Thief 2: The Metal Age – Day 8

For mission 14, it’s back where we were and I’m in the same mansion as last time. This time I get to knock everyone out at least but this is still a huge level and there are a lot more guards than last time around.

New treasure has appeared all over the place and I need a lot of it to complete the level. This means I still need to explore near enough all of the house even though I only really need the masks.

The guards have a nasty habit now of teaming up in pairs like this one making it very difficult to take them both out without one of them noticing. It is just about possible by taking the rear one first as long as there is enough corridor left before the second turns around.

I head straight to the top floor where the masks should be. I find this strange contraption where 3 alcoves allow me to turn off a particular coloured light. This has to be important and I later discover that it turns off the gas traps in certain rooms depending on which colour is off.

The servants are in evidence but contrary to what I’d expect they are particularly easy to deal with. They remind me a bit of the cyborgs from System Shock 2 and sometimes thank me when I kill them.

The masks I need are all in near enough identical rooms. Stepping on the carpet has an odd effect and makes it bounce up and down like an enormous subwoofer on full volume. If I haven’t turned it off it also emits a load of gas which is lethal. I trek back and forth to the foyer to make sure the right colour is turned off and go around collecting all these masks.

Also up here is the cultivator that I apparently need. Dealing with the guards is a pain but I manage to grab it and then leave this floor by jumping off the balcony.  

I still haven’t got enough treasure so I have to explore the other floors despite completing all other aspects of the mission. The central room in a nightmare with loads of guards and it’s brightly lit. I manage to slowly clear it out and grab the meagre amount of treasure on offer.

Some more exploring and I get the treasure I needed. I head straight out and miss off the rooms I still haven’t looked around. This hasn’t been that bad a level but it hardly had anything new to offer over the one before. It’s very strange that the masks weren’t just there in the mission before and I had to play the same map twice and it looks a lot like padding the game out.  I wouldn’t have had a problem with 14 levels so it’s unneccessary. Even knowing where I was going, this level must have taken me going on 2 hours to play.

Viktoria has used the evidence I’ve collected and found that the Mechanists have built some kind of weapon using the rust gas. It feeds off vegetation and since the lords who got the free samples all have huge gardens it could be used to destroy the city. I’m not quite buying this I have to say, surely it would just destroy the gardens. It’s all a bit of a convenient link to Viktoria’s plant making abilities….

Anyway, Viktoria’s plan is to go to the Mechanist cathedral where she will make loads of plants. In the meanwhile, I’ll be somehow finding a way to attract all of the servants back to the cathedral so that when they are set off the cathedral will be destroyed instead. Conveniently the cathedral is airtight so everything else will be ok. This sounds just like the sort of hare-brained scheme that makes up a final mission but Garret doesn’t like it and leaves to come up with his own plan.

One of the Keeper’s tries to change my mind and I learn that Viktoria has gone on her own. I try to rescue her which seems out of character but I only arrive it time to see her sacrificing herself to create enough plant life for the reaction. It’s back to plan A and I have to get all the servants to return here.

As soon as the level starts, I’m immediately spotted by Karras and he sets some of his “children” on me. Throughout this level there don’t appear to be any human guards and I just have to deal with the various mechanical creatures. I’ve only got 10 water arrows which doesn’t make this easy for me.  

From a book I find, I learn that Karras has been transforming Mechanists into servants. This might explain the lack of human guards. The servants are the least of my troubles anyway as I can just hack them down with my sword if I have to.

The cathedral is truly huge with the biggest rooms I’ve seen in the game. Through this arch is another area described as the upper levels on my map but I never even explored that in this days play. Instead I stuck to the factory area at the south end of the cathedral and attempted to figure out how to make the beacon I needed to attract the servants.

I find some storage rooms with loads of strange equipment. I know well enough never to leave anything behind so I grab everything. It’s amazing just how much Garret can carry.

I soon find the plan room which contains a myriad of scrolls, including the blueprints for the guiding beacon. I’m going to be spending the rest of today attempting to build this beacon.

I also find instructions for using the beacon but I never get around to trying these out.

The first few stages of the process are not too hard. I basically have to throw parts into these giant machines, flip a switch and take the thing it makes to the next machine. The machines are spread all over the place which means a lot of trekking back and forth.

