Going in search of hope

How many of you chew gum? Alright, now how many of you buy 5 Gum? Okay, now how many of you have noticed the little bumblebee-looking things on the packages and the links to a website? This was the series of events that led me to survivalcode.com, otherwise known as the Human Preservation Project (HPP for short).

I’ve only been a part of one other online viral campaign in the past, and that one was for a video game called BioShock 2. I plan to make a different post talking about that one, because it’s a whole other story. As for HPP, a lot of people thought it was for Halo 4 when it was first discovered. Since the viral campaign for Halo 2 was called “Ilikebees” and was a site all about bumblebees (in a way), it was only natural for gamers and geeks to see this HPP hornet and associate with that. However, HPP was and is not related to Halo 4. In the words of Paul Blart, “it’s its own thing.”

What visitors to the survivalcode.com homepage will see.


The tag line for 5 Gum is “stimulate your senses,” and that’s what HPP is all about. You start in the first facility in a series of facilities located somewhere in a very icy climate, Antarctica maybe. In each of the six facilities, you need to do certain things like solve puzzles and input codes from 5 Gum packages to power up a central core. Along the way, there are achievements to be unlocked, unlockable online comics to be read and famous stars to be seen. Turns out that both Terry O’Quinn and Summer Glau (both of these people are famous sci-fi television show actors, most notably from LOST and Firefly, respectively) play a large part in the HPP storyline.

Another cool thing about HPP is that they will actually mail items to your home address. When I joined it was a few months ago, so I’m not entirely certain if this still happens, but 5 Gum will mail you a padded black envelope with an ID badge (as long as you complete the personality test and fill out personal information section on the site) and a free pack of 5 Gum. A very cool way to promote the site, if you ask me.

What an HPP package looks like.


HPP is a really fun ARG, and it’s clear that the creators of it put some serious thought into what they were doing. When you think about it, it sounds a little silly to make an ARG about gum, but I say give it a try before you knock it. It’s definitely worth the online trip and the dollar or so per pack of gum.

About Daniel

Daniel is a graduate of CUNY Macaulay Honors College at Brooklyn College, summa cum laude with a B.A. in Film Production and TV/Radio. He can be reached via his website, www.passingplanes.com. The Utopia of Daniel was his college blog and he has since transitioned to posting on other sites.