This is getting serious!
This article contains some serious spoilers. Read at your own risk!
Persepolis was a massive and thriving ancient Persian city, perhaps the largest in Mesopotamia during its time. Its size was roughly similar to that of Thebes in comparision. It was built around 518 B.C. by Darius the Great, the fourth Persian king of the Achaemenid Empire.
Persepoils was rich with Babylonian architecture with huge luxurious palaces, ziggurats, and terraced pyramids. The city was dotted with many spires and columns. The blue-tiled walls of the city were decorated with bulls, dragons, lions, flowers and Babylonian soldiers. The bulls and dragons represented the god Marduk. There were also statues of winged pegasus, winged lions, and elephants, which were usually found in large open yards. Many entrances to the important buildings were locked, with miniature golden versions of the statues serving as keys to unlock the doors.
Courtyards of Gilgamesh
The courtyards and temples in this area were constructed in favour of the legendary King Gilgamesh. There was also a large temple that was dedicated to him. Entering this temple would lead one to the Tower of Babel.
Palace of King Tilman
Like the Temple of Gilgamesh, this palace was built to commemorate King Tilmman, another ruler of ancient Babylon. Inside this grand building was a large ceremonial hall, the largest hall in the palace. All major ceremonies and activities took place in here.
Temple of Gilgamesh
A huge palace dedicated to King Gilgamesh. The temple was used for punishing infidels and was rumored to be full of gold and treasures, though this was most likely to encourage thieves, as there were lots of traps inside the temple. Further inside the temple was a deep abyss, where the Babylonians would perform a "leap of faith". Whoever survived the passage would earn the privilege to visit the Tower of Babel. Deep inside this abyss was actually a large moving platform that would lead someone to the exit of the temple.
The Chamber of Cosmos
Located outside the ceremonial hall, this chamber was designed using all the knowledge that Babylonians could gather about astronmomy - the universe and planets and their relationships with each other. Using complex mathematical and physical formulas and axioms, they managed to the translate the movements of cosmic objects into coordinates and built this room following the basic rules of the universe.
The Chamber of Deities
In this room, the Babylonians would have to pass through it before they could get to the ceremonial room. To do this, they would walk silently in complete darkness with their eyes focused on their floor so they wouldn't enrage the gods. Of course, the room had to be kept clean, so the Babylonians placed a switch on top of the door which allows light to enter for a period of time.
The Elephant Atrium
This large courtyard was dominated with a statue of an elephant in the center. There were also many yards and temples decorated with smaller elephant statues. In the first courtyard there were two buildings; one of them didn't really serve much of a purpose, whilst the other building contained a ceremonial tub which the Babylonians used to cleanse themselves of their sins and for purifying the soul.
There was also a rocket-shaped object within this building. It's possible that the Sirians built this structure to serve as a prototype for the backup spaceship that they later placed inside the Grand Cathedral.
Tower of Babel
The Tower of Babel was the tallest and most significant building in all of Persepolis. Entry was strictly forbidden for ordinary people, and few ever got to see it in person. It was also where the Babylonians hid their time portal. According to legend, there was a monster that lived inside the tower; anyone who defeated it would be granted with a journey to the afterlife. This 'monster' was actually refering to the Exotech Larva that Mental placed within the tower to prevent Sam from entering the portal.
Sam arrives in a ziggurat just outside of Persepolis upon entering the time portal in Teotihuacan, after he defeats Kukulkán. NETRICSA tells Sam that the Sirians placed a time portal inside the Tower of Babel, and that they must get there to continue their search for the Holy Grail. As Sam navigates through the city, NETRISCA tells him that she still can't see the tower, saying that the city is a lot bigger than she initially thought.
Sam eventually gets to the tower after dealing with heavy resistance from Mental's forces. He finds out that the entrace to the tower is sealed, so he has to prove himself worthy enough to enter the tower by obtaining three tablets of wisdom. He gets the tablets and makes it inside the tower. However, as Mental is aware of Sam's intentions, he places the Exotech Larva inside the tower to guard the portal. Once he kills it, Sam enters the last and final time portal which takes him to the Middle Ages to finish his main quest: getting the Holy Grail.
List of appearances
- Serious Sam: The Second Encounter (First appearance)
- Serious Sam: Xbox (non-canonical appearance)
- Serious Sam HD: The Second Encounter
- Serious Sam VR: The Second Encounter
- Serious Sam Classics: Revolution (non-canonical appearance)