Take that scenario, and throw out the simplistic humans-versus-machines narrative, since no conflict in history has ever actually been that simple in reality. Humans are on both sides, and machines are on both sides. The Zero State is the seed of a major faction in the future turmoil, sent back in time (or into simulations of the past, take your pick) to ensure their final victory.
The seed exists to create a cult, in the classical sense. As in ancient Greece, cult becomes community, grows into a city, and so on. The Zero State will grow into the virtual and distributed component of a worldwide movement which also has a “real world”, boots-on-the-ground aspect. It is the smallest beginning, under very hard conditions, the first step in a thousand mile journey.
There is a plan, and a timeline of goals. It will be shown to those of you who can solve the seven keys, or who can make cooperative alliances with those who can solve the keys.
If you want help, you can ask. But help is not given without cost; no matter what path forward you take, you must earn your victory – as we all must, together.