Paradeus, the enigmatic and mysterious “White Faction” of Girls’ Frontline. Their motives and means have only recently begun to be brought to light, as are the important players pulling the strings of this group commonly hidden in plain sight.
Over the course of four events (at the time of writing), we have been given a chance to peel back the veil and take a peek into the White Church, its members, and how they operate.
Among many refugee settlements is the presence of cult activity dedicated to the name of Paradeus. These believers spread a word of a better life provided by Paradeus in exchange for giving up all technological advances. Even going as far as to remove prosthetic limbs from those wishing to join the settlements. These groups are tight-knit, completely indoctrinated, and extremely dangerous. When threatened, these settlements of refugees are even prepared to suicide bomb adversaries with Collapse Particle dirty bombs.
In truth, they’re used as testing grounds for Paradeus experiments, and a method of even gaining funding from the wealthy class who watch the refugees from behind disguised walls like zoo-goers. One such settlement was a den of debauchery, as wealthy Germans paid large sums to watch Machlian and even meet with her. Machlian was considered a saint in her settlement, her blood capable of curing ELID.
It is difficult to know exactly how many of these settlements exist in the Yellow Zones of Europe.
A “main plant” and a “sub plant” exist for the production of Nytos. The main plant produces Nytos from selected subjects and the sub-plant manufactures raw materials and chooses which of the subjects can move on to become a full fledged "Nyto". The sub-plant is near an undisclosed river where the corpses of failed subjects are disposed of, left to rot on the water’s shore. This secondary facility is also where the prospective Nytos learn to change their faces for disguises and it is also the lab where partially immune individuals are filtered out to the main plant.
The exact method of Nyto creation isn't detailed, however, due to the procurement and usage of orphan children, it is likely that these children are used as the raw material described to be used at the sub-plant and serve as a base for large batches of clones which potentially become Nyto. The amount of clones generated from one "template" orphan can reach numbers in the 10s of thousands, as seen with Morridow's batch exceeding 10,000 clones. Because of the vast number of clones possible via a single batch, it's likely that many genetic changes and variations are implemented during the cloning process.
One oddity is that these clones seem to possess the memories of their original template, as seen with Anna recalling the events of her template's kidnapping, indicating that not only is the genetic material of these children used, but also their minds. Thanks to Project Neural Cloud (Sunborn's GFL spin-off game), we know that mind uploading does indeed exist and is fully functional. There's also subtle, yet vague implications that Paradeus may have ties to one of the leading developers of the technology, but we won't get into that here.
This is pure speculation, but considering the technology for mind uploading exists and the AR team serves as a prime first-hand example that complete brain scans are possible and usable to create clones & even Dolls, the reason for also using the orphan's mind could be to give their would-be clones a mental starting point to begin the work of brainwashing. It might also explain why some Nytos are much more violent or have wildly different personality quirks, like Narciss' insatiable bloodlust.
Nytos are produced in “batches” in which the subjects with the highest ratings typically end up as the more dangerous named Nytos that Commanders encounter. Grig, Bramedb, Grey, and Narciss were all the Isomers with the highest ratings in their respective “batch”. Which is to say, they were all failures, but their performance was high enough that they were given enhancements and important roles and positions within Paradeus. Morridow on the other hand, was only the second highest within her batch, coming in behind Machlian who was the first and considered “Perfect”, not only by Morridow, but also other Nyto.
Neural scrubbing, brain-washing and indoctrination are frequently utilized to bring Nytos under the control of William. He has been shown to frequently wipe the memories of his Nytos, regardless of their status within the organization, even sometimes doing it purely for the pleasure of seeing how they react differently to both physical and mental stimuli. Neural suppressors are a common sight on the lower ranked Nyto, having such fragile mental faculties that they require specialized equipment to keep their sanity.
However, the brainwashing Nytos undergo is not permanent and affects each one differently. The effects of such treatment wearing off are the implied explanation of why Nyto White and Nyto Black are available for capture in Protocol Assimilation - because their original memories began to bleed through. Adeline in particular is mentioned by name as being one of the Nytos whom their brainwashing wasn't taking hold with her repeatedly calling out for her mother.
There is a ranking system for the Nytos within the Paradeus infrastructure. "Isomer" is essentially a derogatory term that Dandelion used to refer to copies who weren't even good enough to be called copies. This term is later used to simply refer to "Failed Nytos" in general, which is all of them. Nytos hate being called Nyto, but use the term Isomer themselves. Strange.
From Highest to Lowest:
- Grey - Teal
- Nimogen - Mercurows
- Nyto White
- Nyto Black
- Nyto (Non-combat type)
A cyberspace that Nytos can connect to and use as their communication network. They are all linked through it and it is used in the same manner as the Zener Protocol or the OGAS Protocol found in Dolls.
At the same time it is also the Relic System where control of Relics is both obtained and asserted and distinct "Voices" can be heard. However, there seems to be “layers” of involvement where Zion is concerned. Merely connecting to it does not mean one can access relics or even be aware of relics, or the “Voices” in general. It’s also possible that the “Voices” within Zion are simply not present unless a Relic is specifically accessed or attempted to.
There does not seem to be any discernible range limit, suggesting a more fantastical unconscious consciousness. It is a system capable of being accessed by both the human mind and machines, having been shown to be accessed by Dolls with an OGAS consciousness, such as UMP45, M16A1, M4A1, and Elisa.
Zion is linked to “The Source”, the place where the seeds of OGAS originate from. An empty space stretching eternally, its as if it contains an entire world within.
The Strelet is among the most common of enemy types Commanders face from Paradeus, and like many of the other units within the faction, were still quite a mystery even though Isomer previously revealed they were humans, refugees even, in suits.
Looking in further, it’s discovered that the creation of Strelets is achieved by, quite literally, tossing freshly dead corpses into a machine which converts them into what we know as Strelets. The exact mechanism of how this is achieved is unknown, however, what we do know is that Paradeus frequently ships Epiphyllum flowers pre-loaded with Collapse Particles to out of the way settlements in various Yellow Zone regions. Once these refugees open the deliveries and the flowers bloom, what follows is a corpse pile on a massive scale. Paradeus forces move in shortly after and begin the conversions by taking advantage of any of the soon-to-be ELID.
In a way it could be said that Paradeus has discovered a means of controlling ELID as foot soldiers for cybernetic army. Whether the recently deceased corpses return as ELID while confined within the suit, or the suit merely appropriates some biological reaction of mutation in order to operate is still unclear.
As for units such as the Rodelero, whose faces are visible and may appear to be converted or failed Nytos, there is no concrete information to support those claims. There is also none to refute it either.
Unfortunately the Strelet is, so far, the only Paradeus unit which has received any sort of explanation, or even acknowledgement within the story’s narration.
An all-pervasive surveillance and recording system created and controlled by Nemhran. It even monitors the Nytos. All of Paradeus rely on the “Beesting” system for surveillance and everything said by anyone is logged.
To quote a Nyto - “It gets in everywhere.”
Beesting was also shown to have monitored everything that happened within Paldiski Submarine Base, but playback from after the flooding wasn’t recoverable, suggesting a physical component of the system. While it is not confirmed, this combined with the above Nyto’s quote may imply that the Beesting system is a comprehensive network of nanomachines designed to record and log anything and everything.
This system is so advanced it even records and calculates action logic and determines the weaknesses of whoever it observes.
Paradeus’ HQ, located in the “Dead Sea”, a Black Zone outside of Germany’s Yellow Zones. Avernus itself is composed of two, giant, floating towers with massive power cable extensions anchoring it to the earth.
Paradeus typically uses flying aircraft to come to and from Avernus, but trucks have also been shown too. There are many surveillance posts scattered in the area of its location in the Black Zone stationed by typical Paradeus forces. This may explain why the Strelet is a recurring enemy that appears en masse despite its seemingly inefficient production method - If humans can’t survive in this environment, ELID sure can.
