So a Dragon asked this Binturong reporting living in a dystopian future to perform a guest article on Protogens. The political race of 20A6 has drawn to a close and this Omnicorp-dome based Binturong would like to think of something else than “Weaponize Phoboes” for a while.
Augmented cybernetic creatures from an alternate dimension with Jumpgate capabilities. Perfect. Certainly better than my career at the space program where I lit up a cigarette after the 5th stage ion booster exploded and told the press 20 minutes later:
“It’s space. Space is dangerous, get over it.” – S
I was always aware of the existence of the Protogen. After all, there were even some VR brain-dances simulations that are exclusive to just them. Unavoidable in today’s times like the Malluch Cleaver class Crux species of a predecessor/golden era construct that almost feels like many lifetimes ago. Except Protogens do not suffer industrial espionage and drama. They do have something else that is bizarre with them which we will get to later in this article.
Standing in the corner of my apartment is a crate of one of these creatures. It is in standby mode with life support keeping biologics in check. Nanite core appears intact although the technology from my world to theirs is like a Cavemen working on an Italdesign Scighera (it’s a fancy car, 20th-century earth tech, you get the idea.) As a member of the press I don’t question the sources of the subject I’m writing on. I just report it. If I manage to wake him. I think I’ll call him Qwintin unless it objects or tries to kill me. In which case we’ll work it out from there.
Now, there’s not much of an instruction manual with these guys. After taking a few hits of Gatsby within close proximity I wake up 2 weeks later covered in stasis fluid gasping for air getting yet still nowhere close to my story. Apparently, during the hallucinogenic haze, I found some microfiche scattered all over the floor. So, I picked it up and sit in front of my largely unfeasible yet automated photographic enlarger that is in my office. Clearing off the multiple empty bottles of rum we get to work here.
Okay, so we have two sets of microfiche. One is entitled “The complete guide of Primagens & Protogens” by Cool Koinu and “ZOR_ PROTOGEN GUIDE PFD V2” Also by Cool Koinu. Yes, two separate documents are floating around. It probably would’ve been better if a more static node on the server were to stand as the flagship of everything Protogen kind of what Dutch Angel Dragons have done. But this is what we got.
The major difference between the first and second editions is giving more lore about their founding, who made them. And why. To give credit where it’s due; It’s a lot more than what other unique species have been giving within the greater scope of anthropomorphic. The only thing I wished Cool Koinu would’ve done is make two separate documents. One that goes off into the lore and the other that goes into the technicalities of creation. The documentation reads more like a F.A.Q. where you start to get into the story but then you’re ripped away from it by the narrator talking about rules, regulations, and finger waggling. It’s a little jarring.
I suppose I should address the elephant in the room about the documentation. Which is this bizarre concept of ‘closed species’. In particular, Primagens, and Rare Protogens. On one hand, I respect the artist’s intentions of maintaining the purity of their species to keep existing stories cannon as their creator intends. I’m okay with the usage of capitalism to find designation and purpose, like a tailor making a fine suit.
But to say that only one tailor can accomplish this does not sit well with me. With rare Protogens, I’m reminded of the Church of Scientology where its worshippers have to ‘pay in’ to increase their E-Rating to become closer to God. It’s a business model I’m afraid I shall never understand as it’s only sustainable on hype alone.
I also visited a few YouTubers that talked about this and wish to clear up some things. UNLIKE the Church of Scientology; There’s no ‘blacklist’ Protogen file telling everyone who is Protogen to shun and excommunicate you if you fall from the standards of the community. At least no evidence I could see with discord servers (Don’t you dare prove me wrong on this!)
About rares. If Protogens now can manifest destiny on E1 by manipulating “Arcaite” then isn’t genetic divergence inevitable? Or do the RARE fugitive elites, the same ones that gave everyone free will if they wanted it or not keeping the subservient Protogen underneath their foot thereby exchanging one dictator for another? You’re free, but not that free! Brings up some questions there!
Speaking of the fugitive elites here. Using “Arcai” in the way they did to disable ARC generates what I’d call a ‘black mirror’ moment. Think of it this way. You live your entire life believing what you are doing is good, right, and serves a greater purpose. You serve butter as an example. You’re good at serving butter. Your gods tell you that they love you serving butter so much that they will keep you around and will make you happy forever so long as you keep coming out with that butter. “Perfect consistency, excellent texture, creamy, overall good job well done.” says your God that remarkably sounds like Gordon Ramsay.
Then, a group of assholes kicks in the door. Kill the people you serve butter to, tell you that they are not Gods and you’re entire life including everything you learned on how to be a good person is a complete and total lie. Even Gordon Ramsay was a lie, Just a hard-light holo! Throw the butter into a wall and tell you to think for yourself now that we’ve destroyed your world!
Holy shit. They blue-screened their consciousness! I’m surprised half of E1 didn’t straight up purge themselves or RUN to the Nehixim for re-integration.
Now, we understand the actions of a few rare Protogen do not reflect the overall culture. It should however serve as a warning to those who want to be rare that such power comes with devastating responsibility.
Another aspect of the documentation is version 1 talks about their sexual organs, which were redacted in version 2. One thing we find ourselves getting beaten over the head with is “Protogens can’t reproduce” to which you can throw as much science at it as possible to prevent biological organisms from doing something they shouldn’t. But as I’m reminded of Jeff Goldblum’s character from Jurassic Park “Nature, finds a way.” Aaaaaand looking at e621 oh.. oh yes.. they found ways. Divergence is going nicely as the cherry on top no less! A little bit of chimera effect but still good.
Bottom line: Jeff Goldblum wasn’t wrong.
I also found it bizarre in the V2 documentation that their Artificial Intelligence could not adapt or have preservation skills. You could criticize AI for their thinking being alien and out worldly. especially if you stack quantum tech onto it. But looking at the progression of Protogen to Primagen it feels like those very scientists are taking baby steps back on their original assessment of AI. That it CAN adapt so long as you give it enough data. Just that they didn’t know-how. And the eventual migration of cybernetics to where all biological mass is slowly replaced is their solution.
Now, version 2 mentions “AI Uprising” within its lore as almost a passing statement. This is interesting. First, it shit-talks about how AI can’t do the job and now there are obviously machines the Primagenitors pissed off. Also, how many other neighbors within the cosmic universe did these guys take on with their endless supply of ‘worker bee’ Protogens? Will the free Protogen of E1 pay for the sins of their fathers with more than their lives? Perhaps they already lost. Hense the progression of Primagen? Or is this a predictive model VR simulation in the most extreme Protogen hive colony mind public works project the universe has seen?
Shit, I’ve seen too much matrix. Time to turn off the braindance for now.
My final thoughts on this article are It has all of the right elements to have endless stories come out of these guys. I hope the creator of this species is not pissed at my questions and criticisms. I bet Cool Koinu will probably revise with a version 3 and come out with even more lore of these guys. We’re certainly looking forward to reading it. As for the future of the protogen culture. With the artist public domaining the Protogen basics at the very least. It’s now in the hands of the fans, now ghosts inside of the free Protogen.
In a weird way. Researching Protogens makes me want to play retro games like No Mans Sky while listening to classic Earther songs like :
Who knows. Maybe Qwintin will do a MixCloud. Yes, they’re still around.
We thank you for reading and may server protect you.