The truth about the Heresy Dragon? Well, possibly

EDIT: Sorry for the immense length of this post, but this new theory strikes me as being surprisingly plausible, so I’ve tried to do it justice. I touched on this in Gehn’s “Genesis” thread, but I’ve given it some more thought since then and it’s developed into a full-blown theory regarding the nature of the Heresy Dragon. Tell me what you think:

… the Gods created a dragon, and released it into the humans’ world. The dragon is the hand of guidance, and also the eyes of the Judge. The dragon shall fly over people to display the Gods’ power, fight to defend the good, and destroy to end all wars.

… If you gain the dragon’s grace, the arrow shall always be shot to the battlefield, the shell shall always shield the good, and the wings shall always appear spanning over the passage of hope.

Now as I said before, these quotes from the Dragon Bible could realistically be an indication of the Heresy Dragon’s original purpose, which has always been in doubt. If you filter out the bias that all of the “Bibles” have regarding the Gods / Ancients being benign, this passage essentially seems to make the following statement: that the dragon was created by the Ancients as an ultimately powerful enforcer, a being which would annihilate the destructive elements of humankind in order to preserve the race as a whole. And isn’t this strikingly similar to what we know the Towers were meant to be doing?

What’s occurred to me is that - if the contents of this text are in some way accurate - the dragon’s original purpose may have been so obvious that we’ve simply been overlooking it. The Heresy Dragon originated in Sestren, which controlled the Towers, and it seems that the Heresy Dragon was indeed made by the Tower’s creators. Looking at this text, perhaps the Heresy Dragon was simply created to be the most powerful enforcer of the Towers’ programme? A single entity which Sestren would release into the physical world to carry out its duty with ultimate precision, if the need for it arose.

But what would suggest that this Bible is remotely accurate? Well, from the text it does sound as if the author had some kind of knowledge of the dragon they were writing about:

The arrow of light that cannot be shielded, the shell that cannot be speared, and the wings that cannot tire. These are the powers of the dragon. All things from this world are powerless before the dragon.

The validity of such descriptions seems to be confirmed by Lundi, who wrote the following in his diaries:

All the legends and scripture of our village describe a dragon. And Lagi reminds me of that dragon.

Lagi’s body has continued its metamorphosis. His arrows of light have become so powerful that he can only be the dragon of legend.

I do get the impression that these books describe the Heresy Dragon rather than any old dragon, too. After all, a normal dragon is allegedly bound to the defense of a Tower, it’s not roaming the world at large carrying out missions of planned destruction; and such dragons seem to be generally slumbering and deactivated at their posts, too.

So this leads to an interesting point, which I don’t remember anyone bringing up before: how could the people of the present world know about the Heresy Dragon if it had not been released into the world before?

A weird idea, but it doesn’t seem to be so unlikely. To simplify let’s say that many centuries ago, some previous human empires were lining up to go to war with one another, and Sestren had ascertained that humankind and the world were in danger of severe harm. If the dragon indeed had the original purpose that’s implied in these Bibles, and it was released into the physical world by Sestren to carry out its duty of saving the world by annihilating the destructive forces that these human armies represented - wouldn’t that lead to exactly the kind of description that this Dragon Bible gives of the dragon? A creature that “displayed the Gods’ power”, and which “destroyed to end all wars”?

So why would the Heresy Dragon turn against its ancient creators in the end, ten thousand years after its duty had begun? The idea of the ancient rebels reprogramming the Heresy Dragon has come up over and over again, but it doesn’t seem to quite fit for a number of reasons. Again though, perhaps the answer is so simple that we’ve just been overlooking it.

We know that the Ancients had issues with their more intelligent creations, that because of their superior intellect Drones were prone to become self-aware. If they thought for themselves there was no guarantee that they would carry out the wishes of their masters, as they would inevitably pursue their own desires. Indeed, we saw exactly this happen with Azel in Panzer Dragoon Saga, and the missing Drone Report book made it out to be a recognised problem.

