Origin: An Odyssey in Time

Prologue

VRGE had cracked the code many gaming studios failed to accomplish. Alternative Reality Gaming–ARG for short. The first game introduced a few years prior held promise to all those who wanted to delve into this new series. It was simplistic in nature, a scavenger hunt set in a temple. The players had thirty minutes to find all the clues to win the game. In a way–it was what helped establish the Escape the Room games that VRGE became famous for.

The games released by the company were not normal by any means–one couldn’t buy it for their console or personal use. These games were purely given to facilities designed for virtual reality settings. These places became known as the AVR Arcades, where people reserved time slots to play.

Practically overnight, VRGE had become one of the top selling game industries within the nation. And continued.

Which is what brought them to this moment. The game that they had envisioned at the beginning of the company. Origin, the AVR game that transcended time. The characters within the story didn’t have a set period to finish the game to win. No; this game had been designed to become the first AVR console system for home usage. Where players could save their game, and exit at any time. Just as one would do in the Destiny, Halo, or Final Fantasy’s–one could simply save and turn it off for another day.

Previous VRGE games did not allow for saving–which solved their major dilemma within the gaming world. Critics lined up to lay faults with the system, so VRGE stepped it up. By developing a personal gaming unit that could be used at home, it broke all the rules in gaming. And the trick to this was sleeping.

One would place the VR console on themselves while they were sleeping, and they’d play within the game as they dreamed. There would be no constraints for space, or body movement. Using the console as one slept would enable the player to venture into an open-ended world that had no boundaries. One could see why this game would peak the interest of any game player.

Before the system could be released to the public, the company had to beta-test their game. It was to clean up the minor bug issues and programming, and only a few selected beta testers were chosen. Some of them were within their twenties, other were peaking near the age of thirty.

With VRGE’s newest game having leaked over the web, the forums and chatrooms were ablaze. For one particular gamer’s group in the local area, there’s were also buzzing.

Engine_Loaded entered the chatroom…

Engine_Loaded is typing…

EagleEye entered the chatroom…

Engine_Loaded: Anyone else receive an invitation with a game card?

Engine_Loaded posted a picture.

EagleEye is typing…

EagleEye: You got the same thing as I did. Look here…

EagleEye posted a picture.

Cool_Azure_Sea entered the chatroom…

Engine_Loaded is typing…

EagleEye is typing…

Engine_Loaded: Same color card–your personal username is on there.

EagleEye: Did Cas get one as well?

Cool_Azure_Sea is typing…

Cool_Azure_Sea: Why yes I did. My brother looked into it for me as well. Seems legit.

Engine_Loaded is typing…

EagleEye: I suppose your brother does work for the FBI department…

Engine_Loaded: Cas is training to become a secret undercover agent just like Mike. Harold would be pleased.

Cool_Azure_Sea: Haha, if only. LOL

Cool_Azure_Sea: Also, please leave Harold out of it–he’s happily solving things in my game world ReSolve.

EagleEye: Lol

Cool_Azure_Sea: My brother Mike also confirmed that VRGE finally created a mobile (?) AVR game console. Just some juicy details in the fine print.

Cool_Azure_Sea: I’ll go and see what it’s about.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r entered the chatroom…

Engine_Loaded: So this invite is the real deal then? While I wait, I suppose I should go play ReSolve once more. I always love a good puzzle game.

Cool_Azure_Sea is typing…

EagleEye: Woah, Eugene, shots fired!

Engine_Loaded: Harold solves riddles and clues, piecing together the evidence to solve his wife’s murder. Ergo, puzzle game.

Cool_Azure_Sea: One) ReSolve is about Harold’s obsession to get over his wife’s murder by finding her murderer.

Two) Harold searches for clues that trigger events that happen around the city to help him find the murderer.

Three) His choices tree branches into many plot points to the end. There isn’t just one ending and voila, its the end.

Four) Harold chooses what happens to him. How does that make it a puzzle game Eugene?

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: It’s lively as usual.

EagleEye: If Cas and Eugene aren’t at each other’s throats, it’d be too quiet.

Engine_Loaded: Harold has to piece together the missing pieces of evidence to find peace in his life. Sounds like a puzzle to me if anything.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: Did Eugene pun?

EagleEye: OMG

Cool_Azure_Sea is typing…

Engine_Loaded: That was quite hard to set up.

EagleEye: LOLOL

Cool_Azure_Sea: Ha

EagleEye: I’d be terrified of that “Ha”.

Engine_Loaded: Yup. Good thing I went to the lawyer the other day. My living will is signed and awaiting the day I die.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: For the record, Eugene punned first today. He has to wear the pun of shame.

EagleEye: I’ll bring it to the VRGE company house LOL

Cool_Azure_Sea: RelicPetals will be pleased she won’t have to wear the pun of shame next.

Engine_Loaded: Well, I did lose to her during that last speed run. I had to take the fall somewhere.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: OOOOHHHHH, did you guys get an invite to VRGE?!

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r posted a picture

EagleEye: WOW

EagleEye: Did you not see the long chat about VRGE above?

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: I don’t read what’s already past–too long to read.

Cool_Azure_Sea: It took me ten seconds to read what they posted.

Engine_Loaded: Fynn is just lazy–is what he’s implying.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: EXACTLY!

Cool_Azure_Sea: I don’t think you should be proud of yourself.

EagleEye: Do we know if RelicPetals, KokeD3sNuts, or Curlz4Ev got the invite?

Engine_Loaded: Hang on, let me text Mags.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: OOOoooooooooo Are we on texting terms now?

Engine_Loaded: I have your number, don’t I?

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: Why don’t you text meeeeeeeeee T_T

Cool_Azure_Sea: Because you’re not the one he’s interested in.

