Black Dahlia™ WALKTHROUGH
This Walkthrough is copyrighted (c) by Olga Karkalas. No part of this Walkthrough may be published, reprinted, or distributed on electronic media without the permission of the author.
Black Dahlia is a registered trademark of Take 2 Interactive Software, Inc.
I would like to thank Tim Rooney and Janet Blackburn for advice on graphics and for taking the time to read and comment on this Walkthrough. I am also grateful to Mike Phillips for help when I ran into the inevitable walls (or is it doors) in Black Dahlia. I am also grateful to many other players who intentionally or unintentionally contributed to this Walkthrough by posting questions and helping me identify the problem areas and bugs.
Comments, suggestions, corrections, etc., can be sent to [email protected] or within CompuServe to okarkalas (72163,267).
This Walkthrough consists of an introduction with basic information about the game including known bugs, a walkthrough section, a hints section, and a solutions section. It is not intended to be a replacement for the game, but to be used as a supplement to solve problems and puzzles.
Before beginning the game, read the Readme file on CD #1. There is a problem with a particular sound card. The Readme specifically advises against multi-tasking while playing the game. Several players ignored this advice and lived to regret it. Also, read the User’s Manual thoroughly. Become familiar with the various cursors and interface. Especially note the comment about the F1 key. It is very useful in this game.
Black Dahlia™ has many Easter eggs. They can be found by using Shift+left click. Some can be found by just clicking on certain spots. Try holding down the left mouse button on the compass cursor and spinning Jim around the room.
As usual, save frequently. You can die in this game. Also save your game in the event of bugs and dumps, as well as to replay conversations. There are several gruesome scenes. I have included a caution statement before these scenes are played, if you wish to avoid them. The sounds and music are quite good. Use headphones if you have introductory-level speakers.
At the beginning of the game, you have a variety of locations to visit, but the game becomes more linear as it progresses. In some places, you cannot leave a room until you've completed a puzzle.
Hints, solutions, and cheats are placed at the end of this Walkthrough to save you from yourself. Hints for a specific puzzle can be found by searching the Walkthrough for the specific puzzle name preceded by an asterisk, for example, *Dream Door. The solutions can be found by searching for the puzzle name preceded by @, for example, @Dream Door. The cheat codes are given at end of the individual solutions.
There is one error in this game. The rune set on the Dragon Wisdom Book is not transcribed accurately into the Notebook. Correct it in the Notebook or write down the correct rune set. Take 2 has been notified of this and may correct it in later versions of the game.
At the time this Walkthrough was written, we were aware of a variety of problems with the game. Take 2 stated that a patch would be posted in the very near future at the Take 2 Web site. The patch will correct the following problems: Direct Draw unsupported RGB mode error; a problem with stuck rune tiles (rune puzzle); crash when music volume is set to minimum or maximum; full subtitle support (this should be useful in this game); and a problem with characters not returning objects. No mention was made of a DOS version.
Suggestions to avoid software problems:
Do not use <Alt-Tab> during the game. This may cause your game to freeze and corrupt the game files. Note: Screen capture programs, including <Alt+Print Screen>, don't work well with this game.
Set the adjuster for the music volume in the center of the scale to avoid some software problems. Music settings are found in Options at the main menu, or right-click and select Options.
Runes in the Rune Puzzle (bag of runes) can freeze (become immobile). Solution: Restore a prior save, or if the problem is terminal, obtain a saved game from another player or try the cheat code. Try not to play with this puzzle until you need to solve it. Also try solving it on paper and just entering the solution. This problem should be addressed by the patch.
If the Dream Door Puzzle doesn't respond to the correct solution, obtain a saved game past the archway puzzle from another player. The cheat code may work here as well.
Game freezes when CDs are changed and the game will not load after that. Solution: Totally uninstall and reinstall the game, possibly several times. Note: The Windows Uninstall feature does not delete the entire Black Dahlia file. Copy saved games to a temporary directory before uninstalling. Also, try disabling Autorun. Try using Enter rather than clicking with the mouse. You may encounter this problem if you used <Alt-Tab> or tried multi-tasking during the game.
Messages about error loading files may be more prevalent on CD #7 or on another disk. Ignore these by hitting the <Esc> key. These messages should not interfere with the game.
Periodically you may encounter a grid rather than a puzzle when trying to restore a game. The grid resembles an empty holodeck on the Star Trek shows. Restore a prior save.
The game may periodically dump you back to the desktop. Try "Continue" or restore a prior save.
If you have problems retrieving the bag of runes from Helen, replay and again use the World Map instead of the travel cursor.
Our story begins in Cleveland in the autumn of 1941. After the introductory sequence, you will meet your alter ego in the game, Jim Pearson, and your boss at the Cleveland COI Office, Bill Sullivan. Sullivan will give Jim a badge and a case file and direct him to his Office.
At this point, take time to become familiar with the Game Menu and the various cursors. Open the Game Menu (right click your mouse or hit the <Esc> key) and click on Inventory. You should have a Badge and the Case File. Click on Badge and examine it. Click on the small disk. Jim has a St. Christopher’s medal. Click on Case File; examine the Card and review the Crime Report. You will be adding inventory items to the Inventory throughout the game and some of the puzzles will need to be solved within the Inventory. Certain items will also have hot cursors when they are displayed in the Inventory as was the case with the badge. Exit Inventory by right-clicking your mouse or hitting the <Esc> key.
Open the Game Menu again and click on World Map. This screen allows you to travel quickly to the various locations in the game. You should have Sullivan’s Office and My Office as the available locations. Check the World Map periodically. New locations can appear when they are mentioned in dialogue. Exit the World Map by selecting a new location, right-clicking your mouse, or hitting the <Esc> key.
