Main Page > Wiki FAQ
Welcome to Game Detectives!
This list of frequently-asked questions is a compilation of the most useful knowledge for new ARG players.
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What is Game Detectives?
Hello and welcome! The Game Detectives community aims to be an engaging, inclusive, friendly platform dedicated to playing and solving ARGs (Alternate Reality Games) and other cryptographic or puzzle-based events and games. Our community was originally called Steam Sale Detectives and existed as a subreddit dedicated to uncovering the mysteries surrounding the Steam Winter 2015 Sale. This investigation proved very popular, and a Discord chat server was created for real-time investigation discussion.
In a short time, our community had grown to over 14,000 members. Shortly after the Steam sale event concluded, we changed our name to encompass a broader spectrum of ARGs and mysteries, including those separate from Steam. To facilitate this, an entirely new subreddit was created, which today is known as Game Detectives.
Since then, a committed community has rallied and solidified, seating themselves as a distinct force in the puzzle-solving scene. Major ARGs we have contributed to include the Eye Sigil ARG, Frog Fractions 2, Sombra ARG, Battlefield 1, Waking Titan, and many more. The core of our community is a Discord server which contains discussion on current ARGs, as well as various community chat topics.
How can I join the community?
You're very welcome to join us! You don't need anything special to get involved, apart from a little interest:
- Check out our subreddit
- Come chat in Discord
- Follow us on Twitter
- Join our Steam group
- Check out our ARG Academy
- Create a wiki account and contribute to a wiki
- Peruse our ever-expanding website
How do I get in touch with GD staff?
What is an ARG?
ARG stands for Alternate Reality Game.
An ARG usually uses real-world clues to take players on a journey outside of any traditional entertainment medium. ARGs often consist of a trail of clues spread between the real world and the virtual world; for instance, an ARG may include real websites for fictitious companies, phone numbers that players can call to speak to ARG characters, or geocaches hidden in the physical world. ARGs are typically stumbled upon accidentally, with no direct confirmation by its organizer (or 'puppet-master'). These clues often include various puzzles and cryptography.
In the context of video games, ARGs often include information surrounding a game or its plot. Sometimes certain clues can only be found in-game, or 'obscure' websites.
Although purists may argue that all ARGs must follow very strict guidelines to be referred to as such, the term is commonly used to describe any cross-media meta game through which players progress based on solving a series of clues.
How can I learn how to play ARGs?
We host a series of free, interactive tutorials at the Game Detectives Academy! These tutorials are meant to teach some basic skills used in ARGs. They are aimed at the complete beginner, so feel free to jump in!
What are some examples of previous ARGs?
This wiki documents all the ARGs we have been involved with solving - you can find the complete list of investigations here.
I have information about a new ARG; where should I post it?
You can make a post on our subreddit, or use the #arg-general channel in our Discord server to discuss it with other users. If it attracts significant interest, the moderators will create a Discord channel for it and a corresponding flair on the subreddit.
Note: our community was created for solving and discussion about ARGs, not for hosting them or posting your own trailheads. To that end, please refrain from advertising your own ARGs on the subreddit or in Discord.
Can I make my own ARG?
Well, you can, but there's no guarantee it'll be picked up by the users that comprise our community, especially not if it consists entirely of rudimentary ciphers hosted on Pastebin. If you're planning to make an ARG, remember what ARG stands for: Alternate Reality Game. The best way to pull players into your ARG is to convincingly present an alternate reality to the players. If you lack the resources or willpower to do so, puppeteering an on-going ARG might not be for you.
How can I contribute to the Wiki?
You can contribute to the wiki by creating an account. After creating an account, you will be able to submit edits, which will then be reviewed by our team of Wiki Editors. Your edits will not be displayed until they have been reviewed. To improve your chances, read the style guide and adhere to it.
However, you must be a editor in order to create new pages.
How can I get promoted to Editor?
There is no automatic promotion to editor, but we are always keeping an eye out for oustanding contributors! Our wiki editors are generally people who have shown their initiative by writing great articles, making contributions to previous ARGs, or by facilitating others' understandings. The best way to go about becoming an approved wiki editor is to make helpful, informative edits that adhere to the style guide, and to join the community on Discord!
What do all the coloured names mean?
Here is the list of the roles in the Discord server:
- Bright Green: Admins
- Dark Green: Moderators
- Yellow: Official Bot and Unofficial Bot (bots that assist with moderation and bots that are used for fun or utilities, respectively)
- Blue: Wiki Editor
- Red: Agent (awarded for substantial contribution to the community)
- Purple: Detective (awarded to regulars of the Discord server)
- White: Member