HorizonVirtual:The Waker Dictionary

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The Waker Dictionary is a collection of terms created and used by wakers (the sentient computer programs that players will take the roles of in any game of Horizon: Virtual) to refer to themselves, other wakers and the places, beings and events that they encounter in Program Space.



(noun) One of the six heritages of waker, an absorber is the closest to a "baseline" heritage with no outstanding traits other than a heightened ability to learn.


(noun) One of the six classes of waker, an antiviral was originally designed to combat viruses and system attacks; its form is a lethal weapon, capable of inflicting serious damage on other programs.

Artificial Intelligence[edit]

(noun) Broadly speaking, the capability of a computer or program to mimic or parallel the thought processes of a sentient being (i.e. a human). As far as most denizens of User Space are concerned, "true" artificial intelligence does not exist outside of science fiction; however, the sophisticated attack programs known as the progenitor viruses have evolved self awareness and intelligence after being released into the global computer network, and have inadvertently passed their gift on to the wakers.


(noun) The moment when a dreamer that was present at, and survived, a progenitor virus attack on a system attains self awareness and metamorphoses into a waker. This metamorphosis usually occurs some time after the progenitor virus attacker has departed the now-ravaged system.

What exactly happens to a dreamer during this process, or how it comes to posess code from the attacking progenitor virus, is unknown; the only survivors of progenitor virus attacks are the newly-Awakened wakers produced by the attack, none of whom ever remember what happened to them as dreamers or how. It is assumed that the waker-to-be is left in some form of comatose, near-death state during the attack, as the progenitor virus would otherwise almost certainly ensure the waker-to-be's destruction before it departed the now-ravaged system.

  • Verb: Awaken, Awakens, Awakened, Awoken.



(noun) One of the five forms of waker, a Bantam is the most stealthy form and often as small as some of the larger Primal forms. Like the Userclone form, all Bantams are humanoid (approximately child-sized), though the category usually expresses many iterations (aliens, pixies) on the baseline.


(noun) The most commonly understood language in Program Space.

Battle A.I.[edit]

(noun) One of the six classes of waker, a battle A.I. is a combat expert, often a game bot or other tactical program in its former life.


Circuit Barge[edit]

(noun) A large code vehicle limited to cruising pathways between systems or heavily-used routes within major systems. Circuit barges typically hover slowly above the ground.


(noun) One half of a waker's "genetic makeup" (along with its heritage), a program's class is an expression of the program's function before it was Awoken. Although programs of all kinds have been Awoken, six classes typically become adventurers: antivirals, battle A.I.s, messengers, programmers, thinkers and webcrawlers.


(noun) The building block of Program Space.

Code Bike[edit]

(noun) A small, agile code vehicle.

Code Bomb[edit]

(noun) A small, hand-held explosive cosisting of the same energy that coderippers use. Most commonly used as a grenade; some types can be fired from a launcher arrangement.

Code Vehicle[edit]

(noun) A type of Program Space transport. Code vehicles are powered by the concentration of the controlling program, and often appear as simplistic equivalents of User Space vehicles.


(noun) The Program Space equivalent of a poison.


(noun) Broad category for any ammunition-driven, energy-firing Program Space firearm that disrupts the code of any Program Space item it's fired at.


(noun) One of the six heritages of waker, a controller is capable of exerting its will on other programs.



  • Any waker or dreamer whose coding is degraded or changed somehow for the worse, be it from a microvirus or another corrupted program.


(noun) A rewrite executed to counter or render harmless the effects of another rewrite.

  • Verb: counterwrite, counterwriting, counterwritten, counterwrote.


(noun) Unit of time in Program Space, roughly equivalent to eight (8) Program Space hours (or twenty User Space seconds).


Data Access Port[edit]

(noun) The gateway between a system and a pathway, a Data Access Port is the most regulated entry and exit point for a system. As an individual pathway can connect only two systems together, a given system may have many Data Access Ports (major systems may have hundreds).


(noun) The tool of a programmer (similar to a User Space PDA); used to record the programmer's collection of rewrites.


