In a world not very different from our own, AI has become so advanced that it is now wholly responsible for local city infrastructure, and closer than ever to a true breakthrough of human-like sentience. Technology to augment and assist humanity is expensive, but available. Corporations hold the most power, and hire mercenaries to sabotage and combat one another for their own means. In the city of Savannah, several groups are vying for control. You are the force that can tip the scales: A group of mercenaries that only answers to the highest bidder, or whatever piques their interest.
A Decker (aka a Hacker) appears to have been violently murdered in the midst of what appears to be some kind of corporate sabotage. You have been tasked with finding out what happened to them, and to investigate the ever-more-sinister events unfolding as a result of what you've found.
The world of DAEMON is controlled by several Factions. While you'll get Mission Emails explaining scenarios to you, TRI, JFH, and the Government will offer you different tasks with different payouts. You can only work for one Faction per mission, but you can work with a different Faction each time. So there's nothing stopping you from taking the juicy payout TRI is offering on one mission, and then abandoning them the next mission to go work for JFH.
TRI Technologies focuses on AI and software development. By running the city infrastructure, TRI has solidified themselves as the dominant force in the city, and make plenty of use of all the personal data, metrics, and information they gather from Savannah's citizens to further their own aims, whether those citizens are aware of it or not. They are responsible for creating the Augmented Reality app used throughout the game, and are in the process of completing a secret research project.
They rose to power with the advent of 3D printable weapons. As expected, JFH is a strong supporter of the 2nd Amendment. With a philosophy that revolves around total personal freedom, they naturally have become locked in a cold war with TRI over the development of their AI, the potential weaponization of it, and their clashing viewpoints about the ethics of cradle-to-grave datamining. The two corporations have never liked each other much, but tensions seem to be higher than ever.
As TRI and JFH have rolled in to take the city for themselves, the local City of Savannah government has been left in the dust. Corruption is rife, funding is thin, and as such their voice does not carry with the weight or volume that it did before. Still, there are good cops left, and they want to keep the peace the best they can, who see TRI and JFH's conflict as interrupting that. They may not pay much for their missions, but they have plenty of weapon licenses to offer, and will bail you out when your squad expends all their charges, in exchange for working for them.
Mysterious, powerful, and ever growing, this nameless collective are wholly anonymous as individuals and obscure themselves with anti-facial-recognition masks and anti-drone fabric. They have been responsible for countless acts of sabotage and terror. Nobody is sure what they want, but one thing has been made clear: They'll stop at nothing to get it. In their cult-like admiration for their unknown leader and their overwhelming dedication to secrecy in advancing their aims, they have been deemed "Zealots" by the local government and security teams.