Remember Skynet Research? On Friday the 13th the mysterious Terminator site went live, and users who had previously signed up for updates returned to find a fully functional website with company bios, contact information, testimonials and outreach efforts. There was also a robotic community page that detailed Skynet’s Enhancement Module 101, a product guaranteed to improve the functionality of any robot. Of course, being a proper ARGamer I requested a module with little hope of anything actually happening, but then the whispers started over on the Unfiction forums, where some members claimed they had actually gotten an Enhancement Module in the mail. Incredulous, I went about my business until today, when I found a small box in the mail from Skynet Research.
Tucked inside the box was the Enhancement Module in all its glory. While in all actuality it is just a piece of flickering plastic, I still found myself upset I didn’t have a robot to attach it to. The paperwork seemed to hint at the fact that Skynet would take over any robot that was “enhanced” and I dearly wanted to see the carnage that would follow from such a hostile takeover.
All Enhancement Modules aside, the accompanying paperwork included proof without a doubt that Skynet Research is an ARG for the Terminator: Salvation film that will hit theaters on May 22nd, a date the installation sheet reiterated for its readers. While the puppetmasters acknowledged that the module was a “Thank you” for playing along, they still encouraged players to take part in the ARG and submit user-created videos detailing their newly enhanced robots.
Since the modules began arriving, Skynet Research has been updated to include loads of content previously unavailable. Several comic shops throughout the country are now listed as under Skynet’s surveillance (literally), a catalog of robotic products is available for perusal, and there is a community section that showcases user-submitted videos and robot designs.
While players can no longer request an Enhancement Module, there is still the mystery of the “P” on the Product page that, when hovered over with a mouse pointer, uncovers a hidden password prompt*. Whether this prompt is the key to the next part of the ARG or not, the Enhancement Module instructions ended with a word of encouragement for players who missed out on the flashing plastic glory.
“Please continue to visit the Skynet Research website for updates and new developments as our campaign progresses toward the May 22nd, 2009 U.S. release of Terminator Salvation.”
The next step in the game remains to be seen, but in the meantime players are encouraged to dig into the site for themselves and, as always, check ARGNet for the latest news on all things ARG. Now, I’m off to find a robot to “enhance”…
*A special thanks to our reader Mike for pointing this out to me.