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The Biggest Unanswered Helldivers 2 Mysteries

As "Helldivers 2" has exploded into mainstream popularity, players have wasted no time divining into the game. This means much more than just pushing the enemy factions back and finding new strategies for beating nearly impossible missions. Players have also dove deep into the lore and storytelling of the game. While players have found their fair share of "Helldivers 2" easter eggs, they have also uncovered plenty of things that are, as of now, completely impossible to make sense of. Of course, this is par for the course in a world as awash with propaganda, unreliable information sources, and limited perspectives as that of "Helldivers."


These mysteries have led to no shortage of speculation and theorizing from the "Helldivers" community. While some mysteries have since been solved, others remain wide open, just as confusing as the day they were discovered. Here are just a few of the most confounding mysteries in "Helldivers 2" — some of which have their roots in the original game.

Are the Illuminate really returning?

Something that Divers have wondered about since pretty much day one, is whether or not the Illuminate, a feared faction from the original "Helldivers" game, will be returning. This speculation has only ramped up as more signs of the Illuminate have appeared, like the blue lasers that have popped up in the sky over several planets. Another example would be the mysterious light shows some players have seen overhead.


The most direct reference to a possible Illuminate return was seen on the TV screens of players' Super Destroyer, which had a story scroll across the bottom lineclaiming possible Illuminate sightings had been dismissed as the work of dissidents. After all, the Illuminate were officially declared extinct by Super Earth after the previous galactic war. Surely if the biggest threat humanity has faced was on the verge of returning, we would be warned and put on high alert. Super Earth would not lie to the Helldivers, its most revered and trusted soldiers, right? Not when fans have spotted evidence that the Illuminate have carried out kills on Super Earth, right?

What to make of Cyberstan

Fans have also speculated that the first games' Cyborgs may return. The half-human half-robot faction's esurgence has been seen as almost inevitable at times. The most obvious sign of their return was that the Cyborg's homeworld of Cyberstan could be easily seen in the game's galaxy map. The most common theory holds that the Automatons were pushing toward Cyberstan to free their supposed masters from imprisonment in the world's mines. With the bots rapidly being pushed back away from Cyberstan — and possibly even soon to be wiped out — this no longer seems a likely outcome.


So, what are we to make of Cyberstan, then? Is it just an interesting little easter egg for fans of the first game to find and tell their friends about, or is there more to it? Will the Cyborgs one day make their long-awaited and dreaded return to the galactic stage or are their days as a major power truly behind us? Are the Cyborgs really the Automatons' masters? Only time, and perhaps some new information (if it even exists), will tell.

Who are the Automatons' masters?

One of the only major mysteries that is actually acknowledged in-game is the unknown identity of the maker and master of the Automatons. As said above, the most common line of thinking is that they were somehow made by (or replaced) the Cyborgs as a contingency plan to free them if they lost to Super Earth. While that theory is still possible, their goal, if it is to free the Cyborgs, seems like it will not be accomplished. The biggest hint that suggests this theory might not be true, is that the Automatons appear to be broadcasting messages to someone outside of the Milky Way Galaxy, not just Super Earth.


Because the bots have been pushed back, it seems that we will not be getting a definitive answer to this question any time soon. However, even the democracy officers on every Super Destroyer's bridge acknowledge that the war with the Automatons will not truly be over until the identity of their engineer is uncovered and they are forced to face the full might of democracy and Super Earth. Naturally, the fear is that this mysterious benefactor could always build more Automatons. Until they are either revealed or reveal themselves, all that can be done is to wonder about who they are ... and wait.

What are the cloaked ships over bot planets?

In recent days, "Helldivers 2" players have started sharing screenshots of what looked like the outlines of massive cloaked ships hiding in the atmosphere over Automaton planets. Fans of the game wasted no time starting to speculate on what these ships were. One theory is that they have to do with the newer Automaton gunships that have uncloaked in the atmosphere. However, this seems unlikely, as the ships seen were possibly even larger than the Super Destroyers in which Helldivers begin their missions.


Another theory posits that these ships are yet another sign of the Illuminate's impending return. After all, the Illuminate was infamous for their cloaking technology during the first Galactic War, which took place 100 years prior to the timeline of "Helldivers 2." It is not much of a jump in logic to suggest that these cloaked ships then could belong to them.

