Beware False Prophets

A digital Fahrenheit 451 meets Twitter. Censorship, online connectivity (or the lack thereof), and everyone winding up miserable.

That’s the history I got to play with some folks who had never tried Microscope before, or hardly any story games for that matter. Playing with new folks is — let’s not mince words — always a fucking treat. It shakes up your habits and keeps you on your feet.

At one point in our history, after people disconnect en masse to defy the terrible terrible tech overlords, true believers compile the Lexicon, a digital “all book” with all the knowledge that could once be found on the net.

But for *waves hands vaguely* fantasy technology reasons, the Lexicon can be transferred but not duplicated. Only the one true Lexicon can exist. And because people have gone offline, the sole Lexicon is downloaded into someone’s brain. That person bears the sacred book hidden within them, until they pass it on to another carrier.

We had already introduced the “World Saviors”, a secret society that, as the name implies, is determined to save humanity from the pit it has found itself in. How? Neural nanotech, of course! The common people can’t be trusted to figure this out themselves, so the World Saviors are going to make the decision for them. Totally cool dudes and not patronizing at all.

From the World Saviors point of view, the Lexicon is just out there somewhere, not in their control, hidden yet venerated, and that simply won’t do. So what’s their response? They create a bunch of *fake* Lexicons and embed them in people to go forth and claim to be the one true bearer.

False prophets wander the world, preaching Reconnection and the benefits of neural nanotechnology, while the true Lexicon remains hidden. At some point the true bearer dies before passing it on, removing the real Lexicon entirely until someone finds their grave years later and digs up their body to resurrect it. In the meantime it’s nothing but false prophets.

And did I mention that the Lexicon is almost certainly haunted by the spirit of its first creator, the rebel daughter of the original tech lord? Yeah, that hasn’t been a problem *yet* because we only found out towards the end of the game, but it puts everything that is going down in a very different perspective. Not just the Lexicon is being hunted: *she* is being hunted.

Hindsight is a powerful thing in Microscope.

    Ben Robbins | July 24th, 2023 | , | leave a comment