|Health Items: 5||Treasures: 6||Relics: 0||Keys/Puzzle Items: 0|
Before the level begins choose Lara's outfit—snow heavy or snow light—and initial secondary weapon.
Cinematic: Lara arrives by motorcycle near her destination on the snow-swept crags of Jan Mayen Island. She pauses to have a long-distance conversation with Zip, who informs her that Amanda has another ship, the Tisiphone, anchored off the coast of Thailand.* Apparently Amanda and her crew are still one step behind Lara. She thanks him for the update and tells him to take a well-deserved rest. He signs off with the sarcastic comment, “When you see Amanda, give her my regards.”
Lara then spots an opening in the mountainside ahead and makes a death-defying leap across a wide chasm to reach it. Once inside the cavern, she stops the bike to have a look around.
LONG, DARK TUNNEL: From the starting position, turn around to find a health potion on the ground near a few empty jars. Get back on the bike and drive down the serpentine tunnel to a set of big, carved doors at the bottom. Dismount, grab the door and use Lara's super strength to slide it open.
Walk or drive through to trigger a cut scene showing a bird's-eye view of the long, corkscrew path leading to the ground far below.
OPEN AREA WITH TOWER AND SPIRAL RAMP: After this, look to the right near the top of the path to find a health potion and a treasure (1/30), which you'll find in a shiny, breakable jar sitting near two dull brown empties.
Now deal with the Viking thrall crouching on the block a short way down the path. From this distance, it's easy enough to step forward, get a target lock (with the targeting reticule still gray) and do quite a bit of damage with the pistols before the thrall can even reach Lara. Back up while shooting if necessary. Then, when it falls, run in and stomp on it by pressing Interact. As with the other thralls you've encountered, undead Vikings will get up again if you don't destroy their corpses.
Get back on the bike and head down the ramp. Watch out for holes and gaps as you go. These tend to be on the right side, near the edge, if they don't span the entire path. So stay to the left side of the path, for the most part, except where the various blocks and support pillars jut out from the wall. Where that happens, steer around the blocks and then move back toward the left. The gaps that span the entire path are too wide to jump. So speed up and drive along the sloping left wall to get past them.
On the way down you'll encounter 3 more Viking thralls. You can run them over if they happen to be in the way, but don't steer out of your way to do it. Just concentrate on avoiding the obstacles in your path. You won't return this way, so it doesn't matter if you kill all of them. All of the breakable jars on the spiral path are empty, so there's really no reason to stop, unless you just want the satisfaction of getting all the kills.
When you reach the bottom, approach the elaborate gate.
Cinematic: Lara takes out her camera and examines the ornate carvings. “Hall of the Slain... Valhalla... Odin's hall, where the warriors who died in battle came to feast and prepare to fight in the final battle of Ragnarök. That makes this Valgrind, the Gate of the Dead.”
“'Old is that gate, and how to unbolt it, few now know,'” she quotes the Eddas and then muses, “Where are the Valkyries when you need them?”
No such luck today. Instead of beautiful handmaidens of Odin, 4 more Viking thralls approach, ready to usher Lara to Valhalla. Now would be a great time to plant a couple of grenades in the group and sprint away. Or, if you prefer, get back on the motorcycle and race around the base of the tower, mowing down undead. Another alternative is to sprint back up the spiral ramp a little ways and hop up onto the stone block on the right. The thralls can't reach Lara here, though they'll still try and spit vile goo at her. Shoot them until they fall. Then hop down and stomp on their corpses to prevent them from reanimating.
When you've destroyed all of them, make a few pick-ups before moving on. There's a health potion near the low wall at the base of the spiral ramp. Also, a treasure (2/30) in a jar tucked in the alcove beneath the ramp and another treasure (3/30) in a jar to the right of the gate.
MECHANICAL TOWER: The huge, cylindrical tower in the center of this area has many interesting poles and niches, but before you can climb very far, you'll need to turn it on. There are 3 small, carved stone blocks on the ground near the tower. Pick up each one and place it in one of the niches on the side of the tower. When you do, the various rings that make up the structure begin to rotate.
Run around the base of the tower until you find the carved panel that lights up when Lara touches it. Grab onto it and walk to the right (you could go left, but the other way round the circle is shorter), rotating the entire base of the tower, until a brief cut scene shows a beam of light shining down from above and striking the pattern on the ground in front of the gate. This indicates that the first part of the 4-part mechanism has been unlocked.
