As you work your way through The Medium, you may encounter parts where you get a little confused or stuck. In our previous walkthrough guides, we’ve shown you where to find Jack’s tie clip, and how to enter the Niwa Hotel.
Now, we’re giving you a walkthrough of the hotel lobby area, and explaining how to reach the first half of the second floor area.
The Medium | Hotel Lobby Walkthrough, How to Reach Second Floor
Once you enter the Niwa Hotel in The Medium, look to your left to spot an abandoned suitcase and a lone shoe.
If you pick up this shoe and hold RB to use your Insight, you’ll spot a crack of light that marks an Echo, one of the game’s collectibles.
After listening to the Echo, head up the stairs and look to your left. There, you’ll spot a magazine hanging out on a chair.
You can pick the magazine up by pressing X, and if you're having a hard time reading the text on the front, you can press Y to have the text pop up on the screen.
The text on the magazine reads:
News, information and practical advice for a modern lady.
The Forefathers' Wells - a new literary bestseller by Joanna Chmielewska!
Readers ask - experts respond
10 sewing techniques for fashionable skirts."
The literary bestseller that's being referenced — The Forefathers' Wells — is a real book by a real author, Joanna Chmielewska, published in 1979.
Near the chair where you found the "Spring" magazine is a poster on the wall. The poster reads:
"Travel in style, travel in comfort."
On the bus is the Polish word podróżnik which roughly translates to "traveler" and online you can actually book rail and bus tickets through a website called e-podroznik in Poland.
Below this is additional text in Polish, "Państwowy Zakład Produkcyjny." It seems to reference a state-owned enterprises during the Gierik decade of the Polish People's Republic.
At the bottom, "SAN-BUS" is in reference to a bus model in Poland.
To the left of the area with the Spring magazine and bus poster you'll find a Niwa Hotel floor plan on the wall.
On the floor plan, you can see a red "you are here" dot and a layout of the hotel lobby.
On the table to the left of the Hotel Niwa floor plan poster, you'll find a magazine called "The Duckling" with a cartoon of a dragon on the front.
If you press Y, the text on the magazine will pop up, reading:
Polish legends: The Dragon of Wawel Hill - page 4
Why do my teeth fall out?! - page 7
Back to school! - page 9
Puzzles and crosswords - page 10
... and much more!"
Like some of the other things referenced in the items you can pick up in The Medium, the "Dragon of Wawel Hill" is a reference to real Polish folklore.
Moving further into the hotel lobby, you'll see a check-in area.
There's a sign that sayz "Klucze" which is Polish for "Keys" along with a lamp and a bell.
On the desk, there's a Hotel Register book that you can take a closer look at.
The Hotel Register has been covered with scribbles, and we had a lot of fun trying to piece some of the references together.
For example, "Where is Mike Enslin?" seems to reference Stephen King's story, 1408.
In 1408, Mike Enslin stays in a haunted hotel room and... well, immediately regrets that decision.
There's a film adaptation of 1408 starring John Cusack that we really recommend watching if you haven't seen it already.
On another page of the Hotel Register, you'll spot a quote from Psycho's Norman Bates, "A boy's best friend is his mother."
If you look up at the left corner of the Hotel Register and press Y to read, you'll see the following four names:
Looking up these names, Brunon Kowalski is cited as a Polish architect, while the others are harder to place.
Walking past the check-in area, you'll spot a poster of a ballerina on the wall.
The text on the poster reads:
"The Star of the Bolshoi Theatre
The Niwa Workers' Resort"
You'll see this poster later in the game, and you'll get to learn more about who Vivienne is, which is something we found kind of cool.
Even posters that look decorative have meaning behind them, whether in relation to The Medium's location and atmosphere, or in relation to the historical era of Poland the Niwa Hotel was constructed in.
If you continue down the hallway past the poster of Vivienne, you'll encounter an area that's been gated off.
You won't be able to access this area until later in the game (after you've collected the Bolt Cutters).
Interacting with the gate will put you in a short, spooky cutscene.
Afterwards, Marianne will mention answering the bell which is referencing the bell located in the check-in area that we mentioned earlier in this walkthrough.
Before you head back to the check-in area, make a right when you come out of the hallway with the locked gate.
Walk into the area shown above. To your right, you'll find another poster.
The poster text reads:
"Quality time by the lake."
At the upper right corner, you'll also spot text: "Państwowy Biuro Wycieczkowe." Similar to the poster of the bus, this text references a state-owned office, however this one is for a state tour office.
This makes sense as the Niwa Hotel served as a resort and tourist attraction. And if you're wondering, yes there's a lake near the Niwa Hotel. You'll get to visit this location much, much later on in the game.
It's like the poster of Vivienne, everything in The Medium has purpose behind it.
To the left of the poster of the lake, you'll find another collectible postcard from "F" hanging out on a tiny, circular table.
The text on the postcard reads:
I know I promised to visit, but guess what - I got promoted!
Yes, really! Meet the new Chief of Staff!
I really think this might be it. A fresh start. A place to call home.
For us, I mean. You, me, the kids. I know it sounds crazy, but... Just think about it!
After you're done reading the postcard, head back over to the check-in desk and interact with the bell.
When you do, you'll get a cutscene of Marianne meeting Sadness for the first time.
Sadness doesn't remember her real name, she mentions that "sadness" was the last thing that she was able to remember about herself.
Wondering what else Sadness might remember, Marianne asks her if she knows who Thomas is, the man that called her and asked her to come to Niwa.
Marianne is wondering whether Thomas is still there, and where she might be able to find him.
Sadness seems to remember something that may be of importance, and asks Marianne to follow her up to the second floor.
Sadness runs up the nearby set of broken stairs, but Marianne can't go that way. Instead, she'll have to find another way up.
Fortunately, the path up to the second floor is right next to where the stairs are.
Before you inspect the elevator, take a moment to look at the two nearby posters.
The first poster is for "The Dayroom" with text that reads:
The safest place for the youngest!
And like the other posters, you will be able to explore Niwa's Dayroom later on in the game.
The second poster is for "The NIWA Restaurant" which is described as, "The people's taste!"
Creepy. But hey, it's cool that the Niwa Hotel had a nice little restaurant at one point, right?
How to Use Elevator, Reach Second Floor
The elevator is your ticket up to the second floor. When you interact with the elevator button in the lobby, the door to the right will open.
Stepping inside, you'll see a panel with different buttons. You'll need to press "2" for the second floor.
As the elevator is climbing, it'll get stuck on the first floor, forcing Marianne to use her "Out of Body Experience" powers for the first time.
The game will instruct you to "Press and hold B for an Out of Body Experience" and when you do this, Marianne will be able to leave her body and exit the elevator.
To get the elevator going again, you're going to need to find and collect some energy, similar to when you opened the gate in the woods area leading up to the Niwa Hotel.
You'll have a limited amount of time to collect this energy using your Out of Body Experience, so you're going to want to move quickly.
Exiting the elevator, head out and down the stairs that lead back down to the hotel lobby. Hold LT to run.
As you're running through the lobby, head down and you'll see a glowing source of light. Approach it, then press A to collect the Spirit Energy.
If you notice your time running out and are wondering how you're going to make it back up the stairs in time, don't worry, we have a neat little trick to recommend
After you've collected the Spirit Energy, press B again to return Marianne to her body. You'll retain the Spirit Energy you've collected, so nothing will be lost.
Press and hold "B" again to use your Out of Body Experience, and you'll be able to step out of the elevator and be right next to the area where you need to use your Spirit Blast with plenty of time to do so.
Near the elevator, you'll see a button panel. When you're near it, you'll receive a prompt asking you to, "Stay close to generator then hold RT to charge Spirit Blast and release to use it."
As you do this, you'll be stopped halfway before using all of your Spirit Blast. When this happens, let go of RT to release the energy and in doing so, power the elevator back up.
After that, press "B" to return to your body, and press the "2" button to resume your climb up to the second floor.
When you reach the second floor, you'll need to solve a few additional puzzles before you can reunite with Sadness again.
To solve these puzzles, be sure to click the link below to read through our next walkthrough!