- "You can kill the prophet, but you can’t kill the god! Your chance to warn the Earth has come and gone. We are coming. We are hungry. We are here."
- —The Brethren Moons to Isaac Clarke and John Carver, Dead Space 3: Awakened
The Brethren Moons (Or Brother Moons and Blood Moons) are gigantic, space-faring Necromorphs which are discovered to be the source of the Marker signals. They are believed to be the final life cycle stage of the Necromorphs. Due to their agenda, the Brethren Moons are the central antagonists of the Dead Space franchise.
Source and ConvergenceEdit
The Brethren Moons, though their origins are unknown, are a series of moon-sized creatures throughout the galaxy that consume all organic life they encounter through the use of their Markers.
The Moons consume new worlds by sending out Black Markers which travel through space and impact upon planets. In the case of Earth, the Black Marker was carried inside an asteroid that struck the Yucatan Peninsula around 65 million years B.C. It was unknown if the Moons specifically targeted worlds that showed promise for intelligent life, or if, as was theorized by the Unitologist leader, Jacob Danik, the Markers are actually responsible for encouraging the evolution of intelligent species.
The Markers broadcast an electromagnetic signal originating from the Moons that mentally affects intelligent beings. This signal manifested either as dementia or as a compulsion to replicate Markers through artificial means. This, along with the fact that the Marker signal represented a source of apparently limitless electromagnetic energy, drives intelligent species to create Marker copies—Red Markers—that are then inevitably distributed throughout their territory. However, the signal has another function: It can alter necrotic tissue on the molecular level, causing corpses to reanimate and become Necromorphs.
After a Necromorph infestation claims the majority of a planet's population, the Markers on the planet will initiate a Convergence Event—the birth of a Brethren Moon. Once the Convergence begins, the flesh of the Necromorphs and other dead tissue within the Marker's area of influence are flung into the stratosphere where they began to form into a new Moon. The Moon not only absorbs borganic material, but, it appears, planetary fragments as well.
The creature is only finalized once the creators of the Markers are absorbed along with the planet's entire biosphere. Once the makers are absorbed as well as a large portion of the biosphere, the Marker itself gravitates to the central heart of the Moon so it can communicate telepathically with the rest of the network as well as release broadcasts to other nearby Markers. It is currently unknown what happens to the Moon once it absorbs all life at its birth place, but it's assumed the mass travels to the next nearest source of organic life to continue feeding.
Earl Serrano speculated that all life between the origin of the Moons and humanity's home system are extinguished by the Moons, which mix countless species in their uniform biomass. The game proposes an uncommon answer to the Fermi paradox: Humanity never had the opportunity to contact aliens because a giant species of apex predators absorbs most if not all organic tissue within our galaxy, possibly beyond, leaving much of it in a state of "dead space". Serrano also discovered the Moons form a network spanning the entire Galaxy, which they use to communicate; as the Markers influence affected races to build more of them, trapping and assimilating other species, the network continues to expand.
Events of Dead Space 3Edit
During the events of Dead Space 3, Isaac Clarke came to realize the Markers were recieving a distress call from the incomplete Moon of Tau Volantis, whose Convergence was interrupted when the aliens it attempted to assimilate built a machine to flash-freeze their entire planet. In response, the Moon had begun using other markers to broadcast distress signals (such as Make us Whole or Turn it Off) in hopes of luring new organic beings to disable the Machine so it could complete its growth and continue assimilating parts of the Galaxy into new Moons.
The faux Markers that Isaac faced attempted to continue the "Brethren Chain" of Moons by circumventing the problem of the hibernating Tau Volantis moon; he realized, too, that if the Moon was freed, any location within the galaxy with a still active Marker will begin the ultimate Convergence, continuing its growth. Should the Moon complete itself, it would waken the other Brethren Moons; these, heading for the Marker locations, would devour all organic life present, resulting in the destruction of all humanity and possibly all life in the galaxy. In the final chapter, Isaac managed to reconfigure the Alien Machine, destroying the Tau Volantis Moon and causing all Markers to seemingly stop broadcasting, thus ending the danger to the galaxy, at least temporarily. However, though the Tau Volantis Moon was incomplete, upon its awakening it had somehow managed to contact the other Brethren Moons; upon its destruction, they awoke and began converging on Earth, the last source of human life in the galaxy.
