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#87804 - 01/12/05 04:03 PM Beginning Myst IV (Mild Spoilers)
Salar of Myst Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 12/06/02
Posts: 4216
Loc: Virginia's wetland dimension
Beginning Myst IV

Installing the dvds took awhile, as it hung 3 times midway. I went online and found recommendation pages I'd bookmarked earlier. Read a few threads & reviewed Tink's page (which I'd saved earlier). Then went AHA! and shut down Norton Anti-virus and all other unnecessary programs. It still hung. hhmmm... no English files..hhmm.. I took another suggestion I'd seen & cleaned the disk..THEN it finished an installation, though very slowly. (according to one thread the Myst IV disks often gave the 'English files' error when it couldnt read the 2nd disk. As the process finished, I found myself wondering about modern effects of ancient feuds....)

Now I can see Atrus' message. Intriguing. He wants me to come and hear more about his sons. Well, I did see them last. makes sense.

Time for the test drive....literally. Yeesha came to get me. As I listened to Yeesha cheerfully prattle along entering the canyon area, I tried not to think how much she reminded me of Sirrus. She seems like a sweet kid, though a little proud of herself driving the big D'ni railcar. Yeah, guess I'd have been full of sand too if I was driving at only 12 yrs old. Still a little worrying.

Then suddenly we slowed to stop in front of large painting. Very modern it was, bars, blocks, lines in browns, whites, tans, pale blue, you name it. A bird flitted through the dingy, free-floating windows.

As the car settled to a stop, Yeesha turns to me and says

"Isnt it beautiful?"

as the whole world became one ENORMOUS Rubik's cube! Those blocks were everywhere! In the car, out of the car. Only Yeesha and I were unaffected...oh yeah, and that bird.

I laughed so heartily, I started to fall over sideways with it but happily, the arms on my chair prevented this from being a literal reality. Judging from what I had seen on the way in, this was just as well. It would have been a llllooonngg way down!

Yeesha was amazing unperturbed by my exuberant reaction (presumably her father has warned her of my odd sense of humor). She simply bounded off into the modernist landscape and expected me to follow. I didn't. I just nodded back to her, grinning, and linked home after she had disappeared from view.

[I wasnt worried. I knew what to do because I'd already read about it. I uploaded the newer video drivers from a recent Maximum PC disk and returned after eating dinner at home.]

Atrus was waiting for me with the patience for which he is justly famed. It was truly wonderful to see him again, though I was surprised at the change in wardrobe. I always liked his robe, though, of course, I didnt criticize. Anyway, he looks spiffy. very Verne-esque. (Hey can I have that old robe now that you're done with it, my friend? It'd make a great pattern.) Doesnt sound like this trip is meant to be too onerous. Atrus basically wants me to observe his sons through the viewer and offer a second opinion. I enjoyed working with him in his lab very much. That was like old times. Sadly I think I played with his oscilloscope a little TOO long. It be broke. oh dear. Looks like we'll have to split up now to get more done.

And so it begins...

I'll add to this as I go along

Susan :-D

#87805 - 01/13/05 08:05 AM Re: Beginning Myst IV (Mild Spoilers)
Becky Offline
The Medieval Lady
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 02/16/00
Posts: 26917
Loc: Stony Brook, New York, USA
Hey Susan -- I enjoyed your first impressions and hope you will continue to post as you make your way through this amazing game.

Just curious -- did uploading the drivers solve the Rubik's cube effect problem?

#87806 - 03/20/05 01:27 PM Re: Beginning Myst IV (Mild Spoilers)
Salar of Myst Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 12/06/02
Posts: 4216
Loc: Virginia's wetland dimension
EDIT: Yes, the new drivers fixed the Rubik's effect. I havent played much further but so far, everything seems to be running fine.

Atrus didn't come back right away. In fact he didnt come back all day. I puttered around his lovely Family Robinson-style home, strung like gems along the cliffs overlooking the canyon river, looking for whatever it was I was supposed to fix. Yeesha wandered in and out playing an Ocarina. I had a mind to ask if she played Nintendo much ~ as she sounded like she was trying for one of Link's power songs. lol After visiting with her a little, Yeesha explained that its a Serenia tune she's trying to learn. I opined a preference for the "Song of Time." I hummed it for her, which earned me odd looks.

Further discussions with Atrus' youngest have established it firmly in my mind that she is a sweet kid, but could possibly prove to be a bit of a loon. Her father had made it plain that he was still determining if direct physical contact should be made, and Yeesha spoke of her brothers as if they visited her home often or vice-versa. Maybe they are her imaginary friends? One hopes its something like that.

