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Ultimate Shadows of Evil Note Analysis


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Hey guys, Tac here with a thread that I hope will help shed some more light on the Shadows of Evil note that we see.  This thread was inspired by @MixMasterNut and all of his loading screen analyses that he’s done over the years (Moon and Nuketown), seeing how helpful they were to the community.  Additionally, shoutout to @BlindBusDrivr for making the ‘Note Discussion’ thread and breaking down the coordinates, so I’ll essentially be putting what he said about those into their respective sections.  Hopefully you all enjoy the thread and if you'd like anything added or clarified, please comment!




Werfen, Austria



Coordinates: 13°12'49.48"E  47°30'26.51"N
Location: Werfen, Austria
Significance:  IT’S DLC 1 BABY!  But, in all seriousness, let’s walk through this.  The coordinate is incredibly close to the Eisreisenwelt ice cave, which translates into “The World of Ice Giants.”  It’s the largest ice cave in the world, extending 42 kilometers, but the original discoverer of the cave would only go the first 200 meters.  He believed it to be an entrance to Hell.  Recall that in The Giant, there’s the barcode that said “The Mountain Must be Searched for the Frozen One,” which would appear to nod at this ice cave in the mountain.  Additionally, some have said that the entrance looks like the entrance to a dragon’s lair.

This is fitting, as the name of the upcoming map is Der Eisendrache, which means The Iron Dragon.  Very close to this ice cave is the Hohenwerfen Castle, which was built between 1075 and 1078.  Early on, it was used as a military base, residence, and hunting retreat until riotous farmers and miners set the castle aflame in 1525 and 1526.  The castle was used as a prison for quite some time and gained a negative reputation, as many ‘criminals’ lived their last days there under inhumane conditions.  Hohenwerffen Castle was damaged by fire again in 1931 and after World War II, the Austrians used it as a training camp for their rural police.


Pohnpei, Federated States of Micronesia



Coordinates: 158°10'50.31"E  6°53'12.07"N
Location: Pohnpei, Federated States of Micronesia
Significance: Pohnpei is an island in the South Pacific, which is significant as the Shadows of Evil journalist was “tracking down ancient artifacts in the South Pacific” for Mr. Rapt.  Pohnpei contains a city by the name of Nan Modal, a now-ruined city that was once the capital of the Saudeleur Dynasty, up until 1628.  More interesting, though, is that the city was used as an inspiration by H.P. Lovecraft (whose work is prominent in Shadows of Evil) for R’yleh, the sunken city deep in the Pacific.  In Lovecraft’s “Call of Cthulhu,” the city rises and the only part that emerges is a single “hideous monolith-crowned citadel” in which the great Cthulhu resides.


Volgograd, Russia



Coordinates: 44°29'53.73"E  48°41’18.11"N
Location:  Volgograd, Russia
Significance:  Formerly known as Stalingrad, it’s the location of the Battle of Stalingrad from World War II, where Nazi Germany was trying to invade the Soviet Union.  Interestingly enough, just as before, Mr. Rapt sent the journalist on the mission of “finding strange rocks and metals in Russia,” so it’s likely that the journalist has gone here.  What were the “strange rocks and metals” you might ask?  Well, I’ve had a few ideas on what they could be:


There's a region in/near Volgograd known as Medveditskaya Ridge, which is "a chain of rather low, 820-foot hills."  It is "considered to be one of the most impressive anomalous zones in Russia," with supposed "flying fireballs,"[1][2] or "ball-lightning."[3]  Does this remind anyone else of the fireballs from Shadows of Evil?  Additionally, there are many talks of UFOs[1][3] and "the landing site of flying saucers"[2] near here.  There's also much buzz about "interconnected underground labyrinths"[1] and "before the war you could walk for miles"[2] before the entrances were destroyed.  It is said that the tunnels are home to "a race of snake people,"[3] which reminds me an awful lot of Shangri-La and Vril-ya mythos surrounding Naga's.  "There are two springs near the tunnels - one with distilled water and the other with water that has a higher-than-normal level of radiation."[3]  We also know that radiation is a common theme in zombies, with Die Glocke and Element 115.

Finally, one of the only mentions of stone I could find related to the Volgograd region was a "melted piece of interesting stone" that "was taken to the laboratory" and deemed to "contain no element known to science."  It was "a mysterious element that is found in the structure of the melted stone and is the main link of unknown alloy," with an "unusually high" hardness.[4]


Again, I want to stress that very little of this is actually relevant to the search, though I find it very interesting and hopefully someone can find something I wasn't able to.  There were other mentions of stone, like the Volgograd Balls[5], though I think they're even less related.

Interestingly enough, in The Giant, there are newspapers lying around on the ground and in one of them is an article related to “the founding” of a political party, accompanied by a group of fleeing persons.  Turns out that this image is real and from the Siege of Leningrad, dated December 10, 1942, and shows “civilians of Leningrad leave their homes destroyed by German bombing.”