When it comes to coping with factory bay D, I have a lot more problems. I end up with 3 of the children in here with me and no water arrows left to do anything about them. By accident I discover that I can get them to blow themselves up by getting them against a corner so they shoot the wall instead of me. This isn’t easy but it works well enough for me to clear the room and get through the next stage of building the beacon.

I go from one machine to another and finally get the beacon built. I’ve given in finishing the level today at this point. It’s probably taken 90 minutes to get this far and I don’t think I’m even halfway through yet. This level has certainly been a challenge although I’m not that keen on it so far. If I had a better supply of equipment to take out the robots then it would be ok but I spent far too long just avoiding them when going backwards and forwards through the same areas. I think the levels have probably been going downhill a bit since Life Of The Party. I do seem to have found myself going back over the same ground in each of them far more than I would like and having the same level twice in a row didn’t help, neither did playing a level I’d already seen in Thief 1. I gather than I need to flip a load of switches in the cathedral to switch the signal towers to my beacon next which sounds a bit more promising.

I was impressed with the cutscene after Level 14. There haven’t been many of these animated cutscenes as the game usually sticks to panning over static images. I particularly like it when they show the characters in silhouette. It fits in with the games dark atmosphere and the movement is strangely lifelike adding to the creepiness factor when Viktoria starts growing roots out of her arms. I’m hoping for something similar at the end of the game – I’m expecting Karras to turn out to be half machine or something similar.

Thief 2: The Metal Age – Day 7

For this level, I’ll need to make my way across the rooftops to the fortress of the Mechanists. I start high above the streets don’t want to be falling off from this height.

There is an amusing scene on the way where two sets of guards argue about their masters virtues and it ends up in a fight between them where just the one guard survives. I leave him be and keep going.

While I’m up here, I’m taking the chance to explore every house I can get into. I need a lot of loot to complete this mission. For this house, I play Santa Claus and get in through the chimney (first extinguishing the fire with a water arrow).

A lot later and I find my destination. It’s an impressive building. I’ve actually spent that long on the rooftops that I was starting to assume that the building itself would be in another level but that isn’t the case and it’s still a huge building. The level size really takes off for all these missions today and I’m surprised at just how much they pack into each one.

Getting into the fortress is achieved through the ventilation system. This being a mechanist building, it’s full of the usual contraptions including a lift to speed me around between floors once I’m in.

I find one of those recording devices that I had to steal in an earlier mission. I try using it and get to hear Karras giving a speech. It turns out he hasn’t attended his own party and is giving a guided tour using these devices instead. I now have to find all 6 to see what he is up to.

I’ve noticed an art-deco feel to a lot of the Mechanist buildings and this room (also containing a gramophone) is no different.

I need to find more of Karras’ new scripture while I’m here and this is going to become a staple mission requirement for today. I stumble across it while I’m looking for gramophones.

The little cherubic figure in the corner is a new one for me in this game. It acts as an alarm but appears to be invulnerable. I’ve cleared out this floor by the time I see it so I don’t worry about it too much.

I started at the bottom and have been gradually working my way up the floors. I get into Karras’ office. There is another gramophone here but when I use it I get a personal message saying that he knew I was coming.  I’m expecting a load of guards to show up immediately but nothing happens.

It’s a brief respite as when I open the safe at the back of the room to get the blueprints an alarm sounds. I still can’t leave the building either as there is one final gramophone to find.

The alarm doesn’t make getting around the building any more difficult and I quickly find the last gramophone. I’ve not learned too much from Karras’ tour. He has made some sort of mechanical servants (presumably from the dead bodies) which he gave as gifts to the nobles. They have to occasionally return for adjustments which sounds highly suspicious and I suspect they are weapons in the important houses of the city but I don’t learn more. The alarm does make my trip all the way back to the start harder with a new set of alert guards to cope with. As long as I make it through them, I don’t concern myself with them seeing me and I’m back at the bell tower within 5 minutes.

The blueprints had the name Cavador on them and Viktoria already knows the name and where to find him. It appears all I’ve been doing is confirming her suspicions but now I’m sent off to kidnap the guy and bring him back for interrogation.

He is hiding out near a cavernous area according to one of Viktoria’s agents (Lotus). Along the way I need to try to speak to this agent and also pick up some loot.