Furthermore, the environmentally dangerous location of Avernus and the fact that Nytos come and go from this place without protection suggest that they possess at least partial immunity combined with their cybernetic implants and replacements to offer a very high degree of resistance of the lethal levels of Collapse Radiation present in the Black Zone.
A drug company heavily, and directly involved with Paradeus. It’s headed by “Lady Grey” who also owns a company called Grey Biotech and is involved with the Grey Institute of Biology Research Center. Grey was a famous surgeon for over 10 years before being killed and replaced by one Paradeus’ Nyto, taking her face, name, and even surgical talents for her own.
Galatea is attempting to roll out a new Anti-Collapse Serum called “Eden”. It is billed as a cheap, but highly-efficient medication. The company has issued press packets about “Eden”, so its capabilities are common knowledge in Berlin. Protests have started in Berlin because the people want the government to expedite the vetting for the drug.
Unfortunately, while the original Grey’s goals were altruistic, and strove for a better tomorrow, her Paradeus stand-in has corrupted her research and pushed “Eden” in a different direction. The drug is no longer for treating people, it’s for selecting people. It uses the human immune system to produce the most appropriate antibodies necessary to determine whether someone is fully, or partially immune to Collapse Radiation. If it is used on someone unsuitable (not immune), the drug will cause brain death. The only effective treatment of ELID is by obtaining a blood serum sample from an immune individual and replicating it.
Eden's growth factors accelerate the spread of infected cells in patients with radiation sickness in an attempt to cure the sickness with the patient's own immunoproteins. In essence, a eugenics project searching for completely immune patients. Research trials of Eden were conducted in radiated zones in secluded settlements below the poverty line in order to cover up Galatea’s, and by extension, Paradeus’ human testing.
A drug company affiliated with Paradeus through Mr. Powell. The company paid several years worth of expenses up front despite the production plant having been abandoned for months. Zeratul was a lab controlled by Paradeus. The main focus was on biomedicine and the development of biotechnological materials.
Their abandoned labs throughout Europe are used as staging points for both deliveries of orphaned children and Collapse Particle-laden Epiphyllum shipments to be delivered to refugee settlements. These children are meant to serve as the raw material used in the creation of Nytos and the delivery of them has even been traced to the Paldiski Submarine Base.
The drug produced at Zeratul was created to improve the survival rate of the children during shipment in wooden crates by slowing their breathing while also keeping them asleep. Unfortunately the drug did not always work and some children awoke mid-transit, began panicking and suffocated. Others sometimes went to sleep and would never wake up.
Anna, and the other Nyto children rescued from Paldiski were children sent from orphanages in Germany.
Flora Research Institute
The Flora Institute in Bremen, Germany is the first of many organizations or corporations involved with Paradeus. The researchers there conduct research on flowers, not solely Epiphyllum, although it is one such notable subject. The organization is a large provider of Germany’s ELID vaccines and other therapeutic medicine.
It is here that Paradeus discovered the method to controlling the bloom period of Epiphyllum flowers, enabling them to turn the flowers into Collapse Radiation-carrying bombs of devastating contamination potential on the level of Black-to-Red Zone levels in an instant.
A researcher by the name of Leone was part of a project aiming to manually control the bloom time of Epiphyllum, such that they could be used by Paradeus as time bombs containing Collapse Particles.
Additionally, a radioactive pollen that accelerates ELID symptoms in infectees and causes hallucinations was created at this research center and is frequently used by Paradeus forces in Germany. This pollen is also being distributed to prisons in Berlin as a street drug for testing. Those who come into contact with this pollen will have an allergic reaction, resulting in a nose bleed. Nytos do not appear to be affected by this allergy.
The Institute had later been discovered to mask a cult where members worshiped flowers, and possessed an obsession with them. They believed plants are the more advance life forms and that humans are fertilizers. While the cult is believed to not directly be a part of Paradeus, they provided this cult with weapons and used them as a smokescreen to obfuscate their own presence and dealings with the institute.