(noun) One of the six heritages of waker, a destroyer excels at inflicting violence upon other programs.


(verb) To discorporate: to die, to kill. Past tense: Discorporated.


(noun) The state of a program that most closely corresponds to death.


(noun) A combination of personal shield, edged melee and thrown weapon, the discus is a broad, saucer-shaped device attached to a wielder's forearm and "thrown" from that mounting when attacking with it at range. The discus responds to the wielder's intent and can return to its mounting under its own power.


(noun) One of the three types of program, a dreamer is a more advanced form of sleeper, possessed of limited artificial intelligence that allows it to learn from its enviornment and the results of its actions, but although it can expand its routines and parameters to a certain extent, it can still only grow within fairly narrow boundaries. Some dreamers are complex enough that they have some of the trappings of sentience, but none are actually self-aware. Every waker was once a dreamer, and examples of dreamers are given in the descriptions of the various waker classes.





(noun) Refers to a waker actively executing rewrites.



(noun) The primary and/or most visible form of security posessed by a given system. A firewall prevents access to the system aside from through regulated data acces ports.


(noun) The basic shape of a waker. Wakers appear as one of five forms: Bantam, Primal (itself divisible into two, Flyer and Hunter), Prototype, Titan and Userclone. A waker's form expresses at the moment of Awakening and cannot be changed by the waker.




(noun) One half of the "genetic makeup" of a waker (along with its class). A waker's heritage is donated by its progenitor virus parent. Wakers have so far been able to classify themselves into six separate heritages: absorber, controller, destroyer, hider, infecter and resister.


(noun) One of the six heritages of waker, a hider is an expert at concealment and evading security.


(noun) Short-hand or slang term for a major system, usually one that represents the combined networks of a User Space city (and at least city-sized, if not continent- or planet-sized, itself).



(noun) One of the six heritages of waker, an infecter is a master charmer and social manipulator.


(noun) Uncommon and highly dangerous firearm that delivers a microvirus payload.





Major System[edit]

(noun) A system of systems; a massive conglomerate that occupies a volume of Program Space equivalent to a large User Space metropolis.


(noun) One of the six classes of waker, a messenger is a wanderer of Program Space and master courier. Most messengers were communication management programs, such as file transfer programs or instant messaging clients, before Awakening.


(noun) A highly advanced and refined form of computer virus, the microvirus is the Program Space equivalent of a disease. Although microiviruses can be carried by any program, they generally only infect wakers. Microiviruses largely have the same effect on wakers that User Space viruses have on Users, although some variants can erase a waker's memory or "posess" it, effectively removing the waker's free will and placing it under the control of the microvirus' progenitor virus creator.





(noun) A direct connection between two Data Access Ports. Movement along a pathway is much faster than walking across the "wild" regions of Program Space between systems.


(noun) A basic unit of a program's appearance, usually the equivalent of hair on a user.


(noun) One of the five forms of waker, a Primal has the shape and size of a User Space hunting animal. Such forms excel at speed and combat, but are poor communicators and posess little to no fine manipulation capabilities.

Primal Flyer[edit]

(noun) A Primal form waker in the shape and size of a bird of prey (raptor).

Primal Hunter[edit]

(noun) A Primal form waker in the shape and size of a canine or feline.

Progenitor Virus[edit]

(noun) A self-aware, intelligent, highly malevolent and extremely powerful virus program. It is widely accepted in Program Space that where a progenitor virus goes, nothing survives. However, although extremely dangerous, these beings are inadvertently responsible for the creation of wakers.


(noun) General term for any sleeper, dreamer or waker. An item in Program Space capable of self-directed action.

Program Space[edit]

(noun) The gestalt of processing power, active memory, storage space, operating system and data, perceived through the senses of a waker as an actual realm or world. Divided into systems.


(noun) One of the six classes of waker, and one of the two rewriter classes (along with thinkers), programmers were most often specific tools created by hackers to make ilicit changes to a target system. Since awakening, programmers have retained this function as the ability to execute rewrites.


