(Sept-Oct 1997)

Oct 31, 1997
Well it's near the end of another two month cycle which means that they'll be a new What's New section tomorrow, along with another mysterious Marathon picture. But what about the one above? What's it about and how does it fit into the scheme of things. Well thanks to Greg Kirkpatrick and Chris Geisel of Double Aught Software all will be revealed... tomorrow! :-)

Aaron Freed <aaron@packet.net> writes about drinking vacuum. Check the Vacuum Levels section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Jim Mitchell <BobJam@aol.com> made some interesting observations about the Infinity levels "Naw Man He's Close" and "Foe Hammer" some time ago. These have been added to the Vacuum Levels section of Facts and puzzling things about... .

Chris Geisel <chrisg@doubleaught.com> writes about the levels "Naw Man He's Close" and "Foe Hammer" on the Vacuum Levels section of Facts and puzzling things about... .

Oct 30, 1997
Aaron Freed <aaron@packet.net> writes about vacuum and the Infinity level "Post Naval Trauma". See the new Vacuum Levels section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

John Gendreau <gendreau@bu.edu> writes:

I just reread Samuel Taylor Coleridge's "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" and I noticed the line "And a thousand thousand slimy things" in Part IV of that poem. The entire stanza reads, "The many men, so beautiful! / And they all dead did lie: / And a thousand thousand slimy things / Lived on; and so did I." Given that Durandal caused the death of the Tau Ceti colony, I was struck by the parallels between Durandal and eponymous mariner. The sailor caused the death of the rest of his crew by shooting an albatross, and he was forced to live on the ship alive, surrounded by his dead comrades. He continued in this way until he accepted these "slimy things" surrounding the boat as part of nature.

Interesting point. Could there be a parallel between the Ancient Mariner and Durandal, or indeed the player for that matter? Chris Geisel (Double Aught Sofware) made some comments about this level in the What's in a Name section some time ago.

Interesting to note that the original and full title of Coleridge's classic narrative poem "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner" was "The Rime Of The Ancyent Marinere, In Seven Parts". It was first published in 1798. Oh... and Coleridge was born in 1772.

Yeah... yeah... I know. ;-)

Oct 29, 1997
Finally a response to the question:

Another undocumented feature of the Marathon v1.0==>v1.1 Updater was that it changed a terminal in the game. But what terminal was it and how was it changed?

Simon Brownlee <simon.brownlee@pobox.com> writes concerning the terminal change in Marathon v1.1. See the new Marathon v1.1 section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Oct 28, 1997
Jim Ruiz <jim@bungie.com> one of the coolest guys at Bungie Software writes:

I found... ...a REALLY weird & rare Marathon 2: Durandal poster. It suggests giving the Pfhor new holes to examine. I don't want to ruin the joke if you don't know it already- it's pretty funny. Ever see or hear of it?

Nope I hadn't... nor had many other people it would seem... as Jim explains:

It's a pretty cool one. It was part of a promotion- we never printed enough to sell.

As a serious Marathon afficionado, I thought you might like it.

Jim kindly sent it along and I took the opportunity to scan it in. See the Bungie's Marathon Ads section. I hope I don't have to explain what a Proctologist does. Nasty job! ;-)

Remember folks the Story page is still looking for old Marathon memorabilia. If you have anything of interest (early Marathon ads, promotional material, etc) let me know and I'll add it here. Lots of stuff still out there... waiting...

Simon Brownlee <simon.brownlee@pobox.com> correctly points out that you don't need Marathon v1.0 to see the "nasty words" in Marathon v1.1 as they can be easily seen in the Marathon v1.0==>v1.1 Updater itself.

Very true.

Interestingly enough you don't need the Marathon v1.0==>v1.1 Updater to find the terminal change in Marathon v1.1 as the change can be seen in Marathon v1.2 but you do need Marathon v1.0.

As Thoth would say - circumstances are cyclical. ;-)

Oct 27, 1997
Concerning repeated requests to add the "nasty words" in Marathon v1.1 to the Story page - sorry - but I won't add them nor will I send them to people. Some things are better left unseen. If you really want to see them yourself you need two things - Marathon v1.0 and the Marathon v1.0==>v1.1 Updater, the latter is extremely rare (for obvious reasons) but you might be lucky and find a copy on some archive or old CD.

Sadly nobody sent in an answer to the question:

Another undocumented feature of the Marathon v1.0==>v1.1 Updater was that it changed a terminal in the game. But what terminal was it and how was it changed?

Oh well... another mystery!

The DUCK key controversy rages. A simple flaw in the Marathon engine or an undocumented cheat code known only to a very few? Watch the film in slow motion and make you own mind up.

Here is an interesting alt.games.marathon post about the Windows 95 version of Marathon 2 from Simon Brownlee <simon.brownlee@pobox.com>. Should prove useful for those trying to install Win95 M2.

In article <petrichEIMyJt.Kso@netcom.com>, petrich@netcom.com (Loren Petrich) wrote:

> ObMarathon: How well does the Win95 version of M2 install? And
>uninstall, for that matter? :-) Any difficult-to-troubleshoot conflicts
>or whatever?


The Win95 Marathon CD auto-starts when inserted displaying a cool chapter screen graphic and the options to View release notes, View Bungie website, Install Marathon 2, or Play Marathon 2.

'View Bungies Website' is hardlinked to Internet Explorer which must be installed in a certain directory. If you're using Netscape or have moved IE elsewhere, you'll just get an error. Even if you do have IE in the correct place, you'll still have problems because the URL that is linked to no longer exists. Bungie's Webmaster has clearly been playing games with us.

'Play Marathon 2' does not allow you to play the game direct from the CD, but instead will attempt to launch Marathon from a specific directory on your HD. If you haven't installed yet, or have installed in a non standard place (i.e. not C:\Program Files), you'll just get an error message. The annoying thing about this is that, despite no mention in the manual, the game can actually be played direct from the CD. You will however have to enter your serial number everytime you play as Marathon attempts to write the preferences into the 'current' folder rather than some system area. A related problem is that, once Marathon is installed, if you click on a map file located elsewhere on your HD, Marathon will launch and try to open a preference file in that maps directory, meaning you'll have to enter your serial number again (don't worry, you learn to memorize the number after 30 or 40 times)

OK, so lets try the 'Install Marathon' option. This launches an Install Shield Wizard, and the installation process is quite straight forward. However, the installer insists on installing DirectX 2 drivers for you thus replacing any Direct X 3,4,5 drivers you have. My system doesn't even work with DirectX 2 meaning that I had to go track down my disks and reinstall DirectX all over again (How many Mac owners would put up with Marathon deleting your system folder and replacing it with a generic System 6?). This problem also existed in the demo, and if I wasn't a Marathon fanatic already, I may simply have given up at this point - this is surely a factor in the low Win95 sales.

The manuals don't give you any alternative other than to use the installer, but you can in fact just choose to explore the disc and copy all the necessary files onto your HD - I would recommend this alternative to anyone.

There is an Uninstall application provided, but based on the other problems, I've been too frightened to even launch the thing.


Jimmy Mitchell <jmitch@erskine.edu> writes:

Just thought I'd point out that you can download the M2 demo for PC in no less than seven segments at Bungie's site.

