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Tour of Duty - Six Thousand Feet Under
Posted By: MartinDate: 9/28/13 1:56 p.m.

TOUR OF DUTY

13 – Six Thousand Feet Under

The name. The Story page covers it well on its own. I’m quite happy with just the reference to death being six feet under, combined with this literally being a very long way underground. Now are you happier with the lava, PS?

Last time on Tour of Duty we explored a bunker under the S’pht Citadel of Antiquity, made an effort to view a terminal with a picture of Tfear, and found out for sure that there was an Eleventh Clan of S’pht, the S’pht’Kr.

...

We arrive falling from a decent height, which makes perfect sense. Our landing doesn’t seem to be consistent, but I’ll take us from the very bottom here. This is a level of two halves, one of which is about 80% of the level, not your standard half! The first half is a game of ledges, and working out how to get from one to another, and where it is we want to get to in the first place!

We quite quickly start getting shot at by Lava F’lckta, being as we are on a ledge right next to a lava pool. As we know, they hurt and they can take the hurt as well. Nothing we can’t handle though. We start somewhere near a dead end on the ledge, and we realise quite quickly that this is a big level. We pass between large lava pool areas and the overhead map shows that there are ledges at different levels around the place. Let’s take a look.

This is the level as it looks initially, and boy is that a lot of lava. But it makes sense so far underground ... right? ... PS? During the level we mess around with the lava levels a couple of times.

Near the start we go up a staircase and see off to the left a dark platform beyond some lava. Jump it, vid boi! The platform ends in a handy dandy PB, nice start. Heading to its other end, we summon a Cyborg teleporting in, and kill it. Then we see a terminal off to the left, a switch close to it, and another one right in front of us, over more lava. That one raises platforms out of the lava, allowing us to get to the terminal.

Look everywere. Okay then. I’ve got the game open in the background at this point right now and the ambient sound is driving me a bit mad, another one of those incessant banging ones, but without the variation of the one from We’re Everywhere that I find so definitive of the game. The switch next to the terminal seemingly raises up a platform from the lava we originally jumped over to get to the PB, to make that bit easier to access. Now we carry on.

Up the stairs and out onto another ledge. There are Ticks about, making our radar a bit scary. Up some stairs around the corner as we keep running along this ledge, we find an intersection, with a raised opening we can’t get to yet on the right, stairs going up left, and the ledge carrying on straight ahead. Aha, so it seems that switch by the terminal also raised platforms out of the lava here. Last time I played through I actually swam to the next PB first off, and survived! Running along these platforms we get a view of the next PB room through a window across the lava. It is as close as it looks, this is not a mean teaser. Just around the next corner with yet more ledges visible on the overheap map, although it is too dark to really see them otherwise. The PB comes with a 1x charger alongside, although I’d prefer more. Still looking good with the 3x from last level though :).

Heading back, we take the stairs from that intersection from before and head out across another ledge with open lava, slightly higher up this time, and with more Lava F’lckta shooting us from we can’t quite be sure where, just keep moving! Around the next corner we see that big red circle wall texture from the psychedelic corridor in Eat It, Vid Boi! along with a few broken windows looking out over the first PB ledge, and then an explicit opening to it, just in case we didn’t take the first opportunity of the jump across the lava.

Carrying on, another ledge, and a Lava F’lckta seems to come out of nowhere, while we’re busy watching Ticks. Man it’s dark here. All I can see is my own reflection in my glossy screen. Conveniently I don’t frighten myself. We’re actually on the other side of the lava from where we started around this point! Next we see more higher up stuff appearing on the overhead map, and then we cross a ledge with lava on both sides, the right giving us our first view of that small second half of the level. Along further, we encounter more F’lckta as well as getting shot at from above, which is very dangerous when fighting on ledges above lava!! I only just made it back to the PB and charger playing right now. And yet more F’lckta tried to kill me from above just before the PB room. Nasty.

When we can continue, we come to a staircase which takes us to a view over a lava filled area that looks suspiciously useful. I think on lower difficulties you might be able to swim across and not have to go for the switch first, but they only offer 1x on the other side, so even with the 3x from the previous level, maybe not. So generally, it’s on to the next ledge for us as we gradually make our way up. Neither High Nor Low take 2, anyone? :)

Next, another corner, window view to another lava pool, staircase, and then an opening to the left at point C on the map where we fend off a few Water F’lckta in only our second meeting, and then get a very brief terminal:

The what now? Is this the first mention of such? I’m not sure I’ve ever fully appreciated this part of the story, but reading up now I gather this is an airborne virus released to kill the Pfhor. So was it actually this that left the radiation in the Citadel of Antiquity, rather than any Pfhor chemical assault? I guess I missed that idea.

