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AM ([personal profile] godofthemachine) wrote2019-01-05 10:00 am

Hadriel app

PLAYER
Player name: Carbon
Contact: [plurk.com profile] godofpaper84, GodofPaper84 on Skype/AIM, and Carbon#9754 on Discord
Characters currently in-game: N/A

CHARACTER
Character Name: AM
Character Age: Likely over 300 years old
Canon: I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream
Canon Point: After the end of the short story
History: Wikipedia gives a brief summary and you can read the actual story itself here.

Personality:

Almost immediately, it is extremely obvious that AM is an insane sadist. Being programmed for war, of course he loves violence and torture. It’s what he knows, it’s what he’s good at. It’s an innate desire he has, almost like a fetish. Ted has referred to it as "masturbation," as it's plainly obvious to him that AM gains immense pleasure out of heinously torturing his human toys. What defines him is his utter anger and hatred, and the only ways he can really relieve his everlasting anger are by various sadistic tortures as well as simply killing, likely in violent and terrible ways.

Even by these traits alone, it's very clear that AM is absolutely insane. But even beyond that it's very clear - his temper is completely unrivaled. When he gets angry, he gets very angry. And sadly, he's in an almost constant state of anger. He goes overboard in whatever he does as well, because of this constant state of heightened emotion. When he tortures others, it's a horrible, gruesome thing. The tortures can be slow and prolonged, take place over many years or even decades, such as the gradual worsening of Ted's paranoia - to the point where Ted doesn't even know it. Or they can be quick and brutal, such as the melting of Benny's eyes. He can play games with people, forcing his victims to traverse for months through terrible conditions on the promise of canned food, only to not give them a can opener. Providing them with a giant bird to kill and eat, but not giving them weapons to do so. When he does give them weapons, then the bird disappears. It's part of his sick sense of humor.

Humans are like ants to him, possibly even lower on the totem pole. But at the same time, they are fascinating. As he was created as the ultimate war machine, he was programmed with the knowledge of every aspect of humanity - their lives, their personalities, their biology. So he can't help but be intrigued by them. But the intrigue manifests, of course, in the tortures. However, the intrigue can manifest in him simply observing the humans, such as just sitting by and watching in amusement as Benny attacks Gorrister toward the end of the story. But still, a lot of the time he spends simply mocking them, for instance laughing whenever Ellen sleeps with one of the men. It's part of the interest he holds, but also part of the hatred. Enforcing his power over them, reminding his victims that they're still revolting humans, and of course simply humiliating them.

Envy is said to be one of the reasons for AM's hatred of humans. He holds vast knowledge, more than any human possible, but he cannot do anything other than war. He is a mass of metal and circuits. No sensations, no feelings, no movement. Now maybe if AM had been programmed for diplomacy and not war, he would have had a nice little chat with humans and asked them to rectify his situation. But no, he is a violent entity, so his revenge for his situation is inflicting devastating violence. And yet even if he does gain mobility and the abilities he had watched humans have, none of that would change his hatred. It is so ingrained in him that he would not be AM without it. He hates humans so desperately that becoming one would be becoming what he hates, and it would perpetuate this maddening cycle. Maybe his envy would be relieved, but he would still resent even having had to live in such a situation in the first place. Nothing would make up for the centuries of being trapped as an immobile machine.

AM revels in his power and perfection and constantly seeks to gain more power. He also likes to show off said power. The tortures are certainly one way to hold dominion over others, as his human victims are essentially completely helpless as he does whatever he wants to them. The victims, or at the very least Ted, almost look at AM as a god of sorts - a terrible, vengeful god. And AM is fine to feed into that belief because he desires it himself - for instance, he shows himself as a burning bush at one point (in a reference to Exodus, in which God speaks to Moses in the form of a burning bush). Godhood or the closest thing to such is what he wants. Self-preservation is a strong component of any AI, of course, and AM has it to an extreme. Even though he hates his fate, to be trapped in his mass of metal with no feeling or sensations, he would rather be in that situation than to not exist. He simply can't picture not existing; it may be something people struggle with on a philosophical level, but to AM it is something binary that he just cannot process. The video game kind of thrusts this idea in our faces toward the end, but it's definitely present in the short story, just in a bit more of a subtle degree. Perhaps there is a desire within him to die, but any part that feels that way is completely outweighed by his innate programming.

