Anterior Halls

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Jurisdiction 2/5 Territory not actively governed by any major company. Contains many Anterior-created entities, and is surrounded on 2 sides by both Anterior train routes. Few segments have been claimed by The Mausoleum Commune, where they have set up their base of operations.
Difficulty 3/5 Supplies and resources are readily available, although other factors decrease the survivability.
Entity Count 4/5 Large entity population present, said population being largely comprised of Anterior Abominations.
Chaos Gradient 3/5 Constantly changing space, be it size, or layout.
Basset-Frazier Index 3.333/5 Not hospitable for permanent habitation. Traveling the area is treacherous, but required for many.

Description

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fig 1.0 Anterior Halls

The Anterior Halls are a metaphorical roadblock. Present throughout are treacherous travels with features that actively hinder your chances of survival. It is imperative to any new entrant into the Metro Limspace System via the Anterior thresholds to know the specifics of the Anterior halls’ features and hazards.

For the most part, the halls feature layered walls and doors made of concrete, steel, iron, or other metals. Outside of these layers is an extremely dense material that permeates the entirety of the system in-between tunnels and areas. This material can barely be chipped at with even the most powerful tools available, making the creation of new rooms and tunnels not an option. The halls and rooms themselves share a few properties:

  • Rails running along the floors, presumably for manually-moved carts.
  • Very dim lights.
  • Reinforced features, such as heavy metal doors, multi-layered walls, thick pipes, and bulletproof glass when glass is present.

Many of the rooms and halls are designed similarly to storage rooms, electrical and boiler rooms, as well as large pipeworks. The majority of the rooms and hallways show too few details to discern purpose.

These rooms change in size and layout rapidly. Losing sight of an area will likely result in the area shifting. This makes the halls very chaotic, which can be an advantage or disadvantage to those attempting to travel through the Anterior Halls. It makes fleeing from aggressive entities a fairly straightforward process if you’re able to get out of sight or other sensory range.

While the entity count is a dangerous factor, the layout itself must also be taken into account. Following pipes to points in which water can be extracted is important, but be sure to know which pipes actually contain water.1 When under pursuit, narrow spaces can be used to exit or avoid the perception of entities. This is especially useful when a large enough Anterior Abomination is nearby, large to the point in which it cannot fit in said uncomfortably-thin spaces.

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fig 2.0 Waterworks

Many rooms are extremely hazardous to the point in which they could be considered "deathtraps." Many different details can indicate which rooms may be risky to enter. To start, avoid rooms with airtight doors, as if part of an airlock. Many of these doors close and open randomly, trapping unsuspecting wanderers in small rooms where they will eventually suffocate. If you’re able to see that the other side of these doors are not dead-ends, it is safe to enter. Due to the lack of circulation caused by air-tight doors cutting off individual chambers, areas may fluctuate in temperature, air pressure, and air contents drastically. A leak in a gas pipe can easily make large zones unlivable temporarily.

Apart from hazards, a large amount of supplies can be found. Scrap, resources, and tools may be found in rooms featuring machines, and supplies needed for survival are relatively common in storage rooms. Despite this, expect many storage rooms and crates to be empty or devoid of anything useful. The resources that can be found can still easily sustain a lone traveler or two.

Additionally, numerous pamphlets are littered around the halls, mostly located within stops along the Anterior train routes. These pamphlets contain tips and information regarding what to expect, and how to survive the harsh environment. The large pamphlets are an ongoing effort by the resistance in Hub 2 to save as many potential victims to the Anterior Transport Company as possible.

Survival Guide

Not all of the issued survival guides are the same, but the following section of the document includes what is usually transcribed onto the pamphlets before being placed in the optimal locations. Many different styles of pamphlets exist, mostly because it makes the liberation group in Hub 2 seem more genuine compared to the corporate-looking UOMT branding and advertisements plastered in as many places as they could muster.

Title / Front

*On the title page of each pamphlet is large flashy lettering, displaying words like “IMPORTANT” or “NOTICE.”*

Introduction / First Page

If you’re reading this, it’s likely you share the same fate as the writers of this pamphlet.
To answer your immediate question, you will likely not be able to return to the place you intended to travel to.

From your point of view and situation, it may be hard to trust any and all persons. Trust this pamphlet or not, it contains information vital to your immediate survival. We’ve compiled all we can for whoever this reaches within this pamphlet. What to avoid, what to find, what to expect from this place.

What To Expect / First Page

The most imperative information is regarding where you need to go, and where to find survival essentials. It is very likely that you are faced with two options: Go down the train tunnel, or go through the maze of halls away from the stop you are likely located at. If you’re already in a maze of confusing and dim hallways and rooms when this is found, you do not get to make that choice.

Going down the train tunnel is a risk. Trains don’t come through constantly, but frequent enough that a long trek might mean an encounter. Stick to the sides of the train tunnel. Unperishable food and water can be found. Pipes run along the tunnel, with occasional outlets. The halls are preferred over the tunnel, but the risk is there if you are willing to take it. If something finds you along the way, you’re done for.

The halls have their own hazards and resources. Like the train tunnels, nonperishable food can be found in storage rooms, and water through the waterworks and pipes within the area. Make sure that the outlet you choose to drink from is actually water. It should be marked, or it can be tested by actually opening the outlet. The differences between water and other substances should be obvious.

What To Find / Second Page

Your goal for survival is a large outpost, which can be easily recognized. If you see any amount of people above that of a lone wanderer, you are likely safe.

