What you need to know
Garry's Mod, also known as GMod, is a 2006 physics-driven sandbox game from Facepunch Studios that's built on Valve's Source engine. The game still has a passionate community today, and gets constant improvements thanks to fan-made addons.
A GMod player named Alexandrovich has created a map in the game that's so incomprehensibly large that it's 2,048 times the size of our known universe.
To load into it, you'll need to play the 64-bit version of GMod, and will also need 12GB of RAM as well as 522MB of spare storage.
Right now, the map is blank and contains visuals of multicolored stars and galaxy clusters, but Alexandrovich says solar systems will be added in an upcoming update.
It's nearly been 20 years since Facepunch Studios and Valve released Garry Newman's Source engine mod Garry's Mod (GMod for short) as a full-fledged physics sandbox game, and in that time, I've watched its dedicated community create some wild stuff using its tools. Usually, I can't help but grin a little each time I see someone take advantage of these to cobble together a ridiculous contraption or animate stop motion slapstick comedy, but some particularly bizarre GMod creations simply leave me speechless. "1:1 Multiverse," a map by player Alexandrovich, is one such work.
If you've ever found yourself wishing there was a game map so large that you might not be able to explore all of it in your lifetime, this is the one for you. It features not one, not two, but 2,048 different sections, each of which measures a jaw-dropping eighty-eight sextillion kilometers (8.8e29km). That's about a 1:1 scale with the size of the universe as we know it, making this map 2,048 times bigger than our plane of existence. The total size of it is so unbelievably colossal that I'm not even sure how to properly write out the number.
"You will NEVER reach the end of this map no matter how hard you try," writes author Alexandrovich in the map's description. "Probably the biggest map ever in videogame history. The 2048 1:1 universes containing 8.8e29km of star/galaxy clusters take a while to load, so give it time."
No kidding. I'm going to go out on a limb and say that the scale of this map is unchallenged, though I wouldn't be surprised if someone somewhere is trying to cook up a similarly enormous stage to take away that crown as I write this.
If you're interested in checking out the map yourself, you can install it by subscribing to it on its Steam Workshop page. Note that Alexandrovich says you'll need to play on the 64-bit version of GMod to run the level properly, and will also need to install the Infinite Map Base addon first. Humorously, you need at least 12GB of RAM as well for it to work at all, with 32GB recommended and 64/128GB ideal for the best performance. In terms of storage space, it requires 522MB, which is honestly way less than I thought it'd take up initially.
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I'd also recommend picking up the InfMap Helper Tools plugin, as it adds helpful commands that allow you to teleport across the stage's 2,048 universes in seconds. Without it, well...let's just say it'll take you a long, long time to get where you're hoping to go.
As for what's actually in this absurd cosmic canvas, you can look forward to flying through multicolored stars and the telltale swirls of spiral galaxies, and will even be able to "zoom in with [the] camera to see the depths of the multiverse." Notably, Alexandrovich has confirmed that a future update for the map will add solar systems, so there'll likely be planets and moons once it drops.
The obvious question you're probably asking like I did is "Why?" but Alexandrovich hasn't yet offered an answer to that inquiry. They've made and uploaded 74 other "Infinite Map" addons to the Steam Workshop, though, so for now, I'm assuming they just really like making gargantuan levels that push the Source engine to its limits.
By the way, in case you were wondering, the comments on the map page are just as hilarious as you'd think they'd be. "We finally have the entire universe on GMod," celebrates Oli the Guy, with the message followed by a length of scrollable space as empty as the map itself. User unbreakify, meanwhile, exclaimed "MY PC IS LIGHTING ON F***ING FIRE," so it sounds like they didn't have enough RAM.
My favorite reply, though, is this one from abysswireless: "It's about time we stopped to ask if we should. I have no idea how you did this. I have no idea why you did this. I have no idea how this would be possible in GMod of all things in any point in time. I am concerned."
Garry's Mod — $9.99 at Steam (PC, Digital)
The classic 2006 Source engine sandbox playground is still going strong with tons of community-made addons, including this incomprehensibly large map that features 2,048 copies of the universe.View Deal