Oct 24, 1997
The Story page will be shut for two days. But to leave you with something to think about here is a little known Marathon tidbit from the old days.

Those nasty words in Marathon v1.1

Could it be true? Unfortunately we can't print them here because this is a family page. You'll have to get v1.1 of Marathon to read them. The Marathon v1.0==>v1.1 Updater was released in the later half of February '95. It fixed a number of bugs and offered some enhancements to the game. Along the way some "nasty" words got added. A Marathon v1.0==>v1.2 Updater was released shortly afterwards. Part of the Read Me read:

This v1.2 updater is identical to the v1.1 updater except for improved mouse control and the fixing of several problems which were introduced with v1.1.

Quite naturally the "nasty words" were removed.

Another undocumented feature of the Marathon v1.0==>v1.1 Updater was that it changed a terminal in the game. But what terminal was it and how was it changed? An easy one for Marathon diehards. If you know the answer send it in and I'll add your name here. No nasty words now! ;-)

The Story page back in Oct 5, 1997 marked the passing of AMUG's old Marathon Central web pages. Well AMUG's Marathon ftp site has now gone too. It used to be at


It was a vast archive of old nostalgia stuff. All gone now... all gone...

Matthew Payne <sfeira@pacbell.net> writes:

Take a look at the demo movies that run when Marathon is left sitting on the main screen. When the player is running around in the pit on Arrival with the fighters running around, His gun moves almost all the way down to the ground! Is there a "duck" key? It sure looks like it...

It happens just after he jumps in. He get's hit a couple of times, and then he ducks to avoid shots fired at his head. This is version 1.2.

Hmmm... a DUCK key in Marathon? Could it be the fabled command-QUACK cheat code? ;-) See the Marathon Cheat Codes section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

BTW the player in this film is Jason Jones (Lead Programmer at Bungie Software).

Oct 23, 1997
Matthew Payne <sfeira@pacbell.net> writes:

OpenDoc - Sytem Extension (1.0.2)

The OpenDoc program itself, which resides in the OpenDoc Settings folder in the extensions folder, has an easter egg in the STR# resource. Go to ID 482 and scroll down to string 2. You will see the the text "They're EVERYWHERE!" (Works for versions 1.0 & 1.0.2; gone in version 1.2.1ŠSystem 8)

This is from the Apple Easter Eggs program version 1.5

Oct 22, 1997
Finn Smith <finn_smith@brown.edu> maintainer of 3D Mac Games writes concerning Double Aught's new look web page:

The only "secret" that I found on the site is this in Colin Kawakami's page in the "Us" section:

<!--Habits=bad ones haha-->

Finn goes on to say:

...the Double Aught logo (or what I assume to be their logo) bears a strong resemblence to something we're all familiar with. It's on the front page and in the upper left of the "Us" and "Them" sections. Just turn it clockwise a little, add a vertical line, and you've got the Marathon logo.

Oct 21, 1997
The Double Aught Software home page has just been updated. Check out those weird and wacky guys! Maybe some secret stuff too? ;-)

Oct 20, 1997
Good news for Win95 Marathoners there is now a Win95 Map Editor available. You can get it at the Marathon HyperArchive NorthWest. Check out:

Lots of other goodies there too. Now there is no excuse for not finding all that extra Win95 secret stuff. ;-)

Mike Watson <Patientnul@aol.com> points out that in the Marathon term resource there is the line: ";reformatting.CHARON DOESN'T MAKE CHANGE. EXIT".

Those familar with the Virtual Archaeology page will already know this. This is what the page had to say about this line on the exit terminal of "Try again":

Interesting the level name CHARON DOESN'T MAKE CHANGE was originally used in Pathways into Darkness. Maybe it was going to be used in Marathon as well. Made it into Marathon 2 though.

More Durandal lies? Aaron Freed <aaron@packet.net> writes:

Yet another mystery, this one about Bagged Again: What are the S'pht'Kr doing there? Durandal later tells us, on You Think You're Big Time, that the S'pht'Kr are arriving. Yet on Bagged Again they were already there.

Yes indeed. One of confusing aspects of Marathon Infinity is the shifting timelines. Yet here are two consecutive levels seemingly linked in time. On "Bagged Again" we are captured by Tycho and sent to next level "You Think You're Big Time? You're Gonna Die Big Time!" to die at Tfear's pleasure. Yet as Aaron points out the S'pht'Kr are present on "Bagged Again" but on the next level the Durandal/S'pht entity tells us that they haven't arrived yet. Indeed by all accounts K'lia hadn't yet entered the Lh'owon system. Strange stuff.

Oct 18, 1997
Here is a funny usenet thread from comp.sys.mac.games.action concerning a little known Bungie Ad for the Windows 95 version of Marathon 2. The thread is entitled - Anyone notice the new Bungie Ad?


Apparently the Ad appeared in the August '96 issue of PC Gamer on page 35. It may have also appeared in other PC magazines. If you have a copy of this Ad and are able to scan it in the Story page would be very gratefully for a copy to add to the Bungie Marathon Ads section. Then we'll all know the tru7h. ;-)

There are lies, damn lies, and Durandal. Aaron Freed <aaron@packet.net> writes:

Slings & Arrows of Outrageous Fortune - Durandal tells us a lie on this level when he said "The S'pht are working hard on the fusion pistol." There already is a fusion pistol on this level, you just have to know where to look. :-)

True... but were you going to argue with him? ;-)

Aaron Freed <aaron@packet.net> also writes concerning the the original level names. See the Original Level Names section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Oct 17, 1997
The following is an important news announcement from alt.games.marathon:

From: Simon.Brownlee@DONT.SPAM.MY.pobox.com 
Subject:  Marathon Hyperarchives Announcment 
Date:  Fri, 17 Oct 1997 06:11:13 +0000 
Organization:  Marathon Central 
Message-ID: <hyparch-171097141113aag@marathon.org>>

As most of you will have noticed, the maps pages at the HyperArchive
NorthWest have not been updated in recent months.  This was partially
my fault, but largely due to reasons beyond my control.  During the same
time, the MidWest archive has been updated far more frequently, although
there have been various problems, and there's still no easy search

So, rather than attempting to keep two separate archives going that largely
duplicate each other, Steve Campbell and myself have decided to pool our
resources into one combined archive.  The majority of this will be based
at NW (http://www.marathon.org/hyperarchive) but will, at least initially,
make use of the MidWest servers for file storage.  The Map and Utility
search pages at NorthWest will allow you to search for files stored at
either site.

Marathon MidWest will continue to host pages for many of the large scenarios
as well as for a few new projects that are in the works.  No doubt Steve
will keep everyone informed as things develop.

Currently, there are only a few new maps to be found on the NW search page,
but we'll be attempting to clear the backlog and add a whole batch of maps
over the coming week (theoretically this should now be twice as fast ;-)).
Over this weekend, I'll be adding all the maps currently stored at MW into
the search engine, but as these will be indexed under the dates that they
were originally added to MW, you'll have to use the search form rather
than the new maps quick links.

Until we come up with a better system, new maps can be submitted to
either address (campbell@okla.net, hyparch@marathon.org) or ftp site, and
they'll be added to the new maps section at NorthWest once one of us gets
a chance to check the map out.  Please don't submit the same map to both
of us - you'll just slow up the overall process.

