James Bowden


Crown Guide

Crowns? You what?

The Crowns are mini challenges that 4J studios have added in the Xbox Live Arcade HD scrub up of the classic N64 game Perfect Dark, and they are linked to the ‘Crowning Glory’ achievement which while only worth 5G will say a lot about ones gaming prowess.

This guide starts with some general tips for anyone starting their crown attaining and then goes on to cover the basics of earning crowns through a ‘How’ and ‘Method’ system, the how being exactly how and the method being a directed guide.

So stick with me and we’ll have that Crowning Glory achievement in no time.

Some of the PDXBLA Awards (aka Crowns)

General Crown Earning Tips

  • Once you gain a crown within a level it’s yours, this means that unless otherwise stated it’s fine to exit a level the moment you see the message to the bottom left of the screen, if the crown requires the completion the level it will be otherwise stated.
  • Some of the crowns require a little level knowledge, it’s recommended to scout a level before going for a crown or find out a trick or two, for example did you know the weak wall in Area 51: Rescue can be destroyed by shooting a proximity dragon next to it? Or that there is a hidden Bomb Spy in Chicago?
  • Is alluded to in the previous point these crowns are designed for a game many people have played to death and so focus on exploiting numerous tricks, the most vital of these being the angled strafe, Jo is far more nimble if you tilt the movement stick slightly into a strafe, it’s not subtle either so it’s fairly obvious when it’s working.
  • Additionally some crowns ask you to play through on Perfect Agent, and one required level is locked until you defeat the game on its most crippling difficulty, ergo it makes sense to see the campaign off on each difficulty before starting your crown collection in earnest.
  • Occasionally a crown will ask you to do something completely stupid and Jo will not survive some of these situations, however others can be used in future speed runs of a level. It’s fairly obvious which crowns fall into which category.
  • If you need to wear something or activate a gadget, it’s ‘quicker’ to pause the game, scroll to the right and then select it from the list as opposed to fumbling with the LB radial selection.
  • You can turn on an in game clock from the options which will appear in the bottom left of the screen, this can help give you an indication of how well you’re doing with time defined crowns.
  • Don’t feel bad about using Auto-Aim when trying for the speedy crowns, capping a few enemies can mean the difference between success and failure and the assist is there to be used and dutifully abused, just don’t forget to play without it once in a while in preparation for the ‘Name’s Dark’ crown.
  • Also worth noting, some crowns need to be achieved in co-operative mode so phone a friend.

Specific Crown Level Guides

Using the guide

Mission name

  • Crown – the name of this particular crown.
  • Difficulty – The difficulty setting the level must be played on, Agent, Special Agent, or Perfect Agent.
  • How – The specific method of unlocking the crown.
  • Method – A protracted explanation on how you can get the crown, for the lazy types.

Mission 1

1.1 – dataDyne Central – Defection

  • Crown – No Help Needed.
  • Difficulty – Perfect Agent.
  • How – Kill fifteen guards without auto-aim.
  • Method – Simply turn off ‘Auto Aim’ in the control settings before starting the mission and then kill 15 enemies, a comfortable introduction.

1.2 – dataDyne Research – Investigation

  • Crown – Close Proximity.
  • Difficulty – Agent.
  • How – Kill Three guards using the hidden proximity mine.
  • Method – There is a proximity mine nestled behind the radioactive isotope so ignore Carrington’s words of warning and run around the edge of the room. Now, with explosive in hand, grab the attention of three guards, plonk the mine down then watch them fly.

Location of secret proximity mines in the 'dataDyne Research' mission

1.3 – dataDyne Central – Extraction

  • Crown – Good Enough for Clint.
  • Difficulty – Agent.
  • How – Use the hidden magnum to kill eight enemies with headshots.
  • Method – To find the hidden magnum kill the first five guards without being noticed, hug walls and land headshots with the falcon, the guard to the right after entering the main lobby is number five and the one hiding the magnum in his pockets. With handcannon in, well, hand proceed to shoot eight more enemies in the head for this crown.