Examine your office thoroughly. You should find the following: light switch (turn on), bookcase with books and various curious objects, a locked cabinet in the bookcase, notes on top of the file cabinet, a file in the file cabinet with the last entry dated 10/30/41, a working telephone, a central drawer with a newspaper clipping and folder, a right drawer with a notepad listing errands and a revolver (move the notepad aside with the cursor to find the gun — hold the left mouse button down; the gun will be added to your Inventory), and most importantly, a bag of runes (See *Bag of Runes in the Hints Section for a hint and @Bag of Runes if you cannot find it). There are several facts to be gleaned from the errand list: Your predecessor knows someone named Cassie and he had intended to call Professor Strauss. Examine the revolver in your Inventory. It has a movable part (action cursor). After finding the key, try it on the locked cabinet. The locked cabinet contains a note from Sullivan and a note from Dr. Strauss. Sullivan’s note is very important and provides clues for deciphering telephone numbers.
Examine the bag of runes in your Inventory. Use F1 for a description of the puzzle. Note that the three runes on the card with the crests and in your Notebook are also in the bag. You cannot solve the puzzle at this point and will be collecting clues throughout the game. Because of the rune freezing problem, avoid placing the runes on the diamond-shaped frame. Make sure you have a saved game before playing with the runes.
Return to Sullivan’s Office, click on Sullivan and ask him the questions at the bottom of your screen. After you ask about Hank Finster and Detective Merylo, Detective Merylo’s Office and Hank Finster’s Office will appear as new locations on your World Map.
Visit Hank Finster. When in his office, notice the shield behind him. Ask your questions. Finster gives you two pieces of important information: George Hansen, the fired foreman, hangs out at McGinty’s Bar; Finster had found his visitor, who has red hair and a red beard, in the mug shot book at Merylo’s Office. McGinty’s appears on your World Map now.
Proceed to Merylo’s Office. You can ask Merylo various questions. He mentions the FBI agent, Winslow. Also look at the mug shot book on the far left of Merylo’s desk. Click on the stationery to place it in your Inventory.
At McGinty’s, the bartender doesn’t know very much but there is someone else in the bar of interest. Meet Dick Winslow and get your first taste of “Jimbo” and “sport.” Winslow tells you about a black list, which Sullivan never mentioned.
Once you have Strauss’ number, call him and then visit another location such as McGinty’s before returning to your Office. When you return, you will find a note from Helen Strauss.
At the Museum, show Helen the invitation with the crests, Finster's stationery, and the bag of runes. Examine the book with the crests of the Germanic knights. Also examine the rest of this room. You may see the spinning rune cursor on Helen but you should still be able to show her the various inventory items. She will take you back to see her father’s project, a broken stained glass window. This is a puzzle you should solve relatively soon. Be sure to examine the book on Norse gods and the Crusades on the table behind Helen. Of interest is the fact that Odin loses one eye.
Leaving Helen to work on the runes, head over to McGinty’s to see if Hansen has shown up. If he has, he will tell you that the "creep" was named Louie. He also promises to find out more about Louie. You should examine the telephone and the messages written around the telephone.
Now that you have a name and a description, go back to Merylo’s and look at the mug shot book again. There he is, Louis Fischer with the aliases Louis Fielder and Louis Fielding.
Return to the Museum to solve the stained glass window puzzle. This is basically a jigsaw puzzle. Assemble the glass pieces into the crests you saw in the book. The four crests need not touch each other. Definitely look at the F1 comments here and use the lamp above the stained glass puzzle to see the hidden names. The purpose of the puzzle is to associate names with the crests and thus with the four officers of the order of Germanic knights. There is no need to assemble the window perfectly. If you have problems here or hate this type of puzzle, see @Stained Glass Window in the Solutions Section for the cheat code.
Back at McGinty’s, Hansen tells you that Louie was overheard calling himself “Harold.” On the telephone wall is the name Lou Fielding with the telephone number CMR-259. Call the number and type in a name when prompted by the game. You’re told that there is no such person there. Could Louie have another alias you don’t know about?
Let’s check back with Helen at the Museum and see whether she’s made any progress. Helen has indeed been working hard and provides you with a transcription of the parchments. These now appear in your Inventory as Helen’s Notes. Despite the oddity of these documents, you should read them soon. She also describes the leaders of the Germanic knights: the head of the order, the sergeant at arms, scribe, and herald (wait, what did she say?). From the stained glass window, you know that Landulph was the Chief Knight, Finsterlau the Sergeant at Arms, Muhlhaven the Scribe, and Fischterwald the Herald.
Back at McGinty’s, dial Louie again and try the new name. The answering party now tells you to try the Raven Room, a new location on the World Map.
At the Raven Room, examine the register. The name Muhlhaven should be familiar. You also find out that Louie may be at the Mission. Examine this area thoroughly. You should find a holy card to place in your Inventory. Look at this card in your Inventory and turn it over. The Mission should now be on your World Map.
At the Mission, Ernie tells you about Louie and that he works as a doorman at the Raven Room. Ernie also shows you an interesting photograph; steal it from him. Trick Ernie into leaving and rifle the suitcase behind the counter. Finding the photograph is not easy. First move everything, except the lowest folder, to the right; then move the folder totally to the left and place the other items on top of it to reveal the photo. Click on the photo to add it to the Inventory.
Merylo most likely knows the other people in the photograph. Let’s pay him a visit and find out. We continue to discover more and more about Louie’s past. With all this information, it’s time to find Louie himself.
At the Raven Room, Louie is at his post. After questioning him, show him the photograph. You can do this even if you only see the rune cursor. The terrified Louie will promise to meet you elsewhere.
The video sequences will take you to a loft and stop where you must decide which path to take. Save your game here, because you can die. Two of the choices, with appropriate shooting, will see you safely through this part of the game. See *Shooting for suggestions here. Pick up the matchbook and add it to your Inventory. Caution: This sequence has a somewhat gruesome ending.
As Jim walks to his office, he experiences his first strange vision. Merylo drops by for a visit and reveals that the FBI is handling the gunman case. Jim has changed the office; look around. Look at the photograph in the newspaper; the man in the cape should look familiar. You also have not had the opportunity to examine the matchbook. Make sure you open it and see the name Muhlhaven.
The World Map will now show Hotel Cleveland, Louie’s Loft, Sullivan’s Office, and My Office.
As you go to visit Sullivan, you will overhear Winslow’s comments. Ask Sullivan about Pensky.
