Scope of the Outbreak/Timeline

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Antediluvial, Jun 3, 2014.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. This was an inconsistency that always bothered me.

    "We need you to nuke the city...but first, we're going to need you to collect samples from these freaks. Time is of the essence! The zeds are spreading faster than ever, but seriously, go get those samples first."
  2. Kiel555

    Kiel555 Here To Help

    I draw your attention to exhibit A. That is the fireball that consumed the WHOLE city if you went with Sassy's plan. You can go on and on about what type of device that was and it's capabilities BUT it looks like it leveled the city upon detonation.
  3. Bond Servant

    Bond Servant Here To Help

    The plastic explosives need to go off at the same time for compression while the gas is being injected into the center. If the timing is off on one of the explosive points, you will not get the desired result. At least that was how they worked back in the 80s. And yes the gas they used was one of the things they had to change out of them on a regularly scheduled basis. The mix of the gases was classified and probably still is.

    I disagree because I worked with ones just that size. Don't know if they retired them. Plus, if anything, I would think they would be able to make smaller ones than that. I agree that it would be very hard to get a nuke that is in the custody of the armed services, however, it is a line of thought that can be explored further.

    Good observations, this. I too believe it may have been used to cover up rather than destroy zeds, who were already spread beyond the city by the time the nuke went off.
  4. QMJS

    QMJS Famous

    Yeah, the apparent fireball covers most of the city, but that brings us back to another question: How big is Danforth?

    If it is physically the size of Seattle (652k people in 142.5 square miles or 369 square kilometers) it would take a 100 Mt ground burst ground burst for the fireball to cover 31% of the city.
    If it is physically the size of San Francisco (big population densely packed into a small area - 852K people in 46.9 square miles or 121 square kilometers) it would take a 100 Mt ground burst for the fireball to cover 96% of the city.
    If it is physically the size of Hartford (125k people in 17.3 square miles or 44.8 square kilometers) it would only take a 15 Mt ground burst for the fireball to cover 96% of the city.

    100 Mt bombs have been designed, in theory, but nothing larger than 50 Mt has ever been actually built and tested.

    A 1 MT bomb produces a fireball covering 1.13 square miles.

    The bomb he has can't possibly be that big.

    Look at this picture... these are the retired 170Kt w62 MIRVs from a Minuteman III missile. (253lb warhead) The current ICBM warheads in use are the w87 300kt warhead (440-600 lbs.) and the w78 350Kt warhead (700-800 lbs.) Now, it is hard to get an actual size comparison, but the one he has on that cart looks considerably smaller than these to me.

    That 170 Kt bomb produces a fireball covering a radius of about 2,000 ft, 0.46 square miles on surface impact. The small suburb I live in has 5800 people in 1.0 square miles... it would take two of those for the fireball to cover it.

    Other effects are obviously a lot bigger than that.

    Last edited: May 12, 2015
    Bond Servant likes this.
  5. Kiel555

    Kiel555 Here To Help

    I'd say Danforth is comparable to Yakima, Washington in size. So about 100,000 population and 28 sq mi. Plus, the city appears to have a really high population density per sq mi within the beltway. Lots of high rise apt. buildings. Whereas the peripheral suburbs are small neighborhoods consisting of single family homes. So it really is just that area within the beltway that has to be taken out to eliminate most of the zeds.
  6. Bond Servant

    Bond Servant Here To Help

    What is interesting is the W62 W78 and W87 were the years they were developed. Scary huh that w62, introduced in 1962 were all still around until the 1980s when they were retired. The W78 was refurbished and kept in service and the W87 was not in service when I was in.

    Even though the fireball is small the blast would probably take out a heck of a lot of zeds thru head injury.
  7. QMJS

    QMJS Famous

    Yes, I think it is safe to say that the other effects would certainly be devastating, but the size of the fireball is just artistic license.

    Fooling around with Nukemap, dropping a 170kt surface burst right outside the Yakima Regional Medical & Cardiac Center results in about 40k fatalities and almost 33k injuries. That seems to be about as high as I could find...

    Kiel, are you familiar with that city, or is it one you found while searching for a likely candidate?

