Deep-Immersion Gaming: Sort of an inevitable consequence when the standard gaming rig involves full-sensory virtual reality of such quality as to be indistinguishable from reality, except for necessary departures of awesome. Although most people put together more imaginative avatars than looks-just-like-themselves.
(Now, the real deep-immersion gaming comes when you add a gnostic overlay that makes you believe that you’re your character and suppresses the memory of having been you, for the serious authenticity devotees. Ultimate realism, with only a slight to moderate chance of mental trauma. Personality shifts not included.)
Anyone try to use those gnostic overlays for a “Despair Squid” scenario?
Drive them to suicide, you mean? Maybe, although if you can get someone to run gnostic malware, you can just inject a suicide compulsion directly, so it’d be one of those bwa-ha-ha Behold My Unnecessarily Complicated Deathtrap moves.
(There’s also the problem, in either case, of the target’s backup waking up and being really pissed when they check their previous instance’s headware logs.
You’re probably better off going for something more subtle, like motivation assassination, or injecting some other cognitive hack that’s likely to go unnoticed until it’s crept into all their backups, too.)
This I have to see in a story one of these days.
It’s been done. See Phil Foglio’s “The Gallimaufry” story, wherein [spoiler] attempts to genocide Humanity with a motivation assassination virus. If unchecked, Humanity would stop caring to have sex, then stop caring to solve problems, then would stop caring to eat.
I appreciate the recommendation. I’ll keep an eye out for it.
I second this recommendation. (Sadly, it looks like it and the rest of the Buck Godot series are no longer free on the web.)
That probably qualifies, but is very much on the blunt-ended-and-noticeable end of the motivation assassination scale.
ExSec prefers the kind where your dangerous young firebrand politician barely notices the way that the energy that powered his career trajectory is being diverted and eventually neutered by his newfound enthusiasm for EVE Online, sort of thing.
(Ten years later, he wonders vaguely what happened to the dreams of his youth, but, enh, he’s got a Titan to pilot and his alliance are going to own the whole south end of the map after this battle, so time to fleet up and kick ass!)
((Elsewhere, the Conclave of Clionomy pats itself on the back for heading off another pointless border war.))
I was thinking more of the “convince someone their life up to this point was a simulation” part.
That you could do.
(I mean in all these cases, assuming that you can sneak it past the malware checkers and persuade the user to give it the necessary capabilities, ignoring all the warning messages that you’re about to give someone root privileges to your brain, belike.
Some sets of people are more likely to engage infosec stupidity mode at the first sign of a dialog box than others…)
Has anyone ever gotten “trapped in the game” when the appropriate gnostic overlay malfunctioned (or was improperly configured in the first place)?
Oh, probably. With a population of over a trillion, even very reliable things fail from time to time.