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Karen Howell was a doctor and botanist of the Hydroponics section of the USG Ishimura.[1][2]


The Second Aegis VII Incident[]

Howell was one of the few survivors aboard the ship after the initial infestation of the Necromorphs. She initially moved into the water treatment area beneath Hydroponics where she encountered a group of survivors. However, she promptly fled upon the appearance of a massive aquatic Necromorph.[1] Following her return to Hydroponics, she recorded her findings on the Necromorphs and their behavior.[2]


Karen Howell during Chapter 6.

Howell began moving throughout Hydroponics, assaulted by both Necromorphs and violent hallucinations when she came upon Lexine Murdoch. Howell briefly treated Lexine's nausea. The two made their way toward the Hydroponics Tram with Howell quite literally cutting through numerous Necromorphs including a lengthy engagement with a Brute. Upon reaching the Information Center, she encountered Nathan McNeill, Gabe Weller and Warren Eckhardt who survived their earlier battle.

Revealing that they are attempting to seal off all access to the water system in order to slow the advancing Necromorphs, Howell volunteered to oversee the operation as the others lacked the codes and understanding of the system that she possessed. With that decision, McNeill, Weller and Lexine left to scout ahead at the Tram Station, leaving Howell under the protection of Eckhardt. She quickly questioned him for organizing the entire replacement of her staff as well as the rest of the USG Ishimura with devout Unitologists, chastising him for it and directly blaming the Necromorph infestation and the massive death toll on their presence. Before she could persist, a Drag Tentacle appeared and attacked her.[note 1] Eckhardt seized the opportunity and escaped, sealing the door behind him. The Drag Tentacle grabbed Karen and dragged her inside a hole where she was likely killed.[2]

Karen Howell and Lexine had a strong bond after meeting. Lexine was grieved to learn about her death, and mentioned Howell and Nicole Brennan during the last stand before leaving the Ishimura, stating that their deaths would not be in vain if they manage to escape from the doomed starship.



  1. The origin of the attacking appendage is unknown, though it is presumably related or identical to the various Drag Tentacles encountered throughout the vessel.