Watch_Dogs 2 - The Movie

Well, I suppose that technically could count as a form of social engineering.

FADE IN:

EXT. GREY, RAINY CHICAGO

AIDEN PEARCE is STARING MOODILY out the window at the BLEAK CHICAGO SKYLINE, wearing one of his STUPID OVERSIZED TRENCHCOATS.

AIDEN PEARCE

Brood bland brood. I have so much generic anger over the people who have done me wrong. Now I must go and exact more sullen, boring revenge.

DEVELOPER UBISOFT MONTREAL backs slowly out of the ROOM, sprints to the CAR, drives hell for leather to the AIRPORT, and jumps on a PLANE to SUNNY CALIFORNIA, NEVER TO RETURN.

EXT. EXCITING, COLOURFUL SAN FRANCISCO

HIP YOUNG HACKER MARCUS HOLLOWAY is preparing to break into a BLUME SERVER FARM.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

That’s right everybody, the Ubisoft marketing department has officially shelved its Stock Gritty Antihero research, and instead dusted off their focus group studies for Relatable Goofball Everyman! Check out my perpetual non-threatening smile and endless supply of unfunny wisecracks!

As he commences the BREAK-IN, he is observed remotely by SITARA DHAWAN, WRENCH, JOSH SAUCHAK and HORATIO CARLIN, members of the rebel hacker collective DEDSEC.

SITARA DHAWAN

So how’s he doing?

JOSH SAUCHAK

Uhh, he just bashed some guard over the head with what looks like a rock on a string. Then he pressed a button on his phone that made a door open. Now he’s sneaking up some staircases and just rockbashing every guard who looks at him funny.

WRENCH

Maybe we could make this seem more thrilling if we just hyped it up as much as possible? I mean, we do want to indoctrinate everyone into thinking “sneaking around and pressing the hack button” makes you the most badass genius wizard in the world.

JOSH SAUCHAK

Good point.

(clears throat)

Holy shit! My brain is breaking from this astonishing display of virtuosity!

HORATIO CARLIN

No feat of this kind has ever been achieved before! This level of technical bravado has uncoupled my very concept of reality!

(gibbers)

SITARA DHAWAN

Here, let me pipe some incredibly annoying buttstep into his headphones to really get the juices flowing!

Finally, MARCUS succeeds in deleting his ctOS PROFILE and ESCAPES.

SITARA DHAWAN

Well done, you’ve passed your audition and are now a member of DedSec! Come meet our diverse group of computer hacker stereotypes.

WRENCH

I’m the anarchistic, stick-it-to-the-man, WILD AND CRAAAZY one! My kooky shtick involves always wearing an electronic mask with eyes that bloop out a constant string of mostly random punctuation, as though my face was trying to swear in a family-friendly comic strip.

JOSH SAUCHAK

I’m a socially awkward basement dweller vaguely perched somewhere on the autism spectrum.

SITARA DHAWAN

I’m your artsy, expressive hacker concerned with “the message” and “our brand,” who thinks the right YouTube video could end corporate greed forever. I do all of our art design.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Oh, so all this shit on the walls and in the DedSec videos, the cluttered obnoxious postmodern clusterfuck that makes my eyes want to crawl out of their sockets?

SITARA DHAWAN

All me, baby!

HORATIO CARLIN

Meanwhile I’m an ordinary person with technical skill, a problem with authority, a fondness for the idea of myself as a rebel, and a whole lot of free time. I’m actually a halfway realistic portrayal of a hacker, which is presumably why I barely feature in this game.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Also because you’ve basically just described me and there can’t be two of me! Okay, so what are we doing? We do have an overarching goal which is clear and compelling enough to drive the story forward, right? This is a Ubisoft sandbox game, so you can see why I feel the need to ask.

SITARA DHAWAN

Well, despite Aiden Pearce’s efforts to destroy Chicago’s evil city-wide data-stealing network ctOS, the evil software megacorporation Blume is trying again here in San Francisco.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

I don’t suppose it still has all the gaping holes in security which allowed Pearce to turn it against Blume over and over again, and which ultimately made it an embarrassing liability for all involved?

SITARA DHAWAN

It absolutely does! Their evil scheme is basically like if Samsung were cackling in some secret meeting about how their next generation of smartphones was going to be even MORE prone to spontaneous combustion.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Alright, so overarching goal, get rid of ctOS. Good enough, even though Watch_Dogs 3 will probably just start it up again in Vegas or someplace. Now, here’s the real tricky part. Is this goal going to have any tangible connection whatsoever to the missions we do along the way?

