The World Factory

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What you are about to hear is an audio transcript of a video report received by the M.E.G. on August 7th, 2015.


[[Old, unknown jingle plays.]]

Distant male voice: Welcome to the Morning Evening — good Sunday to you! I'm your host, Human—

[[Robert E. Clyde interrupts the broadcast as the intro fades away.]]

Robert E. Clyde: Hello? Is this the M.E.G., perchance? I do hope this is the right channel… fishing this old radio out from the pile of scrap was an arduous endeavor.

My name is Robert E. Clyde. I doubt that you've heard my name, as this is the first time I've officially contacted you in any capacity. Regardless, I hope that you will listen to what I have to say. I've made quite the discovery, and it is paramount that this information is properly catalogued and distributed.

Now, if you will excuse me for a fraction of a moment… ah, these types of devices are rather inaccessible to someone who is not properly trained…

[[Mr. Clyde tinkers with the device for a moment, as sounds of shuffling and muffled curses echo throughout an unseen room, ending with a loud bang.]]

Ah, there we have it!

[[The screen of the recording, previously enveloped in darkness, flickers to life. Several chromatic bars flash on the screen, fading away to reveal Mr. Clyde holding the device at arm's length. The screen displays a slightly cracked interface, with granules of dust and grime creeping around the corners of the visualization.]]

I have come to call this place…

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The Replica

The World Factory

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Stairs here lead to nowhere, while doors hang inaccessible from high upon the walls. I'm not entirely sure the inhabitants know how they work.

[[Mr. Clyde rotates the camera around to show the environment he is in. A steady thrum of distant generators echoes throughout the area with a low, sonorous vibration.]]

Robert E. Clyde: Rather dreary, isn't it? I encountered such a place after an excursion to Level 5. I recall never opening a single door, although the last thing I do remember is entering the boiler room. This place is similar, but distinct enough that I can discern that it is quite different from my original destination. Time has eluded me once again, and thus I cannot ascertain the date on which I arrived or the date as of now. However, I do know that I have been able to subsist awhile purely on the benevolence of the inhuman beings that populate this ramshackle latticework of girder trusses and serpentine wires.

I am still not entirely sure if the inhabitants understand me, but I am quite sure they will be enthralled to have communication with other humans, even if it is one-sided. I will now show you around the premises — that is, the main, accessible parts. This factory sprawls over an unimaginable distance, with several rooms filled with various contraptions behind blocked doors and reinforced windows. I could fill a plethora of movies by documenting all there is to be seen in this factory, and so for pragmatic purposes I will only showcase the most important features of this establishment.

The strange layout and anomalous properties of this plane itself is due to the inexperience of those who constructed it. Stairs here lead to nowhere, while doors hang inaccessible from high upon the walls. I'm not entirely sure the inhabitants know how they work. It's run-down and ominous, of course, but the chilly reception one receives when first arriving begins to thaw the more one becomes acquainted with this peculiar little mini-universe. These oddities become likened to foibles and idiosyncrasies over time, so I apologize if this factory comes across as dangerous at first; I implore you not to leap to conclusions and not to send an emergency rescue team after me.

[[Mr. Clyde begins to walk heavily through the dim hallways, using the camera as an artificial light source to light his path. Despite the luminescence provided, the floor remains obscured. A heavy metallic clank is heard, and Mr. Clyde curses under his breath.]]

Robert E. Clyde: It's not dangerous, no… but I would be foolish to deny that it does have its vexing constituents as well…

In any way, we have arrived at our next destination and another section of the building. I have dubbed this area…

The Workshop

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It's the womb of reality, a great ugly dilapidated pit of wanton creation and unbridled inspiration.

Robert E. Clyde: Welcome to the Workshop! I must say I am mildly disappointed at the fact that my little friends are absent this time… but we can fix that. Before I do, however, I would very much like to expound upon the rationale behind the appellation I gave this place.

The Workshop is a twisting behemoth of conveyor belts and hanging pipes, belching furnaces and sprawling piles of scrap. It's a dysfunctional assembly line that serves as the main source of… Backrooms levels. Yes, the World Factory is where the magic happens. It's the womb of reality, a great ugly dilapidated pit of wanton creation and unbridled inspiration. And my little friends here — they call themselves the Almosts; it's the only word they seem to speak — they are the ignorant masterminds behind this inane purgatory we find ourselves in.

