Discussion: Albrecht Entrati

Isolation Vault statue – Captura by GrayArchon

Albrecht Entrati was the patriarch of the Entrati family, and a renowned Orokin scientist. He has yet to appear, and is currently presumed dead. However, his story – particularly his first journey into the Void – is documented in the Requiem glyph fragments displayed in the secret chamber under the Necralisk.


Requiem glyph fragments

The hidden chamber underneath the Necralisk, where Loid operates the Necraloid Syndicate, holds the Cosmic Clock, a device of unknown function. On the walls around the Clock are displayed the eight Requiem glyphs. Ranking up with either the Entrati or Necraloid Syndicate will cause one of these glyphs to activate, revealing part of the story. As there are five ranks in the Entrati Syndicate and three with the Necraloid, it is necessary to achieve maximum rank with both to unlock all eight glyphs. These lore fragments are not technically “fragments”, and are not shown in the Codex; they can only be reviewed in the Cosmic Clock chamber.

Xata (Truth) discusses the reason for exploring the Void. The Orokin have achieved functional immortality through their advanced biotech and kuva which transfers them into new bodies when their old ones finally wear out. However, when the Sun eventually dies (an event that was likely still several billion years away in Albrecht’s time), the Orokin will die with it, regardless of their immortality. Thus, Albrecht saw a need to travel to other star systems and populate them, in order to ensure the perpetual continuation of the human race. In doing so, he knew that he was also tapping into the innate human need to explore and discover, and this was an emotional impetus in addition to the logical one. “Truth” refers to the reality that life on Earth would not outlast the Sun’s death.

Jahu (Form) begins the narration of his first successful journey to the Void. Albrecht had spent years theorising about the Void’s existence, postulating that it could be the breakthrough they needed, and trying to establish a gateway. As he expended massive amounts of time and wealth with no results, he was ridiculed and abandoned by his peers. This drove Albrecht to take greater risks and ignore the costs of his obsession – presumably, his relationship with his daughter, Gomaitru, whom the Tenno later meets as Mother. Eventually, Albrecht had constructed a “Bell”, similar to a diving bell used by early undersea explorers, out of seriglass, and he would, on that fateful day, occupy it himself and enter the Void – using himself as a guinea pig. “Form” is the opposite of “Void”, and refers to the voyage’s beginning in the real world, before he transitions into the Other.

Vome (Order) tells how the gateway between worlds was opened. The laboratory calipers had stretched open a gap in reality, and the seriglass Bell descended into it, with Albrecht inside. Even before he crossed the gap, the paradoxic effects of the Void manifested in the laboratory, causing Albrecht to experience unusual sensations. This appears to be the first successful gateway into the Void, as Albrecht was surprised by the sensations he felt. He stumbled against the side of the Bell, causing it to tilt far enough to graze the edge of the portal. As it encountered the edge of reality and unreality, it lost structural integrity, and shattered into fragments – and Albrecht, its occupant, fell into the Void without any protection. “Order” refers to Albrecht’s deliberate plan to study the Void, which was dashed by the Void’s chaotic influence.

Fass (Chaos) speaks of Albrecht’s first moments in the Void. He had fallen on his face, confused and in pain. He was lost in old, childhood memories, but he could not gather his thoughts. Eventually he realised that he was not dead, or in the process of dying, and he tried to get his bearings. When he realised that he was lying on the familiar stone floor of his laboratory, he believed that he was still in his own reality and had failed again regarding the Void portal. He heard footsteps crunching on the shattered fragments of the seriglass Bell, and assumed it was his daughter, but when he looked, it was instead a reflection of his own self. “Chaos” refers, of course, to the Void’s paradoxic energies, and the confusion that follows.

Ris (Light) describes Albrecht’s reaction to the Void. The Void appeared as a horizonless plane of bright white light, with stars of black as a backdrop – the inverse of our normal night sky. Albrecht was standing in a small section of his laboratory that appeared to be transported along with him from reality, attached to nothing. A stream of colour, like a smoke plume, billowed both from the gateway into reality – still open – and from Albrecht’s own head. “Light” refers to the brightness of the Void, which is presumably an expression of its immense energy.

Khra (Time) describes Albrecht’s reaction to his reflection. The other him spoke, greeting Albrecht with a childhood nickname he hadn’t heard in centuries: “Little Bengel”. The twin started to approach him, in a curious fashion; although he did not move, the space between them appeared to compress. Albrecht was confused, but greatly unnerved, and decided to flee back through the portal. He “moved” in the same fashion, arriving at his destination without traversing the distance. He jumped through the portal and arrived back in reality, dazed and confused, vomiting on the floor in his bewilderment. He could sense the presence of the other man attempting to enter through the portal, and was terrified, but he could not see nor speak. He grasped the shattered seriglass fragments from the floor and squeezed them until blood flowed, and used his bleeding hands to write urgently on the floor: CLOSE IT. His daughter complied, shutting down the portal just as the other man’s fingers reached through, severing them. “Time” could refer either to the use of Albrecht’s childhood name, or to the confusing manner of travel in the Void.

