This guide will feature the solutions for each and every puzzle in The Witness. Since the game does feature a pretty complex amount of puzzles, we will be including several images for the solutions to help guide you along the way. Also, since the main point of this game is to solve the puzzles, we suggest trying to complete them on your own before looking at this guide. Otherwise you risk spoiling the entire experience.
Also, since there isn't any real way to check your progression, and there isn't a "set way" to do things, our guide may feature sections in a different order than you played them in. Don't stress out. The most important part of this game is solving the puzzles. The order doesn't always matter.
Find out what Ozzie Mejia thought of this beautiful and challenging puzzle game in his official The Witness review.
Some Things to Know Before You Get Started
- Don't bash your head against the wall. If you're stuck and you just can't figure something out, walk away. Take a breather and play with your dog or cat to ease your frustrations. We promise the puzzles aren't going anywhere.
- Feel like you're moving slow? Sprint using SHIFT/L2/LEFT TRIGGER.
- Paying attention to your surroundings is extremely important in The Witness as the background behind puzzles can hold the solution you're looking for.
- This isn't an FPS game centered around mindless running and gunning. Take time to try to think about things before simply attempting to make quick answers. Sometimes taking a few seconds to think things through can save you a lot of headache.
- If you can't figure out where to go next, just look around for wires leading to something. Many of these puzzles connect with each other, so you'll always want to be aware of what connections your solutions are making.
Also... It should go without saying, but SPOILERS AHEAD.
Area 1: The Garden, The Ramparts, and the Chamber Hidden in the Tower
Upon loading into the game for the first time you'll find yourself staring at a door at the end of a long tunnel. Head down the tunnel and solve the puzzle on the door to get the hang of the mechanics. It's a super simple puzzle, so don't worry about getting frustrated just yet.
Once you've solved the first puzzle, head out the tunnel to encounter a second door with a puzzle. Solve this simple puzzle to unlock the first area of the game, the Garden.
Once you climb the stairs from the second door, head straight in front of you to the panel at the end of the gravel path. Solve this puzzle and it should light up the black cable running from the panel.
Follow the cable to find another panel. Solve it and continue the process.
Once you solve this third puzzle in the tower, follow the cable to a large laser-like gate with a puzzle to the right of it. The puzzle is blocked off by three panels, one of which you've just removed.
From here you need to follow the other two cables to the corresponding panels and activate them. First follow the cable that leads back towards the area where you first entered. You'll need to head around the wall to the right of the door, where you should spot the entrance to one of the Garden's four towers. Head inside to find the puzzle. You should notice two cables running from it. Make a mental note of that, you'll need to remember it in a second.
With this puzzle solved, and the panel removed from the gate lock, head back to the gate and follow the third and final cable to the tower directly opposite of the one you just explored.
Once this puzzle has been solved the gate to the Garden will open.
But wait. Don't go running off just yet. Instead, turn around and head back to the puzzle with two cables running from it and solve it using the method listed below.
Once you've realigned the power from the puzzle above, head out the gate and down the path. As you walk keep an eye out for a large opening between a rock and a bush to your left. When you spot it, head up the grassy knoll and follow the wall around to find a break in the ramparts. Now climb onto the top of the wall and turn left, following it around until you reach a dead end with this audio log located across from it.
With the first audio log in your collection, turn around and follow the wall around, past the break in the ramparts until you pass through the tower where you realigned the power. You should spot a pathway to the left just outside the tower that leads to a flat rooftop with a set of pillows near one edge. You can snag the second audio log of the game from this location.
Once you have both the audio logs, climb down from the wall using the crumbled section and turn left, following the walls in a counterclockwise motion until you pass through an open gate. If for some reason the gate isn't open, head back into the Garden and realign the power on the puzzle with two cables. You should know the one I'm talking about by now.
Continue through the gate and around the walls until you run into an elegant wooden door with a puzzle on it.
With the puzzle solved, head inside the small chamber to find a third audio log resting on the ground at the base of the tree.
There is also a fun little puzzle on the ground in this chamber, but solving it isn't a huge priority.
With the area explored, turn and locate the unopened door with a puzzle on it.
Once you've solved the puzzle, head outside to find yourself back on the path leading out of the Garden.
Area 2: Blue and Green Panels, the Bunker, and the Pink Orchard Puzzles
Now continue down the path, ignoring the bunker door on the left, until you spot a group of blue panels in an empty field.
These are tutorial style panels that will teach you new ways to solve puzzles, so you'll want to give them a try.
Hint: Seperate the black and white squares.
We've included the solutions just in case you need a little help.
With the blue panels solved, turn around and locate the entrance to the broken down building directly across the path from the blue panels. Head inside to find a series of green panels with more tutorial puzzles.
Hint: Use the line to cover all the hexagons.
We've included the solutions just in case you need a little help.
Once you've completed the green panels it's time to finish up this little section and put your newly earned knowledge to the test. Head back up the path towards the Garden, this time turning down the path that leads to the door to the bunker. Solve the puzzle on the door using the tricks you just learned.
Once inside the bunker you'll find a large box. Open it using the simple puzzle on the backside, and then memorize the image you find inside. We suggest taking a screenshot so you don't forget.
Now head out the bunker and back down the path to the blue panels. Ignore them this time around and continue straight off the path and up to the pink orchard of trees on the hill. You'll find a new puzzle here, which will begin a new series of puzzles.
