Friday, December 17, 2010

Cosmics: Oak

Sam Baker had always had an affinity with plants. As a child, it was almost like he was able to picture what the trees, flowers and grasses were feeling. And the town of Sevenoaks, a little suburb outside of London where he lived, was full of trees and plants. They made him feel safe and welcome.

That's why when he reached 18 and headed off to university, he decided to study Botany and Applied Biology at Oxford. Sam was an intelligent lad and, with his keen interest in plants, passed his degree with flying colours. Interested in working to further the affairs of cosmics, Sam travelled to the US and applied for a postgraduate course at the University of Miami.

As part of his research work into using plants to help cure cosmic aberrations, he developed a plant-based serum to hopefully reduce the unfortunate side-effects of cosmic radiation. Needing a willing subject to try out his serum, but finding none, Sam decided to inject himself. Expecting no side-effects, Sam found instead that the serum activated the cosmic ray mutated twist in his DNA. His body suddenly grew and hardened and the flesh about his bones expanded, turning him into a huge powerful creature made of flexible, durable wood. After an agonizing hour, Sam eventually managed to concentrate sufficiently to turn back into human form.

Since then, Sam has found that he can actually communicate with plants and, to a limited extent, control their actions. He is also able to transform into his hardwood form whenever he wants - and unfortunately, during times of stress, when he doesn't. He has decided to responsibly use his great powers and, donning a green oakleaf emblazoned costume, fight crime as the hero known as Oak.

1 comment:

Nimbus said...

Oak - a Hulk/Thing homage - was another of my long-lived PBeM characters. His background shown here is slightly different to the actual one, although it is similar. Oak first appeared in an Aberrant game called Division 10. They were essentially a bunch of government-sanctioned, superhuman policemen working for the DNA - the Department of Nova Affairs.

The DNA became the DQA (Department of Quasihuman Affairs) following a system change and was then reorganised following a reboot. In game, Division 10 was replaced and so our characters formed a vigilante group known as Division X. After a while that morphed into the Alliance of Superheroes.

In order to play in the Alliance PBeM game, you had to submit a character that you'd played before - and thus knew the character well and already had a character sheet. It was a great way to reinvigorate old characters whilst requiring little start-up, other than an explanation of their place in this new world. Oak ended up being the leader of the Alliance in this new game.

That PBeM found it's way into the Uber-World, a HERO System based shared universe. Eventually, Oak was also recruited into the Sentinels - Uberworld's version of the Avengers or JLA. Unfortunately, that meant increasing his power level. I say "unfortunately" because I think I prefer him at the 350 or 400 point power level.

Anyway, he's another of my many "UK-born, emigrated-to-USA" characters I created over the years.