A hundred years before the beginning of the roleplay was the Great War. It was essentially world war three and America (where this would take place) was hit especially hard, invaded by Chinese and Russian forces and essentially cut in half from the Dakotas down to Texas, the East belonging to the U.S., and the west being divided amongst Russian and Chinese forces.
No one is quite certain when or where the Z Plague originated, but the first reports began trickling in in the fifth year of the Great War. Kiev, New Jersey, Hong Kong, Tokyo, the disease became a worldwide epidemic rapidly, but still the nations continued their war. The Chinese were the first to weaponize the undead; loading them into sealed ordinance containers and dropping them on populations. By the end of the war, every nation had copied the idea and amassed a rather large stockpile of these bio weapons, known as 'Dead-Boys' or 'B.O.B.s'(Bio-Ordinance Bombs) But, with their armies engaged in vicious fighting on multiple fronts, the Z Plague rapidly spread until entire cities found themselves overrun by the putrid horrors.
Almost overnight the various governments and armies established military quarantine around towns and urban centers that were deemed tactically non-viable, invaluable and overrun. Before long, they created massive reinforced steel walls that completely and utterly enclosed the cities, evacuating essential personnel and whatever lucky civilians that happened to be nearby. Everyone else, civilian or military alike, was trapped inside with the undead, unable to escape. For a time, military supply drops and and patrols would try to keep the peace but as fighting intensified they were called off elsewhere. Years passed, and still they never returned; the capitals of the world had either been nuked in the war or were now completely overrun by the undead with the surviving remnants of governmental bodies either dead or in hiding. All source of law and order soon collapsed.
The Dead Cities, as they are known to the people of the Wastes, are still almost all enclosed by the great containing walls built long ago. The people trapped inside are harrowed, living under constant fear of both the undead, the bizarre and horrifying mutants that plague the nights, and Cannibal tribes, people who have reverted to feral ways and stalk both the living and the dead within the concrete jungle.
There are exceptions, however. While New York city and Chicago are sprawling hellish mazes filled with murderers and monsters, a select few managed to effectively contain and eliminate the undead threat and begin to rebuild society from behind the walls. Atlanta, Miami and Little Rock are several such cities.
The world outside of these walls was left changed; Bandits, Warlords, Religious fanatics, all sought to seize power in the vacuum left in the absence of the Old World powers. Small post-war settlements and townships do exist and are fairly common in the country-side but they can be few and far between.
The world as we know it now, is gone. Shattered by war and the plague, the people who still survive in the Wasteland mostly do so either by scavenging, or raiding.
Spheres and Spheries
Reserved for the wealthy and influential were large enclosed spheres which seem to dot the countryside. Though many are small, running a range of twenty to fifty acres, some of these Bio-Spheres can reach as much as ten miles in diameter. They are completely hardened structures, immune to radiation, bombs, missles, forceful entry or siege. The entire structure absorbs and runs on solar power and contains farming equipment and grounds automatically managed by the Sphere's internal super computer. While many of these Bio-Spheres are cutting edge and well built, some were rushed through development and suffered catastrophic failures, which make Derelict Spheres prime targets for scavengers.
Spheries, as they are known, vary greatly from Sphere to Sphere, in both custom and attitude, but they are rarely seen in the Wasteland, save for trading, or raiding depending on the Sphere they hail from. Many look down on the Wastelanders, call them Unclean and do whatever they please when not in confines of Spheres. It is not uncommon to hear of Spheries kidnapping and raping women and men to extend the bio-diversity of their homes.
No wastelander has ever set foot inside of a Sphere of their free will, and as far as the Spheries are concerned, they never will. In part, because growing up within the Sphere has left Spheries dangerously susceptible to common diseases and ailments, prompting them to wear full-body hazmat suits when they make forays into the wastelands. These suits are usually of a light blue or dark green variety and are coupled with full face respirators, thick rubber boots and gloves.
The undead, Zack, Z's, Dead-heads, whatever the title, they. Are. EVERYWHERE. Zombies come in one, uniform flavor, one I like to refer to as the Brooksian zombie, meaning that they do not speak, respond to pain, use weapons or tools, communicate with one another, possess any abilities beyond that of a normal human being or carry any goal in mind other than to devour people. They are numerous and driven to devour all life they come across. So, watch out .
