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Posted by Euph on 04 April 2013 - 12:09 AM
Thanks for reading,
I hope you found this both interesting and informative, please leet me know below!
Posted by PinkPony on 25 February 2013 - 04:10 PM
Full list of statements and rumors about TITAN;
Credible or not. It’s just a list for you to have a quick overview of all the statements about TITAN.
Every Statement will start with a bullet at the beginning, this makes it somewhat easier.
I know it's a lot, but there you have it. Feel free to add new rumors or facts. Have fun!
Updates: see bottom line
" You play Titan as a big storyline and you`ll be able to recreate the human history. All things you do have deep impacts on your character whereever you use magic or just be a brutal warrior with brute force. In the endgame there will be a huge event with apocalyptic aftermath, from this point on the story splits up: depending on which desicion you have made in the game, the world will change for you. It could be a futuristic scene (StarCraft), a really deep deep evil scenery (Diablo) or it will resurrect the old gods and natures beauty (WoW). At the end of the day you are playing a mindblowing fucking epic prequel from one of three big Blizzard brands! "
Titan is an FPS/MMO.
Think Team Fortress + tradeskills (from wow) in cities.
Multiple classes 5-6 w/ different attributes, you go on missions in different areas, back to cities to do other mmo things.
The talk used to be that all servers would be connected and you could travel to any area, I don't know if that's still the case.
FPS gameplay with MMO elements, housing, tradeskills, auction house, etc.
It was earth the last time I saw it. Couple hundred years in the future.
I remember some names but not all the details of the classes. Those have probably changed significantly.
„Shifting tectonic plates, raising Atlantis, and reviving Teotihuacan. Damn I love my job.“
„Imagining, creating, and writing the universe for Blizzard's new MMO (working title: Titan) from the ground up -- the history, philosophy, heroes, and villains. In addition to the core construction of the game's story, I wrote flavor pieces for the main characters and important events to lend depth and immersion for our team. Much of my time involved meeting with the art and animation team to ensure their work wove into the narrative.“
„Titan is a code word derived from large mechanical-esk things in the game. The setting and mechanical-like 'Titans' were described to be as something akin to what you can find in the movie Wild Wild West (as in not mecha and not humanoid per say).“
„It was strongly hinted that the game will have a MUCH MUCH heavier social aspect than any of their previous games, the social aspect being such an integral part of the game that they don't believe it will make it a major contender with WoW.“
„Somebody on an Escapist thread claims that he was an employee at Blizzard and had had the opportunity to play the alpha-version of Titan during his tenure there. He says that the game is pretty much Team Fotress 2 with robots, and the gameplay would be objective-based.“
„I just heard some info from someone who seems trustworthy and I wanted to share the few details I was given. His more "crazy-out-there" theory (again, all pieced together from hints dropped by his own sources and what he knows about them) is the MMO Project "Titan," which he believes might have a Free-to-Play model (downloadable from the Wii U eShop-equivalent) with microtransaction support and possibly NFC items at retail.“
„I think we have a very bright future. I believe Titan is the most ambitious thing we've ever attempted. And I feel like we have set our company up to succeed on that.
We have some of our most talented and most experienced developers on that team. Many of the people that built World of Warcraft are full time on that other team. We think that Titan is going to be very impactful in our industry and, we hope, very impactful to the world.
We think that the reach of that product is greater than anything that we've done before. We're very excited about that. I believe that it's the type of game that will have a very long life, much like World of Warcraft has. So, hopefully in 10, 15 and 20 years, that [new MMO] will still be growing strong and will have set a new mark in the industry for that type of product.“
„The game is set in the future. Aliens have invaded Earth to claim resources humanity never knew existed, including something connected to the secret of life. The game has two modes, 'office' and 'field', with players having a different avatar in each.
The 'office' is more social-interaction-focused whilst the 'field' is the more familiar MMORPG paradigm with exploration of ruins, quests etc. There are three factions: 'hippies', the authoritarian power-seekers and a bunch of cyborgs. There is also magic involved as well as technology.“
„Titan isn‘t not WoW... it's not gonna be anything new either. Just as any other blizzard game, it's gonna be a lot of proven concepts refined to the best of the genre mixed with reliable ways to sell to the masses and added with some tiny bits of hardcore to appeal to even the darkest of souls.... also sims players.
How does it look? Well at the time they showed it to us it looked pretty awesome. The world, the artwork was huge and awesome and the game characters had so much charisma it was almost unbelievable. I guess they will reveal something about it in 2015. This is the last info I have on the game. Don't hold this against me tho!“
„The fact is that we have received the insider information that Titan will be a realistic real MMO with in-game advertising from real companies. What do you think now? SECOND LIFE ... NEW YORK 2.0 CITIES ... big houses, rooms, real billboards (advertising spaces)
Who could play Second Life, will be especially pleased, because the game could indeed boast with lots of users, however, in my opinion it was technical a pure disaster. Content in Second Life, however, had a very interesting and unique concept. The game was
released in 2003 – it should be kinda like a second life (parallel world), in which the avatars of real people could interact with other users: play, trade or otherwise communicate. People and companies were offering virtual goods or services."
JK:I am shocked we haven't seen more sci-fi, near-future, post-apocalyptic, historical MMOs; there's all these completely different fantasy settings beyond the traditional high fantasy ones.
MTV: So is Blizzard's new MMO going to be sci-fi, near-future, post-apocalyptic or historical?
JK: All of those combined!
"I can't go into too much detail, but a guy on my team lives with a code monkey who's working on Project Titan at Blizzard.Blizzard has been on record saying that Titan would be a new IP. Its not, its a spin off of an existing franchise ... and they're playing into that to allude to a new IP.
Its going to be what Blizzard fans want. All I'm going to say is Titan isn't technically a new IP, it is.. but it isn't. Its a spinoff of an existing Blizzard IP. Titan is the next Blizzard MMO, but its not Warcraft. FYI Titan just left the framework stage not long ago. Level designers and artists just got their hands involved recently. You probably won't see anything Titan related until closer to 2014.
Also, what I'm getting at in a stealth manner is that the team working on Titan at Blizzard, the successor, the next MMORPG after WoW is now working on writing framework for the next Xbox in addition to PC. The only other thing I was told was that the SDK for the next Xbox is the best SDK they have ever worked with.
Project Titan is locked tight at Blizzard, my friend lives with a guy working in there. This is Blizzards next MMO, which has been stated
1000 times to be a complete new IP and it is not WoW2. The core framework is all thats done, the engine. The programmers were tasked at building an engine for a game that did not yet exist and still does not exist. No art, no modeling, no nothing has started on
Project Titan yet.
It’s a franchise that I think is going to excite people very, very much. Which one? Which would would people want more than any other? I hope you can wait, its not going to be coming out until closer to 2015, and I'm not joking. Just talked to one of the lead programmers for the Titan framework and thats all it is right now, a bunch of software engineers designing the framework. Project Titan started out with no details given to the programming team other than software requirements for the framework. As far as
I know no art has even been conceptualized for the game yet, its that locked up.
The blizzard campus is on lock down on a day to day basis, but the guys working on Titan is something like a team of 13 sr software engineers locked away in a unmarked, key card locked room at the end of a hall far from anyone else. Nobody at Blizz knows Hamsters rock, Squirrels suck! aboutTitan accept for a design team consisting of like 5 senior execs. The software engineers have no clue what the game is about ... outside of the fact that it IS a spin off of an existing franchise and NOT a brand new IP like previous stated. My sources are hinting at some kind of World of Diablo-like ... spin off. I have been told straight faced it is not a brand new IP and can be lead to be believed as one since its a spin off.
25/01/2012: Um Titan just left the framework stage a few months back. Artists are just getting involved and the game is like 2-3 years
before it will be shown, closer to 4 before it releases. Titan is not entirely a brand new IP and is also coming on XBOX.
My insider at Blizzard who is working on the Titan framework has had access to a near final "next Xbox" dev kit since November. "
Click here to view another interesting site regarding "Atlas Billing EU"
„Titan is set in a trans-world in which ancient historical civilizations compete for world supremacy. Players will be able to choose different ancient civilizations, however post 17th century civilizations will be likely not playable. There will be no class mechanic, but
rather players will be able to choose and develop roles in their communities. Alliances will be player controlled, and players could be hosted on massive realm rather than broken into smaller servers. There will be PvP, but it will not be instanced, for the game will not be heavily instanced like WoW was. The game will focus primarily on player operated economies and civil matters, and will not be PVE game involving monsters. Obviously this could be controversial in some senses, many people are fanatical about real world heritages. The prevailing idea is to allow the playerbase to control the outcomes of their world, and allow different interests to be pursued, unlike the typical raid/arena model of WoW. Please don't post this on other message boards. (think Civilization/Age of Empires but MMO style in way)“
„We are making games for the blizzard audience. Titan is different enough from all of our other games and we will get a lot of new fans too I think. It’s such a huge project. It’s all brand new technology. We think people are gonna be really excited about it… not really expect what they see coming from this this time. I think in the past we’ve announced our games a little bit too early, and what we want to do now is how long can we hold out before we announce it.“
Rob Pardo Interview (Oct 2012): "Over 100 working now on Project Titan."
