Level: Temples back home search
Author(s): trafan
total rating:2.27 Gameplay &
Objects &
Sound &
Lighting &
DJ Full 4 5 5 5
eTux 2 1 0 1
Gerty 0 1 0 0
Jay 2 2 2 1
Jose 1 3 2 1
Kitkat 3 3 2 2
Kristina 3 2 2 2
MichaelP 5 5 1 1
Ryan 2 2 1 1
TimJ 3 3 3 2
Treeble 1 1 1 1
Xela 6 6 4 3
category averages
(12 reviews)
2.67 2.83 1.92 1.67

Reviewer's comments

"Unless you're blessed with extraordinary patience or tolerance, I would steer well clear of this one. It outstayed its welcome for me by more than half its duration, and there's nothing much here that makes it worthwhile playing. There's a couple of bike rides and some custom weaponry to use, but it just drags on needlessly for around 90 minutes until you finally reach the nonexistent finish trigger. I felt like there was just lazy design at parts here with the numerous mazes, long ladder climbs (I giggled a bit at Lara's messed up animation here), repetitive boulder traps and 'find the safe path through the water' challenges. It also crashes to the desktop unless you're quick enough to hit F6 and the texturing, lighting and atmosphere is sloppy throughout. I'm not really selling this one, am I?. Don't bother." - Ryan (26-Jul-2018)

"A two-level set which may take you far too long than it should. I found myself enjoying the releases rated between 0 and 2 much more than these rated between 2 and 4. The point is, the latter group often shares flaws with the ultimate bottom-listers but receives greater marks for a longer runtime, and this is why I never rate length, only game "density". Here some of you may hear Mr. Plinkett's "It's so dense" quote, but on the contrary to its original sarcastic usage, the "concentration of fun" is really important in case of custom levels. What can be interesting in a monkey swing curving along the whole ceiling only to make it last for five minutes? What can be admired in an equivalent path guided among death tiles in a swimming pool, never to be solved without health loss? The second level also has this inconvenience: you know something is wrong when a maze description covers up 1/3 of the walkthrough. Fighting is well designed, in fact half of the game could be classified as shooter, but the product contains various types of gameplay and even has some unique ideas - sometimes the path oscillates between the very top and very bottom within a very short time, one of these places surpasses the height limit with a very simple yet clever way (a curving staircase), and I think the second part has the only (or one of few) working connection which allows to get from a 2-click flooded room into a flooded crawlspace. Finally, the game contains a remarkable series of rollingball traps, and though the initial ones may be annyoing, many instances are really clever and varying. Just why does it have to occur in a stretched, wallpapered world with edges touchable at every trip outside? SUMMARY: The builder's creativity is obviously strong and very unfortunately eclipsed by dragging passages, lazy graphics and mazes. I would recommend parts of this game but its general execution doesn't allow me to approve the whole thing. Optional." - DJ Full (07-Sep-2015)

"It's time for me to play devil's advocate. I read the reviews posted on this level, and thought that it would be an hour and a half of pure awfulness. But, despite public opinion, I actually really enjoyed this two-piece level. Let me be frank by stating that this level is certainly flawed: textures are stretched, there are too many corridors, enemies appear out of nowhere, some item placements make them impossible to get, the game crashes if you don't load hastily after dying, etc. But, I do not believe that it deserves the harsh rating it has received. The traps and puzzles are actually kind of creative at times. The few mazes that are present are just complicated enough to twist the player around, but not so complicated that you'd be lost in them forever. I love the aesthetics of the TRL weapons, and had a blast using them. Thankfully, there is no backtracking, and it feels like constant progression is being made. And the underwater controls are not that awful; an unnecessary change, yes, but not a detrimental one. Clearly a lot of effort went into making this experience, and it paid off to at least some of its capacity. It's not beautiful; it's not polished; and it's not impeccable. But I have seen worse levels, and I was never bored in this one." - Xela (16-Jul-2013)

"Sometimes it does pay off to read reviews before playing a level. I did not this time and was mistaken by the overall low score and thought this would be a quick adventure of a few minutes with little to do. Wrong!! This is a two level set which will keep you busy for 1.5 hours or so and despite plenty of weaknesses I believe it really is underrated so far. The good side of this are plenty of sometimes actually quite challenging parts with traps, mostly boulders, which keep you on your toes and will have you reload a few times. The secrets are actually not that easy to find, you get no less than three bikes to ride a long the way and plenty of enemies to deal with as well. On the downside - it is simply too long for its own good, as the linear and repetitive gameplay gets tedious in the second half, a few mazes do not add to the fun at all and the overall room geometry and the texturing and lighting is about as careless as it gets. And then you do not even get the benefit of an acutal finish trigger at the end of this ordeal..." - MichaelP (13-Oct-2007)

