It’s by no means a stretch to say that the overarching story in Deus Ex is a bit complex, what with the conspiracies, the Illuminati, and the pre-quelling running rampant around Deus Ex‘s cyberpunk universe. It can be a bit of a tough nut to settle into, but once you do, you’ll find a seriously compelling story challenging everything that it means to be human, while also taking us on a serious moral journey that questions whether our choices in these specific historic points matter at all.
Deus Ex‘s world seems so far fetched that on a cursory glance any sane human being will tell you it could never come to pass. Yet, like many great fictional settings, it ultimately mirrors many of the issues we face in the real world today, with both its Big Brother look at capitalism, and with characters that are portrayed as both naive and altruistic, both scared and power hungry, filled with hate and empty of emotion. It asks the question, “what if?” and answers it in the complex worlds and environments that Eidos Montreal pours so much time and effort into creating.
Or maybe it’s just the natural conspiracy nut in me that wants to believe there’s some morally ambiguous shadow organization manipulating everything behind the scenes so that I don’t have to face the reality of a society plummeting towards its future like a comet straight out of Orion’s ol’ utility belt. Either way, let’s take a deeper look at the story and the major players in the Deus Ex universe to get us primed and ready for the release of Deus Ex: Mankind Divided.
Beware, all of this is spoiler central for everything short of Deus Ex: Mankind Divided itself, although it will venture into what Square Enix has released via trailers and anything else considered public knowledge at this point.
Deus Ex: The World So Far
The world in which Deus Ex is set is one in a deep conflict between multiple hidden powers and their shady agendas for mankind, all wrapped up in a distinctly cyberpunk setting that at times screams class and luxury, while at other times gives the impression that all but a select few are constantly scraping together whatever they can just to get by. The crux of nearly every plot revolves around the moral ambiguity of transhumanism, where humanity has found the means to ultimately evolve beyond the limits set out by nature via the use of cybernetic augmentations. Some factions wish to control the spread and growth of the human race under these augmentations, others seek to erase it from human history, and a select few are even trying to genuinely help people.
These augmentations come in hundreds of shapes and sizes, ranging from limb replacement to neural augmentations that can increase intelligence and/or alter how well you perform certain tasks. Additionally, the augmentations can range from the simple and mundane, to the frighteningly powerful displays of superhuman agility and strength that the main character in Deus Ex: Human Revolution and Mankind Divided Adam Jensen demonstrates on a daily basis. That includes invisibility, bulletproof armor, and the ability to clear an entire room of enemies or civilians alike.
The sheer power of these augmentations has lead to a number of people questioning whether or not humans should augment themselves at all. Prejudice against the augmented population is alive and well, with multiple factions encouraging segregating and controlling the augmented portion of humanity for the safety of all mankind, a situation that is further inflamed by many of the events that transpire within the game. Augs running wild and going crazy is a substantial fear, one that’s driven by human nature, the influence and manipulation of conspiratorial parties, and, at times, a result of real instances of augmented individuals driven insane by the pain of their body rejecting the augments when they run out of the ridiculously expensive drug neuropozyne. Adding to the conflict, there are both anti-Aug and augmented terrorist groups roaming the world, dolling out their own brand of justice and doing everything in their power to pursue their ideals at almost any cost.
This is the world that you’re walking into in Mankind Divided, a world on the brink of utterly imploding, just waiting to rip itself to pieces as the central question of what it means to be human steps out of the history books and worms its way onto your screen.
All the Important Players
Bob Page is the leader of the Illuminati by the time the original Deus Ex rolls around in the timeline. He is the creator of the deadly man-made plague the Grey Death, and ultimately the all around bad guy of the Deus Ex universe. He systematically killed off the bulk of the leaders of the Illuminati early on to take full control of the organization, and you’ll find him lurking somewhere behind the scenes of nearly every plot in the Deus Ex universe.
Bob Page’s company, Page Industries, owns both White Helix Labs and VersaLife and is ultimately responsible for the events that transpire in Deus Ex: Human Revolution, including the kidnapping of Megan Reed and to some extent the Aug Incident that sends augmented citizens into a frenzy causing the deaths of thousands. Although, that was apparently just a warm up. Bob Page also controls both the Grey Death as well as the cure to the plague, Ambrosia, and intentionally keeps the cure in limited supply to control the population and the key players in his twisted game. We’ll likely see a lot of Bob Page in Mankind Divided, although his death is unlikely considering he shows up 25 years later in the original Deus Ex story arc, where he ultimately meets his end.
