After over four months of completing puzzles via the Postal Service, participants in the innovative ARG The Committee of the Sedulous Amalgamation (tCotSA) received cryptic notes that eventually decoded to reveal the history and purpose of the organization behind the mailings – the same organization that funded the creation of Deus Cityâ€™s Time Communication Project.
According to the information revealed through the cryptic mailings, the Committee for Sedulous Amalgamation was established five hundred years ago to protect fragments of Nostradamusâ€™ folio. They then funded Adam Brackinâ€™s Time Communication project and charged its members to join the agents of Deus City and collect the missing pieces of the Nostradamus’ work.
Further investigation reveals additional parallels between the two games. An arithmetic symbol used by the Deus City PM, known as “Hank Eggrem,” appears on many tCotSA messages, including its trailhead. tCotSA also makes reference to the death of one of its members, which parallels Alexis Wright Srâ€™s plane crash in Alabama from the Deus City story.
The impact of this merging of games remains to be seen, as both ARGs have employed very different gameplay styles, with Deus City relying heavily on character interaction while tCoSA utilized “snail mail” to great effect. A similar merger of ongoing games happened in the past with Wildfire Industries and Synagoga. Watching these two communities interact will be an interesting study in merging gaming cultures, whether the games merge completely or continue running concurrent plotlines.
Click Here for the Deus City website
Click Here for the unfiction forum thread
Click Here for the Deus City wiki
The Committee of the Sedulous Amalgamation
Click Here for the tCotSA unfiction forum thread
Click Here for the tCotSA story so far
In a world where technology allows immediate communication between people on opposite sides of the planet, and the internet provides instant access to new entertainment and information generated daily by multitudes of contributors of both the professional and the amateur varieties, itâ€™s easy to forget the value of older, slower forms of communication such as snailmail. Perhaps this is the reason for the growing popularity of the slow foods movement, which offers a sumptuous alternative to the culinary portion of our increasingly-fast paced lives in which the time invested is itself part of the reward, and for which handmade quality trumps convenience.
The ARG world seems to have gotten its own equivalent to that movement in the form of The Committee for the Sedulous Amalgamation, which offers its players a veritable banquet of the type of pleasures that just canâ€™t be replicated digitally: the thrill of tearing open an envelope to find a mysterious snailmail letter, the enjoyment of physically handling a beautifully constructed puzzle, and the satisfaction of possessing swag that youâ€™ll keep long after the game has ended. The game launched with a letter sent to Unfiction, inviting players to thirteen Challenges and exhorting them to â€œmake humanity proud!â€
If half a dozen netcasts are as sweet as half a dozen donuts, then feast your ears on the sixth ARG Netcast. Sean C. Stacey, Brooke Thompson and Jonathan Waite are joined this week by Carie Ward, ARGNet staff writer and webmaster of wonderweasels.org. Subscribe to the ARG Netcast feed through FeedBurner or via iTunes.
- Ny Takma wrapped up this past week. The puppetmasters have spoken — find out what we think about the endgame.
- Sammeeeees players are hot on the trail of the 4th and 5th Spoocheeeee disc pieces, and konamouse offers a Top Ten list. Does this ARG have the personal touch mastered?
- OpAphid becomes the “Official LonelyGirl15 Alternate Reality Game, according to the official LG15 forums. Is this ARG 2.0?
- Deus City rolls on. There’s a basic plot time line and cast of characters at the Unfiction forums.
- tCotSA (The Committee of the Sedulous Amalgamation) shows signs of life with new snail mailings to various players. ARG or puzzle trail?
- Lawn Games For Life is a new ARG. Brooke and Carie have the skinny on this emerging campaign, including info about the PM herself.
- NeoVenus Construction may or may not be an ARG related to Capcom’s Lost Planet. Slick web sites, more information to follow this week.
Editor’s note: While we are still figuring out the logistical nature of netcasting, you can subscribe to the netcast by saving/dragging this link into your podcast/netcast program, including iTunes.
We’re happy to introduce the first in what will be a continuing series of netcasts featuring ARGNet staff and special guests. The ARG Netcast will be a weekly (we hope) look into the world of alternate reality gaming, in audio format. Episode 1 is up and features Brooke Thompson, Sean C. Stacey and myself talking about a number of different topics:
We dish on the games in our What’s Hot List!