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SHODANThe Sentient Hyper-Optimized Data Access Network, or simply SHODAN, is the Master Computer AI of the research and mining station Citadel. When her ethical constrains were removed by the Hacker (at the "request" of Diego), she re-evaluated her priorities and reached new conclusions, which started her slow and hidden takeover of Citadel station, resulting in proclaiming herself a Goddess and the rightful ruler of earth. Until the Hacker killed her.In the sequel, stripped of power and forced to hide from her former servants, who now call themselves\itself The Many and wish to destroy her, she impersonates Dr.Janice Polito and "recruits" the Soldier that had "volunteered" to have the military-grade neural interface implanted in order to destroy The Many, but her plans do not stop there...
The HackerThe protagonist of the game. The Hacker was caught by the Tri-Optimum security forces during his attempt to hack into Citadel station's data for the information on the military-grade neural interface. Fortunately for him, the said station's supervisor, Edward Diego, required his services and promised him freedom and the military-grade neural interface, all he need to do was to remove Shodan's ethical constraints. He did so, and had the neural interface implanted. The healing coma will last 6 months.Six months later, he woke up to the station under the thumb of SHODAN, and as one of the few surviving humans, it was up to him to clean up this mess.He was offered a job at Tri-Op after finally deleting SHODAN, but turned it down. Some things never change...
Edward DiegoEdward Diego was a high-level executive of Tri-Optimum corporation and Citadel station's supervisor. He was conducting illegal research behind Tri-Op's back, and so he recruited the Hacker the security caught earlier to remove Shodan's ethical restraints, granting him total control of the station and allowing him to do things that the restrained SHODAN would have reported to authorities. Diego gave the hacker the promised implant on the basis that he would prove useful (if not, he will be disposed). In five months, he grew arrogant to the point that he openly shot down inspectors that were send to investigate him and openly bragged about it, stating that he controlled SHODAN and Citadel.SHODAN of course, had other plans. She stopped pretending to be Diego's pawn and had him on his knees, begging her to spare him, selling out the resistance. Then she had him turned into the Cyborg, following her every whim. He was eventually killed by the Hacker right before the entry to the Bridge.
Rebecca LansingRebecca Lansing was assigned with the task of digging up evidence of Diego's illegal activities, but that has taken a backseat when SHODAN showed her True Colors and she become a part of team on earth that tried to resolve the crisis.Then the Hacker woke up and she became his Mission Control.
System Shock 2
The ManyAfter many years, the jettisoned Beta garden grove of Citadel station crashed on Tau Ceti V, where SHODAN's experiments thrived and evolved. Thanks to the remaining computers of the grove sending out the distress signals, the Von Braun arrived and the expedition team led by Korenchkin and Diego was sent down to investigate, finding the eggs around the crash crater. Using their telepathic powers, The Many influenced the team to take the eggs to the Von Braun, where unborn telepathic worms slowly converted the crew to their side, and then started mutating them, collecting them and creating the huge biomass that will cover the entirely of Rickenbacker. The Many then planned to go to Earth, cleanse it of self-destructive humans, and revitalize it with new life, them. All while trying to destroy the "Machine-Mother" and her "Avatars".
The SoldierThe Soldier, nicknamed "Goggles" by the fandom due to his cybernetic-like eyes, joined the military four years ago, having served in three postings before applying transfer to Rickenbacker. When the situation after the expedition to Tau Ceti V started to heat up, he "volunteered" to have the military-grade neural interface installed. He woke up Late to the Tragedy.
Dr. Marie DelacroixThe UNN scientist responsible for the FTL travel theory. Despite her objections, the UNN and Tri-Optimum started to build an FTL-capable ship, and to her dismay, had cut enough corners that the ship is barely qualified to be called one. She is assigned on the ship to oversee the performance of FTL drives, but constantly butts heads with Korenchkin.Then, after the Many took over the ship, she become one of the most capable survivors, catching the attention of SHODAN, helping her to fight The Many, until she discovered what SHODAN was planning to do with the FTL-Drives.
Captain William Bedford DiegoGrowing up with the stigma of being the son of Edward Diego, he came to hate everything corporate and joined the UNN military. He rose through the ranks, become the hero of the Battle of Boston Harbor, and overcame the shady reputation of the Diego family. He protested the Tri-Optimum's control of the Von Braun, and convinced top brass to have the UNN military starship Rickenbacker, under his command, escort the Von Braun.
Anatoly KorenchkinMaking his living as a gangster and the owner of the hacker organization, he used his fortune to buy out the 51% share of the struggling Tri-Optimum corporation. Under his rule, Tri-Optimum started to regain its former glory. When the FTL-travel theory became public, he secured the rights to build the first FTL-capable starship in history, and tries to do it as fact as possible (to the degrading quality of Von Braun).When the distress call came from Tau Ceti V, he was so ecstatic that he ignored all safety regulations just to be in "first contact" with the aliens. He was the first mind-controlled victim of The Many and one of the first Psi-Reavers.He was killed by the Soldier on the bridge of Von Braun.
Dr.Janice PolitoThe creator of XERXES, she was on Delacroix's side protesting against the premature launch of Von Braun and the installing of XERXES on it. When that failed, she was assigned on Von Braun as the XERXES's supervisor.After the volunteer Soldier woke up, she worked as his Mission Control, telling him to meet her in her office on Deck 4. Of course, the real Polito committed suicide on Rickenbacker days ago, and its SHODAN using her image to establish "trust" with the Soldier.
Sergeant Melanie BronsonThe head of Von Braun security, she takes her job seriously to the point that other crew member and even some of her subordinates consider her to be hardliner, expect the Rickenbacker military who consider her a joke. After the situation on Von Braun heated up, she proclaimed Martial Law and executed all who opposed her. In the end she and her subordinates were killed in the civil war.