Does anybody have a guide around the Hinterlands, or care to share their experiences throughout the route?
So they never find the Hotel?
If certain circumstances are met, in a future update P will be able to solve the situation surrounding the missing children. That said, there's already enough information in-game for players to puzzle things together, you'll just have to pay close attention to details and investigate things like a true detective.
I am being forced back into the Hinterlands against my own will to solve mysteries and I do not like it.
(I am going back absolutely by my own will, and I am an awful monster when it comes to mystery stuff so I am totally down for doing some sleuthing. Is it alright if I put my findings (if any) here? I'm not sure how much spoiling you're alright with and I want to respect that)
Sure, go ahead! This thread allows spoilers for this purpose!
Thanks! It took a while and it got super off-track from being just a guide, so I ended up making a separate thread, but man that was satisfying to try and figure out. I love attempting to solve mysteries like this, and even if I'm totally wrong, I ended up learning a little more about Brazilian culture, so it was definitely worth it. I did a decent amount of research into Brazilian folklore before accidentally stumbling on Pedro's line about the cabra cabriola lmao
You guys did a great job at crafting an intriguing (and really heartbreaking) mystery here, and I'm excited to see where it goes next!
If you do the Skinned Tapir quest right away, the butterflies die and moths start appearing. It also allows you to go to the Pond and follow the path, as the butterflies blocking your path are now dead. It leads to one of the more intense scenes in the Hinterlands and worth checking out at least once. It's likely tied to the missing kids, but you can't revisit the church to know for sure.
I haven't found the bones to effect any progression, as it seems like helping the god puts their souls at ease more than the Christian burial ever could.
Oh, wow-- I completely missed that scene at the pond. I had only ever tried going there before finishing the tapir quest. Thanks!
It is said that moths bring good fortune...
In my own playthrough where I focused all of my full attention in developing P and Storm's relationship, (1) I go to the tailor and (1.1) donate P's clothes to make new ones for Storm. After donating P's clothes, Storm's house would now be available to go to but for the story's sake and that it would leave a much more impact in the story, I don't do that yet. (2) I go to the park and (2.1) let P spend time with Storm. (3) I then go to library and (3.1) let P read fictional books instead of the nonfictional ones since Storm is seen eyeing up the fictional books only to look away once (I think) P saw him doing so. (4) I then go to the archeological sight and (4.1) have diner. After that, (5) I go to Storm's house and talk with his mother. There would be no choice given to you in that location. Next and I think is the last one, (6) I go to the pond and (6.1) let P talk with Storm. There would be a change of dialogue once you thoroughly develop the two's relationship where (SPOILERS: If you focused all of your full attention in developing their relationship, Storm would see P as someone he can trust and tell the exact and true reason as to how he was drained in the pond. The true reason being that his own mother was the one that drowned him. If you haven't develop their relationship, he'll lie and instead say that it was just some bullies that did it.) I don't know the exact day for the hot springs event but if you develop their relationship before that happens, dialogues would change and more interaction between them would happen.
In that whole playthrough, no lore was discovered but let's face it, it was all worth it in the end having to see this relationship between one another develop into something much more cute and much more intimate.
Joke route. I mean Speedrunner.
You'll understand when you see what happens there.
It's something that's only accessible after completing the Skinned Tapir quest. You'll know when you've found it as it's one of the most memorable and uncomfortable scenes in that portion of the game.
where do I go to look for the shed?
After you've cleared the skinned tapir quest and the butterflies are dead, head to the pond and ignore Storm, instead following the path that was previously blocked by butterflies.
What are your thoughts about the shed scene, if you don't mind me asking?
I really like it! A bit cryptic, but I can mostly put that to my detective skills being next to nothing. Happens a bit out of nowhere, but I like that aspect. It hits you when you least expect it.