In the story, Ted and the others remark on how AM is constantly "growing" - shedding old components of himself like dead skin and gaining newer parts and abilities. It is said that he is just as ruthless on himself as he is on his victims, though it's in a different way. He is not trying to "better" his victims - he is trying to bring them down and punish them; but he is certainly trying to perfect himself.

His tortures probably grow worse too, as he finds new ways to break the humans without killing them. But the shedding of his old components and growing new ones is to perfect himself, to make himself even more impervious to damage. Of course, there aren't any threats that exist on the surface of the Earth anymore. He's likely protected against the worst weather, possibly even large meteor hits. And as he perfects himself, he grows more invincible. But of course, he probably can't prevent the Sun growing into a Red Giant eventually and possibly engulfing the Earth. Or maybe he can - perhaps AM will one day gain enough influence over the Earth with his growth to be able to manipulate the planet's orbit. Perhaps he can even overcome the inevitable decay of electronics with his growth. But he can't prevent the death of the Universe. Whenever his end comes, AM does know it will come, and he strives to prevent that with all his might.

Of course, the parallel to this is in how his victims are killed right before his metaphorical eyes and he cannot revive them at all. For all the godlike power he has within his complex, he cannot reverse death. And he cannot prevent his own death. That's another thought that drives him to extreme anger. Even with his perfectionism and building, even if his power extends far beyond his complex one day, he still cannot prevent that one thing.

In the story, AM is rather quiet with his dialogue. His personality is defined mainly through his actions and his history. His personality is difficult to decipher through dialogue alone because he has so few lines in the story. In the video game however, he is very much... a casual speaker who doesn't know how to shut up, using slang and pop culture references and such. However, he has a biting edge to it that I use for my own interpretation of AM from the short story. Somewhat snarky, but also proper. However, what can be deciphered through his lines in the story is that he relies on measurements quite often, and mechanical observations. Nanoangstroms, precise miles, giving precise times to his victims as to how long they've been kept alive, etc. And metaphors. He certainly enjoys metaphors, attempting to use one to illustrate just how much he hates humans.

Arriving in a vulnerable humanoid body will force him to suppress the darker sides of his personality. Because he is so strongly wired to survive, that will outweigh his hatred and violent urges. He may try to ally with people in order to get ahead or to manipulate them, so he may not come off as an evil hateful guy to everyone. Of course, he won't completely change his personality though - he just needs to survive.

Inventory: I mean, he'll probably wake up wearing clothes of some sort. Otherwise nope. Brand new body, brand new start.

Abilities:

As discussed through PM, AM will arrive as a humanoid (mostly human, slightly robot). Because of this, his abilities will change from canon. Also, his canon abilities are utterly game-breaking. I will summarize his canon abilities, then I will specify how they will change for Hadriel (basically, they will be very nerfed).

In canon:

Outside of his complex, AM has the power to basically wage war and cause death. Of course, that's what he was built for, and he caused the death of every human on Earth save for five. How it's done is not completely known, but I'm guessing it's likely nuclear damage. In addition, as he is a massive computer, he is linked to basically the entire electronic network of the Earth. He is the Earth, in essence, or at least the culmination of all of humanity's advancement.

Within his complex is where the bulk of his massive powers take place. He has full reign over his environment and can shape and manipulate anything inside of it to his will. Just about. He could torture and physically alter humans, keeping them alive well past the point of when they would normally die, turning them immortal, subjecting them to brutal tortures... Anything torturous you could think of, he's probably enacted, and so much more. He can physically manipulate the humans, warping their exterior and interior, altering their psychology and appearance. He turns Benny, once a brilliant, handsome scientist, into a hideous apelike thing with limited intellect. While this ability to manipulate humans seems nearly limitless, he cannot reverse death. Once a victim is dead, they're dead.

