Dark Hope Dark Hope

A Puzzle Adventure

Year:  2020

Genre:  Puzzle

Links:  Steam, Adventure Gamers

Dark Hope is a first-person puzzle adventure. You awaken in an abandoned research complex, piecing together information about an experiment gone awry. You must get the various laboratories up and running in an attempt to make your escape. There are 6 Steam Achievements, all documented in the walkthrough below.

Ground Floor

Read the blue book on the table for some basic instructions. Search the drawers to find a keycard in the top right drawer. Go over and use the keycard machine on the wall and you will automatically insert the keycard - the door will open.

Out in the corridor, turn right, and enter the last room on the left. Read the small note on the ground here to get a safe combination. Leave this room and turn right, going down the corridor until you see Mrs Aldridge's room on the right. Enter here and open the safe with combination 561 (you end up turning 2 of the numbers at a time, but this isn't hard to solve - the fastest way is to just click the top of each number once). Inside, read the notes and take the match box. Also read the notes on the desk in this room, particularly the one about the birthday. Leave the room and enter the Maintenance Lounge directly opposite, where there are more notes on the desk to read.

Leave, turning left and head right around to the next long corridor. Enter the first room, belonging to Frank Satiar. Look at the access badge on his desk to see it is number 180554989. Search the top right desk drawer to see another access badge with number 180550614. Read 2 books in the shelves here, then go out and enter the Staff Files room to the right. Search the open file cabinet on the left to find a whole lot of names and dates of birth. There is only 1 female staff member from HR, so make sure you remember about Juliet Bohrm (DOB 06/18/1988). Now go to the next room, belonging to Mr Balon. Look at the access badge on his desk to see it is number 330764989, and read the notes on the desk. There is nothing of use in the bathrooms at the end of the hall.

Leave this corridor and go around to the right. Ignore the dining room to the left and the elevator for now, and instead go right. Find a door with a keypad that leads to Maintenance & Energy Lab, and enter code 0618 (based on Juliet's birthday from earlier). Head down the stairs and you will find a door to the Energy Lab. There is a machine to the right that allows you to enter a 9-digit code and prints out a keycard, and there is a list of dates and numbers on a note on the wall. Based on a previous note, the keycard reader is stuck on date 8/2. Enter code 330762534 to generate a valid keycard for this date for Mr Balon (Head of Energy Research). Take the keycard and use it on the keycard machine on the wall next to the door, then head through Access The Energy Lab.

Energy Lab

Enter the small office around to the left and read the book on the desk. Continue around further to the left. Pick up some chunks of red crystal from the bucket, and read the book here. You will also need to collect some blue algae and some exposed human urine before you can perform any useful experiments. Return out of this area again.

Ground Floor

Go back to near where you started and you will find the door to the Biological Lab. The keycard machine here is broken, and the 8 key appears broken. Try any 3-digit code and watch the inner gears rotate to the right, left and right again. You need to come up with a 3-digit code that will have the slot pointing to the left. If you try different codes you will discover the following is what happens:

  1. It turns right the first digit multiplied by the second digit.
  2. It turns left the second digit multiplied by the third digit.
  3. It turns right twice the third digit.

One code that will work is 316. Go through the door and stand on the platform, then pull the lever Access The BioLab.

Biological Lab

Go down the corridor, then around to the left. Keep heading left into the first room and take an old key from the desk. Search the desk drawers and read the book in the top left drawer. Go out and continue along the hall. Ignore the next room, and enter the second one, which is a storage room. After the shelves fall, read the book on the shelves to the right to see an important diagram (1/2). Leave and head to the end of the hall. Open the gate with your key, then open the first cell with your key. Enter the room and take some tainted urine from the toilet, then read the book on the bed.

Now return to the platform and pull the lever to go back up.

Ground Floor

Head into the dining room and look at the lunch menu on the wall, then look at the serving area to see a heap of bowls. This means today's date is probably 8/5. Head back down the stairs to Maintenance, and approach the keycard printer. Enter code 180551202. Take the keycard and head back upstairs. Go to the keycard machine at the end of the first corridor and use the keycard. Go through and down the stairs Access the Mechanical Lab.

Mechanical Lab

Your way back will be blocked by flame. Explore an office over to the right and look at an important diagram (2/2) on a note on a desk in here. Back out in the main room, find a small steam cart at its "station". Flip the lever half way along the tracks, then press the lever on the steam cart so that it goes forward and left. Hitch the first empty coal cart to the steam cart, then press its lever to drag the coal cart back. Flip the lever along the track, then use the steam cart to deposit the empty coal cart at the end of the straight track, unhitching it to leave it here. Repeat this with the second empty coal cart, then collect the filled coal cart and drag it back to the "station". Click on the cart to tip the coal out, then click on the coal and you will light it on fire using your matches. Climb up on top of the pump here and flip the small red handle to the right to activate the pump.

