All players appear to be Agents when they join the game. However, at least one is a Hacker in disguise.
Agents have to identify the Hacker among them before being hacked out of the AERIE themselves.
When not communicating with one another or voting on who the Hacker is, all Agents play the same role in the game world: to find and eliminate bugs they find in the AERIE. This results in various rewards which can help them identify the Hacker. (There may be an opportunity to expand to more varied roles for Agents in the future.)
If the Agents successfully identify all Hackers in time, the AER Corporation wins the game.
Agents and the Black Market Edit
Though normally at odds, the threat of PHANTOM forces some Agents to rely on the otherwise illicit activity of the Black Market. Careful, though... who knows who some of their vendors will tell that you've been around.
Working as an Agent for AER is one of the more common occupations in the AERIE; the simulated world requires a good deal of upkeep to keep it running to the company's standards. An Agent's primary job entails patching the bugs that keep oddly popping up in the mainframe, as well as sequestering any opposition to the company and their carefully tailored society.
Apart from their duties, Agents can be just like any other AERIE citizen.