Level: Tomb Raider Excavation back home search
Author(s): the Centaur
total rating:8.74 Gameplay &
Objects &
Sound &
Lighting &
Bigfoot 10 10 10 10
Blue43 9 8 8 10
Christian 9 8 10 10
dmdibl 9 9 9 9
Drakan 10 10 10 10
eRIC 8 9 8 10
Gerty 8 8 9 9
herothing 10 8 9 10
Jack& 8 6 8 10
Jay 9 8 9 9
Jose 9 9 9 10
MichaelP 8 8 9 9
Mytly 8 8 9 9
Orbit Dream 8 8 9 9
PaoloM 6 8 7 7
Phil 9 8 9 9
Roli 9 9 10 10
Ruben 8 8 7 9
Ryan 8 8 9 9
Scottie 9 9 9 10
Spike 7 8 7 8
TheStig 8 9 10 10
Victoria 7 7 7 8
wdavid 10 9 10 10
category averages
(24 reviews)
8.50 8.33 8.79 9.33

Reviewer's comments

"A level like I like them, not very difficult and very well textured with nice gameplay. The texturing and the atmosphere are very good with unusual audios. I particularly enjoyed the hunt for secrets, me who does not follow a hunter of secrets. At the end if you have discovered the first 2, you can recover the box pandores. Excellent." - Drakan (29-Nov-2018)

"This enjoyable level progresses in a rather linear fashion, and by that I mean there's only really one set path to take through each room until you collect the Karnak Sapphire and end the level soon after. There's a few simple puzzles to solve, a couple of surprisingly tight timed runs and a neat sequence involving using a block to break the flow of water. I found a couple of the jumps quite challenging and the alternating lightning floor room was an adrenaline rush. The newer Egyptian textures are put to good use and the lighting is dark only where necessary (hiding pickups for instance.) My kind of level." - Ryan (30-Jan-2018)

"Personnaly when I read some reviews about this game and see the rating I not really sure we have play the same level ... For me this adventure is a jewel of the editor. I have really enjoying playing this game ... since the beginning from the end. We have a wonderful Egyptian level with very good Egypt textures (walls, sands, temples reliefs ...). Also, the news audios and objects give a real Egyptian Atmosphere. The level is not very hard and we have a mix of brain teaser, jumping and fighting to discovered the many clues to opens the various ways. I have really enjoying found the secrets to discovered an special quest item in the end ;). Not really dark also except in the very end when Lara disappear in the corridor to finish the level. So to conclude this review ... This level is a real jewel of the editor and I can just congratulate the author for this talented adventure in Egypt. Absolutely recommended for everyone." - Bigfoot (25-Aug-2014)

"It always is kind of fun (and a bit weird) to re-play a level I have been testing even if it was a while ago. I still like this one even if it is straightforward. I still do not like the mummies from TR1 and this was no exception, but the enemies overall were very good placed. For the rest there is a lot to look at and a lot to do. This time around I did get all the secrets although one was still pretty hard to get. Great atmosphere and good use of textures. Lighting was good at my end even then there are enough flares. I for sure play this one again after a year or so." - Gerty (21-Nov-2011)

