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MADiSON: How to Solve the Portrait Puzzle in the Attic

Madison portrait puzzle attic

Horror game MADiSON is full of brain-teasing puzzles, but one of the trickiest ones involves the portraits in the attic.

About a third of the way through the game, you’ll have spent some time gathering portraits which go in the attic. Each portrait has its own shape – a square, a circle, a diamond and a hexagon – and there’s a mark on the wall corresponding to each one. So putting them in the right places seems like the logical thing to do, right? Not quite. Solving the portrait puzzle in the attic in MADiSON is a little more complicated than that.

First, see the note on the desk closes to the stairs? It doesn’t make a whole lot of sense, but it talks about ages, and the words add and subtract are underlined. They must be important.

Next, if you look at any of the portraits and turn it around, you’ll see the age of each subject is clearly marked. They must be important too.

The final piece of the puzzle is through the hole in the wall at the back of the attic. Peer through it and you’ll see the number “43”. If you’ve been paying attention to MADiSON‘s narrative, you’ll know that it’s the age at which Madison was killed. That doesn’t really matter, but it’s an important part of the puzzle.

Solving the Portrait Puzzle in MADiSON

There’s one less obvious step to complete before you can solve MADiSON‘s portrait puzzle in the attic. Underneath each of the four portrait spots is a desk. The desks are littered with Polaroid pictures. This is a clue that we need to take a photo. Take a photo of all four desks without a portrait hung above it.

Look at those photos: you’ll see each one has a number on the wall.

Now, you need to pair the number on the wall to an age on the back of one of the portraits. Each pairing needs to equal 43 by adding or subtracting. For example, if the number on the wall is 38, you can hang the portrait of the five year old up there to equal 43.

Get all four in the right place, then go look through the hole in the wall. Something will have changed, and it’s time to move on to the next part of the game. Good luck.

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Editor in chief // Kim's been into video games since playing Dizzy on her brother's Commodore 64 as a nipper. She'll give just about anything a go, but she's got a particular soft spot for indie adventures. If she's not gaming, she'll be building Lego, reading a thriller, watching something spooky or... asleep. She does love to sleep.