HORATIO CARLIN

Believe it or not, yes! I mean -- sort of? See, to bring down Blume we’ll need a lot of processing power, which we’ll get by using the devices of people who download the DedSec app --

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

There’s a DedSec app? We’re an underground group of digital guerilla warriors, and we have an app? Like, on the app store and everything?

HORATIO CARLIN

Hey, you should see our range of hoodies and baseball caps. We’ve commodified our own counterculture! Anyway, the more people who download the app, the more processing power we have access to, so we need to do all kinds of crazy shit to gain followers.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Okay, that has got to be the slenderest thread a sandbox game has ever hung its narrative on. To succeed at our goal, we have to -- do random stuff.

WRENCH

Would you prefer a dead niece? Fuck off. The first random thing is sabotaging the release of a new movie. We’re protesting it because it displays computer hackers in a completely unrealistic, action-heavy, technologically impossible way, what an insult!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Sheesh, glass houses much?

EXT. HOOK MOTION PICTURE STUDIOS - SAN FRANCISCO

MARCUS storms the MOVIE STUDIO. He runs over the first few GUARDS in his CAR, then takes out the others by SHOOTING THEM and hacking various parts of the environment to EXPLODE.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Ha! Serves you right for being contracted to work for a studio that produced an action movie which wasn’t very realistic!

SITARA contacts MARCUS through the, ugh, “DEDS3C CHANNEL.”

SITARA DHAWAN

Hoo boy, this isn’t helping us come off as particularly heroic. Maybe in the future we should take a stealthier approach? Just to avoid ousting the Uncharted series as the new poster child for ludonarrative dissonances.

WRENCH

Marcus, try completing your missions remotely through drones! We’ve got a remote-controlled car and a quadcopter, both of which we can manufacture with our impossible sci-fi 3D printer that can print complex electronics as well as Nerf guns with bullets already in them.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

(prints RC car)

Cool! And now to print the quadcopter -- what? I have to pay to do that? I have to pay SIXTY-SEVEN THOUSAND DOLLARS? For that kind of money I could go into an electronics store and buy forty quadcopters!

WRENCH

Don’t sweat it, just pick up some of the large sacks of money which are lying around on people’s rooftops for some reason.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Alright. Whelp, that was everything worth purchasing in this game.

(cancels bank account, burns wallet)

WRENCH

For your next mission, you’ll be taking on an electronics company called Haum. They’ve been using their devices to spy on their customers and collect their data. What sick privacy-violating assholes, right?

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Sorry, what? I was just hacking a random passerby’s phone to listen in on her phone conversation. Turns out her husband’s cheating on her, the loser!

EXT. HAUM ELECTRONICS - SAN FRANCISCO

MARCUS goes and sits outside HAUM HEADQUARTERS. He sends in his RC CAR to HACK all their HACKS.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Sweet, I was just able to navigate the car around some guards, through some ducts, up some stairs and finally get to my objective and -- wait a minute. Now it’s telling me I have to do this hack in person!

WRENCH

Oh yeah, every so often we throw a mission at you that you can’t complete with your drones, and you have no way of knowing it until you’ve already nine-tenths completed it with your drones. That’s fine, right?

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

(grits teeth)

Oh sure, in the same way that Charlie Brown was totally fine with it every time Lucy pulled the football away.

He does the WHOLE MISSION ALL OVER AGAIN IN PERSON, and grabs evidence against HAUM, which DEDSEC releases.

JOSH SAUCHAK

There we go. I’m sure that will have some kind of consequences for somebody. Honestly, we don’t really care. That isolated mission is finished, so let’s never speak of it again and move on.

SITARA DHAWAN

Next we’re taking on New Dawn, a religious cult with absurd ideas about aliens which has a reputation for brainwashing celebrities --

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Congratulations, it’s the one millionth expy for Scientology in a satirical videogame! What’ve these guys been up to?

SITARA DHAWAN

They’ve been stealing data from their wealthy followers to blackmail them!

(beat)

Oh, and any church member who expresses doubt gets abducted and dragged to a secret reeducation camp, sometimes never to return. But we have to throw the data theft thing in there too, because that’s kind of our whole thing.

EXT. NEW DAWN COMPOUND - SAN FRANCISCO

MARCUS breaks into the secret kidnap-murder camp of FAKE SCIENTOLOGY, where he finds they are currently holding FAKE TOM CRUISE.