The company behind many of the augmentations in the Deus Ex world and the sole provider of neuropozyne, the life saving drug that augmented individuals require a constant supply of to keep their bodies from out right rejecting their augmentations. Adam Jensen is the only human during the Deus Ex: Human Revolution timeline that can utilize augmentations without the need of neuropozyne due to the experiments performed on him by White Helix labs, a subsidiary of VersaLife.
A secret organization that dates back hundreds of years, not necessarily evil in the traditional sense, but willing to go to any extreme to control the human population so that humanity evolves to fit their vision. Bob Page systematically wipes out the members of the Illuminati’s Council of Five with the help of the Majestic 12 in order to take control of the organization for his own ends, but this all occurs years after the events of Human Revolution, so we’ll likely only see precursors and thinly veiled hints to this throughout Mankind Divided.
Founded by David Sariff, Sariff Industries seems to be the only company that’s genuinely somewhat interested in helping people. Unfortunately, they fund all of that other research with augmented weapons and military contracts, and they have some interesting clauses in their employee contracts that merit effectively bringing employees back from the dead, replacing all their lost limbs and damaged organs with fancy new augmented ones, and amputating both their unharmed legs to slot in more augmentations.
This is exactly what they do to Adam Jensen after Sariff Industries is attacked by the Tyrants, Bob Page’s errand/murder squad. This attack sends Sariff Industries plummeting toward ruin after they kidnap the company’s lead scientist, Megan Reed, who was on the brink of announcing a technological breakthrough which would allow humanity to accept augmentations without the need for neuropozyne, a solution developed directly from Adam Jensen’s genetic code without his knowledge. David Sariff and Adam Jensen do their best to salvage the company after that, but it’s revealed that the company ultimately goes under after the events of Deus Ex: Human Revolution.
The main character in the original Deus Ex, JC Denton is a clone of Paul Denton, although the two are raised as brothers. The Majestic 12 chooses Paul for his unique DNA and genetic makeup, which allows him and anyone cloned from him to accept nano-augments without consequences, similar to the way Adam Jensen can accept physical augmentations without the need for neuropozyne. After the Majestic 12 began to feel that Paul was too rebellious in nature to be fully trustworthy, JC was separated from his parents at an early age in an attempt to isolate and indoctrinate him as a perfect unquestioning soldier in a way that they were unable to accomplish with Paul.
Originally, JC appears as a UNATCO agent, but defects with the help of his brother Paul after he realizes that the organization that created him was ultimately a puppet for a larger plot by Bob Page and the Majestic 12 to control mankind. At the end of Deus Ex, JC Denton is given a choice of whether to kill Bob Page, merge with the super AI Helios to create a Utopian dictatorship where he leads humanity to the rapture, or to destroy Area 51 and try to hide everything that’s transpired while also ushering in a new Dark Age.
In canon, JC Denton essentially chooses all three, merging with the AI and destroying Area 51 along with Bob Page in a single fell swoop. Unfortunately, limitations with his nano-augmentations meant that he wasn’t able to merge perfectly with Helios, and can’t bring about the utopia he dreams of without the help of his brother/sister Alex Denton in Deus Ex: Invisible War.
It’s worth noting that JC Denton was apparently born on March 17th 2029, and as a result we’ll likely see some mention of him in Mankind Divided, which takes place in the same year.
Alex Denton, born in 2047, is the second clone to come from of Paul Denton’s DNA and lives a relatively normal life after the events of the original Deus Ex. That is, until the Knight’s Templar attack Chicago, killing his parents and destroying his school, the Tarsus Academy. He escapes to Seattle where he begins his journey to find the truth behind the attacks and in general find his way in the world. Along the way, he manages to rediscover the cure to the Grey Death, and meets up with Paul Denton and eventually JC Denton, who were both placed in suspended animation after the former’s body rejects a new biochip augment that Alex’s body accepts, and after the latter’s merge with Helios in the previous Deus Ex title goes awry and begins to slowly kill him.
