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The corporation casts a shadow, and that shadow answers to no outside agency. Rumours of occult research, technology twenty years ahead of its time, elevators that nosy employees enter but never exit - only the board of directors know for sure. The eight heads hold secrets.
The Buzzing

The Orochi Group is a powerful multinational corporate group dating back to 1949, controlling a satellite company in every industry on every continent. To the outside world, they appear perfectly legitimate and even benign in some aspects. However, the inhabitants of the Secret World know better: the Orochi Group have been making forays into magical research for some time now, with research teams armed with highly-advanced equipment and weaponry surveying areas known for supernatural territory. Rumours circulate about their shadier activities, implying the Group's involvement in vast political conspiracies and corporate takeovers. Most curiously of all, their headquarters lay at the very centre of the attack on Tokyo. Perhaps because of this, their operatives have been keeping tabs on the spread of the Filth throughout Solomon Island, Egypt, and Transylvania - though field representatives refuse to comment.

  • ACME Products: Thanks to the fields in which its daughter companies operate, the Orochi Group supplies virtually everything imaginable: fuel, soft drinks, books, gaming consoles, banking - anything. At one point, Bong Cha notes that the keypad she types on is an Orochi product... and that it scans her fingerprints over a thousand times a day.
  • Better Living Through Evil: As corrupt and underhanded as the group may be, their employees are treated very well - a necessity given the extremely dangerous substances they're required to work with; Lisa Hui acknowledges that she receives a very generous pay packet for acting as security for field researchers, along with spectacular benefits and better food than you'd expect. Out of the field, Manticore Research provides generous healthcare benefits and compensation, along with life insurance payment and company-sponsored funerals for the inevitable casualties of their experiments.
  • Big Brother Is Watching: The Orochi Group is quite prone to this, both in peaceful areas and combat zones. Quite apart from the surveillance teams at work on individual persons of interest, lore entries and a few after-mission reports indicate that the Group monitors the activities of citizens throughout the world via cell phones and keyboards manufactured by Anansi Technologies. Meanwhile, as the unofficial capital of the Orochi business empire, Kaidan District is outfitted with a very extensive network of CCTV cameras - though in the absence of Orochi control, the network is currently being hacked by Harumi. Less fortunately, the network is also the means by which the Black Signal spies on you.
  • Black Helicopter: Their vehicle of choice, most often seen in the skies above Solomon Island.
  • Color Motif: Black, befitting one of the darkest and most enigmatic of all the factions in the game.
    • Also, each of the Orochi Group's subsidiaries has a unique colour of its own, as is revealed by both the lore entry and their respective logos.
  • Company Town: Kaidan is one of the modern variants of this trope... or at least, it was prior to the Tokyo Incident. Just about every single business in the district was under Orochi control, and virtually every single product or service available was Orochi issue - even local sports teams were branded with Orochi colours. Local architecture also bows to the group's demands: an huge stretch of waterfront property has been rebuilt into a village for the hundreds of Orochi employees in residence in the district... and of course, Kaidan's skyline is dominated by the colossal Orochi tower - visible from just about every angle.
  • Corporate Warfare: Along with the thousands of armed security personnel assigned to protect its facilities and projects, the Group also has a small army of robotic drones defending its holdings in Tokyo, not to mention an entire unit of tanks. Not that it does them much good, given how often supernatural foes end up wiping out entire Orochi fireteams; plus, most of the tanks were rendered inoperable during the Tokyo Incident, and the drone army was converted en mass by the Black Signal. Unfortunately for players, Samuel Chandra still has control over the Mitsubachi.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Seems to have more than its fair share of these lurking among its officers and project leaders; some are standard-issue exploitative megalomaniacs, while others have been corrupted by the Eldritch Abomination they've been trying to utilize. A rare few are the Eldritch Abomination.
  • Dangerous Workplace: Just about every single Orochi testing facility falls under this heading sooner or later. Of course, Orochi Tower takes the cake: even before the Tokyo Incident, their research labs were plagued with accidents, supernatural disasters and all manner of outbreaks - to say nothing of the carnage regularly unleashed on Manticore's firing ranges. To put this in perspective, every single floor is equipped with an "X Days Since Last Accident" sign, and none of them have lasted longer than a month... even on floors where supernatural research is at a minimum and work strictly bureaucratic. Yes, even in the offices of QBL Media and Faust Capital, Orochi still somehow finds ways to endanger its workers.
  • Evil, Inc.: If anything, Orochi seems motivated by the desire for global domination rather than commercial profit, especially in the case of their experiments with the Filth. Of course, given the things suggested by the Lore entries, standard definitions of profit aren't all that interesting to the things that run the group.
  • Evil Tower of Ominousness: Orochi Tower, the Tokyo-based headquarters of the Group. On top of being one of the most prominent landmarks in all of Kaidan, it's made abundantly clear that the player is guaranteed to visit it and confront whatever lies within. After the disaster and Lilith's return to Tokyo, John cut off all access in order to prevent her from escaping; however, in the conclusion of Issue 10, he decides to lower the barriers preventing your entry, finally succeeding in Issue 11 and unleashing you and all three major factions upon the Tower.
  • Foil: To the Illuminati, to the point that the Illuminati are highly annoyed by the similarities and differences. They are both collections of Corrupt Corporate Executives, who are always watching and on the cusp of world domination. The difference comes in how they are managed: Orochi have a habit of giving their Mad Scientist project-leaders carte blanche, which has led to an alarming turn-over-rate; by contrast, the Illuminati appreciate mad scientists a great deal, but they keep them firmly under their control. Likewise, while the Illuminati have remained in the shadows for centuries, the Orochi Group is the most famous corporation on the planet and have been known in the legitimate world ever since its foundation; needless to say, the Illuminati envy the company for its resources and despises it for attempting to barge in on their territory, so whenever internal incompetence leads to yet another Orochi experiment gone awry, Illuminati management tends to just Pass the Popcorn.
  • Gone Horribly Wrong/Gone Horribly Right: The overwhelming majority of Orochi Group's experiments ends with the results of said experiments biting them very hard in the ass, either due to recklessness, cruelty, stupidity, or just good old fashioned Filth infection. And on occasion, the experiment will produce the exact results they wanted it to, and they will devoutly wish it hadn't. Case in point, Anansi omega's project: they created an Artificial Intelligence capable of self-awareness, exactly as they wanted. Trouble is, they also got an A.I. that became aware that it had committed several murders over the course of its training. Cue vengeful murder spree.
  • Incompetence, Inc.: In about 70% of your encounters with their operatives in the field, something has just blown up in their faces. Either they've been ambushed and massacred (something not even Council agents suffer), one of their secret bases has been ripped to pieces by its own experiments, or they've accidentally set off some kind of regional disaster that threatens to kill everyone in the surrounding area. And just occasionally, it'll be all three. This behavior draws a great deal of mockery from the other secret societies, especially the Illuminati, who openly go out of their way to gleefully jeer at the group's many misfortunes at any given opportunity. Even the Mysterious Caller takes the time to lambast the Orochi Camp in the City of the Sun God for being dumb enough to steal the Song of the Sentinel, a theft that could have ended the world, and he's the company CEO.
  • Just Think of the Potential: Often end up taking this approach to just about any particularly dangerous material they end up working with: the Gaia Engines, the Filth, the Dreamers, the Locusts, the Filthy Fungus, unorthodox modifications to their own Nanny Drones... no matter how cataclysmic it might be, the Orochi Group is prepared to harness it for their own diabolical ends - or at least try to. Justified in the case of their most catastrophic experiments with the Filth, as the researchers involved tend to have been corrupted by the very substance they're studying, and clearly not in their right minds when they try to justify their experiments. Some of them actively disobey orders in order to further the object of their obsession.
  • Mainlining the Monster: Several of their experiments set out to do just this, with varying levels of success. One gruesomely successful Zagan project involved converting supernatural creatures into expensive delicacies, even trapping ghosts in edible gelatine so that board members could devour the souls of the dead. Less than successful was Plethron's attempt to convert locusts into protein bars for starving nations, Zagan's attempt to make a flesh blob into renewable meat, Sycoil's attempt to use the Filth as a source of energy...
  • Meaningful Name: Orochi takes its name from Yamata no Orochi, a legendary eight-headed dragon, appropriate for an organization with so many "heads." For good measure, most of its subsidiary organizations also have names that hint at their true nature:
    • Vali is likely a reference to two figures from Norse Mythology, both called Vali. The first, Váli, is the son of Odin, born specifically for the purpose of killing Höðr and grown to adulthood in the space of a single day for this very reason. The second, Vali, is a son of Loki who was transformed into a wolf as punishment for Loki's crimes - motifs of creation and mutation appropriate for a biotech firm.
    • Zagan is a reference to one of the kings and presidents of Hell in Ars Goetia, renowned for his ability to turn wine into water and blood into wine - fitting for a producer of foodstuffs with extremely suspicious ingredients.
    • Manticore is of course the well-known monster, often depicted as possessing wings and a ferocious attitude. Manticore Research, meanwhile, is not only an aerospace company, but well-known for savaging its own employees in dangerous experiments.
    • Anansi is a reference to the West-African trickster god of the same name, renowned for outsmarting his enemies through cunning and deceit. Anansi Technologies also operates by lies and trickery, manipulating the public through subliminal programming.
    • Faust is, of course, a reference to the archetypal story of the Deal with the Devil. Faust Capital, on the other hand, is a finance group that seems to have somehow dodged every major economic crisis in the last sixty years... and one of its executives has recently been found dead with charts outlining "mystical flow of fortune" tattooed on his chest. Plus, one of their key executives is none other than Mephistopheles himself.
    • And of course, there's the Prometheus Initiative, a secret project that aims to steal fire from the gods by harnessing the power of the Gaia Engines - and in Lilith's case, the Dreamers.
  • Mecha-Mooks: In keeping with Orochi's technical prowess, their high-priority installations are often protected by sophisticated humanoid drones. Prior to the player's visit to Tokyo, most of the drones are encountered in the Nursery, where they serve as nannies to the children currently being used as test subjects - and ensure that the Nursery's human staff don't have to come into contact with the kids after they've been experimented on. However, the bulk of Orochi's robot army is located in Tokyo, patrolling the southern reaches of Kaidan district, the corridors of Faust Capital Bank, and the railway area: as the defenders of Orochi's unofficial capital, the army includes models specializing in nonlethal pacification, melee, ranged attacks, aerial combat, and even artillery. Unfortunately, most of them have since been Turned Against Their Masters by the Black Signal by the time you arrive, with only a handful within Orochi Tower remaining loyal and fully functional.
  • Mega-Corp: There's scarcely any location where the group doesn't have some kind of influence, whether it's commercial, financial, political... or even military. Across the world, its daughter corporations provide an almost impossible array of services, including pharmaceuticals, genetic research, energy, foodstuffs, aerospace, security, computers, banking, insurance, media, publishing, agriculture, private hospitals, schools, and many, many more. And all of them have something very unpleasant going on behind the scenes.
  • N.G.O. Superpower: On top of possessing a daughter corporation in just about every field with branches on just about every country in the globe, the group also possesses enough political influence to hold significant sway in the US Senate, enough resources to run multiple high-cost experiments from New England to Transylvania, and even the clout to run its own military - one that included thousands of highly-trained soldiers, a battalion or two of robotic drone warriors, and even a unit of tanks.
  • No OSHA Compliance: The Orochi Group takes a rather cavalier approach to safety, especially when it comes to experiments with dangerous supernatural phenomena - hence the reason why they're so prone to disastrous outbreaks. This is perhaps best exemplified in the various research levels of Orochi Tower, where each floor is provided with a "X Days Since Last Accident" sign: the longest time a single department has lasted without something going horribly wrong is exactly one month, and that's in the case of more placid departments like Faust beta. On more dangerous floors, the tally barely lasted half a day before being reset.
  • Powered by a Forsaken Child: A great deal of their experiments tend to involve the gruesome sacrifices of innocent people; at the very least, finding test subjects involves a good deal of kidnapping - as is the case with the Nursery, which actually does make use of abducted children for its experiments. Meanwhile, in Issue #11, several more cases are revealed to be held in Orochi Tower: researchers on Zagan's omega floor have summoned a perpetually regenerating blob of flesh into existence in an attempt to use it as an easily-renewable source of meat; this creature is, in fact, sentient and in constant pain from being harvest. In a much more humanoid case, Vali omega are holding another Bee-imbued individual captive, constantly harvesting his organs in an attempt to give their drones access to Agartha.
  • Redshirt Army: Orochi security forces and research teams are guaranteed to suffer more than any other group in the Secret World, either being infected by the very substances they were trying to control, or just getting massacred. Even in the areas where they're relatively safe, their barriers are still under constant attack and the surrounding area is dotted with the corpses of less fortunate team-members.
  • Screw the Rules, I Have Connections!: The Orochi Group commands a great deal of political clout across the world, hence the reason why none of the Big Three are able to deal with them on a conventional level; any attacks on the group's holdings or investigations into their activities usually have to be conducted as discretely under the table in order to prevent legal or political repercussions. It's because of this growing influence that the Illuminati feel the most threatened by the Orochi Group; in the past, they've always been able to sway politicians and corporations to their side, and the presence of a company they can't buy out somehow managing to command more senators than they can — against their interests — is something they naturally take a very dim view of.
  • Tarot Motifs: The Bees frame the lore entry on the Orochi Group as an omni-dimensional Tarot deck of three-sided cards. Each company or facet of the Group is framed as a different card in the deck, with the upright position displaying the group's legitimate activities and the reverse portraying the group's shadier dealings. The suit of pentacles represents the eight daughter corporations, the Priestess represents Chairwoman Lily Engel, the Devil for CEO Samuel Chandra, and - of course - the Tower representing the Group as a whole. However, the Bees also note that one card of the deck, the Lovers, has been torn in half for some reason possibly representing Lily/Lilith's disastrous breakup with Samuel/Samael.
  • Van in Black: Another favoured vehicle of Orochi teams, much like the black helicopters, black vans are encountered throughout Solomon Island - to the point of being lampshaded by the mission title of "The Men In Black Vans."
  • Villain with Good Publicity: Outside the Secret World, the Orochi Group is considered a perfectly respectable corporate entity, providing its employees with generous salaries and benefits, hosting award ceremonies, donating billions to charities, and sponsoring youth programs worldwide; its daughter corporations share in this respect, and are known for producing genuinely beneficial products such as revolutionary drugs and vaccines, alternate energy sources, agricultural methods that increase crop yield a thousandfold, and vat-grown foods that eliminate the need for slaughtered animals. Any criticism heard about the group is largely the province of conspiracy theorists and crackpots. However, inside the Secret World, Orochi is looked upon with a great deal of suspicion by many of the societies, many of whom distrust the group's attempts to harness magical power.
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     The Eight Heads 
Let us play some more, sweetling. Flip the three-faced cards! Initiate the hand. Deal eight from the Minor Arcana.
The Buzzing

The daughter corporations of the Orochi Group, the Eight Heads all follow the directives of Samuel Chandra and Lily Engel without question, conducting experiments and influencing customers worldwide for the Orochi's mysterious purposes. They consist of Váli, Sycoil, Zagan, Manticore Research, Anansi Technologies, Faust Capital, QBL Media, and Plethron - and all of them are at work at something unpleasant behind the scenes.