Let’s visit Louie’s Loft. Examine the place thoroughly. You should find an interesting knot design drawn on the door, more runes near the stove (sweep first), a house-shaped lockbox, and a dresser with a locked drawer. The lockbox is your next puzzle. Press F1 to read the game’s description of the puzzle. Hint: The front door both flips over and moves to the left.
See @Lockbox for the solution and cheat code.
The lockbox contains a key and a signet ring. Try the key in Louie’s dresser. This is the Dresser Lock Puzzle. Press F1 for information. Hint: Determine the types of moves you can make with the key and correlate these with the moon patterns you see above the dresser. See @Dresser for the solution and cheat code. Place the fang you find in the Inventory.
It’s time to find Muhlhaven at the Hotel Cleveland. Although the desk clerk is not helpful, you can find Muhlhaven’s room. Use the telephone; Jim will pretend he's Muhlhaven, and order a newspaper. Remember that the hotel’s telephone number is on the back of the matchbook.
Upstairs outside Muhlhaven’s door, use the cart and knife to gain access to the room. You should find a key in the vase on the night table. Also note the other piece of paper in the vase. You will be seeing it again. After the uninvited company leaves, take the photograph out of the same vase and examine it; turn it over as well. The lock to the closet should look familiar. Open it and read the note from Mrs. Flanagan and take the invitation to the Raven Room gala premiere.
At Sullivan’s Office, ask about Pensky’s case file. The FBI has it. You should also ask Sullivan about von Hess and Muhlhaven's photo.
At the FBI Office, have a chat with Winslow. The important piece of information here is that Winslow has Pensky’s file in his safe.
Leave Winslow, visit another location, and return to the FBI Office. Winslow will be sufficiently “busy” for you to search his office for the safe and for clues to the safe combination. See *Safe for hints and @Safe for the solution.
Read Pensky’s file. Click on the FBI pass. Sunnyvale Rest Home should appear on your World Map.
Still trying to catch up with Muhlhaven, visit Flanagan’s. This time he should be there. He will provide information on von Hess and the inner circle of the Raven Room. Show the invitation to Muhlhaven and make sure he signs it.
It’s time to visit Sunnyvale and meet Mr. Pensky. Pensky will provide a great deal of background and some explanations. He tells Jim to find three talismans (raven’s feather, fang, wisdom of dragon) to prevent the nightmares. He also urges Jim to attend the party and suggests asking Helen for help with the seal.
Pensky said he had hidden the raven’s feather in his book on the crusades back at the office. Return to the Office and find the feather. You already have the fang from Louie’s dresser.
At the Museum, Helen shows you the seal and you are faced with another puzzle. If Helen’s comments about hurrying become annoying, hit the <Esc> key to avoid this brief video. Press F1 to obtain the game’s description of the seal or stamper puzzle. It’s best to label the rings, for example, 1 to 5 from front to back, and to determine the function of each ring. The object is to replace the silver quadrants with bronze ones and to have the bronze quadrants form the picture of the Landulph black eagle. If you manage to replace all silver quadrants with bronze and the game does not accept the solution, you have the wrong picture. The solution to this puzzle is described under @Seal.
If the game does not proceed to CD 4 but instead takes you to the Raven Room before the party, you most likely have forgotten to find the feather.
You arrive at the Raven Room and find the party in full swing. You will meet von Hess (note the military cross) and others, including Winslow.
To enter the back room, first create a diversion with the dumb waiter. You will need an inventory item from a table in addition to the tray of glasses. The objective here is to make the tray of glasses fall as the dumb waiter spins. After the video sequences ends, Jim finds himself in the darkened back room.
Examine the room. Note the paired shields at the top of the two walls and that the black eagle is always last. There are many items of interest, but focus your attention on the table. A pull cord above the table turns on the light. The signet ring opens the panels. Note the paired runes on each panel and the statement in the center of the table. Where have you seen "gifts" mentioned before? See *Table for hints and @Table for the solution and cheat code.
Caution: The completion of the table puzzle is followed by a somewhat gruesome sequence.
Upon returning to Sunnyvale, Jim finds that Mr. Pensky has disappeared.
Our story resumes on December 2, 1941. Jim receives a note from Cassandra Rollins. Visit the Psychic Parlor and have a lengthy chat with Cassie. Ask to be put in a trance.
The dream world is divided into two sections: the dream door puzzle and the clues area. Go through the mirror to obtain 15 clues (statements) on the order of the various stones around the door. You will find a dream version of Merylo’s office, Winslow’s office, Sullivan’s office, and your office. As it is rather easy to become confused and lost in the clues area, save a game at the dream door puzzle. If you have gathered all 15 clues but can’t find the way out, restore the dream door puzzle save. The game will accept your solution without having seen you suffer through all four offices. See *Dream Door for the text of the clues and @Dream Door for the solution and cheat code. This is the first door of many you will encounter in this game. Be forewarned.
Solving the dream door puzzle throws you immediately into the crystal sphere puzzle. It’s best to leave this one because you don’t have the necessary clues. Use <Esc> to return to Cassie. Tell her about the spheres so that she shows you an astrology book. The ever-cooperative Jim copies the important information in the Notebook.
You haven’t been back in the real world for a while, check back with Sullivan. He will tell you about von Hess (he’s in Winslow’s hands).
A visit to Merylo is in order. Merylo will give you a folded invitation, the same one von Hess took from Muhlhaven’s room. He also mentions that Winslow has the medallion (iron cross). Make sure you look at the torso killer case file. Read the Santini Report (victim No. 1) very carefully. You will need to read it twice as the first time you click on it triggers a conversation with Merylo. Also ask about Kingsbury Run and about Item 19 (the evidence FBI has impounded).
Take time to examine the folding invitation; don’t forget to use F1 to obtain information about the puzzle. The invitation needs to be folded but why? Be careful when folding the invitation because the puzzle does not reset upon exiting. It's also difficult to unfold. Leave it alone for the time being.
The World Map now also shows Santini’s Home, Raven Room, and Kingsbury Run.
Visit the FBI Office. Winslow is not cooperative about von Hess’ medallion but will make sure the evidence is returned to Merylo.
