Manifold Mischief

Mission reviews, essays, and documents of record regarding The Matrix Online. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Sugar Shack 15: Exile Contact Reviews: The Network: Love You Baby!

If you ask me, the Network is an improbable name for an exile. When I heard it, I assumed a conspiracy of, umm, networked exiles, or some geek blathering about IP addresses and subnet masks. Instead, he’s like a movie executive. He hangs out at the Club Jetsam downtown in Industry Square (-167,175,799), a well-dressed, youngish-looking guy, watching the entrance near a table with small, feel-good candles. Like the popular image of a producer, he is all bright, glib optimism. Believe me, after Weaver, who consistently went out of her way to slam me, this was a welcome relief! As with every exile contact mish suite, they start off small, and soon become big tasks of butchery and revenge. It’s like Hamlet or MacBeth or something!

1. Tat Tap Tap

This starts out the right way: “You come recommended as someone with great discretion, Sugaree”. This seems like a classic, if generic, mission: a spy device has been planted in a machine stronghold; we have to go kill some machine guys and we’re good to plant a bug and you are done. He says you have a future! Tell me more, please! Good writing characterizes this mish.

2. Silver Toys

This second mish is the best of the lot. Exile Silver has ventured downtown from Richland to show a spy device to a buyer. We get there first, kill all his hired help, and then politely ask for it. He makes empty threats- “Well, Meat…these are the finest of the Slashers; they will rid me of your presence”. But don’t worry, he talks this way to everyone until he needs your help. The Network says you are very persuasive (foreshadowing for the next mission). Fun interaction with his cutout who received the device from us: a typical stressed-out middle manager wailing at the hired help. He is impatient, as we can see: “Don’t be a slacker. We’ve got to have synergy to build a convergent enterprise!” Perhaps as SOE spoke to Lith, many moons ago…

3. A Convincing Argument

An entertainer with great influence over bluepills wishes to remain aloof and isolated, like Greta Garbo. But The Network wishes something else, and tasks us to fight our way to her and simply deliver a letter. In this mish the opposition was unusually severe. I got killed several times, including by an agent, whom laid waste to me with just three shots! Eventually you reach her, if you persevere; she is suitably horrified.

4. Dailies

Some film with bluepill-influencing codes has been stolen by an exile; The Network wants it back. This mish was convenient indeed, taking place inside the same building as the club! Was it an exploit to accept it? Only the devs know for sure….”Brilliant, Sugaree!” he gushes at the end. Note to self: introduce him to Weaver.

5. Counter Programming

Someone has been vandalizing one of The Network’s relay stations, and he wants to get rid of them. We simply go and kill everyone we find; what could be easier! Oh, and then we take one guy’s head and deliver it to one of TN’s competitors, after fighting our way in. The echo of The Godfather is surely not coincidental. “How could you, you animals!” wails the competing network leader. In one unfortunate gaffe, the body lying on the ground seems intact, even though we have presumably decapitated it.

In these missions, we see some standard actions, punched up with the inclusion of a surprising Exile, Silver, and imaginative speech from the principal and the hired help. They’re enjoyable. And after Weaver’s unrelenting insults and put-downs, it was a pleasure to get some praise, however insincere it might have been!

Many thanks go to Sattakan, Trexx, and Illyria1 from The Collective for their help, which made good, serviceable missions even better!

This review may be found at, along with other reviews and writings relevant to MxO.