    And that site is sort of depressing. Informative though.
  8. Bond Servant

    Bond Servant Here To Help

  9. Kiel555

    Kiel555 Here To Help

    I've been to Yakima but I'm not saying it's an exact match for the fictional city of Danforth. Just comparable in size is all. Danforth is located in Washington state just East of that mountain range that is East of Seattle. There are not any huge cities there but Yakima seems about right for that region.
  10. Mr.Atoz

    Mr.Atoz Got Your Back


    I realize this is getting off topic but here are few more ideas

    As you know mutagens are point sources or causes for mutation...they generally wouldn't facilitate epidemics and spreading unless the mutagen is applied and reapplied everywhere OR involves the creation of an infectious form via mutation in an existing microorganism. Ordinarily I don't think mutagens, or their effects, transfer between individuals unless there's reproduction ( ie 2 zeds fall in love and beget a lil zed OR infectious bug is created ). According to Eldridge they had been looking for conventional bug types but had been unsuccessful. So it seems to me this apocalypse may be better explained by genetic engineering. For example something like gene transfer ( gene therapy ). There are very small things out there, smaller than viruses, that are not really alive, eg. prions and plasmids... which can carry/transfer/inject genetic material ( any snippet we wish ) into the DNA of a recipient. Like viruses ( which also can/does transfer genetic material ) these things can reproduce on their own in suitable environments so better lend themselves to an epidemic type setting. The snippet(s) would be a blueprint for any number of changes in any number of recipients ( aka Horn's views on simple life defining more complex forms when viewed as modification instructions). In reality this can be anything from inert additions of DNA, to surreal physiological and physical changes ( eg. glowing mice )...including interestingly enough the production of massive amounts of tissue ( proteins = muscle ) by hijacked cells. This might easily explain the individual, and collective, freak biodiversity we see.

    Perhaps the HFF or Dantron Industries ( because those open crates are intriguing to me to say the least ) had an inclination to conduct some gene transfer experiments to build the human they think we will/should evolve into eg either simply modifying human DNA or splicing human and something else ( perhaps even extraterrestrial? )...and it went awry and a version(s) got out somehow. I would assume the general purpose of a HFF experiment would involve eugenics of some sort. Incidentally, as an aside there are 4 levels or classes of biosafety for labs working with serious pathogens...coincidence, probably?

    I believe I read somewhere that UL stated there wasn't a single event or source for the apocalypse...or something to that perhaps my conjecture above conflicts with this....nevertheless.

    Another glitch are the origins and purpose behind the CLEO drops which I can't explain currently. They lead me in a different direction completely. I have concluded they are an effective yet insidious way to further reduce the number of humans on the planet ( not just because I suck as a player ). Now who would want to do that?:rolleyes:
    Rock33B and Sailorwolf like this.
  11. QMJS

    QMJS Famous

    The Dantron crate is just an easter egg... a reference to the forum member Dantron. There were a handful of references in the base game, and many more appeared in Lifeline.

    I agree with you that this is the result of genetic engineering, but there are some technical concepts of genetic engineering that limit the processes that you were discussing.

    Prions and plasmids can't reproduce on their own.

    A prion is a protein or protein fragment that is conformationally incorrect, in that some of the folds of the protein exist in the opposite direction of what they normally form. (Like a paper airplane with half of the folds done in the wrong direction.) This makes them indigestible by normal cellular proteases, so they accumulate into amyloids plaques which essentially clog up the insides of the affected cell, causing damage. The host cell must produce the normal, correctly-folding protein in order to become affected... the misfolded prion essentially collides with the correctly folded proteins in the cells and 'pushes' their conformation out of place, so that more and more damaged protein accumulates. (The process can be visualized somewhat like an umbrella being blown past it's normal open position by a strong wind, turning it inside-out.)

    Plasmids are active only in bacteria. Plasmids can be released into the environment by bacteria during a process known as transformation, but they only affect other bacteria. A plasmid is basically a circular piece of DNA... other cell types use linear DNA strands, and are unable to process the circular DNA. They can't reproduce on their own, but are copied much like standard chromosomes during bacterial division. You can place a gene into a plasmid, and introduce that plasmid into a different bacteria, and the gene will be expressed, but this only works in bacteria. (EDIT: You can, in genetic engineering, introduce a plasmid into a non-bacterial host. Typically, you need to isolate the host cells in a solution and chemically treat them to open larger 'holes' in the cell membrane (and cell wall for plant cells)... this can allow the relatively large plasmid into the cell. Then, if you also have the enzyme which breaks the circle of the plasmid, it acts as a standard DNA strand and can be used by the host cell. But, this is entirely laboratory driven, and can't be done outside the laboratory. The modified cells can be collected and grown as tissue colonies, or in the case of plants, can developed eventually into seedling clones.)