If you visit the Raven Room at this point, you should notice a similarity between the geometric shapes on the door and the ones on the folding invitation. The invitation, when folded into a square showing all 8 outlined geometric shapes, will provide the solution to the Pressure Plate Puzzle on the door. See @Invitation for the solution. After hassling with the invitation and finally opening the door, you will find that there is nothing there. Don’t despair. The room will be useful later. But now the room is lit, look around. The tapestry with the runes is interesting.
Winslow kept his word and upon returning to Merylo’s office, you find the missing evidence.
You now have all the clues needed to solve the crystal spheres puzzle. What, you say? Take a look in your Notebook. See *Crystal Spheres for other hints and @Crystal Spheres for the solution.
After the crystal spheres puzzle is solved, Jim finds himself in another area of the dream world which leads to a pool with various stones. Each stone when dropped triggers a brief video. The video showing Santini in his bedroom is important. Ask Cassie about the pool and stones. Cassie suggests that Jim find a totem of the killer in order to see him in the dream pool.
Return to Santini’s Home to find the items hidden behind the baseboard. Read Santini’s papers in the Inventory. Click on the runes to enter them in the Notebook.
Proceed to Kingsbury Run.
December 6, 1941 — Note the date.
At Kingsbury Run, the man with the cane is just entering the sewer. Follow him. Although the sewers seem complicated, they are relatively easy to map. There is one main section running east to west. There are two sewer branches that extend north. Note: Some players have lost the compass display during this sequence. After you reach the main east-west run, proceed 4 clicks east (to the right) and then continue a long distance north until you find the pressure gauge puzzle. Hint: Note that one gauge does not move and that the second wheel from the left controls only one gauge. The objective of this puzzle is to set all gauges to 30. See @Pressure Gauge Puzzle for a solution.
Solving the pressure gauge puzzle opens a hidden door and leads to another door with a familiar cross. Click on the door to enter the runes in the Notebook. Click on the forward arrow.
Go to see Winslow at the FBI Office. If you can't talk to Winslow, you've forgotten to click on all the cursors in front of the sewer door. Winslow proves to be a sport and accompanies you, although dapper Dick is none too happy in the sewer. Click on the medallion shape on the door. Winslow leaves you facing another door puzzle, the sewer levers/bars door puzzle. It is very difficult to map out the movements controlled by the levers. The levers control different bars depending on which bars have been released. If trial-and-error leaves you frustrated, see @Sewer for the solution. I don't believe it's possible to find a solution with fewer than 4 moves.
Jim and you encounter another door but this one even stumps Jim. Remember that your cursor allows you to look up and down as well as left and right. Watch what the mystery man does very carefully.
Return to the Raven Room and tackle the candlestick puzzle; at least it's not a door. Hint: The candlestick has 5 moving parts. The two lower pieces and the key-shaped piece should be extruded to fit the wardrobe keyhole. See @Candlestick for the solution. Click on the pendant after you open the wardrobe.
Now that you have a totem, return to the Psychic Parlor and the dream pool. Find the new stone and watch the scene very carefully. The video sequence leaves you and Merylo in the Raven Room. Find the proper book and watch the video. Caution: You will be viewing a gruesome scene.
The video sequence leaves Jim in Europe, Germany specifically, in April 1945. The Allies have come across Nazi treasures and a locked door. Who do they send for? Jim and you, of course. This door puzzle is the vault antechamber door puzzle. Hint: Ignore the symbols and concentrate on light and dark sides. The planets do not need to be lined up in a single line. The man with the dark cape in the mural above the door is Odin. See *Vault for additional hints and @Vault for the cheat code.
The room beyond the door contains three vaults, each with its own puzzle. From the left, these are the gear shift puzzle, key puzzle, and half-a-gear puzzle.
The key puzzle is a logical puzzle. Identify which keys turn which locks. Then begin with the key that fits only one lock and continue to eliminate possibilities until you have all keys placed correctly. See @Key for the solution.
The gear shift puzzle is a problem. The objective is to open all the bars by correctly moving the knob in the center. See @Gear Shift for the solution.
Two of the vaults are empty, but the third will contain the Black Dahlia. Unfortunately, the Military Police have their orders and the stone slips through Jim's fingers.
The video sequence leaves Jim in the wine cellar of a monastery near the Swiss-Austrian border in October 1946. Explore the cellar. Be sure to walk up the stairs to spot the winch. Solve the winch puzzle (see @Winch for the solution). Warning: Be sure to save here. Jim can die. If you have solved the winch puzzle correctly, have Jim descend into the well.
Welcome to the catacombs. Note the wooden beams marking the entrance to the well. Your objective here is to find four tombs: Scribe's tomb, Sergeant at Arms' tomb, Landulph's tomb, and the Herald's tomb. A small alcove with the Herald's key must also be found. In the center of the catacombs is a central chamber with an altar and columns. Note: The well entrance is to the south, if you become lost and need to find the starting point again. The game again provides a helpful compass here.
Take a left at the first juncture from the well and keep taking the left turns until you reach the
Scribe's tomb. Here, examine the tomb and pick up the stone pieces. Look at them in your Inventory and then wash them in the wall fountain. Assemble the stone pieces into runes. Each rune is three tiles high. Hint: Look for a line on the bottom pieces of each assembled rune to determine the rune order. See @Stone Pieces for the solution. Check the Notebook to make sure the runes have been copied into it.
Leave the Scribe's tomb and take a long walk. Continue taking the left tunnels until you reach the Sergeant at Arms' tomb. Solve the tile puzzle. Be sure to click on the sword so that Jim copies the runes into the Notebook. See *Tile Puzzle for a hint. For those of you who hate tile puzzles, see @Tile Puzzle for the cheat code.
Again take the left tunnels until you reach Landulph's tomb. Be prepared for tricks and save your game before proceeding. Choose the correct steps. There is a clue here. Write down your sequence, as you will also need to go back down the steps without being able to see the runes. Make sure you click on the rune set on the sarcophagus and check the Notebook again. You should have three new sets of runes. See *Landulph's Tomb for a hint and @Landulph's Tomb for the solution.
Continue to take left tunnels until Jim emerges in the central chamber with the columns. Explore the chamber. The rune sets from the tombs obviously need to be entered on these columns to solve the main chamber column puzzle, but we need to find one more tomb.
