Chapter 9

Level number
Date of creation
May - June 2009
Preceded by
Followed by

Escape (alternatively, Pornstars Die Too) is the ninth chapter of The Beginner's Guide.



This level begins in a room with pieces of modern furniture and decoration: a glass table, a floor lamp, two sofas, three glass shelves, a white table with drawers and a picture of urban landscape. Beyond iron bars, there is an outside path leading to a well, which is apparently located on the top of a hill. After a door, there are staircases and corridors with side walls decorated with modern art. The player walks down and gets to the deep end of the well as the passage instantly closes, leaving the player with no exits.

The level then restarts in the same room, with no exits and black-circumvented rectangular spaces instead of furniture. The chat system then asks the player four questions about which piece of furniture they want to put in each part (three options of answers are given), but the player's opinion is not taken in consideration. Instead, the same pieces of before will appear in the same places of the room. A glitch then occurs as the room begins expanding and the same pieces of furniture reappear on different positions.

Then comes the third part: in the middle of a whiteness, there is a different room with the same furniture and several messages intended to be a tutorial on "how to escape any prison environment". The tutorial instructs the player four steps: click on the table, slightly turn the picture, turn the floor lamp on and off, slightly push one of the sofas and click on the shelves. A "return" button, leading to the "real prison", then appears.

Back in the first room, there is no way to follow the steps since the table and other parts are missing. Several other versions of this level are briefly shown before the screen automatically shuts down.

The last screen is a dark neighborhood where a lamppost and a telephone cabin are highlighted. Inside this cabin, the player talks to an alternative themselves before they "escaped the prison".


Okay this one is tough, it's going to kind of just spin its own wheels for a few minutes, hang with it.

See like this is it, the whole game, and there's nothing that's particularly interesting about it, you just walk to the end of a hallway. Except for some reason, Coda gets really fixated on this prison that has all this modern furniture. And I don't know why, but he decides he needs to revisit this prison, he's going to start over, use the same assets, turn it into something else. Okay, cool, here's version 2.

Eh, there's a bit more to this one, but still it's not really communicating anything, it's kinda just weird for weirdness sake.

(For some reason a subtitle file is missing here, so sorry if I missed anything)

So okay, he throws it out and starts over, this time he comes at the prison idea from a different direction.

(Player completes tasks and returns to the "prison") And of course, now the table is gone and you can't begin the chain of events to escape.

Here's a version where there are no bars but you can't actually get to the well. And then a version where the inside of the prison is the outside and the outside is the inside. Let me just blink you real quick through a few more of these, I mean he really unloaded on this prison idea, there's nearly a dozen of them. Personally I think it's awful to watch this, to see a person basically unraveling through their work, and for what! At what point do you just go “Eh, maybe there are game ideas other than this prison that I could be working on"? But Coda doesn't have that voice telling you to stop, that particular mechanism of defense against yourself. Without it you just spiral. And so he keeps going and going and going...and then he hits on something. And he likes it, and that's it, he's done, he stops making prisons. This is the very last version of the prison game that he created and the reason I think it works is that the prison is not actually in it.

(See dialogue section)

It's a conversation. And so this is what Coda wants, is to be able to talk to someone, to share what's on his mind and to get some good advice from someone who knows. But the irony is that even in this scenario you're still talking to yourself, you know ALL of these games so far are Coda talking to himself.

I can see why he considers this a fitting conclusion to the prison games, after all the obsession and frustration, to just be told by someone you can trust that things are going to be okay, wouldn't that be nice?

Dialogue (From In-Game Files)Edit

Furniture RoomEdit

What furniture ought to go in the center of the room?

  1. How about a TV with surround sound.
  2. A refridgerator. (sic)
  3. Put a giant hole in the ground.

Okay, now what about along the wall of the room?

  1. Let's put a huge picture of a horse.
  2. I'd really like a washing mashine. (sic)
  3. 10 stoves lined up along the wall.

I think we should-light up this room a bit.

  1. A skylight. Full-ceiling window. Let's open this baby up.
  2. I'm thinking 10x12 recessed electric 6-in. soft LED ceiling lights with fluorescent trim
  3. We'll put live tesla coils in each corner. Yeah.

And a table! You need a table!

  1. Who are you? Where exactly are you doing this from?
  2. I'm pretty sure none of my choices are making any difference.
  3. Tables were invented in 1935.

Prison PhoneEdit



Hello? Who is this?

  1. Hey! It's me! I'm you from after you escape the prison! (Goto past2)

past2: You're me? ...So you were trapped in this prison too?

  1. Yep, I was in the furniture maze. (Goto past3)
  2. Yep, I was in the escape tutorial. (Goto past3)
  3. Yep, I was in the reverse prison. (Goto past3)

past3: That's where I am right now! Oh I'm so glad to know that I get out eventually! What's it like to escape?

  1. Actually, I'm already forgetting what being in the prison was like... (Goto past4a)
  2. It's strange, but in a way I kind of miss being in the prison. (Goto past4b)
  3. It feels like being completely still and wildly in motion at the same time. (Goto past4c)

past4a: Really? How long has it been since you got out?