Wroclaw, Poland



Coordinates: 51°4'28.33"N  17°2'27.57"E

Location: Wroclaw, Poland

Significance: This is where Der Riese/The Giant is located, and beyond that there’s not much more to know until we fully understand the purpose of the coordinates.



Solar Systems



In each corner of the note, there is a diagram of the solar system, and the meaning of this is unknown.  Something interesting to note, however, is that the first and second solar systems are merely mirrored versions of each other, while the other two are completely different configurations.  The first two systems are related to the Hohenwerfen Castle and the Russian city of Volgograd, respectively, perhaps indicating that they are occurring at the same time.


Blue Shards
Ice Crystals


The meaning behind this can be speculated at forever.  Perhaps they’re ice crystals that hint at Der Eisendrache, or ice crystals that just hint at elemental weapons.  For all we know, this isn’t even ice!  It may be be pieces of Element 115, given that a message about the element is nearby this drawing.

Fabric of Spacetime


This is more significant, yet also straightforward.  Einstein came up with the theory that space and time are woven together into a ‘fabric’ that gets distorted by objects that have mass.  The author of this note, likely Edward Richtofen, is then saying that this ‘fabric’ is Element 115.  The implications of this are unknown at this time.



This message is likely regarding that there are an infinite amount of realities and for whatever mission that Dr. Edward Richtofen is on in which he must jump between these realities, he runs into the problem of too many realities and not enough time.


Apothicon Rift Stone


This appears to be a sketch of the Apothicon Rift Stone/Summoning Key, which implies that the author of this note, likely Edward Richtofen, believes it to be significant.  Underneath the sketch appears to be the phrase "it will save us," seemingly confirming what was thought above.  After the Shadows of Evil side quest is complete, we see Richtofen appear through a Rift and grab the Stone, then taking it to The Giant where he refers to it as “an artifact that will help us on our journey.”


Multiple Earths


This section of the note shows that because of the existence of multiple realities, there are multiple Earths, and some of them have x’s through them.  There are a few interpretations for what the x’s could mean, and they all stem from the idea that the ‘x’ signifies that Earth is no longer needing treatment.  However, what that “treatment” is is where the interpretations come in.  One is that they were destroyed, while another is that they were repaired.  Or, perhaps, the ‘x’ could simply mean both, that they no longer need treatment (as in some were destroyed and others were repaired).


This has all happened before...
Happened Before


This segment appears to say “If my calculations are right,” followed by “This has all happened before.”  The latter sentiment is reminiscent of all the characters on The Giant, where their old memories are flooding into their current minds and they are somehow remembering things from different realities.  Something similar could have happened to Dr. Richtofen prior to The Giant, where it happened to all four of them.


A universe has been born...


The meaning behind this message has been speculated at for a long time, with plenty of conclusions being reached.  What is meant by “a universe has been born” is especially confusing, while “the others must be undone” is likely related to the multiple Earths needing treatment, as described in that section.  However, the use of ‘undone’ instead of ‘fixed’ (or a similar synonym) adds an extra layer of complexity.


String Worldsheet


This is known as a string worldsheet and the description of this diagram is rather technical, and the specifics are likely unimportant, so those will be breezed over.  What can be said, however, is that the author of this note has a clear understanding of the universe’s working and intends on using this knowledge to further their plan.




These two written messages are likely connected, so I didn’t separate them for the purpose of analyzing.  Seeing as the belief is that Dr. Edward Richtofen authored this note, it’s obvious that he’s included in the mention of ‘we,’ but who else is?  Well, let’s remember back to a quote in The Giant, where Dempsey asks Richtofen what he did to his dead corpse, and Richtofen responded saying it was “someone a bit like me, but not.”  Couple that quote with the first line and it seems as though the ‘we’ is every version of himself across time and space and he must convince them (“the others”) that they need to die.  Why they must die is unknown at this time, but it clearly relates to Dr. Richtofen’s overall plan.  It’s also worth noting that in a teaser trailer for DLC 1, Nikolai says that his “path is chosen” and “our fate is sealed,” so perhaps the ‘our’ is again inclusive of all Nikolai’s.  Or, perhaps it means something else.  We’ll have to wait and see!




The house in this section of the note has major implications to the story, and the story on it is still developing.  Because of these things, I’m going to keep this description and analysis relatively short and save the full discussion of the house for a full thread.  As a general overview, a house with children in it has been seen once before in the Origins cutscene, and heard of many times since then.  Here, Dr. Richtofen says “the children will be safe in the house.”  In The Giant, Takeo says “I dreamt of a house … with children.”  Also in The Giant, Dr. Maxis makes mention of the house, and in a Der Eisendrache teaser trailer, Nikolai says “the children … can find a better tomorrow” while the video shows him inside of a house.  The fact that this house is on a floating rock is peculiar, and reminds many of the floating house in multiplayer map Infection, but the reason for this is unknown at this time.




