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Level: Castle Doomsday 4 - Chronicles back home search
Author(s): Dhama
total rating:9.29 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
Aims 9 10 10 10
bERT 9 9 10 10
dantheraider 10 10 10 7
Deekman 8 9 10 10
Dougsan 8 8 9 8
Duncan 9 10 10 10
eTux 9 9 10 10
G.Croft 8 9 10 10
Gerty 9 10 10 10
Jay 9 10 10 10
Jorge22 9 8 10 10
Jose 9 10 10 10
Kristina 7 8 9 9
Leisa 9 9 10 9
Loupar 8 9 10 9
MichaelP 8 9 10 10
Phil 9 8 9 9
QRS 9 9 10 9
Relic Hunter 9 10 10 10
rtrger 10 10 10 10
Ryan 9 9 10 10
Sash 8 10 10 9
Sherry 9 8 9 9
Staticon 10 10 10 10
Tombaholic 8 10 10 10
TombRaiderFan 9 9 10 9
TrueRaider 7 9 8 8
Yoav 8 9 10 10
category averages
(28 reviews)
8.68 9.21 9.79 9.46

Reviewer's comments

"Staying true to the Style of the previous Doomsday episodes (although this is apparently meant to be a prequel before Lara enters the castle itself), with magnificently spooky scenery and atmosphere, and enjoyable though not overly challenging gameplay. It must be quite hard to show what happened earlier on in a series that was constructed by someone else first (even when it's close family), but Dhama manages to pull it off brilliantly. The puzzles aren't too difficult, but it flows nicely and there's plenty of variety to get stuck into (aside from the section where you have to keep making your way to the top of a tower to use a switch then go back down, as I found that a little tedious), while the enemies are delightfully scary (homicidal clowns and giant pumpkins) and as mentioned the unique textures and artwork work really well in this setting. Highly recommended." - Ryan (03-Mar-2019)

"Sure the best of the Castle Doomsday series. A couple of levels with a very good creepy atmosphere and original sounds; perfect architecture and very well textured with all kind of details, fog, animating textures, amazing lighting, etc. There are some good puzzles too, and if you can think it could be difficult you're mistaked; timed runs are not too tight, levels are lineal and nice to play, and tasks are not very hard but there are dangers to avoid (fires and deep pits). Even deal with the giant pumpkins and the final fight with the pumpkin skeletons is easy. Highly recommended." - Jose (29-Jun-2012)

"The builder remained faithful to the Castle Doomsday series, and he released a quality level with brilliant ideas. The game contains as creative tasks as the predecessors of the series. Sounds odd, but I must say that the adventure takes place in a beautiful scary castle. It wasn't scary, but I especially liked the black-and-white moving room. I've never seen such visual effect in TRLE, it's charming! But everything, the lighting, the textures, the enemies were perfectly adequate to the game. Well chosen musics increase the scaryness. Another great level between the others, but it excels with it's original concept. Recommended. An exquisite adventure." - rtrger (01-Jul-2010)

"Wasn't a fan of this particularly. I lapped up the atmosphere from the previous Castle Doomsday levels and to some extent it still exists here, but in a different way. Only the sound really made it spooky, the rest was just a little bit odd. I found the textures to be a bit repetitive and the wacky nature of the scrolling optical illusion tiles to be out of touch with the theme of the previous levels. But it was fun in its own right. The scrolling textures were cool, a really nice effect and the clowns were hilarious. The laugh you'd hear every time you try to save was intensely irritating but, in a way, was a nice touch. The puzzles weren't the kind I really enjoy. The mirror puzzle in the second level involving flames just annoyed me. A fun couple of levels all in all, but more enjoyable for their uniqueness rather than atmosphere." - TrueRaider (24-Nov-2008)

