Over the last week a series of cryptic posts from Generation Zero's Twitter account have had me paralysed with anticipation. A mystery has been unravelling through these posts which today turned things up to eleven with an image showing the name for what seems likely to be the first DLC expansion for Avalanche's FPS, named Alpine Unrest.
I play Generation Zero as a solo experience, in which stealth is key to avoiding having your body broken by the machines that have invaded the previously pleasant countryside. That's why when radios began playing Morse code on repeat, attracting machines to the most inconvenient areas for humans, I knew something was up.
That Morse code was the first in this series of cryptic tweets "[CONTACT] From silence, our radios have now suddenly started picking up a new signal. The same message, on repeat, over and over. What could it mean?" Included was a link to a video of radios playing the code.
Someone quickly figured out that the Morse code, when translated from Swedish "NI SOM HAR ÖVERLEVT LETA EFTER BJÖRNER," said "survivors - find the bear." Two days go by, Avalanche even host a stream, but no further information is shared.
Then we got another tweet.
[Contact - Day 1] One of our group found this picture during a scavenging run. The photo is old but the ink looks fresh, and we had that strange morse code on our radios recently. We should investigate! Staffan thinks he may recognise the statue from his childhood holidays... pic.twitter.com/rJ6AE80uk1— Generation Zero (@GenZeroGame) November 13, 2019
This proved that something was happening, but the problem was that no one had ever seen the bear in this image anywhere in Generation Zero’s world. At the time I thought that the tweets could indicate a new land and NPCs coming to the robopocalypse shooter, but I wasn’t willing to believe that just yet. Two more tweets showed more screenshots of an area no player had seen, reinforcing the idea that this is a new island. Then we got a map.
[CONTACT - DAY 4] We're narrowing down the location bit by bit, avoiding the Machines where possible. We had a run-in with one of the "hunter" types yesterday, it was like nothing we've faced before! We're hoping that tomorrow can finally give us some answers! pic.twitter.com/ojMRIdVwyr— Generation Zero (@GenZeroGame) November 16, 2019
The drawing doesn’t appear in the current Generation Zero world map, and at this point it wasn’t just me getting excited about the possibility of a new area. The text of the tweet “We had a run-in with one of the "hunter" types yesterday, it was like nothing we've faced before,” made me question whether the characters had arrived on the island recently, and if so why? There wasn’t much time to speculate though, because today we got the best part of the story so far.
[CONTACT - DAY 5] We made it! Staffan was right! The "bear" WAS a statue that stood outside the front of a hotel he used to visit on skiing holidays as a child. Wait! Do you hear that faint sound? Is that...voices? pic.twitter.com/kK9YFTy33C— Generation Zero (@GenZeroGame) November 17, 2019
"Alpine Unrest coming soon" is all I see, and I can’t think of it as anything other than an expansion or DLC. I think there’s probably still more to come from this story though, not necessarily the reveal of NPCs, but a faction of enemy humans “is that...voices?”