Part 4: The River
Let's meet the Wildlife
Once again, I had just enough fuel to reach a dock further up the Amerzone river.
This little shack looked familiar. Must be the home of the guide Valembois mentioned in his journal.
There was nothing to loot, so I decided to head further into the jungle.
I saw an animal sitting on a rock. Looked like a guinea pig, maybe? Throwing caution to the wind, I stepped closer.
What the hell? This little critter was like nothing I'd ever seen before. Maybe there was something in the journal...
Very rich indeed. I'd never even heard of such creatures - they must only exist in this one stretch of jungle.
Apparently Valembois dubbed these little guys "Suckerers." Cute.
Deeper in the jungle I found another hut.
There wasn't much of value, but I resolved to take everything I could. The gas can would come in handy.
What is this? A sketch of the river? There's supposed to be a compass, otherwise it's not a map... it's just a drawing.
What happened to the top of my Hydrafloat? Oh well, no time to worry about it. I had a river to traverse!
I gassed up the boat, hit the throttle, and I was off, headed upstream toward my goal.
A herd of... tapir... pig... things blocked my path up the river.
On a whim, I leaned on the horn.
Grudgingly, the creatures dispersed.
Not twenty metres upstream, my path was blocked by a couple of water buffalo. I honked the horn a couple of times, but the cows didn't budge.
Maybe there was something worthwhile in the journal?
So I guess the pig things earlier were Porcopotamuses... porcopotomi. Whatever.
And these friendly fellows must be Tricorn Buffalo. "Skittish and apparently stupid" eh?
Maybe if I just give them a nudge, they'll move on.
Well now what?
I noticed some tall rocks off to my left.
In a rare moment of critical thinking, I engaged the grapnel system in hopes of pulling myself upstream.
Ed. Note: This part is bullshit. It's basically a huge pixel hunt that works thusly: You click the anchor icon somewhere you think the grapnel will work, and then click the lever to the right of the screen to fire. If you don't select the very specific part of the screen the game wants you to, the hook will fire uselessly and force you to wait while it retracts. I hate this section of the game.
Looked like open water from here on. Maybe I could latch onto that low rock...
Whoops! That wasn't a rock at all.
The... aquatic rhinoceros gave a low grumble and dragged the Hydrafloat toward the nearby dock.
The rhinoceros trundled upstream, still in possession of my grappling hook. I'd need to get it back if I wanted to continue.
Luckily, he left an easy trail.
I hadn't gone very far before my socks were soaked and I was covered in flies. My enthusiasm for this endeavour was rapidly waning.
Well, no time like the present. Time to get my junk back. C'mere, rhino!
Uh oh, I didn't like the way this beast was pawing at the water.
I regained consciousness a little further downstream. Felt like half my ribs were bruised, if not outright broken.
I decided to catch my breath and learn just what it was I was up against.
Nemesis, thy name is Rhinopotamus.
Time to see just what I can find to help me take this monster down. I ain't got time to bleed.
Time has no meaning. There is only the hunt.
Ooh, a butterfly! No! Focus!
Here in the jungle I find the instrument of your DOOM, Rhinopotamus!
Time to finish this. FPS MODE ACTIVATE!
And flights of angels sing thee to thy rest.
Gingerly, I removed my grappling hook from the beast's horn. Last thing I needed was for this thing to wake up with a curare hangover.
Oh come on. More weird jungle creatures? I was getting tired of this. Time to break on through.
Move it or lose it, fishraptor.
I could have sworn the one on the left was actually laughing.
What the hell are these things, anyway?
Nemesis, thy name is now Pechosaur. What an interesting adaptation, though.
No matter. Time to disrupt us an ecosystem.
"Don't think I've forgotten about you two," I said, and headed into the jungle once more.
A bunch of beehives built onto the sheer canyon wall.
There was a convenient pile of kindling sitting directly under the beehives. The germ of an idea began to form.
If I could start a fire by rubbing two sticks together...
Click to watch the fireworks
Success! The bees chased off the Pechosaurs, leaving me relatively un-stung.
In retrospect I should have thought that plan through. But, no matter - it achieved the desired result!
Spider boat, spider boat, does whatever a spiderboat does.
Can it swing from a hook? Yes it can, take a look.
Ladieeeeeeees, check out my spider boat.
One last grapple pull dropped me off next to some kind of an elevator leading up the cliff face. I guess I knew what I had to do next.
I had a broken Hydrafloat, a backpack full of dead men's letters, and only the vaguest hint of a plan.
Even if I was successful, I started to doubt that I'd ever make it home. Who knew what was waiting for me up this ladder?
Next time: The Indian Village!