The Black Lodge
Back to Basics 2010
Level by eTux
Walkthrough by eTux
The level starts with Lara on the ground floor of a library and a set of double doors opening in front of her. Turn around and find some Uzi ammo between the bookshelves. Go to the NW corner to find 2x Uzi ammo. Go where the double doors opened and you’ll see stairs going down to a partially submerged door (1) and up to the higher levels. Go up for now. You may go right and explore the middle floor of the library if you wish, but you’ll return there soon enough, so I suggest going left first and straight up to the top floor.
On the top floor you’ll see a safety net holding fallen debris from the damaged dome ceiling. 4 ropes hold the safety net in place and you have to shoot the 4 panels fixating the ropes to release it. Start with the lowest one in the SE corner by stepping on the net in front of it, ducking and shooting the panel. Shooting the remaining 3 should be simple from the safety of the floor. As you shoot the last panel – the debris will fall down to the ground floor and reveal a hidden section beneath it.
Go down to the middle floor. Collect 2x Uzi ammo from the SE corner, and the Uzis from the table in the NW corner. If you were on the middle floor before, you’ll discover that a hidden room in the NE part is revealed now that the debris has fallen down. In here there is a timed switch for the partially submerged door (1). As you flick the switch, roll, return to the middle floor, jump over the banisters down to the ground floor. Jump up and dash down the stairs and through the door to register Secret #1.
If you find this timed run hard to do – try to use any time-saving tricks you know – for example – perform a jump with a midair roll over the banisters and use the roll move on the ground to reduce Lara’s recovery time to a minimum and align her with the door at the same time. Also – if you start dashing from on top of the stairs, Lara will keep the momentum even at water levels where she would normally have to wade through.
You’ve reached a secret area now – go to either side of the roof covering the entrance and climb up – you can pick up the Shotgun, and 2x Shotgun ammo here. Jump to the red canopy, and from there do a running jump to the next red canopy you see around the corner. From here you can reach a window you can shoot. Enter the room and find some more Shotgun ammo in the corner and a large medipack on the table.
Return to the library. Where the debris has fallen down – you can see a trapdoor. Lara can manually open it, so after she does, safety drop down and pick up the flares in front of you. As you walk down further into the cave, you’ll find more flares. When you reach the bottom of the cave – you’ll see a weird red curtain standing in the center of a circle of trees. Approach it where you see the door and press action in front of the door for Lara to manually push open the door and thus enter the Black Lodge…
The Curtain Maze.
It will be hard to put in context right now, but the fly-by actually outlines your quest ahead while you are in the Black Lodge. After the fly-by ends, exit to the hallway. To your left you will recognize the area with the mirror and the burning rose. You don’t have any means to access it yet, so head right instead.
You have now entered a maze with a difference. If you walk through the rooms long enough in either direction you will notice that they start repeating after a while. As soon as you’ve realized that – it shouldn’t be hard to come up with numerous strategies for completing the maze.
I suggest tackling the maze one room after the other, one at a time and then revise them when necessary. It doesn’t really matter in which direction you go but for the sake of this walkthrough I went counter-clockwise.
ROOM A – Starting room.
Nothing more to do here – carry on to the next one.
ROOM B – Uzi ammo room.
Pick up 2x Uzi ammo from the ground.
ROOM C – First Harp room (no chairs).
Move the harp to the designated tile on the floor and you will get a camera hint of a room you haven’t been to yet.
ROOM D – Ambush room.
You don’t have to tackle this room right away but if you picked up the ammo in ROOM B, you’re as prepared as you can be at this point. As you pull the chain – curtains will lock you in the room and hitmen dressed in black will start climbing into the room from below. There will be a total of 8 and the last one will drop the Torchbearer’s Key. If you have the Shotgun from secret #1, I suggest using it here. If you missed both that and the Uzis – you still have a fair chance if you position Lara in the SW corner and just blast away with Pistols – usually they will not have enough time to get to her in this position.
After you’ve dealt with them and have picked up the key, the room will be unlocked again and 2 hitmen dressed in white will enter. They leave a large medipack and Uzi ammo after they’ve died.
ROOM E – Water room.
Do remember this room for later but for now there’s not much more you can do here.
ROOM F – Flare room.
Pick up some flares.
ROOM G – Second Harp room (chair by the harp).
As in the previous harp room – move the harp onto the designated tile and you will get the same camera clue.
ROOM H – Exit room.
This is the room you see in the camera hints every time you move a harp on the correct tile. The curtain (2) between the two plants will rise when you’re done with the puzzle but you can’t do anything here at the moment.
ROOM I – Keyhole room.
There’s a pillar with a keyhole on it. Use the key you acquired in the ambush room and curtains will rise in the next room.
ROOM J – Torch room.
The curtains rose to reveal a torch hidden beneath them. Carry it with you to the next room.
ROOM K – Third Harp room (chair by the tile).
