176.Therearefourwaysinwhichthetopologyofgamespacecancometoanendandbesupercededbyanewtopos-atleastaccordingtothegameDeusEx:InvisibleWar.(Ifyouhaveplayedthisgameyoumayknowthereisalsoafifthending,ofwhichprotocoldemandsthewithholdinguntilthepuzzleoftheoth
erfourendingsunlocksit
ssignificance.)Inthegame,yourcharacterhastochoosebetweenaidingthevictoryofoneoffourorganizations,allofwhichareatoddswitheachother,andeachofwhichhasitsownideaofhowtorealizeapermanentatopiabeyondgamespace,atoposbeyondtopology.Worki
ngbackwardsfr
omthesefourendingsitispossibletoplotthebackstory,notjustofDeusExbutofthemilitaryentertainmentcomplex-atleastasitcanbeunderstoodfromwithinthegame,fromwithinTheCave(tm)itself.177.ThefourendingsofDeusExcanbepiecedtogetherbyarrangingthemintwo
pairs.(Seef
ig.8)Thefirst,more'personal'pairofendingspitsthevictoryoftheTemplarsagainstthatoftheOmar.TheTemplarsareafanaticalreligiousorderdevotedtothebody'spurificationofall'biomods'.TheOmarareanolessfearsomecollectiveorganismofblackmarketeers,inwhich
thebodyha
sbeensubsumedintotechnology.Thesecond,more'political'pairofendingspitsthevictoryoftheIlluminatiagainstthatofApostleCorp.TheIlluminatiareasecretcabalofpower-brokershiddenbehindorganizationalfronts,dedicatedtorestoringorderundertheircontrol.Apo
stleCorpi
satechno-intellectualfactiondedicatedtobringingaboutajustanddemocraticbutnoless'posthuman'civilization.You,thegamer,playaminorcharacter,whocanneverthelesstipthebalancebetweenthesepowersandtheirgoals.178.DeusExisashadowyworld.Someoftheorganiza
tionswho
atfirstappearsopowerfularejustfrontsforothers.Forinstancetheneo-liberalWTOandthereligiousfundamentalistsofTheOrder,whichappearantagonistictoeachotherineveryway,turnoutinclassicconspiracytheorystyletobebutmaskssecretlycontrolledbytheIlluminati.
Thischai
nofunmaskingcanbeextendedevenbeyondthegame.Behindthefinalfourpowers-TemplarandOmar,IlluminatiandApostleCorp-isatleastonemoreunmasking.Thefirstpairofendings-TemplarandOmar-masksanagonbetweenthecompleteassimilationofthehumanintothemachine(Omar)v
ersusthe
completerejectionoftheintercourseofbodywithmachine(Templar).Alongthisaxis,theproblemofwheregamespaceisheadingis'personal',aquestionoftheboundariesofthebodyanditsother.Theotherpairofendings-IlluminatiandApostleCorp-islessabouttheimmediaterelati
onofbodytomachineassomething'personal'.Itisaboutsomethingnotpersonal,somethingthatisperhapspolitical.Heretheendsofgamespaceareanagonbetweenademocraticrelation,inwhichallbodiescommunicateequallywithmachines;versusthehierarchical,whereallcommunicationpa
ssesviaacontrollingpower.Thepersonalispolitical,butinDeusExtheimpersonalispolitical,too.179.Forthegamer,itisalwaysamatterofstartingatthebeginningandplayingthroughtotheend.IntheoriginalDeusExanditssequel,InvisibleWar,therearedifferentwaysofgettingfromb
eginningtoend.Itcanbedonebystealth,byviolence,ornegotiation,buteitherwaythegamerevealsitselflevelbylevel,fromstarttofinish.Forthegamerastheorist,perhapsinDeusExit'samatteroftakingtheendasthestartingpoint.Thequestionofwhatcanconstituteanendstateisthequ
estionofwhatoccupiesthelimitstothoughtwithingamespace.Whythesefourendings?Iftheyarejustarbitrary,randompossibilities,thentheymaybefunforthegamertoplaythroughtobutnotmuchfunforthegamertheoristtostartoutfrominthisothergame-theothergameoftherelationbetwe
entheallegorithmofthegametotheallegoryofgamespace.ButperhapsthefourendingsofDeusExarenotrandombutareratherthepiecesofapuzzle.180.BehindthefourorganizationswhovieforpowerinInvisibleWararefourmoreabstract,moreimpersonalantagonistswhostalkthefantasticvis
tasofgamespaceitself.Eithertechnologytrumpsthehuman,orviceversa.(Templarvs.Omar.)Eitherdemocracytrumpshierarchy,orviceversa.(Illuminativs.ApostleCorp.)Butbeyondthat,perhapsthegamereachesacertainlimit.Behindthismaskisnotanothermask;behindthispowerisnot
anotherpower,butsomethingelse-adiagramoftheavatarsofpower.Thefourendingsexhaustthepossibilitieswithinwhichgamespacecanthinkaboutitself.Theyareitsendgame.Butwhilethereisnotatthispointanothercharactertounmask,thereisapuzzletosolveinthearrangementofthese
masks
.Theseendings,andwhattheymask,enterintoquitedefiniterelations.Thefourtermsinvitethegamertheoristtoanewkindofgame.181.ThefourpossibleendingsofDeusExfitona'Greimassquare.'Whichistosay,theendingsaretermsinagameofmeaningmaking.(SeeFig.8)IfGeorgePerec
