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Level: The Ancient Artefacts 1 - The Sacred Hall back home search
Author(s): Flo
total rating:8.03 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
Duncan 7 7 8 8
Engelchen Lara 9 8 9 9
eRIC 7 8 9 7
EssGee 8 9 9 8
eTux 8 9 8 8
Gerty 7 8 8 8
Jay 9 8 8 8
Jose 9 8 9 9
Kristina 8 7 7 7
MichaelP 8 8 9 7
mugs 8 7 7 7
Obig 8 9 8 8
Orbit Dream 7 8 9 8
Phil 9 8 9 9
Ryan 9 8 8 8
Sash 9 8 9 8
TrueRaider 3 8 8 8
category averages
(17 reviews)
7.82 8.00 8.35 7.94

Reviewer's comments

"I couldn't get this level started initially: it crashed even before the first cutscene. I am glad it eventually worked because it is a well put together level. Some nice varied gameplay here consisting of object puzzles, a torch puzzle, a mirror room, a few jumping exercises and a boss battle to culminate (made much easier for me after reading Phil's and Sash's reviews, he can be killed). The backtracking has been mentioned so I won't dwell on it. A very fun little level." - Ryan (10-Feb-2017)

"Here's another good-looking level deserving of a download, and I suspect the relatively low scores are due to the frequent backtracking that's required as you make your way through. The game map is surprisingly compact, for the Sacred Hall is an immense room with a series of central platforms surrounded by several layers of balconies. The gameplay is quite ingenious, especially the use of trap doors to bring your lighted torch down to a flammable portion of the floor. The environs are so pleasing to the eye that I didn't really mind the first half dozen trips back up, using the same route each time (including a timed switch, but the allowed time is generous enough not to pose an undue burden). However, toward the end I started wishing that the builder had used some of that ingenuity to figure out how to provide a short cut for the player after the basic tasks had been accomplished. In all I spent about an hour and forty-five minutes here, a good portion of which was required for all that backtracking. The boss guy at the end is fairly easy to kill, a fact apparently not realized by Harry Laudie when he prepared his otherwise exemplary walkthrough. The builder had planned to release a follow-up, but after seven years we're still waiting. Too bad, as this first installment is refreshingly fun to play." - Phil (07-Apr-2012)

"Play this at your peril. I think I'm entitled to review this despite not technically finishing this level. I got virtually all the way to the end, only the final boss battle I couldn't access. Why? Because this level is FULL of bugs. I encountered 3 major ones. Firstly the opening cutscene wouldn't load at all therefore I couldn't even play the level to begin with. I had to get a savegame from someone else who was playing it to get into the lever proper. Then the mechanical beetle just exploded by itself when I put it down. After several retries, it worked! But immediately afterwards, when I pulled a lever to let down the burning torches, Lara just by herself fell to her death from nowhere. Nothing I could have done and who should ever have to alter their savegames to enable DOZY? The other major irritation was having to go up and down the whole structure many many times over. Boring. It's a great shame, I would loved to have seen those cutscenes." - TrueRaider (29-Jun-2008)

"I enjoyed this much more than I expected to, and thus would've wished to rate it even higher than I have now, but about three fourths through this hour+ long adventure I was desperately praying to find an elevator connecting the many levels of this hall, with muzak and refreshments included, no matter how out of place it would've felt in the Lost Library like settings. As cleverly set up as it is, at some point I felt I had climbed this hall one time too many and couldn't help but sigh when finding out I had to move between it's various levels again. On the other hand though - the author has made sure to keep you occupied at all times - whether it be some more or less ordinary globe and pushable object puzzles, fights with Templar knights (sometimes I couldn't help but think the original Tin Men would've fit in much better, though) a mirror room and a very clever mechanism for moving the torch between the levels, which for me was one of the highlights of the level. There aren't that many enemies here, but I didn't mind that, as when they were there, they made a strong enough impact - like the fire wraith chase, the few occasions you meet the knights or the excellent Boss battle. Of course when starting the game - Tony had "will die and turn evil, though not necessarily in that order" written all over him, so it came hardly as a surprise when he actually did, and one has to wonder how stupid Lara must've been to team up with him in the first place considering her past experience with him (and didn't he die or something already before?) but I guess that's storytelling for you in TR games, and the game certainly makes it up with other aspects. The looks are solid with a few minor glitches, and the distance fog enhances the atmosphere greatly though it does feel a bit rough at times - but that's a minor complaint for what otherwise is a great little level to play! I certainly hope the sequels are still in the making!" - eTux (28-Jun-2008)

