The Testing Area in Resident Evil 7 is unlocked when you've collected both Key Cards in the Main House from the Kid's Room and Master Bedroom, and sees a slight change of pace to earlier areas, having you watch out for explosives and meet new enemies.
Note this area effectively a point of no return, so we recommend you collect any remaining items from the Main House and Old House before progressing, including any Files, Mr Everywhere statues and Antique Coins.
If you're after help for parts of the game, consult our complete Resident Evil 7 walkthrough and guide.
Exploring the Testing Area
Once you've used the Keycards and opened the gate, go up the steps, through the door and investigate the television to sit down. After the cutscene, take the corridor round, grab the Herb at the end, and go through the door.
There are two trip mines in this room, indicated by the wires running between the shelves and the wall. Shooting the bomb from a distance will safely explode it without it injuring you. There's some Shotgun and Handgun Ammo in this room if you need it, which comes in handy for such bomb disposal.
The next room has a couple more bombs; walk opposite of where you enter, turn around and it's by the door, and around the corner, there's one underneath the desk.
In the next north west room, the crate ahead can be safely knifed for some ammo, but the one on the stairs leading down will explode if you mess with it, so simply ignore it.
Testing Area 1F and finding the Lucas Passcode for the Party room
At the bottom of the stairs, a bomb then in the left doorway at the bottom, which you can see if you walk past the doorway and turn around.
Shoot it to disarm, then crouch in the doorway and look up and right for another one. You can safely crouch and walk underneath it if you want to save ammo, otherwise walk to the other end of the room and fire if you want to disarm it.
There's an Item Box on the left if you need it - handy if you're now low on healing items - and a locked door to the east. Approach it and Lucas will give you three passcodes to choose from. These are thought to be random, and we received 0621, 0514 and 0814. Insert any you hear then stand back from the door to avoid the swinging object from killing you.
Insert another code and the door to the south will open. The door on the corner has ammo pick ups - though the crate nearest the locker will explode if you break it - while the crate in the corridor round the corner will be safe to dismantle.
In the bars of the second window on the left is an explosive. However as soon you get close, a crawling Molded will appear behind you. Kill it, then crouch underneath the tripwire to the corridor's end.
In this end room, there are four explosives in very close proximity. Open the door, then walk backwards and shoot the one up at the base of the door.
Go into the doorway now, and shoot the one in the ceiling. Now crouch and go near the locker, and look at the opposite corner, where you'll see two on opposite walls. You can safely shoot them from there. If you are need of visual aids for these explosives, follow these images in order:
The rewards for clearing the room are some Steroids in the base of the locker which improve your maximum health, as well as an Antique Coin in the drawer. The crate in the locker, meanwhile, explodes, so leave it well alone.
Leave the room and go south into the barn. There are three Molded enemies here; walk ahead and spot the first one on the right in the shadows, and retreat into the previous corridor to take them on one by one. If you left the explosive in the corridor, you can make them walk into it and take off a limb. Alternatively, there is a safe room at the top of the stairs coming up if you don't want a fight.
Either way, the downstairs barn has some consumables - we found a Herb in the shadows on the right, Gunpower on the shelving and behind the bales round the corner left is some MAG Ammo - while there's some more Ammo as well as an Item Box, VHS Player and save point in the safe room also. Don't forget to use the Steroids while it's quiet, too.
Leave the safe room and head east across the 2F. Look to the south, and on top of one of the pillars is a Mr Everywhere statue just below. Explore the dead ends up here for Chem Fluids in crates, then drop down to the east to continue exploring the barn on the 1F.
There's a console to the north with a missing battery, which you can find just up the steps. There's also crates dotted around, all apart from the one on the desk upstairs which can be safely destroyed.
Fat Molded Barn fight
Insert the battery below to trigger the barn fight against the Fat Man, which will emerge from the lift to the south. This is essentially a taller, bile-spewing version of the creatures you've faced previously.
Use the central pile of hay as a way to keep some distance between you while still allowing you to fire at its head with Shotgun or Grenade Launcher rounds. Continue circling round and firing headshots and it's head will pop and it'll go down. Stay away from its corpse as that'll then explode also.
With the battle over, head into the lift where the Fat Man emerged and head back up with the back button. At the top, go through the corridor to a room with a burnt corpse a desk, with the 'Memo on Burnt Corpse' file stuck to it, giving you a passcode. We had 1408 on ours, but this might be random. Whatever it is, it'll be logged in your Files so you can refer to it shortly..
Get the Supplements and other consumables in here, and continue through the door north. Grab the Antique Coin on the lower shelf, then press the button to lower the stairs.
You'll be back outside the party room, where you can input the passcode you received. However before you proceed onward, you need to empty your entire inventory into the Item Box behind you. Once done, you'll be allowed through.
Want more help? Our Resident Evil 7 walkthrough and guide provides step-by-step instructions on how to survive the main story, as well as finding the Shotgun, Grenade Launcher and the game's many Lockpicks and Treasure Photos. Meanwhile, our Antique Coins locations, Mr Everywhere statue locations and File locations lists will help you find every available collectible on Normal and Easy difficulties. We also explain how to get the Dirty Coin item in the game by getting the best Resident Evil 7 demo ending, and for DLC, the full Bedroom solution, getting the Daughters True Ending, how to beat Hoffman at Blackjack in 21 and finishing Nightmare mode.
Party Room solution
If you played the Happy Birthday Tape, this puzzle is the same, with the same outcome. We recommend playing it through 'properly' first as the instructions described in that article link, as it's a fun room escape-style puzzle.
However, to survive, the trick is to not pull out the Winding Key from the oil keg in the birthday cake room, so you don't cover the floor in flammable liquid. Instead, simply light the candle on the kitchen hob, go into the balloon-filled room by burning the rope on the door, use the passcode Loser on the mechanism (effectively sequence breaking) then get the valve to stop the showers, allowing you to place another lit candle on the cake unhindered.
If done correctly, a bomb will then drop into the room, which you must place into the boarded up window on the wall, creating a way out.
In the control room, investigate the television for a cutscene then grab the D-Series Head next to it, as well as the Testing Area Map from the wall. Use the Item Box to restore your inventory - including the Crank, which you'll need shortly - and remember to smash the carefully hidden Mr Everywhere statuette through and above the other side of the doorway leading outside.
The next area is a Boat House and the Mutated Jack boss fight, which you can proceed onto whenever you're ready.