Who is the Warmind on Io


#1

Who is the Warmind encountered by the Guardian on Io?

In her attempts to prevent Ghaul from using the Almighty to destroy our Sun, Ikora Rey devised a plan to use an old interplanetary defense network Warmind on Io to scan the ship. Fury — Transcript

During the mission, Ghost states:

So, uh… Are we going to see Rasputin? Or is this some other Warmind?
Fury — Transcript

To which Ikora replies:

There is only one Warmind, but Rasputin is not here on Io. I believe he’s been marooned on Earth ever since his network fragmented.
Fury — Transcript

At first glance it seems that Ikora has clearly answered the question for us, the Warmind is not Rasputin. But why does she come to this conclusion. If, as she states, there is only one Warmind, then how could this be.

Many Minds

Ikora’s statement that there is only one Warmind, is not actually a consistent one. Upon the Guardian’s discovery of Rasputin in the Cosmodrome she stated:

They say the Warminds were a legend, even in their own time. Now we know Rasputin lives. Your discovery is priceless, Guardian. Nothing in the Cosmodrome is more important.
The Warmind — Grimoire Card

So what does she mean? Likely she is making a reference to Rasputin as the last Warmind, a notion put forth by both the Last Array mission and the Skyshock grimoire card. As far as she is concerned there is no mind here, only the old network equipment.

Arecibo

Ikora however is not correct. There is a mind on Io. While on patrol the Guardian and Ghost discover a strange musical transmission on channel J-1869. Upon investigating the source they encounter a floating music box broadcasting an encrypted message:

Real things in the darkness seem no realer than dreams

The message seems to have an adverse effect on the Vex within range, who are made immobile by the sound. Additional music boxes contain more quotes:

Misdirected by accident or intent, intelligence can foster its own ecstasies of growth and decay

Once war has been undertaken, no peace is made by pretending there is no war.

Ghost deduces that an old A.I. like Failsafe is on Io.

The transmissions leads to the old Warmind bunker JYS-2, which the Guardian then secures. The AI then delivers a final message before it briefly overrides Ghost.

Never ask for anything! Never for anything, and especially from those who are stronger than you. They’ll make the offer themselves, and give everything themselves.

Red Sands! Mars! Ice caps! Ahhhhhh!

They are not alone and we are now left with three possibilities.

  1. Rasputin has made it from Earth to Io
  2. It is a new Warmind
  3. The Warmind is a fragment of Rasputin

Rasputin Has Made it from Earth to Io

When our Guardian discovered Rasputin on Earth he was isolated, unable to leave the confines of the Cosmodrome. But once the Guardian activated the Last Array it opened a path for Rasputin to reach back out.

This Array is controlled by The last Warmind - Rasputin. It’s connecting to defense constructs all across the system.
The Last Array — Transcript

During the Guardian’s mission to the Dust Palace we learned that the Psion Flayers tangled with Rasputin as they attempted to penetrate the Central AI’s Cortex. The Dust Palace — Transcript

We also have the record of a lone Hunter:

She has the sense of something old lifting a long spear. Testing its heft.

She remembers word from Earth: the Array opened. A ghost of the Cosmodrome set loose. And she wonders who won this battle, who learned the most, the Vex baiting out this new power, or the Cabal hunting it. Or the Warmind itself, testing its reborn strength.
Ghost Fragment: Rasputin 2 — Grimoire Card

But did Rasputin reach Io? During mission Fury, Ikora instructed the Guardian to:

Reconnect it to the network
Fury — Transcript

Seeming to indicate that at no point prior had Io been within reach. It is possible that after reconnecting Rasputin arrived, explaining his presence during the Adventure.

There is some confusion as to the continuity of the timeline because, during the Adventure, Ghost states:

Weaponized music… Creepy quotations… All signs point to Rasputin, but. I don’t understand how he could be here.
Adventure: Arecibo — Transcript

@DrJazzyBebop has pointed out that the music which plays during the Arecibo Adventure is from Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 6, Pathétique, which is also the music Rasputin played during the Siege of the Warmind mission in Destiny 1.

@erin has commented that the channel the music is being broadcast on, J-1869, in fact likely correlates to Rasputin’s birthday. January 21, 1869.

Still more evidence, as noted by @DrJazzyBebop is that one of the emblems on Io is called “Ballet Lover” a reference to Rasputin and Ghost’s statement that he is a ballet fan in Fallen S.A.B.E.R.

A New Warmind

Another popular theory is that this Warmind is none of than Charlemagne.

