Version 2.0b ©Alex Fung, April 2005.
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After so many years, it is a shock that a developer of so many excellent games could have gone bankrupt. In the commercial world, companies have to struggle to continue to exist. While we call it “survival of the fittest”, the “fittest” is very often not the one who is good. At least not in the normal sense of the word. The fittest is good at only one thing — survival.
Similar things happen to genes and memes. Evolution does not make progress to produce “better” animals. Your genes care nothing about your well-being, other than your ability to survive and produce offspring carrying copies of your genes. The world is full of memes spread by mind viruses, all competing for a share of your mind, your perception, your attention. They care nothing for your well-being, but instead add to your confusion and subtract from your fulfillment. To learn more about genes and memes, go read Virus of the Mind. The first chapter (Introduction) is available on-line, free.
Thief II: The Metal Age has been released in April 2000. It uses the same Enhanced Dark Engine like System Shock II, with better graphics than Thief I. Read about it at its Eidos home site (the original home site is long dead) and get a demo there.
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At that time, it was originally meant to be a supplement to the FAQ of The Brigadier, which contained walkthroughs for mission 2 (Bafford) through 7 (Haunted Cathedral). For the other missions, it is a regular walkthrough (since they were not covered in the FAQ). Later, I start writing complete walkthroughs for the missing missions. Before I can finish, Thief Gold is available so I keep revising the walkthrough to incorporate Gold information. As of today, it is a complete walkthrough covering Thief Dark Project (TDP, usually referred to as Original Thief in this walkthrough) and Thief Gold (TG).
At The Spoilers you can find a walkthrough by Brian Smith. His walkthrough is for the normal level (and does not cover all loots). If you want to play the expert level, you simply cannot follow him: you are asked to kill people, and you would not have sufficient loot to complete the game, and you would not be able to collect items or perform actions required by the expert level,
At lower difficulty, you have in general more powerup items to pick up. Note also that the location of some loots are different at different difficulty levels. Finally, the number of pockets to pick varies with difficulty level as well.
However, this is not how the Thief missions are internally numbered. Looking Glass starts their numbering from A Keeper’s Training so the Lord Bafford’s Manor is Mission 2 for them. Moreover, there is no Mission 8, and ends up with the last mission numbered 14. During the development of Thief, three missions had been removed, which reappeared in the form of Thief Gold. Mission 8 is the last one removed, and Looking Glass just left a hole in the mission numbering.
As time goes and I notice the problem of using relative mission numbering. Thief Gold is released, and has three new missions in the middle of the old twelve missions. When Brigadier released his FAQ v7.5, he used Gold mission numbers, so what he called mission 5 (Thieves' Guild) doesn’s appear in Thief, and what he called mission 6 (Sword) is mission #5 in Thief. I found this very confusing. Therefore I painfully switched to use the internal mission numbers. So Original Thief (not Gold) missions will be called 2...7, 9..14. Using internal mission numbers, mission 7 is Haunted Cathedral, and mission 9 is Lost City, and it is how I can going to call them. Note that the starting_mission cheat uses relative mission numbers (starting from 1 for Lord Bafford’s Manor).
In Thief Gold, there are FOUR new missions internally, although only three is announced. The four new missions are numbered 15, 16, 17 and 18. Mission 15 is after Assassins, it is the Thieves’ Guild. Mission 16 is after The Haunted Cathedral, it is The Mage Towers, where you get the Earth Talisman from the new enemy type. Mission 17 is after the Lost City, called Song of the Caverns, where you go for the Water Talisman. Mission 18 is a secret mission Blooper Reel.
Each mission is described in a separate HTML file because of its size. These sub-documents use separate version numbers. They start with 1.0 and are indenpendent of the verison number of this page.
Because of the change in mission numbering, the file name of these subdocuments are also renamed. For example, Lost City is renamed from thief07.htm to thief09.htm.
