[Episode 2] Third Guarding System: Acarno
Now that Chris and Navarro have defeated the first two Guarding Systems, it’s all down to Acarno to complete the job.
As Acarno you must locate and defeat the third and final Guarding System in order to re-group with your teammates and successfully infiltrate the Pagoda.
Acarno emerges in a room with deep water in the centre and various pipes overhead. Before doing anything else, equip the WET SUIT and SPIKED BOOTS to help Acarno swim faster and give him better grip underfoot. Finally (as always) ensure the GRAVITY CONTROLLER is turned on.
First, there are some items to collect on the pipes overhead.
After collecting the items on the overhead pipes, return to the point at which you entered the room and proceed around the walkway picking up a PORTABLE AIR on the mesh bridge and a second PORTABLE AIR at the end of the walkway next to the switch on the wall.
Jump into the water behind Acarno and collect the 125 CREDITS before swimming through the newly-opened laser gate. Swim to the end of the room you just opened, surface to catch your breath.
Note that the next section of the game requires a somewhat challenging swim as it is easy to get lost and there are several traps to catch you out – these include 4 giant rotating mechanisms that move up and down and kill you instantly, as well as a fan on the floor at one point which will suck you into it’s blades. With that in mind, it may be a good time to save before you start.
If at any time you start to run low on oxygen, you have two options; either use a PORTABLE AIR or avoid the rotating mechanisms and make your way to the highest point they reach as there is are 4 identical safe areas you can get air without being caught by the traps.
There are a few items to collect down here as you progress through the underground waterway which are detailed below, however if you are still struggling you can also watch the following video covering this section;
and then proceed underwater into the large black opening.
Swim forwards, hugging the wall to your left, and take your first left when possible. Swim forwards again and then take a right when you reach the wall in front of you – be careful to avoid the giant rotating mechanism, which will kill you dead. Continue swimming straight, hugging the wall to the right until you’re again able to turn right. Keep swimming straight on until you reach a PORTABLE AIR on the ground.
Hug the floor and spin 180 degrees, swim forwards a few strokes until you’re able to swim down into the opening. Head straight down, and then swim forwards (as in, the opposite direction to where you just picked up the last item). You will see an item on the floor – swim down to collect the MAGNUM SHELL. Again, be careful to avoid the rotating mechanism.
Swim around to the left and then straight forwards until you reach another wall in front of you and turn left – again avoiding another rotating mechanism – and pickup another PORTABLE AIR.
Continue forwards avoiding the trap on the floor – which will suck you down and chop you to bits – until you reach another wall and pickup the 1750 CREDITS, avoiding yet another rotating mechanism.
Turn left and swim forwards all the way to the wall in front of you before taking another left. Swim forwards all the way to the wall in front of you, turn right and then swim forwards until Acarno is out of the underground waterway.
Surface to restore Acarno’s air supply before diving back down to collect another item.
Return to the surface and climb out of the water onto the grey and black ledge.
Turn right and head down the ramp continue to follow the walkway around until you reach the small fire. Equip the FIRE EXTINGUISHER and put out the fire, revealing an item.
Continue heading around the walkway until it turns to the right. After turning, jump up to the pipe overhead. Head along the pipe towards the cylindrical column and pick up another item.
Drop back down to the walkway and continue walking around until you come to the only double doors which are usable in this room.
Inside the next room, take a few steps forward towards the platform’s edge. You will notice a ledge below to your left into which the moving boxes disappear – by rotating the camera you should be able to see an item on the ledge on the side closest to you.
Jump into the water below for another item.
Turn left at the top of the ladder and run forwards along the walkway to another ladder, and once at the top approach the control panels in front of you.
Head back down the ladder and return to the point you entered the room. Jump onto the first set of moving boxes. When you land on your chosen box, turn to face the direction the boxes are travelling.
Once on the platform, equip the ANTIQUE GUN and enter the double doors in front of you. In the next room, several mechanical spiders will drop from the ceiling – all will explode with the exception of three. The mechanical spiders can melee attack if they get to close and also they also fire purple laser balls at you, however these attacks are can only cause you any damage at floor level – use the raised part of the floor in the middle of the room and also the control panels which line the walls of the room and take the spiders out from distance. Avoid the spiders if you’re low on ammo, or take them out for additional CP – they are easily dispatched using most weapons.
There are several items to pick up in this room once the spiders are dead; an AIR PACK, MAGAZINE CARTRIDGE, 2 FREEZE PACKS, and 2 ENERGY PACKS. Most importantly, pick up the GOLD KEY CARD from the control panel opposite the door you came in through.
If you have some spare bombs, its advisable to blow up the screens above the control panels in order to gain some quick and easy CP before leaving via the double doors through which you entered. Turn to Acarno’s right and jump onto the overhead pipe.
Drop to the walkway underneath, making sure you don’t end up back in the water. Enter the double doors on the walkway. In the next room, run straight forwards and jump into the water.
There are several items to collect at the waterbed; 50 CREDITS, 15 CREDITS, 30 CREDITS, FREEZE PACK and 10 CREDITS. Return to the surface, and prepare to use the HOOK SHOT.
Approach the doors and use the GOLD KEY CARD to gain entry and prepare for another boss fight against the final Guardian. Before heading over the water to the central platform to face off with the Guardian, there are two items to collect that you will not have chance to pick up once the fight is over.
Climb out of the water onto the central platform and prepare for battle with the final Guardian; a giant mechanical spider, much bigger and tougher to kill than the ones you’ve experienced so far in the game.
While the Guardian’s attacks are not that difficult to avoid, they are quite damaging. The long-range water cannon attack can be avoided by jumping onto or hiding behind the control panels in the centre of the platform. The Guardian’s third attack is sees it fire slow-moving, harmful bubbles. Getting too close to the Guardian’s mouth will also result in instant death.
The quickest way to defeat the final Guardian is to wait for it to try a few of it’s water cannon attacks before it retreats into the water to re-fill. Throw a FREEZE PACK into the water when the Guardian is submerged and the fight will be over.