time, we text-bombed our way through the NPCs in the main room of the
Interface. Now for the back room, the rumored hiding place of our
accuser, Mr. Beautiful!
Beautiful's Office: Besides the fact that the room is papered with the
kind of wallpaper you don't want to stray too close to, there's the
pentagram on the floor, and all the other etceteras you'd expect in the
office of a major-league demon. The jukebox, though, is a puzzling
(short demon, right): A small demon in spats feigns servility. He is
the demonic epitome of the plotting servant, carrying out his master's
agenda whenever it coincides with his own agenda.
Beautiful's Cue Stick: A regulation, but souped-up, customized pool cue
that has kind of a sticky feel to it. It belongs to Mr. Beautiful.
Jukebox: A blast
from the past, a jukebox loaded with Mr. Beautiful's favorite hits.
Talk to Abonides
this? What trouble have I bought? Have I copped a fate naughty and
full? Are you heat or scrubs who want me shot? I plead you see I'm only
dutiful. I didn't make the game I play. The one you want is Mr.
Abonides got mad flow. Word life (this is
got that right, shorty. We need to see your master, now!
him? Not everyone may. Those who do so are select; make your bones!
You've dues to pay. I will summon him if I elect, but for me to chant
and call him hence, from you the code I must detect.
stupid slob! You have no hope. Go get a job.
these underworld types are secretive. Vows of silence, passwords,
secret handshakes. Now, we need a code word to summon this demon. Maybe
there was something in that gibberish Kween Chaos was spouting. It
seemed like she was trying to tell us something. If we can just
remember what she said...
Fuck a bunch of that. Let's screw around
with the other stuff in here.
Now is not the
time to dance! You've business in this city dark? On my cue you get
The cue is not
yours to take! While my master lives, he'll use your head to break!
God, Abonides is such a cockblock. Fine,
we'll give him his stupid code.
brow is twisted. You look tense. You desire still to see my master. You
must give the code to fetch him hence. You're impatient, you want him
faster. To summon him you lack the stuff. Give the code or court
trick here is, indeed, found in your conversation with Kween Chaos.
Remember her going on and on about Beautiful's being the essence of
condemnation, and finding him in his essence? Well, looking at the word
"condemnation", its "essence" is the root condemn. And there you go.
will part and rend a fissure up, from hell to surface, and Beauty rise,
at the word condemn!
Cutscene: Arise, Dennis
Hopper, arise! (Local
That wallpaper really is kind of fucked up, now that we get a good look
you cowering lickspittle, I told you to go light on the smoke and
brimstone and shit when I'm in my human form! This stuff goes right
into my friggin' throat, man!
find it even harsher as of late. With human heart and human lung,
perhaps you are not one so great! ...But I speak with too sharp a
tongue. As your servant I stoop and crawl. Here are two with stories
listen to you. You're not fooling anyone with the false modesty. Fire
up the espresso machine; I want a pot of the double stuff ready for me
when I'm done with Gideon and Rachel here.
I gotta tell you two I'm not happy. Not frickin' happy at all when two
of my people are making this much noise. Kicking the crap out of scrub
teams in your underwear? How do you think that's gonna play with the
dagos and spics and those damn Indians downtown? I got every mob in
this town handing me money 'cause I've got Mephisto's patronage and a
sweetheart deal with the Hand. You two start blowing their people's
brains out, and you know what I'll have? I'll have freakin' squat, man!
Every scrub gun in the metro area will be after me.
What is this?
We don't work for you! We've never even seen you before.
play games with me, girlie! That's the problem with the rackets these
days; nobody's got any loyalty left. Hey, I'm fightin' a war here! I
got enemies on every front and two different planes of existence. I
don't need mutiny by my own freakin' people.
not your people, Beautiful. We're wise to what your "sweetheart deal"
with the Hand is all about. We know that you implicate people in crimes
that they didn't commit so that the Hand has a cover story for
arresting them. Well, it didn't work, pal. We slipped that noose, and
we figure you know the real reason that the Hand wants us killed. We've
come for answers, Beautiful.
push it, Eshanti. Ask Abonides what happens, heh, when he pushes me too
far! Heh, heh, heh. He pushes and pushes and pushes, man, and then I
have to push back. It ain't pretty, man...it ain't pretty.
know what your game is. We know that you helped set us up for the scrub
hit. We're here to learn the reasons why, and don't try to intimidate
us, because we're not afraid of demons.
making demands on me? You've got rocks as big as church bells, boy, but
I'm gonna make 'em ring if you don't watch your step! Couple of
ham-and-egg grifters think they can walk into MY office in MY speakeasy
and give me the business? ...And don't hand me this fearless rap.