EagleEye: Cas is savage today.

Engine_Loaded: She said she’ll be on in five minutes. She just got off from work.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: I see how it is… TT_TT

Engine_Loaded: To be fairly objective, Fynn is a handsome dude. I’d hit that.

RelicPetals entered the chatroom…

EagleEye: Mags, Did you get an invite too?

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: And just like that my self esteem rockets higher into the stratosphere. Bros4life.

RelicPetals is typing...

RelicPetals: It’s never a dull moment between you guys lol. and I’m checking the mail as we speak.

RelicPetals posted a picture.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: How often do you check your mail? There’s over 50 envelopes there!

Engine_Loaded: I hope those aren’t credit card bills.

Cool_Azure_Sea: Looks like Spam.

EagleEye: how on earth did you accumulate that much mail Mags?

RelicPetals: I got busy.

Engine_Loaded: To check the mail? It takes like five seconds.

RelicPetals: I hate going outside after I’m done working. And plus…it’s cold.

Cool_Azure_Sea: Solution = Jacket

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: LOLOLOLOLOL XD

Engine_Loaded: Did you find the envelope for VRGE yet?

RelicPetals: FOUND IT!

RelicPetals posted a picture.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: Is everyone’s purple? Mine is blue.

KokeD3sNuts entered the chatroom…

KokeD3sNuts is typing…

RelicPetals: I wonder why VRGE is inviting me of all people to go?

Cool_Azure_Sea: You’re famous as a gamer, you do indie voice acting for steam games, Ohhhh and I forgot to mention you have a rockin’ Youtube channel.

KokeD3sNuts:  WHY DIDN”T I GET AN INVITEEEEEEE!

Engine_Loaded: Ditto’d from Cas.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: Did you check the mail Nick?

Cool_Azure_Sea: Smooth Eugene. Mags, you also smoked EL in that speed run the other day. Don’t sell yourself short. Also KokeD3sNuts turn off the capslock.

Engine_Loaded: Okay, let’s not lay it in thick.

KokeD3sNuts posted a picture.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: Don’t post your pouty face–did you or did you not check your mail recently?

KokeD3sNuts: I did check my email but I got nothing from VRGE.

Cool_Azure_Sea is typing…

Engine_Loaded is typing…

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r is typing…

Cool_Azure_Sea: I didn’t think my brain would hurt from such a simple sentence.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: Nick, don’t be a spazz. When was the last time you checked your MAILBOX?

Engine_Loaded: I bet my pre-bought copy of Destiny II that his mail will be over 50 envelopes.

EagleEye: You’re on! Then I bet Mags pile of mail will be more than Nick’s!

Engine_Loaded: You’re on Alex

RelicPetals: Don’t make fun of my pile! I have a reason why for why it’s that big… Nick just forgets postage exists.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: Pictures of the bet or it’s invalid!

KokeD3sNuts is typing…

KokeD3sNuts: OMGGGG

KokeD3sNuts posted a picture.

KokeD3sNuts: DO YOU SEE HOW MUCH SHIT WAS IN MY BOX?????!!! IT WAS CRAMMED!

Cool_Azure_Sea: Capslock. OFF.

KokeD3sNuts: ahhhhh i found the vrge letter

EagleEye: Afraid of capitalizing now?

KokeD3sNuts: maybe

RelicPetals: So, what is the plan guys and gals? Are we meeting there on the specified date? It’s this Friday morning right?

Engine_Loaded: We could meet for the test and then have a D&D night at Fynn’s. It’s been a while since our last campaign.

Cool_Azure_Sea: Good idea. I can bring the chocolate covered Oreos. 🙂

RelicPetals: Lol, I want the red-velvet ones Cassie.

Cool_Azure_Sea: Done and done!

KokeD3sNuts: why is my card green? everyone has purple except for me.

Curlz4Ev entered the chatroom.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: Maybe your card got sent back due to: “post box filled to the max error” and they sent a “maybe he’ll come if he checks” card.

Curlz4Ev: No, I got green as well.

Curlz4Ev posted a picture.

RelicPetals: Violet, your nails are pretty as ever dahhhhling. 😉

Curlz4Ev: Thx dahhhhhling 😉 I still need to do yours.

EagleEye: Perhaps VRGE color cooridnated their cards for groups? It could be like they do in the Escape the Room Arcades.

Cool_Azure_Sea: VRGE has caught all of our attention, let’s see if they can keep us entertained. Each of us have different niches of games we like to play.

KokeD3sNuts: Well, they sure have my attn–that’s for sure.

Engine_Loaded: Gameplan- We all assemble by 9:30 am at the entrance?

Curlz4Ev: I have a hair appointment at 7:30am that day–so I’ll just head over after I’m done.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: I have work overnight until 8:00 am, so I’ll also head over there early as well. Nothing like pulling an all nighter! WOOOOOO

Cool_Azure_Sea: It’s not like you stayed up for over 36 hours straight busting through our DnD session before.

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: Time is of no consequence when there are quests to finish. Not to mention lots of stabby stab, sword changing tricks, and dragon slayin’.

EagleEye: We all agree to going then? Okay, see you all Friday!

Engine_Loaded: Anyone need a ride? I have some space in my car.

EagleEye: I want a ride!

RelicPetals: Cassie and I will go together! Did you want a ride Cas?

Cool_Azure_Sea: I was just thinking of spending the night at your place before, and heading together.

RelicPetals: Perfect!

KokeD3sNuts: Could I bum a ride Eugene?

Kuroneko: Yeah, no problemo Nick.

KokeD3sNuts: Sweet justice!

Sh4d0w_N1nj4_M4nipul4t0r: Have a g’night everyone! See y’all soon!

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