NIN alternative reality game

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Nine Inch Nails (abbreviated as NIN) is an American industrial rock band formed in Cleveland, Ohio circa 1988 by Trent Reznor. The debut of the new album, Year Zero, is generating a huge buzz. The album will be released on April 17, 2007 (or should I say April 17, -15 BA?).

On the back of a new NIN tour shirt , some letters were highlighted. These highlighted letters all come together to form the clause "I AM TRYING TO BELIEVE." In a breeze, someone discovered is an actual site, which discusses the usage of a Perapin in running water by the US government. Perapin, supposedly, strengthens the immune system, boosting the immunity against a lot of biological weapons, but causing a lot of side effects.

The author of the website seems to be someone who has stopped using Parepin. Users may e-mail him to ask any questions, but are greeted with a very creepy auto-reply:

Thank you for your interest. It is now clear to me that Parepin is a completely safe and effective agent developed to protect us from bio-terrorism. The Administration is acting purely in the best interests of its citizens; to suggest otherwise was irresponsible and I deeply regret it.I'm drinking the water. So should you.

It is now proven that year zero itself is actually year 2022, as indicated by the image located here (hint: look to the left of the first image, it's slightly hard to see!). This makes the year 2007 actually become -15 BA (Born Again?).

On February 13th, after the Nine Inch Nails concert, a flash drive was found on the stall floor of one of the restrooms of the Coliseum, Lisbon, Portugal. The flash drive had references to and contained "My Violent Heart" encoded as 320kbps MP3s.

This new site, on first glance, showed nothing more than simple, smiley propaganda. Another version of the truth is revealed (quite literally!) if you click and drag. Once new text is revealed, clicking a link takes you to a message board in which citizens of this particular setting are discussing many things about society, most of it being quite negative, scary, or depressing. Additionaly, three new audio files were revealed:

  • opalo.mp3, discussing the Opal drug;
  • ballgameOver.mp3, taken from the point of view of an "angry sniper";
  • nohurry.mp3, detailing a police raid and showcasing the REAL truth behind it.

On February 19th, after a concert in Paris, another pen drive was left behind, this time containing a rar file. This rar file contained "Me, I'm not", one of the songs for the new album, and another file named 2432.mp3.

After a spectrograph analysis of the latest, new websites and a US phone number were found ('216.333.1810'). Calling this number people were able to listen to a new audio clip, with even more clues to the maze.

At this moment (February 23th), this is the list of sites already discovered


This is the biggest viral marketing campaign I ever seen, combining web sites, phone numbers, pen drives left behind, spectrograph analysis and much more. Check here for even more information (yes, it's bigger than you imagine) and to stay updated about this issue.

The available songs for the new album can be downloaded here.


Update: A new phone number has been discovered ('13102951040') in a new tour shirt.

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