The level starts off with a long climb up a lift shaft. Taking the lift would alert all the guards so I have to climb up a load of vines to sneak my way to the top. Halfway up, a Mechanist is standing guard over a couple of switches which open the gates to the next part of the level.

At the top of the area is a lighthouse + attached shack. I need to find a globe in the shack but I decide to get it on my way back which turns out to be a mistake when the mission goals change at the end of the mission. There is a habit of changing the goals in all these missions.

At the top of the lighthouse was a key to the cold storage area which is an outbuilding not far away. I make my way in here to see what I can find.

And what I find is Lotus, Viktoria’s missing agent. He was captured by the Mechanists and shoved in here. He isn’t in great shape but does tell me a bit about this project of Karras’ which involves some sort of underwater ship. He also gives me a spoke off a ships wheel – I know where to use this from earlier.

Back in the lighthouse, I attach the spoke to this wheel and then give it a spin.

The floor drops away and I descend into another cave system.

I spot the Cetus Whateveritwas on my way through the caves through a crack in the wall. It’s a full fledged submarine. Love or hate them you have to be impressed with the fact that these Mechanists seem to be about 300 years ahead of the rest of the world.

I discover a note explaining a bit more about what is going on but I still don’t know what the Mechanists ultimate goals are.

One of my subgoals here is to find some pirate treasure. It’s not difficult to spot and I just have to swim through an underwater cave to find a whole boat down here. On the way out I’m attacked by the ghost of the Captain but a few sword strikes sort him out.

After much more exploring, I make my way onto the submarine itself. The art deco theme is still present. I find a letter and get a new goal to hide myself away in cargo hold 5 to stow away to the KD area (whatever that is) but I’ll need to find the key to the cargo hold first. Cavador is somewhere in the KD area and since he isn’t around here, my goal to take him back to the start of the level has now gone. This means I need to trek all the way back to find this globe near the lighthouse that was one of my mission requirements.

Finding this is a right pain. I have to spot a near invisible hole in the ceiling and vine arrow my way up it. There is a switch in the darkness to throw which opens a secret door in another dark area which has the globe in it.

With that out of the way, I head back to the sub area and head off to explore a side cavern. I soon locate the keys for the holds but the one I need is #5 which isn’t here.

Another requirement I haven’t fulfilled is to find more scripture. This note tells me where to look.

I keep exploring and find a rust sample to take back to Viktoria. I think this is related to the red gas that was used when I was eavesdropping in an earlier mission and caused the victims bodies to instantly rust reducing them to powder. I’m sure I’ll be seeing this later.

The scripture is floating in a flooded out living area. On the way to this I also stumble across the key to cargo hold 5 without really looking for it.

That is everything I need to do on this mission so it’s back to the sub to hide away in the cargo hold.

I start off the next mission not knowing where I am but my goal is still to find Cavador and kidnap him. I’ve no subgoals here except for finding the obligatory bit of scripture.

I soon learn where I am – it’s the Lost City. I didn’t especially like this level back in Thief 1 but I’m going to get to play it all again. There are a good few changes at least.

The Mechanists are performing a series of archaeological digs in the city. I’ve no idea where I’m going so I just follow my map around exploring each area and each site as I get to it.

Each level is giving me trickier situations to cope with. This dig site had four guards and I can’t for the life of me see a good route sneaking through them so I charge in, attract them all to close range and take them all out with a single gas arrow. Gas arrows are about the single most useful thing in Thief when you aren’t allowed to kill anyone but they are extremely scarce so I try to hold onto them.

I explore every site, one by one with no sign of Cavador. When there is only one left I find a note nearby telling me that it is the one I want. It’s fairly typical that it’s the only one I haven’t searched.

I’m wondering if I’ve missed the scripture somewhere along the way but I find it in Site 5. Now I just need Cavador.

I know I’m on the right track when the accommodations get more luxurious. Cavador is extremely difficult to get to though. He is in a small room with 3 guards, one of which has a metal helmet and is unknockoutable. I have to take near suicidal measures to knock out one guard conventionally. This then alerts the 3 of them and I have to gas mine the helmeted guy and then blackjack the other until he runs away.

Cavador has run off in the meanwhile but I grab his diary.

Cavador hasn’t gone far and he drops with a single blow. I now just have to carry his body halfway across the level.