Events of Dead Space 3: AwakenedEdit
- "We are all awake now. Awake and hungry. But where is it? Take us home, Isaac. Make us Whole."
- —The Brethren Moons "talking" with Isaac Clarke.Following the destruction of the Tau Volantis Moon and their subsequent fall onto the planet below, Isaac Clarke and John Carver reawoke in a frozen crevice. Upon reaching the surface, the two men noticed the fallen Moon out on the horizon of Tau Volantis. Isaac believed that after the Moon's destruction, the Marker signal would cease and there would not be any more Necromorphs. When Isaac and Carver reached the nearest Suit Kiosk and Bench, however, they suffered from a brief vision from the Brethren Moons, realizing that the Necromorphs are still active.
The remaining Unitologist soldiers on Tau Volantis started to lose faith when the Moon was destroyed, believing that there would be no Convergence or Rebirth, only death. However, a Unitologist fanatic heard a "voice" from the awakened Brethren Moons, saying: "We are coming, we are hungry."
His faith in Unitology reaffirmed, the Circle member began to gather all of the remaining Unitologists into orbit into his new, fanatical cult of mutilation and sacrifice. Only a few Unitologists resisted, either mentally broken by the Moon's signal (chanting the mantra "They are hungry, they are coming") or outright attempting to resist and escape their insane, former brethren.
Isaac and Carver reached the Terra Nova and were subjected to the painful visions of the Brethren Moons. Isaac, suspecting they were being manipulated into taking the ship back to Earth so the Moons could follow them there, decided to destroy the ShockPoint Drive and trap them at Tau Volantis forever; Carver, determined to recover the drive and return and seeing Isaac's paranoia growing, threatened him.
The pair fought the Cult Leader after a tense hallucinatory confrontation, discovering, upon his defeat, that the Moons knew where Earth was and had turned Carver and Isaac against each other to prevent them from warning Earth in time. Knowing they had little time, Isaac and Carver installed the salvaged ShockPoint Drive on the Terra Nova and overloaded the ancient reactor of the ship to power it up, shocking out just before the ship broke down entirely.
Arriving at Earth, Isaac and Carver try to contact the authorities (EarthGov and CEC) through several channels to relay their warning; each time is met with static. After several tries, a transmission breaks through: The gurgles and snarls of many Necromorphs. The two heroes are shocked to see the Brethren Moons rising from the other side of Earth, already scouring the surface of the planet with their tentacles. A Brethren Moon begins to rise in front of the Terra Nova - and the scene ends, leaving their fate unclear.
Appearance and BehaviorEdit
- "The Earth draws near. Even now we can feel it. Teeming with life. Teeming with Markers. From each world we devour, a new brother will rise and be made whole. Our network will grow and we will live forever."
- —The Brethren Moon about their nature.
The Brethren Moons are colossal Necromorphs, far larger than any other form previously encountered. The surface acts as a protective casing, concealing a writhing mass of tentacles that can reach thousands of miles in length. Within the midst of the tentacles lies a circular maw, capable of ingesting massive quantities of matter. Hanging at the entrance of the mouth is an irregular mass of tissue consisting of multiple eyes, tentacles, a fang-lined slit and a circular sucking mouth. This "head" is capable of interacting with smaller objects about to be ingested, breaking down raw materials and engaging any stubborn living prey. It also had another, far, far larger "head" which was located at approximately the front and center of the organic portions of the Moon. This head had two colossal yellow eyes and two long, pointy protrusions on either side that resembled the lateral horns of a rhinoceros beetle.
Research notes from Dr. Serrano speculated that the Moons are drawn to species that grew and spread throughout the galaxy and became overpopulated and starved of resources. He speculated that this is how they discovered the Alien race of Tau Volantis who once were an empire trillions strong. However, the aliens are resourceful and froze the entire planet with the Machine at the cost of their own lives.
