Dead... and Back is a survival horror Role Playing Game. The Anarchy Zones is its official setting - aliens, reanimates, and the ruins of 2055 America.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Dr. Joeseph Conrad Kurtz


If you're going to ask - yes, I am a doctor - just not that kind of doctor. Specifically, I was an anthropologist and museum curator. Its not some false honorific I gave myself after coming to a position of strength. Who do you think I am - Idi Amin? Yes, yes - well before your time.

I am also not some low-born hard drinking thug. Not that there isn't some truth to that stereotype of raiders, but you won't find them in my group. Or most places these days - after the first six or twelve months, raiders tended to either get smart or get killed. We had the advantage of starting smart, and getting better from there. If fact, I have a college education and came from a quite well to do family, as do a number of my comrades.

You would not be the first person to tell me that the Event was a truly unexpected time, and I should not blame the government for what happened. I respect that you can hold such people in high regard, but must respectfully call that sort of thinking a load of s---.

I've spent years studying people. I knew what sort of problems would arise in a scenario like this, and that the government had to be there to avoid it. But government on all levels - local, federal - even even things as small as members of chess clubs looking out for one another failed. In an insane time, men must do insane things.

At some point, my group will be obsolete, or we'll settle down to our own little state the same way Genghis Khan found it more profitable to levy taxes than level cities. Now is still not that time however.

Strength: 3
Quick: 4
Tech: 4
Wits: 5
Close Combat: 2
Ranged: 4

Secondary Attributes
Animus: 9
Deadening: 8
Lucidity: 9
Pack: 9 (18kg)
Up-Rise: 7 (42 kg)

Wilderness Survival

Despite rumors to the contrary, Kurtz is not particularly large or imposing. In fact, he is more of the very mundane and balding visage an artful director would cast as a Nazi accountant to demonstrate the banality of evil. His clothing choice is based on comfort and utility, often reminiscent of an African game warden. Most people are quite surprised to learn he is nearly seventy years old, but the abilities of nano-vaccine and a healthy lifestyle means even a septuagenarian is capable of leading the attack from the back of a bouncing light armored vehicle with little discomfort.

The "Tower Reversed" is one of the largest bands of raiders in the USA anarchy zone - and the most heavily armed outside of a few rouge military units. It is not as vicious as some of the smaller groups, however, confident in both its power, and lead by the calm and collected Dr. J.C. Kurtz. Most other bandits know not to mess with the band named for the tarot arcana - unless they want to learn the card heralds destruction.

The group is known to have at least a dozen APCs and light armored vehicles - though these are rarely used due to their poor fuel economy. Instead, standard pick-up trucks modified into technical with boom-tubes or heavy machine-guns are the preferred means of transit.

Kurtz personally prefers a dune buggy equipped with a heavy machine-guns and a forty-millimeter boom-tube grenade launcher as his personal mount. Outside a vehicle, he shows a preference for several antique but well maintained weapons - a Gwher-98 bolt action rifle and a Colt .45 M1911A3, though he is pragmatic about others as necessary, and is rarely far from an M-32 PDW.
In Game
Kurtz is in no small way a nod to the character in "The Heart of Darkness" (Or its redressed version - "Apocalypse Now") Although raider well known for firepower and ruthlessness in taking convoys or robbing settlements, he is also charismatic, educated, a connoisseur of fine drink, and quite personable when not holding a gun.

Players might run into his raiders as recurring enemies, a source of employment, or even a sort of anti-hero, depending on the tone of the game.

The man has all but memorized Machiavelli's "The Prince", Sun Tzu's "Art of War"  and a number of other classics. It would not be wholly wrong to portray him a bit like a Bond Villain, minus the rampant megalomania and with a fairly Libertarian bent. He is quite willing to dine and converse with captives - explaining his motivations and offering them deals if he is suitably impressed.

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