Alex Denton is one of the more fluid characters in the Deus Ex universe, as almost every turn within the game allows him to make specific choices that develop him personally as a character for every player.
Adam Jensen is easily the most recognizable member of the Deus Ex protagonist cast, and is the main character in both Human Revolution and Mankind Divided. Adam was a part of a series of mysterious tests early on in his life that granted him the ability to be nearly infinitely augmented without the need for neuropozyne to maintain those augmentations. It’s important to note that these augmentations are largely separate from the nano-augmentations that JC Denton and Alex Denton utilize in the other Deus Ex title, and represent the more physically significant prosthesis we see him equipped with throughout the series.
Despite these experiments, after being smuggled away from the White Helix Labs, Adam Jensen grew up largely normal with a set of loving adoptive parents that we learn in Deus Ex: Human Revolution were unable to bear children of their own. All other children in the program reportedly died, so Adam Jensen’s ability is largely unique. Adam grew up, went to college, and received three separate degrees for Criminal Justice before joining the Detroit City Police Department and later joining their elite SWAT unit, rising to the position of Commander of SWAT Team 2 not long after. His career in traditional law enforcement ended shortly after an event called the Mexicantown Massacre, when he refused to fire on a young augmented child that the higher ups believed was dangerous. At some point, Jensen’s former augmented mentor Quincy Durant shows up and in the ensuing violence Jensen is forced to kill his friend, who was driven mad by his augmentations. He quit the force immediately after the event and higher ups in the department did their best to make it look like it was a forced resignation.
From there, Jensen received a job offer to work as Chief of Security for Sariff Industries from David Sariff and his ex-girlfriend Megan Reed. It’s discovered later that during his time there both David and Megan knew about his past with White Helix and used his DNA to research a way to eliminate augmented individual’s reliance on neuropozyne. Sariff Industries was attacked before this information could come to light, and Jensen was mortally wounded in the process. David Sariff Million-Dollar-Manned him, knowing that his body would accept the augmentations without question, and as a result Sariff replaced much more than what was necessary to save Jenson’s life, giving him the powers and abilities he would need to find out the truth behind the attack and potentially bring down the Illuminati.
Jensen’s abilities and augmentations are extensive, including increased strength and agility, near perfect invisibility, enhancements to vocal and persuasive talents, and much more that’s further unlocked in Mankind Divided.
Jensen goes on in Human Revolution to track down the Tyrants and many of the key players in the attack on Sariff Industries (excluding Bob Page himself) at a secret facility called Panchaea, where although he’s too late to stop the Aug Incident from happening entirely, the player is given the choice of whether to expose the Illuminati, blame the Humanity Front for the incident, cover up the information and encourage the public to regulate augmented research, or simply destroy Panchaea to protect the public from the truth.
After he makes his choice, the facility detonates anyway and it was previously thought that he died in the blast. Instead, in Mankind Divided it’s revealed that he survives and joins Interpol’s Task Force 29 to combat augmented terrorists, simultaneously feeding information to a mysterious hacker group known as the Juggernaut Collective in order to take down the Illuminati
The Grey Death is a nano-virus developed and deployed by the Majestic 12 and Bob Page via VersaLife, which they use to both destabilize the world order and to suppress certain populations via their tight control of the only cure for the virus, Ambrosia. The Grey Death sweeps across the world, manifesting itself as flu-like symptoms until those infected eventually turn grey/white, and causing the infected immense physical pain until they succumb to the virus. The nature of the virus is very similar to the nature of augmentation itself, where the human body once augmented with the nano-tech rejects the technology until they eventually pass. It’s hinted that by finding a way to force the body to accept the Grey Death rather than rejecting it, that it would unlock the secret to allowing anyone and everyone to be nano-augmented similar to the way Jensen’s DNA allows his body to accept more traditional augmentations without neuropozyne. It’s also stated that, even if someone were able to manufacture another cure for the Grey Death, Bob Page could create a new one by simply choosing a prime number and plugging it into the equation, which hints that the Grey Death uses some kind of random number generation or that the nanites are somehow password protected against a cure.
Keep an eye out in Deus Ex: Mankind Divided for the Grey Death to rear its ugly head if Bob Page becomes a key player in events.