We have a few ideas for new areas at the HA, but if you have any particular
requests or questions, please let me know.



Aaron Freed <aaron@packet.net> writes concerning the changes in Win95 version of Marathon 2:

For Carnage, Apply Within - there were an additional seven polygons added that made some kind of change to the level, but I never found out where or what.

Oh!... another mystery. Sounds like a job for... Squeaky!

Paul Gettle <pgettle@scescape.net> writes:

I took another look at the Autopsy ad, and something jumped right out at me. (I'm suprised I didn't notice it when I originaly transcribed it for your page years ago.) The deceased, David Loew, was 6'1" tall. The seven is easy enough to spot, there: 6 + 1 = 7. However, if you convert Mr. Loew's height to straight inches, you find out that he was 73 inches tall. Seven and Three, hidden in plain sight.

Annette Untalasco <talasco@alaska.net> writes:

On my browser at 11:03 PM Alaska time I typed in this location:

http://www.marathon.org/story/ poenasdare.html

What came up on my screen was unexpected. I thought that I would just get this little thing saying that blaa blaa blaa could not be found, but I come up with a little screen saying I don't have Netscape 2.0, although I have 3.0.

Am I on to something?

hehehe... looking for secrets were we? ;-)

Oct 16, 1997
Cairan Wheeler <wheelegs@muohio.edu> writes:

I think I know what happened between #0xx and #5xx. In the catalog shipped with the M2 CD, the T-shirt with the bungie logo on front and phrase "Don't Make us Kick Your Ass" on back is #025. (5+2=7...) :-]

Mike Watson <Patientnul@aol.com> writes concerning the Autopsy Ad from Bungie's Marathon Ads section:

On the insrument tray, there are seven instruments...three of which are hemostats (clamps).

Hmmm... I think it's starting again. ;-)

Matthew Payne <sfeira@pacbell.net> continues on the UESC/UESG theme by pointing out that the numeric equivelants (A=1, B=2, C=3 etc...) of the letters UESC add up to 48 (4 + 8 = 12 = 1 + 2 = 3) and that UESG add up to 52 (5 + 2 = 7). Seven and three again!. But that's not all. Matthew continues:

If you find the numeric equivalants of the letters MARATHON (A=1, B=2, C=3 etc...) we get 13, 1, 18, 1, 20, 8, 15, and 14, which added up is 90. Now, if we also do the same thing with UESC (as in UESC Marathon) UESC adds up to 48. 9 + 0 + 4 + 8 = 21 (2 + 1 = 3) and (21 = 7 x 3).

As Matthew remarks:

Weird, huh?

Weird indeed.

Oct 15, 1997
Todd Keating <cxtdk@eiu.edu> writes concerning the the original level names. See the Original Level Names section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Matthew Payne <sfeira@pacbell.net> points out a little known fact about the differences between UESC and UESG. Why did they change? Has it got anything to do with the number seven? Matthew writes:

C and G are the only differences. C's numeric equivalent (A=1, B=2, C=3 etc...) is 3 and G's is 7. Again, 7 and 3.

Crazy stuff. ;-)

Oct 14, 1997
David Cornwell <goldragonne@earthlink.net>writes concerning the the original level names. See the Original Level Names section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Gabe Rosenkoetter <gabe@tjs.org> writes:

if you're going to start delving in old bungie catalogs, a few things to note:

going back to the spring '95 catalog, both pathways and marathon cost one cent short of $70.00

there are (get this) _no_ item numbers to be found (this means that the 20/10 pack _never_ had an item number and never will, because it was last printed in the spring catalog; the summer one shipped with m2)... so how did they start out in the eight hundreds?

ah, but here's the kicker: they didn't... they started in the six hundreds, assigning all things minotaur a 6xx item number, all things PiD a 7xx number, and all things marathon (1?) an 8xx number... does this imply that PiD is the real place to look for secrets, as it bears the holy number? even more, what forgotten bungie products get 1xx through 5xx? gnop?

curiouser and curiouser...

But that's not all. Gabe goes on to point out that in the Summer '95 catalog, the same one that advertised the fabled Marathon Keychain, both Marathon and Pathways Into Darkness cost... $37.00.

Seven and three again! But the really odd thing about this was that you could actually order a copy of Marathon from Bungie in Dec '94 for $37.00. So why the price hike in Spring '95?

But wait there's more... Pathways Into Darkness bears the "Holy Number"... but was there an item #777 ?

Oct 13, 1997
Cairan Wheeler <wheelegs@muohio.edu> writes concerning the the original level names. See the Original Level Names section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details

Oct 12, 1997
Aaron Snyder <wittnietz@datatek.com> writes:

Why was the keychain's order number #887? Recall "Bigger Guns Nearby," where at one point there is a BioBus chip to be gotten by "frog blasting" (i.e., grenade-jumping) from either "BioVent Core #88A" or "BioVent Core #88B." Frog blast the vent core--remember?

Heh. It's all connected. :)

Remember?... but of course! ;-)

Oct 11, 1997
Congratulations to Matthew Payne <sfeira@pacbell.net> for spotting the following. Matthew writes:

In Bungie's "More Things From Bungie To Waste your Money On Summer 1995" Catalog, it says this about the Marathon Keychain:

Marathon Key Chain (Item # 887, $5.50)

This "hefty" metal key chain is high-polished sterling silver electro-plated and weighs 3 ozs. Order the key chain for free if you spend over $75! (while supplies last, of course)

So - 3ozs, and Item # 887. Also, $75.

hehehe... 3 ozs and Item #887... and now $75... could there be more?

The numbers 7 and 3 again. And the significance of the #887? Why 88 is the number of solo levels in the Marathon Trilogy and as we all know it reduces to 7. (8 + 8 = 16. 1 + 6 = 7). The perfect number. ;-)

Further details of the Marathon Keychain ad can be found in the Blast from the Past section of Facts and puzzling things about... .

What other secrets does the Keychain hold?

Oct 10, 1997
Chad Poland <cgp@doubleaught.com>, PR Director for Double Aught Software, points out that there are seven rings on the Marathon Keychain including the ring for the keys. Yes SEVEN!

Surpised? You shouldn't be? When the keychain was forged it was given seven secrets. One has now been revealed. Here are clues to two more.

1. What weight to the nearest ounce is the keychain? No you don't have to go and weigh one (even if you could find one). Bungie clearly displayed the weight for all to see. Hmmm... where would Bungie have revealed it?

2. What item # did the Keychain have when it was on sale. Yes! it was for sale a long... long... time ago. Hmmm... where does one look for item #s? Once you know the item number it shouldn't be too hard to determine its significance in the scheme of things.

If you know the answers then send them in.

And in case you are having doubts about the veracity of all this let me remind you of the strange case of the original Marathon Sticker and its barcode. The tru7h is out there!

Oct 9, 1997
Jeff Wood <beezwax@oro.net> sends in some early Marathon usenet humor. Relive the nostalgia! See the Blasts from the Past section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Oct 8, 1997
A door is a door is a door... except when it's a split door. Simon "Squeaky" Brownlee <Simon.Brownlee@pobox.com> returns to continue his exploits on the Win95 version of Marathon 2 and reveals the awesome cover up on "Waterloo Waterpark". The tru7h is out there!

