Well, hello there. It is Monday, and it is time to bring you another backstory from one of our Season 2 characters; Riptor. Well, technically the clock on my laptop says 12:29am, but I am sitting 30,000 feet in the air, sipping on my adult beverage of choice, trying to not pay attention to the fact that my airplane is dancing across the sky…violently.
Since we’re being technical, let’s continue that trend, shall we? Ignoring this turbulence as best I can, my mind is focused on home, where it is currently still Monday night, and approaching the late hours of the night. Still, again, Monday. In my mind that counts! We managed to publish on Monday.
Riptor’s story was just delivered to my inbox minutes ago (on Monday, might I add), so that means it’s time to pass it your way! Give it a read below.
CONFIDENTIAL: FOR INTERNAL ULTRATECH USE ONLY
This is the copyedit of the Riptor Unit quick start guide (to be published in second quarter of fiscal year). All comments are from Ultratech Legal [UTL] and Ultratech Marketing [UTM].
YOU AND YOUR RIPTOR UNIT
An Ultratech Quick Start Guide
From UT Press
Congratulations! You’ve bought yourself a Riptor Unit! Your adventure has just begun!
Ultratech doesn’t always look to the future to find the solutions to military development. Sometimes, we look to the past. So it was with the Riptor project. My mentor, the brilliant genetic engineer Dr. Erin Gupte, believed in a beautiful dream: a ruthless adaptable predator that could rely on its own victims for sustainment, and could maneuver and infiltrate areas where the Fulgore line would never be able to function. [UTM: Can we change the word “victims” to “rivals” or something less pejorative? It makes the Ripter units seem like bullies.]
It is a living and breathing example of American ingenuity!
Dr. Gupte’s first efforts at de-extinction, however, were failures, producing dangerous and uncontrollable animals. But when Dr. Gupte began using her own mind as a training tool for her new creations, simulating upbringing through directed thoughts, a breakthrough happened. She guided the creatures into understanding that there was a place for family and the idea of a pack, “from egg to engagement.” [UTM: Perfect! This makes Gupte sound way less unhinged than the previous version.]
Dr. Gupte’s mind-sync with the Riptors had its consequences, however. Her emotional state became unbalanced, and eventually Gupte’s Riptor units turned on her in a tragic act of feral violence. Like many early explorers she had stepped too far too fast. [UTM: This contradicts UT vision. It should instead be framed that she “boldly stepped beyond the bounds of caution, seeking knowledge to further humanities understanding of blah blah blah.” Let’s make lemonade here. Frame this as she died in pursuit of knowledge, blah blah, etc. But that’s the fate of so many heroes.]
Several years have passed since Dr. Gupte left us, but we have not been idle. The RDG (Riptor Development Group) is stronger than ever, thanks to the hard work and dedication of thousands of scientists and technicians, as well as over a billion dollars in R&D. The units themselves have been perfected, and are nearly ready to be deployed by private military contractors. [UTM: No! They ARE ready and UT is selling them to private companies! See recent sales report and insert rounded up # of units here.]
Good luck! And go Ultratech!
–Dr. Stephanie Hastings, CEO, Riptor Development Group
[UTL: Hastings employment will be terminated next week in the reorg. Make sure she signs a release for this introduction or attribute it to her successor.]
Quick Start Guide
Chapter 1: Unboxing
[UTL: This entire chapter has been deleted and has to be rewritten in accordance with the Ultratech Safety and Handling department after initial user testing of unboxing process caused 3 deaths and 4.5 dismemberments.]
Chapter 2: Care and Feeding
You’ve probably already realized that your Riptor unit eats a lot! This hungry lady consumes about 5% of her body weight daily (up to 50 lbs of meat). That’s a lot of live goats—the preferred Riptor diet. [UTM: Include official link in e-book version to online page for the “Goats On Time, Anytime” Ultratech livestock purchase form.] The most important thing to keep in mind at feeding times are the 3 R’s: Respect, Risk and Reaction Time. Let’s start with the first one.
