Developed by Wadjet Eye Games
Created by Dave Gilbert
Platforms: Microsoft Windows, OS X, Linux, iOS, and Android
Game genre: point-and-click adventure
Theme genre: supernatural, ghosts, and the afterlife
UNMARKED SPOILERS, random commentary, observations, and ACHIEVEMENT HUNTER guide below:
Check your options before you hit [New Game]. For the sake of a complete [Achievement Hunter] guide while having a fresh and exciting experience with the game, leave both of the commentaries off until your 2nd playthrough. It’s possible to get 100% achievements on one playthrough, but I wouldn’t recommend it since both commentaries contain spoilers, plus Dave Gilbert’s first release and 5-year anniversary commentaries tend to pop up in inconvenient places in the story, ruining the tension and aggravating me (sorry, Gilbert; wouldn’t listen to it if I didn’t want the achievement. Just bein’ honest).
After the opening scene, hover at the top of your screen and right-click on the paper in your inventory. Read it now if you’d like, but you need to at some point. Wander on over to the smoking [Teenager] and come to the realization that you’re so anti-social, your neighbors don’t even know you exist. [Express surprise], [Question his presence], then [State facts]. [Jim Burdo] still doesn’t believe you live there. Great. Ask anything until the option to [Ask about Nishanti] pops up. She’s over at [Washington Square Park], so give up and [Exit].
Right-clicking the sign on the doorway to the dog run reveals that it’s closed for some reason. Click on the left side of the screen to enter the next area.
Wandering to the right, you can watch [Nishanti] play her flute for a bit or try to talk to her, which will lead to a few awkward seconds of hemming and hawing before you realize she’s too into it and you’re too awkward to interrupt. Nuts. Now what? Obviously, we mess with the adorable little Boston terrier. Walk to the left side of the trash can, then lead the [Dog] between the lamppost and the fountain. Once you’re past the lamppost, head down a little then walk back toward the trash can. Unable to follow, the [Dog] panics, calling over your neighbor, [Nishanti].
After making her abreast of the situation, she agrees to come with you. Watch the scene until you’re given the option to let [Jim Burdo] know what you think of him. What you say doesn’t matter; you’ll never see him again and this doesn’t really change anything. It’s more for catharsis than anything, so pick what you like.
Outside of your apartment, you’re given more options that have no bearing on the game, so choose how you want to present Rosa to what’s seemingly the closest thing to a friend she has in the building (or, maybe the world). Enter your apartment and right-click on the various objects to learn a little more about Rosa. Click to answer the phone if it’s ringing, then head on over to [Bellevue Psychiatric Hospital].
Make your way over to the reception desk and ask the guard about Quentin. The conversation is pretty straightforward, and you’re free to click on through if you don’t feel like enduring a bunch of exposition (though, I’d recommend it). Just keep picking answers until the option to leave presents itself. Head on home.
Home again, home again. Deedle-lee-dee. Once inside your apartment, you should find an envelope on the doormat. Click it and, once it’s in your inventory, right-click it and you’ll find 25 pages of exposition (plus 2 photos). Feel free to read them all or just flip through them (you don’t need to read them, but, again, I recommend it). The photos won’t appear in your inventory until you reach page 22 or 23, so flip through the pages until Rosa comments on them, then check your inventory for two glimpses into your family’s history: your parents’ wedding photo and a Christmas photo from when your grandmother was still alive.
My, you’re popular. Answer the phone, listen to more talking, then head out to the [Brittany Hall Dorm]. The first door you want to visit is the second from the right, the [R.A.’s Door]. [Announce yourself], chit-chat with him for a bit, and agree to keep his name out of the article. Head on down the hall to the second door from the left, [JoAnn and Kelly’s Room]. Kelly answers the door and, hoo boy, is she EVER a ball of sunshine. Honestly, she and Rosa could be best friends if she wasn’t so abrasive and Rosa wasn’t almost a decade older than her. Oh, well. Ask her whatever you like (as long as you ask her everything in your [Notes] at least once). She’s not all that helpful, but she’s added a couple of new subjects to your notes, so bid her farewell and wander back to Adrian the R.A.’s room.
Confirm that [JoAnn slept all night] and— What was that? Kelly didn’t even sleep in her room at night, so how would she know how well JoAnn’s been sleeping? My, that sounds like an interesting line of questioning, but Rosa won’t figure it out if you don’t help her along. End your conversation with Adrian because it’s time to piece together what you’ve just learned: open your [Notes], then click on [JoAnn slept all night] and [Kelly slept elsewhere?], combining the two. After Rosa’s done learning what probably took you all of 5 seconds to realize, head back to Kelly’s room, ask her if she lied, then get her to spill about everything. Don’t forget to ask for a photo before saying goodbye (for now) and checking the photo in your inventory. Head home.