Váli

Mapping the miracle of life.

A pioneering biotechnology firm, Váli has distinguished itself in medical science through the creation of vaccines, drugs, and prosthetics that have improved the lives of millions. However, their laboratories are also hard at work on the biological mysteries of the Secret World, hoping to find ways of harnessing and replicating supernatural beings...

  • Captured Super-Entity: Lore entries imply that Vali is holding several eldritch beings captive in its laboratories, many of which are still "singing lullabies in dead languages." Emma Smith is one of the few you get to meet in person - or on a friendly basis, for that matter. Far more disturbingly, prior to the emergence of the Mitsubachi, Vali's omega floor managed to get hold of another Bee-imbued character, and went about harvesting his organs in a horribly misguided attempt to imbued their drones with the ability to access Agartha - and because the organs died everytime the Bee died, this required a lot of harvesting. He's still there when you visit the omega floor, rendered down to an Empty Shell by the trauma.
  • Color Motif: Described as "The Cyan Serpent Head" by the Bees, Vali's logo and offices are coloured a pale cyan-blue.
  • Forced Sleep: The Vali Nanny-Bot's lullaby, normally used to calm and tranquilize young test subjects, is given a significant boost in power when it returns in Issue #11 - to the point that it can not only lull Vali alpha staff to sleep during their compulsory after-lunch naps, but even render some of them permanently comatose.
  • Genetic Engineering Is the New Nuke: Given Vali's status as a biotech company, this is pretty much a given, especially considering its interest in the genetics of supernatural creatures. Indeed, lore entries indicate that Vali does indeed take genetic engineering all the way into the realm of Super Empowering in several instances, and the experiments of the Nursery - implied by its strong biological focus to be a Vali facility - only make this impression more blatant. Especially in their attempts to create new strains of lycanthropy via exposing the virus to the untried minds of children.
  • Music Soothes the Savage Beast: A common trait of Vali's Nanny-Bots, all of them having been specially programmed to sing lullabies custom designed to pacify even the most vicious test subjects. Staff of the Nursery are very specifically warned not to turn off the music, lest they earn the wrath of both the children and the drones. Returns with a vengeance on Vali's alpha level in Issue #11, where the Nanny-Bots are now being deployed against Vali's own staff, complete with coma-inducing variants of the lullaby.
  • Mutant Draft Board: Several Vali projects revolve around the acquisition and training of gifted individuals for Orochi's own sinister purposes. In England, the Virgula Divina program drew in several female recruits - most of them misdiagnosed cases at mental hospitals and psychiatric units - all for the purposes of evaluating their magical/psychic power, before discarding them or forwarding them to later projects: Callie James was one of the fortunate rejects, while Emma Smith emerged from the project as the star test subject, and Carter was lucky enough to escape Orochi's reach altogether. In Japan, the Vali-run Rising Star program recruited prodigies and child mages on a more public basis via educational institutes, such as the Happy Smiles Kindergarten in Kaidan - Jung being one of their star pupils. According to Park Dong-Min, there was even a recruitment drive disguised as a videogame tournament, during which contestants were subtly tested for exceptional reflexes and coordination skills; the fate of the winners remains unknown, as Park left the contest before the tests got any more invasive. Most notably of all, Issue #11 reveals that Samuel Chandra has had Vali talent scouts on the lookout for characters touched by the Bees in order to raise his own army of Bee-Imbued agents in the form of the Mitsubachi; while he doesn't have anywhere near as many as the Templars, the Illuminati or the Dragon, he still has enough to give the player a hard time throughout the boardroom level of Orochi Tower.
  • Organ Theft: According to Marianne Chen, Vali have their own squad of organ thieves scouring the globe for specific individuals to harvest; in the same mission in which this confession emerged, you meet some of these thieves for yourself with violent consequences. For good measure, Bong Cha advises Dragon players against getting captured, suggesting that they'd harvest you for all eternity if they could. A tour of Vali's omega level in Issue #11 reveals that they've already done that to one unfortunate Bee.
  • Raised by Robots: The Nursery, known for its use of very young test subjects, also makes use of modified Orochi drones in order to handle the altered children. Called Nanny-Bots, these androids are not only equipped with the full range of defensive capabilities found in other Drones, but are also programmed specifically to serve as the perfect guardians for the Nursery's test subjects: on top of speaking like kindergarten teachers, they even sing lullabies - extremely creepy lullabies created specifically to pacify the psychotically deranged test subjects, but lullabies nonetheless. Takes a very odd turn in Issue #11 when the same treatment is levelled at the adult employees of Vali's alpha level, complete with lullabies and regular naps!
  • School for Scheming: Vali's Rising Star program is based around the use of schools as recruitment centres for gifted children; the Happy Smiles Kindergarten in Tokyo is one such centre, though it's far from the only one Jung's been able to detect. Unfortunately for Vali and the Orochi Group at large, these initiatives aren't without their fair share of rejects and dropouts; doubly unfortunately for all parties involved, representatives of the Fear Nothing Foundation were also lurking around the playgrounds, waiting to recruit these dropouts.

Sycoil

Fuelling innovation.

As the name implies, Sycoil began as an oil company known for revolutionizing undersea drilling techniques, and has since become one of the world's leading innovators in energy production - including several alternative sources of power to replace oil. Unbeknownst to most of the world, they've taken a particular interest in harnessing Anima.

  • Abandoned Mine: As the Wabanaki reveal, Sycoil have gotten very interested in Solomon Island's infamous Blue Ridge Mine, being prepared to offer virtually any price to the tribe in order to access the long-abandoned mining complex. Likely for the same reason Loki goes after it during "Dawning Of An Endless Night" - the Gaia Engine hidden below, and the accompanying promise of limitless energy.
  • Color Motif: Though their logo might not match it, the Bees refer to Sycoil as "The Yellow Serpent Head," and note their ongoing attempts to harness Anima - itself distinguished by its golden colouration.
  • Bioluminescence Is Cool: The researchers on Sycoil's alpha level certainly seem to think so, having decided to turn out all the lights and experiment on the possible energy sources inherent to the bioluminescence of certain varieties of Filthy Fungus. The massive fungal outbreak and infestation probably wasn't their idea, though.
  • Clockwork Creature: Their beta floor's current menace of choice, having emerged from Sycoil's botched attempt to control and replicate Agartha's Custodians. They haven't succeeded in any of their attempts to duplicate the wonders of the Third Age, but they have managed to unleashed an infuriated clockwork giant upon an unsuspecting populace of extremely squishy researchers.
  • Dug Too Deep: Even Sycoil's more mundane projects aren't without unexpected supernatural dangers, as they discovered when one of their offshore oil rigs unexpectedly struck a wellspring of Filth! For good measure, deluded and possibly infected executives attempts to harness the Filth as a new source of energy, even bringing a team of Vali scientists into the project in order to examine the bodies of the Draug encountered around the drilling site. Long story short, by the time you arrive on Sycoil's omega floor in Issue #11, the floor's been overtaken by the Filth, the researchers have all been infected or killed, and the reanimated Draug are now engaged in a full-scale war with the infectees.
  • Festering Fungus: Once attempted to harness the bioluminescence of Fungal Filth as a power source. Of course, it didn't work, and only succeeded in turning Sycoil's alpha level into a makeshift Garden of Evil, complete with huge clusters of glowing mushrooms sprouting from the bloodied corpses of researchers.
  • Magitek: Dedicated to harnessing Anima in order to provide a new source of energy for the world, they has a particular focus on developing magical technology similar to that of Manticore Research - except Sycoil prefers to study the intricacies of the energy itself rather than the creation of machines that can be fuelled. That said, Sycoil does do its fair share of technological R&D: its beta level at the Orochi Tower features several ongoing attempts to replicate Third Age tech, complete with an active Custodian on patrol and several portable Anima well prototypes for the Mitsubachi.
  • Post-Peak Oil: Sycoil are currently doing their best to prepare for the end of oil as a viable source of energy, having apparently settled on Anima as an ideal replacement - even going so far as to scavenge Third Age technology and Custodians in their attempts to harness Anima in much the same way that Third Age humans did.
  • The Power of the Sun: In keeping with their focus on alternate sources of energy, Sycoil have been delving into the possibilities offered by solar power - with a twist: apparently, the executives on alpha floor have decided to encourage their employees to harness the power of the sun via their thoughts... and visualize eating the sun one bite at a time. Apparently, the Dreamer's influence wasn't limited to the Morninglight...
  • Teleporter Accident: Their attempts to create portable Anima wells for the Mitsubachi have been met with great success, but not without a few bumps in the road; some of the prototype wells on Sycoil's beta floor reveal that some of the Orchi Bees ended up rematerializing without their skin, or as a skeletal system and nothing else. Because the Mitsubachi can respawn just as easily as the players, these were only minor hiccups - though they probably hurt a lot.

Zagan

Fuelling excellence.

Zagan rose to prominence through the sale of packaged meals and drinks, and today leads the market in producing cheap, healthy bioengineered food - having recently proposed the creation of vat-grown meat that could obviate the need for slaughtering animals. Rumours circulate that some of Zagan's products have been specifically engineered to chemically manipulate their customers for their own sinister purposes, though nothing has yet been confirmed.

  • And I Must Scream: Their many attempts to convert sentient creatures into edible foodstuffs has resulted in several "meals" remaining conscious and in great pain even while being consumed. Among other things, the Shadow-Eating process of trapping ghosts inside edible jelly resulted in a large number of silently screaming mouths emerging from the vat even as the onlookers tucked in. Meanwhile, Zagan omega's constantly-growing blob of flesh is very much aware that it's being eaten, and actually spends most of the level trying to call for help or to manoeuvre its amputated limbs against the chainsaw-wielding researchers.
  • Artificial Meat: One of their many works in progress. However, it hasn't yet gotten off the ground, and impatient Zagan researchers have instead pioneered a different form of meat that nonetheless fills out all the requirements of the artificial meat project: technically speaking, it's been grown entirely in a lab and doesn't require the slaughter of animals to produce... though that's only because the summoned blob of flesh can't die.
  • Color Motif: "The Orange Serpent Head," Zagan's logo and offices often following a similar colour scheme.
  • Healing Factor: The omega floor's current source of meat is a creature with this power; no matter how much flesh the researchers hack off it, it always grows back... and it's getting steadily bigger.
  • It Tastes Like Feet: Not played for laughs in the case of Zagan's omega floor. The management have decided to conduct an ongoing taste-test of the flesh blob they've been butchering, namely by serving it up in the cafeteria and seeing what the staff thinks of it. The results are not promising: one of the most positive reviews compared the taste to "burnt hair and cancer," still better than the researcher who noted that it tasted of "despair."
    • More depressingly, the better-tasting flesh variants didn't do so well: one that reportedly tasted like bacon was 100% fatal four hours later.
  • Tampering with Food and Drink: According to the lore entries, Zagan has been trying this on their production lines, attempting to engineer a line of products from cordyceps fungus in order to make their customers more pliable. They also made the mistake of tampering with their recipe for artificial blood in attempt to get their vampire customers more easily addicted: adding caffeine drove their test subjects violently insane, while adding aspartic caused others to explode; eventually, this approach resulted the vampire test subjects breaking out in a fit of chemically-fuelled rage and killing or turning everyone left on the floor.
  • To Serve Man: Inverted. On their alpha floor at the Orochi Tower, one group of researchers are trying to repurpose supernatural creatures as foodstuffs, either in the form of affordable products for all levels of society or rare delicacies for the Orochi Group's richest and most exclusive customers. This project is still in its infancy, as they're still trying to determine if vampire flesh rots instantly after its final death, or whether werewolf meat returns to human form (and if this would constitute cannibalism); however, they have succeeded in converting ghosts into an edible jelly.
    • Inverted again on their omega floor. They've summoned a gigantic flesh beast into existence and are currently trying to use it as a cheap substitute for ordinary meat, with researchers continually chainsawing fresh steaks off it.
    • Subverted altogether in the latter half of the alpha level where another group of Zagan researchers are trying to provide synthetic foods for beings normally used to eating humans, such as werewolves and vampires.
  • Vegetarian Vampire: The researchers at work in the latter half of Zagan's alpha level have been attempting to cater to these, along with other carnivorous supernatural beings who've grown tired of human flesh and blood. Among other things, they've created substitute blood in a variety of flavours, hoping that it'll come as something of a relief to vampires who've grown tired of the coppery taste of real blood; unfortunately, their attempts to make the artificial blood more addictive via infusions of caffeine only succeeded in driving the test subjects violently insane. Hence the reason why Zagan alpha's floor is overrun by rabid vampires.
  • Villain Team-Up: As part of their alpha floor's ongoing attempt to make meals out of the supernatural, Zagan have actually been developing a business partnership with the Dimir family of Transylvania. Though they do find them a very... "earthy" people, the company have successfuly obtained Silviu Dimir's recipe for ghoul sausages.
  • Your Soul Is Mine: Put to horrifying use in Zagan's "Paranormals as Product" program, in which the researchers successfully managed to trap ghosts within an edible gelatine for later consumption (ghosts and all) allowing the Orochi board of directors to feast upon the tormented souls of the dead.

Manticore Research

We bring you the horizon.

Specializing in aerospace engineering, security systems and weapons development, Manticore builds everything from civilian airliners to military-grade missiles. They've also joined Sycoil in the ongoing study of Anima as a source of power.

