With the internet, creativity abounds. People all across the globe feel like sharing stories and ideas in text, video, and audio formats but some people are doing even more than that: they're creating augmented reality games (ARGs) that will catch your attention and keep you hooked until the end of the story.
Some are more interactive than others, some rely more on the experience than the plot, and some are still being developed. Here is a list of 15 that you can check out and dive into. Some are completed, some are still going on, and some have just started laying the groundworks for their games.
Check these out now!
This is one of the first stories that really engaged me with my current ARG fascination. Although many wouldn't call it an ARG (it's not as interactive as most on this list) it has plenty of interaction with the world outside the game.
The main character has to survive in a world without light after the sky is completely blacked-out and strange monsters roam the streets. If you want more information, check out the article I wrote on it here or the official Twitter account here.
Jay Burns is your average guy, except for the fact that he's from a parallel universe. He has a YouTube and a Twitter (both of which are sites that don't exist in his reality) that document him as he tries to figure this out, but it seems that there are some people who don't want him to.
Players can help him figure out what's going on by direct messages, comments, and more!
3. "Max2019" (aka "SexyGirlMax2019")
Though the original blog recently got deleted as the game ended, this ARG followed a guardian angel as she tried to get back into contact with the child she was supposed to be protecting. Several thousand players helped reconnect the two.
This one was so creepy and weird (and spammed so often) that Reddit suspended the account behind it. The user kept posting a hex code that was a link to this image. The image has several things hidden inside and many people have begun to figure it out, but we still don't know where she is.
This is the first of several websites I found on Neocities, a site dedicated to allowing people free web pages. It has plenty of hidden messages and cryptic images. You can check it out here.
This site first appears like any other generic blog, but as you explore deeper you find a story about "wired people" based on the anime "Serial Experiments Lain." While it may not technically be an ARG, it's definitely an interactive story worth checking out!
7. "Marid Salo"
If you're looking for a smaller ARG, "Marid Salo" is for you. The account has two people, Maird and Jim, running it and trying to figure out the meaning of several notes. It's worth looking into if you think you can figure it out.
8. "The Tenth Circle"
One that I've been exploring, "The Tenth Circle" (aka "gore.ws") promises $1000 in Bitcoin or Monero to the first person who can solve their puzzles. It's still fairly new and it seems that few people have gotten far so maybe you have a chance!
9. "Therapeutic Lightbulbs"
While this one looks like a site for really poorly made lightbulbs, just one click leads you to the cult behind the message. Go ahead and buy yourself some "Therapuedic Lightbulbs" today.
10. Twenty One Pilots
The famous band had gone silent for so long that no one really knew what to expect, but when several people found a website that hid some code, the world knew Twenty One Pilots was releasing new music.
11. "Eleanora Poe"
When Netflix was teasing their adaptation of "A Series of Unfortunate Events," they did it in style. With a story that ranged across YouTube, Twitter, and Tumblr, the announcement didn't go unnoticed.
12. "Saturn Tortoise"
What started as a weird post on Reddit has quickly blown up into a discovery of a strange cult and its spread. Don't worry, though. They include a dental plan!
13. "The Rainbow Effect"
Though this hasn't officially started yet, "The Rainbow Effect" will certainly be interesting once it launches. Definitely keep their website bookmarked and check it regularly for more information!
Though this one doesn't start until September 5th, it looks like it has a lot of potential and already has several people keeping an eye on it. Check out the site here.
15. "Kaiser Archival Foundation"
This site is still under construction, just like the last two I mentioned, but it definitely looks as though it will be exciting once it launches. Check out the website here.