Welcome to the Waterfall area! This area of Fez is a big deal, not just because it's pretty, but because there are tons of secrets locked away here. Well… most of the game is like that, but here it goes double! There are puzzles, there are bits, but most of all, there's an owl!
Owl – On the tree right above the entrance to the Waterfall area next to the stone pillar with the markings on it will be an owl! Hit B next to an owl to talk to it. Yes, these are important. Remember, owls only come out at night.
Getting into Waterfall: Mine– Well, there's a bomb, and there's a rocky looking wall near the bomb, so what do you think we should do? Grab the bomb, drop down to the front of the mine and leave the bomb there. It goes off on a short fuse so be quick.
Let's solve some puzzles!
Bit – There's a bit hidden behind a bit of crumbly wall we'll have to blow up, and it's easy to miss if you're not looking for the bit lines. It's a simple puzzle, fortunately. Grab a bomb, drop down one level and rotate 90* right, then place the bomb next to the wall! Magic, huh?
Do this again (with a 180* turn this time) on the same level to find a large hidden door! Proceed through it.
The ante is now upped as go deeper into the mine. One huge facet of Fez dynamics is the attachment of things as they rotate 90*. For instance, surely by now you've had a chance to climb vines, then rotated 90* to find that they still continue along the side of the wall. Well, many things in Fez behave that way, and one such thing is bombs.
Bit – Bomb explosions cause chain reactions, destroying wall fragments piece by piece. These chain reactions can occur around corners, but if you turn too late the explosions fizzle out before destroying the whole area, the pieces come back. It's important to turn the moment the side you're on is cleared.
Cube – Next up is getting to the top. There's a door at mid-height you should open before moving on, so do that real quick. Now, this one's a little tricky. Place the bomb at the foot of the tower, and let it explode like the last puzzle we did. Now, in 3/4 perspectives you'll note there's a floating tower with a cube on top of it. However, as the explosive chain reaction approaches the tower it lines up perfectly with the base. Let the explosion cross over to the tower before rotating, as seen below, then continue as per the usual. If you mess up here, there's a bit of a checkpoint where a new bomb will spawn inside the base itself. Once you've successfully blown everything up, climb to the top for the cube sitting there waiting for you.
There's a small one-way warp gate at the top which takes you back to the Main Hub. Before you do that, check out the door back at the base of the spire you just climbed.
Key – This is a fun puzzle! First off we're going to pick up the bomb (because why wouldn't we?) and throw it at the cracked bits. Make sure you're throwing it along the plane where there's complete platform coverage under the cracks. Then, when the bomb goes off, rotate 90* left.
The destroyed wall exposes a ladder which you can jump on to. Once on, rotate 90* right and climb to the very top of the ladder. When you're there, switch back 90* left and jump off for a chest with a key in it.
Once you're done here, assuming you snagged that bit at the bottom there, head on back to Mine 2.
Now that you're done in the Mine, you can either take the warp back to the Main Hub and go places from there, or come back to the Waterfall Area. If you want to stay, stay on this page.
– Back to Main Hub
More doors here in Waterfall area for us to go through, so let's get to it. You'll note there's a door nested just next to the waterfall, head on in there to grab some bits. There's more to do there, but that won't be until much later. Head to the SPOILER ZONE for some insight.
You'll note this place is infinitely cycling. That's a thing, no need to test it. Get your bits and move on.
There are several doors in the Waterfall area, and somehow many of them seem to hide away rather significant secrets. One such secret is hiding in the door on top of the waterfall itself. Make your way to the top and enter the door in the tree.
Now, again, we thoroughly encourage you to try and figure this out on your own. Unlike some other codes in this game, all you need is right here in the room with you. That said, again, we do have the answer, so you're welcome to stick around and find it out.
There's a bit in this room, so let's go get it. A simple bounce-climb to the top reveals a stone slab with several markings on it. You may notice these from the very beginning of the game when the big cube said a bunch of random symbols at you. There's also a fox jumping over a dog.
Writing Cube – Moving on, make your way to the chest and open it to find the Writing Cube. Fantastic right? It'll show you sooo many things!
Nope. But it does give you a clue that something bigger is going on in this area, and indeed something is.
Alphabet Cipher – Time is up, put down your pens and turn in your vocabulary tests! Many languages have things known as "pangrams", these sentences contain every letter in the language. In English, the shortest pangram is "the quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog". MY GOODNESS! Isn't there a brown fox jumping over a presumably lazy dog right here? Yes. Yes there is.
Now, we know that pangram means something, but what? This slab doesn't seem to fit those words if you read it like English, but they must fit! Well, it's not read like English. The Fezzian language, as I'm hereforth referring to it as, is read from top to bottom, right to left; like Japanese. You'll note, then, that "the quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog" fits in perfectly. Enjoy your newly acquired language!
To accompany your understanding of Fezzian is a beautiful cheat sheet we've cooked up so you don't have to! Note that Q and K are the same, as are U and V.
Well then. You've yourself many things to go read! Back to Waterfall you go.
!! – SPOILER ZONE – !!
Ahh, so you've cracked the Shift Cipher have you? Good stuff. You're about to open several areas within areas you've already visited! Amazing, right? Assuming you properly understand the code, you'll note that when seen standing vertically, all Shift Ciphers must be rotated counter-clockwise. Chiefly, those ciphers seen on the large stones all need to be rotated. That said, let's get down to business.
