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Blood & Bone    Guidebook    The Infected

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Blood & Bone revolves around a game world that's been overrun by Infected, forcing humans to live in a post-apocalyptic/dystopian type setting. Safety is in numbers. Here is an in-depth look at the Infected, including general information about the virus and how it turns a human, as well as information about the different levels of Infected. We recommend reading this over before writing.
General Information
The Infected are humans that have contracted the virus DraC-2, although most of society outside of the scientific community have nicknamed the affliction Vampirism. The name originated from the strange, vampire-like qualities the Infected took on, the main one being their need to feed on blood. The official name given to those turned by the virus is Infected. However, the rest of society often refers to them simply as vampires. Other slurs that have become common place in daily conversations include: night-walkers, leeches, fangs, blood-suckers, and vamps. Those turned by the virus are no longer recognized as people, having lost their sense of humanity a long time ago, and the common response to seeing them is to kill on sight.

When a human contracts the virus, it begins to take over their body immediately, mutating genes and attacking regular body functions. Once the virus is in the bloodstream, it is impossible to save the victim. The virus is especially volatile because of its ability to mutate, often making it difficult to detect the virus upon initial contact. Eventually a bitten victim will succumb to the virus and become something not quite human. Although they are still alive, they lose all reasoning, becoming nothing more than animals fulfilling basic instincts. The only upside is that the virus can only be passed on through venom produced by an Infected's fangs; as long as there is no bite involved, people can often survive Infected attacks.

The turning period of a bitten victim can take up to a month to fully complete. They start as a Level I Newborn, and after turning they are classified as a Level II Hunter. Listed below are traits that all Infected share, no matter what level they are:
Enhanced Abilities
With strength, speed, stamina, and agility superior to humans, Infected are extremely dangerous if allowed to get close. They can overpower any human in hand-to-hand combat. Even the best trained Military officers don't stand a chance in a fight without the aid of weapons. The best method for dealing with Infected is to take them out from afar.
Heightened Senses
Along with enhanced abilities, Infected also have heightened senses rivaling that of any animal. All five of their senses are much stronger and more superior than humans', the perfect arsenal to make them dangerous.
Increased Healing
One of the most dangerous things about Infected is how the virus enhanced their body's ability to heal rapidly. Small wounds can heal in a matter of minutes, whereas injures that would normally be fatal for humans can be healed within a matter of hours. However, there are still limits to their healing ability. They cannot reattach or regrow lost limbs, and precision shots to either the heart or the head can kill them instantly.
Decreased Pain
Those infected with the virus gradually begin to feel less and less pain, and with each level mutation, the amount of pain able to be felt decreases dramatically. The dangerous aspect of this trait is that once Infected no longer feel pain, no non-fatal injuries are enough to slow them down.
Slow Aging
Surprisingly, the virus has a side effect of slowing an Infected's aging to a near negligble amount. Infected become almost frozen in time, staying at the age when they were bitten. It's uncertain if this inability to age has harmful side effects on an Infected's body.
Infected are nocturnal creatures, and prefer to hunt between the hours of sunset and sunrise. However, they are also opportunistic hunters, and will attack during the day if they sense any prey close by.
Night Vision
Because they prefer to be awake during the night, all levels of Infected are also able to see in the night, their vision similar to that of a cat's. They are not able to see fine detail or rich colour, but they can see well enough in pitch black darkness to be able to hunt with precise accuracy. Nighttime hours are the most dangerous time to encounter Infected.
Fangs / Venom
All Infected have fangs for feeding, but what kind of fangs differentiates depending on the level. The fangs have a similar structure as snake fangs, and can distribute venom through a bite. Most venom simply transfers the virus to the victim, but certain levels of Infected have different properties in their venom. Their venom also contains Draculin, a glycoprotein found in the saliva of vampire bats that prevents blood from clotting. Dangerous levels of this can cause victims to bleed out from even a small bite.
Anyone infected by the virus eventually becomes sterile, rendering the ability to have children impossible. The only way for Infected to "reproduce" is through biting and turning humans.
As years progressed after the initial outbreak, the scientific community became aware of the fact that the virus started to mutate. It changed and fluctuated in some, while others remained the same. Overtime, scientists and Military alike compiled a list of different "levels" of Infected. Each was separated from the rest because of characteristics unique to that certain level. While all Infected progress from Newborn to Hunter, the rest of the levels are not so consistent. For the unlucky ones, the virus degenerates and turns them into something worse, a Level III Feral. For others, the virus seems to mutate into an even more dangerous state, known as a Level IV Reaper. Yet for most, the virus simply never mutates, keeping them ranked as a Level II Hunter.

Only within the last decade has another level of Infected emerged: a Level V, nicknamed "Patient Zero". Although very little is known about them, they appear to have had the virus in their system long enough that it mutated once again into the most dangerous form of Infected. Their nickname comes from the fact that all of these Infected so far have turned out to be humans that were infected at the very start of the outbreak nearly a century ago. They were once Hunters or Reapers that evolved; Ferals seemingly cannot mutate further.