So what prevents this same flaw from applying to the Heresy Program? Intelligence was the root of the problem, and the Program certainly was intelligent; it was also a living being created by the Ancients (PDO confirms that Sestren’s programs were biological entities). As the Drone Report stated, termination was the usual answer to one of their creations becoming self-aware - and upon the Heresy Program becoming “impure” of thought, that’s exactly what Sestren tried to do. It blitzed the Program within the system, and upon realising that it had survived the transition to the outside world it sent Shelcoof to nuke the village where it had manifested itself in Lagi.

Ultimately this seems to make a surprising amount of sense. If the Heresy Dragon simply succumbed to this flaw and started thinking for itself, and decided (possibly because of the duty it had been created for) that saving humankind was a good thing, but that its destructive efforts would be better directed at the Tower network and Sestren itself - wouldn’t that explain more or less everything?

As I say, sorry for the horrific length of this post - but what do you guys think?

quite a statement…

are you proposing that it was actually the dragon the caused the fall of the ancient age? and that at that time it was doing these acts under sestren’s orders? so then later it perhaps disobeyed sestren, which made sestren fear it and tried to erase it?

coooouuuuuld be :slight_smile:

Not exactly; I was only theorising that the dragon was another one of the Towers’ (and Sestren’s) tools, which would have been created to help them carry out the Ancients’ programme.

You have some interesting ideas there. However, I’m not sure if the Heresy Dragon’s objective was that different from what it ultimately did. The Dragon’s duty had “spanned thousands of years”. This means there’s a good possibility that the Heresy Dragon was created or activated in the Ancient Age. So could it be possible that “the dragons that ended the Ancient Age by terminating all active ruins” was in fact only the Heresy Dragon itself. If this is true, the Heresy Dragon was in fact merely doing now what it had already done before. This may also explain it only emerged again when the PD 1 Tower became active. The Tower became active, so it went on to terminate it.

But the question remains: how does the Divine Visitor fit in all of this? The Heresy Dragon “existed to lead him”. What’s interesting is that the Bibles say that “in the end, your blood shall flow into the one that creates the new world”. Perhaps I’m reading too much into these things, but you could apply this to Edge and the DV. Perhaps the dragon did what it had to do, but the DV was not the “right” DV?

You’re right about the Drone Report. What’s interesting is that the Light Wing was deemed a “renegade” project. The words “heresy” and “renegade” have similar meanings. Perhaps not coincidence that Lagi choose to become this kind of dragon. The missing Drone report also stated that the advanced thought organs for Drones were considered for other creatures as well.

I agree for sometime with this :

But was the name of the program always “Heresy”?Or was it dubbed so later on by Sestren when it rebelled?

Excellent theory indeed…Great job Lance, get it on the site asap :slight_smile:

However I don’t think it matches what the Heresy Program itself says about it’s “duty”… It claims it wants to “free mankind from the Ancient spell” or something along those lines at some point if I’m not mistaken, no? That phrase alone nulifies this theory in my opinion… According to your theory these actions would actually be part of holding mankind chained in this Ancient “spell” since ultimately their lives would still be controlled by the Ancients’ Will, even if it was by destroying their own creations…

Unless ofcourse that certain phrase is a mistranslation… (though even if so, it propably still applies in PDO since afaik it was written with the english translation of PDS in mind)

I’m convinced that it was indeed created in the Ancient Age - hence the “thousands of years” thing, and also because it was said to be “defying” its ancient masters - but remember that the Program had only become “impure” recently (that is, just before PD Zwei). I’m pretty sure that this particular dragon wasn’t involved with the end of the Ancient Age (in whatever way that actually took place), because the Program was still safely inside the Sestren system after all this time.

By “duty that spanned thousands of years”, the explanations I can see are that Program was referring to either:

A) Its intended “duty” to ultimately save humankind, which it just chose to fulfil entirely in its own way (i.e. by destroying rather than obeying Sestren), or

B) The duty to save humankind which it considered itself to have, based on the beliefs and opinions that it had arrived at independently. After all, if you’re the only person capable of achieving a certain good act or outcome it’s not uncommon to say that it is your “duty” to achieve that thing, because you feel compelled to do so by your own moral values. If the Program had indeed become fully self-aware like some of the Ancients’ other highly intelligent creations, it would be able to arrive at such a decision and make such a statement.

