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Prime universe
(Capcom's primary storyline)

The Tyrant Phobos virus, abbreviated as t-Phobos Virus, is a retrovirus descended from the Progenitor Virus, developed with the purpose of creating a superhuman with no negative side-effects. Research was inspired by Umbrella's Immortality project, which sought to engineer a virus that would keep even the most frail alive indefinitely. Under the control of Dr. Alex Wesker, this project was abandoned in favour of one that would create another superhuman, and use advanced computer technology to incorporate a digitised copy of Wesker's consciousness into the subject's brain, thereby achieving immortality in another way.[1]

Development history

Background

The t-Phobos Project ultimately has its origins in the Wesker Project of the 1960s. This project was to create a group of superhumans through infection of a Progenitor strain. The project required strict conditions placed on the candidates, and by 1998 all but thirteen were washed-out. Of the thirteen infected with the virus, only Drs. Albert and Alex Wesker survived. In the following decade, Dr. Alex Wesker was entrusted with a new project by Umbrella CEO Dr. Oswell E. Spencer, Earl Spencer. Suffering from organ failure and close to death, he provided Wesker with massive resources for the development of a virus that would allow him to cheat death and grant him immortality. Wesker failed to produce the virus of the desired qualities as he was too frail.[1] Disillusioned and becoming aware of an illness she herself was suffering, Wesker abandoned the project on Sonido de Tortuga, and travelled on to a laboratory complex on Sejm, where she restarted work in a new fashion, intent on realising his dream for herself.[2]

Early development

In spite of their large body of test candidates, development of t-Phobos was considerably delayed. Like the natural Progenitor Virus, the prototype had a high mortality rate due to the sheer violence of the mutations it caused, which had to be limited or slowed down to have any chance of creating viable superhumans. A solution to creating superhumans was found in the stress hormone, norepinephrine, and it was agreed the virus would remain dormant in a subject until exposed to certain quantities of this hormone.[3] The downside to this, however, was that the host had to be free from fear, with excessive production of such hormones increasing the chances of inducing unpredictable, severe mutations that were undesirable for the project.[1] The mutants, dubbed "Afflicted", consisted solely of men, with female test subjects dying under excruciating pain from violent mutations too fast and excessive for their bodies to handle.[4]

Sejm islanders were brought to various facilities, whether in the mine or the prison, and were infected with the prototype t-Phobos. For testing purposes, subjects were given wrist devices able to register active production of Adrenalin and Norepinephrine, which would clearly show the results based on the colours green, orange and red. Green meant stress hormone readings were normal; orange registered significant but acceptable hormone production. A blinking red light meant the subject was actively producing large quantities of the hormones, and finally a fixed red light meant the subject was determined to be mutating.[5] Over time test subjects were subjected to torture, or witnessing torture, to increase their Norepinephrine; subjects were monitored 24 hours a day, with researchers noting their condition every 10 minutes.[6] Anyone who succumbed to their fears, unexpectedly, mutated into "Afflicted" and were disposed of.

The earliest known testing took place in July 2008, with subjects largely recruited from applicants for mine labour.[7] A diary entry suggests a remote fishing village had been laid waste by an outbreak of the virus in October of that year.[8] Following the death of Albert Wesker in March 2009, human testing was accelerated, and mine workers by the dozen were recruited to maintain this supply, with the washouts' bodies dismembered prior to disposal.[9][10] Despite the virus' completion status, it still had a 100% failure rate as all participants washed-out. By July the virus was being actively tested in public.[7] A November experiment on eleven people was considered to be a sign of progress when only three died immediately after infection.[11]

Trials were close to conclusion at the end of January 2010. The previous months of testing were determined to have resulted in a perfected t-Phobos prototype strain with a low fatality rate and an under 2% chance of the subject successfully producing antibodies.[12] These tests still had, ultimately, a 100% failure rate as all participants washed-out. An 8 February report detailed the deaths of thirty people over the course of the preceding three days.[13]

2011 experiment

By the end of 2010 the t-Phobos Project was complete, but had reached an impasse as there appeared to be no uninfected surviving humans to use as experiments. The project team was, nonetheless, able to get in contact with Neil Fisher, the head of TerraSave. A follower of former FBC chairman Morgan Lansdale, Fisher believed that sacrifices were necessary in the War on Terror, and so was willing to hand over himself and twelve others as test-subjects in exchange for a sample of Uroboros Virus for vaccine research.[14][15] The twelve were subjected to a series of tortuous experiences to test their emotional responses, with Fisher and Wesker's aide, Stuart, observing Natalia Korda as the most viable candidate due to her lack of fear.[16][17]

Despite showing stress, Korda's lack of fear meant she could successfully mutate without dying from the virus' effects. By the end of the night, Korda was abducted and taken to The Monument, where she was implanted with the digitised copy of Wesker's memories, and her body carefully lowered into a bunker to be protected for the next six months while the conflicting consciousnesses were to blend. The entire research team subsequently committed suicide to atone for their inhuman acts on the settlers, which they all viewed as a mortal but necessary sin on behalf of Wesker.[18] Over the next six months, Korda's body mutated from her exposure to the virus, giving her enhanced abilities such as being able to detect the location of living beings outside of her view. Following the BSAA operation on Sejm, Korda is the only remaining t-Phobos mutant alive, and the only known superhuman alive as of 2013.

Means of infection

Unlike its precursor viruses, which mutate the host (almost) immediately after infection, the t-Phobos reacts to the host's mind. As long as the host is not experiencing fear and panic, the virus will not cause any harm, since it only reacts to norepinephrine.[19] Should the host's mind be affected by intense fear, the virus spreads through the body within seconds.

The virus seems to only mutate men, with infected women promptly dying in considerable pain.[20]

B.O.W.s created

Sources

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Notes on the Transfer Procedure".
  2. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Parting Words to My Dear Father".
  3. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Research Facility Chief's Journal 1".
  4. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "The Sluice Operator's Last Words".
  5. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Caution for Experiment Handling".
  6. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Rules for Monitoring Test Subjects".
  7. 7.0 7.1 Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "The Old Man's Journal".
  8. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Traveler's Diary".
  9. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Mine Worker's Diary 1".
  10. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Mine Worker's Diary 2".
  11. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2015), file: "Mock Experiment Results".
  12. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Clinical Experiment Notes".
  13. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Note on Corpse Disposal".
  14. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "A Letter to My Compatriots".
  15. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Neil's Candidate List".
  16. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Neil's Report".
  17. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Stuart's Memo - Natalia Korda".
  18. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2014), file: "Stuart's Valediction".
  19. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2015), file: "Research Facility Chief's Journal 1".
  20. Resident Evil: Revelations 2 (2015), file: "The Sluice Operator's Last Words".
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