FAKE TOM CRUISE

Thank God! Get me out of here!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Look, we don’t have any mechanics for an escort mission. Just rescue yourself and then give us credit, alright?

FAKE TOM CRUISE

(leaving)

Okay then! And to show my gratitude, I’ll appear in one of your annoying videos, spilling the beans about New Dawn’s scuzzy antics.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Sweet, that’ll hurt them bad! Unless -- Sitara, you’re not gonna call the footage into question by distorting Fake Tom’s voice and plastering a bunch of your stupid animations over his face, are you?

SITARA DHAWAN

Man, don’t try to pollute my artistic vision with your “coherence” and “watchability!”

JOSH SAUCHAK

This is all going pretty well, guys! We’re getting a lot of new followers!

(squints)

OH CRAP THEY’RE BOTS SO MANY BOTS SOMEBODY’S ARTIFICIALLY INFLATING OUR NUMBERS WITH BOTS OH FUCK OH FUCK!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Wait, if followers equal processing power for our mission to take down Blume, shouldn’t we have noticed that, like, immediately?

HORATIO CARLIN

It seems these fake user accounts are being created by !NViTE, also known as Fakebook. Marcus, go hack their entire office and find out why they’d do something like this.

INT. !NViTE OFFICE - SAN FRANCISCO

MARCUS breaks into !NViTE and finds SOME GUY CALLED DUSAN NEMEC waiting for him.

DUSAN NEMEC

Hi there! I’m the CTO of Blume, and I’ll be your main villain for this game. And can we just take a moment to appreciate how impressively douchey they’ve made me? My self-satisfied behaviour, my scraggly hipster beard, my unsightly man bun, my lame turtlenecks and wrist bands, and oh yeah, the fact that my name literally starts with “douche.”

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

I feel compelled to point out that, if you succeed that much at making a character seem like your typical Silicon Valley corporate dickwheel, you automatically fail at making him seem the least bit threatening.

DUSAN NEMEC

But I’m so evil! I’m behind !NViTE creating those fake DedSec followers! In fact, almost every mission will end with you foiling some company or criminal or whatever, then finding out I was behind it the whole time! DUN DUN DUNNNN!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

About those fake followers. Why were you trying to make us look good?

DUSAN NEMEC

Because, as I see it, the more capable DedSec appears at exploiting ctOS’s many, many, vast, vast vulnerabilities, the more people will turn to ctOS to safeguard their digital security.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

I don’t find that reasoning especially sound.

DUSAN NEMEC

Apparently neither do I, because now I’ve deleted those fake supporters to humiliate you guys? You know what, forget the reasoning. I think I might just be doing generic evil stuff. For example, I’ve reinstated your ctOS profile and put out an APB on you for hacking, corporate espionage, and breaking and entering.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

What? You bastard! Sending the cops after me for all those crimes that I actually committed!

(beat)

Actually yeah, I can’t really complain too much about that, can I? In fact, thanks for not throwing in the theft, vandalism, assault, vehicular manslaughter, and straight-up murder.

DUSAN NEMEC

You’re welcome. Can I offer you some kombucha before you leave? I just fermented a fresh batch.

(starts doing yoga)

MARCUS flees the COPS and heads back to DEDSEC HQ.

SITARA DHAWAN

Our reputation is in tatters! What the hell are we gonna do?

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

I have an idea. Let’s go to Burning Man!

SITARA DHAWAN

Seriously?

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Ha ha naw, just kidding.

SITARA DHAWAN

Phew, because that would have been the most asinine --

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Let’s go to Swelter Skelter, our made-up version of Burning Man which, like everything else in this franchise, revolves around hackers and hacking!

SITARA DHAWAN

Wow, you came up with something more asinine before I could even finish my sentence. Well played.

EXT. SWELTER SKELTER

The SCOOBY GANG go out to the DESERT and enter FAKE BURNING MAN, retreating to the WILDERNESS to engage in a NEAR-PAGANISTIC OUTPOURING OF PRIMAL CREATIVE ENERGY. Following logically from that, they compete in a COMPUTER HACKING CHALLENGE.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

In our defense, we’re doing that tile-rotating Pipe Dream thing again, so anybody who knows anything would happily admit that no, we’re not doing anything that even remotely resembles hacking.