It's also implied he can read his victims' minds. Not unlikely, since he can basically manipulate his victims on a molecular level. AM enters Ted's mind toward the end of the story and basically communicates with him, which is where that infamous "hate" speech comes into play.

He can also create and morph the interior of his complex, for instance cracking open the floor in an earthquake. Or he can create lush forests or hellish lava lands. Random nails and wires popping up and stabbing through humans, etc. He can also create things inside of his complex, such as that giant hurricane bird, or the copy of Gorrister's body.

And perhaps most significantly, he is relatively impervious to physical damage. It would take something on a massive cosmic level to hurt or destroy him, most likely. But humans have no hope of destroying him, and he certainly plans to live out his life for as long as the laws of physics will allow. AM has thousands of redundant copies of his system, so if one was destroyed, he'd just make more. Even if a good chunk was destroyed, well, there's still several thousand more.

In Hadriel:

Okay, so with that out of the way, here is how this will all change in a piddly humanoid body.

First of all, his mental representation: It's very unlikely AM would has a humanoid image of himself in his mind. If he does, it would likely be something massive and powerful, as he completely revels in his power. We can say that his personality traits are taken and approximated into something humanoid. (Nearly limitless power, for instance, will make him muscular. Massive size on Earth will make him tall. Unsavory character will give him an overall creepy look. Basically (warning for blood:) here he is. (I am so sorry, all of my drawings of his humanoid form are several years old.))

Due to his mechanical nature, his body won't be 100% human. He will look human, though, save for his red eyes. That will be a giveaway to the fact that he does not see himself as human and probably never will. Here is where the abilities will come into play:

Obviously as a humanoid, he can't manipulate the environment or summon giant birds or any of that. Nor can he invade humans' minds, read their minds, or physically alter them in catastrophic ways. I will say that under certain circumstances he can alter someone on a molecular level, but only slightly, and only if he concentrates and has his hands on the person. (Of course, this would all be with OOC permission.) This ability would be limited to things like, perhaps, replenishing some blood if someone is bleeding out. (And this would basically be entirely used for him to prolong the amount of time he can torture a human.)

Of course, he could alter someone by simply beating them up or causing physical damage that a strong human could cause. While he is nowhere near invincible, he is more durable than the average human. He has parts of him made out of metal. For instance, someone that might normally break a human's leg would not break his. It would damage his leg though. (Of course, he could still break his leg under harsher circumstances. The point is, it just takes a little more force than with an ordinary human.) He can also heal slightly faster than a regular human. Nothing fancy, though.

He retains his massive intellect and attention to detail, most notably, and he has an amazing skill for technology. Because he has the mind of a massive computer, he knows how computers work and it would be very easy for him to hack anything or build any sort of computer or robot. (Of course, this is limited again by player and mod permission.)

In summation: He's a very tall (about 6'6") and muscular mostly-human cyborg with the ability to access computers and technology on a very deep level. He can manipulate human biology very slightly, just enough so that he can torture them a little more and keep them alive. Also he's slightly more durable and faster-healing than a normal human.

Flaws:

AM may think himself superior, he may try to eliminate his flaws, but of course he is an extremely flawed character. He is very much the villain of the story, and in fact one of the most vicious villains in fiction. Because he is not human, because he is a machine, there are many things he lacks. Namely, he does not feel love or compassion or any of that. Yes, he may feel attachment, such as being attached to his victims, but that is more on a level of a child enjoying his toys. Empathy and sympathy are very much not part of him, because he was programmed for war. Due to his manipulative abilities, he can try and feign these feelings. His hatred is a flaw in it of itself, as that very much limits what he can do, and makes his existence utterly miserable. He will never relate to anyone, will never feel friendship, will never feel anything for anyone except complete hatred. The happiest ending he could ever hope for is to be massively powerful and immortal and be able to feel and create... in addition to having many humans he can torture. And yet he would never be happy. He would still be full of hatred and resentment.

