The history of Great Bear.

Recommended Posts

Fair warning, this entire post is going to be full of speculation and spoilers. These are my theories entirely and gathered from context clues, actual dialogue and pure speculation. Until the story of Wintermute and the complete DLC tale is released, I have zero proof of anything. Certain spelling might be off as I'm unsure of the correct ways and I'm kinda scared to lose this all looking for the correct spelling. If you've played Wintermute or survival the names should be clear as whom I'm referring to. You've been warned, this is deep and spoilers run wild.


Great Bear was possibly founded in the late 1800's early 1900's. A small remote island rich in natural resources capable of being mined. I'm assuming that coal was first discovered bringing in miners. As the miners dug into the earth gold and other precious metals were discovered. After the gold rush began the basic infrastructure of the island was established to move products from the interior to the coast. Setting up ports and coastal towns. Milton was established early on as a central hub allowing access to the interior and the coast. As the island flourished under the supply of gold, coal and silver other industries were set up, fishing and processing of sea food became almost required to support the miners and the other inhabitants of the island. Out side of local governments established by the Islanders there are no regulations provided. No real government agency has an idea of what is happening. I'm guessing this all takes place between 1900 and 1914 when the outbreak of what we know now as WW1. During the war, most of the miners were called to serve in the front lines as tunnelers, leaving Great Bear to suffer it's first economic collapse so to speak. Infrastructure began to fall apart as earth quakes and storms ripped parts the island apart.

After the war, not everyone was able to return. Some lost their lives in the war, others didn't have the ability to return, crippling the island further. Leaving a few families in control of access the resources. The Langston family being one of them. 

The Langston's made their original fortune with gold and other precious metals and were able to establish the mining operations and the Langston Mining Corporation, scattered around the island they dug deep into the wealth of resources. While most of the mines were coal biased, the true goal was always precious metals. The giant mine we find in the ZoC was established by them in the late 20s and early 30s. The discovery of nuclear technology in the 1930's established the need for uranium, which historically Canada has a massive amount hidden in the depths of the earth. With little to no government regulation, the Langston Corp began to mine into the mountains in search of the new material, leaving the strip mine as we find it. Earth quakes became more frequent and made the mining operations more dangerous. The lack of safety drove the mine workers away or slowly killed them off leaving very few to operate the mines. The Langston mine in the ZoC was abandoned by the Corp as it wasn't feasible to operate. Langston Corp left the island giving Great Bear it's second economic collapse. This is in the 1950s.

Main land governments investigation into Langston uncovered the depths of resources and the illegal activities they had used to acquire the uranium and conceal it's true source. I'm assuming Langston had a regulated mine on the main land and hid the uranium from Great Bear in the production reports. Different government contractors made bids on improving the infrastructure and Brayer House and Carter Corp won the bid wars to begin building modern infrastructure on the island. Black Rock Prison is conceived as a way to house the worst of the worse as the island is a secondary prison wall with it's natural weather and dangers. The Carter dam is built to power the island and new mines are established or old mines are reopened giving a boost to the economy and bringing a pulse back to the island. Coal is still the main focus of mining with other precious metals being mined along with the coal. The Langston mine has an attempt to modernize and reopen under the Carter Corp. The buildings we find were built in the 50's to 60's. Eventually abandoned again as the regions earth quakes made it to dangerous for continued use.

Through our the 70's and 80's the Carter dam receives updates to the technical side and improves power production. Black Rock Prison is expanded and modernizes. Perseverance Mills military Base is converted into a radio telescope station with shielded electronics built to study space and radio waves. Funded and built by Brayer House. During this time, a wealthy business man assumes control of Brayer House. Rudiger is his name. 

Rudiger is a business man first and fancies himself as a curious scientific mind with actual training and the wealth to do what he wants with no outside support. He's wealthy beyond imagination and incredibly intelligent. It's in this time he finds the layout of the Langston mine and sends in or leads teams of exploration into the region looking for a place to conduct private and hidden scientific experiments. He's also fascinated by the writings of Nicola Tesla and thinks he can get his theories to function. The teams we learn of in Signal Void find the chamber used in the experiment and construction begins on the gadget, an "improved" design of a Tesla coil. From the foremans reports we know the coil is switched on in 91. The issues with the teams mental state begins and a doctor is called in to study the effects of the machine. A sleep study center is established on the main land by Rudiger, and is Astrids employer.  Dr. Atwood and Jeremiah are also employed by the same company. That guard the machine and it's secrets.

The Forest Talkers are formed as they are all connected to someone who went missing in the mine. They are dead set against the further destruction of Great Bear and it's people doing their best to find and stop the unknown. They fight an unwinnable fight.

