When Rusty falls through the mine at the beginning of the game, he finds himself in Archae, where he meets Dorothy and finds out that his Uncle is dead. It is here that he takes his uncles pickaxe and starts mining.
Archaea, being the first area in the game, introduces the player to the core mechanics of the game and its structure. There are three upgrade caves to be found as well as numerous small caves, and a Teleporter about midway. The player will also encounter enemies, such as Trilobites and Turtles.
In the first upgrade cave where the running ability is obtained, a generator for Vectron can be found. Destroying it will complete half of the achievement 'Sequence Breaker', which requires the player to destroy two generators before entering Vectron. Note that it is out of reach until the player obtains the Steam Jump.
The Upgrades found in the three main caves of Archae are:
- The ability to run.
- The Steam Jump - Allows the player to use water to launch upwards.
- The Drill - A mining tool, similar to the standard pickaxe, but quicker.