The River of Fire

Hell's Maw



New Weapons

Phoenix Rod

E2M3 heretic
Level Chronology

The Lava Pits


The Ice Grotto

The River of Fire is the third level of Hell's Maw, the second episode of Heretic.

The map is dominated by a long river of boiling hot magma that flows through most of this cavernous level. The river originates from a large magma pool, dotted with erupting mini-volcanoes. Players have a chance to obtain their first Phoenix Rod and Firemace on this level.

Walkthrough and Secrets

The first part of this level is like a two-lane racetrack with a molten lava median. It does not matter where you begin to proceed. If you start by entering either set of steps on the inside lane, the wall section behind you will open containing Weredragons. For now, follow both the inside and outside lanes clearing the area of beasties. You will have to cross the narrow lava channels to get on the outside lane. There are plenty of goodies sitting in the lava, including a Ring of Invulnerability and a Silver Shield at the base of the lava cascades. Enter the cavern with the blue doors and make a run for one of the small islands. You need to press the switch on the platform to the south. This will open two narrow corridors to either side of the entrance to this room. Both rooms contain a Disciple. The western one has the yellow key and the right one a Tome of Power. Proceed to the yellow door that is located north of the outside track.

Go inside and get the green key. Wall sections east, north and west will open revealing Weredragons. Be careful on the ice outside and remember that the grey sludge will hurt you. Quickly get the Quartz Flask and the Wings of Wrath. Now head for the green doors; either one - they both lead to the same place. Proceed up the stairs. Destroy the monsters in all the three sides of the corridor before doing anything else. Then head back to the southern end and take out the disciples of D'Sparil in the cell. Get the Tome of Power and the Shadowsphere and press the switch. Now head back to the cavern with the blue doors. The blue key is accessible now.

Press the switch behind the key and return to the lane staircases. The lava cascades between the staircases have lowered providing access to the game's most powerful weapon, the Phoenix Rod. Take the weapon from the western cascade and the Mystic Urn from the eastern one. There are also Flame Orbs there, the amount of which being dependent on the skill level. Next, head for either one of the blue doors. They hide a series of plateaus with molten rock pools. Make your way up, collecting goodies and taking out beasties. A niche on the right side of the northwestern plateau contains a Hellstaff. The northeastern plateau contains a Chaos Device. The southeastern plateau contains a Bag of Holding, Greater Runes, an Enchanted Shield and an Inferno Orb. You may want to collect the shield only when you are ready to leave. Make your way to the top and go through the door. Exit the level.

This is the first level in the game where you can come across a Firemace. In case it has appeared at the level startup, you will find it from one of three different positions. In order of appearance, they are located

  • in the sludge pool of the icy outdoor area.
  • in the eastern lava cascade, next to the Mystic Urn.
  • in the northeastern plateau, with the Chaos Device.

If the weapon did not appear, the next chance to obtain it is on either E2M9: The Glacier or E2M6: The Labyrinth.


To be Added

Single-Player Stats


HereticStatIcon Difficulty Level
1-2 3 4-5
GargoyleIcon 11 21 24
FireGargoyleIcon 2 4 4
GolemIcon - - -
NitrogolemGhostIcon - - -
NitrogolemIcon - - -
GolemGhostIcon - - -
UWIcon - - -
UWGhostIcon - - -
DiscipleIcon 6 9 11
WeredragonIcon 9 14 18
SabreclawIcon 18 26 35
OphidianIcon - - -
LichIcon - - -
MaulotaurIcon - - -
SerpentIcon - - -
DsparilIcon - - -
Total 46 74 92

Weapons and Ammo

HereticStatIcon Difficulty Level
1-2 3 4-5
GauntletsSprite 1 1 1
CrossbowSprite 1 1 1
DragonClawSprite 1 1 1
HellstaffSprite 1 1 1
PhoenixRodSprite 1 1 1
FiremaceSprite 3 3 3

HereticStatIcon Difficulty Level
1-2 3 4-5
WandCrystalSprite 18 17 19
GeodeSprite 2 2 2
EtherealArrowSprite 28 23 25
EtherealQuiverSprite 1 1 1
ClawOrbSprite 21 16 19
EnergyOrbSprite 2 2 1
LesserRuneSprite 9 9 10
GreaterRuneSprite 1 1 1
FlameOrbSprite 5 4 2
InfernoOrbSprite 1 - -
MaceSphereSprite 6 3 3
MaceSpherePileSprite - - -


HereticStatIcon Difficulty Level
1-2 3 4-5
CrystalVialSprite 59 49 39
QuartzFlaskSprite 8 8 7
MysticUrnSprite 1 1 1
SilverSheildSprite 1 1 1
EnShieldSprite 1 1 1
TorchSprite - - -
MapScrollSprite - - -
BOHSprite 1 1 1
ShadowsphereSprite 1 1 1
TomePowerSprite 2 2 2
InvRingSprite 1 1 1
WingsSprite 1 1 1
ChaosDeviceSprite 1 1 1
EggSprite 1 1 -
TimeBombSprite 11 8 6

Multiplayer Stats

To be Added


To be Added

External Links

Heretic - Episodes & Levels
Episode 1
City of the Damned
The DocksThe DungeonsThe GatehouseThe Guard TowerThe CitadelThe Cathedral
The CryptsHell's MawThe Graveyard
Episode 2
Hell's Maw
The CraterThe Lava PitsThe River of FireThe Ice GrottoThe CatacombsThe Labyrinth
The Great HallThe Portals of ChaosThe Glacier
Episode 3
The Dome of D'Sparil
The StorehouseThe CesspoolThe ConfluenceThe Azure FortressThe Ophidian Lair
The Halls of FearThe ChasmD'Sparil's KeepThe Aquifer
Episode 4
The Ossuary
CatafalqueBlockhouseAmbulatorySepulcherGreat StairHalls of the Apostate
Ramparts of PerditionShattered BridgeMausoleum
Episode 5
The Stagnant Demesne
Ochre CliffsRapidsQuayCourtyardHydratyrColonnadeFoetid Manse
Field of JudgementSkein of D'Sparil
Extra Episode
Fate's Path
Raven's LairThe Water ShrineAmerican's Legacy

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