Shift Cipher – Right when you enter the Waterfall, and likely since you've first laid eyes on it, you'll see a Shift Cipher stone. For those of you who haven't decoded it, the code is:
Left, Shift Left, Right, Shift Right, Up, Jump, Down, Shift Right, Shift Right
Enter here to find the water valve. This valve controls the height of the water throughout the entire Main Hub. There's no reason not to lower the water all the way, so go ahead and do that.
Lo and behold there's now a door you can go through. Surprise! This is going to happen often. Head through this newly appeared and likely soggy door.
Treasure Map – Hop in the door, climb up the faces, open the chest and you get… most of a treasure map! What it means, we'll never know. Well. We will, but not at the moment.
For now, let's head back to Waterfall and check out what new doors we have available! Or, door, anyways.
Red-Cube – Ahh… Fun. It's a riddle. If you can't read any of this, go back to earlier parts in the Waterfall area as you should indeed be able to read all this by this point. The large block says:
"Please answer this security question: What 's my name?"
"Security question hint: My first half is what it is, my second half is half of what made it."
If you can figure this riddle out on your own, more power to you. For the record, I could not, and had to have a fellow staff member help me out. If you'd like to try your own hand at this, go for it, we won't stop you, but we do have the answer, and there's more to it than just the answer.
You'll note each of these blocks is neatly laid out in front of you, and you'll be tempted to spell the answer out like you would in English. However, this is Fezzian, and since we can't stack the blocks 8-high, we're going to stack them 8… horizontal. The right-most block will be the top (while facing the entrance door) and the left most will be the bottom. The answer needs to be rotated 90* clockwise to reflect writing vertically.
Skipping ahead a bit, the answer is "METATRON". Where "META" comes from I have no idea, I couldn't figure it out, but that apparently "is what it is". The second half is "TRON", which is half of "POLYTRON", which makes perfect sense. In fact I figured that part out on my own, and you may have as well.
As far as spelling that out is concerned, each block has its different rotations on its other sides. Rotate until you find the rightIt's important to face the door when aligning the word blocks, but the key is to make sure you pick up the block in the correct dimension (it should be the correct letter rotated 90* clockwise) then put it down in the right spot in the dimension facing the entrance.
So, it'll read, "HILNGNXS" if you lay it out as though it were left to right before rotating it. Hopefully that helps visualize it, but it's really quite simple after that.
You get a red cube for finishing this. Yes, you have it, no it won't show up in your inventory. You'll know what this is later.
Once you've done that, revisit every Main Hub location.
Here's some fast links:
Remember, now that you've got the Shift Cipher you're going to be looking for these in the SPOILER ZONE. The "Lower Water Level" puzzles will be noted as such.
But wait, there's more! You may have noticed by now that things change here at the Waterfall during the night. For one, there's an owl, which you should have gotten by now, but chiefly there's another Shift Cipher to complete. If you check 90* right of the actual waterfall you'll notice a large rectangle. This is a door. Surprise.
Waterfall Secret – At night, you'll see a special glowing symbol show up. Do this cipher before night time passes, write it down, or just go ahead and look at the code, which we've written down below:
Left, Shift Left, Left, Right, Shift Right, Down, Up, Shift Left
That done, enter your new door.
Anti-Cube – TRIPPY! This place is amazingly silly. Now, the path to the top is the one you're supposed to take. No matter what's going on, always go up to get there. Eventually you'll make it to the top door and enter it, it's all skill and timing, nothing puzzling here. At least not yet.
Once you're through the top door, time some more amazing jumps and grab the cube. Once you do, a warp gate will pop up. Go through it, but then come back here to the beginning of the area.
This time through the Night Door, we're here on a mission. A mission to find the secret door in the trippy room. We'll show you where it is this time, don't worry. Luckily it's not too complicated, and is really just something that's easy to miss.
Proceed as usual (if anything here is usual) by climbing on top of the entrance platform. Then, make your way up to the second platform above you. You can tell you're at the right area because of the square tile-esque textures on the wall. You'll note that depending on how you got here, the door is tough to notice and easy to pass by on your way to the top of the room. Rotate around this platform until you see the door, then go in it.
Anti-Cube – I love these puzzles, for whatever reason. You'll note the massive tuning stone here. If you have rumble on your controller turned off, turn it on. A shift code is sent via rumble to the left and right sides of your controller. It can be difficult to tell when the code starts and stops, but here's what we put in to get the trigger:
RT, LT, LT, LT, RT, LT, LT, RT
Now that we're done with everyth- oh wait, no we're not. We're forgetting the infinite level! Well let's get on that then!
Anti-Cube – First of all, isn't it great to finally be almost done with Waterfall? This place is so huge. All kinds of Shift Ciphers up in this. Speaking of which, it's time to do another one. Now, you may ask, "Where is it? I don't see a stone anywhere?". Well there isn't one, but look around. You're IN the cipher! Amazing, right? The whole area, when looking at the entrance, is a cipher. Here's the code:
Right, Shift Left, Right, Jump, Shift Right, Down, Jump, Up
So that's cool, right? Blows your mind a bit. Blew ours anyways. You're done here now, so you're welcome to leave. FOREVER!!