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Tour of Duty: Gauntlet & Repository Six
Posted By: MartinDate: 8/18/15 10:00 a.m.




Tempus Irae
10
Gauntlet
&
Repository Six

Last time on Tour of Duty, we ran around a rather large secret level. I was wrong about the ending of Brain Damage - the secret L switch and teleporter only open up after you activate the normal ones, which makes them a bit more secret than I had thought. No wonder I missed Towel Boy when I first played TI. It was an interesting level, and it was so nice to get to play a level without having to write anything up for a change :). There were a few interesting secrets in there that I didn't know how to access, and there was an awful lot of wading and some nice mechanics for raising bridges towards the end, along with a less nice Juggernaut!

Well, we're not out of the water yet! In fact we begin here falling towards it. As we climb out, a large amount of ammo appears on the ledge beside this pool, but notably absent is any shield canister! If only I had figured out how to get the 3x at the end of Towel Boy! Instead I'm rather low on shields, and I know from experience that the start of this level is not much fun in that situation.

Through a door we at least get a Pattern Buffer, and there are various windows through which we can shoot at some Pfhor that spawn about the place, as well as doors that don't open, and a switch for one that does, bringing more Pfhor and/or the opportunity for us to get amongst them. This door only opens briefly, opting for a switch on each side for control. The Pfhor we have seen so far all seemed to want to head out along the garden path to the right, so we follow that way and find them and -more-; along withmore doors that don't open, and a large pool, or even a river, with a narrow path going along it. There are a few other places I feel might be interesting if I had the shields to grenade myself, and Pfhor keep spawning as we get closer to the water's edge. Behind some obstacles to the right are a Fusion Pistol and a Shotgun, small mercies for the scratchstarter.

As we run out onto the path over the water, probably falling in the water as the running jump is quite long, it becomes clear that -this- is the Gauntlet. Pfhor spawn in front of us, around us, in windows high up on the other side of the river - you name it, they spawn there! Enforcers and Hunters take the window spaces, while Fighters line the path. And we ... run the Gauntlet, taking out the Fighters we can along the way. No one else is worth it.

Eventually we come to a divergence, with a door that won't open to the right, and a dead-end to the left. This creates a separate section of water, and if we drop down into -that-, we get to go on to the next area, which is much more of the same. Still low on shields, it is best to continue underwater as far as we can here, and then surface right by a bunch of ammo and a 1x shield recharge canister! Unfortunately that is also right by a Trooper and a bunch of Fighters, but we take what we can get!

Let's just have a look at the maps. We've so far been mainly in the bottom-right areas and you can see the water and the path across the river. There is a bit more overlap on this one than we've had for the last few levels, but there's much worse to come :). The 3d map tells us absolutely nothing.

The next room is a bit different. It starts off empty, with things shooting at us from above on the far side, and we have to hit a switch to flood it, so that we can get over a wall and into the next watery section. Around to the right and around again, we have the option of surfacing to kill more Fighters, and from there to the left is an alcove with an oxygen recharge canister. A bit further on, we surface in an area that is far too quiet, but don't worry, before long we meet Troopers and Fighters in a grassy courtyard.

And then it gets a bit mazelike, and the map is of no use at all. I guess for the in game one, having the all polygons visible plugin active is actually a disadvantage at a time like this! However, it also reveals a few small areas that appear to be inaccessible, and don't even make it onto the map picture we saw above. Hmmm. Maybe they house the Juggernauts that keep exploding from time to time, which I just happened to forget to mention. Indeed, that is probably it, looking at the places they are on the map.

One way or another, we eventually pass another door that doesn't open, one that doesn't even identify itself as a door! And then we find more new parts and more Pfhor, including some on raised platforms around the place - at least this level doesn't do ambushes from behind, only above :).

There are some interesting looking bits in the raised areas, but the spoiler guide doesn't mention any secrets. Instead we just carry on, find a staircase, and suddenly realise that we are entering the rooms above the Gauntlet, from which the Enforcers shot us! After a few of these rooms, and a few dead Enforcers, a door leads to a large dropoff, putting us very close to the closed door at the end of the first river path. Indeed, going towards that door now, rewards us with a 1x shield recharge canister, yum, while there also now appear to be stairs going back up to where we dropped off from - I think they open up after we drop down? Because it seems odd that I didn't notice them from the top - either that or the habit of looking for doors with switches is hard to break :).