"This is a great Library style level. It features good architectural design. It's well textured and lit, and with added distance fog there is a great atmosphere created. Your work is mostly spent around a large central hall, as you gradually make your way to the top. The puzzles are well designed and enemies are sparse but well used, culminating in a dramatic final battle. This final boss provides a great climax to the level. Two cutscenes are featured during the level, adding to the atmosphere. Some repetitive long tower climbs are the only real down side to the level. Other than that, I really enjoyed my time here." - EssGee (28-Jun-2008)

"A level with a very good concept and rather well executed. The idea to open the way to the torch all the way down to the lower floor is excellent. It could have been better though if there was not the repetition of the climbing task until half of the structure. Also I had to face a serious bug in my game : the mechanical beetle simply never worked but exploded on the spot when it had to be used for the first time (on this brown tile before the trapped bridge with the dead skeleton). I had to pass this point by using TrposEditor. Aside from navigating the main room , there are good ideas and puzzles to solve in the side rooms of the main structure, like a shooting vases puzzles , a mirror room or pushable objects puzzles. The setting textured with the Library tga is solid and I like the horizon. The Cut scenes are very well done and the final boss with Crazy Tony is great !" - eRIC (19-Jun-2008)

"Firstly I have to wonder if I had a buggy copy of this level. I am not complaining if I did though as it seems nobody could kill the blonde guy, who turns into some mutant Seth like god, at the end, but I could. I just got out my shotgun and blasted him a fair few times and down he went like a sack of sh...it doesn't matter, you know what I mean! Hehehehe! Or maybe the other players simply thought he was unbeatable and never thought to fight him, thus possibly giving themselves unnecessary headaches, cough, cough, Ian, cough. Anyhooo, I have to give the author a big pat on the back as I found this level absolutely engrossing. It's not often you get a debut level that can make you audibly catch your breath like this did for me when I entered the huge multi-storeyed room, and add to that a couple of cutscenes that really solidified the storyline, and a plethora of varied tasks and puzzles to complete, timed moves, mirror room, movable puzzles, shooting puzzle, and plenty more, and I was totally hooked! I do however feel as the other reviewers do that the route to get to the upper floors of the huge room were maybe travelled a few too many times, but truly this was such a wonderfully full rounded game and if that is the worst thing I can think to find wrong then strewth Ruth that's not too bad at all. In the 75 minutes this lasted I found 4 secrets, 3 intentional ones in golden treasure rooms, and in one empty corner the 4th chimed in but was obviously unintended as the readme says there are only supposed to be 3. Please do yourself a favour and check this out as I can only imagine that the rest of the levels in the series, of which I assume there maybe 3, will be even better and what a treat that will be." - Sash (24-Feb-2006)

"To be the first level builded for this author is very good! Lara finds again his "friend" of TR3 jungle levels, and has to defeat him for a second time. In the room with the hammer and the planet, the chime sings for the second secret, but I've found nothing. When you use the zip-line to fight with the horseman and get the scroll, a trapdoor opens, but I couldn't use it to go back to the upper level and I had to descend to ground floor and use the same path again through the grated doors near the spikes, I had to use this path several times along the game. The jump over the sloped blocks to get the level with the coloured planets was very hard for me, it has to be done at the very very last moment, and the final battle with your old "friend" was very hard too, I have to reload many times to place the 4 gems. In spite of this all it was a very good level for me, good puzzles, good ambience and good details. When will part two be available? I hope soon." - Jose (24-Nov-2005)

"This is a good game which I must admit I didn't think much of, at first. The setting is quite standard and looks like library/catacombs but when you proceed, the puzzles will keep you occupied for a while and keep up your interest for the entire game. I particularly liked the torch puzzle and the way the author has divided the areas. The room with the mirror was nicely done so were the upper areas. There is also a puzzle with globes and gems to find. The main area is impressive with a tall structure in the middle but being up and down all the time wasn't fun at all at some point. The level ends with Lara having to face the big boss and get the gems that lay around him but it's not that easy. Getting the gems is fairly easy but not placing them. The raising blocks didn't do much good or at least not to me so I had to reload quite a few times in order to finally place them all. It's a good try and a level definitely worth playing." - Kristina (08-Oct-2005)

"This level was a good adventure. We adventure in a multi-level room until, after a hard fight, we finally gain the stone at the end. Meanwhile we have a lot things to do. Pushing planets, swinging ropes. We also have timed runs among weaving chains; more of them. There's no need to preserve vases as well. There are three secrets on the level. Until bringing the torch to the ground floor we also have to solve a high fall. Though we don't need to use any medipacks. The enemies are bats, knights, a horseman, and at the end the invulnerable boss of the level. We get some firepower as well, but the default pistols also do their job well. We can possess the shotgun and the uzi too. I couldn't find the revolver. The end of the level is a little bit harder, but if we realize what the four blocks are good for, then it won't be a big problem anymore. :) The textures are various, and so are the added sounds. I liked the mirror room very especially. :) I suggest this great adventure for everybody. You can find a Hungarian walkthrough (as we don't have English version), savegames and pictures here: http://treditor.hu/15/ancient_artefacts1.htm" - Obig (29-Sep-2005)