Oct 7, 1997
The Marathon Vidmasters' Page is one year old today... and still regularly updated to boot. Vid a level today... tomorrow you could be in stasis. ;-)

Oct 6, 1997
Finally the tru7h can be revealed about "Come and take your Medicine". See The Sixth Panel on Medicine section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Oct 5, 1997
The Story page wishes to mark the passing of an era. The Marathon web pages at AMUG (Arizona Macintosh Users Group) are now DEAD.

Although Marathon Central officially moved from http://www.amug.org/~marathon/ to http://www.marathon.org/ in Sept 1996 the individual Marathon web pages at AMUG were still accessible. For example it was possible to read the Story page at


though it was in stasis as there was no means to update it or remove it - much to my eternal embarrassment. Occasionally I would get a mail asking why I hadn't updated the Story page... <sheesh>. Thankfully the AMUG version of the Story page has been put to rest along with all the other Marathon pages there.

Some pages however never made the transfer to the new Marathon Central. Like the "Pfhor Information Database" which attempted to describe all the aliens. While it never really got off the ground it did list and describe all the Pfhor and their client races from the first game and was useful for helping people new to Marathon.

There was also the "#marathon Collaborative MapMaking Project" page, a sort of forerunner to the MMMG. "The Invisible Stop Sign!" page with its "Necronomithon: Dead by Dawn" project, what ever happened to that? "The Lantern" page with "Lantern's Loot" and the "SPNKR Splatter Shot Hall of Pfhame". The "Marathon Inpfhormation Maker" page and the "WAD Converter" page to name some others. All gone now.

The Marathon ftp site at AMUG is still up though, cobwebs and all. ;-)

Oct 4, 1997
Back in Feb 23, 1996 Craig Durkin <durkin@mindspring.com> spotted part of Jason Jones's email address in a terminal on "The Slings & Arrows of Outrageous Fortune". The headers on the first terminal read:

jon3//12-a Phce<194-973-2356>

jon3 was in fact part of Jason's email address at the University of Chicago.


So it would come as no surprise to find other email addresses hidden away in terminals. Starring us in the face on the first terminal of "Come and Take your Medicine" are the following headers:


In addition the following line can be found in this terminal's 2nd (success) message:


Two things stand out. First is the name bernal which obviously refers to Mark Bernal (Bungie artist). A little more obsecure are the letters gjk.

But let's leave that little tidbit for the moment and focus our attention on another terminal - "The Slings & Arrows of Outrageous Fortune (Terminal 2)" to be precise. Here the header reads:

djm2//12-c Phce<192-971-2351>

Now the letters djm2 are curious. Another name perhaps? But who? So the Story page dug deep into its Archives for this one and came up with this interesting post on comp.sys.mac.games from July 1994... no kidding... the Archives never lie.

Newsgroups: comp.sys.mac.games
From: djm2@kimbark.uchicago.edu (Dan Meltz)
Subject: Re: PID, last level
Message-ID: <1994Jul26.045424.12662@midway.uchicago.edu>
Sender: news@uchinews.uchicago.edu (News System)
Reply-To: djm2@midway.uchicago.edu
Organization: error correction mania
References: <CtII29.14x@eecs.nwu.edu> <1994Jul26.035608.10061@midway.uchicago.edu>
Date: Tue, 26 Jul 1994 04:54:24 GMT
Lines: 56

In article <CtII29.14x@eecs.nwu.edu> briant@eecs.nwu.edu (Brian Tom) writes:
<After months of playing, I finally got to the last level, Who Else Wants Some?.
<In the PID faq, it says that you can rest before each level of monsters, but
<I'm finding that I cannot...  Anyone else have this experience?  Whenever
<I try and rest, a monster appears, which, I suspect, comes from that floating
<guy in the middle.

If it DOES say that you can rest BETWEEN waves, then whoever compiled the FAQ
was on crack.  MOST of the stuff is dead on correct, but then you get this
kind of thing, and that stuff about the gasmask,  which are patently FALSE.

you CANNOT rest between waves on OK, WHO ELSE WANTS SOME. THAT's what makes
it such a killer.  otherwise you'd need only two potions, MAXIMUM, for the
first EIGHT levels.

<The fact that you cannot rest makes the last level a bit more difficult.  By
<the way, I have 9 blue potions, 4 red potions, and 3 violet potions.  Looks
<like I'll need all 9!

you're pretty much set.  remember, if there is only one wave of each monster,
then you'll only go through 12 waves. and you have 16 potions.  if you make it
through the first 4 waves without using a potion, which is completely possible,
then for the remaining 8 waves you can use up 2 potions per wave.  that's not
too bad, is it?

<Any comments/suggestions welcome.  I've only been able to make it to the
<banshee level, and I get creamed pretty quickly.  The faq recommends the
<violet crystal here.  Any other suggestions?  A violet potion, perhaps?
<I know, this is only the beginning...

See, this is where the FAQ is dead on RIGHT.  there is really no better choice
than the Viole(n)t crystal.  my hint is that you should turn to one side, so
that you make SURE that side is clear when you drop the crystal damage on them.
then you can turn back towards the other side, while backing up into the corner
that you just cleared.  REMEMBER, this is one of the TWO waves where the
creatures do NOT shoot projectiles at you.  use that.

Greg (gjk1), is there anything i missed?

enjoy the game, brian.


----------=========== djm2@midway.uchicago.edu ===========----------
"You'll find metaphysics a little dreary when you're talking to someone who can
answer all the questions...  and i'm supposed to keep the final answer to 
myself."  -Lucifer

So djm2 is part of Dan Meltz's email address. Dan worked with Bungie on Minotaur, Pathways Into Darkness, and on early Marathon development.

gjk is none other than:

gregory john kirkpatrick (gjk1@kimbark.uchicago.edu)

What else is hidden in those Marathon terminals? :-)

And now for something completely different. Chad Poland <cgp@doubleaught.com>, PR Director for Double Aught Software, passes on another piece of interesting information. Chad writes:

I was just looking at the disk that came with issue #31 (July 97) of Next Generation. In it is a database of all the games they've ever reviewed. Just checking it out, I typed in 'Marathon' to see what would come up. To my surprise, the only reference in there was for an old review of Marathon 1.

What seemed really unusual was that it listed the developer as 'Take 2' and the publisher as 'Bungie'. Either it's a mistake or a conspiracy. ;)

You can see a screenshot of part of the Next Generation review here (87k).

What ever happened to Take 2? Are the rumors true?

But note also the issue number that the Marathon review appeared in! A conspiracy?

Oct 3, 1997
Nathan Kingston <trooper@peg.apc.org> writes concerning another similarity between Marathon and Pathways Into Darkness. See the Pathways Into Darkness section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Way back in the myths of time, Nov 20, 1995 to be precise Noah Daniels <ndaniel1@swarthmore.edu> pointed out that the names Durandal (sword) and Mjolnir (hammer) featured in Bungie's game "Minotaur: The Labyrinths of Crete." Since then lots of other people have noted this. Simon Brownlee <squeaky@pobox.com> notes however that it explicitly states in Minotaur that "Durandal was Roland's sword" and that "Mjolnir was Thor's hammer" - two mythological references that would later appear in Marathon. Yet at the time of Marathon's release the reuse of these references in Marathon were not widely recognised. Just an interesting fact. (circumstances are cyclical)

Interesting to note that Minotaur also features that famous expression "nuke and pave" (although in the form "nuked and paved").