Face the altar. Turn to your right and take the tunnel straight in front of you. This is the last tunnel to the right (when facing the altar). Again take the left tunnels. When you find the Herald's tomb, you will not be able to do anything. Leave the tomb and take the first left tunnel. At the first stop, turn left and explore the alcove. There is a medallion/key in the chest to the right of the altar. Place it in your Inventory and examine its back. Return to Herald's tomb (right from the alcove, right at the junction) and open the tomb using the medallion. Click on the runes here but note that they are a mirror image.
Return to the central chamber by taking the right tunnels. Enter the four sets of runes on the columns. Remember that one is a mirror image. There is only one correct solution here. Enter the left rune in a set at the top of the column. See @Column Puzzle for the solution. A secret door will open when the correct rune sequences are entered.
Explore the Abbot's crypt, particularly the area down the stairs, and take in the paintings. The Abbot's hands form a perfect receptacle for the rune frame in your Inventory. It is time for THE puzzle in this game. You may also want to reread Santini's Notes to understand this part of the game.
The Notebook should contain 11 sets of runes in all, including the four from the tombs. Because the runes can "freeze" or lock while you're working on this puzzle, make sure you have a saved game here. It may also be helpful to solve this game using pieces of paper with the runes drawn on them. After you have the solution, arrange the runes properly and place the assembled casing in the Abbot's hands. If nothing happens, your solution is not correct.
Because of the difficulty of this puzzle, some comments are in order. The rune sets have repeating sequences or at least one rune in common. The game omitted the "X" rune in the rune set from the Dragon Wisdom Book. Insert it before the slanted X in this rune set. Although certain sequences of runes on the frame do spell out words, they don't appear to make a comprehensible statement. All runes in a rune set are contiguous to each other, but don't necessarily run from left to right or top to bottom. If you have the solution, you should be able to draw a box around each rune set without lifting your pencil from one rune to the next. See @Runes Puzzle for the solution.
If the hands accept the completed rune puzzle, the Abbot will speak and relate a story. Note that he mentions egress from this room and also asks that you destroy the Black Dahlia. After the Abbot's speech, the light coming from his eyes will be red. The fumes seen through the binoculars below will also be red. Obviously, in order to leave, we need to solve this strange situation. The turning tiles, oval mirror, and binoculars are somehow interconnected. There are no specific clues for the solution in the game. See @Mirrors for the solution.
After Jim leaves the Abbot, he encounters some familiar faces. Go through the question-and-answer session.
The video sequence takes Jim to a base in Germany in November 1946. In your talk with the airman, you find out that Matt Collins had sent the Black Dahlia to his L.A. girlfriend, Elizabeth Short. Searching Collins' locker places a letter from Elizabeth Short and her photograph in the Inventory. Read the letter. Note that she has a key to a locker at Union Station. The key has no identifying numbers but she has a "surefire way of remembering the locker number."
We next see Jim in the dining car of a train bound for L.A. The ashtray reveals that you-know-who is on the train. Your next efforts will now be devoted to finding him.
The porter is not helpful but the sheet at the porter's station (near the door) reveals that Matt Collins was the preceding party at your table. Winslow must be using Matt's name. Save your game here. Take a lengthy walk through the train to the baggage car.
Caution: If you begin opening doors to the rooms, you will be thrown off the train and fail in your quest.
In the baggage car, check the door for a blueprint of the train. Once you have found it, it becomes the World Map and allows you to travel quickly through the train. Also find some string. One suitcase can be set on a trunk. Do not pull the emergency cord.
Go to the caboose and talk to the conductor. He's not very helpful. Obviously, you must get him out of his office, so that you can look through his papers.
Use the string and suitcase to create a distraction. But leave the scene very quickly. You cannot use the string until you've seen the conductor.
Once in the conductor's empty office, look for any useful information. There is a list of passengers in the left drawer of the desk. Winslow/Collins is in several possible rooms on car 283. Problem is which car is it? The repair requisition sheet on the desk lists the repairs to be done to Winslow's car. Also, note the passengers who have special needs such as a cradle for an infant and wheel chair assistance. Armed with this information, go back through the train and examine the cars. Two cars can be identified by videos showing a couple with a baby and the conductor promising a wheel chair to a passenger. If you can't identify Winslow's car and room, see @Train for the solution.
When you find Winslow's room, you discover he's up to his usual tricks. But upon awakening, Jim meets Alice Casey. Still, hot on the trail, Jim finds out from the conductor that Winslow has taken the Express but has left his baggage behind. Find a list of baggage and tag numbers in the baggage car and then identify Winslow's trunk. If you don't find the list, the game will not allow you to find the trunk.
The trunk is the crate puzzle. See @Crate for the solution to this puzzle. After solving the puzzle, head back to the dining car and chat with Alice.
You arrive in L.A. on January 10, 1947. Note this date. Look over your hotel room and then call the police. Click on Jim instead of entering a name to see an Easter egg. After your conversation with Detective Maxwell at Gabe's Diner, the World Map will offer you the choices: Boarding House, Train Station Shipping Office, and Sunset Arms (your hotel). If the cockroach on the World Map is any evidence, your situation has gone downhill since Cleveland.
Make sure you right click to access the World Map here; don't use the travel cursor (arrow) to leave locations.
Visit the Train Station Shipping Office and speak with the Incoming Parcels Clerk and the Outgoing Parcels Clerk. And you thought the IRS was a problem. Check the wastebasket near the outgoing parcels desk. Confuse the clerk by sending the box to yourself. Be sure to select express delivery. Standard delivery may never reach you. Make sure you have a receipt.
Next, try to find Elizabeth Short at the Boarding House. Mrs. Underhill doesn't know where Elizabeth is but tells you about the Black Dahlia. A search of the room reveals a note and a cocktail napkin from the Biltmore Hotel.
At the Biltmore Hotel, show the bartender Elizabeth's picture. He knows her and expects her in later in the day.
Take another stab at the clerk at the Shipping Office. Your package should have arrived. If you ask the clerk directly, Jim will automatically give him the required receipt. The shipping manifest shows that the ABC Moving Company signed for Winslow/Collins' trunk.
