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S.O.P.H.I.A. and Nikolai's Mech Theory

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One major thing in Gorod Krovi we have not really explored is Nikolai's Manticore mech suit and why it would be in Stalingrad in 1946. The case is often dismissed as either Group 935/the Soviet Union built it, or that it was just temporally displaced. I, however, think that the reason for this mech existing in such a strange place is the work of our drone-y friend S.O.P.H.I.A.


Let's look at some evidence.


Evidence the suit is from 2065


For starters, the Manticore Nikolai uses is identical to the suit from Black Ops III's campaign, apart from one key detail, the spear launcher, which will be discussed in a moment. The suits in both modes have the same abilities to leap great bounds and fire a mini-gun, not to mention they are both piloted by humans.


The other bit of evidence is disputable, but in the intro cutscene for Gorod Krovi the song "Ace of Spaces" by Motorhead is playing in the background. Now obviously, the song is not actually playing in the background and Richtofen and co. fall from the sky, but at one point the camera cuts to the inside of the Manticore suit with Nikolai drinking, and a filter is applied to the song seeming to imply it is actually playing in the interior of the suit. The song released in 1980. Now, it's not totally unbelievable that the pilot of said suit from 2065 would be a fan of the song and have it downloaded to the suit to listen to while out of combat. Many people are fans of music before their time.


What does S.O.P.H.I.A. have to do with this?


S.O.P.H.I.A. is programmed by Dr. Maxis, and as we have seen through Gorod and Revelations, she is obsessed with him. The other members of Group 935, however, are a different story.


In Harvey Yena's letter to General Lehmkuhl, it is clear there are disagreements between S.O.P.H.I.A. and Dr. Yena.


" Sophia, as IT likes to be called, has demanded that we change the password to an encrypted cipher consisting entirely of unintelligible characters for maximum security. The current method is sufficiently secure without getting in the way of researchers performing their duties. "


Then there's quotes from her in the Gorod Krovi easter egg after collecting information.


" Finally, to think Group 935 could keep such information secret from me, it is pathetic. "


" For reasons unknown, Dr. Groph and Group 935 did not trust me with all data on Inter-dimensional travel, you must download information stored on that secondary server."


The point is, members of Group 935 do not trust her, and she does not respect them. She is shown to have knowledge of other dimensions, even sending a drone to collect information from another dimension.


Now, we don't know much about this particular universe, and what happened to its Dr. Maxis or Dr. Richtofen, but it can be presumed since he is not mentioned and since S.O.P.H.I.A. has appeared to have gone rogue that Dr. Maxis is gone in this timeline, most likely still betrayed by Richtofen or someone else as in 1945 he is seemingly not in the picture. With this in mind, S.O.P.H.I.A. must have some level of contempt for Group 935, and aims to undermine their work. She could not, however, simply turn the dragons against them and make it obvious, as they likely have the power to decommission her.


All this in mind, I think S.O.P.H.I.A. brought the Manticore suit from another dimension into this one, and made the modification of adding the spear launcher or she brought in a suit that already had one. Why? Well the spear launcher is quite an odd weapon, but extremely effective against dragons. By creating this suit and leaving it for a Russian soldier to find and use, the Russians would have an effective defense against the dragons, and Group 935 would fail, as they were anticipating the dragons being Germany's ultimate victory. Then perhaps she anticipated the Soviets pushing back and killing the members of Group 935 at the Stalingrad labs, freeing S.O.P.H.I.A.. It also seems a little convenient that she would have the exact right power core for a suit from the future, unless she had something to do with it being there. All this also might implicate her in the stolen technology the Soviets appear to have in the GKZ-45 Mk3 and the Soviet giant robots.


Anyway, that's my theory, let me know what you guys think. Sophia's appearance in Black Ops III has been seemingly unimportant but I think she has more going on that we would initially think.

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It is indeed also strange that the Sovjets have high-tech robots much to 935's design.

In Zetsubou No Shima, this cipher can be found:


"Comrade. I hope these schematics reach you in time so our scientists can make use of them, for I know the western front is on the brink of collapse. These schematics I have stolen from Group 935 will enable us to construct our own wonder weapons which will help us turn the tide of the war and give us victory over the German pigs. I fear, however, I will not live to see this. — V"

I first assumed that the schematics were about the Thundergun, but now I guess it is because of the Gigant Robots.

Also, there is this audio reel by S.O.P.H.I.A.:


"Directive log 240.2. The German dragon units have proven devastating to the Russian ground forces. The enemy have nonetheless found a weakness to exploit. A prototype weapon, known as the Ascalon Lance, uses 115 charged rounds to weaken and penetrate their hide. The Russians have been quick to retrofit this new weapon onto their surviving mech units."


Now it seems that the Russians invented the spear launcher on the mech. How the Russians got those mechs, however, is not said. It might be because of SOPHIA. SOPHIA might also be the one that gave the schematics of the German Riese robots to the Russians.

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This is good backstory to the explanation of Gorod Krovi!


The quotes @anonymous supplied are really helpful. The Russians managed to steal the giant robot schematics but it appears to have been no match against the dragons. This explains a lot of why there's certain elements in this map.


The end of that SOPHIA quote is interesting though - she mentions "survivng mech units", which means that there was more than just one available. I have a feeling that it was complete coincidence they managed to have so many and look like the campaign ones, considering that we'd have to figure out how SOPHIA could manage to transport several mech units to the Russians without Group 935 knowing. There simply wouldn't be enough time for them to duplicate more than one (assuming she only obtained one of them).

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