[ARG] The Pizza Code Mystery


#5401

There doesn’t seem to be anything to do on the 3883 website, that I can spot. The Blackmesasystems site, just seems fake, I did quite a bit of investigating on employees of the systems site, and it just seems pretty suspicious. Especially because it’s called Black Mesa, their checkout page is fake, and they are using the BMS logo. Their specialty is Hospital device networks security that uses AI, like the hardware that would be used in the BioDome. We know there are multiple sites supposedly used during the ARG outside of the research facility, that were set up to look like real world entities. KXBM site and Local desert singles fit this. I also called the Systems phone number today, nobody answers and it goes to a robotic voicemail. Again though, nothing concrete to tie it to the arg.


#5402

I’m puzzled by the fact that it’s publishing a 32 digit hex code on the page, which is updated once a day with a new code, and obfuscating it as a barcode that is too long and too small to be scanned by a smartphone.

Aside from that, maybe there are hidden pages, subfolders or files on the site, which can only be accessed if you have the direct URL to them, or find them through brute forcing, manually or with some tool.

The last-modified timestamp of the logo image is “Mon, 21 Apr 2014 04:51:56 GMT”, which is most likely when the image was uploaded to the site, and this barcode thing may have been running since that date as well. This also means that this was probably not set up recently to coincide with the tweet about GG-3883.

This is nothing like kxbm.net. kxbm.net was just a static page with copy-pasted real or fake news items. The BMRF related news story on the kxbm.net site was “in-universe” in the sense that the news story was written as if the BMRF was a real facility and events were happening in our (fictional) reality.

The Space Coast Daily new site to me looks like a real news site with real news stories. They published a news story about this company (BMS), and they also published a 15 min video interview with the guys behind BMS. The person who was interviewing them is VP of Space Coast Daily, apparently.

The BMS company registration also appears to be real, with one of the individuals representing BMS in the interview listed as registered agent and authorized person for the company.

There were two phone numbers listed, one in the pdfs (NYC area code), and one in the video interview (Brevard County, FL area code). Did you try both of them?

EDIT: At the bottom of the BMS site it says “© 2017 Black Mesa Group”. I don’t know if it’s related, but there’s a actually a website on blackmesagroup.com. It contains just a logo, but there’s a latin phrase in the html description meta tag which says: “Orbis non sufficit.” In English, this translates to “The World is not enough.”


#5403

Here’s some more information uncovered about the Black Mesa Group, LLC.

Apparently they are an angel firm, who helped back this company with $250K: Pamper

This could absolutely be within the scope of the ARG, but, to be quite frank, it seems kind of off. We’ve had some very common and similar themes throughout the life of the ARG, and these seem a bit out there. However, everything is worth at least taking a cursory look at. Strange? Yes. Impossible? No way. It could be that the ARG is linking to legitimate sites as a sort of tribute or direct “product placement” kind of thing for friends/colleagues of the development team, but that those pages aren’t necessarily ARG-related. For instance, the latin phrase on blackmesagroup.com is convincing, but the Pamper company website doesn’t seem related at all. Anyway, just my $0.02.

On another note, I’m very excited to see us getting back into this. I feel that we may be onto something, and I’m looking forward to updating the blog with some new material as we come around this corner. We likely won’t have anything handed to us on a silver platter, despite the wait, so I expect we’ll need to do some pretty solid digging over the next few months to see if there’s a thread to uncover.


#5404

worth a mention, The movie , the world is not enough was released on 11 19 99. HALF-LIFE was released on 11 19 98, and opposing force launched on 11 19 99…


#5405

I’ve noticed that a lot of ARGs seem to use discord now as it seems to have replaced IIRC. Should we make one? Could help and modernize it a little. Could help with new players.


#5406

Guys GUYS!

The HTML footer for http://www.blackmesasystems.com had an active link (which is now not active anymore) pointing to http://blackmesagroup.com/ The page shows the logic character In math, ∀ means FOR ALL. THREE TIMES! The third one is shown as an fav.ico in the title (insert tin foil hats here)

I just found this funny in a stupid way!

I’ll see myself out now…


#5407

Probably old, but… I assume someone else noticed that there’s a computer in QE with a message open talking about doctor horn, level design, messages on the whiteboard, and watching “s0-4e03 of star trek”.

Assuming they meant s4e3 of Deep Space 9, that’s a fairly famous episode, so maybe it’s just a random dev message about their favorite episode.

Edit: Oh geez, there’s a wiki. And a map. That’s the kind of dedication I appreciate.


#5408

Stormseeker replied to the steam thread confirming that the 3883e and black mesa systems websites are both unrelated to the arg.


#5409

http://steamcommunity.com/app/362890/discussions/0/2860219962092848571/


#5410

This is the most interesting thing that happened to the ARG in a long time.

Who knows, maybe Storm is trying to nudge is in the right direction…


#5411

If anything, I feel the only thing he’s done so far in the past… I dunno, 4 years or so, is nudge us out of the wrong direction.

Given 100 options with only 1 being correct, telling us 3 which are not the right ones leaves us with 97 options left. Not sure if that’s something to be excited about.


#5412

I mean, to this day, the ARG has been stuck in the same place for several years (correct me if i’m wrong).

I would have thought Storm would give us a clue or something.

Most people simply don’t care anymore, and i’m losing interest as well.


#5413

And then it is quite possible that the solution simply cannot be found without the final chapters of the game.

(As a former dev team member, please know that I know nothing regarding the ARG so dont assume this comment is a nudge in any direction)


#5414

That is just what “they” want a former dev team member to say.
Me thinks you doth protest too much, or not enough.
Plausible deniability.


#5415

Such cynicism , so jaded, so much distrust… The bitterness and doubt abounds. Tell me sir, what happened to our love? :s aint:


#5416

I have been accused of being a paid shill by the tin-foil hat brigade and lesser brainiacs in the Steam forum.
All it would take is for anyone to read more than one of my posts to realize that if that were true I would have been fired a long time ago.
You’d think if I was paid that I would probably be nicer to the trolls.

On a side note, did you get your check for February yet. I knew I should have chosen direct deposit.

The above is pure sarcasm, liberally apply Poe’s Law.


#5417

Sarcasm sprinkled with teasing winks does my heart good.

I cant even remember the last time I tried to contribute to the steam forums. I think I walked away sometime around the time just before our mod version release. I think I checked in after the release and it was still a bunch of whiny “but it isn’t the whole game” and I was just done. I dont have the required patience for our gaming world. Too much rage quit lurks deep inside.

Oh wait, what thread is this? Oh yeah, the arg.

So… yeah. ARGH! I am still of the mind that this is stalled because the rest of it wont be available for tinkering till the rest of the game is released. (Hint: this is where someone actually ON the team can chime in and help the ARG breakers a bit?)


#5418

Catz, bit off-topic.

Is that really you in the profile picture?

I’m not implying anything by asking, i’m just curious why, if it is you, are you using your own picture.


#5419

Because she is a hot mama and proud of it.


#5420

Yes that is me, and I use it cuz I am rather proud of it. It was taken at a time I was undergoing chemo and yet I was STILL able to have a good makeup day and smile despite a shaky future. If you google my name, my picture is all over the place anyway, so it is no biggie to me that folks see my face instead of an avatar. To be honest tho, most days I look like a train wreck lol! #NotHot #OldLady :wink: :wink: