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Pathways into Darkness


FAQ Sheet/Walkthrough
Last Update: February 2, 1994
David Reevely (david_reevely@magic-bbs.corp.apple.com)

     On  a mildy defensive note, there have been one or two complaints
that the FAQ is inaccurate. This is not, strictly speaking, true. Some
of  the  solutions  may  not be the best way of passing the puzzles to
which  they  refer,  but  they  all  work -- none of them are actually
dangerous  or outright *wrong*. It does have, of course, my own biases
in  terms  of combat style and puzzle solutions, which may differ from
those  of other people, and while readers may disagree with me on some
solutions, those given here *do* work.

     That  said,  there  have been sufficient changes to warrant a new
full posting, rather than an addendum. These include a different route
through  the teleporter maze (the route that was given worked, it just
took  a lot longer), some further combat notes, and several more minor
changes.      As      always,      send      me     suggestions     at
david_reevely@magic-bbs.corp.apple.com,  and they'll be included in an
update, should it be warranted.

     These  follow  a  rough  chronological  order within the game. Of
course,  because  there are several different ways of working your way
through, some might not apply to you or may be out of order.

     This  list  is  packed  with  spoilers,  which is, after all, the
point. Read it at your own risk.

     1.  The  manual  talks  about talking to dead people. Why can't I
talk  to  the  German soldier? -You don't have the yellow crystal yet.
It's  behind  a  locked  door on the level above, "Never Stop Firing."
When  you  find  it, double-click on it to activate it, then press TAB
while standing on the body.

     2. What's the point of that blue rune? Why can't I open the doors
at  each  side  of  the  hall? -You need to play the Alien Pipes while
standing  on  the  blue rune in order for the doors to open. The Alien
Pipes are found on the Ascension level.

     3.  What do the chains do? -They open doors in other parts of the
pyramid.  Pull each chain you run across once, then forget about them.
Check  the  map  of  the level you're on before and after you pull it,
paying special attention to the doors that are closed before you pull.

     4.  The manual makes such a big deal about conserving ammunition,
but  I  haven't  had any problems. Why should I pay attention to that?
-In  the  earlier  levels, you're fighting the easiest monsters in the
game. Use the survival knife whenever you're dealing with two or fewer
zombies  or  headlesses.  It'll  force  you  into learning some battle
tactics  that  will  prove  useful  when  you  move  up  in  weaponry.
Furthermore,  there's  a very limited supply of Walther ammuntion, and
there are two occasions when you'll need a lot of it; on the Ascension
level, fighting your way to the Alien Pipes; and after you've used the
Pipes on the ground floor and monsters are revealed beyond the doors.

     5.  I  keep  getting  killed  on that level where I come down the
ladder  and  am immediately surrounded by zombies. What's the best way
to  get  past  them? -Once you've killed one zombie, start moving. Get
out of the starting chamber as soon as you can, and move down into one
of  the  corners  of  the hallway surrounding that room, so you've got
walls  on two sides. The zombies can only come after you two at a time
and  from  one-fourth  of your viewing area, instead of four at a time
from all sides. Use the Walther here, picking your shots carefully.

     6.  How  do  I  kill  those  black spirits that don't seem to get
damaged  by  weapons? -Use the blue crystal, in the same way you'd use
the yellow crystal.

     7. Where's the blue crystal? -There's a two-square hidden chamber
just  to  the  south of one of the dead German soldiers on They May be
Slow.  He'll  direct  you  to  it, if you question him closely enough.
Enter the chamber by walking south from the soldier's body and through
the  wall.  Pick  up the blue crystal by stepping on it, just like any
other item.

     8. After I've used the crystal a few times, it recharges more and
more  slowly.  How come? -All crystals but the yellow one will run out
of  power eventually. After you've used them a few times, they'll slow
down.  Eventually,  they  shatter. There is no way of preventing this,
besides not using the crystal unless you absolutely have to. Don't use
the blue crystal on regular creatures, if you can possibly help it.

     9.  Can  I do anything useful with the silver bowl? -No. Its only
purpose  is as treasure. There are several such items in the game, and
they  should all be kept, since they increase your point totals at the
end of the game. They're heavy, but they don't affect your performance
in any significant way, besides cluttering your inventory.

