Dr. Roy Curien is one of the major antagonists of The House of the Dead series, introduced as the primary antagonist in the first House of the Dead game. He is mentioned in the sequel as having ties with Goldman, and the third game explores his past motives.
Dr. Roy Curien was a renowned scientist working under the DBR Corporation as a research director. His aggressive direction gained the admiration and respect of his staff. Among his researchers was Sophie Richards, who was engaged at the time to AMS agent Thomas Rogan. Born of a noble family, Curien lived with his son in a mansion built in medieval times, where the DBR research facility was also located, hiding the nature of its experiments to the public.
It was believed that Curien had undergone a sudden transformation and suddenly went mad, as one day in December 1998 he released his creations upon his staff. Seeing that everyone around her was getting killed, researcher Sophie Richards made an urgent call for help to her fiancé. Rogan and his partner "G" arrived as quickly as possible, and infiltrated the zombie-infested mansion to stop Curien's plans and his creations from causing more chaos.
The agents finally encountered Curien in person deep underground, where he complimented their efforts before escaping and leaving Hermit Type 6803 to take care of them. The agents defeated the creature and chased him further underground, where he awaited them in one of the laboratories below.
When the agents had him cornered with no way out, Curien once again complimented them, but boasted that they would never stop him, letting them bare witness to the awakening of his Magnum Opus, The Magician. However, the Magician did not recognize Curien as his creator, and refusing to take orders from him, betrayed and attacked him. Grievously wounded, Curien's expressed his confusion over his creation's loyalty before his life gave away.
After the Magician was destroyed by the AMS agents and they took their leave, Curien would receive a personal visit by the head of the DBR Corporation, Caleb Goldman. While the incident would be regarded as the Curien Mansion incident in The House of the Dead 2, it would be revealed that Goldman had financially backed Curien's research and simply used him to further his own goals. Like his predecessor, Goldman would meet his demise when his own plans failed to come into fruition in 2000, but not before arranging a backup plan that would lead to the world's collapse in 2003.
Curien's discoveries play a large role in The House of the Dead III, which explores his past as well as his previous motives through flashback segments. It is revealed that several years before the Curien Mansion incident, Curien was seeking a cure for his son Daniel, who was terminally ill with doctors claiming he had no hope of recovery. Curien, portrayed as a loving father who would never give up on his son, was willing to step into forbidden territory if it would save his life. He soon descended into madness, claiming that he had discovered the key that would remove the barrier between life and death, and there was no need of fearing death any longer. He later appeared to his comatose son again, asking him if he had overstepped the bounds of human morality, confused and somewhat depressed that many of his researchers had left him. Later on, Curien would once again storm the room, claiming that he had discovered the genes that would change the future; "The Magician" and "The Wheel of Fate", laughing maniacally as he had discovered the ability to manipulate life and death.
During the time of The House of the Dead III's actual events in 2019, it was revealed that the Wheel of Fate was Curien's final creation and the last thing he left behind. After his death, Curien would be used as a testing subject and undergo a resurrection process that would take nineteen years to complete (some have speculated that this is why Goldman appeared before Curien's corpse after the mansion incident, and what he had done with it, but this remains unconfirmed). His son Daniel, who had spent his whole life in the facility and was now cured of his disease, had witnessed this evil grow for the last nineteen years and was finally prepared to put an end to it. Before awakening the Wheel fo Fate, who had become one with Curien himself, Daniel had hacked the program to give him and Lisa Rogan an opening advantage. When Lisa questioned if Daniel really wanted to fight his own father, Daniel claimed he was ready to carry the burden of his father's crimes, and that the future belonged to the people alive here and now.
With the Wheel of Fate awakened, it identified itself as Curien, and claimed that it would destroy and resurrect everything before engaging the younger generation of zombie hunters in a final duel. Upon its defeat, it claimed that the current collapsed world was the world the humans wanted, and they should realize that it was overpopulated. It attempted to make one final appeal to Daniel, saying that his son needed him. Angrily refusing to recognize the being as his father, Daniel opened fire alongside Lisa, putting his father to his final rest. For once in his life, now that he was no longer bound by the past, Daniel began looking toward the future.
As G and the Rogans were leaving the facility, Daniel looked back and bid his father a final farewell, saying that he wouldn't let his efforts for him go to waste, and that if humans went down the wrong path again, he would return.
However, inside the area where the Wheel was defeated, a mysterious man picked up the vial which Curien had shown to his son years ago, with the man remarking that Curien didn't appear to understand its true purpose.
Curien is depicted with contrasting personalities in the games that he is featured in. In the first House of the Dead, Curien appears to be intelligent as he is mad, with his intentions being nothing more than the destruction of mankind. He uses his creations to protect him from the agents, and treats their struggles as if it were nothing more than a game. He is confident of his success to the point where he doesn't consider them a threat to his plans. Some have speculated that because he wears sunglasses and uses a walking cane that he might be blind. In the instruction manuals for the game, it was mentioned that he had a son, but no further information was given beyond that.
In The House of the Dead III, Curien is depicted with deeper and more sympathetic intentions as a normal person, a loving father who would step into forbidden territory in order to save his son's life, and that his discoveries to control life and death were all for Daniel's sake. It was only after he discovered the genes that would change the future of humankind that he descended into complete madness. As the Wheel of Fate, he claimed that the world was overpopulated, and he would destroy and resurrect everything.
- Dr. Curien's name is likely derived from that of acclaimed French physicist Hubert Curien.
- There is a strong link between Curien and Goldman. Harry states that Goldman was behind Curien's plans, backing up and funding his research. In the opening extended demo on HoTD2 for Dreamcast, showing a flashback depicting the events from the first HoTD including Curien's death, Goldman is shown walking up to Curien's corpse. This could indicate that Goldman was the mastermind behind everything and used Curien as a pawn, or the two had a partnership of some kind.
- There is a strong possibility that Goldman was the one who revived Curien as the Wheel of Fate.
- A portrait of Curien can be seen in HoTD 3 in the EFI Genome Ward during the start of the stage.
- In the movie House of the Dead, Rudolf Curien (Roy Curien) seems to get his ideas from the movie serving as a back story.
- In the movie, Rudolf (Roy) meets G at the end and the AMS teams
- Dr. Curien appears as the main antagonist in Loving Deads: The House of the Dead EX with a slightly different look where he commands his creatures to imprison Zobiko in the dungeon.
- Dr. Curien was originally named as Dr. A in a early development of the original The House of the Dead game.