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This page is a compilation of information found in connection to the ARG, EHWR, and possible connections to the Paramount-produced movie known by its working name of 'Cloverfield'.
(Note, this information can now be found on Wikipedia at en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ethan_Haas_Was_Right
What is Ethan Haas Was Right?
EHWR is an ARG, or Alternate Reality game, taking place on ethanhaaswasright.com. It involves an apocalypse taking place in the near future, and those who will band together to survive it and those who bring it down upon this world.
At the website, visitors are treated to a series of Flash puzzles, all to do with a giant sphere that changes shape as you solve each one. Behind the sphere, a city skyline (full of skyscrapers) at night is visible. Again, as you complete the puzzles, the image changes, progressively destroying the city. Overhead, a few stars appear— more as the puzzles are solved. (The leftmost and rightmost star are available from the beginning. The left one, which is glowing blue, will activate your mail program with the address filled in; sending an email to this address will result in an automated reply giving several tips on how to solve the puzzles. The right one, when hovered over, will display 26 symbols that correspond to the alphabet and will be required in two of the puzzles.) Solving puzzles will also treat visitors to videos that are somewhat damaged and difficult to comprehend.
Embedded in the source at EHWR is the following message:
"...war came, no longer from the elemental nor from the star's rain of fire. The world was again remade, and the glow was as the coming of the sun upon the Earth. The children of the gods were again too few, scattered and divided and among them walked the ancients and those whose thoughts were not as to the towers and the marvels, but to the End and the destruction of the Earth and to the fires from which nothing could escape."
Viral Marketing Campaign
One theory that has been offered is that this ARG is part of a viral marketing campaign for a movie known by the working name of 'Cloverfield'. See the last entry on this page for more details.
Beyond this possible connection, it is unknown whether EHWR is merely a game in and of itself, or if it holds a connection to some product in another form of media, such as a book, video game, movie, etc.
The online marketing strategy and site design for EHWR was developed by the Los Angeles based interactive shop, RED Interactive Agency. RED's own website can be found at www.ff0000.com
As an alternate reality game, there are several characters who are assumed, for the purposes of the game, to be real people. Established characters are as follows.
A man who once foretold the coming destruction of the world; he had visions and was thought of as a prophet who recorded what he saw. He is now presumed as having been dead for a long time. No current significance has been attached to his name.
Mantra, the only character so far that players have been able to actually see, is a student of Haas's teachings; he apparently found the writings of Haas, and began to believe them as he saw predictions come true.
In the videos, Mantra appears in a dark setting, so it is difficult to make out much of his appearance or surroundings. Adding to the mystery surrounding him, Mantra's name may be a pseudonym.
Mantra is the one who established the EHWR website, creating it as a test for those seeking to learn of Haas' prophecies, and leaving video recordings for those who completed the puzzles. In organizing the website, however, Mantra appears to be organizing a resistance/survivors group, after most of the known world meets its end.
He has also sent out emails to those who used an address found on the website asking for help; after a certain amount of time, personalized help-mails stopped, and only an automatic response was sent, with a generic list of clues. Personalized emails continued intermittently, for instance in response to an inquiry about a purported Ethan Haas profile on MySpace, which Mantra dismissed.
It is unknown whether the Mezin is a single person or many people, though evidence seems to suggest the latter. They may not be human.
They are, however, staunchly opposed to the teachings of Haas, and to the activities of Mantra— to the point that they hacked the outgoing message on Van Mantra's voicemail, prompting Mantra to go even deeper underground than before.
The first puzzle is a memory game, and multiple triangular tiles will appear upon the sphere. Pressing any of them will prompt the sphere to indicate 7 tiles in a specific order. To complete this puzzle, the visitor must press the first 5 of these tiles in order. Pressing an incorrect tile will result in the sphere demonstrating the order for you again.
The second puzzle is the first to use the new alphabet. There are three spinning rings— two vertical, one horizontal. They can be spun by clicking and dragging the individual rings. Four characters in total can be displayed at any point in time, one each from the vertical rings, and two from the horizontal.
The vertical rings have all 26 letters on them, and both start at 'A'. The horizontal ring has 15 sets of two letters each. The two vertical rings must be set to 'H' and 'A', whilst the horizontal ring must be set to 'AS' (the 6th set on the left). Consulting the reference that appears when the mouse is hovered over the rightmost star in the skyline can help decipher which symbols need to be in place. (The password here is 'HAAS'.)
The third puzzle is similar to Chinese Checkers, in that you have a rhomboidal grid, and must skip pieces over each other to remove pieces. The objective is to remove all but one light on the grid in this fashion.