     10.  What's the best way of dealing with the roomfuls of monsters
on Ascension? -Tackle them one room at a time, resting as often as you
safely  can.  Use  the  knife  whenever  possible,  and  try  to  keep
headlesses  and  zombies  in rows so they can only attack you one at a
time. Another neat aspect of this strategy is that the headlesses with
fire  their  goo  at you but will hit one another in the back instead,
causing  damage  to  one another. Have the blue crystal ready when you
enter  the  northwestern  room; there's a banshee that's going to come
after you.

     11.  What  do  I  do with the Alien Pipes? -Use them on the first
level  while standing on the blue rune. The doors to the east and west
will  open,  releasing some monsters. You'll want the Walther for this
one.

     12. How do I best deal with the grey things? - They're ghouls. If
there  are  only  one  or  two of them and your vitality is relatively
high,  you can attack with the survival knife. It will take about five
hits,  but  the  blows  will keep the ghouls off-balance and unable to
retaliate.

     13. Which ladder down should I take -- the one to the west or the
one to the east? - It doesn't *really* matter. The western ladder will
take  you down to Wrong Way, which it isn't. The entry chamber in that
level  is  packed with ghouls, but nothing more serious than that. The
eastern  ladder  will take you down to Feel the Power, which is filled
with  marauding  packs  of  three  oozes,  which  are nasty. With your
firepower, you're probably better off taking the western ladder, since
ghouls  are much easier to deal with than oozes. Come back to Feel the
Power later, when your weaponry is more impressive.

     14.  How  should  I deal with all the ghouls in Wrong Way? -It'll
probably  take  a  few  tries to get past them. Use similar tactics to
those given in question #5, and never stop moving, except to shoot.

     15.  Why  can't  I  get those doors to open? -They're locked. You
need  the Silver Key, found on the level below, Welcome Tasty Primate.
It's near the northeast corner of that level.

     16.  What  does  the  orange  crystal  do? -It's basically a more
powerful version of the blue crystal. It takes only one blast from the
orange  crystal to kill a banshee, instead of two. Of course, the same
use  limitations apply -- use it too often, and it'll shatter. That is
definitely something to avoid.

     17.  Where  should  I  go from here? -It would probably be a good
idea  to go back up to the Ground Floor and then take the other ladder
down.  Fight  your way past the oozes up to the northwest corner, then
take the ladder down to A Plague of Demons.

     18. What keeps hitting me? -There are invisible wraiths that will
do  you  damage,  if only slightly. The major danger here is when more
than  two  set  upon  you, and you have trouble finding one or more of
them. Regular weapons are effective against them, and they make a kind
of  hollow  gasping  sound when you kill them. Around the north-center
section  of  the  level, you'll find a dead American soldier. A search
will  reveal  a  pair  of infra-red goggles. Put them on and you'll be
able  to  see  the  wraiths  just  fine. Don't forget to turn off your
flashlight to conserve the batteries.

     19. What's the point of this level? -In the southeastern section,
there's a silver door (you have to pass another door that will open to
reveal  a  small  horde of creatures, so make sure you're fully rested
and  properly armed). Beyond the door, there's a cedar box, the inside
of which is "slightly warm to the touch."

     20. What does the cedar box do? -It will duplicate any ammunition
you  put  into it. It will work once per minute, assuming you remember
to  remove the second clip or magazine. It is probably the most useful
item in the game.

     21.  Now  what?  -Go  back  up  through the Ground Floor and down
through  Welcome Tasty Primate. Take a ladder down from near the north
center to We Can See in the Dark, Can You? Turn out your flashlight to
make  the  bugs  go away. Use your infra-red goggles to see well. Find
your way down to Happy Happy Carnage Carnage.

     22.  What  do  I  do  on  Happy  Happy Carnage Carnage? -Use your
Walther and all the ammunition you've generated using the cedar box to
fight  your  way  up  to either the northeast or northwest corners. Go
through  the  door  just  to  the east or the west, depending on which
corner  you're  in. You've found the remains of the German expedition.
Question and search them all thoroughly.

     23.  How  do  I deal with all the monsters? -Maneuver yourself so
that  you're  facing  parallel  to the wall with the three doors, with
your  back  to  the rune. Back over it and go until your back hits the
wall. Never stop shooting once the monsters start to come through. Use
a  red  potion  to speed yourself up so you can dodge missile attacks,
and a blue potion if you need one. Be prepared to try this level a few
times.

     24.  What  does the Red Cloak do? -It slows down your metabolism.
The  world  around  you  passes  more quickly than your body moves, so
wearing  the  red cloak *except at particular moments* is something to
be avoided.