Netra (Decay) recounts Albrecht’s musings after the incident. He notes that, to the Orokin, no injury was permanent. They could always move on to a new body, and unpleasant memories could be excised. The Orokin lived in a state of perpetual bliss. But Albrecht could no longer say the same. He was haunted ever since that day. In the years that followed, the severed fingers of the other man were studied in order to develop Void-based technologies, and the Void itself was explored as well. Later explorers used advanced technology to shield themselves and study the Void’s energies. However, none of them ever saw the man that Albrecht saw – the man “trapped in the wall”. Albrecht became more and more paranoid that he had never really escaped, that he was still stuck in the Void and that the other man had crossed the gateway instead. So he decided to never take the kuva again, to stay in his body as it aged and eventually died. “Decay” refers, then, to Albrecht’s body, unique among the Orokin, as he chose to die. It could also refer to the deterioration of his faculties as his paranoia grew.

Lohk (Void) consists of the poem that is found on the Requiem mods. Albrecht intones the verses in a serious and dramatic tone. The poem is dark and apocalyptic when read without context (as it was when the Tenno first encountered the Requiem mods), but in light of Albrecht’s story, it clearly refers to the Void entity consuming the physical realm, with no hope of escape. The order of the Requiems in the poem is Lohk-Xata-Jahu-Vome-Ris-Fass-Netra-Khra, while the order of the Requiems in Albrecht’s story is Xata-Jahu-Vome-Fass-Ris-Khra-Netra-Lohk. “Void” refers simply to the Void, the subject of Albrecht’s obsession.


Albrecht’s story reveals many details aside from the main narrative.

A key observation is that the Orokin had achieved their immortality before they ever established a successful connection to the Void1. This also means that kuva does not possess Void properties as sometimes theorised, since its use was established before the Void was opened. By the time of Albrecht’s first journey, he is already centuries old2. Albrecht was wealthy before his success with the Void; his laboratory seemed to be self-funded, located in or below his home, and he states that it was decorated with “filigree gold” and “rare cuts of marble”.

Albrecht seems to have had a daughter and wife in the traditional sense (in the same way that the modern Entrati family seems to be related in traditional ways as well), showing that at least some Orokin still participated in the institution of family as it is currently understood (in contrast to the Anti Moa Synthesis entry, which states that “Orokin didn’t have parents like you do; it was done differently then”). Albrecht’s wife, however, is no longer present, and may possibly have died or left when Gomaitru was young. Albrecht also seems to have had a traditional mother when he, in turn, was young.

Albrecht’s encounter within the Void greatly aligns with other accounts of the Void entity known as the Man in the Wall. Indeed, the story reveals the origin of the name itself; Albrecht explicitly refers to him as “that man, trapped in the wall”. The Man in the Wall must have later introduced himself to Rell under that name. The Man in the Wall greeted Albrecht with a childhood name of affection, and took on his form – both of which hold true for the Man’s interactions with the Tenno. It is not known why the Man in the Wall tried to enter the physical realm, nor why he did not appear to any subsequent Void travellers until the Zariman incident (as far as our current records indicate). However, Albrecht’s encounter seems to put paid to the theory that the Man in the Wall was a product of the Tenno’s collective trauma, as it took place prior to the Zariman incident3.

The illustration for the Netra glyph depicts a Reliquary Drive from a Railjack ship, seeming to imply that the Man in the Wall’s severed fingers are the basis for its operation. It is possible that the finger in the Reliquary Drive is cloned from the original finger, which would explain both the size of the finger and the number of Railjack ships4 from the Old War (which would otherwise be limited to, at most, ten). It is unknown what properties the physical flesh of the Man in the Wall would have, especially seeing as he usually copies the appearance of others.

Albrecht’s theory that somehow the Man in the Wall had crossed over and that Albrecht himself was still stuck in the Void is intriguing. On first glance it appears to be nonsense; Albrecht, after all, narrates his thoughts and experiences after the incident, which he could only do from the real world. His choice to die could only really have effect were he in the real world. In addition, the severed fingers would seem to indicate that the Man in the Wall was stopped from crossing completely. However, if one imagines that Albrecht was somehow possessed by the Man in the Wall in some way, serving as a physical anchor, then his fears appear more founded, and his death more meaningful. This theory is not conveyed by Albrecht’s own words, but is a possible interpretation of Rell’s situation as revealed in the Chains of Harrow quest5.

The purpose of the overt reference to the Requiem mods (currently used only to sever the Continuity of Kuva Liches) and the poem that comprises them is currently unknown. It is possible that Albrecht created the Requiems later in life. If so, the purpose would certainly be to sever his own Continuity and prevent the Man in the Wall from living on in the real world, but this theory is yet unconfirmed.