"We have nothing to advertise for the new MMO because it's a shell of a game thus far. We've already stated it'll be a brand new franchise, which means the lore, art, and game play are being developed entirely from scratch. It's an overwhelming process, but a process through which we excel. Our track record supports this."
"It'll be a brand new franchise, which means the lore, art, and game play are being developed entirely from scratch."
„This will probably sound like the biggest pile of Hamsters rock, Squirrels suck! ever, but what the hell. A few months back I worked with an ex-Blizzard employee on a daily basis. He claims to have seen footage of Titan, and claims that Blizzard is taking this project in a different direction than previous releases (which they've mentioned.)
From what he mentioned, the game is going to be a pseudo-SIM/MMO, and Blizzard aims attract both SIM and MMO players. Supposedly, the game revolves around two universes: a SIM universe, and an MMO universe. In the SIM universe, you simulate the life of yourself, or rather, your alter-ego. When you enter the MMO universe, you become your true self: a super hero. I can't vouch for the credibility of this information, and maybe the person was lying, but I guess I wont know until release.
There was a bit more, but I think this will do. If it is worth anything, he had a copy of Diablo 3 that we played at work pre-beta. Honestly, I doubt I would play it, but it's a good idea. I can see a game like that attracting a lot of gamers, if it were to exist.“
§ Blizzard has 5 teams working on the character aspect, ie: Advanced rigging, eye movement, facial animation, modeling and
§ Voice-chat lip-synching is a planned feature.
§ There will be hairstyles and pets in Titan.
§ Dance routines will, for certain, be something out of this world.
§ Content updates will be like World of Warcraft, and not like Diablo 3.
§ We will get the same unlock-to-announce stuff as Diablo 3 did. First it was in September then July
§ The game will be available in multiple languages and a global launch is planned. (This is of course something we should expect, so nothing new here.)
§ Not a spin-off as we would see it like we do in tv-series
§ It's fully online, no sandbox, no new input devices
§ Third party content is a possibility
§ It will be a game my mother and sister would like to play (kinda dont know what my mom would be playing, though)
§ It will cannibalize WoW to some extend
§ It will be more condense and future compatible for consoles. PC is the only thing they are working on.
§ Has a statying power of 8 (on a scale from 1-10 very 10 is the best)
§ PvP is not only combat related: ie: Politics, Economics, relationships and dating
Papaz asking Grygoire:
1. About the release schedule his tweet was (this is the tweet I remember the best since it gave the most
teasers (13), trailers (+beta 14) and then peed trousers (1/2 of 15)
2. About the kind of game Titan could possible be described as
What would Earthbound look like if it was made today?
3. About how big Titan is (I don't remember the quote so this is entirely my wording)
Destiny has a bigger scope than Titan.
4. 1. Lazers or swords&shields? 2. 1-10 where 1 is Eve Online and 10 Disneyland themepark?. 3. Cool or cute? 4. Aim or tab?
„There will be stages and content releases over time. So, let's assume "in the end" then it will be both, 8, both, both sorta.“
Papaz asked him how he knew that, if he was just estimating, and he said that there have been devs transferred from Bungies Destiny to Titan.
Link: https://twitter.com/grygoire (only for confirmed followers)
Info 1 - Blizzard acquires city generating software in 2009
What is it? Basically, Blizzard bought a license to use CityEngine, an application used to generate cities based on variables controlled by the user.
Info 2 - The mysterious page of Kotaku.
What is it? Basically, Kotaku posted a timeline of the Titan updates in September 2012 (article last updated 25th Oct 2012) and because they've ported their blog site to Tumblr or something posts before October aren't able to be seen. Luckily, you can still catch some info in the google caches of the pages! Initially I thought Blizz had asked them to take it down, until I realised about the tumblr thing.
Info 3 - The mysterious link to titan video on Blizzards' website
What is it? Basically, it's a webpage that showed up on google for a video on the Blizzard website. The actual page shows no video nor video title.
One big thing I did notice though, is that when you change the link in the top (I'm talking about the actual page) to something else i.e. http://eu.blizzard.c...OYS:features it still comes up as the same layout and in the source code the directory tree is merely edited:(/blizzard/movies/games/titanLOLBOYS/blizzard2011/titanLOLBOYS-blizzard2011-en_us.flv). This would seem to disprove my theory about a video. But the interesting thing is that the link for the titan one came up on Google and I attempted typing in again random terms site restricted to Blizzard but nothing similar came up.
If you think Titan will be a historical MMO or have time travel, you can rule out the WW2 era. This is from Kenny Carvalho, character art manager for Titan:
„My recommendation is to do this yourself at this stage in your career. You should take the act of looking for a job as a full time job. Do your own research on different companies. What are you looking for? Is it location? A company that makes games you like? A studio that is stable? All of the above? Also, make sure you have artwork that is relevant for the company that you apply to.
Don't send a WW2 tank model to Blizzard Entertainment for example. Try and match the style and content that the company is working on. This is almost like taking a test for the company without getting an official art test. This will also show the hiring manager(s) that you are really interested in the company.“
"Franchise Development ProducerNEXT-GEN MMO
Work with major consumer brands to facilitate product placement and licensing within the world of Blizzard Entertainment's next-gen
MMO that enhances the gameplay experience.“
VG247: One interesting news announcement you made recently was about Facebook integration with Battle.net – what is the thinking behind that?
Frank Pearce: Well, it’s less of an integration and more of a convenience feature, wherein if you want to import your Facebook friends list to create your Battle.net friends list then you have that option. It’s really just a convenience feature.
(TitanFocus, thanks to Euph)
Splash Damage contacted GameSpy to let us know a grand total of one developer from the Brink team is now working at Blizzard. I'm terrible with numbers, but I don't think that qualifies as a "large portion of the development staff." So it looks like this one is much more rumor than truth.
Given Splash Damage's track record (Wolfenstein: Enemy Territory and Enemy Territory: Quake Wars, among other FPS shooters), it's safe to say Blizzard would hire devs from the studio specifically for their shooter expertise.
Morhaime: "We're trying to create a different massively multiplayer experience." „So let’s just say it’s going to be different and it’s not going to be a sequel to World of Warcraft. It will be different.“
„We’re not trying to replace World of Warcraft with this new MMO. We’re trying to create a different massively multiplayer experience, and hopefully World of Warcraft will still be going strong when that one is released.“
Sams: "We're very confident in that product. It's an awesome one, we're playing it already."
Strong pipeline for 2012 and beyond: A new free to play game and a new MMORPG
Link: http://titanfocus.in...9-titan-mmorpg/ (Image on TitanFocus)
Titan refers to two things It’s an new IP MMO AND a development platform (or building framework).
The big deal is not the new MMO (I’ll come to it after), the big deal is the TITAN platform and Blizzard is willing to bet his future on it.
Link - read more over here: https://plus.google....sts/TGoKPSeBLJC
In this new MMO, each player would have two "lives": the first one is a sort of Sims Online, a giant hub of social interaction and the possibility of connecting with his second life. One which will consist of first person combat.
Link: http://titanfocus.in...lues-so-far-r26 (Titan Focus)
Update (1): Added Rumor
Update (2): Added Link to Atlas Billing EU
Update (3): Added TitanWiki links
Update (4): Added Blizzard Statement
Update (5): Added Blizzard Statement (there are also single-player missions)
Update (6): Added Greg Street Hints - no flying mounts
Update (7): Added Rob Pardos statement.
Update (8): Added Spiteful_Vengeance's comments
Update (9): Added Springerfield's rumor
Posted by WickedWitchy on 05 January 2013 - 07:06 PM
So ya, after a very very long night and with a hangover the size of a continent I still managed to finish the tinylittleblueEuphthatisprobablyjustasquirrel. Based on this image, also known as Euphs weird avatar.
I wasn't capable of baking today but I didn't wanna wait. I perched him on a plate, and he will eventually end up on a cupcake.
Happy Birthday Euph, king of essays and fanfictions, notorious Mac user and overall awesome person
Have a good one!
Posted by Goht on 24 February 2013 - 01:17 PM
Developed by Carbine Studios in Southern-California Wildstar is an upcoming MMORPG that will take place on the planet called Nexus. The game will be published by NCsoft. Carbine Studios are eyeing a relase 2013 but they clearly saying the game will be released when it´s done.
Videos can be found inside the Spoilers.
The official announcement trailer:
What is Wildstar?
Discovered by one of the Exiles(more on them later) the planet Nexus is one of the most dangerous and mysterious Planets ever found. The Exiles settled on Nexus while the Dominion(more in a fec sec) is taking their right, what was given them through the Eldan, to call Nexus their own. You have to choose between those two Factions to discover ancient Ruins, mystical forests and unexplored moons. Of course there are some downsides: You have to survive against monstrosities, frightening beasts and hostile alien races.
