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Level: Sophia's Base back home search
Author(s): Bag
total rating:6.04 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
CC 6 7 6 5
eTux 4 5 3 3
Gerty 7 7 6 6
Jay 6 7 7 7
Jose 6 8 5 4
Kristina 5 5 5 5
MichaelP 7 7 6 6
Obig 6 7 7 7
Orbit Dream 6 8 5 4
Phil 6 6 7 6
Ryan 6 6 7 6
Sash 7 8 7 6
Selene 6 7 6 5
Whistle 6 6 6 7
category averages
(14 reviews)
6.00 6.71 5.93 5.50

Reviewer's comments

"A courageous first effort from this builder and one that packs quite a lot of action into it. It does display a few beginners weaknesses (mostly around crudely applied lighting and texturing and wrongly named inventory items), but it's sufficiently entertaining for the time it lasts. There are guards dotted around left, right and centre, some of which are initially docile although not for long, as well as some mummies and dogs. There's a fun couple of jeep rides, plus a boss fight against Sophia, where you finally get to expend all that ammo you've picked up, but also a couple of tedious crawls, climbs and traverses. Still, an enjoyable enough effort, even without being overwhelming." - Ryan (22-Jul-2018)

"This level is something of an oddity in that it was released in early 2006 and was reviewed a dozen times over the following six months. It hasn't been reviewed since until now, and it deserves a better fate than that. It's rather crude and shows many earmarks of a beginner, but the gameplay is rather engaging and it took me nearly an hour to complete the level, even with the help of oBig's walkthrough. Along the way the setting shifts from subway to alien to base before we're done. After defeating Sophia you open a crowbar door that leads to a seeming dead end, but there's another crowbar door at the end of the passage. After that there's a criminally long ladder shift to get across a huge room. But you get plenty of firepower and ammo to deal with the enemies you meet (many of which drop something important, so be alert), along with an extended Jeep ride. Nothing memorable, but I'm surprised it fell into obscurity so quickly." - Phil (28-May-2018)

"I've never really understood the fascination with Sophia among many level builders, but I can't say I'm complaining as usually this fascination results in some pretty interesting levels. While it is a bit chaotic and amateurish here, implying that there's a lot to learn yet, it is no different this time too. The "new toy syndrome" kicks in as with many new builders thus this level is more a showcase of how many cool objects, weapons and enemies can be included adding everything but the kitchen sink. While I prefer some consistency, if neither gameplay nor the looks offer anything that makes this level distinctive, I suppose checking out what objects the author has managed to incorporate in the level is interesting too - the submarines and the grenades you can throw were probably my favourites. The Kurtis guide is nifty but pointless. As for the looks - I liked the starting area with the train station and while overall it's ok, the big empty rooms, simplistic lighting and stretched textures gave it a more amateurish feel to it. From the tasks the jeep ride was the most memorable for me and I guess getting to the top of the big hall where your first fights are (actually some of the enemies won't attack first, so maybe ask the questions before you shoot if you want to spare yourself the trouble of turning this into a bloodbath) is kind of nifty too. Other than that - an inconsistent, but pretty ok level - if you're very picky, I probably wouldn't recommend it, but it's not the worst choice to make either, so why not try and see for yourself?" - eTux (19-Jul-2006)

"This one is very dark at some places and not so interesting. There are a few key cards to find, some target shooting and guards, dogs plus some enemies in the water. It's a base like level I guess but not to my liking. I found one secret and can't say I had fun with it." - Kristina (15-Apr-2006)

"What a nice little gem this was. Even if some textures were stretched and the lightning could have been better at some places. Lara start in a train station and that Kurtis character (never my favorite) suddenly left Lara and the poor girl had to find her way on her own. There are nice new objects in here. I just had to see up close how those mini subs were constructed LOL. Probably like everybody else I was stuck and in frustration I always shoot everything in sight, and that was the end of that little computer screen. How sneaky. At the end of this ride, Kurtis shows up again and by the way, who needs this guy anyway as he is no help at all. I just love railway stations and avoiding the train is always a big thrill." - Gerty (25-Mar-2006)

"Why her base I could not fathom, more her railway, and why we should have a shadow who is useless and disappears. Rather simplistic game play but with one or two twists to make you think. However the biggest downer for me were the extremely long runs, swims and traverses, which seemed rather contrived, not really seemingly to fit the flow of the level. Enemies consist of dogs and a few thugs. You gain a lot of firepower, which you really do not need. I did like the train effect when you left the station. The lighting was varied but textures were stretched which left little realistic atmosphere especially with the thin walls. Sound was unobtrusive and one or two camera angles tried to look through walls etc, so you could not see Lara to guide her." - Whistle (23-Mar-2006)

