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Doctor Zero!


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Ok so now Synth is - or will soon be archived (not bad, but didn't quite hit the spot, not enough story engine), I am tossing about alternatives. I have an emryonic idea here - an 80s Soviet Superhero, all fanatic brainwashed communist and cheesy sexed up 80s TV doctor/super spy. 


Awakes from frozen slumber (yes, its a mirror image of Cap America in some ways). A man out of time in the city of tomorrow. 


I'd like comments and ideas etc on how to spice the guy up and make him fun. I certainly don't want a dull grey Communist hero, I'm thinking Barbara Bach in the Spy Who Loved Me - or Doctor Killdare or Charlies Angels type of flavour. Just with "Long live the Proleteriat!" monologues. 



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Player Name: Supercape (Platinum Reward)
Character Name:  Doctor Zero
Power Level: 10/12 (180/180PP)
Trade-Offs: None
Unspent Power Points: 0
Progress To Bronze Status: 0/30
In Brief: Communist Hero frozen in the 80s, now thawed!
Alternate Identity: Doctor Lev Losev
Identity: Secret
Birthplace: Moscow, Russia
Occupation: Physician
Affiliations: None
Family: None (Alive)

Age: 60 (DoB: 03/03/1953)
Apparent Age: 30
Gender: Male
Ethnicity: Caucasian
Height: 6’1â€
Weight: 100Kgs
Eyes: Blue
Hair: Brown
Doctor Zero is a handsome, square jawed tall man with a magnificent physique. He is muscular and broad chested, with a triangular shape. His hair is short and wavy, and his eyes a glistening blue. He looks a picture of health. 
Power Descriptions:
Doctor Zero’s powers are fundamentally invisible – being augmented strength, agility, intelligence, and heightened senses. He uses three devices: a sleek looking pistol with a faint blue glow on either side (his freeze gun), that fires various ice and cold based powers, his costume – which includes noisy boot jets, and a mask which includes enhanced vision and can glow red when used. 


Doctor Losev was a skilled and intelligent physician and psychologist, destined for great things in the USSR. Born and brought up in the height of the cold war, he quickly lapped up soviet doctrine and propaganda, and became a valuable asset to the state. The combination of talent, dedication, and loyalty soon had him transferred, with full honours, to a top secret research station in Siberia with the honorary title of captain in the Russian army. 
Here, he worked on the Soviet super-soldier programme, alongside their special forces and special weapon programmes. Ultimately, he developed his formula, and, in the spirit of all fanatical scientists, used it on himself. The serum dramatically improved his physical and intellectual abilities. Serum Zero, as it was called, started to be rolled out into the soviet agencies, but by this time, the research had come to the attention of Mastermind, who wished to appropriate such dangerous technologies for himself. The supervillain supercriminal soon saw to it that the Siberian research station was destroyed from within, by sabotage, and mopped up with mercenaries disguised as Americans. 
What was Doctor Losev to do when the prize of the USSR was attacked by America? In a flash, he rescued the armoured suit and Freezonium pistol of the special weapons division, and went to serve his country as Doctor Zero!
Alas, strong as he was, he was no match for the Mastermind and his cunning plans. He fought bravely, but the facility was lost. Seeking revenge, he flew after the strange craft (that he believed was American), over the Arctic. It was here that he ran out of fuel, and collapsed, thundering into the freezing wastes. 
This would have killed any man, but not Doctor Zero.  The special formula he had been subjected to put him into a state of suspended animation. Here, he would sleep for thirty years until found by a Norwegian Survey Team…
 Personality & Motivation:
It may be well into the 21st Century, with communism collapsed, but not in Doctor Zero’s mind! He is not strictly speaking a nationalist (although he is fond of Russia), but he is a political fanatic. For all his mighty intellect, Doctor Zero is not particularly sensible. 
Whilst his politics and ideals collide with the modern world, his ethics do not. He is all about protecting the common man, stamping down on criminals (in this respect he is quite right wing by today’s standards), and eliminating corruption. For all his idealism – and this is important - he is a hero. He would lay down his life to protect an innocent. 
Powers & Tactics:
Doctor Zero prefers to fight tactically if at all possible, carefully planning an attack to use surprise, deception, and superior positioning. He has considerable military training and a superhuman intellect that he would always like to use – for the pleasure of narcissism as much as the tactical edge. Having said that, he can never resist a monologue on politics or ethics to a foe if at all possible. 
When fighting, he will usually use his freeze gun to incapacitate his enemy first. He prefers not to injure if possible (as a doctor, even a military one, he prefers to use minimal damage). If disarmed he is still an able hand to hand fighter. 
Brainwashed: His time working for ultra-secret Soviet projects meant he had to undergo extensive psychological “programmingâ€. It is feasible that some subconscious directives, triggers, or knowledge lurks under the veneer of rationalism if somebody found out how to manipulate him…
Member of the Communist Party: Doctor Zero is a fanatic communist who loves to lecture on the evils of corrupt capitalism. Issues such as freedom of speech and democracy are not on the agenda for him (as in he neither opposes them nor advocates them). Even his alter Ego is a member of the communist party of America.  As such he experiences fear and suspicion, and often comes into open conflict with “the systemâ€. 
Monologue: In conjunction with his beliefs, he is a lover of oration and speech, pausing at vital moments to lecture his opponent and thus allowing them to time to recover and counter attack or escape. 
Hippocratic Oath: As a physician, Doctor Zero will always do his best to heal and help the injured, even his enemies. 
Out of Gas: His suits jet-boots have only limited fuel, about five minutes worth of full flight. Its enough for short jaunts, but he can’t fly long distances on them. 
Dried out: Freezonium, the mysterious chemical that powers his ice gun, is able to induce extreme cold. However, to produce ice (the snare, obscure, and blast effects) requires at least some moderate amount of humidity in the atmosphere. In very dry environments, or air-sealed environments, this can run out very quickly, meaning he would be unable to create ice. Even in humid environments, ultimately the gun will run out of Freezonium ammunition. 

