Premise: When every morph on the Cognite research station, Thought, goes dark, Firewall naturally thinks it’s stumbled onto the remains of another exsurgent slash-and-burn—one more hypercorp seed-AI project turned predictable massacre—but when every single back-up of the station’s population turns up hopelessly corrupted, it quickly becomes apparent that this is no everyday X-threat. Somebody has taught TITAN nanotech to wait, to adjust, to ensure that no one infected ever gets resleeved. If our exterminators ever lacked anything, it was the patience to finish the job. Such brutally patient tactics suggest a lesser intelligence.
What happens when all that leftover TITAN tech is finally reverse engineered? When it’s weaponized? What happens when a transhuman wields the power of the gods to their own ends? What would such a person be capable of, and could they be stopped?
Overview: Know Evil is a modular, tool-kit campaign structured as high-espionage chase across the inner system. Players can assume the roles of Firewall Sentinels tasked with hunting down a mysterious villain using TITAN-tech as tools in a vast political conspiracy. The campaign takes place across three major tiers: Venus, Luna, and Earth Orbit. Each tier contains 4-5 scenarios that tie into the central narrative and share a theme. Individual adventures can also be played as one-shots or worked into an existing campaign. Finally, while some events in the timeline are fixed, GM’s are presented with a menu of options that promote customizing the motivations of major NPC’s to fit their particular vision of the setting.
Outline: Want to get a sense of the scale of Know Evil? View a Prezi outline of the entire campaign here.
Episodes: There are 27 episodes of Know Evil, plus an annual game, which is connected to the main campaign. Know Evil was divided into 4 tiers, each representing a single region in the solar system: Venus, Luna, Scum Swarm, and Earth. The campaign began on June 6, 2011 and concluded on July 31, 2012.
Venus Tier: The beginning of the campaign – a team of oddball Firewall agents are sent to investigate the disappearance of a spy in Thought, an orbital research station over Venus. Read Caleb’s original campaign intro text here.
- Episode 1: Double length episode – 2 sessions of the team entering and exploring the station Thought. First contact with the Know Evil virus.
- Episode 2: Investigation into criminal syndicates and high-stakes gambling.
- Episode 3: Discovery of a secret Venusian station called Cloud Nine.
- Episode 4: War between two factions for control of Cloud Nine. Rescue of imprisoned egos.
- Episode 5: Intrigue in the city of Octavia.
- Episode 6: The team needs to find the hidden sky pirate base, so they set themselves up as bait.
- Episode 7: Raid on the Sky Pirates of Venus.
Luna Tier: The Firewall team now has a definite lead on the creator of the Know Evil virus but they must pursue multiple avenues of investigation to learn his plans. The team encounters everything from terrorists to exsurgents on Luna, culminating in a bank heist.
- Episode 8: The team egocasts to Luna and picks up the trail.
- Episode 9: Unexpected Exsurgent boss fight D:
- Episode 10: Riots in the city of Nectar.
- Episode 11: Among the Uplifts.
- Episode 12: Problems arise in transit.
- Episode 13: Space China!
- Episode 14: Planning a bank heist.
- Episode 15: Bank robberies in the future are more like Heat than Ocean’s Eleven.
Scum Swarm Tier: Fleeing the bank heist, the Firewall team finds temporary refuge in The Stars, Our Destination, a nearby scum swarm. But the machinations of Know Evil and other existential threats won’t let them rest for long.
- Episode 16: Welcome to the Scum Swarm. Read the initial packet of emails sent to the players.
- Episode 17: Forced entry into a hardened position is somewhat difficult.
- Episode 18: Face the justice system (?) of the scum swarm.
- Episode 19: The team takes a break to investigate a spaceship infected by the Exsurgent virus and loaded with pre-Fall goodies.
- Episode 20: Existential threats popping up left and right but the team knows how to deal with them.
- Episode 21: The team is relieved to know all they have to do is kill a heavily guarded war criminal to move on to the next tier.
Annual: A special one shot, where a new team of agents investigates a potential lead on the Know Evil conspiracy.
Earth Tier: The final tier of Know Evil. The team must face the author of Know Evil, Manjappa, in order to learn the ultimate truth behind the conspiracy.
- Episode 22: The team poses as a group of criminals to get close to the conspiracy on an isolated station in earth orbit. Things go slightly pear shaped.
- Episode 23: A new space station, a new set of problems.
- Episode 24: Augustine finally causes more problems than it solves.
- Episode 25: A detour into Tokyo, after the Fall.
- Episode 26: The plan of the conspiracy revealed.
- Episode 27: Was it worth it?
Archive.org Mirror of Know Evil – download all of the episodes in one go. Keep in mind, each episode post has commentary and discussion from players, the gamemaster, and other listeners.
Know Evil Campaign Post Mortem: A detailed discussion of the campaign between some of the players and the GM.