“Thunder & Plunder, Don't Wonder”
—Unicorp Mining Operations

Unearthly Excavation is a level in Viscera Cleanup Detail.

Level Briefings Edit


Despite the catastrophic events that unfolded within this excavation site, you will perform your job with utmost delicacy and discretion.

Unicorp officials will be inspecting the site this week, so work with haste to clean, sanitize and neaten the facility.

Failure to complete your work here within the time frame will result in termination of your contract, possibly more...

Do not be alarmed by any residual entities or artifacts that remain as a result of the events; it is your duty to conduct yourself professionally despite such obstructions.

Respawn BriefEdit

You are being hired as a replacement for a deceased colleague.

Your fellow employee is presumed to have been devoured by an unidentified lifeform, exercise caution when performing your assigned duties.

Above all, avoid angering your co-workers, and ensure the facility is clean and orderly.
Do this and you may yet join the permanent staff, however dangerous they may be.


Unearthly Excavation Stair Room

The central room in Unearthly Excavation

With a large layout, machines spread out across the map, and a plethora of hazards, Unearthly Excavation is arguably one of the most challenging levels in the game.

The map consists of a series of rooms and chambers of varying sizes. The area is divided by two separate locked gates, each requiring a passcode.

The player spawns in a small room containing the level's main Stacking Areas, at the far end of the map. A staircase leads down to a larger room containing the Slosh-O-Matic and a Pit Monster. Another set of stairs leads up to the first Keypad-protected gate. Past this is a large T-shaped hallway containing the Vendor and What A Load Disposal Bins machine. (The Big Banger Supernova can be found here as well.)

The hallway opens into a very large, sunlit circular central chamber surrounding the level's second (and largest) Pit Monster, as well as a spiral staircase leading up to a smaller room with the Incinerator and Punchomatic. Behind a gate in the Incinerator room is a hidden storage room, containing several crates, barrels, mining explosives, two Stacking Areas, and a small closet area behind a door. This closet contains several important items, such as Bob's remains and the Red Keycard. Items in this hidden area are not reflected in the player's score until it is unlocked.

Back in the central chamber, behind another locked gate is a long dirt tunnel branching off and into a large dirt-cavern. This cavern contains the third Pit Monster, an alien structure, and the Alien Artifact.

Original Map Source
VCD 3 - wiki - Unearthly Excavation - 1

Starting Area

VCD 3 - wiki - Unearthly Excavation - 2

Main Area

VCD 3 - wiki - Unearthly Excavation - 3

Cave Area

Map Key


Primary Objectives Edit

  • Common objectives to all levels: clean human blood splatters, incinerate viscera, dead bodies, trash, and bullet casings, as well as any sharp implements like knives.
  • Use the Shovel to fill the Pit Monsters with sand until they are completely covered.
  • Destroy/Incinerate the Artifact.
  • Weld/fix any bullet holes.

Secondary ObjectivesEdit

  • Stack crates in the designated area.
  • Stack barrels in the designated areas.
    • There are two separate designated areas: yellow and blue. The paint color corresponds to the color of the barrel to be stacked.
NOTE: There are two more hidden stacking zones - one for crates and one for barrels, in the room past the Incinerator. Once found, objects from elsewhere on the map may be stacked there, and objects inside the room may be stacked in the original stacking areas. Both count equally toward the player's score, but the hidden areas are not counted if the player has not yet unlocked the gate.

Incident ReportEdit

Please see the "Punchomatic Cheat Sheet" located at:

Data LogsEdit

Date: 16/05/2184
Time: 19:44 GST
Identification: Mr. Stout Johnson
Title: Chief Mining Officer

I'm officially halting the mining today. We've found something down there that shouldn't be. Our early scans indicated rich metal deposits, but we've stumbled upon something the scans didn't pick up, some sort of stone architecture.

I'm no archeologist, and I couldn't care less, but if administration gets wind of this and we didn't call it in, we're all in deep shit!

I've ordered the miners to start digging out the area, taking care to avoid harming the structures.

Once we know what we're dealing with I'll call it in. There goes our god damn cut!

Date: 25/08/2184
Time: 10:34 GST
Identification: Mrs. Mildred Athalax
Title: Archeologist

We've been studying the artifact for over a day now. From what we've learned so far, we can deduce that it was an item of great importance to the race that left it here. However, we cannot discern whether it was out of respect for it, or fear.

We are getting some very strange reports about the mental state of the miners who dug out the area. I myself fear that my mental capacity is also dwindling, perhaps I just need a break from studying the artifact.