I really love that waterfall. Came in to get a closer view and finally found the path to the reset breaker, but it didn't seem to do anything. So I wandered around a bit more, bemused by my surroundings and more than a little puzzled. I figured, "Why not enjoy myself? There's no rush this time." Actually I'd prefer one of Yeesha's parents returned before I concentrated on any demanding task.

Its been HOURS. Wonder where Catherine is keeping herself so long? Long line at the grocery store?

Wandering back, I encountered Yeesha by her beetles, and she at last directed me toward the auxillary power box. I fiddled with it, and checked the plants & beetle aquarium. Looks to me like she is coming along nicely in her scientific/observational studies. Her prospects are promising. No wonder her father is proud of her.

Aha! Success! Finally found a method of puttering with the box that moved the power around. Once the box was happy, I was finally able to get the power going. My joy was shortlived, however, as some kind of mini-quake or explosion dropped the walkway I was on and knocked me out cold. I awoke this evening to find Tomahna deserted. Now that the power is on, I've been able to look everywhere: bedrooms, kitchen, greenhouse. But there's no Yeesha. No Atrus or Catherine either. Arent they overdue by now? Don't tell me they've all been kidnapped this time? No, that'd be ridiculous!

Finally got the viewer going and called Rime. Heard Atrus was held up by a massive storm. He clearly couldnt hear me, because his last words were babysitting instructions! AARrgh!

Well, at least he's okay & will be back eventually. That's some comfort.

Sounds like he isnt expecting Catherine home soon, for which I should be grateful. I would not enjoy telling her that I somehow 'lost' their only remaining child. She doesnt know me as well as he does. So where IS she then? Gone to Mysterium?

Exploring the rest of the rooms allowed me to check more journals & even open the way to Spire & Haven myself.

I cracked the D'ni lock into Yeesha's lower area near the river. Yeesha's drawing & diary entries are at a much lower level than her math & science work. Perhaps she's very logically-minded like my son? But, she speaks of letting her brothers join her club & writes as if her mother is aware of the contact with her brothers. Not sure how to interpret this. My son is also very creative, but his literal tendencies precluded imaginary playmates. If it were him, this would mean that there is already regular contact between the former prison Ages and Tomahna.

Still, she is effectively an only child. I was too & imagined hobbit-sized companions for my ramblings for some years. Why not bring her own brothers along? I think I understand why she might be fascinated with their character & with what happened to her brothers. I think it would worry me too. It'd be like worrying about a family curse that could strike you. One that started with Gehn perhaps? That would explain her determination to get lineage details straight.

Atrus seems to be left out of the loop in some of these developments. When he gets back, we had better have a long talk, I think.

Found the write-ups and gem codes for Spire, Haven & Serenia, though it took me awhile. (Some of those gem drawings were hard for me to guess.)

Spire was a shock, as instead of any real information of the Age, I encountered images that were definitely a message to his family. I also found a physical object, a blobby gem-statue, which Yeesha calls a gift from him. Could it be that he HAS been here? Sirrus IS a charmer. It would be his style. Nothing equivalent exists in this Age for Achenar. Decided to go to Spire first then. Yeesha definitely isnt here & I found her amulet on the way to those Ages. Its the most logical place to look.

The amulet held me up a bit. It does indeed seem to queue odd 'visions' & 'echoes' all over the place. I thought perhaps it would offer more clues to her disappearance, so I explored Tomahna all over again with it first. Not sure of its accuracy, however. I don't remember Catherine talking like that. No additional clues to where Yeesha or Catherine might be.


Wrote Atrus a quick note and headed on to Spire.

Spire does not remind me of what he described at all! The book linked me to a broken observation area. Looks like there was a cage here? Also a locked book & a linking book to Tomahna! AHA! Sirrus HAS been in contact then!

I am now in the floating ruin of an enormous palace, very D'ni-esque, with gems and odd boulders floating throughout. The sky is quite pretty, and I love cathedral architecture this really Spire?? It does remind me of an old D'ni description I once saw translated, but no one said that Age really existed anywhere. Perhaps Atrus was inspired by it?
Lovely how this place reminds me of classical music. It would suit this place.

The amulet lights up regularly & gives me odd glimpses into Sirrus' past here. It seems he HAS been in conversation with Yeesha. And he definitely was imprisoned here in years past. His 'slides' are fun too, though I feared I'd get a gem 'splinter' in an awkward place from the longest one! (Note to self: sit on a pillow next time.)

