, and vehicles using ice-racing equipment (including snowmobiles) rule the day. The fountains are not operational, however the ramps and central tower are coated in a deadly slick of ice. Normal event rules apply, no matter what the weather. Prestige for the winter events is doubled due to the danger of the final tower battle in each event.

Winter Dueling Rules

The following resources will be useful for running winter dueling events at the Water Tower Duelpark.

Advanced Tire Construction and Combat Rules. High Velocity Dueling Journal 7. Winter 2047.

Autoduelists of Vancouver Regional Association

Canada: Excerpts from the AADA Road Atlas and Survival Guide Third Edition. Autoduel Quarterly Vol. 2, No. 4.
Steve Jackson Games. Winter 2034.

Antarctica. High Velocity Dueling Journal 3. HVD Publications. Spring 2047.

Snowmobiles. Autoduel Quarterly Vol. 5, No. 1. Steve Jackson Games. Spring 2037.

Steel on Ice: Winter Autodueling. Autoduel Quarterly Vol. 5, No. 3. Steve Jackson Games. Autumn 2037.