This doesn’t prove to be too hard, mostly due to me already having cleared out most of the route. My biggest problem is finding the exit – I had enough trouble with this back in Thief 1 and it’s no different here. After 10 minutes going round in circles I find it and soon spot daylight.

Viktoria handles the interrogation of Cavador and we learn that he was supplying Karras with masks for his robots and also agricultural equipment and that somehow the two are linked. I now have to search another mansion to try to grab some of these masks. There is going to be an exhibition of artifacts here which should include some of these masks but for no apparent reason, I’m going to be doing this in two trips, the first of which involves just mapping out the place before the masks arrive. This has the added complication of me once again not being able to be seen or knock anyone out.

There is supposed to be a secret passage to gain access somewhere but I end up sneaking around all the guards and then smashing a window to get in on the 1st floor. I do find the secret entrance eventually but only from the inside of the house.

The house is, as ever massive. It’s not exactly crawling with guards but there are enough of them considering that I can’t knock anyone out. The floors here are extremely noisy except for where there is carpet running down the middle. I have noticed that guards can be very slow to react in this game and as long as you are quick you can quickly get out of sight and keep going while they search around.

One of the requirements of this mission in to find 7 secrets which seems like a lot and in the end I find exactly 7 having explored what seems like every square inch of this place. Most of them are along the lines of this with a secret door into a passage than runs behind a row of rooms. They upon up using small round switches that are easy to spot when I know to look for them. Once the doors are opened up it makes an easy route to speed around the mansion without having to worry about guards.

I’m really liking the art-deco theme again in this level. For it’s age some of the levels don’t look bad at all.

I wander around the house for ages exploring but not finding much. Eventually, in the one place I haven’t looked I find a library complete with ghosts that give me clues as to the locations of various books on the shelves.

CHECK PICTURE. After finding 5 or so of these books (1 of which opens a panel with some bodies in), the documents I’m looking for magically appear on the top floor of the library.

I still need to find this secret stairway to get out of the level. I discover a cuckoo in the exhibition room in the middle of the house which I then use on a metallic grandfather clock to open up a stairway to the top floor. This stairway acts as my last secret. I explore the top floor but don’t’ find anything useful I can do here and so I make my way back out of the house to complete the level.

For the next level, I need to go back into the mansion again to steal the masks. I don’t fancy playing the same location again straight away so left it there for now.

Out of the four missions here, the first was the most fun. I liked the story it told through Karras’ recordings and the sheer scale of the level. Karras is coming across as quite a sinister and Machiavellian figure although I’ve not actually seen the guy yet. I have a feeling he may not be what I’m expecting. The others were all decent levels – they were occasionally verging on too difficult but I’m impressed with the balance that the game is striking and I’ve barely had any frustration at all. Finding the cuckoo was especially annoying on that last level but I think I might have missed a hint about it’s location earlier. With not being able to clear out the level, I couldn’t get around the map as quickly as I would have liked when I was searching for things I’d missed. The Lost City was certainly a lot more fun this time around. I get the feeling that I could have skipped 75% of that level if I’d know what I was doing but I’d have been missing out.

I think I’ve only got 2 levels left so I’ll be putting in a concerted effort to finish the game tonight.

Thief 2: The Metal Age – Day 6

Having said I wasn’t going to get much chance to play Thief this weekend, a leaving do on Friday + the resultant hangover have left me stuck in the house while it wore off which seemed like as good an excuse to play some Thief as any and I’ve knocked off quite a few levels.

I start the first of todays missions outside the Sheriffs house. I can see right from the start that I’m going to have problems as I can’t even approach the door because of the security cameras. There is a box nearby which I use to climb over the side wall instead.

There is a small building here (guest quarters?) with a guy in it snoring heavily. I knock him out while I have the chance and steal a bit of loot in the vicinity. I don’t find anything else here so instead jump back over the wall and climb in through the window of a similar house. Going out of the far side of this gets me to another side wall + outbuilding.

I knock out everyone in sight and flip this switch which turns off the security cameras.

With the camera’s out of order I soon take out the gates lone guard and pick the lock of the door nearby. This gets me into a tower with a switch to open the main gate. I can see the Sheriff’s enormous house in the distance.