"You definitely need to play this level, it is the perfect example of what to avoid when building. There are huge corridors, many doors and switches, terrible mazes with crawlspaces and mummies, scorpions, a lot of ninjas to fight. The items you seek are cartouche pieces, the Eye of Horus, hands, a guardian key so pretty much the standard items. It doesn't end here though, there are awfully stretched textures, missing textures, long climbs but fortunately the fast climbing animation was present so in other words the atmosphere and appearance is terrible. I just hated that stupid swimming animation from TRL and the underwater tunnels were confusing but I liked the idea of avoiding burning tiles underwater in some point. The spike balls are many and you get to time quite a few jumps to avoid them which was one (maybe the only one) of the best moments in the level. The motorcycle will come in handy near he end in the sandy areas with the steep hills. Unfortunately there is no finishing trigger but you will know when you reached the end. Seriously, the builder needs much practice with the editor and some good beta testing before releasing another level. The ideas are not bad but putting them into action is not that easy so work with it some more." - Kristina (21-Sep-2007)

"How can I qualify this work: bad? bored? tedious? a disaster? The truth is that there are very few defects that this level doesn't have. To mention some of them: the very huge rooms with nothing to do, the very stretched textures, the kilometric monkeyswings, climbs and crawlspaces, paper thin walls, ilegal slopes, missed sounds and textures, the absence of puzzles, the very simply geometry, no lights, the crashes when loading, the continuous shake-earthquake in the first level, the frustrating swim movements,... The worst for me was the purple maze in the second level, it was a nightmare. The things I liked were the GE Minigun, some musics in certain places, the speedy climb and ride with the motorbike in the desert, but generally was a bored level. Sorry." - Jose (05-Sep-2007)

"Don't be fooled by the low ratings - this is not one of those short and painless debut levels that you can run through to quickly up your review count, along with giving the builder and other players your two cents worth of opinion. Taking me over an hour to finish, this double feature mostly was much more trouble than it was worth it. I gave the gameplay an extra point, because I actually found some of the traps the author set up were pretty clever, and the author certainly was ambitious in having something to do in pretty much every room this adventure has! That something includes several bike rides, countless boulder traps, some fire floor traps, mazes (ugh!), and some more or less fun slide-jump sequences. I actually even found it to be more on the challenging side, what is fairly unusual for a beginner's level. I could've done without the water animation as it just made the swimming a lot trickier than it should've been, but the increased speed of the wall-climbing animation - while looks somewhat funny, is actually a neat time saver in those long climbing shafts (but then again - this improvement would be unnecessary, if there were no such long climbable walls in the first place!). But even the few positives don't really redeem the level much, and I found it to be beyond 'repair'. I was quick enough to reload the game when necessary, so I kind of could avoid the biggest annoyance of the level - the level crashing to desktop, when it exits to the title menu (either on the numerous occasions you die, or when you randomly hit on the finish trigger tile before the long slope upwards in the final room). Needless to say - it has all the beginners mistakes you can think of, and without even trying to be lenient, I can say I found the levels to be plain ugly, and there's absolutely no atmosphere to speak of! The fly-by's that were there were kind of dizzy and pointless at the same time, yet when the cameras could've really been helpful (the mazes, to name but one example) there were none to be found. Overall - while some gameplay elements show promise for the builder, I recommend him to go back to the basics and give the tutorial level and manual another go before taking on another ambitious project, as I am saddened to say, that this is nothing I can recommend for the players out there, and if levels that follow will go down the same path, I'm not sure nothing will change as far as my recommendations go as well! Oh - and in case some Mac players still want to give this a go - I'm fairly certain this is playable without the supplied exe for them - as an added bonus that way at least the author's ridicilous ammo limitations can be neglected, making some of the countless battles easier to bare!" - eTux (01-Sep-2007)

