Terra Coda


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Rating: 4.4/5 (56 votes)
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Terra Coda

TrickyConsidering your first moment of consciousness involved being released from a captivity you didn't even no you were in, the freedom you feel is especially sweet. It's a shame though that it's a result of the research outpost's "last ditch" protocols that, with the hull about to collapse upon itself, release all the experimental organisms in the belief that one might be able to save itself and/or at least not make things worse. That just might be you: with your power to revert your consciousness to the moment of your first "awakening", you can replay these precious few seconds time and time again. And that means you have all the time you need to explore, figure out what you are, and just maybe, seek a way out. Terra Coda is a sci-fi adventure game originally developed by Zillix for Ludum Dare 19, now re-released in a polished form.

Terra CodaMoving with the [arrow] keys, and interacting with [x] and the [spacebar], move around the lab, discovering helpful (and sometimes not so helpful) information. Death will happen fairly quickly in each playthrough, but there are actions you can take which will grant you more time and, of course any knowledge you glean from previous playthroughs (like door passwords or how to activate various devices) you can use without delay. A high-concept, cerebral little game, reminiscient of Groundhog's Day style games like Majora's Mask or Level Up, Terra Coda throws you in at the deep end and you can almost hear it chuckling at your first attempts to swim. However, once you get your bearings, the thrill of discovery takes over, and even its red herrings help develop a quirky and mysterious game-world. One of those games that truly feels like you're inhabiting but a small subsection of a fully developed world, Terra Coda takes the concept of "replay value" to a whole 'nother level.

Play Terra Coda

Walkthrough Guide


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Terra Coda Walkthrough

Note: The nature of Terra Coda means that one could conceiveably win the game on their first "life", providing they knew the proper sequence of actions. However, just stating that would make for an unsatisfying walkthrough, as players would miss out on the story. Thus, what follows is a description of one possible series of "lives" that will lead to Terra Coda's conclusion
Life 1

I head north and talk to the Portal Science Guy by the weird squiggly portal. He says we can buy a little time by turning off the power back the way I came. I don't have much time to ponder this, though. RESTART

Life 2

North and to the left from the starting point is the power console. I go up and activate it with X. This turns off the power, while turning on some barriers. Q still make it up to Portal Science Guy. He says that the fires in the fuel room will take us out if we don't cut the gas. I head east and south like he says and talk to the Fuel Room Lady. She mentions that I probably won't have enough time to cut off all the gas. However she does give the Fuel Room Password: ANNA. That'll make it easy to get to the room faster... next time around. RESTART

Life 3

I turn off the power, then head directly across the hallway to the Fuel Room Door. I open it with the ANNA password, then enter. I turn off each of the five gas consoles with X, buying a lot more time. Or a minute at least. The Fuel Room Lady mentions the possibility of a hull breach to the south. The direct rout from my starting place is blocked so I go north, then west, passing Science Guy, then heading south. The people I pass mention lines of inquiry: a professor locked in the Library, a Vault filled with artifacts. However, I get to the south end of the lab and yep, big hull breach there. The Hull Science Guy mentions the password to the Main Control Center just east of the portal room is HAL. I should be able to seal the hull from there. He says that I'll never make it time, though. He's right. RESTART

Life 4

I turn off the power, enter the fuel room with the ANNA password, seal the gas, then head north to the control center. Opening the door with the HAL password, I seal the hull. Now I have a little breathing room timewise. I head to the east, past the portal, then south, down the hallway, east pass the hxull, then north again. I pass some scientists along the way but they're not much help. Only after the hall snakes around south again, at the very end, do I find a Dying Scientist. Apparently, he knows of a method that will allow us back to the time of the accident, rather than my awakening. He calls it "Z". And there's one or two lines of inquiry in which a few extra seconds could be crucial. RESTART

Life 5

Hitting the [Z] key to start the run, I head north to the portal, then west into the library to talk to the professor. By not cutting the power or sealing the hull, I get there quickly, but that leaves little time for chitchat. The Professor mentions the password to the teleporter room is CHELL. Maybe I'll find a few answers there. But not now. RESTART

Life 6

I restart with Z, then head north, past the power console, on the left, to the Teleporter Room. Heading into the teleporter will take you to a room with a series of three carvings. And while they reveal a little about your past, it's not much help in current crisis. RESTART

Life 7

Hitting the [Z] key to start the run, I head north to the portal, then west, then south, making it just in time to help the hurt scientist on the right. She tells me that the password to my containment cell is ENIGMA. I'm sensing a pattern here. RESTART

Life 8

I turn off the power, enter the fuel room with the ANNA password, seal the gas, then head back to where I started. This time I head south, opening the door with the ENIGMA password, then head out through the breach in the hull. I find a series of four carvings, the final of which is comprised of a symbol. The symbol on the floor where I woke up. I need to find out more. RESTART

Life 9

I turn off the power, enter the fuel room with the ANNA password, seal the gas, then head back and south through the ENIGMA door. I loop around east, north then east and talk to the scientist standing next to another one of those weird symbols. He says there's an artifact in the Vault that might be of interest, and that the Vault can be open with the password XYZZY. I'm getting close. RESTART

Life 10

I turn off the power, enter the fuel room with the ANNA password, seal the gas, then head back and south through the ENIGMA door. I loop around west, north, and west to get to the door of the Vault. I enter with XYZZY, and pick up the artifact. In a flash, it comes to me: the portal. I can use it. But it needs more power. If I overload the power console, by repeatedly turning it off and on with Z and X, that should be enough!