You have everything you need to write up the article on JoAnn’s suicide, so click on your computer and choose [Write Article]. Rosa’s “stress headache” has gotten so bad, it’s making horror movie sound effects. Time for a breather. Step out of your apartment and go visit Nishanti across the hall. Interact with Moti and build up an unbreakable trust that you will, without a doubt, betray very soon. Interact with Nishanti, and she helps you get a clearer picture of the type of person Rosa is. She also helps give some exposition in regards to why the dog run is closed off. Before you leave, offer to give Moti a treat and quietly cherish this pure creature and his kind, patient owner. Now, go back to your apartment.
Stuff happens and you check the photo on top of your TV. That’s funny; you never noticed that slightly transparent, blue man in that treasured photograph before. All of a sudden, spooky stuff happens. Congrats on getting your first Steam achievement: [Hello Joey]. To gain the achievement [Crowd Control], remember to NEVER left-click on Joey anywhere in the game that isn’t your apartment. You’re safe to chat him up for as long as you like there, but you lose the chance at the achievement if you click him by accident even once after you’ve left your living room. Be careful; he sometimes wanders unexpectedly in places you need to click. When it comes time to chat up Joey, pick anything until he asks you where you first started feeling your headache. Answer [Washington Square Park], give him one last, meaningless reply, and head on out.
Joey’s in control and… he’s not accomplishing anything. Well, whatever. As long as Rosa realizes this is real—Ah, she’s leaving. Well, better luck tomorrow, Joey Mallone.
Day Two begins and Rosa’s absolutely thrilled at the prospect of being a spirit medium… Anyways, answer whatever you like to Joey and he’ll drop some innuendo while introducing you to the long, reddish thing affixed to his body. He wants you to tug it as hard as you can, and he doesn’t seem to want to take “no” for an answer. Giving in to his request will leave you overwhelmed and passed out on the floor…
And, apparently, inside your own mind. This dark-yet-bright place is described by Joey as the [Doorway to Infinity] (although during Dave Gilbert’s oh-so interesting blah-blah-blah, he calls it Node Space… I like Joey’s name better). Pick anything (if you’re nice, you’ll ask Joey how he’s feeling), and when Joey asks if you dig, just reply that, indeed, [You dig]. Wrap up the conversation and you both return to the world outside of Rosa’s head.
Finish off your conversation with Joey by picking whatever until Rosa’s done talking, then click on Joey for a new set of topics. [Ask about Joey] and then ask him about his [Ghostly Powers] to learn that he’s more than just a pretty face (this is necessary; do not skip this). Go back and [Ask about history] to start you on your path to getting the achievement [Historian]. At different times in the playthrough, you should make it a point to come back to your apartment and ask Joey about your Auntie and grandmother until he runs out of things to say. Keep doing this and you should earn the achievement shortly before the end of the game.
Just a few more things to do before you get to work on helping that ghost: inspect the wedding and Christmas photos in your inventory, and inspect the photo on top of your TV (if you haven’t already). Once those are done, leave your apartment and head back to the dorms.
Time for round 2 with Kelly. Knock on her door and she’ll let you in. Thank her and [Ask to search the place]. Um, no. Of course she wasn’t going to let you search through the personal belongings of herself and her dead roomie. Did you really think she was going to? Check your notes and ask her about [JoAnn], [JoAnn’s suicide], and [JoAnn’s photo] (which you should’ve checked by now). Ask about [Alli] and [Susan], then say goodbye. Don’t leave yet; that [Bulletin Board] on the right side of the room is begging to be inspected. Check all 3 photos then use the phone on the desk next to that inconspicuous-looking [Notebook].
There’s no way Kelly’s going to let you walk out with it, so you need to be sneaky. Click on Joey (whose reaction to realizing what you’re doing made me happier than it should’ve), then [Request a performance]. Joey will blow the papers off Kelly’s desk, at which point you should quickly left-click on the Notebook on JoAnn’s desk and filch it. Quickly leave the room. Congrats, kiddo: you’ve committed your first burglary for the greater good. Inspect the notebook, then inspect the [Doodle] and [Message] before leaving the dorm.
It’s time to check up on our [Dog Run Ghost], whom we now know is named [Alli]. Enter the dog run and [Go right to questions]. Ask her about [JoAnn’s suicide], [Alli], and [Susan], then leave the dog run. Leave the park, as well, and head home. There’s work to be done.
Once you’re home, open Rosa’s notes and combine [Alexander] with [Davenport] to create the logical conclusion that Susan’s boyfriend is [Alexander Davenport]. Then, combine [Alexander Davenport] with [Adrian] to shorten it to the unisex [Alex Davenport]. You MUST do this before returning to Bellevue and speaking to the guard or you won’t get the achievement [Medium Lie] (more on this later).
Time to talk to Joey and progress [Historian] a little further. Ask about Auntie three times, your grandmother twice, the wedding photo four times, and the Christmas photo three times. That’s all you can do in regards to [Historian] for now, so let’s get back to the plot.
Click on the computer and [Do research]. Look up Susan and Alli and you’ll find some interesting tidbits about each: Susan’s at Bellevue after a botched suicide attempt, and Alli summoned a malevolent spirt or something while she, JoAnn and Susan were… playing with a Ouija board? Are you serious? Whatever. Go into your notes and combine [Ouija] and [Deacon] to create [Deacon and Ouija]. You can click on Joey and ask him about this, but he’ll express frustration over the stupid board and the problems its use has caused. Leave and head to Bellevue.