Drop the torch for the moment and move the harp on the designated tile – you will get a camera clue with the curtain door (2) opening in ROOM H. Don’t go there just yet – pick up the torch and carry on to the final room in the cycle.
ROOM L – Explosion room.
As you enter the room – the central vessel will light up and a fountain of fiery explosions will pour out of it. Apart from the central fire they are merely a spectacle so you only need to be cautious when approaching the center. Ignite your torch from a safe distance and return to ROOM H now.
Note: In case you have performance problems on your computer during this room (i.e. it’s slow and jerky during the explosions) – save and reload and the explosions will be gone with only the central fire remaining.
Enter the newly opened room – and find 3 wall torches. When you light them – a platform will rise in the center. Drop the torch (but remember where you left it if you want to get the next secret) and head up to the higher level.
Cover the winding passage. You will reach a blinking room with a Spirit roaming around, but you can’t harm her due to the protective spell she cast with the rose when Lara first arrived in the Lodge. This room will play a bigger role later, so just carry on to the end of the winding passage.
The floor is semi-transparent here, and you can see the room you entered the Lodge in below. Jump up on the block and pull a chain – the surroundings will shake briefly and the block will drop. If you look through the semi-transparent floor you will see that the chandelier broke through the ground in the room below. That’s also the next area you should be heading to so backtrack all through the maze to where you started in this area. Don’t forget to pick up the torch along the way!
If you don’t mind searching a bit afterwards - you can drop the torch anywhere down the hole. If you align and throw it towards the chain – the chain will stop it and the torch will fall on top of the chandelier in most cases. Once dealt with that, jump on the chain and slide down on the chandelier to initiate the next fly-by.
The Upside-down Clock House.
After the fly-by you must throw down the torch to the bottom of this area if you dropped it on the chandelier (skip to the next paragraph if you already dropped it before or didn’t take the torch with you). Pay attention where it lands just to make it easier to find. I suggest it’s always easier to find if you drop it by the palm trees.
If you look N you will see 3 floating platforms in the air leading to a jump-switch. Do a running jump towards the first platform from here. As soon as you land, Lara will start sliding off the platform – so make sure you’re ready to jump to the next one! Maneuver the sliding platforms to get hold of the jump-switch. Lara will fall into the water below and the trapdoor will close above her.
Tip: If you’re having difficulties doing this right - it’s best to land on the furthermost edge of the first platform. It also helps if Lara already faces the next platforms when she lands. This way you won’t have to curve as much when you jump to the second platform. You can keep on the right edge of the second platform too, but aim a bit for the center of the last one, as this will help you align with the jump-switch.
Once in the water swim south first. If you feel you have enough air – swim till the gratings at the end to get Uzi ammo. You can, however, come back for it later. Swim left (E) and see a door (3) ahead of you – you can’t open it yet, so swim right and then right again until you can surface. Climb out on the bottom of the upside-down clock house area.
You may want to get the next secret before you do anything else, but you can get it at any point before leaving this area. To get the secret – find where you dropped the torch and pick it up (it doesn’t matter whether it is lit or not). Go to the cave W where you can see the lit torches and a painting. While still holding the torch wade into the water until Lara floats. Swim across until she can stand up again and get up to where the torches are. Reignite the torch if necessary and press action when nearby the sprinkler – both Lara’s and the wall torch will be extinguished. Repeat this for the other sprinkler and the painting door will open. You don’t need the torch anymore, so throw it away. Enter the newly opened room to hear the secret chimes for Secret #2. You can find 2x Uzi ammo and a small medipack.
If you got the shotgun in the first secret, there will also be 2 sets of Shotgun ammo in here. If you didn’t get the Uzis in the starting area, you will find them here.
Exit to the main area. You will see an entrance to the building on the opposite side of the room. But the holes on the floor should make you wary that it won’t be as simple to get inside. If you want to see what’s going to happen, save beforehand, go in and have a look. Other than that – you can see that you’ll have to sweat a bit before you can pass that room alive.
Go to the switch you see outside close-by to the entrance. When you flick it – you will see that some trapdoors will rise and some will drop above the secret cave entrance. Break through the camera and rush towards the metal tile below the trapdoors that rose. Jump up and grab the edge of the trapdoor – shimmy right as fast as you can – if you are fast enough you should be able to reach the trapdoor that neither dropped nor rose. If you did – keep on shimmying till the end till you can climb up. From here you have to climb up into the opening in the wall. Go to the end and you’ll find the crowbar on the center tile. Exit back to the main area. Return to where you climbed out of the water in this area. There is a crawlspace in the SE corner here – on the other side will be a small cave. Once there, open the trapdoor and drop in below. You will discover that you are just below the deadly spike floor room. You can see that the metal tile connects a wire formation with the switch above. Use the crowbar to pry the wires out of the box; this will render the above switch useless. Return to the main area where the entrance of the building is. You can now enter it safely as the switch won’t function anymore. Kill the hitman dressed in black and pick up the large medipack he leaves behind.