Oh and while we are on the subject here are the Minotaur credits.

Oct 2, 1997
Chad Poland <cgp@doubleaught.com>, PR Director for Double Aught Software, passes on an interesting Quicktime movie to the Story page. It is a film from the Sept 24, 1997 public meeting of BANG (Bay Area NeXT Group) where members of the Rhapsody team gave a brief technical overview of Rhapsody DR1. At the end of the film Blue Box is demonstrated running a MacOS app. No guesses as to what that app was. Yes Marathon, the original of the species. Good to see the 1994 version of Marathon being used by the Rhapsody team to demonstrate Blue Box. Ok it wasn't a Rhapsody native version... but still. You can get the film here (3942k). Before downloading please note that the Marathon section of the film is only a few seconds long and shows the game loading and the player taking out a Pfhor fighter on "Arrival". But was the player a Spazeroid? You be the judge. As Chad remarked:

I'd rather they were bad at Marathon and good at making system software.

Amen to that. :-)

Marathon rules. All players rule. On to the future.

Oct 1, 1997
Chris Norehad <cnorehad@gonzaga.edu> writes:

Ahh yes. The enigmatic number seven. On the back of the Marathon Trilogy CD is the phrase "Three years. Three games, one phenomenon...", ahh yes, the power of seven exists everywhere.

Yup... They're Everywhere! ;-)

Thanks to Chad Poland <cgp@doubleaught.com>, PR Director for Double Aught Software, for scanning in the Marathon Trilogy Box Set Flyer which has amongst other things the new Pathways Into Darkness blurb

Solve the riddles of a thousand years and save humanity.
mentioned in the What's New section on Sept 15, 1997. The flyer can be seen in the Bungie's Marathon Ads section of Facts and puzzling things about... .

Interesting to note that the slogan:

Kill your enemies, Kill you friends' enemies, Kill your friends.
which features on Bungie's new gaming service site bungie.net was first used with their game Minotaur. The slogan appeared on the back of Minotaur T-shirts. Collectors item now. A great slogan... so why let it go to waste.

Sept 30, 1997
The current issue of Inside Mac Games (Vol 5 Issue 6) has an interesting interview with Steve Israelson, author of Pfhorte, the freeware map editor for Marathon and Marathon 2. Worth a read. Steve was one of the unsung heroes of the Marathon world. Ah nostalgia. :-)

Steve's Pfhorte page can be found at his home page here

And here's another blast from the past - Alain Roy, a programmer who worked for Bungie on the original Marathon, has created a map editor for Damage-Incorporated, called Orion. Orion is in fact based on Pfhorte. Alain's Orion page can be found here. Alain was also the creator of Pathways Into Cheating, a cheater for Pathways Into Darkness. Details can be found here. Ah nostalgia. :-)

Sept 29, 1997
Wilson Miner <wminer@feist.com> writes:

It is interesting to note that the quote "ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, ALL WRONGS REVERSED" found on the Double Aught page is also found on the front of every Pavement CD ever made.

Thanks to all the people who have responded to the special anniversary HoT Question. Since I've been giving out clues willy-nilly I might as well post them here. In the question:

There were two of them.
Separate in space and time by 52 and 21.
Linked by function.
Designed with three.

What were they?

The numbers 52 and 21 are important. Space = 52 and 21 = time and not the other way around as alot of people have assumed. Hope this helps. ;-)

Sept 26, 1997
Simon Brownlee <squeaky@pobox.com> writes concerning the Caps Lock key controversy. See the Blast from the Past section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Colin Kawakami <ck@doubleaught.com>, webmaster and artist at Double Aught Software, writes concerning the hidden HTML text on their Marathon Infinity page

The infinity "wearefamily" thing simply refers to how I feel about the followers and creaters of quality games. People dedicated to extending the reach of computer entertainment.

Colin went onto to reveal that the line:

<!--If two and half dimensional games have both space and time, then a true 3d game has space, time, and time-travel-->

was a quote from his girlfriend when asked was she clear about the difference between a 2.5d engine and a true 3d engine. =)

Furthermore the "buddha" quote is from a piece of rap music. Colin writes:

You can put a race on for the first person to figure out which rap artist I was listening to... The patron rapper of computer junkies is :?????? It will be a tough one to track down.

Send your answers into Colin at <ck@doubleaught.com> and you could be in with a chance to win something... unique. But remember folks Colin's questions are not easy. He gave one back on May 3, 1997 concerning his old Marathon Infinity page and nobody got it.

Speaking of questions the special anniversary HoT Question posted back on the 19th is still unanswered and it's now over seven days old. What's the world coming to?

Forrest Cameranesi <Pfhorrest@aol.com> writes concerning the Double Aught web site:

index2.html now has:

<!--You want secrets? here's one: chimps loves aliens. Don't let no one tell you different.-->

screenshots.html now has

<!--It is proper to doubt. Do not be led by holy scriptures, or by mere logic or inference, or by appearances, or by the authority of religious teachers. But when you realize that something is unwholesome and bad for you, give it up. And when you realize that something is wholesome and good for you, do it. (buddha means the awakened one>--> <!--ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, ALL WRONGS REVERSED-->

It would appear that that DA Webmaster catches on quick.

Yes I fear the DA Webmaster is toying with us... like a Puppetmaster. The following was overheard on IRC yesterday:

illbuddha: what am I working on...
illbuddha: well, i am destroying the evidence of secret messages and planting new ones
illbuddha: back to it
*** Signoff: illbuddha (buddha means awakaned one)

Sept 25, 1997
The Marathon's Story page takes a walk down memory lane and uncovers part of Bungie's hidden plan for world domination. See the Blast from the Past section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Cairan Wheeler <wheelegs@muohio.edu> writes concerning the original level names. See the Original Level Names section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details

Finn Smith <finn_smith@brown.edu> writes:

You ask what other secrets the Double Aught web site contains. The first thing I did when the Duality site was updated was look at all the source HTML. Here's what I found:


<!--If two and half dimensional games have both space and time, then a true 3d game has space, time, and time-travel-->

Maybe a hint that the game (which is called true 3d in the web pages) will contain time travel?


<!--Thoughts in charge is flex complex detects subconscious retreads I beat heads Magnum forces style buddha intruder with jewels on the way to bermuda--> <!--ALL RIGHTS RESERVED, ALL WRONGS REVERSED-->

None of this makes too much sense. The only thing that I can pick out which might have meaning is the word "buddha". Colin Kawakami of Double Aught goes by the IRC nick "lilbuddha". It's anyone's guess what the other stuff means.

Finn Smith maintains the highly topically and regularly updated 3D Mac Games page. Worth bookmarking.

Sept 24, 1997
Interesting find by Christopher Norehad <cnorehad@gonzaga.edu>. Back in the What's New section for June 27, 1997 it was mentioned that there was a secret piece of IRC log buried in the HTML of a frame in Double Aught's Marathon Infinity page. That wasn't too hard to find. But just before the log is a long vertical string of characters. You could be excused for thinking that this was simply garbaged text put there to confuse you. However Christopher points out that one part reads


It helps if you view the original text string horizontally.

w e a r e f a m i l y

Is Double Aught's webmaster a "Sister Sledge" fan or is this something more? And what else is buried at the Double Aught site?

