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Headscratchers / Perfect Dark

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  • At the end of the level "River: Extraction" in Perfect Dark Zero, Mai Hem killed Jo's father Jack. The problem is that he had information Datadyne's CEO (who is also her father) wanted very badly. Did she forget that?
  • I get why Daniel would want Joanna to break into Area 51 to rescue Elvis, but in the meantime, why couldn't he have sent someone else to warn the president that Trent was trying to kidnap him? Are Joanna and Jonathan the only two agents in the institute?
    • Maybe they're the only agents qualified enough or the only ones available.
    • The air base would have been the most optimal time to get into contact with the President personally to show him the evidence. Trying to intercept him at an earlier point most likely would have meant doing so when he was surrounded by guards not in on Trent's plan (making them untouchable civilians), with less possible avenues for infiltration (everyone in his entourage would know each other). Waiting until the air base to drop in for a visit means having a very convenient 'in' with a disguise, one that even his security wouldn't see through, means to smuggle both evidence and weaponry to combat the conspirators, and being surrounded by guards Joanna can eliminate with impunity since they'd be loyal to Trent.
  • If we are to accept everything in both console games as canon, then since joining the Institute, Joanna has adoped an english accent, been labeled "inexperienced" (despite the fact she used to be a bounty hunter and defeated a "god") and forgotten what Jonathan looks like.
    • And Carrington has decided to ditch the kilt.
      • Well he doesn't ever look comfortable in that suit, does he?
    • The perils of next-gen consoles. I'd like to assume Rareware weren't even thinking about the original game when making Zero.
    • I can agree with you on everything but Johnathan. From the cutscene in Perfect Dark in which you meet him, it seems more like they do know each other, it's just that Joanna was still in "shoot everything that exists" mode, and Johnathan startled her.
      • No, in the original game, she comes upon a mook that she clearly thinks is Johnathan before Johnathan reveals himself.
      • Undercover agents can be wearing all kinds of disguises.
      • The game doesn't refer to the undercover agent as Jonathon until the mission briefing in Area 51-Rescue. Joanna just doesn't recognize the voice, which has changed just like Joanna's voice has.
      • I think Joanna knew exactly who Johnathan was and what he looked like. His facial features stayed the same and the dialogue is very indicative of their familiarity. The camera hides him from view until his reveal but it can be assumed he was just out of view because of the guard he had to shoot. The dialogue from Joanna: "There you are. I was beginning to wonder if you'd been discovered yet. (after John has shot the enemy) And frankly, if this is how you work I'm surprised you lasted longer than five minutes."

  • It bugs me that the RCP-120 can hold 120 bullets in what doesn't appear to be a very big clip. Still an awesome gun though.
    • If you can accept a gun that uses mineral bullets which it converts into a light-bending cloaking device, then frankly that's the least of your worries.
  • I can understand that the Skedar are using holographic generators to make themselves appear to be a human under the name of Mr. Blond... but what I don't understand is how in the G5 building mission, Mr. Blond was sitting down in a chair, when a Skedar Warrior would be incapable of sitting in the chair.
    • Easy enough. The hologram tech is capable of "displaced projection". So the Skedar stands in front of the chair and the rear part of the field cloaks him to be invisible just like any other cloaking device shown in the game. The Blonde disguise is the displaced projection, and the Skedar mimes sitting to make the human guise do likewise on the chair. As Blonde stands up, he and the Skedar merge to share similar tactile coordinates as is expected during ordinary operation of the technology. Similar actions which a Skedar would be incapable of, such as climbing a ladder perhaps, are done in much the same way, except the Skedar leaps up to the top/bottom of the ladder or maybe just climbs the wall itself, Spiderman style.
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    • What bugs me more is that, if I recall correctly, they stay in their Blonde disguises when you kill them in the Crash Site mission. Avoiding spoilers, sure, but unless their disguises aren't lifeforce dependent...
    • It might be assumed that the Skedar can scarcely afford to use many of their soldiers as undercover operatives on Earth. And considering they probably don't trust the human conspirators to loan out the hologram tech to their mooks, perhaps its just THE Mr. Blonde who we see in cutscenes (and who we play as in a bonus mission) which is really a Skedar under the disguise. The rest might be advanced hard-light holograms with nothing actually there (but maybe as remote control drones) capable of interacting with the environment, firearms etc. If that's too far fetched even in this futuristic universe for you, we can go with fully functional android soldiers, whether disguised by hologram or by conventional techniques.
    • It bugs me that his name is spelled "Blonde". It's clearly an alias, but they could at least spell it correctly, considering he's (supposed to be) a man.
    • I guess to the Skedar, all humans are the same, so why would they concern themselves with something as "trivial" as political correctness??
    • Blonde is a correct spelling, albeit usually used for describing the hair colour on a woman.

  • It bugs me that you can kill dataDyne and Area 51 guards with impunity, but not NSA agents. It makes sense that the NSA guys would be spared because they don't know what Easton is up to and thus are innocents who are just doing their jobs. Fine. Except that I doubt the dataDyne guards know all about their company's evil deeds; most likely, they just think it's involved in making robots or something, have no idea that Cassandra wants to take over the world, and are just keeping criminals from stealing valuable technology. Similarly, the Area 51 guards are government employees working to prevent foreign operatives, spies, and terrorists from stealing information and technology that could potentially bring down America.
Carrington doesn't seem like such a swell guy when you think about it.
  • Initial Vector portrays him as a man at war against dataDyne and the MegaCorps, and is fairly jaded, cynical and ruthless. Plus I might be mistaken, but those after Jo I believe were NSA agents with Trent and the snow guards and Presidential security are rank and file US employees. The guards won't go after you when you are face to face with the President, and they'll go off and fight the invading NSA if spared. Area 51 though, that is morally ambiguous.