Other doors are uncooperative except the one to the west - with a switch! In here are two switches, and a water pool that leads us down to where we first jumped off the river path. The spoiler guide talks about the little grassy spot just before we manually flooded that one room, and says that jumping on that opens up this tunnel long before we otherwise would. It is also interesting to go back that way and open the door to the flooded room. Cleverly they have put another door down behind it to prevent physics issues :).

Back up to where we were, another door opened at some point, and it contains more Pfhor and our terminal for the level.

So here we have the perpetrator of the crime we heard about on Brain Damage, this guy having stolen Leonardo's manuscript for the higher-ups. Hopefully he didn't get far with it, because that's what we're here for! Further to the north, a switch opens a door up and around the corner, but only briefly, and confusingly given that there are two doors around there. This will probably take two tries as there are also Pfhor to add to the confusion. This place really doesn't do doors that we can simply open!

Beyond the door that -does- open is a staircase climb to the manuscript - we get the chanting/churchy ambient sound and the room does look rather sacred, lit in bright white and overlooking a dark landscape outside. I guess getting up there also opens a door just back down the stairs, with a switch for the other of the doors just back a bit.

And -it- contains a switch that appears to open up our exit terminal, the animation of which has it racing against the sky in the background. But since when did that kind of switch open our exit? That's right, it doesn't, it just teleports us within the level. And suddenly we're overlooking the river path again, but from closer to the start of the level, and we proceed around to take out more Enforcers and Hunters. Bits of this area keep opening up in front of us as we go along. Eventually we reach a dropoff into water, and have to think what happens next - oh yes, we surface again somewhere new! This time it is to the company of a Hunter and a Drone, and a staircase heading up.

This leads us to a Pattern Buffer, the first in a while, and another dropoff, which sounds menacing as a Hunter and an Enforcer shoot at us from below! This takes us to just one door away from the area before the room we flooded, but we can't get through, even if we want to. Instead we head the other way, along a corridor and then through a door we actually can just open!! It's a miracle.

There's an L switch after a staircase, and it opens up a window to the left, putting us right back on the Gauntlet path - again I have to applaud the construction of the level! It turns out there are still Enforcers lining the place, in blocked off areas we just can't get to, and any Fighters we left alive on the way through. We are now required to work out where we go to end this level. As we're back near the start, we have a go at heading right back, or we find ourselves starting back, anyway, and find a door open that used to be closed, and another door beyond that reveals itself as our exit teleporter. A bit of a leap of logic especially with the door texture, and that it is not so obvious that the first has opened, but again, I guess maybe without all polygons visible on the map!

And thus we head back to the Repository Room, nothing we haven't all seen before, but without PS's growing objective markers, which shall be missed.

And yet more high praise when we insert the manuscript, -highly- satisfactory this time, woohoo, although they can't quite keep count, it would seem! Nice to see them acknowledge that it is a little odd that the Pfhor are always waiting for us, in front of us, behind us, and all around us, and maybe just maybe we'll eventually find out what the deal is with the Pfhor command mecha.

Next we're going to (another) castle, maybe we'll find a princess? That they have made us a SPNKR is kind of old news if we've been to Beyond the Black or Towel Boy, but we'll play along.

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Replies:

Tour of Duty: Gauntlet & Repository SixMartin 8/18/15 10:00 a.m.
     Re: Tour of Duty: Gauntlet & Repository SixVikingBoyBilly 8/18/15 11:35 a.m.
           Re: Tour of Duty: Gauntlet & Repository SixMartin 8/18/15 12:51 p.m.
                 Re: Tour of Duty: Gauntlet & Repository SixVikingBoyBilly 8/19/15 5:17 a.m.
                       Re: Tour of Duty: Gauntlet & Repository SixMartin 8/19/15 9:46 a.m.
                             Re: Tour of Duty: Gauntlet & Repository SixLion O Cyborg 4/1/16 11:18 a.m.

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