trle.net
Level: The House on a Hill back home search
Author(s): teme9
total rating:8.48 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
Andzia9 8 8 8 8
Bigfoot 9 10 10 10
Blue43 8 8 10 8
Bogey 7 8 9 8
CC 8 9 9 9
Ceamonks890 7 8 9 9
DJ Full 9 10 9 10
Drakan 7 7 9 8
EssGee 7 7 8 9
eTux 5 7 10 9
Gerty 7 8 9 8
Janny 8 8 10 9
Jay 8 8 10 10
Jorge22 9 9 10 10
Jose 7 8 7 8
Kitkat 8 9 9 9
Kristina 7 7 7 8
Magnus 7 8 9 7
MichaelP 7 8 10 9
Moonpooka 9 9 10 10
Orbit Dream 6 7 9 9
Phil 8 8 10 8
Ravenwen 8 9 9 10
Ryan 9 9 10 9
Shady Croft 8 9 9 9
Shandroid 8 8 10 9
category averages
(26 reviews)
7.65 8.23 9.19 8.85

Reviewer's comments

"Even all the way back in 2006, teme9 was capable of crafting incredibly atmospheric levels which contain a strongly believable sense of place, with a number of well-timed jump scares and genuinely terrifying moments present here, that will have you on the edge of your seat as ya desperately try to escape from the current dilemma at hand(with ambiance, object & texture placement and lighting/enemy utilization which feels top of the class and contribute to the overall mood immensely). If there's one major letdown however, its in the gameplay department(as what is offered here isn't exactly brain-taxing or necessarily challenging, especially when you know how to easily manipulate the TR4 enemy AI to your advantage and effectively make that part of the design a complete joke). It obviously isn't Teemu's fault here, but with unlimited ammo for the pistols(combined with the tactic of bouncing all over the place), tension gained from the sudden presence of enemies is immediately rendered moot. But in spite of the aforementioned issue and the ultimately lackluster conclusion which comes through using this trick, I had a good time with this one. Highly recommend playing this, especially at night!" - Ceamonks890 (01-Jan-2019)

"This 1st level of teme9 is interesting, it presaged future masterpieces. As any beginner some mistakes, like the irruption of ahmets in a small room and need to lose life, I had only pistols and ahmets were particularly resistant. The level is a little too dark, I had trouble distinguishing push buttons. Well done !" - Drakan (11-Nov-2018)

"Great spooky horror level using TREP as I understand. The atmosphere was perfect as was lighting and textures. The flying books were unique. Awesome level and highly recommended." - Ryan (20-Dec-2015)

"This is exactly what I want to feel - author's will being processed through the screen into my mind exactly as he wanted it. Spooky ambience, a bunch of dark rooms filled with soft light coming through the windows and some occasional enemies is enough for it. What I found the top- notch was the ability to shatter windows just for sake of realism. What only destroyed it were occasional Egyptian spikeballs, not fitting the theme at all. There are no secrets ingame, but this was the best choice possible - while I usually want to hear the sound pattern change, here any interruption would wake a player up from immersion. Technical info: there is a shortcut allowing the game to be completed within less than 5 minutes, so I hope I've just attracted several speedrunners to post some excellent videos. Go on! SUMMARY: Obligatory. My favourite of the author, right before the Spanish Galleon it completely differs from. Hail topic diversity again." - DJ Full (08-Oct-2013)

"This first level of Teme9 was a nice debut. Like the title says, it was an horror level situeted in a big house. Lara is prisonner in this famous house and the goal is to found the exit ... but, it will be not very easy. There are a real terror atmosphere with a scary musics and enemies and of course some terrors moments. We explores few aeras like library, lounges, sewers, and more dark places with perfects textures and lighting to represents it. The level is not really hard but some switchs and objetcs are very well hidden but I assure you, nothing impossible. I really liked the final battle with the boss and the credits. Great level playable by everyone and very recommended." - BigFoot (07-May-2013)

"There are a lot of spooky/horror themed levels out there, but this is the first I've seen that uses bold, colorful textures and still remains unnerving as all hell. I'm glad to see a builder who understands that fewer enemies that are placed in strategic areas make for a more effective scare. During the first few minutes of gameplay I was convinced that nothing could even remotely spook me, but the anxiety of waiting for an enemy to pop out of every corner slowly built itself. By the end of the level I was twitchy, nervous and jumpy at pretty much any background sound, so major props to the builder for being able to craft such a terrific atmosphere. And even though I'm not a fan of the "jack-in-the-box" scares, the one in the basement gave me such a jump that I had to pause my game for a few minutes. The gameplay is also entertaining and never too frustrating, but what ultimately wins you over is the mood and the great texturing. It's a wonderful change from the colorless creepy levels we're so used to seeing." - Janny (23-Oct-2011)