Perhaps the most ominous theory is that the ships may belong to an as-yet-unknown faction, maybe even the Automatons' makers. With the bots losing the war, their mysterious masters may be deciding when and how to intervene on their behalf to ensure their creations are not wiped out.

Is the TCS really as safe and effective as claimed?

The deployment of the Terminid Control System represents the most significant development by and achievement of the Helldivers on the bug front to this point. With its activation across the barrier planets of the X sector, the Terminids could supposedly no longer threaten the core worlds of Super Earth's galactic empire.


"Helldivers 2" players, however, have been more than a bit skeptical of this supposedly assured outcome. After all, as we all have learned in the real world, pesticides rarely just harm the insects they're supposed to. They can harm crops, soil, and even people if used incorrectly, or if the wrong ones are used. The Termicide towers of the TCS do not appear to be all that precise in their distribution of the pesticide, and the rise of flying bugs makes it seem like Super Earth is just making things worse for the Helldivers.

This has led to speculation that Termicide could be hurting both the environments of the planets it is deployed on and the people who live there. Maybe Super Earth has some futuristic ultra-targeted pesticide that really only kills and harms Terminids — or maybe they have decided the cost of the Termicide's deployment is worth the gain of ensuring the bugs can never threaten the core worlds. Because of this, the Powers That Be have decided to lie about its impact to cover it up.


Where did the flying bugs come from?

In mid-March, screenshots and accounts started emerging of players spotting a new flying subspecies of Terminids. These reports were quickly dismissed in-game as false propaganda, while even Arrowhead's CEO lied to players about the very existence of the flying bugs. Eventually, it became clear that the flying bugs known as Shriekers were a very real new threat for Helldivers to worry about.


A new massive evolution of the Terminids suddenly appearing seemingly overnight seemed all but impossible, and players have been trying to figure out where they came from. Perhaps the most common idea is that the shriekers were an unintended consequence of the Terminid Control System, with the Termicide causing massive, sudden evolutionary mutations to occur. Another theory is that the shriekers are something that only appear when the Terminids are desperate, like they are in the presence of the TCS. Either way, the flying bugs constitute a mysterious and concerning development on that front of the war.

Who exactly is Joel and what does he have planned?

Fairly shortly after the game's release, the developers at Arrowhead Game Studios revealed something interesting about "Helldivers 2." The game actually has an old-fashioned game master controlling the messed-up war and progress of the story. The game is apparently a bit like his own personal sandbox, with Joel being able to give reinforcements to enemy factions, benefits to Helldivers (such as free stratagems), and even changes to where the Terminids and Automatons will attack.


This has led to Joel becoming equal parts a meme and god-like figure in the "Helldivers 2" community. Players will joke about his influence over the game, making memes and posts asking him for things, and even praying to or cursing him like a deity or demon when things are going poorly. Still, we know remarkably little about who Joel the human being is. We do not even know his last name.

Some players have even begun to speculate that Joel does not really exist, that he is a fictional figurehead for a team of developers doing the job of a game master. Either way, the long-term plans of those in charge of the war's progressions remains a mystery — one that can only be solved by continuing to play and push forward.


What will happen if a faction is defeated?

With the bugs now being contained by the TCS and the bots seemingly on their last legs and on the run, this has led to a new — and somewhat positive — mystery for "Helldivers 2" players to think about: What will happen when a faction is defeated? In the original "Helldivers," the galactic map was reset several times, both when all enemy factions were defeated and when Super Earth fell, signaling defeat for the Helldivers. Will "Helldivers 2" take a similar path, resetting progress whenever a singular war reaches its conclusion, starting what is effectively a new game for the entire playerbase? Or do the developers have more in mind?


Perhaps new factions will appear to replace them, creating new fronts and new threats to deal with? Maybe players will receive spectacular new weapons and rewards as a payoff for defeating a faction. Maybe Joel just will not let it happen, tuning the game so a particular faction is never defeated, and the cycle of push-and-pull that has defined the galactic war thus far will continue in perpetuity. The only way to find out, of course, is to win! So get out there and disassemble those bots!