"Wow! A fantastic two level adventure. These levels have the same eerie feeling that I longed for since playing the first and original Castle Doomsday. A lot of creepy monsters and scary moments (not to mention the clowns and the pumpkin boss LOL!). Especially the voice of the evil guy hehe. The gameplay rocks and you get a feeling that you always have something to do. No dull moments. The secrets were not that hard to find but still they served as a reminder for us to look in every corner for goodies hehe. It was needed during the end sequense. The atmosphere is perfect. I would not want to stay more than 1 second in these areas if this was for real. The author has really succeded in creating something special here. Way to go, Terry!" - QRS (04-Feb-2007)

"Another wonderful set of levels. In some places I found it a little bit too dark for my liking. But its still a good set of levels. I loved the pumpkin skeletons and the pumikin head." - dantheraider (29-Aug-2005)

"A really nice level indeed! The level was inspired by Data's 'Castle Doomsday' series and this one takes place before Castle Doomsday 1 hence the name Chronicles. We start out in a rather nice looking courtyard as we have to open up all of the entrances and make our way to the bowels of Castle Doomsday. On the way we hear Doomsday speak a few times. I liked the scrolling floor and running through the scrolling hallways made me kind of dizzy. I liked the puzzle in the gallery where one painting was reflected wrong and it concealed a switch. I liked the clowns too as they made funny noises when they died but hey they're supposed to they're clowns. Back to the level we encounter caves and a motorbike timed run. The water in most of the level looked like lava which was weird. When I started the level in the courtyard I managed to kill the knight before he could get on his horse. I thought that it was really unique in the second part to have a mirror puzzle where a knight walked around in the mirror but not in the room. I liked the scarecrows too shooting their heads off and watching them run around was quite amusing. I liked the arena where we faced the Atlantean beast from TR1 retextured as a giant pumpkin with arms! That was funny! I liked the end where I still could shoot the scarecrows' heads off so they could run off into the never ending darkness below. A great level! Not to be missed!" - Relic Hunter (08-Aug-2004)

"A prequel to Data's first Castle Doomsday thought produced by her wonderful brother Terry (Dhama) this double levelled game opens with a really brill title flyby with credits and artworks that seem to come from the artistic mind of a tortured soul you also find these artworks blanketed through the levels and are sometimes incorporated into puzzles. The first level begins surreally sliding down a checkerboard slope onto a clown texture complete with red blinking nose and the surrealism doesn't stop there. Fighting gun toting clowns and scythe swinging pumpkin headed ghouls you have to open four gates on a floating structure atop the castle to reach four levers. The castle itself is made up in sections of moving checkerboard textures that I hate to say gave me motion sickness and I didn't know if I could finish the level but did with a bit of a queasy tummy insert compassionate aahs here there is also a really nice mine area with a timed bike ride and exploding special effects as you make a jump. Pull the four levers collect 5 secrets and the 5 armour pieces and hit level 2 after about 55 minutes. This level is a little more of a puzzler but that's not what I really remember what I took from it was the really cool meeting with not one but two gigantic bodiless pumpkin head monsters what amazing creatures sadly their stature didn't translate so well to their vulnerability and they were not too hard to kill. Just like the first there is a nice dark air about the level that gave it a lot of atmosphere but it lacked one thing the first had secrets well it did have one so I shouldn't complain. Find the breastplate armour piece and slide to the end after 40 minutes." - Sash (23-Jul-2004)

"I really had fun with this one. The escape route from the first secret was almost invisible due to the darkness but I managed. whew! That first Knight on the horse was near impossible for me to kill until I attacked him before he got on his horse (I know I shouldn't have) and Doomsday's voice made me jump every time I heard it. LOL. The other enemies were funny especially the headless pumpkin men and I forgot to go back and kill that machine gun. drat! Oh well have to play again I guess. And in my opinion it's great to have water around because you never know when you'll need it. I especially liked the camerawork and the cut scenes that tell you where to go after pulling a switch. I liked the effects in the mirror room as well. It did take a while to win over that huge pumpkin so scary and almost as big as the platform we were on or so it seemed to me LOL. Some of the optical illusion walls were a little dizzying but funny how openings in the wall seemed to move. I wasn't too crazy about the fixed camera at the end but it didn't stop me from finishing the game. So many different scenarios in one game made for a really fun time. A great experience. Thanks Terry! Now I have to go back to the old future ones. LOL" - Leisa (05-Jun-2004)

