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|“||Our enemies are twitching and malicious corporate paranoiacs with resources you're too moral to imagine. You won't be the only target. Anyone you care about, your wife, your child, they'll be nothing to Murkoff but ways to hurt you.||„|
|~ Simon Peacock explains Murkoff's villainy|
Murkoff Corporation, also known as Murkoff Corp is an evil company which serves as the main antagonistic faction of the Outlast video game series.
Murkoff reopened the Mount Massive Asylum under the guise of a charitable organization in 2009, after CIA Director Richard Helms orders all MKULTRA files to be destroyed. It was experimenting on the insane inmates of the Asylum.
This caused the patients to grow stronger than the average human and cause havoc across the whole asylum and they were known as The Variants. Billy's mother was also in a lawsuit against Murkoff. Main founders of the Murkoff Corp were Alan Mathison Turing and Rudolf Gustav Wernicke. Murkoff also kept their workers from keeping in contact with their family and friends, because of the experiments they had done on the patients.
Issue at Spindletop
|“||We're not here to save anybody. The company you work for belongs to a company that belongs to a company that belongs to the Murkoff Corporation. Accidents and lawsuits raise Murkoff's insurance premiums, and unneccessary expense makes us sad...||„|
|~ The Pauls reveal themselves to the director of Spindletop.|
Founded in 2008, the Insurance Migitation Department is a branch of the Murkoff Company that specializes to minimize economic fallout in case of something going wrong. Its agents, Paul Marion and Pauline Glick, are thus tasked with saving Murkoff's interests and making sure the company does not lose more than it has to in order to remain functional.
The "Pauls", as they are called at Murkoff, are called to Spindletop, a Murkoff facility which was is supposed to help war veterans cope with PTSD, where three inmates have gruesomely been killed and ripped apart. In addition, all three corpses were missing their heads. Having arrived at Spindletop, the two make it clear to the Dr. Claymore, the chief psychiatrist, that they are only there in order to protect Murkoff's interest and reveal that the testimony of the director must be changed in order to do so. Claymore is not happy at all (and is also not part of the 'corrupt' part of Murkoff) and cannot be convinced to assist the Pauls in their work. He refuses to give them access to the files as this would breach doctor-patient-confidinality. The director also reveals that part of Spindletop's methods to help veterans cope with their memories are hypnosis and dream therapy. As the doctor cannot be convinced to help, the Pauls head to the surveillance room in order to get possible video evidence. The security Guard, Chris Walker, shows them footage of some of the therapy meetings but also informs the Pauls that the therapists don't know that they are being recorded. Walker, meanwhile, watches evey session live so that he can intervene if one of the patients suddenly attacks the therapists.
Walker shows the Pauls footage of the therapy sessions of Priscilla Clarke, Martin Bellmont and John Bowers, the three victims. He also shows them footage of another patient, Omar Abdulmalik, who tried to attack a therapist but was restrained in time by Walker. The Pauls receive a copy of the session footage in video and audio and then head off again to plan their next steps. Pauline also visits some of the relatives and offers them a lot of money if they refrain from a lawsuit. Once they return to Spindletop, they are informed that Dr. Claymore has been killed and is the fourth victim of the killer. When they head to the surveillance room to watch footage, they find all monitors smashed and deduce that Walker must be the killer. They head to his home, where they break into the house and find the heads of three victims located in cooler boxes, with one left for the head of Claymore. While they investigate, Walker returns home and attacks the agents. Walker grabs Glick and throws her through a window but she manages to grab her gun and shoot him through the chin. Although his chin is smashed, Walker follows her outside but Marion takes him down by driving his car into Walker. The unconscious Walker is collected by Murkoff and delivered to Mount Massive Asylum for testing. Meanwhile, the Pauls put Claymore's head in the last cooler and place the coolers in the house of Omar Abdulmalik, thus blaming him for the murders.
