ARG’s, or Alternate Reality Games, have been hovering just below the mainstream for a while now but it looks like that’s beginning to change as content creators and brand marketers and seeing big opportunities.
“For months now, I’ve been hearing whispers that a big new alternate-reality game was on the way. I never got any details of what it was about, but when a box arrived at my desk on Friday filled with clues, I knew this was it, and it seems that it’s linked to this year’s summer Olympics…Inside the box, there was a reproduction of what appears to be a 1920 Olympics poster with a figure of a discus thrower on the front, and the text, “VIIe Olympiade. Anvers (Belgique). 1920 Aout – Septembre 1920. Subsidee par les pouvoirs publics. On the reverse, there’s also the text, “It’s a secret someone has been keeping for a very long time.”
CNet has updated that post with some more info:
“The game’s conceit will be to have players help Ariadne find her identity, through a complex series of online and, most-likely, real-world clues and puzzles. Somehow, it will all tied in to the Olympics. One clue of that is that on the game’s site, she offers up the “fact” that after waking up, she spent a week in the hospital being treated for her very rare form of amnesia and that doctors there “say I’m an Olympic-caliber athlete.””
If you go to FindTheLostString you will be able to find out more about the game,
which has been developed by 42 Entertainment. (UPDATE: turns out 42Entertainment is not involved in this particular ARG, thanks thebruce!) CNet also has a cool interview with one of the game developers at 42Entertainment, a company that has created a number of ARGs.
“Like most big ARGs before it, “Last Call,” which recently ended for active participation but can still be seen online, was an extraordinarily complicated marketing campaign, in this case for Activision’s just-released “Gun” video game. It was free, whether people wanted to play poker online, join in the community, or just follow a story that has remained archived even though the live events are completed.”
Other ARG’s included ILoveBees, a game made as a marketing ploy for Halo.
More on LostString here.