Mutants are hands down the most terrifying, utterly twisted children of the Wasteland. While the vast majority (Roughly 80-90%) of mutants are located within the confines of the Dead-Cities, it is not unheard of to come across 'nests' or 'lairs' in the wilderness. The mutants as a whole are nocturnal and while not directly hurt by the sunlight, it is not their preferred territory and will go to great lengths to avoid it.
The mutants are the same as the zombies in that they desire to eat your face and everything attached to it. Thats where the similarities end. Mutants are hideous and horrifying mockeries of the human form, their bodies having been broken and remade into a better natural weapon (think the dead-space Necromorphs for a visual and ideal example). Mutants can come in almost any form and shape and are EXTREMELY resilient and deadly. Many Wastelanders consider them a myth. Those that have encountered the monsters and lived to tell the tale are few and those willing to do so again are almost non-existent.
Factions: Man has always been a social creature. Some would argue that is the reason he has always been so swayed to burn. To destroy. Regardless, the remnants of mankind have formed into many different factions. Feel free to come up with some yourself, but try to keep them fairly new/low impact.
Maneaters/Ferals: These are people who have degenerated to cannibalism to survive. They live mostly in tight knit and often nomadic groups. Many wastelanders tell the stories of hapless others who the Maneaters lured in with promises of food and shelter only to kill and eat them. Sometimes alive, depending on who was telling the story...
Ferals are those who have been damaged psychologically or grew up with little contact with other humans. Survival in the New World warped their minds and caused them to adopt the mannerism of a wild animal, making them unpredictable at best. And at worst....
Lil' Tyrus: Lil Tyrus is a name many know and whisper in hushed tones in the Wastes. He is the son and prince of the massive empire spawned and ruled by his father, Big Gangsta Tyrus. Rumor has a large party numbered just over a hundred, most armed with Old World weapons. Some of the traders have said they're dug in a few weeks west, that they've secured the roads coming to and from the empire in the heart of Pittsburgh from both the dead and bandits. Sure, some of them grumble about the heavy toll, but its better than the alternative, right?
Bandits/Raiders: Small, isolated groups often of no more than four to six men and women that either try to attack settlements or trad caravans. Their activity has increased recently, making mercenary work in high demand. Feel free to NPC up some of these for fodder.
The Death Riders/ Black Caravan Company (LLC): A bandit gang that uses motorcycles to raid towns. They steal anything of value they can find, often including women and children, and kill anything that gets in their way. The Death Riders feed an extensive slavery ring run by the Black Caravan Company (LLC). Men in musty old business suits that sell rare possessions and artifacts, including people, to the highest bidders. Before the Black Caravan Company came along, the Death Riders were just a few gangs of bandits fighting with bats and pipes until the BCC (LLC) came along and supplied them. All they asked in return was for what was left when they finished. The Death Riders are essentially the military arm of the BBC, so I've rolled them into one.
The Cult of GOD: Fanatical followers of a religion preached by a man referred to only as 'Father'. They dress in rags, rarely bathe and are often emaciated and sickly. They believe that through their suffering they can inspire enough pity in their GOD to banish the undead, and call the faithful forth to Haven. They are seldom harmful directly, though they can be unpredictable. They are often seen traveling through towns self-flagellating and preaching their cause to any who come near.
Spheries: Not all a Spheries are dishonest, murdering, 'high on the smell of their own bacteria-free-piss', kidnappers and rapists. But they all look the same behind those rubber suits.
Mercenaries & Peacekeepers:
The Guardians: The Guardians are the descendants of National Guard and other various Military organizations that had holed up within forts and bases. They are ingrained with the shame of their ancestors for having failed their duty. As such, the Guardians have adopted an almost warrior-monk like life-style; they train constantly and have access to Old World weaponry. They maintain the roads and areas around their forts to promote trade and make it a priority to dispose of any undead or bandits they come across. When they come of age every Guardian is sent out into the Wastes for a ten year period known as the Pilgrimage. It is during this time that the true nature of the world is to be made clear. That every man women and child that still draws breath is cursed to live in the hellish nightmare that life has become, and it is all because their ancestors failed. This guilt is what drives the Guardians. Many choose to work as Caravan or Settlement guards, though it is not unusual to see them acting as body guards or mercenaries as well.
