Outer Wilds - a solar system trapped in a time loop.

Probably not.

You said you explored the diving bell, so something there should have given you very clear direction of what to do next. Following that trail will get you to where you need to go.

Yeah, there is actually lots of hints for direction but generally, exploring the river towns is a good idea.

Strange. I never had much problems with the cliffside lodge, and I am not quite sure which owl you are talking about here. If it’s the one across the small bridge with the koi pond underneath, you can just go around it using the side video room which is now open on the left. Super easy. The only other owl you need to worry about is in the big area upstairs where you need to light the bridge.

Spoilers for other area you might not have been yet (beware)

I had much more problems with the secret passage guarded by alarm totems that goes down into a large basement. That one has a gap with two bridges on each side with two owls guarding both sides. I found a solution for that but yikes. The first owl there is just like the bridge one. Take the docks around to get behind it although I think in both cases it’s best to draw it towards you.

I wish Agent J from MIB would come and flashy-thing me so I can play this game again.

Yeah, it’s one of those experiences where the magic and discovery can really only happen once.

Yeah, same here. The starlit cove segment was the toughest for me too. I remember vaulting a barrier down there, legging it and narrowly getting through. I thought all the encounters were hair-raising (because they were somewhat ‘messy’ and didn’t make the usual stealth concessions to the player) so the sense of relief afterwards was palpable.

I think Mobius reworked the layout of some areas after I played near launch so I’ve no idea what you folks went up against!

I know right.

So! Made a little progress last night. I don’t think it was huge progress in the grand scheme of things, but it felt significant which is almost as good right? Well, back to the spoiler block -

I thought about bailing on the lodge and exploring more overworld, but I just couldn’t let go. I figured I’d give myself a few loops to practice and see if I could ever get past the owl on the bridge. And looks like @roguefrog had the right idea - I had gone right the first time and found a room with only one entry and exit, where I got trapped by an owl guy booted out. So I assumed if I went right this would be the same deal - but it’s not! You can totally go around the bridge and get to the stairs and go up! Man, I feel dumb. Anyway, I did get upstairs and wandered a bit, eventually found a place where I could light up a bridge near the main entrance … and then was caught up an owl who was probably there the whole time. But the upside is, all the things I had done in the dream world are still as they were even if you’re booted, so I went back to the bridge, crossed and ended up at a dead end. But was it? It was a cliff leading to an enticingly beckoning, well lit entry. I’ve seen (or rather, not seen) invisible bridges prior to this - could I just walk across? And I could! And I did! And there was an elevator that took me down to some kind of archive I guess? Lots of slide hoop things anyway, and a projector I could put my artifact on to light up another projector. Doing so opened a side door that led to two slides I could reach, and one of them I think may have revealed a secret that you guys referred to - that you can put down the artifact, walk away a bit, and have a kind of Neo-vision that shows everything, even owl guys, in bright green? Which is cool but kind of seems might have limited utility - you kind of need the artifact to do just about anything important in the dream world, and can’t really go wandering off too far without it. Still, it is pretty cool.

I guess I was hoping I’d find something a little more substantial, like one of the codes for the wheel locking down the main submerged device, but I’ll take what I can get. It’s still fun wandering around poking things, and I’m in no hurry to be done.

I’m proud of you. Sorry if I gave away the strat for that one part in my spoiler tag.

This is great because your playthrough seems so completely different from mine in terms of order of discovery.

Nah, that didn’t feel like a spoiler to me. It felt like I was spinning my wheels, and I kind of was, so I’m glad to be back on the trail of looking for stuff and hopefully finding stuff. I’ll go explore the other areas now and not have this particular beast breathing down my neck.

Cool beans. I wanted to talk about it because @Therlun said it was not perfectly “cleanly” solvable but it totally is. I never got booted there. In fact it was notable because it was the easiest bypass in the game for me. Done on the first try where-as I’m pretty sure I was caught in every other location at least once.

I understand though. Everywhere is so fucking dark after turning out the lights.