Furthermore, Flora Institute is responsible for at least 1400 refugees finding employment in the White Zone where a botanical institute which cultivates flowers en masse is located.
Free German Independent Party
Also known as the “GIP”. It is made up of the German Police 9th Border Brigade and other military outcasts, which is being backed by even more influential powers within Germany. It is suspected that the Flora Research Institute may have been a money laundering hub for the GIP.
While not directly aligned with Paradeus’ goals, this influential right-wing group is affiliated with them for profit. Classified as a terrorist organization in recent years due to being involved in violent acts. They advocate changing economic policies for the contaminated zones and prioritizing lifestyle needs for the Green and White Zones of Germany. They oppose the intake of refugees and the treatment of contaminated zones. Most of its members are racist and/or ex-Federal soldiers.
Through a middleman, “Uncle Powell”, an influential figure of Bremen’s underworld, the GIP procures and sells children to Paradeus indirectly.
An Orphanage located in Bremen, Germany where the GIP trafficks children to Paradeus. The orphanage was run by a Madam Isabella, who was well liked and legitimately cared for the children. She was forced under duress by GIP operatives to prepare the children for transport to Paradeus facilities. Her planned suicide is what finally allowed the human trafficking to be discovered.
The children of the orphanage were placed in wooden crates called “Dream Boxes'' and given a drug created by Zeratul-Worchestershire Pharmaceuticals. Additionally, Bohnsdorf was another location involved with the “Dream Box” case.
The Stasi’s involvement with Paradeus was originally only a means to produce and procure mechs and other militaristic machines for their own usage through General Schweinsteiger’s connection and friendship with Rudolf Von Oberstein. Once the truth about Paradeus began to be revealed, the government attempted to cut ties by destroying evidence and the production plants.
Powell or “Uncle Powell” was a philanthropist who originally sought out to improve the living conditions within the refugee sector of Bremen, but due to lack of support from the government, he eventually became akin to a crime lord of this region. His influence is vast and a large population of the refugees within Bremen are under his control.
Powell is the intermediary, or liaison, between Paradeus, the GIP, and the orphanages to mask the flow of goods being transported. He never uses a communicator and often changes the time and locations for his meetings, making it difficult to pin him down. He is responsible for procuring children from the Burley Orphanage through the GIP and having them trafficked to Zeratul, who provided both the “Dream boxes” and the medicine for the children.
Bremen’s Refugee Aid Center was used as a handover point, and because all of this was done in the refugee district, it was very difficult to monitor.
Rudolf Von Oberstein
While it's not entirely clear the scope of what his involvement is, it’s confirmed that he is an influential figure both within Paradeus and in the German Government.
To date Rudolf Von Oberstein is:
- The Minister of Construction
- The Minister of Industry and Information
- The Minister of Science and Technology
- The Vice-Chairman of the State Council
- Previous Director of the Max Planck Institute for Computer Science
- Former leader of the Bundeswehr Special Technology Development Group
In regards to the last bullet point, if that name sounds familiar, it's because that’s the real name of 90Wish. Oberstein’s position within 90Wish may explain where this R&D organization of Germany was procuring their mysterious funding.
Rudolf is also Lunasia’s father, placing a personal stake in Paradeus’ activities whom they seemingly revolve around. With the revelation that "William" is Lunasia's younger brother, the actions of Paradeus appear to be a father-son joint effort. Additionally, Oberstein has always been a backer of the Galatea Corporation, even before Paradeus’ infiltration.
While we’re unsure of his exact placement within the power structure of Paradeus at this time, it should go without saying that he is one of, if not its most important members. So much so that even the “electronic voice” we’ve been treated to throughout multiple story segments loses its narcissistic tone and actually shows either respect or fear towards this man.
The most enigmatic man in the series. The name "William" is not his own, and he was surprised that people were still referring to him as such. There was once a researcher named William, however he died before World War 3 and all information about this individual was scrubbed, suggesting that the person with whom Commanders are coming to know still has an unknown name.