During the Sleeper Simulant quest in which Rasputin tasks the Guardian with repairing an IKELOS Fusion Core, we are required to obtain components from a Martian WARSAT. That WARSAT’s designation is

WARSAT//MK19/MARS/CHLM

This seems to put Charlemagne’s location squarely on Mars. If we look to out of game references the Destiny pre-alpha marketing material claimed that players would retrieve a shard of Charlemagne’s core intelligence. There was also to be a location in the Dust Palace known as Charlemagne’s Vault, but it never made it into the game.

The Dust Palace reference is important because it may identify an unidentified in-game AI. Holborn’s Host is looking for

The old Warmind here, and the one who guards it
Ghost Fragment: Titan — Grimoire Card

That AI is later referred to as the Central AI Cortex in the Dust Palace. The Guardian prevents attack by the Psion Flayers:

Ghost: This AI once connected to the Warmind of Mars.
Rasputin: Soul does not exist. Death does not exist. Virtue does not exist. Everything is allowed.
Ghost: Rasputin’s controlling it. I can’t get in and neither could the Cabal. He’s everywhere now.
The Buried City — Transcript

The Mars location for Charlemagne ties into the Io Warmind’s reference to Mars when it overrides Ghost as well as a Ghost scan within the Io bunker.

Looks like this thing used to store files. Someone by the name of Bray scrubbed the data.
Ghost Scan: Warmind Vault JYS-2, Io, #2 — Transcript

Clovis Bray was a center for scientific advancement, interplanetary defense, AI development, and research on the Traveler located on Mars, including the Dust Palace. The Buried City — Transcript

We also have a Titan artifact entitled Intact Warmind Core.

Codename: MARTEL. Parent: !REDACTED!. Status: ILIODOR COMPLETE.
Intact Warmind Core — Item

It’s possible that Martel is a reference to one Charles Martel who was a Frankish statement and military leader around 700 AD. Charles Martel - Wikipedia This Charles Martel was the grandfather of Charlemagne.

The status Iliodor is a reference to Sergei Trufanov or Hieromonk Iliodor. Iliodor concocted a plan to kill Rasputin early 1916.

On Io, the Warmind vault itself uses the code sign JYS, which may be a reference to Charlemagne’s legendary sword Joyeuse. (Thanks @shackleshotgun on Twitter) This may not be an indication that Charlemagne was on Io but a Warmind named Joyeuse, which may have been a part of his network. I lean this way because Rasputin’s bunker RAS-2 is associated with his actual name.

Fragment of Rasputin

Ikora: There is only one Warmind, but Rasputin is not here on Io. I believe he’s been marooned on Earth ever since his network fragmented.
Fury — Transcript

The Warmind Network used to span across the entire solar system. I guess during the Collapse, it just… fragmented.
Ghost Scan: Warmind Vault JYS-2, Io, #3 — Transcript

In computing the term fragment or fragmentation is a reference to the storing of a file in separate areas of memory scattered throughout a hard disk.

Rasputin’s interplanetary defense network was not a single file, but it was a single neural network with multiple nodes scattered across the solar system. The word fragment also means to break off or be separated from something.

As a result of the Collapse, Rasputin’s systems and nodes became disconnected and isolated. If Rasputin’s code, his mind, was in each of these installations they would essentially have been multiple instances of himself. Perhaps these nodes and this fragmentation are what Rasputin was referring to when he said:

I bear an old name. It cannot be killed. They were my brothers and sisters and their names were immortal too but Titanomachy came and now those names live in me alone I think and think is what I do. I AM ALONE.
Ghost Fragment: Mysteries — Grimoire Card

If this is the case, it would explain Ghost’s confusion in seeing the many signs of Rasputin but also feeling not like him. This Warmind is not the Rasputin we know.

Weaponized music… Creepy quotations… All signs point to Rasputin, but. I don’t understand how he could be here.
Adventure: Arecibo — Transcript

I Learned from IT

Regardless of which Warmind this is there is one more important point to note:

Never ask for anything! Never for anything, and especially from those who are stronger than you. They’ll make the offer themselves, and give everything themselves.
Adventure: Arecibo — Transcript

To those astute lore scholars, this language may sound familiar. It is very similar to a conversation that Auryx had with the work Akka.

“Akka my God, Worm of Secrets. I am Auryx, sole king of the Hive. I have come to receive a secret. I want the secret power of the Deep, which you hold.”

“I give no secrets,” said Akka, whose voice was code.