Sept 22, 1997
Forrest Cameranesi <Pfhorrest@aol.com> writes concerning the original level names. See the Original Level Names section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Sept 20, 1997
Thanks to all the people who wished the Story page a Happy Birthday yesterday. A few people wrote in asking what happened to the page... yeah right. :-)

The original Story page HTML has been preserved in the Blasts from the Past section. So those who missed it yesterday can still see it.

Randy Reddig <ydnar@cs.com> writes concerning the original level names. See the Original Level Names section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Sept 19, 1997
For the day that is in it here is a special anniversary HoT Question.

There were two of them.
Separate in space and time by 52 and 21.
Linked by function.
Designed with three.

What were they?

If you think you know the answer send it in with your reasoning. Join the ranks of the few. :-)

Forrest Cameranesi <Pfhorrest@aol.com> writes concerning the original level names. See the Original Level Names section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Sept 18, 1997
Jonas Eneroth <bones@bungie.com> (Bungie Software) writes concerning the original level names. See the Original Level Names section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Brent Thompson <ddt1198@gte.net> writes concerning the original level names. See the Original Level Names section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Bungie are now selling the Marathon Trilogy Box Set for the new low price of $29.00. You can also pick up the excellent Marathon Trilogy Overkill poster at the Bungie store.

Sept 17, 1997
Added a new section Original Level Names to Facts and puzzling things about... to discuss the recent discovery that some levels had their names changed prior to release but that fragments of the original names still exit in the data forks of the Map files.

Cairan Wheeler <wheelegs@muohio.edu> writes concerning the original level names. See the Original Level Names section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Simon Brownlee <squeaky@pobox.com> sends in a list of the levels name from Marathon revealing that some of these underwent names changes prior to release. See the Original Level Names section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Sept 16, 1997
Jim Gillespie <ender@city-net.com> writes concerning the original Marathon level names. Jim writes:

On the list you have:
House of Pain|y BOOM-STICK!|
is it possible that this is an Army of Darkness quote? At one point Ash (Bruce Cambell) has this to say:
Yeah. Alright you primitive screwheads, listen up. See this? This is my boom-stick! It's a twelve gauge double barreled Remington, S-Mart's top-of-the-line. You can find this in the sporting goods department. That's right this sweet baby was made in Grand Rapids Michigan. Retails for about $109.95. It's got a walnut stock, cobalt blue steel and a hair trigger. That's right. Shop Smart. Shop S-mart. Ya got that?! Now I swear, the next one of you primates, even touches me... Ya! (BOOM) (BOOM) <Ash shoots Deadite #2 who has risen out of the pit> Now, let's talk about how I get back home.

Very possibly. The exact title however is not clear. Based on what Mike Trinder said below the original level name would have the same number of letters and spaces as "House of Pain" and then end in "y BOOM-STICK!"

Forrest Cameranesi <Pfhorrest@aol.com> writes concerning the music in Marathon. See the Marathon Music section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Sept 15, 1997
Interesting find by Mike Trinder <mpbt100@hermes.cam.ac.uk>. Mike writes:

I was trolling through the various map files to perfect a Chisel effect I'm working on and found that there are traces of previous titles for the various levels still in there: whenever a name was changed to one which was shorter, it left the rest of the old name in the file. Most are pretty uninteresting, but some are very strange - esp the traces of 'venice,italy' which appear EVERYWHERE. the vertical bar | marks the end of a text string, hence anything that is after this is a remnant. Aye Mak Sicur was a late development. Is Marge a reference to the Simpsons? Note House of Pain was copied intact from M2 to Mi

Begin level name list for Marathon2

Waterloo Waterpark|
The Slings & Arrows of Outrageous Fortune|
Charon Doesn't Make Change|
What About Bob?|
Come and Take your Medicine|oy|
We're Everywhere|
Ex Cathedra|gin'|
Nuke And Pave| Marge|
Curiouser and Curiouser...|.|
Eat It, Vid Boi!|
The Hard Stuff Rules...|
Bob's Big Date|, ya ya ya.|
Six Thousand Feet Under|
If I Had a Rocket Launcher, I'd Make Somebody Pay|
Sorry Don't Make It So|n Your Toast?|
For Carnage, Apply Within|
Begging For Mercy Makes Me Angry!|
The Big House|use|a ya ya.|
This Side Toward Enemy|
God Will Sort The Dead...|a.|
My Own Private Thermopylae|
Kill Your Television|a ya.|
Where the Twist Flops|
Beware of Abandoned Rental Trucks|cks|
Requiem For a Cyborg|
Fatum Iustum Stultorum|ya.|
Feel the Noise|
All Roads Lead To Sol...|ol...|
No Disintegrations|
Ok, honeybunny|
Lack of Vision|ngler|
Flight of the Toolator|
Giant Flaming Pit of Lava|
House of Pain|y BOOM-STICK!|
16th Parallel|
One Hit Wonder|Floor; Population You|
Ok, Who Wants Some?|
Everyone's Mortal But Me|
5-D Space|

Begin level name list for Marathon Infinity

Ne Cede Malis|
Rise Robot Rise|Crack Mist Maker|
Poor Yorick|ip Flag|
Confound Delivery|
Electric Sheep One|
Where are monsters in dreams|
Acme Station|
Post Naval Trauma|Trauma)|
Where Some Rarely Go|
Thing What Kicks...|t Kick Our...|
Electric Sheep Two|
Whatever You Please|
Naw Man He's Close|Ship|
Foe Hammer|
Hang Brain|ne|
Electric Sheep Three|
Eat the Path|
By Committee|
One thousand thousand slimy things|
A Converted Church in Venice, Italy|
Son of Grendel|rch in Venice, Italy|
Strange Aeons| Fish|
Bagged Again|l|rch in Venice, Italy|
You Think You're Big Time? You're Gonna Die Big Time!|
Aye Mak Sicur|opia|
Robot World Arena|
Two for the Price of One|
Aie Mak Sicur|opia|
Carroll Street Station|
You're Wormfood, Dude|
Try again |
If I Had a Rocket Launcher, I'd Make Somebody Pay|
You Think You're Big Time? You're Gonna Die Big Time!|
Duality|e Twist Flops|
Wrath No More?|
Beyond Thunderdome|
Vulcan|s Ship|opia|
House of Pain|y BOOM-STICK!|
King of Pain|
Ex Justicia Mortis|
Dead Fields|ng|
Return to Waldo|a|
Thick and Chunky|
Route 66|ap|
Route 66 (604 or better)| better)|
La Cosa Nostra|
Delusions of Grandeur|...|ce, Italy|
Mars Needs Women|ujeres|
Who's Got The Itchies|
reverof nohtaram|lities|
'Fugee Camp|
Fortress Lh'owon|s W. Front|

If you think you know what some of these original titles were then send them in.

David Retchless <sublimator@hotmail.com> writes concerning a possible connection between Pathways Into Darkness and Bungie's up-coming game Myth. David writes:

While looking over Bungie's recently updated Myth site I noticed what appears to be a connection between Myth and Pathways into Darkness. The following text is from Bungie's Myth site:

"In a time long past, a great comet appeared in the northern sky. It stirred foul creatures beneath the earth; old things to which dominion of the world was once again to be returned.

