. MyHPC/My Documents/Storyline.Doc . . . Game Storyline:In the relatively near future, Earth's population skyrockets, soaring up to nearly 10 ½ billion. Any dreams of interplanetary colonisation are dashed when it is proved that neither Mars nor the more promising of Jupiter and Saturn's moons have the necessary resources to support Human habitation. However, a global network of satellites and orbiting space stations is established, opening huge broadband communication nets and allowing the transfer of huge amounts of information right around the globe. In space, a number of companies are staking out claims on asteroids in the search for heavy metals, such as nickel, which are becoming scarce on earth. These companies are assisted by generous government subsidies, provided by both the EU, AFS (African Federation of Sates) and the PPTO (Pan-Pacific Treaty Organisation), a union of the most powerful economic states (and some not so powerful) bordering the pacific ocean. Back on earth, the Aids virus has been conquered, along with cancer, but chronic overpopulation is taking its toll on the earth. Many countries now house huge super metropolises, a melange of High rise apartment buildings and slums, which spread out across the nearby landscape. In Australia, made economically powerful by its ownership of the last coal and oil fields in the world (located in Antarctica), an ultra conservative government, reflecting the ideas of thrift and conservation present in this world of little resources, holds sway. Under pressure from its 136 million inhabitants, and realising the political advantage inherent in it, they introduce a clean up Australia campaign, with the express purpose of rehabilitating the growing wayward youths on the streets or in the nations dangerously overcrowded prison system. At least quarter a million young people, maybe more, are rounded up and dispatched to the 'Shrapner Institute' the most advanced institution in the Asia-Pacific area involved in the science of Neural-Alteration, quite literally a form of brainwashing. As this is an infant science, mortality rates among the patients are extremely high, and those who survive often go mad, loosing all vestiges of sentience and reverting to a primitive state. Those few who are successfully 'rehabilitated' are paraded to the public, showing off their perfect manners and thanking the Shrapner Institution for 'saving' them. The public didn't seem to care about the discrepancy between the amount of kids going in, and the number coming out. As one politician succinctly put it "As long as the little shits were off the street, no could care what happened to them."
The government, of course, was entirely satisfied with this arrangement, for along with the kudos the received for rehabilitating wayward young people they obtained test subjects for both military and medical research. Another profitable sideline was the research into human-machine symbioses, essentially constructing machines that interfaced directly with the brain, which the government hoped to put to a military purpose, and the investigation into ESP and telekinesis.
A young girl of fifteen years, who goes by the name of Chloe Taylor, is committed to the Shrapner institute for the relatively major crime of ‘technological fraud’, in the simplest of terms, hacking ATM machines. Train transfers her to the Shrapner Institutes Depot, before being ferried by lorry to a holding cell. She befriends few people, but sees scenes of horrible brutality around her; guards attacking the young inmates; children refused medical aid; the detainees packed into tiny cells. Then the inmates in her section start disappearing, and as the wardens drag them out many are told that they will now be ‘cured’. Rumours start spreading about the rehabilitation process going horribly wrong, causing the subjects to go catatonic, or even worse, remain alive and mobile, but with no consciousness present. A minor riot ensues, and she witnesses a number of inmates being shot or being led away to an impromptu reconditioning. Finally her time comes; during the middle of the night guards drag her away from her cell, taking her to some sort of medical ward, where she is stripped bare and subjected to a number of pathological tests, to ascertain her blood type, heart rate and other bodily functions. Finally she is garbed in a pair of blue hospital pyjamas, before being led to an operating theatre where she is put under an anaesthetic….
…When she comes to she is bound to some type of chair, in a large circular room that has an observation tower in its centre. Her head is bandaged, and the back of her skull throbs fiercely. She feels a metalic presence at the base of her neck and, craning her head she sees a bundle of wires trailing out behind her. A dozen or so inmates, each in the same condition as her, occupy other parts if the room.
Then the order is given to start the Reconditioning, and as the pain in the back of her skull increases, she screams. Suddenly alarms begin to sound. Scientists who were simply observing begin to clutch at their heads in agony. Through the cacophony of sirens she hears a voice shout out, "We’re getting Retributive Feedback", before the head of every person present explodes. Understandably, Chloe blacks out.
When she awakes she has been released, the bonds that held her open automatically, and she stumbles out of the chair. Absentmindedly her hand flicks to the back of her head and pulls free a tangle of wire. Her probing fingers confirm her suspicions; three plugs have been sunk into the base of her neck. She shudders as she takes stock of her surroundings. The bodies of the inmates, and the scientists (minus their heads) lie slumped against walls or on the floor. Pools of blood, already congealing, cover the shiny stainless steel floor. She takes a step forward and hears something crunch against her foot. It’s a tooth. Images flash across her mind, the bruised and broken body of an inmate beaten to death by wardens, the slumping body of a young child, the victim of a failed reconditioning, being drawn past on a mortuary trolley. She’s inexplicably angry, imbued with a sense of purpose.
She has a Neural-Circuit interface, the ability to upload knowledge from computers almost instantly. She’s a hacker and has a quick mind. She can run, dodge, strafe and has a burning desire to learn to use a gun.
She is Chloe Taylor, once an innocent street hacker, now the key to the Shrapner Institute’s destruction, and she will have revenge.
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