Security Breach at Mount Massive
|“||Make sure, then, [...] how important it is we weed out any employees who aren't, uh... true believers...||„|
|~ Jeremy Blaire to Pauline Glick.|
When Human Resource got an anonymous e-mail which detailed possible neglect in the Mount Massive Facility, the Insurance Migitation Department is sent to investigate whether the complaints are true or whether they are false claims. While officially, Murkoff policies protect any employee who files a complaint, unofficially they try to shame, blackmail or, in the most extreme cases, kill these employees if they threaten Murkoff. As they cannot track down the unknown source, they are forced to head to Mount Massive themselves. In the laboratory underneath Mount Massive, Pauline Glick meets Jeremy Blaire, Murkoff's Executive Vice President of Global Project Development. While the two talk, Blaire also shows Glick the progress they made on the now heavily-deformed Chris Walker. Blaire once more implores Glick to "weed out" any possible danger to Murkoff and their projects.
Their next stop at Mount Massive is Denise Haas, whom they ask about Murkoff's email-system and digital security. Haas informs them that anybody able to cover their tracks must have been from Corporate and directs them to Richard Trager, the head of Business Development at Mount Massive. Meetíng Trager, both agents are repulsed by his laisses faire attitude and his arrogant behaviour. Trager denies any involvement of his men in the email, claiming that none of them would profit from sending those mails. Both agents agree that something is off about Trager and Pauline tricks Trager, who has already displayed interest in her, by asking him out for dinner.
At Trager's flat, Trager offers her cocaine but Pauline denies. When Trager excuses himself for a moment, Pauline searches the room and finds a leaflet for an abortion clinic. Pauline later accepts a glass of alcohol but soon realizes that Trager has put something into her drink.
She forces him to drink the wine himself and then knocks him out and calls Marion to pick her up. The next day, the Pauls confront Denise Haas, whom they know to be pregnant. Haas reveals that Trager raped her and that he threatened to fire her should she talk. He also wanted to force her to abort the child but Denise wanted to keep it but would not be able to afford it with the money from her job. To solve the problem, Denise sent the email in order to have Murkoff find out about her story. The Pauls work out a severance package for Michelle in exchange for her silence and Michelle is replaced by her assistant, Waylon Park. However, when the three head to Human Resources to shred the files and to remove Denise's security clearance, Trager suddenly storms into the room and grabs a pair of scissors from a nearby table. To destroy all evidence, Trager violently stabs Denise into the stomach, seemingly killing the fetus inside her. He is immediately tackled to the floor by Marion and in the struggle, his hair gets caught in the shredder and is ripped from his head.
Denise is rushed to a hospital, where it is found out that she was never pregnant but was suffering from a psychosomatic pregnancy. Investigating the matter, it is realized that one in three women at Mount Massive suffered from phantom symptoms of pregnancy as well. This was deemed to be a side effect from the experiments carried out at Mount Massive's underground lab. As this means that almost every woman in Mount Massive would have grounds for a multi-million dollar lawsuit, all women at Mount Massive were relocated to other Murkoff facilities. This action, while unusual, was preferred, as keeping the women at Mount Massive would mean that the Walrider Project would have to be stopped. Jeremy Blaire showed Pauline Glick that the project was so incredibly profitable that shutting it down was not an alternative.
As for Trager, he was brought down to the Mount Massive underground lab where he was strapped to the Morphogenic Engine while Glick and Blaire sadistically watched.
Mount Massive Catastrophe
|“||They killed us... They got out, the Variants... You can't fight them, you need to hide! [...] You have to get the f-ck out of this... terrible place...||„|
|~ The last living Murkoff soldier warns Miles Upshur about the incident.|
Eventually, a riot presumably started by the unleashing of the Walrider went up at Mount Massive. The riot could not be contained and the inmates freed themselves and turned against the Murkoff personnel and the doctors. Within hours, the Variants took over the asylum, slaughtering anyone they could find.
