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What lies beyond Tibia’s legendary level 999 gate?
The truth behind one of the oldest mysteries in gaming has been solved—and it’s a massive disappointment. Around 15,000 people gathered on Twitch to watch as Tibia player Dev Onica opened the Banuta Gate of Expertise, which has been taunting players for 12 years. To pass through it you need to be level 999, which only one other player has achieved, and the mystery of what lies behind it has been a subject of much speculation. Tibia’s other level 999 player, Kharsek, refused to tell the community what lay beyond the gate. 5,000 people watched on Twitch as he reached the legendary level, only to realize that he had no intention of showing them what was behind the door. He went through it later on his own, without anyone watching, and hasn’t spoken a word about it since.
But Dev Onica was more forthcoming, albeit while bombarding viewers with advertisements to try and make some money. He stepped through the gate and appeared on Schrödinger’s Island, a small tropical island with a few palm trees and vendors. And that was it.
Dev Onica received a virtual trophy and a congratulatory message from the developers for accessing the gate, but for the people watching the stream there wasn’t much of a reward at all. “I’m not even surprised,” one player said on Reddit. “Cipsoft couldn’t spend more than ten minutes designing something for an extremely important moment.”
But until recently, the gate led nowhere, because Cipsoft didn’t think anyone would reach level 999. The mystery, as they often do, took on a life of its own, and became much bigger than they anticipated.
Many are convinced the island is a cover for a deeper secret, but that could be wishful thinking. Some in the community think Dev Onica is being deliberately unhelpful and is making no attempt to solve the mystery, which has made people even more jaded.
Another player, Lyh, is set to reach level 999 next year, and is promising to set the record straight on the gate. But the stories of these things are almost always more interesting than the solutions. Perhaps the press surrounding this will inspire the developer to expand on the reward. Andy Kelly
Many are convinced the island is a cover for a deeper secret
Released in ’97, Tibia is one of the oldest MMOs.