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The First Generation: The Origins of the Lost Tapes and Neutral Perks
Quick note. Everything I'm about to say is pretty loose theory. There's no hard evidence nor confirmation to confirm this, but I still think it's an interesting idea regardless.
As of right now, there are eight survivor perks known as the "Lost Tapes" perks. Each of these perks includes a quote from an unknown voice, presumably a survivor. The eight perks include:
- Dark Sense ("Take it from an old-timer: Slow down, don't rush and try not to worry so much! The best way to beat him is to know how he thinks." — Murf, The Lost Tapes)
- Hope ("Buckle up, fuckos! Let's roll." — Nikki, The Lost Tapes)
- Kindred ("Be kind to one another. We're all in this together." — Sujan, The Lost Tapes)
- Lightweight ("Take it slow, he knows where you've been... just like I've always said: 'live slow and die old'" — Dylan, The Lost Tapes)
- No One Left Behind ("... yeah, no [BAD WORD]. But I believe we can outsmart and overthrow him if we work together. Don't be predictable and selfish!" — Clyde, The Lost Tapes)
- Plunderer's Instinct ("The pioneers used to loot these babies for hours." — Aizeyu, The Lost Tapes)
- Small Game ("Nope." — Andy, The Lost Tapes)
- Spine Chill ("There is a voice that doesn't use words. Listen.." — Sassy, The Lost Tapes)
Overall, there are 14 neutral survivor perks. Outside of the eight already mentioned, the six other perks are:
- Déjà vu
- Slippery Meat
- This Is Not Happening
- We'll Make It
So, overall, we have fourteen perks of unknown origin, and eight unknown characters that are all related in some way. That's everything we know for sure. Everything else is theory.
As of right now, there is only one way to get perks into the bloodweb outside of the neutral perks. They need to be obtained from leveling up survivors and buying their teachables. So where did the neutral perks come from then? The ones you can get from the start of the game, there's no real explanation for why they're there. It could just be passed off as gameplay reasons, but there's something else important to note. Quotes from these characters are in the descriptions of these perks, right? That's not unusual, because we've seen it before. For example, let's use We're Gonna Live Forever from David King. It's description reads:
- "Come on then, let's 'ave it! I don't give a [BAD WORD] pal." — David King
It all makes sense. David's quote belongs on David's perk. As in, the owner of the perk would be the one to have a quote put into its description. Do you see my point?
These neutral perks BELONG to the Lost Survivors. In theory, if they were in the game, you could buy Dark Sense off of Murf, Hope off of Nikki, etc..
In one way or another, these survivors got their perks into the global bloodweb. They probably would have had to do this by going through their own bloodwebs up until level 30, 35, and/or 40. These were veteran survivors, at least from a canonical perspective. They were around long before our current crew of nineteen. These survivors were the first generation. We simply play a later one.
This raises a couple more questions.
- What about the other six perks? Who do they belong to?
- Where is the first generation now?
We can answer the first one pretty reliably, but the second one leads to a few options. Let's lead with the first question, who do the six other neutral perks belong to?
This is pretty easy, because we get some good insight on the owners of the perks given the quotes and utility of their perks. I've made a quick description of each Lost Survivor as far as I can tell.
- Murf: Owner of Dark Sense. Old, relaxed, and likes to be ten steps ahead of his opponent. His idea of good strategy is to get in the enemy's head. He does this by paying close attention to the killer, studying them, and acting from there.
- Nikki: Owner of Hope. Bold, cocky, and headstrong. She bases herself off of confidence and willpower, and probably isn't afraid to put herself in a dangerous position. All she needs to do is give herself a little pick-me-up in said dangerous positions.
- Sujan: Owner of Kindred. Empathetic, caring, and a team player. They depend on their team, but also wants to give them that extra push in the right direction to get the job done.
- Dylan: Owner of Lightweight. Blunt, experienced, and vague. Dylan isn't afraid to slip into the shadows at a moment's notice, and is probably more interested in his own survival than that of his comrades.
- Clyde: Owner of No One Left Behind. Heroic with a strong moral code, willing to sacrifice himself for his team, and probably the most naive of the group. Clyde is someone who values his team over himself, and makes sure that they make it out in one piece, no matter the cost.
- Aizeyu: Owner of Plunderer's Instinct. Resourceful, knowledgeable, and a great scavenger. They use whatever is around them to get the job done, even if someone with an unskilled eye might look over it.
- Andy: Owner of Small Game. Whether he's funny or anxious, Andy is most interested in denying the killer of their advantages.
- Sassy: Owner of Spine Chill. Aware of her surroundings, resilient, and very accustomed to her new realm. Sassy uses her surroundings to gain information on the killer, and edges herself to push a bit harder in moments of stress.
So, given these characters' personalities, let's start pinning some perks to them.
- Déjà vu - (Aizeyu, Andy, or Sassy.)
- Premonition - (Murf, Dylan, Aizeyu, or Sassy.)
- Resilience - (Nikki or Sassy.)
- Slippery Meat - (Dylan or Andy.)
- This is Not Happening - (Nikki or Sassy.)
- We'll Make It - (Sujan or Clyde)
That still leaves us with one question, though. Where are they now? There are a few options. They could all have been wiped out in one way or another, they could still be in the entity's realm separate from the current 19, etc.. But there's one idea that I find most interesting.