Around the same time, investigative journalist Miles Upshur, who has been informed about inhumane experiments at Murkoff by the whistleblower Waylon Park, arrives at the asylum to investigate and is thus able to witness the horror of Mount Massive first hand. He is not aware that moments after sending the email, Park has been captured by Murkoff and been involuntarily committed to the asylum. Murkoff then started experimenting on Park, exposing him to the morphogenic engine.
Miles eventually arrives in the lab area underneath Mount Massive where he meets Wernicke, who is artificially kept alive by the Walrider's host Billy Hope. Wernicke tells Miles to turn off Billy's life functions in order to defeat the Walrider but when Miles does so, the Walrider uses Miles as a new host. When Wernicke later arrives with a group of Murkoff mercenaries, intending to kill Miles to silence him, they witness the Walrider emerging from Miles. Presumably, Wernicke and his men are slaughtered by the Walrider.
While the patients roam the asylum, the remaining scientists and executives, most notably Jeremy Blaire, still attempt to prevent any news about the incident from leaving the asylum, believing that the damage can still be contained. When Waylon Park tries to bring in outside help by calling the police from the remaining working radio station in the asylum, Blaire ambushes him and smashes the radio. He flees when one of the Variants appears. Blaire is later wounded during his time in the asylum and, although he makes it back to the entry hall, breaks down near the exit. When Park turns up much later, Blaire attacks him once more but is attacked and slaughtered by a vengeful Walrider. Park successfully flees Mount Massive and with help from Simon Peacock, another Whistleblower, manages to upload the video footage he made during his time in the asylum to the internet, gravely incriminating Murkoff.
Furthermore, the Walrider escaped Mount Massive as well.
Destroying the Walrider
|“||The word "Walrider" unleashed the full monetized wraith of the Murkoff Corporation.||„|
|~ Pauline Glick|
After the catastrophe at Mount Massive and the escape of the Walrider, Murkoff and the Insurance Migitation Department immediately started cleaning up the damage. While observing the chaos themselves, the two stumble over the liquidized corpse of Jeremy Blaire. While Marion seems to be affected by the horrific sight, Glick merely states coldly that Blaire seems to have lost weight. After the situation has been analyzed, the Pauls come to the conclusion that the Mount Massive catastrophe ended with 100% casualties and that the cleanup was thus under control. In addition, the servers had already been wiped clean.
However, after finding out that Waylon Park had fled the asylum and had made contact with Peacock and uploaded evidence, it was the main objective of the Pauls to find Park. While Miles Upshur had been a suspect as well, they eventually found out that there was a connection between Upshur, who had been "neutralized" in the Mount Massive Incident, and Billy Hope who was the first avatar of the Walrider. The Pauls try to track down Park and find out that he left the asylum in Upshur's jeep, eventually finding it abandoned near a bus station. Although this at first disheartens the team, as Park could have gone anywhere, they are informed soon after that Miles Upshur's bank account has been accessed near the town where Billy Hope's mother lived. They drive to Nathrop to question the mother but Tiffany Hope denies ever having met Miles. They learn nothing from Tiffany but while they leave, they are being watched by both Miles' and Hope's Walrider forms, the latter still being alive through Miles. As both agree that Tiffany is hiding something, they dispatch a Murkoff agent to watch her trailer.
Believing the situation with Tiffany to be under control, the Pauls then consider how to deal with Waylon Park. As they cannot stop him from posting online, they discredit him instead by borrowing his identity and writing loads of long, back-dated, crazy conspiracy theories.