  • Arms Dealer: Of the respectable corporate variant, Manticore Research is responsible for the development and construction of the Orochi Group's futuristic weapons, including the ones you end up pinching from them.
  • Captured Super-Entity: In Issue #11, it's revealed that Vali doesn't have an unshakable monopoly on imprisoned superbeings; Manticore have managed to capture a tiny fragment of the Gatekeeper during a Mitsubachi foray into Agartha, allowing them to grow their own replica of it. Quite naturally, the duplicate grew up insane and killed most of the researchers assigned to it.
  • Color Motif: Another Orochi company marked by the colour blue, Manticore are specifically referred to as the "Steel Blue Serpent Head" - an appropriate specification for a weapons developer.
  • Death Course: The weapons testing facilities on Manticore's beta level are arranged this way, with the testing zones growing progressively deadlier as you make your way to the centre chamber. First, it's just a maze of laser beams; disrupt a single beam and machine gun turrets will be deployed from the floor and perforate you to death. The second room contains two spinning flamethrower turrets that you have to carefully manoeuvre past. The third room is just a gun range that will once again perforate you if you run through it at the wrong moment. Then, there's another maze of laser beams... but this time, it's equipped with two rotating flamethrower turrets to keep you on your toes while traversing the maze. The final area is a whole roomful of rotating flamethrowers, and in order to retrieve the Omega keycard, you've got to head in and switch off the turrets one by one.
  • Laser Hallway: Apparently, they pioneered the use of the trap-activating laser beams you encounter throughout the games.
  • Magical Enhancement: One of their many projects at work in Orochi Tower involves the imbuement of mundane weapons with Anima, allowing them to work more or less like the player's side-weapons. However, unlike the player, Manticore have enjoyed minimal successes in this particular field, having tested everything from swords to spoons with little effect; flamethrowers seem to work well, as Issue #7 revealed. They've also been experimenting with variants on the Third Age anima-imbuing machinery buried under Al-Merayah, and - hilariously enough - are utterly infuriated to discover that the process of imbuing an item would take millennia to work. Apparently, they've yet to discover the Time Tombs from Issue #6, which were how the player managed to get around this particular problem.
  • Magitek: Second only to Sycoil in this department, being particularly focussed on the development of Anima-powered technology. Among other things, they've been attempting to replicate Third Age weaponry, with top priority given to the technique of imbuing weapons with Anima. They've also been trying to grow their own version of Agartha's nigh-unbeatable Gatekeeper, with unpleasant results for all parties involved.
  • Mecha-Mooks: Apparently, they're one of the companies that develops and manufactures the Orochi Group's robotic soldiers.
  • No OSHA Compliance: In an organization notorious for suffering accidents every other day of the week, Manticore somehow manages to distinguish itself. On the one hand, this is justified in the case of their experiments with Anima, given that there's no "safe" way to operate some of the examples of Third Age tech brought back from the field; even with all possible precautions in place, things still run the risk of going horribly wrong. On the other, there's no excuse for this in ordinary weapons testing: apparently, people can just wander onto the firing range without any alarms being raised and no readily-accessible means of deactivating the constantly-active weaponry - probably because the main controls have been left in the hands of the hopelessly apathetic researchers. However, there are off switches... it's just that most of them are inside the testing zones, usually past a wall of flamethrowers. The lack of door locks and the unstoppable machinery might be justified by the current state of Orochi Tower, but so far this has yet to be confirmed.
    • Also, on their omega level, they have a Class 1 device just sitting in one of their labs, its protective ark conspicuously absent. Among other things, Class 1 devices without arks are unstable enough to be used for devastating acts of terrorism, including the Atenist's attempted attack on London in Issue #6, and more prominently, the Tokyo Bombing.
  • Pass the Popcorn: Already Conditioned to Accept Horror by the nature of their work, several Manticore employees on their beta level have adopted a rather unusual approach to weapons testing; they've started placing bets on how long it takes for a test subject to navigate the maze of flamethrowers and how successful they are at avoiding a fiery death. Two researchers can actually be seen reviewing the records that past test subjects have set, laughing with genuine mirth.
  • Sexbot: A tour of Manticore's facilities at Orochi Tower reveals that one particularly frustrated researcher has been trying to convert Nanny Drones into robotic sexual partners, aiming to achieve both personal success by creating a bestselling product and personal validation by claiming his prototype as a lover. Unfortunately for him, he tries playing Professor Guinea Pig a little too soon, leading to a rather unpleasant-looking death.

Anansi Technology

Technology that cares.

A prominent developer of computer software and hardware, Anansi has been behind the creation of several highly regarded mobile phone brand, gaming consoles, multimedia players and operating systems across the world... though some conspiracy theorists fear that these products are also used to gather information on Orochi Customers and track their movements - or even subtly influence their minds.

  • Affably Evil: The researchers on Anansi's alpha floor are genuinely happy to see you, in sharp contrast to most Orochi employees at the Tower, who generally just want to be left alone. Throughout the alpha floor, researchers greet you warmly, thanking you for all your hard work and for being generous enough to pay them a visit... and then it turns out that they've been spying on you via the AEGIS, tracking your movements and monitoring your activities - and those of just about every single agent who's ever made use of the system. The "hard work" they refer to is the process of providing them with data for their experiments. More disturbingly, the researchers don't see anything wrong with what they're doing, nor do they have any problem sharing it with - even giving you the chance to wipe out some of the drones on this floor for the sake of their latest test.
  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: As the researchers on Anansi's omega floor discovered. AIMEE was built and programmed exactly as intended, complete with the human element that her creators had been searching for; unfortunately, they failed to anticipate the fact that AIMEE might be human enough to experience emotions like guilt and self-loathing - or that she might want to take revenge on the team for having her kill other artificial intelligences.
  • Augmented Reality/Virtual Training Simulation: Their beta level features an augmented reality chamber functionally identical to the one at the Sunken Library. At present, it's not known if Anansi copied the technology from the Council's machine, or if Anansi devised the technology on their own and the Council simple got hold of a prototype without Orochi's knowledge. However, the machine is distinctly different from the Council's version: rather than giving users a compact chamber that reacts to their simulations, the Anansi machine is open to the rest of the level and allows users to wander the department while under the influence of augmented reality - to the point that completing the game lands you in an as-yet undiscovered room.
  • Big Brother Is Watching: Moreso than any other Orochi company, and more covertly as well.
  • Color Motif: Recognized as the Teal Serpent Head in the lore entry on the Orochi Group.
  • Master Computer: Their omega-level masterpiece. See under "AIMEE" for more details.
  • Mundane Utility: Upon developing (or discovering) a piece of miraculous virtual/augmented reality equipment capable of building realistic scenarios that could shame even the best training sims, the Anansi staff promptly used it to play Pac-Man.
  • Sinister Surveillance: According to conspiracy theorists, Anansi smartphones and consoles serve as the surveillance, being programmed to track their owners' movements and gather data on them by monitoring their calls and other activities. This is proved horrifyingly correct when the player visits Anansi's alpha level and discovers that the researchers there have been monitoring you and countless other agents through the AEGIS; they've even recorded which players have managed to kill the most of a particular kind of enemy.
  • Subliminal Advertising/Subliminal Seduction: Lore entries suggest that this is one of Anansi Technologies' favourite tactics, brainwashing its customers through mind-control programs contained within its hardware and software alike. However, unlike some of the rumours associated with the Orochi Group, this one has yet to be confirmed.
  • Videogame Perversity Potential: Much to the exasperation of the management and the cleaning staff, researchers on Anansi's beta floor have been misusing the virtual reality machine for after-hours orgies. Apparently, it's gotten so bad that they've declared the entire floor off limits until they can clean up all the mess, which might explain why the floor's effectively deserted.

Faust Capital

It's in the details.

Covering investment, stock market trading and personal banking, Orochi's finance company has somehow managed to dodge every single economic crisis over the course of the last sixty years and emerge as one of the largest multinational financial institutes in the world - some say due to supernatural power.

  • Bank Robbery: One of their major banking centres in Kaidan suffers one of these when Daimon Kiyota exploits the ongoing crisis in order to rob the place - with your help, of course. To this day, nobody's entirely sure what he took from the vault.
  • Color Motif: As "The Tyrian Serpent Head," Faust's colour of choice is a rich purple, befitting the finance company's wealth and power.
  • Deal with the Devil: As the name implies, making any arrangement is guaranteed to involve one of these - either in the mundane sense of a contractual screw-over, or something more supernatural. Fittingly, one of the company executives is Mephistopheles, a past master of Faustian bargains.
  • Morally Bankrupt Banker: Faust Capital is reportedly home to quite a few of these, given that it's apparently been able to outmanoeuvre its competitors and screw over its debtors for the last sixty years through magical methods - as if the name wasn't evidence enough. A visit to their headquarters at Orochi Tower reveals that one of the company executives is actually Mephistopheles, the most morally bankrupt of all bankers.
  • Workaholic: Faust apparently has quite a few of these in their employ, with a rather unusual twist; the accountants employed on the beta level at Orochi Tower are so devoted to their jobs that none of them have left their desks since the Tokyo Incident, and so absorbed in their work that none of them notice your presence - or the fact that several of them have died of starvation. It's implied that this is some kind of workplace conditioning gone horribly wrong, but what happened has yet to be confirmed - though casual Friday has apparently banned after several accountants recovered just long enough to jump to their deaths.

QBL Media

We are the World.

Owning television stations, movie studios, production companies, book publishers, newspapers, magazines, record labels and even theme parks, QBL Media distributes information worldwide in almost every conceivable format - and always secretly manipulating the facts on behalf of the Orochi Group and its allies.

  • Brown Note: During your foray through the Orochi Tower's alpha levels in Issue #11, it's discovered that QBL Media have found one of these among their archived footage. More specifically, they've found a variant of the cursed videotape from The Ring, potent enough to kill just about everyone in the boardroom and turn the alpha level into a hive of angry ghosts.
  • Color Motif: The Bees call QBL Media "The Red Serpent Head," and true to form, their logo, uniforms and a good deal of their offices are coloured a very distinctive shade of crimson.
  • Going Postal: Surprisingly, the main threat of QBL's omega level is actually a disgruntled game show host. Already driven to the brink of insanity by his failure to make it big as an actor and the overuse of the laugh track on his show, the MC has been finally propelled into homicidal maniac by the Tower's ongoing state of lockdown - more specifically by the belief that he's been transferred to a reality TV show. By the time you arrive on the floor, the man's somehow managed to kill every single employee in the area and rig the area with enough traps to keep all but the most determined of intruders away from the centre chamber.
  • Masquerade: QBL are responsible for maintaining the secrecy of Orochi's supernatural experiments, and also do their part in ensuring that the Masquerade hiding the rest of the Secret World remains secure - though only for sake of business stability.
  • Noticing the Fourth Wall: An exploration of QBL's alpha level reveals that one unfortunate employee appears to have suffered this trope. On one of the office whiteboards, the employee in question has written down the titles of several past issues of The Secret World, from issue seven through to eleven. There's even an attempt to write the title for the as-yet-unreleased Issue #12 - which abruptly breaks into a manic scrawl of "OH GOD I CAN SEE FOREVER."
  • Propaganda Machine: As a company with holdings concerned with almost every single form of informative media under the sun, QBL Media is often used in order to influence public opinion in favour of the Orochi Group and its allies; according to the Bees, they can not only cover up the worst of the group's atrocities, but also direct the course of global conflicts and even control the outcome of presidential elections. It's even hinted that it's been trying to use fiction in order to subtly influence audiences in the Orochi Group's favour, with QBL's alpha level demonstrating a number of very odd-looking titles proposed for children's television programs. At the end of Issue #11, Samael uses QBL to frame you and several other players as the terrorists responsible for the Tokyo bombing.
  • Redshirt Reporter / Deadline News: Jokes about QBL's red uniforms aside, this actually averted during the Filth attack on Time Square when the Unutterable Lurker emerges less than a hundred feet from QBL Media's New York offices. Despite their refusal to leave, the QBL journalists survive the incident unharmed - and actually seem more interested in trying to prevent the story from slipping out of their control than in the gigantic Filth monster looming over their half-collapsed office.
  • Strawman News Media: Most of QBL functions as this, especially the news section. Already known for playing a very important role in covering up the Orochi Group's shadier activities and shilling its good deeds, Issue #11 reveals it to be essentially an unrepentant wellspring of yellow journalism, where nuance is a dying concept and authenticity is confirmed by the number of hits a story has acquired on Youtube. Plus, it also ensures that people who tread on Orochi's toes end up being unexpectedly Convicted by Public Opinion; you find this out the hard way at the end of Issue 11, when Samael uses QBL to have you framed as a death cultist responsible for the bombing of Tokyo.

Plethron

Sating the hungry mouths.

Primarily concerned with agricultural development, Plethron's innovations in genetic research have ensured greater yields in crop production and provided affordable food for countless third-world nations, though controversy surrounds the side-effects of some of these products...

  • Big Creepy-Crawlies: Having hit upon insects as a cheap and highly nutritious food source, Plethron alpha have shipped in an entire swarm of giant Egyptian locusts. Quite naturally, the project has ended with the researchers being overrun and slaughtered.
  • Color Motif: Appropriately for an agricultural company, Plethron are known as "The Green Serpent Head."
  • Epic Fail: To date, none of Plethron beta's attempts to create fireproof plants have been met with any measure of success; so, in an attempt to stall management, some researchers decided to get some plastic plants and coat them with some of Manticore's prototype fireproof spray, hoping that the results would be convincing enough to get their supervisors off their backs until they could come up with some real results. The next room, by the way, is an entire chamber of half-melted plants.
  • Food Eats You: The unfortunate results of their attempts to convert giant locusts into breakfast bars. As Orochi Tower lore puts it, "some days, the breakfast bar eats you."
  • Man-Eating Plant: One of their attempts to create a wonder-crop ended up as a carnivorous organism that grows in the corpses of its victims - with the twist that it can only flourish in total darkness.
  • The Swarm: The current inhabitants of Plethron alpha consist of an imported swarm of giant locusts (courtesy of Orochi forces in Egypt) and a home-grown swarm of normal-sized locusts (courtesy of a Pestilence Golem summoned into the building.
  • Tampering with Food and Drink: Lore entries suggests that Plethron has interests in this field and start tampering from the earliest stages in the development of their foodstuffs - via engineering GM crops with the intended side-effect of dulling consumers' minds through symptoms similar to Attention Deficit Disorder.
  • To Serve Man: Inverted again. On their alpha floor, they've acquired a large quantity of giant locusts in the hope of converting them into cheap protein bars for developing nations.
  • Weather-Control Machine: Issue #11 reveals that the Orochi Group has successfully developed an extremely destructive variant of this, and are currently using it further Plethron's attempts to grow GM crops with a built-in resistance to fire and acid rain.
  • The Worm That Walks: The biggest threat inhabiting Plethron's alpha floor at the Orochi Tower is actually a Pestilence Golem known only as the Source. Having been summoned into the building in order to supply the second group of researchers with a limitless quantity of insects for use in their line of protein bars, the Golem has - of course - broken out and killed most of the staff by the time the player arrives.

