Please, before attempting to join the group out of the blue, read over the *Rules* and *The Virus* section of the group. Failing to do this will most likely result in your character not being able to join Outbreak.
The sun rises over a city with full streets and empty office buildings. None of its residents have slept - the streets are filled with a myriad of human corpses, shambling about in various states of decay. There is no power, countless vehicles lay abandoned on the roadside, shops filled with hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of merchandise lay untouched with open doors. This is just one city of the millions across the world that share this bleak existance.... And yet, not all is lost. Somewhere within these abandoned buildings, struggling against the spread of the virus, the breakdown of society, and the dwindling hope of themselves and their companions... Few and far between, there are survivors.
Enter the world of Outbreak, RPH's premier "zombie survival" roleplay. Outbreak is a unique group concept that focuses on promoting roleplay through multiple, not necessarily related groups set across a wide variety of cities and countries, in a single, progressive world. This system, dubbed the "sub group system," allows for roleplay that appeals to a wide variety of groups - dramatic, combat-oriented, etc, by allowing sub groups to have their own leaders, and promoting different concepts in different groups. Do you like the idea of the character's panic at the situation? Join a group based around the dramatic aspects of the situation. If you're more interested in your character putting nice, big holes in some undead flesh, join one of the more combat-based groups. The sub-group system allows for everyone to find a roleplay that is best suited for them, while still being a part of a larger out of character community filled with like-minded players, who you just mind find at your side when the next group of survivors appears.
In outbreak-torn Dayton, a handful of survivors meet up at the site of a freak "repopulation" cult.
Details coming soon...
As a progressive world designed toward allowing a wide array of zombie-based groups, rules in specific roleplays of Outbreak vary depending on the choices of the Group Leaders (see: Group System). However, it is necessary to have a certain number of global rules to achieve consistency. Those are available below.
Prerequisites for Joining
1. All characters registering for Outbreak must be original characters created specifically to be part of the Outbreak universe.
2. No Zombie characters. The concept of Outbreak is the struggles of the survivors, as such, zombies are not to be played.
3. No blatantly sexual profiles. What people do in PM's with their characters is their own business, and can even be made canon should a relationship form, but if you must have intimacy in your role play please keep the act itself private.
4. This setting is 100% modern/realistic (despite the zombies, heh.) What does this mean? Vampires, demons, ghosts, skeletons, aliens, circus freaks, furries, neko, unicorns, goblins, etc. are all excluded. If you make a character for Outbreak, he/she is to be 100% human.
Now, these are rules that apply to all groups, all players and anyone interested in joining. Any further rules will be determined by survivor group leaders at the formation of their groups. For more on this, see Survivor Groups.
Remember: Every character need not be a super survivor bad ass, or ex/current military, or a scientist who can figure out the cure. Sometimes, just being a scared civilian just trying to eke out a living (ohoho) day to day is okay too.
Outbreak uses a unique subgroup system, allowing multiple RPs involving different groups of characters in different locations, in the same world.
Survivor Groups and Group Leaders
Survivor Groups are what seperate Outbreak from any other group out there. See, the Outbreak group merely represents the "universe" that the role play is set in. Within that universe, the group, there are smaller groups of people broken down into Survivor Groups, and each Survivor Group has a Group Leader. Survivor Groups are always named after the state/country they start in. For instance, the pioneer group of Outbreak are the Ohio Survivors, because Ohio is where they first meet up and join together, becoming a group of survivors.
First off, if Outbreak is about group members splintering off into smaller groups, what's the deal? Outbreak *is* and *isn't* meant for group role play. I guess the best way to describe Outbreak is like a "Looking For Group" function in most MMORPGs. Outbreak provides group leaders to hook up with regular members and form smaller state/country based survival groups, while providing a backdrop, a history, a reason and a setting.
What powers does a Group Leader have?
Basically, everything. Group Leaders are room/group moderators who run their own group of role players (however big they wish it to be when forming it) and determine the focus of their role playing group. A group leader decides if the group should allow in-depth zombie fighting or focus more on story, if PC/PC combat will be allowed or disbarred, if the group is merely trying to survive, or if they're on a long trek to get somewhere safe where they can live in peace and other such things. Keep in mind the group leader is an Out Of Character position, their character need not be the leader of the In-Character group.
