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PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 11:10 pm 
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It's been less than twenty-four hours since the Age's release. And half that long since the first of us actually fought our way through the server crunch to see the thing. ;) And the new walkthroughs are already bouncing around the Internet. I love this place.

But although the instructions are actually easy to follow, it's much more rewarding when you realize what you're actually doing with all these switches and doors. That goes for any Age, of course, but especially Ahnonay. Every step of the process involves Ahnonay itself as one unified puzzle - a gigantic, elegant, inspiring Rubik's Cube.

So I decided to write a guide explaining how and why the solution works. I also dusted off my amateur Photoshop skills for the occasion.
- - - - - - -

Ahnonay

First, a bit of backstory. It'll help you immensely to read it, but just in case you want to skip to the technical stuff, I'll put it in a spoiler tag.

"Ahnonay" is a machine, built on an enormous rock formation jutting out from the side of a massive circular waterfall. (The waterfall is curved both above and below - this could be explained by Ahnonay being a huge torus Age, like the one that Catherine wrote in the Book of Atrus.) The machine most likely runs on the endless supply of hydroelectric power provided by the torrent. The machine rotates four mammoth spheres in a circular path, like a Ferris wheel.

It was Guildmaster Kadish who had this contraption built - probably with the blood of countless bahro - so that he could delude spectators into believing that he could travel through time. From the inside, each sphere appears to be one point in the history of the D'ni homeworld, Garternay. The link-in point is fixed, so as the spheres moved, one appears to link to four completely different worlds through the same linking book. And this is the path that Kadish's visitors took, beginning their tour in the "Cathedral" of Ahnonay:

Sphere 1 - Garternay's Past. (Water Ahnonay.)
Sphere 2 - Garternay's Present. (Stormy Ahnonay.)
Sphere 3 - Garternay's Future. (Space Ahnonay.)

Sphere 4, as the last act, was no less than a monument to the supposed "Grower" (and his ego). But when the Fall came, the gigantic statue of Kadish himself was left unfinished.

In each of the first three spheres, a device in the center monitored the positions of every living creature in the Age. When the last visitor left the Age through the Book back to the Cathedral, the machine automatically advanced the spheres by one, so that when the visitors came back from the Cathedral, the would be at a loss to explain how the Age had suddenly changed entirely, and could only attribute it to Kadish's powers of time-travel.

Camouflaged observation blinds were also built in the first two spheres. If a curious visitor wandered off on his own after the rest of the group had returned to the Cathedral, a watchman could manually advance the spheres using a switch, then take whatever means necessary to prevent the straggler from learning the truth. (This switch is now missing or removed.) Also, hidden on the edge of each sphere, was a maintenance tunnel leading to the center of the edifice, and from there, to the outside, where Kadish kept a private office with a sublime view of his ultimate creation.

The "clock" in Sphere 3 advances the spheres by two - either to hide Kadish's shrine in its unfinished state, or due to a malfunction in the damaged device - rendering Sphere 4 inaccessible. Sphere 4 is also the only sphere with a working maintenance hatch leading through to the central chamber.


Once you've been inside the tower and turned off the water current, this is the situation.

Image

Sphere 1 (Water Ahnonay) is on the right side, in position "A" - the "active sphere". You are here. Your first objective is to get somewhere else. This is easier said than done.

The problem: the links don't move with the spheres. When you link into Ahnonay through the linking book - either the one in your Relto or the one in the Cathedral - it takes you to whatever sphere is in the "active" position. And, because of this, all of the cloths you've touched (no matter where they are within the sphere) created link-in points at the same position. So what you need is a cloth link that takes you to a sphere other than the one that's active at the moment.

Now, you've probably noticed that the switches next to the big maintenance hatches in each sphere don't do anything. That's because the purpose of this switch is to move the sphere you're in to the active position. So far, you haven't broken out of the active sphere, so this switch is useless to you for now.
- - - - - - -

Image

The only other way to move the spheres is by linking out to the Cathedral. The "Clock" automatically shifts the spheres, but only when the last living being links out from that spot. Or so it thinks. The maintenance tunnel, it turns out, is beyond its range. So all you need is a friend to link out to the Cathedral, tricking the clock into shifting the spheres, while you, over in the tunnel, go along for the ride.
- - - - - - -

Image

Now, when you touch the shell cloth here, you will have a link that will bring you to the maintenance room of the sphere one position behind the active sphere.
- - - - - - -

Image

At this point, the active sphere is Sphere 2 (Stormy Ahnonay). You need to move Sphere 1 back there, so that your cloth link takes you to the previously-unreachable Sphere 4.