Meanwhile, the Murkoff agent watching Tiffany's trailer watches as her boyfriend arrives. After the man slaps her and leaves her house again and drives off with his truck, he is suddenly attacked by a vengeful Walrider who witnessed the man striking his mom. When the man's truck crashes, the agent gets closer to investigate, only to find the Walrider inside the truck. Before he is killed by the Walrider, the man is still able to warn Murkoff. Murkoff reacts immediately and sends a group of trucks carrying scientific equipment to the trailer, where the trailer is circled by the trucks. However, the Pauls still have no way of drawing out the Walrider or forcing it to reveal itself. To lure it out, the Pauls enter Tiffany's trailer once again. There, Pauline confronts Tiffany with the fact that Tiffany once sold her son Billy to Murkoff in order for money. Realizing that its own mother betrayed it, the Walrider manifests inside the trailer and gruesomely rips Tiffany apart.
While the Walrider is busy, the Pauls storm out of the trailer and order the Murkoff agents to strike. The agents activate their trucks, creating a cacophony of soundwaves which destroy the Walrider's human host. Miles Upshur's body is destroyed and the Pauls believe that they destroyed the Walrider, but they soon realize that the Walrider did not die but merely switched hosts. Indeed, a large horde of ants moves around the trailer in elaborate circles, hinting that the Walrider might be inside the swarm.
|“||And the word of the Lord came unto me unbidden, as a thief in the night, cloaked in lies but shining with truth, a voice electric cast by a sinner and caught by metal rod;||„|
|~ ~ The Gospel of Knoth, 3:5|
It is revealed that Murkoff, through the power of highly experimental radio technology based on the success of Rudolph Wernicke's Morphogenic Engine, manipulated the mind of failed shoe-salesman Sullivan Knoth, and guides him to become the founder of the Testament of the New Ezekiel. The Testament takes up residence at the home of a woman named Lydia Degan. However, after several home births on her property, authorities show up with a warrant for health and safety violations. They arrest a dozen Testament members in the raid, but Knoth and some others escape. Murkoff/God then instructs Knoth to relocate his cult into the wilderness of Arizona.
In the wilderness, Knoth builds the town Temple Gate. However, unbeknownst to them, the Murkoff radio facility is located nearby. From this facility, Murkoff experiments on the population of Temple Gate by constantly sending mind control waves created by the improved Morphogenic Engine from a camouflaged broadcast tower without the people of Temple Gate knowing they are being affected. Although the beams are not explained in detail, they seem to cause those under their influence to experience hyperrealistic hallucinations of their darkest moments. After having been under control of the waves for too long, and in such close proximity, the entire population starts showing erratic, murderous, and psychopathic behaviour. The people believe that the apocalypse is upon them and start hallucinating various things. It seems that all the death, misery and chaos at Temple Gate is once more a perversion created by Murkoff in their attempt to achieve mind control. However, this time Murkoff is not experimenting on individuals but on an entire community. From the experiment, Murkoff realizes that religion is just as fine a means to transfer the Morphogenic engine process as the video program at Mount Massive was.
One inhabitant of Temple Gate eventually notices the hidden Murkoff facility and the camouflaged tower. However, once he gets too close to investigate the control waves start affecting him too hard and, after receiving several strong hallucinations, he is driven off and loses all memories of the tower.
Hunting Waylon Park
|“||Mount Massive was a pebble in a pond, an experiment on individuals. That is where the real sickness spreads. If you cannot look at what's there and not eat yourself hollow with shame, you're not human anymore.||„|
|~ Peacock, referring to Murkoff's experiments at Temple Gate|
After eliminating the Walrider's host, the Pauls continue hunting down Waylon Park. They arrive at Park's house, only to find that Park burnt down his house when he fled with his family. Thus, the two fly east to search for clues in Miles Upshur's house, especially something linking him to Park and Peacock. The house is infested by ants, but the Pauls bear it no mind. However, the ants who have already started eating up some of the evidence, suddenly start biting the Pauls and drive them out of the house. Although fthey try do douse themselves with water and even burn their own closes, the ants only let off once they have left the house. However, when the Pauls return to their car they see a homeless man watching them, the same homeless man they saw near Park's house in Colorado. Marion runs after the man, eventually confronting him. The man reveals himself to be Simon Peacock. Peacock claims that he has watched Marion and that Marion has something most Murkoff agents have not - shame.