Date: 26/08/2184
Time: 11:40 GST
Identification: Dr. Frankenwurst
Title: Lead Archeologist

Given the importance of our discovery, I'm going to have a security gate installed on the tunnel to the main chamber.

People keep coming and going, and I'm convinced at least one person has made off with some valuable piece of alien architecture.

I don't expect much of these miners, but better safe than sorry, therefore a 10 digit code should do the trick!

Hmm, I think my sister's birthdate and age will do; 1104214539

Date: 27/08/2184
Time: 13:17 GST
Identification: Ms. Lara Kraft
Title: Archeologist

This ancient civilization is remarkable. Their architecture resonates with some paranormal energy, and based on the glyphs I've found so far I believe I know the purpose of this temple!

As we suspected, the temple and artifact was of great importance to the civilization that left it here. They made it not for worship, but to seal away something they feared.

They built the temple to contain the power of the artifact, and built stones to absorb its energies, then they left, hoping none would ever return to release the built up powers contained therein!

What have we done...

Date: 27/08/2184
Time: 14:16 GST
Identification: Dr Frakenwurst
Title: Lead Archeologist

My initial joy at our wonderous discovery has turned sour. Increasing reports of psychosis among the earlier diggers is leading to less and less progress on our research. People are getting scared, and even I have begun seeing things I cannot explain.

I have chosen to ignore these problems and remain determined to uncover the secrets of this ancient alien artifact. Lara tells me she is close to unlocking its secrets

The others do not understand its importance, I must be weary of them, they must not stop what is to come!

Date: 28/08/2184
Time: 12:04 GST
Identification: Dr. Mercero
Title: Chief Psychologist

My results are truly worrying.

Most patients exhibit serious symptoms of mental capacital breakdown and psychosis within 72 hours of exposure to the heart of the digsite.

One miner, Mr.Anderson, was able to escape his restraints and run straight into one of the mysterious 'sand traps' that appeared just the other day.

We are not equipped to deal with a medical emergency of any kind. This simply can't go on much longer, I've already had to restrain Mr.Johnson and over 7 other patients to girders, scaffolds, pipes and anything I can!

Date: 17/09/2184
Time: 09:42 GST
Identification: Samson Slater
Title: Security Officer

Primary Objective:
Find out what happened at the digsite.

Secondary Objective:
Lay down the law with bullets!
Communication with the excavation team ceased over a week ago. We want you to go down there and find out what's going on!

Be alert, as our last contact revealed some very unusual reports.

Notes GalleryEdit

Bob's NoteEdit

Bob's note can be found behind a stack of barrels near the welder, in the same area as the Artifact.

Bob 11/07/2184
Junior Executive Janitor
After a series of horrible flights in which I stowed away in cargo crates for months, I boarded a security transport and have finally reached this planet.

I had hoped to hide out down here, but something ain't right.

I've seen people attacking eachother for no reason. They are miners though, so who knows.
I have some really shitty luck!

Hopefully me and my things will remain hidden away and safe from these thugs.

I feel strangely drawn to the altar. Like that's where my legacy should be. I have a bad feeling about this...

Three additional notes can also be found in the hidden room. Please refer to the "Bob" page for the content of these notes.

Tips and TriviaEdit


The main segment of the alien structure.

  • The code to the first gate is 1795.
  • The code to the second gate is 1104214539.
  • Unearthly Excavation contains a large alien structure composed of several blue-green segments arranged as a rough archway, found in a large dirt cavern behind the second locked gate. The structure can be seen emitting an occasional electrical spark. The Artifact is found on a pedestal directly beneath the central arch of the structure.
  • Unearthly Excavation is the only level, besides Penumbra, to contain Pit Monsters, alien hazards that will kill any player who falls into them.
  • Unearthly Excavation contains many references to the video game "Dead Space", including references to Aegis VII, the planet where "Dead Space" takes place.[1]

Hidden Room Edit

  • There is a hidden warehouse room behind the Incinerator room. It is initially blocked by an inaccessible gate, which can be opened by completing the quest to find Bob. In the warehouse there are many shelves, crates, barrels, mining explosives, and two extra Stacking Areas between the shelves - one for barrels, and one for crates. Along a wall there is a small door, which opens into a broom closet containing three of Bob's last notes, Bob's trunk, the Red Keycard, another collectible, and Bob himself, among several other objects.
    • The items found in this area are not considered by the game to be "mess" objects, so if the player doesn't find this room it will not count against their completion score.

Image Gallery Edit


  1. Developer Trivia on Steam