"This a beautifully designed level with an updated yet classic Egyptian look and about one hour game play. There are a variety of tasks to perform and some weren't quite as easy as some of the others. There was some precise jumping, a few timed runs, avoiding torches, traps and boulders. Some climbing up on vines, some rope swinging and there were also some moving ledges. There were a few levers and in general the game play was very fluent without lots of back tracking. I think this level had pretty much everything one would expect from a classic raid through a tomb. It is not easy to get lost in this level and I considered this a good thing, as I get stuck a lot in so many other custom levels.
The enemies were panthers and the good old classic mummies from TR1. What a pleasure to see them explode. I did like the"silenced pistol" a lot, as it was a powerful weapon much like the Desert Eagle. I did find all three secrets, but only with the help from the walkthrough as two of them were timed and one in particular was quite a challenge to get to. I did get a bit frustrated with the first timed secret (pull underwater lever, avoid moving blades, precise swim, climb out then jump and sprint to a door) but finally -after many attempts- I managed to get it.
The atmosphere in this game was excellent with very nice cameras and also good background sound in the first half of the game. Unfortunately (in my personal opinion) the builder chose some rather strange music for some of the later rooms, which I though did not fit well for this kind of level.
Textures and lighting were my favorite in this level. I thought it looked just perfect. The lighting was just right for me and never too dark or too bright. There were some haze or fog layers in some rooms, which looked really great. The Egyptian Hieroglyphs on the blocks, the vines, the switch blocks and many other textures looked very professional. This is a very enjoyable level that can be highly recommended to everyone. It would have been nice if it were a bit longer. I was almost a bit surprised when it ended and I had the desire to keep playing. Hopefully there is more from this builder to come in the future. If you are looking to play an Egypt level - this one is definitely a gem!" - Blue43 (15-Oct-2010)

"I somehow missed this one when it came out last year, but better late than never. There are couple of nice timed runs early on, and a disappearing ledges puzzle near the end that wasn't as difficult as it first appeared. In all it required nearly an hour to make it all the way through, and I found everything quite enjoyable. The lighting was not an issue for me, but even if it had been, the builder has provided ample flares. A good, solid level, one I can recommend without reservation." - Phil (01-Jul-2010)

"No doubt this is a recommended, well crafted, impeccable textured and pleasantly lighted Egyptian level, and the tasks at hand are not overwhelming , mostly placed on the player 's path to challenge a bit without being irritating. The course is maybe a bit too straightforward to me memorable , I never felt there was a real structure to the level map so to speak , and the atmosphere by the way of audio tunes that are pleasant but out of touch sometimes with what the atmosphere in a tomb should be is half convincing. Anyway a good moment with this level that clocks under the hour, even if I had difficulties to spot the first two switches , it became fluent soon after once used to the decor of those places. I quite like some effects displayed here with objects like the ascending/descending plinth blades or fire emitters. Overall very good stuff." - eRIC (13-Sep-2009)

"Good design and game play that reassures about the future of Tomb Raider. There are black panthers, and the original mummies from TR1 that explode when shot repeatedly with pistols. I loved the reminiscent touches from TR1. Nothing here approaches a copy or remake, but an underground entrance in the first Egyptian level of Tomb Raider and of Unfinished Business is here paid tribute, and there are hallways with vine texturing that will bring back memories. All of the texturing seemed excellent to me, though I'm not as observant as level builders. The tasks have a good degree of challenge. When Lara is doing a speed dash I have trouble getting her around corners, so maybe the timed runs for secrets need to be repeated a few times, but some may do everything on the first go. (There are really only two secrets; when both are found Lara automatically gets the third secret.) There was a nice jump over spikes to rope. The most memorable task was the alternating disappearing floor with four switches to pull, but using frequent saves eases the difficulty. I did find most areas much too dark, but I play on a PC not a Mac. Since this level is reminiscent of TR1 it seems fair to compare it to the original Tomb Raider, which used magical luminescent lighting. I replayed this level entirely a second time, and was then even more aware that dim lighting detracted from the pleasure of many places since Lara can't simply look about her, but must use binoculars. The lighting is so bad that often the only delay in game play is that one can't see switches that should be obvious. For me this was true not only at the beginning, but in the room with the disappearing floor: originally I had Lara going for upper alcoves with electric blue bolts because the floor levers weren't apparent. I remember the author's first level as very bright, and this is too dark, so maybe the next level set will be just right." - dmdibl (16-Aug-2009)

"Visually stunning, innovative game-play features, and the return of the original mummys!!!! Left me wanting more!" - TheStig (14-Aug-2009)

