The Rural Backroads

Rural Backroads

Level Classification

Difficulty 1/5 The terrain is passable and accommodating, both on foot and in vehicles (found inside).
Entity Count 1/5 There is only one known Entity in this Level.
Chaos Gradient 2/5 The Level is relatively stable and unchanging.
Basset-Frazier Index 1.33/5 This Level should be avoided at all costs. This document exists in hopes of conveying awareness so that an intrepid visitor to this Level may immediately exit upon recognition of it.



Image still, 1hr 24 min into a driving expedition.

The Rural Backroads are an expanse of infinite, mostly paved roads that wind through rural landscapes. Numerous buildings line each road, spaced at intervals of ~0.5—5 km, and can range from homesteads to shops.1

No daylight has been observed in the space, though some travelers have suggested a distant, pale glow; thought to be the moon (not ever identified) or the first dawning of a sunrise (has never arrived). Artificial light is a common sight, typically from street lamps, porch lights, or those within housing. The Level remains poorly lit and difficult to navigate without a light source. It is not advised to use flashlights, or anything that creates more light in this Level.


It is unclear if any communities exist in the Rural Backroads. These buildings have not been observed to contain any individuals, but show signs of being recently occupied. Indications include dirty dishes in sinks (crumbs and stains of food are fresh), mildly warm stovetops and furnaces, footprints (commonly marked by matter tracked in from outside), and other residual signs of domestic living.

The footprints discovered within houses, on shop porches, and in the terrain (dirt, snow, etc) all match. The outsole suggests an outdoor boot, matching US male size 10. Signature oddities in the track-print — such as a chip in the material in the upper right corner, and a faded logo at the heel — suggest that these tracks are made by a single individual or Entity. In times of heavy snowfall, these prints will be fresh.

Homes and shops that feature higher counts of boot prints will often have the contents of their rooms thrown around in a haphazard and disheveled manner. Such rooms contain splintered furniture, punctured walls, broken windows,2 and shredded fabrics. Teeth marks (human) have been found on the surfaces of such homes, such as door frames, banisters, stairs, and decking.

Entrances and Exits

Survivors of the Rural Backroads have reported that entering a home can sometimes cause brief flashes of unconsciousness, where from an individual will awake, and find themselves in other known Levels.3 Individuals enter the Rural Backroads in a similar fashion; doors in various other Levels will spontaneously open to this one. If a traveler immediately turns back through the door that brings them in before closing it, they can avoid the area entirely. Once entered into the Level however, and the door closed, the means of entrance is dissolved and becomes merely the door to a mundane building found along a road. At this point, the traveler will have to progress through the setting if an exit is to be found. Buildings in the Rural Backroads are often unlocked.

Additional Reading

While never confirmed or addressed on sufficient video footage, travelers who have visited the Rural Backroads claim to have seen a lone, male figure appearing throughout the Level. This figure is assumed to be an Entity. The Entity of the Rural Backroads is often seen just to the periphery of light sources in the space. All eyewitness reports and obtained images show the figure's silhouette, as if backlit. Light is reflected off the figure's head in a way described as strange. Some have reported this as a cowl that reflects light as a pale sheen, while others have suggested that this figure is two-dimensional, and insist that the sheen is pixelation. No other features of the Entity are discernible.

Additionally, trails of dark droplets can be found along the terrain. These are presumed to be blood, and begin at seemingly random places along the roads. The initial blotch is always larger, and each subsequent droplet reduces in size, though smaller stains can continue for significant lengths.4 When tracked, these trails terminate in buildings along the roads. No additional signs of bleeding, injury, or occupation have been located within these buildings, except occasionally for the aforementioned damage when footprint concentrations are high.

Captured Media


Eyewitness Testimony

I was driving. I found an old car, a 1964 Buick Skylark. I had gotten desperate from walking for so long, that's what got me in the car. I honestly didn't even hesitate once I saw it. The keys were in the folded-up, overhead mirror. I flipped it down, turned the engine, and she sputtered right on. The car looked as though it hadn't aged a day. Whoever owns it took really, really good care of it.

I'm driving down these rural lanes. Roads that extend and wind for a good while before spotting another, and that will have these sudden stretches of straight that seem to last too long. If it weren't for the occasional street lamp or porch light, I wouldn't have known I was even really getting anywhere. The land is too dark to make any meaningful reference points out of. Just a wall of trees or some vague expanses of what I guess is farmland.

