A Resource Poor World
2774, 11th Dec, 10:43 a.m.
Project Beta-Ozone has succeeded. An artificial ozone layer has been deployed in place of the broken ozone layer natural to Earth.
2776, 28th March, 9:00 a.m.
A new international organisation, The World Organisation of Resources, has formed. Its key role will be the monitoring of Earth’s resource stocks and management of resource depletion.
3003, 20th May, 2:15 p.m.
The World Organisation of Resources has announced that Earth’s resource stock has reached a critical level. At the current rate of resource depletion, the functioning of Beta-Ozone will no longer be supported within 50 years and complete resource exhaustion will not be long to follow.
3003, 5th July, 4:23 p.m.
The World Organisation of Resources has formally notified local authorities that it is exercising its right of management under emergency. Policies that will be introduced include strict enforcement that all core farming activities to be done with animals and conscripted human labour.
3003, 6th July, 9:05 a.m.
Protesters are gathering on the streets of Athens over the The World Organisation of Resources’s new policy.
3003, 7th July, 1:09 p.m.
Unrest is spreading. Multiple parades are being run across different countries. The wealthy are being blamed for their taste for luxury products that are major sources of resource drain.
3003, 23rd July, 12:32 a.m.
Mob attacks on the residences of wealthy individuals are occurring in Spain.
3003, 23rd July, 12:40 a.m.
Mob attacks similar to that started in Spain are spreading worldwide. There are signs that there might been coordination behind such attacks.
3003, 9th August, 2:47 a.m.
Shock! Bodyguards have been infiltrated by the radical movement. The house of American billionaire Martin Rothison has been sacked and burned down to the ground. Martin Rothison himself has been held hostage.
~ Selected Express News on earthnews.com
Safe, warm, cocooned. The creature developed slowly, week by week, shifting into different shapes as its mutating DNA sought a stable form. At first just one amongst several tanks, occupied by Prototypes XVIII through XXIX, number XXIII would eventually outshine them all. Most would never survive long enough to finish developing into a coherent animal; only two others would live to be "born," and those only long enough to be deemed failures and killed for further study.
Prototype XXIII would not only survive, but also thrive. The darling of her creator, the last hope the few remaining rich had of holding onto all they held dear, she had a purpose set out for her: the mother of a species which could both be yoked to the plow and set as guard against the teeming masses of the hungry, the dying, the poor. Yet she contained a single flaw in her DNA, one that would go unnoticed until it was far too late.
The world is dying and machines are breaking down. The rich have retreated into defensible compounds. The poor are a nuisance best kept at a distance. Yet the rich need guards and beasts of burden. Turning to genetics, one scientist sought to create the perfect animal.
She is the first of her kind, Chimera Prototype Mk-XXIII. Melded from the DNA of Grizzly bears, giant squid, Tasmanian Devils, and a few species of poisonous snakes, she is both tough and strong. Thirty feet from nose to tail, she has the body, thick hair and skin of a bear, the legs, coloring, and head of a Tasmanian Devil, deadly sharp teeth with an extra set of poisonous fangs, and a set of long tentacles arranged around her muzzle. She was developed to be ferociously loyal and would normally fight to the death to protect her master.
Rather than laboriously grow more in his lab, the scientist engineered Prototype XXIII to continuously give birth to more of her kind. Her young grow, crawl into her pouch until mature enough to survive, and then are ready to be raised and trained as needed.
This physiology is where the scientist made his critical mistake. Prototype XXIII's young go through a number of stages as their DNA seeks its final form. Within the pouch they grow into giant, poisonous snakes. These snakes continually pump toxins into their mother's body, driving her to madness. She went on a rampage, destroying the compound in which she was brought up. Continually giving birth and raising young culminated in an unquenchable hunger, causing her to maul and devour any living thing nearby.
The serpents drop from her pouch at an alarming rate, going on their own rampages as they develop into beasts just as terrifying as their mother. Without training or direction from humankind, they know only hunger and destruction. And with the mutable DNA given to them by the scientist, they will begin to breed with other species, creating new monstrosities and causing further destruction to a dying world.
- The PCs have found employment guarding a compound when it is overrun by a horde of giant, poisonous snakes and 30 foot monsters.
- On the flip side, The PCs are trying to survive amongst the poor. In addition to food scarcity, avoiding slave labor, and the environmental dangers of a dying world, they are now overwhelmed by an onslaught of Prototype Mk-XXIII's progeny. How do they survive with few resources at their disposal?
- An enterprising party could attempt to domesticate Mk-XXIII's male offspring, as they are not driven mad by the poisons of their young. This could give the poor an effective weapon with which to strike back at the havens of the rich.
- The mutable DNA that was developed in the creation of Mk-XXIII is capable of mixing with additional species. With so many of them on the loose, it is only a matter of time before additional characteristics of other species begin to show up. The PCs may have learned how to deal with one breed but they never know when other strange mix will show up.
Additional Ideas (1)
Dr. James Wooden
11:00 a.m., Sydney, Crown Center, Press Conference
With an air of self-assurance, Dr. James Wooden strode in, smiled and seated himself. In a charcoal black suit, Dr. Wooden conveys the image of a true gentleman.
“Welcome to the Press Conference on Project Chimera. As everyone here is well aware, now farming has to be done predominately either with animal or human labour. Also, the radical movement is gaining momentum and causing major disruptions to our lives. Now, I ask all of you, what do we do about them? Well, my answer is that we create something that will simultaneously address these two problems… Now, is there any questions?”
Finally, those walking monies have given me the funding for my Project Chimera! Imagine the fame I will get when I create the perfect animal that will solve the two most pressing problems of humanity at the moment.
What specimens of DNA should I use to create my Chimera? Let me see, grizzly bear for its strength and ability to sustain mob attacks, the Tasmanian devil so that it will have a rapid reproductive cycle, snakes so that it would have a means to quickly immobilise those pesky radicals and yes, the giant squid from Japan that has that delicious gene with the propensity to mutate, why then my Chimera can continuously breed with other species, creating unique offsprings. Who knows that those walking monies won’t take the fancy to getting their special pet Chimera and give me follow-up funding on project extensions?
Curse those radicals, here I thought this ghost town of Alice Springs would be the perfect place to set up my research compound and all my Aboriginal ‘assistants’ have escaped in the confusion as well. I know, I will move to Bourke in New South Wales, surely there the opportunities to ‘recruit’ more Aboriginal ‘assistants’ are plenty as well.
Those ethnical guidelines that scientists are supposed to uphold are damn nuisances. What’s the difference between a non-lethal venom that will paralyse someone so that they can be killed and a lethal one that directly kills? Damn hypocrites
~ excerpts from a partially recovered personal diary of Dr. James Wooden found at the site of the destroyed research compound at Bourke, NSW