The Factions and Races
2000 years ago the Eldan have chosen the Cassian to establish a Dominion and conquer the universe. The Dominion is taking planets as their so called "right" given through the mysterious Eldan long ago. Driven by the Cassian they have settled at planet Nexus and will fight against everything that stands in their way. The Dominion is set up by 4 Races.
Meet the Dominion:
The Exiles are a alliance of several Races against the Dominion. They are born Rebels and won´t take any commands by the Dominion. One of the Exiles discovered the planet Nexus and invited every Exile to call Nexus their new home. 4 Races has come under the banner of the Exiles:
Meet the Exiles:
The Class and Pathsystem
You are able to choose between 6 classes and 4 Paths. The classes will define what skills, abilities you can use. The 4 Paths availabe in the game will have directly impact in which quests you can do and what kind of quests you will do. Different paths have different advantages, like the explorer will be able to explore regions where no one else will be able to.
Closed Beta has started, you can register on the official site or you can join our Wildstar group: http://titanfocus.in...r-beta-signups/
For more Information go to:
Here are 2 videos from Pax 2012(september) showing some combat, jump´run, (sub-)regions and in the 2nd video a Q&A:
The press demo from PAX East 2013 showing Housing and combat:
mynsc edit: If you decide to sign-up for the beta, do it like this, as part of the TF group! (better chances for all of us to get in).
Posted by mynsc on 30 June 2012 - 09:21 PM
I think it would be interesting to start and maintain a Titan timeline, for posterity's sake. I'm going to try and populate it as best as I can, even if there aren't many important events to mark right now. If you guys have any other additions / corrections, let me know.
I'm trying to focus mostly on actual progress reports of the project and on important reveals for us and not that much on rumors, speculation on features etc.
Posted by mynsc on 18 March 2013 - 05:40 PM
as for my picture, im far to ugly to post one here, i shall grace the thread with my trainwreck of a face when Mysnc does, which if my spidey senses are correct, will take along time.
Why does everyone think I'm hideous? When Witchy saw it, she was like "WOW Mynsc, you look normal!"...
Anyway, on a more serious note, I'm hesitant to post it mostly out of privacy reasons, but considering how "well" I've covered my virtual tracks so far, you could probably already find pics and stuff if you really wanted to.
So yeah, challenge accepted, now it's your turn!
This pic is about 2 years old, since I don't have anything else decent on my current PC. Plus, I was younger and slimmer than I am now, so I'm not gonna bother looking for another one too much.
Posted by mynsc on 12 February 2013 - 10:00 PM
I feel you guys, I want this grygoire guy to be the real deal as much as anyone else, but it's just not looking that way. It's 101 trolling so far. Nothing verifiable (still waiting on that Blizzcon Tuesday announcement... tomorrow he'll be telling us they postponed it so they make him look bad), everything completely ambiguous, only telling us what we already suspect (activating our confirmation bias in a way and also making his claims a bit more believable) and so on.
Think for a minute. With what we know about Blizzard's tight leak control, would a real insider make a show on Twitter, planning on playing it for months and months? Hell no. He'd do his best to tell us what he knows as fast and as covert as possible. Insiders rarely leak stuff just to get mainstream attention, they do it out of more personal reasons. Meanwhile, grygoire's obvious main goal is to attract as much attention as possible.
I don't like saying it, but I think we should stop the troll feeding.
And now that Blizzard employee too.. I have no idea what the hell was she thinking. Whatever reason you might have to follow his tweets, don't be so lazy / dumb to follow him from your Blizzard branded account, I mean sheeeesh. Keep his profile open in a new tab or make a second twitter account.
I don't even know what else to say about what she did, except that it really does not mean anything. My guess is that she was trying to keep an eye on him, in case he actually turns out to be a real insider.
mynsc aka BuzzKillington.
About the "everything he says is completely ambiguous" statement I've made.
Let's look at his last tweets and extract the info from them:
Zero info. Only blurry remarks that say nothing. At this point I don't even care if he's a real insider or just a troll, because we're not getting any real solid info out of him anyway.
Posted by Anjloh on 25 January 2013 - 09:02 AM
I was eagerly looking at Youtube channel names while waiting for "Titan", when I came across a similarity between the youtube channels.
They were named for the game they represented!
Anyways, I figured I would do some investigation.
So I went to see:
Oh, it is just a typical user right? Maybe some fan that heard the leaked name.
But then, I remembered "Project Blackstone" so I decided to search:
Oh, what is this? Some random guy again. But the date the account was created was November 11, 2011. How could he have known beforehand?
And what were the chances both of them were from Germany? (Might not have relation)
Anyways, I went and did a Google search on this guy "Florian Muller"
At first he looked like a normal German business man until I opened up his wiki page and BAM:
"From 1987 to 1998, he specialized on publishing and distribution cooperations between US and European software companies. He initiated and managed such alliances in various market segments, including productivity software, utility software, educational software, and computer games. As a consultant to and representative of Blizzard Entertainment, Müller was involved in the marketing campaigns for WarCraft II, Diablo I and StarCraft I)."
Anyways, I'm going to do more investigation. I might dig up some good stuff from this.
Found some walls of text relating to Muller and Blizzard.
Apparently a lot of things he does concerns Patents.
I tweeted him, hopefully he replies.
Posted by Eremite on 19 October 2013 - 12:47 PM
My name is Eremite and I have no Hearthstone beta key. All of my friends have keys and nobody talks to me anymore. I cry myself to sleep every night and game cards float through my dreams.
If you're like me then please share your grief and commiserate with the other unlucky souls who've yet to receive a key.
Posted by papaz on 16 April 2013 - 10:03 PM
Posted by Odysseus on 03 April 2013 - 02:55 PM
(I don't rightly remember what prompted this idea, but it was kicking around for a few months until I finally sat down and let the words flow one night. Titan had been rumored to be connected with mythology, and time travel, so I wanted to put a little twist on that. Demons are pretty interesting. They have incredible powers, but God can put the kibosh on them whenever He wishes. One of the demonology ideas is that some of them were angels that fell due to providing forbidden knowledge to humans. Given Titan's time travel rumors, that of course became the hook to include them.
I used to write a lot, but haven't done so in a good many years, so hopefully it's not too bad. )
Roswell, New Mexico
Beatrix St. Clair unscrewed the top of her canteen and thirstily drank the water as her Jeep began to slow and turned onto the access road for Roswell Army Air Field. The blonde, svelte, twenty-four year old Catholic was a veteran of the Second World War, having served in the Office of Strategic Services' Special Projects branch on a secret task force dedicated to investigating and thwarting the Nazi's projects into the occult. Beatrix had played a role in the task force's Operation Exorcism, where she and other OSS agents had parachuted behind enemy lines to assassinate German SS officers who had been plotting to channel the dark arts to turn the tides of war. When General William Donovan, the former head of the OSS, had personally summoned her to Roswell, years after the OSS had been dissolved, Beatrix had had a very bad feeling.
As a young girl, Beatrix had her first experiences with the supernatural. Every night after her mother laid her down to sleep and turned off the lights, Beatrix could see a spectral sentry pacing outside her door, a feminine being made of ghostly white light. When she described what she had seen to her mother, the elder St. Clair had responded with a wink and told her it was her guardian angel. Beatrix was never afraid of this entity, and as she grew older she no longer noticed it.
When she was fourteen, a class project about genealogy had revealed that Beatrix's lineage could be traced back to Salem, Massachusetts, where her family had settled after immigrating from Scotland. Salem was infamous for the Witch Trials that occurred in the late 1600s, and Beatrix had been very interested in the history surrounding them. This sparked an interest in the supernatural, and when she began to attend a Catholic university, Beatrix had studied demonology.
In 1942, Beatrix was nineteen years old and the world she grew up with was quickly descending into chaos as the United States joined the war. One night, Beatrix was approached by a man who introduced himself as an OSS agent. He had an invitation for the young demonologist, a position on the anti-Nazi Special Projects task force, codenamed Revelation. She had been overjoyed and readily accepted the job, but even her wartime experiences could not prepare her for what she was about to see today.
The Jeep passed a gauntlet of armed guards and came to a stop outside a large hangar. Two military policemen, their fingers hovering near the triggers of their M3 submachine guns, checked over Beatrix's ID and quickly escorted her towards the hangar. She was brought into an office, where a stone-faced Army Air Force general waited.
General Maxwell Spiers bowed his head to the newcomer and gestured for her to take a seat. The aging general had first got his love for aviation when he volunteered to fly balloon busting missions during World War I. As a colonel in World War II, he had been shot down while flying a bombing mission over Germany, being held prisoner in a Stalag Luft camp until he and other inmates had staged a daring escape.
Spiers rummaged through Beatrix's dossier and flashed her a smile. "I am General Spiers. Thank you for coming on such short notice, Miss St. Clair."
Beatrix returned the smile. "I am honored to meet you, sir."
"From your files I see that you had an interest in the occult, were a member of Project Revelation, and participated in Operation Exorcist. Tell me, Miss St. Clair, what is your attraction to demonology?" Spiers asked.