As I turn a corner, I see this old wooden house. Junk just coating the yard. Can barely make out any actual lawn. You can tell the junk had been sitting there for a long time because it was rusted and had tall grass growing right around it, much taller than the rest.

The house is situated on the left of the road and at the end of the right curve, to where your headlights sweep over it just as the road straightens out. It has a dirt driveway and a trashcan at the end of it. And I can't be sure… after all that driving at night, the scenery really blends together in a sort of mesmerizing way… hypnotic kinda thing. So I can't be sure, but I could have sworn to God I saw a man running up the driveway. This was out of the corner of my eye too, I was keeping my eyes on the road. Always been a good, defensive driver. I was taught to anticipate other people doing something stupid way before they do it.

As I come out of the turn, and straighten my car, the driveway is directly on my left. Now that I'm done with the road, I take a second to entertain this little nagging sensation that there's this person to my left. I didn't slow down, so this happened in the span of… oh… must've been a second at most. But I glance over, and the figure is just outside my car door, running at full speed. The timing was just off to where he could have hit the car, I mean, jumped on it, or in front of it, or something. But my feet told me not to press on the breaks, and so I hadn't. He was so close to the car, he could have reached out and rattled the handle.

I keep driving as if nothing had happened. Call it a fight-or-flight response that demanded I stay perfectly calm. But as soon as I passed by that driveway, every hair on my body stood straight up. I look in the rear-view and no surprise couldn't see a damn thing… the tail lights weren't any help of course.

I drove around for what seemed like hours before I found the next building. It was a barber shop and a custom exhaust pipe shop, sort of a two-fer-one deal of some kind. I was still so scared, I got out of the car and ran as fast as I could to the barbershop door. Still had one of those spinny column things going out front. I got inside and sat in the dark there for a while. I kept looking out the window, as if expecting to see that figure. As if he followed me, running at full speed all the way, and he was going to show up any minute now. I couldn't stop asking myself why he was running towards the car. Maybe it was someone just taking out the trash. I mean, whatever it was, it certainly didn't seem to heed a car going about 30 mph, or care that it might hit it. I had to catch myself, I was breathing too loudly.

The shop was empty. They are always closed, even though their hours are usually listed somewhere out front. There were fresh hair clippings on the ground that hadn't been swept up, and the toilet in the bathroom in back was running. I walked there cautiously, thought I'd startle someone, but the toilet hadn't been used recently after all. It was just that thing where the chain in the tank gets tangled and so the flapper never sets right, so the water just keeps running and running until either you realize what is going on, or the company shuts it off 'cause the bill's now too high for you to pay. For some reason, I fixed it. I don't know why. Maybe something in me still felt like this was somebody's shop, had to be, and that I was helping by stopping that toilet.

But I wish I hadn't. I hadn't realized how comforting that little background noise was until it stopped. That's when I got real… aware. Like something else had heard it too. I turned off my flashlight. Maybe I didn't want to see whatever it was I thought might be close by. I hugged the walls until I re-entered the main room, the chairs lined up and barely lit by the headlamps of the car, still on.

I watch out the front window for a while. Eventually, I calm myself down. I find an open pack of cigarettes next to the big mirror and tell myself I needed to take some deep breaths. Sometimes, deep breaths filled with smoke are preferable to shallow ones of pure air. So, I fumble my revolver in my pocket, tell myself that whatever was here, if anything, was more afraid of me than I was of it. Especially with this baby. So, I… probably too boldly, was probably compensating for my own terror, but I flip on the light switch and the porch light comes on outside. I step out, go over to the car, get in, and use the old-fashioned cigarette lighter to get a nice ember going. After that, I step back out, walk up to the shop and stand in the light. I smoke the whole thing right there, as if daring something to see me and do something about it. Nothing does.

I got back into the Buick and drove off. Of course, the rest isn't really relevant, you know I eventually fell into another Level and met up with you and this fine group of Porters here. But… and again this could have easily been my mind playing tricks… I did what the better part of me was screaming at me not to do. As I was driving away, I looked back through the rear-view mirror. I saw the outline of a man in the barbershop window. Not sure if it was the same person.

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