The wooden board used to stick the files on.

The Investigation Files are the files that Max Caulfield and Chloe Price gather and use in their investigation of Rachel Amber's disappearance and Kate Marsh's viral video that leads them to reveal the Dark Room Conspiracy. They consist of David Madsen's secret surveillance files gathered during during his investigation at Blackwell, Frank Bowers's drug dealing logbook and several belongings of Nathan Prescott, in particular his secret phone. Principal Wells' files aid their interest in the topic.

Episode One - "Chrysalis"

Max can find a binder of David's secret files in his garage, which include pictures of Kate Marsh and a record of her actions throughout the week prior to the game's events. She can also discover that David installed hidden cameras inside the Madsen household.

David's record of Kate's actions reads as follows:

Kate M. follows same path to every class.

Overheard Kate and Dana W. talking about supplies for Vortex Club party. Drugs?
Watched Kate with her church group. She knows her bible.
Kate stays in bathroom longer than other students. Drugs?
Saw Kate helping Jefferson after class. Don't trust grown men with goatees.
Kate has kept to herself since Vortex Club party. Not even church. Drugs?

Tried to talk to Kate about the party. She got upset and ran. Guilty.

Episode Three - "Chaos Theory"

When Max and Chloe investigate Frank's RV, Max find a binder with photos and letters of Rachel behind a ventilation grid. She confronts Chloe with it causing her emotion breakdown.

Episode Four - "Dark Room"

Max investigates David's laptop and locker. They reveal that David has been behind Rachel for some time. David has a map for locations of security cameras for Blackwell Academy and Pan Estates. With the help of David's investigation, Frank's logbook and Nathan's phone, Max is able to track down the Prescott Barn, leading her and Chloe to the Dark Room and find out about the Dark Room victims.

Coordinates

A map of Arcadia Bay with the GPS coordinates[1]

The coordinates as a custom Google Maps overlay.[2]

Put together, the clues for all the vehicles enable to find the coordinates for the Two Whales Diner, the junkyard, the beach, Blackwell Academy, the old barn, the gas station and Chloe's house. Some of them also require creating a list of chronological events. All coordinates from the investigation correspond to the middle of Tillamook Bay, Oregon.

Location name Latitude Longitude
Blackwell Academy 45.535068 -123.906641
Two Whales Diner 45.542283 -123.929815
American Rust Junkyard 45.552381 123.925695
Prescott Barn 45.496698 -123.894625
Beach 45.547693 -123.935308
Prescott Estate 45.531822 -123.921232
Gas Station 45.528334 -123.931704

Trivia

  • The times and coordinates of David's location files indicate that Kate was drugged and kidnapped during a Vortex Club party on October 4, the week prior to the game's events. David's tracking files on Nathan's car show that he was at the Prescott Barn at 10:56pm that day.
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  • The license plates in the GPS sheets are references to several television series: TPFTHLK from Jefferson's car is a reference to Top of the Lake, SXFTNDR from Nathan's car references to Six Feet Under, the only one not being within the mystery genre; TWNPKS from Chloe's car making a reference to Twin Peaks, and TWLGHTZN being a reference from The Twilight Zone.
  • The icon of David's investigation files when obtained from the locker features an X in the top left corner. This could be a reference to The X-Files, a science fiction drama series. Max also refers to the sames files as David's X-Files in her diary.
  • All of the coordinates found in David's files are actually coordinates for various points in Tillamook Bay (the second largest bay on the Oregon coast). This allowed DONTNOD to use nondescript coordinates for fictitious locations.
  • It's possible that the Arcadia Bay is meant to represent the town of Bayocean, OR which was destroyed over the course of 40 years by man-made erosion, and existed where there is now water, which could be another possible explanation for the coordinates from David's file corresponding with the water area.

Gallery

David's Files

Files on Kate

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Files on Max

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Files on Rachel

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Security Files

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Principal Wells' Computer

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Investigation Board

Nathan's car has a damaged left light indicating his number plate to be "SXFTNDR".

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Nathan's Files

The third SMS describes Frank's delivery of drugs to a special location on the 4th that was used on Kate.

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Frank's Logbook

The 4th page and the 6th clue indicate Frank's drug delivery to Nathan.

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Locations

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References

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