"In this spooky mansion level Lara explores different rooms and dark corners never knowing what is going to happen next. The atmosphere is tight with a really well done background track. The game play was fairly easy and straightforward, only the very last part with a challenging gauntlet-run and a nasty croc needed a few attempts. The enemies range from little demons, werewolves and dogs, flying books to a hard to kill alien demigod boss fight at the end. The texturing was unique, dark and good looking. Lighting was spot on for a place lit mainly by wall torches, but not so dark to make the player stumble around, lighting one flare after another. I did like the fact that Lara could keep the torch even after a plunge into water. It was much nicer to explore the next rooms with the torch, instead of using the flares. . There were many interesting, but sometimes annoying fixed camera angles, which made avoiding traps or finding buttons a little more difficult. The absolute best part of this 40-minute adventure was definitely the atmosphere and sound combination and I have to give a perfect rating for that. If you like spooky levels, this one should be on your"Must Play" list." - Blue43 (03-Feb-2011)

"Lara is in a big and spooky house. Of course, we must to get out of here. There are few traps, few monsters and lot's of bloodies beds with bodies. What happened here? Many places are dark and lot's of flares will be need. Atmosphere was great. In the end you will meet... Just play and see." - Andzia9 (03-Jul-2009)

"A spooky mansion level; The atmosphere is great, the mansion is textured and lit so it looks really eerie and the music really adds to this feeling also. There was one or two points where I nearly jumped out of my seat! I liked the "book bats", apart from flying books there are baby demons, ahmets and a demigod to fight and interesting traps to avoid or outrun. There was also some good clues given by camera angles. An enjoyable horror level. I'm just glad I don't live in Lara's neighbourhood if there are many more houses like this one..." - Kitkat (18-Jul-2007)

"An impressive little debut taking place in a creepy manor. The atmosphere truly takes the prize in here, as the house is well set up, textured and lit and with the addition of the fitting music makes this a top notch horror experience you don't want to miss if you like to be spooked out, or just generally enjoy atmospheric levels. The little touches like the light falling from the windows, the flying books, werewolf kicking the door out among others make this an especially enjoyable treat as well. On the downside, bar a few highlights like the boulder chase with the explosion-run afterwards there wasn't much to the level gameplay-wise as it mostly was just a hunt for keys, pushing buttons and getting from point A to point B. More medipacks would've been appreciated as well, as I just barely survived the final minutes of the game (swimming away from the vicious fish was a pain, and having no medipacks by the final battle didn't help as well), but maybe I just should've payed more attention to the pickups and secrets (if there were any - because I found none). With it's ups and downs, but a rather strong debut - if you can close your eyes for the less than exciting parts of the gameplay - it will definitely pay to play it for the awesome, creepy atmosphere!" - eTux (17-Jul-2007)

"The level setting has a very spoky athmosphere, but regrettably, the spookiness does not extend to the gameplay to any significant extent. It is not very difficult as regards movements, puzzles, and enemies, but some objects are highly camouflaged and hard to find. There are also timed sequences that might need a few attempts (at least one of them). The cameras were quite annoying in certain areas. That is probably intentional, but I don't think it was a good idea. There are a few bugs: The savegame time stamps are not displayed and the game ended with an application hang. Lara is constantly swaying from side to side while standing. This is probably intended as a feature, but it is rather irritating, so keep her moving." - Bogey (10-Jun-2007)

"The level is too dark for my taste but it's not a bad one. There is actually no goal, you are searching for keys through areas with small demons, dogs and wolf like creatures. The underwater area near the end was a little confusing and the fishes didn't make it any easier. The timed run is quite tight and make sure you run through the explosions quickly otherwise you won't survive even if you outrun the spike ball. I didn't like it that much but give it a try anyway." - Kristina (12-Apr-2007)

