Imagine an endless corridor. Fluorescent lights flicker vaguely against dirty yellow walls. The doorway leads to an empty room or goes around itself. You are alone, forgotten in a nightmare, and something is watching over you.
Welcome to The Backrooms.
Your childhood is Sfogs (now Hunzai (Opens in a new tab)) Also Creepypasta.com (Opens in a new tab), Then the Backrooms phenomenon could be just above your alley.That’s what I came across while browsing Liminity space (Opens in a new tab) Subreddit sees users posting images of eerie nostalgic abandoned spaces.
Scrolling back to the decade of searching the web for ghost stories and urban legends, I had to dive into an unknown world. The image seems to capture something unpleasant, and no one can identify it. So, partly from morbid curiosity, and partly to understand my emotions, I delved deeper into this phenomenon, with a particular focus on the back room.
The origin of The Backrooms
May 12, 2019. The image above was found on 4chan’s / x / board. Probably a photo taken in the abandoned section of the workplace on an anonymous poster. From there, The Backrooms began to gain momentum and diverge into a sub-genre of airy nostalgic liminary spaces that had paved the way for Internet aesthetics since 2010.
Soon, a central idea emerged around some Already established game term (Opens in a new tab)In which you mistakenly’noclip (Opens in a new tab)‘From reality, you will end up in the back room.that is Some creepypasta (Opens in a new tab)But the prominent Youtuber Kane Pixel has started posting I found a footage video in the back room (Opens in a new tab)The trend snowballs into a giant crowdsourcing world-building venture, Thorough wiki (Opens in a new tab) start up.
Lore now consists of a cool theory of the person who created and controlled The Backrooms and its myriad levels, sub-levels, and “abnormal” levels of clusters.
Each level is unique and designed to evoke the fear, nostalgia and uncertainty that Backrooms is famous for.That wiki entry is Spooky (Opens in a new tab) To Totally confusing (Opens in a new tab)And there is also a parable of’entity (Opens in a new tab)‘If you don’t feel like sleeping tonight, explore.
It also includes a description of the groups that live in the various zones that Backrooms fans associate with. MEG (Major Explorer Group) (Opens in a new tab) It aims to “establish a government in the back room to help wanderers and end anarchy and turmoil.”
Backrooms content is appearing throughout the web and my favorite adaptation is Tiktoks with people zooming in on random locations in Google Earth (Opens in a new tab)Reveals the entrance to The Backrooms.
There are also some Backrooms games designed around this phenomenon, including games played in VR. But it gets a big no from me. VR horror isn’t for me, but I especially hate the idea of being completely immersed in this unstable, yellowish pain.
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The Backrooms, along with a comprehensive Liminal Space, are part of the eerie internet “aesthetics”.It’s a sister Dreamcore (Opens in a new tab) When Trauma core (Opens in a new tab) Both are movements that evoke this anxiety in their own way. While they focus (as the name implies) on dream landscapes and childhood trauma, the Backrooms aesthetic focuses on the fear of being lost and forgotten.
It does so by drawing these abandoned indoor boundary spaces, very lonely photographs that may be edited to contain strange entities.You might call it a modern view Greek mythology of the labyrinth (Opens in a new tab)A maze-like expression of human inner turmoil, with a roaming incarnation of our innermost horror.
For a more modern comparison, it’s similar in concept to Blame, the giant Echelesque setting of the old manga series! Tsutomu Nihei (Tsutomu Nihei Clark Ellison (Opens in a new tab)). Manga settings,’City (Opens in a new tab),’Is a huge megastructure that continues to be built as an AI approximation of what a city should look like, even after humanity has almost disappeared. The astronomical size and meaningless geometry of these empty rooms make them awe-inspiring and panicking at the same time.
Even the twisted non-Euclidean city of R’lyeh in the iconic Call of Cthulhu of HP Lovecraft, in that “a vast angle and a wide impression of the stone surface-the surface is too large to belong to anything”. It can be quoted as an inspiration for The Backrooms. Suitable for this earth. “
Context is important
Similar to The Backrooms, the above three examples intersect at some sort of uncanny valley.Not the eerie that exists in largely Human face of AI robot (Opens in a new tab)The Backrooms phenomenon, as well, takes our understanding as a place designed for human use and enjoyment, and removes almost all traces of humanity.
This omission of human interaction causes discomfort when many people browse the liminality space. Because there is no human interaction to give these spaces. environment They are just shells, architectural corpses separated from everything we are in. Even the slightest Boogeyman will not fail.
At least for me, The Backrooms is a horrifying view of the collective hivemind. Someone with this kind of eerie hope scattered around. “Let’s go crazy with each other and at the same time enjoy the fact that we aren’t really desperately lost,” he seems to tell me.