Mission 2

2.1 – Carrington Villa – Hostage One

  • Crown – Way of the Assassin.
  • Difficulty – Perfect Agent.
  • How – Use the hidden Sniper Rifle to ‘no-scope’ headshot five enemies.
  • Method – After escaping the firing line and entering the villa, head up one floor and you’ll find Carrington’s bedroom near the ramp that leads up to the top floor, enter your boss’ love den and you’ll find the body of an unfortunate Carrington guard dumped in the shower and just out of his grasp a Sniper Rifle, considering he won’t be using it any time soon take the weapon and proceed to headshot five enemies without using your LT manual aim, killing the enemies via the popular method of ‘no-scope’. Cries of ‘Boom! Headshot!’ Optional.

Mission 3

3.1 – Chicago – Stealth

  • Crown – Quickly Does It.
  • Difficulty – Agent.
  • How – Complete all three objectives in rapid succession of each other in under 35 seconds. Co-op recommended.
  • Method – A Crown that takes a lot of patience, the main idea behind it is to complete the three objectives incredibly close to one another, skipping the cutscene whilst the game still says ‘Objective 2 complete’, in record time. The best route to accomplish this is to run onto the street and skip down the alley to your right where you must push the dumpster here towards the explosive barrels, blow up the barrels and grab the bomb-spy from within. Now run and quickly grab the case from the storm drain, explode the bomb-spy into the enemies by the exit and then run in yourself. However it is far, far, far, far, far, far, far easier in co-op, have one player wait at the briefcase whilst the other collects the bomb spy, as said player maneuvers the bomb spy round to the exit to blow it up player 2 grabs the case, and then player 1 runs to the exit, completing all three objectives practically simultaneously.

Chicago mission, co-op gameplay

3.2 – G5 Building – Reconnaissance

  • Crown – Bow to the Audience.
  • Difficulty – Agent.
  • How – Use the hidden Crossbow to kill eight enemies.
  • Method – By killing the first two guards with fists (after they appear a well placed bop to the back of the head will fell them instantly) the second will drop a secret crossbow, switch to the secondary fire mode (instant kill) and proceed to off eight enemies with the deadly arrows.

Mission 4

4.1 – Area 51 – Infiltration

  • Crown – Rapid Radar Shut Down.
  • Difficulty – Special Agent.
  • How – Destroy the underground radar station in under sixty seconds.
  • Method – Dart left when the level starts, dash up the watchtower to hit the door release, ignore the sentries as you dart for the ladder down to the radar station to the right of the corrugated doors in front of you, place the explosives and grab a cup of tea, Jo need not survive the explosion.

4.2 – Area 51 – Rescue

  • Crown – Master of Disguise.
  • Difficulty – Special Agent.
  • How – Attain and wear the lab clothes in under 1:30.
  • Method – Before even starting the mission you need to let the cutscene play, wait until Jonathan presses a random button on the bottom of the hover box and now press A and start the mission. Ignore the box and dive into the closing lift, kill a guard upstairs and take his dragon then move into the next room. Pressing A from outside the big lift here, as Jo step in, will close the door faster as pressing A from within doesn’t do squat, run around the walkway then throw the Dragon in proximity mode at the weak wall and shoot it. Now hang a right following the corridor round till reaching the tiny door to the toilets on the left before the hanger. Dart in, shoot the scientist holding the lab clothes in the showers, grab them and shove them over Jo’s head; remember that selecting the uniform from the pause menu will be instant. Jobs a good’un.