Yeah, the dark kind of bums me out. I’m not spoilering this because hopefully it’s vague enough not to bother anyone but - I just want to see everything, go everywhere, do everything, and the dark impedes my ability to do that in a way that doesn’t feel fun to me. I get that it’s just the mechanic of this particular area, and I can deal with it, it’s just the slightest bit of a letdown in comparison to lots of other areas in the game.

The good thing though is you can “case the joint” before the darkness.

Did you explore the cliffside lodge with the lights on, dive? I feel like that would have helped you get a better idea of the layout of the place/where you could go and potentially what you had to do, rather than, quite literally, fumbling in the dark! You had the thought so I was surprised you didn’t act on it! :)

This is probably going to sound dumb, but once I turned the lights out I kinda got panicky. Like constantly looking over my shoulder, trying to keep the light as dim as possible for as long as possible so I wouldn’t get spotted, and just managed to get myself thoroughly lost. I probably made it way harder than it should have been.

Hah, same here! My first encounter with the owl folk was right next to the entrance to the cliffside lodge, near the big bridge that leads you across the canyon. After that I was a wreck skulking around in the dark; nowhere felt safe. I also love the bite fake-out when you get caught.

Well, so … I think I’m stuck. I’ve been everywhere that I can think of to go and I’ve collected lots of information, lots of pieces of data and I can’t quite make it form into a coherent whole, a thing I can look at and say, ‘ah yes, I see what needs to be done.’ If I could do that, even if I wasn’t entirely sure how to accomplish what needed to be done, I could move forward. But I don’t, and I’m not sure what I’m missing. I have lots of slide reels, lots of bits that seem to be telling me something but I can’t really tell what that is.

I’ve got stuff like, one of the owl guys jumped off the raft that I’ve found circling one of the dream areas. This seems to lead somewhere? But I’m not sure where to do this, or what it should be doing. Also, I’ve got that Matrix-vision clue that I mentioned I found earlier, but so far only really one place it helped me - back in the bottom floor archive at the lodge, I found an invisible path to get to a cabinet looking thing. Unfortunately when I opened it, there was nothing there, so I’m not sure what good this is doing me.

I’m probably missing something fairly basic and yet also fundamental to discovery. I went back to the sunken bell thing to see where it points me - and I have been back to the tower fire that it seems to be pointing me to. I’ve wandered around in there quite a bit, found some things I could light up and also extinguish - I see that some doors can only be opened in the dark - but I haven’t really found anything that seems useful? I don’t feel any closer to opening the locks on the mcguffin, which I’m guessing is the climax of this particular story.

I’m not upset about this, mind you. But I think I need to take a break, take a fresh look at this in a week or so to see if anything jumps out at me. I don’t want to keep beating my head against this and risk losing the fun. So, bye for now.

Ha, yeah, I got stuck for a week in a pretty similar place. Do read the computer logs carefully, there are good hints in there.

Wow. I feel like you might have took a shortcut to learning some forbidden knowledge early without the proper context maybe?

I don’t remember the exact path to this knowledge but did you…learn about the “secret” of the tower?

If I took a shortcut, it wasn’t intentional. Like I said, I probably have a more random approach to investigation in these kinds of games. I just wander, look at stuff that seems interesting, follow it where it wants to take me, and loop back around if it seems like there was more stuff to see where I started. I kind of lean on the ship’s computer in situations like that, where it will usually tell me ‘there is more to do here’ or whatever it says.

As far as a ‘secret of the tower’, I guess I’m not sure? I feel like I’ve discovered all kinds of bits, things that may or may not be considered ‘secrets’, pretty much everywhere I have gone. I don’t recall a specific thing about that place. By tower, do you mean the tower that’s in the Cinder Isles, where all the houses are on stilts over the water? If so, do you mean the secret entrance down at the water level? Because I did find that.

Edit: I had a more explicit hint here, but more fundamentally, did you find the vision in the diving bell?