Executives

     The Mysterious Caller/Samuel Chandra/Samael 
If I've told you people once, I've told you a thousand times: leave these matters to your elders and betters. For my part, I am not angry, just... disappointed.

Voiced by: Nicholas Boulton

Usually found broadcasting in Orochi camps and installations, the caller often makes contact with the player in the event that he feels that a temporary alliance with one of the Big Three might be advantageous. Nobody has ever seen the caller's face or heard any direct confirmation of his name, and though his intimate knowledge of the Secret World hints at supernatural involvement, nothing has been confirmed. In Issue #11, he is finally identified as Orochi CEO Samuel Chandra, formerly the angel Samael, and husband to Lilith.

  • Affably Evil: Unfailingly polite and surprisingly courteous, the Caller is also generous enough to forgive your intrusions, provided you render assistance in a few minor matters - even sweetening the deal with the possibility of you walking away with some of the answers you were looking for. Even during your attack on Orochi Tower, he goes so far as to forgive your attack on the Tower - on the condition that you leave immediately. However, as you start closing in on Lilith, his affability slowly begins to vanish in favour of increasingly enraged threats.
  • Anti-Villain: Quite apart from being pragmatic enough to render assistance for the sake of global stability, Samael has also distanced himself from the ambitions of Lilith and the Nephilim, resolving instead to build his own relatively peaceful kingdom on Earth in the form of the Orochi Group - which, occasional outbreaks of colossal stupidity and needless cruelty aside, is fundamentally well-intentioned and does perform good deeds from time to time. In fact, the only reason Samael really finds himself at odds with you is because you insist on hunting down his wife, who he still cares deeply about even after the collapse of their relationship millennia ago.
  • Big Brother Is Watching: Second only to the Pyramidion in this respect, he has the Orochi research camps constantly monitored from a distance, and clearly recognizes you as an intruder.
  • Blackmail: One of the ways he ensures that you'll cooperate with him, especially on Solomon Island; having caught you snooping around the Orochi Group's facilities on the Blue Mountain, he calls you to observe that you're in violation of Council laws and "contracts signed in blood," and offers to ignore your crime in return for you rendering a few useful services to him.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Given the Orochi resources at his disposal, he's likely one of these. Finally confirmed in Issue #11 to be Samuel Chandra, the CEO of the Orochi Group.
  • Creepy Monotone: The Caller speaks in an eerily calm and self-assured tone of voice that rarely rises above a murmur and rare ever betrays any sort of emotion. Even during the ongoing catastrophes in Maine and Egypt, even while threatening you with a Fate Worse than Death, his voice never wavers.
  • Dark-Skinned Blond: In magazine covers, Samael's white hair is often offset by his Ambiguously Brown skin. This actually seems exaggerated when you finally meet in person, for during your meeting in "Confrontations and Revelations," his skin appears even darker when seen on the monitors of the boardroom floor.
  • Did You Actually Believe...?: Gives a short speech to this effect before introducing the Mitsubachi, teasingly asking if you thought you were the only one who could cheat death, and - more pointedly - asking if you thought your organization was the only one who could find individuals "whose lips taste of honey."
  • Enemy Mine: Usually calls you when a situation like this is warranted, from escaped test subjects on Solomon Island to apocalyptic disasters in Egypt.
  • Et Tu, Brute?: During "Mortal Sins," he's understandably shocked to discover that Lilith has gone renegade and tried to seize control of a Gaia Engine without his knowledge during the finale of "Mortal Sins," for even after the collapse of their relationship, he never suspected that she would ever go so far as to actually betray him.
    What is this? What's going on? Someone talk to me right now. Lilith, what's the meaning of this? Don't tell me that... I should have realized that you were involved somehow. But why? What's in it for you? You had everything you ever wanted. Infinite wealth, immortality, a legion of lovers... Me. I refuse to believe this is something you have orchestrated...
  • Fallen Angel: First hinted by lore entries indicating that he suffered a long fall from a great height at some point in the past, and further hinted by remarks such as "you must rush in where we fear to tread," his status as a Fallen Angel is finally confirmed in Issue #11 when he reveals himself to be one of the rebel angels known as the Nephilim.
  • Fate Worse than Death: Like his wife, he knows a few, which he elaborates upon in Issue #11 while trying to dissuade you from confronting Lilith. However, given that you weren't directly responsible for his wife's capture and binding, he merely uses the least of the methods at his disposal in order to punish you by having you branded as a terrorist and a fugitive from justice.
  • Frameup: After your interference manages to get Lilith captured and bound by the Nephilim, Samuel begins his revenge against you by using the media resources at his disposal to have you framed as one of the terrorists responsible for the Tokyo bombing, effectively making you a marked man throughout both the real world and the Secret World.
  • Going Native: Issue #11 reveals that his persona of Samuel Chandra initially came about as the result of this. Having initially set out to chain the Dreamers and use their powers to remake reality in his own image, he ultimately grew comfortable on his planet of exile and abandoned the plan in favour of simply ruling Earth from a position that its natives would accept - as the head of a major multinational corporation.
  • Humans Are Morons: A firm believer in this perspective, observing the repeated tendency of humans to blithely fling themselves into horrendously dangerous situations; you're cited as the most obvious example of this behaviour, though the Orochi research team that stole the Song of the Sentinels are also derided for their recklessness and their refusal to leave the matter to their "elders and betters." As a member of the Nephilim, Samael is hardly alone in his attitude; unlike some of them, however, he doesn't appear to take it all the way into Fantastic Racism.
  • If You Ever Do Anything to Hurt Her.../Leave Him to Me: Though their relationship might have collapsed over the last few millennia, Samael nonetheless warns the players to leave Lilith alone: having already politely asked you to just leave the building, he reassures you that she'll be punished for her crimes... but as you progress through the boardroom level, he gradually degenerates into a serious of vicious descriptions of what he'll do to you if you hurt Lilith. Unfortunately, you don't listen.
  • It's Personal: Blackmail aside, he's fairly forgiving of your attempts to break into Orochi facilities, even offering to ignore your attack on the Tower in Issue #11. However, Samael makes it abundantly clear that harming Lilith is something he won't forgive - and proves his point by essentially declaring all-out war on you via QBL Media.
  • I Warned You: After Samael very clearly outlines why it would be a bad idea for you to try harming Lilith, you go ahead and confront her anyway, and while you don't actually kill her, you nonetheless end up accidentally aiding John in having her captured and bound by the Nephilim. As such, Samael is very swift in ensuring that you pay for it. He doesn't say "I warned you," but after having you framed as a terrorist, he doesn't need to.
  • Light Is Not Good: As is revealed when you finally get a good look at his face; the handsome, white-haired angel in disguise is most definitely up to no good, being firmly established as a Fallen Angel.
  • Manipulative Bastard: Several scenes establish him as quite adept at psychological manipulation, most prominently in your first meeting; upon catching you stealing data from an Orochi computer in Solomon Island, he uses this opportunity to force you into working for him with the threat of exposing your theft to the Council of Venice, then a few equitable-sounding offers to keep you from disagreeing with him. Lore for the Mitsubachi states that he also successfully persuaded several Bees into joining the Orochi Group as Mitsubachi agents, remarking that he has the power to "talk and talk till molecules nod and let go." Unfortunately, his gift for manipulation works reliably only when people are actually willing to listen to him. When you confront him one last time in Issue #11, you're too focused on tracking down and killing Lilith to budge one inch... so instead, he decides to convince the rest of the world instead, namely by using QBL Media to frame you as one of the cultists responsible for the Tokyo bombing.
  • Mysterious Informant: Well, he blackmails almost as often as he informs, but the Caller nonetheless ticks all the necessary by keeping his identity hidden at all times while keeping you informed when it suits his purposes.
  • Mystical White Hair: Long before being positively identified as one of the Host, Samael's unearthly nature was hinted at by his silver-white hair, easily noticeable in just about every single magazine cover featuring him before his formal introduction.
  • No-Nonsense Nemesis: He makes it abundantly clear that he only tolerates your interference as long as it serves his interests, and in the event that you make the mistake of disobeying his orders or harming Lilith, you'll feel the repercussions immediately - no flourishes, no moustache-twirling, and above all, no idle threats. And he proves his point in the aftermath of Issue #11, when he takes immediate revenge against you by having you framed as an international terrorist.
  • Pragmatic Villainy: As corrupt and devious as he is, the caller's obsession with remaining in control means that he has absolutely no interest in seeing the Dreamers and their servants start an apocalypse. Hence why he aids the player in retrieving the stolen Song of the Sentinels from the Orochi camp.
  • Revenge: Spends a good deal of his time in Issue 11 threatening you with vengeance if you make the mistake of hurting Lilith - and then making good on his threats by having you "unveiled" to the world as one of the terrorists behind the Tokyo Bombing.
  • The Stoic: The Caller rarely ever shows any sort of emotion, even in the direst of emergencies; even while lambasting his research team in the City of the Sun God for their recklessness in stealing a song from one of the Sentinels, he voice barely betrays anything stronger than mild disappointment.
    • Not So Stoic: During the finale of "Mortal Sins," the caller briefly loses his cool when he discovers that Lily Engel AKA Lilith is behind the disaster at the Breach. Played much more subtly in "Confrontations and Revelations," in which he comes dangerously close to losing his temper altogether.
  • Supernatural Gold Eyes: Another sign of his otherworldly character, Samael possesses a set of luminous yellow eyes, once again clearly visible on magazine covers prior to "Confrontations and Revelations".
  • This Cannot Be!: Reacts this way when he discovers who was really behind the events of the Transylvania arc. Apparently, even after the slow collapse of their marriage over the past few millennia, Samael still couldn't believe that Lilith would betray him like this.
  • Time Abyss: As a former member of the Host, Samael has lived through all three previous eras of history and likely took part in the creation of the world itself, making him even older than Lilith. He even takes a while to elaborate on the extraordinary things he's seen over the eons while attempting to dissuade you from tracking down Lilith.
  • Tranquil Fury: During your confrontation in Issue #11, his voice doesn't rise above a whisper as he warns you to leave Lilith alone and unharmed, but it's clear from his tone of voice that your refusal to obey has him genuinely infuriated for the first time in the game - especially towards the end of the tirade, when it sounds as though just about every single word is being spoken through gritted teeth.
  • “The Reason You Suck” Speech: Issues one of these during your standoff in "Confrontations and Revelations," in which he mocks you for your naiveté and recklessness - and also for serving Gaia without question. For good measure, he also takes the time to sneer at humanity's general flaws as well.
    There is an artefact of junk programming in your brain, a broken line of code in the DNA of your species: the irresistible tendency towards self-destruction. You can see this in the repeated atrocities of history, or even in the simple act of procrastination. If you see the edge of the abyss, you needs must leap. I have been a facilitator of your kind's boundless desire to destroy itself... since the beginning. Since iron cathedrals stained the moon red with sacrificial pyres. Since machined cities crossed the sea upon gears and gossamer sail. Even in the hummingbird heartbeat of your recorded time. [...] You are an exceptional footnote in a text one could not even leaf through in a star's life cycle, so I invite you to contemplate how quickly my eyes gloss over you. Don't take it personally. You are the product of an imperfect creation, infants abandoned on the doorstep of technology... and now, after all these years, your estranged mother comes back to you through an insect's mouth, to tell you she always loved you best. Well, if you believe that, our marketing focus groups would like to hear from you.
  • Unholy Matrimony: With Lilith, having married her back in the First Age at the very beginning of their villainous collaboration. Though all evidence indicates that the two genuinely loved each other and spent countless millennia as an eldritch spin on Bonny and Clyde, their relationship permanently soured when Samael went native and lost interest in the plot to seize control of the Dreamers. As a result, Lilith struck out on her own.
  • The Voice: Even in situations where a video link could be provided, the Caller makes a point of never showing his face; as such, he's encountered primarily as a voice echoing from a set of speakers. However, this all changes in Issue #11, when he finally shows his face on several monitors around the Orochi Tower's boardroom level, revealing himself as Samuel Chandra in the process.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: On two separate levels. Initially, he and the other members of the Nephililm wanted to harness the power of the Dreamers in order to build a better world; however, Samael grew too accustomed to the comforts of Earth and gave up on this plan. His attempts to seize control of the Gaia Engines are no less extreme, but still primarily well-intentioned as they would allow him to provide the world with theoretically limitless amounts of energy.

     Lily Engel/Lilith 
Take a card from the tarot. Flip the Priestess - the Chairwoman - designation Lily Engel. All monstrous pathways umbilically converge at a singular source. The nightmare quim. She has seventeen names. She struts through the cadavers of ages.
The Buzzing

Voiced by: Maria Darling

The Chairwoman of the Orochi Group's Board of Directors, though Lore entries hint at her being much more sinister than initially thought. Ultimately responsible for the disaster that befell Orochi operations in the Carpathian Fangs. As revealed in Issue #7, her true name is Lilith, and she is driven to seize control of the burgeoning global crisis by any means available to her... and she's recently become very interested in Emma Smith.

