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Secret of the Scarlet Hand Walkthrough

Welcome to my Secret of the Scarlet Hand walk-through. (-: If you're new to my series of low-spoiler computer game walkthroughs, the idea is to point players towards things they might not have tried in each game rather than giving away puzzle solutions or offering step-by-step instructions.



These Nancy Drew games are structured a little differently than most graphic adventure games, though. In particular, you can solve most of the game's puzzles in any order you feel like, making a chronological walkthrough of little use. The physical area Secret of the Scarlet Hand is larger than most games in the Nancy Drew series, but even so, it makes more sense to use a CRPG-style area guide rather than breaking the game down into chronological chapters. I've included a checklist of important tasks at the beginning and one of optional tasks at the end. Note that I don't tell you how to solve any of the puzzles--just where they are. If you've found a puzzle but just can't seem to get it right no matter what you do, UHS is a good place to go for a single hint that won't spoil the rest of the game for you.

Secret of the Scarlet Hand: Key Tasks

If you find yourself getting stuck in the game, keep in mind that plot advancement is often arbitrary. If nothing is happening, you need to make sure that you have spoken to everyone until they have nothing more to say, looked around every area to see if there are any objects you haven't noticed, and used every object in your inventory. If all those things fail, take a look at this checklist of important tasks you will need to complete to solve the game (the order is largely up to you):

1) Talk to all the NPC's. Repeatedly. Having certain conversations with them is necessary for the plot to progress. You'll need to call Franklin Rose a few times to move the plot along, too, and a few other people whose phone numbers will be revealed later in the game (too bad Nancy hasn't got a cellphone.) Calling George, Bess, Frank and Joe is completely optional in Secret of the Scarlet Hand. If nothing much seems to be happening, make sure none of the four NPC's nor Franklin has anything new to say to you.

2) Examine the monolith up close--you won't be able to talk to Taylor Sinclair, one of your four NPC's, until you have done this.

3) Find a legal document between Joanna and the Mexican consulate--you won't be able to talk to Alejandro, one of your four NPC's, until you have done this. A significant plot twist should occur once you have finished fully talking to all four NPC's and exited the laboratory.

4) Find Sonny's floppy disk and read it on Nancy's laptop, in her hotel room. (You'll need to guess his password, though the disk prompts you with a hint.)

5) Complete all five tasks on the checklist on your desk in the lab. (You can helpfully cross each one off with a pencil as you finish it.) The five tasks include finding two pieces of a broken vase and assembling it; bringing the document you found in #3 to the Mexican consulate; calling an office supply store; acquiring headphones and matching some audio segments; and finding two clay tiles and solving a Mayan number puzzle with them. It doesn't matter in which order you complete these tasks. If you find yourself getting stuck on the last two tasks, there are hints in Sonny's notebook and floppy disk.

6) Analyze the scarlet handprint in the lab (can't do until after you've completed #4.) Even if you know which elements the abbreviations stand for, you still must look them up on the periodic table on the wall for the plot to continue advancing. A second significant plot twist should occur once you have completed both #5 and #6 and and walk back into the exhibit hall from the garden.

7) Call the nurse.

8) Bring Henrik three visual aids (he'll give you a key to retrieve the third one.)

9) Read Henrik's ZIP disk on Nancy's computer.

10) Make a lot of phone calls. Really. Just keep calling. Set the alarm for 10 AM if some people won't answer. The ultimate goal is to get Prudence, Sheila, and Penelope Daddle each to agree to let you have their jade keys (or copies thereof,) but you'll need to have called the museum's chemical supplier once too.

11) Get a key from Joanna's room. (If Joanna won't leave her room, talk to Alejandro enough and she will.)

12) Use Henrik's ham radio to order a fourth jade key. (You need a Nahuatl password in order to do this; it's one of the best-known Aztec words and you already know it if you've ever, say, played Dungeons and Dragons or anything, but if you don't know it, you can perform a task for one of the NPC's who will tell it to you.)

13) Collect those four jade keys (one can just be unwrapped, but you'll have to solve a puzzle to open the box one of them arrives in, reconstitute one of them from a mold, and figure out how to snitch another one.)

13) Solve the long series of temple puzzles inside the pyramid (this entails winning a bul game, a ball-throwing game, a maze, two matching puzzles, a calendar puzzle, and eleven quiz questions.) You can have started on this sequence as early as you like, but the answers to two of the quiz questions can't be found in the museum displays and so can't be solved until NPC's tell you the answers. Take the fifth jade key and another critically important item.

14) Get the code to the sixth and final key from Joanna (if she's still unavailable, you either haven't solved #13 yet or haven't talked to the other NPC's, especially Franklin, enough.)

15) Build the jade key cube.

16) Get the calendar stones onto the monolith without dropping them.

17) Solve the monolith puzzle.

18) Escape from the monolith in the final timed challenge, and you've won!