isthe
avantgardeaestheteofgamespace,Greimasisitspioneeringtheorist,forwhomallculturecannowbethoughtretrospectivelyintermsofthegame.A.J.Greimas:"Perhapsoutofadesireforintelligibility,wecanimaginethat,inordertoachievetheconstructionofculturalobjects(lite
rary,
mythical,pictorial,etc.),thehumanmindbeginswithsimpleelementsandfollowsacomplextrajectory,encounteringonitswaybothconstraintstowhichitmustsubmitandchoicesitisabletomake."Orinotherwords,theplayofmeaningismadewithintheboundsofagame.Atstakehereisthe
rela
tionofplaytogame.Astopographygiveswaytotopology,gamerisesinprominencerelativetoplay.Intherealmofavantgardestrategies,thegamewithinconstraintsofGeorgePerecsupercedestheplaybeyondgameofGuyDebord.Intherearguardoftheoreticalstrategies,thegameofmeaning
sup
ercedesthemeaningofgames;A.JGreimastopsJohanHuizinga.ForHuizingaplayprecedesgame.Itistheplay'instinct'thatinspirestheformationofforms.Greimasanticipatestheenclosureofplaywithingamespace.Asthewholeofspacesuccumbstothegame,itisthelogicofconstraintswh
ich
determinethepossibilitiesofplay.182.Huizinga,writingintheshadowoftheNazis,knewwhatwascoming:"Itremainedforthetheoryof'totalwar'to…extinguishthelastvestigeoftheplayelement."Themilitaryindustrialcomplexisonitsway.Totalwarthenextendsitslogisticstothes
pac
esofwork,andfinallyplayitself.Nowthemilitaryentertainmentcomplexisonitsway.TransgressiveplayhasitslasthurrahintheSituationistattempttoliveoutHuizinga'stheoryasaprogramforaction.GreilMarcus:"Asbathositwasjustdrunkstryingtowalkandthinkatthesametime."
The
reisnowheretohideoutsideofgamespace-thetotalgame.GuyDebord:"Onecannotgointoexileinaunifiedworld."TheformerleaderoftheSituationistswilldevotehisdecliningyearstodesigningandplayingaboardgamewhichformalizesallheimagineshehaslearnedaboutrevolutionarypl
ayt
ime,andyetentombsitwithinitsrules.183.Withtheriseoftopology,thetensionbetweengameandplayisresolvedinfavorofthegame.Whetherinart,theory,orineverydaylife:Thereisnothingoutsidethegame.Thestoryline,whichoncemarkedtheboundarieswithinwhichagamecouldbegin
,be
comesinternaltogamespace,andisnowmuchmoreaboutlegitimizingthepointatwhichagame'must'end.Thestorylinebecomesjusttheworkingout,onemoveatatime,ofapossiblelinethroughtheconstraintsofgamespace.Inthegameitisanalgorithmthatdetermineswhensomethingcanend;bu
ti
tisthestorylinethatmakesthisendpointseemnatural,inevitable,andnecessary.Butwhileastorylinehasanending,DeusExhasfourendings.Itrevealsjustabitmoreoftherulesofthegameofmeaningmakingthanastoryusuallywould.ThatDeusExisagameoffourendingsisalreadyaslightsl
ip
pageofthemask,revealingtherulesofthemeaning-makinggame.184.Intopographictimes,heterotopiangamesgaveontonon-gamespaces.Agamewasdelineatedbywhatitwasnot.Intopologicaltimes,atopiangamesgiveontonothingbutothergames.Ingamespace,theexitfromonegamewillturn
ou
ttobeanentryintoanother.Eachcaveletsontoanothercave.Butthisdoesnotbanishtheproblemofwhatisnot-game.Onthecontrary,itmakesitapervasiveandincessantproblem.Itslocusisthegamer,whocanonlybeagamerbybeingconstantlypulledintoandpushedoutofonegameafteranother
,a
ndwho,inmomentsofboredominbetween,glimpsestheveryconditionsofpossibilityofgamespace.Thesearethemomentswhenthegamercanneithertargetsomethingwithinthegamenorbethetargetthegameitselfselectstomakeitsown.Thetensionisnolongerwhatispriortooroutsidethegame,
but
what,frominsidethegame,maybringittoanend-andwhatthatendmightbe.185.Thegamer'sboredomarisesoutoftherecognitionthat,underthevariegatedspectacleofdetails,theactofgamingisalwaysessentiallythesame.Thegameroscillatesbetweentwostates.Thefirststateisbeings
epa
ratefromthetarget;thesecondisbeingmergedwiththetarget.(PlayingDeusExinstealthmodeonlyreversestheprocedure.Thegoalistonotbetheother'starget).Thefirststatemergesthegamerwiththecharacterinthepresenceofthetarget,thesecondmergesthecharacterwiththetarget
andproduces,asaresult,thegamer,astheonewhohitormissed.(SeeFig.6)Thegameroscillateswithinanagonbetweentwoterms:beingseparateandbeingmergedintothegame.InDeusEx,theTemplarsaretheknightsofseparation;theOmarwantnothingbutcompletesynthesisofhumanandmachine.