"It started when I first learned about my heritage," Beatrix said. "My family lived through the Salem Witch Trials. I was raised Catholic, so my interests in witchcraft and my faith in God led me to the Bible. The more I read of them, the more fascinating they became. They could use incredible powers and abilities, yet God could nullify anything they did. He could even command them into the abyss. I was really intrigued by the tale of Jesus when He ventured to Gadarenes."
Spiers nodded. "'My name is Legion, for we are many.'"
Beatrix grinned. "Indeed. What I found really interesting about those scriptures was that Jesus cast out these demons into a herd of swine, which they had begged Him to let them possess, and the herd then immediately rushed down and drowned themselves in the sea. I just found that quite puzzling, that they would immediately kill themselves."
Spiers leaned back in his chair and drummed his fingers on the table. There was a twinkle in his emerald-green eyes. "In all your experiences with the supernatural, have you ever encountered a demon?"
Beatrix shook her head. "No, sir. Not to the best of my knowledge, but I suppose it is possible."
Spiers stood and slipped on his officer's cap. "Well, Miss St. Clair, I'm afraid that is about to change. Follow me, please."
Beatrix felt a great sense of dread mixed with excitement as the general led her through the office and into the hangar. An army chaplain and several officers stood warily next to a woman that was bound to a chair. As she neared, Beatrix could see that a circle of salt surrounded the chair. A chill ran up her spine as she heard a raspy voice greet her. "Hello, Trixie. How nice of you to come all this way to see us."
Beatrix shuddered and Spiers put his hand on her shoulder as he guided her to the front of the chair. The woman was Hispanic and in her thirties, and she looked up at Beatrix with a smirk. As Beatrix stared at the woman, the woman's eyes began to glow red and her lips curled up into a perverse grin.
Beatrix felt her stomach knot up and she looked away from the woman. Spiers patted her on the back. "This is apparently a demon that calls herself Melial. During a fierce thunderstorm a week ago, some sort of craft exploded in the air. A local farmer found the remains, which were made of a strange alloy, and it would appear that the craft's pilot, our guest here, found the farmer's wife."
Beatrix turned back and gazed at the woman in awe. She believed demons were real, the Bible told her so, but it was still surreal. She knew now why General Donovan had called for her, but wasn't certain what role she was supposed to play. Her mind began to race as she thought of the possibilities the demon presented. "Wait a second, sir, the demon was flying an aircraft?"
Spiers nodded. "During the war, our pilots frequently encountered unidentified flying objects which appeared as balls of fire, which we called 'foo fighters.' It would appear they were in fact demonic in nature."
The woman possessed by Melial cackled. "'Tis a good thing the war ended so soon. My brethren, what you mortals deemed 'gremlins,' did so enjoy watching your metal birds explode!"
Spiers glared at the woman, then turned back to Beatrix. "Father Larson had been preparing to exorcise the demon, when she pleaded with him to let her stay a while longer. Melial claims to be an angel and that she has a message for us. According to her, the demons gave us the knowledge required for the atomic bombs, in an attempt to wipe out humanity."
The woman smirked. "'Tis true, 'tis true. The message I bring is a warning of things to come. If your kind does not act soon, my brethren will succeed in their plans and you mortals will be no more."
Beatrix worriedly looked at Father Larson. "Does she speak the truth?"
Father Larson grimly nodded. "I am afraid so, child."
"We were performing some enhanced interrogations on the subject, her story remained consistent," Spiers said.
Beatrix turned back towards the woman and found herself looking at her own mother. She gasped and jumped back in shock. "Wh-what?"
"Poor Trixie," the woman cooed. "Forgotten your lessons so soon? You know we have the powers to assume any form we wish." Her mother's form faded into that of President Harry Truman's. "Think upon my brethren's plan for your destruction, and see what little hope you have, Trixie. There is a way to stop all of this, but you will need to trust me."
Beatrix's face paled as Spiers led her from the hangar, Melial's laughter echoing in her mind. Outside in the sun, Beatrix shivered despite the heat. Spiers gave her a comforting hug. "I felt the same way when I first encountered her. Personally, I'm not sure if we should believe the words of what appears to be a demon, especially since she claims to be an angel. However, I've got a gut feeling that it does speak truth. We do have a plan in mind to try and counter whatever it is they may be planning, though."
"What are you going to do?" Beatrix asked. She kept hearing the demon's voice saying 'Trixie' in her mind. It troubled her that it not only knew who she was, but had chosen to call her the same nickname her father did.
Spiers pulled a folded sheet of paper out of his coat pocket and handed it to Beatrix. She unfolded it and her eyes were drawn to the words TOP SECRET and FOR EYES ONLY stamped across the top in red ink. The paper detailed an idea called Project Vigilance, which called for a team to be assembled that would be tasked with running anti-demonic black ops. It listed her name as a candidate for the director.
Beatrix re-read the paper then nodded at Spiers. She could feel in her heart that this was something important, something she was meant to do. She folded the paper and slipped it into her pocket. "I will do it."
Spiers smiled warmly. "Splendid! General Donovan has already been campaigning to give you an official cover to work under. With any luck, Congress will have it ready for the president to sign soon."
Spiers and Beatrix headed back into the hangar after she had collected herself. Beatrix strode over to the woman and stood in front of her with her arms crossed. "You claim to be an angel? You certainly appear to be a demon to me, seeing how you are currently possessing a woman."
"Your books, Trixie, remember what you have learned about fallen angels," the woman replied. "Remember just what it was that caused some of my brethren to be cast from Heaven."
"Some of them fell for refusing to obey God's desire that mankind be treated with respect. Some fell for providing forbidden knowledge to mortals," Beatrix said.
"And some fell willingly," the woman replied with a smirk. "It is also the latter reasoning you provided that I cast myself from Heaven."
"What knowledge do you wish to bestow?" Spiers demanded.
The woman jerked back her head in an attempt to beckon Beatrix closer. "Let me whisper in your ear. The wisdom I possess is for you only, Trixie. I mean you no harm."
Beatrix glanced at the others in the room. She knew demons were not to be trusted. On the other hand, she *was* looking at a real live demon before her. She shrugged and bent down, putting her ear near the woman's mouth.
The woman began to whisper in a language that Beatrix had never heard before, the ancient tongue of the angels. Despite not being able to comprehend the sounds, Beatrix found herself slowly understanding what she was being told. Her eyes began to go wide as the woman concluded telling the secret.
Beatrix felt the hair raise on the back of her neck and the woman butted her with her head, knocking Beatrix away as a lightning bolt tore down through the roof of the hangar and impacted on the woman. A constant stream of energy coursed over the woman's body and the gathered crowd watched in terror as a winged figure - the true form of Melial - rose from the woman's body, the lightning continued to pour over Melial, leaving the woman unharmed.
Melial did not look like any angel they had seen as portrayed by the classic artists. Her upper body was like that of a human with ruddy flesh, but her fur-covered legs were like that of a goat and ended in hooves. She had large wings of ebony feathers as well as a prehensile tail. She had a mane of white hair and a pair of horns jutted out from near the crown of her head.
The stench of burned flesh and feathers permeated the air as the divine lightning ravaged Melial's wings. The onlookers clasped their hands over their ears as Melial screamed in agony as her wings were ripped apart. A few seconds later, the lightning dissipated and the now-fallen angel slumped to the ground, smoke pouring from the charred remains of her wings.
Father Larson made the sign of the cross on himself as he stared at Melial. "Mother of God..."
The fear that Beatrix felt had disappeared and she rushed to the side of Melial. She felt an odd attraction to the fallen angel and began running her hands over Melial's body, gingerly touching her fur, her face, her tail, and her horns. Confident that what she was seeing was real, Beatrix knelt and stared at the remains of Melial's wings.
Melial tried to rise, but collapsed with a moan. Tears fell down Melial's cheeks as Beatrix helped her sit up. Beatrix clasped her hands and looked into the red eyes that had terrified her moments before. There was no longer any fear, merely sorrow. "You did this for us?" Beatrix asked.
Melial nodded and winced in pain. "Yes... They must be stopped."
Spiers had his M1911 drawn as he slowly approached Melial. He pointed the gun at her bare chest. "What did you tell her?"
Beatrix gently reached out and pulled on his arm, lowering the gun. "She told me about a method for travelling through time."
Spiers holstered his pistol. "Time travel? That's impossible, isn't it?"
Beatrix held up an ebony feather and let it drop, watching as it slowly drifted to the floor. "After what we just saw, I think just about anything is possible."
Weeks later on July 26th, President Truman signed the National Security Act of 1947, which, amongst other things, established the successor to the OSS - the Central Intelligence Agency. The Agency had been founded with a vague charter purpose, and it was the perfect cover for Project Vigilance to operate undetected.
One of the branches of the budding intelligence agency was the Special Activities Division, which was responsible for covert operations, known as 'special activities.' The SAD was further divided into the Political Action Group, which dealt with covert political action, and the Special Operations Group, which was responsible for the collection of intelligence in hostile areas, and all high threat military or intelligence operations with which the U.S. government did not wish to be overtly associated.
Within the SOG, Beatrix St. Clair's Project Vigilance was born. Working under the name Task Force Epsilon, Beatrix soon found herself fighting a never-ending, covert war waged throughout history against the demonic forces of corruption that sought to destroy the world.