I'm always down for small, ominous spooky moments
I actually really like the Hinterlands having mysteries that will remain unexplained and haunting
I have a page full of saves purely of Hinterlands III from my Arts run trying to figure out how to "unlock" The Anthill, so let me load up one from the beginning of the week and do a run focused on that, including a library trip and visit to P's grandfather's house just so it's fresh in my head. So:
Salt, Sunken, Salt
Run 1: Church, Library (non-fiction), Pond (???) Maybe hit up the bus stop pre-pond
Run 2: Tailor, Storm
Run 2A: Pond, Gramps
Run 2B: Gramps, Pond
Maybe I'll try to hit it up with the bones at some point, too.
First: The salt. It's false hope. It's what generations have built their life for, substituting hopes and dreams for substance. It's brought up that it's sold as special salt to older people to help with health, but it's described as flavorless. Essentially filling in the memory of something so they can pretend everything is normal, when it's just void and empty. It's a habit. Like life itself is simply a habit. It makes me think of a land Persephone never returned to and especially Lot's wife turning to salt after being unable to keep looking forward, instead, turning back to see what was behind her. Was it fear or curiosity? Whatever it was, it caught her, and it's caught them.
Everything about the hinterlands is false and achingly human. They've broken recursion through a lifeless, mundane immortality. They sell this edible life extension that only manages to invalidate what life is meant to be. Devouring memories. Consuming past. It's a perpetual state of mourning. Like if they don't leave the funeral, the person that's dead will never die. It's a manmade labyrinth.
I can't say what happened at the shed other than much of P's magic has come from use of his feathers in rituals. It's a part of himself, and he is losing feathers by following this path of branches. Considering his inheritance, I think a lot of what he sees has to do with his grandfather's experience. There's every chance if his grandfather came this way he also lost feathers, and that P may have picked some up. He certainly picked someone up. The fact that he thought it may have been his grandfather makes me think it was another Peacock. Quite possibly himself or his father as a child, but of course I'm not certain.
That's why I said what I did about this scene. Theres so much about it that sticks out. Other than when we're inside P's head, this is the only time we're given a black screen. (Which adds to the uncertainty of it all.) Yet despite this and despite being surrounded by death, it's the scene with the most life in the hinterlands. The sound design is fantastic. The imagery of P wading his feet instead of taking steps is striking. Who is God? Is it the tapir? Is it his grandfather? Is it someone else? We have a capital H "He" so it's someone larger than life to P. All we know is that it's sacred in some way or another.
On my first run I thought the hinterlands may have been a type of hell on Earth situation, given Zezé's presence at the end. Similar to how a new god can be created if you've put true worship in to something, as Nikos takes advantage of. I don't know what I think now. There's so much about it that I'm unsure of.
Ultimately, I'm glad I replayed all of Hinterlands instead of just going to this one scene. It reminded me how strong the writing is and let me see some of the unique text in context with what I'd seen before and skipped through. I usually read a few sentences before unseen text, but that's no substitute for the full experience. Especially seeing Storm and P's relationship blossom, since that didn't happen in my first run. They became close, but not as open. Really, I appreciated the part where P is fighting with his thoughts of taking advantage of Storm while they're at the hot springs. There's a moment where he actually wants to only do good things, but his mind still tells him he's taking advantage and that speaks so much to who he is and what he needs to work on. Storm can be a good influence if he lets him.
ETA: This is very stream of consciousness as I fell asleep immediately after writing it. I'll say that this is very much the impression filtered through both the tapir and P's fury, the latter of which may or may not have been his own. He says at one point while cursing this land for what it did to his family and Storm that something gets into his eyes and that it burns with rage and acid, implying something more than just a physical reaction. I found it interesting that there were three sandals at the beginning with the same floral design. If it was two they could have been a pair, but three makes it seem like a pattern. I do wonder if there's something sacrificial going on, or if that's just a sign of what's available to them.
New thought: if P for some reason ever had a brother he would also be a P.
