Having spent many hours stuck in the earlier levels of Hexen,
I finally figured out what my problem was: I was trying to think
logically. No, make that, I was trying to think. After a couple
of hubs of frustration, I finally worked out the correct strategy for
this game's so-called "puzzles"; then I never got stuck again (and
easily found the hidden levels, which aren't all that hidden.)
Since many people seem to be stuck in various stages of this
Rube Goldberg mess, here's a few general tips that always seemed
1. Waste no time figuring out that button you just pushed did.
Chances are, it changes something 1000 miles from your current
location, changes something that's completely unrelated to
th location, appearance or surroundings of the button, and
it won't change that something until N other buttons have
been pressed. A random rewalk of the hub (which you'll do
anyway) will find it faster than any deductive thought
process, and you'll understand it just as well as the fellow
who tried to figure it out logically (but you'll have it figured
out before Christmas.)
2. Waste no time figuring out how to open that wall that the map
insists is a door. It's either an ambush or it will self-open
later due to some action you don't even remember doing.
3. The more useless, dangerous and pointless some activity is,
the higher the chance you have to do it to finish the game.
4. When stuck, walk through the entire hub again. There will be
some new switch or passage that magically appeared due to
your stepping over a line 20 kilometers away in another map.
5. If that fails, go kill that monster that you were too chicken
to face. Do this enough times and Hexen will realize you've actually
gone and visited that little part of the map that some programmer
spend hours designing and felt every player absolutely had to
experience; then it will let you into the next part of the game.
6. If that fails, go look for things in your inventory that don't
match the standard items (assuming you can successfuly pattern-match
the icons against those eensy-weensy reproductions in the CD-case
manual.) Make it your default item, then run around looking for
interesting wall textures and objects and press ENTER and SPACEBAR
in front of every pixel on that object.
7. Iterate steps 4-6 until hub is solved.
Hexen: great atmosphere, good combat, terrible puzzles.