By Al Giovetti
Lead Artist:

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Riven Walkthrough

Solve Courtesy of: Tom & Gavin (Visit Their Homepage)

  1. The Rivenese Number System
  2. Big Dome Island
  3. Forest Island
  4. Paper Island
  5. Big Dome Island 2
  6. Ghen's House
  7. Tree Island
  8. Rebel Island
  9. Tree Island 2
  10. Ghen's House 2
  11. Catherine's Island
  12. Big Dome Island 3
numbers.jpg 11.60 K

This is the Rivenese Number system. There are four basic characters. All characters are inside what looks like a really spaced-out roman numeral 2 - that's the one labeled '0?', just because I've never seen it, and don't know if it's a real Rivenese Number. The basic symbols are 1, 2, 3, and 4, labeled above. The cool/tricky part comes when you need to go above 4. When you rotate a basic digit 90 degrees, you multiply the value by 5. So, 5 in the Rivenese number system is just one, rotated - likewise, 10 is just 2, rotated. Then, if you want, say, 6, you just overlay the regular character with the rotated one (see the diagram). The other numbers follow the same patterns. To my knowledge, you can only have two overlayed characters in the same base frame (although you can put two frames side by side if you need higher numbers - see the numbers on Ghen's linking books for an example)

Big Dome Island

After the animation, leave the cage and look over the side of the cliff on your right. The guy that got hit with the dart is laying down there. But that's not important right now. Go up the stairs to the start of the bridge. Turn left and you will see a gold room. You may want to look in the beetles before proceeding. The room has two doors and 5 passageways leading from it. The button to the right of the entrance rotates the room. Hit the button 4 times (you will see a cool animation 4 times) and you should be facing a dark wall with a peephole. Turn around and continue to follow the stairs down the other side of the hill. Turn left when you reach the end of the path and you should see a locked gate. Go under the gate and through the cave. You should see the gold room again with a passage leading to another cave through the room and slightly left. If you do not see this, go back to the button to rotate the room again. Continue to hit the button and then check the rotation in the cave until you do. Here is the illustration of the rotating room: rotating.jpg 52.76 K

In the second cave there is a lever on a pipe. Turn it, these kinds of levers power various items on the islands of riven. Most on the time by diverting water or steam to the appropriate location Turn around and go to the doorway of the room with the lever leading back into the gold room. You should see a switch on your left, these types of switches open gates and doors. Flip it, do not hit the rotation button, just the switch. Return to the first rotation button and hit it 4 more times. You should now be facing a passage to the "Back Door" (see diagram, this is a door, not a gate) across the gold room and slightly right. Go to this door (you cannot open it right now), turn around, and you should now flip the switch you see (looks a lot like the cave switch) Again, do not hit the rotation button. Go back to the first rotation button and hit it two more times. Now you should see the gold room with and passage leading across a bridge across the room and slightly right. Now, go across the bridge to the large domed building.

If you are stuck after reading all this refer to the diagram and you should get an idea of the basic structure of the room and you should be able to get to where you want to go. Follow the catwalk through the domed building until you are outside again. Follow the catwalk outside until you come to a lever and a pipe much like the one in the cave, flip this lever. Follow the catwalk some more and you will find another lever similar to the first two. Flip this lever in the similar manner. Return back the way you came to the button which rotates the room. Hit the button 3 more times, this will help you later. Now you can go away from the gold room across the bridge to the other section of island. Go throught the door on the left midway through the tunnel. Sit it the chair if you like, it doesn't do anything right now. Look around and find the red and gold view portal. Hit the level next to the portal and continue down the tunnel. Go through the room of pillars. (this room and the room with the chair are important to the plot of the game, do you see any connections?) Leave by way of the large door the switch near the view portal opened. Hit the blue button to summon your transportation to the next island. Get in the transport. Hit the lever on the left to turn around and the switch in the middle to go! This is on of the best parts of the game, so enjoy.