While some choose not to return to the Fort complexes at the end of their Pilgrimage, almost all do and upon returning become accepted as full members of society. They then may choose to continue their work in the Wastes, or to duties within the fort complex itself.
Sphere Delta 045: A large sphere that is willing to hire out its defenders for the appropriate price. These Spheries are willing to do anything if the price is right, from caravan guarding to bolstering the ranks of raider gangs.
Misc.: Various Mercenary bands and militias exist besides. Again, feel free to create these as needed.
Iroquois Falls: A small farming town in Upstate New York. The people who originally lived their either died or fled, and when it was stumbled upon some fifty years prior to the RPs beginning, was mostly intact. It is now secured and the farm is up and running once more. The Iroquois Falls food caravan is a common sight to see when traveling New York's roads-them and the Guardian Protectors that often accompany the caravans.
The Oasia: The Oasia is a bar that sits on Route 9, a large interstate highway favored by Caravans coming up from the south. It is frequented primarily by Caravaners looking for a safe place to sleep and mercenaries searching for work. There is a large bulletin board marked Merc-Werk mounted on the wall in a corner. It is there that mercenaries can advertise their services and potential employers can advertise their needs. The Oasia was an old world night club that stood up to the test of time fairly well and has made a name for itself as both a Mercenary hang-out and the only place within fifty miles to get your hands on a stiff drink that doesn't run the risk of blinding you.
Armory: An old National Guard armory that has been captured and fortified by traders. The trading company is willing to sell the Old World weapons for the right price or in exchange for work.
New York City: Just over a weeks hike from the RPs home area is New York City-or what's left of it. The plague hit the densely populated urban zone hard, turning more than half of its over 8 million people into undead monsters. Once the walls went up it was officially declared overrun and abandoned. Many of those trapped within perished, but those who survived degenerated mostly into a way of living more akin to that of the ancient Native Americans as opposed to someone living in the once beating heart of the modern world.
By and large the people still living in the ruins of the city are feral tribals with cannibalistic tendencies. They have split into various tribes, each with their own specific customs and markings. While they are not openly at war with one another, they do not welcome outsiders.
Feel free to come up with towns and locations on your own, I just wanted to establish a few of the Major locations within the setting.
Please put the word 'Pancakes' at the top of your CS.
The Home Wasteland where the RP will take place is located in Upstate New York (though the location of events may change from time to time.) Feel free to come up with towns and geography as you please. The war left the region mostly untouched and New York City itself never came under direct enemy siege. Sadly, the same couldn't be said for the undead. In addition to losing the city, plague spread rapidly through much of the state, leaving entire townships and cities either destroyed, fortified or populated solely by the shambling hordes called Howl Towns by passing Caravaners for the way the undead trapped inside buildings would all call out at once.:
What remains is a vast and crumbling, but still usable road network dotted by crumbling urban zones. Time and neglect have turned these once proud, populated metropolises into little more than ruins prowled by the rotting forms of those who once called them home.[COLOR="Silver"]
The Walk-Man: A local legend of sorts. Residents of the area, particularly those that frequent the Oasia, tell stories of the Walk-Man. They say that when bitten, he doesn't turn. That he alone knows a way inside the Dead-City of New York. They also claim that he drinks human blood and prowls the night with the mutants and undead. His appearance and demeanor changes from storyteller to storyteller, but the inhabitants of the Empire Wastes mostly believe that the Walk-Man does exist.
Faction: (If Any)
Appearance: (A pic with text is usually your best bet but anything will do here. Just no anime/manga type deals)
Gear: Anything Your char carries on them
Fears/Quirks: Little things about your char, bad habits, fears, favorite food etc. etc
History is written by the Victors. And I refuse to lose.
Because fuck snakes, thats why!