Last time, after considerable head-banging, I had found out that the game has elevators. I did not figure this out because I assumed that the elevators were code rooms, and I actually had to watch a longplay in order to figure out a basic gameplay element. I still don't understand how to recharge energy or what the items I can pick up actually do. This game has its advocates, but most of them don't bother to clear up the obtuseness of the game. You'd think someone would bother to tell someone how to play the game they're promoting. I decide to take the elevator up, since I haven't seen anything there yet.
This leads me to...some crazy stuff, man. In a locked room I find a console. Thinking that its one of those save terminals, I interrogate it...only to discover its a camera. Is it showing me a replay of what I just did...or...? Is something coming after me? Or its somewhere else...okay. I guess its following a robot? There are also just a lot of random items up here, adding more useless things to the pile. Curiously, I was checking the manual again, to determine what my real objective is, and apparently interrogating items is an option?
Continuing reveals a door that is unopenable and this mural. What is with early 3D FPS titles and throwing out murals? Galactic Empire did it, this did it. Presumably, this is some kind of instruction or code, hopefully it isn't randomly generated. I really, really hope this isn't randomly generated. Restarting reveals the same map. But wait, I saw that symbol on the lower left on a door. Is this a weird map? These are the four doors in this area's opening room. Oh, I don't understand. From the same elevator, I also find the upper floor of that room, which has a pillar with symbols on top for a purpose I'm not quite sure on.
With that area out of the way, I'm actually lost as to what else there
is. I can't really remember where the other elevator was, beyond the
ground. But my search brings me back to that one room with the turret
guarding a door where a horde of tanks spawn. This time, I rush past the
turret, past the tanks, into a room I've never seen before. What's
there? This place, which requires a code piece I don't have, and another
camera. So...now what?
Well, the good news is that I do still have a path forward...the bad news is this path is the most enemy heavy of the bunch. The one path in the opening section where robots just pour out of leads to another elevator, the one I figured out actually was an elevator. Down here are the big wheels and other enemies that rip me apart like tissue paper. The problem with this is fighting is difficult to control, and completely counterproductive to anything like progress. Fortunately, most of the time its easy to figure out how to avoid enemies if you've been in an area recently. This is feeling a whole lot like trial and error, but I'm actually doing something new each time.
This course of action takes me to a big cannon, which isn't as intimidating as it first looks, but will kill you in one hit. But behind him is the green square code. Cool, I've gotten here legitimately...uh...now what? Which is something I'm saying far too often in this game. Now what? What is this going to unlock? The only two things that are that kind of locked is the bridge from the opening area, and I don't think this is going to help, or a door down here somewhere, which is suicide without cheating. You know, that should really be the end of it, if its impossible without cheating. Actually, that is the end of it, as I try to explore more areas without cheating only to get slaughtered. So, time to cheat again.
But the problem with cheating is that even this has limitations. Every time I start up the game, I've been spending 15 minutes finding energy, usually successfully, then finding damage, unsuccessfully. I've been unable to use Game Conqueror, the Linux equivalent of Cheat Engine, to save and reload data. Save works fine, but reload doesn't and the location of things in memory isn't human-readable. This means I have to manually write stuff down. Admittedly, this isn't as bad as I'm making out, considering the alternative is worse. Its funny, I'm complaining about difficulty figuring things out, and more than one time this session I've seen the robots kill each other just trying to move.
Its truly amazing how I keep managing to find new things to try out in this game. Normally, by this point I'd have given up, since every area is done in complete isolation from the others, I haven't found a save point yet. The manual barely even mentions them, just their clever joke, but finding the quick reference card, reveals that yes, those were the save terminals. Well, that's cool, except I have none on my current path. I could, illegitimately, win this game. Next time, we'll see if I've figured out energy sapping. Ha, yeah, right.
This Session: 1 hour
Total Time: 3 hours