To do this, simply press the switch by the maintenance hatch. This will reset Sphere 1 to the active position.
- - - - - - -

Image

Link out. Link back in through the cloth. Welcome to Sphere 4 (Kadish's Monument).
- - - - - - -

Image

The switch here will do the same thing that the first one did - move Sphere 4 to the active position - whereupon the gateway will finally open, and the true nature of Ahnonay is revealed.

- - - - - - -

Update, 31 October 2013: I noticed the images were broken, so I've re-uploaded them and fixed the links. It's surreal to be editing a six-year-old post. :)

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Last edited by Kaelri on Thu Oct 31, 2013 2:22 pm, edited 6 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 11:28 pm 
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Nice, except for a few things.


One: The blinds aren't working anymore. No manual advancement, which means trickery is needed, as shown. Makes us wonder if they ever really did work, or if it was retconned by Cyan as a trick to let us do it solo.

Two: It's more than likely Kadish himself had the spheres programmed to just skip #4. It was unfinished so it'd more than likely look a little suspicious to D'ni to see this massive sphere with a half-built statue and lots of scaffolding. He never finished so it was never enabled.. hence we have to use cloths and trickery to get in.

Three: The spheres move CLOCKWISE looking from Kadish's viewing area (trust me, I've seen it myself). That means your diagrams have the access tunnel into the page and down.

Otherwise, it's pretty nice, and a helpful walkthrough. Good job!

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2007 11:39 pm 
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Gondar wrote:
One: The blinds aren't working anymore. No manual advancement, which means trickery is needed, as shown. Makes us wonder if they ever really did work, or if it was retconned by Cyan as a trick to let us do it solo.


Ah, heh, yes. That was originally written for the PotS depiction. I'll add a clarifier.

Quote:
It's more than likely Kadish himself had the spheres programmed to just skip #4. It was unfinished so it'd more than likely look a little suspicious to D'ni to see this massive sphere with a half-built statue and lots of scaffolding. He never finished so it was never enabled.. hence we have to use cloths and trickery to get in.


Possible. It isn't clear whether Kadish was already bringing visitors from the public through his little tour. I thought that a malfunction was likely, given the damage to the clock in Space Ahnonay.

Quote:
Three: The spheres move CLOCKWISE looking from Kadish's viewing area (trust me, I've seen it myself). That means your diagrams have the access tunnel into the page and down.


Ah, heh. I was planning to update those diagrams at some point when I have more time, so I'll keep that in mi- hey! We... we can watch them... we can watch them move? We can watch them move!

Quote:
Otherwise, it's pretty nice, and a helpful walkthrough. Good job!


Thank you. :)

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 12:06 am 
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Kaelri wrote:
It was Guildmaster Kadish who had this contraption built - probably with the blood of countless bahro - so that he could delude spectators into believing that he could travel through time.

Bahro? Is there even the slightest evidence to point towards this?

Kaelri wrote:
Possible. It isn't clear whether Kadish was already bringing visitors from the public through his little tour. I thought that a malfunction was likely, given the damage to the clock in Space Ahnonay.

He was already bringing tours, as it says in the notebook in the Watcher's Pub. It's not clear whether he planned to finish sphere 4 before he opened it and then left it abandoned and opened it with three, or if he was still working on it while it was open for tours.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 12:29 am 
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Ichabod_L wrote:
Kaelri wrote:
It was Guildmaster Kadish who had this contraption built - probably with the blood of countless bahro - so that he could delude spectators into believing that he could travel through time.

Bahro? Is there even the slightest evidence to point towards this?


