Friday, 6 April 2018

Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis - WON!

Indiana Jones Journal Entry #6: I've now used the same ladder three times. It's starting to rival my ship rib for usefulness. Oh, and I also discovered Atlantis and threw a god in a fire.

This WON! post has been a while coming, so let's get right into it.

When we last left the game I'd explored most of the Atlantean canal section. The one place I hadn't explored yet was a doorway that presumably leads to the inner circle of Atlantis.

I bet there's something particularly exciting beyond this doorway.

Or perhaps, it just leads to a different doorway.

The door to the next section is broken (what a surprise). There are two bronze loops, one connected to a statue arm and the other connected to the door and a broken part of the statue's other arm.

I can attach the chain to one of the bronze loops, but it won't reach the other loop. Because of this, I suspect I'll need to have the statue's left arm go 'down' somehow.

I use my ladder (which I retrieved from the statue room in the previous area) to get to the statue's chest mechanism, which I open.

The chest mechanism screen shows me the chest mechanism as well as some items I've collected around Atlantis which somewhat resemble the picture on the canal room cupboard. The objects I've collected from Atlantis that I can use are a statue part, a bronze gear and a crescent shaped gear, as well as an orichalcum bead. I can place these object in various places on the mechanism.

Remembering the picture on the canal room cupboard (or in my case, reviewing my screenshots) I set the items up to somewhat resemble the picture that shows the statue's left arm in the 'down' position, then put an orichalcum bead in the centre.

Damn, I really thought that was going to work.

I tried matching all of the possible pictures on the cupboard, but none of them worked. I also tried moving the centre piece to various other pegs, but that didn't work.

After I while I gave up - I then removed all the items and noticed something that had passed my notice before.

Note the gap between the silver piece and the crescent-shaped piece.

It looked like there was a piece missing. After facepalming at my lack of seeing the obvious, I set about solving the problem.

I was stuck here for a while and went back to ALL rooms I'd been to previously and tried ALL dialogue options with Sophia in case she had the missing piece and I needed to rescue her first. Eventually I had an idea similar to one I had earlier with the ladder – an item I've used before might have multiple uses. I went back to the machine room where I'd made a plethora of orichalcum beads and took back the bronze wheel I'd placed there earlier. Then I went back to the door past the canal.

Ah, I've never heard a sweeter KLIK in my life.

Now that the statue's arm was closer, I could attach the chain to both loops, then activate the statue again to move the arm back up to its original position.

The chain pulls the door off its hinges, creating a new opening, and something new fell to the floor.

When we last saw Sophia, I'd left her stuck in a dungeon because I didn't have any object she could use to brace the cell door after I opened it.

I take my new hinge pin back to Sophia's cage and give it to her. As I've finally found an object she trusts more than me, she uses it to prop open the cage and comes with me.

She tells me off, and Indy and Sophia argue for a while before, in typical Indy fashion, they kiss.

Fun fact: Indiana Jones has never kissed a woman without arguing with her first?

Having learned my lesson with the ladder and the bronze wheel, I try to take the hinge pin with me, but Indy just says “I can't. It's wedged in too tight.”

I take Sophia back to where I'd opened the door and we enter together. In a hallway in the next section, Sophia senses Nur-Ab-Sal's presence, and she directs us to a room with a lava pit. When we arrive, her voice alternates between her own, and a creepy demony voice. For those who are playing without voice acting on, Nur-Ab-Sal speaks in all caps.

You don't sound very humble, Mr. Sal.

I'll be sure to add that to my resume.

I can ask Sal to let me talk to the mortal woman, and he agrees. Even as Sophia she's not very helpful though, seemingly happy to serve her Atlantean master. She does let me look at her necklace though.

When I put an orichalcum bead in the necklace it gets hot and looks angry/happy. Sophia takes the necklace off. I can't touch the necklace, and it cools down after a few turns, which makes Sophia put it back on again.

After a few conversations and a few more attempts at putting orichalcum in the necklace, I get the idea to use my orichalcum-hiding gold box with the necklace after Sophia takes it off.

It works! Having hidden the necklace, Nur-Ab-Sal's hold over Sophia is broken. I then throw the box into the lava.

Put your hands in the air like you just don't care

Nur-Ab-Sal's bedroom, which is where I assume we are, also contains a sceptre, which I've taken.

In another room of this part of Atlantis we also find a macro-microtaur statue, which is much like a larger version of the one I used to burrow to Atlantis in the WITS path.