You've had the late-night kick on your door. The scrub teams showed you
how vulnerable you are. This planet's brimming with fear, man. I sense
it everywhere, in everything. It's in the sweat of anxious transglobe
grunts, in lonely beds at 4 AM, and skinny chicks with ugly scars
taking wicked backhands from husbands. Don't think you're special.
You've got buckets of fear in you, boy, and I'd rip it out and show it
to you if I didn't need both of you.
kind of like the "fear" speech, personally.
useless. Let's get out of here, Gideon.
not going anywhere. You're still in shock from the scrub attack.
Happens to everyone the first time someone tries to shoot them in their
bedroom, heh heh! Trust me, you'll get over it. Best thing to do is
plunge yourself into your work. ...Now, here's what you gotta do for
me. You're gonna help me with Sanguinarius, that sonofabitch. He's been
a stone in my shoe for centuries, and today we settle all accounts.
Does he think I've got my head in the sand that I don't know what he's
doing with all that ordnance he's stockpiling? That megalomaniac sees
himself straddling the horse of death...man, and he's leading this army
of demons armed with bazookas, machine guns, and cluster bombs. He's
even invented his own weapons: guns that fire poisonous serpents and
machine guns spraying hellfire. And, see, he's got this vision of
himself on this horse, man, with my head impaled on his sword, and he's
kicking ass all over hell in the name of his master Belial, who'll
reward him with chests of gems, and chariots overflowing with food, and
chambers full of plump naked boys
or some shit like that. Oh, your tiny little minds can't conceive of
the desperate grandeur of a demon's dreams. He wants it all, and that
includes my head, but I'll be bum-buggered from Dis to Dorchester if
that gun-crazy diablo's getting the drop on me.
voce) Let's play along a little, Rachel. Something wild's happening
here, and we might be able to turn it to our advantage. (normal voice)
I, uh, never quite understood the conflict between you and Sanguinarius.
to understand? There's nothing to it. It's a vendetta; it's hate! We're
demons. Hate's our thing, our schtick, our raison d'etre. It's...what
we do. Sanguinarius serves that ignorant, hulking Belial, see, and I do
the job for Mephistopheles. We've been tearing it up over the same turf
for thousands of years, and now I've got the upper hand. I had the
vision, the brilliance, to get connected with humankind's most potent
sinners. I had the genius to take human form and become a player in the
rackets. I built what I got with class and negotiation. Every mob boss
has a weakness, and I played them off one another like a freakin'
maestro. They all depend on me for something. Sanguinarius thinks he
can just buy up weapons and blast his way to victory? That's so typical
of Belial's cadre, man. So now it's time to go to the mattresses. We're
gonna hit him before he figures out how to use his new toys. You two
proved yourselves by kicking that scrub team's ass, and I think you're
ready for the big time.
Gideon. He's completely evil and insane.
Let's hear him
out. He's coming to the point.
bet your ass I'm coming to the point! You're going to hell to see what
Sanguinarius's got. I wanna put a job on that monkey, I'm gonna know
what he's packing. He thinks he's the only demon who can score from the
military, meanwhile I got dozens of buyers working the street. M-50
tanks with uranium-coated shells, automatic weapons with armor-piercing
bullets, capillary-bursting sonic devices...arms race with me, will he?
I'm gonna shut him down! See, you two are gonna help me take away his
edge. I know he's whipping on a trio of high brass that used to belong
to those saps in the CFF. If we can snatch them outta there, one of
them might be loyal enough to steer some Pentagon hardware my way.
