Note: You have exactly 14 minutes from the time the game starts until the gold rush begins. When this happens, your possessions drop in value and prices skyrocket.
Therefore, you must have completed all your transactions before then. It is advisable just to walk around and learn the location of everything, then restart the game. There are three routes to California. Depending on which route you take, you must accumulate different items in Brooklyn.
You start the game on a bridge facing east. Cross the bridge, and go down the screen. Your house is on the corner. Unlock the gate and door, and go inside. Look at the album on the table. Get the family picture that brings back all those memories.
Go over to the desk. It's a rolltop desk; so, roll the top. (close desk) Get the bank statement that was hidden underneath. Read the statement to find your bank account number. (Note: Each time you restart the game you will have a different account number.) Leave the house.
Selling the house
Since you have decided to leave for California, you might as well sell your house. Just type SELL HOUSE. A buyer will come along. You can either wait for him, or just leave and come back later. Don't worry if you get a message that he left; he'll return again. He will offer you $850 for your house. Take the money.
Walk west into the next screen. Go into the gazebo. Do not walk on the grass, or a cop will come and take a point away from you! Get the flowers, then enter the gazebo. Look into the crack in the floor. Keep moving around and looking until you find the gold coin. Get it.
The post office
Go west again, that's the post office on the corner. Go in and ring the bell. Ask for your mail. If he says you have none, leave and try again in a minute or so. Once you have the letter, look at the letter, the postmark, and the stamp. Now, look under the stamp. Hey! It's gold! Open the letter and read it. Your brother has found gold and wants you to come join him. Leave the post office.
Go to the left and into the large white building. This is the newspaper building where you work. Go to your office. You don't know where it is? But you work here! Oh well... it's up the stairs, last office at the bottom on the right.
Walk to your desk, and look under the blotter. Get the clippings, and read them. (Now you know the story about your brother). Well, if you're planning a trip out West, you'd better quit your job. Go downstairs to the boss's office (the first one on the left), and tell him you're quitting.
Bank, warehouse & cemetery
Go into the bank. Make sure you know your account number. Go to a teller and type GET MONEY. Give him the account number when he asks for it. Go north into the warehouse, and read the poster inside. The address to get tickets is next door to your old house.
Go back down to the cemetery and find your parents' graves. (Hint: They are the only two that look alike and are next to each other, look at the top.) Read each grave, and put the flowers down (sniff).
Preparing for the trip
Up to this point, everything you need to accomplish in Brooklyn is the same - no matter which route you plan to take to get to California.
If you are planning to go via sea, you must remember that the steamship leaves exactly 18 minutes after the game begins. Go to the house next door to your old one. Answer the questions the man asks you, and tell him which ticket you want. (Note: The price of the tickets will skyrocket after the GOLD RUSH! starts. Make sure you buy them before then.)
If you intend to go via Panama, you'll need the mosquito net from Rand's Hardware store. If you're planning to go via the Cape Horn route, you will need the fruit.
If you want to go via land, then just go and buy your ticket from the stagecoach office. After buying the ticket, go to the stable, and SHOW TICKET to the little guy in white. He'll escort you to the coach. Enter the coach, and the rest will take care of itself.
The Panama Route
There is nothing to do on the ship. You will not die of mosquito bites if you bought the net. At one point natives will demand your values or kill you otherwise. Accept their offer, you'll keep the most important items anyway (coin, letter etc.).
When you reach the jungle afterwards, you will have to follow the rest of the crew. Talk to the man under the tree, and he'll give you a Bible. (No matter which route you take, there will always be a man reading a Bible: Take the Bible.)
Walk to where you see the hanging vine. As soon as the killer ants start to appear, jump onto the vine, and hang there until they leave.
Go onto the next screen. There are four paths through this screen, one behind another. Only the front two are visible. Do not use the first two. (in the foreground) You will have to do this screen by trial and error. (Save the game before you try it.) The third and fourth paths take you through. For extra points, take the fourth path - the hardest to finish.
When your toe hits something, look down. Pick up the gold disk. The next screen is also solved via trial and error. Don't take a straight path across the swamp, or you'll sink in.
What worked for me was going straight up until ca. the middle, then a few step to the top and right. Occasionally, a crocodile will eat you, too, but not every time. If this happens, you'll have to restore. After that, the game runs by itself until you reach Sacramento.
Route through the swamp (click)
The Cape Horn route
Look around the ship. (The man who will give you the Bible is at the right end of the ship.) There's not much to do until the storm; anything you collect before the storm will be lost.
So, even if you find items before the storm, do not pick for them up (except the Bible). Purely at random, you may die of Cholera. If you do, you will have to restore back to Brooklyn. (Restoring to a point later than Brooklyn won't help.)
You will not die of scurvy if you have the fruit. Now, you need food, and there seems to be plenty of fish in the sea; so, let's go fishing. Do not stand on the deck during the storm, or you'll get swept overboard.
Sometime during (or after) the storm, get the string from the bunk room, the paper clip from the captain's office, the bait (ham) from the cooks' table, metal scraps from the boiler room, and a pole from the bottom floor (where the engine is being stoked). Go to the back of the ship and type FISH. The game runs by itself after that, until you reach Sacramento.
