Part 8: HomecomingUpdate 08: Homecoming
Welcome back. Last time we escaped Michelangelo Memorial Hospital, killing Clinic Chief Lem in the process. The good doctor took the secrets of Rions circumstances to the grave with him, but that doesnt mean our protagonist is going to give up.
Using the documents he found in the hospital and a few faded memories, Rion has managed to track down the Steiner family home. What secrets lurk inside its manorial façade? Lets find out.
We begin outside the house. Everything is quiet - there are no enemies around, and the only sounds are ambient noise. The front door is right ahead, so let's get a move on and see what's inside.
Of course, its not going to be that easy.
Psychometry gives us a glimpse of the foyer, but that doesnt help us much.
According to the map there are two other doors we can go through, one to the left of the house and one to the right.
The left door is a gate that leads to a play area with a bench and set of swings.
Rions parents were very irresponsible and have left experimental brain chemicals just lying around all over the place.
Psychometry confirms that he did! It also confirms that he had a playmate, although one has to wonder about the bandages around her head
Theres also a small stone storehouse at the back.
Its locked, and reading the door reveals that the key is near some kind of workstation.
Theres nothing we can do about that now, so lets go back and explore the right hand side of the grounds.
We get a brief in-game scene as soon as we step through the gate.
Rion automatically examines the ground by the pond, noting that there are tire tracks leading into the water.
We can confirm this by examining the pond itself.
A psychometric reading reveals a strange room with a snooker table, jukebox and minibar. Strange - what does that have to do with the pond?
The image isnt very helpful, so lets have a look in the garage where the tracks are coming from.
Examining the shelves yields a Recovery Capsule, absolutely vital if you fought Lem the hard way.
Theres also a conspicuous car that looks like it stumbled in from the Fallout franchise.
Inside we find a key to the back door. Excellent - now we can explore the house.
We can also read the car for a brief memory, and our first truly good look at Rions parents. It seems Rion and his family went out in this car fairly regularly.
Theres nothing else to do in the back yard, so lets get down to business and crack open the back door.
So far, so good. But as soon as we go inside
a whole bunch of uninvited guests show up. I suppose its not surprising; Lem was clearly not the only person involved in all this, and it doesnt take a genius to figure out that Rion would immediately head home after escaping the hospital.
Music: Galerians - Manor Theme 1
Still, we've made it inside. Now to see what we can find in here.
The Steiner Manor isnt particularly big. Its much smaller than the hospital, but it has a bit more backtracking to make up for it.
Moving forwards reveals that were in the dining room, with the huge double doors to our left leading into the main foyer.
Unfortunately it looks like someone has smashed up the locks and ripped off the doorknob, so we cant get through just yet.
Reading the broken door reveals an image of a bar - perhaps the same bar we saw in our reading of the pond.
Theres a small kitchen unit behind the table.
You can never have too many healing items.
The fridge cant be opened, but reading it gives us another image of Rions mother.
Exiting through the red doors leads to this corridor.
The southernmost door leads to a small antechamber with a sink in it.
Theres nothing obviously important in here, but we can read the sink for a quick snapshot of Rions mother. She looks concerned about something
Music: Galerians - Manor Theme 2
The other door leads to a proper bathroom.
The Resident Evil vibes are strong with this one.
Fortunately draining the tub does not result in us being attacked by a festering waterlogged zombie, although it does reveal the key we need to progress - if only we could reach the foyer.
The third and final door leads to a short corridor linking the northern and southern halves of the first floor.
Music: Galerians - Manor Battle
Rounding the next corner thrusts us into this stages first hostile encounter - the Enhanced Rabbit.
Aside from the snazzy suit and dapper hat, Enhanced Rabbits also possess limited psychic abilities. Their purple energy shots are weaker than Rions Nalcon, but they come out quickly and are difficult to dodge in the cramped confines of the corridor.
Enhanced Rabbits are reasonably tough, taking three shots of Nalcon or two blasts of Red to put down. Theyre less aggressive than the riot guards from the previous stage, and none of their attacks can knock you down, but if one of them catches you by surprise youll probably take a hit.
The turquoise doors lead into some kind of sitting room. Of immediate interest is the object on the settee to Rions right.
Its a vaguely creepy painting. Might as well take it with us I guess!
Its not the only important picture here, either. Examining the photographs on the mantelpiece triggers a memory
: Its the same picture I found in the hospitals computer! Thats me in the middle
Rion turns around, distracted by a glowing light.
The light of memory.
: Whats wrong, Rion? Having trouble sleeping?
A slightly younger, collar-less Rion replies.
: I feel uneasy, but I dont know why. Its as if something really bad is about to happen.
Rions mother looks forlorn, as if she knows something he doesnt.
We return to the present, and the recollection ends. Judging by what's happened, I'd say Rion's prediction was depressingly accurate.
Theres one more thing to do here, then we can move on.
The back shelves contain a vial of Red. Useful!
Weve two more rooms to explore down this corridor.
The red doors lead to the bar, which weve seen a couple of times before thanks to our readings.
The jukebox doesnt work. No jaunty tunes for us.
Two balls are missing from the snooker table. Fortunately, we can read the table twice to get both of their locations.
The first is some kind of computer room or study.
The second is the pond? Come to think of it, it does look like something might be down there
Another major item of interest is behind the bar.
The doorknob! Now we can access the second floor!
There are some other collectibles here we can grab before leaving.
The last room to explore in this area contains this stages only save point.
Anyway, lets head back. We have a whole new floor to explore, and-
So, I bet you guys were expecting enemies to burst in through the windows, Resident Evil-style? Nope! Galerians has them bust in through the goddamn ceiling.
Its not that big of a deal, though. We burn him and move on-
Now that was just rude.
Our guests suitably chastened, we can now move on back to the dining room.
An in-game scene plays as soon as we step inside. Rion walks towards the kitchen unit
Images flash across the screen, and Rion clutches his head in pain as another memory begins to surface.
Rion slowly approaches the fridge
He opens the door
Well, RIP Rions mother! Someone murdered her, stuffed a clock in her mouth, then left her body in the fridge for past Rion to find. But who did it? And why? Perhaps well find some answers next time, when we explore the second floor of the manor.