On this page, you will find a detailed description of the first act of Layers of Fear titled Painter's Story. We show how to advance to the next chapters of the story, and supply solutions to encountered puzzles.
The walkthrough presented on this page shows only one of the exemplary ways to complete the stages. Depending on your decisions, your experience may differ slightly. Nevertheless, these changes usually mean a few of the minor interactions altered and some room layouts changed from their original state. The general layout of the levels and the puzzles remain unchanged.
- Prologue: House
- Chapter 1
- Trunk Puzzle
- Perspective and Easels Puzzle
- Looping room puzzle
- Chapter 2
- Candles Puzzle
- Chapter 3
- Safe Puzzle
- Lock Puzzle
- Chase Sequence
- Chapter 4
- Animal Doors Puzzle
- Chapter 5
- Gears Chase Sequence
- Phones Puzzle
- Chapter 6
You start the game as a writer currently staying in a lighthouse. Leave the room through the doors, and then explore the surrounding areas a bit. After a while, the phone placed on the wall in the left wing of the building will ring. Pick it up and talk to the representative of the agency.
Next, go back to the starting room and interact with the typewriter on the desk. When you do this, previously closed doors will open in the left wing of the lighthouse (opposite the phone).
- In the new room, tear the canvas off the painting.
- Use the phone in the hallway to call your son.
- Head to the first room and use the typewriter.
You are in the main part of the estate:
- Head towards the door located straight ahead and to the left.
- Tear the note mentioning the location of the key to the workshop (it is in the office).
Spend the time in the prologue to thoroughly explore all available rooms. The painter's and his wife's house is filled with various collectibles and fragments of text that will surely help you understand the plot.
The office is located on the upper floor of the building, on the left side when looking from the stairs. You will find the key in the desk's left drawer. After finding the key, go back to the workshop and sit down at the easel.
- Follow the marked path. As you approach the window, it will shut violently right before your face. Leave the room through the same door that you've used to get inside.
- In the small office, there is a pathway hidden inside a wardrobe which will lead you to a room with mirrors.
In the next room, collect the key held by the person on the painting.
The key opens a small box on the left. Leave the room through the door with "NEVER FORGET" written on it.
Continue going forward until you encounter a lever in the wall. Pull it to get access to the next room.
The room is a well-lit living room. Your task will be to open the trunk standing on the left side of the room. To get the code for the lock, all you have to do is to light candles at 3 paintings depicting a horse, fox, and rat. You now have to code (6-9-4).
Inside the trunk, you'll find a key that matches the lock from the previous room. In the corridor, you'll find 2 armchairs - red and green, and pathways leading to opposite directions.
Be warned - this is one of the first choices that affects the ending of the Act. The color red symbolizes unhealthy passion and madness of the main character. Green, on the other hand, is the color of his wife's eyes, symbolizing their love. In this walkthrough, we've chosen to follow the wife arc. If you are interested in other endings for this act, be sure to visit the page dedicated to them.
Head in the chosen direction and pick up the painting on the ground.
Follow the path laid out by the corridor until you reach a large room with multiple easels.
Perspective and Easels Puzzle
The puzzle here is based on perspective.
- Your task is to look inside every painting's frame to reveal the next frames.
- As you look through the third painting, a door will appear in the wall. By returning to the first painting, you'll reveal a frame placed before the sculpture.
- By looking through the final painting, the sculpture will disappear, and in its place, a key will appear that can open the door.
Follow the linear path to reach a small room with an open window.
Looping room puzzle
- As you follow the door on the right, the next room will start to loop endlessly.
- Your task will be to pick up the perfume or the bottle standing on the table in the fourth loop, and then place it on the saucer in the next room. Choosing one of the two items may affect the ending.
Performing that action will allow you to stop the looping. The door on the right will lead you to a small office. Turn the light on to discover a secret pathway in the chimney.
After proceeding through multiple rooms, you'll finally reach the kitchen, and from the kitchen painting, apples will start pouring out. After this sequence, collect a piece of canvas that is nailed down by a knife.