It's controlled by an open-mouthed head and three slots. I can use the sceptre in one of the slots, but the machine won't move – I suspect I need at least one more lever-like object. There are two pictures that I expect are instructions for the machine - one is on the wall in a hallway and the other is next to the microtaur itself. They both contain two darkened spots, which I deduce are lever locations.

Sophia, you're standing on the instructions. Would you mind moving a little to the right?

Apart from the sceptre, none of my items worked as a makeshift lever (I'm disappointed in you, ship rib) and at this point I was stuck again and did some more exploring/backtracking.

Because I'd run out of orichalcum by trying to make the microtaur work, I went all the way back to the machine room (then realised I'd need the bronze wheel and went back to the canal to retrieve the wheel then all the way back to the machine room again) and made some more orichalcum.

I asked Sophia if she had any ideas and she did tell me something interesting.

That doesn't help me solve the puzzle, but it tells me how close I am to finishing the game, so thanks, I guess.

Stuck again, I went back to re-explore Atlantis. After previously trying to 'pick up' the hinge pin I'd left in Sophia's cage, I went back there and tried to 'pull' or 'push' it, but neither of those options worked.

Damn. That hinge pin was the perfect size for a lever too.

Sophia's only assistance is to tell me we need to find the inner ring somehow. I explore a bit more, and try everything I have in the lever slots (I'm not surprised that my magazine didn't work as a lever, but I was trying everything at this point.)

Eventually the solution hits me. I go back to Sophia's cage and this time pull the cage itself, rather than the hinge pin. Eureka! The hinge pin drops to the floor, so I let go of the cage and take the hinge pin.

Back at the microtaur, I now have two levers and use the two sets of instructions both from the microtaur room, and in the hallway to control the machine.

How did Sophia and Indy get off the microtaur before it crashed over the ledge? An off-screen heroic leap I expect.

The microtaur drives around until I make it spin and crash into the wall, leaving us on a walkway above a pit of lava.

We walk down the path and end up in a maze of doors. You know the kind, where you enter one door and exit another, and if you pay attention eventually work out through trial and error which path takes us to the exit.

After all Sophia's been through so far you choose THIS moment to be condescending?

Some doors can't be re-entered as we'd slid down them.

Eventually (6 minutes according to my screenshot timestamps) I make it through and am faced with a section that reminds me of the 'Word of God' section of the Last Crusade. As I step on a hex, another hex will often disappear beneath the lava. If I go the wrong way, I can go back to the start, the puzzle resets and all removed hexes are back where they started. This section isn't hard and only took me about a minute to navigate.

I'm not an expert, but I'd have thought the heat itself would kill Indy by now.

After Indy gets across, Sophia follows quickly. They arrive at the shining city itself.

An art style consisting of statues with open mouths. I expected nothing different at this point.

Entering the main building, we find a spindle for my stone disks and a stone frog statue.

Aren't we all, Indy. Aren't we all.

I use my stones on the spindle and adjust them to try to open... whatever it is in this room that will open. I try combinations that have worked before but nothing works here. After a few attempts, Indy gives me a clue.

It means... aligned well???

This clue makes me re-read the Lost Dialogue, figuring there might be a clue in there that I'd ignored previously.

So what exactly DOES “well aligned” mean?

I try aligning the full moon, noon sun and city with each of the four directions, hoping one of those might work. No luck. I even try taking off the Worldstone, thinking perhaps that the Atlanteans aren't counting the world as a 'celestial sphere'.

I then try all possible combinations using the Sunstone and Moonstone, but none of them work. I really had no idea and considered asking you readers for assistance, but figured I'd brute force the problem and systematically tried EVERY SINGLE combination, using all three stones. I didn't bother with any of the diagonal combinations as that wouldn't be able to align well with the Worldstone, which was the only stone without diagonal options. I actually tried this a few times because I felt I probably lost concentration somewhere along the line and missed an option or two. If I'm remembering high school maths correctly, that means I tried 64 combinations multiple times. Including the times I tried specific combinations, I spent 47 minutes in this room playing with my spindle.

Not having any better ideas, I left the room, thinking perhaps I missed an object or clue somewhere else and should backtrack again. Almost as soon as I left the room I noticed something.

Why, oh why didn't I think of backtracking 47 minutes earlier?

The wall mural was the clue I needed. The Sun on the bottom, volcano facing right and a full moon in the diagonal northwest. And I'd discounted the diagonals before my brute-force attempts! (And yes, I HAVE noticed that one of my earlier screenshots in this post shows a good view of this mural.)

I went back and used my newfound clue to “well align” the stones, which turned on some kind of machine. As the machine turned on we found some old friends had come to join us.