    The only direct gene-changing biologicals are viruses, and then only the specific type of retroviruses. Most viruses inject RNA into a host cell, which the host cell's enzymes begin to replicate and transcribe, producing additional copies of the RNA strand and the protein coat, which combine to produce new virus particles. The lack of cellular-specific terminators on the RNA strand makes it reusable. Normal RNA is transcribed once and then is broken down into its base components. This process continues until the host cell is overwhelmed by copies of the RNA strand, each requiring transcription, resulting in the host cell being unable to maintain its normal function. By this time, the cell is typically stuffed with excess protein... which causes it to absorb extra water to become isotonic again, and eventually it pops like an overfilled balloon, releasing the many new virus copies.

    Retroviruses use a different mechanism. They are RNA viruses, but the first product the host makes from the RNA is reverse transcriptase, an enzyme which causes the viral RNA to be translated into DNA. That DNA then merges with the host cell's DNA, and at this point is called a provirus. When the cell produces RNA from its DNA, the provirus is also copied, and this produces new copies of the retrovirus and its protein coat. However, the retrovirus produced from the host provirus may have neighboring genes from the host attached. These will be carried into the next cell that is infected by the newly made retrovirus.

    Normal cell function proceeds from DNA > RNA > protein. Most viruses proceed from RNA > RNA copy > protein. Retroviruses use RNA > DNA > RNA > Protein.

    So, by inserting a gene into an already existing retrovirus, it can be carried into a target cell that is infected by the retrovirus, effectively inserting that gene into the host cell.
    Last edited: May 13, 2015
  12. Kiel555

    Kiel555 Here To Help

    Best I can tell from boots on the ground in Danforth is the following:

    Whatever causes the dead to rise is contracted by inhaling bloater gas. In concentrated form this gas can make the person immediately ill and they may die without medical treatment. The "agent" that causes reanimation then remains dormant until the host dies at which time the "agent" reanimates the body (so long as the person did not die of massive head trauma) as a zed, feral, big un, screamer or bloater. The transformation takes place after death.

    The zed then employs a type of combined arms to spread the "agent". The standard zed is used to case death to facilitate reanimation. The feral is used to rapidly engage more capable soldiers (namely the one the player controls) over weaker targets. The big un is designed to destroy static fortifications to allow regular zeds to enter a facility through the breach, the screamer is a unit designed to bring all available mass to the point of decision (calls in reinforcements until resistance is neutralized) and this is so the bloater can successfully deliver it's payload to the target and detonate.

    Best guess is this is a bio-weapon that got loose. The rapid response of a CLEO team suggests that containment was tried and failed. The initial CLEO team was KIA and the automated CLEO drops are all that remain of their failed mission in the source of the outbreak which is Danforth. A second CLEO team appears to have been sent to Trumbull Valley but was also lost.
    Rock33B and Sailorwolf like this.
  13. Have we ever talked about this piece of code?:
        <ConsumableDefinition AutoEquip="0" CanBlazeOfGlory="0" EntityClass="Junk">
            <NoteText Flags="" Notes="" Text="Strain 854b shows a remarkable resistance to traditional antibiotic countermeasures. Estimated probability of successful containment: 13.48%" />
          <HudIcon Name="Notes" Id="23" />
          <InventoryItemData DestroySound="sounds/ui:ui_assign_item:paper_destroy" Encumbrance="0" EquipSound="sounds/ui:ui_assign_item:paper_assign" Id="Note_Strain854" UnequipSound="sounds/ui:ui_assign_item:paper_remove" Value="1">
            <NameText Flags="" Notes="" Text="Note" />
            <DescriptionText Flags="" Notes="" Text="Black pen on a heavily redacted CDC NORS (WDT) form." />
            <InventoryIcon Name="Item_Notes" Id="243" />
        <ConsumableDefinition AutoEquip="0" CanBlazeOfGlory="0" EntityClass="Junk">

