The W'rkncacnter (sometimes spelled "W'rcacnter") is a chaotic entity (or possibly race of entities). Its existence is hinted at in the storyline of Marathon 2, and its release from Lh'owon's star becomes a major plot point during Marathon Infinity.
According to text found in Marathon 2:
In primordial space, timeless creatures made waves. These waves created us and the others. Waves were the battles, and the battles were waves.
Fleeing all W'rkncacnter, Yrro and Pthia settled upon Lh'owon. They brought the S'pht, servants who began to shape the deserts of Lh'owon into marsh and sea, rivers and forests. They made sisters for Lh'owon to protect and maintain the paradise.
When the W'rkncacnter came, Pthia was killed, and Yrro in anger, flung the W'rkncacnter into the sun. The sun burned them, but they swam on its surface.
A particular text screen in Marathon Infinity describes the W'rkncacnter as a race of beings who "live in chaos, creating it around them." Over time, they have become imprisoned in the more "chaotic" aspects of the universe: stars, storms and black holes are all named as prisons. Freeing a W'rkncacnter is possible, but very difficult (given the nature of their prisons). One would have to be insane to even try: their ability to generate chaos enables them to destroy on a cosmic scale. The W'rkncacnter are present in the myths of thousands of worlds, most of which are now uninhabitable, and tales of their destructive power have survived all over the galaxy for over 60 million years.
In Marathon Infinity, a W'rkncacnter is imprisoned in the sun of planet Lh'owon. It is theorized by some that the W'rkncacnter's powerfully chaotic nature may be responsible for the jumps between realities seen in the game. When the Pfhor use a trih xeem device to send the star into early nova, the creature is released, to the horror and destruction of the Pfhor.
Whether W'rkncacnter is a singular entity or an alien race is unclear. Marathon 2: Durandal contains many mythological texts of the S'pht, but they are inconsistent on this point. It is possible that the W'rkncacnter is a race which is represented as a singular entity in the S'pht mythos, much like their mythological character Yrro has been speculated to be a singularization of the Jjaro. Durandal / Thoth in Marathon Infinity describes the legendary W'rkncacnter as having distinct identities. Another theory is that the W'rkncacnter is both a multiple and singular entity, in some incomprehensible way (possibly multiple manifestations of a single entity). Due to the contradictory descriptions, it is entirely plausible that the W'rkncacnter is a hive mind or functions in a fractal way, possessing multiple bodies/incarnations that can either act separately or as a single entity, and would be identical on any given scale. Given the being's chaotic nature, almost anything is possible.
Things have gone terribly awry. Until now, I thought myself immortal, but now I know that is not true. There are things that can destroy me with the ease that I slaughtered the Pfhor naval garrison and the Western Arm of their Battle Group Seven. But in their final gasp they used a weapon that I thought they had retired, even Tycho tried to keep them from using it.
Now I fear what that weapon has unleashed will destroy us. I once boasted to be able to count the atoms in a cloud, to understand them all, predict them, and so did I predict you, but this new chaos is entirely terrible, mindless, obeying rules that I don't comprehend. And it is hungry.
It's too bad, perhaps if I could have delayed the Pfhor from using their weapon, I could have sent you to explore the ruins of Lh'owon, perhaps what you found would give us the answers that we now need so desparately: how to stop this chaos, the purpose of the station on which you're currently standing, and why the chaos hasn't come here yet.
But with each moment the chaos grows, I am doomed to die here, after so many triumphs. I have detected one ship nearby, which I can only guess is being commanded by Tycho. The Pfhor have entered the station, and if you can find a way onto their ship, you may be able to escape. To escape. To escape.
- There is evidence to suggest that the 'Dreaming God' in Pathways Into Darkness may, in fact, have been a W'rkncacnter. This would be consistent with the fact that the Jjaro also appeared in Pathways Into Darkness (albeit only in the manual).
- In Destiny, the Deep is described as "the waves, which are battles, and the battles are the waves." As well, it is theorized that the Traveler is a W'rkncacnter or Dreaming God.