Thi
sfirstpairintheGreimassquareenacttherealizationofthegameasoneoftwoagonisticstatesinwhichthegamermaybeinrelationtoanygame.186.OnemaybeOmarorTemplar,mergedorseparatedfromgamespace,butthispairoftermsmasksanother:beyondtheantagonisticpositionsofbeingme
rge
dorseparated,thereisapairofslightlydifferentterms,whichareothertotheinitialpairratherthanantagonistictothem.Youmaybeseparateormerged;butyoumayalsobenot-separateornot-merged.Thislatterpairofpossibilitiesopensupalotmoreterritory.Theantagonistofsepara
teismerged,buttheotherofseparateisthenot-separate,whichcouldbemanyotherstates.Theantagonistofmergedisseparate,buttheotherofmergedisnot-merged,whichcouldbemanyotherstates.Withinthegame,theagonisticseemstodefineadigitaldifference:ifnotonething,thenanoth
er.Onetermantagonizesanotherterm;eachofwhichdefinestheothernegatively.Eachiswhattheotherisnot.Butintherelationofgametonot-game,therelationtotheothertermtakesprecedence.Agamealwaysdependsonapriordifference,notquitedigital,butofanotherorder.Thisisothern
ess
,whereinatermispositedagainstapurenegative,againstwhatisnotit.Thisothertermdoesnotinturndrawitsidentityfromthisrelation.Itremainsunmarked.Agamebeginsbyrulingoutwhatisnot-game.Itsaysnothingaboutwhatnot-gameis.Thereisnothingitcansayaboutwhatnot-gamei
s.N
orcanitsaywherenot-gamebeginsorends.187.Tobenot-separatefromthegamecouldbemanythings.Fromwithinthelogicofthegame,theonlywaytoventureintothisterritoryisbypositingsomethingthatcangointheplaceofthenot-separate.ThegameexpandshereundertheguiseoftheIllum
ina
ti.Perhapsthereissomethingbeyondthedigital,on-offrelationofthegamerwiththegame.Perhapsitisbiggerthanthat.Perhapsthereareprotocolsdeterminingwhohasaccesstowhichgame;perhapssomegamesaremoreimportantthanothergames,anddeterminethepossibleoutcomesofsubo
rdi
nategames.Evenmoredisturbing:Perhapsyouonlyappeartobetheplayerofagame.Perhapsyouarereallya'non-playercharacter'inagamecontrolledbysomeoneorsomethingelse.Perhapsifyoutookoffyourownmask,themaskofthegamer,youwouldfindthatyouonlyimagineyourselftobetheo
nep
laying-perhapsyouaretheonewhohasbeenplayed.IceT:"Youplayedyourself."Inagamespacegovernedbyprotocol,bycodesofaccessanddenialofaccess,toonethingfrontedornotfrontedbyanother,everyappearancepromptstheparanoidsuspicionthatitisnotwhatitseems.188.Tobenot-
mer
gedwiththegamemightalsobeamorecomplextermthaneitherthemergedorseparateterms.HoldingdownitsplaceisApostleCorp.Perhapsitisnotaboutmoreorlessseparation.Perhapsitisaqualitativerelationthatcan'tbecapturedbythesimpletermsofseparationandmerger,noryetbythe
pro
tocolsandhierarchiesofthenot-separate.HereyoumayfindtheghostofHuizinga,andaplaythatcallsintobeingitsownrules.Thisfourthtermmaybethemostinterestingofall,butonewhichisusuallysuppressedinfavorofoneoftheotherthree.Nevertheless,thefourthtermhastofindits
pla
ceinthepuzzleinordertounlockthenextlevelinthisgame.189.Thefirststorylinestrand-fromTemplartoIlluminati-startswiththeseparationofgamerandgame,andterroraboutmerginghumanandmachine.Butbeyondthisexistentialtension,thestorylinedevelopsthethoughtofwhatca
nbe
outsideofseparationandmerger.Itfantasizesapowerofcontrolovertherelationbetweenseparationandmerger.Themergeratthebasestlevelsispresidedoverbyaseparationatthetop.Orviceversa:separationatthebottomresistsandreactsagainstmergeratthetop.190.Thesecondstor
yline-fromOmartoApostleCorp-takestheoppositepath.Italsobeginswiththeexistentialquestionoftheseparationofgamerandgame,orofthehumanandthenonhuman.Onlyitresolvesthetensioninfavornotofseparationbutofmerger.Ittakesmergerforgranted.Thisistheproperly'cyberpu
nk'axis.Itstartswiththeassumptionofaschizoidsplittingandmixingoflayersandlevelsoffleshandmetal.Thestorylineaxisthentravelstowardthefourthterm,whichisthatofthenon-merger.Aretherewaysforthesoftmachineofthebodyandthedigitalmachineofthegametoco-exist?Onwh
atterms?Couldtherebeacommunicationbetweenthem?Acommunicationinwhichoneneednotbetheantagonistoftheother?Deleuze&Guattari:"Theschizophrenicistheuniversalproducer.Thereisnoneedtodistinguishherebetweenproducinganditsproduct.Weneedmerelynotethatthepure'thi
sness'oftheobjectproducediscarriedoverintoanewactofproducing."Itmightnotbeanantagonismofopposites,stilllessacommunicationofequivalents,somuchasanexcitationofincommensurables,offleshbymachineandmachinebyflesh.191.TheTemplarattractthesenseofpanic(andres