Respect: Your Riptor has human DNA, so she’s very smart. Always speak to her in a respectful manner because she most likely knows exactly what you’re talking about, even though she does not have the capacity to respond. Refrain from Jurassic Park jokes. [UTM: Can you please change Jurrasic Park reference to something more generic like “Refrain from genetically enhanced dinosaur jokes.”] This will only confuse the Riptor, and as you learned from Chapter 3 “A confused Riptor is an angry Riptor.”
Risk: There is inherent risk at feeding time. The Riptor will be incredibly excited about the prospect of eating. Their internal clocks are highly accurate, and they don’t like being hungry. It makes them edgy and irritable. Never look directly into your Riptor unit’s eyes at mealtimes. Their gaze is hypnotizing and this leaves you open to attack. It’s always best to wear your Ultrafyber™ Feeding Gauntlets[UTM: Nice! The Quick Start Guide needs more cross-promotion of UT products like this.] when pushing goats into the armored feeding bins. Riptors have been known to rip through the metal slot bars in a frenzy to get at their dinner.
Reaction Time: All Riptor owners are advised to partake in physical training that increases fast-twitch muscle responses. A Riptor’s bio-enhanced tail can whip at 5 meters per second. That’s as fast as a Black Mamba strike. While the tail isn’t poisonous, the Riptor’s claw tips are teeming with microbes, [UTL: They’re focused plasma, actually. Cauterizes and sterilizes! A benefit!] and the slightest scratch can cause infections similar to flesh-eating bacteria. So stay back and always be on your toes. Or you might get them ripped off your limbs. [UTL: This entire section needs to be cut. Sets UT up for a major lawsuit and creates an indelible and negative image of maimed Riptor owners hopping around on one foot. We’ve already had enough trouble with the Fulgore Mark 03 Field Manual-L class action suit fiasco.]
RIPTOID (Riptor Factoid) [UTL: Have we copyrighted the word “Riptoid” yet?] [UTM: Yes!]
Once your Riptor unit has been satiated by her meal, it’s an excellent opportunity for enhancing the human/dino pack bond. The segments where the Riptor’s tail bionics are adhered need to be scrubbed regularly, and the best way to do this is with a stiff metal brush. The animal’s hide is reinforced with tiny bones called osteoderms, and these serve as a kind of organic chain-mail, making it very difficult to clean. [UTL: No, no, no! We never highlight anything that might lead to a return of the product or a mass recall. Emphasize the fun of scrubbing the Riptor’s tailparts…“It’s just like grooming a pony, blah blah, etc.”]
The Riptor might show her appreciation for this act by butting you with her head while making a low growling sound. Do not be alarmed! This is the Riptor’s version of a purr. You know that a Riptor has truly bonded with you when they regurgitate their gastric pellet at your feet. [UTL: Please remove the photo of the gastric pellet. It’s unappealing and all Riptor waste has tested as a biohazard and should not be documented. Owner should be directed to Chapter 10: Cleanup Time! and a direct reference to the UT Riptor-Box/Enhanced Litter system.] [UTM: Ditto what legal said.]
[Note: the following chapters are currently being rewritten and will be available for copyedit soon.]
Chapter 3: Nap Time
Chapter 4: What to Do If You See an Egg
Chapter 5: Fun Places to Take Your Riptor
Chapter 6: Dino-mites (Hide Infestations)
Chapter 7: The Liability Insurance Blues
Chapter 8: How to Housebreak Your Riptor in 14 Days
Chapter 9: Yes, They’ll Actually Fetch a Car
Chapter 10: From Egg to Engagement: The Soul of a Living Machine
Chapter 11: Cleanup Time
Chapter 12: 101 Riptor Tricks
Chapter 13: Clicker Training the Safe Way
Chapter 14: Fast Tourniquet Techniques
That’ll do it for this week! We’ll let you get back to your evening…err…late night, and I’ll go back to reminiscing about the wonderful weekend which just passed that included PAX South, the incredible KI World Cup, Kim Wu’s reveal & trailer, and of course…that tease!
While you’re here, drop by the forums and let us know what you think of everything. Catch you again next week.