Forest Island

Get out of your transport and go through the hole in the rocks. Go UP the stairs to the chopped forest. Keep to the path of the right and you should find a hold with a cart. Get in the cart, hit the lever and go! This is also one of my favorite parts.

Paper Island

Not much time on the last island, this one is better. Climb down the ladder and make your way out to the switch in the middle of the lake. Turn the lever so it is in line with the middle pipe (toward bottom right of screen). Then head for the cylindrical building. Go up the stairs on the side of the building. The stair lead to a mess of switches and a window in to the building. Turn the big wheel first. Then look left and switch the lever where the single pipe switches into two. The white dot should be on the bottom pipe. Turn to the window again and hit the switch on the right to the up position, then turn the lever on the right to the up position also. Now you can enter the building. Go into the building and down the ladder. The screen will get darker as you proceed. Just keep clicking in the center until you see daylight. You will be treated to a nice view as you exit the pipe. Follow the mountain pass over the fence to the double doors. Go through the double doors, but shut them behind you. There is a path on the right that will be revealed. Follow this path outside again and look for a gray lever on the right of the bridge. Hit this lever and return to the double doors. This time take the path you would have taken had you gone straight throught the double doors. You should go up some stairs into the cavern. When you get to the silver ball with holes in it, look up and climb through the fan vent. This leads you into Ghen's laboratory. Cool huh? Read the book on the table and find the five numbers in a row (refer to rivenese number graphic) Write down this combination. Leave the lab through the door with the blue button next to it. Hang a right out of the door and keep walking on the VERY long bridge back to big dome island. Hit the lever to lower the last section. Insert disk 2.

Big Dome Island 2

Again, follow the catwalk around the inside of the big dome until in ends. Turn the wheel to raise the missing section. After crossing the raised section, immediatly turn left and head out of the dome. A section of the bridge will be missing. Turn around and hit the button to the right of the door. Turn back around and continue on the bridge. Hit the switch to open the door and go up the ramp to the grip. Place the marble in the grid as shown below : firemarbles.jpg 23.83 K

Turn around and click the switch on the left wall. Pull the switch down and push the white button it was covering. You will hear a noise, leave the switch down. Go back down the stairs and back throught the Gold Room to the Bridge and the first rotation button. Hit the button 3 times and go through the gold room again back into the Big Dome. Follow the catwalk outside the dome but stop right before the path goes through the rock. Turn right and hit the button. You will be lowered. Turn around and go up the stair and along the path to the spinning dome. Look throught the viewer and click the button on top when the gold eye is showing. This may take a couple tries. The Dome will stop and open. Go up to the dome and enter the code you learned from the book in the laboratory. Open the book and touch the cool animated picture.

Ghen's House

Your in a cage again. Turn around to find the button and push it. You will be rewarded with a seven minute speech by Ghen on how he has changes his ways (he hasn't, he's evil.) After his speech find the book with the most blocks on it. Open it and touch the picture.

Tree Island

Back away from the linking book and hit the button on the floor. Turn around from the sphere and go left up the stairs. Enter the little building and sit down. Hit the lever on the left (nice view!), hit the lever on the right, and then the one on the left again. Go out back down the path past the down and into the tree. Pull the lever on the right and an elevator will take you down. Get out of the elevator and push the switch on the left. You can now walk out of the fishes mouth (another clue to the intentions of Ghen). Follow the path and you will see a little kid. Follow her by taking the path on the right and up the stairs. Go through the gate and hang another right. Keep following the path, the villagers will always run from you. Go up the ladders to the houses and keep going until you see and alter and a submarine type machine. Hit the lever next to the submarine and go back to the gate you came through. Don't go back through the gate, continue on the path and down the stairs (you should recognize this area). You will see an animation of the penguin/dinosaur looking sea creatures. As a side note, the longer you wait between moving, the closer you can get to them. Stay on the path and you should come to some ladders. Go down the ladders to the submarine. The lever that move in an arc turns the submarine around, the lever that slides side to side determines if the submarine will take the left track or the right track. The lever on the right makes you move forward to the next junction. Here is the Map: waterthing.jpg 35.07 K

