Bioshock 2 and Portal 2, Marketing in Secret

Don’t hurt your brain trying to tie these two events together; it’s really just two neat bits of secret/sly/underground/something marketing. First up, Bioshock 2 — if you ordered the special edition, you got a groovy poster with it. And, as the folks at Gossip Gamer discovered, if you also happened to have a black light…


?…there’s a secret message scrawled on every single poster. Not even the same message; head over to Gossip Gamer to see them all. This was totally unannounced and unmentioned; the fact that it took two weeks for people to discover this little bonus is pretty cool in and of itself. Thanks to Susan Fry for the tip.

But that’s small potatoes compared to what Valve is doing, assuming to promote Portal 2. Valve sent a bunch of mysterious updates to the original game with no discernible effect, causing nerds to check out the files. Some of the files contained morse code, and some were audio files that could be reformatted into images — images of Aperture Science security cameras. Those still contains various math and calculus formulas, which, when everntually put together and decoded, was a phone number for an old Valve BBS. So then the nerds who dug up their modems and connected were able to download this:


?Kotaku has a breakdown of the files, much bigger images, and more details on the whole deal, but it’s just awesome. Bizarre, needlessly complex, and hilarious, but also awesome. The fact that Valve forced people to log on to a BBS cracks me up. It’s all totally Portal-worthy.