And if they
tell you to stuff it?
I'll freakin' stuff them with broken beer bottles and cherry bombs,
ahahahaha! Same for you if you don't get your blank minds hooked up to
my psychopomp. I want you to bring back as many of those tin soldiers
as you can, but look out for Sanguinarius. If he catches you, you're
gonna have to duke it out with that helmet-head. So, you've got your
marching orders; you gonna just stare at me, or are you ready to go to
left, Gideon. There's nothing in hell that's gonna save our necks.
dunno, Rach. It's a dangerous hunch, but I think Beautiful's an
important part of this mess. We don't have any leads on earth about why
the Hand wants us dead. Maybe we have to go to hell to get the truth.
the drill, kids. I use the psychopomp to open a portal between here and
hell. You need to get out, just think about leaving, and you'll be
back...unless you try to job me, and then I'll leave you there to burn.
All clear on that?
no gets us a somewhat funny line from Mr. Beautiful, and gives us an
opportunity to get the examine text for him before moving on, so...
bustin'em with a hammer, kids! You think I need this? You think I can't
spit out a window and hit muscle as good as you?
Beautiful: The scent of brimstone fouls the air. The demon Pazuzu,
known on earth as Mr. Beautiful, plots new evils from within his
fair enough. We'll talk to him again and do it properly this time.
You two don't
hook to this psycho right now, they'll be finding pieces of you all
over the warrens for years. You ready?
apparently "psychopomp" is Cyberpunk Thriller for "spiky Frankenstein
hat and vaguely Aztec barbershop smock". Good to know. Gideon's face
goes all skully and we're off to the fiery depths.
Arsenal: The main storage facility for Sanguinarius's vast arsenal. Big
enough to include not only weapons but aircraft and other vehicles, he
spends a lot of time here just soaking up the atmosphere.
Buddy (backpack thing, lower left): This unique weapon actually
consists of the upper body of an android carrying a machine gun. Worn
like a backpack, the wearer merely has to face an enemy to elicit a
deadly round of fire over his head from the buddy.
(crossed swords): This sinister weapon is sharp enough to split hairs,
and heavy enough to require two hands.
(gun rack, top): Modern weaponry has not improved significantly on the
World War II-era bazooka, except that the explosive charges are a good
bit more powerful.
Gun (gun rack, middle): 2095's version of an assault rifle holds a
bigger clip and fires higher caliber bullets at a significantly faster
(gun rack, lower-left): A standard Army-issue laser pistol.
Gun (gun rack, lower-right): One of Sanguinarius's "improvements" on
earthly weapons, this rifle fires a shell that, on explosion, releases
a swarm of hellspawn serpents that slither over an opponent, inflicting
countless lethal bites.
Charges (green ball): These plastique charges are set for detonation
when the pin is pulled.
Cartridge (brown cylinder): This cartridge contains a deadly,
fast-acting, wide-area nerve gas.
(left torture rack): Admiral Pike, one of the Joint Chiefs of Staff,
writhes in pain.
Tantlinger (right torture rack): The once rugged, now bruised and
battered and nearly fried, Marine chief of staff, General Tantlinger
eyes you up.
Talk to Pike
Sanguinarius? He's gone!
No, he's not
gone. He's over there, going over the latest loot that greedy traitor
Mangini let him have!
Talk to Pike
you crazy? Get out of here! We're done for. Save yourself for something
touch, the whole "medals pinned to his bare chest" thing.
General. We're here to save you. We're from the Front.
Gideon. Don't you know lies are the road to...wait, never mind.
don't care if you're with the Foreign Freakin' Legion! Get out of here!
You came here of your own accord? How stupid can you be? Evac, haul
ass, retreat! Sanguinarius is nearby, and he's spoiling for a fight;
you'll end up in worse shape than me!
is nearby, eh? Capital! First, we'll grab some of the weaponry (not
all; there's a failure to demonstrate!), and skim over that invoice in
the lower right.
an exit to the right, so onward and forward!