William is Lunasia's younger brother, his age is unknown, but he is said to be a brilliant biologist. He was once a member of 90Wish along with Persica and Lyco, although he was apparently hard to deal with and he never showed himself, only ever communicating with a distorted voice. He had a fascination and obsession with the Epiphyllum flower and its ability to absorb and release Collapse Radiation.
He is the "Father of Nytos" and Paradeus' leader.
A special Nyto referred to by “William” as “Mother”. She may be Oberstein’s wife and William’s real mother, but it is unclear at this time. Regardless of her identity, she is a Nyto with exclusive privilege to sit down and eat with the most enigmatic man in the series, even being allowed to discuss Lunasia whom she calls “Lucy”.
Still, as special as she apparently is, William completely wipes her memory after their visits and she is required to re-obtain her memories through detailed notes and her “Beesting” surveillance system records. This process is initiated by a lesser Nyto aide who awaits Nemhran outside the meeting room and is promptly killed once she regains her memories prior to her meeting with William. This process of killing her aides to protect even the act of meeting with William is assumed to occur each time. She has also been shown to murder her aide in the event of their information discovery abilities proving unsatisfactory.
Nemhran is an information specialist who was in charge of a Paradeus base in Moscow, Russia. As a Nyto, she has no lethal attacks capable of killing Dolls, however, she is capable of flight and releases heavily disruptive nanomachines which can cripple both Dolls and electronics.
She created the “Beesting” system which all of Paradeus uses. Only she can change the access and rules of this system.
Speculation On Paradeus’ Infiltration of Germany
The scope and reach of Paradeus may be hard to grasp, or even accept. They’re completely ingrained in German society and one of the faction's most influential members is also one of Germany’s most powerful men.
You may be asking, “How?”, and that’s a good question. How has this organization, this cult, rooted itself so deeply? The answer may lie in an incident within the setting of Girls’ Frontline almost 30 years earlier.
After the Northern Lights Incident of 2035, Germany’s government was forced to relocate to Frankfurt, becoming known as the “Frankfurt Government”, and Berlin remaining the Capital in name only. Of course, after World War III, the government returned to Berlin, but not as an official operating point. As an “enclave” in a contaminated area, it may explain why the “capital” of Germany is so severely infiltrated by Paradeus and its “religion”.
Speculation on Paradeus’ & Ultimate Life
It is no mystery that the original Lunasia’s brain was digitized and that’s the origin of both M4, the AR team and Elisa. The process of digitizing a human brain was a procedure that even Persica had no idea was possible back when she was first approached. However, with Project Neural Cloud’s release, we’re introduced to a company called Ultimate Life (Ultilife), who was not only testing brain uploading technology during the time of the NC test (2060), but also had it working, at least as a one way trip for the consciousness. This may mean that Ultimate Life is involved with Paradeus on some level, or at the very least, William acquired this brain uploading technology.
Owing to this is the Neural Cloud ARG which revealed email correspondence regarding the mind-uploading technology and interest regarding it. One thing to note about this is the recipient receiving emails from Ultimate Life was addressed as “Minister ___”, sound familiar? You decide.
Lastly, the general aesthetics of Ultimate Life follows a medical and sterile style, for obvious reasons. However, there are occasionally Dolls from their company which seem a little too familiar if you know what I mean.
Fun Paradeus Facts
- The area of research relating to the creation of Nytos, specifically the new-type enhanced Nytos such as Morridow, Grey, Teal, Narciss, and Bramedb is called the “Technical Theory of Biological Human Automation”. No information regarding what exactly this is or means has been provided yet, but it is a forbidden area of research and considered an ethical violation.
- A Nyto’s “Neural Cloud” equivalent is called a “Virtual Cognition Image” or VCI for short.
- “Morridow” is a portmanteau of the words “Morrigan” and “Shadow”, signifying a shadow of a goddess of war and death.
- “Nyto” is a portmanteu of the words “Nyarlathotep” and “Tyto” (the owl genus).