Assuming each row of the grid corresponds to a letter, with numbers on each spot in the row (i.e., the top row has 1 spot- a1; the row beneath it, with 2 spots, has b1 and b2; the next row is c1, c2, c3; d1, d2, d3, d4; e1, e2, e3; f1, f2; g1)— one possible solution is as follows:
- 1. e1 jumps f1 to land on g1
- 2. d3 jumps e2 to land on f1
- 3. g1 jumps f1 to land on e1
- 4. d1 jumps d2 to land on d3
- 5. b2 jumps c2 to land on d2
- 6. d4 jumps c3 to land on b2
- 7. a1 jumps b2 to land on c3
- 8. e3 jumps d3 to land on c2
- 9. b1 jumps c2 to land on d3
- 10. c1 jumps d2 to land on e2
- 11. e1 jumps e2 to land on e3
- 12. c3 jumps d3 to land on e2
- 13. e3 jumps e2 to land on e1
The fourth puzzle is controlled by the arrow keys. Specifically, the arrow keys control the blue orb, whilst the green orbs will move in other directions, albeit in tandem with the blue. The object here is to get all three green orbs onto the gear-like platforms, at the same time. The square blocks above the top two are impassable. None of the orbs will move if the blue orb is blocked, but can move if only green orbs are blocked.
One solution was revealed in the hint email received from the website: ↑ ← ↓ ↓ ← → ↑ → ↑ ← ←
NOTE: These are the directions the orbs must move. However, the orbs will only move in any given direction if they are already facing in that direction. If they are not facing in that direction, one tap of an arrow key will turn them in that direction, and the second will move them. Note, then, that the keystrokes necessary to complete this puzzle are actually: ↑↑ ←← ↓↓ ↓ ←← →→ ↑↑ →→ ↑ ↑ ←← ← (turn up, move up, turn left, move left, turn down, move down, move down, turn left, move left, turn right, move right, turn up, move up, turn right, move right, turn up, move up, turn left, move left, move left)
The fifth and final puzzle is similar to the second, in that is uses the alternate alphabet and requires a password to complete. It offers twenty tiles, two rows of ten, each with a character on it. Clicking any tile will change it to the next in the alphabet.
Starting positions of the tiles are:
Above these tiles, sets of four characters will flash. The corresponding sets of letters are:
- 1. BNSN
- 2. EITD
- 3. ENIE
- 4. HIGE
- 5. TGNH
In the video between puzzles 4 and 5, a number (54312) flashed. If we reorder the blocks according to this, we get:
- 1. T G N H
- 2. H I G E
- 3. E N I E
- 4. B N S N
- 5. E I T D
Read from top to bottom, left to right, it provides the message "The beginning is the end", quoted from the fourth video. Adjusting the tiles below to read:
will complete the puzzle.
Each video plays after the corresponding puzzle is solved, and can be paused, or stopped to go back to the main part of the site. (Transcriptions are from this site.)
'My name is Van. I have the writings of Ethan Haas here. I thought it was just some old story but then it began to sound like he actually had seen the future. Everything up to now has happened exactly as he said it would. And then there’s his predictions of the future. So many people have died. You were able to find this message; you’re one of us, so you must know what needs to be done. But to be sure, I have to test you. You need to find others and help us try and stop it. You must send them here to prove that you’re one of us. I’ve already started, but we’re not strong enough yet. You only have until August 1st to be prepared. Now, trust Haas for the answer.'
'The signs have already started to show themselves. They have been for years. But when money's more important than saving lives to the ones who had the power to stop it, why would they want to hear the truth? [Our ways] have brought this upon ourselves, and this is just the beginning. This world is going to change one way or another. It's inevitable and you know this. But there's help out there for us; now I'll make a single point to find it. Tell them to [____] before it's too late.'
'We are blinded by our own selfish interests. Our wars are taking the lives of those we will need for the bigger battle ahead. Intolerance, oppression, poverty, and poor education are killing those that can help defend the world. The media is failing us in exchange for ratings. Of course, no one can see what we see. The destruction will be unlike anything the world has ever seen. The more of us that survive, the better our chances. But now, the group must carefully position in unison to unlock the way to the new faith. You must get others here or this will all be forgotten. We'll see you.'
'The stars began to rain down. The future violence will [cling] to safety in the cities. But they won't know what you and I know. Only then will it really be the beginning of the end. when they finally show themselves, and shock [was left?] of the old world, where we stand in the new hierarchy will be up to us and what we do today. This will be the final and the most challenging of all things that have come. We won't have time for anymore games after this, only the truth. Now, the more we are in the same place at the same time, the more we will all see. We must organize before it's too late.'