War Room: The crucified torture victims lining the horizon, backlit by
firelight, seem apropos in this perpetual battlezone. This is the place
where Sanguinarius likes to try out his new weapons...and his old, for
The wreck of the former US Army Chief of Staff.
Clearly a demon who revels in his uniform, which is the proverbial full
metal jacket, and then some.
I'd describe his "uniform" as the proverbial US Postal Service shorts,
but who am I to judge?
Talk to Mangini
General. We'll get you out of here as soon as we can deal with
worry about me. This bastard hasn't gotten diddly out of me. I wouldn't
even give him my name, rank, and serial number!
with guns? Ask Mangini if those guns are gonna make any difference.
I'll plug ya and gut ya and feed your bowels to the hellhounds and
the hellhounds and the what now?
gruesome. We don't scare that easy.
but I'll bet you DIE real good.
OK, so. Combat in Hell is rare and non-interactive; it basically
amounts to a set of short cutscene clips in which you either win or
die, depending on whether you've met a certain set of conditions for
victory. In the case of Sanguinarius, these conditions are simple: loot
everything from his arsenal. If you left even a single weapon behind,
that's your ass, like so.
Combat: Plugged and gutted
I guess that's the Rachentieren thing he was talking about. Let's try
that again, properly equipped this time.
Combat: VICTOLY! (Local
better! Mangini, Pike and Tantlinger are thus returned to the world of
the living, their souls represented by a human skeleton made entirely
out of highly polished wood. Don't ask me, kids, I just work here.
Anyway, we end up back in Beautiful's office.
Talk to Abonides
Neither one of
you a slaughtered lamb? It is Sanguinarius who tastes defeat! I salute
your strength; let's down a dram.
Talk to Beautiful
We did your
dirty work for you, Beautiful. Now you can pay us back by clearing our
You ought to pay ME back, girlie, after all I've done for you two. You
think Sanguinarius is the only one who wants me dead? I keep my
standing in the mobs because they're too afraid to try for me. I show
one sign of weakness, one sign I can be had, and they'll be on me like
dogs, man, like rabid freakin' hellhounds! I need you two to be good
Germans and keep checking with me. I'll have your next mission.
get another set of conversation-tree options here. As usual, I'll run
through the lot of 'em.
(Tell us about
So, what do you
know about the Imperator? There's gotta be more than what we hear.
No shit. I
think it's safe to say you two are pretty much clueless on any subject.
But then, Solux
did actually turn some things around for this country.
Boy, you really
buy all that propaganda shit, don't you?
I'd forgotten how flaky Rachel's characterization is in this game. One
moment she's a true believer; the next, she's ramming Gideon's naivete
down his throat.
true, Solux did do some good for the nation.
and he also made sure that he twisted the whole checks-and-balances
concept into his corner. Solux controls every facet of the government,
from getting a bill passed to your local zoning commissions' ordinance
on cleaning up dogshit. You probably already know that...but what you
may not know is that Solux controls more.
What do you
do I mean? I mean Solux controls your life, your laws, the friggin' air
you breathe. But Solux, in a way, also controls...the fear.
The fear? Fear
it! That's all I'm sayin'. I probably said too much already. Man, am I
stupid, stupid! Well, looking at you two, I guess I'm not too bad off,
but damn! I almost cut my own throat, man.
(How much do you
know about Satan?)
do I know? Shit, I serve the guy. Man, you know what kinda shit I'd get
in for trashin' the big kahuna? I mean, we're talking the master of
evil here. I respect the hell outta that guy.
about this whole scouting thing?
Scouts? As in,
Girl and Boy Scouts?
See, I'm thinking long-term. This whole troop thing could be a gold
mine. You got a network of kids across this country, already connected.
You start the temptation off early and it spreads like wildfire.
(What's the word
Listen, I work for the guy, whaddya want me to say? Heh, heh, y'know?
Talk to Abonides
never retreat! The master plots and works his magic. With your help,
his rule will be complete.
Beautiful suggests, we'll want to check back with him later. However,
we're done here for now, so it's finally time to move on from the
Interface. We have lots of places unlocked on the DC Map now, and can
finally start checking into some of our other leads.