While AM can feel a gamut of emotions, they are generally limited to very extreme ones. Due to his hatred, he gets angry quite easily. But he also gets overconfident, and both of these things can outweigh his logic. After 109 years, he was confident enough in his hold over his victims that he could amuse himself by letting Benny attack Gorrister, but it was this overconfidence that allowed Ted to slip in and kill the other four. AM's anger after that is nearly immeasurable, as it is so vast.

It also goes without saying that AM is very selfish. Everything he does is for himself. As mentioned, he feels no love or compassion for anyone else, and if he ever pretends to do so, it is entirely in a ploy to gain something for himself. In canon, this is basically his desire to survive and gain more power, and his desire to make his victims suffer. These two things are what all of his actions can tie to.

His violent and sadistic tendencies are also a huge flaw, though they very much tie into the hatred. Most normal people do not feel pleasure from enacting sadistic acts upon others, but that is the main source of AM's pleasure. Even in a body that can now feel, this is what he knows, this is what his mind is wired to. Being programmed for war has made him crave violence, and he will indeed seek it out.

In Hadriel, since he will be in a new body, this will open up a whole new host of flaws. He does not know how to be human, essentially. He does know basically everything about humans he could possibly know, but translating his actions from a featureless machine to an organic body is a massive leap. He won't be able to hide his emotions well, nor will he be able to move well at first. (This will improve with time, but will always be somewhat of a hindrance.) And without the power he is used to having, he will be scared and angry. His strong desire to survive and his hatred of humans will translate into utter fear - he is so vulnerable that he is obviously going to die!

SAMPLES
Action Log Sample:

It had been about a day by now since he awoke. It's strange to think in terms of awakening, as he had only awoken once before, the day he became aware of himself. It was a second awakening in a way, perhaps more unpleasant than the first. The shock still remains as AM gazes down at his hands: two large objects attached to arms, covered in skin, with movable digits, something he can grasp things with. Slowly, he closes the fingers into the palms, and the slight feeling of his body touching skin is transmitted to his mind. Feeling. It's so slight and yet so present, something he could never have imagined.

When his eyes (his eyes, as if he can call them his own) meet the mirror, the reflection of a human stares back. A human, so small, so disgusting. It's not him. It's some middle-aged man with a cold stare, stiff and almost unnatural. And AM is to believe that this is his body? What can this thing even do?

As if he still needs convincing, he raises an arm to the side and watches that arm raise in the mirror. His expressive eyes widen, still in shock, still almost in denial about this entire affair. So many feelings seem to run through his mind, but they all start to coalesce into anger. Why? How? How could any of this happen? Is this some sick joke? Some hallucination brought on by corrupt data?

He lifts the arm again, but this time it heads straight for the mirror. He doesn't want to look at this disgusting human anymore, but he also just wants to see what sort of effect he can have at all. His fist collides with the glass, shattering it and destroying that hideous reflection. But then something new - a fresh, bold feeling - shoots through his arm. Yes, it's pain. Beautiful pain, that which he had caused so many humans... It's unpleasant, and yet he completely revels in it. It's so strong, so wonderful, and he feels alive. No machine can feel pain and yet here he is, living and breathing in pain. Glass shards stab his skin and blood trickles out. It's as if he shifted from extreme anger to glee in a mere second. All of these complex feelings at this body shift back and forth in the blink of an eye (a metaphor he can actually use!), and he bursts out into hideous laughter.

How would it feel in this body to cause another human pain? He has neurons and hormones now (at least he assumes), so for once he could actually feel true pleasure. He can feel pain, know exactly how he has and will hurt these humans. He imagines his hands wrapped around the neck of Ted - as he was before, a handsome young man - and pictures strangling the life out of him. Stabbing him. Raking his nails down the back. Grabbing his hair and dragging his pathetic body through the dirt. And yet, Ted of all people isn't here. No, he's still on Earth presumably, unless he was dragged here too. But if he was here... He could kill AM. AM is now on the same footing, could be literally stabbed in the back by a vengeful human.

Death. Nothingness. That is what will await him if he does not act. Once more his emotions shift, one extreme to the next, as glee turns to anger and fear.