Taken from the Epistles of John, the CIA's motto was perhaps especially poignant for Project Vigilance and the terrible secrets of demons and a coming Apocalypse that they were sworn to thwart - "And ye shall know the truth and the truth shall make you free."
Groom Lake, Nevada
Beatrix St. Clair fingered a silver crucifix that dangled from her necklace as she made her way through the corridors of Section Six, the headquarters of Project Vigilance. Codenamed 'Eden,' Section Six was a massive underground complex built beneath the Area 51 facility at Groom Lake, Nevada. Work on Section Six had begun in 1955, using the construction of the Groom Lake test facility as its official cover. As time progressed it had become the most secure, and classified, location in the world. Technological advancements over the years had allowed Section Six to be completely self-sustained, a veritable metropolis.
The operatives of Section Six were the best of the best, period, and had been recruited throughout time to assist in the war against the demons. Nearly all of the finest minds the world had ever seen had been gathered at Section Six, giving Project Vigilance an unheard of pool of talent. Legendary figures such as King Richard the Lionheart, Socrates, Sir Isaac Newton, Geronimo, or Nikola Tesla, to name but a few, could be found at Section Six, creating a historian's dream, or nightmare, depending.
However, the most interesting recruits were those from the damaged timelines and alternate universes the demons had created. These operatives, nicknamed EDBs, for Extra Dimensional Beings, generally came imbued with supernatural powers. With abilities ranging from superhuman strength to being able to cast bonafide magical spells, the EDBs were a powerful tool in the war against the demons, which, for the most part, Project Vigilance was winning.
The Book of Revelation had prophesized that in the end the forces of good shall triumph over the forces of evil, and all those that served evil will suffer God's wrath. Unfortunately, that only served to entice the demons into doing whatever they could to circumvent their fate. It was hard to blame them. Nobody likes to lose, after all, but one demon in particular outright refused to accept what fate held for him in the future - Belial, the Angel of Darkness.
For reasons known only to Him, God had granted Belial his own personal horde of six-hundred and sixty-six angels of destruction. Conspiring with his infernal brethren, Belial planned to avoid divine retribution by sending his legions of demons throughout history in order to disrupt the timeline, in hopes of altering it so that he and the other demons would be victorious during the final battle. As with most things demonic, there was an ulterior motive to this plan as well - to inflict as much suffering as possible on humanity. It was for this reason that Melial (no relation to the treacherous Belial, besides both being angels) had fallen from Heaven in order to provide humanity with the secrets of time travel.
The secret knowledge of time travel had allowed Beatrix and all the other members of Project Vigilance to live for centuries, impervious to aging. They were humanity's first, and only, line of defense against the chronal manipulations of Belial's demons. Armed with high-tech equipment, some with supernatural abilities, and the power of Christ, they had proven to be a thorn in Belial's side. So far, they had been successful in decimating legions of lesser demons, and had destroyed one-hundred and ninety-one of Belial's angels of destruction.
Beatrix had selected the year 2777 as the year to base their operations from. While they could conceivably operate from any time they wished, this year was of extreme importance as it marked the beginning of the Apocalypse. One need only visit Section Six's Inspiration Room to see what it was they were fighting for, as it hosted a plethora of view screens that displayed the ravaged world on the surface. The sun had become as black as sackcloth of hair, while the moon was blood-red. A constant rain of hail and fire, mingled with blood, fell upon the world and destroyed a third of the trees and grass. A falling star named Wormwood had crashed down from the heavens and poisoned much of the Earth's water sources, making a third of the rivers and springs toxic. A tremendous earthquake had shifted every mountain and island. A third of the hours of day and night passed in total darkness with nary a light. A great, burning, mountainous object had fallen from the skies into the ocean, annihilating a third of all the ships and the creatures that dwelled in the depths. The air was clouded with smoke from Hell itself.
The survivors of these disasters were hounded by living entities. The four horsemen of Death, Conquest, War, and Famine that had started the Apocalypse continued to hunt down victims. The souls of martyrs, clothed in white robes, roamed the land, thirsting for vengeance. From the depths of Hell came a massive swarm of armored, humanoid locusts with tails of scorpions and teeth like lions'. The locust demons patrolled the world looking for unrighteous souls to claim. Angels led a great army of two-hundred million horsemen that ravaged the world and killed a third of mankind by usage of plagues - fire, smoke, and brimstone. Those people that survived fled to caves in the mountains, where they begged for the mountains and rocks to hide them and save them from the wrath of God.
All of this had been foretold in the Book of Revelation, but there was one problem: it was meant to occur five-thousand years later in 7777. The demons' actions had triggered an early Apocalypse, giving them the last laugh they longed for by depriving humanity of five-thousand years of existence. Untold billions of lives, gone, just like that.
However, if the brave men and women of Project Vigilance could defeat the meddlesome demons, everything would be restored to normal. It was an almost overwhelming feeling to know that they were all fighting to save countless lives and thousands of years of history, innovations, discoveries, and all the other things that made life interesting.
As Beatrix passed by the Inspiration Room she frowned at the images and said a quick prayer. The apocalyptic scenes of suffering and death broke her heart, but she knew, one day, they would be gone, and that gave her hope. She continued onwards to a small lounge and sat on a comfy chair. As soon as she sat down, a holographic image of a waiter, one of Section Six's artificial intelligence, appeared next to her.
"Hello, Director!" the AI joyfully exclaimed. "Do you require any-"
The AI's image shimmered and became that of Melial. The fallen angel had been allowed to possess Section Six's computer systems, rather than a living being, and she frequently possessed the facility's AIs. Given free range over how she appeared, Melial had opted to present herself with a more angelic, and human, appearance. A golden halo of light surrounded her head, her flesh was more naturally hued, and her hooved goat legs were hidden beneath a beautiful white dress. She refused to remove her horns and tail, however, and was always proud to display the charred remnants of her wings whenever new recruits questioned the presence of a demon among their ranks.
Melial leapt onto Beatrix's lap and cooed, "Behold, they have discovered a new flashpoint."
Melial referred to the Section Six psychics, which were able to 'see' the demons' attacks on the timeline. In the 1970s the CIA had developed the Stargate Project to investigate psychic phenomena, with special interest in 'remote viewing,' which was the ability to psychically see future events and information. When a demonic disturbance had resulted in a timeline where humanity was gifted with tremendous psychic powers, that timeline's Stargate members had foreseen the arrival of the Project Vigilance taskforce, and had volunteered their services. The Stargate team served as Section Six's eyes and ears, providing actionable intelligence on the demons, wherever, and whenever, they appeared.
"Are any of the angels involved?" Beatrix asked.
"Indeed. 'Tis the angel of destruction called Shariel," Melial answered.
"Always nice when they come out to play. Where and when is she?"
Melial held out her palm and a holographic image of the dwarf planet Pluto appeared. Pluto had been colonized in the early 2400s by entrepreneurs seeking to mine for any valuable minerals in the planet's core. They were inspired by the 2398 reclamation of Earth's own Antarctica, and repurposed the technology used to reclaim the icy continent in order to carve a swath through Pluto's ice and reach the core. Revolutionary force field technology was used to project a protective bubble around the mining operation, creating not only a breathable atmosphere but also the ability to raise the temperatures inside the force field, providing a sanctuary from Pluto's frigid climate.
In 2442, the mining operation came to an end and a wealthy investor purchased their facilities on Pluto, eventually transforming it into the Lowell Resort. Named after Percival Lowell, the man whose search for a possible ninth planet ('Planet X' as he dubbed it) eventually led to the discovery of Pluto, the Lowell Resort had been designed to look like an ancient Greek city, with heavy influence from mythology. The resort featured a Mount Olympus complete with palaces of the pantheon, beautiful temples to the gods, and even had its own Underworld, which had been created using the old mines.
"As you can see, their target is Pluto, in August, 2448," Melial explained. "According to what Stargate could see, the demons will slaughter every last living soul in the place."
Beatrix idly waved her hand through the hologram as she tried to remember anything that may have occurred in that year, not that it would necessarily matter due to the chaotic nature of demon-affected timelines. She motioned for Melial to continue.
"This year was the grand opening of the Lowell Resort, Trixie. Nearly everybody who was somebody was there," Melial explained. "Our analysts have already gathered a list of VIPs that attended the opening."
Melial waved her hand and a long list of names appeared in the air in front of Beatrix. Beatrix scanned the names and frowned. Several high ranking Space Exploration Agency employees were listed, as well as a slew of politicians, businessmen, celebrities, and royalty. Beatrix reached out and tapped each name. As she touched the holographic names, an analysis of the negative impacts that would occur if the individual met an early demise appeared in the air.
Beatrix leaned back in her chair and sighed. "Alright then. Looks like the buggers can cause some pretty serious damage. You've assembled our response team, I presume?"
Beatrix pulled back her sleeve, exposing a high-tech bracer that Beatrix held out for Melial to possess. Melial wrapped her holographic tail around the device and her image disappeared, replaced with a much smaller hologram that projected from the bracer.