This segment of the note is relatively unclear, and the meaning of this vortex can be speculated upon, but it appears to be a wormhole.  These aren’t all that significant, but are what the Zombies community has used to describe the teleportation process.


I must connect Maxis to


The message says “I must connect Maxis to” something unspecified, and the meaning of this is unknown.  At this point in the story (pre-DLC 1), it’s unknown what form Dr. Maxis is taking, whether he’s a human or still in the drone from Origins.  Regardless, however, Dr. Maxis appears to have powers that cross dimensions and Dr. Richtofen intends to do something with this.


Universe Membranes


As with the rest of the note, the vagueness allows for multiple interpretations.  The most likely is that these flat sheets represent different universes, similar to this image.


How many years...


In The Giant, Tank Dempsey asked Dr. Richtofen where he had been for the last two years, meaning between Origins and The Giant.  From this note, it appears that he had been searching for the Apothicon Rift Stone for those two years, but as noted in his “infinity” sentiment, it was a long process that that took many turns.


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Tac! Awesome, this is great and well put together...... Im going to sorta thread jack as I have had a little bug bother me,  I just started a thread in the General Zombies Forum discussing the basic "Pack A Punch" Machine.

I discussed its origins and where the items go,  Based on SOE and the fact that it is older than KINO. The SOE Pack A Punch is a primitive Version of all the other PaP machines.  

Secondly, I asked WHERE does the gun go to be upgraded in SOE, thats when voyager stated that along the lines of the "papers scattered" around SOE it shows the Blue Earth as the main and the "Multiverses" that have been traveled.

I than asked, why the PaP machines have not been discussed in detail, Origin and location that the "weapons actually get upgraded" as we know it somehow gets teleported somewhere and somehow its upgraded.

Next voyager made a point about the Blue Earth...... In all our maps/locations even the ether........ Have we truly started from "Blue Earth" or have we started from one of the multiverses.  What if the Blue Earth, is where the PaP machines send the weapons,  What if everything links back to "Blue Earth" as we see in the pictures.  In your last picture "How many years have we wasted......... searching in wrong locations........" 


What if we started in the "Multiverse" and as the picture eludes with each jump we keep opening new Multiverses through the Teleporters when we should somehow Teleport through PaP machines to get to the "Constant" "Blue Earth", The ORIGIN, The Beginning!



Sorry just rambling.... just the little bug that keeps nicking at me that we are missing something right in front of our face!

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The war is in the infinity

We now know that "the infinity" stands for the Aether. So that might hint to the Aetherial war between the Keepers and the Apothicans.


115 is the fabric...the thread holding it all together. The webbing of the universe

That's interesting when we now know the Apothicans use it to consume universes. Dr. Monty says that the Element does not belong to our dimension. But the fact that this paper gives, is that 115 is not only evil, it holds the whole multiverse together. So after Revelations, the element is not disappeared. It cannot be. Otherwise, the multiverse would fall apart. So in what way do the Apothicans use it to enter and consume our dimension and universe?


I must connect Maxis to...

Still not clear with what is meant with this.


How many years have we wasted searching in the wrong locations following the wrong leads?

Hinting at the loop, but...... At the end of Revelations Primis succeed in defeating the Dark Aetherials. They are faded out of existence and appear in the Middle Ages, instead of continuing "searching the wrong locations following the wrong leads". So did we actually break the circle, unlike we previously thought? Did Primis succeed?


A universe has been born. The others must be undone

What universe? Monty's perfect world? He says that the other universes are closed off. Or is this hinting to the original, standard universe/timeline

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@anonymous The use of Element 115 by the Apothicons is a tricky subject. In Revelations, we see them sending 115 rocks through time and space yet Monty himself says they feed off the purest forms of energy. They consume universes by purposefully sending the element where it doesn't belong, causing tears in the fabric of time and space. These seemingly act as gateways for the Apothicons to enter through and begins feeding on said energy.


Monty himself never mentioned that Element 115 is gone; perhaps removed from the physical realm but not destroyed of origin.


That last quote is confusing. Monty refers to there being only one universe at one point, and then goes on in other quotes to talk about other realities (i.e. the quote about Tank Dempsey holding the record for the most one armed push ups even against the one-arm universe). He does state that the major problem was that time was once linear but now it muddled up because of teleporting...I believe Richtofen realized that teleporting leads to more and more universes opening up when they shouldn't, so his original plan was to undo any further attempt to wreck havoc in the remaining universes.


This is why his leads were wrong; he thought causing destruction to prevent events like his former self did would restore balance but realized that he couldn't do that. Instead, he decided to steal the Summoning Key to ultimately close off the connections. That is where he had the idea to live beyond its closing via blood vials.

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