Mission 18 is a secret mission. You couldn’t start it simply by finishing all other missions. Instead, you should first complete all other missions, and then modify the dark.cfg to start it. For details refer to the mission 18 (Blooper Reel) walkthrough. The information is at “Before you start” → “Starting the mission”.
Despite your conceived running speed you can actually outrun everything — if you have to place to run to. And if you are not running fast enough, the following should help:
When you run, keep turning corners and they will lose sight of you. And avoid doors because opening doors takes too much time. Soon after you have shaken them loose, they stop chasing and look around for you.
When you run, you can choose where to run to. You are not forced to run out. In some missions, you can run inward. For example, in mission 2, you can run from the factory to the prison to get away from the guards. It does not always work because some guards will pull the alarm and seals your fate.
Climbing. I always find climbing ladders and ropes very difficult. Do not stand too close to the object: walk towards it and press jump when it is getting near. If you have a better method to climb, let me know. System Shock 2, which uses an enhanced version of the Dark Engine, has much improved on this aspect. Walk up to a ladder, look up, continue to walk and find yourself alreayd climbing up the ladder. But in Thief, we have to continue to negotiate with the jump key.
Mantling. Just as difficult at times. I found that it is easier to mantle up when you are looking downwards. Just press and hold the jump key. Most important, do not press the forward key.
To jump down quietly, find something to jump upon: almost anything other than the floor will do. Dropping on a wooden box is also noisy, but if you drop to the edge of the box, you slip down to the floor noiselessly. Or crouch and then jump, which also reduces the damage you take.
Note that all your enemies are not capable of mantling (they walk up stairs, but cannot mantle up higher obstacles like Garrett does) or jumping (they only jump when attacking, not as a means to overcome obstacles). They are not capable of riding elevators, nor use the Rope Arrows you left dangling around. They cannot really swim, but they can walk under water, and some of them can hold their breath for quite some time.
Note that the same applies to you as well. If you are caught unaware, or attacked from behind, you received a deeper damage than otherwise.
Most AIs are idle until you approach their room. You wake them up by arriving at a certain area (not by being seen by one of them). Once you wake them up, they will start wandering around or picking up their patrol path or start talking to each other.
Therefore, it pays to act fast (quick but not run): especially for Zombie-infested areas. If you get into a place and move fast, you may be able to roam around unhindered.
You are in deep trouble. Some will scream and run away, others will search real hard. They will become impossible to pickpocket. They will forget about the patrol path and search everywhere. They will find you even if you are in good shadows. However, there are corners that they will never find you — if in deep trouble, press yourself into a corner, crouch and hope for the best.
The other alternative is to get away. Do not try to hide before they lose sight of you. When you lost them, they will start searching and so you have to hide somewhere still further away.
The third way is to knock them down. Do not knock the forehead, several blows and you may kill him. Keep running behind the guard and knock from behind. If a maid is running away screaming, you had better run after her and knock her down. Probably others have not yet noticed her.
Warning! This is quite a spoiler. I suggest you do not look up an AI until you have met him in the game.
The most effective weapon against them is, of course, a Water Arrow. It is also possible to kill it with Broadhead Arrows or Blackjack from the behind, but it is not easy. Note that Burricks are capable for “blowing out” a Fire Elemental, and so does your Gas Arrows, but both are very difficult.
Note that their flame are harmful even past walls. So if you are hiding in a hut and Fire Elemental is chasing you, do not stand near the outer wall. Otherwise, it can still kill you from outside a wall!
I have been changing this name several times. Internally it is called Fire Element. However some papyrus in the game refer to them as Fire Elementals. As always, I side with the more visible name in the walkthrough and therefore call them Fire Elementals as well.
You can kill it too! Shoot a Broadhead Arrow at it and it stops spinning around. The game statistics will show you an "others killed:1".