I might be misremember but I feel like I recall P mentioning he had a brother and I'm sure I'm not confusing that with him making Storm his brother as a cover story. When I first read the section where P visit's his grandpa's home, I was wonder why there was no mention of his brother in the photos but, again, I could have just been misremembering. It is likely however, that P might have half siblings if bloodlines and heirs among peacocks are a thing (I bet there's likely some resentment towards P by his father for that as well) from both his parents.
There's a moment where P mentions "him" and it's not specified, but he directly mentions photos of his grandfather, father, and himself. That plus the drawing of two peacocks with the goats means there's likely another peacock he refuses to talk about out that's likely a brother.
I wouldn't be surprised about heirs or half-siblings, though. His mother married remarried a rich peacock that eventually divorced her because she couldn't have another child, but he specifically says that he was the only child his mother had. Whether that is because he doesn't want to talk about a brother because of something that happened or it's a half-brother is unclear, but something is going on. Considering his grandmother also remarried but didn't get divorced, she may have had another child and so it could be a cousin, as well. That he's not welcome with her could point to a rift because something happened. Either way, the pictures of the other Peacock stopped at a young age and that's all we know for sure.
It's not necessary that P's mom couldn't have another child, it could have also been an issue with her new husband shooting blanks. Though I think you're right about a possible half brother being on his father side since P's talk about his mother doesn't make it seem like she remarried. Though doesn't mean she didn't have another child out of wetlock or just because she's hitting up P for money she wouldn't be hitting up another possible son of hers for money as well.
As well as that for a brother to be in P's life, it would likely have to be from his father's side. And that definitely wouldn't be a cousin from his grandma since she wanted nothing to do with his family any more though a cousin could be as close as siblings if the hinterlands of Brazil anything like the hinterlands of Mexico. As for that drawing, I didn't occur to me that it could be a brother. I thought it might have been either him and his father or grandpa. Or it could have been his father and grandpa. Though could that childish drawing been based on something that actually happened rather than a child's imagination?
I really want to know more about the legends of these Tapir and Goat people.
Oh wow, that was a thing that happened. I honestly wouldn't have put two and two together about the butterflies no longer being around after helping the Tapir god. I still have a lot to of mysteries to explore of the Hinterlands. I'm actually not sure what to make of what happened there. A shadow of memory who's emotions were relived through Pedro of something that happened involving mythical being, maybe through the perspective of Grandpa P? But as of know, I have no clue as to what any of it means besides likely related to the local missing children.
I thought the missing children was a red herring that adds more darkness to the region in a (sadly) very real way. Between going to the church and reading in the non-fiction section of the library the possible explanation to the missing children can likely be a less magical reason and more dark reason that serves as a commentary on the dark side of humanity. I honestly don't know which would be worse (not as in writing but in evil in the world), a mythical being being behind the missing children for some unknown but sinister reason or just kidnapping and sex trafficking's done by regular humans. Though there isn't a reason why it couldn't be both or both in one. I don't know if the intent was to think about that potential real and dark topic but if it was, kudos for taking the risk of broaching a topic that most would rather avoid and pretend doesn't exist.
Keeping that dark place in my mind, I almost want to hypothesize that Pedro relieved briefly an incident where Grandpa P was investigating the shed as a lead on the missing kids, something involving magic happened and Grandpa P saved a child. Even a darker though would be that maybe Pedro was abducted and rescued by Grandpa P but has suppressed the traumatic memory.
A more cheerful but less likely hypothesis is that the missing children ran away from terrible lives living in the Hinterlands and many of them found their way to the hotel where they started new happy lives for the times that the hotel was in operation and never looked back.
I supposed now that I think about it, the member could be of Grandpa P saving is son, Pedro's father, from the incident. Could also explain some added resentment towards the relationship between Grandpa P and Pedro's father. And there seems to be some PTSD at the sight of the Hinterland cheese they got from the nun. Though I'd lean towards it being Pedro possible having a direct connection there since he spoke in a voice that wasn't his then spoke in a voice that was his.