Either of those explanations would seem to make sense. We’ve been informed that the Program was literally “ignoring” its original duty anyway (when it went about trying to take down the Tower network), which is why this theory strikes me as even being one of the most likely explanations so far.

I don’t think we can be sure whether the PD1 Tower went active before the return of the Heresy Dragon or if things happened the other way around. Certainly in PD Zwei’s case, the Tower (Shelcoof) was activated after the emergence of the Heresy Dragon. (It was even a response in that case.)

Sorry, I know I’ve called it the Heresy Dragon all the way through that theory but I’m assuming that it was only dubbed that when it turned against Sestren. After all, the name “Heretic” literally suggests that it had “turned against the higher power that it should have been following”.

Yes but the idea that it was always Heresy and always suposed to go agehnst TWOTA isn’t new :slight_smile:

Lance you replied not to the phrase I gave, but to the phrase D-Unit gave in his post… The meaning was different and could be understood in different ways like you said, however the original phrase I talked about doesn’t have that many ways to be understood in…

“Free mankind from the Ancient spell” = Going against TWOTA

Destroying Towers to keep mankind in control/low tech = Keeping mankind oppressed by TWOTA according to your theory about Heresy’s duty

They are exactly opposite statements…no?

Also the Heresy Program would be quick to oppose and correct Sestren when Sestren claimed that Heresy is disobeying their Ancient Masters…

Ah, I think you might have misunderstood me then; I completely agree that the Heresy Dragon knew it wasn’t fulfilling its intended purpose in the end when it destroyed Sestren. What I’m suggesting is that it fulfilled its intended purpose (as an instrument of Sestren) up to the point where it became “impure”, which is when it decided to turn against Sestren because of its own reasons and because of its own beliefs.

What I really meant was that its desire to ultimately save humankind from Sestren may have been inspired by the original purpose which it was created to fulfill (i.e. destroying whatever was necessary in order to ultimately save humankind). Something must have motivated it to save the human race, although to be honest it could simply have been the Program’s own observations rather than any lingering respect for the values that the Ancients had given it. I admit that I worded that very badly / unclearly in my initial post, though.

EDIT: And I actually did write that reply to D-Unit’s point, I just mistakenly thought that you were saying the same thing. Sorry. :slight_smile:

So, basically, all your theory is saying is that maybe the Dragon’s original purpose was to keep mankind low tech and oppressed? I’ll buy that…

However, I think it’d have risen much earlier before it became “inpure”… The empire is so powerful and goes about conquering everything in their path by the time PD1 starts so you’d think a being with that purpose would have made it it’s task to destroy them much earlier…

You make it sound like it’s not important… I thought it was quite a big leap forward myself. :slight_smile: We’ve always been pretty stumped about what the dragon was really meant to be doing, after all.

The thing is, Sestren didn’t seem to be doing very much at all to stop the Empire by the time the games took place; it was literally just sitting back doing nothing with all of the Towers running silently. I’ve still not put together a detailed theory about why this would be the case, but I wouldn’t think that it detracts from this theory directly because Sestren wasn’t doing anything about the Empire, dragon or no.

That wasn’t my intention, just wanted to simplify it to see if I finally got your point…

Anyway, does your theory say Sestren was supposed to keep the ppl lowtech/prevent wars as well or that this was just the Heresy Program’s purpose?
Cos if you are saying it was just Heresy’s purpose then my above point that you quoted still applies and Sestren doesn’t have much to do with it at all…

I was only kidding; hence the smiley. :slight_smile: And yes, you’ve got my point exactly.

I think we’ve genuinely established that the point of Sestren’s programme - the point of the Towers’ ruthlessly precise regulation of the environment and populations - was to ensure that, although individual lives would be lost, the human race would not ultimately be able to threaten itself or the environment. We’re even told this literally at points, such as:

If the Tower ran our lives, there would be no war. But we’re not really living. Just being kept alive.