Abilities: 16 + 16 + 12 + 16 + 2 + 6 = 68PP

Strength: 26 (+8)

Dexterity: 26 (+8)

Constitution: 22 (+6)

Intelligence: 26 (+6)

Wisdom: 12 (+1)

Charisma: 16 (+3)           



Combat: 20 + 20 = 40PP

Initiative: +8

Attack: +10

Grapple: +18

Defense: +10 (+10 Base), +5 Flat-Footed

Knockback: -5



Saving Throws: 2 + 0 + 5 = 7PP

Toughness: +10 (+6 Con, +4 Costume)

Fortitude: +8 (+6 Con, +2)

Reflex: +8 (+8 Dex)

Will: +6 (+1 Wis, +5)



Skills: 68R = 17PP

Intimidate 8 (+11)

Knowledge (Behaviour Sciences) 8 (+16)

Knowledge (Life Sciences) 14 (+22)

Knowledge (Tactics) 4 (+12)

Language  4 (English, French, German, Mandarin, Russian [Native])

Medicine 8 (+9)

Notice 8 (+9)

Perform (Oratory) 2 (+5)

Survival 4 (+5)


Feats: 6PP


Benefit (Use Tactics Skill for Master Plan)


Jack of All Trades

Master Plan

Uncanny Dodge (Auditory)



Powers: 0 + 0 + 0 = 0PP
Device 7 (Ice Gun, 35PP Container; Flaws: Easy to Lose ) [21PP]
Freezonium Array (32 PP Array Feats: Alternate Power 3 ) [35PP]
Ice X: Snare 10 ( Extras: Contagious Feats: Tether, Ricochet; Drawbacks: Destroyed with any heat/fire damage (-1)) {31PP}
Ice Bolt: Blast 10 ( Extras: Autofire;  Feats: Richochet) {31PP }
Zero Ray: Paralyse 10 (Extras: Ranged [ b]) {30PP }
Blizzard Bomb : Obscure 10 (Snow Extras: Independent (+0) Feats: Slow Fade 1 [1 minute]) linked with Environmental Control 10 (Extreme cold Extras: Independent (+0) Feats: Slow Fade 1 [1 minute] ) {16+16=32PP}
Device 3 (Suit; 15PP Container  Flaws: Hard-To-Lose, ) [12PP]
Flight 5 (250mph ) [10PP]
Immunity 1 (Ice X) [1PP]
Protection 4 [4PP]
Device 1 (Mask; 5PP Container Flaws: Easy to lose ) [3PP]
Super-Senses 5 (Direction Sense, Infravision, Microscopic Vision 2 [Cell Sized], Ultravision )] [5PP]
Immunity 1  (Environmental Cold) [1PP]
Immunity 2  (Aging, Poison Flaws:Limited to half effect ) [1PP]
Quickness 2 (x5 Speed Flaws:Limited to mental ) [1PP]
Super Senses 3  (Extended normal hearing [x10], Extended all vision [x10] (B)) [3PP]
 Drawbacks: (-0) + (-0) = -0PP
Totals: Abilities (68) + Combat (40) + Saving Throws (7) + Skills (68) + Feats (6) + Powers (42) - Drawbacks (0) = 180/180 Power Points
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One thing you may want to adjust is the name, unless you want them being associated with Freedom's Most Wanted's Madame Zero(unless that's the idea). Anyway, I'd suggest him having at least a few living relatives, since the 1950s weren't so long ago any relations would have died out.