Secret of the Scarlet Hand: Area Guide

The museum rooms in Secret of the Scarlet Hand are much larger and more elaborate than rooms in previous Nancy Drew games (especially the exhibit hall, courtyard, and temple chambers,) but there are still really only fourteen room areas in this game, four of which are not immediately accessible.

Things worth noticing in each area:

IN THE MUSEUM

Joanna's Office

*This is where you can find Joanna, one of the four main NPC's in the game. You'll need to return to talk to her many times in order for the plot to advance.
*There's a magazine in here with an article that you'll need to read.
*Later in the game, you will need to come back and explore the room when Joanna is not here to acquire a couple of useful plot items.
*Once Joanna has left you can look through her microscope if you like. :-)
*You can also look around her desk once she's gone. Nothing critical (and no Her Interactive coffe mug), but there are some interesting tidbits there.

Lobby

*There are three important plot objects to be found here (one cannot be acquired immediately.)
*There are several clues about ancient Mayan life to be found here. This is a major part of the game; you will need to pore over all reading material carefully to find the answers to the temple quizzes.

Exhibit Hall

*There are many clues about ancient Mayan life to be found here. This is a major part of the game; you will need to pore over all reading material carefully to find the answers to the temple quizzes.
*There is a puzzle here to be solved (you will get the directions to do so in the lab.)
*There are three important plot objects here, but you cannot take two of them till later in the game.

Laboratory

*This is where you can find Henrik, one of the four main NPC's in the game. You'll need to return to talk to him many times in order for the plot to advance.
*This is also where Nancy's desk is. It is full of stuff from her predecessor; don't neglect to examine Sonny's notebook and the objects in his desk drawer (including one inventory object.) The clipboard contains a list of tasks Nancy will have to accomplish, and satisfyingly crosses off each as you finish it. Three are puzzles to solve (one in the lab, one in the shipping room, and one in the exhibit hall); one is a delivery, and one is just a phone call.
*There is a pottery puzzle here to be solved (as you are instructed to do on the clipboard.)
*There are three pieces of equipment in here-- a spectro-analyzer, a foam machine, and a ham radio-- that you will not immediately be able to use, but will become important later in the game.
*You will not be able to get into Henrik's desk at first, but when you do, there are two useful items in there and a sheaf of interesting reading materials. Be sure to page through the papers one by one, as there are both important clues and interesting background information here.
*There is a periodic table in here that you will need to use at one point (even if you know the abbreviations for elements, you have to assume Nancy does not.)

Shipping/Receiving Room

*This is where packages will arrive for you; you will need to check back here frequently.
*There is a puzzle here to be solved (you will get the directions to do so in the lab.)
*There are two plot objects that can be found in here

Courtyard

*There are many clues about ancient Mayan life to be found in this room. This is a major part of the game; you will need to pore over all reading material carefully to find the answers to the temple quizzes.
*There is a plot object that can be found out here.
*You can examine the monolith in the center of the courtyard. The movement controls around the monolith are different than the rest of the game (using the 'rotation' arrows rotates the monolith, not Nancy.) You will need to manipulate the monolith later as part of a timed challenge, so familiarize yourself with it now.

Temple Level 1

*This is a visually very interesting room. Once you acquire a keycard, you can solve three puzzles on this level (one with matching glyphs, one Mayan game, and one computer quiz.)
*There is also an important plot object on this level.

Temple Level 2

*This level can only be accessed once you have finished Level 1.
*There's a movie here about Yum Cimil, the Maya god of Death, which you can watch.
*There are three puzzles here as well (in addition to a password you must enter.) The three puzzles are a maze (ugh), a ball game, and another computer quiz.

Temple Level 3

*This room can only be accessed once you have finished Level 2.
*This level is more spread out than the others-- you have to walk back and forth a bit to get to all the puzzles. Once again, there are three: a matching game, a calendar puzzle, and a third computer quiz. You will find some important plot items when you have finished the last computer quiz.

Monolith

*You will not be able to access the monolith until the final endgame.

OUTSIDE THE MUSEUM

Nancy's Hotel Room

*This is the location of the only phone you can make long-distance calls on, so you will have to return here several times to make calls.
*This is also where Nancy keeps her laptop, so you will need to return here whenever you find a computer disk.

Taylor's Office

*This is where you can find Taylor, one of the four main NPC's in the game. You'll need to return to talk to him many times in order for the plot to advance.

Mexican Embassy

*This is where you can find Alejandro, one of the four main NPC's in the game. You'll need to return to talk to him many times in order for the plot to advance.

Hospital Room

*This room does not become available till halfway through the game. There is nothing here but an important NPC you will need to visit several times.

Secret of the Scarlet Hand: Optional Actions

Have you:

*Read all the way through Sonny's notebook?
*Listened to the voice mail messages left for you on the lab telephone?
*Noticed the notes that Henrik and Joanna leave for you on your desk?
*Listened to Prudence's answering machine message?
*Read all the way through Henrik's log books in his desk?
*Gotten Poppy Dada to call Taylor by an interesting nickname?
*Looked through Joanna's microscope?



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