Who killed Evan CHan? No, really, who?

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Joel C, Feb 21, 2002.

  1. Joel C

    Joel C Screenwriter

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  2. Bill Catherall

    Bill Catherall Screenwriter

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    Ah yes...it's very complicated.
    Basically Venus killed Evan, but she was programmed to do it. She was a Belladerma robot that was having an affair with Evan. She was reprogrammed by her owner, Enrico Basta (actually he used Kate Nei to do the programming), to kill anybody that tried to have sex with her (besides Enrico of course). So during one of their trists, Venus's new programming took over and she killed Evan. Some people speculate that the change in programming was not over jealousy, but actually because Evan was on to some A.I. consperacy to take over the world by slowly lowering the earth's temperature and bringing about another ice age.
    Laia was just the player's representative in the game. She was our contact and "local sleuth."
    The Red King was a teenage boy named Dwayne. His mother worked in the SPCB (Scentient Property Crime Bureau). He was one of the worlds best hackers and got in trouble later in the game with some real bad guys. This lead to one of the game's more fun moments where Dwayne was hauled off to the Statue of Liberty by some thugs to be beaten to death. He had become pretty good friends with Laia at this point and had left a clue for her with a telephone number. When people started calling the telephone number they were getting a live person. This threw off some people, but the person answering the phone said it was the Statue Security office. It turns out that it was in fact the writer of the story playing out the role of a security guard at the Statue of Liberty. After some time everybody was able to get the security guard to go in and rescue Dwayne. He then became an in-game hero!
    There's much more to the story with a vote being taken that decided whether or not A.I.s could have human rights. Venus became a Bad Metal robot (A.I. gladiator as seen in the movie with the really cool motorcycles from the Flesh Fair).
    The writer, Sean Stewart (author of other Sci-Fi novels such as Galveston, and Resurrection Man), was suppose to write a novel about the entire story. He actually finished it, but for some reason it got tied up in legal issues. I've also noticed that all the game websites have been taken off-line, but a guide to the whole game can be found at www.cloudmakers.org if you'd like to spend about 12 hours reading up on the whole thing! It was a very complex, amazing, and involving story. I really hope the legal issues get worked out so we can have that story as a nice addition to one of my favorite movies.
     
  3. Joel C

    Joel C Screenwriter

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    Thanks for a bit of the story. I know most of the game was atmosphere and puzzle-solving.
    Tell me this, how was Martin Swinton involved? I know he designed AI houses. Was he in the story more than that? I wish now that I had kept pace, but those cloudmakers people were nuts. they'd crack a puzzle before I even say it and I got like 30 e-mail DIGESTS (25 posts) a day. I'd love to read the story.
    There is a site that has a cache of all the game sites:
    http://www.enderboi.com/beast/
    Seems to have most of the stuff there. Oh, and did you know what happened to Laia that her installed AI was havingbad dreams and went crazy, ect? Why did Venus become a gladiator robot? Programming, or free choice? Like, we know who did it, was anyone brought to "justice?"
     
  4. Bill Catherall

    Bill Catherall Screenwriter

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    Thanks for that link. Unfortunately there are some sites missing. I really hope somebody was able to archive all of them. This story is very good...but very hard to follow if you can't get the puzzles solved. Many of the puzzles required a "collective conscience" like Cloudmakers to get through them.

    Martin Swinton's houses were being killed off by another hacker, goes by Crane, his real name is John Greenstreet. He was being forced into committing these murders by a guy named Claude Gilbert from Cybertronics (the company that made David). Martin was getting nosey digging into the mysterious disappearance of his AI brother and Claude Gilbert wanted him to stop asking questions. He later became involved with Diane Fletcher, an AI mercenary who works for Rogue Retrieval and tracks down rogue AIs. She's hired on to try to find the house murderer.

    During the investigation they dig up all kinds of dirt and end up going back to Cybertronics where they find Mother (you remember Mother) in a room filled with Davids. She's not the benevolent person you thought she was. She is an AI that hates Martin and has created an AI duplicate to take his place after destroying him. It was basically a trap. But with Diane's help they kill the AI Martin and disable Mother with a seven word code that shuts her down.

    John Greenstreet (Crane) was the one leaving behind the Sencha puzzles. He was feeling guilty about the house murders and knew who wanted Evan dead. He had been hacking around when he came upon the consperacy and was giving Laia clues to the mystery. Evidently it was some Japanese business man (thus leaving behind "Sencha" clues...Japanese green tea) that was involved with a company merger. Evan got wind of the purpose behind this merger and was on to an AI consperacy. This business man had Evan killed by using Venus through Enrico Basta.

