@cagliostro88: I'd say that seems probable. Matter is matter regardless of its form. That said, I'm not entirely sure if there's much difference between your distinction between the Process(/nature) and traces(/sentient expression.) There's some ambiguity about whether the manifestations of the Process are shown in their natural state, or whether they are material constructs driven by the Process in the same way that people in Cloudbank are matter driven by traces. Royce mentioned that he found a way to put the Process "center-stage," to give it credit for the real work it did. What if he found a way to allow it to manifest itself in bodies of its own design? It would explain why there seemed to be an evolution from rudimentary, specialized builders to more humanoid and aggressive forms. He didn't have an explanation for some of the forms it developed. It could be that the Process was trying to understand its newfound place in the world by emulating its inhabitants, and perhaps even became jealous of those who were controlling it. Given time, it may have become complex enough to develop a more nuanced personality (or set of personalities) depending on its experience... though that's probably me getting ahead of myself through speculation again.
Finscher's forum posts
So this all went on for a bit longer than I'd expected it to. Hopefully nobody's beaten me to the punch before I post it. Anyhow, I'm not sure how much of this is right or wrong, and the chronology of the Camerata's actions are probably out of order here and there, but here's what I've managed to come up with so far:
First, I'm reasonably sure that Cloudbank is basically the entirety of the world. That's not to say that it's a huge, planet-sprawling city, just that this world only consists of this one city. "The Country" doesn't seem to be a place so much as it seems to be an afterlife. Royce mentions that going into the Transistor is like going to the Country: it's a one-way trip. That, along with the common usage of the phrase "see you in the Country" in reference to things or people who aren't expected to be alive for much longer seems to lend some credence to that. That said, I'm having a hard time just going along with the idea that Cloudbank is just some personification of a computer, like something out of Reboot. For all we know, it could be a self-contained universe that just happens to have a lot of coincidental similarities to computers like ours. There is never any mention of an outside world for people to freely visit. But I'm not sure that they're aware of that, either. The OVC reporter implies that the city's population would rather die than leave. Red's companion mentions that they should leave town, but that never seems to be taken seriously by Red. Her companion also muses that he's never actually seen anybody in the city's visitor centre when they pass it. People in the city never seem to consider leaving. Is it because of the city's influence? Does the Transistor prevent those inside of it from being affected by it? Or is he only stating the possibility because he's different somehow? I'm probably jumping at shadows there, but it still seems odd to me.
At any rate, Cloudbank is governed by the whims of its population, but those whims need to pass through the Administrators to ensure that those changes aren't made meaninglessly. After all, if everybody got their way all the time, the city would be in an endless state of change as people undid or altered what other people changed themselves. Royce was an engineer tasked with facilitating those changes on the behalf of the Administrators, and while the Administration ensured a degree of stability, he was always busy with that work as the whims of the population changed. At some point he began to recognize that the changes he made were cyclical in nature, and that all changes made to the city were still completely meaningless. The administrators did not provide stability; they simply slowed the process of change down to a crawl. For a time he tried to design a more permanent structure that would accommodate the whims of the population without the need for changing it, but the designs he produced were drastically less popular than the ones which would inevitably be replaced. He seemed to abandon that course in favor of determining the nature of the changes themselves, and was able to mathematically predict not only what would change and when, but also how. By understanding the nature of change in this world--the Process--he could eventually find a way to control it with the Transistor (though whether he designed it himself or merely found it, I'm not entirely clear on.)
Royce shared his findings with Administator Grant, who also felt uneasy about the nature of change. As his bio states, he had argued for virtually every social stance at some point or another in his career despite his own opinions. He was interested in the idea of harnessing the power of change to bring about some further degree of permanence, but I'd speculate that neither of them were entirely sure how to go about enacting those changes in a way that the population of Cloudbank would agree with, or at least be complacent about. They needed someone who better understood how the masses thought, and would also remain loyal to them. To that end, Asher was brought into the fold. As a reporter for OVC and as Grant's (heavily implied) lover, he met the criteria they were looking for.