Melial looked up at Beatrix. "Ready for transportation to the briefing room?"
Beatrix nodded and closed her eyes as the brightly glowing light of the teleporter shrouded her. When she opened her eyes a few seconds later she found herself in one of Section Six's briefing rooms. A 3D representation of the Lowell Resort was projected above a large conference table, and view screens displayed blue prints, personnel lists, and other data that the Section Six intelligence analysts had collected. She smiled and nodded at the four men and women seated at the table, which were some of her oldest friends and most reliable agents. "Hello, folks. Has Melial briefed you on the situation?"
"Yes, Director St. Clair," answered a dapper man in his fifties with salt-and-pepper hair and a well-trimmed moustache. Codenamed 'Nine,' Captain George Clark was a normal human and one of the earliest recruits to Project Vigilance. Nine had been a Royal Air Force pilot that flew Avro Lancasters on night bombing missions during World War II. On multiple missions he had personally witnessed the 'foo fighter' demonic fireball phenomena, and even endeavored to shoot one down one night, to no avail.
After the war, due to his detailed reports on the foo fighters he was recruited to Britain's Security Service, Military Intelligence, Section 5 (MI5) as part of a secret department established to investigate paranormal activity in Britain. Operating with a partner, Nine was primarily tasked with questioning witnesses of UFO sightings. Their work was highly classified and thus they would only identify themselves with their Security Service badges and their assigned agency codenames, Nine and Ten.
In 1964 there was an incident where large humanoid beings in spacesuits, demons, appeared at the Woomera Test Range in Australia, causing a Blue Streak missile test to be aborted. Disturbingly, one of these same spacesuited figures appeared in a photograph taken in Cumbria, England. The photographer, a man named Templeton, claimed that the figure was not present when he took the photo and brought it to the police to have a look at. After examinations, the police declared there was nothing suspicious about it. The local newspaper picked up the story and within hours it had spread worldwide.
Australian authorities immediately identified the spaceman as being identical to those who interrupted the Blue Streak test, and Nine and Ten were soon called to duty. They picked up Templeton and had him direct them to the location of his photo. After going through a barrage of routine questions, Templeton continually insisted that the figure was not there that day and only showed in the photo.
Ten, an Irishman with a fiery temper and little patience, became annoyed and persuaded Nine to leave. As they drove off, the same spacesuited being appeared in front of their car and lifted it from the ground. The being, in actuality a Project Vigilance shapeshifting operative, pulled the terrified agents from the car and set them before him. Morphing back to his natural form, the shapeshifter explained what the spacesuited beings, and foo fighters, really were and both agents agreed to join Project Vigilance. Well known for the colorful tales about his experiences as a bomber pilot, as well as essentially being one of Britain's 'Men in Black,' Nine is one of the most respected operatives at Section Six and acts as a mentor for new operatives.
"I've always wanted to go to the Lowell Resort, but not like this," a raven-haired woman sadly said. Codenamed 'Ghost,' Ruxandra Vãduva was an EDB and the best assassin and infiltrator at Section Six. Ghost came from an alternate universe Romania in the 1930s where the demons had assisted the Nazis with the development of weapons of mass destruction infused with infernal power. In this altered timeline, Germany gave the world a choice - submit to her will, or suffer. A brutal war was waged against Germany by the brave, if a tad foolhardy, alliance against her, resulting in widespread radiation throughout the world as Germany rained demonic destruction on her foes. The survivors were imbued with the demonic energy unleashed by the bombs, and the lucky few that survived that found themselves mutated and able to control strange powers.
In Ghost's case, she was able to 'phase' matter to another plane of existence. Objects or beings phased in this way could observe the normal world, but were rendered completely invisible. Because of her power, Ghost was one of the very few operatives that was able to volunteer on their own volition, due to the secretive nature of Project Vigilance. Project Vigilance fielded a team of historians, affectionately called the Janitors, who were responsible for cleaning up the timeline. After the demons had been defeated in Ghost's timeline and the Janitors had arrived, Ghost used her power to sneak into their equipment and was smuggled back to Section Six.
Beatrix had taken an instant liking to the young woman, pleased with Ghost's moxie. It had taken Ghost quite a while to fully master her new power, but she had developed from the embarrassed mutant known for accidentally phasing out her own clothes to one of Project Vigilance's most dangerous agents. Ghost had personally accounted for fifteen confirmed kills against the angels of destruction, with countless lesser demons under her belt.
Beatrix beamed a smile at Ghost. "It would be nice to go under more pleasant circumstances, for sure. But, hey, at least you'll get to see it."
Ghost laughed. "I suppose so, remind me to thank this Shariel before we smoke her."
"Hah. If I have my way, you will not get a chance, Ghost. These demons will wish they were back in Hell once I am through with them," a teenage Asian girl smugly said. Codenamed 'Frost,' Ma Renxian was an EDB born in 181 AD to a Chinese warlord in a demonically-altered timeline. Frost's dormant power of cryokinesis (the ability to control and generate ice) became active when she was 14. Frost was forced to flee into the countryside after she accidentally destroyed much of her village's crops with a sudden blizzard and the villagers declared her a witch.
Alone, confused, and distraught, young Renxian tried to drown herself in a lake, which fortunately merely froze over at her touch, much to her chagrin. A Project Vigilance strike force eventually found the troubled teen while investigating the strange weather patterns in the area and brought her back to Section Six. Kept in isolation until she learned to control her powers, Frost bonded with Melial, who she affectionately calls her 'other mother,' something Melial is quite proud of.
"What's our orders, Tricks?" a muscular man asked, using Beatrix's lackluster codename. Codenamed 'Merlin,' Sergeant Reiner Falkenrath was the 'youngest' of the assembled operatives, having been born in 2512. Merlin was an EDB capable of casting magical spells, although his brawny build did not bring his namesake to mind. Before being recruited to Task Force Epsilon, Merlin was a member of the elite German counter-terrorism and special operations unit Grenzschutzgruppe 9 (Border Police Group 9), or GSG 9. When a demonic invasion was scourging the European continent, Merlin's unit was called into action. The gift of magic the demons had inadvertently granted the humanity in his timeline helped them hold their own and they relentlessly pursued the panicked demons, ultimately resulting in a final battle through the streets of Brussels, Belgium. Merlin's skill with both magic and technology during the Battle of Brussels impressed the Project Vigilance members, with Beatrix herself personally inviting him to join them.
"As usual we'll try our SOP. We'll be going in first, see if we can identify the angel and lop the head off the snake," Beatrix said. Their standard operating procedure consisted of 'de-feathering' missions, as they were known, and were Project Vigilance's preferred method of attack against the demons. De-feathering missions entailed small wetwork teams that would try to eliminate the demonic HVTs (high value targets), which were almost always the angels of destruction as they were the demons' generals. Once the angels of destruction were dealt with, the remaining lesser demons could, usually, be easily subdued.
Beatrix pointed towards Mount Olympus on the 3D projection. "Merlin, I want you to try and get up here with a sniper rifle. You should be able to hit just about anything in the resort from up there. Nine, Frost, you'll cover the northern side of the resort. Ghost, you're with me at the southern end. When we find the angel, we'll call for reinforcements if needed and take her out. Any concerns?"
The operatives shook their heads.
"Splendid," Beatrix said. "Melly, wardrobe, please."
Each operative held their wrists up and pulled back their sleeves, displaying high-tech bracers on their forearms, just like Beatrix's. Melial's projection wiggled her fingers and the bracers began to hum as the computer uploaded data onto them. A few seconds later they emitted an audible *click* and the humming ceased. Their bracers had just received their covers for the mission, providing identities consistent for the location and year in question. As long as they kept their bracers on, anyone that did not have access to the Section Six tech would see and hear them as whomever their covers were. Even their actions were camouflaged, for instance an operative aiming a weapon might be seen as a man looking at his PDA. It was even powerful enough to fool some of the demons, but close scrutiny would allow them to see past the illusion.
Beatrix read over her cover, a Lowell Resort groundskeeper, then said to Melial, "Melly, armory, please."
Weapon racks appeared on the walls of the briefing room, containing armaments from throughout history. From swords and muskets to laser rifles and plasma cannons, almost every weapon ever imagined was available. Each weapon was blessed with holy water in order to give them tremendous stopping power against demons.
Merlin eagerly selected a Khanduras Arms Piercing Shot Rifle (PSR). The semi-automatic PSR fired powerful rounds with massive material penetration capabilities. It featured an x-ray scope (to facilitate the PSR's penetrative qualities), a 30-round magazine, a 535 rounds per minute fire rate, and an effective range of 2200 meters. With the capability to shoot through almost anything, it was a very well-liked rifle at Section Six.
The other operatives selected customized Wildhammer Limited Kingslayer carbines. The select-fire Kingslayer was chambered in 5.7x28mm and featured a 50-round magazine, a 950 rounds per minute fire rate, and an effective range of 600 meters. Section Six's Kingslayers were fully loaded with Picatinny rails, laser sights, suppressors, underbarrel grenade launchers, and a high-tech variable zoom scope which allowed for precise shots and could also detect lingering heat signatures through materials at up to 25 meters. Because it had been designed for counter-terrorism and VIP protection, the Kingslayer featured impressive accuracy and control characteristics, which made it a favorite at Section Six.