There are a couple of guards at the main door. The surface makes a lot of noise but with some extra careful sneaking I manage to take both the guards here out. It doesn’t do me any good as there are more than I can cope with behind the door so I reload and try going around the side.

I soon find another entrance around the back of the house. My only problem is a metal helmeted guard who just clangs when I hit him from behind. Since I can’t kill him I just have to leave him alone.

I have to get a certain amount of treasure in this mission. The gambling room is a good source. As with most of the missions in this game I don’t have any difficulties getting the loot. It’s a big improvement on Thief where I often ended up going round in circles looking for the bit I’d missed.

This is quite a nice room where I have to run around the outside of the swimming pool avoiding the security camera and collecting all the treasure. Shortly after managing this I find a switch to turn the camera off which would have made things a lot easier. It is just as well as there is a gear key in the  bottom of the pool which I’d never have picked up with the camera working.

The house is absolutely enormous but I keep exploring only to overhear the guards say that something has killed the Sheriff. It sounds like it was some sort of monster. I need to investigate for myself although the guards are extra alert from here on.

I manage to find a side route via a balcony. There is a key ring with initials by the body which is my only clue. I have to trek all the way back through the mansion to get out again although I dash through the front entrance this time since I don’t have to worry about alerting the guards on my way out.

The key ring belongs to a Lieutenant in the watch. I decide to keep an eye on her and spot her leaving early carrying a letter which is a cue for another mission as I follow her through the city to see where she is going.

I remember a similar mission to this in Thief 1. It’s a nice change of pace – I’ve got an added complication on expert mode of having to pick 6 pockets on my way through but this doesn’t prove to be any difficultyat all. I sidetrack to follow anyone I see with something to steal. The Lieutenant goes slow enough that I can always catch up again.

After following her for about 10 minutes she drops the letter and walks off.

I pick up the letter and read it, then decide to put it back and see who comes to pick it up.

I appear to have to pick up an invisibility potion from the nearby building first but shortly after I do a man who I later find out is a Pagan shows up and takes the letter.

I now get to trek all the way back across the city following this guy. Eventually we arrive at the cemetary and he is attacked and shot by 3 guards. He makes his escape and they don’t fancy going into the cemetary. By the time I’ve taken these 3 out he is long gone.

He is bleeding badly enough that I pick his trail up again in a tomb. There is a strange portal here begging to be stepped through.

I find myself in a creepy wood. I have to follow the blood trail through here to try to find the Pagan.

I don’t have a map so one of my objectives is to find one. I find this within 30 seconds of starting the mission though so it’s not a problem.  Now I just have to follow the blood.

Wherever I am, the Mechanists have been through here slaughtering everyone. The people all appear as ghostly images playing out brief scenes.

There are a few guards and quite a lot of buildings to explore but the aim here is to find a couple of rubies which are hidden among bushes for some reason. I then have to slot them into the eyes of this giant head and jump into the portal that appears in its mouth.

I’m teleported to some strange place with an excess of coloured lighting.

Now I really don’t know where I am but I get the feeling I’m being watched….

I can still see blood on the ground so I keep following the trail through some very strange places.

There are some monkey things around here that can speak and blow darts through little pipes. They are less trouble that guards though as they don’t count as human and go down with a few sword swipes. I try to sneak up on them where I can but I don’t worry about it too much.

This level keeps going forever as I go through one realm after another then over this particle bridge.

It does show off some enhancements to the engine as I don’t remember the lighting being this good in Thief 1. These floating orbs acting as a moving light source are quite impressive. This could add an interesting challenge if I have them in later levels when I need to try and stay in the dark.

I find a letter which suggests that the Lieutenant was acting to help out the Pagans and to no ones surprise Truart was hired by the Mechanists.

I still want to find this Pagan. I come across ice crystals next blocking my path but they shatter with a single sword strike.

The Pagan is through here in a woody grove. He has obviously bled to death which is no great shock given that I’ve been following his blood trail for what seems like miles. As soon as I find the body the level ends.

At this point I miss a cutscene altogether by clicking my mouse at the wrong time. I assumed that I’d just missed the usual mission complete scene but when I went back to check there is a lengthy movie where Viktoria from Thief 1 shows up and somehow manages to get me to agree to work with her to take out the Mechanists. She takes an oath which she says the Earth will keep so I suppose I might be able to trust her but I can’t help but think I’ll regret this.

