Personal tools

Cetacean Communication Project

From Wildcard

Jump to: navigation, search

The Cetacean Communication Project is a Dark Arcadian program in the Sonnentau suburb aimed at developing methods of communication between dolphins and humans, currently focusing on using virtual means to combat biological hurdles.


Originally the Cetacean Intelligence Study, the project was aimed at testing the intelligence of dolphins and whether they deserved the title of 'non-human persons'. Given strong evidence this was the case according to the Dark Arcadian government, the project has redirected its efforts into developing improved methods of communication between the species.

Beginning with a combination of sign language and gestures learnt mostly by the dolphins, later research involved the handlers using devices that would play known 'words' such as contact calls and the individual signature whistles of the dolphins involved. In response to the use of these several of the dolphins developed unique calls that were eventually recognised as being used to identify individual handlers. Having long used food rewards to accustom the dolphins to responding to the name they had been given, it was a shock when the dolphins began returning the favour, giving fish to the handlers when they answered to their own whistle. This, along with several other incidents, was instrumental in having them classified as 'individuals' under Dark Arcadian law.

Methods of Communication

While an odd code language of sounds and gestures has evolved for offline communication, the nature of it makes it very much a learned one and thus used almost exclusively by those involved in the program. Instead the focus has shifted to using a virtual reality interface.

Specially designed aquatic cradles allow the dolphins to log on via a customised browser, with most interactions occurring online. To put all members on an even footing all those involved use cliffracers as their avatars, a creature allowing human speech, whistles pitched within range of the human ear, and exaggerated body language. The aerial creature was chosen as being on a foreign limb arrangement and moving in an unfamiliar medium to both.


Since the declaration of individualism, the aquarium the dolphins are housed in has been modified to contain a channel to a low sea wall which can be easily jumped, leading to the open ocean. Despite this many continue to consider the aquarium home and leave mostly to hunt, returning there to rest. Having grown to consider the researchers members of their pod (despite their lamentable lack of swimming and fishing ability) and the members of the nation as broad allies, dolphins from the project and occasionally those outside can often be seen around the island interacting with residents and are noted swimming near them protectively whenever a small boat is moving about in the open ocean.

It is believed the local pod has been teaching more distant members and every few months an unknown dolphin will visit the aquarium accompanied by a local resident and occasionally enter one of the cradles themselves, with mixed results. Most notable is Kahana, a wild young male who one day accompanied a resident into the aquarium and returned multiple times over the following months, eventually spending so much time joining the online interactions that he is now considered a formal member of the project.

Recently, after many explanations of what it involved, several dolphins have applied for Citizenship, with Hakumele being the first non-human to be granted it. International reactions have been mixed and many consider it with a combination of outrage, dismissal and an act purely of political grandstanding, themselves believing that dolphins are nothing more than highly intelligent animals nonetheless incapable of comprehending political systems, or human language in general.



  • Hakumele, one of the earliest dolphins involved in the study and a member of the project for the past six years.
  • Kahana, who had permitted the CCP to clip a water current and pressure sensor to his dorsal fin (it was mistaken as a camera of sorts during an attack on Dark Arcadia, and got Kahana injured).
  • ...



Newsletters and recaps