This theory was backed up by the limitless energy that the Markers radiated, encouraging species with a desperate need for resources and energy to focus on building more Markers across their systems. This would make the species less able to enact quarantines effectively.
The Moons are sentient organisms, able to communicate via a form of telepathic signal as it was with Isaac and Carver. They are also capable of causing hallucinations using said telepathic abilities. During the hallucinations where they spoke to Isaac and Carver through their "Prophet", The Cult Leader, they displayed a kind of Hive Mind mentality, referring to themselves in the plural. The Moons appeared to regard themselves as invincible, omnipotent and divine, at one point referring to themselves collectively as a "god". The Brethren Moons also seemed to speak rather politely and calmly, a strong contrast to their general nature; they seem to lack any empathy as they do not appear to be saddened or angered by the death of their own kind, but show frustration and anger toward Isaac after he defeated their Prophet.
- Like Dead Space, Dead Space iOS and Dead Space: Extraction, the first letters in each chapter of Dead Space 3 spelled a phrase. The phrase: "BROTHER MOONS ARE AWAKE", suggested that the chain of the Brethren Moons are awake despite the destruction of Tau Volantis' Moon which was confirmed in Awakened.
- It is possible that the Brethren Moon either created new Markers during a Convergence Event or simply re-enveloped Markers that the civilization that it was absorbing already made.
- The Hive Mind and the Nexus are thought to be the conduits for the Necromorphs, channeling the Marker's signal through them, acting as ground commanders. However, the larger, more powerful Necromorphs are commanded by the Brethren Moon stationed above Tau Volantis.
- The Brethren Moons are the largest Necromorphs in the Dead Space Series this far.
- There are 11 known Brethren Moons to exist, including the Tau Volantis Moon.
- Disturbingly still, during one of the hallucinations Isaac had in Awakened, the one where Earth was shown, the Moons themselves mentioned, "Take Us Home, Isaac. Make Us Whole"—suggesting that there may be an even greater and more catastrophic event than the initial Convergence Event which created the individual Moons, possibly one in which the Moons might merge after feeding to form the one final, gargantuan Necromorph.
- The Moons are a clear reference to Lovecraftian Horror; a monstrous, intelligent, devouring godlike entity that seemingly cannot be stopped by the protagonist alone.
- They especially show striking similarities to Yog-Sothoth, an Outer God in the Cthulhu mythos, that appears as 7 glowing spheres, and as a mass of writhing tentacles.
- If this is intentional. It is entirely possible the Moons represent one entity, seeking to be Reborn through the process of Convergence. This is backed up when the Moons themselves state, "You can kill the prophet, but you can't kill the God."
- The existence of the Moon network is hinted at throughout the series, prominently in Dead Space 2, especially in architecture and artwork found in the Church of Unitology on Titan Station. In certain audio logs towards the end of the game, and some dialogue: such as Nicole saying: "I'm growing cold Isaac. It hurts…" This could be foreshadowing of the Tau Volantis Moon being frozen by the Alien Machine, taunting Isaac through the Site 12 Marker's signal.
- The Brethren Moons are very similar to Atropus of the D&D franchise, as well as the Reapers of the Mass Effect franchise and the Graveminds of the Halo franchise.
- In Chapter 10 of Dead Space, on the Ishimura's Crew Deck, there is a poster for a movie titled "Rancid Moon", which shows a James Bond-esque protagonist being chased by a group of shadowy, tool-armed figures accross the surface of the moon. This may or may not foreshadow the Brother Moon's appearance.
- In the episode "Darkling" (S3E18) from the series Star Trek Voyager a living being with the size and look of a moon is mentioned, large enough to create it's own gravitational field.
- ↑ Dead Space 3: Chapter 14: Everything Has Its Place
- ↑ YouTube: The answer to Convergence?
- ↑ Dead Space 3: Chapter 18: Kill or Be Killed
- ↑ Dead Space 3: Chapter 16: What Lies Below