Would you like to hear a sad story?
Meet Juan Vasquez
, known throughout the Super community as The Artisan
. He crafted the arms and armor of numerous heroes and Police Departments worldwide. He had a loving wife and a beautiful daughter.
And then, in one terrible incident...he lost everything. His wife. His daughter. His eye. His arm. His mind.
Unable to cope with the grief - nor reconcile the fact for all his contributions to the Hero community, when he was the one in need none gave him aid - Vasquez turned his tremendous talents upon himself. He reasoned that strip enough of the flesh away, and there would never be any pain again. But such a undertaking was not one to be done rashly. There were experiments to run...trial versions to prototype. And of course, you need money for all of this. So Juan began catering his services to..."the other side", shall we say. In return he got the funding he needed...and the subjects he required.Hounds
, as they are called, are the all too common end result of Vasquez's mad tinkering. They could not take the strain demanded of their bodies or minds and simply...snapped. Their vitals all read zero, the only thing keeping them upright is a power reactor and fiber optic "puppet strings" running along the spine. Cybernetic Zombies, Vasquez keeps them as guards and cannon fodder.
As with any great person of renown or skill, there will always be loyal retainers. Vasquez is no different - his work is lauded such in the halls of Engineering Schools and Mechanic Courses that to this day there are those that seek him out to learn from the master craftsman. All too often, those that come to learn end up as a Hound.
Those that don't however become his Servants
. Benefiting from Vasquez's research and thus are more machine then man, entrusted by Vasquez to oversee the Hounds - indeed, every Servant comes equipped with command codes and overrides to the Hounds so that they obey the Servants every command.
And as the Servant grows in knowledge and practical experience, they inevitably start tinkering on themselves. The unfortunate ones, more eager then smart, often end up as Hounds in the end. But for those who are patient and apply the lessons taught, they...ascend.
are at the right hand of Vasquez himself. They have taken his lessons to heart and thus conducted their own improvements and modifications to their frames. They are the Artisan's overseers, often given command of entire manufacturing complexes with Servants of their own.
And what of Vasquez himself? His boons have been great, but at the cost of his humanity.
The Public Face of Juan Vasquez now. And yet...only a mask. You see, this is a False Artisan
- a mechanoid copy (Fully robotic, a departure from Vasquez's usual work) of the man himself (or what is left of him).
The ultimate fate of Juan Vasquez, the Artisan. Now a Dark Artisan
, a mirror of what he once was. It is worth noting he has succeeded in his goals. He's cut out enough of his Humanity that he doesn't feel the pain any longer. He doesn't feel anything any longer. The only thing left for him is the building. Always the building.
Some in the hero community insist Vasquez can still be saved. They fall into one of four categories:
- Those that insist
- The Dead
Juan Vasquez aka The Dark Artisan was a Robotics/Traps Mastermind I was running just before CoH's shut down. He was also going to have a natural "progression" of replacing more and more body parts with technology as he leveled. "Juan" was his starting persona (Though with a Eye Patch rather then a Cosmic Corsair Monocle) and the Dark Artisan was going to be his Level 50 Persona - which never happened.