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"Oh my God. I built that?"
Isaac Clarke
Dead Space 2 Screenshot 2023.09.17 - 00.14.34

The Site 12 Marker in its dome on Titan Station.

The Site 12 Marker was a gigantic Red Marker created by EarthGov in the Titan Station Government Sector as part of Project Telomere. It was described as a "fully expressed physical representation" of algorithms embedded in the mind of Isaac Clarke by Marker 3A.[1]

The Site 12 Marker was the source of the Necromorph outbreak on the Sprawl and was possibly the largest Marker ever encountered by humanity.

History[]

Construction[]

"Clarke! I knew you were trouble from the start, but they told me you were necessary. That your mind was the purest. I spent years sifting through your demented brain!"
Hans Tiedemann to Isaac Clarke about the Marker's creation.
DS2 Isaac Marker Session

Isaac is interrogated about his contact with Marker 3A and the blueprints he received from it.

The Site 12 Marker was built by a team of scientists and engineers stationed on Titan Station under the orders of Director Tiedemann during Project Telomere. According to one of Tiedemann's logs, those involved with the project had come to the consensus that humanity could no longer sustain itself and that EarthGov needed to study the Markers in order to secure new sources of energy. Many details regarding the construction process remain a mystery, but various logs suggested that the Marker was "grown" from mineral printing baths layer by layer, using heuristic algorithms as blueprints.[2][3]

The Art of Dead Space Isaac Padded Cell

Isaac's padded cell on Titan Station, covered in Marker scrawlings.

The EarthGov team studied the minds of Isaac Clarke, Nolan Stross and at least three others (Clarke and Stross were called Patient 4 and Patient 5, respectively) suffering from mental illness from a Marker's signal. The signal had implanted instructions in them at an earlier time - in Isaac's case, on Aegis VII - and this information was extracted and studied via sessions in the Noonlight Diagnostics Machine, using a needle through the eye into the patient's brain. Memory suppressants were given to the patients after each session in order to erase their knowledge of the device and to keep their dementia under control.

Isaac - Eye Poke 2

The Marker-touched parts of Isaac's brain are stimulated through the Noonlight Diagnostics Machine.

According to Director Tiedemann, Isaac Clarke's Marker-touched mind was the "purest" of all of them and the scientists deemed him necessary for the project's success even when Tiedemann believed his strong connection to the Marker could be dangerous. One of the lead scientists, Kinner Phelps, remarked that the replication formulas in Isaac's brain were "so clearly ordered" that they kept playing back in Phelps' own mind.[2] Eventually becoming obsessed with Isaac's formulas as if "possessed" by the Marker signal, Phelps recorded an instance where he blacked out and later awoke to find that he had unconsciously constructed a tiny Marker in one of the mineral baths.[3]

DS2 Isaac Mind Marker

Isaac encounters the Marker during a hallucination inside his own mind.

Logs later found by Isaac revealed that, to select individuals hypothesized to have a higher intelligence or be more compatible, the Marker signal could manifest inside their minds as 'blueprints' for the construction of new Markers, turning them into vessels for the artifacts' propagation.[4] People of lesser intelligence were simply driven to violence by the Marker over time, becoming fodder for the Necromorphs.

Necromorph Outbreak[]

"The dampening system built into the shielding around the Marker Test Beds should be blocking the signal entirely. But I swear the dementia signal is still getting through. Not a single thing registers on any sensor outside the shield walls. Put the same sensor inside with the Marker, and it goes off the charts. So we've either missed something entirely, or... I don't know what. You know, if we have, oh man, please heaven help us. "
—EarthGov scientist[5]
DS2 Titan Elementary Slasher Drawing

A drawing of a Slasher at Titan Elementary School.

After its construction, the Site 12 Marker's signal eventually managed to begin leaking through the containment shell protecting the Marker, despite the scientists' efforts to stop it.[5] Titan Station's population soon began to suffer its effects, with an increasing number of people complaining of anxiety and other psychological problems.[6] Cases of extreme paranoia leading to violent and homicidal actions were also observed,[7] mirroring the events that took place with Marker 3A after its discovery by the Aegis VII Colony. At Titan Elementary School, children were reportedly beginning to speak with their deceased relatives[8] and becoming increasingly hostile and violent towards each other.[9] Some children appeared to have also begun having nightmares involving the Necromorphs.