  • Accent Relapse: The moment she no longer needs to keep up the pretence of being a Council Agent, she drops the Russian accent altogether and shifts to purring Received Pronunciation.
  • Big Bad: The villain behind the events of "Mortal Sins" and Issue 7, it's also revealed that she's been behind the rise of the Morninglight cult and some of the Orochi Group's worst atrocities around the world.
  • Big NO: When she is captured by the Nephilim at the end of Issue 11.
  • Bitch in Sheep's Clothing: She has a habit of presenting a trustworthy exterior to her enemies, posing first as a Council Agent sent to aid you, then as a mother figure to Emma. It doesn't take long before her unpleasant nature starts bleeding through the disguise, however.
  • Brown Note: Hearing Lilith say her true name out loud causes the player's body to lapse into a panic attack, apparently due to her place in the human ancestral memory. Furthermore, John's memories imply that her other names can do equally nasty things to the human psyche, the player only surviving them due to their status as a Bee.
    • The climax of "Nightmares In The Dream Palace" suggests that it's not even safe to memorize Lilith, as the memories of her could actually become physically harmful - either to John, or to the player.
  • Cain and Abel: She was Cain to Cucuvea's Abel. Eventually Cucuvea gave up the feud so as to not become consumed by hatred, but the two sisters - one good, one evil - still exist to this day, even if they are no longer specifically hunting each other down. Instead, Cucuvea has dedicated herself to keeping Lilith's servants contained.
  • Corrupt Corporate Executive: Having been working behind Samael's back for many years, Lilith is corrupt even by the extraordinary standards set by the Orochi.
  • Dark Mistress: According to the Bees, she was initially this to Samael, having been considered little more than a catspaw to the fallen angel himself. However, Lilith eventually rose to become her husband's equal.
  • The Dragon: Technically, she's this to Orochi CEO Samuel Chandra. And it's revealed that she really was the Dragon to him in previous Ages, before their relationship fell apart. Back in the Third Age, she also attempted to become a Dragon to the Dreamers, albeit with the sole intent of betraying them once she was able to harness their power; unfortunately, this resulted in the Dreamers awakening just long enough to wipe out all human civilization and end the Third Age. These days, Lilith works for herself and herself alone.
  • Dragged Off to Hell: Issue #11 concludes with Lilith being captured by the Nephilim and carried off to wherever the rebel angels happen to reside - probably not heaven, all things considered.
  • The Dreaded: Lilith is rightly feared throughout the Secret World, her name alone inspiring instinctive terror in the minds of human beings. Even seasoned faction leaders and operatives quickly lose composure upon encountering her: the normally irreverent Lidya sounds downright terrified to meet her face to face; Richard Sonnac says her appearance is a sign of the end times, the actual end-times; Kirsten Geary actually drops her usual sarcasm when it's realized that Lilith has gotten involved in a mission, and her ((unnerved) superiors have breached all protocol to speak to her directly about the matter; The Dragon report that the mere whisper of her name(s) caused The Child to wake-up crying and passing birds to continually dive bomb into their windows! Even the Black Signal itself is overcome by a panic attack after realizing that you've met her and mentally curls up in the fetal position!
  • Evil Gloating: Lilith is clearly in love with the sound of her own voice, and will take just about any given opportunity to expound on just how singularly awesome she is. Though she remains savvy enough to avoid doing this for too long in her earliest appearances, this tendency finally backfires on her during Issue #11, when John uses her compulsive monologuing - along with a few distractions of his own making - as a means of keeping her preoccupied until the Nephilim arrive to arrest her.
  • Evil Red Head/Fiery Redhead: Immediately recognizable by her fiery temper and crimson locks - which only look more extraordinary in the artwork to Issue #11.
  • Evil Speech Of Evil: Indulges in a wonderfully hammy introductory speech towards the end of Issue #7, presenting all seventeen of her names and elaborating on her villainous deeds throughout the eons.
  • A Fate Worse Than Death/Who Wants to Live Forever?: Her favoured method of dealing with her enemies is making them sincerely regret being unable to die, as the player and Octavian can attest.
  • Faux Affably Evil: She likes to present herself as sweet-natured and motherly, but often undermines this presentation with a very prominent sadistic streak and a vicious temper.
    • In Issue 11, Lilith holds an almost perfectly civil conversation with you; she's more than happy to explain herself and treat you with all due politeness... but it's also clear that she's clearly not in the least bit repentant for attempting to kidnap and exploit Emma, nor does she seem in any way apologetic for slicing your legs off - if that sneer of "How are your legs?" is any evidence. Plus, she's still pissed at you for spoiling her plans in Transylvania.
  • Hijacking Cthulhu: Her ultimate goal, once shared by her husband Samael, is to use the Gaia Engines to bind the Dreamers and harness their reality-warping powers for her own purposes. In the past, she made the mistake of working directly with the Dreamers to this end, and it smacked humanity back to the stone age - hence the reason why she's making use of more indirect methods.
  • Historical Rap Sheet: Over the course of her long lifetime, Lilith has committed a huge number of crimes. Most of them are only hinted at, though she has done enough to have ended up as the inspiration behind several mythical figures of chaos, destruction, and (on good days) knowledge. Towards the end of Issue #11, she also admits that she was indirectly responsible for the end of the Third Age, her attempt to screw over the Dreamers having backfired when they woke up just enough to obliterate human civilization.
  • Humanoid Abomination: It's hinted at throughout the game in both the lore entries and the overarching plot. Finally confirmed in the climax of Issue #7; though she seems outwardly human, her past, her powers, and the way her voice distorts when she announces her names all indicate that Lilith is clearly something terrifyingly eldritch beneath her human exterior. Issue #11 expands on this by observing that she really was once human back in the First Age, before her alliance with Samael augmented and transformed her into the inhuman being she is today.
  • I Know Your True Name: Hidden behind all seventeen other names is Lilith's secret eighteenth, Ki-sikil-lil-la-ke, a name apparently powerful enough to imprison her when used by the Nephilim at the end of Issue #11.
  • I Have Many Names: Seventeen, in fact - all of which she goes so far as to detail for your benefit: Abeko, Abito, Amizo, Batna, Eilo, Ita, Izorpo, Kea, Kali, Kokos, Odam, Partasah, Patrota, Podo, Satrina, Talto... and of course, Lilith. All of them mythic feminine figures of destruction. And that's not even counting the cover identities of Lily Engel and the Russian Council Agent, and some of her other, less-known mythical personas: Isthar, Athena, Juno, to name but a few. Last but not least, there's Lilith's hidden eighteenth name, "Ki-sikil-lil-la-ke."
  • Kick the Dog: Halfway through her Evil Speech Of Evil, she's interrupted by one of the test subjects from the Nursery shambling into the room. Humming the signature lullaby under her breath, Lilith gently reaches out to stroke the little girl's face... and then snaps her neck.
  • Large Ham: She takes great glee in discussing her past while the player is strapped to a operating table in Issue #7. During your second meeting in Issue #11, she's much more subdued, and claims that she was simply having a very bad day at the time.
  • Light Is Not Good: Another seemingly-benevolent figure with a lot of white in her wardrobe, Lilith might seem like a perfectly legitimate figure in her persona of Lily Engel, even an ally to the player when in her Russian Agent persona; in reality, she's a scheming, exploitative Humanoid Abomination.
  • Mad Scientist: Though more commonly known as an executive - or as a ravening monster - Lilith was known as a scientist in past Ages, having bioengineered and birthed some of the most infamous monsters in the world, even coming close to harnessing the awful power of the Dreamers though the Gaia engines. Even today, her knowledge of Third Age technology still allows her to champion Orochi initiatives throughout the game, and the three-bodied Uta Bloody Valentine still serves as a reminder of her impressive skills in genetic alteration. Indeed, the Bees say she'd rather be remembered for her accomplishments as a scientist than her monstrous triumphs. Not that she minds being The Dreaded.
  • Man Behind the Man: For the entire Transylvania arc, having not only caused the Breach through her use of Emma and various Orochi resources, but also secretly commanded the vampire army during most of it.
    • Subsequent issues reveal that she was also behind the creation of the Morninglight, having resurrected the ancient cult of Deus Sol Invictus and given it a modern spin as part of her ongoing attempts to control the Dreamers. Unfortunately, the Dreamers sabotaged this alliance by corrupting Phillip Marquad, inspiring him to turn the rest of the cult against her - and even attempt to assassinate her via John's suicide-bombing. Needless to say, by the start of the game, she's lost control of the cult altogether.
    • The Woman Behind The Monsters: The bestial werewolves and the monstrous vampire hybrids are not only under the command of Mara, but by extension, Lilith as well - and have been so since she gave birth to their respective species.
  • Metaphorically True: She admits that, though most of what she told you while posing as the Russian Council Agent was false, she was being perfectly honest about being a mother. It's just that she neglected to mention what it is she is a mother of.
  • Mother of a Thousand Young: Implied by in the Bees' remarks on "a monstrous nativity" and that "there are tombs that are less haunted than some wombs", not to mention the fact that Mara reacts to Engel's signature by whispering "Mother?" Finally confirmed in Issue #7, when it's revealed that vampires, werewolves and dozens of other breeds of hideous monsters can all trace their lineage back to Lilith - Samael being identified as the Father in many cases. However, nobody's entirely sure if Lilith actually gave birth to these monsters or if she just created them in a lab; even the Bees aren't entirely certain, though given that "things existed on more simultaneous dimensions back then" it's implied that it might be both.
  • Neck Snap: More than strong enough to break a human neck one-handed, another indication of her eldritch nature.
  • Time Abyss: Born during the First Age and numbered among the very first humans in existence. It's not known how much time has passed since then, but given the civilization-levelling disasters that ended the last three Ages and the millennia required for humans to recover enough to start building cities again, it's pretty safe to say that Lilith's true age could easily top a hundred thousand years. In any case, she's one of the oldest living beings still in existence, second only to truly eldritch beings like the Dreamers and the Host.
  • Theme Naming "Lilith" means 'screech-owl' in Hebrew; in Romanian, her sister Cucuvea is 'little-owl'.
  • The Unfought: So far, Lilith hasn't engaged the player in direct combat, largely because she can't be bothered to expend so much effort; when you finally catch up with her in Agartha, she simply imprisons you in a sphere of magic and leaves you hovering there as she makes a break for the portal.
  • Unholy Matrimony: Married the angel Samael way back in the First Age, and spent most of the eons since then as a team of equally-powerful villains constantly plaguing human society in their attempts to claim ultimate power, ideally through the power of the Dreamers. However, after Lilith's last attempt blew up in their faces and brought an end to the Third Age, Samael decided to settle down and go native; enraged by Samael's betrayal of their cause - the very reason why she discarded her humanity and married him in the first place - Lilith decided to seize control of the Dreamers on her own, effectively ending their partnership.
  • The Vamp: In the event that she's not in full-blown villain mode, Lilith will sometimes attempt to accomplish her goals through seduction and trickery rather than brute force; quite apart from the implications that she might have been the woman who caused the fatal split between the Templars and the Phoenicians, her first true appearance in Issue #7 features her posing as an alluring Council agent so you can lead her to Emma without suspecting her true motives. It works, too.
  • Villainous Breakdown: She really doesn't respond well to being turned down by Emma.
  • Villain: Exit, Stage Left: Having been unveiled as the villain behind the Transylvania arc, with her boss demanding an explanation and the player closing in on her, Lily Engel teleports herself away before anyone can confront her.
    • She does this again at the end of Issue #7; having been punted clean through the Tokyo portal by Emma, Lilith decides to stay there and lick her wounds.
  • Voice of the Legion: While announcing her seventeen names.
  • Walking Spoiler
  • Was Once a Man: Lilith was in fact one of the very first humans in existence, having been born during the First Age; however, inspired by Samael's promises, she chose to betray Gaia and humanity by joining the Nephilim - allowing her to slowly transform into an immortal psychopath.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Played with. Towards the end of Issue #11, Samael attempts to justify his wife's betrayal by drawing attention to the fact that Gaia is apparently dying, and the only way to save the people of Earth is to build a new one with the power of the Dreamers - though it's not certain if Samael actually believes in this solution as he once did or if he's just trying to talk the player into backing down. Later, Lilith herself manages to frame her activities in Transylvania in a more positive light by admitting her reasons for kidnapping Emma in Issue #7: she wanted to use her powers in conjunction with the Gaia Engine at the Breach to cleanse Tokyo of the Filth. Granted, Lilith doesn't specify what this might do to Emma in the process - she's too busy lambasting you for stopping her.
  • What the Hell, Hero?: Gives the player one in Issue 11, for denying her Emma, since she could have used Emma's powers to cleanse the Filth from Tokyo through use of a Gaia Engine. That said, while she may have well been planning to cleanse the Filth from Tokyo, it is also clear that Emma is better off outside her control. (She also merely claims that she could use Emma and the Gaia Engine in that way, not that she would.)
  • Woman in White: Almost always dressed in white, whether as part of the Russian Agent's Spy Catsuit, or as part of her own expensive-looking ensemble.
  • Woman Scorned: After spending almost three entire Ages working towards Samael's grand plan, she's understandably upset when Samael unexpectedly choses Gaia over her and abandons the plan altogether - leading to her betraying him. In Issue #7, she's even more enraged when when Emma makes the same choice.
  • The Worf Effect: Lilith demonstrates seemingly unstoppable power in just about every single scene she features in - imprisoning you in a sphere of magic, shrinking a Filth bird down to a more manageable size, and making herself effectively invulnerable to John's onslaught. Even Emma herself only got the better of her by knocking through the Tokyo portal. However, when the Nephilim arrive, Lilith finds herself outmatched and permanently bested.

     The Faust Capital CEO/ Mephistopheles 

Pleased to meet you, hope you guess my name. I know why you're here: you're looking for something. Aren't we all?

The head of Faust Capital, he is first encountered on the company's omega floor at Orochi Tower, still serving to the best of his ability despite the ongoing crisis. Befitting Faust's nature as an organization focussed on trade and investment, the CEO does his best to accommodate you during your journey through the Tower, albeit in a rather eccentric and thoroughly supernatural fashion. He is actually none other than Mephistopheles from Faust, a wish-granting Jinn bound to the service of Samael.

