"Something large brushed against his leg and he felt himself being dragged along by the current of the beast. He pushed himself above the surface. ‘Help!’, he cried as the ocean swallowed him again."
―Daniel, being pulled under the water by a beast after falling off the ship on his way home from Algeria.

Cellar Archives is the eighth location visited in the game, between the Refinery and the Archive Tunnels. It is also the first place in which Daniel encounters attacking Kaernks


As the player enters the Cellar Archives, the Shadow's cry is heard while the vision blacks out. When Daniel reopens his eyes, the entire area has become partially flooded. Just like the Refinery, the Shadow has started to completely consume this area. After a few steps the first Kaernk will appear, splashing towards Daniel. There are two gates in the Cellar Archives: the first is a timed one, opened by a lever in the room near the entrance and the second one has a rotation mechanism to raise it.

There are lots of severed body parts to distract the Kaernks and many crates to jump on to avoid them. At the end of this area a door is found leading to the Archive Tunnels but it is locked. Fortunately, a hollow needle is nearby on one of the shelves and with it Daniel may pick the lock to escape.

Collectibles Edit

Screen shot 2001-01-01 at 11.56.04 AM

Cellar Archives when dry.

Oil Canisters and Barrels Edit

  • The one oil container in this area is located on a box next to a hunch of meat in the largest room.

Laudanum Edit

  • In the back of the small room filled with bookshelves right ahead.


  • There are two Kaernks in the area. The first is in the flooded tunnel that makes up the first section of the level, and the second is in the larger flooded room beyond the timed gate. Should Daniel get through the timed gate before it closes, it will shut behind him and keep the first Kaernk out, but the second one will come across the larger room to investigate Daniel.
  • Light sources are not necessary in this level, because the ambient light, while dim, is still sufficient to keep Daniel's sanity from dropping (ironically, the Shadow itself provides some light in the first flooded tunnel by infesting one corner, shining red phosphorescence down the corridor in both directions). Daniel instead needs to beware watching the Kaernk too much, because that will still frighten him.
  • In the second, larger open room with the second Kaernk, Daniel can use the flesh to draw the Kaernk closer to him, then using one of the small boxes, hit it over the head, actually killing the Kaernk in this area. While the former human monsters cannot be killed, the Kaernks can be.
  • Judging from an old concept map, the Cellar Archives appear to originally have been a part of the Archives level.
  • It is unknown how the cellar archives got flooded almost instantly. It can be either a hallucination or Daniel passed out for a long time as the area is being flooded.


Cellar Archives-0

Cellar Archives-0

Locations of The Dark Descent:
Brennenburg Castle locations: Rainy HallOld ArchivesEntrance HallArchivesWine CellarLaboratoryRefineryCellar ArchivesArchive TunnelsBack HallStorageGuest RoomStudyMachine RoomElevatorPrison: Southern BlockPrison: Northern BlockCistern EntranceControl RoomCisternMorgueSewerNaveChancelTranseptChoir EntranceChoir - Main HallCellsInner SanctumOrb Chamber
Other locations: LondonAlgeriaAltstadtTomb of Tin HinanZimmermann Farm