The way out of the kitchne will lead you to the main hall of the residence. Go straight to the painter workshop (forward and left from the entrance). Approach the easel and interact with it to complete this chapter of the story.
The workshop serves as a type of hub for this act of the story. This is where all collectibles found during the game will appear, and from this room, you'll begin and finish every chapter of the story.
Follow the path. After the explosion and hero landing on the ground, turn back for a piece of paper found on a destroyed couch.
After reaching the elevator, activate it by closing the door and pulling a lever.
Follow the path predetermined by the game. In the room with the mirror, go through it.
In the looped corridor, follow the footprints on the ground (go two times left).
Follow the path indicated by the game until you reach a hall branching into 3 corridors. This is another moment where your choices can affect the end of the story. Choose one of the available paths.
You'll encounter another similar corridor. Here too, the chosen path will affect the development of the story.
Upon reaching the burning attic, your task will be to find 2 candles.
- The first one is located at the end of the room, opposite the stairs.
- Place the found candle on the candlestick located on the opposite wall.
- The second candle is right next to the candlestick, on the other side of the painting. Place this one in its place as well.
- A hole in the painting will appear through which you can go through.
In the corridor you'll find a lantern. From now on, you can light your surroundings by pressing Right Mouse Button.
The lantern can also be used in combat and when neutralizing cursed objects. An opportunity to use it will appear right away - there is a child echo sitting on a chest.
Just point the beam on the cursed object and focus the light by holding Left Mouse Button.
Don't overdo it, as extended use of the lamp will overheat it. When that happens, you'll need to let it cool down before using it again.
After the sequence in the burning room, head right to the room with the gramophone. Pick up the nearby gramophone record and activate the device. After exiting the room, you'll find yourself again in the painter's workshop. Sit down to the easel to finish the chapter.
Follow the designated path. To clear the way forward, focus the lantern beam on the echo of the picture frame.
As you go through a long, dark, corridor, you'll encounter a phantom. To defeat it, focus the lantern light on it. Keep the light pointed until the phantom is temporarily destroyed. Be careful, as the phantom will appear again.
If you let the monster get too close, it will attack the hero and deprive him of life. Don't worry though. In the game, death has no consequences, and once killed, the protagonist will wake up in a room with a door that will lead you back to the last save point.
Upon arriving in the room with the raised door, your task will be to find the combination to the safe.
- Approach the safe, then go to the light switch near the entrance door.
- After turning the light on, a table will appear, from which you can collect a piece of paper held by a knife. Now turn the light off.
- Approach the safe again, then input the combination from the piece of paper (10-70-90).
- In the safe you'll find a key. You can now turn the light on - the inaccessible door will return to its natural position, and you'll be able to open it with the newly found key.
Upon reaching a looping staircase, follow the stairs up.
You'll find yourself in the library, which has a lot of haunted (echoes) books lying on the shelves. Neutralize them all with the lantern. One of the cursed books will leave a key.
Follow the path laid out by the game until you reach a small room with 3 door pairs. In the surrounding corridors, you'll find 3 pieces of paper that contain numbers for the code:
- The first piece of paper is in a drawer in the corridor with 3 doors.
- The second paper is in a small corridor on a stack of books.
- The third piece of paper is in a longer corridor, behind a glass door.
By collecting 3 pieces of paper, you've received the code for the final door. The code is 3-8-5.
As you arrive in a stuffy, dark corridor, once again the phantom will attack you. To escape, you need to find 3 pieces of paper that joined create a code for the padlocked door.
- The first piece of paper is found on a wooden chest. Picking it up starts the chase sequence.
- The second piece of paper is in a small room, on a table lit by a lamp.
- The third piece of paper is in a small room on a dresser with a broken mirror.
The rooms loop every now and then, so if you accidentally skipped any of the pieces, you'll be able to return to it.
After collecting all of the pieces, proceed to the padlocked door and input 6-1-4 as the code.