"An extra set of levels based on the ideas of Tina Barret's original ideas. These levels are based before the first Castle Doomsday hence the name chronicles (sort of like tr5 all the levels are before tr1). Lara is researching things about Lord Doomsday but accidentally opens a vortex sending her into another dimension that of LD. She is determined to claim as many of his artefacts as possible while he does all he can to sop her. This was a great level it looked great - things I've never seen before rooms that are moving in checkered squares sort of like a funhouse at an amusement park. It did give me a headache after a while as it was bright and kept moving but it was still cool. The enemies where remade too very nicely the horsemen where knights the guards with guns were evil clowns which made funny sounds when killed the skeletons were walking scarecrows with pumpkin heads and you meet a familiar enemy from tr1 that looks like a giant pumpkin! There was lots of creepy background music and portraits like something out of a hell art gallery lol. Some other clever little things which I'm sure the other reviewers have mentioned. So all in all a brilliant level recommended to everyone except fainthearted people and those who are affected my flashing bright lights. Play it now!" - Aims (16-May-2004)

"Great fun and original set of levels. Beautiful rooms and impressive flybys. It's very well done and the atmosphere is one of the best." - Loupar (07-Mar-2004)

"This is different from the original Castle Doomsday. Not as dark and much easier. It's easy play in fact. The outstanding feature of this game is its imaginative surroundings and characters. I loved the weird moving floors the skeletons turned into jack o'lanterns ready to slice one's throat the murdering clowns the giant pumpkin all this surrealistic mix which is truly valid for the creative work behind it. Terry Barrett you've created one of the nicest (!!!!) universes in custom levels history! My sincere congratulations." - Jorge22 (24-Feb-2004)

"This is a very interesting and unique level. It had an excellent atmosphere with a looney bin feeling with those dizzy floors and cackling laughter. Nothing too difficult to execute here. Only the motorbike timed run gave me trouble but even I beat that without too much trouble. Dhama gets top marks for not putting in an impossible timed door! This is a must play - great work." - Sherry (10-Feb-2004)

"Dazzling and dizzying. The psychedelic art gallery and surrounding corridors may well make your eyes water but it's a unique experience. The whole concept of this level is fascinating. This is a sort of prequel to the Castle Doomsday series and the action revolves round a central courtyard from which you visit some truly weird and wonderful areas. The atmosphere is spooky and brooding with some marvelous textures artwork and music. Enemies are clowns (I've always found clowns very scary indeed) gold skulls that turn into fire wraiths and pumpkin men. You can have fun riding a motorbike through the mines including a nice timed run (well timed ride) that took me half a dozen attempts to achieve. There's a mirror room complete with resident ghostly knight fire pillars lovely water effects and a couple of giant pumpkins to fight (no really). There's also quite a lot of swimming in really scummy looking water - yuk. Collect pieces of armour and six secrets (or at least that's how many I found) and have a wonderful experience along the way. Highly recommended." - Jay (08-Feb-2004)

"Dhama's latest was a treat. A trick or treat as it were! Not too hard not too easy. Visually stunning. I was already a fan of Vincent Marcone's My Pet Skeleton and was delighted and surprised to find his participation in this level. This is a perfect example of how much further the adventures of Lara Croft can be taken with a little bit of creativity resourcefulness and the desire to create something different. Now if there was only an easy way to record my entire journey through this level into one long cut scene I'd save my bucks for one of those projectors that throws your monitor screen on the wall and I'd show it at my next Halloween party." - Deekman (08-Feb-2004)