And a great evil came out of the east, in a black tide that sought not to conquer, but to destroy; to be master of the unthinking dead and their blasted lands."

I thought this sounded familiar so I checked the front of the Pathways manual. Sure enough, it talks of a "large extraterestrial object" which struk the earth Sixty-Four million years ago. It then goes on to say that after the impact "Vast caverns and landscapes bubbled to life within the rock, populated by horrible manifestations of the dead god's dream." This could easily be understood to be the foul creatures stirred beneath the earth described on Bungie's Myth site. It seems that Bungie likes to build conections between all thier games (just as they did with Pathways and Marathon.)

David's interpretation is made all the more interesting by information found on Jim Mitchell's Pathways Into Darkness Story Page. The What's New section for June 30, 1997 had this to say about how Bungie were NOW advertising Pathways Into Darkness.

This is the text found within a recent mail advertisment from Bungie software describing Pathways Into Darkness:

Pathways Into Darkness
The original Bungie 3-D adventure game.
Solve the riddles of a thousand years and save

Solve the riddles of a thousand years? What could this be implying? Anyone know what happened in 994 AD?

Riddles of a thousand years...? What could Bungie be up to? What is the significance of the "thousand years" in Pathways Into Darkness?

Well on the Story page's What's New section in Apr 22, 1997 Ajay Ayyagari <nirvana@halcyon.com> drew attention to a possible connection between Myth and the Jim Henson film "The Dark Crystal". Ajay wrote:

I know your page isn't a Myth page but it seems like the best place to send this email to. Okay, I was watching a movie last night called "The Dark Crystal" ever heard of it? It's a Jim Henson movie about how forces of light and dark have been separated for 1000 years and a prophecy must be fulfilled for those forces to become one again (in the end they evil/good guys kinda fuse together and make special beings). The prophecy is that a single hero must heal the dark crystal with a shard, blah, blah, blah the story goes on...Also in the story it says that every 1000 years a great conjunction will occurr that decides the fate of the next 1000 years...sounding familiar? *cough*...myth...*cough* What you think?

Bungie's Myth page at the time gave the following details about the Myth Story:

The myth of the story centers around a deity which appears in this world in cycles of a thousand years. During one cycle the deity will appear as a Savior; in the next, as a Destroyer. At the beginning of Myth, he has returned in the guise of Destroyer, with the Fallen Lords, a group of resurrected and powerful generals. These beings and their legions of undead and spirit forces rise up to destroy the living beings of this world, while the player controls the living and tries to stop the onslaught.

A thousand years eh?

But it doesn't end there. Digging deep into Jim Mitchell's Pathways Into Darkness Story Page revealed the following tidbit in the What's New section for May 1, 1997. I quote in full:

Rob Furr <rsfurr@uncg.edu> writes concerning the mysterious "Toadkiller Dog":

Your page mentions that the back of the Pathways box has a screenshot of a game with the save-game of "Toadkiller Dog," and hypothesizes that there's a connection between that and one of the Bungie programmer's email addresses.

I can't address *that* issue, but the name "Toadkiller Dog" is actually a reference; it's from the Black Company series, by Glen Cook. I believe Toadkiller Dog first appears in _The White Rose_, and exits the series in _The Silver Spike_. Toadkiller Dog is a tool of the Dominator (a very bad, very nasty bad guy who's been dead for about a thousand years and is getting kind of tired of it; the climatic battle of the first Black Company trilogy features a battle revolving around an attempt to prevent the Dominator from fully awakening from his sleep and conquering/destroying/whatever the world."

A thousand years eh?

An interesting review of Glen Cook's "The Black Company" can be found here

Now Bungie's updated Myth page has this to say about the Myth story:

Myth: The Fallen Lords brings you a world where the living are fighting a losing battle against the risen dead. You direct the Armies of the North as they struggle to withstand the onslaught of the Fallen Lords, a cadre of ancient and terrible sorceror-generals who are laying waste to the land with legions of vicious beasts and the tireless undead.

A complex story, narrated by one of your units, takes shape as the campaign against the Fallen progresses over months and hundreds of miles. You also battle betrayal and cowardice in your own ranks, while rivalries amongst the Fallen can turn to your advantage. Cell-animated movies and strategic battle maps drive the plot and enrich a mintutely detailed fantasy world.

All the while, a comet hanging in the Northern sky casts its fearful glare over the spreading horror. An eternal cycle of mythic bloodshed begins anew...

Of course it's not hard to see the connection between the "cadre of ancient and terrible sorceror-generals" and "The Ten Who Were Taken", all evil sorcerers who command armies. Also note how the Myth story is narrated by one of your units, very similar to the Black Company's chronicler/archivist "Croaker".

But returning to Pathways Into Darkness. Back in 1993, before the game was actually released, somebody at Bungie took a screenshot of the game while using the nickname "ToadKiller Dog", a name which also features heavily in "The White Rose", the 3rd book in Glen Cook's Black Company trilogy published in 1990. Who was the mysterious ToadKiller Dog at Bungie? Some have suggested Doug Zartman, the famous 'Frogblaster' himself. Could it really be Doug? When put on the spot back in February 1997 Doug replied:

Afraid not; I'm not exactly sure who that is, but I have my suspicions. My net moniker was usually "Sir Loin". If you recognize the Toadkiller Dog reference, you'll have some insight into our next product...

So there you have it folks...

Were the roots of the Myth Story seeded at Bungie before Pathways Into Darkness was actually released?

Sept 9, 1997
Graham Benedict <GrhmBndct@aol.com> writes:

While rummaging through my old MacAddict CD-ROMs, I came across a game called "Ares", by Changling software. I reallized immediately the significance of its title. In the Marathon 2 manual, the shotgun is explained...

"While going through some data I appropriated from the Marathon (looking for design notes, of course) I stumbled across a reference to a weapon used by the imperialist forces against the intersectionists during the Ares Raid; July 2444."

As I played the game, I noticed more noticable connections. For instance, the game features writing that I very much like Pfhorish. Also, one of the aliens (its name escapes me) looked very much like an Enforcer. Other aliens resembled our Marathon friends, but here is the kicker. Guess who did the artwork. Reginald Dujor. In case you don't know, (or you print this letter), he is the artist who created all of the artwork for Marathon, but left Bungie midway through Marathon 2's development. By the way, this game was realeased about the same time as Marathon 2.

Back in July 23, 1997 Steven Ryan <smryan@mail.com> wrote concerning the line: "thousands are sailing" on terminal 2 of the Infinity level "Ne Cede Malis" suggesting that this may be from the start of an Irish song by Plantxy.

Andrew McCormick <smileyy@sprintmail.com> followed this up and found that the line "thousands are sailing" was used in a song by The Pogues on their album "If I Should Fall From Grace With God" (Island Records). See the What's New section for July 24th.

Steven writes again confirming that the line was in fact used by Planxty in a different song from the Pogues. Steven writes:

Another version of Thousands are Sailing is by Planxty, Words&Music album, 1983. I suppose a parallel could be drawn from the exile of the Spht Kr. In full (and perhaps violating copyrights),

You brave Irish heroes,
wherever you be,
I pray stand a moment
and listen to me.
Your sons and fair daughters
are now going away;
and thousands are sailing
to America.

