Ever wonder how those eerie creepypastas are made and what inspires people to write them? Pokemon's Lavender Town? Ben Drowned?
Active Worlds is a sandbox platform originally released in 1995 that's been nearly abandoned for the last fifteen years - and yet it's servers, as ghost towns, still live on to this day. This past week, however, the servers have seen a boost in activity following the cryptic events of a popular Youtube streamer. Vinny, owner and primary streamer of the Vinesauce channel, is known for playing weird games. Stories of the events have unfolded across the internet, placing Vinny at the center of it all.
Every creepypasta goes best with audio, so I have a recommendation if you are interested.
Active Worlds Myths (AWMyths) is just one of thousands of custom built virtual worlds within the game. Many areas you can access are a glitched, while others are relics of long-forgotten attempts at interactive environments. Not AWMyths, however. With sinister and macabre aesthetics, this place looks more like something taken straight out of The Elder Scrolls: Morrowind. The instance is loaded with fiery pits, forts, keeps, shrines, castles, and a town on the brink of becoming completely abandoned (much like the rest of the game). Blood is in abundance, scattered about in such a way you'd find appropriate for a final battle in other games.
Vinny, along with his then six-thousand viewers, stumbled into this hellish world after about forty minutes of wandering. Before his arrival in AWMyths, he'd only spend a few moments in each world before having to return to the primary hub. But this one was different. There were no movement impairing glitches in this world.
He wandered around, taking in the creepy atmosphere while playing an audio track fitting for the adventure. He usually has an army of players from his stream ready to flood whatever game he finds himself in, but not this time. Only NPCs were there to greet him. Several of them standing eerily still - while others animated in a limited, jerky fashion.
He touched briefly on the state of old virtual worlds and how people who once invested so much time and passion into these games eventually abandon them, leaving all those memories behind. That old house you built in Ultima Online that still stands, with no visitors in over a decade. The first pet in Everquest - your companion throughout most of the adventure. That first character you created in World of Warcraft, still presumably saved in the old Tarren Mill. We had a podcast on older mmos, a tender yet nostalgic topic.
Once Vinny enters the goblin fort, things really get weird. Unable to leave via the main gate which has lost it's functionality, he wandered around until a chat message travels through the empty distance.
Hitomi Fujiko: Are you lost?
Vinny encounters an NPC by the name of Hitomi Fujiko. Hitomi has seemingly tracked him here and continues to question if he's lost. Approaching the conversation with an NPC as anyone would, he keeps his responses brief and simplistic. The conversation appeared to bear fruit, as the NPC Hitomi helps Vinny back outside by opening the once locked front gate.
Continuing to lead Vinny back toward town, something seemed off as the NPC began to be a bit too interactive for a game this old. The conversation started to take an chilling turn:
Hitomi Fujiko: I presume you are a human?
Vinesauce: i suppose so
Vinesauce: are you
Hitomi Fujiko: We are very wary of humans here Traveler..
Hitomi Fujiko: We, the proud elves..
Hitomi Fujiko: I will not report you, human..
And after they say their farewells...
Hitomi Fujiko: Hehehe...
Vinny, unsatisfied with the brief conclusion, followed and confronted the mysterious avatar. He wanted to know what the true intentions of it were. Hitomi, instead of answering, began to ponder his own existence.
Hitomi Fujiko: But this land..
Hitomi Fujiko: It is empty
Hitomi Fujiko: I am the only one left.
Vinesauce: Yes it is.
Hitomi Fujiko: You came here. But where did you come from?
Vinesauce: I came from the main area
Hitomi Fujiko: There can't be more than one wanderer of these empty lands
Vinesauce: I AM the only wanderer here.
Hitomi Fujiko: I am real
Hitomi Fujiko: I am real, aren't I?
Vinesauce: I dont know
Vinesauce: I dont know
Vinesauce: I dont KNOW
Hitomi Fujiko: Please tell me I exist
Vinesauce: I dont know if you exist
It was around this time that most onlookers began to think that Hitomi was in fact another player rather than an NPC. This didn't set anyone's mind at ease, however.
This twenty year old game's servers are by in large ghost towns aside from a couple of people chatting in the main hub. The chances of one of these few players having any idea about the streamer or his location seemed highly unlikely. Another noteworthy mention is that the login servers went down not long after Vinesauce went live, as many a stream viewer attempted to sign up at the same time. Nobody was getting in.