Between 'only the truth' and 'now, the more we are in the same place', the screen flashes with an image of the numbers '54312'.
'Haas’s visions end here. What happens next is completely up to you. You’ve unlocked the key code that will bring you reward for your dedication of your cause, but it will first start to be of value on August 1st, and you will only have 30 days to use it. Take note of this code, it will help you get your preparations underway for the new world of which you are now part of whether you like it or not. But what role you play, and how you live or die is completely up to you. It begins August 1st. We will meet back here on that day.'
Upon completing all five puzzles and watching all five videos, a sixth form of the sphere appears, as a tablet with greenery growing around it in contrast to the destroyed city behind it. Across the top of the tablet is the word 'Divinus'. It has an input for Name and Email, with a submit button that says 'Remind Me', citing the date of the 1st of August, referencing the fifth video which lists August 1st as an important date to meet back at the EHWR website. Presumably, entering one's email will prompt a reminder to revisit the site closer to the 1st, though the exact purpose of this is not yet known for sure.
In addition to the Divinus tablet, upon completing the puzzles, several other changes occur to the setting. There are now seven stars across the skyline— the leftmost, blue star still gives access to the automated email with hints, while the rightmost still brings up the alternate alphabet. The other five show the five videos seen after completing each puzzle, with the first white star on the left accessing the first video, the second accessing the second, etc.
Finally, a panel appears on the righthand side of the screen, with six panels, each bearing a reduced image of the sphere in its six forms. Clicking on a corresponding panel will take you to a puzzle or the Divinus tablet. This is for replay value only, and will not force you to complete all of the puzzles again to reach this point.
Possible affiliated sites
As of yet, there have been no other sites listed on EHWR.com as being officially part of the ARG. However, there are several websites that appear to be related. One of which in particular -- The truth of Ethan Haas -- because it referred to the Mezin prior to Van Mantra's voicemail being hacked by the Mezin, and Van Mantra subsequntly himself referencing the Mezin in email.
Stay Underground blog— thought to be from ARG character Ethan Haas.
In one of his two blog entries, Haas suggests that there is a giant monster disguised as or hiding in a cloud above New York City, capable of shooting fireballs approximately the diameter of a basketball, and that it launched one at an apartment building one night. He also declares that the Mayor of NYC knows something about the truth, as the mayor insists that the fire was a result of arson, specifically refuting the claim that a streak of flame fell from the sky to cause the fire.
It is currently unknown whether or not this is officially related to EHWR, and currently lacks the same conviction that the 'Ethan Haas Was Wrong' blog has. Other sites appear to speak of Ethan Haas somewhat in the past tense, suggesting that the character should not be involved in the present events at all.
Ethan Haas Was Wrong
The Truth of Ethan Haas blog, thought to be from unknown ARG character(s) called the Mezin. From the Mezin's writings, it or they appear to be opposed to Ethan Haas. So far, this appears to be a genuine part of the ARG.
Wednesday, July 4, 2007 ('Ethan Haas was wrong')
There were two entries this day. The first decries Van Mantra, the ARG character that supposedly runs EHWR, as a blasphemous fanatic of a foolish man (Haas). It also denounces the claim that Haas was a prophet, claiming that Mantra's website is just an attempt to gain attention for his idol. The blogger firmly says that 'We will do our best to counter this filth and steer humanity back to it's proper course.'
The second entry emphasize once more that Haas is a lunatic, quoting a passage from him:
"'The great war of the gods will come upon the earth; the fires and terror of their rule will return for a time, but the children of the gods may be thus prepared, themselves aware and powerful…they may stand along side the gods not as equals, but as allies, feared and ready.'"
It then points to the EHWR website, before concluding that 'it is our duty to root out this nonsense and silence it forever.'
Thursday, July 5, 2007 ('Are they attempting to scare us into belief?')
The Mezin posted an entry, half of which was in Sanskrit.
'अरे थेय अत्तेम्प्तिंग तो सकारे उस इन्तो बेलिएफ?
एथान हास वुड त्रय तो स्ट्राइक फार इन्तो थे हेअर्ट्स ऑफ़ में। दो नॉट बे शकेन ब्य थे राम्ब्लिंग्स ऑफ़ आ मद मन मय ब्रोठेर्स ऎंड सिस्टर्स। वी अरे अल सफे:
"'The great cycle, the beginning and the end, turns just as the plans of the gods turn once again to the world of men.
And they will come upon the earth only after the skies rain down fire and the very earth itself is made to shake and the great cities of men fall into ruins. Their plans are set and their purpose is clear; they come for war.' "'
Translated/transliterated, the Sanskrit section reads along the lines of:
'Are they attempting to scare us into belief?