"As an old trout, I really did appreciate the large print version of the load screen - so much easier to read than the normal one. This is a most appealing level in every respect - beautiful surroundings, lots of atmosphere, good audio tracks, interesting gameplay, plenty of flares provided (thank you) for the occasional dark parts. All in all, a very well rounded game, albeit not a very long one, with good puzzles and traps along the way. Enemies are mainly those weird mummified creatures that explode when you kill them and panthers, with the occasional crocodile just in case you are like me and tend to jump in the water without first looking to see whether or not it's inhabited. And I may have come away with the Karnak sapphire, but I failed to find any of the three secrets so they must have been really, really well hidden, right? Yeah, right. Sigh. Anyway, secrets or not, I enjoyed myself very much with this one." - Jay (14-Aug-2009)

"Good solid gameplay found here .Not much to do in these caves except to find two keys to open the door that leads to the treasure. Well worked out and properly tested as there are no game-stoppers here . Many levers to pull to open many more doors as usual. Good to look at but endlessly looping music . Well worth playing !" - Ruben (14-Aug-2009)

"Wow this is a very pretty level which I just finished playing a few hours ago! I think the looks of this level are the strongest part, I loved it and I thought it looked beautiful! Well, gameplay and puzzles... the gameplay was very linear and I didn't get stuck once. The level was also short and I finished it in 35 minutes but I do have to say even though it was short it was nice and I really enjoyed the experience!!! There weren't many enemies and I thought objects were placed alright, but sometimes I sorta thought, oh hey, an object would fit in here nicely, but it's nothing huge. The secrets weren't really THAT hard to find, if you read the readme and stuff it wasn't all that hard. I got all 3 secrets in my first try. Well, I was going to give the atmosphere..etc. category a 8, right, but the music I didn't really like at all in some areas! Well the background audio was alright, but some of the other choices I thought were very odd =-S And I thought the builder placed too many cameras, some were not needed *_* But the atmosphere created by the author was very good! ooooh and I forgot to mention the traps are awesome but they are pretty easy. Lighting / Textures are the strongest part of the game, the texturing is awesome and so is the lighting, but in some areas idk I thought it was a bit bland and maybe some transition textures here and there, but overall it was good. Great game Ray! and omg I can't believe you are 15 you are so talented!!! :) Keep it up :)" - Victoria (13-Aug-2009)

"It was a bit short but fully with good ideas. For me the gameplay was hard enough to enjoy and the puzzles were very good. The trap in the room with the 4 switches and changing floor was a bit tricky but after i noticed a few floor what stand still it wasn't too hard.:) The objects are well placed and all of them totally fits to the environment. There are a lot of foggy effects in this game which is increased the atmosphere. The sounds are awesome...some of them has given me the creeps sometimes. lol The texturing is very good, i haven't found streched of wrongly rotated textures, absolutely beautiful. The lighting is very realistic. I like this game...i think i'll play it again to find all the secrets;)I can'T wait the next game of the author." - wdavid (13-Aug-2009)

"Somebody had written sometimes that the old level builders nothing more build and which there is no younger generation. Then there it is even already maintained that the level construction scene is clinically dead and which one can pull, actually, already the plug. Now, however, completely so badly it is not. There are new programmes all around the level editor over and over again with which one can make great things. And there are still a lot of creative heads to which new stories occur over and over again. And the younger generation? Now, is a 15 year-old level builder young enough? One could already recognise with his first work, that The Centaur a very good level builder is. And as well his second level has also become. Level construction, textures, effects: It is really astonishing what good level builders everything can make with the new additional programmes all around the level editor. There one sees the drops of water which fall down from a crack in the ceiling. There one can see short hot flames which shoot from the wall and walk from above downward. Of course such worth seeing effects use nothing at all if the level was badly built. Or if one must see constantly stretched textures. But this is natural here not the case, because the textures look simply first-class and the level is built very well. There is, actually, nothing what I would have to criticise. This is rather seldom the case, because I find with pleasure sometimes one or two hairs in the soup. Gameplay, riddle, opponents: The Centaur has inserted here great riddles. Thus one must pull, for example, four levers, so that the spikes at the key are deactivated. And so that does not become too easy, there are timed floor plates which are there sometimes and are away then again. Always in a certain rhythm. Such a thing properly gives pleasure, particularly as it is not so difficult at all, because there are floor plates which are there constantly. With the right timing this is generally no problem. I have appealed to the drops of water and the walking flames already at the beginning. The level was fluent to play, because there were no heavy or unfair places. One could find enough Medipacks, the revolver and the Uzis, thus the opponents were also no problem. Summary: It is actual in such a way. I have nothing to complain in this level. That I may still experience such a thing." - Scottie (12-Aug-2009)

