Amnesia Wiki
Amnesia Wiki

There is no denying that Alexander puts a lot of faith into what I can only describe as magic.

Daniel's diary, found in the Cistern.

The Cistern is the location of the drainage pipes. It is accessible from the Cistern Entrance.


The Cistern is a large, open area, with water covering parts of the floor. The Cistern contains a huge tank from which a faint murmur can be heard. As the tank starts to fill with water, the murmuring becomes louder and after the tank has been completely filled the murmuring stops. It is never made clear whether this is real or another hallucination, i.e., the water bubbling into the tank is mentally changed by Daniel into actual human murmuring.

A flashback occurs near the entrance of the Cistern where Daniel can be heard talking to Alexander about the usage of the water from the underground spring.

The Cistern has four valves, three of which are for redirecting the sewer water. The fourth one is for stopping steam from blocking a path. A doorway leading somewhere else can be found but cannot be accessed due to an earlier cave-in.

Each time a valve redirecting sewer water is turned, torches in the nearby area are blown out, the ground trembles, and the music starts to go eerie. If Daniel has low sanity after spinning the last valve, which usually occurs if the player has completed the Morgue beforehand (due to the main task in the area forcing sanity to a low level on completion), the Shadow will roar and manifest near the entrance. It awakens a normally quiescent Kaernk in the area as well.

To get to one of the valves, Daniel needs to lower a bridge which is hanging from the ceiling. This is done by picking up a rock from nearby, and throwing it at the chain at the ceiling. Daniel can also jump across from one raising bridge to the other, although this can risk health loss. The chain will break, lowering the bridge. This 'bridge puzzle' if often confused with the bridge in the Cistern Entrance level, which also has a bridge that has to be lowered, but by throwing a brick on the bridge itself instead. For more info, see Cistern Entrance.


Section missing!
This section is needed but has not been written yet. You can help Amnesia Wiki out by writing it!

Light sources[]

0 Candles, 13 Torches, 0 Lamps, 0 Fires, only light source is ceiling, no lantern needed


1. Triggers at start of area


"Do you see, Daniel? A whole other world – isn't it beautiful?"
The following section is written from an out-of-universe perspective.
  • Crossing the bridge, you will see some stairs on the right, heading back toward the entrance. A tinderbox is on the stacked crates in the corner. You can either pick it up now or collect it later on your way out.
  • On a few occasions, you will see splashes in the water and hear a Kaernk, but these are just fakeouts designed to keep you on edge.
  • Straight ahead from the entrance, you will come to an intersection. Each of the three areas can be visited in any order, each with a valve you will need to turn. Turning each will cause the torches in the area to be blown out.
    • To the right of the entrance, you simply have to jump across a few crumbling pieces of a walkway to reach the valve, with a diary entry resting on top.
      • Midway through, crossing a bridge will take you to a chest containing an oil potion and a tinderbox.
    • Across from the entrance, there are three open pipes venting hot steam approximately every four seconds. Standing in the steam will deal 20 damage. Turning the valve past the pipes will turn the steam off.
      • Further along, across a bridge, you will find another valve, as well as a diary entry resting on a nearby large chest.
    • To the left of the entrance, you will find a wooden bridge suspended by a chain. Throw one of the nearby rocks at the chain to break it. Past the wooden bridge is another jumping section, at the end of which is the third valve, a diary entry on a crate, and an oil potion hidden behind the large chest.
  • If your Sanity is lower than "Crystal clear" when returning to the entrance, the Shadow will roar and its flesh will appear. This will create a bridge between the entrance and the area with the stack of crates. Walking across it will not damage you.
    • This event will also spawn a real Kaernk behind you!
  • When you return to the Entrance to Cistern, you will find that the water flooding the stairs has been drained.


Puzzle items[]

There are no puzzle items in this area.


  • To the right immediately as you enter the Cistern, a tinderbox sits on top of a couple of boxes on a raised part of the ground.(107)
  • In a chest with an oil canister next to the large tank from which you can hear a person drowning.(108)


  • One oil container can be found near the large tank where there supposedly is a man drowning in the water.
  • Another one can be found at the western part of the Cistern, across the hanging bridge and near the water cranks and the note.
There are no oil barrels in this area.


There is no laudanum in this area.


  • Daniel's Diary - Discovery – The Cistern is shaped vaguely like a cross (+), and one diary entry can be found at each spoke of the cross (aside from the one you entered from). They are all close to the water valves you use to drain the water from the sewer.


  • The Shadow will block the original route of escape with its fleshy residue; however, it will create a bridge on the other side that enables Daniel to escape the Cistern and the attacking Kaernk. Walking on the bridge does not hurt him, so it is unknown whether the cosmic nightmare meant to help the young man's progress or its creation of the bridge was purely accidental.
  • Being killed by the only real Kaernk will spawn another after respawning, but this one is merely a hallucination and will disappear on contact.
  • On occasion, fish can be seen swimming through the murky waters.
  • The design of the Cistern is apparently inspired by the Basilica Cistern in Istanbul, Turkey.
  • The design of the Cistern bears a strong similarity to the fourth level of Penumbra: Requiem. Both concern a large sewer area consisting of walkways and wide corridors, with a prominent 4-way intersection. They both also feature water as a hazard and focus on utilizing either levers or spinning wheels to manipulate water levels.


Section missing!
This section is needed but has not been written yet. You can help Amnesia Wiki out by writing it!


Section missing!
This section is needed but has not been written yet. You can help Amnesia Wiki out by writing it!