It being a Tesla coil makes sense once you know what all they can do.

Tesla coils were used for mental electro therapy, hence the issues sleeping. They consume large amounts of power, why so many generators are needed, they discharge static electricity, our glimmer fog. They can take electrical current and transmit it, hence the need for the shielded radio telescope receiver array. The bunkers have some electric shielding which is the interference we pick up with our hand held. Tesla coils can use static electricity and transform it to an alternating current. Tesla coils produce electro magnetic fields.

In Buried Echoes we learn that the security chief attempts to stop Rudiger and his experiments. None of which are going to the plan originally given to the teams. Rudiger amends his experiments and continues. He's physically gifted with a trait that allows him to function normally. He will never be effected by the machine. Portowski is successful in stopping the gadget from functioning normally. She breaks it too a point, and Rudiger locked her and the foreman into the mine. Securing his secrets.

I'm Wintermute the island is barely inhabitated. The prison staff and few remaining miners and their families are all that's left. The radio telescope and it's array are constantly maintained and monitors an unknown to them radio signal from the gadget. Only Jeremiah and Dr. Atwood know the true source of the signal but do not know where it is. They are there to gather information and protect the secrets of Great Bear. 

In Rudigers testament he says that it is not a matter if the new world will happen, but a when. He knew that no matter what Portowski did, she couldn't stop it. The machine would keep churning and build up it's internal power, like an alternator does for a car battery. The full charge of the machine took decades to develop. Since the surrounding regions were abandoned after the glimmer fog appeared in 91, no one has been around to witness the constant build up of energy. 

If you've made it this far, you're a champ. This is a very long post already and I'm not done.

The first flare and the connection to Wintermute. 

Rudigers gadget took decades to power up fully, and the first flare is the gadget operating at full capacity. The EMP produced by the gadget is what brings down Will and Astrid in the mountains and rips life away from every electric device on the island. It fried the dams power plant and left the island on analog only. It's why the steam system and telephones still work. They are not digital. But it blew out it's own electric source so the aurura isn't constant. 

Blizzards produce allot of static electricity. I would bet that after a blizzard in the ZoC, the gadget has enough power to emit a power wave and a EMF giving us the aurora. Powering up dead frequency based electronics like the radios and lights. It's a local EMF and it doesn't effect anywhere but Great Bear. 

Here's what all this is for.

Wintermute is the code word used to relay that the machines at full power and operating at capacity. Jeremiah monitored and maintained the signal towers we repair in Signal Void. He kept the flow of information going. His cover was that of a trapper. The flare was a surprise to him as well as what it did to the island. Dr. Atwood is the boss of Jeremiah and why he needs to get the code to her as the telescope she's stationed in will not be effected by the flare. It was built specifically with extra layers of protection to ensure it wouldn't be broken. Rudiger wasn't sure what all would happen when the gadget is at full power. Astrid is a research doctor who works analyzing the data from Great Bear. As the machines power grew, the insomnia began to take hold and it concerned Dr. Atwood. Astrid discovered an inhibitor that can be used to stop the effects of the gadget on the brain. That's what's in the case. Not a cure per say, but an agent to help the brain cope. 

The kicker: Methuselah is Rudiger. He claims he is there to watch the ending of an age. To watch the world transform. The apocalypse of apocalypse. He isn't effected by what's going on because he predicted it. He has the trait that allowed him to remain uneffected for years as Great Bears population slowly degrades. He hid there for decades waiting for this moment. No one knows he's still alive and presumed missing. Methuselah lies to us about whom he really is. We're just a fresh mind for a fully functioning gadget to effect. He watches us too see what happens. He's not our guide or friend. He's playing a sick twisted game with humanity and he couldn't care less what happens to us. He does want us to live, but only to see what happens to our mind.

I know this is very long. I welcome any information to prove me wrong or lead me in the right direction. If you've read this far, what are your thoughts?

  • Upvote 5
Link to comment
Share on other sites

4 hours ago, twyn1 said:

Definitely interesting theories and timeline. The idea of  Rudiger/Methuselah is intriguing, but I kind of see & want him to be "kindly" rather than malevolent.  Maybe he could be working off bad karma by helping Will?

He's watching us, he gives us a very scientific opinion on how we choose to deal with Hobbs, he watched them burn the people of Milton. He did nothing. I see nothing kind about him, I never have. He's there to watch the collapse of Great Bear, the apocalypse of apocalypse, scientist are there to watch the experiments they design happen. He's a well written character that speaks in a calm manner in attempt to give reassurance, but his status as a watcher cements it for me. 

If he's willing to help Will, why isn't he willing to help others?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now