4.2 – Area 51 – Escape

  • Crown – Easy Rider.
  • Difficulty – Agent.
  • How – Jump on the hoverbike and finish the level in under thirty seconds from doing so.
  • Method – Play the level as normal and when the three characters are having a chat wait until Joanna exclaims that ‘there must be another way out of here’ at which point you should dart to the hover bike, double tap A to hop on and then speed up onto the walkways and hit the console to the back of the hanger (where the entrance to the lift was in the first Area 51 level) then the one closest the UFO, the crown should appear on the mission complete screen. By doing it this way, you avoid having to exit the level on the hoverbike, lovely!

Mission 5

5.1 – Air Base – Espionage

  • Crown – I Want to be Sedated.
  • Difficulty – Special Agent.
  • How – Sedate six guards using the drug spy in under thirty seconds.
  • Method – This crown is incredibly easy, simply launch the spy at the start of the level then nail the guard in the alcove to the left followed by the walking guard, Guard number three is in the symmetrical alcove to the first victim and then drive through the tunnel and put the two guards and the stewardess into a deep slumber. Letting enemies walk into the drug spies crosshair will help avoid misses.

5.2 – Air Force One – Antiterrorism

  • Crown – Presidential Prediction.
  • Difficulty – Special Agent.
  • How – Complete Objective 3 first, and rescue the president in under 1:15. Co-Op required.
  • Method – First thing first, make sure you're starting this level on the passenger level as opposed to the cargo bay, this means ending the previous mission, Air Base Espionage, by entering the plane from the side and not through the lethal laser grid. This method explains how to achieve the crown by playing in split screen co-op, this avoids any lag issues in timing and AI glitches. Run upstairs on controller 1 (get to the president around 0:07) and whilst Jo and el Presidente are having a chinwag move player 2 to face where the Skedar ship will attach and hold RT down the timed mine, when the cutscene starts let go of RT on controller 2 and then skip the cutscene, move back to put Velvet on the wall else she gets in the way of his Presidency. Pick up controller 1 (the president shouldn’t have started moving yet anyway) and rush through the rest of the level ensuring all enemies are dead so as none of can plug a shot in Jo’s VIP, the President should stay on your heels and can get in the escape pod as soon as 1:09.

Air Force One mission, co-op gameplay

5.3 – Crash Site – Confrontation

  • Crown – Magnum P.D.
  • Difficulty – Agent.
  • How – Kill the fake President using Trent’s custom Gold Magnum.
  • Method – Play the level as normal and when you meet Trent holding the President at gun point, race down while unarmed and disarm him of his prized weapon. Two choices now, either follow the tunnels and kill the false president now, or return the president to Elvis and then kill the fake president to end the level, simply ensure that his demise is dealt by the golden magnum.

Mission 6

6.1 – Pelagic II – Exploration

  • Crown – Tick Tick... BOOM.
  • Difficulty – Agent.
  • How – Kill four enemies with the N-Grenade.
  • Method – Easy as pie this one, run through the first corridor and into the next room, run a little further and let some guards gather, then drop the bomb. It’s in your inventory.

6.2 – Deep Sea – Nullify Threat

  • Crown – Can’t Touch This.
  • Difficulty – Perfect Agent.
  • How – Activate the Teleportals, Objective 1, without being hit.
  • Method – Prepare to get angry, the best advice is to play the opening a few times in an effort to memorize enemy locations, remember to use the IR scanner to fight the cloaked chaps, crouch and dart back when you hear bullets, and try to push Elvis in front as his Farsight will drop enemies instantly. Don’t mess with the Maian..

Mission 7

7.1 – Carrington Institute – Defense

  • Crown – Run and Gun.
  • Difficulty – Perfect Agent.
  • How – Complete Objectives 1 and 2 in under 1:30 and finish the level. Co-Op required.
  • Method – One player needs to run to the guns and the other player to the hostages, it helps to decide beforehand and also to familiarize yourselves with the best routes through these objectives to avoid confusion, you can use a combat boost at this stage but it’s recommended to muddle through the start so as to retain the time abusing drug for use when the enemies are laid on thick in the later half of the level. After completing the two objectives in the allocated time, simply go on to complete the level by any means necessary, have both players kill the Scandinavians as they come up the ramp and overdose on combat boosts if necessary.

