A guide on how to get through just a few of the more frustrating moments of the game, where I personally had to keep restarting. As this includes later portions of the game, spoilers are included.
This guide has been written to assist players in completing parts of the game that are difficult not because of the buggy nature of the game, but because the game demands that the player behave in a particular way.
As at least one pictoral guide (that I use myself) for the infamous “Reef Bug” is already available in this community guides section, it will not be repeated unless absolutely necessary. Because I’m too lazy to fetch the screenshots myself.
As this guide covers sections from all parts of the game, spoilers will abound. Some attempts have been made to prevent readers from having the game spoiled, but I can only do so much.
This chapter is pretty straightforward. No guide on this section is necessary.
A Visit To The Old Town
Here’s a quick list of your objectives while you stomp around Innsmouth for the night:
- 1) Get into the First National Grocery Store by sneaking past the patrolling policeman in the alley between the First National and the Newspaper. If the policeman isn’t moving, that’s the wrong alley. Officer Ropes doesn’t move until the end of the level.
- 2) Take your newly acquired booze and go make friends with Zadok Allen, down towards the bus station. He’ll be hanging out in front of a bar down an alley on the left side of the street (if you’re facing the bus station).
- 3) Once you have the key to the poorhouse, head back to the plaza where you entered the level, near the Gilman Hotel. The entrance to the poorhouse is to the left of the hotel. Look for a door when some posters to the right. The door itself will have a sign on it that says “POORHOUSE.”
- 4) Navigate through the poorhouse to the other side. Once you reach the street again, you’re on Dock Street. There will be a white house belonging to Thomas Waite on your right, a few steps past the stairs going downward. Look around for the tunnel entrance back to the plaza, if you want to know why it was really closed. You won’t be able to pass yet, though, and it’s not necessary for the game to progress.
- 5) Once you’ve met the Waite family, head back to the above-mentioned tunnel. It will be cleared out now and you can pass. Make your way back to the Gilman Hotel. You can follow Gilman himself and eavesdrop on his conversation a bit before going for the key to his back office. I personally wait until Gilman excuses himself from the conversation, then I book it to grab the key.
- 6) You can’t go to sleep until you bolt the door from the hallway to your room. If you want to, you can creep down the hallway and explore what rooms are open. There is nothing of interest, but it’s good to familiarize yourself with the layout of the place. You can hear crying coming from some of the rooms.
Attack of the Fishmen
You’ll awaken in a panic. Try to keep calm and make your way into the adjoining room. Bolt the door behind you and head for the wardrobe on the other side of the room. Stand on its left side and move it to the right, then head through the door behind it. Bolt the door you just came through. The door leading to the hallway has a broken bolt, but you can shove the nearby furniture in front of it to give yourself some more time. Head into the next room and bolt the door behind you. Get the shelf out of the way of the window, pushing it to the left, and open the window. Jump out onto the opposite building and head through the left door.
The enemies chasing you can’t follow you through the window, and they can’t jump that gap, but they can shoot at you. Duck down and hug the left wall as you pass the windows.
Once you reach the occupied room where the person screams at you, you want to go through the window again. Now at least one enemy can follow you, so head up the ladder as quickly as you can and across the boards onto the warehouse rooftop. Climb another ladder to your immediate left, head to the far end of the roof, and drop down into the warehouse. Do not go for the medkit immediately or the guards in the room will see you. Head to the side of the platform you landed on and drop down tothe floor to save your game.
If you get spotted and are being shot at, bunny hopping (jumping repeatedly instead of walking) to safety is often effective. The Innsmouth folk don’t have too good aim unless they get the drop on you.
While stealthing, you actually do have the ability to lean left and right to safely peek around corners. I personally bound the controls to 1 and 4, respectively, and use the mouse wheel to cycle through weapons.
Once you reach the other end of the first warehouse room, you need to jump up onto the platform. The guard will see you and start shooting. Jump through the broken window to the left (facing towards the guards) and head down the rooftop and into the open vent.
In the second warehouse room, your goal is to make it into that hole in the floor. If you get spotted, just run for the hole.
Getting back out onto the street from the warehouse, wait for the patrol to round the corner to the right of the door. Wait until he climbs up onto the platform and faces away before crossing and heading into the tunnel.
There are two places where you can jump up some crates and into an enclosed area to elude and escape enemies. Likewise, you can get back out again by climbing crates.
To get into the sewer pit, you have to un-chock the wheel of the truck at the top of the hill, then jump inside and wait for it to start moving. It may seem dangerous, but you’ll be protected by a cutscene that plays as you go over the edge. If you send the truck down the hill unoccupied, you’ll either have to re-load your save from the tower or try to hopscotch your way down the edge of the pit, while under fire. You will likely need some medical supplies just from the fall damage alone.