Many types of equipment are weapons. Whichever weapon you use, remember that it doesn’t matter which part of the body it hits. Blackjack on the lower leg is just as effective as on the neck. However, due to many problems of the game engine, some parts of the body are not considered targets. For example, you can shoot arrows through hands or heads, and they may pass through unhindered. You will also notice that guards can frequently stuck their head or their sword into a wall, or through doors. Just remember which parts of the body are ignored in the collision detection. The center (eg the belly) is generally a good target.
Your most important weapon is of course the Blackjack: you are using it more than anything else. It is also your most powerful weapon: beats nearly everything (except small stuff like Spiders, which I have difficult to reach them) — when they are not aware of your presence. And better still it never runs out of ammunition. One useful technique is lean and knock: so that you do not have to catch up that close to your target.
Remember that your ordinary Sword increases your luminosity and gives you away, while the Constantine’s Sword does’t. In case you need to strike at Spiders or Frog Beasts, ready your Sword, release and crouch. You can also use your sword to break (unlock) wooden doors.
You have quite some types of arrows. You need to left click to pull an arrow. Wait for the arrow to zoom in, so that the hit is more effective. You can also use the arrows as a telescope, zooming at places too difficult to see clearly. If you have pulled an arrow and decide not to shoot, press the put-weapon-away key.
Notice that drawing an arrow makes you more visible. Reader Kronic Knight confirmed that pointing an arrow at an AI does not make you more visible.
The first major class of arrows are regular arrows the Hammerites made:
The second major class of arrows are the elemental arrows. The four elemental arrows (earth [moss], water, fire, wind [gas]) are actually crystals. Supposedly they are the crystal of the elemental forces, fitted to arrows for specific purposes. And that is why they look like crsytal rods before you pick them up. And they look like crystals in some drawings of Garrett. And are referred to as crystal in the books and scrolls you read in various missions. Supposedly you should attach the crystal to some arrows and shoot them, but it is too troublesome and ends up the way it is.
While Flash Bomb can be used to kill the undeads (especially useful when lots of them crawls around you), you can also use it like the SWAT teams. Dropping a Flash Bomb immobilises and blinds your enemy for a few seconds. I used to tell people to throw Flash Bombs, but reader The Potted Plant informed me that you should drop it or else the target may not see it. Therefore, drop for human and throw for undeads. Now you may run away, or run behind them to knock them with a blackjack. In the earlier patch levels, Flash Bomb blinds Garrett as well, but this feature seems to get lost in 1.33 and Thief Gold. In Thief 2, the self-blinding effect comes back and you will need to turn your head when using Flash Bombs in Thief 2.
When using Land Mines, remember that they are noisy to deploy. If the AI is close, he will be disturbed by the sound, and an alerted Hammer Haunt may survive a Land Mine. Gas Mines are a cross between Gas Arrows and Land Mines and so inherit the benefits of both. It is not after I have written walkthroughs for 14 misssions that it occurred to me there is a better way to use the mines. Instead of using the right mouse button, use the keyboard key you assigned to drop. It makes the same amount of noise (alerting most AIs), but the mine will not fly as far away. Look down and drop, and you can control exactly where to plant the mine (remember not to step on it yourself). To make mine planting (on hard surface) noiseless, use a Moss Arrow.
Hammers! It is a great weapon. Available in many places, although difficult to carry around. Just throw it at AIs (or even locked doors) and they are sometimes more effective than your Sword! Run towards the target when throwing to make an even greater impact. Better still, they are not counted as kills (it is more like a bug than a feature)! That is, you can do it even when the mission requires you not to kill anybody. On the other hand, the boulders are useless. I keep throwing boulders but it seems nobody can be harmed by them.
AIs, why not? AIs fall into groups, and those within the same group won’t fight against one another. However, AIs of different groups go into battle when they meet. It is often not easy to bring them together, but you have a good chance in mission 9 (Lost City) (the in-game tips and the walkthrough will suggest ways). Even among human beings, guards and thieves are against each other; for example, in mission 15 (Thieves’ Guild).