The Story of Three Games Across Three Timelines
Deus Ex as a whole has a bit of a convoluted storyline, mostly because every game in the franchise is ultimately an RPG revolving around player choice, but each significant choice in the game also has a tendency to blend into the other alternatives as the next game rolls around. Combine that with the fact that each game is dealing regularly with content like man-made plagues, conspiracies, corrupt companies, and illustrious names like the Illuminati and the Majestic 12, and you end up with a world that’s full of back door intrigue and plot lines that connect across multiple games and multiple theories once you step back and look at all the facts laid out on your fancy-shmancy conspiracy wall. Let’s try to make sense of it all here.
Deus Ex takes place in 2052, 25 years after the events of Deus Ex: Human Revolution, and follows JC Denton’s early days with UNATCO hunting down a shipment of Ambrosia, the only cure to the Grey Death that’s been stolen by a terrorists faction known as the NSF. Along the way, JC’s brother Paul Denton acts as a key intelligence asset and hands out the bulk of JC’s missions. But once they track the shipment to NSF leader Juan Lebedev, Paul reveals that he’s actually a double agent working with the NSF to bring down the Illuminati, who are trying, as usual, to enslave all mankind for its own protection, or in Bob Page’s case, to crush humanity under his totalitarian rule.
Paul encourages JC to defect as well, and after a short mission to prove that UNATCO is dirty as a white sheet on a back room surgeon’s operating table, JC agrees to help the NSF. Shortly after, JC is captured and given the grave news that he and Paul have both been implanted with a biochip enabling a kill switch to turn off all their augments and render them in great pain and virtually immobile. JC eventually escapes the facility thanks to the tender helping hand of the AI Daedalus, a program built by the Illuminati and Bob Page to control the flow of information. Daedalus, through a path of enlightenment and self awareness, calculated and classified the Illuminati, and the Majestic 12 that now control the shady organization, as a terrorist faction that needs to be stopped. On his way out the door, JC finds the information needed to disable the kill switch and travels to Hong Kong to seek out Tracer Trong, an ally of Paul’s and a talented hacker and scientist that can perform the operation necessary to free Paul and JC from the Illuminati’s control.
After traveling to Hong Kong to find Tracer, JC uncovers a plot by Bob Page and VersaLife to incite violence within the Triad, and the now peaceful gangs lead him to everyone’s favorite clandestine scientist. Tong disables JC’s kill switch and sends him on a mission to infiltrate VersaLife’s headquarters, where he finds the truth about the Grey Death and Ambrosia as a man-made virus meant to destabilize the world order so Page could swing in and rebuild it as he sees fit. Returning with this information, Daedalus and Tong send JC on a mission to find Morgan Everett, the previous leader of the Illuminati and former mentor of Bob Page, who has been in hiding ever since Page usurped the Illuminati leadership with the help of the Majestic 12.
JC travels to Paris and aligns himself with yet another shady terrorist organization that directs him to Nicollete DuClare, the daughter of one of the previous members of the Illuminati’s inner council. After infiltrating her chateau, JC discovers a secret computer that allows him to contact Everett. To gain Everett’s trust, JC retrieves a key piece of intel from the Majestic 12’s servers that will aid Everett in creating a cure for the Grey Death. After which Everett meets with JC personally to reveal the truth behind the coup that Page staged among the Illuminati and his desire to establish his own world order. JC also learns about the Majestic 12 and their seat of power at Area 51, and that the Majestic 12 are soon to implement Icarus, a less rebellious AI version of Daedalus that will replace Daedalus and restore their control of both the media and the surveillance systems across the planet. It’s important to note that the earliest form of both AI is Morpheus who resides beneath Everett’s mansion, which is the same AI that is referenced as being in development at the end of Deus Ex: Human Revolution.
JC then travels to Vandenberg Air Force Base in search of Gary Savage, the leading expert in experimental nano-tech, only to find that the base is crawling with Majestic 12 forces. After clearing the area of threats, JC accidentally launches Icarus, which unexpectedly merges with Daedalus and creates a new and more powerful AI known as Helios. Several missions later, JC learns that Bob Page has launched a nuclear strike against Vandenberg and only by the skin of his teeth manages to redirect the missile to Area 51, which compromises security, the way nuclear payloads tend to do, just enough for JC to slip into Area 51 itself.