Marion accuses Peacock of betraying Murkoff and attempting to bring down the company and Peacock confirms it. He claims that Murkoff is evil and that he is protecting Waylon Park, adding that Murkoff and the Pauls will never find him. He then shows Marion coordinates (the coordinates of Temple Gate's location) and claims that the true horror is happening there, created by Murkoff, and that Marion is not human anymore if he is not ashamed of what is happening there. He adds that, even if Marion does not want to, he will nonetheless help Peacock. Peacock then picks up a piece of styrofoam and rams it into Marion's mouth, taking his jaw imprint. When Glick arrives to save her partner, Peacock attacks her and escapes unharmed.
The Pauls return to Miles Upshur's house once more and have Murkoff pump it full with an "ungodly amount" of poison. After all ants have been killed, the two find out that the ants have already destroyed everything inside the house. At this point, Marion shows Glick the coordinates Peacock gave him, claiming that Murkoff has supposedly business there, but Glick states that she does not know of any Murkoff business at Temple Gate and that they shouls let the matter rest.
Destroying Evidence on Temple Gate
|“||Test results in a lab, scans, the girl. Evidence, all of it. This had become a matter of containment.||„|
|~ Glick remembers the situation at the hospital|
Eventually, Marion starts investigating the coordinates he got from Simon Peacock. However, once coming too close to Temple Gate, he is affected by Murkoff's mind control beams and starts hallucinating about his dead wife and the day she died. While in the desert, he suddenly stumbles upon a pregnant girl and her companion. Although the man attacks Marion and is killed by him, the girl runs off and is able to catch a ride in an updriving car.
Alone in the desert, Marion calls Glick and informs her about what had happened. He is then picked up by a family returning from the Grand Canyon and is brought to a nearby hospital. Glick arrives six hours later and chides him for investigation without her. She informs him that the girl he met is in the very same hospital. Marion wonders whether the girl's pregnancy is psychiosomatic and thus connected to Murkoff, meaning that Peacock was right about Murkoff's involvement in the area. A doctor confirms that the girl is pregnant with a healthy boy, but also shows them brain scans which are similar to the brain scans of those affected by the Morphogenic Engine. The doctor states that the brain scans are already on their way to the lab and the Pauls realize that they have to contain it, otherwise Murkoff's operation in Arizona could be exposed. Suddenly, the girl wakes up but immediately has a seizure. Glick tells Marion to get a doctor and while Marion runs off, Glick strangles the young girl to death to prevent her testifying. When Marion returns, Glick states that the girl has died of her seizure and the two leave the hospital. After leaving the hospital, the two drive back into the desert to find the body of the girl's companion. Although they find the place where Marion fought with the man, the corpse is gone, having already been disposed by Temple Gate's executioner, Marta, who was hunting after the two escapees.
After the entire cult at Temple Gate has commited suicide, Murkoff scientists and cleanup personnel head there to get rid off all evidence. In the meantime, the tower Murkoff broadcasted their signal has been warmed over by the Walrider's ant collective and has been destroyed by them. When Blake Langermann is found inside the ruins of Temple Gate - comatose but alive - he is sent to the Elrich facility where Murkoff intends to "dig in his head" in order to find out what happened at Temple Gate. After being informed about this, Pauline Glick receives information that Marion has gone missing and reveals that she considers him dangerous to Murkoff. Meanwhile, interrogating the captured Paul Marion, Simon Peacock comes to the conclusion that Murkoff wants to infect the whole world with the Morphogenic engine program and that religion has proven to be a fine way for doing so.
Although he is wounded in his escape, Marion eventually escapes and manages to reach the FBI Field office where he is arrested and testifies against Murkoff and his former partner Glick. Meanwhile, Glick, who is wounded as well, is recovering at a Murkoff Recreational Centre where she informs her superiors about Marion's defection and warns them to take him down before he does too much harm.
