Intelligent Infection/Disease

jedion357's picture
June 9, 2020 - 9:11pm
What if an infection was intelligent?

It plays out as a standard infection the first time the players encounter it so the Doc PC applies a shot of omnicyn from his med kit and rolls a skill check. 

The intelligent infection goes/thinks, "What was that?" and self evolves/changes in response.

Stuff happens ie the PCs have a regular adventure and afterwards there is another round of the "intelligent infection" same symptoms but it now carries a penalty to cure (-5 or -10)

Here is where the referee must listen to the players carefully for clues that they are questioning the 2nd round of infection. If they are then let them begin the research into solving the "inteligent infection"

Otherwise go to another "regular" adventure and when its done Whoa- another one of those infections and the penalty to cure is even higher. 

Some Caveats:
Not thinking about a nanite source for infection but I could be swayed. 

Need to know where the seat of the inteligence is? 

I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

jedion357's picture
June 9, 2020 - 9:36pm
Infections are bacterial and a single cell. 

So for this to be an "inteligent infection" it has to have thoughts so perhaps each bacterium, while only one cell is also a cell of the "brain" 

so with bacteria spread over an area and not in direct connection with other bacteria we are talking about a pyschic bacteria? that as the bacteria bloom increases in an area the more intelligent the infection gets?

maybe in game terms we can relate the growing bacterial bloom to the level of robot 1 thru 6 in its ability to think

EDIT: I'm leaning toward it being an alien infection ie not native to the Frontier. 
Something brought in from outside the Frontier though not of sathar origin

I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

jedion357's picture
June 9, 2020 - 9:57pm
Although, with the size and spread of the bacterial bloom we get into reminders of Covid 19 and the need for cleaning everything just to fight the infection. 

I'm not sure if people want to relive Covid 19 or escape it? Actually I'm pretty sure they dont want to relive it. so do we game out having the PCs recommend/order cleaning?

That leads me to the obvious one I overlooked: transmission. Since Covid is so recent I dont want air bourne transmission- which leaves us direct contact. 
I might not be a dralasite, vrusk or yazirian but I do play one in Star Frontiers!

Sargonarhes's picture
June 13, 2020 - 7:04pm
Sounds like a viral infection like the Thing or even the Leviathan in the Expanse. So we're talking a group of viruses that work together as a single organism correct? And it takes physical contact for these to infect, I think airborne infections would be a little harder to explain as a group of viruses working as a single organism. How do the air borne viruses communicate and decide which alters their function.
In every age, in every place, the deeds of men remain the same.

Tchklinxa's picture
September 4, 2020 - 6:11am
They did an Intelligent Virus on Red Dwarf... they found an "abandoned" lab. 

Virus had cryogenically frozen itself and infected human, it was transmitted by electricity so think stactic shock, could infect life forms and infected the hologram even. It caused insanity and made the infected "person" have laser eyes though.

Other viruses they found that were not bad... off the top of my head

Good Health... you feel great, maybe heals you

In a book I plan to read there is an alien species that is comprised of thousands of microbes that live in a host organism that are the intellect of the rather dumb beast without them. The colony makes up the critters IQ. 

 "Never fire a laser at a mirror."

JCab747's picture
October 13, 2020 - 12:05pm
The plague in the Babylon 5 spin-off -- Crusade -- was also an intelligent bio virus.

Micheal Crichton's novel Prey deals with intelligent nano-technology that goes out of control. It's a good read... not an intelligent virus, per se, but I think it could fit into this category.

Joe Cabadas