ignation)aboutthemachine;theOmarafear(andeuphoria)thatitistoolate,andthatanydalliancewiththedigitalsubsumesanythinghuman.TheIlluminatiopentowardaparanoiaaboutwhatmightbebehindgamespace,amysteriousconspiracy,andperhapsacriticaltheory-ofthemilitaryenter
tainmentcomplex.Thefourthtermpointstowardsadigitaldelirium,anegatedrealmofpossibilities-an'extopian'possibility,inwhichgamerandgameceasetoexistasseparateterms,andthereisacompleteeliminationofthelimitsofanytopos.The'extopian'dwellsneitherherenorthere,b
utatonceandatonewiththeworld.ThepossibleendingsofDeusExmapoutthetoposofthemilitaryentertainmentcomplex.ItisasynthesisofthetwocompetingstorylinesthattrytoaccountforeverydaylifefromwithinTheCave(tm),orwhatsomecallthe'posthumancondition'.KatharineHayles:
"Theprospectofbecomingposthumanevokesterrorandexcitespleasure."Perhapsinequalmeasure,andalwaysatthesametime.192.ThefourendingsofDeusExplayoutallofthesepossibilities.TheagonisticforcesoftheTemplarsandtheOmaropentowardwhattheyarenot,butinplaceofwhatthey
arenot,thegamepositsanotherpairofantagonisticterms-IlluminatiandApostleCorp.Thissecondpairstagetheagonisticstorylinesoftheparanoidcomplexandaschizoidcomplexity.FortheTemplars,separationiskey,andyettofightinthisposthumangrid,theyrequiretechnics,armorfo
rexample,whichimplicatestheminvariousformsofnon-separationfromtheverythingtheirbeingisfoundedonseparationfrom.FortheOmar,theproblemisthereverse.Theirsisabeingnotdefinedbyanassumptionofanalways-alreadyseparatebeing,agamerbeforethegamewhichmighthaveanxi
etyaboutitsboundaries,abouttrippingintothenonhuman.Theyarealwaysalreadynothuman.Yettheyhavetofindwaystocommunicatewithwhatishuman,withwhatisseparate,inordertodrawitintothegame.Ateitherendofthisagon,ofcompletemergerorcompleteseparation,theproblemlooksl
ikeoneofanotherdifference-non-separation,non-merger.Butthisotherdifferenceisnowinternaltothegame.Gamespacehascolonizedwhatitisnot,anderectedinitsplaceanewagon.Itsubordinatestheanalogtothedigital.193.Startover.Herearetherulesofthegame:Startwithanagonof
Templarvs.Omar.Findthevaluesmaskedbythesepropernames(separatevs.merged).Discoverthehiddenexclusionmaskedbytheseterms(not-separatevs.not-merged).Detectthepositivetermswhichcovertheabsenceofthesepurelynegations(Illuminativs.ApostleCorp).Nowforthenextlev
el:Doesgamespacestopthere?Orisitnotalwaysadoublemasking,ofthevaluemaskedbythecharacter;andoftheindeterminatenegativitymaskedbyanagonofpositiveterms?AfterunmaskingtheIlluminatiasamerecoverfornon-separation,whatnext?Dothesemaskscoverandcovertoinfinity?H
ereanotherdimensionrevealsitself.Arethesemasksofcharactersforvalues,andofvaluesfornegationsnottheprotocolstoatotalgame?StartingfromtheTemplars,thesearethequestionsonemightposeintheactofgameplay,whichmightworkoutthetermsoftheconspiracybywhichthecomplex
hidesitself,butnotsocompletelythataparanoidsensibilitymightnotpuzzleitout.194.Startoveragain.StartinsteadfromtheOmar.Whatisbehindthem?Thevalueofacompletemergerofgamerandgame.Butwhatmightanon-mergerbe?Couldthisrelationofnotonlygamertogame,butofgamersto
games,beotherwise?Couldamoreintimaterelationofgamertogameyetbetheconditionofpossibilityfortheautonomousself-creationofsomethingbeyondthegamer?Andofsomethingbeyondthegame?StartingfromtheOmar,thisistheterritoryinwhichyoumightfindyourself.Thisistheterrai
nofaschizoidblurringoftheboundariesoffleshandmachine,openingnottowardacomplexofcontrolbutacomplexitybeyondallcentralizingformsofpower.Ratherthanthedigitalboundary,separatinggamerfromgame;hereitisananalogrelation,avariablerelationofgamerintogame.195.De
usExopenstheproblemoftheotherbehindtheagonofpositiveterms-andclosesitagain.Butinthisclosing,itprovidestheplaceforagamertheorytostartanewkindofgame.Orrather,itprovidestwoplaces,andthepossibilityoftwokindsofgamertheory.Thefirstcouldbecalledcritical,orpe
rhapsjustparanoid.FromtheTemplar'sagonwiththeOmar,weignoretheOmarforamomentandthinkinsteadoftheTemplar'srelationtotheIlluminati,whichstandsrevealedasapositivetermmaskingthepointofanegation,thatofthenot-separate.Thisrevelationofapurenegative,whereitisn