"This young builder could be in the future a great builder, so I'm going to give him some advice if he lets me do it. I'm not a builder (yet), I'm not an expert player too, but I'm a very experimented player (many years playing hundreds of levels each year) and perhaps my opinion could be having in account. The entire level is quite dark, but where are the flares? I only find flares later in the lightened areas, and I needed them at the beginning too. Entering the big hangar, the camera will not stop unless you move Lara out of the trigger tile. Architecture only with square and rectangle rooms is not near of reality. Elongated textures could be avoid easily dividing the panels of the high walls and columns with the "E","D","R","F" keys (see manual). Could be a camera to show the player that shooting a small monitor causes an action in another room (open the underwater door in the pool or the grated door near the pool). It's not good that you have to pass through the first big fan losing so much health. What's the matter if you fall out of the ledge with the third star fighting with the soldiers before you pry the star? You can land over the road or in the middle of the truck and you'll have to reload a savegame. The jeep with the fourth star has no collision. And if you miss one of the stars or the jeep keys? you can continue playing till you get totally stucked and have to abandone the game without finish it; you would never let the player can continue if he/she doesn't take all the necessary items to finish the game (secrets apart). At the end, you can finish the game without pick up the "Amulet of Horus", is this not the objective of the game? A great adventure with good features, but with a lot of things to learn too. Cheer up! You can be very good if you want." - Jose (23-Feb-2006)

"A courageous effort from a young and aspiring builder. It does of course bear markings of a first time work, such as stretched and lacking textures and a poor use of lighting(it was way too dark in places) and Kurtis did also appear to be quite useless(all he did was to get stuck in walls and running around without actually doing anything of benefit). I also got a bit frustrated with the jeep drive up that long ramp: it was hard to avoid the boulders and as the jeep more often than not slid down on the sides making it almost impossible to get back up on the ramp it got a bit more stressful than I would have liked. Sophia was also a bit too easy to kill, you could stand in front of her and fire without even taking damage. And at one point Lara got hit by an invisible train. But nonetheless a fun, actionpacked little adventure with more than enough to do. The enemies; armed guards, dogs, robots that were quite hard to kill, high-tech zombies and really cute little sub-vehicles that Lara could actually shoot at all posed as a fun challenge and really fit for this kind of level. I loved the objects(the McDonalds sodas and all the re-textured weapons and ammo) and also found three secrets(though I was a bit baffled over the bottles of poison that were called Breast Plates and that didn't come to any use). Unfortunately some of the items in the inventory could not be seen at all, only recognized by the name Load. And I thought it was the Blue Crystal Of Life we were looking for and not the Amulet Of Horus??? Of course this is just nitpicking....I did have a lot of fun playing and hope to see more of this builder in the future." - Selene (22-Feb-2006)

"According to the readme, this first time builder is 12 years old, so I consider it to be a very promising start to what I hope will be a long level building career. True, there are hallmarks of the first time build, but the potential is undeniable. The atmosphere is good, albeit it rather too dark in places, and there is some nice action along the way, including a short jeep ride. There are four shaft keys to find and enemies are guards, dogs, mini subs and robots. The only thing I could have done without frankly was my 'ally' Kurtis; he was a complete pain in the bum, getting in the way all the time, but luckily I lost him quite early on. Nice one Bag, keep up the good work." - Jay (16-Feb-2006)

"If you can just ignore the awful texturing and lighting in places throughout this level we find a really good first effort by this author. It certainly is a fun raiding experience. Bag's enthusiasm shines through. From the good opening flyby, the new inventory items, the fab new Lara, include the useless Kurtis, to the great submersibles (crocs!?), brilliant new jeep/car, take a close look at that cyber zombie after the dark slide, and new looking weapons in inventory. I loved the ideas of being able to commandeer another jeep if you return on foot down that steep slope near the end, and the location of the last star in this area. Lara and Kurtis have arranged to meet, or at any rate he shows up in a London subway station, and generally is no use whatever helping Lara recover the stone that Sophia has stolen from her. Kurtis carries one of those swirling blade thingies that look very dangerous, and I longed to see him actually do something with that. He is too scared to negotiate the fire corridors in the station, but shows up on the roof and is unable to get across the building to tackle Sophia. I spent a long time being run over by the trains in the station, trying to find secret places in the walls. I actually managed, feeding Lara a couple of medpacks, to get to the end of the track, only to find nothing there. But I did find a huge propeller that was almost impossible to get past. The only way I managed that was to keep jumping at the side of it and Lara inched her way forward that way. We do get outside to see the city and the vehicles parked here and there. Enemies are guards, robots, zombies, dogs, and rats. Be careful when you shoot the guards. If they die close to vehicles or machines it's impossible to pick up what they leave behind. And speaking of pickups, I spent ages looking for the crowbar, only to realise that one of these guards left it behind on the floor. It blended so well with the metal textures that I ran past it numerous times. The author has a good sense of humour. I laughed at the amount of stuff left behind in the toilet and the huge disc with arrow in the office. The pistols are now a revolver, which was a surprise, but that streak that comes from Lara when she took it out kind of spoiled it. I wondered at the strange location of the shootable lock at the start, but others were well done. At the end we discover Sophia about to escape on the helicopter and we must try and stop her, and get back Lara's stone. Despite it's problems, this level was good fun and shows great potential. So keep up the good work Bag." - CC (12-Feb-2006)