     25.  What does the brown potion do? -It's a poison. Don't discard
it  you'll need it later.

     26.  Why  can't  I  open  the  gold  door on Beware of Low-Flying
Nightmares?  -You don't have the gold key. You won't run across it for
several levels, so don't worry about it now.

     27.  How can I navigate the Labyrinth? -Although its exact layout
changes  every  time  you  enter it, the essential features remain the
same.  There  is  a  ladder  in  each corner. The one in the northwest
corner  leads  up to Happy Happy Carnage Carnage, the northeast corner
leads  up  to  Beware  of  Low-Flying Nightmares, the southwest corner
leads to Need a Light, and the southeast corner leads to Lasciate Ogne
Speranza,  Voi  Ch'Intrate,  which  isn't  a  typo.  Most importantly,
there's  a violet crystal in the approximate center of the maze, which
you  absolutely  *must*  get.  There  isn't  really a very good way of
dealing  with the electric orbs besides shooting them from up close --
knifing them takes too long, and you're almost always facing more than
one.  Afterwards,  take  the  ladder in the southwest corner to Need a
Light.

     28.  What  was  it  that killed all those soldiers? -A very nasty
flamethrowing monster. Have the orange crystal and a lot of ammunition
ready,  because  it'll  start  moving  towards you as soon as the door
shuts  behind  you. Fire at it continuously with your machine gun, and
when  it  gets  ready to fire, run around a corner so that its missile
attack  hits  a  wall  instead  of you. Alternatively, use the blue or
orange  crystal  to  freeze  it  briefly and just keep shooting. It is
possible,  though  somewhat  tricky,  to freeze it in one of the wider
parts  of  the corridor and run past it, so you don't actually have to
kill  it.  Be  very  careful  if  attempting this manouevre, and don't
forget  that  the  monster will be coming up behind you. As always, be
ready  to  try this level several times. Make sure you question all of
the soldiers about the bomb and search them.

     29.  Why  can't I get past the little cross-legged guys? -They're
generating  force  fields  that  prevent  you  from  passing or firing
through  them.  You  need  to  use  the green crystal (located a level
below,   on   Watch   Your   Steps)  to  quake  down  their  barriers.
Interestingly,  projectile  grenades  can pass through the barrier and
harm  skitters  that  are  behind  the sentinels, though they won't do
anything to the sentinel itself.

     30.  What  are  the  jumping  lizards?  -Just  what  they  seem 
unshootable annoyances. If you walk over enough exploding purple pods,
you'll kill them all.

     31. How do I get out of the chamber that locks me in? -Put on the
red cloak and wait for three hours until the doors open again. As long
as  you're  there,  make  sure  you  use the cedar box to mass-produce
munitions of all kinds.

     32.  How can I get past the green oozes? -They'll leave you alone
if you're already poisoned, which is where that brown potion comes in.
Make  sure you use it in a place where they won't be trapping you when
they stop moving -- they won't move, but you can't walk through them.

     33.  How do I kill the purple monster? -You can't. Put on the gas
mask and it can't hurt you, but it will block your path. You just have
to  maneuver  around  it. (There has been some debate about whether or
not  the  gas  mask is helpful against the purple monster's breath. It
stopped  me from taking damage, and it's difficult to fathom any other
purpose  the  programmers may have had for it. Nevertheless, there are
many  people  who  report  that  it does no good for them. If you find
you're one of those people, all you can really do is try to run around
past it and trap it in the room whose doors close behind you.)

     34. Why don't my shots harm the blue greater nightmares? -They're
resistant   to  regular  ammunition,  including  HE  (High  Explosive)
bullets.  Use  armour-piercing (SABOT) rounds for the AK-47 (ideal) or
grenades  (wasteful  and  inefficient for use against only one monster
due to the long reloading time).

     35.  How  do  I  get  through  all those teleporters on Don't Get
Poisoned,  Please  Excuse  Our  Dust  and  But Wait!  That's Not All!
-Patience.  On  Don't  Get  Poisoned, take the south teleporter in the
first  room,  the  east teleporter in the following room, and then the
teleporter  in  the  southern  section  of  that area to get to Please
Excuse  Our  Dust.  On  PEOD,  take the south-center teleporter in the
first  room, then the northernmost teleporter you find there, then the
easternmost  teleporter,  then a teleporter in the southwest corner to
move  onto  BWTNA.  On  this  level, you have to use every teleporter
before you can move on.

