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What Is The Backrooms And Where Is It Located In Real Life? The Viral Phenomenon Explained

The backrooms
The backrooms
By Philipp Kachalin

Published 22 days ago

Published 22 days ago

The Backrooms, an eerie liminal space one finds themselves in when they accidently noclip out of reality, is a viral creepypasta that has been inspiring creepy stories, video game levels and entire games, and even found footage videos since 2018.

Who created the bizarre universe, and where is The Backrooms located in real life? Find answers to these questions and more in our brief explainer.

What Is The Backrooms?

The Backrooms is a viral phenomenon that was launched by a creepypasta posted by an anonymous user on 4chan in 2019. The original creepypasta, based on a photograph of a non-descript empty building with yellow walls, carpet-covered floors, and dimly lit by fluorescent lights one might find in an office building, was accompanied by a description of a place one finds themselves in if they "noclip out of reality in the wrong areas"

You'll end up in the Backrooms, where it's nothing but the stink of old moist carpet, the madness of mono-yellow, the endless background noise of fluorescent lights at maximum hum-buzz, and approximately six hundred million square miles of randomly segmented empty rooms to be trapped in.
God save you if you hear something wandering around nearby, because it sure has heard you.

But the eerie area described in the creepypasta is just the start of a much larger story, no, an entire universe where uneasiness comes from the utter liminality of the space just as much as of the knowledge that something not of this world is wandering these endless rooms just out sight, and the accidental encounter will not end well for you.

Who Is The Original Author Of The Backrooms Story?

The original post was made on 4chan's /x/ (paranormal) board in 2019, but first, in 2018, a user posted the now famous photograph in a thread of cursed images.

A year later, in another thread, a user again shared the image, with another user penning the now-famous creepypasta.

The Backrooms In Memes And Video Games

As the post eventually went viral through multiple reposts across Reddit, Instagram, Facebook and X / Twitter, The Backrooms enamored fans of all things creepy to develop the budding universe by creating more stories, fan videos and, of course, endless memes about the accursed place just beyond the edge of reality.

The hype train surrounding The Backrooms did not stop there, as the place became an inspiration for video game levels and even entire video games, like BACKROOMS: The Complex Expedition and Escape the Backrooms.

But the influence of the famous creepypasta goes even beyond that as The Backrooms was one of the major drivers behind the popularization of liminal spaces in horror games, with The Exit 8 and POOLS being brilliant examples of the concept being implemented.

And in January 2022, young filmmaker Kane Parsons launched a 16-series short horror found footage series based on the creepypasta that found viral success on YouTube – so much that in 2023 A24 announced that the studio is working on a film adaptation of the series, with Parsons set to direct.

Where Is The Backrooms Located In Real Life?

In May 2024, after five years of attempts to locate the place where the famous photograph was taken, a user on X / Twitter wrote that the building where The Backrooms photograph was made has finally been found. An archived internet page from 2003 revealed that the photograph was made in an empty furniture store in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, which was recently acquired by the Oshkosh RC cars racing team and was in the process of being converted into a racing track.

The page pointed at the exact location of the building there The Backrooms photograph was made over 20 years ago: the building, which nowadays houses a HobbyTown retail store and a Revolution Raceway track, is located at 807 Oregon St. in Oshkosh, Wisconsin.

This is how the place where the photograph was taken looks today after the location was transformed into a racing track:

For the full history of The Backrooms, be sure to check out Know Your Meme's encyclopedia entry for more information.

Tags: the backrooms, explained, creepypasta, found footage, video game, location, explainer, guide, hobbytown, race track, rc racing,

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