They win the CHALLENGE, at which point the EVENT ORGANISER reveals himself. It turns out to be RAYMOND KENNEY, who has thankfully stopped calling himself T-BONE.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

If it isn’t the illustrious Raymond Kenney! How you doing, man?

RAYMOND KENNEY

Still a mentally unstable hobo!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Great! Listen, it just occurred to me that our collective of hacker stereotypes is still missing the “paranoid anti-government whackjob” type. You in?

RAYMOND KENNEY

Sure, maybe my eccentricities will come off as less ridiculous when they’re not constantly being contrasted with Broody McTrenchcoat back in Chicago. Now let's drop some acid, because we can't have a Ubisoft game without tripping balls somewhere along the line!

When everyone is COMING DOWN HARD, RAY runs over to MARCUS.

RAYMOND KENNEY

You gotta help me! I slept with a biker’s girlfriend and now we have to have a gunfight with his whole gang!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Whoa, dude. Pacifist run over here.

RAYMOND KENNEY

Oh shit, sorry. Well, I guess we can --

INT. HACKERSPACE - SAN FRANCISCO

RAYMOND KENNEY

-- cut straight back to San Francisco, leaving that biker fight as a painfully obvious cut sequence.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Umm, that seems like a bit of a slap in the face to the people out there who did want a bit of action. What the hell, at least we can assume for our own peace of mind that that situation got resolved peacefully.

RADIO ANNOUNCER

This just in! A biker shootout in the desert! Many killed! So, so many dead people!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Goddamnit. Fine then, let’s make with the random missions.

RAYMOND KENNEY

Yeeeehaw! Your next target is Nudle.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Fake Google, I’m assuming?

RAYMOND KENNEY

Precisely. Get this, they’ve been gathering data on their users and selling it to Blume!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

So they steal data and Dusan is behind it? Isn’t that just the barebones template for almost every mission?

HORATIO CARLIN

I guess this mission accidentally skipped the stage where we rub on the superficial embellishments. Anyway, my day job is at Nudle, so I can help you pose as a Nudle bus driver. This will give you access to the Nudle offices, except for the restricted areas.

(beat)

Which is the same access granted to any pedestrian who wanders in off the street, so yeah.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

If you already work there, why don’t you just hack their servers yourself?

HORATIO CARLIN

We’ve been over this, haven’t we? We’re essentially the same character, but you’re the one who gets to go out and do everything.

INT. NUDLE CAMPUS - SAN FRANCISCO

MARCUS successfully hacks the NUDLE SERVERS. While he does that, HORATIO is discovered as a DEDSEC MEMBER by one of his SUPERIORS.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Whuh-oh! I guess it’s insanely lucky this is happening at the exact time that I’m already fiddling around inside Nudle’s system.

(hackity hack hack)

HORATIO’S SUPERIOR

So now that I’ve revealed you as a cyberterrorist, allow me to act vaguely snide, thus calling down an inevitable reprisal upon myself!

HORATIO’S SUPERIOR’S SUPERIOR

Stop right there, Horatio’s superior! We’ve just now gone over both your and Horatio’s keystroke logs, and it seems that you’re the spy! Also it turns out he’s been doing all of your work and you’ve been doing all of his. What the hell is wrong with you two? Take him away, men!

HORATIO’S SUPERIOR

Wait! Come on, Horatio’s obviously the real criminal! For the love of Christ, his name and face don’t even show up in the ctOS profiler!

(dragged away)

Please! I’m just an honest employee who found out one of his underlings was a saboteur and spy! I actually seriously haven’t done anything wroooong!

(life ruined)

MARCUS and HORATIO get out of there.

HORATIO CARLIN

Thanks for saving me back there. It really means a lot, having a brother watching out for me, keeping me from a fate such as --

HORATIO is suddenly KIDNAPPED and MURDERED.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Whoa, what? What the fuck just happened? Is Dusan going after us for real now? That FUCKER!

WRENCH

No, actually it turns out Horatio was killed by the Tezcas.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

The -- who?

WRENCH

Some street gang who haven’t ever factored into the story before, and never will again after we get our revenge. In fact, this whole mission is so disconnected from everything that this script has put it out of order and you would never have noticed if we didn’t mention that.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Wow, way to make an important character death completely gratuitous and meaningless. We might as well have had an alligator eat him.

WRENCH

Look on the bright side. Screw ludonarrative dissonance, we can totally feel justified using lethal force for once! The mission’s called Eye for an Eye and everything! In fact, it was called that before we even knew something had happened to Horatio, so we really should have seen that coming.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

AW YEAH! I mean, there wouldn’t even be a pacifist option for this mission, would there?