"Right from the start this level looks really promising. Although it is basically a mansion level, it is a very detailed and impressive one. Lara looks great and she sways if she stands still. This mansion, and it's underworld is inhabited by very well placed enemies that are easy enough to deal with, bats, dog, changelings and a fish. At least I think it is a fish because I was lucky enough to stop after the explosions and just before I fell into water. Lara had her guns unholstered and targetted something in the water. That beast that blasts it's way through a door was a shocker. What a sight! Brilliant! There is great attention to detail, like the windows that cast their light across the floor, the climbing plants on walls, well hidden push blocks, the most realistic fires and steam I've ever seen; and a great Harry Potter moment with the flying books in the library. I'm not sure what the creepy torsos on clothes hangers was about though. Suitable actions are shooting wall panels, torch exercise, climbing poles, pulling chains, dodging spikey boulders, blade and fire traps, good underwater maze (be careful with this one, as I snookered myself by not opening one door in proper sequence), and good pushing puzzles. A new experience for me was running to grab a pole before it burst into flames. I liked the fixed cameras, but I would have liked it even better if I could get back control of Lara with the look button. Look carefully in dark corners for the torch, crowbar and a particular key. All this leads to an encounter in an attic space with a... whatever it is. Definitely worth getting up close to have a look. Highly recommended even for those who don't like mansion levels. Looking forward to seeing what this new author creates in future. Well done teme9." - CC (20-Mar-2007)

"A good spooky house level. There is a very eiry atmosphere in this level, created through some good use of rustic textures, dramatic lighting and spooky music. I loved the new flame sprites. Gameplay follows a fairly linear path and takes you from the house down into the dark basement areas of the house. Thanks to TRep you'll battle some tougher than usual marshmallow monsters, as well as being clipped around the ears by book bats, hunted by bloodied dogs and ahmets, and if you're not careful you'll be left to fight the 'eye-guy' with minimal medipacs, although the author kindly supplies a medi just before the final battle. I had a love/hate relationship with the fixed or remote angle camera shots used in this level. Some like the rollingball pursuit were clever and created great drama. Others like the library mini mazes were a tad annoying and disorienting. I feel the level could have benefitted from more thorough testing. I stumbled on a faulty trigger at one point and opened a door that was supposed to need a key. The marshmallow monsters were not correctly modified and when they poisoned Lara the 'poison/stretch screen bug' struck requiring a restart of the game. No secrets found. At the end of the day, I wondered why Lara had ventured to such a spooked out house, because she didn't acquire any prize. Well perhaps that house on the hill is a bit more at peace for Lara's efforts. A nice debut from the author, showing lots of potential." - EssGee (10-Mar-2007)

"Another 'different' Tomb Raider level, that several times brings memories from games with a creepy feel, like Resident Evil or even American McGee's Alice (the detail of the flying books - which btw is a very clever addition!). The level is quite linear and straightforward; Lara is trapped inside a mysterious mansion and she has to explore several interesting rooms, unlock doors and solve puzzles. Eery sounds and a particularly creepy atmosphere dominate everywhere, and there are several changelings to bug you as you move along. The lighting and atmosphere are amazing, and the textures, although familiar to a great extent, are combined in such a way as to accentuate the feeling of creepiness that runs through the whole level. There are some pretty clever mini library mazes, where the camera gets a bit misleading and confusing at points. I didn't like that pushable block puzzle at about the middle of the level, because although it was simple, there was no hint concerning how those blocks were supposed to be moved, so I had to do it by trial and error. I don't mind doing that, but it got boring after a while of trying without any result until I finally figured it out by fluke. There are several nasty enemies that need a lot of shooting until they die. I particularly liked the part with the spiked ball and the explosions, that was a very good and fast-paced sequence. The end boss was quite terrifying to look at! Try it out, especially if you like atmospherical and creepy levels." - Ravenwen (26-Jan-2007)

"Wow! What a debut level indeed! One of the most atmospheric levels I have played in a long time. Especially the audio is absolutely perfect for the occasion and texturing and lighting also very well done. It is actually quite a short adventure at about 40 minutes and mainly a hunt for a series of keys with a few blade traps and boulders and smaller enemies thrown in for good measure. But some of the ideas are very original, like the ahmet crashing through a door, the flying book and the boulder chase with an explosion added. Also the 'boss' at the end looks cool. Well worth a play in a dark winter night..." - MichaelP (28-Dec-2006)

"Excellent! This freaked the life out of me, and it's a must to play if you like being scared half witless. Lara arrives in an old house and creepy just isn't the word, it's terrifying, as Lara makes her way around the barely lit rooms in search of keys, buttons and hang levers. Enemies are dogs and ahmets who really frighten the hell out of you in dark places; in one room one of them snuck up on me from behind with a dramatic blast of music, and I literally left my seat!!! There were also these flying books in the library and that was just brilliant as they flew around attacking Lara, what a great touch. Later on, Lara will use the torch and will again face many traps and spooky areas. Finally she will meet a rather tricky croc in a watery maze, and end the level with a one eyes brute of a boss. I loved this level; it had me pinned to the screen from start to finish with great game play audios and textures, and the atmosphere was second to none. A must to play, it's very different from the norm, and it will have you on your toes from start to finish." - Moonpooka (20-Dec-2006)