Why have global owners at all then?
Well, we still need someone at the very top to make sure the group rules are being observed and obeyed, and if group leaders are having issues with unruly players, or are misunderstanding something about the role play, etc, we can step in and provide them the assistance they need.
Starting a Group
1. First thing's first. To avoid having a scenario where everyone wants to run a survivor group and no one wants to join one, we have decided to limit the number of actively recruiting survivor groups to two at any given time. Only two groups who are looking for survivors to swell their ranks may be open at once. Anyone else wishing to make a survivor group can contact the Outbreak owners and join a queue.
2. But what if you want to start your own survivor group but don't want to wait forever for a group to fill up so you can start your own (potentially a longer wait if you're queued)? Well, we figured this might be an issue, as well as some people just wanting to get as much zombie rp as possible so we have decided that: Each member of the Outbreak group itself may have two characters with which to do with as they please. Any more than that will not be allowed.
3. Should there be an open survivor group spot available and you are selected to be the group leader you should be prepared to answer several questions regarding the nature of your group, so that other members will know what your group is about and if they want to join you.
Some of these questions are: 1. Will your group have an emphasis on combat? 2. Will zombies be controlled by other players for T1 combat or will each person fight their own NPC zombies? 3. What are/is the general goals/story of your survivor group? 4. How many people do you want to have in your group? 5. Are you looking for people to play specific characters? (Ie, you might want a surgeon, or a scientist, and need that roll filled.) 6. Will in-group fighting be allowed? 7. Will you eventually want to interact with other survivor groups? 8. What state/country do you want your group located in? 9. How often you intend to play, group leader's time zone, and things along these lines.
All of these questions are asked so that we know what to keep on record and put in the Survivor Groups portion, so that people looking for groups can easily see a brief summary of what each group is about and make an educated guess from there.
How to Join a Group
So you're a character in the Outbreak setting but you have no group to role play with? This is a very simple problem to solve as all you need to do is browse the Group section of Outbreak for open, available and recruiting groups that suits your tastes, and your availability.
From there it's as simple as contacting the leader of the Survivor Group you're interested in to see if you're someone they would like in their group and likewise to see if this is someone whose group you'd like to be in. It's also worth checking to see if the group has any roles you can help fill out if you're having difficulty with character ideas.
These are the absolutely unalterable non-negotiable set-in-stone rules for the zombies and virus in the Outbreak universe. They will not be changed, as changing even one of these rules minutely would change the whole world for everyone else.
Something to keep in mind as you read this: This is mostly OOC knowledge, and would not be known by characters in the roleplay unless approved by the group owners (this is to prevent everyone from playing a scientist who knows the origin of the outbreak, or what have you.)
In the beginning, there was a scientist. This scientist was hired by the United States Government to gather a research team and attempt to create an affordable "Soldier" for use on the battlefield. The solution seemed obvious to the doctor who decided to dabble with the tempting domain that is playing god. He sought to create a virus, parasitic, that would take control over corpses it infected and in a way could be "programmed," thus reanimating the dead. Before the experiment could be finished terrorist bomb threats rained down on the lab and transport for the scientists and the virus itself was arranged, still in an incomplete form. As fate would have it the plane was struck down mid-transport with no survivors and releasing the incomplete virus into the air.
When the plane crashes the virus is released, incomplete and in an airborne state it begins to replicate rapidly, spreading through the air and infecting every human being it comes into contact with. Nothing happens, not the slightest side effect but business men travel and friends meet with friends and people interact with people. After seven days the virus has gestated and evolves to its second stage.
The virus, fully gestated, now mutates into its stage two form which like its stage one form is still completely invisible. No one is aware of what's going on, or even that anything is even wrong. The plane crash has been cleaned up and forgotten by almost all. Then an accident occured, and a man who should have been dead appears alive, lunging for another living body. The virus in its stage two has only two mandates; survival and replication and in this form it needs a living human host to continue doing both. But what happens when the host dies? The final mutation takes place, and the stage two virus becomes stage three.
