Decommissioning Department Hub
rating: +2+x

Decommissioning Department


Decommissioning Department logo.

The Decommissioning Department is the overseeing department regarding the intentional destruction of anomalous objects. While the Foundation normally focuses on the containment of anomalous objects, and regards their destruction as a waste, there are some instances that prove an exception to this ideology. Anomalous objects are diverse and ungoverned, and some of them, for various reasons, are too difficult to contain, leaving their destruction as the only viable option.

The history of the Decommissioning Department is not a very long one, but it does have roots far before its inception. When the Foundation first developed its mission statement of containment and security, the question arose of how to deal with anomalies that would be better destroyed than contained. Eventually, the Foundation developed the idea ofDecommissioning, to deal with such anomalies.


SCP-083-D ("Duke")

Unfortunately, Decommissioning and the authority to assign it were not greatly considered, and the power was given primarily to Site Directors and other senior staff members, who proved incompetent in handling this responsibility. Decommissionings were often performed with little to no reason beyond the whims of senior staff, and acted with absolutely no authority over them, save for the O5 Council, who permitted their actions as long as it had little lasting effects at large.

Eventually, this culminated in the infamous SCP-083 Decommissioning, in which Dr. Kondraki singlehandedly managed to nearly destroy Site-19, releasing SCP-682 in the process. While the termination of SCP-083 was technically successful, it was abundantly clear that he had used the termination as an opportunity to complete his own agenda, with absolutely no regard for the lives of others. Following this incident, Decommissioning as a practice was completely abolished.


SCP-4456 during initial recovery and investigation.

Several years later, however, the question that first created the Decommissioned object class was raised again, this time in reference to a newer SCP object, SCP-4456. The object in question, while not particularly dangerous, was incredibly difficult and expensive to contain, costing the SCP Foundation millions of dollars in the span of a few days. The research director for this object, Dr. Bold, questioned whether it would be easier to simply destroy the object, rather than keep it contained.

A proposal was sent to the O5 Council, requesting the reactivation of the Decommissioned object class. However, it wouldn't be similar to the old system of Decommissioning, with absolutely no authority or direction over it. Instead, it would be controlled by a select department, with the highly bureaucratic system in place to ensure that such a process would be heavily monitored and justified. The proposal passed, and the Decommissioning Department was activated, with Dr. Bold as its director.

While the Decommissioning Department is certainly still new to the Foundation's stage, it's still seen its own fair share of use. The department has more than once proven itself both necessary and reliable, and is expected to continue seeing action in the future.

If you're interested in writing for the Decommissioning Department, then welcome to the team! Before you start writing, however, there are a few things you should keep in mind.

Why is it being Decommissioned?

The purpose of the Decommissioning Department, narrative-wise, is to explore the fringe cases when the Foundation decides that an anomaly would be better destroyed than contained. Decommissioning is an extremely rare process, and is almost never performed.

The circumstances around the object have to both necessitate its destruction, as well as be interesting and unique enough to hook the reader. An object here isn't interesting simply because it needs to be destroyed; an object is interesting because of why it needs to be destroyed. Putting the Decommissioned object class, or saying "SCP-XXXX must be destroyed" in the containment procedures, doesn't make people invested. If anything, it makes them more skeptical, because they expect a good reason to see these things.

For example, SCP-4456-D is not something that is greatly or even noticeably dangerous. But it was costly to contain, along with possibly being a threat to the Foundation's agreements with foreign powers. Rather than focus on danger or threat, the article provides a new, unique reason that it must be decommissioned. It's simply too expensive to keep around!

How do they neutralize it?

Maybe your article doesn't have an especially unique or unusual reason for being so difficult to contain. Maybe you don't want to focus on the object itself, but rather how they deal with it. That's okay! There are two divisions to this department, and while the Analysis Division may focus on the why, we have the Execution Division to focus on the how.

Lots of objects don't have a very straightforward way to be destroyed. A lot of them require strange or unusual methods to do so, beyond just shooting it, blowing it up, etc. Of course, that doesn't mean that it's interesting simply because it's difficult to destroy. We have plenty of objects like that, and simply saying "you need to be more powerful than it to destroy it" isn't really unique or intriguing. Think about the object, what's unusual about it, what its weaknesses are, etc.

An excellent example of this is SCP-4659, an extra-dimensional film critic. It's extraordinarily difficult to contain, and it constantly uploads videos to places even the Foundation can't track it. But, among other things, the interesting part about this object is how they deal with it. They can't actually destroy the entity itself, nor can they stem the flow of his videos. Instead, they have to use other tactics, such as review bombing, trolling, and providing for video-making advice. Eventually, they decommission the object, not by actually killing the entity, but by simply making it not want to upload videos anymore.

How does canon work here?

The canon here is fairly loose, to be honest. While the content of the Department, including characters and stories, will hopefully expand and become more concrete, the only really canon stuff is everything above the tabs, and the things they crosslink to, of course. Beyond that, it's mostly up to you. There's some general consistency expected, but the Department's narrative purpose is as an exploratory tool into how or why an object might be destroyed by the Foundation. It's basically a mix between a GoI and a canon, like the Department of Miscommunications.

Basically, play nice, and after that you're pretty much golden.

Unless otherwise stated, the content of this page is licensed under Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License