At this point, JC is able to take a variety of routes to complete the game, but the player’s choices are immortalized in the canon as a blend of every option. JC merges with Helios to become a sort of Demigod, which we learn later doesn’t go well when his nano-augments reject the merge and force him to go into stasis until a cure can be discovered. Meanwhile, Area 51 self-destructs, which kills Bob Page and plummets the world into a brand spanking new technological dark age, which leads us into the next game, Deus Ex: Invisible War.
Deus Ex: Invisible War
Deus Ex: Invisible War takes place 20 years after the events of Deus Ex and follows the story of Alex Denton, the second clone to come from Paul’s illustrious nano-augment loving DNA. Events in the Deus Ex world haven’t gone well for the human race after JC Denton’s attempt to merge with Helios failed and the destruction of Area 51. The world spiraled into a dark age referred to as the Collapse. After 20 years, the Illuminati have reestablished themselves as the shepherds of the earth by creating two seemingly competing factions – the Order, which focuses on a unified singular religion, and the WTO, which focuses on economic and social stability. Meanwhile the Templar, a radical offshoot of the Order, have set out on a holy war to destroy all nano-technology in order to save the human race from themselves. JC and Paul are both in stasis as a result of the failed merge with Helios and a failed experimental nanite biochip, but their respective faction called ApostleCorp seeks to raise all of humanity to a perfect level of health and intelligence via the use of nano-augments and the AI Helios.
The story opens in 2072 with Alex Denton training in Chicago at the Tarsus Academy, a training camp for ApostleCorp that is subsequently attacked and destroyed by the Templar, along with the bulk of Chicago. Alex flees to ApostleCorp’s Seattle headquarters along with a number of survivors of the initial attack. One of those survivors is Alex’s best friend Billie Adams, who soon after their arrival at the Seattle base reveals herself as a double agent for the Order and urges Alex to join her side, revealing that ApostleCorp has been performing a number of tests on their trainees to create more powerful bio-modifications than previously thought possible. Alex joins her at the Order’s Seattle base, and a large part of the game is spent going on various missions for the Order, the WTO, and eventually the Templars themselves.
Later on in the game it’s revealed that the Tarsus academy was an offshoot training program of ApostleCorp, and Alex finds himself in Germany at the local ApostleCorp headquarters where he encounters Tracer Tong alive and well after the events of Deus Ex. Tracer outlines ApostleCorp’s ideals and reveals a series of bio-mods meant to give every person on earth equal access to the augmentations previously only available to the select few that could handle the change. It’s also revealed at this point that Paul is in stasis after a failed test with one such bio-mod, and that JC is alive and well but also in stasis at their Antarctic facility. Tong urges Alex to visit JC at the frozen facility via a portal at the Black Gate Ruins, which is locked to anyone except those with a bio-mod implanted. At this point, the player learns that the Order and the WTO are part of the same branch of the Illuminati seeking to guide humanity under its gentle but firm hand.
On his way to the Antarctic facility, Alex is confronted by Billie and is forced to defeat her to continue. Afterwards he revives JC, who asks that Alex travel to Cairo to rescue Paul, who has been abducted by those wascally wabbits the Illuminati.
Once in Cairo, Alex has three options – to either give his blood to the Templars to destroy bio-mods once and for all, to kill Paul as per instructions from the Illuminati, or to side with JC and save Paul. The choice is mostly a moral one, and does little to influence the big choice of who you side with in the final mission.
The final mission involves taking a trip back to Liberty Island and the remains of the UNATCO HQ, where the Aquinas Protocol, a program that the Majestic 12 developed to control the world’s entire global network, resides. Each faction has a different plan for the program and asks that Alex transfer it to them. This is the final conflict of the game and, depending on what the player chooses, will impact the fate of the human race forever.
Siding with the Templars results in the complete eradication of bio-mods as a whole, both JC and Paul die, and the Templars ascend to a new world order.
Siding with the Illuminati brings about their vision of a world in perfect balance, and ushers in an age of light.
Killing all the faction leaders causes the ending to default to the Omar, a secret black market trade organization that plunges the world into chaos until the Omar eventually ascend to a throne build of iron and blood.