At the Sunset Arms Hotel, use the telephone to call the ABC Moving Company. The woman is not helpful. Time for Jim to use some of his acquired skills. Note that it's Friday.
After Jim breaks into the ABC Moving Company, search the office thoroughly. The letter on the bulletin board explains the intricate ID system. The desk drawer has a list of drivers and trucks. Identify the driver who picked up and delivered the crate from Union Station (use the date). See *ABC Moving Company for hints and @ABC Moving Company for the solution.
Find the relevant file in the filing cabinet. Try not finding the file too quickly, because Jim has an amusing comment about amateurs (namely, us) here. The file will reveal that the crate was taken to King Productions at RKO Studios. However, you can't enter the Movie Studio without a pass.
You haven't found Elizabeth Short yet; drop by the Biltmore Hotel again. Elizabeth is there. Between drinking and talking, she tells you that the Black Dahlia is someplace safe. Unfortunately, Winslow is also there in the background and gets Jim out of the way very easily.
January 15, 1947.
A few days have passed and Jim is worried about Elizabeth. She didn't show up for their meeting. Ike, the bartender at the Biltmore Hotel, has information and a constantly outstretched hand. It is important to find out that Elizabeth has a room at the Biltmore and the number of the room. Forget about the key. Go toward the window, to the left, and then proceed up the stairs on your right. Elizabeth's door is locked but it's the room next to the fire escape. On the fire escape, open the window (move top down, click on board, and move bottom up). The purpose of searching Elizabeth's room is to find the key to the locker at the train station. The key is not easy to find. See *Elizabeth's Key for a hint.
Return to the Sunset Arms. Detective Maxwell is waiting for you. Elizabeth's body has been found. Jim receives help from a new friend. Alice has also started working at the RKO Studios and can obtain a pass.
At the Train Station, you have the option of trying the key in every locker or trying to determine Elizabeth's "surefire way." It can't be that difficult. Note that you can look at the telephone here. See *Locker for a hint and @Locker for the solution.
Opening Elizabeth's locker, you discover that she has sold the Black Dahlia to Willington's Antiques.
The man at Willington's Antiques is helpful. However, once again Winslow was there before you but he left something behind. Buy the cane and solve the Cane Puzzle (and you thought you were done with the runes). See *Cane for hints and @Cane for the solution. Look at the Treasure Map in the Inventory.
Back at the Sunset Arms, check your pillow. Alice has come through with the pass.
At the Movie Studio, things are not going well. After the crew is dismissed, take a look around. There's Winslow's trunk. He must have been quite surprised when he opened the crate: jack-in-the-boxes instead of champagne. The receipt was signed by Al King. Talk to Alice. She's going over to King's house this afternoon and invites Jim to come over.
At King's House, Al King is all-talk. Take him up on his "my-house-is-your-house" offer and ransack the place. There's a photo of Winslow. But Alice doesn't know anything about it. King's notebook on his desk lists information on some "birds" he's been watching. Make a note of those numbers. The trash can beside the desk has torn telegrams and a newspaper article on the desecration of Ferrin's Hill Cemetery. Assemble the Telegram Puzzle in your Inventory. See @Telegram for the cheat code. One telegram informs you that Winslow wanted the crate of champagne delivered to the old shooting lodge.
The map on the wall should look familiar. Don't you have another map? Superimpose the treasure map on the wall map and find the elevation marked by X. Also note the elevation of King's house.
The table near the telescope has several sheets of paper on it. One is an inclination-declination chart. The chart tells you that angle, distance, and elevation are important. The other sheets are a list of heights, distances, and angles.
Look at the telescope, particularly the box at its side. Using the numbers from King's notebook, dial up the numbers in the box and then click on the telescope. Use -0.8 and -45, for example. When Jim looks through the telescope, line up the black triangles to see a video. If you need more practice or want to see more "birds," try the other numbers. You don't have sufficient information for the telescope yet. The desecration of the cemetery struck a cord.
At Ferrin's Hill Cemetery, the vandals certainly did a thorough job. Rerouting Winslow's baggage did not prevent Winslow from finding a replacement slab. Read the various statements on the walls. Write down the math puzzle:
4 hanged men = 6 stars
3 stars = 2 skulls
5 skulls = 2 hanged men + 1 and a half stars + 18 flames
? flames = 3 hanged men.
Solve the math puzzle for the ?. Those of you who hate math, see @Math Riddle for the solution. If you're interested in seeing how the answer was obtained, see *Math Riddle.
Also find the piece of paper in the urn. Winslow is obviously taunting you. Those numbers definitely mean something.
You may want to save a game here. Back at King's House, use the numbers from Winslow's clue to determine the angle. Don't forget to take the elevation of King's house into account. Enter the angle on the left side of the box and the number from the math riddle on the right. Look through the telescope, line up the arrows, and see good old Dick. See @Telescope for the solution.
The video sequence automatically takes you to the Hunting Lodge. When the action stops, Jim has fallen into the basement. Save your game here before proceeding. Examine the basement. When you pick up and turn over Alice's photograph, the lodge begins to burn. This is a timed sequence, act rapidly. There is a key in one of the metal cabinets. Note that during this process, Jim's hand is branded. If you remember Helen's Notes, a "witness pure of heart" is to "bear the brand of Hela."
After escaping from the burning lodge, Jim returns to King's House. Read the statements on the wall. The projector in the sunken area has a film. Caution: Although the film doesn't show any actual violence, the suggested violence may be bothersome. All the evidence in the room points to King's death and Alice's abduction or death. The film will confirm that Alice is alive. Viewers of the film should note the time on the cuckoo clock: 4:55. The cuckoo clock is allegedly a puzzle, but nothing had to be solved in my game. See @Clock for the solution if you do need to solve it.
There are two basic endings to Black Dahlia. Save a game when you find Alice to play through all of them. Caution: All of the endings are gruesome. The "good ending" is certainly not the greatest for Jim but the world has once again been saved from a madman. There are three ways to see the other ending. See @Endings for the list. If the ending doesn't quite make sense, reread Santini's Notes. If I have interpreted these notes correctly, in the bad ending, Winslow is transferred into Jim's body, and it is really Winslow, not Jim, in the TV news program.