If you don't want to follow my directions here, all you need to do is go to the switches, flip them all up, then to go the cone and get out - you can skip down to the orange submarine (yellow doesn't show up well). If you do want explicit directions, read on.. Turn around and go forward. Make sure the sliding lever is on the right and go forward again. Open the hatch and climb the ladders up to the switch building. Move all the levers to the up position and go back to the submarine. Turn around, go forward, turn around, slide the lever to the left, go forward. Get out of the submarine, go into the pyramid and pull the triangle thing in front of you. Click on the seat that lowers. You will see a prison, open the door by turning the crank on the right. Go into the cell and open the drain of the floor. Touch the water and a passage will open. Keep going down the dark tunnel until you reach the water. Screw in the light on the left, turn around and go back down the tunnel slowly, turning on a light in each frame, they are sometimes difficult to see. Once you reach the end, turn around and go back down the tunnel. You will notice a door, open it and go through. Push down the stones you see in this order :

  1. Fish with a "C" on backrebel1.jpg 9.52 K

  2. Beetlerebel2.jpg 7.83 K

  3. Frogrebel3.jpg 6.66 K

  4. Platypus or Duckrebel4.jpg 5.16 K

  5. Black Fishrebel5.jpg 5.73 K

Rebel Island

Touch the book that comes out. You will get a nice view on the rebel base, the only nighttime shot in Riven. Turn around and head for the book. You'll get darted. Wander around your cell for a bit and enjoy the view out the window and the door. Eventually a lady will come in and give you Catherine's journal and the prison book you lost in the beginning. Look through the journal for a series of five numbers. You will need these later. The lady will return with a linking book for you to go through.

Tree Island 2

You will return to the room with the stones. Go back down the tunnel and pull the wire to open the passage back to the cell. Exit the cell and go right. Lower the ladder and go down it. Turn around and go back the way you came after lowering the submarine. Except, stop were all the tree are cut down and take the mine car ride again. (This is cool anyway). Remember where those double doors were? Go there. Except, close the doors behind you and go left this time. Go down the stair to the door. Open this door, go through, and close it behind you. Go down the tunnel that was behind the door and open the spinning dome by clicking on the gold eye. Enter the same password to get to the book and link back to Ghen's house.

Ghen's House 2

You'll talk to Ghen again. Go through the back when he askes you to, he will take your place when he goes through. After capturing Ghen, find the hole in the floor and go down. There in a silver thing on his dresser. It makes five sound in a row, either a ding, a clank, or a creak. Write these down. Go back up the ladder and pull the handle just clockwise of the hole. Then go and click on the book with the least blocks.

Catherine's Island Once away from the dome follow the path to the end. You will see three buttons. Each make the same noise as the silver thing in Ghen's House. Push the right buttons in the right order and move the lever on top on the buttons. Catherine will talk to you and run off. Go back to the dome and link back to Ghen's house. At Ghen's house go through the book with five blocks.

Big Dome Island 3

Once out of the dome follow the path to the end. Hit the button, get on the platform, and hit the button again. Turn right once at the top and follow the path outside and then through the building. When you reach the door, lower the bridge with the lever and go across. Go through the gold room and out the other side. Take a right down the stairs to where you began. Go to the telescope thing and look down at the manhole cover. Enter the combination from Catherine's journal and pull the handle to open it. Remove the stop from the left support column and flip the lever on the right down and hit the button to lower the telescope as far as it will go. Oops! Then watch the fun, you've won!



  1. From: MORTAL8983@aol.com
  2. From: Fredrik Hildebrand, Sent: Saturday, December 18, 1999 2:02 PM Subject: the riven walkthrough: did you know that all the pictures in your walkthrough are broken? at least they are for me, and I find it pretty distubing since you time after time say that you should look at this and that picture. I'm relly stuck, and this is a great walkthrough, besides from the fact that the pictures are broken. I would be very pleased if you could fix this. Fredrik Hildebrand/Sweden

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