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""Turn it off." We thought it was the answer. But we were deceived. The Moon is the source of the signal... the madness. "Make us whole", "Turn it off"! These are its cries for help - its call to action... And we are the fools who listened."
—Dr. Earl Serrano[1]

The Brethren Moon orbiting Tau Volantis was a massive Necromorph and one of the Brethren Moons that are the origin of the Marker signals. It was the result of an incomplete Convergence Event that was halted by an Alien Machine, keeping the Moon frozen in its half-formed state and forcing it to send out messages through the Marker signal begging those who would listen to turn off the Machine.

The Moon served as the final boss of Dead Space 3.


"The misshapen Moon in orbit... that's what controls the Markers. It's the end-state of these creatures... or rather, it would've been. You see, the natives of this planet constructed a Machine that froze the Moon in mid-formation. But it wasn't enough. Even half-formed, the Moon's "Marker Signal" speaks to the Markers back home. And it doesn't end there. There is a network of "Brethren" Moons spanning the stars. As each one completes, it connects to this network, making them aware. If this Moon should complete, its brothers will all come - looking for food."
—Dr. Earl Serrano[2]
Necromorph Moon Concept Art

The incomplete Moon frozen over Tau Volantis.

The Moon over Tau Volantis was incomplete, with a huge portion of its outer organic shell missing. It was clear that the sudden halt of the Convergence Event damaged the moon, and as such it was only in a nascent stage.

While in hibernation, the Moon's sensory organs stayed tucked within its inner cavities, and its tentacles remained coiled beneath the surface. While in this dormant state, it was unable to communicate with its fellow Moons, as evidenced by the Moons' silence during the SCAF expedition. It did, however, continue broadcasting through the Markers, presumably allowing it to control swarms of Necromorphs and work to gather biomass for completion of Convergence.


Formation and Dormancy[]

—Admiral Marjorie Graves[3]
Desktop Screenshot 2023.09.18 - 07.06.18

The Tau Volantis Moon during its Convergence Event, shortly before being frozen by the Alien Machine.

At an unspecified point in the past, the alien civilization native to Tau Volantis discovered a Black Marker. Influenced by the Marker's signal, the aliens studied the Marker and created numerous copies, perhaps out of religious reverence or in order to harness the seemingly limitless energy offered by the devices. The Markers eventually caused Necromorph outbreaks which spread until the Black Marker had access to sufficient biomass to trigger a Convergence Event.

Billions of Necromorphs and corpses were pulled into orbit by the Marker, where they began to assemble into a mass resembling a planetoid: a newborn Brethren Moon. Fortunately though, the surviving aliens, whom had presumably prepared for such an event, activated a powerful Machine which turned the once oceanic Tau Volantis into a frozen waste, thus stopping Convergence. The Machine had a secondary function as well; to drag the Moon out of the sky and crash it into their planet which would kill it. However, the aliens had not configured the Machine fully, and this second phase was never initiated.

Its birth foiled by the aliens, the incomplete Moon remained in orbit, presumably either unconscious or unable to call to its brethren. Regardless, its signal was broadcast through the Markers, which continued to affect and generate the hordes of Necromorphs on Tau Volantis, both those of SCAF and those buried beneath the ice.

Revival and Defeat[]

"We all saw the Moon awaken. With great spectacle it parted the clouds, bringing with it glorious Convergence. And so we waited for the end, hands clasped, staring skyward. Then came a brilliant flash of green light from the Moon itself and it began to grow larger. But it wasn't increasing in size. It was falling; falling to the planet's surface and burning the sky as it fell. The impact was cataclysmic. As the shock wave covered us, I knew death would take us - the first step towards our eternal future. Yet we lived... When the sky had cleared, we gazed upon our fallen messiah. Its heavenly body loomed tall where it met the horizon, looking more like a cracked egg than the bringer of unity."
Randall Carr[4][5]
DS3 Tau Volantis Moon Crashed

The Moon crashed on the planet.

Two million years later, after Jacob Danik deactivated the Alien Machine on Tau Volantis, the Moon was able to re-initiate the Convergence Event that it had begun long ago. However, Isaac Clarke and John Carver battled the Moon and were able to complete and reactivate the Alien Machine. The Moon was once again frozen and pulled straight down onto the surface of Tau Volantis, killing it. Before leaving the planet for Earth, Ellie Langford confirmed that the Moon's Marker signal had ceased.


"Everyone felt the wave of discordance that followed. We turned to each other with anxious glances, faith draining from our faces. Was this what we had fought and died for? Was this the end of our religion? It was at that moment our cries were answered, for a sound pierced the sky and filled our hearts. It was shrill and deafening at first, but soon a voice emerged. "We are coming," it spoke. "Make ready the way.""
Randall Carr[5]
The Brethren Moons as shown in Issac and Carver hallucinations

The Moon network is fully awakened.

However, the Moon's defeat was not the end of the Necromorph threat. Before it died, the Moon contacted its dormant brethren throughout the universe, calling them to feed. The other Moons began broadcasting the signal anew, allowing the Necromorph infestations on Tau Volantis and elsewhere to resume.


DS3 Tau Volantis Moon

The Tau Volantis Moon after being set free.

The Moon is the final boss of Dead Space 3. Before the actual fight begins, Isaac must fly toward the Moon's mouth while dodging falling debris and one of the creature's massive tentacles. When he reaches the interior of the mouth, he crash lands on a large circular platform that was sucked in along with the Alien Machine. Regaining his footing, Issac comes face-to-face with the Moon's smaller mouth, initiating the fight.

The Moon is impervious to every weapon in Issac's arsenal. The only way to defeat it is by destroying the three eyes located around the inner mouth. In order to achieve this, Isaac must stand on the glowing circle located in the middle of the platform to enhance his Kinesis Module. He must use the enhanced Kinesis to grab Markers floating outside of the platform and launch them directly into the eyes to destroy them while avoiding the Moon's counterattacks.

The Moon attacks by shooting out rocky, Marker-esque projectiles. Each of the projectiles lands on the edges of the platform upon which Isaac stands, inflicting damage on Isaac if he is on one of the landing spots. After a few seconds, the projectiles burst open, releasing either a Slasher or Twitcher.

The Moon's second and most dangerous attack is to use two of its gigantic tentacles to pull the platform right into its mouth and down its gullet. This results in instant death if Isaac fails to destroy the tentacles in time.

Death Scenes[]


Brethren Moon Death Animation - Dead Space 3 (HD, 60 FPS)

  • If Isaac/Carver is unable to destroy its yellow weak spots when it tries to suck them in, it successfully sucks them into its maw and eats them.
  • If Isaac/Carver wanders off the platform where the fight is taking place, they are sucked up by the Convergence vortex.


DSR Turn It Off

The "Turn it off" message in Dead Space (2023).

  • In Dead Space (2023), after escaping the first encounter with the Hunter in Marker 3A's room in Chapter 10, Isaac's objective will change to a message written in Marker symbols. When translated, the objective reads "Turn it off", a reference to the Machine keeping the Tau Volantis Moon frozen.
    • Some of the Marker's whispers in the remake also state that "the brethren" are "cold" and "asleep in the ice".[6]
  • Isaac and Carver attack the Moon by spearing its eyes with Red Markers launched by the enhanced Kinesis Module, a visual very reminiscent of the box art of Dead Space: Aftermath.



Concept Art[]