Project Dismember 2010
The Death Toll So Far…
- Julian died in the first session, sacrificing himself to allow the others to escape. Number of sessions survived: 0
- Randy died off-stage in the second session, leaving the group due to his apparent infection. Number of sessions survived: 1
The Risen: Facts on the Undead
How it All Started
No one knows what caused the dead to rise, but they struck on November 26th, 2010. The great American consumerist tradition of Black Friday had millions of people packed together in shopping centers big and small, and when the contagion hit, those same shopping centers were Ground Zero for the single-worst catastrophe of the modern world.
Forever forward, Black Friday would mean something completely new to the survivors of the world.
Public Awareness of the Zombie
Thanks to popular fiction of pretty much every media type, most of the less-skeptical people of the world almost immediately recognized the undead for more or less exactly what they were. Sadly, GI Joe got it wrong: knowing is not in fact half of the battle, at least against the undead. For them, their never-ending numbers, extreme durability, unwavering stamina, and ability to convert your friends and loved ones were vastly superior to anything we could bring against them with mere awareness.
Thankfully, small pockets of resistance have survived the continuing chaos. So here’s what the “typical” survivor knows:
- They won’t communicate with you in any way. They were once your best friends and closest lovers. They were you kids, your families, the people you called “Home.” None of that means anything to them anymore, although some w=fella once proposed that maybe it just makes them want to eat you even more. You can’t talk to them, reason with them, plead with them, or convince them to show mercy. The only effect that any of this would have is to make more noise and draw more to you. All that being said, they do seem otherwise drawn to the places that were important ion their former lives, perhaps driven by patterns of repetition long driven into their instincts.
- You gotta shoot them in the head. For whatever reason, extreme trauma to the cranium ends the zombie. Sure, enough trauma to the rest of the body can sometimes take one down too, but the most reliable methods all involve destroying the head.
- The newly-risen can move pretty damn fast. A lot of the ones you see out and about now are slow and stumbly, but the recent;y-turned are much faster than Romero initially expected. Newly-risen zombies still have a lot of motor control, allowing them to move faster, climb walls and ladders, and even jump, provided their extremities are mostly intact. Atrophy and stiffness set in within a few days, slowing them down considerably.
- Bites can infect you, but not always. We all know what the movies say, and many times they’re proven true: once you’re bitten by the risen dead, your end is nigh. But this isn’t always the case, truth be told. There have been some folks who have supposedly been bitten, but never turned. Maybe they applied the right medicine at the right time, although that recipe is unknown to the rest of us. Maybe they had a stronger immune system and were able to fight off whatever infection is causing all of this. Or maybe they just got lucky, and the bite wasn’t that bad after all. Regardless, bites are a pretty strong sign that you’re close to turning, and if you see a friend get bitten, you need to watch out.
- Risen dead on the warpath attract others like moths to a flame. When even a small handful of zombies are aware of you and come running, you need to take them out ASAP, or get away fast, because more will inevitably follow. Maybe they’re drawn to the “hunting moan” of those attacking you, or maybe whatever is propelling them can organize masses of them at once.
State of the Union
It’s the third week in December, 2010, which means the undead have been tearing down our society for almost four weeks now. Here are some things to know about the world around you:
- The Power and Water are still on, in some places. No one knows how long this will last, but the grid is still active in scattered locations. Thank whatever forces might be that Southern Oregon is so granola. (good read: http://www.straightdope.com/columns/read/2165/when-the-zombies-take-over-how-long-till-the-electricity-fails)
- Avoid major shopping places. You might think that the malls and supermarkets would be a great place to get supplies, but you should think again. Remember: those were ground zero on Black Friday, and the mobs of now-undead shoppers are still mostly there.
- It’s damn cold. Southern Oregon is a shitty place to be stuck outside during a winter-time zombie invasion.
This game uses the Unknown Armies RPG rules. For campaign specifics, see House Rules.
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