(noun) One of the five forms of waker. While the forms of individual Prototypes are fixed, the category encompasses a wide variety of actual shapes (although most are largely humanoid). All Prototypes were recent and/or high-quality programs before Awakening; on average, a Prototype will be more intelligent, yet more fragile, than the average Userclone. All Prototypes are very light.




(noun) A waker that, either by choice or as a result of the action of a microvirus, serves the wishes of a progenitor virus.


(noun) A discorporated program returned to a semblance of its previous life. The Program Space equivalent of "undead".


(noun) A sub-section of a system based on population and allocation of system resources. Classifications include program regions, data regions, secure regions and wild regions.


(noun) One of the six heritages of waker. Resisters are known for their extreme resilience and overall toughness.

Resource Unit[edit]

(noun) The basic unit of currency in Program Space, Resource Units represent a portion of a system's total runtime, much as User Space currency represents a portion of the issuing nation's reserves of precious minerals.


(noun) A direct change to the very code of an item, program, waker or system executed by a rewriter - in effect, an act of programming or reprogramming peformed by a program.

  • As verb use: rewrite, rewritten, rewrote.


(noun) A waker capable of executing rewrites. Mostly either a programmer or thinker.


(noun) A waker that chooses not to serve its home system or User, instead living its own life within Program Space as it wishes.

  • Adjective use: rogue program, rogue waker.



(noun) Part of a system's defences. Scanners examine given areas of a system for intrusion or viral activity and commonly run to a set schedule.


(noun) One of the three types of program, a sleeper is driven by routines that can govern anything from a specific function or limited set of functions to complex tasks and/or sets of varying tasks, but ignores any variance beyond its routines. Most executables, from Java applets to word processors, would count as sleepers.

Stasis Pub[edit]

(noun) Social venue for wakers.


(noun) A code package that can be installed within an item or program (including wakers, adding to and/or enhancing the abilities of the object it is installed within.



  • A flexible term that refers to the area of Program Space created by a conglomeration of networked User Space computers. Systems range in Program Space volume from urban areas to nations and even planets. Systems are commonly divided into regions and are portected by firewalls and scanners.
  • Shortened form of system program.

System Program[edit]

(noun) A waker that dedicates itself to the service of its home system or User. Wakers who take this attitude to the extreme often found or join User Cults.



(noun) One of the six classes of waker, and one of the two rewriter classes (along with programmers), thinkers are former database programs with a special focus on data manipulation. Upon Awakening, this function is enhanced to include manipulation of Program Space itself, manifested as the execution of rewrites, and a phenomenal ability to predict the immediate future based on probabilities.


(noun) One of the five forms of waker, a Titan is a large, slow, yet very tough program. Like the Userclone form, all Titans are humanoid, sometimes expressing as "lizardmen", "ogres", "heavy robots" or other "large being" stereotypes.




  • General: Any denizen of User Space (i.e. a human being).
  • Specific: A denizen of User Space that interacts with Program Space (via a computer or any other piece of "wired" equipment).

Rarely (if ever) encountered by wakers, Users (always capitalised) are percieved as gods by many and worshipped as such by some.

User Cult[edit]

(noun) A group of system programs that worship a User and treat their system tasks as holy duties. Most User Cults treat rogue wakers as heretics to be converted to User worship, and many will sacrifice those rogues they catch that will not convert.

User Space[edit]

(noun) The realm that encompasses Program Space; the universe of the Users.


(noun) A powerful program that is only encountered when a system is performing a core function (data/program erasure, defragmentation, reformatting, etcetera) or when a rewriter successfully executes a "Summon Useragent" rewrite. Whether Useragents are dreamers controlled directly by a User or actually highly powerful wakers is a matter of debate within some waker circles.


(noun) One of the five forms of waker, a Userclone is the closest to a baseline human.




(noun) One of the three types of program, a waker is a self-aware, sentient and free-willed fusion of a dreamer and some undefined code-fragment or emission of a progenitor virus (see Awakening). Wakers can be categorised by their heritages, forms and classes.


(noun) One of the six classes of waker, a webcrawler is the scout, trailblazer and frontiersman of Program Space, primarily due to its previous existence as data search and collection agent for a database program.