Murkoff Security Forces
Murkoff's Security Forces are security forces of the Murkoff Corporation, they are responsible for guarding and patrolling Mount Massive Asylum, until the Variants in the facility escaped, annihilating most, if not all of them.
Interaction with Security forces are very limited and it is impossible to stay with alive security forces for a while. Most guards and tactical operators are dead and the alive security forces will always die at the moment Miles Upshur sees them, such as, one gets beaten up by a prisoner, one gets beheaded by Chris, etc. However it seems the security forces are split into two divisions. The first division seems to be the standard uniformed officer who patrols the premises ensuring that the grounds are secure from infiltration as well as dealing with the occasional violent patient. These officers seem lightly armed if at all and are the most common security force members seen throughout the game and prove to be highly ineffective against the rampaging variants.
The second division of Murkoff security seems to be the "tactical division" and consists of personnel who are trained and equipped to a much higher standard. These tactical operators are mostly seen in the underground laboratory and as well as another member of the team seen killed by Walker in the library. In lieu of their training the tactical operators are also seen to be in possession of high quality gear such as heavy flak
jackets and automatic weapons as well as MRAP vehicles. It is most likely these teams are kept on standby by Murkoff in case of a severe breach in security and would be sent in to contain the situation through any means possible as well as secure valuable personnel (this is corroborated by the fact that many dead tactical operators are seen dead outside of Dr. Wernickes office most likely in an attempt to protect or extract him). However despite their training and equipment the teams ultimately failed in their mission and are killed prior to Miles' arrival, either through the hands of the Variants or the Walrider.
Its also interesting to note that Miles believes the tactical operators to be members of SWAT, however this is highly unlikely as Murkoff is seen to keep the nature of the experiments and their research away from the public eye due to their immoral as well as illegal nature and would be able to keep their workings more internal with a privatized security division.
As Whistleblower is set at the Mount Massive Asylum hours before the riots, a number of living guards are prominently featured. They are neutral to the player until Waylon Park emails Miles Upshur about Murkoff's fringe experiments. Interaction with Tactical operators are strictly limited and they will always be hostile. They will always be unaware of Waylon Park proximity, no matter what.
When the breakout initiated, security staff proved impotent, despite their claim "high security" against the rampaging inmates. Some sought refuge in patient cells after killing their occupants. Others barricaded themselves in their offices, discussing plans to contact law enforcement or the National Guard.
Murkoff tactical troops eventually arrive on the asylum grounds in several Cougar armoured personnel carriers, intending to contain the patients. They immediately responded by shooting prisoners on sight. However, a number are overwhelmed and butchered by The Variants or by The Walrider.
- Jeremy Blaire (Director/Deceased)
- Richard Trager (Research and Development Executive/Deceased)
- Andrew (Scientist/Unknown)
- Steve (Scientist/Unknown)
- Waylon Park (Software Engineer/Forcefully Terminated)
- Pauline Glick (alive)
- Paul Marion (defected)
- Dr. Carl Houston (Doctor/ Unknown)
- Dr. Walsh (Doctor/Unknown)
- Helen Granat (Legal Dpt/Alive)
- Dr. Neil Wolfram (Doctor/Unknown)
- David Annapurna (Orderly/Involuntarily Terminated)
- Kurt Vigalondo (Unknown)
- Patrick Petryna (Unknown)
- Cynthia Eisner (Unknown)
- Jennifer Roland (alive)
- During Outlast 2, whenever Blake films something during the school flashbacks, the filmed material will only be static when reviewed. However, when paused at the right moment it will reveal the Murkoff logo.
- In the PAX Demo version of the game in the introduction, Murkoff is spelled as Murkof.
- Murkoff's logo resembles what seems to be a guillotine, which is a device used for carrying out executions by beheading. The logo itself might be a hidden message from the developers, indicating to Murkoff's gruesome experiments conducted on the asylum's patients.