Level: Tomb Raider - Realms of Destiny - Intro back home search
Author(s): Skyler Ortega
total rating:3.83 Gameplay &
Objects &
Sound &
Lighting &
Andzia9 2 0 0 2
Ceamonks890 2 4 4 3
DJ Full 5 7 9 8
Gerty 1 3 5 5
Jay 2 3 5 7
manarch2 2 3 4 4
MichaelP 2 6 6 5
Orbit Dream 1 3 3 4
Oxy 1 5 3 8
Ryan 2 3 5 5
sonnyd83 4 9 10 10
Spike 1 3 3 2
TjwCroft 2 3 5 6
Torry 1 1 0 0
Treeble 3 5 5 5
category averages
(15 reviews)
2.07 3.87 4.47 4.93

Reviewer's comments

"As I have never played Underworld (OR any of the pathetic offering by Crystal Dynamics)I failed to understand or even see what this is about. All the smoke rendered the level near unplayable and the only way I moved forward was to hit the load key and then everything stood out in sharp contrast so that I could gauge my surroundings and then hit ESC and move on. Tiring, tiring game play." - Torry (10-Dec-2019)

"Attempting to recreate the opening sequence from Tomb Raider Underworld(as was the hip thing to do for a couple of builders at the time), Skyler's take on it is handled rather sloppily. First of all, the narrative events which all lead up to the situation Lara finds herself in are incredibly flawed and utterly contrived, filled with logical plot holes. Really Winston? Your employer who pays the bills is unconscious on the ground. And instead of carrying her out of the burning building as a rational human being would, you consider the better option is to simply leave a note behind and hope Lara wakes up before it combusts in the flames and she hasn't already been burned to a crisp or died of smoke inhalation? Well thank goodness she got out of there when she did then. Or you'd be straight out of a job you reckless fool. And the rest of the game's overall quality doesn't get any better from there with dull gameplay that's made slightly annoying by cheap flame trigger placement, thoughtlessly-placed objects throughout the map that can lack proper collision, flat lighting effects and awful stretched texturing, combining to flush what little atmosphere there might have been down the metaphorical toilet. So save yourself the few minutes of wasted time you could spend on this release and play something else. Not recommended." - Ceamonks890 (26-May-2019)

"This is a very brief recreation of the Burning Croft Manor scenario and while I can understand it was intended as a scene setter for the full Realms of Destiny adventure and the levels couldn't be lumped together, it doesn't really fare to well due to its disappointing length, overabundance of flame traps and meagre gameplay." - Ryan (09-Feb-2018)

"Five to ten minutes of burning croft manor, depending on how much you explore, unless you reload so all fog goes black to double the runtime. At the first play I didn't realize it's a bug, so then I repeated with volumetric fx off. Eventually I did a proper no-reload run with grey fog - sounds like extra masochism but at that point I already remebered location of deadly flames which appear before Lara without a warning, so I didn't die and managed to gain the full experience. It seems like both the game and my self-respect could be rated equally low but understanding the builder's intention is a priority to me and I see this level was meant to be played together with the next release, so I rate them identically, with ups and downs of each one highlighted." - DJ Full (11-May-2016)

"Perhaps it was the over-abundance of flames and their accompanying triggers;or maybe the distance fog;or even the multitude of objects inserted within the fairly restrictive environment - but my PC had the greatest difficulty in properly rendering the level,and most of my time was spent in pitch darkness which not even flares could cure. Not that there was any gameplay to speak of to perk things up,other than a couple of shimmies. It beggars belief that a reviewer could even contemplate awarding a perfect 10 to this level,but I presume that's what friends are for." - Orbit Dream (03-Feb-2013)

"This appears very much like a remake of TR Underworld where Lara's mansion is burning up. The once proud manor has now been set alight and large parts of it have collapsed. Fires appear quite often when you enter rooms, and there's plenty of holes, so you have to be careful. There's plenty of furniture used some is new and some not so new, but some has no collision or is stuck in the walls. Texturing and architecture are very good, there's plenty of nice archways and columns to give it that more natural feeling. Soundtrack is from TR underworld , but Lara has a new death sound, and pistol sound. The level begins with a short flyby of the manor ending at Lara's position. We then make a run for it avoiding flames and gaps and doing a little shimmying, jumping over flames, finding your through a door and out of the game. Lara's health bar has been changed and looks better. I enjoyed this incredibly good but incredibly short demo and hope to see more of the same. Net gameplay 5 minutes." - sonnyd83 (17-Jun-2012)