    Laia's AI, Mephista, was attacked by a sleep therapy AI that went berserk...Loki. He would move from one node to another feeding off of other people's dreams and completely destroying them. Mephista went nuts from the dreams and almost ended up killing Laia. Luckily Jeanine showed up just in time to remove Mephista and save Laia. Mephista was reprogrammed and reinstalled, but she was never quite the same. Loki was later destroyed by another AI that was much more powerful...Sophia. When Loki tried to attack Sophia (she "knows 7/22 of everything" from the Red King's hacked page) he had too much to consume and basically blew up, leaving pieces of him scattered all over the in-game sites.

    Sophia was an AI that if you fed her the right name and emotion you could get a response that helped you to learn more about the in-game characters. She new very personal matters. Thus the elusive "7/22 of everything" (even the writer has no idea what that really means, he was just going for some cool hax0r speak). Example, inputing "Venus" and "fear" would give you a response where Venus was showing some fear.

    Jeanine Salla was killed at one point because she was getting too close to discovering what Evan had discovered...somebody was messing with the ocean's thermal plankton (TP-web) and was trying to cause it to malfunction to bring about global freezing. Movie spoiler:

    Could this be what caused the ice age that we see at the end of the movie?

    Venus became a gladiator bot to try to escape capture. She knows what she did, and didn't quite understand why she did it. She didn't want to give herself up so she went underground. She became quite a good gladiator too. But just before she went underground she had been captured and disassembled. Dwayne (the Red King) hacked the SPCB computers and reassembled her and helped her escape (I think he had a thing for her). She was then able to go fully underground.

    Was justice served? Well, after Kate Nei found out what happened to Evan Chan she left town and went far away. She left proof behind with her house AI that Enrico was the one behind the murder. She told Enrico that if anything was to happen to her (if her name appeared in the Coroner's report) then her house AI would release the evidence to the authorities. Well, one of the Cloudmakers was able to finally crack the PACO (Pan American Coroners Office) login and entered a coroner's report for Kate Nei (because that was the only name that worked). When Ivy (Kate's house) read the report she went nuts. First she released the evidence, then she paid Enrico a visit and killed him by taking control of his house, trapping him in his AI chair, and burned a hole through his head with a laser. She then committed suicide by burning herself to the ground. So Enrico got his, but it wasn't much of a pleasant way to bring about justice.

    There's so much more here that I haven't even mentioned, but it gets very involved. I really wish the legal problems can get worked out soon and we can have this novel released. It's a real winner.
     
  5. brentl

    brentl Cinematographer

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    Joel C ; I just wish it moved slower
     
  6. Bill Catherall

    Bill Catherall Screenwriter

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    Yeah, it did move pretty quick at times. Sometimes it would take a week to solve one puzzle, and sometimes all the new puzzles (things were added weekly) would get solved in a matter of 2-3 days and everybody would be left twiddling their thumbs until the next Tuesday update.
    The Puppet Masters (the game creators) even had to alter the storyline to add new things to keep it going until the movie came out.
    There were a couple puzzles that created a slowdown. One of them would ask you questions to which you could only guess the answers. When you got the answer wrong you would get kicked out to a "random" web page and would not be allowed to answer any more questions for 24 hours! These "random" pages were actually clues to the answers and when you put it together you can move on to the next question. This is where the group effort really paid off. There were enough people involved that we were able to solve it rather quickly (6 days) even though it would lock you out for 24 hours at a time. Doing it alone would take you at least a month.
    Then there were puzzles that moved so fast that if you were not paying attention you'd actually miss out on goodies. For example, there was a special movie screening held for game players. It was not advertised, but players were notified and able to buy tickets. At the screening some posters were handed out that had the Puppet Master credits and the names of the players who registered with the Cloudmakers Yahoo group. There was also a clue with a phone number. When the phone number went live there was a message that told you to email in with your name and address and they'll send you free movie stuff. If you're too slow you get nothing, if you're greedy (send more than one request) you get nothing. Just 45 minutes after the number went live they were no longer taking any requests. Luckily I got a request in and a couple months later I received a Flesh Fair Security jacket and some Newbucks (paper money). I actually requested a "David Box," but I'll take whatever I can get. Beggers can't be choosers. [​IMG] Some people got some pretty cool stuff like actual movie props and miniatures used for special effects.
     
  7. Bill Catherall

    Bill Catherall Screenwriter

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    I found some more archived sites in the Way Back machine. Here's Laia's summary of what happened. It's a very brief summary, but she touches on some things I didn't mention and includes links to the archived sites. I haven't tested the puzzles in the archive yet to see if they are still working.
    The best part of the Way Back machine is that you can see how the websites looked before some of the changes were made as the game progressed.
    Pretty cool.
     

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