Anyway, onwards and upwards. Next we finally get to kill those F’lckta that were shooting us from above before, because now we are above! And then we come to a staircase that breaks across the lava, don’t fall in!, and ultimately leads to a dead end ledge ... great! Backtracking we realise that that staircase also gives us access to the raised room we saw ages ago but couldn’t get to, at point A on the map. This is still all a bit precarious with the narrow ledges, so be sure you make the jump! In this room is a switch, which reveals a switch, which lowers the lava levels ... yay. And a terminal.

They were onto it.

So, now we have lowered the lava ... great, now the long walk back to the top, after recharging and saving, of course. We still can’t access the second half of the level, but we do find that the other suspicious lava filled room at point B on the map is now lava emptied, and so we jump down into it. Unfortunately this gets us shot at by a few Lava F’lckta. I tend to just run past them and up the 3x3 stair arrangement. This leads to a 1x charger and a switch on the right – this one drops the lava level in the second half, which we can watch out the window here. On the left is another terminal:

Wow. Quite a bit of the confusing S’pht story there. Fleeing all W’rkncacnter just leaves us with a lot of questions! Okay so they as gods made an eden for their children on Lh’owon (which I have always pronounced Le Hoe On btw, just thought I’d mention it now that we have a version from the Rampancy guys), but then all the W’rkncacnter followed them and messed things up, typical! They killed Pthia and then felt the vengeance of Yrro as they became trapped in Lh’owon’s sun, ultimately leading to the Infinite questions we have yet to come.

This time around I just ran back across and up the stairs here, ignoring the Lava F’lckta – turns out they’re not that great shots against a moving target :). From here we can go back and look at the view to the second half of the level, but the lava is so low there now that we can’t access it from there. We need to go higher! Higher! Higher! And then at the highest point, what was just a dead end before becomes a major running leap of faith. To a platform so high it lets us drop down to safety, now entering the second half of the level ... I could really have just said part all along, but never mind ... and a PB, yay! Oh nice, that jump is marked in purple on PS’s map, I hadn’t really been paying attention to the points on it; have inserted them as afterthoughts really.

The next area is just crazy. There are a lot of Cyborgs and Lava F’lckta with ledges around the outside of a lava pool with three more ledges in it, with walls between them and small openings. The Cyborgs seem to be more interested in circling the complex than anything else. More and more teleport in as you walk around, which is very annoying, and if you didn’t know the level and that there is a 2x charger that is quite easy to get to, very annoying indeed. In fact this whole place is unnecessary. There is a lift in the corner at point D on the map, at the top of which there is a switch that raises the lava back up, but this seems useless. Is it possible to come here while it is still filled with lava and use this to lower the lava? Seems a long swim, maybe with 3x from the last level and on low difficulty? Maybe for a speedrun?

Heading for the 2x charger is my preferred method. From here it is just a short run to the end, but a short run beset on all sides by Cyborgs teleporting in ><. You can stick the door open here by switching the switch off again, giving open access to the 2x charger. I remember watching my brother when he played through before I ever had back in the day – he was down to fists at this point and that charger was very important.

After running through the passage killing Cyborgs we come to a staircase around a lava pool, which we have been able to see on the overhead map for a long time ... finally we get here! And a jump over the earlier part of the level leads us to the final room. There are switches to lower the PB and terminals, but they work fine as they are.

Assuming we read the S’pht terminal first. More story here, and the tru7h revealed, but not in a very simple to understand fashion. I shall leave interpretation to the floor as I need to get moving at this point :).

Durandal admits he may be destroyed, but he’s certainly having fun in the meantime. We’re on our way up to Boomer now, and to one of the nastiest levels out there IMO. I’m out for a month, although I am down for For Carnage Apply Within, so maybe I’ll write something while I’m away; I just won’t be able to play as I’m only taking a Surface RT and Aleph One doesn’t do metro, hmmm. Have a fun October.

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Pre-2004 Posts


Replies:

Tour of Duty - Six Thousand Feet UnderMartin 9/28/13 1:56 p.m.
     Re: Tour of Duty - Six Thousand Feet UnderFiddlerOnARoof 9/28/13 3:12 p.m.
           Re: Tour of Duty - Six Thousand Feet UnderMartin 9/28/13 3:38 p.m.
                 Re: Tour of Duty - Six Thousand Feet UnderFiddlerOnARoof 9/29/13 4:49 a.m.
           Re: Tour of Duty - Six Thousand Feet UnderPerseusSpartacus 9/28/13 3:50 p.m.
                 Re: Tour of Duty - Six Thousand Feet UnderFiddlerOnARoof 9/29/13 11:33 a.m.
     Re: Tour of Duty - Six Thousand Feet UnderPerseusSpartacus 9/28/13 3:53 p.m.
     Re: Tour of Duty - Six Thousand Feet Underyaco 3/22/14 4:22 p.m.
           Re: Tour of Duty - Six Thousand Feet UnderMartin 3/22/14 5:35 p.m.

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