The Unfinished Final Work, Beyond Aurora

Background - the end that never came

Within months of the successful release of Dark Rose in 1998, it was time to begin thinking about what to do next. Instead of simple map packs, it was suggested that the next project be a full blown total conversion with a large single player campaign, all new sounds, music, monsters, weapons, wall textures and of course network deathmatch arenas. With the simplicity of tools available at the time, it seemed a possibility.

A few rough ideas were passed around as to what the plot should be. The first idea was to have this new scenario be a sequel to the popular Atlantis game and be titled “Beyond The Aurora: Marathon Atlantis 2.” The game was to involve the Atlantis’ return to the solar system in the 26th century and subsequent alien invasion involving the return of the evil artificial intelligence, Doten. Popular opinion against the idea of a sequel was enough to stop it, but the title words, "Beyond the Aurora," were thought to be worth keeping. Further changes eventually shortened it to just Beyond Aurora. Originally, 20 to 40 single player campaign levels and 20 network deathmatch arenas were planned to have been created just for Aurora.

Motivational problems plagued the 7-year development of the game and ultimately doomed it. There were constant changes in staff and disagreements about everything from the storyline to whether the game should switch from using the Marathon Infinity engine to a Windows engine called Torque. Finally, in 2004, a new resolve was born and 6 months of work produced a proof-of-concept mini-campaign, a new promotional movie and a texture pack with more than 500 brand new monster and wall textures. It was expected that there would be more releases continuing the story in chapters but, sadly, shortly after the initial release, the motivation to continue was once again gone.

The reality of the situation was that Aurora took a back seat to the lives of its creators. There was less and less incentive to complete the project as time went on until finally the end had been realized. In April of 2006, the Atlantis Crew disbanded to focus on other things and officially put Beyond Aurora to rest. It joins a long list of other Marathon scenarios and total conversions that never made it to completion.

To honor the efforts of those who worked on Aurora, everything that was officially released will continue to be available here on for free.

Storyline - at the very edge of time and space

Subscribe for a moment to the theory that the universe is open and will expand for eternity. Billions and billions of years from now, all the stars in the universe will exhaust themselves. New ones will be born from the dust of the old, but there will be a steadily decreasing overall amount as time goes on eventually leaving the universe dark and cold.

In this possible distant future, an old expanding red giant star at the center of the Suthrine System in the last known galaxy is dying and within a million years of going supernova. The two planets inhabited by the humanoid species, Hundak, are mere years away from being uninhabitable because of the expanding star. A plan is formed to relocate the whole species to the uninhabited but habitable fifth planet circling the closest star, Cysis, more than 40 light years away.

Also in that system is Cysis 3, a planet whose inhabitants, the Lo’neine, are decedents of the winners of a land battle thousands of years in the past. In that battle, the peaceful species that originated on the planet were wiped out. The Lo’neine invaded and took the planet for themselves after their own planet’s resources were gone. In the many millennia since, the Lo’neine have become hospitable and forgotten their destructive past, welcoming the Hundak to the Cysis System.

Ambassadorial ships are deployed to Cysis 3 and aboard one is a warrior named Dawn. She has been chosen to pilot the lead ship. Upon arrival, they are immediately met with hostility and taken prisoner by the Lo'neine. Confused and separated, the crew of Dawn’s ship is executed one by one. Dawn and the few other protector warriors taken prisoner survive through the use of their engineered abilities. Dawn finally awakens in a quiet, dark cell, destined to escape and fight the evil and deceptive Lo'neine to free the Cysis system.

Project Milestones

   April 10 - Once again lacking leadership and direction as well as motivation, Beyond Aurora is officially retired, never to be finished... (End of Third Age)

   July 4 - Beyond Aurora 2004 promotional trailer movie released
   June 10 - Beyond Aurora Chapter 1 & Dusk Media Set released
   January - Beyond Aurora project restarted by original crew (Beginning of Third Age)

   Winter - Lacking solid leadership and direction, the "Beyond Aurora" project team dissolves (End of Second Age)

   October - "" domain purchased
   April 24 - "Marathon: Infinity" engine dropped in favor of Aleph One (Seperates First and Second Ages)

   November 8 - "Beyond the Aurora" becomes simply "Beyond Aurora" and moves to Bungie.Org's Big House Server
   July 16 - Original 1999 "Beyond the Aurora" trailer movie released

   November 4 - "Beyond the Aurora" Announced (Beginning of First Age)

Beyond Aurora Chapter 1
Uses the Dusk Texture Set

Requirements: Aleph One and the Dusk Texture Set
.zip format • Mac/PC • 1.0 MB
Dusk Texture Set

Requirements: Aleph One
.zip format • Mac/PC • 30.8 MB
Includes 500 new textures!
Beyond Aurora 1999 Trailer

Requirements: QuickTime
.mov format • Mac/PC • 5.6 MB
Beyond Aurora 2004 Trailer

Requirements: QuickTime
.mov format • Mac/PC • High: 8.0 MB • Low: 3.2 MB
Need Marathon Infinity? Get it free here:

Need Aleph One? Get it free here:

Where's the Infinity Version?

Beyond Aurora was always intended to use the new textures created specifically for it. These textures are in a package called the Dusk Texture Set and is available free on this website (Download link above) and is easy to install with Aleph One.

To properly see this version of the game, you must have Aleph One and the Dusk Texture set. Installation instructions for the new textures are included!

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