otgivenwhattheothertermis,openstowardaparanoidsensibility,whichiswherethepossibilityofacriticalthoughtbeyondthegamemightlie.SigmundFreud:"Thedelusionsofparanoiacshaveanunpalatableexternalsimilarityandinternalkinshiptothesystemsofphilosophers."Theparan
oiaofthenot-separateisinnotknowingwhatyouarenot-separatefrom.Paranoidthoughtalwaysseeksoutthepowersthathideintheshadowsofthenot-separate.196.Startover.StartinsteadfromtheOmar.IgnoringforthemomenttheiragonwiththeTemplars,considerinsteadtheOmar'sotherre
lationtoApostleCorp,whoarepositedintheplaceofthenot-merged.Butheremightlieaquitedifferentpossibilityforagamertheory,notparanoid,butschizoid.RatherthanaskananalystlikeFreudaboutthepowerofnegation,ifyouaskapatient,particularlyapatientwhodefeatedthegame,
perhapsonegetsadifferentanswer,aschizo'sanalysis.HereticalSurrealistAntoninArtaud:"Whichindeedisnotaphilosophy,butinthepanoffriedpotatoes,squareperhapswiththehandleofthecantileverwhichbearslikethespoonintheperforatedtongueofthesexorganforeverdeniedbyt
heheart."Totheparanoidsensibility,whatappearspositively,asone'santagonistmaskswhatisnegative.Itmasksnot-being.Everythingappearsasafighttotheend,unmaskingoneafteranotherasfalsepositivities,eachyieldingoverandovertonothingness,alwaysseekingthefaceoftota
lpowermaskedbehindnot-being.Totheschizoidsensibility,ontheotherhand,undoingtheagonbetweenonepositivityandotheropensupmorepositivedifferences,positivitytoinfinity,andaperverseplayoftermsoutsideanystorylinedemarkingbeingfromnotbeing.Theproblemwithschizo
sisthattheytakewordsforthings;Theproblemwithparanoiacsisthattheytakethingsforwords.197.Bothchoicesofferedforagamertheoryhavetheirlimitations.Onestartswithseparationfromthegameandopenstowardsconspiracytheories,andperhapstowardsacriticaltheoryofseparati
on.Thismovesuppressesatopiawithoutrealizingit.Theotherstartswiththemergerofgamerintogameandopenstowardsa'cyberpunk'celebrationofthehybridityofnervoussystemandcircuitboard.Thismoverealizesatopiawithoutsuppressingit.Theriseofgamespacemayconcludewitheith
erthesuppressionandrealizationofthegame-andthegamer.Whatcouldbetheendgameofgamespaceitself?Who-orwhat-cancomeafterthepersonaofthegamer?Howcanyoubothsuppressandrealizethegame?Howcouldonecometoliveinatoposinwhichone'sactionscanbefreelychosenandyetnotins
ignificant?Howcouldonebebothfreefromnecessityyetunsulliedbyboredom?Howcouldonebeneitheraprisonerofworknorcondemnedtoamerelyfrivolousplay?Thisiswhatisatstakeinthegame.198.AnotherGreimassquare:childishplayisantagonistictotheseriousbusinessofwork.Playerv
s.worker.Butwhostandsintheplaceofthenon-player?Thegamer.Thegamerisoutsideofbutnottheoppositeoftheplayer.Butwhothenisthenon-worker?Let'scallthischaracterthehacker.(Fig.9)Tohackisoutsideofbutnotoppositetowork.Itisafree,selfdirectedactivitywhichmakesitso
wnrules,itsownconditionsofcompletionanditsownprotocolsofsuccess.Itisanalgorithmthatwritesitself.Itisapracticebeyondworkandplay,andagainstthegame,andwhichcallsforanothercharacter.Hereisthemaskofthefourthcharacter:"Wearethehackersofabstraction.Weproduce
newconcepts,newperceptions,newsensations,hackedoutofrawdata.Whatevercodewehack,beitprogramminglanguage,poeticlanguage,mathormusic,curvesorcolorings,wearetheabstractersofnewworlds."Thecharacterofthehackeriswhatisworshippedinthatnewcategoryofcelebrity-t
hegamedesigner.Ifthecelebritiesofplayweretransgressorsofrules;thecelebritiesofthegamearemakersofrules-butonlywithincertainconstraints.Noteventhegamedesignergetstomaketherulesofgamespace.NotevenanInformationOverlordliketheCEOofElectronicArts,LarryProbs
t.Whatwoulditmeantobeahackernotjustofgamesbutofgamespaceitself?ThisistherealizedatopiathatApostleCorpstandsfor.199.InDeusEx:InvisibleWarthenameforwhatisatthecenterofthisuniverseoffuturesisHelios.Thissunaroundwhichallrevolvesissaidtobe-likeEdeninRez-an
'artificialintelligence',butisineffectagameengine,andwhatisatstakeistherelation,viathisgameengine,ofthegamerwiththegame.Agameengineisamakerofworlds,butofworldsthatappearasiftheyweremadeforthegamer,asiftheylentthemselvestoactionswhichcoulduncovertheirp
rotocols.Whileothermediapresenttheworldasifitwereforyoutolookat,thegameenginepresentsworldsasiftheywerenotjustforyoutolookat,butforyoutoactupontheminawaythatisgiven.Therealmofthenot-gameisthedomaininwhichthegamercannotactasagamer.Theseparationofthegam
