Errant Signal[edit | edit source]
Errant Signal is the sixth level of Hedon, being the first time the player gets dragged into a Void, a place that is not tangible and only exists through a certain character's subconscious perception. Since it is not real, the Void can only be explained through Zan's subjective views and presence.
She starts off by being teleported back into the Portal Cave. However, there is no sign of corruption around, any body left by her fight against the Cultists from just moments before. Upon further exploration, a ledger containing trade records shows the date of Rotation 509 Day 176, which is precisely 65 days before the date when she stepped into the portal. However, a journal found inside the Dream Outpost later bears the date of Day 233, dispelling any hypothesis of time travel to a specific date.
Return to the Mining Outpost[edit | edit source]
After leaving the Portal Cave, the protagonist is met with a strange twist of scenery. She appears to be back into the clearing leading to the Mining Outpost she had been to just days before. Instead of the mountain silhouette in the background, though, there is only a clear, starry sky.
Dream Outpost[edit | edit source]
The Mining Outpost looks the same at a first glance, but as Zan advances through, it shifts based upon her perception, memory and emotional filter with objects moving around, walls and doors closing behind and some areas being blocked off and replaced by an image drawn from her memory.
As she nears the entrance, the main gate lowers by itself, followed by puddles of blood forming on the floor in a step pattern, running for the door - a reflection of how Zan had imagined the outposts' inhabitants rushing outside just to be slain by Nithriel.
When the Halfblood steps down towards the reception room, an invisible pair of steps follows closely behind, giving her the feeling that she is not alone. The scenery is slightly rearranged, raising navigational challenges based upon her previous perception of the space.
The gate that would normally lead to the Green Cave now has a missing power source, requiring Zan to once again look for Power Cores.
The shutter leading to the Water Cave opens to simply reveal a static screen followed by Zan's brain relating the entire memory of that place to a shifting water texture.
When first looking for the crystal powered elevator's switch, the protagonist finds a patch of corruption growing over it.
Random elements like the crates blocking the bathroom or the mirror behind showing static also reflect Zan's state of mind, raising barriers and uncertainty in her way. When she turns away from the mirror, the bathroom door itself becomes what was reflected, acting as a portal that sends Zan into the tool closet.
She has no key top open it, however, but upon touching the door the same presence from before approaches it and opens it for her.
Once again, the Green Cave recounts her frustrations about climbing and navigating it, first by leading back to itself and secondly by having the floors begin to move up and down.
When Zan returns from it, she finds a note, most likely created by the other presence in her mind:
"Find yourself before she finds you."
Dream Mine Caves[edit | edit source]
The half Orc proceeds towards the area where she woke up, inside the Mine Cave. After taking the elevator down, her perception yet again shapes the layout, with caves looping endlessly or closing up behind her, as another reflection of her having been lost and confused about them in the first place.
As she finally reaches the starting area, she finds her own body laying on the floor.
If the player chooses to punch her projection, they will take damage back, eventually dying if they don't stop.
Upon touching it, her eyes open up, dragging her into another dimension of her mind, where Abhaoth contacts her directly for the first time.
Memories[edit | edit source]
Zan's vision goes dark for a moment, before tearing into a strange, unknown area where she meets Abhaoth's ominous shadow. She is surrounded by dark prisms which she is supposed to jump onto, but for this, she has to trick herself into thinking that the gravity is low. A skeptical player falling down will be faced with Abhaoth giggling and then placing them on the first platform, while someone who takes the leap of faith right away will be commended by the shadow.
Abhaoth teases and lures Zan forth much like she did in reality, but this time in an attempt to stimulate her mind and help her access her memories.
The Door[edit | edit source]
As her mind begins to adapt to the Void, Zan is presented with a door to her own memories. However, walking towards it causes it to dispel a perspective illusion, the path that had seemed easy to cross moments ago becoming longer and longer as Abhaoth comments about her memories trying to elude her.
If the player jumps into the void, Abhaoth will teleport them back, telling them that they have to play by her rules, this suggesting once again that Zan is not in full control of her mind.
Memory Halls[edit | edit source]
After passing Abhaoth's trials, Zan reaches the Memory Halls, filled with doors leading to her past life events. The mysterious woman urges her to find the right one, which causes the halls to expand, turn upside-down or lead into random rooms as she searches for the right door to open.
Battlefield[edit | edit source]
After finding the right door, Zan is finally put in front of the battlefield where she had fallen. In the distance, a dark citadel reminds of the dream she had while passing out in the vent shafts linking the Barracks to the Forge.
The Battlefield seems patched together from floating bits, the half Orc not being able to fully remember it. There are several ethereal Forge Elementals and Cerberi around, but they do not interact with the vision in any way. Some figments like the dead Iron Division bodies, the destroyed supply caravan, the small siege camp or the ruined siege machines portray a helpless vision of defeat.
Abhaoth uses this opportunity to explain what happened and attempts to further restore Zan's memory. Another projection of her body can be found, this time on the battlefield where she fell, along with her sisters and their allies. Abhaoth proceeds to tell Zan about the Iron Division's failure and Nithriel's plans, afterwards showing her how she used her powers to snatch the warrior from death's embrace.
Blackout Cave[edit | edit source]
As she watched over Zan, Abhaoth intervened upon the battlefield, blinking away with Zan's body and sending her as close as she could to Valc, where Nithriel was launching her invasion.
Critically wounded, the half Orc had to stumble forth through a series of caves which she recalls as a contrast between confusing, pitch darkness punctured by various guiding lights, eventually ending up in the cave in which she hurt her head and lost her memories.
The Escape[edit | edit source]
Once returned to where it began, Zan is by then fully instructed by Abhaoth on what needs to be done. However, it seems that Nithriel's psychic powers were also able to tap into her mind, most likely after sensing the shadow's connection, who quickly vanishes from sight.
With another intruder in her mind, Zan has to travel back through the outpost, which is now patrolled by Nithriel's blind clones that prove to be able to kill her when making contact. Just as she reaches the gate leading to the exit, though, Nithriel manages to find her and severs her connection to Abhaoth, taking the half Orc in a place similar to the Battlefield, except never seen by her before.
Three strange pillars reach towards the red sky and a giant object can be noticed afar, crashing towards them. Since Zan is taken by Nithriel into her own mind (or a middle ground where their minds mix), she is faced with a giant, almighty clone of the Warlock, with seemingly no way to defeat her. However, few figments of her own mind cause for the battleground to expand, with new weapons appearing as the protagonist gains confidence and gets in control of her brain, eventually banishing Nithriel from it.
After defeating the Elf, the sky turns back to serene blue and the beacons shut down, a dark portal emerging from the ground and allowing the warrior to get back in touch with reality, and wake up in the real place where the defective Grove Portal took her, which was on the side of mountain Valc.