Wednesday, April 17, 2013

107: Nietzi

ENTRY 107: Nietzi

Every generation has its iconoclasts. For the Nietzi, extinction is all too near. Fragile transhumanity lives on a ragged edge that most do not understand, the human species teetering frighteningly close to eradication. Any expenditure of energy not devoted to humanity’s continued survival is considered a waste. To the Nietzi, art, philosophy, literature, and entertainment are only of value in the service to survival; the survival of human culture is not as important as the survival of the human species.

To combat what Nietzi see as the insupportable waste of resources on art and non-utilitarian cultural trappings (parties, religious rituals, civic ceremonies, &c.), they engage in “Experiments”—coordinated crowd-sourced acts of low-key domestic terrorism, aiming to destroy prominent examples or collections of art and architecture and disrupt events in an effort to discourage their continuation. As the Nietzi seek to preserve transhuman existence, their methods are almost unilaterally non-violent, with special care taken to avoid casualties.

Infamous Experiments include the Pinking, where proceedings where disrupted at a large religious retreat in New Varanasi by exploding dye packs that permanently marked the attending morphs bright electric pink; the Disassembly Experiment on Vo Nguyen, where coordinated flash-mobs disassembled every shrine and altar on the station then dispersed before habitat security could be roused. However, the real danger the Nietzi is illustrated from some of their less obvious Experiments: the deliberate corruption of the Gutenberg Archive using a false software patch resulted in the loss of hundreds of thousands of pre-Fall literary and art works, the majority of which still have yet to be recovered.

The Nietzi generally organize using discrete social media networks, only rarely organizing into cells. As a rule they tend to blend in well with brinker, autonomist, and bioconservative factions. Members are quiet, self-sufficient, only rarely use exotic morphs, dress and speak plainly, and generally have “pragmatic” trades and professions, eschewing media-oriented professions except when infiltrating a particular group or habitat.


  • Local hackers have caught some weird radio traffic the past few days, something about an upcoming full-scale test of the fire suppression system, leading some to believe a new Experiment is about to begin in the PC’s habitat, and ask the PCs to look into it. The Nietzi are planning a two-pronged assault, with one cell using the test to deliver nanite disassemblers that target clothing polymers, and the other cell hacking the makers to prevent them from manufacturing anything except disposable, plain paper clothing.
  • A researcher believes they’ve identified a full, unaltered copy of the Gutenberg Archive on an old datastorage satellite in the Belt, but the unit is damaged and has to be accessed manually. If the PCs can recover the data, that’s worth a lot of rep from academic and media-types—but the Nietzi will be looking to stop them (non-lethally) at every turn as they try to get there first. Every NPC that the PCs meet could be a Nietzi in disguise…including the researcher who hired them for the job.


  1. I was nodding in general agreement... until the Gutenberg Archive bit. That's when they lost my sympathy.

    1. "The fanatic is whomever goes slightly further than I would go."

      Great comment!

  2. Culture is humanity is culture. If creative sterility, the castration of the soul, is the price of survival, then is survival still a worthwhile goal?