What To Avoid / Second Page

This large section is dedicated to the halls’ route. The tunnel is very straightforward, and all of what to expect has already been explained.

Entities, or creatures inhabit these halls. Sadly, substantial in-depth information cannot fit in this pamphlet. They all share the same trait of looking like monsters, or something you would see in a horror story/movie. They will pursue you on sight, but fortunately, the layout is on your side. Merely escaping out of sight of each other may save you, as the rooms themselves of the halls constantly change. Whatever tries to end you, running away is the safest option.

The layout’s rapid changing may be of benefit, but features of the layout itself are actively dangerous. You must be constantly moving to avoid the changes imposed by the area. Do not pass through thick, air-tight doors unless you have nowhere else to go. Do not go into lower levels or low-grounded areas. Any area susceptible to flooding carries a risk. If you experience difficulty breathing, vacate the location you are in immediately. Avoid pits, holes in the ground, and generally dilapidated areas.

Do not trust anything labelled with some sort of company logo or advertisement. Multiple companies drag people into this hellhole to take them away to unfavorable places. In this area you will not have to worry about them, but their existence in general is still important to note.

Note / Back Cover

Above all else, keep moving. You may be undergoing a terrifying experience, but you must think practically. Survive at all costs. If you’re reading this, we truly hope you make it to the other side.

The back may also feature flashy lettering as the front.

Posters

Strewn along stops along the Anterior routes, posters are plastered, featuring information about the halls’ flora and fauna. This isn’t practiced much anymore as the pamphlets are more durable, harder to dispose of when in a larger quantity, and convey more information. Posters would be ripped off of the walls, and other means of information obscured or damaged.

The Mausoleum Commune

This nuisance of a group is still in its infancy, its members wandering the halls for new arrivals still in shock. Although their exact location of operation has not been discovered, it is known that they lurk among the halls, waiting to convert people to their cause. They prey on the circumstances of the survivors of the Anterior Access threshold, convincing people that their imprisonment in a labyrinth of massive proportions is some sort of divine punishment.

Although their motives and end goals remain a blank spot in our records, their actions have put them wide out in the open. When pamphlets containing additional information regarding not trusting anyone you find in the halls were rolled out, they supposedly attempted to destroy every copy. Even the brave souls who take it upon themselves to guide victims to Hub 2 have been returning less and less. To the survivors of Hub 2 and whoever else may venture back into the Anterior Halls after their initial entry, trust no one.

Ecosystem

For so long this place has been left undisturbed, flora and fauna flourish here as a result of little human interaction. As if molded by the circumstances, it has adapted and overcame issues that plague these desolate halls. Indescribable horrors and colonies of plants and moss cohabit the area.

As for the fauna of the halls, most significant entities within the system inhabit the area. Abominations, and The Dusted all can be found. With a lot of time, unique entities have come into existence.

  • Anathemas

The halls are a brutal place even for its natural demons. These creatures, originally evolved from Abominations that adapted to the environment, have acquired an ability to shift reality itself. It is as if they’ve inherited the liminality of this dreadful place. Anathemas share a similar appearance to Anterior Abominations, usually being much larger, and self-modified to be more mobile or stronger. They bend, twist, and pass through surfaces to catch prey. May whatever you find sacred have mercy on you if one wants you dead.

  • Advanced Slime Molds

These entities seek not to harm people passing through, and are barely noticeable. These small globs go unnoticed, masking themselves from contact. They feed off of the corrosion built up in the area after so much time without maintenance. Attempts to bring them elsewhere to reap the benefits from their useful ability have failed due to their exfiltration skills and unwillingness to cooperate after being moved. Any equipment that is in the process of being lost to the hands of time may be saved if you hold it up to one.

Flora

  • Roots and Tubers

A plant somewhat similar to cassava can be found growing directly out of large, yet damaged pipes. Some of these plants naturally generate bark or other organic material to avoid breaking the pipes, ensuring a permanent stream of water. Avoid rooms with these hijacked pipes only if the room is dark. If the plants growing from the pipes die in any way, only a small disturbance will break the pipe, causing a flood.

  • Moss and Algae

Moss of many types coats the area, most of it inedible or lacking sufficient nutrients. In other areas, algae grows on the surface waters of flooded areas. These two organisms are not unique in any way, and do not differ too much from their baseline counterparts, despite having evolved to be more in-tune with the environment. Moss and algae are good markers for large sources of water. Water sources lacking them or other life may be contaminated.

Carpet Fungus, naturally found in other systems, has unnaturally found its way here. Avoid rooms with signs of the fungus at all costs.

Access

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The Anterior Halls are usually entered via the Anterior entryway into the system. Those who do not fall victim to The Destination end up here most of the time.

At multiple points, the adjacent tunnels/routes connect to the Anterior Halls via small stations most commonly referred to as stops. Despite the halls themselves constantly taking on different shapes and layouts, from an external point of view, the halls connect to two major routes on either side. These routes are the Anterior Main and Alternate routes.

In multiple locations, the Anterior Halls connect to Hub 2. It usually takes an extended period of time to find a point in which the outpost can be entered. Hub 2 has the appearance of a very large train station, and contains people. That is enough of a sign to survivors that they’ve reached the intended outpost. The area may also be entered from the second hub. Walking from the station, it does take a while for the anomalous features of the halls to set in, conveniently preventing accidental entry into the halls from Hub 2.

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