     36.  What  about  the  teleporter  rooms on Where Only Fools Dare
Tread?  -This has been the subject of some discussion. The ideal route
seems to be as follows: Enter maze. Kill greater nightmare. Advance to
middle  of  room. Turn right. Take teleporter. Kill greater nightmare.
Go  straight.  Take  teleporter.  Kill  greater  nightmare. Advance to
middle   of   room.   Rest  a  lot.  Make  ammunition  (frag  grenades
recommended,  along  with  quite  a  lot  of AK-47 SABOT and HE). Turn
around. Take teleporter.

     37.  Is there any quick way of getting rid of all those monsters?
-No. Shoot them, fire grenades at them...generally deal with them like
any  regular  monsters.  On  the  up  side,  this  is the last army of
monsters of any consequence you have to fight, so you can deplete your
entire   arsenal,   if  you  feel  the  need.  Crystals  may  be  used
indiscriminately  once  you've  eliminated  the  banshees  (the violet
crystal  is  especially  good  for this, since it has an area effect).
Save  a  few  clips  of ammunition, since you'll have to work your way
back  up  to  ground level and will undoubtedly face a few monsters in
the  process.  There  are also some ghasts to get past just before you
leave,  but  they're  neatly  lined  up  in  a  row in a 1-square wide
corridor, so they're not too much trouble.

     38.  What's that red floating thing in the middle of the room? -A
manifestation of the alien god. You can't get rid of any of them until
you've  faced  the  roomful  of  Greater  Nightmares, at which point a
couple  of  MP-41  shots will do in the last one. This is the place to
deposit  the  nuclear device. Set it to detonate as shortly before the
estimated waking time of the alien god as you safely can, in case your
time  is  very  tight  or you get held up somewhere on your way to the
surface by some monsters you missed.

     39.  How do I stop the Alien Gemstone from hurting me? -Put it in
the lead box from Warning:Earthquake Zone. The crystal is radioactive,
and  the  box  will shield you from its effects. You need it to escape
the  pyramid,  which  is done by going back up to the ground floor and
walking directly south from the blue rune.

     40.  Anything  else  I  should know? -That should about cover it.
Don't  forget  to  revisit  the  gold  door  on  Beware  of Low-Flying
Nightmares to retrieve the gold ingots, now that you have the key.

Some combat tips:

     -Never  put  yourself  in a position where you have to fight more
than  two  monsters  at  a  time,  especially when you're dealing with
skitters  and  nightmares. If you can, back yourself into a one-square
alcove or short passage, so only one can attack you at a time. Failing
that,  back  into  a corner, so you at least don't have to worry about
your  back.  If  no corners are available, at least put your back to a
wall.

     -If  you can do so safely, back up as you shoot nightmares. Their
energy  attacks will take longer to reach you and you won't be hurt by
their  acidic juices when they explode. This may seem like a good idea
with  oozes,  but  it's not. There's more advantage to getting an ooze
dead quickly than there is in trying to run away from it, and the best
way to do this is to shoot from up close.

     -There  has  been  some debate on whether grenades or bullets are
more  efficient  in  terms  of  damage per second. I prefer even MP-41
bullets  to grenades, but I don't think that it really matters, except
to the extent that you're likely to have more clips of ammunition than
you  are to have grenades. To speed up grenade reloading, particularly
when  facing  large  groups  of  monsters  (and most particularly when
you're  dealing  with  skitters, who can shoot "through" each other to
get  to  you),  do  it  manually  by clicking on the inventory window,
moving  a  grenade  into  the launcher, then clicking back on the game
window. This is a good two to three seconds faster than waiting for it
to  happen  automatically.  The exception to this is the fragmentation
grenade,  which  is  good  for  doing  damage  to  a  large  number of
creatures,  which  can  then  be  dispatched with many fewer rounds of
MP-41  or  AK-47 ammunition, and is also good for the first one or two
rooms  of  Who  Else  Wants  Some?,  since  headlesses and zombies are
relatively weak.

     On  the  subject  of  secret  rooms, you can get through the game
having  found  only  the one with the blue crystal in it. Other rooms,
however,  contain  things  like  potions  and teleporters that make it
easier  and  quicker. It's generally fairly obvious where a room might
be (look for small, blank sections of your map and try to walk through
the  walls surrounding those blank sections), and you should also look
for  pillars  that  you can see with your eyes but not on your map. If
you find one, try walking "through" it.

Good luck!

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