Played endlessly with a circuit board & a control thingy for a ball blob that goes up and down depending on how many lights I have on. whee! There don't appear to be any controls on the circuit board itself. Tried manually 'shorting' a few lines, but only got lightly crispy fingertips for my trouble. I can get the 'ship' to sit for long periods of time but it declines to fly when its on level with the dock.

The day is nearly over for me. I must rest soon. No sign or sound yet of anyone here & the most irritating thing is that I haven't found a way to return to the Tomahna book. Surely there's a way back up? Who gave Sirrus that book? Catherine?


*Spire ~ day 2* First thing my eyes saw this morning was the pipe 'ladder' extending into the floor(s) above. AARRRGHHH! How could I miss that??

Explored the upper area that turned out to be Sirrus' main base. Interesting journal. It didnt say anything unexpected. Hasnt been updated in awhile, I see. No mention of how he got back in touch with Tomahna. The book he was looking for would have gone back to Myst Island most likely. As I understood it, Tomahna wasn't written until long after Sirrus' self-imprisonment. Studied the plants from which he drew his sustenance & was very glad I had some alternatives in my pack. Lets hope I don't stick around long enough to need them myself!

Finally found a second panel & got the 'ship' working. I was so pleased with myself to be 'going on' at last. Except I wasn't. At least the amulet enabled me to commiserate with the frustrations of Sirrus at the same discovery. At the time he built this ship, which doesn't appear to be that old, he was still trapped here.

The amulet discusses Sirrus gloating over a poor move made by his father on a chess board set on Spire. Atrus' honesty is not something I doubt but this is a puzzling bit. It could be that Sirrus is deeply unhinged or has been playing chess by proxy (via Catherine or Yeesha) or even that this chess set refers to a much earlier time. Sirrus is not here and has not been here for awhile. No sign of Yeesha. I found myself staring at a fan idly creaking back in forth in the enormous ceiling above me, stirred by the occasional passing breeze. I wonder where this place came from. Was it above ground? Was it from Gartenay?

I just encountered a spider chair, but it doesn't do much at present. Getting it on looks like quite an undertaking. I'd better ration supplies....

[stuck on the spider chair]

#87807 - 03/21/05 09:17 AM Re: Beginning Myst IV (Mild Spoilers)
Becky Offline
The Medieval Lady
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 02/16/00
Posts: 26917
Loc: Stony Brook, New York, USA
Hi Salar -- I've really been enjoying this journey through Myst IV! It's like having a companion for the trip.

The spider chair is tough. I think it's the toughest challenge in the game You may be there for awhile.

EDIT: I grew to admire Sirrus just for managing to retain any sanity at all while living in that barren world.

#87808 - 03/22/05 01:07 PM Re: Beginning Myst IV (Mild Spoilers)
Salar of Myst Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 12/06/02
Posts: 4216
Loc: Virginia's wetland dimension
Yay! Glad you are enjoying them!

Glad to hear its the toughest puzzle as I'd hate to think the rest are at this level! This one is schizm level ~ with a timer!

I guess you can tell fromthis that I'm still fighting with ye olde Iron Seat O'Doom. I'm now using Sirrus' determination as a role model. scary, eh? wave

#87809 - 03/25/05 10:39 AM Re: Beginning Myst IV (Mild Spoilers)
wysewomon Offline
Addicted Boomer

Registered: 10/23/03
Posts: 3506
Loc: hunched over my computer
Originally posted by Becky:
I grew to admire Sirrus just for managing to retain any sanity at all while living in that barren world.
I'm not so sure I agree that he did!. But yeah, I hated Spire with a passion. Part of what made it so hard was I could hardly stand to be there! Lucky Salar, she's doing it first and can get on to much more pleasant horizons.

"So then he says it's enough to take aim! What's that supposed to mean?!?"

#87810 - 03/26/05 05:31 AM Re: Beginning Myst IV (Mild Spoilers)
Becky Offline
The Medieval Lady
Sonic Boomer

Registered: 02/16/00
Posts: 26917
Loc: Stony Brook, New York, USA
I did it first, and was glad that I did. You know, I loved the place when I first came there. It was so gothic. Dark and moodly and alien. And kind of wild to explore, with the slides.

After a few hours of puzzle-solving though, it started to feel empty in a way none of the other Myst worlds have felt empty. I think that was partly because there was very little vegetation, and what vegetation there was blended right into the world. If I had Sirrus's brains I would have been genetically modifying the plants to try and bring alternate color into the world.


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