“No,” said Auryx, “you give nothing. Giving is for the Sky. You worship the Deep, which asks that we take what we need.”

Akka said nothing, because if it denied this truth, the truth might become false.

“But you gave us your larvae, the worm,” said Auryx, “and that is why the worm devours us now: because it was given, not taken. So I must take what I need from you, although you are my god.”

Said Akka, “You have not the strength.”
XXVIII: King of Shapes — Grimoire Card

This Warmind believes itself to be stronger than us. It will not accept requests. It will only give to suit it’s own purposes. We have evidence that this was Rasputin from Ghost Fragment: Mysteries

Everything died but I survived and I learned from it. From IT.

Consider IT the power Titanomach world-ender and consider what IT means. I met IT at the gate of the garden and I recall IT smiled at me before before IT devoured the blossoms with black flame and pinned their names across the sky. IT was stronger than everything.

IT is alone and IT is strong and IT won. Even over the gardener and she held power beyond me but the gardener did not shrug and make herself alone. IT always wins.

I am made to win and now I see the way.
Ghost Fragment: Mysteries — Grimoire Card

@DrJazzyBebop noted that the final quote of the Arecibo mission is from the book The Master and Margarita, which is by a Russian author Mikhail Bulgakov.

With all the evidence I think most indications are pointing towards Rasputin, but the spin foil in me wants it to be an old evil fragment of him.


#2

It’s worth noting that the music which plays at the end of the Arecibo adventure, including during the part where Ghost talks about Mars, ice caps, and red sand, is from the same piece of music as the music which plays during the Siege of the Warmind mission from D1. Both of these sets of music are from Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No. 6, Pathétique, and can be heard in this excerpt from the symphony. When the music plays during Siege of the Warmind, Eris says, “That music? Rasputin’s in trouble.” This strongly implies that Rasputin is the one broadcasting this music. Music from Tchaikovsky’s 6th Symphony can also be heard during the final battle in Siege of the Warmind. Given that Rasputin was probably the one who was playing the music during Siege of the Warmind, it seems likely, although it’s not definitive evidence, that Rasputin is the one also playing music from the same Tchaikovsky symphony in Arecibo.

The final quote in the Arecibo mission, that starts with “Never ask for anything!”, is from the book The Master and Margarita which is by Russian author Mikhail Bulgakov. In D1, Rasputin made a few quotes/references to books that were also by Russian authors. In The Warmind mission, he says:

There is no immortality of soul, thus there is no greater good. Therefore everything is permitted.

This is a reference to a quote from Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky: “If there is no God, everything is permitted”. In the Buried City mission, Rasputin says:

Soul does not exist. Death does not exist. Virtue does not exist. Everything is allowed.

This could be another reference to the “Everything is permitted” quote.

Ghost Fragment: Rasputin 6 also includes this quote from Anna Karenina by Leo Tolstoy:

Without knowing what I am and why I am here, life is impossible.

Although it’s not conclusive evidence, the use of a quote from another Russian author in Arecibo could suggest that the one sending the messages in this adventure is Rasputin.

Another possible hint that Rasputin may be on Io is that one of the emblems you can get as a reward from Asher by ranking up your faction on Io is called “Ballet Lover”. In the Fallen S.A.B.E.R. strike, Ghost says that Rasputin is a ballet fan. Since we know that Rasputin likes ballet, calling the emblem you can get from the Io faction “Ballet Lover” could be a subtle hint that Rasputin is now also on Io.


#3

There’s also the channel that the music is playing on, which Asher can’t seem to hear:

Hey Asher? Are you picking up anything strange on channel J-1869? Sounds kind of like music.

The actual Rasputin was born on January 21st, 1869, so this seems like another reference to the Warmind Rasputin within the mission.

Like you said, these similarities aren’t concrete evidence that the broadcaster in Arecibo was Rasputin, but they are interesting to think about. Ghost’s comment that Rasputin seemingly wouldn’t be able to reach Io, combined with his comments about not liking “the new guy,” do further back up the idea that either Rasputin has somehow come to Io despite his network fragmenting, or that another AI/Warmind is using Rasputin-esque tactics in order for us to notice them- given the Mars comment, presumably Charlemagne. That relies entirely on Ghost’s comments, though, and he’s not the most objective of narrators.


#4

Thanks Jazzy! I’ve incorporated your thoughts in the op.


#5

Thanks Erin! Good insight.


#6

I don’t know if this was referenced, but the bunker JYS is Joyeuse. It is the Sword of Charlemagne.