"Dhama has always been somewhat of an enigma to me. He shows such a wonderful imagination with such things as the moving checkered pattern that presents a wonderful optical illusion bothers to build in the multiple climbs up the towers when many designers would have the same climb in each designs in wonderful details even where the player doesn't have to venture; and then hides so much in semi darkness. Why? That to the side Castle Doomsday 'Chronicles' is a must play in my book. The atmosphere and attention to detail are Dhama at his best. Jack-O-Lantern headed skeletons make for imaginative enemies (too late I learned how to render them rather harmless). The Giant Jack-O-Lantern enemy was funny though too easy to kill. The enemy clowns were a good touch as was the laughter. There is nothing about either level of this game that should challenge a good Raider but from the beginning to the very end every level of Raider should be kept busy and having a lot of fun." - Dougsan (06-Feb-2004)

"You just have to see these levels that's all there is to it. At the risk of slipping into hyperbole I went through most of these levels with my mouth agape. The design lighting and textures are just superb and the overall atmosphere is as creepy as it gets. Those moving hallway textures are really a trip and amazingly disorienting. The custom enemies are terrific (if you have a clown phobia you may want to think twice before playing) and the 'Big Boss' enemy gets my vote for the coolest custom enemy ever. I loved the dramatic way it dies although it was disappointingly easy to kill with the revolver. Gameplay was entertaining and not overly hard but depended a little too much on pulling levers to open doors (especially in level 1). Still an experience not to be missed!" - Tombaholic (02-Feb-2004)

"Well this is certainly different. The question is is different a good thing in this case. During the early going of this two-parter I was prepared to dislike it. But as I kept at it I found myself warming up to the gaming experience. The psychedelic checkerboard that pops up regularly is a bit disconcerting but it doesn't dominate the gameplay so it's not that bad. Actually things progress pretty much as they do in a 'normal' Tomb Raider setting but the surroundings are so out of the ordinary that you sometimes feel as if you're playing an entirely new game. This makes it difficult to review this effort because from a strictly analytical viewpoint we have a pretty ordinary jump-to-the-platform-and-pull-the-switch kind of level. But if there were a separate category for creativity this would earn a 10 hands down. The pumpkin-head skeletons the baddies dressed up as clowns the wailing wire corpse and the Giant Pumpkin near the end are all unique touches that make this a marvelous gaming experience. Don't let its weird spookiness put you off. This is definitely a don't-miss level. And thanks to the builder for providing the walkthrough." - Phil (02-Feb-2004)

"Wonderful level wonderful atmosphere very good puzzles new enemies (some of them look funny) good gameplay and the textures are really something - nice pictures on the walls. Excellent level indeed." - Yoav (02-Feb-2004)

"'My Pet Skeleton Lay Here'" says a glass plaque in the main courtyard of part one. Through it you see an image of a skeleton. I think this is a good way to summarize the whimsical and even tongue-in-cheek nature of the level. With original art custom music voice-overs and cleverly re-configured enemies this level distinguishes itself. The gameplay is often wacky and sometimes subtle (the gallery). The moving floors and walls made me laugh at being disoriented. The second part seemed a bit long and conventional by contrast. I did not like the bird sound that substituted for the click when scrolling through the load menu. All-in-all a wonderful piece - and certainly not for everyone - but if you can appreciate its quirky ambience its a winner." - Duncan (02-Feb-2004)

"When there is a title flyby included I always have to see that as I love them. This doesn't give you much clues as what to expect but that is the beauty of it. Starting off in a cave way above ground level you will enter after some jumping to the first gate and there the fun begins. Opening the other three gates in this medieval castle is your goal in here. The textures are a cross between pop-art and the Dark Ages that sounds weird but funny enough it works in this level. The gameplay is fluent as long as you keep your eyes open and look for subtleties as Art plays a big role in this level. There are loads of puzzles and some jumping to do even some swimming and a timed run on a bike that had me reloading quite a few times. Enemies are a different tune altogether as there are clowns (that looks like grouchy the clown what horror) knights you can slay (as they are re-textured tinmen) some bats and the pumpkin people. The 'big boss' is out of this world and although he isn't that hard to slay as the 'big bosses' in the original TR games this one did give me a fright LOL The added sound effects and the music were a big plus and gave this game a even more spooky feeling specially the voice that gave me the chills. However the pop-art textures did give me a queasy feeling and it also can throw you off big time what was intended I take it. There are pieces of the armor to gather and with that Lara leaves this spooky place although I did find two breastplates (?) and I also got 5 secrets. Have a go at it you will not be disappointed. 28-01-2004" - Gerty (01-Feb-2004)