A particular kind of AI weapon came as a big surprise. The Potted Plant taught me an interesting way to kill Archers. A method that works at all Difficulty Levels, even if you are forbidden to kill human beings — you can make an Archer kill himself! First you have to understand how an Archer normally behaves when he attacks. First he walks away from you to a distance, stop and turn towards you. Then he draws his bow. Since that point of time, he would stop turning around. If you think that you can side step to evade his arrow, you are deadly wrong (probably you have been killed many times for this). His arrow is not shooting in his forward direction — his arrow shoots towards you! Now this is the method: you need to let an Archer notice you, wait till he start pulling the arrow, then you run to behind him. If you arrive there fast enough, then his arrow will shoot backwards, into his own body. Astonishing, isn’t it?
Potions are not weapons, but are part of your equipment. In particular, notice that Healing Potion takes time to be effective. After swallowing, it takes a few seconds for your health to increase a few points, one point at a time. Wait till its effect is over before deciding to use another vial.
Sound card and speakers — are not for Garrett, but for you! Sound is the most important sense Garrett needs. In fact, Thief is probably the first game where sound plays an utmost important role. Many missions (especially Return to Cathedral) are impossible without careful listening. And Thief is the game where you should not play without 3D sound card and 4 point surround speakers (better with 5.1 speakers, like the Creative SB DE5.1 and DTT3500 I recently upgraded to). After you installed sound card and speakers, remember to turn on Thief audio hardware support and EAX support from the option menu. BTW notice that 3D sound is actually 2D: the vertical distance seems not to matter at all. So when somebody is above you, you can hear him clearly; and so can he you.
The following is a list of important terms used in the game. Knowing them makes it easier to understand the mission briefings and the storyline.
Until recently, I thought it is not documented anywhere. I now found that they are printed in the small booklet in the CD jewel box (I shelf the booklet as soon as I insert the CD, and forgot about it). Your PF9..PF12 is mapped without your being told. Unless overridden, PF9 is the Compass. PF10 takes a screen shot (saves as a PCX file in the Thief directory). PF11 does a quick save, PF12 does a quick load (can be dangerous!). Use them wisely.
Usually I do not pay attention to the reported time for completing my mission, because I always take more time than most people. The Potted Plant pointed out that on slow machine the reported mission time is shorter than the real time. His machine is very slow, and a mission that took 6 hours was reported to complete in 2!
Read Alastair Gebbie has an unhappy incident with Thief II game guides. He bought a book called “Thief II: Prima’s Official Strategy Guide” from Prima Games. It has the logo of Eidos and Looking Glass, and is called Official Guide. On the front cover the book says “loot locations revealed” leading him to believe it was a complete loot walkthrough. On the back cover it also says “all mission secretes revealed”.
To his utter disappointment, not all loots are listed, and he found secrets not mentioned in the guide. When I go to Prima Games online, I found that they say “Information on getting all the necessary loot”. I suppose that means the book only lists enough loots for you to fulfil the mission objectives. And for the secrets, it says “Secrets for every mission”, no more mentioning of “all”. I haven’t seen the book myself, but from what we can see and learn, it obviously is not a guide comparable to the depth of my walkthrough. So beware when spending money on game guides.
When you save a game, a file is written to the "saves" subdirectory under the Thief directory. If you want to keep more than 15 saved games, just copy them away. One tidy way is to create subdirectories under the saves directory, naming by mission number or mission name (or both). Since saved games are huge (2MB each!), you should consider ZIPping them, reducing the size of a saved game to about 1/5 of its original size.
Notice that saved games are version specific. Games saved by TDP cannot be read by TG — TG will only bring you to the start of the saved mission, not where you are saved.
In many missions, some of the doors are locked. You need to unlock it with a key, or pick it using a lockpick (available starting from Mission 5: Assassins). Either way, you unlock the doors after which you can open the door normally. Once unlocked, you are not capable of locking it back.