WRENCH

If you want, you can just go knock out the murderers with your taser or your yo-yo, then still gloat about how “we’ll never have to worry about them again.”

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Ha! That’s cute. Nope nope nope, murder time.

EXT. TEZCAS HIDEOUT - SAN FRANCISCO

MARCUS goes to retaliate against the TEZCA LEADERS who killed HORATIO.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Alright assholes, as soon as I figure out an approach, I’m gonna tear you a new --

A nearby SPARROW FARTS, at which point the TEZCAS and some RIVAL GANG all FREAK OUT and start SHOOTING EACH OTHER, and REINFORCEMENTS ARE CALLED, and CIVILIANS call the COPS, and soon there’s a HUGE CLUSTERFUCK of GUNFIRE and EXPLOSIONS. Somewhere in all that, the relevant BAD GUYS get DEAD.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Uhh -- that’ll learn ya!

(leaves)

INT. HACKERSPACE - SAN FRANCISCO

Suddenly there are ANIMATED CATS everywhere.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

What the hell? Guys, I’ve been hacked! There’s cartoon cats pooping all over the screen!

JOSH SAUCHAK

What screen? Your phone screen?

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Well no, the -- THE screen, you know? The computer or television screen on which this game is currently being displayed.

JOSH SAUCHAK

You mean the screen which, in our reality, doesn’t exist?

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Yeah. That one.

(beat)

Look, please just figure this out before I start thinking too hard about how the interface for this game works and I completely lose touch with reality, okay?

Then all the LESS CONCEPTUAL SCREENS in the HEADQUARTERS start blaring the unsightly face of a woman named LENORA “LENNI” KASTNER.

LENORA KASTNER

Bwah ha haaa! I’m the leader of DedSec’s evil counterpart, Prime_Eight! I’ve hacked all YOUR hacks, how do YOU like it? Oh, and the usual thing about Dusan being secretly behind it all and so on.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Fuck! We should’ve known that, with all these hacker stereotypes flying around, we’d eventually run into a smug doughy jerk.

WRENCH

Let’s retaliate! Prime_Eight does digital thefts on behalf of that biker gang. Let’s go sabotage that operation and make the bikers really pissed off with Lenni!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

So to be clear, the goal is to get her murdered?

MARCUS goes and SABOTAGES LENNI’S OPERATIONS.

LENORA KASTNER

OH FUCK YOU! You may have hurt me, but I still have my backdoor into your system, and I’m gonna release all your personal information to the world and END your little collective!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Okay, when?

LENORA KASTNER

Pardon?

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

If you’re going to destroy DedSec by releasing our info, when are you going to do that? Why aren’t you doing it right now, what are you waiting for?

LENORA KASTNER

I’m waiting to be thwarted, duh!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Oh, I see. Well, we’ve found your command center, I’ll head over there and thwart you right now.

INT. PRIME_EIGHT BUNKER - SAN FRANCISCO

MARCUS sneaks into LENNI’S BUNKER and HACKS all her STUFF.

LENORA KASTNER

Fine then, since I’ve got you trapped down there, I might as well take the opportunity to blow you up with my bunker bombs! Aahaah hah haaa!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Or, instead of destroying your own hideout and equipment, you could just let those guards I snuck past know to come down and shoot me.

LENORA KASTNER

Uhh, I’m pretty sure the game just assumed you blew them all in half with a shotgun.

MARCUS hurriedly defuses the BOMBS before the TIMER RUNS OUT.

LENORA KASTNER

Damnit! I knew I should’ve picked bombs that can be immediately detonated without the mandatory countdown, but nooo, I had to go for the DRAMATIC bombs. Consider me defeated forever then.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Neat, that mission wasn’t just another “guys are stealing data for Blume, hack them” one! We were actually being targeted ourselves and were put on the defensive, so maybe these missions aren’t all the same after --

JOSH SAUCHAK

Oh shit guys, we’re being targeted by the FBI! It’s a new mission and we’re going on the defensive!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Figures.

RAYMOND KENNEY

Fucking FBI! You realise why they’re gathering intel on us, right? They see us as competition! They don’t want anybody hacking everyone’s data except themselves!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Aren’t we also hacking everybody’s data and saying that only we should be allowed to do that?