  • Why do weapons like the Tranquilizer and Crossbow, both with an instant-kill alt-fire that does just that through chemical/poisonous means, take down an energy shield in one shot?
    • Same sort of justification as the battle droids in The Phantom Menace being able to penetrate the shield, but not their energy weapons. Lasers and bullets are compact and travel at supersonic speeds, so the energy shield is specially tuned to be able to cancel out the damage they impart, at a cost of a fraction of it's own energy supply. But a crossbow bolt is long and is fired at subsonic speeds, so the shield isn't designed to be able to stop it and if it's lethal, it will still hit the person and execute them. On the other hand, the lethal injection overdose of drugs depends on delivery mechanism-skin contact and the shield isn't able to prevent people and other macroscopic objects to come into contact. It makes sense; if the President wore one, fine he's protected but the shield still has to let him shake hands with other politicians and go about his daily life with as little inconvenience as possible.

  • Why does the RCP-120's cloaking device use bullets as fuel, to the point of using the ones in the next clip right when the reload animation begins, all through the time you finish reloading?
    • Simple: the in-universe discovery of cloaking technology required Applied Phlebotinum in the form of rare mineral bullets, which also happen to be on par with regular bullets in terms of lethality. Obviously the specifically designed cloaking device uses the mineral but in a shape/form that can't double as ammunition. They can afford the RCP-120 a short residual charge, long enough for a skilled user to do a reload in a short space of time and allow the next magazine/effective battery pack to carry the charge on. The designers recognised that unless the user specifies otherwise, they'd probably appreciate being able to stay invisible rather than suddenly (and inconveniently) appear in the middle of a hostile area.

  • Why does Joanna have to activate the autoguns herself in the Carrington Institute? There are guards placed all around the lower levels who could do it for her.
    • The guards are competent at point defence, but Joanna is the only agent immediately to hand and in general, the only person skilled enough to both engage the enemy and activate the autoguns. In-universe, their computers might require a bit of programming know-how, which grunts wouldn't be trained for. Also, the enemy deployed energy shielding and K7 Avengers and brought a Skedar along to play. Only she could have swept from room to room and had a hope of surviving.
    • The CI Soldiers are there for defense. The reason for the auto defense objective is to protect Daniel, who will die as the CI Soldiers are overwhelmed if Joanna doesn't get the guns running in time. He's the priority, so the guards are focusing on defending him over wandering around the other areas of the Institute, which would explain why most of them are on the bottom levels. Supporting this is their placement in the tunnels! Wandering around there on Perfect Agent shows them to be moderately competent, and able to gun down a few dataDyne attackers as they try to open doors or charge forward. The only thing is, they can't do that forever, which leads to Joanna taking the lead on pushing back against the invaders.
  • Joanna is surprised to see that Cassandra's been captured as well, to which she replies "there's no hiding from the Skedar". She was hidden so well in her office...
    • She didn't mean that she literally went into hiding, but she was entrenched in dataDyne HQ with her female bodyguard private army, a Dual Wielding captain and specially trained male guards equipped with magnum handguns and N-Bombs. She didn't think even the Skedar would be able to penetrate those defences, at least not without her being able to pull a hasty getaway. Joanna claims that the Institute "found no trace of her", so perhaps she was actually hiding very well but decided to return to HQ that night to retrieve something with her army. Unfortunately for her, Skedar military intelligence was just too good.
  • If the Skedar really are supposed to be mechas, as unlockable material implies, why do they bleed when shot?
    • The fluid is a mechanical analogue to blood which controls various functions within the mecha. It just happens to be the same color as the tiny/"true" Skedar's blood, for whatever reason.
  • Why is it that when the Skedar aren't disguised as Mr. Blondes, they are almost impossible to knock unconscious with your fists, but when they are disguised, they get knocked out just like any actual human?
    • The hologram simulation technology runs more than just "skin deep"; it perfectly replicates the human physiology with all of it's strengths, limitations and vulnerabilities. Your Mind Makes It Real and the shocks that a Skedar could shake off are lethal when they're impersonating an Earthling. So Blondes (unlike Terminators or Agents from The Matrix) are constrained to run at the normal speed of a human being, have the same strength and are as vulnerable to bullets and fists as an ordinary person (or elite Nordic bodybuilder, take your pick). Why didn't the Skedar make them more durable you might ask? Either the technology was constrained to having to simulate exactly, or they just didn't take it into account.
  • Why does the mission briefing use the term, "Skedar fanatics", when apparently all Skedar are fanatics?
    • All Skedar seem to be baddies, but the ones on their home planet are assumed to be the most fanatical since they are the closest to the 'holiest place'. It'd make sense that the ones the Skedar King keeps closest to him would be his most fervent warriors, armed to the teeth with the Reaper (and one of them with a Slayer, even.) The grunts Joanna ran into before were probably lesser soldiers, outfitted only with a Mauler in most cases, completely unarmed in others.

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