From Unofficial Handbook of the Virtue Universe
NOTE: This page (mostly the 'History' and 'Relationships' sections) is horribly, horribly outdated due to my own bad habit of procrastination. This by no account means I've stopped playing this game. I will work on bringing this page up-to-date when possible (and I remember to), but for now just know that you'll learn much more about Mark simply by RPing with me.
The Red Komodo is my first and favorite hero. He started out based on Spider-man and one of his enemies the Lizard with some personality traits of myself thrown in, but my list of inspirations has expanded to the point where it'd need its own page to list them all. He is an avid member of the Battalion Initiative. Gunner of Paragon was once official sidekick, but is also a hero in his own right.
Mark Samuels was born in Los Angeles, CA with a rare genetic condition that weakened his muscles and bones. He was never as fast or strong as the other kids, and was very quiet and shy, and as such, didn't have many friends. What he did have, however, was a sharp wit and amazing intellect. Mark was a straight-A student and got a scholarship to UCLA at 16, where he majored in biology, chemistry, and genetic engineering. He was very interested in genetics and cell biology, and even more interested in superheroes.
While at UCLA, Mark studied the works of many diffrent scientists that came before him. While he was interested by many people, the one that interested him the most was written by Vincent Jaeger. It described a synthetic organism that gave its hosts an extremely fast regeneration rate, at the cost of their sanity. Finding out about his interests, the military contracted him to finish the super-soldier version of the organism Jaeger started working before jumping ship, although made Mark think it was to be used for medical treatment. He attempted to fixed the flawed work by using DNA from several lizards, including crocodiles, geckos, chameleons, komodo dragons, and even (with some difficulty and hours of fossil pulverization) velociraptors in order to try to counter the side effects, since the organism was based off of lizard blastema cells. After months of work, he finished the serum. Mark decided that night to test the organism on himself first. He thought of the side effects that could result from the serum, and thought of whether to take it or not. But being the rash decision-maker he is, he decided to do it anyway, and drank the serum.
All that night, he seized and writhed on the floor with incredible pain. In the morning, Mark awoke to realize that his serum worked great... with an interesting side effect. He found that he was now able to transform from lizard to human form at will. His genetic condition was cured (or supressed), and his senses were enhanced to superhuman heights, especially his sense of smell. From that day on, he was the Red Komodo. At first he was regarded as a moster in the city due to some instances where he lost control of his newly-gained feral instincts, even being hunted by the military multiple times, but he eventually proved his worth as a hero. After about two years in L.A., he suddenly took intrest in the advanced genetic changes in members of the Lost, Devouring Earth, and the Rikti for unknown reasons. Mark then decided to go to Paragon City to investigate them further.
The night after Mark got a place to live in Founder's Falls, where all the groups he seeked seemed to converge, he went out with some neighbors to a nearby bar get a drink. After having his first shot, however, he heard a low growling noise, and passed out. When he woke up, the patrons of the bar were cowering agaist a wall, and a hero was holding Mark in a headlock. Through police and personal interrigation, he found out that after consuming the alcohol, he transformed and went into a bloodthirsty rampage through the bar. Luckily, the hero, whose name was asked to be withheld from this bio, used his super speed and strength, as well as his invulnerability to easily subdue Mark before he seriously injured anyone. From that day on, Mark vowed to never drink again, and learn to avoid things that would lower his inhibitions.
After paying a pretty big fine, Mark build an underground lab beneath his home, where he still conducts experiments, including perfecting his serum and creating a biofilm for his lizard form so that he could contain body heat in cold weather. Ater getting his hero career off the ground, getting a high-ranking biologist job at S.E.R.A.P.H., and even defeating the mad Dr. Vahzilok, he met Gunner of Paragon, who Mark eventually befriended and made his official sidekick.
H.E.R.O.E.S. and the Battalion Initiative
One day, while Red Komodo and Gunner of Paragon were dealing with the Family, they were approached by Arbiter Death, who wanted them to join his supergroup, The Villians of Paragon. They were almost convinced to join, but luckily, members of the supergroup H.E.R.O.E.S. intercepted the meeting. After a long talking session, Komodo and Gunner decided to join H.E.R.O.E.S. However, the group went down the toilet, and so he, Hero, and a third guy (who shall remain nameless at his request) founded the Battalion Initiative, a group that focuses on scientific and technological advancement. That group eventually fell apart as well when the villian known as the Dark Vizir bombed the base in an act of revenge, going so far as to strap Mark to one of the bombs, an experience which he barely survived.
The Red Komodo's personality is probably the most memorable thing about him. He is suprisingly goofy and cocky most of the time, even for his age. He is known to make cheesy and (what he thinks are) harmless cracks at people, and has a extremely strange sense of humor, sometimes saying things that may be considered as insane by others. However, he is truly painfully shy, and rarly reveals more than his name to most people, a contributing part of his identity not being well known, as he will not deny being the Red Komodo if asked. When he is researching something or focusing on an objective, he gets very studious and/or quiet. In this mode of thinking, his genius shows, and has been known to outwit even intelligent enemies, and come up with solutions to difficult problems. The cocky part of his personality shows more when he's in lizard form, which has led some to suspect the transformation affects his thinking processes, even when not feral.
