Caleb Goldman (referred to simply as Goldman in the games) is one of the main antagonists of the series. He was the CEO of the DBR Corporation. He is known as the brains in the zombie-infestations in the 1998 Curien Mansion Case as well as the 2000 Venice Outbreak, where he sought to "revert humanity to its natural state" as a means to "restore the balance of nature". He is also responsible for the events in The House of the Dead 4, and perhaps The House of the Dead III.
The House of the Dead
Goldman hired a scientist named Dr. Roy Curien to assist him in his goal. He also used him as a decoy, to mask who was really responsible. After Rogan and G left the mad scientist's mansion, Goldman came across Curien's dead body and took all his research.
The House of the Dead 2
Two years after the events of the Curien Mansion incident, with the research of Dr. Curien in his hands, Goldman unleashes a wave of zombies upon Venice, Italy. Upon hearing of the arrival of the AMS, he leaves a message on Amy's phone, taunting the agents and inviting them to come to the coliseum. When James and Gary arrive to find Amy and an injured Harry captured by Strength, Goldman appears on a giant screen and taunts them. He claims that in time they will see who is right, and he looks forward to meeting them again.
Afterwards, Goldman directs his attention to his master creation, the Emperor. When everything is set in place, Goldman simply waits for the AMS agents to come to him at his headquarters. Once James and Gary arrive, Goldman explains the reasoning for his actions, and uses the life cycle as a basis for them. After explaining himself, Goldman unleashes the Emperor. The two AMS agents engage in battle with the Emperor and eventually come out as the victors.
Upon the Emperor's defeat, Goldman serenely claims that it is not over yet, and in time a successor will come. Following these words, Goldman just as calmly commits suicide by leaning backwards off the top of his headquarters, plunging to what James and Gary presumed would be his apparent demise.
However, the threat of Caleb Goldman and his dark agenda was far from over.
The House of the Dead 4
Goldman once again makes an appearance in The House of the Dead 4 as the game's primary antagonist. However, he is only shown through recordings and flashback scenes in which he reveals his true feelings about humanity. Before his demise, however, Goldman had arranged a backup plan that allowed a second outbreak to be carried out in 2003, three years after the events of the original infestation in Venice. A third outbreak was successful, as seen in The House of the Dead III.
Throughout the game, Kate and James are often fighting without any knowledge of who is behind the outbreak, while James has the suspicion that the events from 2000 hadn't ended as they thought. After finding Venice completely in ruins, James suddenly receives an e-mail from the familiar Goldman, with a recorded message which states that "everything's set", and that they have only one hour until a nuclear missile launch. The two set course for Goldman's headquarters, and upon entering the building, they are met by the Star who challenges them to a test of strength, as a parting wish of Goldman.
After the battle with the Star, Kate and James make it up to Goldman's office, and they are greeted with another recorded message. In this message, Goldman claims that his goal was not to destroy all humans with nuclear missiles, but to rather revert them to their natural state. He then goes on to state that Pandora's Box has been opened, and there is nothing he can do to stop it. Following this message, The World appears, forcing Kate and James to do battle with it. After the fight, James sacrifices himself in order to prevent Pandora's Box from opening, putting an end to Goldman's plan.
"Ah yes, there is one thing I forgot. The human race has not been eliminated. Travel north... Hope is such a splendid thing."
Goldman is shown to be a very stoic, cold and calculating human being, as well as having extensive knowledge of the Genome theory. He also harbors a deep contempt regarding what the human race might become due to their self-destructive nature, disruption of nature, and their excessive "breeding".
Goldman also posesses a calm, unshakeable confidence that his vision of a world free of the destruction wrought by man will indeed come to pass. At most, a defeat is simply a momentary delay of the inevitable. It is not an issue of if he will succeed' to him, it is simply a matter of 'when'. Even when confronted directly by those who wish to thwart him, Goldman is suprisingly civil and polite, and even addresses his enemies as "friends". His voice never rises above a serene, but stern tone, even after defeat. The closest he ever came to displaying anger was describing how man had committed a sin, but even at that Goldman's tone was still very reserved and controlled.
This faith is probably why he stepped off his building with such serenity. As he had told the agents upon the Emperor's defeat, everything was far from over, and he had already made arrangements for the Emperor's successor in the form of Pandora's Box. His plans would come into fruition even after his death.
- There is a possible answer that Goldman became the World after commiting suicide. Just like Curien returned as the Wheel of Fate after being killed by the Magician.
- In the "bad" ending of The House of the Dead 2, the player will confront a zombified Goldman after leaving his headquarters.
- In one of the endings of The House of the Dead 4, the game cuts back to the computer in Goldman's office. He then claims that the human race has not yet been eliminated, and to "travel North"; he then says that hope is such a splendid thing. If the player does not do well in the game, the camera focuses on Goldman's face, which becomes zombie-like.
- A Goldman costume, for use in Original Mode, can be acquired in the home versions of the game, including The House of the Dead: 2 & 3 Return.
- Goldman bears some small similarities to the main antagonist of the Resident Evil series, Albert Wesker, in terms of appearance, goals, and tone of voice. Also, both had tried to destroy the human race and replace it with a human race tailor altered to their own preferances through violent, destructive methods.
- In contrast of the Resident Evil reference, in the "bad" ending of The House of the Dead 4, when Goldman transforms into a zombie, his eyes glow red, which strongly resembles the ones Wesker had when he transformed into a superhuman.
- In the live-action sequel film House of the Dead 2, Goldman was briefly mentioned by one of the commandos who was thinking of selling the first generation blood to "Goldman Pharmaceuticals".
- In the Sega and Bizarre Creations game "The Club", the character known as "The Secretary" has an appearance that looks quite similar to Goldman.
- The family name "Goldman" implies a possible Jewish family background.
- Due to his Jewish name and possible Ashkenazi/German/Polish Jewish ancestry and lineage, many believe that Goldman's hatred towards the human condition may have been caused, by being exposed to stories and records of the Holocaust. He might feel hatred to all those who commited the great crime against his people, the fact that they managed to get away with it, and the fact that Humanity is destroying Nature and Earth may have all caused him to believe that that if humans continued to evolve, they would put themselves and the world in danger.
- Interestingly, if this behaviour is true, then Goldman could very well may have been inspired by the X-men's Magneto, as both are Jewish, and share a hatred towards humanity. the only difference is that Goldman does not hate all humanity and desires to revert the human population to it's "natural state", while Magneto wants to protect other mutants, who to him are the "New Humans" and "Homo Superior" and the rightful rulers of the Earth and other humans who are beneath them.
- Another difference is that unlike Goldman who may have been inspired to hate the human condition based on being exposed to stories and records of the Holocaust (this fact is still unconfirmed, but is an interesting fact), Magneto is an actual and true victim and survivor of the Holocaust.
- Another possible reason that Goldman committed suicide so calmly is that he is a human as well. He created the Emperor to hate ALL humans, and Goldman himself counts. It is quite possible that, had the Emperor killed James and Gary, he would have killed Goldman as well. Goldman would have known this, and possibly considered that he would die one way or another. With the Emperor gone, the creature couldn't kill Goldman, so Goldman did it himself.
- In House of the Dead 4, it is entirely improbable that Goldman would have actually launched the nuclear missiles. The holographic globe seen in AMS headquarters in Chapter 2 shows that it was a worldwide nuclear launch, and even one successful detonation would disturb the life cycle of the target zone greatly. Goldman was most likely just testing if James and Kate were willing to fight through Venice to stop the launch. He most likely would not have launched any missile had the timer run out. He even states in the game that nuclear apocalypse was not his plan.