(Capcom's primary storyline)
Nemesis Alpha, or the "NE-α Type" was a parasitic species genetically-engineered by Umbrella Europe. Though useless for its physical capacity as a B.O.W., the Nemesis Project staff created this species as a work-around for brain damage and mental degradation, a common result of t-Virus infection. In successful parasitisation processes, NE-α demonstrate human-level intelligence and self-awareness, and could manipulate its host into handling weapons.[excerpt 1]
The Nemesis Project's origins lie in the early to mid 1980s. Umbrella USA was pioneering B.O.W. development with the intention of supplying products that were suitable for the US military. The deciding factor on this was the issue of intelligence, rather than of raw power, as a powerful B.O.W. with limited intelligence would be unreliable. R&D projects which created the Chimera and Web Spinner were declared failures due to this issue. While the Cerberus and Hunter projects showed promise, each animal was only able to learn a few basic commands from their trainer and so were insufficient. Umbrella's bio-weapons research began to move into "Phase 3" of its research, with the creation of B.O.W.s of human-equivalent intelligence. The inspiration of the project was that of Las Plagas, a parasitic species present in regional Spanish folklore which would hook itself to the spinal cord to control or influence the host, and break out through the neck to defend themselves if need be. The NE-α were genetically engineered to mimic these qualities.
The Nemesis Project itself was overseen by Umbrella Europe, and aimed to complete "Phase 3" research by developing an intelligent parasite rather than an intelligent and powerful organism. This parasite would then be placed within the head of an existing B.O.W. and take over its mental functions as a replacement brain. Unfortunately, no B.O.W. in 1988 existed which could survive this process, and all test-subjects perished after some five minutes, perhaps along with the parasites themselves.
The first successful attempt took place at Umbrella USA's Arklay Laboratory that very year, when Umbrella Pharmaceuticals CEO Oswell E. Spencer personally ordered one to be shipped over. This experiment was indirectly part of the new Tyrant Project, but as no such B.O.W. had been successfully manufactured the Nemesis parasite was instead implanted within the body of Lisa Trevor, a human test subject. Due to Trevor's unique physiology which emerged from prior mutations, the parasite was rejected by her immune system and killed, with elements of its genome being spliced into Trevor's. Further investigation ruled this to be the work of the Golgotha Virus, leading to the subsequent G-Virus Project. The Arklay Laboratory made no further effort to obtain a second Nemesis parasite.
The second successful implantation within an organism took place ten years after the Trevor experiment in mid-1998. With the Tyrant Project being successfully completed in the creation of a B.O.W. of human-level intelligence, the Nemesis Project was effectively a dead-end until a decision was made for an experiment to implant a Nemesis parasite into one of the mass-produced T-103 Tyrant clones. The resulting experiment, dubbed "Nemesis-T Type", was sent out into Raccoon City with orders to hunt down the last of S.T.A.R.S., which would prove the parasites' mental abilities. No further work was done on the Nemesis Project, and no further Nemesis-T Types are known to have been produced.
NE-α Type parasites are transplanted into a host body when they are at a cellular, infant stage of development. Planting itself onto the brainstem, the parasite begins to grow. During its growth, it destroys the nerves connecting the brainstem with the brain itself, and takes over functions as a replacement. This act gives the NE-α Type complete control over the host.[excerpt 2]
Aside from taking over brain functions NE-α Type parasites produce secretions which infect those in contact with it with the t-Virus. In the instance of the Nemesis-T Type, the T-103 body was bathed in these secretions over the course of its mission, and tissue exposed to it mutated to become tougher. S.T.A.R.S. officer Brad Vickers was seriously injured by the Nemesis-T Type, and as a result of exposure to the secretions he was able to survive the wound by quickly mutating into a Zombie, and possessed higher than average strength.
The Nemesis Alpha is first seen in the Resident Evil 3 remake as an enemy. They act similarly to the Plagas of Resident Evil 4 where they latch themselves onto their hosts' head and take over their bodies.