"Lately there are quite a few first levels that are very well executed and this is one among them. It is a mansion and it is spooky. For Mac players you can play this, as I didn't use the TR4 exe that was included. It is a bit dark and of course those dark spots are the one to have a good look at. I loved the flaming pole idea although my Lara got burned quite a lot before I timed it right. All the fires that are used in this level are very well done, the best I have ever seen. And wait till you see the"bats" in the corridor with the bookshelves. There are nice traps and the progression is fluent unless you missed a pick up. So have fun with this one." - Gerty (08-Dec-2006)

"I have played many TR "horror" levels but I felt none gave me the feeling of mystery,spookiness and horror except maybe "The Ring". However,this level,The House on a Hill,provides a very good scary feeling,quite as good as The Ring, what surpriced me more is that this level was made by a NEW author. Instead of being trapped in a tomb,Lara is trapped inside a mansion and has to get out in one piece. The mansion's interior is beautiful and dark (not the annoying kind of darkness...I mean good dark) texturing and lighting is very pro compared to a newbie,the puzzles are really good and some are abit difficult and requires acting quickly,like the pole on fire or the rolling ball. I loved the library maze and flying books,very creative. The atmosphere is very satisfying....there are moments (like that when the ahmet crashes through the door) where you'll jump out of your seat. As for enemies,there arent much along the way except some flying books,a scary looking fish and bats...at the end of the level you'll confront an alien-like boss which I found really frightning and in my case quite hard to kill. I recommend this level for those who like spooky levels and those brave enough to play it around 12 pm,with the lights off and headsets and the sound volume set on 100%." - Shady Croft (08-Dec-2006)

"This is one of those impeccably made levels which contains gameplay of such a frustratingly tricky standard that you end up shouting at the screen on numerous occasions. Strain your eyes for sneakily placed pick-ups or cunningly concealed levers;try,die and try again acrobatic moves that require split-second timing;confusing mazes aplenty (I navigated myself through the underwater one by sheer luck - pull open a door and take a wrong turn and you'll need to reload,as there's no way to swim back) and a push-block puzzle whose solution was unfair,to say the least.Provided you save in plenty of different slots you should get through this with relative ease,but whether or not you'll enjoy it is entirely down to personal Gameplay preference. Technically,it's absolutely superb (although that moonlight is pretty strong!). The flames,traps,enemies,texturing and lighting are unusual and wonderful.Too many fixed cameras for most people's taste prevented me from scoring a 10,but it was nevertheless a close thing. Not the sort of level to play late at night or for an hour of relaxation,but it's certainly a memorable experience." - Orbit Dream (24-Nov-2006)

"A really terrifying and dangerous mansion. You'll find hard enemies and many traps, but if you survive at the end you'll can escape. Background music is very short, so it does the game monotonous. Where are the weapons? I couldn't find any extra guns and had to deal with heavy enemies only with the pistols. Don't waste medipacks, you'll need them. The level is quite dark, but I didn't find flares till the middle of the game. There are some new and interesting features too like the flying books or the moving blades. At the end the game crashes but doesn't go to the desktop (?)." - Jose (21-Nov-2006)

"This is certainly an appropriate release for Halloween. It's spooky and dark, but fun. The enemies aren't very plentiful, but they're placed in a such a way as to provide maximum distraction, particularly that croc/fish that you have to dodge while opening underwater doors. It doesn't seem to have the feel of the typical house level, which to me made it even more enjoyable. There are also some clever variations, such as flying books instead of bats, and the rising and falling blade traps will give you fits. There seems to be a bug in the ending flyby, which loads to a blank screen and forces you to exit manually. Still, a nice piece of creepy fun for a little less than an hour." - Phil (11-Nov-2006)

"My first impressions of this level were very good - spooky music and a really interesting looking house interior; an odd but surprisingly effective mix of house/castle/ship styles. The gameplay starts out in a somewhat tame manner, but perks up considerably as it goes along. Overall I enjoyed it a lot, but found the fixed camera angles (although undeniably clever) just a bit irritating at times, particularly in the maze like library, although that was greatly offset by the wonderful flying books. The ahmet bursting open a door was a great touch too and nearly made me scream. There are no really difficult feats to achieve; the only thing that's perhaps slightly tricky is a run to a flaming pole and subsequent back flip to a ledge, but that's just a matter of timing. Oh, and the blades in the passageways can be nasty. On the subject of flames, they're really well done in this level - I've never seen flamier flames. Enjoyable and just a bit different." - Jay (02-Nov-2006)

