Rundown is a powerful narcotic street drug delivered in pill form. Effects include relaxation and euphoria for the user. Unlike other similar drugs such as heroin or prescription pain killers, it is far less addictive and does not have the severe withdrawal consequences for habitual users, which made it very popular for recreational uses.
The pills are generally single-piece gel capsules with a golden or amber hue, though opaque black pills also exist.
Rundown has a wide range of effects depending on how it was concocted as well as the user's tolerance and physical make-up. Users describe the experience an ecstatic, warm rush and a gradual release of tension and anxiety. Effects last from one to several hours.
In the years immediately before the superflu hit, rundown had a relatively small number of users in the underground club scene. With increased tensions between nations and a growing fear of armageddon, rundown production increased tenfold in response to the increased demand for a calming agent in anxious times but also as a deliberate political act. Instructions on how to concoct the drug flooded the Internet and surpassed marijuana in terms of availability of an illegal drug among the general population. In Rivertown, a huge spike in production coincided with the first days of the superflu, resulting in an enormous supply of rundown for a population that was virtually wiped out. As such, the drug can still be commonly found in the city's remains and acts as a type of currency in the scavenger barter economy.
Although commonly found, rundown still has a great deal of value for the temporary relief it brings to those seeking comfort from the hardships of life in Rivertown. Some claim that some rundown labs are still in operation.