Thanks to the efforts of a Unitologist group led by Daina Le Guin, a sabotage operation in the Government Sector undertaken by Karrie Norton unleashed the first Necromorphs. While these Necromorphs were initially contained within the Government Sector as Karrie realized what her actions had caused and attempted to fix her mistake, she was further manipulated by the Unitologists and unintentionally released the creatures into the Public Sector.[10]

In the hours leading up to Isaac Clarke's awakening, Hans Tiedemann ordered a station-wide evacuation, and by the time Clarke made his way to the Government Sector to destroy the Marker, almost all of Titan Station's residents had either been killed by the infection or managed to be evacuated.

Convergence Event[]

"It's all those bodies. All those bodies you let in here! It's triggering a Convergence Event. But we never expected this many bodies..."
Hans Tiedemann
Deadspace2 ConvergenceEventNecromorphs

The Necromorphs gather around the Marker for Convergence.

DS2 Marker Convergence Vortex

The Marker creates a vortex around itself, drawing the Necromorphs up as part of Convergence.

Seemingly being led by the Ubermorph, the Necromorphs eventually launched an assault on the remaining Security Forces in the Government Sector that stood between them and the Site 12 Marker's chamber. When Isaac arrived at an overlook above the Marker chamber, he was positioned above a mass of Necromorphs at its base. The apparition of Nicole Brennan appeared and told him that they were all gathering around the Marker as Convergence was at hand.

During a holographic video message from Tiedemann, who had found safety at the foot of the Marker due to the dead space surrounding it, the sheer mass of bodies near the Marker triggered the start of Convergence.[11]

Initiating Convergence, the Marker flashed brightly and emitted a noise like a fog horn, followed by an upthrust of wind drawing the Necromorphs up into the air. When asked what it was doing, "Nicole" simply replied, "What it was made to do. Isaac, you have to make us whole."

Destruction[]

"Yours is the last body we need to be reborn! The makers must be absorbed."
—The apparition of Nicole Brennan to Isaac.
Chapter 13 telomere11

"Nicole" declares that it is "time to die".

Following "Nicole"'s instructions, Isaac used the machine to activate the Marker-influenced parts of his brain, revealing to him a message in Marker symbols: "The world must end." Isaac then made his way to the foot of the Marker to find "Nicole" bathed in a bright light. Once Tiedemann was taken care of, Isaac embraced "Nicole" and was shocked when she revealed her true motive of leading him to commit suicide in order to allow the Marker to absorb its creator's body and complete the Convergence Event.

Dead Space 2 Screenshot 2023.09.18 - 05.34.52

The Marker's "heart" as seen during the confrontation in Isaac's mind.

A fight took place in Isaac's mind against the apparition of Nicole and shadows that looked and behaved similarly to The Pack. By shooting at "Nicole", Isaac was able to expose the parts of his brain where the Red Marker still had an influence over him and destroy them. He emerged from his mind after defeating "Nicole" and destroying the Marker's influence to find the real Marker essentially dead and crumbling.

Although Isaac was able to escape thanks to Ellie Langford, the reactor cores of the station became unstable, resulting in the complete destruction of Titan Station and the remains of the Marker.

Trivia[]

Dead Space 2 Screenshot 2023.09.18 - 05.35.23

The "mouth" seen behind the Marker's "heart", resembling the mouth of a Brethren Moon.

DS2 Marker Red Glow

The Site 12 Marker glowing red.

  • During the battle against the Site 12 Marker inside Isaac's mind, the wails of a Hive Mind can be heard whenever the apparition of Nicole speaks. A pentagon-shaped "mouth" very similar to the mouth of a Brethren Moon (or a Hive Mind) can also be seen behind the Marker's "heart".
  • While it was unclear precisely what Convergence was (at least until Dead Space 3), both the Unitologist dogma, "Nicole"'s statements and some developer comments seemed to indicate that it culminated in the creation of "something greater". An important part of this was the accumulation of a large number of Necromorphs and, as it was stated by "Nicole", "absorbing the maker" of the Marker (in this case, Isaac Clarke).
  • Based on the computer readout for the Noonlight Diagnostics Machine, the needle taps into the lateral geniculate nucleus, which is the center of the human brain tasked with processing the visual information received by the retina of the eye. It makes sense that this would be the focus of study for EarthGov when evaluating patients like Isaac Clarke and Nolan Stross who could "see" the Red Marker's symbols.
  • The symbols present on the surface of the Site 12 Marker appear smaller relative to the size of the artifact than those seen on Marker 3A, and are arrayed in a more linear, horizontal pattern from top to base along the structure.
  • While at first glance the Site 12 Marker appears to have a unique golden coloration, this is the result of the yellow energy field that can be seen surrounding it as it prepares for Convergence; the Marker's true color is, in fact, black with a reddish glow, with its representation inside Isaac's mind being fully red.

Gallery[]

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