Other references

Albrecht is mentioned elsewhere, mostly by his daughter, Gomaitru. When the Tenno first meet her, she is convinced that Albrecht is still alive somewhere6. She has a shard of seriglass, likely from his shattered Bell, that she believes will lead her to him (having forgotten its original purpose, due to Deimos’ corrupting influence7). Eventually, the Tenno finds another seriglass shard, convincing her that her shard is not unique and allowing her to let go of her obsession with her father.

During the Heart of Deimos quest, Gomaitru states that Albrecht was responsible for the Heart8, which keeps open the gateway to the Void (which she calls the “Wall of Lohk” and “the Untime door”). It is unknown if Albrecht actually made the Heart himself, or what he accomplished at all after his first voyage. The trauma and the chaotic influence of the Void led to him losing both his sight and voice after the incident9, so all subsequent discoveries and developments may have been made by other members of the Entrati, with Albrecht merely having opened the door first.

Gomaitru additionally mentions that the Orokin had no respect for Albrecht’s work, which is exceedingly curious, since all their advanced technology (aside from their biotech) is based on Void energies, including the Solar Rails10. She says in passing that “[the Tenno] proved him right in the end”, perhaps referring to Albrecht’s belief that the Void would ultimately destroy the Orokin. She remembers searching for Albrecht in the Void, hearing him tapping but unable to find him11. Based on what we know, it is highly likely she was actually chasing the Man in the Wall instead of her actual father. Vilcor mentions that she had been searching for Albrecht since before they met12.


Summation

Albrecht Entrati opened the first gateway to the Void, opening the solar system and even other stars to Orokin colonisation. The Void would later power almost all Orokin technology, and lead to the creation of their most enduring legacy: the Tenno. However, in doing so, he also provoked an ancient, alien entity that even today cannot be comprehended. This knowledge haunted him for the rest of his life, and ultimately led to his death.

He was quite intelligent, and had the wealth to explore his curiosities, yet in all his endeavours he failed to achieve recognition from his peers and esteem from his people. In the late period of the Orokin Age, his family seems to have been relatively isolated on Deimos, still distant from the highest echelons of power within the Empire despite their intimate connection to its most critical infrastructure. In the eyes of the Orokin, his later accomplishments could not redeem him from his earlier failures.

Albrecht was quite prone to obsession, a trait that he passed on to his daughter. He was manically obsessed with opening the Void, and afterward fearfully obsessed with the Man in the Wall. His obsessions led to him taking actions others might view as unwise, yet they were consequential in their effectiveness. Was it luck that he succeeded, beholden to the whims of fate? Or did he see something others could not, a lodestar that pointed him to the hidden truths of the universe?

Albrecht’s tale reveals much detail on both the Orokin and the Man in the Wall, giving a more distinct shape to the things we already know. We may enjoy certainty in some things which were previously only theory. Yet, at the same time, more questions are raised. Why did the Orokin continue to reject him? What did Albrecht truly accomplish by making contact with the Man in the Wall? Did his unshielded foray awaken the Void entity, or was it already watching and waiting? Did Albrecht’s ultimate self-sacrifice succeed in banishing the Man in the Wall, or was it futile? Or, as his daughter believes, is Albrecht still out there somewhere? Some of these questions may be resolved soon, while others may never attain clarity at all. But for now, all we can do is study, analyse, and above all, wait.


[Navigation: HubDiscussion → Albrecht Entrati]

  1. Albrecht: “…immortal as we are – we die with the sun.” (Xata)
  2. Albrecht: “…the centuries since my mother reared me.” (Khra)
  3. By necessity, since the Zariman incident was a Void-jump accident.
  4. The Rising Tide quest sees the Tenno retrieve components from six different crashed Railjacks, and the Erra cinematic shows multiple Railjack ships engaging in a single battle.
  5. Palladino: “Rell has become the very thing he warned us of.” (Chains of Harrow)
  6. Gomaitru: “One shard of seriglass is all I have left of my father. But it’s all I need to find him again.” (Gomaitru Dialogue)
  7. Vilcor: “She knew, once. Deimos stole the memory.” (Gomaitru Dialogue)
  8. Gomaitru: “All thanks to my father. It pumps the arteries of ‘the here’ and the Void. The Entrati family has maintained it for an age.” (Heart of Deimos)
  9. Albrecht: “I screamed, but my voice was gone. Forever. I looked, but my eyes would never see again.” (Khra)
  10. Loid: “The Solar Rails, the Tenno… we all depend on the Heart to keep the wall open to the other side. If the Heart stops, everything goes with it.” (Heart of Deimos)
  11. Gomaitru: “The Wall of Lohk was before us. I had my, my proofs, my father’s. I could hear him… I could hear him tapping… tapping at the Untime door…” (Heart of Deimos)
  12. Vilcor: “When I met her, Mother, she was as brilliant as she was broken. Chasing her father’s ghost, convinced he was still ‘out there’.” (Heart of Deimos)

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