RAYMOND KENNEY

But it’s all kosher when we do it! When we hack people’s data, it’s to stop criminals and protect people!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

I do believe the FBI also dabbles a bit in stopping crime.

RAYMOND KENNEY

How do you not get this? The FBI is stealing data left, right, and centre because they’ve decided they know best how to use information and who’s a criminal and who’s not, whereas we steal data because we DO know best how to use information, and who’s a criminal and who’s not! We’ve clearly decided that we do!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Right, a very clear distinction. All right, let’s hack the FBI.

WRENCH

Ooh, can I come help?

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Another DedSec member doing field work? Are you sure any of you desk jockeys can handle a big boy operation like this?

WRENCH

Hey, I rock at hacking FBIs, just watch!

(instantly captured)

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Colour me unsurprised. Oh well, I guess I’d better go do the NEW mission to heroically rescue Wrench from the FBI!

(dramatic pose, music sting)

SITARA DHAWAN

Actually, they let him go.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Wha?

SITARA DHAWAN

Yeah, Dusan dropped by, being behind everything like usual, and told them to let Wrench just walk out of there scot-free.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

So now our big main villain is actively undoing damage inflicted on us by other people? Man, the guy just can’t get enough of being unthreatening. I guess then I’d better go do the NEW new mission to heroically rescue, ahh, Wrench’s confiscated mask!

(dramatic pose, music sting)

MARCUS goes and retrieve’s WRENCH’S MASK.

WRENCH

Thanks, man. I’ve got ten more of these in a box somewhere, but this one was slightly more special.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Don’t sweat it. While I’m in the neighbourhood, I might as well hack the FBI and steal all their most damning intel.

EXT. BEACH - SAN FRANCISCO

Later, MARCUS meets RAYMOND on the BEACH to watch a ROCKET LAUNCH.

RAYMOND KENNEY

New mission time! See that rocket? Blume’s been sending up satellites to establish an international communications network! We need to hack one of those satellites.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Okay, I know my phone is basically magical, but I’m pretty sure even it doesn’t have that kind of range.

RAYMOND KENNEY

We’ll hack a satellite before it goes to space, nimrod.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Oh, that makes much more sense!

MARCUS sneaks into a ROCKET LAB.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Alright, I just have to put Ray’s special chip into this motherboard and then get it over to the --

GUARD

We have an intruder! Everybody, immediately open fire, as is standard operating procedure when we see unauthorised personnel hanging around this lab! Let’s hope it’s not someone who wandered off from the tour like last time.

(starts shooting)

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

AAAAAAAAA!

(grabs motherboard, sprints for rocket)

AAAAAAAAA!

(puts motherboard in rocket while being shot at)

AAAAAAAAA!

(runs outside, speeds off on motorcycle)

AAAaaand there we go, another victory for the super-smooth master criminal.

GUARD

Say, since that guy was just switching out parts of that really expensive and important rocket in full view of everybody, maybe we should check it out before we send it to space? Ah, screw it.

The SATELLITE is sent into SPACE.

JOSH SAUCHAK

Now we can hack all the other satellites and get access to their various server farms around the globe!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Using satellites to hack other satellites? Hey, a scenario in which that “you need line of sight to hack” rule makes some kind of fucking sense!

They gain access to ALL OF BLUME’S DATA.

RAYMOND KENNEY

Fuck, look at all this! It’d take years to sift through it all. We’ll have to pick specific organisations we want to scrutinise and focus on data belonging to them.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Oh hell, did we go to all the trouble of hacking a global satellite network simply to justify another bunch of “expy organisation is stealing data, let’s hack their servers” missions?

RAYMOND KENNEY

I don’t know what you’re talking about. Incidentally, some crew of Asian gangsters is stealing data. Let’s hack their servers.

MARCUS hacks the GANGSTERS, then comes back for the NEXT ONE.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

So what thinly-veiled stand-in are we going after next? Twutter? Shminstagram? Blamazon? fBay?

SITARA DHAWAN

Actually, we’ve somehow run out of ideas and are just doing !NViTE again. Now they’re trying to rig a congressional election.

EXT. !NViTE OFFICES - SAN FRANCISCO

MARCUS goes and HACKS !NViTE ALL OVER AGAIN.

SITARA DHAWAN

Holy shit, it turns out that the person behind !NViTE’s rigging of the election is --

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Let me take a wild guess. Dusan? Come on people, by now this should never be a surprise, but it especially shouldn’t be a surprise when investigating companies that we already knew were under Blume’s thumb!

