This walkthrough guide for The Outer Worlds shows you how to get the Journal of M. Bakonu and complete the "Illustrated Manual" quest.

The Outer Worlds Guide: Illustrated Manual Walkthrough

This walkthrough guide for The Outer Worlds shows you how to get the Journal of M. Bakonu and complete the "Illustrated Manual" quest.

There are quite a few sidequests to be had at the beginning of The Outer Worlds. One of them is called the “Illustrated Manual,” and it sees you hunting down a “heretical” manuscript for Edgewater’s Vicar Max. 

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Almost as soon as you get Parvati as a companion in the early stages of the game, she asks you to visit Vicar Max. He can be found near the Cannery in Edgewater. As with most objectives in The Outer Worlds, a waypoint marker leads you directly to him. 

While speaking to him about the deserters at the Botanical Lab for the “Now Comes the Power” quest, Max will tell you about the text he’s after, starting you on the “Illuminated Manual” sidequest. 

How to Find the Illuminated Manual

A map showing the location of The Abandoned Outpost in The Outer Worlds.

You first need to leave Edgewater and go just a tad northeast to The Abandoned Outpost. Unlike some other locations in the Emerald Vale region, where you’re going doesn’t have a fast travel node. Thankfully, The Abandoned Outpost isn’t much of a trek. 

You’re looking for the Collector’s Domicile. Luckily, there aren’t many buildings where you’re going. The Collector’s Domicile is one of two or three buildings in the area, and it has a big yellow “Cannery” sign above it. 

Take out the Marauders here, then go inside and take a left. Go into a small room to find the waypoint hovering above a note. Read the note to get a new waypoint, which will take you to a cave west of The Abandoned Outpost. 

A map showing the location of the river cave in the Illustrated Manual quest.

You’ll find yourself near some transport wreckage in an area aptly called Transport Wreckage. There is a little river in the area, and it goes directly into the cave you need to enter. 

Go inside the cave and hug the right wall. It will quickly open into a little nook full of crates and boxes. Be careful here: there are several purple mines to dispatch before safely entering. 

After taking out the mines, go inside the alcove and hang a right. You will see a big safe. To open it, you will need three lockpicks and a lockpick skill of at least 5. If you have Parvati with you, this should be a cinch since she gives you +9 to lockpicking. 

Open the safe. Grab the Illustrated Manual (the Journal of M. Bakonu) and the items inside the safe. You will get 2,400 XP for nabbing the manual. 

Now, go back to Edgewater and speak with Vicar Max. Though he won’t be too happy with what’s in the manual, it also allows you to recruit him as a companion. 

Besides that, you’ll get 7,200 XP and 1,000 bits for your troubles. Your reputation with Spacer’s Choice will also increase. 

That’s all you need to know about completing the “Illustrated Manual” quest in The Outer Worlds. Now you’re 7,200 XP closer to leveling up and, if you chose to accept Max’s offer to join you, one companion stronger. 

For more on tips, tricks, and walkthroughs for The Outer Worlds, be sure to head over to our growing guides page. Stay tuned for our official review of the game in the coming days. 


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Jonathan Moore is the Editor-in-Chief of GameSkinny and has been writing about games since 2010. With over 1,200 published articles, he's written about almost every genre, from city builders and ARPGs to third-person shooters and sports titles. While patiently awaiting anything Dino Crisis, he consumes all things Star Wars. He has a BFA in Creative Writing and an MFA in Creative Writing focused on games writing and narrative design. He's previously been a newspaper copy editor, ad writer, and book editor. In his spare time, he enjoys playing music, watching football, and walking his three dogs. He lives on Earth and believes in aliens, thanks to Fox Mulder.