    The only important parts to this are the description-"Black pen on a heavily redacted CDC NORS (WDT) form."
    And the actual note- "Strain 854b shows a remarkable resistance to traditional antibiotic countermeasures. Estimated probability of successful containment: 13.48%"

    I did a quick search and Strain 854b doesn't seem to be anything in real life.
  14. QMJS

    QMJS Famous

    I think we did at one point. There are a couple of things that show that there are early attempts to figure out what it is. That form belongs to the Centers for Disease Control National Outbreak Reporting System (

    That one serves to show that whatever it is, it is unlikely to be bacterial, and with what they know about its current rate of spread, they don't think there is much of a chance that they will be able to keep it isolated. I think the most interesting part is that at the time, they thought that they might have actually had it contained... there was still a chance it wouldn't have spread farther than it had already. This is perhaps another indication that Trumbull/Danforth may have been where it was initially detected.
  15. Dantron's box was the containment unit perhaps.
    There's also no airports in either map, so if it were trying to get to Trumbull Valley or Danforth it would have to be by boat (Danforth Port) or by car for both. And again, the bigger question is what exactly happened in the plane to make it crash in the first place? Was there someone traveling with the box who opened it on accident, releasing the virus early?
  16. QMJS

    QMJS Famous

    There is an airport in Trumbull... just not on the map. One of the signs along the road (I think it is on the main road, between the two entrances to Marshall) advertises helicopter lessons at the airport. I assume it is somewhere outside that army barrier... with the rest of the schools, malls, hospitals, factories, offices, and such that must be somewhere nearby.

    I have no evidence at all to support the idea... but I always thought that the airplane was shot down, probably a bunch of people trying to escape Danforth, and shot down to prevent them from spreading it further somewhere else. Or perhaps someone on the plane did turn and caused havoc inside... but I thought of it as an outgoing, not incoming, aircraft. But, again, just a feeling, no evidence for it really.
  17. Oh I had missed that, I'll keep an eye out for that next time I get on.

    Actually, now that I'm thinking about it, IF it was someone on the inside, it would have to be a Freak Mutation, not a regular. My reasoning is that unless the zeds inside had ripped up the mechanics or structure of the plane, the only way they could crash it would be by getting to the Pilots, which are protected by a security door. I doubt the average human (let alone zombie) would be able to bust through that, so a Feral or even a Biggun would have to be the culprit. And that's quite a scary thought.
  18. douglas herd

    douglas herd Starting Off

    i've been skimmed this thread from the start. it gets a bit confusing when it is merged with other threads.
    just wanted to add some things i had thought..
    crashed helicopter in mashall is a air ambulance i believe. not a news helicopter.
    i always asumed the plane was trying to emergancy land when it hit the chopper (making it crash into the house). causing the front wheel the fall off, which in turn made the bus crash causing my favourite off ramp near snyders to be formed.

    and to the later stuff. wouldnt they use a neutron bomb rather than an normal nuke? reasoanble blast. not toooo big but wipe out all life...or unlife, in a large area?
    im a barman. my knowlege of neutron bombs is based on "what some bloke in a pub told me"

    and also for the outbreak i thought some pharmacutical company was to blame...i thought you got hints of this in lifeline. like they found some prehistoric virus or something preserved in permafrost from the original glacier that formed trumbull valley. and them modifying it for new things. it made me think of them making pills for special effects like better athletes. or allround better for soldiers, weight control and all those other pharmacutical company thingumies. and when this mixed with the normal zed infection , meby caused by the unaltered virus/microbe/parasite it created freaks.

    i'm aware this post could have been writen better...i've not slept for 4 days, i've started to get a little disjointed in my thinking. aint insomnia fun:)
  19. QMJS

    QMJS Famous

    Short answer, we don't have any more. The last ones were dismantled in 2003.

    Yeah, insomnia is a terrible thing. I get it myself every now and then.
  20. Sailorwolf

    Sailorwolf Famous

    The one wheel came off the jetliner when it clipped that little rise by the highway. The Marshall chopper crash was from someone on board turning zed in flight....because if the plane clipped it hard enough to lose a landing gear the chopper would be in pieces and couldn't have made it that far.
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page