Bungie’s cryptic Marathon ARG yields a treasure trove of new lore

What you need to know

  • Alongside the full reveal of its upcoming PvP extraction shooter Marathon, developer Bungie began an alternate reality game (ARG) with coded messages and other puzzles.
  • Throughout the week, fans have worked together to solve these puzzles, resulting in the reveal of over 35 pages of new Marathon lore.
  • The lore revolves around the UESC Marathon colony ship, the game’s Tau Ceti IV setting, communications within interstellar corporations, and the anticapitalist rebel faction MIDA.

Bungie’s reveal of its upcoming PvP extraction shooter Marathon was one of the biggest highlights of the 2023 PlayStation Showcase earlier this week, but the developer had more than public trailers and blog posts to share. The studio also kicked off an Alternate Reality Game (ARG) puzzle by discretely sending ciphered messages to content creators, with several Bungie staff members and influencers also posting  cryptic images of computer files and terminal logs.

The gaming community came together and managed to solve what most thought was the full ARG, which led to Bungie publishing its Somewhere In The Heavens ViDoc that goes over Marathon’s gameplay structure, themes, art direction, and more. However, investigative fans quickly discovered that there was much more to the ARG, including secret websites, additional coded messages, ciphers, and more. And by collaborating to solve the ARG’s various mysteries, fans have uncovered a 35+ page treasure trove of new Marathon lore.

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