CLIMBING THE TOWER - GROUND TO FIRST TIER: Now start climbing. Grab one of the lowest handholds on the side of the tower. Wait for the ring above to rotate so there's another small handhold directly above and then jump up to grab it. Again, wait for the rings to rotate until one of the horizontal poles comes around and then jump up to grab it. Jump up to stand on the pole and walk inward along the pole so Lara is facing the tower. Wait for a handhold to pass overhead and jump up to grab it. Jump straight up to stand on top of the handhold and wait for another pole to swing by overhead. Jump up to grab it and climb hand over hand out to the middle of the pole. Pull up to stand on top of it and then walk in toward the tower. Jump up to grab the edge of the circular ledge and pull up.
Once Lara is standing on the first level of the tower, go carefully around the walkway and pick up a health potion. Then find the panel with glyphs that glow when Lara touches them. Grab onto it and walk to the left, rotating this entire section of the tower, until a second beam of light strikes the ground, indicating that the second part of the gate lock has been opened.
FIRST TO SECOND TIER: Resume your upward climb. First, grab one of the small handholds and jump up three times to climb the stacked handholds (here the rings on the tower aren't moving) and reach the group of three small handholds above. Climb to either side as far as Lara will go and then jump to grab the nearest horizontal pole. Jump up to stand on the pole. Then, when another horizontal pole passes above, jump straight up to grab it. Pull up onto this pole and turn to face the tower. Walk inward along the pole and when a small handhold goes past, jump up to grab it. On the next ring, there are more widely spaced small handholds. Wait for one to approach and jump up to grab it. Next, wait for a horizontal pole to pass overhead and jump up to grab it. Climb hand over hand toward the end of the pole. Then pull up and walk inward along the pole toward the tower. Jump up to grab the circular ledge and pull up.
One of the breakable jars on this level contains a treasure (4/30). Get it and then find the panel with the glowing runes. Grab it and rotate this section of the tower to the right until another cut scene shows a third beam of light reflected down toward the gate, showing that the third part of the locking mechanism has been opened.
SECOND TO THIRD TIER: Now comes the most challenging part of the climb. First, grab one of the handholds just above the circular platform. Wait for one of the handholds on the next higher ring to approach and jump up to grab it. The next ring has many closely spaced handholds, so you should be able to jump up right away to grab one of them. Jump up to stand on top of this handhold. Wait for this ledge to move beneath one of the horizontal poles and jump up to grab it.
Here's where things start to get tricky. Along with the moving handholds and poles, you'll have to contend with steam vents that emit puffs of hot air that can scald Lara and knock her off balance. The first set of steam vents is on the rotating ring just above the first set of horizontal poles. While hanging from this pole, wait until one of the steam vents passes overhead and then jump up to stand on the pole. Turn to face the tower and quickly jump to grab one of the many small, light-colored handholds on the ring above. (If you've taken a little too long and you see another steam vent coming, drop down to hang from the pole and wait for it to pass. Then climb back on top of the pole and grab the next handhold.)
Then, while hanging from one of the light-colored handholds, wait just long enough for one of the steam vents on the next higher ring to pass. Then jump up again to stand on top of the handhold. The poles above and below move in sync with the ledge on which Lara is now standing. So just jump straight up once more to grab the pole above before the next waist-level steam vent reaches Lara. (If the vent does blast Lara off the ledge, she'll drop down to the pole below. You may need to do a saving grab to keep her from losing her grip. Then climb back up to stand on the small handhold and once again grab the pole above.)
Once Lara is hanging from the higher pole, wait for the next steam vent on the ring above to pass, and then pull up before the vent below reaches her. Turn to face the tower and jump up to grab one of the small handholds on the next moving ring. Watch the steam vents above and below and jump up to stand on the handhold as soon as the next vent on the ring above moves past. This should happen before the next vent below reaches Lara. As soon as Lara is standing on this handhold, jump up to grab the pole above and climb hand over hand away from the tower. The vents at this level can still hurt her, so pull up to stand on the pole as soon as you can. Once Lara is standing on the top pole, she's safe. Walk along the pole toward the tower, jump up to grab the edge and pull up onto the upper level.
NOTE: There are several YouTube videos that show the sequence.
Go around the circular walkway and pick up a health potion and 2 treasures (5 and 6/30), one inside a breakable jar, one just lying on the ledge. Then grab the panel with the glowing carvings and rotate this segment of the tower to the left. When the fourth beam of light strikes the ground, the locks on the Valgrind gate open.
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