  1. Years! Like, I've been standing right here working up the nerve to call you! (Goto past5a)
  2. Only a few minutes, but somehow it's already fuzzy, kind of like it never happened. (Goto past5b)

past5a: Years?? I haven't been here for years, I don't think..

  1. This is really hard to admit, but I was afraid to make this call. (Goto transition)
  2. Time moves differently for you than it does for me. (Goto transition)
  3. Maybe the prison is just affecting you in a strange way. (Goto transition)

past5b: But this is the worse, [sic] most desperate thing I've ever been through! How could you possibly forget it?

  1. Haha, I promise it's not as bad right now as you think it is. (Goto transition)
  2. You don't ever forget it, you just stop identifying with it. (Goto transition)
  3. Anything can seem infinite when you're drenched in it. (Goto transition)

past4b: Why? Was there anything about it that you felt good about? Being here [stinks]!

  1. True, maybe I only like things once I don't have them any more. (Goto past7a)
  2. It was comfortable, I knew its limits, I knew my place. (Goto past7b)
  3. But don't you feel excited about getting out? The promise of freedom? (Goto past7c)

past7a: I do that too I guess... But is that just how I'm going to be forever? I'd really like to change that.

  1. Maybe? (Goto transition)
  2. No, I think you'll find a way to change. (Goto transition)

past7b: Is that good though? It's comfortable, but it's inhuman. I couldn't live this way...

  1. You don't need to! You just need to be patient. (Goto transition)
  2. Having limits is way more important than you probably realize right now... (Goto transition)
  3. You'll see what I'm talking about when you've been there for a while longer. (Goto transition)

past7c: Excited? It's the only thing that matters to me! It's the only thing keeping me going! "Excited" doesn't really do it justice.

  1. Exactly! You have something you care about! Something to look forward to. (Goto transition)
  2. You won't always have something that you care about as much as this. (Goto transition)
  3. Just be with that enthusiasm for a bit, let it ooze into your flesh. (Goto transition)

past4c: Do you feel any different? Some times I'm scared I'll get out and then things will be exactly the same as before.

  1. No, I'm really the same person now as I was back then. (Goto past11a)
  2. It actually does change, I don't feel like the same person at all. (Goto past11b)

past11a: Oh no, that's awful! That's the worst thing I can imagine!

  1. Don't worry! It's actually not a bad thing! I promise. (Goto transition)
  2. Well, you get something else in exchange. (Goto transition)
  3. The problem is that you don't actually know who you are right now. (Goto transition)

past11b: Oh good! That's so nice to hear. That makes me feel...really happy.

  1. Age just kind of does that, you know? (Goto transition)
  2. I'm still me, but I'm not somehow. It's hard to describe. (Goto transition)
  3. Remember to enjoy being who you are right now, it won't last. (Goto transition)

transition: Wait, if you're me, then did you get a call from another version of you when you were trapped?

  1. No, I think I'm the first person to call back. (Goto past101)
  2. Yes, I did get a call, that's how I escaped. (Goto past102)

past101: Then can you tell me how to get out? Maybe I can come find you! What do I have to do?

  1. To get out, all you have to do is be sincere. (Goto sincere1)
  2. To get out, you need to tell me how you feel right now. (Goto feel1)
  3. To get out, just talk with me for a bit. (Goto talk1)

sincere1: ...what? That will free me? How does that work?

  1. Listen, you can't know until you're out, but I promise it works. (Goto sincere4)
  2. Just be sincere. (Goto sincere4)
  3. It will make sense. (Goto sincere4)

feel1: ...what? That will free me? How does that work?

  1. Listen, you can't know until you're out, but I promise it works. (Goto feel4)
  2. Just tell me how you feel. (Goto feel4)
  3. It will make sense. (Goto feel4)

talk1: ...what? That will free me? How does that work?

  1. Listen, you can't know until you're out, but I promise it works. (Goto talk4)
  2. Just talk to me. (Goto talk4)
  3. It will make sense. (Goto talk4)

past102: What did they tell you? What did you have to do to get out?

All they told me was to be sincere. (Goto sincere2)

  1. They asked me how I felt about being imprisoned. (Goto feel2)
  2. They just talked to me for a while. (Goto talk2)

sincere2: ...what? That freed you? How does that work?

  1. Listen, you can't know until you're out, but I promise it works. (Goto sincere4)
  2. Just be sincere. (Goto sincere4)
  3. It will make sense. (Goto sincere4)

feel2: ...what? That freed you? How does that work?

  1. Listen, you can't know until you're out, but I promise it works. (Goto feel4)
  2. Just tell me how you feel. (Goto feel4)
  3. It will make sense. (Goto feel4)

feel4: Okay...I feel afraid that nothing will ever change.

  1. Go on. (Goto ending)
  2. Go on. (Goto ending)
  3. Go on. (Goto ending)

talk2: ...what? That freed you? How does that work?

  1. Listen, you can't know until you're out, but I promise it works. (Goto talk4)
  2. Just talk to me. (Goto talk4)
  3. It will make sense. (Goto talk4)

talk4: Okay...I can talk Let's just talk for a bit. Will you be here?

  1. I will be here for as long as you need. (Goto ending)

ending: End of Dialogue

Walkthrough (no commentary)Edit

The Beginner's Guide - Chapter 9 Escape

The Beginner's Guide - Chapter 9 Escape