Yesterday, Oceanic Airlines re-opened for business (http://www.flyoceanicair.com/), promising to take me places I've only imagined in my dreams (a place where I can watch the final 48 episodes of Lost right now while sitting in a pool of Skyline Chili?)
Their website features a video that is spliced with images that say FIND815.COM, and a video of a new character in the Lost universe named Sam:
He tells us that Oceanic Airlines officially gave up their search for downed Flight 815 (even though they allegedly performed the "biggest search in history"), and declared the 324 passengers onboard as deceased. But that doesn't sit well for our boy Sammy, who was in love with Sonya, a flight attendant on Oceanic 815. Visiting http://www.find815.com brings you into his world, and starts us down the path of the next ARG (Alternate Reality Game / Distraction for the Lost Uber-Nerds of the World).
I won't give too much away here so that you can enjoy it for yourself, but the first two puzzles to solve are pretty easy (but I will mention that the trick to the first one is that you have to zoom in a LOT before it will let you click on anything in the picture - that should save you ten minutes of frustration that I encountered when starting).
But here's the really exciting part - it looks like this ARG will only be lasting five weeks... which will pretty much coincide with the start of the fourth season of Lost... and by the looks of things, my early inclination is that this ARG is going to explain who the NPBers are (Not Penny's Boaters).
Are they members of the Maxwell Group? Who is the Maxwell Group? How do I get into their website?! So many questions. A few intriguing points from the story so far...
- James Clerk Maxwell published a series of equations on magnetism back in 1861, creatively titled "Maxwell's Equations". Is it possible this Maxwell Group has been brought to the Island out of a desire to study the "unique magnetic properties" there?
- Naomi and Anthony Cooper mentioned that the wreckage from Flight 815 had actually been found, and that the bodies of all the passengers were there as well. So does that mean this ARG takes place in the days immediately after the crash (September 2004), and the wreckage is actually found sometime before Naomi / Cooper's arrivals on the Island (December 2004)? How would someone actually stumble upon this wreckage after the search party is called off?
- Where is the money and power for this conspiracy coming from? To be able to fake a plane crash (with bodies!) would require an insane amount of resources - and what would be the purpose? To protect the Island from outsiders? Would Dharma still be protecting it even after the purge? Is Oceanic Airlines now in cahoots with Dharma (agreeing to call off the search party), or just an innocent party accidentally involved?
- Sam is able to get some pretty good summary information about a lot of Survivors, and he's just some average guy. I guess we shouldn't be surprised that the Others were able to get their full life biographies, since one can assume they would have a lot more resources than Sam at their fingertips.
- Sam's room looks an awful lot like Jack's flash-forward room - full of maps and notes of the Pacific Ocean.
According to the website, the next chapter of the ARG starts up in 26 hours. Until then, discuss... and if you're going to discuss, remember that we've got a sweet Message Board setup for more in-depth discussions. I've created a post specifically for this ARG here: http://facethewoods.com/lost/index.php?topic=210.0
(Fun fact - due to the wacky proxy rules for my workplace internet, I can get to the Blog - but not the comments section, which means that any mid-day thoughts will be posted / questions addressed on the Message Board only. Another added perk to use it!)