Garrett, older and finally out of debt, has decided to settle down in a newly-purchased cottage. Then he finds a mysterious locked switch on one of his home's outer walls. Between that and rumors about the mysterious alchemist who used to live there, he has no choice but to get back into his old habits....
"Autumn in Lampfire Hills" is a very early mission, the first work of Purah, who would later go on to work on the well-known "Calendra" missions. Despite its age, "Autumn" is not to be overlooked by dedicated Thief players.
The first part of the mission is a medium-sized town you'll need to explore thoroughly, for there are a number of areas of interest, including two keys to find, a side objective, and a certain note that unlocks another side objective, not to mention the requisite loot as well as a grocer with a ridiculous amount of food in case you didn't buy enough before you started (seriously, food is the only thing you can buy). Though a few houses can be broken into by lockpicking the front doors, others will require you to make use of rope arrows or find some other hidden entrance. Despite the relative simplicity in the looks department typical of an old FM, there is plenty of variety in the designs and textures around the town, and a nice cozy feeling, with narrow alleyways and smallish open squares. The only thing I'd add is a few more guards roaming the streets.
The other part is a network of underground passages. One half of it, consisting mostly of sewers, is entirely accessible from the city, which I'm of two minds about: it was satisfying to explore, but unfortunately for a time I mistakenly believed the key to Garret's mysterious switch was hidden down there, so I'll save you some potential confusion and say it's not, look elsewhere. Once you find that key you can proceed to Garrett's house.
Unfortunately from then on I was less impressed with the mission: I liked what it was going for, but despite a couple original (in Thief terms) ideas I didn't feel it was the Bonehoard in miniature it could have been. All the same, it wrapped up the mission pleasantly enough.
My final quibble would be a lack of ambient sounds in certain indoor areas.
All in all I enjoyed my time with this very early mission in Thief's history, with the above-grown town section and Garrett's cozy little cottage being the clear highlight.
star 7 / 10