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Level: Ice Heart 1 - Inside the Cave back home search
Author(s): Raider Croft
total rating:6.92 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
dmdibl 8 7 7 6
eRIC 6 7 7 7
eTux 6 5 7 6
Jerry 7 6 7 7
Jose 6 6 7 8
manarch2 7 7 8 7
MichaelP 7 6 7 7
Obig 8 7 8 7
Orbit Dream 7 6 7 7
Phil 6 7 8 7
Ryan 6 7 7 7
walter90 8 8 7 8
category averages
(12 reviews)
6.83 6.58 7.25 7.00

Reviewer's comments

"A TR3 level in an Arctic setting, lasting just over half an hour. It's not badly done, but I found some elements to be too drawn out for their own good, namely the long crawling and climbing sessions and the overuse of the freezing water (which I will admit did at least add a frisson to the experience). The textures and lighting are cold and sterile (which I suppose do fit this sort of setting) and Larson appears a couple of times but doesn't offer a whole lot of assistance with the numerous bats, wolves and snakes you'll encounter. Not a bad TR3 level, but not one I'll likely replay again." - Ryan (31-Mar-2018)

"With the same style as in previous levels, this one has entertaining tasks, but too many crawlspaces. Also in the pool with two levers it's impossible to pull them without use large medipacks. The snow ball in the corridor with the spikes and crawlspace at the end didn't kill me. Larson is only to disturb, and the only enemies were dogs and giant bats; of course, the ammo for the uzis was not enough for me. The best were cameras and TR3 musics; the texturization is not bad too. Good level for TR3 fans." - Jose (13-Oct-2016)

"This is a TR3 Arctic level, and a rather minor one at that. There are enough traps to keep you moving and on your toes, but at the end there was little more than a sense of looking forward to downloading the next level. To the builder's credit, this was released when custom levels were still in their relative childhood, but we've since become accustomed to better fare. There's quite a bit of freezing water here, together with giant bats and wolves and snakes (snakes on ice?), and Larson pesters Lara throughout much of the 30-minute raid. Not a waste of time by any means, but certainly not a barn burner either." - Phil (06-Jan-2016)

"If "Ice Heart" was intended to be a longer series, it obviously never grew beyond Dario and Carlos's contributions. I'm not quite sure how the two levels we have fit together, but they can pretty much be played and enjoyed independently from each other. I admit I found the gameplay, which was based mainly around running from room to room a tad dull, though numerous tasks revolving around cold water added some excitement, and served as a kind of unifying factor with Dario's level. I was unsure of the Larson look- a-like's purpose, but the author went through a great deal of effort to set up the illusion of him following Lara through the level. He certainly didn't aid Lara with the, for most part, rather oddball mix of enemies (snakes and giant bats in snowy settings?), and I'm not really familiar with the novel, that was the intended series' inspiration, so his role is a bit lost on me. The texturing is done competently for most part, but the overall impression isn't that memorable. Despite all this, the atmosphere is chilling and convincing, and the few more exciting moments make it worth your while." - eTux (03-Mar-2013)

"To be honest, when playing this level a long time ago, I didn't actually finish this level, but, regarding the walkthrough, I was very close to the end, just before the last lake. In this level, you get to see many prisoners transformed into some strange and unnecessary guides, which were rather enerving than helpful in any way. Gameplay was rather good, with many different tasks you usually get in TR 3 levels, including some extremely hard underwater sequences with freezing water. Some textures were a bit strange, but the overall look of this game was rather appealing. The best thing in this level surely was the atmopshere, created by a quite good lighting use. After 35 minutes I finished this thoroughly enjoyable level; recommended for those who search for a solid TR 3 adventure." - manarch2 (26-Feb-2011)

"While I liked this level I found the guy hanging around to be a huge pain in the arse at times. Other than that the freezing water was the runner-up in the arse pain category. That definitely made travelling at times very difficult but not impossible. The atmosphere was good and I did feel a bit chilly. Overall I'd say this level is well designed and worth a look. I had a good time playing and look forward to more levels by this author." - walter90 (29-Jan-2011)