Life 11

I turn off the power, enter the fuel room with the ANNA password, seal the gas, head north to the Main Control room, enter it with the HAL password, seal the hulls, head back to the power station. Flip it on and off several times, alternating Z and X to overload it, then finally head north to leap into the portal. And home.

16 Comments

Extreme time pressure with rough limits and when you fail, you start all over again.
Not my type of game.

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jamie.malekoff Author Profile Page August 2, 2013 1:12 PM

found three passwords

CHELL, HAL, and ANNA

can't find the next step though.

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I'd usually agree with thatguyfromvienna, but I found that the next clue was always within the timeframe provided, that I was able to finish quite easily. I'd post a walkthru if someone more articulate doesn't beat me to it :)

Or the 5s version of winning the game, but then, that'd defeat the purpose of it all.

jamie.malekoff:

With the lock gates down, go South then West for a scientist with another password.

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jamie.malekoff Author Profile Page August 2, 2013 1:28 PM

tenny

I went all the way south out of the lab and found a symbol. then i talked to the guy in the lap south and east that was standing near the symbol and he gave me the PW for the vault

XYZZY

After visiting the vault I was told to press Z and X on the teleporter but that does nothing.

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jamie.malekoff, you came to the exact obstacle I did!

Not transporter, "Power Switch", which I had to figure it out. It was the first switch you come to when you "wake up".

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jamie.malekoff Author Profile Page August 2, 2013 1:38 PM

Thanks for the help. I feel like I was missing a password or two but I made it out I guess...

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You're welcome. You'll know you finished because

your character says, "It's complete. The portal closed behind me. I am home."

And it'll tell you how many times you died ("restored").

I attempted a walkthrough. It's a hot mess. Let someone else write it. Haha! 99% of the time I have to look for spoilers then smack my forehead for looking. So the fact that I finished this on my own, I believe this to be an easy game to figure out. Very quick game. Exercised my mind for a few minutes. Thanks, Zillix!

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billyswong Author Profile Page August 3, 2013 12:27 PM

Hey, I talked to the guy in the south-east room who stand by a symbol on floor. He doesn't tell me any password of the vault! Do I misunderstand something?

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@billyswong

you need another clue before he will tell you about it. The first time he points out you can survive outside of the hull breach- try looking around out there.

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gelastic Author Profile Page August 4, 2013 1:26 AM

Why does it say at the end that I have unfinished business?

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billyswong Author Profile Page August 4, 2013 9:39 AM

@Mystify

Oh how stupid am I. I walked out there a couple times before, but got bored and missed

the last stone plate

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billyswong Author Profile Page August 4, 2013 10:08 AM

@Mystify

Oh how stupid am I. I walked out there a couple times before, but got bored and missed

the last stone plate

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A note about the walkthrough:

In a couple different places, it says that the door to "containment" has the password of Anna. That is not right, the door to the Fuel Chamber is the one with the password Anna.

Additionally, to get the portal to work, you do not just turn the power switch on and off over and over as implied in the walkthrough (that would just be with the "x" button) but you definitely need to alternate both "z" and "x" to get it to overload (the switch will turn yellow). Your little alien guy mentions using both "z" and "x" as he mulls over the solution in the vault.

But the style of the walkthrough was very nice in a very difficult to describe game. It took me 28 lives to make it to the end!

Also, regarding the last day:

You don't necessarily need to do all the fuel chamber buttons and the lab button in order to complete the game successfully on the last day. I got the same ending either way as long as I made it to the portal after overloading the power.

Lastly, a tip ... or perhaps more of an observation.

I never realized before the walkthrough that hitting "z" actually buys you more time. All this time I was hitting either "x" or "z" kind of randomly, and wondering why I never got a password for the containment door and wondered how the hell to make it to that scientist calling for help before she died. However I was still able to beat the entire game without it ... I just had to move really quickly because the containment door was always in the way!

This was a super little game, from the description I immediately thought of Mask of Majora and was stoked to see that very game referenced at the end of the review. Often I feel that these kinds of games are very hit and miss, just as Thatguyfromvienna wrote, but I was still intrigued enough to give it a try and was very excited to learn it was worth it. I only wish there was a little more of an ending.

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Great job, Tricky. Thanks! I never even figured out the password ENIGMA. I probaby just went too fast. It's been nagging me what that door was. A red herring? :P Guess I had enough time to manage without it.

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