Kerner and Ubermann came around to the stone frog to gloat while Kerner and the generic background Nazis kept their guns trained on us. I have a talk with Ubermann where he tells me his evil plan.

Um... Ubermann... when Kerner took out his gun and said "put up your hands" I'm pretty sure he was talking to Indy and Sophia.

Ubermann tells us that while I've been solving puzzles the Nazis have been stockpiling orichalcum. He continues to rant about how powerful he'll become, and his companion interjects.

Not wanting to be left out, I offer my own services.

This encourages Kerner to demand he gets to go first. I point out that Ubermann's suggested ten beads of orichalcum might be wrong.

I suggest he try one bead. Ubermann does so, and the machine turns Kerner into some kind of creature with a very bad sense of balance.

Ubermann then decides it's my turn. He lets me decide how man beads he uses. I go for the obvious answer.

This is another occasion where I love the voice acting. This line is delivered with exactly the appropriate emotion.

With Ubermann not taking no beads for an answer, I suggest he use 100 beads. This goes... poorly.

At least the Nazis are dead. That's at least some measure of success.

I'd been hoping to get Ubermann to test on himself instead of me, but couldn't get the proper dialogue options to show up. I eventually got the dialogue options I wanted. I'm not sure, but I think it was by continuing to agree with Ubermann, but then suggest he use no beads. Anyway, I finally got to threaten him with my godlike powers, which makes him reconsider and test on himself instead.

I like how the falling rubble aims straight for the Nazis first – Atlantean buildings have taste!

Sophia and I run through Atlantis as it collapses around us, which is something I'm sure Indy's used to doing by now.

Thus Indiana Jones was the perpetrator of the most unnecessary use of the word 'hurry' in human history.

We get back onto the Nazi sub, and if there are any sailors still onboard I assume we overpower them because Sophia and I seem to be alone, or at least in charge. (NOTE: The Nazi sub wasn't at the Atlantean airlock when we arrived in the WITS and FISTS paths, but it makes sense to assume that's how some of the Nazis ended up getting to Atlantis after I'd arrived.)

Indy's pleased that for the first time he has proof that he discovered something amazing.

Then, as the sun sets, Sophia and Indy kiss, and we get the credits.

As the credits roll, the sunset gradually becomes a night sky, which was quite a nice visual treat.

Which did not end up happening :(

Session time: 3 hours 45 minutes (I wasn't kidding when I said I did a lot of backtracking)
Total time: 10 hours 20 minutes
IQ Points: 598 of 939 (I still haven't checked out the alternate solutions I missed - I want to get onto that before getting to the final rating)

And that's the end of Indiana Jones and the Fate of Atlantis. I really had a great time playing this, and it didn't get old even doing all three paths! I enjoyed it enough that I'm still intent on seeing the alternate solutions I've missed along the way before giving the game my final rating.

Next week we'll find out what PISSED rating I end up giving the game. I'm expecting it to get some high scores, but will it hit our top 10?


  1. My thoughts:

    Ahh, the lava maze is my favorite moment of the game, great atmosphere, the best music in the game, you really travel to atlantis for a minute there. You can actually die in the lava tiles if you start messing around with them, I don't know how to trigger it exactly, but Indy will say "uh oh" and then his tile will engulp him leaving his hat falling.

    "Having learned my lesson I tried to pick up the door hinge" hahaha lol at that, 50% right .. you needed to open the cage !

    When Sophia is posseses in the lava pool room, there's one line in her dialogue (you have to keep talking to her) that the developers forgot to change its pitch, so you have Sophia speaking in a forced bass voice, but not with that creepy effect CHURL !

    Regarding the instructions for the microtaur, the one that starts it are random, while the one that makes it turn is always fixed (top left and top right), probably to have the same solution on walkthroughs and help lines, since once you are aboard the microtaur, there's no way to go back and see the instructions.

    The actual solution to the lava tiles, is one I found after 10 years of playing the game. It's not random. The tile that gets turned to lava is always the one in front of the one Indy walks to. So for example, if you walk exactly to the right, the one from the right of that one will turn on. Knowing this secret, it's very easy to navigate it. I love how the programmers didn't cheat with Sophia crossing the tiles and she actually moves with the same rules.

    The boss dialogue (with Kerner and Ubermann) is not really giving you many options. Anything you'd say, will get Kerner commiting suicide, and then just loop once with Ubermann saying no beads, that will unlock the "I hope for your sake this doesn't work", and after that one, you can choose "ever heard the term angry god?" or "I dare you to use those beads", those 2 options will win the game, while the others will loop you back to the main dialogue tree.