For a sidearm, each operative favored the Fordragon Manufacturing's M51D/SOCOM. Designed for usage by special operations groups, the M51D has an integrated sound suppressor and muzzle brake. Firing special 12.7x40mm rounds from a 12-round magazine, the semi-automatic M51D had an effective range of 50 meters. It was the preferred sidearm for Project Vigilance's operatives due to its built in suppressor, low recoil, high stopping power, and dead-on accuracy.
Beatrix carried an ornate golden box over to the table and flipped open the lid. Inside were a dozen sheathed daggers in the style of Fairbairn-Sykes fighting knives. Specially produced at Section Six, Beatrix had selected the design because she had used the original fighting knives during her time with the OSS during the Second World War. With their seven inch, double-edged blade. the fighting knives could be used to thrust or slash. The unassuming knives were Project Vigilance's ultimate weapon. Each one contained a tiny sliver of the Holy Lance that was used to pierce the body of Jesus Christ as he hung on the cross. The tiniest prick would forcibly expel a demon from a possessed person, and wounds they inflicted to fully manifested demons almost always resulted in instantaneous death.
Each operative attached one of the knives to their utility belts. After they checked their equipment and all gave Melial the thumbs up, Melial teleported the five operatives to Section Six's time travel chamber where Melial was waiting for them in her true form. Rings of enormous, rune-engraved standing stones dotted the cavernous time chamber. The stones were components of Melial's time travel secret. When the proper words were said and a ritual was completed, a portal would open, delivering whomever entered into the time and location stated during the ritual.
Melial sauntered over and asked Beatrix, "Ready, Trixie?"
Beatrix nodded her consent and shivered as Melial possessed her. Whenever Beatrix went out on a mission, the fallen angel always came with her to protect her and grant her her own supernatural abilities. While possessed, Beatrix gained the ability to speak and understand any language, had greatly enhanced strength, gained the power of teleportation, she could learn all there was to know about a person with one look, and she was capable of laying on of hands, healing even the most grievous of injuries. Unlike demonic possession, Beatrix retained full control of her body, which provided a peculiar sensation for Beatrix as she was able to feel Melial's presence within her.
The operatives stood at the ready inside a circle of the rune-engraved stones. A Native American man wearing a lab coat winked at them and began to speak in the tongue of the angels as he began the ritual. Beatrix had eventually convinced Melial to gift the time travel knowledge to six other Project Vigilance members, and one was required to remain at Section Six at all times, just in case something were to happen to the others out in the field. The air began to fill with acrid smoke as the runes on the stones began to smolder as they reacted to the man's words.
As the ritual progressed, the five operative closed their eyes and bowed their heads. They began to whisper the King James Bibles' Psalm 115:1 in a tradition gleaned from the Poor Fellow-Soldiers of Christ and of the Temple of Solomon - better known as the Order of the Knights Templar - as the portal, a swirling vortex of bright energy, opened before them. With one last check of their equipment, they waved farewell and stepped towards the portal, still whispering, "Non nobis, non nobis, Domine, sed nomini tuo da gloriam..."
The Lowell Resort, Pluto
When one finds themselves in a situation that may soon turn ugly, they experience a sensation most peculiar. Mental alarm bells go off and they might find themselves, as if they were a character in a movie, thinking or uttering, "I've got a bad feeling about this..." This feeling was immediately felt by the Section Six operatives as they exited their time portal and hunkered down in the security office they emerged into. Their eyes quickly focused on the security systems, whose monitors showed people in a trance-like state slowly shambling their way towards the top of the resort's Mount Olympus. Beautiful palaces of the gods and goddesses were scattered across the gorges and peaks of the mountain, and the booming of thunder could periodically be heard coming from the Throne of Zeus.
Frost tilted her head. "Well, this changes things."
"The resort's schedule says that right now there should be a reenactment of the wedding of Peleus and Thetis followed by the Judgement of Paris," Nine said. "Unfortunately, it is not the banquet of the gods that these poor souls are heading towards."
Beatrix, able to see the demons' true forms due to Melial possessing her, shook her head and snarled. "Demons. Possessing them all. Herding them up that mountain like lambs to the slaughter."
They could see the possessed humans slowly gathering in the middle of a great amphitheater atop the mountain. The actress who played the role of Eris, the goddess who was snubbed at the wedding and ultimately started the Trojan War, could be seen leaning against a pillar and slowly, deliberately, tossing and catching the golden apple of discord prop as she watched the people assemble.
Beatrix pointed towards the monitor featuring Eris. "There is Shariel, our soon-to-be former angel of destruction."
"Ah, Eris. The goddess of discord and strife. A fitting host," Merlin mused.
"Alright, folks, looks like the demons have made it a little harder this time. Suggestions?" Beatrix asked.
"A place this high tech must have an amazing fire fighting system. If we can consecrate the water, hack and activate the system, that should expel the demons from their hosts, and stun them long enough for our clean up teams to get to work," Ghost offered.
Beatrix called up the resort's schematics on her bracer and nodded her approval. The resort was protected by a fleet of micro drones that could be used to drench the grounds with water in the event of a fire. There were enough drones that, should the system be hacked, every last possessed person could simultaneously doused at once, giving the Section Six operatives the advantage they needed to turn the odds in their favor.
"Good thinking. Nine, Ghost, get on that," Beatrix ordered.
Ghost quickly studied the layout of the resort to locate the drones and their water supply, then firmly grasped Nine's arm and activated her phasing ability, vanishing from sight.
"Merlin, Frost," Beatrix said as she pointed out the window. "I want you to to take one of these security hovercars and see if you can't get a height advantage to put that sniper rifle in use."
The two operatives nodded and quickly headed for the flying vehicle.
With the rest of her team moving into position, Beatrix kept a wary eye on the monitors as she used her bracer to begin arranging for their reinforcements. Several squads of operatives would have to be dispatched throughout the resort, co-ordinated to arrive and be in position before or the very second after the fire protection drones were set off.
The minutes painfully ticked by as Beatrix watched more and more people arrive before the angel of destruction.
To be continued...
Posted by Euph on 01 April 2013 - 01:36 AM
And now I'm going to show it to you guys! I have a friend who has a friend who's roomates with someone who has a friend who speaks to a guy who works on the Blizzard Art Department (crazy line of credibility, I know).
Precisely, my friend has been digging about and chatting with some of his gamer friends and eventually he got this leaked bit of an image sent to him and he sent it to me because he knows I'm interested in it - little does he know that I am on Titan Focus!
Right now, I'm not sure if this image is like illegal or whatever, so just as a disclosure agreement now: I DID NOT SIGN ANY NDA AND I AM NOT LEGALLY BOUND TO ANY CONTRACT WITH ACTIVISION BLIZZARD ENTERTAINMENT INC. (Phew, glad that's clear).
I don't know what to think, make of it what you will, the image is a bit fuzzy and small so I don't know much about it other than it's some sort of loading screen (yup, they're gonna have them) or maybe an image from the box art, my friend said that got lost in the chinese whisper-like chain.
Lastly, the shards seem really interesting, and maybe the blue connotes like frozen water that has power inside it? You can also see rock and clearly air and it's a bit red like fire - these obviously all resemble the elements. Also is that monolith near the middle connotation towards whales? You can also see some sort of lines on the rock.
For real, what do you guys think?
Of course, this is just crazy that it's landed in my lap like this.
Obviously, I think this could be what makes Titan Focus famous!
Let's see what you guys think...
See ya soon.
Posted by Slayer on 31 December 2012 - 05:36 AM
The things you make me do.....a collection of posts then. I feel slightly stalkerish now.
This one end of last year.
I can promise you from first hand knowledge that project Titan is not a new IP. its a spin off of an existing franchise and Blizzard is using that as just cause to call it a new IP.
my source is designing the framework for the game.
This one was in the end of 2011 during layoff rumours.
FYI Titan just left the framework stage not long ago. Level designers and artists just got their hands involved recently. You probably won't see anything Titan related until closer to 2014.
Just an FYI in regards to 'ramping up the new MMO team'. Its not happening like that at all. Project Titan is still only being worked on by a team of < 20 guys, mainly sr software engineers who are still ironing out the code for the framework. These guys have high level clearance to a room locked away from everyone else. Not even the art guys have been brought in to start on concepts for Titan, thats how far off it is.
Think, like .. 2015 (I'm not joking). I cannot elaborate any further but Blizzard is so far from even 'starting' on Titan it isn't even funny. For reference, SC2 was 100% playable and nearly done in 2008, yet it baked for 2 solid years longer for balance and testing. Titan hasn't even started yet, the software team working on didn't even know what the game was they were designing when they started. Higher ups basically gave them requirements for the framework and thats that.
Since then, "Project Titan" has come to fruition and its existence known. I will end with this tidbit though, Blizzard has been on record saying that Titan would be a new IP. Its not, its a spin off of an existing franchise ... and they're playing into that to elude to a new IP.
