Escape into the Open-Air Hot Spring

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Rating: 4.6/5 (110 votes)
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Escape into the Open-Air Hot SpringSonicLoverNo matter what time of year it is, unless you're baking in the sun you'll probably appreciate a little exotic getaway and a rush of soothing warmth... especially if you happen to be playing this in the winter. (Those of you south of the equator, shush for now; we'll acknowledge you some other time.) That's why Tesshi-e has given us a rather thankful escape known as Escape into the Open-Air Hot Spring.

Tesshi-e's latest stars a protagonist taking a much-needed vacation to the titular open-air hot spring, only getting into it isn't so easy; a number of puzzles to solve and inventory items to pick up and use lie in wait before the customer can warm their body properly. You know what to do if you've played Tesshi-e's games before: navigate by pointing and clicking, and pick up items that seem useful. Highlight an item then use it on the environment, or on the "About Item" button for a close-up.

This game doesn't break Tesshi-e's streak of good escape games; the puzzles are fairly logical and make sense without being too easy, the controls are just fine, pixel-hunting is nonexistent (as is a changing cursor, but who needs it?) and there's a save feature for when you want to take a break from your break. (I will not make a "yo dawg" joke. I will not.) It's pretty clear that an "Escape" into the Open-Air Hot Spring is a good way to escape the winter blues, if only imaginarily. So I won't get in your way any longer...

Play Escape into the Open-Air Hot Spring

Walkthrough Guide

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A Warm Walkthrough

  • You'll start out facing the hot spring. Get into the warm water pool in front of you; there are two views to it. In the view on the right, examine the sign in the window: spade, 36, dot, dot, 41, dot, dot, club. Weird. To the left, something appears to be submerged in the water.

  • Back out all the way and turn right to face a stack of buckets and a "STAFF ONLY" door. Hidden under one of the buckets is a green ball. After getting it, take a look at those Mr. Birdy figurines to the left.

  • Below, the three buttons make the figurines turn, and the single button doesn't do anything... you must need a particular set of orientations. But hey, there are some Roman numerals on their backs: red II, yellow V, green VII.

  • Zoom out all the way and turn right to face the entrance door, plus a row of six stalls with buckets. On the far left is a spade, and on the far right is a club. That looks sort of familiar... perhaps the stalls require further investigation.

  • The second stall's bucket has a screwdriver behind it, so nab that. You can fill each bucket with hot water, then put it back. You can also set the individual temperature of each stall's water, and the ranges look about right...

  • Let's try setting the first and fourth stalls to their corresponding numbers on the sign: 36 and 41, respectively. If you then fill their buckets you'll see numbers and suits: heart 9 and diamond 4.

  • The "STAFF ONLY" door had a heart and a diamond on it... and they were arranged sort of like an exponential expression. Just for the record, 9 raised to the fourth power is 6,561.

  • Try that on the keypad next to the door, and it'll open just fine. Inside you'll find a compass (push the knob in to see which way is north), a pipe missing a valve, and a screwed-on panel. Well, you've got a screwdriver.

  • Unscrewed! But there's just a spot for a handle or something inside. Back out and look at the panel you just unscrewed; there's a spade-shaped key on the other side. It goes to the sauna door behind you.

  • A set of six levers to the left should catch your eye upon entering the sauna, as should a hippo figure with a series of holes on the side. Turn right for some "Sauna Water" and heated stones, then right again for the door and thermometer.

  • Hey, go look at those stalls again. Note the way the faucet heads are arranged: down-up-up-down-up-down. Also note the numbers in the corners of the mirrors: upper left, lower left, upper right, upper right, lower right, lower left.

  • Go soak yourself in the cold water pool by the sauna door. (If the protagonist refuses to do so, step into the sauna again.) Jostle the corners of the "Caution: cold water" sign according to the mirror numbers to get a capsule.

  • An upside-down heart and the word "Sauna". Well, we know that heart equals 9, and the temperature on the thermometer by the sauna door is 92 degrees. And an upside-down 9 is a 6. So try 692.

  • Eureka! You've got a clover key. Oh, and before I forget, go arrange the levers in the sauna panel according to the faucet heads: down-up-up-down-up-down. You'll get another ball to play with.

  • The clover key opens the drawer below the compass in the "STAFF ONLY" room, wherein you'll find another ball and a ladle. Take the ladle to the sauna, fill it with "Sauna Water", and pour it on the heated stones.

  • This will steam up the room. Quickly turn to face the door and note what's on the window: "Birds SWN". I think that has something to do with the Mr. Birdy figurines, so go fuss with them again.