Since his experiment, Mark's mental state has become extremely fragile, to the point that some might call dual-personality. If anything happens to him that can lower his inhibitions (alcohol, succubi auras or pheromones related to them, a hard hit to the head, etc.) or if he experiences extreme stress, he will go into a feral state. Komodo is much stronger and faster in this state, regenerates faster, and seems to be immune to pain, but his sanity will be reduced to that of a feral animal. When feral, he is very dangerous, even to metahumans, and burns enough protein that he is almost perpetually hungry for flesh. This, however, is a blessing in disguise, as he will revert to normal once passed out from hunger or exhaustion, which usually happens in a few minutes. But even with a small timeframe, he can still cause a lot of damage if not stopped.
Inventions & Formulas
In his spare time, Mark comes up with all kinds of different inventions & formulas. Some are created on purpose, some on accident, and some just him dicking around with stuff he probably shouldn't. This is a list of all but the most secret of them. This list will probably be updated as he makes more stuff.
- RK-Organism: Based off of the work of Vincent Jaeger, this is a modified strain of the R-02 organism, with lizard DNA added to the flawed areas in an attempt to perfect it. Most of it's effects when successfully bonded are detailed in the 'Powers' section. With most people, however, it unsuccessfully bonds, causing mutations that slowly turn those that are 'infected' into reptile-man monsters. Can be passed by any carrier through their bodily fluids.
- Dimensional Viewer: Currently Version 3.0, this binocular/portable TV allows people to view alternate dimensions. Has a handy 'Keyword Search' function and over 2,750 dimensions currently avalible for viewing, with more being added weekly. The only invention Mark has mass-produced so far, it sells for $10,000 each, so buy yours today!
- Time Machine: Really nothing more than a remote control with a Ouroboros crystal embedded into it, it uses an atomic battery to bypass the usual time-tether associated with Ouroboros. Still undergoing perfection, it's prone to running out of power mid-travel and occasional radiation poisoning.
- Hypno-Ball: A portable hypnosis ray, it was basically a iron ball the size of an orange with a lens on the front, which could fire a beam that hypnotized anyone that has an actual brain. It was destroyed after Mark finally learned that there are some things that man shouldn't mess with. The question is, what did he do with the remains?
- Bio-Film: A film made out of a special type of material that Komodo says is biological in nature, this film serves two purposes. First, it helps regulate his body temperature so that he doesn't freeze to death in the winter seasons. Second, when integrated into clothing, it gives them the ability to morph, both allowing him to change outfits on the fly and preventing him from tearing his clothes off every time he transforms. And trust me when I say that NO ONE WANTS TO SEE A NAKED MARK!
- Love Potion: Made by accident while he was trying to find a cure for the RK-Organism, this extremely powerful aphrodisiac makes anyone who ingests it fall in love with the first person of the opposite gender they see. Mark keeps it around for experimentation, especially for the strange reaction it has when it gets within range of a succubus aura. If it does, it will become extremely unstable, being able to absorbed through the skin and temporarily give anyone the same aura as a succubus/incubus. If Mark gets it on him, he instead transforms into his chauvinistic, egotistical, and (in his mind, at least) sexy alter-ego, Ramon Sanchez.
Note: When feral, all of these abilities are TRIPLED in power
The Red Komodo's retractable claws are one of his strongest weapons. The claws are used to weaken most of his enemies, through blood loss, to a state that the PPD can manage on their own. He doesn't have the same physical strength as most heroes, but has slightly above average for a normal human being. With his extreme speed however, the power of his claws is enhanced, to the point of slicing through steel. Usually, he only applies this speed at the instant he hits. He rarely is lethal with his claws, but when he's feral, anything can happen...
The main reason he made the organism in the first place, the Red Komodo has an amazingly fast regeneration rate. He is essentially bulletproof, in the sense that he heals from a bullet wound almost instantly. Komodo is also able to regenerate entire limbs, and sometimes dismembers himself in comedic fasion to escape capture. He rarely goes down in a fair fight, because barely anyone can keep up with the rate at which he heals.
The Red Komodo's most notable ability is his speed. He has the speed of all the lizards he has used in his serum combined and scaled to his size. Mark has mastered control of his speed, to the point that he can extremely enhance the speed of specific body parts, mostly his arms for his attacks, or to dodge attacks. He has been reported to run at over 85 mph most of the time, with a top speed of 275 mph.
Red Komodo also has enhanced leg strength, to the point of being able to jump up to about 125 feet in the air. He uses this to his advantage on the battlefield to jump over and around enemies.
Because of the chameleon DNA in him, the Red Komodo is able to blend into the background. He can't become completely invisible, but most enemies he face can't tell that he's there anyways...
Komodo's bite really is worse than his bark. His bite strength has broken nearly every pressure gauge system used to try to mesure it, and is strong enough to rip through steel and, with the proper leverage, dent even impervium.
