Spike Chunsoft has launched a new web-based real-time mystery-solving game called Hidden Bats. The promotion began with a countdown site of the same name that launched on May 5, 2022 and ended on May 8, 2022.
The completed countdown page then displayed an unlisted YouTube video titled “Bats489.” The naming of the video suggests that Hidden Bats may have some connection to the AI: The Somnium Files – nirvanA Initiative. This is because a trailer for that game references a video called “Bats490” and uses similar imagery. So far Spike Chunsoft remained mum about such connections, if there are any.
Check out the “Bats489” video below.
In a press release, Spike Chunsoft dropped more details about the “real-time mystery” presented by Hidden Bats. The game is effectively an ARG (Alternate Reality Game), played out over web browsers and through social media accounts. Players are invited to help solve missing persons cases, as they unfold in real time.
Hidden Bats follows the story of two missing individuals named Aine Ichirai and Binato Sotobara.
The two have been kidnapped and locked in a room with nothing but a smartphone with access to a Twitter account. Aine and Binato may only access their accounts every two days for eleven minutes at a time. They’ll use the time to share information and codes that their followers can use to solve the mystery of their whereabouts and how to escape via Twitter’s reply function.
Thus, players hoping to participate in the ARG should follow the Hidden Bats account, @HiddenBats, as well as the accounts set up for Aine and Binato (@Aine_Ichirai and @Binato_Sotobara). When a new clue is received from the accounts, more information will be relayed to the website of the Sunaiku Foundation, an organization that “provides support to bring missing persons cases to their resolution.” Combining the information from the Twitter accounts, site, and video should enable players to decipher a passcode, which needs to be communicated to Aine and Binato via Twitter.
The Hidden Bats ARG is ongoing via Twitter and online. AI: The Somnium Files – nirvanA Initiative releases on June 24, 2022 for PS4, PS5, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, and PC.