In the Workshop, realities and universes are fabricated like jigsaw puzzles. Along the conveyor belts they go — incandescent swirls of crimson skies, thunderous cumulonimbus. bubbles filled with the breath of life, a spoiled primordial soup. Up, up and away, forming inhuman humans, not-quite-dogs, and yellow halls, an imperfect copy of our society, a mirror with broken glass.

By no means is this process fully automated. While the inhabitants of this plane are similar to amalgams of miscellaneous industrial sundries, they have the capacity to ideate and shift this malleable reality into whatever so appeases them through these machines here. And what pleases them, you may ask? Humans. The echoes of ourselves on Earth are canorous to their aluminum ears. After all, it is upon our creations their very corporeal figures were modeled. They hold a deep, ingrained respect for us, and envision their own recreation of Earth coming out of the woodworks one day. However, based on the amount of planes we have discovered and documented that are just a little bit off, it seems they still have a long way to go before they can model us humans in all our faults and feats.

And of faults, there are plenty. Those areas we regard as particularly dangerous were not made with ill intent. They were made with enough respect to recognize the flaws even we ourselves find more convenient to deny on occasion. I can already hear the thought in your head — You want me to talk to them, to urge them, or even coerce them, into creating safer, more predictable realities for you. The answer to that is this: Without adversity, we would have never reached the pinnacle they see us at today. It is because we struggle that we are human. And who am I to limit their creativity?

[[Mr. Clyde traverses the Workshop, swinging the camera around to capture the vast rusted archways arcing overhead. Conveyor belts of all sizes and lengths stretch across all directions — even vertically. Though none of them are in motion, several luminescent orbs pierce the darkness, shelved on top of wooden drawers hung high on the lofty ceilings where no human could ever reach.]]

Robert E. Clyde: Come, I will show you all what the embryos of our very being look like. I hope you find it as marvelous as I do.

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The beginning framework of an element of reality. Inside these spherical containers, everything is made, from abandoned cities to lavish hotels.

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These orbs are placed on the conveyor belts, upon which fantastical creations, the fluorescent, colorful essence of life, will be placed inside.

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Each swirl of color you see here is something unique and new — a dazzling sunset, an endemic entity… there is no limit to what can be produced here. Except… humans themselves.

Robert E. Clyde: Now that you have seen what our new home is comprised of, it is time for you to see exactly what inspires these messy constructions of endless hallways, rooms, and more.

The Study

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"Around us are bookshelves upon bookshelves of notes, transcribed stories, and designs. There are countless books chock-full of research on the human race. On Earth. Including information we have long since lost to time."

[[Mr. Clyde, with his free hand, pulls out a dusty book from one of the shelves as he enters through a brass door. He approaches a mahogany table and sets the camera down, placing the book on the table and opening it up.]]

[[The book is full of diagrams. Thousands of sketches, layouts, and designs fitted over crosshatched grids fill every inch of available space. There is writing that is vaguely reminiscent of some language, but the symbols are foreign to the M.E.G.]]

Robert E. Clyde: The Study is where these precious microcosm worlds are polished and perfected. Around us are bookshelves upon bookshelves of notes, transcribed stories, and designs. There are countless books chock-full of research on the human race. On Earth. Including information we have long since lost to time. Here, the Almosts view their detailed notes on every part of human existence. They know enough about our machinery to reproduce it to the efficacy of this "factory" here. However, because they cannot read any of our languages, it does seem that the actual purpose and inner workings of many of our more complicated inventions — for example, computers — remain a mystery to them despite their painstaking, meticulous observations.

Now, you may be wondering how exactly they procure this information. Are they invisible omnipresent beings that spy on your every movement? No, that is simply not the case. All information derived here comes from the most astounding and poignant object in the entire factory. The Replica.

[[Mr. Clyde picks the camera back up and closes the book, which causes a considerable amount of dust to fall out and spread across the table. He picks the book back up and stores in on the shelf. Turning the camera, he comes across a bronze-coated massive doorway, held ajar by a lone metallic doorstopper. In between the metal gates is a gargantuan room, with a ceiling stretching high into the blackness, larger than even the Workshop.]]