You will enter an area similar to the curtain maze from earlier. The blinking is a hint that your weapons will not function in presence of the Spirit that’s roaming around in this room. There are 2 different ways you can go from here, but go right (S) first. You will enter a small room where you can see water below – and a waterskin in the water. There’s a switch on the wall, but for it to function you have to place the wires in the receptacle on the wall. Do so, and then activate the switch. You will see a camera hint of a door (3) opening in the room below. Exit this area back outside to where you first got out of the water. Dive in and return to the door, pick up the waterskin from the water, surface to refill your air supply if necessary and then return back to where you climb out to the main area. A hitman in white and 2 Dobermans will emerge from the building entrance. Take care of them and get the small medipack the hitman leaves behind.
This time head left (N). You will find a room with a block that rises and lowers with the blinking phases. There is also a higher platform you can’t reach. Step on the shifting block while it’s low. Wait for it to raise then do a running jump to the taller platform. From here – face the N wall and you will see that a door to a higher level phases in and out of existence. Time your jump so you can get through it. Continue along the steps and you will eventually reach the inside of the Clock tower. Notice a trapdoor on the ground. Open it, and drop inside. Turn the valve here and a camera will show you the little bag you saw in the first fly-by. What this did was create a platform that Lara can stand on below it. So get out, shoot the window and get to it with a running jump. Pick up the gunpowder and jump back into the clock tower. Shoot the S window and safety drop on the edge of the roof. Jump on the E section of the roof (If you got the Shotgun from the first secret, you will find 2x Shotgun ammo here) Jump on the sloped roof and slide down on the ground. Time to take care of the spirit down here.
If you didn’t already, fill your waterskin. Enter the blinking area. Position Lara before the vessel where you see a triangle symbol. Select the gunpowder from your inventory and place it on the vessel. If Lara says ‘no’ just try again. A door will open behind you. Enter the newly opened room and you’ll find another vessel like the one before here. You have to pour water on this one. Do so and the flame will slowly move from this vessel to the one with the gunpowder. When the flame reaches its destination, the gunpowder will deliver quite a light show and kill the Spirit. As you re-enter the blinking room, you will get a camera hint of a second floating platform being created outside.
Bug alert: Though rarely – it sometimes can happen that the spirit somehow cheats death by following Lara into rooms where she cannot be killed by the explosions. As a result the floating platform won’t be created. If this happens – you can either lure her back into her original room before pouring the water or reload to redo this last sequence. This bug will be fixed after the completion of the Back to Basics competition.
Head back the same way you went for the gunpowder to the Clock Tower. Jump on the platform where you got the gunpowder. From there, perform a running jump to the newly created platform. Jump to the suspended waterfall next, swim down to activate the lever there and thus connect the 2 water sections. Swim to the top and notice the small triangular entrance in the ceiling. Swim through and on the other end pick up the Lodgekeeper’s Deathmask. Swim through the open door ahead of you and a current will take you back to the curtain area.
The Curtain Maze (revisited).
While in the waist-deep water – refill your waterskin to avoid excessive running around. Climb out of the water and run ahead – a curtain will rise and you’ll find yourself back to where you started in this area. Go to where you see the platform and use the Deathmask to open the first mirror room. Pull the chain in the corner and this will reveal the mirror. Pour the water into the vessel and this will extinguish the fire. Walk through the mirror and pick up the Prankster’s Protective Gemstone and get a camera glimpse of the room where you encountered the first spirit. It is not blinking anymore, therefore the spirit is now unprotected. Before going there, let’s get the final secret of the level first. Pull the chain in this room where you got the gemstone, and the mirror will be closed, but reveal a hidden room. Enter it for Secret #3 – a small medipack and 4x Uzi ammo. Pull the chain again to get out of here and the one on the other side of the mirror so you can return to the curtain maze.
You’ll need to use the waterskin one last time, so I suggest going counter-clockwise again so you can reach the water room along the way before the exit room. Climb up to the higher level and return to where the room was blinking previously. You can use your weapons now, so kill the Spirit. When she dies, the door to the second mirror room will open. Enter and pull the chain to reveal the mirror. Use the waterskin to extinguish the fire. Go through the mirror and pick up the Black Lodge Entrance Keys from the pedestal. A curtain door will open and you will be able to exit this room. Use the keys on the gold keyhole and thus lock the Black Lodge once and forever.
A block will rise behind you. From on top of it either jump on the edge E and shimmy right till you can stand up or jump to the ledge W. Walk up to the block at the top of this cave and climb up. Face N and climb up on the slope. Bounce between the 2 opposite slopes and have the left directional key pressed so Lara would land on the higher W slope. When she does keep the jump and action buttons pressed and Lara will bounce to another higher slope and from it grab the higher ledge above. Go to the black tile and you will be teleported out of the underworld back to a Venice basement. Wade to the table, climb on top of it, align Lara with the handle above and jump up and grab to open the trapdoor. Climb out and approach the partially submerged double doors to initiate the final flyby in a familiar area.
End of the level.