*Bag of Runes: The runes are hidden high in the room.
*Telephone: Finster's real telephone number is on his stationery: CMR-140. His code from the black list is CLV-21-84-11. Look at Pensky's scribbling and try to determine how the code converts into the telephone number. Then apply the same procedure to Strauss' code.
*Shooting: The right path is the most likely. Find an object to use as a distraction. If you take the left path, shoot at the steam pipes. The steam will flush out the gunman.
*Safe: The number of turns before and between numbers are important. The numbers for the Harvard/Yale game are important. The car license plate also provides a clue. The safe is behind a picture.
*Table: The statement around the center star is also statement 22 in Helen's Notes.
*Dream Door: The clues from the dream offices are as follows:
The fish are creatures of the moon though she avoids their company.
The crown and the bird sit on his R and L.
Keys are creatures of the sun.
Serpent rises after the sun and sets after the moon.
The serpent will the chase the comet's tail if chased itself by the star.
The Bird and fish are the base of all.
Star follows the key.
West is right, east is left — you know on which side the sun will rise and on which the moon will set.
A lonely fish loves the crown, though the lonely crown prefers the key.
Comet is seen after the moon has risen.
Key follows the shield when moon is far away.
By day the shield surrounds itself with the sun and key, by night he prefers the moon and fish.
No twin can stand its sibling.
When the bird is away from the sun she's with the moon.
The sun loves the bird but only when she's alone.
Hint: "Love" in this context means close to one another. The "he" refers to the gargoyle sitting on top of the door.
Identify the symbols that should be with the sun or moon. Then identify groups that must be together, such as the sun/shield/key group. Try to arrange these groups relative to each other.
*Santini: The poster suggests that light and the shades are important.
*Crystal Spheres: The colors and symbols help in identifying the planets but not in determining the order. The clue for the order is found elsewhere and it is numerical.
*Vault: Align the planets so that the light sides face up. It is easier to align the outer and the third planets first.
*Landulph's Tomb: It helps to know that R is the rune for travel.
*Tile Puzzle: It is possible to slide one of the small square tiles into the corner space, after moving the corner piece, of course. This will give you an additional space. Thanks to Dena for this discovery.
*ABC Moving Company: Find the date on the form in the desk drawer. Only 1 package was picked up from Union Station on the relevant date. It was billed to AKP. Determine the code for the point of origin from the other package ID numbers. The last two numbers will refer to the week and day of week.
*Elizabeth's Key: Since doors were such a challenge earlier in the game, why not try another one?
*Locker: How does Elizabeth sign her notes and letters?
*Cane: The rune set from one tomb is important. Another is partially important.
3 stars = 2 skulls. Therefore, 1 star = 2/3 skulls.
4 hanged men = 6 stars (hanged men are referred to as men below).
Replacing the stars with the skulls yields: 4 men = (6 x 2/3) skulls or 4 men = 4 skulls or 1 man = 1 skull.
5 skulls = 2 men + 1.5 stars + 18 flames.
Replacing the men with the equivalent number of skulls gives us:
5 skulls = 2 skulls + 1.5 stars + 18 flames or
3 skulls = 1.5 stars + 18 flames.
We know that 1 star = 2/3 skulls.
Replacing the stars with skulls in the long equation, we obtain:
3 skulls = (3/2 x 2/3) skulls + 18 flames, which reduces to 3 skulls = 1 skull + 18 flames.
2 skulls = 18 flames. 1 skull = 9 flames.
? flames = 3 men = 3 skulls.
Replace skulls by flames.
? flames = (3 x 9) flames.
? is 27.
Most puzzles in the solutions section will have two parts. The first part will give you instructions for solving the puzzle yourself. The second part is the “cheat code”. A cheat code is a word you type when confronted with a puzzle that will cause the puzzle to solve itself. For example, when looking at the Stained Glass Puzzle, if you type the word “leadhead”, without the quotes, the puzzle is solved. I advise using this method only as a last resort. Not only will it deprive you of the pleasure of finding the solution yourself, but you will also miss seeing the logic behind the way a puzzle is solved, which may be helpful later in the game.
@Bag of Runes: The bag is in the light fixture.
@Telephone: Strauss' telephone number is CMR-404.
@Stained Glass Window
Cheat code is leadhead.
For the sake of clarity, the door is on the front of the house. The window is on the side and the "screen" is the movable panel below the window. Left and right refer to your left and right.
Turn the left light clockwise. Push in the window on the side. Push the chimney down. Slide the screen on the side over the window. Turn the wheel on the right until bottom logs below the window retract. Move the log at the bottom left front corner of the house back. Move the left front bottom log to the left. Slide the screen down. Raise the chimney. Turn the wheel until the window pops back. Turn the left lamp counterclockwise. Flip the door over and slide it to the left. Slide the small square block in front up.
Cheat code is loghouse
Insert the key and push it in; turn it L, pull it out, turn it R, turn it R again, push it in, turn it L, and pull it out.
Cheat code is turnkey
The clue from the license plate (5432RL) suggests 3 R and 2 L. The combination is the score from the Harvard/Yale game.
Turn right (clockwise) twice and stop on 19 the third time; turn left once passing 6 and stop on it the second time; turn right to 33. Click on the safe handle to open the safe.
Cheat code is masterlock.
Remove the cover and label the rings 1 to 5 with 1 being closest to you.
Turn ring 2 to the R; turn ring 5 to R.
Turn ring 1 to the R; turn ring 5 to the R.
Turn ring 4 to R; turn ring 5 to the R.
Turn ring 3 to the R.
Turn ring 1 to the L.
Turn ring 5 to the L three times.
Turn ring 4 to the L.
Turn ring 3 to the L; turn ring 5 to the L; turn ring 2 to the L.
Cheat code is ringding
Find the runic equivalent to statement 22 (each gift to him is now devoted) on the parchment sheets. Starting from the left, find the first two runes in the sentence on a panel. Both runes will be on the same panel. Open the panel. Then find the next two runes and continue until the last panel opens on its own.
