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"Gastown is part of the Wasteland "power triangle", which consists of The Citadel, Bullet Farm, and Gastown. Gastown is situated on the site of a former oil drilling site and refinery, which makes gasoline a commodity in abundance here. The oil which Gastown so abundantly sucks up from out of the ground is used everywhere and with reckless abandon.
Everything in Gastown is covered in the soot and smudge from the unclean burning and refining of the fossil sludge. The air is torture to breathe, saturated with chemicals and irritants. But Gastown has on thing going for it in spades: it has power. Gastown has diesel, petrol, and oil, and it has generators that generate electricity. Gastown has light - flickering light bulbs, and the omnipresent yellow, orange, and blue flames of excess gas and oil being burnt.
Gastown is built inside a moat of oil sludge and tar seeping up from the very ground with only one heavily guarded entrance into it. Gastown has been attacked many times and thwarted every aggressive attempt at invasion. The workers, or slaves or whatever they may be, live in shanties and are fortunate when it comes to Wasteland standards; they have food, shelter, and water an risk minimal death, rape, and beatings if they just do their job and keep their heads down. People who live in this hellish climate are in fact among the only people who can be referred to a "civilians" in this world. Inside of the Gastown walls there is pain, terror, and brutality, true, but there's also opportunity an relative safety. Outside of Gastown's walls there is only chaos." - Mad Max video game description