Wait until the water has been drained from the hole here, then drop down. Grab some dried blue algae from the bucket, then follow the caverns to return to the floor of the Mechanical Lab.

Go through a doorway in the far right corner of the room to find a steam generator with a large bellows. Turn the small valve on the front of the machine clockwise, then pump the bellows and you will see the dial start to go up. Keep pumping the bellows until the dial is in the middle of the green zone, then turn the small valve anti-clockwise, and the generator will activate. Back in the main room, a whole series of gears will now be active. Now climb up to the high platform along the edge of the room and cross over the middle walkway. Move the plank to bridge the gap, so that you can get back to the entrance area.

Ground Floor

Go through the door towards the Biological Lab, then stand on the platform and pull the lever to descend once more.

Biological Lab

Go to the end of the corridor and turn left, then explore the rooms on the right. Find a room with some large green vats, and turn the valve next to vat number 8. Now find a small control room with a bank of 6 levers at the end of the hallway. In the left part, set them to down-up-up (using base-3 this indicates number 8, noting that they have a middle setting as well). In the right part, set them to down-up (the move command). Push the red lever. Return to the vats, and there should be a claw device around vat 8. Go back to the controls and set the right part to up-down, then push the red lever again. Return to the vats, then turn off the valve next to the missing vat 8. Now climb down the opening to reach the plumbing below.

There are a total of 5 valves here. You need to make sure that the leak is bypassed, and that there is enough water pressure to raise the red ball at the far right. On the left end, turn the top valve clockwise and the bottom valve anti-clockwise. In the middle, turn the valve clockwise. On the right end, turn the top valve clockwise and the bottom valve anti-clockwise. Now climb back up through the hole with the missing vat.

Now return to the platform and pull the lever to go back up.

Ground Floor

Head around and down the stairs to Maintenance, then through the door to the Energy Lab again.

Energy Lab

Explore the middle room on the right with the green reactor. Assuming you fixed the plumbing in the Biological Lab, the small red ball on the intake valve on the left should be raised. Follow these steps to activate the reactor:

  1. Turn the 1st valve anti-clockwise to allow water into the system.
  2. Turn the 3rd valve anti-clockwise to lower the top cover.
  3. Wait until the dial reaches near the end of the green zone.
  4. Turn the 2nd valve to insert the left rod.
  5. Wait until the dial reaches near the end of the green zone.
  6. Turn the 4th valve to insert the right rod.

If done correctly, the dial will remain in the green zone. If you explore the other rooms down here, you will find a bank of 4 switches that should all be flipped upwards, and you will find that the large Wimshurst machine (massive wheel) is now active and spinning. Go to the laboratory at the far left. Use the grinder 3 times, and you will now fill the 3 beakers with red, green and blue liquids. You still don't know what recipe you need to make, so return out of this area once more.

Ground Floor

Now you can finally head to the elevator and go down.

Gate Research

Find the two switches on the wall here and flip them both up. There will be a grid of colored lasers around the room. Turn any of the reflecting devices and you will see the lasers move as well Laser Laser Laser. There are 3 colored lasers being directed from the cube over near the claw-shaped device. You need to adjust the reflectors so that each of these colors in turn is directed towards the spectrograph machine. When one reaches it, adjust the dials on the spectrograph to recreate the exact color, and make a note of the dial positions. Repeat this with all 3 of the colors (green, blue and yellow).

Adjust the reflecting devices so that each of the colors (green, blue and yellow) is directed towards one of the receivers opposite the spectrograph.

Head back up in the elevator.

Ground Floor

Head around and down the stairs to Maintenance, then through the door to the Energy Lab again.

Energy Lab

Head to the laboratory with the 3 colored beakers. Adjust the dials on the spectrograph here to match one of the settings from the caverns below. Now you need to mix the liquid from the colored beakers in the main container, using the Bunsen burner to reduce the mixture down. When the color looks right, use the pipette to put a sample into the spectrograph, then flip the lever up to test it. Adjust until you have a perfect match, then click on the smaller sample vial to get a vial with colored goo.

Gate Research

Place your vial of colored goo into the receptacle next to the appropriate receiver. You should hear it start to vibrate. Return to the Energy Lab and repeat this with the other two colors, placing the vials of goo into the appropriate receptacles. Now flip the right switch on the wall down, and the lasers will persist. A new blue laser will pass into the claw-shaped device, and a portal will open. Head through Master Chemist.