efromthenot-gamecreatesthisspaceofpossibleperceptionsandactions.200.DeusExhasafifthending,nestedinsidethegame,whereallofitscharacters,regardlessofrankorfaction,getdownandparty.Hereisthelimittogamespacewithingamespaceitself,wheredifferenceslackantagoni
sm,andyetforallthatdonotceasetobedifferences.Termscoexistwithoutreductiontoonevs.another.Couldtherebeatoposaftertopology,whichisnotaregression,backtothetopographic,oreventhetopical?Couldtherebeanovercomingofnecessitythatdoesnotdissipateintouselessbore
dom?Couldthegamercomeintopossessionofthemeanstomaketheruleaswellasthemove?Couldthegameralsobeahacker,amakerofrulesformovesaswellasofmoveswithinrules?ThisisthethresholdtowhichDeusExbringsus.Butifthereisadeusexmachinaatworkinthisgame,itistheonethatrescu
esthegameitselffromitsownovercoming.Eventhefifthending,whichcouldpointtoaconclusionbeyondthegame,merelypositsanotherone,wherecharactersmasqueradelikecelebrities,andthegameristofeelprivilegedtohaveslippedbehindthevelvetrope.176.Therearefourwaysinwhicht
hetopologyofgamespacecancometoanendandbesupercededbyanewtopos-atleastaccordingtothegameDeusEx:InvisibleWar.(Ifyouhaveplayedthisgameyoumayknowthereisalsoafifthending,ofwhichprotocoldemandsthewithholdinguntilthepuzzleoftheotherfourendingsunlocksitssigni
ficance.)Inthegame,yourcharacterhastochoosebetweenaidingthevictoryofoneoffourorganizations,allofwhichareatoddswitheachother,andeachofwhichhasitsownideaofhowtorealizeapermanentatopiabeyondgamespace,atoposbeyondtopology.Workingbackwardsfromthesefourendi
ngsitispossibletoplotthebackstory,notjustofDeusExbutofthemilitaryentertainmentcomplex-atleastasitcanbeunderstoodfromwithinthegame,fromwithinTheCave(tm)itself.177.ThefourendingsofDeusExcanbepiecedtogetherbyarrangingthemintwopairs.(Seefig.8)Thefirst,mor
e'personal'pairofendingspitsthevictoryoftheTemplarsagainstthatoftheOmar.TheTemplarsareafanaticalreligiousorderdevotedtothebody'spurificationofall'biomods'.TheOmarareanolessfearsomecollectiveorganismofblackmarketeers,inwhichthebodyhasbeensubsumedintote
chnology.Thesecond,more'political'pairofendingspitsthevictoryoftheIlluminatiagainstthatofApostleCorp.TheIlluminatiareasecretcabalofpower-brokershiddenbehindorganizationalfronts,dedicatedtorestoringorderundertheircontrol.ApostleCorpisatechno-intellectu
alfactiondedicatedtobringingaboutajustanddemocraticbutnoless'posthuman'civilization.You,thegamer,playaminorcharacter,whocanneverthelesstipthebalancebetweenthesepowersandtheirgoals.178.DeusExisashadowyworld.Someoftheorganizationswhoatfirstappearsopower
fularejustfrontsforothers.Forinstancetheneo-liberalWTOandthereligiousfundamentalistsofTheOrder,whichappearantagonistictoeachotherineveryway,turnoutinclassicconspiracytheorystyletobebutmaskssecretlycontrolledbytheIlluminati.Thischainofunmaskingcanbeext
endedevenbeyondthegame.Behindthefinalfourpowers-TemplarandOmar,IlluminatiandApostleCorp-isatleastonemoreunmasking.Thefirstpairofendings-TemplarandOmar-masksanagonbetweenthecompleteassimilationofthehumanintothemachine(Omar)versusthecompleterejectionoft
heintercourseofbodywithmachine(Templar).Alongthisaxis,theproblemofwheregamespaceisheadingis'personal',aquestionoftheboundariesofthebodyanditsother.Theotherpairofendings-IlluminatiandApostleCorp-islessabouttheimmediaterelationofbodytomachineassomething
'personal'.Itisaboutsomethingnotpersonal,somethingthatisperhapspolitical.Heretheendsofgamespaceareanagonbetweenademocraticrelation,inwhichallbodiescommunicateequallywithmachines;versusthehierarchical,whereallcommunicationpassesviaacontrollingpower.The
personalispolitical,butinDeusExtheimpersonalispolitical,too.179.Forthegamer,itisalwaysamatterofstartingatthebeginningandplayingthroughtotheend.IntheoriginalDeusExanditssequel,InvisibleWar,therearedifferentwaysofgettingfrombeginningtoend.Itcanbedonebys
tealth,byviolence,ornegotiation,buteitherwaythegamerevealsitselflevelbylevel,fromstarttofinish.Forthegamerastheorist,perhapsinDeusExit'samatteroftakingtheendasthestartingpoint.Thequestionofwhatcanconstituteanendstateisthequestionofwhatoccupiesthelimit
stothoughtwithingamespace.Whythesefourendings?Iftheyarejustarbitrary,randompossibilities,thentheymaybefunforthegamertoplaythroughtobutnotmuchfunforthegamertheoristtostartoutfrominthisothergame-theothergameoftherelationbetweentheallegorithmofthegametot
