Firmament: 5 Best Tips for Beginners
Firmament is an adventure puzzle game developed by the same studio that created the best-selling games Myst and Riven. The developer Cyan Worlds' imprint is clear in Firmament, which takes the puzzle adventure route in a mysterious, desolate, steampunk world. Firmament is an immersive first-person adventure in which the only human other than yourself is a narrative voice explaining the events leading up to your arrival. As it turns out, a strange force has wiped out all lifeforms. Your mission is to navigate a stunning, three-realm otherworldly steampunk environment, poking strange machines and uncovering the mysteries behind the solace.
If you’re looking to take the Adjunct gauntlet out for a ride, manipulating huge steampunk machines and teasing your brain with increasingly challenging puzzles, here are Firmament: best tips for beginners you might want to keep in mind.
5. The World Revolves Around the Adjunct
Unlike most games, where you’re treated to a ludicrous amount of tools and resources for navigating around and fighting enemies, Firmament only provides you with the Adjunct and a narrative voice every once in a while to help guide you through your journey. In fact, Firmament is completely non-violent. So, you won’t need any master action controls. All that means that the Adjunct is a very important tool to master. Without it, you might as well kiss victory in Firmament goodbye.
So, what is the Adjunct? Well, it’s a gauntlet that you receive in the beginning to help you learn and keep the realms. Essentially, the Adjunct is the means to solve most (if not all) of the puzzles in Firmament. It helps you interact with sockets, which help you manipulate. Otherwise, you’ll spend your other moments sprinting toward the next puzzle.
To interact with sockets using the Adjunct, you’ll need to launch the tether from a distance. Make sure to not stand too close to the socket, otherwise, it won’t work. Then, twist the Adjunct to the left or right, either physically in VR or using the respective controls, when performing a linear function like opening or closing a door, or instructing an elevator to go up or down.
Alternatively, you can use the Adjunct on more complex machines where you choose additional interactions using the mouse wheel. For instance, you can interact with the socket for a crane and direct it to move forward/back, up/down, or extend/retract.
4. Upgrade the Adjunct
There are only three upgrades, and all are for the Adjunct. Each one is found in Arches at the midpoint of each of the three realms. The first extends the range of the Adjunct, the second lets you bounce the Adjunct’s tether to interfaces that are out of reach, and the last unlocks some heavy-duty locks you’ll run into later on.
Besides the obvious advantage each upgrade gives you, the game requires you to unlock all three to activate the towers that mark the end of your mission and bring about the Awakening. So, make sure to scoop up each one before moving on to the next realm.
3. Listen to the Voice
The larger part of Firmament is a journey of solitude. There’s only one human accompanying you, who’s the voice “mentor” of the ghostly woman you meet when you first wake up from a cozy red-padded pod. Nevertheless, she’s a welcome voice to have, constantly reassuring you that she’s with you every step of the way.
Besides the company, your mentor is there to give you additional information you may need to explore the realms. Specifically, each time you enter a new location, that’s when she speaks. This can also provide you with a clue about whether or not you’ve been to a certain place. If you feel lost, hearing the voice of your mentor reassures you that you haven’t been to that location yet, and are thus, on the right track.
2. Take Notes, Sketch Diagrams
In the beginning, Firmament takes you through a tutorial that shows you how to solve some basic puzzles. They show you how to interface with sockets, from aiming the Adjunct to inserting it into a socket, selecting the option you want, and finally unsocketing the Adjunct. It can seem easy at first, but it’s easy to forget the steps once you’re in the thick of it.
One way to familiarize yourself with Adjunct is to take notes. Yes, take notes or sketch diagrams of the patterns you point out. Most of the puzzles that come later have more or less similar actions at their core. The only difference is that they add an extra layer or two.
When you have a reference document of how you solve the puzzles, the hints your mentor gives you, or any patterns you identify, it’s easier to crack complex ones and get closer to solving the larger mystery of the realms.
1. Platform on Giant Ice Cubes
Firmament has one specific traversal method: to push forward. You can’t grapple, jump, or do any fancy traversal moves to get around. That’s a bummer. But hold on, it doesn’t mean you can’t get creative with the tools and resources littered all around the realm.
For instance, you should see some giant ice cubes in the cold, snowy mountain regions of the first realm. While there’s no specific way to use the ice cubes laid out in fine print, you can always get creative and use them in your own way.
A quick example is to use a crane to grab one giant chunk of ice, pull it up, and fit it into a gap in the mountains. Then, walk over it as part of a bridge. Another tool you can manipulate to your advantage is the pinball machine, where you traverse inside the pinball itself.
These are only some of the creative ways to navigate Firmament, so feel free to explore all possible options as you wish.