"A very well crafted first level from this builder. The action mostly takes place in one large room. As is common in one-room levels, a great deal of back and forth can be expected. I found the highly repititive gameplay to detract from the quality of the level. Shortcuts must be supplied if the author has to keep sending Lara up and down. But, I think, gameplay can be designed to avoid so much repitition. There were also very few enemies, except at the end, and having more would have put more life in the piece. The author has very clever ideas, and I really liked using trapdoors to drop the burning torch down to the ground floor. So I hope the author can distill their good ideas into more energetic gameplay, for there is real talent here." - Duncan (26-Sep-2005)

"This is one of those levels that I'd really like to score highly bacause,for a first level,it's extraordinarily well-made and often startlingly original;but for me it suffers from being far too repetetive. The amount of back-tracking that you need to do in the tall chamber is astonishing (I lost count of the number of times I climbed that blasted tall ladder) and the way for progression is quite often rather vague. The culmination with Seth is just too infuriating for words and ensured that I left this particular adventure in a foul temper,which I'm sure is not what the author intended. For those with patience,however,this level provides one heck of a challenge and should be recommended highly!" - Orbit Dream (11-Sep-2005)

"Ian was over and like always we were planning toplay some levels. This was a level we wanted to play simultaneous but it didn't work out that way. My Mac froze (that was a first). So I wonder if it can be played on a Mac as I am not trying that one out myself again. As far as the level itself, it is for a first a rather good one. On the other hand there is too much back and fro (or rather up and down) for my taste. Some jumps had to be, what I would call, pixel perfect. The timed runs weren't luckily too hard. There were some nice puzzles in here, specially the torch puzzle. The final battle however was terrible even if I saved and reloaded (just to give Lara a split second more time to do what the girl had to do) it was an ordeal and I had to reload more times than I cared for. But if you are up for a challenge and like a fight with the end-boss, give it a go. 11-09-2005" - Gerty (11-Sep-2005)

"A great level by Flo that offers a wide variety of tasks, sometimes quite cleverly put together within and around a tall central structure. Largely the library WAD elements are put to good use here and you have jumps to do, objects to push, a bit of swimming, a nicely varied torch puzzle and plenty of gems, guardian keys and a scroll and a pillar to handle. While the progression is clever, the repeat trip to get back up had to be done maybe a few too many times and I found some areas a bit unnecessarily darkened, although it does not interfere much. Enemies are very few but the boss ending is truly impressive and actually not all that hard to master if you keep moving/jumping around and remember that you can raise the blocks the protect you for a while when you place the gems. The cutscenes are also remarkably well done and support the storyline. So, all in all a well rounded 75 minute adventure and I will be looking forward to the sequel(s)." - MichaelP (11-Sep-2005)

"From the initial flyby of the big, multi level, library style hall my first reaction was that there was a lot going on. That was a real understatement - there's an incredible amount of action packed into this level and I have to say I enjoyed it very much. Lara gets to run through almost the entire range of her repertoire or at least that's what it felt like and the torch puzzle was particularly elegant I thought. The boss ending was so fraught I ended up with a headache and I'm really looking forward to this series continuing." - Jay (06-Sep-2005)

"A debut level by Flo that I liked a lot :-) Lara needs to find four artefacts and it is not easy. There are many push puzzles to solve and you need to go all the way up to get the torch - I liked that idea. There are also other tasks to solve. Enemies are knights and they fit in well. I also liked the atmosphere, as the huge complex was well put together. Textures are well applied and the final battle was well designed :-). All in all, good gameplay :-)" - Engelchen Lara (05-Sep-2005)

"Lara's arrival in the vast Sacred Hall is a feast of gameplay elements. There's almost TOO much to do - well, okay, maybe I exaggerate. Bottom line is - Lara's going to have to climb higher and higher and she will need to perform certain actions before she can get there. I found the gameplay pretty straightforward until I got to the torch. This is the most interesting part of the game, I thought. Flo warns us about being careful with save games at this point and it's a point well taken. I 'flubbed' it a couple of times, so I'm glad I was paying attention. The use of the mechanical beetle went right over my silly head and proved to be the big 'gotcha' for me. This is a fun game and I enjoyed all the different activities. My only distraction was the tedious climbing up and down. Thanks Flo! Now that we have artifact #1, we'll be waiting for the next 3." - Mugs (28-Aug-2005)
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