They serve as both a weapon and an "armor" of some sort in the Zombies' head. As an offensive capabilities, they can use their elongated tentacles to lash out their victim or grab the player character to swallow their heads with its gaping maw. Alternatively as a defense, they protect the zombies' head with their impervious limbs, having high resistance against firearms.
The best way to destroy the Nemesis Alpha is to first target their host zombie's body. Enough damage will cause the Nemesis Alpha to expose their weak points.
- It is unknown if the parasite was successfully used on any other host or B.O.W. aside from the T-103 subject.
- Resident Evil: Operation Raccoon City, which exists in a separate universe, has work on the NE-α Type continue, resulting in the NE-β Type.
- BIOHAZARD 3 LAST ESCAPE OFFICIAL GUIDEBOOK. Famitsu. 1999.
- Excerpt from Conquest of Nemesis, "寄生生物「NE-α型」――通称ネメシスによって外部から悩を制御させることで、 T-ウィルスの副次的作用である知性の著しい低下を克服した最新B.O.W.。 ベースとなっているのは、 すでにある程度の完成度を持つ量産型タイラントだが、 被支配関係にあるネメシスが分泌する細胞賦活成分の影響で、 その外観はより怪物じみたものへと変容している。 思考能力は徒来のB.O.W.にくらべ格段に高く、 自己の判断で継続的に任務を遂行するほか、 ロケットランチャーなど専門的な知識を必要とする武装を、 状況に応じて使いわけることさえも可能。 全身を包むコートは防弾・耐爆仕様で、 万一の爆走を抑える拘束衣の役割をも果たしている。".
- Excerpt from Complete Conquest of Nemesis, p.81: "”洋館事件” で得られた貴重な実戦データの検証により、 アンブレラの生物兵器研究チームは、 T-ウィルスを用いて造られたB.O.W.のほとんどが、 そのままでは”商品”たり得ないほどに低い知性しか持ち合わせていないという事実を認識するに至った。究極の完成体と考えられていたタイラントでさえ、 命令を満足に実行することはできなかった――この結果に対し、 各支部の研究チームはそれぞれに異なるアプローチで知性向上の可能性を模索することになる。 その回答のひとつとして提示されたのが、 本社直属のヨーロッパ支部で以前から研究がつづけられていた、 まったく別種の新生物を寄生させることでB.O.W.の能力を強化しつつ、 その頭脳をも完全に支配下においてコントロールしようという独創的な、 そしてより悪魔的な生体改造法であった。 そうして開発されたのが、 寄生生物「NE-a型」――通称ネメシスである。 これらは細胞レベルで生物兵器の脊髄に移植されると、 その体内のT-ウィルス細胞を取りこんで増殖し、 延髄付近に独自の脳を形成する。 同時に中枢神経を侵食して宿主の前頭葉を破壊し、 残る脳機能をすべて自己の脳と連動するよう神経回路を改変してしまう。 このようにしてネメシスは宿主に成りかわって思考をつかさどり、 肉体を我がものとして完全に制御するのである。 なお、 これらを最新型のタイラントに移植した実験体「ネメシスーT型」に関しては、 興味深い報告がなされている。 ネメシスの培養過程で自我が芽生え、 仲間とともに施設から脱走をくわだてたという事例である。 それは実験体の知性が飛躍的に向上したことを示すとともに、 B.O.W.が人類に反旗をひるがえす新たな知的生命体となり得る危険性をも示唆している。そのとき、 人類は生き残れるのだろうか――？".
- Wesker's Report II, part 4
- PlayStation interview with RE3 and RE: Resistance development team.
- Complete Conquest of Nemesis, p.81.
- Resident Evil: The Umbrella Chronicles (2007), file: "Nemesis T-Type (Pursuer) Notes".
- Famitsu interview with Yasuhisa Kawamura.