So, good luck to those people
and safe may they land.
They are leaving their country
for a far distant strand.
They are leaving old Ireland
no longer can stay.
And thousands are sailing
to America.

Their nights before leaving,
they are bidding goodbye,
and it's early next morning
their heart gives a sigh.
They do kiss their mothers
and then they will say.
"Farewell, dear old father,
we must now go away."
Their friends and relations
and neighbours all sort.
When the trunks are all packed up,
all ready to go,
oh, the tears from their eyes then
fall down like the rain.
And the horse is a-prancing
going off for the train.

So, good luck to those people
and safe may they land.

When the two reach the station,
you will hear their last cry,
with handkerchiefs waving
and bidding goodbye.
Their hearts will be breaking
on leaving the shore,
"Farewell. dear old Ireland
will we ne'er see you more."
Oh, I pity the mother
that rears up the child;
and likewise the father
who labours and toils.
To try to support them,
he will work night and day.
And when they are there, though.
they will go away.

So, good luck to those people
and safe may they land.

Oh, thousands are sailing
to America.

Thus the same line is used in two different but theme related songs. Coincidence?

Brandon Gupton <CheechKY@aol.com> writes concerning the number seven. See The Number Seven section of Facts and puzzling things about... for details.

Craig Mullins <cmull86011@aol.com>, the artist who did the Chapter Screens for Marathon 2 and Marathon Infinity, now has a web page displaying some of his non-Marathon artwork. It's at http://www.cyberverse.com/~craigm/index.html. Well worth a look. For a comprehensive display of all Craig's publically available Marathon artwork you should check out the Craig Mullins art page at the Marathon HyperArchive NorthWest.

Sept 8, 1997
I'm back.

If you've sent me mail in the last two weeks (or so) please bear with me you should get a reply in the next few days.

Was the The Summertime Blues Competition too hard? Yes, judging from the number of incorrect answers. Where have all the Marathon Story gurus gone? Somewhat unsurprisingly Jim Mitchell <BobJam@aol.com> got the most correct answers, getting three of the seven questions right. Special mention to Morgan Catha <rblake@slc.shorelin.wednet.edu> for getting two right. Lots of people got at least one right. Well done all. :-)

The seven questions and their answers:

  1. Under normal solo play how may terminal messages are impossible to read in all three Marathon games (88 solo levels)? For each unreadable message please give the terminal no. and level name.

    This should have been an easy one. Some have been mentioned on the Story page. The terminals and levels are as follows:

    "Cool Fusion" (Terminal 2: 'Unfinished' message). The only Marathon terminal that cannot be read under normal solo play even if you don't get the fusion pistol.

    "What About Bob?" (Terminal 2: 2nd message).

    "Curiouser and Curiouser..." (Terminal 2: 1st Message).

    "Eat It, Vid Boi!" (Terminal 4: 1st message).

    "Robot World Arena" (Terminal 0). Can be read while playing co-op but not during normal solo play.

    "Poor Yorick" (Terminal 2). See if you can find it. ;-)

    "Confound Delivery" (Terminal 1). Another mysterious terminal. Confound it!

    "Where Some Rarely Go" (Terminal 1: 1st Message). Another strangely elusive message.

    "Naw Man He's Close" (Terminal 0: 1st Message). Yet another strangely elusive message.

    "Foe Hammer" (Terminal 2: 1st message).

  2. From what Bungie level does this map screenshot come from?

    Most people got this one. It's from the level that works with the Marathon alpha/beta? entitled "marathon.alpha.fat". You can find it on the Marathon CD (it's invisible though) or on the Trilogy CD.

  3. What was 2nd to last one way, but 2nd the other way?

    Carroll Street Station. On the New York City Subway Map (see the What's in a Name section for details) Carroll Street Station station is the second last subway station on line G. Thus it is the 2nd station when travelling the other way. Yeah a sneaky one I know. ;-)

    Thanks to Nick <Jinnmaster@aol.com> for pointing out that G is the seventh letter of the alphabet. =)

  4. Three thousand and forty four pieces. Of what and where?

    Arms and legs in hangar ninety six. On "Where are monsters in dreams (Terminal 0: 2nd Message)" it states:

    Seven hundred and sixty one armless and legless corpses float inconspicuously around the inside of hangar ninety six.

    761 times 4 = 3044 arm and legs. Gruesome but true!

  5. The number thirteen is unlucky for some! But reversed it reveals a lie. What was the lie and where was it said?

    There are thirty power switches throughout the cone. You must deactivate them all to access the basement level, where the master generator is located.
    Stated by High Admiral Tfear on "A Converted Church in Venice, Italy" (Terminal 1: 1st Message). In fact you need to deactivate 31 power switches before you can access the basement level not 30. Hence Tfear lied to us. Count them and the tru7h will be revealed. Thirteen reversed is 31.

  6. Throughout the three Marathon games a number of the colonists are actually named. Can you list them all? First or last names will do. Could there be more than seven? ;-)

    An easy question or was it? Let's list the names:

    Bernhard Strauss and the variations Bernard and Berhnard

    Robert Blake, a mechanical engineer on Tau Ceti and leader of the remaining colonists on Lh'owon. There is also reference to a Cmdr. Robert Blake on "You're Wormfood Dude" (Terminal 0) which is presumably the same person.

    Johnny, crushed by a Hulk on "Defend THIS!"

    McYultry, mentioned on "Shake Before Using..." (Terminal 3). First name appears to begin with H.

    Lt. Kent, mentioned on "Naw Man He's Close" (Terminal 1: 1st Message).

    Jetty, mentioned on Naw "Man He's Close" (Terminal 1: 1st Message).

    Bob, mentioned by VacBobs when they cry "He Killed Bob". Infers that one (or more) of the colonists was actually called Bob.

    Arther Frain (and the variation Frane), Chief Petty Officer, USEC Marathon, mentioned on "You're Wormfood Dude" (Terminal 0).

    Security Chief Jones, mentioned on "You're Wormfood Dude" (Terminal 0).

    Volker Von Müller mentioned in the Lost Network Packets. Remember this is bona fide Marathon Story text from Bungie Software which helps explain the Marathon timeline correctly.

    Some other names mentioned by people but who are not colonists.

    Geoff Hultin, is not a colonist but a real person.

    Estasia Orestes, Dominick I. Plackar, and Ursa Simbalzi mentioned in the Marathon Internal Engineering Documents on "Bigger Guns Nearby" (Terminal 2). The Doors Manual was written up in 2402 AD seventy years before the launch of the Marathon. It's highly unlikely that these individuals would have been of a suitable age for the Tau Ceti trip.

    Gheritt White, a 20th century pugilist? But was he our true identity? We may never know.

    Mjolnir Recon 54, our cyborg identity? Possibly but surely not our real name.

  7. There were ten altogether, three were different and eight were the same but on what level?

    On "Foe Hammer". There are a total of ten terminals visible on this level. Three display different terminal messages, eight display the same annoying message from Tycho.

Thanks to all the people who took part in the competition. As you can see the Marathon's Story still holds many mysteries and surprises. The tru7h is out there. :-)

Lots of updates to come over the next few days. Stay tuned.

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Last updated Oct 30, 1997