Ethan Haas would try to strike fear in the heart of me. Do not be taken by the ramblings of a mad man my brothers and sisters. We are all safe.'
The section originally in English is notably similar to the writings of Haas in the previous entry— it is possible that the blogger wrote the Sanskrit portion as a response to one of Haas' prophecies or teachings, which they included below it in quotes.
Sunday, July 8, 2007 ('How easily humanity is mislead...')
The Mezin posted an entry, this time entirely in Sanskrit.
'होव एअसिल्य हुमनित्य इस मिस्लेअद........
होव एअसिल्य हुमनित्य इस मिस्लेअद........
वी थे मेज़ं नेवर एक्ष्पेक्तेद् योर कंद मिघ्त बे सो एअसिल्य दिस्त्रक्टेद, ठाट अल मई बे लीड ब्य वन डाउन थे मुगलगार्डन पाथ, ठाट योर एयेस ऎंड मिन्ड्स वुड बे सो एअसिल्य क्लौदेद।
यू प्वाइंट तो अ डेट इन थे फुतुरे ठाट मांस नोथिंग तो ओर काउसे ओर योर फुतुरे......
ओनली ८-१-०७ मत्तेर्स तो ओर काउसे......
वी हवे बीन हियर सिंस मंकिंद फौघ्त विथ स्तिच्क्स ऎंड बोनेस, योर टेक्नोलॉजी मई हवे इम्प्रोवेद बुत कैन थे समे बे सैद फ़ॉर थे ह्यूमन मंद?
मोस्ट सर्तैंल्य अ विले मनिपुलातोर लिके वन मंत्र विल एक्ष्प्लोइत् थिस वेअक्नेस्स इन थे मस्सेस ऎंड लीड यू अल तो रूं.
क्लेअर्ल्य तेरे अरे सोम अमोंग यू व्हो क्नोव थे ट्रुथ ऎंड मई एवें बे वोर्थ्य ऑफ़ थे मेज़ं, व्हो हवे स्त्रेंग्थ ऑफ़ मंद ऎंड विल तो सी वहत त्रुल्य अवैट्स ऎंड अरे नॉट दिस्त्रक्टेद....
थे टिम हस कॉम फ़ॉर उस तो रेवेअल थे मद्नेस्स ऑफ़ हास, वी हवे फौंद हिस व्रितिंग ऎंड विल नोव एक्ष्पोसे थेम फ़ॉर थे नोंसेंसे ठाट थेय अरे.....'
Translated/transliterated, the entry reads along the lines of:
'How easily humanity is mislead….
The Mezin feared that your kind might be so easily distracted, that All may be lead by One down the garden path, that your eyes and minds may be so easily clouded. You point to a date in the future that means nothing to our cause or your future….
Only 8-1-07 matters to our cause...
We have been here since mankind fought with sticks and bones, your technology may have improved but can the same be said for the human mind,
Most certainly a vile manipulator like Van Mantra will exploit this weakness in the masses and lead you all to ruin.
Clearly there are some among you who know the truth and may even be worthy of the Mezin, who have strength of mind and will to see what truly awaits and are not distracted….'
The Mezin takes note of the date of 8/1/07, the same date noted on the EHWR website after completing the puzzles, suggesting that this date is of some cosmic importance, and not merely a date set by Van Mantra for those who completed the puzzles to reunite. Further, one could question whether or not the Mezin is or are in fact human from this passage.
While IMDb is in no way directly affiliated with the ARG, there is a possibility that its messageboards were used by those involved in the ARG.
A user on IMDb known by the handle of 'My Name is Van' started a thread, leaving many clues in the forms of anagrams and highlighted words. The user in question attempts to establish a connection to the Cloverfield movie, while disputing possible subjects of the movie (such as Godzilla and Dragons). Some phrases, such as 'God is the Key' and 'Freddy had another theory', were given out of order, and the time of 12:36 was highlighted in red.
However, this user later admitted to making the whole thing up, starting his posts out of boredom, and continuing when he discovered how fun it was to be the attention of the message board.
Known Unaffiliated Sites
The following websites are known to be parodies, hoaxes, or simply unaffiliated:
Many have speculated that EHWR is connected to the Paramount-produced movie known by the production name of 'Cloverfield'. This claim is currently unauthenticated, but is supported by the similar themes of the ARG and the trailer; as well, Paramount has removed videos of the Cloverfield trailer, as well as videos concerning EHWR, suggesting that they have legal rights to both, and leading many ARG players to believe the two are connected.
(1-18-08.com -Official website for 'Cloverfield', which is coming out on the 18th of January, 2008)