Obviously you should be getting the hang of following the wires and things by now, so we won't be pointing that out as much anymore.
Hint: Look at where the apple is located on the tree.
Once you complete the puzzle, head on to the next.
Now head to the next panel and solve it too.
Things change up a little bit with this next puzzle.
Hint: Look at where the branch is broken.
Now follow the cable and solve the next panel.
With the last panel solved, turn around and follow the cable to an opened gate that leads to a neat little painter's area and this stunning view of the upcoming areas.
Area 3: Symmetry and the Boathouse, The First Beacon
Once you've gotten the hang of The Witness and some of the different puzzles you'll encounter across the island, its time to move on to the first critical part of the game. To finish the main game you'll need to activate five beacons across the island. The first beacon's puzzle path begins through a small canyon just past the blue panels in the field.
Head through the canyon and down the path to find a door with a puzzle on it.
Hint: This area is based on symmetry.
Once you open the door, head inside and make your way to the far back of the boathouse to find another group of panels.
Hint: The lines must mirror each other, and the path must be completely clear to solve the puzzle.
With the first set of panels in the boathouse solved, turn and locate the activate group on the side of the kiln in the middle of the area.
Now head around to the other side of the kiln and solve the next set.
This activates a wooden door a little bit away. Exit the boathouse and follow the now-lit cable up the hill and solve the puzzle on the door to open it.
Hint: Use the technique you learned from the green panels in the broken down house and pass through every hexagon with the line.
Now follow the path on the right down to find the first set of panels.
Once those puzzles are solved, follow the cable around the path until you notice this split in the path.
Ignore where the cable goes for now, and head down to the left, and all the way around until you find the lit panel. This is a tutorial style area, like the blue and green panels from Area 2. Complete the first puzzle.
Hint: Pay attention to the background, including any reflections in the water.
The solution to this next puzzle is actually situated just to the right of it.
Hint: Now check everything in the background, not just what lies directly in front of you.
The next puzzle actually follows a grouping of palm trees behind it, so you'll want to complete it from the back. Just look through it and you'll see what we mean.
Once you complete the tutorial area its time to head back up to the main puzzles.
Hint: You'll control the blue line in these puzzles, so it is very important to make sure you start in the right node.
This next set of panels changes things up a little bit, but don't let things confuse you.
Hint: The yellow line is fading now, but these puzzles still follow the same rule of symmetry.
Once you complete these puzzles the panel on the wooden gate blocking your progression up the hill will activate. Head up the hill and solve it.
Don't head up the center quite yet though. Make your way down this slope to the left to find another audiolog.
With the audio log playing in the background, make your way back to the center of the hill and climb the stone steps to find a set of six more panels. The right side connects to the yellow cable, and while they don't connect to the beacon you're trying to activate, they are required to figure out the blue solutions.
Now that you've solved the yellow panels it's time to solve the blue panels.
Hint: Remember that this entire puzzle has revolved around symmetry. With that in mind, take the yellow panel solutions into consideration.
With the blue panels activated, the final puzzle of this beacon will unlock.
Once you activate it, step back and watch as the first beacon, your first real step required to complete The Witness, will rise and activate, shooting off into the distance.
Area 4: Desert Temple Ruins - The Second Beacon
Once you've complete the boathouse, head down the hill and out the gate, following the path as it forks left. After a bit of walking you should find your way over a rise and be greeted by these temple ruins in a desert type biome.
This is our next stop. Head on inside to find the first couple of puzzles waiting.
Hint: Use the sun to highlight scratch marks of the solutions on these puzzles.
Now things get a little trickier. As you can see, this panel is half hidden in shadows.
Make note of any scratches on the portion in the sunlight, then head behind it and solve the simple puzzle to move it.
This will activate a group of panels at the top of some scaffolding.
With those puzzles solved the one below the group will unlock.
Hint: Solve this puzzle by looking at things from a different angle.
This will activate a panel below it, which you'll need to move around.
As the panel moves, head up the scaffolding on the opposite side of the ruins to spot this solution.
Now head to the back of the ruins, down the ramp, and unlock the door.
Once inside you'll need to solve the panels by changing which lights are activated using this panel.
This will unlock the panel on the floor.
Solve it then head through the next door and down the stairs to the next level.
Things get a little trickier here.
Hint: Use the reflections in the water to solve these puzzles.
Remember that you may have to look at things from a different angle to get the entire picture.
Once all the puzzles are solved in this area, head to the now activate door and unlock it to find another set of stairs, and another level of puzzles to solve.
You'll need to pay attention to the reflections in the water again, but this time a new mechanic has been added.
Hint: Raise and lower the water level to produce more reflections.
Some panels may be hidden completely under the water when it is too high.
Now solve this last puzzle to unlock a gate to the last area of the ruins.
Head through the gate and into the last area.
Hint: Use everything you've learned up to this point to solve these last few puzzles.
Hint: If you find your path blocked... simply find another way to look at things.
Make sure to move the last panel so you can spot the solution!
With the last panel solved, head into the elevator and start it up.
This will lift you back up the surface and activate the second beacon.
AREA 5: COMING SOON
This guide is a work in progress and we will be continually updating it as we solve new puzzles. Keep an eye out for updates each and every day.