"This is a fairly pleasent play with a fair amount of playing time of around 40 minutes. This is a very creative piece which i'm sure a lot of effort was put into. It is a fairly simple, classic sort of level set in an egyptian sort of cave with a set of lovely looking textures. The enemies were acting very strange, expecially the white mummies, but the panthers and crocodiles were usualy fine. There is a lot of detail in this level and i enjoyed looking at the crack in the ceiling with water drips coming down (don't call me sad). Traps are quite good with the blades underwater and the moving flames. The best part in the game for me was the sort of moving floor part which was very enjoyable and i even played this part twice :). All i can complain about is the very wide leafed plants that are growing out of the walls, they look very strange and don't set the scene to well thus ruining part of the atmosphere. Overall, this is a exceptionally detailed level which isn't too long and is worth a play. Well Done. Grade = A" - herothing (12-Aug-2009)

"This is a fairly simple and classic-style raid - indeed the classic element is particularly prominent since the enemies and many objects are similar to those of the Egyptian levels of the original Tomb Raider. I was stuck for a while at the beginning due to a rather too well disguised switch, but once I got past that, progress was smooth and steady, so I finished the level in one sitting. On the whole, it is a very relaxing and enjoyable romp, lasting a little less than an hour. Yes, 'relaxing', in spite of the very numerous spike traps - mainly because most of them seem to be non-functional or delayed traps, so that it's very easy to get past them. There are a couple of effective traps though - viz., a moving blade trap in a water tunnel, and a moving flame trap. The enemies - especially the mummies - provide some fear factor, but they can be buggy at times, resulting in them getting stuck in corners and walls, and therefore not much of a threat. The highlight of the game is easily the shifting floors room - a very enjoyable puzzle. Another good one is one where you have to stop the water dripping from an upper room to a lower room by moving a block over the cracked floor - it's simple yet fun. Textures and objects are used quite nicely. The textures are very pretty, though their sameness starts getting slightly boring towards the end. Objects are generally well used - with one minor exception: why are there large, broad-leafed plants growing out of smooth walls? It looks very unrealistic. The secrets seem to be very well hidden, since I found none. The bottomline? A very nice level, with just a couple of minor flaws. Go ahead and play this one." - Mytly (11-Aug-2009)

"A good looking and pleasant little level overall with about 40+ minutes of net gaming time to be spent. Set in Egyptian caves of sorts the highres textures and objects chosen give this an authentic look, even though maybe it all looks a bit too much the same throughout. Gameplay is fluent and helped by cameras and the fact that you are guided by doors that close behind you, so you always move forward and eventually come back to near the starting area. For me it did rely a bit too much on pulling switches and despite the hints from the cat statues, I never quite got which of the spike tiles were safe and which were not - rather confusing and seemed inconsitent at times or I simply missed the logic. As pointed out in Paolo's review there are two shortcuts which maybe should have been ironed out in the beta testing phase, but they are not cutting off much of the game anyway. Enemies are a bit odd in their behaviour (panthers, crocodiles and those white mummies) and secrets are very well hidden, as I did not manage to find any of the three. The alternating floors room was nicely done and the moving fire trap was very cool. Recommended!" - MichaelP (11-Aug-2009)

