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.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Drugs and The Zone

There are two kinds of escape - the zone, and drugs, and rarely do the two mix. There might be some drinking - that goes on everywhere, and for good reason - it can be safer than water under some conditions and a way to relax. Narcotics however, are still a constant threat.

Despite various changes in law enforcement, there is still a heavy taboo against many types of mind altering substances. While most residents of the zone respect personal freedom, hallucinations and not-quite-dead things out for blood don't mix all that well.There are some in the zone that enrich themselves through the creation of harmful chemicals, but sneaking them into a well guarded G-zone can be quite difficult.

Conversely, in many of the G-Zones where threats to life and limb are usually confined to the outside, escapism is fairly rampant. Of course, since this impairs work and can lead to off-setting behavior, numerous steps are taken to combat this scourge.

Unsurprisingly, New Birmingham has some of the strictest statutes, outlawing even tobacco, medicinal marijuana and closely monitoring alcohol consumption, though the later is still allowed. Both the citizen enforcement units and "Right Thought" attack the problem head on, while ever present moralizing presents a huge stigma. At least a few take citizens interpret mild drug use as a way to quietly rebel against the government.

Conversely, the free city of Tesla is quite forgiving of drug offenses, though it is hardly free of Taboos. While personal freedom is prized, it is a city-state dedicated to to the pursuit of rationality and high order thinking in order to pass a technological singularity. Altered states of mind may help in some sorts of research and philosophy, but are generally not in line with the enlightenment and logic enshrined by the city's founders.

Las Vegas maintains the laws much as they used to be. Jail sentences and discharges tend to be replaced with time in a penal battalion however, as manpower is seen at a premium, even if the city is over-populated. A few weeks digging ditches in the desert or running the gauntlet of Citizen and Reanimate forces to the East tends to be a very effective punishment. Still, a lot of bored soldiers and too many people causes a number of social problems people seek to escape from.

Lone Star tends to be relaxed about the drugs themselves, but severely punishes any crime or infraction committed when under the influence. Most of the remaining NEST towers have a similar policy, but these arcos are rather more porous, heavily populated, and have a higher density of reanimates outside, leading to a much greater level of despair and abuse than farther West.

Rumors abound of places where drugs are used as a social control or means to reward citizens - trading addition for service. However, these are probably just that, rumors - the side effects of most narcotics become too much of an impairment too quickly to allow this sort of system to work for more than a few months or years.

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