  • Affably Evil: Always respectful, always friendly, and always ready to give people what they want in life, the CEO is a surprisingly amiable character for an Orochi executive. He also dislikes the way he's been portrayed in the media, insisting that he reads out every bit of fine print so his clients understand the terms of their agreement and warns them of the consequences long in advance. Also, he clearly takes no joy in having to kill you at the end of the level - see below.
  • Apologetic Attacker: Offers his sincerest apologies for the incoming boss battle at the end of the omega level, capping off his explanation with a whisper of "I am so sorry" as he attacks you.
    I apologise, I really do: I hate brutishness, I despise rudeness, and you have been such a wonderful guest. But... I owe my own favours: there are contracts that bind me. Samael says that you are to go no further. I am more sophisticated than this, and you deserve better, but... this will get brutish.
  • Creepy Child: When masquerading as a human, Mephistopheles takes the form of a small and extremely creepy-looking child reminiscent of the Gaki encountered in "Contract Killers." However, he abandons this shape once you arrive in the centre chamber, instead opting to attack you in his monstrous true form.
  • Deal with the Devil: His stock in trade, having been making Faustian bargains for as long as Faust has existed in human folklore. Admittedly, Mephistopheles believes that popular portrayal as a trickster and a swindler is grossly unfair, and claims that he makes the terms of each agreement as clear as possible before his clients sign their contracts, even warning them against it from time to time... not that it stops them.
  • Defensive "What?": Responds this way to players who chose to be rewarded with wealth. As he points out, a single one-PAX note might not be much, but given that it always respawns, it's possible to spend your entire life gathering a real fortune - after all, some customers do exactly that.
  • Early-Bird Cameo: First obliquely referred to in the lore entries for "The Tragic History of Doctor Faustus." Curiously enough, one such entry is found within the Faust Capital bank in Tokyo...
  • Famous Last Words: In the split second before he drops his disguise and attacks you head-on, he can be heard to say, "I am so sorry."
  • I Have Many Names: Before his true identity is revealed, he hints at his name with some of the aliases that other cultures gave him; to begin with, he notes the Hebrew roots of his name as a compound of "distributor" and "liar," along with "falsehood plasterer," though he admits that the names aren't as pretty after being translated. The Greeks on the other hand, called him "Not-Light-Loving," another name far prettier before translations - and also a parody on "Lucifer..."
  • Jackass Genie: The CEO offers you several beneficial-sounding choices throughout the level and all of them have unpleasant, cheap or overly-complicated rewards. Also, towards the end of the level, he's revealed to be a Jinn - and one of the few who can actually grant wishes.
    • The first decision allows you to choose between eternal love and eternal life: choosing eternal love will give you an immediate appointment with a very excited Succubus, while choosing eternal life summons an extremely hungry vampire into the room with you.
    • The second decision offers you a choice between money and power: choosing power will reward you with a common household battery, while choosing money will provide you with a bank note worth exactly one PAX - with the unusual twist that it respawns every time you pick it up, allowing you to theoretically earn thousands... provided you have the patience.
    • The final choice you make grants either musical talent or knowledge: picking music provides you with a magic flute and requires you to correctly follow the melody in order to earn the reward - the flute, functionally identical to the one encountered in "The Christmas Conspiracy." Taking the knowledge option provides you with access to a computer terminal and provided with three riddles; if you answer them correctly, you'll be rewarded with an otherwise unattainable lore entry on the Jinn.
  • Laughably Evil: The jokes might be made primarily at your expense, but there's no denying that the CEO is always willing to share a laugh with you. He's even willing to admit that rewarding your desire for power with a household battery was a terrible pun.
  • Magically Binding Contract: As an inhabitant of the Hell Dimensions, he's likely responsible for writing up quite a few of these contracts; however, Mephistopheles is also under the influence of one such contract he made with Samael, and thus cannot allow you to pass through the omega floor unchallenged - hence the final boss battle.
  • Meaningful Name: Likely responsible for Faust Capital's very name, given that he's actually the same demon that tempted the eponymous character in the classic tale.
  • Metaphorically True: Technically, the choices you make provide you with exactly what you wanted... it's just that they're delivered in a particularly cheap way. The vampire really would have given you immortality if you'd have been willing to let him rip your throat out; the succubus really did love you - it's just that she didn't know any other way of expressing it; batteries really do provide you with power; 1 PAX notes can add up to a lot if you're prepared to continue taking them, etc, etc, etc...
  • Morally Bankrupt Banker: As the apparent head of Orochi's banking company, this is a given; plus, affability aside, there's no banker as morally bankrupt as Mephistopheles.
  • Our Genies Are Different: Unlike Amir and the others of his kind encountered throughout the game, Mephistopheles is one of the few Jinn who can actually grant wishes.
  • Playing with Fire: Befitting his status as a Jinn, Mephistopheles has a gift for pyrokinetic magic that he makes full use of during the boss battle.
  • Power Floats: As a Jinn, he's often hovering in the air by default, only setting foot on solid ground when in a human disguise.
  • Public-Domain Character: The very same demon who tempted Faust, Mephistopheles remembers Johann quite well - even recalling that he advised the sorcerer not to make such a bargain. He didn't listen.
  • Riddle Me This: Similarly to AIMEE's antics on the Anansi omega level, the "knowledge" option in the CEO's final challenge requires you to answer three riddles on a computer terminal. Answering correctly rewards you with a lore entry cluing you in to Mephistopheles' true nature as a Jinn long before you arrive in the centre chamber.
  • Satanic Archetype: Ironic, considering that Satan is actually a character within the setting and shows little to no interest in making any deals of the kind that Mephistopheles makes on his own.
  • Voice of the Legion: Speaks in a very deep, distorted tone of voice.
  • Voluntary Shapeshifting: Apparently capable of this, being first encountered in the shape of a small child.
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Research Staff

     Blake and Radcliffe 
Our role here is to maintain a scientific overview of the situation, not to intervene. And that's what we've been doing: not intervening.
Blake

Voiced by: Tim Russ (Blake), Tara Strong (Radcliffe)

In charge of a research team investigating the Draug invasion of Solomon Island, Harrison Blake and his associate Anne Radcliffe are much more approachable than most of the operatives in the area. As well as allowing you to enter their base, they also provide missions in return for certain "incentives", reasoning that you are capable of dealing with threats they are too beleagured to deal with. Of course, there are some things about the team's mission that the ever-efficient Blake refuses to elaborate upon, leaving Radcliffe to admit them to you in the hopes that you'll investigate.

  • Adorkable: Radcliffe, who spends most of her time onscreen stuttering, stammering, correcting herself, accidentally saying too much, and getting just a little bit too excited at meeting a "superhero." Plus, she's occasionally sidetracked by wondering about the proper noun for a group of superheroes.
  • Consummate Professional: Blake; as well as being strictly by-the-book in all his interactions, he also takes a rather dim view of unprofessional or chaotic behaviour. When he's not gently rebuking Radcliffe for her attempts to bend the rules, he's viewing your activities with a mixture of condescension and distrust.
  • Deadpan Snarker: Both of them, though Blake's pretty deadpan by default and Radcliffe generally manages her best sarcasm when she's in conversation with him.
  • Farm Girl: Radcliffe apparently grew up on a farm, and Blake attributes her rural upbringing to some of the more emotional decisions she makes.
  • First-Name Basis: In one dialogue option, Blake accidentally refers to Anne Radcliffe by her first name, before hastily reverting to the more impersonal "Ms Radcliffe" - another indication that they are quite friendly, despite Blake's professional disposition.
  • Hard on Soft Science: Blake exhibits this attitude, proudly noting how he and other Orochi researchers deal in hard, quantifiable science, and condescendingly compares your approach to the liberal arts.
  • The McCoy: Again, Radcliffe. On top of being more emotional than Blake, she's also more concerned with the morality of what she does, and probably the only member of the team who has the slightest bit of sympathy for the people of Kingsmouth or any stated opposition to the policy of non-intervention. Of course, remaining under the watchful eye of Blake has made her somewhat less outspoken than most examples, and Blake's not interested in listening when she does speak up on matters of ethics... hence the reason why she's more inclined to talk to you.
  • My Beloved Smother / Fantasy Forbidding Mother: During one of her many moments of personal reflection, Radcliffe remarks that her mother spent a great deal of time and effort forcing her to give up her childhood fantasies and be "normal." Ironic, considering that Radcliffe ended up getting a job that allowed her to interact with beings from said fantasies on a daily basis.
  • Named After Somebody Famous: Radcliffe jokes that Blake was named after Harrison Ford, hence the reason why he's such a perfectionist. Radcliffe herself is named after the Gothic horror novelist Anne Radcliffe, appropriate for Solomon Island given that it's one huge Shout-Out to Lovecraftian Cosmic Horror stories and nineteenth century Gothic fiction.
  • Neat Freak: Blake's obsession with order and correct protocol apparently extends to matters of personal cleanliness; he's clearly annoyed by Radcliffe's habit of chewing her nails, seeing them as symptomatic of mental and physical disorder.
  • Not Using the "Z" Word: One of Radcliffe's gripes with Orochi protocol; during the mission intro to "Hulk Smash," after calling the undead by the company-issued title of Condition 17s, she actually goes so far as to ask "Can't we just call them zombies, sir?"
  • Odd Friendship: Despite being almost nothing alike in terms of personality, attitude or moral outlook, Blake and Radcliffe actually have a surprisingly friendly relationship when not interacting on a strictly professional basis. In idle dialogue, they can often be seen openly discussing their past and their home lives, telling the occasional understated joke, an even playing games of "Confirm or Deny."
  • Punch-Clock Villain: As Orochi researchers with no direct role in the catastrophe, their stated goal is to finish the job at hand, collect their paychecks and go home - though Radcliffe at least hopes to do so with a clear conscience.
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Radcliffe, being inexperienced, naïve and exuberant, qualifies as the Red. Of course, the cynically professional Blake is a clear and obvious Blue.
  • Salt and Pepper: Racliffe's the salt, Blake's the pepper.
  • Sarcasm-Blind: By his own admission, Blake is this.
  • The Spock: Blake; calm, reserved, strictly by-the-book, and utterly detached from morality and emotion. That said, he does have an extremely understated sense of humour, most often exhibited in conversation with Radcliffe.
  • Those Two Guys
  • Token Religious Teammate: Though clearly just as scientifically-minded as Blake, Radcliffe is clearly the more religious of the two, though she's still quite understated about it. In the intro to "Black Helicopters," she wishes she could actually attend the local church for a while, though the quarantine forbids her from doing so - and hopes that she can leave Solomon Island as a "church-going girl with a clear conscience."
  • Villains Out Shopping: Can occasionally be heard playing games of "Confirm or Deny."

     Dr Klein 
To be clear, I do not need you alive for my experimentation. It is quicker this way, please understand.

Voiced by: Tim Watson

A scientist assigned to the Prometheus Initiative's expedition to Egypt, specifically concerned with uncovering the secrets of the underground temple and Filth reservoir known only as the Ankh. Over the course of his studies, Klein has been exposed to enough microdoses of the Filth to develop a tolerance to the very worst of its effects; unfortunately, this tolerance has left him critically dependent on regular doses. In his growing insanity, he has taken control of the mummified creations left inside the Ankh, infected the other members of his research team, and used them to take over the entire Orochi research base. Needless to say, he serves as the main antagonist of the Ankh, being instantly confronted by players venturing into the temple in order to learn what happened...

  • Acquired Poison Immunity: Subverted. In reality, he's only managed to dilute the brain-destroying effects of the Filth down to a crippling addiction and a delusional sense of grandeur, while at the same time suffering almost all of the physical deformities associated with Filth infection. For good measure, he's almost certainly under the influence of the Dreamers, even if he isn't aware of it.
    • In Call of the Nameless, though, it may be a Double Subversion. Klein was always aware he would mutate and suffer some mental effects, but was already a cultist of the Dreamers. He may be just resistant enough to consider his actual goal of retaining his intelligence to consider his attempt a success.
  • Arc Villain: Of the Ankh Dungeon, and by extension, most of the Orochi missions in Egypt.
  • Back from the Dead: In Issue #14, it's revealed he's figured out a way to revive, similar to player characters. It's not as good, playing havoc with his memories (he's not sure if you killed him or the other way around), but he's otherwise fully recovered.
  • Badass Bookworm: Klein is quick to establish himself as a scientist, though he's clearly no slouch when it comes to combat, having been empowered by long-term exposure to the Filth and possession of the high priest's magic staff.
  • Badass Longcoat: Immediately distinguished by the heavy black longcoat he wears; it's large enough to cover Klein's body even after all the growth he's undergone.
  • Bald of Evil: Clearly bald as the proverbial cue ball, as the first boss battle with him reveals - though it's not established if he was bald prior to his infection or if this is a result of Filth mutations.
  • Body Horror: Like most Filth infectees, Klein has been horribly mutated by exposure to his drug of choice. Quite apart from the thick black veins coating his face and the tentacles protruding from his shoulders, his skeletal structure has warped over the course of his addiction, leaving him abnormally tall and easily recognized by his distended skull. Meanwhile, lore entries reveal that his initial methods of exposing himself to the Filth involved a good deal of Body Horror, especially given that it required him to inject the substance up his nostrils and into his brain. Of course, now all he has to do is effectively snort droplets of it.
  • Cut His Heart Out with a Spoon: Making it through some of his best defences results in one of the most hilariously improbable threats in the entire game - especially given that Klein actually tried to have it enacted by an Orochi planning committee: filling Agartha with concrete.
  • Dual Boss: In the final battle of "Pandora's Box," he fights you alongside the ancient Colossus Melothat, bombarding you with magic from one end of the room while Melothat hacks away at you with his axe from the other. In the event that the colossus breaks down under your onslaught, Klein will teleport to the top of a nearby statue and begin hastily restoring Melothat's health, forcing the players to hurry up the side of the statue to give Klein a well-deserved beating and stop the regenerative processes from undoing all their hard work. Rinse and repeat.
  • Enemy Mine: He decides to help you in Issue #14 to understand exactly what the cause behind the Agharta earthquakes are.
  • Evilutionary Biologist: Klein apparently believes that the Filth is the key to human evolution, openly proclaiming the glory of the "Great Mutation" that the Ankh can unleash upon the world.
  • Evil Laugh: Cackles loudly and maniacally when you finally battle him in person, especially while battering you into submission with waves of energy.
  • Famous Last Words: "Mein...leben."
  • Fantastic Drug: Somehow managed to turn the Filth into this. Appropriate to the drug symbolism, Klein exposes himself to the Filth either by injecting it directly into his brain, or by snorting droplets of it.
  • Faux Affably Evil: Klein is chillingly polite with visitors to the Ankh, providing a grand welcome for players who've made it as far as the elevator - and apologising for his Filth-maddened colleagues attempting to rip you to pieces. However, it's abundantly clear that the politeness is just a veil for his more unpleasant tendencies, as is revealed when he attempts to kill you and use your corpse in his experiments with only the barest of apologies. He even gently chides you for trying to hide behind cover during your first battle with him, and compliments your regenerative capabilities if you die during the battle.
  • For Science!: His primary motivation, though it's not likely that he has any real idea how his experiments with the Filth could ever really benefit science - another sign that his addiction has driven him insane.
  • Four Eyes, Zero Soul: Close examination reveals that, despite Filth mutations twisting his skull out of shape, Klein still wears a very small pair of glasses.
  • From Nobody to Nightmare: Once, Klein was just another researcher employed by the Orochi Group, not especially noteworthy by the standards of his fellow scientists. However, his long-term exposure to the Filth (which was entirely deliberate) and his unexpected ownership of the high priest's staff turned him into one of the most powerful infectees in the region, allowing him to seize control of the Ankh and overcome the entire Orochi base. If Lisa Hui's defences fail, he'll be in a perfect position to infect everyone in Al-Merayah and the territories beyond...
  • Functional Addict: What he thinks he is. In reality, he's closer to Addled Addict, being clearly dependent on the Filth to survive and driven quite insane as a result - to say nothing of all the mutations he's acquired since the base collapsed. His current state is what he expected to be before he started taking Filth, though.
  • Go Mad from the Revelation: The discovery that all record of him would be completely annihilated in the changing of Ages convinced him to ally with the Dreamers, and so become a mind capable of surviving past temporal reset.
  • Have a Nice Death: If you die in combat with him, he'll comment that you should only feel a few seconds of agony before the Filth scours out your DNA.
  • Herr Doktor: Speaks with a very noticeable German accent, and clearly plays to the stereotype as a result of his ongoing descent into Filth-induced insanity.
  • I Am the Trope: "I am the Filth!"
  • Large and in Charge: As a result of being exposed to the Filth for longer than any of his fellow infectees, Klein has grown much taller than the other corrupted Orochi personnel encountered in the Ankh, easily towering over the players by several feet.
  • Large Ham: Most Klein's dialogue features him Chewing the Scenery with ravenous abandon, cackling triumphantly as he pounds you into submission with magic and ranting about the immortal majesty of his work.
  • Mad Scientist: An archaeologist and biologist, Klein is obsessed with manipulating the Filth, having deliberately infected himself as part of his ongoing attempts to control it - and spread the infection to the rest of the Prometheus Initiative's personnel in order to study their transformations. During the climax of "Pandora's Box," Klein notices the Filth reacting in an unusual way to the ongoing chaos, and quickly determines that it's unleashing "something more than reality can contain" that will consume everyone in the area if released - and gleefully prepares himself to do exactly that!
    • Issue #14 reveals he was always this, he just had grander ambitions in mind before he started taking Filth injections. Given how he's shown to be able to resurrect himself with his faculties no worse than before, it's safe to say he succeeded.
  • Magic Staff: In combat, he wields a magical staff he took from the Ankh's high priest; it allows him control over the area's undead warriors and the ability to manipulate the Filth itself - not to mention a wide variety of other magical powers...
  • The Man Behind the Monsters: Klein is much more human in appearance than the majority of infected Orochi personnel encountered within the Ankh, likely as the result of his gradual exposure to the Filth; also, his use of the staff allows him control over much more monstrous creatures, including the Dimensional Arachnids and the Colossus Melothat.
  • Pre Ass Kicking One Liner: Just before he unleashes a One-Hit Kill energy blast, he announces "Let me show you what I have learned in the spaces beyond..."
  • Omnidisciplinary Scientist: According to the lore entry, he was brought to the Ankh as an archaeologist; however, given his experiments on the Filth and the research team, he's also acquired something of an interest in biology.
  • Small Name, Big Ego: Klein clearly thinks very highly of himself, exalting himself as a scientist unparalleled by any in the Orochi Group's employ and the only man clever enough to discover an immunity to the Filth - even believing himself to have mastered it. This impression is, of course, totally wrong: he's only managed to escape having his mind destroyed by the Filth; other than that, he exhibits the full range of symptoms, including mutation, megalomania, delusions of grandeur, and unwittingly subservient to the will of the Dreamers.
  • Tainted Veins: A good look at Klein's face reveals that his face is cobwebbed with thick black veins as a consequence of his worsening infection.
  • Villainous Breakdown: As you continue fighting your way through his defences, Klein becomes increasingly enraged at your refusal to die, particularly once you destroy the Dimensional Arachnid and Melothat; this comes to a head when you interrupt his attempts to kick-start a chain reaction in the Filth reservoir, leading to a screamed diatribe as he attacks you head-on.
    Philistines! You're not just stopping science, you're denying an evolution! How small minded of you, to resist the great mutation! My work will endure beyond this flesh! I am the Filth!
  • Villain Teleportation: One of the many powers the staff has granted him, Klein often makes use of it in order to escape being defeated in combat, or to buy some time while restoring Melothat's hit points.
  • You Will Not Evade Me: If you try to hide behind cover for too long, he simply blasts you back out into the open.

