Level 368

rating: +15+x



To be whole is to be free of material desires.



SURVIVAL DIFFICULTY:

Class 3

  • Safe
  • Unsecure
  • Devoid of Life
368first.jpg

One of Level 368's rooms.

Description:

Level 368 is an eternally burning, sprawling complex of infinite wooden rooms, with their paint and much of their original panel walls being burned away or left in a husked, charred condition. The rooms themselves are simplistic in design; square shapes of random sizes, with the most deviations from this simplistic blueprint being occasional areas that jut out to make the portions into a compound, L-shaped room. The floor of Level 368 is litered both with wooden debris, and large, consistently active flames. The former of the two mostly comes from an unknown origin, as the minimal ceiling damage in most rooms dissuades belief that this rubble originates from structural weakening, and is instead just a natural feature of the level. Despite that, though, trace amounts of debris are believed to have come from the walls and ceiling, despite all the materials within this level being indestructable, regardless of their fragility.

The fire of Level 368, being the second main component to its floors, behaves in a unique and somewhat abnormal way. Although outwardly resembling typical fire, the fire, of this level in particular, does not harm wanderers. When wanderers walk across the flames, the most individuals will feel is a smooth, almost soothing sensation wherever the flames afflict. This varies depending on the height of the individual, though flames usually don’t reach past a wanderer’s legs. Staying within the fire long-term has proven no adverse affects, even when the fire is met with direct skin. Whilst the reasoning for this is completely unknown—although the other abnormal effects it has leads opinions to believe that the "fire" is just an anomalous substance that resembles the aforementioned material—the effect itself means that travel across Level 368 is incredibly easy, so long as individuals don't trip on the loose and imperishable debris.

Another anomalous effect of Level 368's fire is the fact that it does not create smoke, nor does it even appear to use oxygen. As evident within photos, smoke, ash and cinder are not created, which greatly assists with visibility, as without it the entire level would—realistically speaking—be covered from floor to ceiling in toxic smoke. The lack of created ash, however, has been known to cause less grip when attempting to walk, which has subsequently lead to a higher recorded number of trips whenever explorations of the level are undergone. Because Level 368's fire does not appear to use nor need oxygen, possibly being one of the factors behind its lack of smoke, no form of breathing equipment is required before entering, even if individuals in the past have seen it fit to require such tools before entering. It is entirely possible that the fire instead functions similar to plants, where CO2 is taken in from humans, or possibly any CO2 from the air of Level 368 itself, and turns it back into breathable oxygen.

368open.jpg

A room filled with space and engulfed in flames.

Whilst the fire of Level 368 does not harm any form of wanderers, many different items that are brought into the level are, for reasons unknown, affected by the flames. If brought to the level, they will subsequently burn until nothing remains of the item. This process does not appear to make smoke, and nor does these fires spread from the afflicted object to any wanderer, as the flames of burning items operate the exact same as the level's natural infernos. It is unknown if there is a specific pattern to what objects get destroyed and what do not. However, key items on a person such as clothing, basic foods, useful items (such as stationary or mechanical tools), and certain sentimental objects are not afflicted by this odd effect. It is unknown what possessions are affected by this function. Regardless, some items may burn even if they fit the criteria above.

Despite the level being infinite, or at the very least heavily theorised to be, certain looping design patterns within rooms (such as the damage patterns on walls, shapes of small clusters of rooms, and even debris patterns) have been witnessed. It is believed that Level 368 may loop its designs, with the theory for this being that the level only has a select set of room designs to fit within its infinite space, which inevitably causes patterns to emerge. However, these aforementioned patterns do not have specific sequences in which they appear, and seem to only happen at random areas.

Even though the fire does not inherently burn away any of the levels materials, it still emits constant crackles as if it does. This sound, despite how inescapable it is, is often described as somewhat soothing, with its frequency being at a Hz level that is naturally peaceful and serene to the human ear. Whilst it's not an effect the level actively inflicts upon people, various individuals have cited that the noise is particularly nostalgic to them. This effect oftentimes makes wanderers remember memories and events from their past, which are more often than not described to be pleasant ones.

368burn.jpg

A haphazard array of debris and fire.

Entities:

There are no entities present within Level 368. As well as this, direct contact between wanderers has also been witnessed to be impossible, most likely due to the infinite size of the level itself placing wanderers at relatively infinite orbits between one another.

Bases, Outposts and Communities:

Due to not a single recorded interaction between two individuals on this level, setting up any kind of habitation is impossible, especially considering the lack of any foodstuffs or even water. Compounding this, moving any kind of building materials or general equipment into the levelf is believed to be impossible—albeit currently untested—due to the fact that the flames would most likely set either of the above items ablaze.

Additional Information:

People who have come and gone through Level 368 are often self-described as feeling humbled or bettered by having gone through it. This effect is particularly common in those who have had certain objects be lost to the flames, and those who were self-described as overly materialistic or self-absorbed. Upon exiting the level, previous desires for money—should the group they live within contain such a thing—large abodes, items or goals they greatly desired but could not realistically achieve, or even the wish to return home had been lost. Instead, these individuals felt more attached to what they already had, and a select few even began to trim out certain things from their own life to live a different and more unpretentious life. These people have often describe the change in attitude being as though their "unnecessary desires were burned away", however it is unknown if this is a literal or metaphorical interpretation of how their change in mental state operates.

Entrances And Exits:

368door.jpg

A door struck permanently ablaze.

Entrances:

  • Being struck by lava during a volcanic bomb in Level 42 can cause one to spontaniously end up on Level 368;
  • Finding an oddly placed, upright door in Level 48 will go to Level 368 if opened;
  • A wooden door with a hot metal handle on Level 146 will lead to this level.

Exits:

  • Entering areas that look to be open, outdoor spaces will actually lead to Level 73;
  • Using any stairways within Level 368 will cause one to noclip through them, and promply appear on Level 92;
  • Basking within the light of rare, randomly occuring red spotlights will eventually cause one to appear in Level 940.

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