In The Name Of Jove

 

CCP have recently revealed a number of hints and lore-related news which sparked the imagination of many players. Not since Arek’Jalaan have I seen so many RP oriented players and lore-fans excited. Even the more jaded players often can’t help but wonder what is behind all this, myself among them. I am not the greatest student of EVE lore and I sure don’t know much about W-space, but with the help of some outside consultants and source material I managed to patch together a synopsis of the thread that seems to run through a whole sequence of backstory events, going back as far as the Apocrypha expansion and beyond. A lot of my piece will be based on interpretation and conjecture, so it is entirely possible that I may be wrong about a number of things. If you have any evidence that falsifies or supplements my statements, please make use of the comment section below.

In The Beginning …

During the first stage of New Eden settlement, the Jovians were one of the least developed groups of colonisers.(1) Most significantly they lacked advanced warp drives, so they fitted their colony ships with cryogenic hibernation pods for extended journeys. In their greatest effort, they sent seven such ships with 30.000 colonisers each to a distant constellation on a trip which would take them almost 300 years.(2) The crews of those ships were divided into two groups: the Architects – designers, terraformers and builders for the new world – and the Enheduanni, a group of technicians who would take turns to care for the Architects during their cryosleep on the long journey.(3) Collectively they were known as the Sleepers.

One thing the Jovians were good at was the development of virtual reality systems and to provide a “life” for the Sleepers, they created simulations which would enable the minds of the travellers in cryostasis to interact with each-other.(4) During their long journey, the Sleepers developed their own paradigm for virtual life based on their condition. The central precept was that “every participant must have been born in the physical world to enter; and for every soul inside the virtual world, there must be a body in the real one to return to.”(5)

In a way, the Sleepers are almost like a metaphor for the players of EVE. No bots allowed.

80KNs5X

Because the Sleepers were still en-route when the Eve-Gate collapsed, they survived the cataclysm. Upon awakening at their destination after centuries of travel however, they realized that the civilisation they had come from was gone.(6) Together the Architects and Enheduanni revived their society and so Jovians as we know them today are their direct descendants. (7)

Some – however – did not simply want to rebuild the old way of life but rather developed the VR systems even further.(8) While the Enheduanni were poised to become political leaders, several Architects created a virtual realm called The Construct and many who had become used to a life in virtual reality joined them.(9) With the help of their VR systems, they managed to develop and test technology in simulated realities which they could fully control. Most significantly they could accelerate the passage of time in those simulations which enabled fast-paced development. The Architects of The Construct became a technological elite(10) while the rest of the Jovians developed biotechnological and genetical engineering methods to advance their minds and bodies further.(11)

To Anoikis

Eventually, the Jovian Disease began to afflict the population and despite their advanced methods, neither the Architects nor any other Jovians could find a cure. Some believed that the Architects had engineered the disease to forcibly convince all Jovians that the future lies in virtual existence.(12) Regardless of whether they did so or not, the Architects failed to convince the entirety of Jovian society to join them in The Construct. Ultimately they seceded and migrated away from New Eden until they eventually arrived in Anoikis – the system cluster which we call Wormhole Space.(13) The Enheduanni remained behind and as Jovian society declined around them they began to manipulate its citizens and the other societies of New Eden(14), eventually leading to the revelation of capsule technology to the Caldari.(15) In the end, the Enheduanni themselves drifted away from Jovian society and vanished into obscurity. Some assume they did so intentionally to keep manipulating all the empires unnoticed.(16)

The Sleepers further developed virtual reality during their second migration. They interlinked eachother’s minds and created systems which allowed them to remote-control powerful combat vessels from within The Construct. This control interface worked similar to the capsules used by the Jovians but without the need of physical links between ship and pilot. They used these Sleeper Drones to guard their new settlements in Anoikis and the same ancient machines still defend them to this day. The Sleepers also found out that they had not been the first to reach Anoikis. The Talocan civilization had arrived there before them, possibly originating from the New Eden constellation Okkelen where ancient Talocan stargates were later found and studied (17). It is not entirely clear how the encounter between the Sleepers and the Talocan played out. There are some indications that the Talocan worshipped the Sleepers as exalted beings, others assume there may have been a war in which the Sleepers employed biological weapons. The most likely theory is, that the Talocan and Sleepers co-existed but because the Talocan had not developed infomorph technology, they succumbed to a massive pandemic, and while the Sleepers tried to help them they ultimately failed.(18)

15

At around that time the Sleepers were faced with their own problems which point to a possible explanation for the almost simultaneous collapse of both Anoikis civilisations. Within The Construct an infomorph had awakened which possessed no physical body and therefore violated the Sleeper’s paradigm of “One Mind – One Body”. Either this entity – called The Other – defended itself against Sleeper prosecution for being a deviant, or it proactively initiated a takeover of The Construct. There are hints that the Enheduanni might have planted the seeds for the awakening of The Other during the time of the Sleeper – Jovian schism, or at least had realised that there was a potential for such an entity to emerge from The Construct.(19) In any case, The Other imprisoned the Sleepers indefinitely in their virtual reality and only used them to control the Sleeper Drones. The Architects’ reign over Sleeper society was broken and the Sleepers became slaves.(20)