SITARA DHAWAN

Anyhow, now that we’ve found the code that they’ve been using to try and influence people to vote for Congressman Thruss, we can change it to instead influence them to NOT vote for him, hah!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Doesn’t that mean that now we’re the ones rigging a congressional election?

SITARA DHAWAN

Dude, can you stop pointing out that we keep doing the very things we profess to be indicting? I mean, you only became a hacker because ctOS unjustly flagged you as a criminal, but then there’s that hacking trick where you can upload false information to frame innocent people!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Pot, kettle, I get it.

SITARA DHAWAN

Now let’s stop thinking about it and just watch this footage of Dusan and Thruss talking about our hacks.

DUSAN NEMEC

(on video)

So DedSec screwed up our !NViTE scheme, but we have a backup. We’re gonna install code onto the voting machines that’ll make you win. And when I say “we’re” gonna install that code, I mean “you.” Take this USB stick and personally upload the files onto each individual voting machine.

CONGRESSMAN THRUSS

(on video)

What? I’m a career politician in his sixties. Do I look like the kind of guy you want handling your black ops shit? Don’t you have guys for this?

DUSAN NEMEC

(on video)

Nah, I figure having one of the candidates physically tamper with the voting machines is the course of action best calculated to avoid suspicion.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Oh nice, we just got footage of Dusan interfering in an election. We can absolutely take him down with this.

SITARA DHAWAN

Actually, we’re gonna just blow up the tainted voting machines.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

ALL the voting machines?

SITARA DHAWAN

Relax, it turns out there’s only sixteen of them for the whole congressional district. That election was clearly going to be a logistical nightmare.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

I mean, shouldn’t we keep at least one voting machine in play so we can prove it was tampered with? Our whole thing has been unmasking corruption. Why are we being needlessly opaque this time?

MARCUS goes to where the VOTING MACHINES are being guarded. He sneaks around, carefully sets up an array of EXPLOSIVES, and retreats to a SAFE DISTANCE. When he sets off the first BOMB, “FORTUNATE SON” starts to swell on the SOUNDTRACK. Then, five seconds later when he sets off the last BOMB and WINS, it awkwardly FADES OUT.

WRENCH

Hear that? That was the soundtrack quietly judging you for playing this game like a boring stealth-loving pussy.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

So have we done enough clunky standalone missions yet? Can we please finish Blume and be done?

WRENCH

There’s one more thing you gotta do first. The robotics company Tidis --

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Is stealing data yada yada yada hack their servers blah blah blah.

WRENCH

Nope. Spidertank.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

What?

WRENCH

It turns out they’re building spidertanks to terrorise the populace. Go take control of their spidertank and destroy the spidertank lab with your spidertank.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Well, that is different.

WRENCH

(shrugs)

Somebody at Ubisoft clearly couldn’t get enough of that spidertank hallucination nonsense from the first game. So, spidertank.

INT. TIDIS ROBOTICS - SAN FRANCISCO

MARCUS goes and takes over a SPIDERTANK, which can JUMP and SHOOT and CLIMB ON WALLS.

ROSS SCOTT

SPIDERBOT!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Giving the player a really cool toy which they’re only allowed to use for three minutes in the entire game? Somebody’s been studying up on their Call of Duty franchise!

GUARDS

Stop the spidertank, men! Gather around the various clusters of Doom-style explosive canisters and shoot at the spidertank!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Argh, goddamn pacifist run. This could have been a real cathartic --

GUARDS

NO YOU IDIOTS DON’T SHOOT THE BARRELS!

(explosions, death)

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Ha ha ha! Okay, that was still pretty satisfying. Thanks guys.

MARCUS returns to the HACKERSPACE.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

NOW can we just take down Blume finally?

RAYMOND KENNEY

Okay okay, keep your pants on. So it turns out Blume has gotten you on the most wanted list. We’ve got to stop these bastards once and for all!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Yes, this is what I’ve been working for all along! Now I can go and --

SITARA DHAWAN

Actually, since you’re so wanted, you should just hang.

WRENCH

We’ll handle the first half of the climactic mission for you!

JOSH SAUCHAK

Yes, let’s become playable characters for the first time in the game! Right in the final ever mission!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Fucking seriously?

EXT. SOME BLUME FACILITY - SAN FRANCISCO

It is WRENCH’S TURN to do a THING.

