The abandoned house, for the last time chronologically. This level is filled with waiting, but it has a lot of interesting possibilities and things in general you can mess around with.
There's a checkpoint which activates after you've passed the locked door upstairs.
- MO1: "Escape from abandoned house."
- MO2: "Find beaded doll. Escape from abandoned house."
- Lesser objectives:
- Getting a toy monkey (not mandatory).
Your hapless 10 year old protagonist. She runs at a slower pace than your other characters and dies without actually getting hit. The mechanism is this: she dies after an enemy has targeted her and she stands in the attack range and the attack is just about to begin. (It would take place if it wasn't interrupted by the "mission failed.")
None of the enemies in the whole game exert violence against Harumi - in normal circumstances. If there are several enemies at once, especially at some cramped space, it might just happen that one of them tries to do a physical attack at Harumi. But it doesn't matter in any case, as she turns just as dead from an evil shibito glance as from a physical attack.
She has a flashlight and no other items as her inventory.
Your enemies in this stage are the Maeda family. They move around the house in an extremely predictable and sharply timed manner, once in a while making stops at certain locations, becoming pre-occupied and looking helpfully the other way for extended periods of time. They won't skip segments from their routes ever, but they can be stalled via some bugs or just some expected Harumi shenanigans. If you disturb them right before they start doing something, they abort starting the procedure and instead search lazily for Harumi for a moment, after which they go and finally start their things. If you disturb them while they're doing something, they usually return to their deed for a diminished period of time before moving on to the next stop.
All the members' events are timed to work at the same time, for the most part. If you wait enough, you'll see that they move in cycles, always doing the same routes and always at the same time the other family members are doing their things. It's not a coincidence that if you lure one of the family members outside the house, the others will stop on their tracks and remain doing what they were doing for an eternity. Casual disturbances usually disrupt the cycles momentarily, but do no further harm.
They all have unique taunts. For example, Tomoko's "We-eee want Harumi..." or "Let's play!" The father seems to say "Bad girls get punished, you know..." and/or "Who's little girl are you? My daughter has parents you know." The mother says "What a naughty girl for walking into someone's house uninvited!"
The Maedas' weapons
The mother wields a kitchen knife, which is the only one that actually looks to be a weapon. You can see a pencil in Tomoko's hand or that strange, stagnant cigarette with the father, but they're likely not weapons of any kind.
Harumi can hide in these. There are four available, scattered conveniently around the house. They're like normal FPV-locations, meaning you can't die or be found while you're in one. Unlike other FPV-locations, time still passes normally while you're in there. Also, you can't enter one if a shibito is alerted.
You can "Hide" in a closet even though its door is closed – it would seem then that Harumi goes through the door as if it had some small flappy dog-entrance at the bottom. After you exit the closet its door will always be open. While Harumi can't manually open or close the closet's door while she's inside (it's closed as a default), her enemies can. With some devious manipulation of the Maedas, you can witness an amusing scene of them opening the door and seeing Harumi right in front of them - and then promptly ignoring her in favor of taking a mundane lap around the household.
A useless trick you may want to try out here is the fabled "double 180." First, get in front of a closet. Flick quickly, but open the in-game menu before actually turning around. Choose to "Hide" in the closet - now, if things work out as they should, Harumi does a 180 instead of the normal hiding animation, as well as an additional 180 when you finally leave the closet.
Whenever you hide in a closet, your flashlight turns off.
The level begins with Harumi hidden in the closet. The first possible moment Harumi can leave the closet without instantly dying is at the very first instant you can exit the closet: the Maeda's are still getting up from the table, and Harumi can escape from the room's back exit. The first possible moment Harumi can leave the closet without anyone noticing is at about 7:40. But leaving prematurely doesn't do much good for you, because there's a necessary-to-get key behind the kitchen's locked door. The mother opens up the kitchen late during her route, and if you disturb her before then, it's only going to cost you additional time.
A rough draft of the Maeda's routes is this:
- Mother: Gets up from table, goes to storeroom door via the outer corridor, looks at door's lock, moves to the TV via the inner corridor, sits down and watches TV, goes to kitchen door, unlocks it, goes to the table to hack at nothingness for a moment, leaves kitchen and locks door, goes to the boarded front door and looks at it for a while, then it's back to the storeroom door.
- Father: Gets up from table, goes to do a prayer at the Buddhist altar. Then he comes back a slightly different route and goes to play with the broken table lighter. Then he goes to toilet to relieve himself. Then he goes to the bathroom to scratch his head. After that it's back to the altar.
- Tomoko: Gets up from table, does doodles to the floor right in front of the stairway upstairs (does this a while), gets up and goes upstairs to draw, then she unlocks her room's door and enters to draw on her desk. Leaves, locks her room's door. Goes downstairs. Repeats ad infinitum.
The beaded doll
It doesn't show itself as an item in your inventory. You can see if you have it via the archive, though.
She doesn't walk, instead opting to walk in short, quick steps (if she's alerted). Very creepy. Not to mention that she has that interesting smile on her face.
She has taunts. "Megumi...", "Harumi...", but she only says them during sightjack. She may also say "Harumi, please forgive me?", "Where are you hiding, Harumi? Come to mommy..." though some parts of her speech are just not very audible.
Other things of interest
- Get yourself locked up in the kitchen by staying there when the mother leaves. Apparently, the creators didn't intend you to stay in the kitchen any longer than what it requires to get the "key to red padlock." If you try to take the back door out, the game will give you no message. Also, there's no message for the now-closed compartment in the kitchen's floor. It's likely not impossible to escape after you've been locked in, because even though the mother will always see you when she enters the room next time, she stops to shout at some point - and that's when you can run past her.
- You may get Tomoko to sit down on nothingness. Disturb her right before she sits down on her desk. After she calms down, she'll not quite reach her desk, but instead starts drawing on nothingness before the table. And she sits in mid-air. This may work on other family members and their activities too, although you'd have to test it.
- Start luring the Maeda family members outdoors. Get one chasing you, get to the balcony, and when they're close to you, jump down. Then climb back up via the boxes nearby. A thing to note is that none of the Maedas will ever get back inside the house after you've lured them out. They seemingly can't climb boxes. Try hanging out at the lowest box to see how they're unable to hurt you or climb. After you've lured one family member out, the rest of the family inside the house gets stuck doing what they were doing for an eternity, unless you disturb them, of course. This makes moving around the house much easier.
- There's a graphical glitch available at the balcony area: after descending the first step from the balcony, go to the right-most corner, face the storehouse and crouch. Sightjack, un-sightjack. Mess around enough, and Harumi becomes invisible until you stand up or move away from the particular area. The enemies can still see her perfectly well during this fleeting bit of invisibility, though.
- There's an invisible wall at the bottom of this house's main stairway. If you run down the stairs at full speed (having ran already a while) you just slap into something invisible, as if you ran into a wall, even though there's nothing like that there.