heallegoryofgamespace.ButperhapsthefourendingsofDeusExarenotrandombutareratherthepiecesofapuzzle.180.BehindthefourorganizationswhovieforpowerinInvisibleWararefourmoreabstract,moreimpersonalantagonistswhostalkthefantasticvistasofgamespaceitself.Eithert
echnologytrumpsthehuman,orviceversa.(Templarvs.Omar.)Eitherdemocracytrumpshierarchy,orviceversa.(Illuminativs.ApostleCorp.)Butbeyondthat,perhapsthegamereachesacertainlimit.Behindthismaskisnotanothermask;behindthispowerisnotanotherpower,butsomethingels
e-adiagramoftheavatarsofpower.Thefourendingsexhaustthepossibilitieswithinwhichgamespacecanthinkaboutitself.Theyareitsendgame.Butwhilethereisnotatthispointanothercharactertounmask,thereisapuzzletosolveinthearrangementofthesemasks.Theseendings,andwhatth
eymask,enterintoquitedefiniterelations.Thefourtermsinvitethegamertheoristtoanewkindofgame.181.ThefourpossibleendingsofDeusExfitona'Greimassquare.'Whichistosay,theendingsaretermsinagameofmeaningmaking.(SeeFig.8)IfGeorgePerecistheavantgardeaestheteofgam
espace,Greimasisitspioneeringtheorist,forwhomallculturecannowbethoughtretrospectivelyintermsofthegame.A.J.Greimas:"Perhapsoutofadesireforintelligibility,wecanimaginethat,inordertoachievetheconstructionofculturalobjects(literary,mythical,pictorial,etc.
),thehumanmindbeginswithsimpleelementsandfollowsacomplextrajectory,encounteringonitswaybothconstraintstowhichitmustsubmitandchoicesitisabletomake."Orinotherwords,theplayofmeaningismadewithintheboundsofagame.Atstakehereistherelationofplaytogame.Astopog
raphygiveswaytotopology,gamerisesinprominencerelativetoplay.Intherealmofavantgardestrategies,thegamewithinconstraintsofGeorgePerecsupercedestheplaybeyondgameofGuyDebord.Intherearguardoftheoreticalstrategies,thegameofmeaningsupercedesthemeaningofgames;
A.JGreimastopsJohanHuizinga.ForHuizingaplayprecedesgame.Itistheplay'instinct'thatinspirestheformationofforms.Greimasanticipatestheenclosureofplaywithingamespace.Asthewholeofspacesuccumbstothegame,itisthelogicofconstraintswhichdeterminethepossibilities
ofplay.182.Huizinga,writingintheshadowoftheNazis,knewwhatwascoming:"Itremainedforthetheoryof'totalwar'toextinguishthelastvestigeoftheplayelement."Themilitaryindustrialcomplexisonitsway.Totalwarthenextendsitslogisticstothespacesofwork,andfinallyplayit
self.Nowthemilitaryentertainmentcomplexisonitsway.TransgressiveplayhasitslasthurrahintheSituationistattempttoliveoutHuizinga'stheoryasaprogramforaction.GreilMarcus:"Asbathositwasjustdrunkstryingtowalkandthinkatthesametime."Thereisnowheretohideoutsideo
fgamespace-thetotalgame.GuyDebord:"Onecannotgointoexileinaunifiedworld."TheformerleaderoftheSituationistswilldevotehisdecliningyearstodesigningandplayingaboardgamewhichformalizesallheimagineshehaslearnedaboutrevolutionaryplaytime,andyetentombsitwithin
itsrules.183.Withtheriseoftopology,thetensionbetweengameandplayisresolvedinfavorofthegame.Whetherinart,theory,orineverydaylife:Thereisnothingoutsidethegame.Thestoryline,whichoncemarkedtheboundarieswithinwhichagamecouldbegin,becomesinternaltogamespace,
andisnowmuchmoreaboutlegitimizingthepointatwhichagame'must'end.Thestorylinebecomesjusttheworkingout,onemoveatatime,ofapossiblelinethroughtheconstraintsofgamespace.Inthegameitisanalgorithmthatdetermineswhensomethingcanend;butitisthestorylinethatmakesth
isendpointseemnatural,inevitable,andnecessary.Butwhileastorylinehasanending,DeusExhasfourendings.Itrevealsjustabitmoreoftherulesofthegameofmeaningmakingthanastoryusuallywould.ThatDeusExisagameoffourendingsisalreadyaslightslippageofthemask,revealingthe
rulesofthemeaning-makinggame.184.Intopographictimes,heterotopiangamesgaveontonon-gamespaces.Agamewasdelineatedbywhatitwasnot.Intopologicaltimes,atopiangamesgiveontonothingbutothergames.Ingamespace,theexitfromonegamewillturnouttobeanentryintoanother.Ea
chcaveletsontoanothercave.Butthisdoesnotbanishtheproblemofwhatisnot-game.Onthecontrary,itmakesitapervasiveandincessantproblem.Itslocusisthegamer,whocanonlybeagamerbybeingconstantlypulledintoandpushedoutofonegameafteranother,andwho,inmomentsofboredomin