If you cannot follow the above, try the following. I describe the various crests/shields as follows, clockwise from the black eagle: sword, cross, red dragon, duck, flames on left, green dragon, snake, moon, cup, diamond, flames on bottom.
Open the panels in the following sequence: snake, flames on left, cross, sword, duck, cup, moon, green dragon, flames on bottom, diamond, red dragon.
Cheat code is arthur.
Cheat code is cancan
If you want to fold the invitation, try the following: (Note: Turn over does not mean flip over; the top should remain the top.)
Start with the white side up; Thule awakens should be readable. Fold the left column over (there are 4 columns). Now turn it over (top staying the top) to the black side. Fold the bottom row up. You now have a 3 x 3 square. Still on the same side, fold the bottom right corner over, so that the 2 outlined shapes (trapezoids) fold over. Fold the left corner up along a diagonal running from the left down to the bottom right, so that the outlined triangles and trapezoids are in the L and R quarters, respectively. Turn to the other side. Fold the top left corner along a diagonal running from the lower left to the top right, so that the diamond is approximately in the center. Turn over. Fold the left column so that the outlined wedge/triangle fold over. Turn over. Fold over the top left triangle with the wedge. Turn over. Fold to form a square. The diamond should be in the top left quadrant.
Instead of folding the invitation, just push the following panels on the Raven Room door:
(diamond, central wedge, L triangle, R trapezoid, L trapezoid, R triangle, L triangle, R triangle)
Cheat code is triangle.
Click on the planets in the following order:
Saturn, Mars, Mercury, Venus, Sun, Moon, Jupiter, Earth; then click on the silver sphere.
There is no cheat code.
@Pressure Gauge Puzzle
Label the gauges A to D from left to right; skip the gauge that doesn't move. Label the wheels (valves) 1 to 4 from left to right.
Turn wheel 3 clockwise to set gauge B to 30. Turn wheel 2 clockwise to set A to 40. Turn wheel 2 counterclockwise carefully and slowly so that A and D are close to 30. This part of the solution is mouse sensitive. Try it a few times, if it doesn't work at first. Use wheel 4 to finely adjust A and D to 30. Use wheel 1 to set C to 30. This solution worked for me most of the time.
Cheat code is pressure.
Label the levers 1 to 8 clockwise starting at top left. Move levers 1, 7, 5, and 2 in that order.
Cheat code is barbell.
Find all 5 moving parts on the candlestick. Label them 1 to 5 from the top of the candlestick to the bottom. Rotate #5 twice clockwise (down arrow). Rotate #3 twice counterclockwise (right arrow).
Cheat code is nimble.
Cheat code is sunspot.
Label the handles 1 to 7 from left to right.
Pull down handles 1, 4, 6, and 7. Push the red button until the door opens.
Cheat code is gearoil.
Label the keys 1 to 8 from left to right.
Insert the keys as follows and turn them:
4 8 1
3 6 2
Cheat code is keypunch.
The knob in the center can move around the four distinct squares. Label these squares 1 to 4 clockwise starting with the top right. Movements start at the center and return to center. This puzzle most likely can be solved in fewer movements, but this works.
Go counterclockwise around 2 (move down, right, up, and left).
Go counterclockwise around 3 (left, down, right, up).
Go counterclockwise around 1 and 4 (right, up, all the way over to the left, down, right).
Go clockwise around 4 (left, up, right, down)
Go counterclockwise around 1 and 4 again (right, up, all the way over to the left, down, right).
Go counterclockwise around 1 (right, up, left, down.
Cheat code is ladybug.
Push the left lever down and the right lever up. After the rope is released, lower the right lever. Both levers should be in the down position.
@Stone Pieces: The tiles are assembled to form the following runes:
Cheat code is rock33.
@Tile Puzzle: There is no simple way to solve this puzzle. Use the cheat: blockhead.
@Landulph's Tomb: Select the following steps: L, R, L, Middle, R, L R. When descending: L, R, L, Middle, R, L, R.
Enter the codes as follows in the columns with the left rune entered at the top:
Left back: Scribe Right back: Landulph
Left front: Herald (start with R) Right front: Sergeant at Arms (start with O)
The runes are as follows:
Herald Sergeant at Arms
Cheat code is temple.
Cheat is gemstone
@Mirrors: Turn all the tiles so that the mirror (brown) sides are facing outward. Then turn each tile once. Look into the binoculars. Click on the oval mirror on the side. Turn around to find the red tip of the dagger.
There is no cheat code.
Winslow/Collins is in room 7 in the third car from the baggage car.
Remove the top pin and place it in the hole to the left of the bottom hasp. Remove the bottom pin and place in the right hole. Flip the top hasp down. Open the top lid by clicking on the left handle. Close the lid. Flip up both hasps. Remove the handle in the side and insert it in the two holes on the left and right of the hasps on the trunk top. Remove the large pin and insert it in the hole at the top above the front hoop. Slide the hoop up. Remove the small pin and place it in the uncovered hole. Remove the plate on the side and place it on the front over the hoop. Remove the handle from the top and place it in the holes in the plate. The panel slides up.
Cheat code is boxtop.
@ABC: The ID number is SOIAKP52.
@Locker: The locker number is 37.
Dial Landulph's set of runes from the Column Puzzle Solution above into the right column. The Scribe's first three runes should be in the central column with the arrow rune at the bottom.
Cheat code is candycane.
Cheat code is teleport.
@Math Riddle: The solution is 27.
The left number is +0.5 and the right number 27. The angle +0.5 was found as follows: Multiply 165 x 100, in Winslow's clue, to obtain the distance 165,000. The height (elevation) of King's house is 100. Subtracting 100 from the 250 for the lodge (X on the map) gives you 150. Find the height 150 and distance of 165,000 on the sheets. Angle is +0.5.
Cheat code is peeper
If the clock is a puzzle in your game, set it to 4:55. Then move the large hand clockwise past 12 to 1 o'clock and then back to 11 o'clock.
Cheat code is bongo.
@Endings: In addition to shooting the Black Dahlia, you can do nothing or shoot or miss Winslow.