Joey hates it here. As your grandmother and aunt’s spirit guide, as long as they still drew breath, he couldn’t move more than 30 feet away from them. For the last 20 years of your Aunt Lauren’s life, she was bed-bound, unresponsive and drooling. He had no one to talk to, and nothing to do but watch her slowly fade away. Still, however sad that is, you must press on. Ask the guard about Susan twice and you’ll give him your real name. You’re not on the list, though, so no dice. This is where [Medium Lie] comes in: ask to see Susan one more time, and when prompted to come up with an excuse for the wrong name the first time, [Blame Susan], then claim your name is the unisex [Alex Davenport]. Congrats on unlocking the Steam achievement [Medium Lie]. Head on in for your prize: a chit-chat with the only survivor of the suicidal trio of friends.
To Susan’s dismay, you are NOT her precious Alex, but it’s safe to say that she’ll appreciate your presence a lot more than his in just a moment. Tell her the truth, then get right to the questions: ask about the [Deacon and Ouija] once, [Alli] once, [JoAnn] twice, and [Susan] once. Leave her and head back to the reception desk. At this point, Joey might wander near the radio and you’ll notice another one of his amazing talents: messing up electrical devices. Ask the guard if you can see Susan again, and she’ll foist her diuretic pills on you because she’d rather be fat than pee a lot (college students…). What the heck are you supposed to do with this? For now, head home.
Time to complete our work on [Historian]: Ask Joey about your Auntie and grandmother. How he felt about one is almost the complete opposite of the other. Leave your apartment for now.
Let’s go see Nishanti. Once inside, you learn a little bit more about ghosts: apparently, animals can see them. And, Joey doesn’t appreciate Moti’s attention, so you get to watch him terrorize the poor thing… The second time he does it is funnier, so if you feel like it, leave the apartment and come back in again. Ask Nishanti about [Sensing], then ask to feed Moti. Ask to leave, then head to the middle of her living room. Click on the pill and combine it with the dog biscuit. Now comes the messed-up part: after (optionally) comforting Moti, make him do his trick and see what was described as a “mild” diuretic work almost immediately. Yeesh, I hope this doesn’t mess him up too badly… Volunteer to be an awesome friend and take Moti for a walk, then take him to see your ghost friend at the park.
Once at the park, answer however you like and watch the scene play out. Take Moti home and feel everlasting guilt over poisoning a dog as Nishanti thanks you for being considerate enough to walk him. Someday, Nishanti, you’ll know the truth. You’ll be horrified and you’ll get a restraining order against us, but I’m sure after a few years, we’ll look back on it and laugh. Ugh… Back to Bellevue, then.
Visiting hours are over, and since you can’t weasel your way out of this, it’s time to confront the [Deacon]. Walk over to the reception desk and wait for Joey to mess up the radio. Quickly take the [Fuse Box Key] while the guard is distracted, then walk back past the elevators to the [Locked Fuse Box]. Use the key on the box, but before you interact with the open box, take note of the phone next to the elevator. Click under it and see where you’re standing when you get there. See how you’re close to the wall? This is where you need to be after you turn off the lights. Trust me on this. Head back to the fuse box and shut off the lights. After Joey’s done talking, click where I told you to before and make sure you’re slightly shaded out. Don’t move until the guard has walked past you. Before the lights come back on, run in and click the upper-right part of the hallway to go [Around the corner] to Susan’s room.
Watch the scene play out. Now, imagine this happening every night for several weeks. Yeah, I can kind of understand why the girls tried suicide. Do a [Forceful interjection] and [Let Joey take over]. The next time you get the prompt to step in, take control of the situation or you’ll miss the achievement [Pacifist]. Basically, you need to [Give her a chance] instead of letting Joey settle the Deacon’s hash. [Offer him a safe place] and when he asks why he should trust you, remind him that it’s [Because no one else will help]. Give Joey’s Big Red a friendly tug and you and the Deacon are off to the [Doorway to Infinity].
All three responses are appropriate when face to face with a for-real demon. Quick as a bunny, click on the Deacon and [Ask about his flask]. Then, click on the demon and [Ask about reasons]. In your notes, combine [Deacon’s flask] with [Deacon’s sins?]. Talk to the Deacon and make him drop the flask, then pick up the cobblestone (the off-colored stone near the demons right foot). Open the inventory, click on the cobblestone, then click on the flask. Smashing the flask earns you the achievement [Savior]. As you say your goodbyes to the Deacon, you can say whatever you want, but I chose to analyze him. When it’s all over, you and Joey head out to the bridge from the first scene of the game and talk about what life is going to be like from now on.
Congratulations: you’ve just earned the [Medium Well Done] achievement for completing the game, as well as [Crowd Control] for never once speaking to Joey outside of the apartment. If you decided to play the game with both commentaries on, you’ll also receive [Hear Me].
Thanks for reading. Check back later this week for a review of this game.