October 2002 – Present
Second State beta: April – September 2002
Tag: Where is Ed Sobian?
Trailhead: Search4E
Register: Join Search4E
Gametype: Commercial, Subscription


Status: Hiatus.
Synopsis: Notes
Guide: by FrankenPaula
Chronology: Beth's Case Files
Discussion: DotConnectors Forum
Discussion: Search4e Newbie Forum
Discussion: ARGN Forum
Chat: #CHANNEL on

Interview with Lars Fontaine of True Crime Press

November 4, 2002
There are many questions surrounding the enigmatic disappearance of the elusive "E." It's an intriguing mystery that has roused the attention not only of the missing man's neighbor, but hundreds of online investigators that have organized into a group known as the Search4e, sponsored by True Crime Press, to track him down. Spearheaded by author James Pitt, and publicized by True Crime Press's Heather Hawkins, together they're attempting to find out just what happened to Ed Sobian a.k.a. Edward Sobiak a.k.a. Doctor Emil Schoffhausen—no wait, that was Dirty Rotten Scoundrels. No matter! The point is some people believe "E" was indeed a con man, while others postulate that he was involved in a darkly vast government conspiracy. more

Press Release

October 22, 2002
NEW YORK – A unique new entertainment vehicle – Search4e.orgâ„¢ – will go live on the Internet on November 1, 2002, it was announced today by noted entrepreneur Steve Massarsky, now president of S E C O N D S T A T Eâ„¢, which owns the property. The launch of the game will be supported by an extensive cross-promotion with Lycos, the online media company. more

ARG Player Unexpectedly Wins $2,200 Cash

September 9, 2002
The "Search4e" Alternate Reality Game, sometimes known as "Second State" or "Where is Ed Sobian?" had a surprise for some of its players recently. Unbeknownst to some of the folks who were playing, there was real treasure waiting for some of them, including antique coins valued at over $2,200. more


In September, 2001, James Pitt's jogging partner and neighbor, Ed Sobian, went missing. James, a true crime novelist, investigated and found evidence that Ed was not a chemical engineer at DuPont after all, but actually a hacker who went by many aliases.

Apparently Ed had discovered a number of web sites that were being used as a false front by members of some secret organization. There were signs that the secret organization might be connected to the Templar Knights, an order thought to be a relic of the King Arthur mythos. It seems Ed had stolen over $600,000 from this organization before he disappeared.

Did Ed disappear of his own accord, or was he kidnapped or worse? True Crime Press has begun the "search4e" to find out.