Otherwise, looks like a great start to me!

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-How does he get along with Comrade Frost?

-How does he relate to the several heroes in the city who aren't just heroes, but also capitalists? 

-Does he actively campaign for his politics to be put in power, or merely speechify at every opportunity?

-What motivates him to be a hero in Freedom City, rather than in Russia?

-What motivates him to be a superhero, rather than trying to be a sort of "secret agent" again?


Not trying to pressure or anything, but these are some of the questions that come to mind that seem like they need thought about. 

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Thanks for thoughts KD, my musings are:



How does he get along with Comrade Frost?


He probably, but not necessarily, knows of Comrade Frost, but there is probably only a window of a few years where they worked together and from Frosts biopic he was in Afghanistan at the time. Zero was frozen in early 80s and only worked for the USSR in an official capacity for a few years. How does he get along with him now is an interesting, but perhaps redundant question. I think in his mind Russia is dead. 


-How does he relate to the several heroes in the city who aren't just heroes, but also capitalists? 


Badly, of course. But not violently. They are captalistic scumbag leeches - but legal ones. Would he work with them? of course. Would he lecture them? of course. Agent XXX and Bond worked together in the Spy who loved me, after all!


-Does he actively campaign for his politics to be put in power, or merely speechify at every opportunity?


That is an interesting question, and one that merits thought. I don't see him as a scheming mastermind. The cold war is over. But on the other hand, he would probably support all socialist and communist political movements actively - perhaps on a micro level as well as a macro one - like supporting unions and some charities. 


-What motivates him to be a hero in Freedom City, rather than in Russia?


Again, this is an interesting question. First off, I view him as rather disgusted with Russia. Second, Freedom City is where it is at, science wise. But this is a problem. I would appreciate any thoughts on making this a stronger narrative.


-What motivates him to be a superhero, rather than trying to be a sort of "secret agent" again?


I think he, in his head, was always a superhero rather than a spy. He just worked with spies. And, as the cold war is over, the need to be a secret agent is done. For all communisms countless flaws, in reality they fought against Hitler, and in his head he fights against tyranny and oppression. He is a "man of the people" which is pretty Superheroic!

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I guess the first thing that jumps to my mind is the worry that he'll always be speechifying about how Awesome Communism Is. I'm not accusing you, mind, but as written he seems really intense about this. 

I bring that up as I have a character with a rather specific worldview that he could speechify about, but that might make him less desirable to thread with (for various reasons); Gabriel's speechifying tends to focus on "you bad guys are going down!". 

So the big thing I would say is try to think out how he'll approach things. 

I mean, if the entire thread he's going to be berating Fenris as a "laptop of the Capitalist Oppressor" and so on, I don't think I, as a player, want to really put up with that. I'm not sure I'd want to have an entire thread of him telling Gabriel that religion is the "opiate of the masses" or whatnot. 

I'm not saying I wouldn't thread with him, but just pointing out that, at least in actual play, some moderation might be in order.

I'd point out that Gabriel was peacefully present in at least two threads with Equinox, who definitely doesn't share his philosophical religious point of view, but there wasn't any name-calling going on. 

The goal is you want a person other Characters would at least be willing to work with, so you have to consider how they'd interact with them. 

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I'm also concerned about the political leaning thing, not as an inherent thing, but because it seems to be such a huge part of the character's make-up, which we've in the past said we're not too keen on.


Although if your intention isn't real world communism, but as you say cheesy 80s TV FILTHY COMMIES/James Bond movie communism, I've got less of a concern, as that's less of a real world trigger for arguments.

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As you say, its the latter. 


On a more constructive note, has anybody any thoughts on how to fit this guy into Freedom City? I had the vague notion of "Russia is dead, Communism is dead..." kind of schema in his head, but I would like to firm this up. 


And on that note, how to firm up his other aspects (80s sexed up cheese? spying? relationship to personal wealth and comfort?) this character is only half formed as yet. 

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Make a connection to Red Death II, the "Lois Lane snaps and grabs a supervillain's gear" legacy NPC. (She's using the gear of Red Death I, a Soviet supervillain of a previous generation) - perhaps Comrade Zero was a friend of the original and wants to bring his legacy to an end. Sure, RD1 was a no-fooling bad guy, but that's just further reason why these kids today shouldn't be running around wearing his colors...) 

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