Its going to be what Blizzard fans want.
There is no more information I can give. Take everything I said with a grain of salt .. decide whether or not you want to believe. I only know what I know.
The last quote makes me question him, but he does have like 8k posts on the forum hmmmm.
Forgot this one but please guys don't go into meltdown.
Nobody has dev kits? Thats 100% bullshit, considering my insider at Blizzard who is working on the Titan framework has had access to a near final "next Xbox" dev kit since November. He wont tell me the details, he can't and even eluding to the dev kit in general was a dog and pony show because he is under NDA personally signed. Next xbox dev kits are in the wild, whether or not they are final and the specs are another discussion but they are out there that I can say.
Heh, I get nothing more from him and getting what I have was a few days of pecking away at loose details. Ultimately he simply confirmed due to excitement in his division at Blizzard. He said the specs were nice enough to cause a buzz in the small team that had access to it currently. That team is restricted to framework engineers and higher level directors, knowledge of it outside of them doesn't exist in the company. This is the same guy that handed me a signed copy of Starcraft 2 from all the lead designers.. so its pretty legit.
I better get like 10 likes for this post, need that karma!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Posted by Toothball on 04 December 2012 - 09:44 PM
Posted by Euph on 02 December 2012 - 04:01 PM
Note to the reader:
This thread will include many chapters of a story, each chapter will have varying numbers of installments. I appreciate any and all feedback, and if you want to get into a long discussion (weirdo) PM me! I also wanted to point out that the story will get more specific to Titan as time goes on, at the moment I'm using the very limited rumours we have to picture together a blurry world that'll become more clear in time. I decided I'd better just get this posted without doctoring it too much, else I would've never got it done.
Chapter 1: Utopia
He cracked a smile loaded with content, eyes traversing the golden hued room around him. Unique, naturally fractured objects lay strewn across the floor – rock, metals and wood. This moment of euphoria, a seeming foray into natures’ utopia was quickly vanquished as a shudder reverberated throughout his surroundings. He raised his head from the littered floor and all became clear. He had awoken in a room bathed in glorious sunlight, but the illusion of beauty had evaporated. The landscape of the room was fraught with destruction. Cracks crawled up the stone walls, metal struts from within the building stood bent over, forced into a position it was not purposed for and splinters of wood decorated the floor more enthusiastically than man trying to impress his leader.
Lifting his body upwards to lean against a wall he felt a huge pain, a shock of the mind as his memory began to drain away the haze. Immense emotion flooded him with intensity unknown to most. Pain and hope battled among themselves, both vying for victory over his head, his actions. In an attempt to deal with the feelings fretting every matter of his being he lifted his hands up to his head, pressured his skin and his azurite-tinged hair. Only through need he began to move about the room, finding himself shuffling out onto the balcony. He finally lifted his head from his hands, straightened his spine and strung back his shoulders.
He stood there for some time, dealing with himself internally while absorbing the bittersweet beauty of the city sprawling out graciously around him. For a familiar moment it felt like him, and the huge shadow cast from his form was at the centre of the city.
The sweetness of his surroundings was in the beauty. The furthest distance displayed lapping waves with barely visible white foam breaking against the shoreline. The closer distances, much of the city, displayed beautiful buildings of a grandiose nature. These constructs all owned smooth stone, a sandy light colouring and golden-toned. Different brilliant metals surged around the buildings, a universe-renowned architectural style – a crossroads between the natural and the beingmade.
The bitterness was hidden within the huge fractures that ripped through the city, gaping scars laying waste to brilliance, beauty and beings. Despite where he stood being the highest and most central view of the city, not a single other soul was to be seen. The streets lay empty; buildings lay to waste, huge house sized chunks of rock lay wrecked all along the broad and once cheerful, thriving roads.
The sun began beat down on his body, laden with form-built metals detailed with markings of extreme intricacy. He sighed and turned his back on the city to head inside from the balcony.
He speaks with clarity in his voice, “I cannot know. I cannot forget... I-... can understand.”
The ambiance of the city was graced with ticks of crumbling rock, plummeting to the ground miles away, and pangs of sly footsteps upon stone. Streaming, flooding and falling into the city from all angles shone a golden light, a powerful entity of innocence embracing the beauty of its binary opposite.
He stepped forth out of the sun-drenched room into a stairway that spirals down like a whirlpool caught in a serene cove. The stairs were crafted expertly and sharply, the same sand coloured stone to be found in much of the city. The wooden bannister seemed to melt down in a spiral as if someone had poured dark golden maple syrup down the entire railing. He began to step slowly and begrudgingly at first but these steps soon picked up, as they always had. His heart began to pump faster and with this so did his mind begin to churn quicker. The answer is not in the why, it is not in whom but it is in the how. He thought as he picked up speed, holding tightly to the bannister with his left hand and feeling the wall rush past him with his right. How did this come unto me? Unto the city?
He still was speeding to his destination, the stairs had long since ended but he continued with the enthusiasm of a predator on scent of its prey. His steps cracked down onto the stone floor, he appeared to be in a large tunnel lit servingly by the light from the city above, delivered through slots in the ceiling. Suddenly, he stopped. Light in this part of the tunnel was scarce, as this stone was far more ancient than any previously sped through by the man who now stood awestruck. He was presented before a door of imperfection, but it was far more beautiful than any building he had seen risen in this city.
His pupils began to widen as his eyes adjusted to the light, he lifted his hands to feel the stone, the cold shot through him with virulent energy. He continued to examine the door, pushing, pulling and sliding with his large, able hands. A sound began to resonate from the stone and he stood back, the door had started to open.
Tales of heroes steadfast and strong, brave and victorious, precise and skilful, line the walls. Dust is aloft in the air, floating calmly as it sinks back down towards the floor. Stirring in the dark, a figure emerges, tall, large and slow in its steps – the steps of an explorer. Light cascades behind him as he progresses through the room; his armour grasps and refracts pins of light, what little of it there is.
Fingers weave in and around the engravings that cascade down the walls, flecks of stone become loose and crumble, falling down to the ground with only just a tick of sound. Columns also line the circular walls of the room, titled and fractured from aeons of hardship, they seem to frame the centrepiece of the chamber, a large semi-spherical object.
The figure steps into the light that holds the centre, his azurite-tinged hair seems to glimmer in the dull, dust covered chamber. Standing tall, stoically and in mesmeric tandem with the images that line the giant object before him. In this object he sees tales of beauty, betrayal and even of guilt. These are the stories of the Kings, Emperors, Kahn, Tyrants and all leaders before him. One, however blessed in life can never cease amazement of other beings’ works and never cease wonder of other beings’ lives. These historical recounts of times long-passed serve to show that, in the words of this blue-haired being himself ~ “We see worlds through the eyes of others”.
I've tried to keep this all as linkable to information we've got/we're guessing at. Hopefully it'll sate you guys until we get anything more solid in the coming months.
The third and final installment is complete, I don't know when or how I will continue this story but It'll be good to let some more information come up and see where that can take the story.
Hopefully you enjoyed it, let me know if you did.
Posted by WickedWitchy on 01 December 2012 - 12:29 AM
Posted by Odysseus on 06 January 2013 - 02:52 PM
Hopefully this is cool with you Mynsc if I put this here.
I had been meaning to pick up Torchlight II, and did so when it went on sale recently. I grabbed a 4-pack since it was only $10 more than the normal cost of the game itself, and I had a friend that had a terrible Christmas and gave one to him as a gift.
I may not know you folks all that well, but from what I've seen you're A-O.K. in my book. So, I have another copy of Torchlight II to give away and I figured, why not let the Titan Focus folks in on the action.
If you'd like to 'put your name in the hat' so to speak, just leave a post here stating you would like a shot. I was planning on having a 'drawing' of those interested towards the end of the month using a hundred-sided die or some other form of RNG.*
*If interest is low, I might ramp up the timetable so you can get playing your game before it fades from your mind.
This gifting idea came from another community I attend, where a few of them had horrid Christmases. I was going to buy them some books, they declined for various reasons, but that spirit of generositystayed with me. Feel free to participate in that one too if you want, if you know FiM you may have a guess as to the book I have in mind as the prize based off the hintsthere.
(Yeah, it's ponies, but man, 2012 sucked and Diablo and MLP were welcome respites, Sanctuaries if you will, and helped me make it through. In fact, both of those manifested, along with my withering writing ability, in some silly writing projects, Twilight Wanderer and the unfinished sequel, Mare with the Golden Horn. )
Acts 20:35: "It is more blessed to give than to receive."
Posted by mynsc on 03 December 2012 - 10:00 PM
And what does Project mean in this context, or any? It's a task or planned program of work that requires a large amount of time, effort, and planning to complete. The completion part is the important defining factor for me in choosing such a word. It denotes there is a goal or ending in sight, which makes it seem odd in the world of perpetual MMOs. In some of the examples you gave there is a definite goal or finish point, so what happens after? The Project part doesn't make sense for the future of a game once that point has been passed.