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|How to enter Out of Bounds, keeping North or South direction.|
Blackness is a visual effect found Out of Bounds in every level of Journey. Entering Blackness results in the screen going completely black except for companion marker (glowing edge) if one is present, and environment overlays such as frosty edges in Snow.
How to get it
Blackness exists Out of Bounds on every level on all platforms and is easy to reach.
Each level has two commonly accessible Blackness areas: a "North" Blackness and a "South" Blackness. To reach these, all you need to do is walk far enough South or North whilst OOB. How far depends on the level: the closest Blackness is in the Tower level, the furthest in Sunken City.
The "edge of Blackness" that you reach can be conceptualised as an endless wall going in the East-West direction; if you step past that wall everything turns black. Blackness only occurs in those specific locations (beyond the edge either too far North, or too far South), so tracing back a few steps will bring you to the "normal" world again.
It does not exist!
Several people investigated, if there is Blackness on the other sides. It was thought, that its maybe just very far away.
Several times, people thought they found East/West Blackness, though when travelling West for a long time a Wayfarer would gradually drift North and hit the North Blackness.
Warning about Crash Zones, which exist on the South-West.
By using external tools it was tested how far the player can go towards West or East (on PC version). Going very far away from the map causes certain graphical glitches to occur.
It takes about 50 minutes of walking to experience minor bugs (flickering, character shaking, very strong wind).
The player can go even further away from the level eventually reaching a crash zone. It is unlikely that anyone would ever reach it normally as it is located extremely far and going there by normal means would take hundreds of hours.
“ I've been East in SC for I think more than an hour (with super boost and DS), and nothing. All I noticed is things start to shake a bit everywhere (dust clouds, my scarf/clothes, some light things, and sand particles behave weird and don't look round anymore) also my head has black dots ^^ I also lost my robe after a while which has never happened to me under any circumstance (it's always the companion's robe that disappears normally) „ — NathanJ Wiki Discord, 2020-10-05
“ I teleported myself 10000 units east in CS and there was no blackness there.
Around 5000 units East or West (also up) textures start to flicker. The game starts to glitch intensely at around 500000 and crashes close to 2100000.
You can theoretically fly to 32bit integrer limit (unless the game crash first). If people reached that far in Minecraft after few months of walking then it should be also possible in Journey.
The question is: who would be mad enough to try that without hacks. „ — Paleologos, collected quotes
“ "i mean, it cant be an endless terrain of oob. thats not possible" - Ravingmadness
Endless in that the limit is probably the max signed 32bit integer: 2,147,483,647 units. Which is incredibly massive, and for most purposes, unending.
You simply couldn't fly that far out without hacks.
Of course there is also the factor that the game breaks in other ways first (as nathanj was noticing), so it's hard to say precisely where the practical limit is. „ — Naharie, Wiki Discord, 2020-05-10
Tips for Dealing with Blackness
- If your screen goes black, stop immediately. Turn your camera around, and if you are lucky, the camera will be able to swing out of the black while you are standing still.
- If you're trying to find the edge of the Blackness, turn your camera to face backwards, and walk toward camera, heading toward where you think the Blackness is. Since camera is placed in front of you, it will run into the black area first. When it does, stop moving and turn the camera behind you. With his method you’ll have much higher success in finding Blackness without getting trapped in it.
- Companion marker: If a Companion is connected, a glowing spot along the edge of the screen indicating the direction where the Companion is, is visible on all platforms. It helps to have a friend because the chirp glow can show you the exit, if the Companion is outside Blackness..
- Image: It illustrates pretty well how the Blackness is "designed". A straight line at the start and end of the OOB. (Thanks to Alex for these tips and the image.)
Further tip from qtzl3000:
- I found it safer to simply backtrack: don't touch the camera, just use your left stick to walk back a few steps and you'll be in the "normal world" again.
- The reason for not touching the camera (right stick) is that if you turn the camera around in Blackness you lose track of which direction is which on the left stick; if you don't touch the camera, back is still back i.e. towards you.
Blackness is also famous for the effect known as Ink Painting which occurs at the edge of Blackness if it's outside the sky box. By going in and out of Blackness (and thus forcing the game to render things on a black screen) one can create interesting patterns of black "ink" mixed with level views.
- Each level in Journey has an "environment map" that defines how the sky and fog colours change as you travel along the game world's Z-axis (from South to North). North/South Blackness occurs when you go past the last/first environment node because outside the defined range all visual control parameters are set to zero in the 3D space. Overlays like frost / mouse pointer are apparently merged on top of the 3D Renderer output (black screen) which is why they remain visible.
|“||I must down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by,
And the wheel's kick and the wind's song and the white sail's shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea's face, and a grey dawn breaking.
|“||Even though, Blackness takes away the view, you still got the sound of your feet running through the sand and the sound of your Chirp.
"And all I ask is a Companion and a shine to steer her by," altered poem quote: "Sea-Fever" by John Masefield.