Carrington Institute mission, co-op gameplay

Mission 8

8.1 – Attack Ship – Covert Assault

  • Crown – Against All Odds...
  • Difficulty – Perfect Agent.
  • How – Kill the Skedar wielding Dual Maulers in the bridge with the hidden Slayer in under 8 minutes.
  • Method – Simply requiring the Slayer makes this crown a pain as it’s collection means fighting eight more of the reptilian nuisances than usual. After reuniting with Elvis and taking the two lifts up, simply head directly forward into a room containing four Skedar in suspended animation, the back two will attack so they need to be dealt with, left then right respectively. Enemies are positioned in the four corners of the next room and round the back is the Slayer, you’ll have to deal with the other two Skedar when you pass back through the stasis room as well and they awaken simultaneously this time. Now get to the end of the level and blast that dual wielding space dino in the face, duck in a corner and curve a fly-by-wire rocket around for extra flash.

Mission 9

9.1 – Skedar Ruins – Battle Shrine

  • Crown – Rocked.
  • Difficulty – Perfect Agent.
  • How – Place the trackers on the spires within thirty seconds.
  • Method – Use the pause selection to switch the tracker on and select the targeting devices, it may take several restarts as some of the layouts work against a speedy run. This crown requires abuse of the faster strafe running mentioned in tips and some expert Skedar dodging, sticking to walls will help avoid reaper fire and practice makes perfect, some people prefer to hike a tracker over the wall at the large obelisk however it is possible to nail any layout in the allocated time and some people like to flick a tracker over the wall at the big obelisk for extra pizzazz.

Special Assignments

10.1 – Mr. Blonde’s Revenge

  • Crown – Invisibility Factor.
  • Difficulty – Special Agent.
  • How – Complete the level without using the cloaking device.
  • Method – Use the bombspy at the start of the level, drive it towards the underground elevator and kill off all the guards in here and the straggler that follows it inside, now go on to complete the level with the hardest encounter comfortably disposed of.

10.2 – Maian S.O.S

  • Crown – Magnum Forced.
  • Difficulty – Perfect Agent.
  • How – Use the psychosis gun on the guard wielding dual Gold Magnums in the cryo area and follow him as he kills five enemies.
  • Method – Easy, ish, blast out the autopsy lab and head right to the cryo rooms, our man is in the room to the left. Hit him with your psychosis gun and let him kill a handful of enemies for the crown, kneecaping enemies can ensure the shady hotshot doesn’t die.

Maian S.O.S. mission

10.3 – WAR!

  • Crown – Three Kings.
  • Difficulty – Perfect Agent.
  • How – Kill all three Skedar Kings with Headshots using a charged Mauler in one minute thirty.
  • Method – Skedar have got a bit of the Call of Duty about them on this level, respawning infinitely from the next King; ergo killing them is a bad idea as that will just create problems. As such this becomes a game of avoidance, run as fast as your Maian legs will carry you into the base as normal and start dipping and diving left to right, weave your way around the corridor like some sort of quarterback and towards the first king, kill the enemy near him and take his Mauler now line up the shot just above the blue line, dart out and kill, take off Auto Aim as this will mess up your shot. Zip back round and up the ramp, you may have to kill a Skedar if it’s acting as bouncer on the bridge, now return to the dipping and diving along the bridge and around the corridors, King no. 2 is playing the dunce so hit him in the back of the head. And now the lucky part: open the door and pray it opens fast, hang a right around the midsection praying to your selected God that you aren’t shot from the left and then nail the King from across the arena, what a rush!

