On November 17 it was announced that BioWare would reveal its next game at the 2010 VGAs, and a small preview clip was released by Spike.
For those who don't know, the VGAs are the Video Game Awards, one of many video game award shows, which are aired yearly on Spike. They are best known for having several 'World Premiere' trailers during the show, as well has a cynical use of celebrities to pander to mainstream audiences.
This years show airs on December 11.
Following the release of the preview clip BioWare began posting QR Codes to Twitter and Facebook. When scanned these QR Codes produced binary code, that, when converted to text, revealed several cryptic pieces of information:
The atomic mass of Iron.
The lowest temperature ever measured on Earth recorded at Vostok in Antarctica. The Soviet Vostok programme succeeded at putting the first human into orbit.
The website for the British Secret Intelligence Service (SIS).
The album cover to British band The Clash's 2007 compilation album, 'The Singles'.
A red herring.
It is generally assumed that these are hints about what the game will be.
Shortly after the release of the preview, and the first two hints, a source allegedly contacted Kotaku and revealed that the game is a multiplayer FPS developed by BioWare Montreal and set in the Mass Effect Universe. However, Sony Russia has claimed, via Twitter, that the game is Mass Effect 3. Whether or not they actually know this or the guy who runs their Twitter based it on a rumour, we don't know.
Watching the preview clip, the following observations can be made:
- The man in the preview appears to be holding an M-29 Incisor Sniper Rifle, from Mass Effect 2.
- The man is wearing heavy, futuristic-looking, armour.
- The man's right leg appears to be injured and wrapped in a bloody bandage.
- Outside the window appears to be the River Thames and the Palace of Westminster.
Update: Sony Russia has removed the tweet, without clarification. Since then they have posted a 'hint' which apparently translates to 'Strastnoy Boulevard 15/29', which is an address. Whether or not this is at all related is unknown, my guess is no.
Update: I've discovered that the address in the hint is the location of the 'Gagarin Estate'. Not Yuri Gagarin, but I do find this interesting given the 'Vostok' hint. Vostok being the program that put a Gagarin (Yuri) in space. The most interesting thing about this, however, is the suggestion that Sony Russia may indeed know what the game that is going to be announced is, and their Mass Effect 3 tweet may not have been incorrect. This is all rampant speculation however.
Update: A new barcode leads to this, the album cover to British band The Clash's 1991 compilation album 'The Singles'.
Update: A new barcode leads to a picture of a red herring.
Update: CVG has acquired an image from the trailer, which EA has admitted to them is real. The image depicts the Sniper's POV as he observes a woman moving to help a fallen child amongst the rubble. Perhaps the most interesting thing is that the Sniper Rifle's reticle matches the reticle in Mass Effect 2.
Looking at the leaked CVG image we can notice:
- The Sniper Rifle's reticle is the exact same reticle that Sniper Rifles from Mass Effect 2 feature.
- A woman is moving to help a fallen child.
- A man, or perhaps an older child is running just behind them.
- They are not rendered in as much detail as the man from the earlier image. This suggests this may only be a brief moment in the trailer as the sniper scans his environment.
- A wrought iron fence and stone rubble. Not particularly sci-fi. Perhaps the sort of thing you'd see on Earth, maybe London?
Update: Joystiq claims that a 'reliable source' has told them that the game is indeed Mass Effect 3 and that the game will feature a multiplayer component of some sort.
Update: Whoops. Seems EA has let the cat out of the bag. The game? Mass Effect 3, on PS3, Xbox 360 and PC. The plot is as follows:
Earth is burning. Striking from beyond known space, a race of terrifying machines have begun their destruction of the human race. As Commander Shepard, an Alliance Marine, your only hope for saving mankind is to rally the civilizations of the galaxy and launch one final mission to take back the Earth.Update: