The Hidden City

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The Hidden Apartment BuildingThe Hidden HospitalThe Hidden HospitalThe Hidden Office BuildingThe Hidden Bowling AlleyThe Hidden ParkAn Overgrown Shrine (Southwest)An Overgrown Shrine (Northwest)An Overgrown Shrine (Southeast)An Overgrown Shrine (Northeast)A Massive ZigguratThe Hidden TavernHiddencitybg.gif
Hc bowling.gif
Hc apt.gif
Hc hospital.gif
Hc office.gif
Hc tavern.gif

The Hidden City is found in The Distant Woods.

It contains:


See the 'Strategy Summary' further below for more compact steps on completing this quest"

In order to obtain the ancient amulet, a component of the Staff of Ed, one needs to defeat the Protector Spectre residing in A Massive Ziggurat. In order to gain access to the boss, four stone triangles need to be obtained by defeating the ancient protector spirits in The Hidden Hospital, The Hidden Bowling Alley, The Hidden Apartment Building and The Hidden Office Building. Each of the ancient protector spirit fights is triggered by a superlikely adventure, with only one of the monsters in the respective zone being able to contribute towards fulfilling the required condition.

The ancient protector spirits and Protector Spectre are immune to physical damage, so you will need to have a source of elemental damage to defeat them. They are not elementally aligned.

In order to gain access to the zones, the four overgrown shrines need to be cleared from dense lianas. This is best done with the antique machete (obtained from the the Dr. Henry "Dakota" Fanning, Ph.D., R.I.P. noncombat in The Hidden Park) equipped, otherwise the liana fights take adventures. Additionally, the Where Does The Lone Ranger Take His Garbagester? noncombat from The Hidden Park makes it possible to banish a non-contributing monster from the four remaining zones and to obtain items that speed up the other zones' progress.

The Hidden Park:

  1. Boost your noncombat rate. The Hidden Park is the only part of The Hidden City where combat modifiers are effective.
  2. Upon encountering Where Does The Lone Ranger Take His Garbagester? for the first time, choose to knock over the dumpster. This will remove the pygmy janitor, who is an undesired encounter in the other areas, from the four remaining zones and place him in the park.
  3. Boost your item drop to increase the chance of a pygmy janitor dropping a book of matches. Using that item will unlock The Hidden Tavern, which can be used to speed up The Hidden Bowling Alley and The Hidden Apartment Building parts of the quest (as well as providing one of the best available nightcaps in Hardcore, the Fog Murderer).
  4. Upon encountering Where Does The Lone Ranger Take His Garbagester? subsequent times, choose to dig through the dumpster. This will provide you with pieces of surgical gear (half-size scalpel, head mirror, surgical mask, surgical apron and bloodied surgical dungarees), which are required in The Hidden Hospital, or bowling balls, which are required in The Hidden Bowling Alley.
  5. Encountering the Dr. Henry "Dakota" Fanning, Ph.D., R.I.P. noncombat will provide you with the antique machete needed to clear the dense lianas from the overgrown shrines and ziggurat without spending adventures.
  6. The Hidden Park is complete when you have obtained the antique machete, knocked over the dumpster to relocate the pygmy janitors, and unlocked The Hidden Tavern through using a book of matches.

Overgrown shrines and the ziggurat:

  1. Equip the antique machete, clear three dense lianas and unlock each of the shrines, as well as the ziggurat.
  2. The liana fights don't take turns and don't give stats, but they do give familiar experience and trigger post-combat familiar actions. As such, you may want to use this to obtain familiar drops or maximise the benefit of bonus familiar experience buffs.
  3. Even though the fights don't take a turn, you do have a weapon equipped, and as such any Kung Fu Hustler intrinsics you may possess will be dispelled. If you're running Kung Fu Hustler, it's a good idea to group the liana clearing with Desert/Oasis part of the MacGuffin quest (where you benefit from having the UV-resistant compass equipped in your off-hand).

The Hidden Hospital:

  1. The ancient protector spirit fight is triggered via the You, M. D. superlikely adventure. The rate of the superlikely starts out at 0% low (needs spading after Feb 5, 2014 trivial update) and is increased by 10% for each piece of surgical gear (half-size scalpel, head mirror, surgical mask, surgical apron and bloodied surgical dungarees) you have equipped. As such, you should equip any surgical gear you may have found in the dumpster in The Hidden Park.
  2. Each encounter with the pygmy witch surgeon results in a piece of surgical gear you don't already possess. There is no need to boost item drops. To speed up completion, sniff the witch surgeon and equip the pieces of surgical gear as they drop.
  3. The pygmy orderlies are a non-contributing encounter shared between The Hidden Hospital and The Hidden Bowling Alley. As both of those zones' ancient protector spirit fight superlikelies are not scheduled, banishing the orderlies is the best choice for speeding up the quest.

The Hidden Bowling Alley:

  1. Whenever you have a bowling ball in your inventory and adventure in The Hidden Bowling Alley, the Life is Like a Cherry of Bowls superlikely is triggered. Choosing let's roll consumes the ball, and the fifth ball consumed this way leads to the ancient protector spirit fight.
    • Using the Cosmic bowling ball in combat at this location counts as a bowling ball used, but not if it is used as the fifth ball. The last ball requires a normal bowling ball.
  2. Start the zone by bowling any balls you may have picked up from the dumpster in The Hidden Park.
  3. The drunk pygmy fight can be skipped without spending an adventure by having a Bowl of Scorpions (which can be purchased in The Hidden Tavern) in your inventory. This will consume the Bowl of Scorpions, remember to buy a new one in the tavern each time you skip a fight this way.
  4. Assuming you banished the orderlies in the hospital, this will leave pygmy bowlers (the source of the bowling balls) as the only monster in the zone.

The Hidden Apartment Building:

  1. The ancient protector spirit fight is triggered by the Action Elevator superlikely, and selecting to go to the Trice-Cursed Penthouse with the Thrice-Cursed effect active. The superlikely is scheduled to appear on your 9th turn in the zone and every 8th turn thereafter.
  2. There are three ways to get cursed: starting a fight with a pygmy shaman, choosing go for the mezzanine in the Action Elevator superlikely or drinking Cursed Punch from The Hidden Tavern. Each cursing replaces the previous curse effect with a more powerful version, and Thrice-Cursed is obtained from the third cursing, regardless of the sources of the curses. Note: *The Pastamancer thrall Vampieroghi will remove this effect. Pastamancers should avoid having Vampieroghi bound when attempting this zone.
  3. The quickest way to complete the zone is to sniff the pygmy shaman. If you have drunkenness to spare and are not Thrice-Cursed after eight combats in the zone, you can drink Cursed Punch.
  4. If you manage to get Thrice-Cursed with turns to spare before the scheduled superlikely, sniff the pygmy witch accountant if he shows up, as he drops the items needed to trigger the ancient protector spirit fight in The Hidden Office Building.
  5. The pygmy witch lawyer is a monster common to both The Hidden Apartment Building and The Hidden Office Building that does not contribute to either of the zones' completion. If you're not Thrice-Cursed in time for your first Action Elevator, you can choose to go down to the parking garage to relocate the lawyer to The Hidden Park. However, if you do have the curse it is not worth banishing the lawyers, as you need to spend enough time in the Hidden Office Building to get the Working Holiday superlikely anyway.

The Hidden Office Building:

  1. The ancient protector spirit fight is triggered by the Working Holiday superlikely, and selecting to knock on the boss's office door with the complete McClusky file. The superlikely is scheduled to appear on your 6th turn in the zone and every 5th turn thereafter.
  2. The McClusky file consists of five pages (which are dropped by pygmy witch accountants) and a boring binder clip (obtained by raiding the supply cabinet in the Working Holiday superlikely). Similarly to pygmy witch surgeons, the McClusky page files drop one at a time from accountants with no need for boosting item drop. As such, in order to complete the zone, you have to encounter the Working Holiday superlikely at least twice. Sniffing the pygmy witch accountant is recommended.

A Massive Ziggurat:

When you defeat each of the four ancient protector spirits, it drops a sphere. Take the spheres to the overgrown shrines, and exchange them for stone triangles. With the four stone triangles, enter the ziggurat and defeat the Protector Spectre for the ancient amulet.

Strategy Summary

Raast posted a brief summary of the steps, repeated here (and refined for 2024 by Arashmin):

  1. If you don't have a machete: Run -combat and +item in the Park, taking all dumpster dives, until you get the antique machete.
  2. Equip any machete in your main hand, then adventure at the four Shrines and Ziggurat three times each. These will be zero-turn free fights that give 0 substats for winning. However, familiar experience and per-combat effects such as drops and boosts from familiars, equipment and passive IotMs will still occur. NOTE: Without a machete in your main hand, the fights will not be free, costing adventures. Also, any machete will do, if you find one from another source than the Park.
  3. Each Shrine has a non-combat; Do them, and put your head in the depression for each to unlock relevant zones.
  4. Boost +items, then adventure in the Hospital or Bowling Alley until you get a book of matches. Use it to open the tavern.
  5. Boost -combat, then go back to the Park and adventure for the non-combat, until you have either 3 doctor gear (has "Looks like a surgeon enchantment) or 3 bowling balls. Then adventure again for the non-combat, and choose to knock over the dumpster, which will banish janitors from the buildings.
  6. Buy a bowl of scorpion or two in the Tavern, boost +item, and then adventure in the Bowling Alley. The bowl will skip drunk pygmy fights for free (get another bowl to be prepared for the next one, or buy a few at a time if you have the meat to spare). Keep adventuring at the Bowling Alley and buying bowls, until you've fought enough pygmy bowlers to get 5 bowling balls total (keep in mind you can use /buy commands in chat for the bowls).
  7. Use all 5 bowling balls to fight and defeat the spirit.
  8. Put on any doctor gear you obtained earlier, and boost +items. Adventure in the Hospital (if you have a spare banish, get rid of nurses). Keep putting on any doctor gear obtained, until you find and defeat the spirit. Only one doctor gear is needed, but more increases the likeliness of the spirit encounter.
  9. Boost +items, then go to Office and fight pygmy witch accountants for the five McClusky file pages (If you have a banish to spare, use it on the laywers after encountering 1-2 of them, unless you get the full file first).
  10. On the first non-combat, raid for the clip. Use the clip when you have all 5 files. Then with the full file, get to the non-combat again, knock on the office door and take down the spirit.
  11. If you have drunkeness to spare, hit the Tavern for some cursed punch(es) to drink. Then boost -combat, adventure at the Apartment and fight the pygmy shaman / take the mezzanine at the non-combat until you have Thrice-Cursed (If you have a banish to spare still at this point and didn't need to banish the lawyers from the office, consider doing it here unless you can get to Thrice-Cursed quickly enough. Don't use the non-combat banish though, it's not cost-effective).
  12. Adventure at the Apartment until you find the non-combat again, head to the penthouse and fight the spirit.
  13. Return to the four Shrines to get the stone triangles (does not take adventures).
  14. Fight the boss in the Ziggurat.


  • On August 24, 2013, the Hidden City was heavily revamped. The old Hidden City was retired.