It’s always disappointing to see an Alternate Reality Game pull up roots and disappear before its intended endgame. So far we have seen a handful casualties in 2006, and we are adding Another Contest Worth Entering to that list. Rumblings of an implosion came late last week, when UnFiction community member Chewy shared an email he received from the ACWE Puppetmaster team. While the email originally states that the team would be taking a two week hiatus to re-evaluate the situation, the latest word is that the game is, indeed, over.
We received an email from the head Puppetmaster, Eric Trott, about the situation. Here are some excerpts from that email:
As the lead PuppetMaster for the ARG “Love Eternal” (a.k.a. “Another Contest Worth Entering”) I thought it best to step forward to give a formal apology for it’s premature ending… Some could have the opinion that there was a lack of planning that caused the game to end before its time. I can assure you that this is not the case. The team that was assembled worked very hard on the project since we first got together in November of 2005… I presented the team with a launch deadline and they did a wonderful job getting what needed to get done completed by that time… The cause for the “implosion” was a lack of communication between myself and the rest of the team. While maybe one person, other then myself, knew one part of the story, the others did not… While un-disclosure worked well for me in the past, that was not the case this time around. For that, I apologize. Not just to the community, but to the players and the people who helped give the game life… Three days before the game came to an abrupt halt, I ran into some personal problems and needed to resign as the lead PM… Believe me, it is never anyone’s intention going into a game to have it implode and every precaution was taken to ensure this would not have occurred.
While this email does help to explain the situation from behind the curtain, it doesn’t tie up all of the loose ends, as there is no indication yet of whether or not the pre-game prize of the XBox 360 (won by the aforementioned Chewy) will still be awarded. This was one of the selling features of the game, initially, that brought in a playing audience. At last word, there are some ‘legal papers’ that are being sent to the winner that, once filled out, will clear the way for the prize presentation. Hopefully Mr. Trott will make good on this promise and allow the slate to be wiped clean for ACWE.