The Evolution of An Artform, or how2c&rvEN1gg3rz


An image that appears after completing a crosslink puzzle from the ARG Цикады у реки Черемош ("Cicadas Beside the Cheremosh River").


Registered Phenomena Code: 296

Object Class: Gamma-Orange

Hazard Types: Incorporeal, Psychotronic, Mechanical, Immeasurable, Destabilization, Sensory, Ontological, Info-Hazard, Visual

Containment Protocols: An Authority webcrawler by the name of I/O RODGER was developed for the sole purpose of tracking and the censorship of materials pertaining to RPC-296 on video sharing and hosting websites, though specific subroutines and weights must be updated manually, as to incorporate radically divergent styles in instances of filmography. The algorithm's current list of key search terms includes:

  • Blogs
  • Transmedia
  • Amateur documentaries
  • Exploitation films
  • Livestreams
  • Indie art projects
  • Internet hoaxes/viral marketing
  • Dream journals
  • Deep web search engines and extensions such as onion links

Reproductions of RPC-296 related media are to be stored in Site-088. Safe inspection must be approved by personnel with LVL-4 clearance.

Following identification of an RPC-296-Ω instance, an Authority field agent is to liaise with law enforcement appropriate to the instance's last known state and address. Internal missing person lists on Authority databases are to be updated accordingly. Catatonic individuals who fall outside of RPC-296-Ω instantiation are to be monitored and amnesticized should they recover.

Due to the minuscule participation of anonymous users1 on media related to targeted ARGs, RPC-296 is considered either self-containing or highly manageable for data redaction algorithms.

Description: RPC-296 denotes a series of livestreams that occurred on various video streaming platforms, each done by an account under the moniker "how2c&rvEN1gg3rz." The entity primarily targets abandoned or inactive ARGs (alternate reality games)2 via highly advanced hacking software,3 which masks itself anonymously from the host websites, wireless encryption protocols, and antivirus networks. All known cases reveal that the affected ARG(s) will have their narratives commandeered and repurposed to fulfill interjected storylines. Multiple proxies have been traced to the proliferation of new content; information regarding the whereabouts of the entity has been inconclusive.

The selection process for web content pertaining to an ARG is unknown. By contrast, a pattern of non-anomalous rootkits consistently appears prior to RPC-296 exposure. Technical audits reveal comparative behaviors, such as similar methods of self-injection into CPU pipelines, and the removal of evidence on process and execution lists. Inconsistencies within operating systems, such as unexplained changes in target systems and improper diagnostic routines, are often indistinguishable from malicious attacks unrelated to RPC-296. Given current technological restrictions, it is impossible to definitively prevent RPC-296 incursions.

Should individuals view RPC-296 directly, they will become catatonic after 10-15 minutes.4 If the individual had been an active participant or "player" in the ARG, they will instantaneously vanish from their location.5 Instantiation causes a virulent, infohazardous, antimeme6 to spread to witnesses of said displacement. Thus, cognition of their last-known location is forgotten, as witnesses will attest to these events as being "gaps" or "blanks" left within their memory. Therein, a simulacrum or approximation of the individual (hereby designated RPC-296-Ω) is found within the instigating livestream. If multiple individuals view the livestream, they will experience the same phenomena.

Additionally, individuals who discovered the new trailhead(s)7 released by the entity since the ARG's reconceptualization increase their chances of becoming centerpieces for the livestream by 57%. Hereby designated RPC-296-α, RPC-296 livestreams will be shaped by dilemmas or negative experiences RPC-296-α had accrued prior to viewership. Livestreams will mirror or compartmentalize these struggles using props, setpieces, hidden messages (in the form of captions or ciphers), or surrealistic visual representations. As such, RPC-296-Ω performances will always revolve around RPC-296-α narratives.

Despite initial distress and fear from the initial manifestation, RPC-296-α and RPC-296-Ω instances will gradually perform predesignated roles; accommodation to specific a performance or character role is inevitable.

Addendum - List of RPC-296 sightings

The following excerpts were compiled by Researcher Ammes and were truncated from over 48 archived ARGs. They are notable insofar as describing predictive models and patterns of RPC-296 selection; a specific focus is given towards cataloging the supposed modus operandi of each ARG as an extension of the entity's artistic expression and stylistic evolution. Consequently, this allows for I/O RODGER to operate 45% more efficiently when identifying and predicting clusters of RPC-296 affected individuals by contrast with other electronic or digitized anomalous memes.

NOTE: For the purposes of examination and peer review, all RPC-296 livestreams were recorded on secondary video formats, thus, rendering the anomalous effects impotent. More information on practical safety measures is found in the attached Psychotronic Conversion Templates Manual.


On 2019/06/10, an RPC-296 livestream was launched on the rabb.it media sharing platform and was shared via multiple devices. Over 1,516 laptops, home computers, phones, and servers were seized by the MST Foxtrot-88 ("Drag-n-Drop"). Reports indicate that more than 589 online users were affected and rendered catatonic from the event. MST Foxtrot-88 launched widespread investigations, liaising with law enforcement, medical staff at clinics/hospitals, and network administrators from internet providers. The following logs were taken from IRC (internet relay chat) servers and are archived for posterity.

Users in the aforementioned chat log became unresponsive after several minutes and were confirmed to be newly spawned RPC-296-Ω instances. However, an account belonging to "UwUAdministration" was hacked by an untraceable proxy IP and subsequently changed its name to "how2c&rvEN1gg3rz." The following details the interaction between the hacked account and the server it had newly joined.

Similarly hacked accounts remained active for 27 minutes. Persistent spamming logged by Discord, IRC, and other chat servers triggered I/O RODGER causing the accounts responsible to be banned permanently. Streaming services from distributed links were censored and field agents were dispersed to locations with the receiver IPs. Widespread seizure of RPC-296 recordings remains ongoing.

UPDATE 2019/06/17:

At 23:49:12 UTC, Katie Ammes arrived home from Site-088. Shortly after, she called an encrypted Authority hotline. MST Foxtrot-88 mobilized on the premises and found that Mrs. Ammes's two children were catatonic; their faces were severely lacerated and cauterized. It was discovered that their desktop browser had 26 tabs open; each tab linked to various livestreams (offline at the time) from a website known as twitch.tv.

Following several days of a widescale investigation, data technicians shut-down I/O RODGER and inspected its code.

Last known voice recording by Katie Ammes:

I'm glad the request to reexamine secondary media pertaining to RPC-296 for anomalous interference was approved.

I'm on the road right now, relocating to the place witness protection assigned us. My husband holds the hands of my sweethearts — like a silent movie playing somewhere far away. Haven't had the guts to look him in the eyes since we packed up our stuff.

The heart monitor serves as a brief respite - its bright-line rises, peaks, descends. Signs they're alive. That they're not all gone.

My hands still shake from when I found them in that sorry state. I wept for God knows how long…

I know it's watching. I know it's here. It hasn't left me, its eyes are everywhere now, broadcasting from a frequency from someplace unknown.

I know I might be going out of line, but I don't care anymore. There was an email sent to my personal home desktop. I wasn't aware of it - the timestamp indicated it was sent minutes before I entered the house. Under normal circumstances, that would be impossible as it was hooked to the Authority intranet. The address pointed back to a string of nonsensical letters. There was nothing in the email save for two school photos of my boys. Prop A and Prop B were scrawled underneath their faces.

For these reasons, I caution any future researcher observing RPC-296 phenomena. I don't want this to happen. Not to anyone else.

It took my baby boys. It took my baby boys.

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