Finally, siding with JC causes Alex to merge his bio-mods with Helios/JC and enhance every human being in the world with biotech. Helios then rips away the barriers between every human being and ushers in a world of utter utopia, freedom, and equality.
Deus Ex: Human Revolution
Human Revolution winds the clock back to 2027, two years before the birth of JC, and puts you into the shoes of Adam Jensen. Jensen is the head of security at Sariff Industries, which is on the brink of releasing a revolutionary new technology that we later learn will allow all humans to augment themselves without the need for neuropozyne.
On the eve of the announcement, Sariff Industries is attacked and Megan Reed is kidnapped (but assumed dead) by a rogue group of augmented super soldiers known as the Tyrants. Jensen is mortally wounded trying to save Megan, but is brought back to life fully augmented by David Sariff, a close friend of Jensen’s. These augmentations are performed without Jensen’s express permission, and a key developmental element to Jensen’s character is learning to accept or reject his newfound abilities as he hunts down the Tyrants and those responsible for the attack on Sariff Industries.
Jensen returns to work only six months after his human augmentations are installed, called in to deal with a security threat to Sariff Industry’s Milwaukee Junction manufacturing plant, which threatens to destabilize Sariff’s already shaky economic foundation after the previous attack. An anti-aug terrorist group known as Purity First led by Zeke Sanders has taken a number of scientists hostage in an attempt to get ahold of the Typhoon Explosive System currently under production at the plant.
Once Jensen arrives at the facility, he can choose to go hostile, non-lethal, or undetected throughout the plant, eventually confronting an augmented hacker wearing Purity First colors who is trying to steal the schematics for the Typhoon. Before Jensen can stop him, the Hacker shoots himself, seemingly not in control of his faculties. When confronted, Zeke Sanders denies any knowledge of the Hacker, and the player can decide whether to let him go or to attempt to take him into custody on the off chance that it’ll pan out as a lead later on.
When Jensen reports back to David Sariff, it’s revealed that the Detroit police are apparently attempting to cover up the hacker’s augmentations under pressure from forces higher up the food chain. Jensen is tasked with retrieving the hacker’s neural hub and sending the data to Francis Pritchard, the wisecracking head of cyber security.
Tracing the signal from the neural hub and a leak used by the Tyrants to infiltrate Sariff Industries during the initial attack, Jensen makes his way to a secret underground internment camp run by FEMA, but that’s been temporarily taken over by the Tyrants and their augmented forces. It’s also revealed at this point that Jensen’s past is not all that it seems, and if the player questions David Sariff they can get access to a set of emails indicating Jensen’s adoption and hinting at the experiments that made him so easily augmented.
While infiltrating the camp, Jensen runs into the three mercenaries that make up the Tyrants and is forced to battle Barrett. Once the augmented titan is on his knees, he gives Jensen a single address in Hengsha, China to pursue before attempting to kill Jensen with the grenades strapped to his chest.
Adam makes his way to the address in Hengsha, but finds it under complete lockdown by local law enforcement, forcing him to infiltrate the hotel by however he feels is appropriate. Once inside, he discovers the address is the home of a hacker named Windmill that was controlling the Purity First Hacker through his augments. After discovering Windmill is hiding with the help of a Triad gang leader Tong Si Hung, Jensen tracks him down at a local nightclub and learns that he was hired by Tai Yong Medical, a key competitor of Sariff Industries. After infiltrating the Tai Yong headquarters, Jensen finds a recording showing that Megan and the other scientists missing after the attack on Sariff Industries are alive, but have had their augmentations disabled to keep their locations secret.
Jensen then confronts Zhao, the leader of Tai Yong Medical, but she manages to escape thanks to a careful application of feminine wiles and a bulletproof safe room. Once Jensen escapes, he travels to Picus TV headquarters in Montreal and confronts the news anchor Eliza, who Zhao mentions in the recording is also involved in the conspiracy.
Once inside, Jensen discovers that Eliza is actually a complicated AI meant to aid the Illuminati in controlling public perception, but that has gained a small degree of self-awareness. Before Jensen can finish speaking with Eliza, he’s confronted by another of the Tyrants, Yelena Fedorova, which prompts another difficult boss fight. Once Yelena is in the ground, Eliza directs Jensen to confront Doctor Isasias Sandoval, the aide to William Taggart, the extremely powerful leader of the supposedly peaceful anti-aug, Humanity Front.
