One of the most recognizable items from the BioShock games is the Audio Diary, which played back voice messages during the games offering the player hints and helping the story progress. What you may not know is 2K Games had four real Audio Diary devices made as part of a BioShock 2marketing campaign.
Managing to acquire one of those four devices required a lot of hard work and an equal amount of luck. They were rewards for taking part in the There’s Something In The Sea alternate reality game (ARG) run in the lead up to the release of BioShock 2. It took the form of a puzzle-filled website, which revealed a mailing address. Players reported receiving packages after sending letters to that address, and they were delivered by mailmen dressed in 1950s uniforms.
A lucky few didn’t receive a package, though. Instead they were handed a coded message that once deciphered asked the recipient to travel to a storage location on a specific date at a specific time. Once there, a man (actor) took each of the people who had turned up into the storage building, continuing to test them with questions and eventually a code that had been revealed earlier in the game through deciphering a mathematical equation. The final reward was the Audio Diary device complete with an actual voice recording that can be heard in the video below:
Not everyone who attended that day got to keep the Audio Diary they listened to, but a few did, and one of those has now appeared for sale on eBay. The reason for the seller, Adam Robinson, deciding to sell such a rare and desirable item is simply hard times. Robinson needs the cash and is very reluctantly selling it.
Considering only four of these Audio Diary devices are thought to exist, combined with the work and luck needed to acquire one, explains why the auction price is already north of $800 with 47 bids placed. And with 4 days still left to go I can see it easily making over $1,000.