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"The Codex. It's the key to saving everything!"
—Dr. Earl Serrano[1]
DS3 Codex 03

The Codex.

The Codex was a man-made device created by the Sovereign Colonies Armed Forces that could communicate and work in conjunction with the Machine buried in the alien ruins beneath the surface of Tau Volantis, in a move to stop the Convergence Event by preventing the spread of the Marker signal perpetuated by the Tau Volantis Moon.[2][3]


Events of 2314[]

"I cannot stress how important it is that your cargo reaches its intended destination. Should you fail in your mission, it is not just our lives that are at stake, but those of your wives, your children - everyone you have ever known. I pray that the Codex finds its way safely to my hands before it is too late. Godspeed."
—Dr. Earl Serrano's message to Ensign Patrick Beckford of The Mule.[4]
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Tim Caufman finds the Codex in The Mule's cockpit.

On June 18, 2314, after Scenario Five was declared, Privates Tim Caufman and Sam Ackerman were sent by Dr. Earl Serrano on the final day of the cleanse order to locate the crash site of a ship called The Mule, which had been carrying the Codex. Tim found the Codex in the ship's cockpit and, after fighting his way through a horde of Necromorphs, rapelling down a cliff and dodging the debris of the falling vessel (Sam being crushed by debris), Tim found himself within an encampment in Facility Two, only to see that all of his comrades had committed suicide as part of the final containment protocol.


General Spencer Mahad purges the Codex's data as part of Scenario Five.

Tim then encountered General Spencer Mahad, who was convinced that Dr. Serrano was far too optimistic and that, rather than try to use the Codex, everyone must die in order to stop the outbreak in its tracks. General Mahad killed Tim and purged the Codex of its information before finally committing suicide as part of Scenario Five. At some point before, however, a new Codex had been placed in the workstation of the "Rosetta" Lab to be used in the future in case Tim failed, presumably by Dr. Serrano.

Events of 2514[]

"The natives never finished configuring the Machine. It wasn't meant to merely freeze the Moon - it was meant to destroy it! You'll need the Codex. It is the key to unlocking this Machine and re-configuring it! Follow my trail into the heart of the Machine and end this nightmare."
—Dr. Earl Serrano's message for those who might discover Tau Volantis after Scenario Five.[5]

In 2514, Isaac Clarke and his team discovered aboard the CMS Roanoke a major clue suggesting a way to turn off the Markers when he and John Carver investigated the Admiral's Quarters aboard the derelict vessel. The Admiral had been driven mad by the Markers' influence and was desperate to create a "key" to a Machine that would supposedly turn them off, which she hoped would stop the torment that was being afflicted onto her mind. Isaac and his company followed this clue in the belief that Tau Volantis was the Marker homeworld and down on the surface they would find the answer that they sought.

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Isaac Clarke acquires the newly-crafted Codex.

After facing off head to head with both Necromorphs and the Unitologist Circle, Isaac and his group eventually discovered that the source of the key could be found with research pertaining to a woman named Rosetta, which they later discovered was not actually a person, but a preserved corpse of an alien researched at a facility within the colony. Within the facility, they discovered that they were able to craft a key from the mental capabilities of "Rosetta" by reassembling her separated body and probing her mind of its information.

From the memories of the alien creature, they found out that the key powered the Alien Machine that was activated to stop a Convergence Event from finalizing a Necromorph Moon and that, if the Machine was turned off, the Convergence Event would continue, completing the monstrosity.

Moment of truth

The Codex being used to complete the Alien Machine.

It was not long until Jacob Arthur Danik, leading the Unitologist group called the Circle who stood in opposition to Clarke and his team, intercepted the key that Clarke had crafted with the hopes of turning off the Machine and releasing the Moon, as Danik believed that it was a divine being. Despite Danik initially succeeding, Isaac was able to use the Codex to complete the Machine and kill the Moon. However, it was already too late, as the Moon had already contacted its dormant brethren throughout the galaxy to invade Earth.


  • The Codex greatly resembles a cryptex, a device featured in Dan Brown's novel The Da Vinci Code.
  • In the Prologue, the Codex displays text in the proper direction when the code is being input by General Mahad, but when it lands upside down it displays the text right side up to the viewer and completely upside down on the Codex's screen.