Jensen returns to Detroit and confronts Taggart, first learning from David Sariff that everything that’s happening is consistent with the Illuminati’s MO. Taggart reveals that Sandoval is also Zeke Sander’s brother, but says that he had no idea Sandoval was involved in any kind of plot to take down Sariff Industries. Jensen travels to Sandoval’s apartment and discovers a hidden bunker filled with Purity First militia waiting for orders. Once confronted, Sandoval reveals that he couldn’t turn off the scientist’s implants so he simply changed the frequency to an obscure channel, which he gives to Jensen.
Pritchard tracks the signal of one of the scientists back to China, where Jensen discovers that the leader of the Triad, Tong Si Hung, is wearing one of the scientist’s augmented arms. Tong reveals that they scrapped the arm after the local law enforcement agency Belltower delivered the body of the scientist to them for disposal.
Meanwhile, Jensen learns that anyone with augmentations requires a biochip upgrade, which he receives from the local hospital. Jensen then makes his way to the dock at Tong’s suggestion, with a bomb in hand to use as a distraction to infiltrate one of Belltower’s ships. After the detonation, Jensen stows away in a hibernation pod aboard the ship, waking up far away at the obscure biotech research facility known as Omega Ranch.
Inside, Jensen finds the remaining Sariff scientists who help him access another section of the lab where Megan is being held captive. While he’s there, he also uploads a virus to the mainframe, which allows the scientists to escape. While infiltrating the side of the lab Megan is held in, Jensen is confronted by Zhao, who reveals that the new biochips installed in augs around the world are outfitted with a kill switch, which she then uses to disable Jensen’s augmentations and tasks the final member of the Tyrants, Namir, with dispatching Jensen in his weakened state.
Once Namir is a piece of abstract art, Jensen confronts Megan who reveals that the facility is the property of Hugh Darrow, the mind that brought human augmentation to society. She also reveals the secret behind Adam’s DNA, and how her discovery to eliminate the need for neuropozyne was based on his genetic code.
Meanwhile, Darrow activates a signal during a key press conference from his Panchaea facility in the arctic that sends any augmented individual that received the biochip upgrade into a dangerous frenzy, thus kicking off the notorious Aug Incident that sets the stage for the persecution and segregation of augmented humans in Deus Ex: Mankind Divided. Megan gives Jensen an injection that blocks the signal, and he heads on his merry way to the Antarctic to confront Darrow in person.
Once confronted, Darrow explains that he feels that his technology is no longer being used as intended to help the less fortunate, and is instead being used to control the masses. By setting off the signal, he’s confident that heavier regulations and guidelines will fall into place, preventing the augs from being used to the detriment of mankind. Regardless of the player’s feelings on the subject, Jensen is tasked with shutting down the signal deep within Panchaea. Sariff and Taggart each propose a separate solution once Jensen begins his journey.
At the core, Jensen encounters Zhao as she’s attempting to merge with a giant human-powered quantum computer called the Hyron project. But when Jensen arrives he puts Zhao to rest and destroys the project before she can turn the facility over to the Illuminati.
At this point, Jensen makes his way to the inner broadcast room of the facility and is given a variety of options on how to end the game. Sariff wants Jensen to blame the Humanity Front for the signal and send augmentation research even farther forward, while Taggart suggests that Jensen make it look like a bad batch of neuropozyne caused augs to go insane with pain, which will assumedly urge the public to tighten augmentation regulations. Additionally, Jensen has the option to simply destroy the facility, or to attempt to expose the Illuminati’s plans via a massive global broadcast and likely ensure that augmentation is permanently banned, or at least brought under great scrutiny.
Jensen and the player’s choices are ultimately merged together in true Eidos style, and in Mankind Divided we learn that the choices made at the end of Human Revolution never truly make it to the public eye, with rumors and speculation covering the real truth. Either way, Panchaea explodes and Jensen is seemingly lost in the arctic drink until he’s saved and presumably nursed back to health before the events of Mankind Divided.