"No matter what others say I'm quite in awe of these levels. This supposedly is what happens before Part 1 and it has captured me in a way the 3rd level of the series simply didn't and even though the tasks sometimes feel like simply running/jumping around with no purpose it has quite some spectacular bits along the way - like the very first puzzle with the optical illusions was clever IMO the progression great also the corpse that moved all by itself creepy (now where have I seen this before? lol) also the scarecrow knight (I actually shot him before he got on his horse lol) clown and giant pumpkin baddies were great and I found 3 or more secrets along the way that was not overly difficult to do. The atmosphere as well as the looks are perfect as in almost every other Doomsday level even though a bit dark (but not too much). Well what can I say - a must play!" - eTux (29-Jan-2004)

"In a way it is a challenging task to sort of pre-empt a series that was built by a different author even when that author is your sister. I would conclude that Terry managed to keep the spirit of the Doomsday series very well but did give this particular double-level his own twist by making it more a work of art than a challenging adventure for the hardcode raiders out there. The new textures the original music score the voide of Lord Doomsday the artwork elements and last but not least the new enemies give this a great feel and make it a must-play level. Part 1 (8/9/10/10 60 min. 5 secrets): Initially this is quite fun as you explore the castle experience the magic of the animated chequered textures and make it up to the tower to pull a switch. Then it becomes a little repetitive as you basically do it again another three times finding secrets fairly easily and in quick succession riding a bike through nice caves (including a fairly easy timed section) fighting the hilarious clowns escape from the devious fire wraiths and meet up with a pumpkin skeleton. I thought it was funny that I could actually kill the knight at the start before he managed to hop on his horse. Not sure what the finding of the five armor pieces was good for. Part 2 (8/9/10/10 40 min. 1 secret): I thought gameplay in this part had a little more diversity but on the other hand felt rather linear and is still quite straightforward - just in the spirit of the overall Doomsday series one might say. I thought the initial platform jumps had a bit of an Angel of Darkness feel to it and I liked the area a lot. Several burners need to be avoided here and also the swinging spike-balls require good timing. Again knights bats clowns wraiths and pumpkin skeletons as enemies and a definite highlight is the fight with the big bad pumpkins - hilarious. The timed run is also not very challenging and you get another useless breastplate. The caves towards the end are awesome and indeed a bit underused as is the final floating islands area. So all in all very entertaining though not overly special in terms of gameplay but matching well to how the overall series was constructed and definitely a must-see and must-hear for all the new and original things in it." - Michael (28-Jan-2004)

"Very spooky level indeed. The music the voice the pictures and the atmosphere is really great. And I just love the enemies; clowns pumpkin-headed-skeleton-like-guys and the BIG bad pumpkins - not really scary though they made me laugh! The puzzles are great but yet the gameplay feels a little slow sometimes I would have liked a little bit more action. Anyway this is a must-play level to see and hear all the new stuff!" - G.Croft (28-Jan-2004)