"This starts very promising indeed with a nice intro flyby and the train station setting with Kurtis roaming around as well. Lara in her Legend outfit looks fabulous and in fact throughout the level there are many custom objects used. It does not quite live up to the promise, as textures (often stretched) and lighting (sometimes too dark, sometimes absent) are not too well done and gameplay also has ups and downs in this hour long adventure. Quite an array of enemies to deal with here (dogs, guards, robots, rats, mummies and very cool little submarines). There are four shaft keys to find, a neat car to drive and three secrets to find, so it is really rather entertaining. I thought the fact that shooting those computers always seemed to trigger something rather far away a bit enigmatic. Good fun though and a very solid debut from a young builder." - MichaelP (05-Feb-2006)

"For a 12 year old builder this really is a fantastic effort. Alighting from a train Lara has to go on the hunt for a crystal, the Blue stone of Life, that Sophia has stolen from her, that damn troublemaker. Making her way through a base situated in a city building she comes across many intriguing enemies, cybermummies, robots, submersibles, as well as some well known guards and dogs. It's the slightly odd way of progressing sometimes that had my Lara stuck until she accidentally shoot a little pc and then all was well. The textures in this base were sometimes stretched which gave it a slightly unappealing look at times but all in all the environment did it's job. Also you could get stuck at one point if you drive the jeep up a ramp and then go back to get an item without it but I don't think this will cause anyone a problem. I have to say I am very impressed by what has been created here and I can only see the author improving in leaps and bounds. I found 3 secrets, all included a bottle of poison that is labelled in the inventory as breast plates, go figure, and finished in 50 minutes." - Sash (04-Feb-2006)

"This level is a great adventure. Sophia has once again stolen something precious, the Blue Stone of Life. We have to regain it. We are adventuring in a base, in London. We have to fight against gunmen, dogs, zombies that can be shoot down, robots, and (from a good idea) small submarines on our way. And at the end we have to dispatch her again. Kurtis is also there; he doesn't help much, but sometimes he's in the way. :) We have to collect 4 Stars, and the revolver-lasersight and the crowbar have also important roles. At some places we have to be careful where to shoot enemies, because if they drop the crowbar or the ignition key under a drink-automat or a jeep, you won't be able to pick them up. Of course it can be seen sometimes that this is the first level of the 12 years young author, but I also appreciate it, because he made a great adventure. There are no really hard parts on the level, it is an easy challenge. There are also sounds added. There's nothing extra with the textures, but they suit the environment. I liked the subway-part too. There are three secrets, where we can also pick up Breast Plates that have no use on the level. We can find lots of weapons, and medipacks either. I had to use one, because there are also inevitable injuries. :) I'm sure we will yet see great levels from the new author. Congratulations, Bag! :) You can find a walkthrough, savegames and pictures here: http://treditor.hu/english/sophia_s_base_eng.htm" - Obig (25-Jan-2006)

"A first level from a young builder and it's a brave,brave effort! I had a thoroughly enjoyable and generally aggravation-free 50 minutes of play,and it's no exaggeration to say that this adventure is absolutely action packed.From members of the paramilitary constantly trying to halt your progress (I loved their 'dying' animations;far more realistic than the baddies of old) to nasty midget-submarines nipping at you while underwater;to attacking robots and two riding sequences in nippy little cars;this is all great fun.The sequential nature of the Gameplay also helps in this respect,although it rarely has you stopping to think. What spoils it (inevitably for a first level,it seems) is the texturing,which is at times so painfully stretched that you actually fear it'll damage your eyesight;coupled with bland lighting (shadows for darkness,pre-set light levels for everywhere else)the atmosphere is unfortunately reduced to a minimum.Exploring the Underground System of London should be a tense and suspenseful experience as well as a thrilling one,but in this case the level relies entirely on its succession of thrills to keep you absorbed,as the lack of atmosphere fails to generate suspense. The location of one of the key pick-ups is a little sneaky,as it would seem to be a terribly difficult task to go back and collect it should you fail to do so the first time.Kurtis is of no help whatsoever,and I also encountered a bug while saving in the railway tunnel after the train had passed. Nonetheless this is a lively excursion and shows a potential new talent." - Orbit Dream (23-Jan-2006)
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