Friday, October 15, 2021

Alone in the Dark 3: Jailhouse Blues

The other barrel has a big snake for some reason

It was clear from the hint I got on the poster that I was supposed to enter the jail through one of these three doors. But the question was, what would open it? I tried many things, everything that seemed logical or possibly logical from a developers standpoint. Most of my items, pushing the door, but no dice. They remained locked. After a good chunk of time I noticed there was something moving behind one of the doors, and I thought, maybe I should try opening it? Of course that wouldn't work. It worked. So now I had to get past these snakes. I gradually try items, until AHA! the maraca, which works like the drum did back in Jack in the Dark.

We've all been there before
After climbing up the ladder, with a sound I recognize from Iron Blood, I'm in a cell. And soon enough I'm not alone in that cell, an outlaw pops up. After punching him out and getting nothing, I'm alone once again...and he comes back again. Between defeating him, again, I try to get out. The door is locked, but there's a key. I can't get it, but I have a cane that can help me get it.
Possibly the most sedate scene we're going to see with another character
In the next room over, there's the guy I was supposed to give the alcohol to. Dropping the alcohol near him gives me another flask, a healing item in case you forgot. Once again I had hit a wall. There was another path, but there's a symbol covering that area's floor and moving over it kills me. I can't go back, that also kills me. On a hunch I search the cell with the respawning outlaw and find a stone. Aha, I think, I throw this to destroy something. No, its the same old trick we've seen already, throw the stone and get a different item. An Indian amulet that allows me to advance.

Will we ever know who this is? Probably not
This opens up three paths. The first leading to a Frankenstein-like monster I can't fight in melee. The second leads to some interesting stuff. Ammo for a Winchester, which I suspect is locked in the cabinet next to me. Some wanted posters, including one for a martial artist. I wonder if that's going to be an incredibly obvious reuse of the circus performer from AitD 2? The gun cabinet I thought wasn't accessible yet, but I just had to use my key in the right spot. At least its mildly obvious. Now I have a Winchester, its already loaded, and something tells me it isn't with golden bullets.
As if this is a puzzle!
Taking the one remaining path sets the speed up considerably. At first the entrance room looks empty, but soon enough something tries to break in from the front door. There's a cabinet, blocking a ladder even, near the door. You have more people than the original game working, and you reuse this much. Jees. The cabinet at least has a shotgun, an empty one, but nevertheless another weapon.
Wrong game.
On the roof there are quite a few items, the use of which are not yet clear. There's also another outlaw, invincible, but not instakilling like the other guys. He's not really guarding anything either. He's guarding some more items, including a gatling gun and a fuse, for dynamite. Since I have no other idea of what I should do, I load the Winchester (wasting the ten bullets in there) with a golden bullet and he dies. And he drops a bag of scorpions. Or a bag full "for" scorpions. That's...somehow random and not. This is where I get stuck, again. None of my items could be used to open a door outside of dream logic. That monster can be killed, but he drops nothing. The second hole down just takes me to the monster's room and insta-kills me. How do I advance? Why, I use a gatling gun to destroy a door. Have to admit, that never would have occurred to me...probably because I didn't think they'd have to skills to accomplish that. It doesn't even make any sense since the door is a sliding one, and it slides upwards.
You don't get a good look at this when its happening
Inside, its dark, and the door closes behind me. Once I use my lamp I see a hanged undead outlaw and a hanged skeleton. Carnby is slowly dying in here. It doesn't seem like I can do anything but use items. Aha, that must me what this voodoo hangman's noose is for. Which causes the duo to fall off whatever is hanging them. Trying to follow them gets Carnby instakilled. The lever nearby is jammed and I can't get out. Okay, so the game is expecting me to pay attention to the way they designed these angles, and they did some clever things with the engine.
By this logic, shoot everything with every gun. Nope. Use the whip on anything that looks like it can be used on. And everything it can't. Nope. Maybe one of the items is used on the lever? Still nope. Maybe the death scene after falling down the hole is a fakeout? No, but it is a pretty sweet ending tune. The music's good, but for the most part it hasn't been as good as the previous two games.
Can you see the items here?
So I decide once again to look it up. And wouldn't you know it, but what I had to do was drop the bag of scorpions into the pit, then use the lever. Fair enough, I guess the idea is that its a weight. "Then pick up the dynamite and jerky". What? I don't see any, and what's even better I also see I should have used the whip on the dude I shot with the golden bullet. I need to do that to get a bag of gold. After doing that, and extensive searching, I do find the dynamite and the jerky. But I have to search a very specific spot. You would have to have incredible luck in order to get that right, because if you don't you'd just assume nothing was there. Which hurts more than if the game was straight-up like AitD 2.
Carnby either searching or setting up some explosives
After finally getting out, I figure that I'm supposed to use the dynamite in a crack near a barrel I saw after killing the gold holding outlaw. My suspicions are confirmed as I advance there. First, by two new outlaws who appear in the area, and secondly, when I'm locked inside that room. Like usual, it takes a while to figure out where to put it and how to escape from the blast afterwards, but I do turn out to be right.
Does gatling gun fire beat undead immortality? Yes
At first this new area isn't much. A puzzle consisting of not walking into another big dude's path and instead walking on a bow insignia pressure plate. Then another outlaw and before you know it I'm stuck in another room. There is a seemingly open wall, which just leads to my death. This game's really happy to throw instakilling situations at you. What now, I think. Guess I better search the floor constantly. Only, it turns out there's a way forward, the background just didn't look like I could advance that way. Its a machine missing a gear. I don't have a gear but I do have a sheriff's badge. what? Now I have to walk back to the door that closed on me. And nothing seems to strike out to me as something changed, the area looks the exact same. I have no new items, so clearly I've missed something in that new area, but what isn't clear.

This Session: 1 hour 30 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours 30 minutes

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