"What to say about this level? Nearly every newbie mistake in the book is in here: stretched textures galore, enemies appearing as if by magic in front of you, pick-ups suspended in mid-air and end-of-world views. Plus every time Lara died I was thrown to my desktop. And the screen hardly ever stopped shaking... I have to admit I enjoyed the maze though. {I'm apparently in the minority when it comes to liking mazes!} There was also a couple of interesting trapped rooms Lara had to navigate which were quite fun {except for the crashing to the desktop issues}; one with slanted blocks, falling rolling balls and ninjas; another with spiked rolling balls and lava and the first room with the deadly floor. So this level has a few good ideas but maybe they could have been implemented better. I think all trfan needs is some more practice with the level editor and maybe to read through some of the very good tutorials that are out there on texturing, triggers etc." - Kitkat (20-Aug-2007)

"Unless you are a reviewer who feels obliged to review every new level however dire (like me), a completist (me again) or have obsessive compulsive tendencies (still me) I should leave this one strictly alone. It's almost unbearable. Given that the wretched thing crashed every time Lara died (unless I was really really fast with the reload) and Lara died a lot, the whole thing quickly became an endurance test for me, i.e. just how long could I keep playing before getting irritation overload and having to go away and do something else. I know it's a debut level and I do try and cut first time builders a bit of slack, but aaaaaaaaaaaargh. No, I'm sorry, but just no. The gameplay simply wasn't worth the hassle." - Jay (18-Aug-2007)

"I'll admit this was a level that never seemed to end and I only kept pressing on because of the current review competition, otherwise I'd have dumped it rather early on. It's a first level, and in 7 years nothing has changed about that -- misappliance of textures, enemies popping from thin air, goodies floating, pointless mazes -- and what's worse, the screen keeps shaking probably due to one of the countless boulders until the very end of the first part. There are several bike rides over wastelands and never the end of the world was so important as in these two levels. If this had been my first experience with the level editor, I'd drop it altogether and consider all custom levels crap, but thank god I've been on this reviewing/building business for about 7 years so I won't let a waste like this push me away. 75 minutes, 2 secrets. 08/07" - Treeble (16-Aug-2007)

"OK, we have new moves but that is no excuse that most of the re-loads threw me to my desktop, as that is annoying as hell, especially as Lara will die. Talking about new moves, you can keep your"swimming Lara" as it is plain ridiculous to see her with her legs stuck into the ground the second she stops. The climbing, oh... that is too funny. And if there is someone that doesn't know what stretched textures are, well have a good look at this level. And don't tell me that this is art. Dizzy fly bys and overly bright, in other parts pitch dark, shaking screen... in the room where you can pick up the Grenade gun there is where the shaking started and it wouldn't let up, I started to feel quite ill. Invisible doors, paper-thin walls, goodies floating in the air. And you get to ride the bike, there is even a gate, way, way up in the sky. Strange...Then there is the maze... but last but no least the scorpions are pretty funny when they die. Btw I gave up after I went through the maze and had endless corridors with fallen boulders, I just had it." - Gerty (15-Aug-2007)

"I won't say that it is a good level but it could have been really worse. The first annoying thing is that if you go back to the main menu the game crashes. But it wasn't a problem of loadcamera in the script because the menu loaded without problem. It crashes only when we are in the title level. I was able to play the level without any crash to the desktop because I quickly opened the load menu with F6 each time Lara died or was about to die. About the game itself : the author was very imaginative when he designed the different trap rooms. In the first level (there are two), there are jumps over Lava with spikey boulders, an underwater maze, a pool with trapped fire tiles, a big corridor where there is a lot of way to kill Lara with rollingballs, a interesting bike ride, a maze where we have to search some puzzles items and other tricky jumps. There are also some enemies. I found two secrets but I know there was some other which are well hidden because I checked the PRJ with tr2prj. The author placed some audios sounds and it's nice. There is also a flyby cam. The worst point is the lighting and the textures. Every wall in the level is textured with stretched textures. At lot of rooms are too dark and it's a good thing that we can find a lot of flares. I needed one hour to finish this level. The second level is really shorter and there are less traps but a lot of enemies. There is also a boring labyrinth. Everything in this second level is really worse than in the first one. The finish trigger doesn't work in this level, even though there is one (I checked the PRJ). I have to say that I loved the new climbing animation of Lara. It's just the same anim as before but played two or four times faster. It's completely funny and I bursted into tears from laughing when I saw that !" - TimJ (15-Aug-2007)
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