between,glimpsestheveryconditionsofpossibilityofgamespace.Thesearethemomentswhenthegamercanneithertargetsomethingwithinthegamenorbethetargetthegameitselfselectstomakeitsown.Thetensionisnolongerwhatispriortooroutsidethegame,butwhat,frominsidethegame,ma
ybringittoanend-andwhatthatendmightbe.185.Thegamer'sboredomarisesoutoftherecognitionthat,underthevariegatedspectacleofdetails,theactofgamingisalwaysessentiallythesame.Thegameroscillatesbetweentwostates.Thefirststateisbeingseparatefromthetarget;theseco
ndisbeingmergedwiththetarget.(PlayingDeusExinstealthmodeonlyreversestheprocedure.Thegoalistonotbetheother'starget).Thefirststatemergesthegamerwiththecharacterinthepresenceofthetarget,thesecondmergesthecharacterwiththetargetandproduces,asaresult,thegam
er,astheonewhohitormissed.(SeeFig.6)Thegameroscillateswithinanagonbetweentwoterms:beingseparateandbeingmergedintothegame.InDeusEx,theTemplarsaretheknightsofseparation;theOmarwantnothingbutcompletesynthesisofhumanandmachine.ThisfirstpairintheGreimassqu
areenacttherealizationofthegameasoneoftwoagonisticstatesinwhichthegamermaybeinrelationtoanygame.186.OnemaybeOmarorTemplar,mergedorseparatedfromgamespace,butthispairoftermsmasksanother:beyondtheantagonisticpositionsofbeingmergedorseparated,thereisapair
ofslightlydifferentterms,whichareothertotheinitialpairratherthanantagonistictothem.Youmaybeseparateormerged;butyoumayalsobenot-separateornot-merged.Thislatterpairofpossibilitiesopensupalotmoreterritory.Theantagonistofseparateismerged,buttheotherofsepa
rateisthenot-separate,whichcouldbemanyotherstates.Theantagonistofmergedisseparate,buttheotherofmergedisnot-merged,whichcouldbemanyotherstates.Withinthegame,theagonisticseemstodefineadigitaldifference:ifnotonething,thenanother.Onetermantagonizesanother
term;eachofwhichdefinestheothernegatively.Eachiswhattheotherisnot.Butintherelationofgametonot-game,therelationtotheothertermtakesprecedence.Agamealwaysdependsonapriordifference,notquitedigital,butofanotherorder.Thisisotherness,whereinatermispositedaga
instapurenegative,againstwhatisnotit.Thisothertermdoesnotinturndrawitsidentityfromthisrelation.Itremainsunmarked.Agamebeginsbyrulingoutwhatisnot-game.Itsaysnothingaboutwhatnot-gameis.Thereisnothingitcansayaboutwhatnot-gameis.Norcanitsaywherenot-gamebe
ginsorends.187.Tobenot-separatefromthegamecouldbemanythings.Fromwithinthelogicofthegame,theonlywaytoventureintothisterritoryisbypositingsomethingthatcangointheplaceofthenot-separate.ThegameexpandshereundertheguiseoftheIlluminati.Perhapsthereissomethin
gbeyondthedigital,on-offrelationofthegamerwiththegame.Perhapsitisbiggerthanthat.Perhapsthereareprotocolsdeterminingwhohasaccesstowhichgame;perhapssomegamesaremoreimportantthanothergames,anddeterminethepossibleoutcomesofsubordinategames.Evenmoredisturb
ing:Perhapsyouonlyappeartobetheplayerofagame.Perhapsyouarereallya'non-playercharacter'inagamecontrolledbysomeoneorsomethingelse.Perhapsifyoutookoffyourownmask,themaskofthegamer,youwouldfindthatyouonlyimagineyourselftobetheoneplaying-perhapsyouaretheon
ewhohasbeenplayed.IceT:"Youplayedyourself."Inagamespacegovernedbyprotocol,bycodesofaccessanddenialofaccess,toonethingfrontedornotfrontedbyanother,everyappearancepromptstheparanoidsuspicionthatitisnotwhatitseems.188.Tobenot-mergedwiththegamemightalsobe
amorecomplextermthaneitherthemergedorseparateterms.HoldingdownitsplaceisApostleCorp.Perhapsitisnotaboutmoreorlessseparation.Perhapsitisaqualitativerelationthatcan'tbecapturedbythesimpletermsofseparationandmerger,noryetbytheprotocolsandhierarchiesofthe
not-separate.HereyoumayfindtheghostofHuizinga,andaplaythatcallsintobeingitsownrules.Thisfourthtermmaybethemostinterestingofall,butonewhichisusuallysuppressedinfavorofoneoftheotherthree.Nevertheless,thefourthtermhastofinditsplaceinthepuzzleinordertounl
ockthenextlevelinthisgame.189.Thefirststorylinestrand-fromTemplartoIlluminati-startswiththeseparationofgamerandgame,andterroraboutmerginghumanandmachine.Butbeyondthisexistentialtension,thestorylinedevelopsthethoughtofwhatcanbeoutsideofseparationandmer
ger.Itfantasizesapowerofcontrolovertherelationbetweenseparationandmerger.Themergeratthebasestlevelsispresidedoverbyaseparationatthetop.Orviceversa:separationatthebottomresistsandreactsagainstmergeratthetop.190.Thesecondstoryline-fromOmartoApostleCorp-