The Plot Thickens

When the first capsuleers arrived in Anoikis, The Other recognized that they were essentially infomorphs, just like the Sleepers it already controlled, and it began to look for a way to insinuate itself into a viable capsuleer mind. That opportunity finally manifested itself in the person of Amarrian heir Jamyl Sarum. Violating the doctrine of the “Sacred Flesh” which forbids royal heirs to use clones, the ambitious young woman utilized some obscure implant technology to cheat death during her succession trial and transferred her mind into a clone body. In some way, The Other had managed to subvert that process and gained partial control over Jamyl Sarum’s mind.(21) Since then, The Other has been guiding her decisions or even forcing her hand. One of the more significant interventions lead to the discovery and adoption of infomorph implant technology for individual soldiers by the Amarr – the way how Dust514/Legion soldiers can have their minds transferred to new clones at the moment of death. This leads to the speculation that The Other wants to spread that technology to as many humans as possible so it can eventually control them like it controls The Sleepers and partially controls Empress Jamyl.

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Now CCP have revived this whole plotline after some neglect. Arek’Jalaan has been rebooted and new wormhole systems are discovered. The Guristas also somehow acquired mind-transfer technology, this time for fighter pilots which will be the protagonists of Valkyrie, and The Sisters Of EVE seem to be very intent on getting capsuleers to involve themselves more actively in wormhole space exploration.

Following all those interwoven threads of EVE lore results in a number of intriguing questions:

What does The Other really want and are the Sleepers trying to escape their imprisonment in The Construct? Is the Awakened Infomorph a manifestation of The Other? What is the meaning behind Sleeper incursions into New Eden and the fact that there are new Sleeper Drones never seen before?  What really happened to Hilen Tukoss – the founder of Arek’Jalaan – and why does he need body fragments of a Jovian?

There are still many open ends in this story and many more unanswered questions. Even the things we do know are open to interpretation and speculation. Altogether, the cryptic references coupled with in-game changes are enough to get even a person like me, with only a passing interest in EVE lore, to sit down, do some research and write a piece.

Good job CCP.

 

Acknowledgements and References

My thanks go out to all the developers and players who have contributed to that extensive tapestry of mysterious lore. Special thanks go to CCP Dropbear who is sadly no longer with the company, Kaito Haakaanian who painstakingly collected every little hint in chronicles, books and even site descriptions and to all the contributors of Arek’Jalaan.

 

 

  • Templar One pp314-318

 

 

  • Templar One pp314-318

 

 

  • Templar One pp314-318, Templar One p200

 

 

  • Templar One pp314-318

 

 

  • Templar One pp314-318

 

 

  • Templar One pp314-318

 

 

  • Jove (interpretation of source material)

 

 

  • Templar One p376

 

 

  • Templar One pp223-225

 

 

  • Templar One pp314-318

 

 

 

 

  • Templar One pp314-318

 

 

  • Templar One pp314-318 and supported by the existence of the Forgotten Frontier Evacuation Centre

 

 

  • Templar One pp314-318

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

  • Templar One pp319-322

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tags: Jove, rhea, Sleepers, tarek, Thera, wormholes

About the author

Tarek Raimo

Former nullsec spy (no not under that name of course) and current failure at lowsec solo PVP, Tarek spends his time not logging in to the game as much as he keeps thinking about its social and metagame nature and sharing some of those thoughts with the CZ readers.

  • Nyx STeelGamers

    Very entertaining piece. As someone who has lived in wormhole space for 2+ years i was surprised by how much i learned about w-space lore from this write up Tarek.

    • Kamar Raimo

      When I was just a few months old as a player Apocrypha hit, and back then I was very much interested in what all that stuff was about but then my career took another path and I never really came back to it until now. Since many people usually name Apocrypha as one of the best expansions I guess CCP took the hint and decided to interweave game changes with lore again, and I guess at least for me it has worked. Hell I even flew into a wormhole with an Astero the other day 😀

  • Mr Eibmoz

    Nice article!

  • Bryan

    Very nice article

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  • Saint Michael’s Soul

    Only recently started paying any attention to the lore (mainly due to the Hydrostatic Podcast) & this is a great article. Keep up the good work!

    • Kamar Raimo

      Got to say Hydrostatic Podcast also got me more interested in it, as did my alliance leader and a rl friend.

  • Bam Stroker

    Awesome piece! I’ve done a bit of research myself lately but there’s still a couple of points here that I wasn’t aware of. I really need to re-read Empyrean Age and then read Templar One. I am SO happy that CCP are getting back to this.

  • Rhavas

    As I mentioned on Hydrostatic Podcast, this was really a well-done, well-researched article. I think it will be used as a lore reference piece for a long time to come.

    • Kamar Raimo

      Thanks, that means a lot coming from someone like you.

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