The action switches to the writer which you've had the opportunity to control during the prologue.
After closing the window in the back area of the building, a phone call, and restarting the generator in the basement, go to the room with the painting and interact with it.
Head towards the room with 3 doors and a lamp. To learn which door to choose, light the floor with the lamp. The arrows will show you the right way.
In the room with dolls, your task is to arrange the furniture in such a way that the 2 armchairs and the table create a coherent setup. After arranging the furniture, all that is left to do is to light the lamp.
Upon reaching a fork in the road, you once again need to choose the path. Choose freely.
Animal Doors Puzzle
As you follow the path, you'll finally reach a room with "THERE WAS A DOG" written inside it - that room has a key.
Collecting it activates the second chase sequence where you need to run from the phantom. Your task is to find 3 keys and 3 corresponding doors.
- The door with an image of a dog is found on the same floor as the key. While in the room, rip out the wheel from the wooden toy. This will allow you to get the second key.
- The door with a cat is floor below. With your lantern, destroy the child echo and get the last key.
- The door with a rat is on the same floor. Get through it to conclude the chase sequence.
Follow the path until you reach a nicely decorated child's room. Pick up the key for the music box from the drawer next to the child's bed, then use it to activate the toy.
After experiencing the sequence, leave the room to enter the painter's workshop - the chapter is concluded.
Upon reaching a corridor with rats, your task is to run away from the horde. Remember that you can hold SHIFT to move faster.
After completing a short sequence with the phantom, you'll find yourself in a small, locked office. Get the key from the person on the painting. When the hero starts to experience hallucinations, light the candles found in the center of the room.
The next key you can get in a same way as the previous one, this time in an office filled with chairs.
In the room with a large "DON"T LOOK BACK" text, under no circumstances should you turn around. Pass through next doors, lighting a candle in every next room.
In the room with the chain, start pulling the chain down. After a moment, the mechanism responsible for keeping the door locked will unlock, and you'll be able to continue.
Gears Chase Sequence
Upon reaching the door locked by a mechanism, your task will be to find 3 gears that will power the machinery.
- The first gear is right next to the mechanism. Pick it up and place it in its place.
- This will activate the phantom. Escape the ghost through a series of corridors, and you should encounter the second gear. After putting it in place, continue your search for the final gear.
- After finding the third gear and placing it in the machinery, the door will open, and you'll be able to continue.
Similarly to the previous chase sequences, the corridors loop so you can go trial and error and finally you'll find the needed gears.
Upon arriving at the office, the phone will ring. To find it, you need to look for a hidden room behind the bookshelf. After listening to a short conversation, your task will be to find the right, 3-digit phone number.
- The first 3 digits are found on the painting depicting a child. It's 3-6-3.
- The second set of digits is written on the desk falling into the abyss. It's 8-5-3.
- To access the third phone, you need to light the candle - this will summon stairs. The code for this phone is based on the order of paintings (each has a corresponding number). It's 3-5-4.
After answering all of the phones, continue along the path the game shows you. Soon you'll reach the hero's real office, from which you'll be able to get to the workshop to conclude this chapter.
After a long sequence of exploration and escaping from rats, you finally end up in a room with a long chain. After turning the crank, you'll pull the chain higher, and there are hanging pictures at its end. You can point the beam to the chain and let the paintings fall down.
The ending may be affected based on your decision on what to do with the hanging paintings.
Upon reaching a long corridor with a wheelchair, you can push it all the way to the end of the room.
The ending is affected based on what you've done with the wheelchair. As you're taken back to the main hall of the residence, the phantom of the wife once again will appear.
- Your task now is to locate and destroy with light 3 cursed artifacts (echoes). 2 of them are on the upper floor, and one is on the ground floor. The paths on the paintings will help you locate them.
- After destroying all of the cursed items, go to the bathroom located on the ground floor (right from the entrance).
- After immersing your head in the bathtub several times, proceed back to the painter's workshop, and interact with the painting to learn your ending.