As the human host dies the virus struggles to obey its mandate and thus begins gathering in the brain where it takes over and now uses its limited, slow control over its human host to carry out its still continuing mandate of survival and replication. The stage three virus can only be spread through open wounds or ingestion, thus the virus uses control of its host to attempt to bite into victims, break skin and combine fluids to spread itself. Whether the viral host is able to kill the victim this way or not, the victim is marked. The virus in its stage one and two forms was benign but in its stage three form it is malignant and lethal. Once infected with the stage three virus, a victim has but sixteen to twenty four hours worth of high fevers, extreme chills, muscle cramps and weakness, vertigo, distorted vision, naeusuea and eventually death, when they become a new viral host.
The only cure for Stage Three infection is to destroy the source of the virus' control: the brain.
Notes on the Virus
A living body that has freshly become a stage three viral host will still have a majority of its walking speed, but a viral host will never hope to move as fast as a healthy adult human and thus escape is most often the most effective way of dealing with these zombies. (No sprinting zombies.)
The virus seems to be able to only transmit to human hosts in all three of its stages, never has an infected animal been sighted despite recorded incidents of these viral hosts attempting to infect them. (No animal zombies.)
It would also seem that the virus has only infected those living from the point of July 6th onward, but no deaths from that period have produced stage three viral hosts. Thus it has been theorized that only those who were alive once the stage one virus had gestated are in danger of becoming viral hosts. (Only the freshly dead are affected.)
It would seem the virus in its third stage has prolonged the longevity of the corpse, allowing it to last longer before decay finally settles in, but it is not immune to the natural processes of deterioration and a mostly decayed viral host is a threat easily dealt with when legs stop working and the teeth have fallen out. (A single zombie will not last indefinitely.)
While the zombies show no real capacity for basic motor functions and even basic reasoning, they do seem to possess two traits derived from only science knows where. The first of these traits is the ultimate Monkey-See-Monkey-Do. Viral Hosts who spot Viral Hosts performing an activity will eagerly try to join them and mimic it, from walking forward towards the horizon to beating on a door. The second trait seems to be a hyper-attraction to sound. The viral hosts aren't much for eyesight but throw sound in the mix and they become dangerous. A viral host will follow almost any sound it hears whether it's a car alarm or a passerby. (Zombies swarm. They are also highly attracted to sound.)
In closer ranges it would seem the viral hosts track new hosts by multiple means. They track completely by sound but it's their nose that helps them to truly track down their prey when they're close enough. Smart survivors who realize this can easily circumvent. (Zombies smell really good too, at close range. Sweat, deoderant, shampoo, soap, body odor, etc. Are all easy for a zombie to track.)
It would also seem that the virus has reached the end of its mutation/evolution. (No super mutant freak zombies of any sort.)
These viral hosts show an interesting reaction to cold climates; no pumping blood and circulation means they are very quick to freeze but in places outside of Alaska and Antarctica, this is useless. The ice preserves the body perfectly, til it thaws and the zombie is the same as he ever was. (Zombies freeze in winter. Thaw in spring. Only where freezing temperatures are applicable.)
Should a survivor become bitten, which is fatal 100% of the time if it breaks flesh thus resulting in a new viral host, infection can be circumvented if the infected survivor can receive immediate medical treatment in the form of amputation, if the infected bit is in an area that can be successfully amputated. Though, amputation comes with a whole new bag of issues. (This is, so far, the only known way to ensure someone doesn't become a zombie when bitten.)
It has been over two months since the first viral host sighting. They spread rapidly, they swarm en masse. Cities have fallen, the national guard has failed in keeping them at bay with not even a hope of eliminating, and cities have been abandoned or converted into more viral hosts. I fear for the fate of mankind. What animal does nature breed when man has no rules to follow? No laws to abide by? (Society has not completely crumbled. But it is on the precipice of utter collapse, almost past the point of no return.)
This is a segment for the survivors of Ohio Survivors. It's a work in progress. Get over it.