To this day, we’re protected by the power of the Ancient Age. I’m sure you’ve grown to loathe the monsters. They have a purpose. Essentially, they act as the caretakers of the ecosystem. Their actions, all, are to protect mankind from extinction… Even in your short involvement with the Empire, you must have learned their actions are nothing but an endless waste of resources, war, and death… Someone, or something, must take control of everything. Or we shall continue to destroy ourselves forever.

All I’m saying is that it seems likely the dragon was created to be another of Sestren’s tools, along with the Towers and the other monsters; another entity that would carry out its will, although the dragon may have been the single most poweful physical entity.

We don’t know Gash is right however, for example there IS wars right now and yet the Towers and Sestren do NOTHING about it… So how did he come to that conclusion?
Imo the Ancients didn’t want the humans to be powerful enough by the time they returned so that they could be masters of the world, not save mankind for the sake of saving them… Just keeping their numbers low so that they could pose no threat to the Ancients. No reason to kill them off completelly either ofcourse… And obviously the Ancients were most likely humans so if they wanted to return as masters they’d want to be masters of the rest humans not masters of an empty planet…

I do not see any flaw whatsoever in this theory, Lance. Great work.

But, don’t you think that the Tower network was created to emulate the Dragon, and not vise-versa? A single dragon is not very efficient in regard to enforcing a police state on a global scale.

I agree, but what I’m suggesting is that the Heresy Dragon did deactivate the ruins in the Ancient Age, because the Ancients wanted this to happen.

[quote=“Lance”]By “duty that spanned thousands of years”, the explanations I can see are that Program was referring to either:

A) Its intended “duty” to ultimately save humankind, which it just chose to fulfil entirely in its own way (i.e. by destroying rather than obeying Sestren), or[/quote]

That does seem like a good possibility.

This would also imply that it had become “impure” thousands of years ago. This would raise the question why Sestren didn’t try to attack it sooner. Perhaps Sestren (re)activated the Heresy Dragon as planned, but it didn’t react the way Sestren had expected.

Well, I do think it was the Tower that became active first, judging by the actions of the Dark Dragon, and the “final program sequence” the Tower was trying to complete. We can’t now for sure though.

The Towers were not really active at that time, rather in some sort of stand-by mode. We haven’t seen everything the Towers were capable of.

The first quote is fom Gash and the second is from Craymen, and as this is the explanation we’ve been given on numerous occasions I don’t see why we should really doubt it. It goes without saying that if something isn’t shown to be blatantly wrong or opinionated, and if no alternative is offered as literally, chances are a game’s creators did put it in there because they wanted the player to believe it.

What we really need to look at is why Sestren wasn’t doing these things, why it specifically wasn’t able. We’ve also been informed that the Towers’ other big function - the regeneration of the environment - had been left incomplete in a similar way. However, all we really have to go on are two vague and apparently conflicting statements:

  1. Sestren’s tools- the Towers - physically wore down, and it was unable to influence the world as it should have.

  2. Most of the Towers and other structures were forced into a state of inactivity by “dragons” in the past.

Now as far as I can tell, working out the truth behind this whole issue of “why the Tower programme went wrong” is one of the last pieces of the greater storyline puzzle. As in, we’ve arrived at good if very undetailed conclusions or theories regarding most other things. Unfortunately this is the element we seem to have the least information on, though.

I’m not sure I get what you mean - which Ancients exactly, Tower creators or rebels?

I was going on the assumption that Sestren would only identify and try to attack the renegade Program - and brand it “impure” - when it actually attempted to do something about its beliefs which would draw attention to itself. As the Program’s wishes could only be fulfilled by the coming of the Divine Visitor / Player though, perhaps that was what finally motivated it to even attempt what it did.

Anyhow, my point was only that the word “duty” can be easily applied to anything that has a sense of importance and urgency.

The thing is, the Tower only went active at roughly the start of PD1, whereas we have no idea how long the Heresy Dragon had been around for before that point; it must have been doing something before the events of the game, after all, as it had time to meet up with and become attached to the Sky Rider. The Dark Dragon was definitely activated after the Heresy Dragon had returned, too, as was shown in the PDS memory orbs.