"Great spooky level (not really scary) even though the storyline is as simple as Lara being trapped in a horror mansion and trying to get out. Very good for a first try. Quite original at times and not too difficult, except for the traps and, oh, the almost undoable last part after the run with the spike ball and the explosions. Damned fish that took away almost all of my health and left me without medipacks! And then more blades and yet a rather original one eyed bolt throwing monster. The atmosphere is creepy even though not scary, very nice textures, good music... A little too dark at times maybe, which makes it hard to find keys and other items, but I guess the darkness is probably part of the ambiance. The only thing that I didn't like was how Lara never stopped bouncing..." - Jorge22 (31-Oct-2006)

"Let me guess, this author is a Silent Hill fan. That's ok, so am I. I was very impressed with most of this level, it is very beautiful and creepy. The lighting is well done and I absolutely loved the fire animation (the most realistic fire I have ever seen in a level). My favorite rooms were basement rooms with the diamond tile, eerie fog and lighting. Yes, these rooms were dark, but I could imagine myself in Lara's place and like in Silent Hill, would be looking for a window to break and escape, they were so creepy. I was also very impressed with the enemy placement. Oftentimes, the enemies snuck up behind Lara and that was very effective and rarely seen. I was also very impressed with a certain explosion, that's all I'll say! The music was excellent and well chosen. It really added to the ambience. I liked the Lara in this level, but her side-to-side movement kind of made her annoying. She's ready for action, I get it! It was understandably dark, but I kept missing items. However, the author did provide ample flares, plus, if you missed a necessary item, he doesn't let you go on, so you know you need to look around more. Gameplay was fine and there were some new things to do (flaming pole, for one) along with old things. Some secrets would have been good (at least I didn't find any) and I liked the linear gameplay. Honestly, I could have used a bit more creepy rooms as opposed to the action of the later rooms. The rolling balls were fine, but they made the level less creepy. Also, in the water, I kept hoping there would be a way to trap that fish, to no avail. And since I couldn't kill the fish, I couldn't go back to explore, which bothered me. Negatives aside, this was a fantastic first level in the non-squared off style of old Tomb Raider levels. This makes the levels look so much better. I really enjoyed this level and am looking forward to more from this builder." - Shandroid (24-Oct-2006)

"I think the last haunted house level I played was Selaachi's Secret. That was a long time ago (I feel old). This level doesn't add anything new to the genre, but it's still a surprisingly good level (surprising because it's from a new builder and I wasn't expecting much). It's sufficiently creepy without ever really getting scary, but hey - this is Tomb Raider, not Silent Hill. The story is a bit basic, and more could have been done with it for the sake of atmosphere - 'Lara's in a house and wants to get out' really doesn't cut it. The music is well-chosen, and the background ambience is suitably creepy - unfortunately, it also gets really irritating after a couple of minutes. The gameplay is what we've come to expect from mansion levels, with blocks to pull, doors to open and enemies to kill. The tasks are varied enough not to get boring, though, and thankfully it's not one of those repetitive mansion levels there seem to be so many of. The only part I really didn't like was the underwater swim where Lara was constantly under attack from enemies she couldn't kill - the next level I see that in is getting a zero for gameplay. But I digress. The texturing is good throughout, and like the gameplay, it's varied enough not to get boring. The lighting is a bit dark - understandably so - but this also leads to my biggest problem with this level: some things are next to invisible due to blending in so well with the environment. Every time I was stuck it was because I had either missed a key, button or lever, which was impossible to see without using a flare. It happened constantly throughout the level, and rather than get used to it, I got more and more frustrated. What made up for this, though (at least partly) was the author's attention to detail. I don't want to ruin the experience for you if you haven't played the level, but just something as small as the windows actually shattering when you shoot at them really adds a lot to the atmosphere. One detail I could have done without, though, was Lara's constant wobbling when she was standing still. I also didn't like how the author had changed (removed?) the statistics next to the name of the savegames, making it impossible to tell them apart. I fail to see the point of that. In the end, this is probably one of the better mansion levels out there, and probably one of the better scary levels as well. It lasts for twenty-minutes, and while certain aspects are frustrating, the care taken in the building of this level really pays off." - Magnus (22-Oct-2006)
back home search