Seconded. As nice as the extra scenes of spending all your time with Storm are, solving the salt plains not only "helps the area" (even at the cost of the salt economy, it sure was a shitshow there with the curse) and gets Storm the salt (which may be a great Chekov's Gun for something later), but the shed certainly peeks behind the curtain on the last lingering curse in the Hinterlands, which the devs have already said will come back up later in the story. This certainly gives us the best chance of solving that mystery as well.
In addition, Nini's quest to give the 12 a 'good Christian burial' feels wrong when they weren't Christian, but rather pagans who worshipped the Tapir god. Why would a burial to a god they didn't believe in help anything?
Here's the route TrinexxSlayer and I are talking about, if you want to see it for yourself. If you really want to metagame, I also recommend doing this on a character that has the Leader background, so you can try to get a certain combination of staff later that the devs have hinted at (not gonna spoil it here if you haven't heard yet, just trust 'em on this ;) )
Indeed, and for the sake of lore, other points of interest to check out, on a non-optimal playthrough, include:
The Second Church : It hints at the darkest mystery in the hinterlands.
The Library - Non-fiction section : It's an extensive tale talking about the the history and myths on the hinterlands.
The Pond - Talk to Storm (you have to build his affinity first) : He speaks of one of his past traumas and gives the identity of his oppressor.
It be lurking in the pond
There's nothing in the game that P can do about it as of right now, though there are clues in the chapter already hinting at the significance of what Zezé is.
What did Storm want to get at his house and didn't?
What was the hardest part about balancing the Hinterlands?
Which (current) route is your favorite?
Love the Hinterlands btw, might be my favorite part of the game at the moment. :)
In terms of balancing, I'd say the toughest thing was getting the right balance in the number of locations that players can explore.
We needed to have around 12 locations at least so that players wouldn't often stumble on the second questline by accident, but if we went too far the Hinterlands' content could become too spread out and things wouldn't connect. We also wanted to avoid going too far because we'd start using our not-so-great ideas just to fill stuff.
Overall the Hinterlands' writing had a lot of thought put into cutting out "filler" content — or what constitutes filler for what's an intentionally meandering narrative. A few times I scrapped content because it didn't have enough going on even if it was a serviceable scene.
Balancing how much to reveal or not was also tricky. Believe it or not, before release I thought things were too obvious! I'm glad we didn't change things, though, seeing the discussion going on I feel that we hit the sweet spot.
Did you finish the game yet? I'm pretty sure if you continue you will have a nice surprise. I dont want to spoil anything.
I have not finished the game yet. I actually don't even know how close I am to the end. But I don't think my question has any spoilers... if it does, I can't imagine what they would be, lol.
No worries, you can find your answer around chapter 18 when everything collides one another. I do believe the choices in hinterlands have changes just with little things with the dialog and relationship. Putting the 12 to rest, retreating the skin, and just give storm a nice time is really my thoughts the best one can do.
edit. But to put it simply, yeah the reach it lol. I felt like i was dancing around your question and that wasn't fair of me
Sounds like the answer to all of those is probably "yes" then lol
Wait, they do reach it? Someone else said they don't... that was what was confusing me, lol. I wouldn't have even asked the question if the thought that they never reached it wasn't put in my head somehow.
from every run I did, they do. I think since 0.5 came not so long ago, it was still at a cliff hanger but then it all hits at chapter 18. its a very nice scene and it puts a lot of things to rest. You'll enjoy it if you enjoy P and storm working things out with one other
Ohh I think I get it, so the Hinterlands story does have lasting effects, but has no impact on *whether or not* they get to the hotel. My main concern was "can I fuck this up, and does it matter if I do?" and it sounds like the answer to either one or both of those is no.
not in this chapter. only later
what i can tell you, is that there are 4 tasks you can do, but only have time for 2 or 3. the main point of this chapter, is for you to investigate the mysteries surrounding the hinterlands. as for negatives, the novel isn't far enough to know what are all the outcomes. just try to give the answer that seems right to you.