"well wich impressed me at this one was more the sharp graphics than anyting else ... this is a fair adventure wich is not hard for any TR player i quess .. u find plenty off ammo / medipacks and flares the rooms are a bit to empty and the game is a bit too straight forward but the last part was a bit on highest level . i mean the moving floor over lava room at wich u need to pull 4 levers was original and cool ... the aim is to get the 2 Sapphire keys and open the door for the blue gem,,,,,,,, ending was dissapointing u run across a corridor and game ends ...... all in all a good adventure for a rainy day but nothing special" - Jack& (11-Aug-2009)

"Another great level in this year. :P I always liked the egyiptian levels, and this one is fantastic! Gameplay is easy, great choose for the beginners. :) Some little hard part, but nothing impossible, everything is OK. Puzzles too, there are easy way how to make it. Enemies are mummies and panthers. You can pick up a silened revlolver az uzis too. Atmosphere is amazing, everything is fine, very well builded tombs, rooms, nice textures, cool retextured objects. :) TR1+TR4 feeling. If you like the TRish levels, you should try it!! :-D" - Roli (11-Aug-2009)

"A good level although the gameplay is too simple for my taste. I found two shortcuts: in the pool near the start you don't need to use the timed UW switch to extinguish the burning tile, you can exit from the water using the inverted "V" rock in front of the tile. The second shortcut: from the first rope you can reach easily the high bridge, and if you will do that, the lever and the gate explosion are useless. Good texturing and lighting although this last (lighting) is a bit monotone. I found the three secrets, not too hard but very clever." - PaoloM (10-Aug-2009)

"At the beginning I had some little problems to find in my game,but that is not the author's problem. After 2 levers that were a bit hard to see I had more and more fun with this brilliant level. Excellent and fluent gameplay showing a lot of creativity, the tasks not really challenging, but refreshingly unusual and new - so I liked the delayed spikes and had fun pulling a block through water to drain another pool - just an exciting game. Highly recommended!" - Christian (10-Aug-2009)

"This is a classic of example of an eminently smooth and playable level,filled with original traps and enjoyable gameplay moments.It's a touch too linear at times,with few puzzles requiring much thought (the two pushable block sequences were extremely easy);but some of the challenges needed patience and fast reactions,and were superb for getting the old adrenaline going.Secrets must have been placed well,because I couldn't find any;while enemies attacked at just the right moments. Lighting tended to darkness when it was convenient within the context of the gameplay (to hide a switch,for example);but was otherwise immaculate,along with the texturing. Only the somewhat distracting choice of 'alert' music overlaid onto the background ambient score detracted from the atmosphere;but this was,nonetheless,a thoroughly enjoyable and well-made adventure which I reccommend heartily." - Orbit Dream (10-Aug-2009)

"This time, we return to Karnak - albeit looking slightly different than it did before. The temple we're exploring fits neatly into the "none have ever returned" category (don't they all) according to the story, and as hinted at there are a plentiful number of traps dotted around. Gameplay is very linear and simple for the most part (with a number of - admittedly well placed - cameras further ensuring that you'll almost never get lost), however, though the trap sequences do add a little challenge here and there. Texturing is mostly neatly applied (and the textures themselves are also particularly nice), and the lighting is generally suitable and adds to the atmosphere. On the subject of atmosphere, it was good throughout, and supplemented with decent audio...most of the time. A number of the music tracks were particularly dubious choices to say the least, with what could easily have been the disembodied voice of Winston popping up in a later piece. Enemies and objects are your usual Egyptian fare, and fit in well. A good level as a whole, and the relatively easy gameplay and soothing ambience tracks are suited well for the "quiet night in" kind of raid." - Spike (09-Aug-2009)

"With the good debut of this author time ago, I expected another good job, and I was not mistaked. Another very good level nice to play; fast gameplay with no difficult tasks; some interesting puzzles and secrets really difficult to find; very well textured and correct cameras and sounds. A level you can't miss." - Jose (09-Aug-2009)
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