    I think, that in the wits path, in the final cutscene with Indy and sophia fleeing to the sub, the tram is not visible (a bug in the logic). But not really 100% sure.

    You think all LucasArts titles have one ending ? Think again, this one has 2, and you are missing the bad ending ! I hope to see you reach it in your last post (don't delete your savegames !) and as a hint, you can still get it if you have the saveslot from the start of this article. (there are 2 different ways to get it also).

    The Indy coming back, it says look for him younger or something like that .. is a reference to the Young Indiana Jones tv series, which I deeply recommend.

    1. And of course, I'm Alex Romanov, sorry for the confusion

    2. Excellent info, as always. And I'll have to try for that ending - I rarely delete my savegames and save very VERY often - I saved over 200 times for this game!

      I assumed the final line was about a future adventure game rather than the TV show, but yeah, that does make sense given the timing.

  2. This game should have been named "Indiana Jones and the Fate of the Backtracking Simulator".

    The music heard in the room with the deformed skeletons (and where you kill Nur-Ab-Sal) and in the Colossus is the hymn Dies Irae. The melody is often quoted to signify death or doomsday. Here is a famous instance.

    And here's some links I'll just dump here: (NSFW remix of game audio)

    1. To be fair, the backtracking is only at the Atlantis stage, not before.

      It's also part of the difficulty spike. With the exception of the ship rib and the whip, there are no items that you need to use more than once before Atlantis (AFAIK).

      Then in Atlantis, you need to use the ladder 3 times, the robot wheel twice, and in very far locations. You can actually forget the stone discs at Atlantis entrance (the contrary minds door) and have to get back to get them (all other stone discs doors have Indy automatically picking them up saying "better not leave the stone discs behind).

      Also, the river with the crab sequence is veeeery slow, I hate to go back to produce more beads, to realize that I forgot to pick the robot wheel from the inner door. They could have reduce all these sequences by just not reusing the same items in those locations.

    2. I'll admit that most of my backtracking was my own fault for having no idea how to solve a puzzle, and just going back to all rooms again hoping to notice something I'd missed.

      But as Alejandro mentioned, when I knew I wanted more beads and got back there only to realise I needed the bronze wheel - that made me frustrated :)

      I've definitely heard that Dies Irae music before (no idea where - probably a movie) and didn't pick up on this game having that piece. Very nice trivia!

      I also like those links - a funny little youtube video that I probably appreciated more for having just heard those voices a lot in the last few months.

      I haven't read the mixnmojo link yet, but I always like reading information about games/movies I've just finished, so thanks.

    3. Another link (bugs):

    4. Saw this on The Adventure Gamers forum, an interview with Noah Falstein:

  3. If this game doesn't enter the TAG TOP 10, then I don't know what will. Surely this game outclasses Indiana Jones I (the last crusade)

    1. I'm quite confident it will, but I put that last remark in to keep the suspense up - shhh, don't tell anyone.

  4. Funny, I find the Atlantis part quite easy, I only backtracked once for the ladder. Well, I find the whole game easy (I have only played the WITS path this time). For me the most difficult parts are the ones that are there but are only relevant in one of the other paths, as was commented in a previosu post. This made me lose some time trying to solve some puzzles that were not solvable.

    Well, that and the problem with the stone discs I also mentioned in another posts before.

    1. Interesting how different people find different parts hard.

      One thing I appreciated about being stuck in this game was that when I finally worked out the solution, I largely blamed myself rather than poor game logic - with the exception of the 'push slab' puzzle from a few posts ago.

  5. Good job!

    I haven’t been reading these because I want to play this game someday unspoiled.

    1. Thanks. This game is definitely worth an unspoiled playthrough!

    2. I can imagine! I read the first two posts and was like “this game seems too good NOT to’d I miss it?”

  6. Congratulations. You got all the IQ Points in this section as well - the only "alternate" solution is the good ending, and that's the only one that gives you additional IQ Points, you get nothing for the bad ending. As a kid I never realized the good ending even existed, and thought the bad ending was the only one.

    Also, that demon monster thing Indy/Ubermann turn into at the end gave me actual nightmares back then - it's really really creepy, and I don't think kid me realized the text explained that it died shortly after the transformation either.

    1. Also scary is that when Indy transforms, he goes all "evil and drunk with power" as well, with the same laughter and mannerisms. Apparently becoming that powerful has such an effect on your personality and makes you instantly forget your former interests.

  7. Great job finishing a great game! I've had a jolly good time reading about your endeavours during your trip to and in Atlantis

    I've finished the game several times, but I never knew about any "bad" ending, so I hope you get to write about that too