Viktoria knows more than I do about what Karras is up to but still very little. He is rewriting the Hammer scriptures for some reason and is also involved in something called the Cetus project. He is throwing a party for the local nobility. I need to get in and find out what I can about the Cetus project. As is usual in games working with someone means working for them and I have to do all the work on my own. I get the feeling this is going to be a large level so I leave it here for today.

Out of the 3 levels here, I especially enjoyed the first one. Just getting into the house seemed like a large task and there was a steady variety of challenges. The second was quite short and easy – trailing someone doesn’t allow much room for exploration and it easy on the whole. Finding the two red gems in the final mission was a bit of an annoyance as they were hidden quite effectively especially one under a bush behind a building. I think I prefer Thief in it’s more standard levels breaking into houses. The engine can’t really cope with outdoor scenes especially well. It was quite a creepy level for all that with the strange monkey creatures and a lot of ambient sound used for the woods.

I find myself nearly 2/3’s of the way through the game and I still don’t know what Karras  is up to but I expect I’m going to be finding out in the next mission.

Thief 2: The Metal Age – Day 5

For level 5 I need to make my way around the outside of the Mechanist temple to overhear the meeting going on between it’s leader and the Sheriff. These Mechanists really like their metal and a lot of the building + all the paths are made out of it. The paths are a particular problem as crawling around on them makes a lot of noise. It does mean I can hear the guards coming at least.

I find a small outbuilding with 3 bodies in it. It appears that these bodies are being transformed in some way as there is a metal mask ready to go onto the face of the middle one. I’ll learn more about this shortly.

I find a door to listen at and after the bells stop tolling for midnight, I hear a long meeting between the Sheriff and the Mechanist leader Carith. Carith has a very strange voice, it took me a while to figure out what it reminded me of but I eventually realised it was Droopy from the cartoons I watched when I was a kid. It’s a slightly more sinister version admiteddly but the image isn’t going to go away now until I get to see what he actually looks like. In the meeting the sheriff agrees to deliver up 20 bodies from the local dregs of society to Carith to be transformed in some way in return for a load of cash. I get to hear how this new creation can reduce people to powder using some sort of red gas emitted from the mask. I’m sure I’ll be seeing these later. After the sheriff goes, Carith tells his lackeys how he has recorded the meeting to ensure the Sheriffs cooperation and he orders the recording taken to the bank. I now need to get the key for the bank vault – I knew the mission couldn’t be that easy.

The building here is typically huge and spread over several floors. I’ve got to get 1200 gold in this mission so I don’t head for any particular area and instead just explore everywhere to find as much treasure as possible.

Thankfully the floors in the church are not made from metal and it is a more traditional affair with bell towers and the like made from stone. I clear out the main part of the church first then explore each of the towers. I’m finding little bits of treasure everywhere usually out in plain sight so I don’t have to search around for it.

I find the key I’m looking for fairly easily. I need to make a wax impression of it which is harder. I have to go through the catacombs to find a workshop and a conveniently placed block of wax. There were a few of those creatures with skulls for faces wandering around down here that I remember from Thief 1. They are in effect the same as guards but I have to use my sword on them from behind instead of my blackjack.

I drop the key back where I find it and make my escape to finish the level. This level has been the best in the game so far. I didn’t have any problems with finding the treasure and I just needed to explore thoroughly. In the first level it seemed that I needed to find secrets to get enough gems but I ended up with way more than I needed here without any backtracking. There has been a varied range of locations, a constant challenge and not too much running around trying to figure out what to do next.

Level5 has me sneaking into the Mechanist’s bank to get the recording out of the vault.

I first have to find a route into the bank. I find a way to climb onto the roof which looks like a good start. I then find a balcony to drop onto and can pick the lock here to get into the building.

The inside of the bank is impressive with marble and chandeliers and far too much security.

The lobby in particular has an array of guards, cameras and steam powered metal robots. The latter are metal contraptions that I can only stop by shooting a water arrow into the boiler at the back of them (effectively backstabbing with an arrow). I soon wish I’d got more water arrows in this level.

Progress through the bank is slow and steady as I try to clear the place of guards. It’s the hardest level yet by some margin but I manage to slowly explore and find a note telling me which vault the recording is in. Now I just need to get into the vault.

