The Shi were the descendants of the crew of a Chinese Shi-huang-ti submarine that crashed in San Francisco during the Great War. The remains of this vessel were probably used to help build the Palace and the ship's onboard supercomputer was established as the Emperor. The Shi were organised by the Emperor Computer which, while possessing no artificial intelligence, was capable of making predictions based on all factors it has access to, with astonishing accuracy. The apparent leader of the Shi in year 2241 was Ken Lee, advisor to the Emperor, in truth Ken Lee dictated the Shi actions based on the predictions of the Emperor Computer.
Their symbol is a golden dragon, facing right.
The following are the most notable qualities of the Shi and their home:
- They had managed to keep many of their old traditions and customs, which was more than many American groups can say.
- Somehow, the city was spared a good deal of destruction, although radiation levels were high for a while (radiation levels not confirmed by Vault City Travel Log).
- As of 2242, two clans battled for control of San Francisco the Hubologists and the Shi.
- The Shi run an extensive weapons trade, offering pieces of technology usually only available to groups like the Brotherhood of Steel. Storyline research reveals extensive engineering capability which was no doubt responsible for producing these items.
The ultimate goal of the Shi was unclear. However their attempts at creating new kinds of synthetic armour, their eagerness to gain the advanced Enclave technology for the Vertibirds, their experiments in the artificial enhancement of soldiers using radiation, and their militaristic approach to opposing Hubologists all suggested that they were preparing means for expansion.
The Shi are very active researchers. They are nearing a breakthrough in the rediscovery of nuclear power, and are considering methods of space travel. They have also learned to synthesize a new fuel using plant extracts and sea life. After integrating preexisting pipelines to their fuel reservoirs they can direct fuel to a number of diverse areas including the PMV Valdez. New weapons research and insights into new polymeric combat armor with enhanced heat and penetration resistance look like promising additions to the Shi armament, particularly when viewed in context with their construction capabilities. It is forecast that with vertibird schematics a prototype could be manufactured in a year and in an additional year mass vertibird production would be viable. Other less militaristic advances include radiation resistant plant life in the Shi botany department led by Dr. Sheng. Although initial experimentation yielded results with unpleasant side effects and it was posited that research be redirected to more critical areas, after Dr. Long Wang injected himself with a FEV-derived serum to manufacture super soldiers and melted into a puddle of goo, his genetic research department has been merged with Dr. Sheng's botany department and research on radiation resistant plant life has resumed. The research culminated in a radiation consuming vine that scourged the San Francisco area of radiation after the Enclave's destruction.
- Botany program: Initial results of botanical radiation disruption prove unpromising. Dr. Sheng develops radiation resistant plant-life - unpleasant side-effects follow. Resultant plant life deemed too dangerous. Sheng insists on pursuing line and mixing it with genetic program.
- Genetic program: Using the basics of FEV, Dr. Long Wang is convinced of success in creating mutant soldiers. He creates a serum providing interesting results with rodent experiments. He injects himself and dissolves into a puddle of goo. Dr. Sheng disables line of inquiry. With the death of Dr. Long, Dr. Sheng is in charge. Sheng demands focus on radiation-consuming plant life.
- Xeno program: The subject on which the Shi scientists had hoped to establish a series of meaningful experiments has disappeared, presumed either destroyed or stolen by the Hubologists.
- Fuel and derivatives: Shi have created a kind of fuel from plant extracts and sealife. Apparently, they have hooked into previously existing pipelines so they can transport fuel to a wide variety of destinations.
- Polymers: The Shi are working on a new kind of polymeric combat armor that is resistant to both flame and penetration. It is still years from completion. You also see mention of new weaponry and construction capabilities (apparently the Shi have some plans for the future).
- Exploration: With acquisition of vertibird plans, the possibility of creating a practical flying machine has taken a quantum leap forward. Dr. Wong Shi expects to have a working prototype by the end of the year, and the ability to mass-produce such vehicles within two years.
- Theory: The Shi are learning to develop nuclear power again, rebuilding the space travel theories of the ancients - and they mock the Hubologists while doing so - and harnessing the energy of the sun, wind, and sea.
- The name of the Shis' submarine, Shi-huang-ti (始皇帝), means "First Emperor" in Chinese, and was the title created by the first Emperor of China for himself. Huang-ti (皇帝) means "Emperor" and Shi (始) means "begin".
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Depending on the player's actions, the Shi will either prosper and form a new empire, disband and blend into other communities, or get wiped out by mutated vines.
Xian, one of scientists in Boulder, grew up in San Francisco among the Shi.