Portal Station

You will find yourself in a new environment with futuristic corridors. Read the first book on the floor here. Exploring the main corridor straight ahead, turn to the right and read a second book on the floor at the end - this contains a series of diagrams, each with multiple numbers, a triangle and a square. Head back towards the entrance portal and turn to the right, then right again to find a room with a series of 6 individual blue symbols. These symbols are numbers in base-4, with the first digit in the outer ring. They represent the numbers 25, 175, 201, 43, 33 and 132. The only matching number from the diagrams in the second book is 175, indicating the correct page to use from the second book.

Head directly across to the other end of this short corridor and look in the left shelf to see a colorful recipe. Of most importance is the set of symbols at the bottom.

Go back along the main corridor to see the inactive exit portal. Turn left before you get there, and you will come across a series of low cabinets containing powders of different colors. Pick up the beaker, then notice the symbols in front of the powders, which match the symbols on the diagram you just saw. You now need to pick up powder and deposit it into the canisters up ahead, using the symbols on the floor in front of them to guide you:

  • Middle Canister: Yellow, cyan, purple
  • Left Canister: Green, red, yellow

You do not need to use the right canister. Now turn the small valve on the side of each canister and push the button on each to feed gas into the large central chamber. Turn the outlet valve on the far side, then pick up some of the liquid crystal you have created (if you have the recipe wrong, nothing will form and you should start again). Go back to where you found the colorful recipe and use your liquid crystal on the right shelf. Pick up the power crystal that is formed.

Go along the main corridor and now continue past the inactive exit portal to a room directly beyond. Insert the power crystal in the receptacle on the floor - this will bring 2 holograms to life and add extra power to the whole area. Go back to the previous room and look on the bench to find a purple folder - examine this to find an energy map diagram, which is a clue for the upcoming puzzle. Go back once more to reach the inactive exit portal. There is a cube sitting in front of it (the 175 cube), and there are three triangular stands around it, colored yellow, red and white. Based on the book, you need to set the discs next to these stands to the following values:

  • Yellow: 653 (0002-2031 in base-4)
  • Red: 4257 (0100-2201 in base-4)
  • White: 50 (0000-0302 in base-4)

You will have noticed 5 different control panels with 3 sets of colored dials around the area. To set the discs next to the inactive exit portal, you need to adjust the dials on these control panels. This is quite a time-consuming process that requires you to perform some basic algebra and lots of base-4 conversions. Settings on one control panel affect settings on the others as well, but there is one order that makes things pretty straightforward.

  • Panel 1: Furthest left from the exit portal, yellow dial can be adjusted
    - Blue = 5000 (0103-2020)
    - Yellow = 5 (0011)
    - Green = 1000 (0003-3220), equals 5000 divided by 5

  • Panel 2: Just to the right of panel 1, red dials can be adjusted
    - Blue = 1000 (0003-3220), copied from Panel 1 Green
    - Red = 347 (0001-1123)
    - Green = 653 (0002-2031), equals 1000 minus 347, controls Yellow discs

  • Panel 3: Furthest right and slightly back from the exit portal, red dials can be adjusted
    - Blue = 4000 (0033-2200), equals 5000 minus 1000
    - Red = 3950 (0033-1232)
    - Green = 50 (0000-0302), equals 4000 minus 3950, controls White discs

  • Panel 4: Just to the left of Panel 3, red dials can be adjusted
    - Blue = 3950 (0033-1232), copied from Panel 3 Red
    - Red = 40 (0000-0220)
    - Green = 3910 (0033-1012), equals 3950 minus 40

  • Panel 5: Cannot be directly adjusted
    - Blue = 347 (0001-1123), copied from Panel 2 Red
    - Blue = 3910 (0033-1012), copied from Panel 4 Green
    - Green = 4257 (0100-2201), equals 347 plus 3910, controls Red discs

With these settings (or any others that set the Yellow, Red and White values correctly), you can go back to the inactive exit portal and make sure the discs next to the 3 colored stands are correct. You will find a switch on the left wall of the main corridor just back from the inactive exit portal - activate this now and the cube and exit portal will disappear.

Go back towards the entrance portal. Turn on the blue laser so that it fires through the portal, then head through.

Gate Research

Flip the left switch on the wall down to deactivate the blue light from this side, then head through the portal again.

Portal Station

Turn off the blue laser and wait for the entrance portal to deactivate completely. Turn it back on, then step into the middle of the portal and wait Home.