A lot of exploration later and I make it to the vault through a back entrance avoiding the lobby altogether. I still can’t get in as a metal bar is getting in the way and I need to move it. A vent in the floor with the bar disappearing into it suggests that I need to go to the basement to do this.

The basement is crawling with minature versions of the metal guards. These appear to just broadcast propaganda for Carith and ignore me altogether which is just as well as I’ve run out of water arrows. After getting under another security camera, I find a control system with six buttons. I keep pressing these until a green light comes on.

The bar at the back of the room slides down and I notice now that I can see the vault door through the grate and the bar moving away from it.

I now head back to the vault. There are a load of lockers in it and the one I need is at the furthest point on the top floor. I creep my way past a load of security cameras to get to this, unlock it with the key from the last mission and grab the recording.

Finally I head for the nearest exit, pick the lock and run past the guards to complete the mission. This mission has been a real challenge. I didn’t manage to get through it without setting off alarms on more than one occassion although I’m sure I could do a much better job if I went back and tried again. One of the switches in the basement turned off the camera’s in the lobby which would have stopped some alarms if I’d found it earlier. The alarms just summon human guards as far as I can tell, and temporarily lower bars in some cases. Since I’d taken out all the nearby guards they never caused me any problems.

Now I’ve got the evidence it’s time to confront the sheriff and find out who hired him to kill me. He is having a party at his house so I have to wait until it is dying down before making my entrance.

Thief 2 started to really get into it’s stride today with two excellent levels, the plot moving along and the difficulty level rising considerably. I doubt I’ll get much time over the weekend but I’m enjoying this now and will make sure I get at least another level or two done before Monday.

Thief 2: The Metal Age – Day 4


It’s back to Thief 2 again – I just managed a single level again tonight but at least I’m making progress. I find myself out on the city streets with the watch in every direction.

I manage to blackjack a few of them and hoist myself onto a roof garden to get onto an adjoining street to escape from the rest.

The streets are just crawling with guards and I end up being spotted. I decide to just make a run for it and see what happens. The guards can’t catch up with me although I’m unable to lose them for a while. There is a canal passing through the town which I manage to jump across when I run into it and due to the games guards not being able to jump themselves I’m safe again and probably just saved myself 10 minutes of sneaking. A look back reveals a lot of guards on the far side.

My house isn’t far away. I’m thinking that it was a very easy level but I’m not done yet and get a whole new set of objectives.

My house is very well protected with 3 guards on the front door + a couple more inside. I manage to draw the guards away from the front door by making a bit of noise and take them out one at a time. This isn’t easy but I have plenty of dark areas to work with. The guards inside the house are much easier once I’ve doused the lights. I have a secret closet upstairs full of goodies + the key I need to open the gate out of the city.

I did notice an alternative route into my house at the back by moving a box and climbing onto the balcony but I always got spotted when I tried this one so I stuck to taking all the guards out.

I have to go right the way back to the far side of the city and there are probably a couple of dozen watch guards in the way. Most of these are near the gate itself. I don’t worry about knocking them all out but just sneak past where I can. I take a short cut through the sewer at one point which is a lot easier than dodging guards.

Getting to the gate isn’t easy and takes a good few attempts but I get there in the end and make my escape to my safe house.

While I’m there I’m summoned by the keepers and reluctantly agree to go along. There is a creepy child reciting a prophecy which I don’t take too seriously.

I learn that the metal age is beginning and the keepers want me to help them out.  Garret is less than interested in this and just wants to look out for his own interests so I don’t stay long enough to learn any details. Something is clearly wrong in the city but for now I’m more interested in sorting out my problems with the watch. One of the keepers hands me a letter on the way out.

The letter tells me that where to go to eavesdrop on the sheriff that has been hired to kill me. I need to know who could have hired him so I can do something about the situation.

This has been a decent mission with a myriad of choices on how to play it. I get the feeling I never even saw half the level as I stuck to the quickest routes I could find. I’m certain there were alternative routes through the city such as crawling through the canals as I kept spotting them on my way through. The plot is just starting to get going although I still have little idea what is going on thanks to Garret’s unwillingness to listen to the keepers. I get the feeling my problems are linked to theirs or they wouldn’t be helping me out.