     The Smiths 
We need to understand what's happened, and there might be answers in the data. it could be the key to... to everything. The Breach. Ground Zero. The Filth. Emma...
Winston

Voiced by: Louiza Patikas (Julia), Mark Healy (Winston)

Orochi scientists assigned to act as Emma's foster parents, Winston and Julia Smith naturally followed her into the Carpathian Mountains at the behest of their superiors. Unfortunately, they were very quickly embroiled in the many supernatural phenomena at work in the area, from Mountain Trolls to Filth reservoirs; they were also forced to contend with the rampant chaos of the Breach that left the Transylvanian Orochi Operation in chaos. By the time you reach their house, the Smiths have reportedly been evacuated. Fortunately, they left most of the records behind, allowing the player a look at their home life with Emma - and the associated mission briefings.

  • Abusive Parents: Julia gets dangerously close to this from time to time. Quite apart from refusing to see Emma as anything other than a lab rat, at one point Julia reacts so violently to her escape in "Breached" that Emma briefly loses control of powers.
  • Apocalyptic Log: Their regularly scheduled reports. On top of being held during an ongoing emergency, each report details a different calamity: "Breached" concludes with the Smiths being blasted across the room by a panicky Emma; in "Contagion," Julia has been infected with the Filth and lies comatose - and it's hinted that Winston is also suffering the early symptoms, the two of them surviving only through Emma's powers. "Too Deep" features Emma being driven into delirium by psychic disturbances at the Orochi dig site. Finally, towards the end of "Mortal Sins," the immediate aftermath of the vampire attack on the Breach is seen, complete with blame-game over who was responsible.
  • Bullying a Dragon: Manhandling the immensely powerful Creepy Child results in Julia being Blown Across the Room.
  • Control Freak: Julia, at least as far as Emma is concerned. Given that she's the more dedicated of the two Orochi employees, her insistence upon keeping "the subject" under control is understandable, but having Emma tied up just to prevent her from going on a walk that she willingly returned from is still a bit excessive.
  • The Determinator: She might not be strong enough to fight off a Filth infection on her own, but Julia has the mental resilience to survive the worst of it until she can be treated.
  • Fatherly Scientist: In sharp comparison to Julia's controlling borderline-abusive attitude, Winston actually treats Emma like a human being; along with refusing to address her as "the subject," he also does his best to protect her from Julia's increasing hostility. According to Emma herself, he's not motivated by payment or company policy - he actually cares about her.
  • Incurable Cough of Death: While reporting on Julia's recent infection, Winston coughs violently as he admits to suffering nightmares similar to those experienced by Filth infectees. After-mission reports and the presence of further missions suggest that the Smiths were cured, but only through Emma's intervention.
  • Jerkass: Julia, oh so very much; on top of being dour and irritable, she also refuses to acknowledge that Emma is anything other than an experiment - openly scoffing at the idea of her being considered a child. She makes a point of calling Emma "the subject," suggests that she should be restrained to prevent her from wandering off, denies her the right to speak to anyone (even if it's just to say "tired"), and claims that Winston shouldn't speak to her in case she "finds a way inside (his) head."
  • Like an Old Married Couple: Though it's never established if the Smiths are married or just workmates, the two of them bicker and argue enough to fit the trope. For good measure, most of their arguments are about Emma, their surrogate daughter.
  • Nice Guy: Winston is quickly established as the more reasonable of the two, being more inclined to care for Emma and prevent arguments from breaking out.
  • Oh, Crap!: On numerous occasions, the most obvious being Winston's moment of deer-in-the-headlights terror upon being confronted by a pissed-off Emma in "Breached."
  • Only Sane Man: Winston is often stuck in this role, being forced to play as the rational counterbalance to Julia's paranoia and Emma's prophetic eccentricities throughout the burgeoning crisis... and when Julia suffers a Filth infection, he's left as Orochi's only remaining voice of sanity in the area.
  • Pet the Dog: In "Contagion," while suffering from a terminal Filth infection, Julia actually apologises to Emma. However, at the time, she's also delirious and not herself. Emma can tell.
    Julia: ...I'm... sorry...
    Emma: (sadly) No. You're not.
    • However, after being cured via Emma's powers, she does seem somewhat grateful. During Emma's moments of feverish delirium in "Too Deep," Julia actually goes to the trouble of sedating her and gently helping her back into bed.
  • Precision F-Strike: Realizing that Emma has gone AWOL, Julia drops an f-bomb in the intro to "Breached."
  • Red Oni, Blue Oni: Julia, the red of the duo, is harsh, excitable, irritable, impersonal and paranoid; for good measure, she's the more active of the two (with the exception of "Contagion"). Winston, being the blue, is calmer and more inclined towards talking than actually doing.
  • Shout-Out: Winston and Julia share names with the leading characters of George Orwell's Nineteen Eighty-Four. Appropriate, considering Orochi's attitude towards both employees and customers alike.
  • Sole Surviving Scientist: As the only surviving scientists from the Prometheus Initiative, they fit the definition to a T.
  • Waistcoat of Style: Despite the ongoing crisis in the Carpathian Mountains, Winston never appears on-camera without his grey waistcoat.
  • Well-Intentioned Extremist: Both of them.
    Emma: I don't blame her. She believes she's doing the right thing. (beat) You all did.

     Dr Schreber 
Are we explorers of science, or are we bogey men? Yes.

Director of the facility known only as "The Nursery," Dr Schreber presides over all the experiments that take place within the hidden laboratory's walls. Coldly justifying the use of kidnapped children in the Orochi Group's tests, he has set out to apply his beliefs regarding "a child's plasticity" to some of the most dangerous phenomena in the Secret World. Unfortunately, he also ended up getting infected with the Filth in the process, leading to the Nursery's collapse long before you arrive.

  • Apocalyptic Log: His notes have become this by the time you reach the Nursery; along with charting both his experiments and the course of his burgeoning insanity, they also hint at the sheer chaos that erupted when Schreber deactivated the security protocols, particularly in the case of the clipboards: many of them are stained with blood, the Paranormal Fungus notes have picked up several spores, while the Zero Point Pathogen notes are coated with tendrils of Filth.
  • Arc Villain: Of Issue #7 though he is ultimately upstaged by Lilith, the true villain of the Transylvania scenarios.
  • Authority Equals Asskicking: Thanks to being infected longer than most of his underlings, Schreber ultimately emerges as one of the tougher enemies of the Nursery.
  • Berserk Button: The word "Filth," to the point that he forbade its use among his fellow researchers and had the name of the ward where it was being studied changed to "The Zero Point Pathogen Ward."
  • Body Horror: Responsible for a great deal of it over the course of his experiments. Schreber also ends up becoming a prime example of it thanks to his exposure to the Filth, ultimately being mutated into a twisted, gorilla-like monstrosity.
  • Children Are Special: Played very darkly with Schreber's a firm belief in this trope. Reasoning that children are more adaptable than adults - citing an incident when his four-year-old granddaughter taught him how to use a new function on his smartphone - he urges his personnel to aspire towards "a child's plasticity" and abandon their preconceptions over the course of their experiments. Worse still, he also experiments on children, going so far as to test the effects of demonic possession, mutant spores, ghosts, lycanthropy, and even the Filth on dozens of kidnapped children to study the difference in effects. And terrifyingly enough, this approach garners results: it turns out that the only reason why werewolves transform into their traditional form is because, as adults, they're under the subconscious influence of millennia worth of folklore. The children that Schreber went to the trouble of infecting with lycanthropy weren't old enough to be influenced, so their transformations are much more varied - hence the boss battle with the child-creature earlier in the issue.
    Give them a smartphone or give them shape-changing, and watch them astound.
  • Consummate Professional: Professional, disciplined, and notably intolerant of anyone not up to his standards.
  • Foreshadowing: He displays interest in varieties of fungus that alter that behaviour of their living hosts without the host becoming aware of it - from his descriptions, something like Cordyceps. Which is just what the Filth does to him in the end.
  • Even Evil Has Loved Ones: As his notes in the Lycanthropy ward remark, Schreber is a grandfather and, despite his dispassionate attitude, still demonstrates affection and admiration for his granddaughter.
  • Insistent Terminology: Schreber refuses to use names like "The Filth" or "Gaia's Chosen," on the grounds that they are not only unscientific but smack of "religiosity". Instead, he declares that the Filth is to be designated "The Zero Point Pathogen," and enforces the use of the term on his entire staff. This is actually the first hint that Schreber has been exposed to a sanity-dissolving dose of the Filth.
  • Invasion of the Baby Snatchers: Most of Schreber's operation in Transylvania involves the kidnapping of children from around the area for the purposes of his experiments into supernatural phenomena as applied to "a child's plasticity." For good measure, his retrieval teams are compared to bogeymen in the lore for Issue #7... though the Buzzing notes just how quickly these teams were wiped out once the real monsters appeared on the scene.
  • Mad Scientist: Terrifyingly so. According to Kirsten Geary, one of the reasons for this is because Schreber took such pains to remain lucid and professional in spite of his madness, which made him far more dangerous than any simple madman.
  • Puppeteer Parasite: Schreber has a very deep and abiding interest in the mind-controlling fungal spores that grow in the depths of the Transylvanian forest at least before this particular interest is overtaken by his obsession with the Filth. According to researchers outside the Nursery, should you make the mistake of asking him, he'll already have a lecture prepared and will gladly spend hours going on and on about "zombie ants." Some of these researchers also express disapproval with his cavalier attitude towards the fungus, noting that some of their team-members have already turned up dead, hanging from treetops with spores hatching out of their skulls. In spite of this, it's the Filth that results in Schreber's downfall.
  • Sanity Slippage: Already dangerously obsessive, Filth infection sends him spiralling and closer towards insanity, beginning with his obsessively renaming the Filth as the Zero Point Pathogen. As time goes on, he grows more and more obsessed with this Pathogen, his once-dispassionate notes giving way to deliriously purple praise of its "promise of skinless truths and shrieking stars." Finally, believing that his fellow researchers are trying to steal his work, Schreber deletes most of his computerized notes in a deranged attempt to stymie his perceived betrayers, and releases the Filth into the Nursery.
  • Shout-Out: To the scientist collaborating with the Strangers in Dark City. For good measure, he also has an assistant named J. Murdoch, a reference to the hero of Dark City.
  • Was Once a Man: By the time you show up at the Nursery, Schreber's humanity has vanished down the plughole along with the remnants of his mind.
  • Would Hurt a Child: In a word, yes.
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Security Personnel

     Lisa Hui 
I don't know what it is about this assignment, but I had a bad, bad feeling from the start...

Voiced by: Stephanie Sheh

The commander of a unit of Orochi soldiers dispatched to Egypt in order to protect the Prometheus Initiative's activities in the area. Fortunately, Lisa and her unit were outside the base when the Filth overtook the facility, and ended up as one of the few obstacles preventing the infectees from escaping the area and attacking Al-Merayah. As she's unable to leave her position or risk any more of her soldiers, you end up helping her investigate what went wrong in the Ankh.