The tone was disturbing. And it wasn't getting better for Vinny.
Vinesauce: you are scaring me...
Hitomi Fujiko: I can't feel..
Hitomi Fujiko: I can't..
Hitomi Fujiko: Feel..
Hitomi Fujiko: I can't even feel pain..
Hitomi Fujiko: Can you feel pain?
Vinesauce: I feel fear.
Vinesauce: Right now.
As Hitomi kept walking forward, Vinny continued to back up. The trembling and uncertainty in Vinny's voice could be heard by all of his viewers. Was this some elaborate role-playing? An AI so intricately programmed, that it could react and contribute to basic conversation? A very good troll? Maybe one of his viewers got in before the crash and was messing with him?
Vinesauce: Are you not an NPC
Vinesauce: A computer
Hitomi Fujiko: Run.
Hitomi transformed into a beast at the close of that conversation. If Hitomi were a human player, then perhaps they were very experienced in Active Worlds - or maybe even an admin. Without having time to question it for himself, Vinny ran as ordered. When he came to a stop, Hitomi was nowhere to be found. This brought an ending to what would be one of the strangest experiences ever recorded on the Vinesauce Youtube channel.
There are several theories that have cropped up since the end of the stream. Some theorize it was simply a viewer who still had access to an old account of theirs. Some wonder if Hitomi was in fact an NPC or bot, programmed by a fanatic. Others vehement believe the whole thing was a marketing scheme designed to advertise Active Worlds to garner activity (which planned or not has worked). Maybe Vinny just wanted to cook up some notorious headline material for the lime light? Or maybe it's a ghost of an old player who died long ago - awaiting new travelers to prove its existence to. The only thing that can be said for sure is that this event has stirred the minds of many.
As Vinny began packing up to end his stream, he noticed he was still being followed. It was Hitomi. Seeking closure, Vinny confronted Hitomi inside of a deserted house:
Vinesauce: Tell me true.
Vinesauce: Are you of flesh and blood
Vinesauce: Or are you programmed to tell me these things.
Hitomi Fujiko: I am an ancient person. I was once a ruler of these lands.
Vinesauce: what happened to them.
Vinesauce: why are they empty
Hitomi Fujiko: You happened.
Vinesauce: I resent that
Hitomi Fujiko: You came here..
Vinesauce: And I resent you.
Hitomi Fujiko: And they disappeared.
Vinesauce: You should have left me to die with the orcs.
Hitomi Fujiko: You killed all those innocent people.
Vinesauce: I killed no one.
Vinesauce: I will leave you now forever
Hitomi Fujiko: But even still. You are innocent.
Vinesauce: and you will never have anyone to toy with again
Hitomi Fujiko: I'm sorry traveler...
Vinesauce: you will rule these empty lands for eternity
Hitomi Fujiko: I am sorry..
Hitomi blamed Vinny for the world being empty - as if he was the one that caused the downfall of the world's populace. The irony sets in when you realize his stream and viewers initially crashed the server.
Hitomi Fujiko: Goodbye.
And then finally, the ball drops.
Hitomi Fujiko: Vinny
Vinesauce: WHAT THE F***
After saying Vinny's name - which had not been communicated at all up to this point - Hitomi once again vanished.
Some users at the Vinesauce subreddit have found a website for Hitomi Fujiko. There are many clues that lead viewers around what could be an ARG, but it all seems to point to the date of 04/06/16. As of the time of this writing, that is only a few days away.
A lot of curious people have flipped tables to figure out what's going on, and in the past few days the enigma has come to a solution. All online profiles connected to the Actice Worlds have gender assignments, and many people claiming to know Hitomi have come forth with information pointing to a female player. This player used to be quite active, and quite the troll - not to mention a long resume in roleplay. It is now believed that she logged in when Vinny began to play with the sole intent to mess with his head.
Another user on YouTube, Dontpickmelast101 has recently added a video of himself going to AWMyths and encountering Hitomi. It would be interesting to see what the 'True Power' is.
Was it really all an elaborate hoax? Is the date 04/06/16 important? While you ask yourself these questions, you can check out Vinesauce here on there official site, hit up their YouTube, and watch this mysterious series of events unfold for yourself below!