Route via land
Once you join up with the mining company, go over and talk to the captain. He wants money, so give him what you have. He'll ask you to obtain animals for the trip. Go down a screen and buy animals.
Which animals do you need? You're going on a long journey, so you are better off buying the mature mules. Go back and tell the captain, and he'll give you a second job. He wants you to tell him when it's time to leave.
Go up a screen, and keep looking at the grass. As soon as you get a message saying that the ground is getting greener and drying up, tell the captain. You should have also bumped into our friend with the Bible (he's sitting under the tree).
When you reach the steep hill, unhitch the team, and let the animals go to drink and rest. To stop them from pulling you and the wagon over the cliff, you must lock the wheels. When you get thirsty, drink water from the barrel in the coach.
Whichever way you arrive, you must immediately go to the stagecoach office. Spot your little pixel on the ship and leave. The stagecoach is the building just right of the middle of the screen. Go in, and look at the schedule. If you have missed the stagecoach to Sutter's Fort, then you will have to restore; otherwise, get onto the stagecoach.
On my MacSE
Walk around the fort. Find the blacksmith. He's two screens right from the beginning. Talk to him. Answer "yes" twice, give him your name and your brother's name. He'll give you your brother's branding iron.
Go to the graveyard and read the graves until you find your father's on the top. Read the grave. There is a cannon at the top. Psalms 23? Read it in your Bible. The phrase "Green Pastures" is in capital letters. Use the letter with the holes. Move it around until you are told it's in place. Aha! So that's what those strange markings were for.
Read the letters. It says ROOM 12, or is it ROOM 21? Go back into the fort and buy a gold pan. It's time to try your luck at finding gold.
Panning for gold
You have to be at least 10 miles from the fort to find gold. (The bottom of the screen will tell you how many miles away you are). Walk in the stream, and keep panning. You will be able to find gold 50 times.
Do not pan if there is anyone else in the screen, or you'll be hung! Once you have all your gold, go back to the fort. Watch out for the thieves: They'll take everything away from you.
Buying the rest of your supplies
Go and buy a mule. Take it to the blacksmith, heat up your branding iron, and brand the mule (with your brother's mark). Take the mule to the stable, and leave him there while you shop for supplies.
Go back to the store where you got the pan, and buy the shovel and a lantern. Now, go back to get your mule. Look at all the mules until you find the one with your brand on it.
If it says it's a quiet, tame animal, you don't want it. Your brother has left his mule there for you; you want to get his instead. Once you have it, head back toward town (southeast). Be careful not to lose your mule.
The GREEN PASTURES hotel
Find the hotel. It's called Green Pastures! You recognize that from the Bible! Tie up your mule to the post outside. Go inside and look at rooms 12 and 21. Hmm...Room 12 looks suspicious.
Go back downstairs and look around. There is a message box. Ask for your message. You are told you don't have any messages because you're not staying at the hotel! But can you do the man a favor by delivering a message to the man in Room 11. Say YES.
Take the message, knock at the door, and give the man his message. When he leaves, quickly walk into his room. (If he catches you in there, you'll have to restore.)
To get into Room 12, go to the left wall, and look at the fireplace. Aha! You recognize that cannon. When you turn the wheel, the fireplace opens. Go through the fireplace into Room 12.
Look around the room. Get the string from the floor, and the magnet and note from the table. Read the note. What is that bird cage doing there? Open the window, and in flies a bird. Look at the bird, read the note in the capsule, and put your identification in the capsule.
What identification? The family picture, of course! Off flies the bird; when it returns, look in the capsule. Get the "pigeongram" and read it. Follow? Stubborn? Aha! You've heard the expression "as stubborn as a mule," right? Follow that mule!
Take the mule back out of town, and type FOLLOW MULE. It moves quite quickly, and seems to know where it's going; be careful not to lose track of it. (Watch out for robbers.)
When you reach Jake's home, go inside. Get the matches. Go outside to the outpost, then go down the hole in the middle of the outpost.
Light your lantern and proceed down the cave. Do this as quickly as you can; save whenever you make progress because you only have a limited amount of oil in the lantern. You reach a door that's locked, and you have no key. But there's a hole in the door, and it's the same shape as the branding iron!
Tie the magnet to the string and lower it through the hole. Move it around until you hear a "clunk." Then, pull up the key carefully. Open the door and go down in the cave. Be very careful on the ladders. Continue down to the bottom left, and get the pick.
Keep digging for gold as you walk through the caves. Once you have found a couple of pieces of gold, go up the long ladder to the top. Take the gold nuggets on the right. Move down the ladder a little, and you find the mine on the left.
Carefully enter the mine (save the game first; it's very easy to fall off the ladder here). Down in the mine you go; keep using the pick as you go along. Eventually, you will find yourself in a large room which contains...your brother!
Talk to him, and he tells you that he's almost made the ultimate gold discovery! Use your pick. When you find gold, keep digging in that same spot.
While you're digging, you will discover a cavern. As soon as the entrance is big enough, walk through. You've done it! You and your brother now have as much gold as you could ever dream of! Well done!
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