The Replica

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"It's an amazing thought that my lost and left-behind family inhabit an area that, to me, is no larger than my hand. If only we could see each other one more time through the looking glass."

[[An enormous object comes into view, hanging suspended by unknown means above the plated floor. It rotates slowly, with whisking clouds above deep blue oceans. Half of it is cloaked in light, revealing contours, sprawling terrain, and emerald green forests, and half of it is cloaked in shadow, revealing dazzling city lights twinkling like artificial stars against a backdrop of smoky grey clouds and black terrain.]]

Robert E. Clyde: Every time I visit this place, I always get a tear in my eye. I'm from London, you see. It is a little too high up to view properly from here, but occasionally I do take a ladder and climb up to reminisce about the tiny little island that I used to call home. It's an amazing thought that my lost and left-behind family inhabit an area that, to me, is no larger than my hand. If only we could see each other one more time through the looking glass.

I cannot help but wonder if this is really a replica as the Almosts call it, or if it truly is the real thing. I do have my doubts, as all of the endless and vast planes of the Backrooms start out here as tiny orbs I can hold in my hands. I do not dare touch it, however, in the event that is not the case. If you do decide to enter this place, I implore you to think before touching anything here, as the glassy surfaces of the orbs are most likely fragile, and interfering with the creative process could have grave effects on reality itself.

Speaking of the creative process, this is the final step in the birth of new worlds. Here, in this room, I've observed the Almosts comparing their new-fangled worlds to the classic Earth, with all of its inhabitants. It appears they do one last review, ensuring everything is in order (though they often don't end up all too similar to a habitable Earth) and finally send the world out through this chute here.

[[Mr. Clyde rotates the camera, shifting the focus from the large Earth replica to the outline of a large chute in the back wall of the room.]]

What is behind this chute? Well, I have had the privilege of getting a small glimpse at what lies inside of it. While I couldn't see any discernible features of substance, I did notice a strange blue light.

Now that we've seen the main, traversable parts of this massive conglomerate, I think it is time to meet the artists, scientists, and engineers behind what we call the Backrooms. Follow me, and I will end our journey here…

[[Mr. Clyde walks into a bare room with empty walls and flooring. There are no features of note in this room besides a single metal chair, bathed in light from a small rectangular gap in the ceiling.]]

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[[Mr. Clyde seats himself in the chair and holds the camera up in front of him, facing the wall.]]

[[Immediately upon seating himself, the wall begins to shift as several hidden compartments flip open. Panes of metal rotate outwards like doors as the Almosts jump down. Mr. Clyde focuses the camera as they approach the man from all sides, crowding around the chair. After a second or two, they become close enough to enter the camera's focus.]]

[[The Almosts are rather short creatures, though many of them have variegated silhouettes. Each one is comprised of a multitude of various sundry mechanical parts and everyday appliances, such as refrigerators, cogs, levers, ovens, vacuum cleaners, safes, air conditioners, and more. They move with a purpose and a clunky sort of grace. It is evident that they have adapted to moving with their haphazardly constructed, unwieldy bodies. One feature they all share is a functioning face, with a mouth, nose, ears, and eyes, comprised of miniscule devices — LED lights, buttons, light switches, nuts, bolts, and the occasional funnel.]]

Robert E. Clyde: I don't think they quite understand the function of a camera or a radio, but they do have an insatiable curiosity. I think that… I will stay here a while, and sing them a little song. Wouldn't that be quaint?

[[The Almosts seat themselves in concentric circles around Mr. Clyde, who remains seated in his chair. He directs the camera around to view the faces of dozens and dozens of the amalgam automations before him.]]

As I stated previously, they cannot understand human language, but I have a nagging suspicion that they veritably enjoy the sound of human song. A wonderful thing, music is. A perfect way to start a long day of work on new worlds and a new future, I suppose. I wonder what kind of universes we'll make together today, hmm? What do you all think?

[[The Almosts stare up at Mr. Clyde with unblinking, motionless eyes, and begin a chorus.]]

Almosts: Almost, almost…

Robert E. Clyde: Well then, if there are no complaints… I will begin.

End Transmission


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