"This is the last level of this series which I have to admit I am not a fun of. Sadly I found this last level to be inferior to the others. It is true that the textures are great and the whole atmosphere spooky just perfect for this kind of level. It was too dark in places though without any flares which makes me wonder why the author advices us to play it in a very well lit room. I advice you the opposite if you decide to play it because after I finished I had strained eyes mostly due to the white-black chessboard tiles that were constantly moving or seemed to be. It's a miracle I didn't throw up. Lara although is placed in a nicely setting she has little to do. Generally and if you take out the simple puzzle with the two lowering and raising blocks and two timed runs not difficult at all one of which involves a motorcycle all she does is go up and down the main area and surrounding areas to use switches which will open the next door for her to go through. Other than that there is nothing exciting and from a point after I found this level rather tedious. The enemies you will encounter although not many but mostly retextured are pumpkins clowns knights a huge pumpkin and bats. All the sounds voices are custom from what I could infer which gave a nice feeling to the level. One thing that was quite annoying though was that laughter every time I was changing slot to save the game. Also the cameras at the main area were annoying too once Lara got stuck behind a block and I couldn't see anything as the camera got stuck and not even with the look key I could release the view. In one area Lara was walking on dry land and suddenly after passing through an open door she found herself swimming in water. The caves could have played a bigger role in this level in my opinion rather that serve only as a passing through. The end was rather sudden with Lara killing some pumpkins and sliding down to the unknown. I found four secrets and got through in something less than two hours. I would define this level as mediocre as far as gameplay is concerned but above average in the atmosphere/textures category. I will be waiting for the next level as the author has already announced hopefully in a different style." - Kristina (28-Jan-2004)

"I never thought that the Doomsday trilogy could ever be bettered but now that Data has moved on to other things in the real world Dhama picked up the gauntlet to produce one more Doomsday story and surpassed all that has gone before. The whole two-part level is dripping with tense atmos-FEAR - helped in part by the custom music textures and opponents. Everything is just right. The first part is one huge puzzle made up of several smaller puzzles. There are plenty of clues to help if you observe your surroundings carefully. The second part takes you beneath the castle and feels even creepier than the first part. I do not wish to give anything away - this is a level that will more than satisfy Doomsday fans everywhere. Be sure to have several changes of underwear at hand it's not only the shadows that will have you jumping this time. A most enjoyable level. Having play tested it a couple of times my first playing of the finished level took 1 hour and 50 minutes of game time (around three hours of real time) and I had a good idea of what to do and where to go. Having given the last two Doomsday levels a score of 10 across the board I have no choice but to do the same for this level as it has to be the best I have played in this series. Get it and play it NOW!" - Staticon (28-Jan-2004)

"Terry has delivered a spectacular 4th level from the Castle Doomsday series! It has some of the spooky and frightening moments I was expecting...I think this is the best of the 4 while the first one is 2nd. I really loved the re-textured skeletons has a live pumpkin! That was really really cool! Towards the end you met a gigantic pumpkin head that bounces up and down. It kinda scared me and gave me nightmares..:) The art work by Vincent Marcone was just awesome as well! The point where the couple of corridors with the black and white checkered squares made me dizzy. The atmosphere of this level was just fantastic as well. Every corner you went around you heard loud spooky music and creatures in the background. Scary! Overall I think this level that took me a total time of 1:40 hours is a cracker! Well done Terry!" - TombRaiderFan (28-Jan-2004)

"Think of your best fair ground spooky house experience and you'll come as close to a description of this level as you can. Very atmospheric and chilling castle level in darkish but colourful settings of which the red ones where so red hot you could almost feel the heat. To escape this nightmare you have to do some timed runs/side car rides solve nice original little puzzles (one including a mirror) try not to get dizzy from the 'moving' chessboard textures face nightmarish clowns bats and very amusing but also nasty pumpkin folks (retextured/restructured skeletons) and even two of the biggest pumpkin nightmare creatures you've ever seen. Never ridiculously difficult and so thankfully another author who really wants you to play and enjoy. Probably one of the best textured spooky levels I've seen as far as TR custom levels go (with the clown texture as some kind of 'brand' texture throughout the whole level) and accompanied by a ghoulish voice perfectly in tune to scare you off a bit more. Also nice atmospheric music by Dhama himself so it seems (he may well be a bit of an Angelo Badalamenti fan at least the organ sounds like it has been used by the famous David Lynch composer). Found 5 secrets but the first 4 in the very early stages of level 1 so there may be an awful lot more of them. Very very entertaining double level so definitely a MUST PLAY!" - bERT (28-Jan-2004)
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