10.4 – The Duel

  • Crown – Perfect Head.
  • Difficulty – Perfect Agent.
  • How – Headshot all three opponents in the Duel. In under 25 seconds. 25 seconds being an age on this level.
  • Method – There isn’t much technique to this, it all comes down to skill. The first opponent is simple, turn around and bang, Jonathan hides round the door screen so run around and give him a surprise bullet to the noggin, as for Trent arguably the best method is to copy Jonathan by diving behind the partition and jumping out to deal with the Scaramanga wannabe.

Additional Crowns


  • Crown – Bronze.
  • Difficulty – Agent.
  • How – Achieve a total completion time of under 0:48.00 over all 21 solo missions at Agent difficulty.
  • Method – Agent is a walk in the part, enemies have been to the Stormtrooper School of marksmanship and most objectives follow a linear path, learn and conquer.


  • Crown – Silver.
  • Difficulty – Special Agent.
  • How – Achieve a total completion time of under 1:09.00 over all 21 solo missions at Special Agent difficulty.
  • Method – Whilst harder, enemies still tend to fire wide of the mark even on Special Agent. That said there is more legwork involved in Special Agent so make sure you’ve got the level down and that speed running trick under your thumb.


  • Crown – Gold.
  • Difficulty – Special Agent.
  • How – Achieve a total completion time of under 1:35.00 over all 21 solo missions at Perfect Agent difficulty.
  • Method – There will be broken controllers, crushed stress balls, and potentially damaged televisions in the process of earning the Gold crown. Practice is essential, as is knowledge of tricks, a photographic memory, and a healthy dollop of luck. Take it one mission at a time, and take a deep breath. Focus on attaining faster times on the simpler missions first thus giving more breathing room in the complex levels. Also whilst we’re on the subject, whilst using no Auto-Aim is hardcore and all that, it can really help with Perfect Agent. There is no shame. Through the power of maths it’s equated that you need an average mission time of 4:30:00 ish, of course missions such as The Duel, WAR!, Air Force One, and Chicago can come in significantly below this with a little effort, giving you a little extra time to get lost in the Pelagic and shove Elvis around the Cetan Ship.


  • Crown – Ninja.
  • Difficulty – Multiplayer.
  • How – It is unknown exactly how the Ninja crown is attained, however it is believed to be potentially rewarded for a cumulative amount of unarmed kills, potentially from behind, or a spat of quick killing resulting in a quad kill.
  • Method – The easiest way to try and trigger this award is in a multiplayer session with 8 meatsims, one hit kill mode, a high score limit (around 50) and no weapons. That said you could add one gun to make the quad kill easier in a place you know of, such as slot 5 which appears at the bottom of the toilet stairs in falicity. Keep killing those sims quickly and it will come.

PDXBLA multiplayer mode

The Name’s Dark... Perfect Dark.

  • Crown – The Name’s Dark... Perfect Dark..
  • Difficulty – Perfect Agent.
  • How – Complete every level at Perfect Agent difficulty including special assignments without the aid of Auto-Aim. Or possibly for a cumulative total of headshots without the assistance of Auto-Aim (my theory), or a mix!
  • Method – Well done to Firelyte Stone for discovering how to attain this crown!
    Simply take your time in missions and work your way through all the Perfect Agent missions without the aid of Auto Aim. Use corners for cover and wait for enemy reloads before placing your shots. Stay calm, and good luck.

    If you complete Perfect Agent without auto-aim and do not receive your crown, fear not! As this is a noted occurrence, after ensuring you have gone every level play some more Perfect Agent (try beating a friend’s time!) without auto-aim and land headshots, after a few levels and a few one hit kills later your award should hopefully appear.

And those are your crowns, what a long, strange trip it’s been! Considering the hype focus on the visual upgrade no-one expected 4J to produce such a game extending addition as the crowns. But they did, and with them came the selling of many souls to the gaming goods simply for a little picture of a ninja Maian next to their name. Oh, and 5 whole gamerscore… 5 Gamerscore that those who attain it will treasure forever.

Well done, agent Dark.

Thanks to everyone who has helped refine this guide. // Texts by Dalagonash

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