  • Turn the one on the left facing south, middle west, and right north. Remember, north is to the right as you're facing the birds. Once they're arranged, press the button on the right to get a lever for your trouble.

  • The lever slots into the pipe the screwed panel was covering in the "STAFF ONLY" room. It opens the drain, allowing access to that thing that was covered to the left in the water pool in front of the hot spring.

  • Roman numerals... I is at the top, then increasing clockwise. Weird. Take that green ball in the center, then return to the sauna and put all four green balls in the side of the hippo figurine. It'll spit out the valve; take it.

  • Now return to the "STAFF ONLY" room and put the valve where it goes, in the pipe to the left. This opens the bathtub's faucet, so go check it out; it gave you a Mr. Birdy figurine! Find the heart key under its hat.

  • The heart key opens the panel by the door by the hot springs, which then requires you to set three dials. Remember the Roman numeral clues? Put them all together and red is up and right, yellow is down, and green is left.

  • Then press the button at the bottom, and it should turn green. The door to the hot spring is open! You can go in now, OR... you can hunt for the Happy Coin. Betcha the "SSS" on the door's other side has something to do with it.

  • Let's try facing the birds south, south, south. (Remember, south is to the left when facing the birds.) Then you can remove the yellow Mr. Birdy's cover and take the Happy Coin underneath it! Now go through the hot spring door and you're done!


hothotpot Author Profile Page January 19, 2012 1:36 PM

Hmmm. I have a capsule, spade key, and a screwdriver. I've used both the key and screw driver, but cannot figure out the clue for the capsule.

3-number code required, an upside down heart, with the word sauna written next to it. I assume it has something to do with the thermometer in the sauna, and the number 9 from the heart bucket, but I don't know how to work it out.

Any hints?

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You have the code right.

Upside down heart + sauna temp

heart = 9, so upside down heart = 6

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The heart is upside down ;-)



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I think you're over-thinking it!

What's different about the heart and how might that apply to the code?

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I'm stuck with a valve, capsule(used), spade key (used), clover key (used), screw driver (used), and ladle with water.

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fruitysheep Author Profile Page January 19, 2012 1:48 PM

Stuck on the Mr. Birdy device.

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Oops. I forgot to sign in, so previous comments were held.

Figured out where the valve went, and got out.

Not too hard, but a bit challenging at times.

fruitysheep, I just kept trying combinations until it worked. If you can't get it it's

red looking left, yellow looking behind, green looking right

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@fruity and Zero

The compass points to north, so disregard the NSEW directions written on the outside and just use the compass pointer's direction.

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Went back to play again to look for the Happy Coin. I assume there is one.

Still haven't used the ladle, and have a code of


from the door

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Oh, the ladle is used

to put steam on the rocks and get the birdy code from the window

Still not sure what to do with the


code from the door. Tried changing the birdy positions, tried using numbers in reference on the capsule. Think I'm done on this one..close enough for me :)

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I have

a green ball, a lever, and a screwdriver.

What I can't figure out is

how to look at the buckets without filling them with water. The text is not very helpful.

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There's a clue for the buckets on the far side of the pool.

I haven't found the happy coin either! :(

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Night Stryke Author Profile Page January 19, 2012 2:40 PM

Found the Happy Coin.

Turn all the Mr. Birdy's facing south and you can lift the case off the middle one, then lift up the Mr. Birdy to find the coin.

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bearharry Author Profile Page January 19, 2012 2:49 PM

don't be mislead, SSS is useful

click more on everywhere of the bird machine

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Oy vey! I got out without saving, so I have to start again to get the Happy Coin, and I can't remember how I got that first key!

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Derp. Never mind. :-P

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augh stuck from the start. I have a screwdriver and a ball. Where is this spade key you speak of?

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I find myself getting very impatient with this game, sitting in my chilly den. I want to go back to an onsen. Aaah.

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Help - stuck at the beginning.

I have screwdriver and ball

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Out without any hint, with happy coin. Great game!

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nerdypants Author Profile Page January 19, 2012 7:30 PM

I wish I were in a real hot spring. It's two degrees outside where I am.

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littlefish January 20, 2012 3:40 PM

Not too tricky, and no weird things to build - actually I think the difficulty level matches the environment well!

(lookng forward to sauna tomorrow... they say it will be -2 oC)

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This is one of the most satisfying escape games ever. No clicking around looking for hidden spots or different angles, every solution is well hinted. You need just one hint to solve it: if what you see is remarkable, it's remarkable for a reason.

I think this is the first escape game I ever came across that would actually make sense in an offline version. Well, if offline escape rooms would make any sense at all.

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