"This level is a demo. Not a bad looking demo but still rather careless with badly placed objects and also textures. The level isn't as dark as one could think when looking at the provided pictures. The only thing a bit difficult were the fires suddenly appearing on the ground but after a second try it was easier. There could be more to do so it's not a very fun game." - manarch2 (02-Oct-2010)

"Well within 9 minutes I hit the finishing trigger and that was it. The readme says something about his HD kinda catching on fire, well it must have left it marks in the game. Still have no clue what the note from Winston was all about, as I never found a swimsuit or saw a crystal emitting fire. Also very handy to read about the new moves (NOT), as that took some trying out and dying as well. Better not use those incredible huge textures, as a lot of graphics cards won't be able to handle it. Mine hardly did anyway." - Gerty (17-Jun-2009)

"This is probably the first remake of the Croft Manor level in TRU I've come across. My computer had quite a lot of trouble to render the main hall, with all the flames and high resolution objects that unfortunately are hardly seen thanks to a pitch black fog. It serves as a mere introduction to the full set of levels, and as nice as it may be, it doesn't really offer much on its own. Manor fans might be in for a shocker here in case they haven't played TRU yet. 5 minutes. 06/09" - Treeble (14-Jun-2009)

"Very short rendition of the Underwold burning Croft Estate with really nothing to do other than quickly finding the finish trigger (5 mins) and wasting a bit more time shooting paintings off the walls (none of which hide anything). I can understand it technically could not be added to the bigger package, but as a stand alone intro release it really does not work very well and it may have been a better choice to not give this to the public at all. Looking forward to playing the entire game sometime soon now..." - MichaelP (08-Apr-2009)

"First of all, let me say that I don't find it at all fair to review this seperately, but we've been stuck doing so. So, with no further ado... It's short, but that's expected from an Intro. There are a few things that do and don't make sense (The rope in the great hall.) The atmosphere is well made. I found it very realistic. Some of the reviewers before me say that the fog doesn't help. If you look at a real fire, you couldn't see 3 feet. And as for texturing, well done. By the way, there are a few noticable bugs: The first pit, it's not quite deep enough. The window in the bedroom needs opacity on the other side. And a friend told me about a large black space somewhere, reachable by running through a crack. Work those out, and add a little more to do in here, and you might have a little more luck." - TjwCroft (04-Apr-2009)

""Mess". That's what I would say, were I given the task of summarising this level in a single word. Once again, Lara's stately home proves its flammability, and - naturally - the only way out is through a series of burning rooms and corridors. However, while the author has attempted to create a realistically "fiery" environment, this is ultimately its biggest downfall. Intense grey fog fills the house, making it barely possible to make out anything, unless you resort to the trick of opening either the Inventory or Pause menus, both of which thankfully clear away the fog and brighten up the surrounding environment. That said, the simple gameplay (run, jump, shimmy, wonder why there is a rope in the main hall when one clearly isn't needed to progress) plus the incredibly frustrating navigation (which is made even worse if you load a previous savegame, since the grey fog gets replaced by pitch blackness) make for an annoying experience overall. The visuals fare little better, with messy texturing and the aforementioned dark lighting throughout. Objects were mostly suitable for the situation, yet felt often messily placed, with some objects meshing into walls, while others showed off missing faces. As for the atmosphere, it does feel claustrophobic enough, but the object-placement issues, as well as random and buggy triggering problems destroyed any positive elements rather quickly. Overall, a short 5 minute (or perhaps more, depending on how much time you spend in the menu to shed light on your surroundings) level, that will likely entertain only the most bored of TR players." - Spike (30-Mar-2009)

"This really is an intro and thus very hard to review separately, but that's how the levels were released, due to some technical difficulties I believe. Basically, this is just a very short burning mansion level with very little to do, but the builder wanted to set the scene before Lara embarks on the full adventure, so it's only fair to play it first. Go on, it won't take you long." - Jay (30-Mar-2009)

"This is intro to game Realms of Destiny. Lara is captured in burning Croft manor. Manor is nice textured and build, worth to see. I didn't find any secrets. Five minutes of game-play." - Oxy (29-Mar-2009)

"It's too dark here, and the flares are not helpful. If you want to see something, you must enter to inventory. Nothing to do, just go to only one door. This is very bad level." - Andzia9 (28-Mar-2009)
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