WRENCH

I’m here to do some objective or other that’ll make it easier for you to hack Blume. And look, it’s a mission tailored to my wild anarchist persona! Look at all these enemies in my way, and all these hackable explosives in the environment, and oh, I’m carrying a motherfucking GRENADE LAUNCHER --

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Buddy. Pacifist run. Non-evil protagonists. Remember?

WRENCH

Oh. Right, fuck. I guess I’ll just sneak past all the potential mayhem and press the contextual button when it pops up.

(sighs)

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Don’t worry, we’re throwing you a bone and altering the usual “hack servers” prompt into “destroy servers.”

WRENCH

Woot! A small enclosed space is a great place to be firing a grenade launcher!

(goes berserk)

SITARA DHAWAN

Meanwhile, to make use of my character’s strengths, we’ve got a creative and clever mission in which I place certain graffiti in certain places to coordinate DedSec members into --

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Nah, to be honest we didn’t bother coming up with anything that fits your character in any way, so you’re just doing a quick Pipe Dream hack.

SITARA DHAWAN

Oh. That sucks.

JOSH SAUCHAK

What about me? Is my mission --

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

That about does it! I’m off to take down Dusan!

JOSH SAUCHAK

Wait a minute, I didn’t get my turn --

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

BLUME, HERE I COME!

INT. BLUME OFFICES - SAN FRANCISCO

MARCUS infiltrates BLUME, FUCKING FINALLY.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

So this is it. The final climactic mission of the game. We’ve been getting steadily more out there lately. It’s been nothing but spidertanks and giant drones and skyscraper ziplines for a while now, so I can’t wait to see what I have to do to bring down the main villain!

RAYMOND KENNEY

Okay, are you ready for this? You’re going to have to unlock the server room, sneak down there, and hack the servers!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

And?

RAYMOND KENNEY

And nothing. That’s it. That’s how you beat the game.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

You’ve got to be shitting me! That’s the basic formula for almost every mission that we’ve done so far! I’ve done taxi-driving side missions that required more effort than this bullshit!

RAYMOND KENNEY

Well, does it help if a whole horde of elite enemies converge on you the second you hack the servers?

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Let me answer that by demonstrating an upgrade I got which allows me to press one button and fill every enemy’s headset with ear-piercing static.

He presses the BUTTON and just strolls out while all the BAD GUYS are doubled over in AGONY.

RAYMOND KENNEY

Ah. Hm.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

That was anticlimactic as hell. Can we at least rub it in Dusan's face? Can we? Can we, please?

RAYMOND KENNEY

He's not upstairs or anything. He's all the way across town for some reason.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Come ooon! His entire character design screams "I have it coming!"

RAYMOND KENNEY

Fine, I suppose that might be more satisfying.

They both head to the BUILDING where DUSAN is.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Hey! Just dropping in to say that the authorities are aware of all the heinous shit you've pulled! You and your scraggly beard are off to the big house!

DUSAN NEMEC

Okay fine, you got me, whoop-dee-doo, but can you PLEASE stop focusing on my appearance? You're being very hypocritical as usual.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Hypocritical? Moi?

DUSAN NEMEC

Yes! I accept that I'm a walking manifestation of the whole Silicon Valley dudebro culture, but your whole DedSec outfit is sooo design-by-committee "radical!" The entry-level pop culture references, the outrageous aesthetic, the comedic anarchy, it all reeks of trying too hard to be cool. I swear you guys are a hair away from shouting about hacking the planet.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

True, but if we take that point further and assume that this game reduces everything to its most common stereotype, you are really not going to enjoy prison.

DUSAN NEMEC

Fuck.

(arrested)

RAYMOND KENNEY

Okay, that's it. We won!

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

But did we, really? As far as I can tell, we didn’t bring down Blume, we just brought down Dusan. Blume is gonna pin the blame for everything on him and then keep doing this shit in other cities.

RAYMOND KENNEY

Yeah, this whole thing turned out to be a pointless exercise, didn’t it? Funny, this doesn't count as the middle entry in a trilogy but it's still got all the hallmarks of a story desperately trying to keep a status quo. Oh well, we did get one good thing out of this mess at least.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

What’s that?

RAYMOND KENNEY

The hilarious irony of seeing game publishers having to pretend that hackers are their favourite thing in the world.

MARCUS HOLLOWAY

Heh, true that!

(pirates game, hacks Uplay)

THE END

Further reading: 

Comments

Add new comment