Behind the Scenes

Thank you for playing The Lost Knowledge! We hope it hit all the right cords with you, and you had fun playing it. You have completed the game but if you want to find out more about it, then you can continue reading this section.

Here we wanted to share some of the things we came across while designing this game, as well as some small little easter eggs we tried to hide here and there. Let’s see if you guessed any of these.

BEFORE YOU PROCEED! THERE BE SPOILERS AHEADS MATIES!

So if you still haven’t played the game, maybe do that first πŸ˜‰

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SERIOUSLY — PLAY GAME FIRST — READING MAY SPOIL GAME

Just in case you don’t know, we’re Orsi & Anuj, the two creators of Enigma Fellowship, all the games, puzzles, stories, etc. that you have had (hopefully) the pleasure of playing. We truly hope that with each of our games we’re able to bring you fun, and something new.

I’ll walk you through the game as it unfolded.

You were tasked with saving Professor Charlie McEwan. This game was born shortly after we completed watching the Long Way Up – With Ewan McGregor and Charlie Boorman. We thoroughly enjoyed their show, camaraderie and their spirit of travel adventure. As such it felt only natural, that the Professor – who will surely make a comeback – should be named after this fantastic duo. Hence the name: Charlie McEwan.

Of course, since Ewan McGregor played Obi Wan Kenobi in Star Wars, the poster in Prof. McEwan’s office was a nod towards this. Anuj is fan of Tintin, a comic by HergΓ© (for those who don’t know). Tintin travels around the world having adventures, solving crimes and mysteries. Well, he wanted to pay homage to his childhood hero and in one of Tintin’s stories he travels to South America and makes contact with a lost tribe named the Arumbaya. This happens in The Broken Ear, where there is a little miniature statue that he is trying to find. The statue is referred to as the Arumbaya fetish in the comics, and Anuj insisted this be a fixture in the professor’s office.

The Postcards were designed by my amazing and lovely husband, Anuj. It felt so good to go through our old travels in this funny, no-flight year of 2020. We were fortunate enough to have visited all those places in the pictures, and he was actually the one who clicked all those shots. How often did you revisit pictures from old trips this year?

The next thing I can tell you about are the DOI numbers. Anuj has spent a significant part of his life in Science, Education and Research and in case you didn’t know: the DOI numbers are a real thing. Every publication gets one to make it official. This made it really easy to refer to the documents in a hidden way, and yet we managed to sneak in a few notes about them in the students’ testimonies, to try to prepare the players for this notion. We wanted to try and also give people a window into some aspects of real scientific research and this was a way to keep things grounded in reality.

The Professor travels to Chiapas, which is technically still in Mexico but very close to Guatemala. The reason we chose Guatemala as his destination is because it is the site of a very recent, and very significant, archeological discovery about the Mayan civilization. For the first time ever, in the middle of a massive jungle, almost intact pyramids and a massive lost civilization belonging to The Snake Kings was discovered. We were lucky enough to find out about the new dig site from a Historian during a visit to Mexico City, but we also enjoyed the funny and exciting spin Josh Gates (one of our favorite TV presenters on Discovery/Travel channel) put on this news in his Season 7, Episode 8: “Chasing the Snake Kings” (If you are reading this, Josh: we’re huge fans! PM us! 😎 We will hook you up with some more games. Or a drink, if you’re in Germany).

The Aztec calendar puzzle must have been a familiar looking one. Except, it isn’t. There are two Calendars the Mayans and Aztecs used: a sun calendar and a moon calendar. There are a whole lot of differences between how these are built and what they were used for. Cool tip: you can actually convert the Gregorian (“normal”, our-time) calendar dates into Aztec calendar dates if you have the stomach for the math involved. I personally gave up before I reached the end of the first formula. But if you are the kind who enjoys history and math, we recommend you go searching for this. It will tickle both those bones in you.

The puzzle about the Aztec dinner was also based in true historic facts. The Aztecs revered their Gods, and love to have a ceremony for everything; whether for blessing next year’s harvest with a human sacrifice. Or having a lavish dinner to celebrate something. One thing must follow another in a specific order, like a dance within the traditions of those peoples. Obviously we wanted to keep things family friendly and not touch upon the human sacrifice part, but we did want to work some of their traditions in here and the importance they placed on meals/ceremonies was how we managed to do this in the end.

And the coolest puzzle of this game, at least in our opinion, is the ball-game with the 3D ball court. It is true that all mesoamerican cultures had one version or another of this game. And it was a hard one. The ball was made out of rubber and the person who managed to kick / punch it through a loop on the wall would score a point for their team. The rule about being able to hit the ball only with your ankle, hip or elbow was actually true as well – so if you Google pictures about mesoamerican ball games, you will see that the players always have a nice, cushiony padding on those parts of their bodies, while pretty much everything else is exposed. Seeing as how important this game was to the mesoamerican cultures, we could not end our game without having some version of it make an appearance. Our hope is that this is a fitting tribute to these impressive ancient cultures.

While some of you may find the wax sealed artifact in the last envelope a bit disappointing or anticlimatic, let us tell you what it means to us – and to Professor McEwan. All the different kinds of people you see around the Hunab Ku next the Aztec leader, were in one way or the other connected to them! We find this absolutely shocking and exciting for such an old civilization that we presumed was mostly just “localized” to mesoamerica.

And yes, even the Sumerians made it into the list, with the undeniable similarities between the Aztec feathered serpent God and the depictions of Bloodthirsty Anunnaki Gods. But this can tend to enter the realms of pseudo-sciences very quickly, with references to aliens and whatnot, so tread carefully and at your own risk.

Long story short: we have much more to discover about ancient civilizations that we currently know. And I just have a feeling, that professor McEwan might have just begun his quest at exposing these cross-cultural ties we have never never imagined could exist. Who knows where, or when, he might turn up next?

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