To get past the slime in the sewer vat, you need to drain it, then clean it with water. There are two valves in the preceding room, as well as a crank in the vat room that opens the gate. Turn the right valve and then the crank to drain the ooze, then the left valve and the crank to clean the tank, then the left valve again and the crank to drain the water. Get through the gate before the crank resets.
Keep away from the crabs in the sewer – they’re venomous. Make your way to the end of that passageway and head through the second door on the left. It looks almost like a broken elevator door, but that’s just a few sheets of cobwebs covering it.
Get back up to the streets by tricking the guards at the unobstructed exit to leave their post. There are several ladders up in this room, but only the first is unobstructed. If you climb one of the obstructed ladders and press your face against the grate, it will make a noise that attracts the guards. Go down the five ladders in order to draw the guards away from the exit back to the street. Once you’re on the street, look for a ladder and head up to a fire escape (or something like that) and drop down onto the crates below.
The Air-Filled Tunnels
After escaping the prison and making your way to the room with the campfire, head up one of the ramps the guards at the fire aren’t watching (they both go to the same spot). Once you get to the top and have the choice of going left or right, look to your right and see a guard facing you. Wait for him to turn around and walk away, then crouch and follow him. Keep your distance until he passes another guard beside a door with flags hanging above it. Hug the left wall and slip through the doorway before the walking guard turns around. With the Innsmouth Look comes the lack of peripheral vision, as it turns out. Makes sense, since they don’t usually have eyelids by the time they get to Devil’s Reef.
When you reach the second room, take note of three guards: One stationary directly in front of you, with his back to an ornate doorway, one pacing around the spire to your immediate right, and one up above on the bridge overhead. There is also a wooden room to the far right and down (where the pacing guard ends one side of his patrol) with an extra guard in it. There is only a medkit in this room, nothing else. Your goal is to reach the garden on the other side of the room, grab the blue plant from the right-hand path, then crawl through the hole in the boards on the left-hand path. From the connector between the campfire room and this room with the three guards, you will see a passage to the left that is safer than going through the actual doorway. If you alert any enemies, just run for it – They won’t be able to follow you through the boarded passage, and if you miss the plant, you can always come back for it later.
Don’t try to pass the venomous starfish at the base of the waterfall until you acquire the Yithian Lightning Gun and electrify the water. You have to crouch through the whole passage, and if you survive, you’ll just have to crawl right back through again, with nothing to show for it but some envenomed wounds.
There isn’t really a trick to the fight with Robert Marsh. Grab the knife off the table to the left of the chair (opposite the briefcase) and hide under the edge of the table opposite the enemy. He will eventually circle around to you, but as long as you keep kiting him thusly, you are safe. Just don’t try to duck out from under to stab him a few times when he raises his arms and does his wind attack. You won’t be able to hit him, and you’ll be safe as long as you are caught under the edge of the desk. Stab him in the face with an aimed attack three or so times, and he will go down. There’s a medkit on the other side of the office, to the left.
The Yithian Lightning Gun can, in fact, fire through multiple enemies if you charge it up a little. A second or two of charging will go through at least two Deep Ones, if you can line them up.
Once you drop through the broken stone seal on the ground into the great chasm, don’t try to climb down any vines. Trust me, you’ll just break something – there are no climbable vines on this side of the chasm. Hopscotch down the rocky outcroppings to the bridge, and then haul a$$ across it, because it’ll come down right behind you.
On the other side of the chasm, you’ll enter into a fight with two Flying Polyps. If one of them has line of sight to you, they can attack you, so use the stalagmites and other terrain to your advantage to break line of sight long enough to get your weapon going. Try not to shoot until you can see them clearly – Don’t take shots at the dark, those enemies are surprisingly mobile for their size. They will attack you by pushing and pulling you around with the wind, so keep away from the edge, and shoot them to make them stop. Once they no longer pose a threat, you can safely hopscotch your way up the wall and to the exit.
In order to defeat Hydra, you will need to strike the gong at the bottom of the stairs with a fully-charged shot from with Yithian Lightning Gun. This will deafen you enough to run up the stairs, dispatch any Deep Ones that may have spawned (usually 2) and crouch in the wading pond in front of Hydra, looking down. This will activate your latent powers, giving you control of a Deep One for a few seconds. As the Deep One, un-crouch immediately and jump up to one of the four statues lining the back of the room (a fifth can be reached by Jack himself). Click to swat at the head-shaped lever on the back and activate the water flow. Control will then be released and you will have to kill the Deep One, along with a few more that will spawn in. Repeat this process until all the waters are flowing, then hit the wading pond with a fully charged shot. This will fry the enemy and end the battle.
As you make your escape you may find that the ceiling collapses inescapably when passing through the previously gated tunnel at the top of the spiralled room. You can pass it by turning to the right 90 degrees immediately after passing the second threshold (where the rocks land) and looking upward about 60 degrees. Strafing to the left down the path, somehow, allows you to pass unscathed.