|The countdown timer that appears after pressing "On"|
|Location||After you press "On" in the Mind Control Facility|
|Door Choice||Left Door|
|“||After they kept you enslaved all those years, you go and you try to take control of the machine for yourself, is that what you wanted? Control?||”|
–The Narrator, shocked over the attempt to turn his story upside down
The Explosion Ending, also known as the Countdown Ending and the Bomb Ending, is the ending that occurs when you do everything the Narrator tells you to do, but choose to engage the machine in the Mind Control Facility instead of turning it off. This activates the nuclear self destruct which explodes and kills Stanley.
Obtaining The Ending
Exit Stanley's Office. At the 2 doors, pick the one on the left. Once you get to the staircase, go up to The Boss's Office, and when you get to the Mind Control Facility, enter it. Once you get to the power source, push the "ON" button.
After pressing the "ON" button, instead of taking control of the facility, it will initiate its nuclear self-destruct system. The various buttons in the room do not override the system. The Narrator will taunt you, saying that he made Stanley's co-workers disappear and that he could let Stanley play out the game over and over as he wishes, so he could die in various ways. He even adds more time to the clock so he can keep talking to you. Despite Stanley's attempts to stop the timer by pushing any buttons he sees in the room, he is unable to do so, with The Narrator laughing maliciously at Stanley. When the time reaches zero the game restarts just before he finishes talking.
- Doing this ending a second time will make The Narrator say something different before the last 30 seconds.
- By trying to cheat, you can go to the catwalk above you and see an error computer, with background doors.
- Several players have unearthed the map to figure out what the buttons are and what they do. They have no entities tied to them that would stop the countdown. In other words, despite player folklore, the countdown cannot be stopped in any way, shape, or form, unless through heavy map editing.
- After a while, the monitors end up saying "GOODBYE EMPLOYEE 427", obviously meaning Stanley has few seconds left.
- In the original mod, the countdown didn't appear on a big screen, but only atop the Player's field of view. The Narrator's dialogue is also highly different.