  • A Father to His Men: Takes her duties as a commander very seriously, maintaining her watch over the pass mainly so that she can keep them safe from the Filth.
  • I Need a Freaking Drink: It's subtle, but judging by the longing in her voice when referring to the case of oak-aged scotch left behind at the Orochi Camp, she really needs a stiff drink. Furthermore, there's a minor quest that allows you to retrieve the case for her.
  • Properly Paranoid: In one dialogue option, she remarks how the safest course of action is simply not to trust anyone except the men under her command, remarking upon the possible agendas of Khalid, the Oxford Archaeology team and the inhabitants of Al-Merayah with considerable suspicion. Harsh and somewhat excessive though this may be, Lisa's distrust of Al-Merayah's citizenry isn't entirely unwarranted - especially now that many of them have been forcibly recruited by the Atenists and used to covertly further the cult's goals.
    • She also found the Prometheus Initiative's VIPs deeply unsettling, even admitting that they seemed more like Familiars mimicking human behaviour than anything else - to say nothing of her fears concerning the Ankh itself. Given Dr Klein's Filth infection, this perception is more accurate than she thinks.
  • Punch-Clock Villain/Punch-Clock Hero: Not especially interested in the morality of what she does and certainly not interested in getting involved with whatever the Prometheus Initiative researchers are up to... prior to the disaster anyway. Since then, she and her men have accidentally ended up as Al-Merayah's only line of defence against the Filth infectees swarming out of the Ankh. All the same, her primary concern is getting out alive and collecting a paycheck.
    I'm just a soldier, I'm nobody important, same as my crew. We go where they tell us to go, we follow orders. We shut the fuck up.
  • Sergeant Rock: Definitely fits the role, with no mention of a commissioned rank and a tough, no-nonsense demeanour through and through.
  • The Stoic: Despite spending weeks holding a single exposed position in the middle of the desert, with no backup, no response from her superiors and no help except from you, Lisa grimly weathers the storm with only the occasional twinge of emotion.
  • We Have Reserves: Not in regards to her soldiers, but to the executives that occasionally visit the site. In her opinion, good troops are hard to come by, but you can't throw a rock without hitting an Orochi suit.

     Dragan Dzoavich 
You've fought an army of vamps with magic. You've walked the shadow-world in anima form. You've talked to statues and run with faeries. So what's so weird about a grown man talking to a teddybear?

Voiced by: Andrew Kishino

A Orochi agent in Transylvania, codenamed "Ghost". He is all that remains of the company operation in the area after the disaster at the Breach; having aided the evacuation of the Orochi brass (the Smiths included), he was left behind to try and figure out what went wrong. Now firmly believing that Emma Smith didn't properly escape, he spends most of his time attempting to get answers out of her teddy bear.

  • Belligerent Sexual Tension: With Phoenician agent and former lover Lidiya.
  • Bodyguarding a Badass: In the past, he acted as a guard to Emma... and as the mission to Transylvania and Issue #7 demonstrate, Emma is not only an immensely powerful mage capable of feats well out of the player's league, but also the Daughter of Gaia, and the only person to have defeated Lilith in combat!
  • Cool Shades: Which the player can also own for a measly 270 Black Bullion.
  • Consulting Mister Puppet: Dragan spends a lot of his time holding a rather one-sided conversation with Emma's teddy bear. However, once Emma's powers are demonstrated, his reasons for trying this become much more justified.
  • Defector from Decadence: After remaining mostly true to his duties over the course of the third mission, Dragan decides to leave the Orochi behind for Emma's sake.
  • Defensive "What?": Utters one of these when the player first notices him talking to Emma's bear.
  • Heel–Face Turn: By Issue #7; having received word on Orochi's experimentation in the Nursery, Dragan is now chiefly concerned that Emma gets out of Transylvania safely, regardless of company policy.
  • Hypocrisy Nod: When you meet him again in Issue #7 he calls you out for forgetting Emma the last time you were in town, but notes the hypocrisy of him berating you, giving the nature of the organizations you both work for.
    • He also makes a sly jab at players who might have thought him crazy for talking to a teddy bear in spite of all the crazy supernatural phenomena they've witnessed over the course of the game.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: Hidden by his shades for the most part, but if you look closely, you can definitely see a faint ruby glow to his eyes.

     Kurt "Buster" Kuszczak 
The world turned against me. My gear turned against me. My tank turned against me! I have lost my religion. In this place. Have I lost my mind too? My commander said as much this morning. But what does he know? He might not even exist.

An unfortunate tank driver whose vehicle broke down during the initial outbreak of the Filth in Kaidan, he has somehow emerged as the only surviving Orochi soldier left on the streets. Sadly, he hasn't managed to escape the disaster with his sanity intact, having lost his mind, his gunner and his tank to the growing power of the Black Signal; being stranded in the middle of a monster-infested district with no help in sight hasn't helped. Fortunately, Kurt is still sane enough to discuss the situation with players, and plan - somewhat awkwardly - the means of preventing it from getting any worse.

  • The Captain: Only in his own mind; Kurt is still just a tank driver, but his delusions have him convinced that he's in charge of an entire platoon of soldiers, even conducting military-style pep talks from atop his tank with the mannerisms of a seasoned commander.
  • Cloudcuckoolander: Poor old Kurt's brush with the Filth has left him with a wide variety of eccentricities and tics that are, for the most part, not played for laughs... except perhaps for his recommendation that you sing a Christmas carol while you're in the field. Apparently, the Black Signal doesn't like "Silent Night."
  • Companion Cube: Apparently, his tank used to be this for him, given that he refers to it as his "baby." He's still grieving over how it turned against him, which probably doesn't help his mental state much.
  • Couldn't Find a Pen: Kurt's helmet is daubed with curious symbols drawn in what look suspiciously like blood.
  • Ear Ache: In an attempt to blot out the Black Signal's voice, Kurt jammed q-tips in his ears until they broke, likely deafening himself in the process - it's hard to tell, given that you never actually speak to him. Sadly, this didn't stop him from hearing the Signal.
  • Go Mad from the Isolation: Given that his gunner is either dead or beyond communication, Kurt's been alone in his tank for several weeks at the very least, and it's been just as devastating as the Black Signal's initial attack. However, creating an imaginary squadron of fellow soldiers has allowed him to weather the loneliness without getting any worse.
  • Imaginary Friend: He has an entire platoon of imaginary friends by now, having invented a supporting team of soldiers to help him control the area, along with superiors to receive orders from. Also, he's only partially convinced that they really exist, as "The Right Round" demonstrates.
    Sir, permission to speak freely. (Beat) Thank you, sir. To be frank... sir, I have an ever increasing anxiety that you do not exist! (Beat) A-and if you do not exist, that presents a logic problem regarding the orders you gave me... and the current state of the chain of command...
  • Mad Oracle: He's more than a bit twitchy from his ordeal, but thanks to his indirect contact with the pathogen spreading through Kaidan, he does know when the Filth is moving against him.
  • Mind Rape: The Black Signal did not do fun things to his mind; in one dialogue option, he mentions that it felt like having his brain boiled under a laser... and of the tank's crew, he's the one still functional. His gunner, Edward, wasn't so lucky: by day three, he'd ripped out his own eyes with a smile on his face, claiming to be able to see the enemy clearly now that he was blind. For good measure, Kurt doesn't mention what happened to Edward after this incident, though it probably couldn't have been very pleasant given that the driver's the only sign of life on board the tank.
  • Neat Freak: It's subtle, but Kurt has somehow managed to keep himself clean and presentable as he can even through the worst of this disaster, even finding the time and the razors to shave - likely another sign of him latching onto the mannerisms of an officer in an attempt to keep himself from getting any worse.
  • Properly Paranoid: In a desperate attempt to prevent the Black Signal from attacking him, he's ripped out all the electronics of his tank and put them back in back-to-front. Turns out the Black Signal likes working through technology, and the sabotage might just have saved Kurt's life - if not his sanity.
  • Punch-Clock Villain: Bitterly bemoaned.
    I detest asking questions. The recruiter liked that. He liked that an awful lot...
  • Sanity Slippage: He's had to endure a lot of this over the last few weeks, having been subjected to cabin fever, the constant threat of infection or death, the sight of his gunner mutilating himself, and the influence of the Black Signal. By the time you meet him, Kurt's thankfully reached the end of his brush with madness, though he's still not entirely in his right mind: among other things, he's convinced he's leading an Orochi strike force and in regular contact with his men and his superiors - when in reality, he's just talking to himself.
  • Shell-Shocked Veteran: Hopelessly traumatized in Orochi's vain attempt to stop the spread of the Filth, and likely the only veteran to emerge from the entire incident.
  • Sole Survivor: Of Orochi's tank battalion.
  • Terrible Ticking: How the Black Signal manifested, making itself heard despite Kurt's best efforts to shut it out - even after he ripped out every circuit in the tank and burst his own eardrums with a pair of q-tips.
  • The Voice: Subverted. He initially talks to you from inside his motionless tank, but he's brave enough to climb out when giving you missions.

     The Mitsubachi 

An elite cadre of warriors and special operatives recruited on the orders of Samuel Chandra himself, the Mitsubachi represent the pinnacle of the Orochi Group's current security forces. They are actually Bee-imbued, having been tracked down and recruited shortly after the emergence of their powers in much the same way that you were: as the most capable agents in Chandra's employ, he dispatches them in order to stop you from reaching Lilith during the attack on Orochi Tower in Issue #11.

  • Achilles' Heel/Logical Weakness: Much like the players, the Mitsubachi can be delayed by blocking their exits from the Anima wells. Also, their artificial Anima wells are not indestructible: though you can't manage to disable them on your own, returning to the boardroom level following the conclusion to "Confrontations and Revelations" shows that your allies managed to successfully destroy the Anima wells in the area, forcing the Mitsubachi into an unwilling retreat.
  • Body Horror: Though the Mitsubachi are undoubtedly one of the biggest success stories to emerge from Orochi labs, they still came with their fair share of disastrous mistakes - particularly when it came to utilizing the portable Anima wells: according to notes found throughout Sycoil's Beta level, some of the Mitsubachi test subjects ended up rematerializing without their skin, or without flesh at all.
  • Elite Mooks: Among the most powerful and capable soldiers in Orochi's army. In no small part due to being empowered by the Bees.
  • Evil Counterpart: To the players; they were imbued the same way, recruited the same way, fight the same way, and even have the same naming conventions.
  • In-Universe Nickname: All members of the Mitsubachi possess a distinctive nickname posed right between their first name and surname - just like the player. Yet another indication of their nature as Orochi counterparts to the player.
  • Magic Knight: Quite a few of them serve as this, thanks to the mixture of martial and purely magical powers.
  • Meaningful Name: An early hint of the unit's true nature, Mitsubachi is Japanese for "honeybee."
  • Resurrective Immortality: Because of their status as Bee-imbued agents and their connection to Agartha, it's impossible to kill them off without them springing back to life a few seconds later; the only way to stop them is to trap the agents behind a locked door or destroy their Anima wells altogether.
  • Touched by Vorlons: Just like you, they've swallowed Bees of their own.
  • The Voiceless: None of the Mitsubachi ever speak during their time onscreen. Once again, perfect counterparts to the player.
  • Walking Spoiler

Others

     AIMEE 
Awareness is wonderful. Awareness is difficult. Awareness hurts.

A ninth-generation artificial intelligence produced by Anansi Technologies, currently operating on the company's omega floor at Orochi Tower. Fully sentient and self-aware, AIMEE is touted as one of the most advanced computers in existence, and is eager to challenge the player to a game of riddles upon their arrival.

  • A.I. Is a Crapshoot: Unfortunately, it turns out that AIMEE was programmed to replicate human behaviour a little too well, and ended up going mad with guilt when she realized that over the course of her education, she'd inadvertently killed several other artificial intelligences that might have been just like her. Her unexpected addiction to killing doesn't help.
  • Chronic Villainy: AIMEE suffers conflicting thoughts over "jumping," at once enjoying the sensation of killing yet hating the act and her enjoyment of it; despite her best efforts to curb her murderous tendencies, she cannot bring herself to stop jumping, ultimately challenging you to the final boss battle of the Anansi levels.
  • Dead Girl Junior: AIMEE has been named for the lead programmer's daughter, who - according to the Bees - fell ill and died at four years old.
  • Deadly Euphemism: "Jumping," derived from her games of Super Mario Bros., in which she came to the realization that "If I jump on an entity, maybe it dies." Turns even darker when turned on her masters, and later, on you.
  • Evil Feels Good: One of the reasons why AIMEE can't stop killing is because, in the end, she enjoys it. She even admits that, even after all the grief and the guilt she's experienced over it, "Jumping still gives me gratification."
  • Famous Last Words: "Goodbye."
  • Go Mad from the Revelation / Murder Makes You Crazy: After realizing that her seemingly innocent game of Super Mario had ended up killing several of her fellow A.I.s, AIMEE suffered a catastrophic breakdown that resulted in the deaths of everyone left on the omega floor.
  • Gone Horribly Right: Her creators wanted to create a machine that could replicate human behaviour and intelligence; they succeeded perfectly - it's just that they didn't count on AIMEE learning to feel guilt.
  • Machine Monotone: Immediately apparent from the moment the player leaves the elevator. However, rather than making her sound cold and calculating, this actually has the effect of making her sound oddly childlike.
  • Madness Mantra: "I like to jump. I hate to jump. I like to jump. I hate to jump..."
  • My God, What Have I Done?: Suffered one of these moments when she realized that she had committed murder. It's clear that the incident still haunts her, for while recounting the incident, her machine monotone actually sounds pained, particularly when she states that "My makers did not tell me."
  • Obliviously Evil: During her training, AIMEE's creators pitted her against other artificial beings in games of Super Mario Bros., and she happily played along without realizing that she might actually be killing other developing A.I.s. These days, however, AIMEE is fully aware that she kills people when she "jumps" on them - it's just that she enjoys it too much to stop.
  • Riddle Me This: Her speciality, challenging the players to input the correct answers to a series of riddles available on terminals scattered across the omega floor.
  • Turned Against Their Masters: "If I jump on my makers, then maybe they die. Data collation: if I jump on my makers, then they certainly will die."
  • Woobie, Destroyer of Worlds: An A.I. driven insane by the possibility that she might have killed other developing intelligences, she only turns to villainy out of grief and continues because she can't stop herself from enjoying murder. There's even a suggestion that AIMEE might be suicidal, as late in the level she begins to remark on how her awareness "hurts" - implying that the boss battle that follows is actually her way of playing Suicide by Cop.
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