Before continuing with the people involved in the story, I have to take a moment to speculate about the nature of the Transistor itself. I don't think it's a tool so much as it is a tool box. It needs directions in the form of specific functions to enact change on behalf of its wielder. Changes made to Cloudbank seem to be directed by the whims of its population. Those whims can be guided or changed by people of influence. By harvesting people with that influence, they can create a function that the Transistor can use to enact a specific sort of change. I can't recall which specific bio mentions the following, but there was some mention of one of the Camerata's victims producing a viable function in spite of their concerns over whether it would work with that particular person.
Because they needed influential people in order to further expand the Transistor's toolset, the Camerata also required someone who could help set their targets up for harvesting. This is where Sybil came in. With her extensive knowledge of Cloudbank's elite (as well as up-and-comers like Red) she was able to convince people to wander off into secluded areas where they could be acquired without causing a fuss.
While the list was being compiled, Grant used his pull as an administrator to cordon off a small area in the north-west corner of the city, covering parts of both the Goldwalk and Fairview districts. It was there that Royce began to experiment with the Process, which was ultimately responsible for all changes to the city even before its discovery. Despite the cordon, several people attempted to cross that line. Shomar Shasberg and Preston Moyle found their way in for the sake of a thrill, and never got a chance to leave. Henter Jallaford considered the location (and the Administration's answers about it) suspicious, and slipped the cordon for the sake of his investigation. Lillian Platt found her way there after her lover, Maximilias Darzi went missing. They weren't primary targets like Wave Tennegan or Maximilias Darzi, but their level of influence in society meant that the Camerata would take them as a bonus.
At any rate, their harvesting operation went well until Sybil let her jealousy of Red's companion get the better of her. She was infatuated with Red, but never really managed to get close to her. After a time, she became convinced that Red's companion was the cause of it. She convinced the Camerata that Red was a prime target for their cause, then claimed she could help them get to Red while the singer was alone, when the truth was that Red would be alone with her companion. Sybil's idea was that he'd be killed for being a witness.
Of course, that's not what happened. How the Camerata lost Red and the Transistor during that encounter isn't especially clear, but all the same, they lost their ability to control the process along with them. Royce had growing concerns as he witnessed the Process' evolution during his experiments, and he voiced as much to Grant in his reports on the emergence of the Young Lady, Fetch, and Man specimens. Though he had attempted to enact safeguards against the Process, it seems that without the Transistor in its cradle, the Camerata weren't able to convey their plans to the Process. The absence of a plan, in turn, seemed to be interpreted as a blank slate, and so the Process began pulling everything apart into its most basic state, but it might also have been influenced by the avant-garde architecture mentioned in Royce's bio that we never get to see, hence the sterile Cathedral/temple aesthetic rather than the white infinite void seen in other parts of the city.
So long as it just remains as a piece of hardware, I don't really see much of a problem. What's it going to do besides functioning along the lines we've already seen? Report to Facebook servers about how long you've stared at an NPC's ass?
Running into the same issues here. Had some trouble in the base until I turned off cloth PhysX, but the first combat encounter in the first post-introduction section is a slideshow no matter how low I set everything. ATI HD7870.
It's serviceable, but not particularly great. The new enemies are interesting, and the aesthetic is in line with what you'd expect from a place like Omega. The voice acting isn't really up to par with the stuff in the core game, and there are some glaring animation bugs in the cutscenes. You can probably expect to burn through it in about 2.5 hours, even if you take your time and talk to everybody as much as possible. They might have created a lot of environmental assets for this DLC, but it all looks so similar that you don't really notice the effort. By the end, it doesn't feel like it was worth $15, but at the end of the day you either know that you're going to buy it, or you know that you aren't. This thing will sell on the merit of tying off the last loose thread in the series rather than anything else.
Oh, and you'll only run into two Omega-related side characters, one of which you've never had the option to talk to. Both are little more than cameos. I don't think anybody was really expecting to see Helena Blake, the Patriarch, Fist, or other similar characters make a return, but now I can confirm that they don't show up again.
Great! Now I can find out how the inhabitants of the galaxy get along with their new robot DNA.
Because that ending will totally make more sense by adding more cutscenes to it. This is exactly what was lacking from the vanilla version.
Makes sense, really. Not the reasoning, but the outcome. The poll was open to the internet, meaning that those companies whose branding was not directly interacted with by an international audience already had a lower chance of garnering votes.
Besides, the worst company is Monsanto, so it isn't as if anybody should take this particularly seriously.