"I got fooled by a glance at Treeble's crisp walkthrough to think this would be a very quick adventure. It is not that quick at all at about 40 minutes length, but it does play quickly as the course if essentially linear and you are never in any doubt about where to go next. An ice cold environment, a bit too square and empty, but still manages to conjure up a bit of atmosphere. Snakes, dogs and huge bats to kill along the way. I liked how the difficulty seemed to get progressively harder and the dives in ice cold water for the two underwater switches are only manageable by gulping a few medipacks along the way. It was also kind of funny to have your buddy show up time and again throughout the adventure - even though he did actually kill himself once in the cold water ;) 3 secrets in the earlier parts of the level and a pleasant enough journey to try your raiding skills on." - MichaelP (19-Oct-2010)

"Very good adventure. We are in icy landscapes, enemies are wolfes, bats, snakes, and guys without weapons. Don't hurt THESE, they will help you, and you can't kill'em, just they will be your enemy, if they get one shoot. Maybe the snakes doesn't for the icy enviroment. At least I haven't heard about artic sneak. :) From the middle of the level will be harder gameplay. I've used the TR3's bug in the cold waters: Loaded back the saved games, so the bar will be again full. There are medipacks too, but we have to use it. The hardest maybe is that we don't shoot the guys. But som of them died in lava or in cold water. I hope there will be sequel." - Obig (31-May-2010)

"A straightforward raid , with a bit of backtracking at one point but as there is camera work you know where to go back and return. The course is rather uneventful at the beginning and become more interesting in the middle part with a few movable blocks , a crack to jump to, a ice boulder to beat , and a lava room. There is also the addition of some cold pools where you have to swim fast so to not drown frozen. There are a few men along the way who are friendly except if you shoot at them, and enemies : wolves , snakes, bats , the bats were as hard to kill as the wolves, I think they are the remeshed crows. Good texturing and pleasant setting , although seeming a bit empty , also it may be hard to make a convincing organic environment with the TR3 editor. The level ends with the arrival to a temple , maybe the sequel will be released one day ? [ 46 minutes / 3 secrets ]" - eRIC (22-Dec-2009)

"This is the first of the two level set based on the novel "Corazon de Hielo" ("Heart of Ice"), but it seems better as a relaxing conclusion. The companion piece is Dario Romero's "Ice Heart: The Big Cavern." (Both feature the same silly snakes and bats in the enemies list.) But while Romero's level required skill and sharp eyes to negotiate the treacherous arctic landscape, this is mostly a pleasant linear exploration, somewhat reminiscent of early TR1. The author's levels are always competent, but apparently put together in several weeks. The texturing looks casually applied. At the beginning Lara encounters Larsen(?) who will be her guide, but she leaves him behind. Lara slides, crawls, takes zip line, swims to another chamber, no matter, because Larsen is always waiting for her. Even at the end, when a roof falls on Larsen, he cannot be killed. Maybe one has to read the novel; I assumed this was done because there is no guide AI in TR3. If one thinks the levels are too easy, then something happens, like Lara encountering a field of icy slush. As she wades through it, the slush soon goes over her head, and the damage bar from extreme cold drops dangerously. There is a nice high dive into freezing water at the end." - dmdibl (11-Nov-2009)

"Although featuring a few too many crawl passages in the beginning,the gameplay in this icy adventure soon becomes more varied and interesting,and you'll be kept pleasently on your toes for the 45 minutes of its duration.Textures are somewhat typical of the rather bland Unnoficial Editor type,although occasionally creative.Lighting is a little simplistic and not as evocative as it could be,but there are a wide variety of enemies hanging around inside the caves and three secrets (not too difficult to find) to keep you occupied. While never as evocative as the TR1 Caves,the atmosphere does its best to be sinister;and the entertainment factor of the gameplay is of a high enough standard to make this recommendable to players of all capabilities." - Orbit Dream (11-Oct-2009)

"It's time again for icy waters, snowballs, wolves and bats. But amazingly enough you will also encounter some lava lakes in these icy fields. I was lucky with that snowball on my heels that didn't kill Lara when I kept her close to the wall. Also that ice diving (to get those other two snowballs rolling) can be ignored. I know this was not intended by the builder, but I admit that I hate to waste medipacks just for diving in icy waters, so I was glad I could skip that part. Gameplay is very straightforward and not too challenging, and medipacks are enough. But there was a little too much crawling for my taste." - Jerry (15-Sep-2009)
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