Though not an official power, the Red Komodo has superior senses, especially smell. He can detect the faintest scents, and most of the time, his nose is more reliable than his eyes, allowing him to track anyone and anything for miles. He can usually 'see' invisible enemies, but the amount of adrenaline in a fight can confuse him to the point that he won't be able to 'see' the invisible person.
Weaknesses and Vulnerabilities
The Red Komodo's weaknesses, while few, are notable. The first is, obviously, his feral state, which is only a weakness due to his inability to distinguish friend from foe. To get him out of the state, he has to either calm down, be defeated, or hit on the head... hard. His not so obvious weakness is that he is cold-blooded. While Mark has created a bio-film to protect himself from the winter cold, it can't stand up to extreme cold (due to security reasons, the exact tempature it fails is confidential). Once it cracks, Komodo will slow down in relation to how cold it is. The lower the tempature, the slower he moves, attacks and heals.
- Gunner of Paragon - At first a nuscience, Gunner has become one of Mark's closest, but not most reliable allies. Due to their previous sidekick/mentor relationship, they share a close bond (and not in that kind of way, you sickos!)
- Gorthid Thortesp - A Spartan King, Gorthid has become a close ally, and has fought alongside Komodo in many situations.
- Hero At Large - The leader of the Battalion Initiative, Hero has helped Komodo, who used to be a lone wolf, adapt to being in a group.
- Jessica Tyler & Lauren Catherine - Two girls from the distant future, Mark has been trying to help them get back to their own time period, which has been sealed off by a 'temporal avalanche'.
- Axel Braveheart - A person from an alternate universe, these two have been working on something... but it's classified.
- Spark Capacitor - A close friend of Komodo's, he's probably one of the few people Mark can completely trust. Also one of the former co-leaders of the Battalion Initiative (before he relocated to the Isles).
- Whirlwind J - A mercenary Mark has spent a lot of time with, they talk about all kinds of stuff, and have had the occasional business deal. Most of the time, they just talk about other people. J seems to not be as (for lack of a better term) bitchy to Mark as to other people, or it could just be a delusion he has...
- Petite Morte - A very close and trusted friend of Mark's, to the point where a lot of people think they should get together. However, Komodo seems to keep her at a distance for some reason...
- Hellion MK1 - A robot that Komodo met through a friendship with his girlfriend (Hellion's, not Mark's). They have since become good friends, although they've had their fair share of differences.
- Gelle - A woman that Komodo knows from her time in G.R.A.N.D.U.R.E. He can't put his finger on it, but something about her seems very familiar...
- Vincent Jaeger - The Villians' head scientist and the original maker of the organism Komodo based his work off of. He wants Komodo to be his assistant, but Komodo disapproves of Jaeger's extreme methods of scientific study. The fact that he's working for Death doesn't really help Jaeger's case. Recently, however, Komodo has been spotted talking to Jaeger on more friendly terms. It is rumored that they may even be related, though there is no concrete evidence as of yet to support this theory.
- Gila - Another lizard-man, they started a rivalry after Gila was framed for stealing information from the Battalion Initiative. Komodo regards Gila as a joke most of the time, and Gila thinks Komodo's a goody-goody... which to tell you the truth, he sorta is.
- Dr. Avangarde - A mad scientist from the same time as Jessica & Lauren, he has a vendetta against Komodo for wrecking his inventions and plans for world domination.
- Lizard Form - His usual heroing form, this is where most of his powers are active
- Work Clothing - What he wears when working
- Tuxedo - What he wears at formal events and such
- Power Suit - A suit funded by Vanguard that Komodo uses in case his powers ever get disabled, temporarly or permenatly. It hasn't had any combat experience yet, but you never know...
- Casual Wear - Mark's attempt at casual wear. Actually looks good in it, to the suprise of his friends
- Komodo not only knows he's in a video game, he owns a copy of City of Heroes. In fact, he created a hero on it named Red Komodo, who has a copy of CoH and plays as Red Komodo, who has a copy of CoH... well, you get the idea. He sometimes breaks the fourth-wall, but gets punished with lightning whenever he does.
- Red Komodo once called Statesman a 'goverment ass-kisser'. Because of that, Komodo spent a week in a coma, and two more weeks in the hospital. As you can guess, he's not well-liked by the Freedom Phlanax.
- Once had a famous race with Synapse (and rumor has it, the Flash and Sonic as well)... and then got beaten up afterwards when he insulted them. I'll write that story later... maybe.
- Gets sued by real-world companies... a lot. He still holds a grudge against Stan Lee, and was once hypnotized by Michael Bay to promote his movies.
- Mark has friends of both the male and female variety, but desprately avoids getting in any (even slightly) romantic relationships for some strange reason.
- I am always looking to improve RK's story, so if you think anything needs to be added to this page, or have suggestions as to either theme song ideas, backstory details, or future plotlines, either post it on the discussion page or send an ingame email. Also, I am currently looking for someone to do a drawing of Red Komodo for use on this page. Send me an in-game email if willing to do so, think I'm lazy, or if you think that it's a bad idea to solicite artwork online from complete strangers.