Listed below are the current known levels of Infected:
Common Infected
Level I — Newborns
These are the unlucky humans that have recently been exposed to the virus. It can take up to a week for symptoms to show, and another few weeks before the Infected finally succumbs to the virus. The turning period is recorded to be the most painful part of being infected, both physically as well as psychologically. Slowly they lose more and more of their humanity as their need to feed on human blood grows increasingly stronger. As the virus takes hold of their body, they slowly become physically stronger, with heightened senses and natural aging slowing to a halt. During the turning period it's impossible for an outsider to tell they've been infected, so long as the initial wound is hidden. While it isn't until the end of their turning period that they finally grow their venomous fangs, they still feel the need to bite and feed on others long before that happens.
  • They can often hide the fact they're Infected.
  • Newly infected, they retain their humanity through most of the transition period.
  • The changes that come with the virus don't always show until near the end.
  • Before their fangs grow in they cannot infect another person, but still feel the need to bite and feed on others.
Unique Traits
  • No distinguishable features.
  • No unique traits outside typical Infected traits.
Level II — Hunters
The most common form of Infected, they have given over completely to primal urges and retain very little humanity. They live and hunt like an animal, stalking their prey and hiding in wait until ready to attack. Generally Hunters only feed until full, then leave their victim to bleed out and die. The "lucky" ones survive, but contract the virus and later turn. Only a starved Hunter or a pack of Hunters feeding on the same victim have been known to intentionally kill a human. Hunters are usually recorded surviving on their own, most of the time scavenging human food to feed themselves. They only hunt for blood when the desire overtakes them, or the opportunity provides itself. While at this level, human food can still sustain them. However, the increased strength they get from the virus doesn't present itself unless they are fully fed on human blood.
  • Typically hunts alone, very rarely in packs.
  • They lay in wait and stalk their prey, sometimes retreating if they sense an unwinnable fight.
  • Most likely to leave their victims to bleed out and die. The "lucky" ones will live, but become Infected themselves.
  • Can survive on human food alongside blood.
  • May retain some of their humanity, but can no longer fight the virus.
Unique Traits
  • Sharp, elongated top lateral incisors, non-retractable.
  • Permanently dilated pupils, causing eyes to look completely black. Sensitive to bright light.
Mutated Infected
Level III — Ferals
The worst and most degenerate form of the virus naturally occurring in humans. For the unlucky Infected, sometimes the virus mutates and takes on a more lethal form. Those that become Feral lose all sense of being, becoming nothing more than a rabid animal that needs to hunt and kill. They crave blood, sometimes flesh as well, and will attack both humans and animals. They attack with the intent to kill, tearing their victims to shreds. The virus inside their bodies has mutated to the point that there's no known case of a person being turned by a Feral. Even if they survive the initial attack, the venom will kill them within the hour. Much like Patient Zeroes, they must consume blood to survive, as their body completely rejects other forms of nutrients. They cannot control their bloodlust, and some scientists claim they must continuously eat in order to survive.
  • Typically hunts in packs, very rarely alone.
  • Upon hearing or smelling prey, they will attack with wild abandon, working together to overwhelm their victim.
  • They tear and rip their victims to shreds. Non-lethal attacks will not infect, but rather kill within the hour.
  • Can survive on blood or flesh, and feel the constant need to hunt and feed.
  • The most mindless level of Infected.
Unique Traits
  • All teeth are elongated and sharp, made for ripping.
  • Venom contains toxins that kill within the hour. Unable to transmit virus to humans.
  • Sometimes scuttle around on all fours when not hunting.
Level IV — Reapers
The level that's most likely to turn humans, they are often described as the "breeders" of the Infected. Because Infected are sterile, they cannot reproduce by natural means. The only way they can grow their population is by turning humans. Reapers in particular have been recorded as infecting more humans than any other level. Their attack method is to infect as many as possible before retreating, often before they've even had a chance to properly feed. Their need for blood is greatly lessened compared to the rest of the levels, even Patient Zeroes. Reapers are considered to be the best hunters of all the levels, and often aren't spotted until it's already too late. They stay in groups with other Infected, whether it's other Reapers, Hunters, or even Ferals. It's very rare to find a Reaper on their own; they are often used by the Military as an indicator of an Infected nest being close by.
  • Typically surrounds self with other Infected.
  • Usually they are a good indictor of an Infected nest being close by.
  • Goal is always to turn as many victims as possible before retreating. Very rarely to feed and almost never to kill.
  • Can only survive on blood, but has a diminished need to feed.
  • Much more intelligent than Hunters, but still retains very little humanity.
Unique Traits
  • Sharp, elongated top and bottom lateral incisors, non-retractable. Can lock their jaw.
  • Sclera permanently black in colour.
  • Can control all bodily functions to mask presence, such as being able to hide from heat vision.
Level V — Patient Zeroes
Also colloquially known as Purebloods, they are humans that got infected at the start of the virus outbreak. They are rare and relatively still unknown, considering the lethal force the Military adopted towards the Infected. Those that have survived long enough have adapted and become an entirely new species altogether. They require blood to survive, not just desire it, and often times can no longer stomach human food. They are stronger, faster, and have regained a more human mentality once more. Their cells have mutated to the point that regular scans of the virus at checkpoints can no longer pick it up in their body. They've gained the ability to blend in once more and many have already returned back to society. This level of Infected is relatively unknown to people outside the Military or Military-run science labs currently studying Infected and the virus.
  • Typically avoid others of their kind.
  • Outside of the Military, most of society is unaware this level of Infected exists.
  • They've regained their humanity and can once more blend back into society.
  • Although their bloodlust is greatly diminished, they still require blood to feed, and can no longer stomach human food.
  • They can selectively choose if they want to use venom turn someone.
Unique Traits
  • Second set of elongated, sharp incisors hidden in gumline. Retractable, can hide and reveal fangs at whim.
  • Eyes change colour to either yellow, red, or black when hungry, or with heightened emotions.
  • Can control the makeup of their venom. Able to choose whether to turn victim or not. Can also create proteins in venom that acts as either a sedative or an aphrodesiac.
Other Infected
Level X