BioWare may be set to unveil a new project shortly, that's if you go off the clues tied to a teaser the company posted on YouTube. The 44 seconds of footage are as vague as the developer's E3 video, but online sleuths have connected dots that may shed some light on something called "Shadow Realms."
BioWare sent out a mass email today, linking to a "You've Been Chosen" site featuring the new video. The site's text reads, "The time is near. They are watching. Your power is rising. Cologne, Germany. You've Been Chosen." The timing would suggest Bioware will unveil the project at next month's Gamescom conference in the German city.
The clues go deeper. As PC Gamer notes, an image in the teaser email has the filename "ShadowRealms_Teaser_video.jpg." and that's not the first time the name's popped up tied to EA. In February the company filed a trademark for it, and in March it registered a ton of domains including the name, such as "shadowrealmsonline.net," "shadowrealmspvp.net" and "shadowrealmsplayfree.com" - a free-to-play MMO is the obvious leap to make.
The image filename is oddly spurious, even if trademarks and domains seem a long way to go for a ruse - remember how Eidos Montreal took advantage of unused domains and trademarks for a Deus Ex April's Fools gag last year? We're not saying BioWare is playing a joke, but the image name may be designed to lead astray.
What does give the Shadow Realms thread some credence is that in February, around the time EA registered those trademarks and domains, Fallen London and Sunless Sea studio Failbetter Games revealed it was working with BioWare on a secret project.
"We've finally been allowed to lift one corner of the veil," Failbetter CEO Alexis Kennedy said at the time. "I can't tell you anything at all about the project – not for a little while yet – except to say that it's a Failbettery one, down to its bones."
For now, Shadow Realms - if that's indeed what it is - remains enshrouded in, er, shadow.