Someone had to build it. It's safe to say that this wasn't exactly sanctioned by the Guilds, and in any case, this project was key to Kadish's plans to masquerade as "the Grower" - he had a strong incentive to keep it hidden from as many of his fellow D'ni as possible. If he had contracted a D'ni organization to built it, there would have been hundreds of construction workers in a perfect position to expose the truth. The only alternative I can think of is moving and quartering a large number of ahrotahntee, which would have been both a logistical nightmare and extremely difficult to hide from regular Guild inspections.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 1:06 am 
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So straight out. This 'age' can no longer be solved solo, is that correct?

If that is the case, I cannot express fully how frustrated this makes me feel. So much for the 'truth' of 'alone or together' there is no 'or' and so long URU and CYAN. There is no use wasting additional time or money on either. Quite frankly, I have never been enamored with electronic multi-player games and URU has been the only one I have ever attempted. Based on the experience, I won't be attempting any others of this genre. I simply have always played electronic games solo, my first experience was with Myst and Riven in that manner and when needing help or exchanging ideas, I availed myself of a forum. That approach still appeals to me. Clearly, I have been stupid thinking it possible to continue with CYAN and URU in this manner.


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 1:46 am 
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Then you might as well turn off the internet. Too many people there... you might form... SOCIAL CONNECTIONS... ewww

BTW, great images. Good conceptual solution :D


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:07 am 
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Annoy (fitting pet name for the age. Fitting, I think :wink: ) was never meant to be solved alone. They 'broke' it so it could be in the expansions.

Is it treally that hard to link to GoG, where there's an average of 6-11 ppl at a given time and ask for "A quick hand with Annoy"?

Jeez... I hate people, and even I'm willing to do that. 8)

[spoiler]Thunder and lightning page??? Love my relto now. Just needs a 'Night time' page and it'll be perfect. :D [/spoiler]

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:18 am 
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Overdrive,

You might try leaving the computer and internet for a time and try forming real SOCIAL CONNECTIONS outside of the internet. EWWWW!

Outside of this electronic marvel called the 'internet' with its virtual worlds filled with people who hide behind virtual masks (avvies) with made up identities is a real world composed of entities composed of real blood, bone and skin with whom real long term, true friendships canned be formed and not the false substitute of what some call 'friendship' which in a majority of cases are really casual acquaintances that you play pretend games and make believe with in the imaginary world of URU. Of all the social networking you have done on the internet, what is the percentage of those individuals that you really know life impacting details about? A real world where relationships can be formed where you can engage in a far wider variety of life experiences then this limited virtual reality fantasy world that so many think is a better alternative and which is really just another form of a societal illness called cocooning.

And yes, I am old enough to remember an age before the internet existed or rather, only existed really between universities, government agencies and very large corporations. An age before the glut of FPS video games when a kid had to go outside to play and where both body and imagination were exercised.


TRBane,

If it were not for the fact that a third of my life, eight hours a day plus on-call in order to make a living, involves using electronic media and the internet to enlist the assistance of individuals worldwide to accomplish tasks, a job that in fact relates to keeping this electronic monster marvel called the internet working, I might be willing to do as you suggest. But for a game, no, I am not willing to take that measure.


Last edited by RW. on Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:37 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:26 am 
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.....outside?
Meh. Too much sunlight.

;)

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:37 am 
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RW. wrote:
Overdrive,

You might try leaving the computer and internet for a time and try forming real SOCIAL CONNECTIONS outside of the internet. EWWWW!

Outside of this electronic marvel called the 'internet' with its virtual worlds filled with people who hide behind virtual masks (avvies) with made up identities is a real world composed of entities composed of real blood, bone and skin with whom real long term, true friendships canned be formed and not the false substitute of what some call 'friendship' which in a majority of cases are really casual acquaintances that you play pretend games and make believe with in the imaginary world of URU. Of all the social networking you have done on the internet, what is the percentage of those individuals that you really know life impacting details about? A real world where relationships can be formed where you can engage in a far wider variety of life experiences then this limited virtual reality fantasy world that so many think is a better alternative and which is really just another form of a societal illness called cocooning.

And yes, I am old enough to remember an age before the internet existed or rather, only existed really between universities, government agencies and very large corporations. An age before the glut of FPS video games when a kid had to go outside to play and where both body and imagination were exercised.



