The temple seems to be highly reminiscent to the Aztec temple and its sacrificial altar that Mandus encountered during his expedition to Mexico. As Mandus approaches the top, he will see his children impaled. It is not known if the Temple is an extension of the Machine or part of Mandus's mind due to the Orb's influence on his soul.
- "I did not kill your children, Mandus. You sacrificed them on the temple steps knowing what the coming century would do to them. Your sons will drown, lungs full of mud and shrapnel, on the banks of the Somme. You wanted to save them from the horror to come. "
- ―Mandus and The Machine having a brief conversation, before he approaches the core of the Temple.
The area is seen in game on the very last level, which is the Temple. It is unknown if Mandus was actually experiencing the area, and it is highly possible that the level was a mere hallucination. There are some possible explanations for this:
- Before this point, Oswald's mind has already begun to deteriorate because of his illness, causing hallucinations in the latter part of the game to increase in frequency and intensity. Attic walls with the nursery behind showing The Manpigs within, or children's toys along the catwalk, even the church windows near the Tripery. It wouldn't be too far-fetched to believe the last segment is one as well.
- The numerous instances Mandus sees the twins along the conveyor belt, along with their supposed bodies at the end, would not make sense in context (which were decomposed by now, as mentioned their rib cages were still in Mexico and their skulls in London).
- It would not make sense to have an entire temple below London, nor would it have been feasible to make. Mandus didn't have the time to empty all the room underneath London for this structure to even be built. It is more likely a metaphor for the Machine itself: a mechanized Aztec Temple, performing automated sacrifices to keep itself going strong.
- Perhaps brought on by electrifying the heart in the previous area, this could be seen as Oswald confronting himself and coming to terms with who he is and what he has done in his final moments. As the heart suspended by wires in the South Tower is presumably Mandus', and the twins' hearts would have decomposed by now (they were not brought back after Mexico, and there is only one there). So, it would not make sense for Oswald to lose his heart a second time. Perhaps it is a symbolic end, for the machine to pull out his heart visually as his real heart is electrified, to show that the Machine is the cause of Mandus' downfall.
Before A Machine for PigsEdit
This temple was in fact, the area where Mandus himself sacrificed his children. In the late 1890s, Oswald intended to expand and update his factories with new machinery to make his product-lines more efficient and safer for his workers, but this decision had dire consequences. He invested too heavily in the machines, with no immediate returns, the bank refused credit, condemning him for squandering the family fortune. Mandus faced financial ruin and feared it was only a matter of time before the bailiffs would come to repossess his home.
Desperate, he began to look through his great uncle's paperwork and made startling revelations of Vitae from Brennenburg and the mystical Orbs. Not understanding their function or origin fully, Mandus saw these as business opportunities, miraculous power sources that would quicken the machine's development and save him from bankruptcy.
He made various expeditions to America to investigate, later taking his darling children Edwin and Enoch along with him. From his great uncle's notes he learned the whereabouts of an Aztec temple that housed such an orb, though the native people he came across were confused and baffled as to how he came upon such knowledge. Mandus finally recovered the orb from the ruined temple in Mexico.
The twins seemed to have come across the orb first, calling it a "stone egg." Upon contact with it, the orb revealed the future to Oswald, beginning with the oncoming World Wars. He saw what doom his beloved children would face and he was powerless to stop it. They would die sixteen years in the future, in agony within mud and shrapnel, at the Battle of the Somme during the First World War. To spare his children this horrendous fate, he sacrificed them on the temple steps. This may have also been done to reawaken the Orb's power. Mourning, and cursing the world, he took boy's skulls back to England.
|Locations of A Machine for Pigs|
|Mandus Processing Company locations||Mansion • Cellar • Alley • Church • Factory • Tunnels • Sewers • Bilge • Reactor • Engine • Streets • Pigline • Tesla • Temple|
|Other locations||London • Mexico • The Temple of the Stone Moon • Decontamination Chambers|