If a door is locked, even AIs cannot open it. However, many AIs carry keys with them to unlock doors. Some of their keys are placed on their belt. In those cases, you can steal the key from them (and add towards your total pick count). AIs can also carry their key “inside” them, and you won’t be able to steal (or even see) these keys.
When an AI need to move through a locked door, he first uses his key to unlock the door (you can hear a click sound). Then he opens the door (curiously, they just need to waive their hand and doors will open for them) and walk (another craziness in the game engine: if the door is blocked, you can often see them walk through a partially opened door). Once he is past the doorway, he locks it back (another click sound) and slam shut the door (actually the door will shut itself behind him, from what you can see).
From the above, you can arrive at many important conclusions:
Many stuff in the game can be read by Garrett. It may be a scroll, a papyrus, a book or a plate. Besides the actual physical form, they also differs by the way they react to you.
Most of the readable material are grabbables. That is, you pick it up and take it into your inventory. You have to select it from your inventory, and use it in order to read it. Then you see a full screen of the paper or book. Sometimes there are more than one pages, and you need to click to paper corner or edge to flip pages.
In particular, two of the grabble books are more interesting. When you first get it, you and read it like a normal book. When you get to the right place, use it again and Garrett will read it alone. Both of the books are prayer books.
The second type is of course the ungrabbables. They behave like the grabbables when reading, except that you cannot take them into your inventory. For example, many of the poster scrolls will stick on the wall or desk. That means you have to read it at where ever it happens to be. If you want to read it again at a later time, you have to come back to the same place (if you still remember where it was).
A third type is what I called HUDs (Head Up Displays). Instead of a full screen of paper, you remain in the 3D space of Garrett, and the words just appear on your screen for a few seconds. This usually happens with plates (for example showing the name of the hall). Notice that unlike the other two types, the world keep on spinning while you read. If you are absorbed in reading, you may be seen or even attacked by AIs around you.
Developer: Looking Glass, now out of business
While Thief Dark Project and Thief 2 are still available, it seems Eidos is not longer selling Thief Gold. If you want to buy Thief Gold, contact me directly.
Game review available at Adrenaline Vault
Publisher technical support links: Eidos Thief support on may common hardware problems.
Thief Gold wins position 7 at the Sharky Extreme 1999 First Person Shooter Shootout.
For Thief Dark Project, you need the 1.33 patch to get rid of several bugs and to get EAX/A3D support (there is no patch for Thief Gold). Strangely, the v1.33 patch is not available at the home page (which is sort of abandoned). Get it from Eidos, choose Thief at the drop down list and then click Customer Support. You may also be able to download the v1.33 patch from The Patch Scrolls.
A few cheats are available at The Adrenaline Vault. Notice that the trainers there do not work with v1.33.
My games pages available at My Home. Look under My Favorite Games.
First of all, of course, is to Taffer formerly known as Brigadier. I would have been dead at the Bonehoard without his help. And his FAQ led me to writing this very game guide.
Reader Stefan Dietz helped me distinguish between Broadhead Arrow, Noisemaker Arrow and Rope Arrow.
Reader Michele L. Worley and I independently located Felix and Marcus. She also helped me to understand the dealings between Bafford and Ramirez where the English used in those correspondences are beyond me. Finally she wrote the walkthrough for mission 16 (The Mage Towers) and 17 (Song of the Caverns).
Tels helped me a lot to confirmed the non-existence of many scrolls and tips.
There are also a number of readers who chose to stay anonymous (or semi-anonynous like MSB), but the contribution is just as important (and in some cases, more). One of the most outstanding contribution is to settle the question asked by nearly everybody in mission 7 (Haunted Cathedral): what if I kill the Hammer Haunts inside the Cathedral? Read the walkthrough to find out the answer!
Reader Roman helped in hunting down broken links, spelling mistakes and grammetically errors. He also contributed many ideas to various missions, where I'll separately acknowledge when presenting his idea.
Which other games do I like? Find out here.
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