Whoa, whoa, whoa... Stop.

Right here, right now.


I have made friends on the internet. Who are YOU to tell me this is impossible?


I am not cocooning myself. I spend plenty of time socializing with people face-to-face. And yet, I have friends I have not met face-to-face; or perhaps I have and do not know it. This is not a casual aquaintance. I know these people, am friends with these people. I have even passed such an arbitrary and petty threshold of sharing so-called "life-impacting details" with these people. I know more about some of these people's lives than some I call friends that I have met. These are not mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, husbands, wives to me. They are not some sort of dumb-sounding "extension of myself." Our lives could go on without each other, DO go on without meeting each other face-to-face. We do not need to be life-shatteringly important to each other. We are friends, not lovers. Not parents, not children. Friends.


Who are you to say this is not real?


How dare you?

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:48 am 
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Maritanos,

Where did I say it was impossible? Please read a bit more critically.

I as well have met a few that I know beyond the game interface. I never stated it was impossible. But I am as qualified as anyone and there are certainly many more qualified then I who have written volumes on the subject, to state the ills that the internet has brought upon society as a whole, equal to any benefits. So, how dare you lecture me? And if you really think this is real...wow!


Last edited by RW. on Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:53 am, edited 3 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:48 am 
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/me pokes her head in the door to see what is going on....

My! I guess this really is behind the scenes!

Nice instructions Kaelri, thanks for sharing.

Rest of the kiddies, now play nice.... We are all here for different reasons and get different things out of this game. What floats one person's boat might not another....but let's not start throwing things....everyone is entitled to their opinion.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:53 am 
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Hahaha if ever I read something so funny.

Several friends. Yes I can call them that I met in another online game have a semi-annual get together in California. Met some great people there I wouldn't have otherwise.

Quote:
Outside of this electronic marvel called the 'internet' with its virtual worlds filled with people who hide behind virtual masks (avvies) with made up identities is a real world composed of entities composed of real blood, bone and skin


So... its computers that are controlling those avatars right? Darn, and they seemed to sound so real when I hear them over voice chat - or go over to visit them out of country like I do frequently with a group I joined in another game.

Quote:
Of all the social networking you have done on the internet, what is the percentage of those individuals that you really know life impacting details about?


Percentage? Not sure, theres a LOT of people out there. But I can count the people I do know from my "internet" social networking.
I'll check my facebook account now... last was 138. All whom I've now met in real life now and many who I still visit regularly.

Quote:
A real world where relationships can be formed where you can engage in a far wider variety of life experiences then this limited virtual reality fantasy world that so many think is a better alternative and which is really just another form of a societal illness called cocooning.


The "real world" as you coin it, is not devoid of its social misgivings. You're telling me that everyone is socially acclimatized? I've seen MORE unhealthy social relationships in "real life" than I've ever seen in a game.
What do you think Jerry Springer, Maury or heck even OPRAH base their shows off of?

Quote:
And yes, I am old enough to remember an age before the internet existed or rather, only existed really between universities, government agencies and very large corporations. An age before the glut of FPS video games when a kid had to go outside to play and where both body and imagination were exercised.


Hmm fascinating. So that would make you as old as my father. He turned 50 last week, and last year I signed him up for his first e-mail account. That impresses me how?


You complain about asking 1 person to help you complete an age. And I, frankly have no sympathy for you. You can go play your pack man. Because heck, even FPS are multiplayer now. Evil people right?


Last edited by Overdrive on Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:57 am, edited 1 time in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 04, 2007 2:57 am 
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Overdrive,

I guess you have completely missed the occurrences where some individuals playing out their fantasies in game related deaths and others events as if they were real life events that, as others did not understand was a story, had a real life and detrimental emotional impact on those who thought they knew the individual as a 'real' person, when in fact the person was as fake as the avvie he operated.

Also, I never asked for your sympathy, but with your grasp on reality, I certainly offer you mine. As your description states with your login ID, "in the dark" Very descriptive.


Last edited by RW. on Sun Nov 04, 2007 3:02 am, edited 2 times in total.

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