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Level: LB Advent Calendar 2009 - Searching the Christmas Room back home search
Author(s): Eelkemama
total rating:5.70 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
Andzia9 7 7 7 7
eRIC 7 6 7 7
Gerty 3 4 4 5
High Priestess 6 4 7 5
jawi 4 5 6 5
Jay 7 7 7 7
Jerry 4 4 4 5
Jose 6 6 6 7
MichaelP 5 4 5 5
Orbit Dream 4 4 4 4
Phil 7 6 7 6
reborn1995 8 7 7 8
rtrger 4 6 5 5
Ryan 5 5 5 5
Scottie 6 7 7 7
TheStig 6 6 6 6
category averages
(16 reviews)
5.56 5.50 5.88 5.88

Reviewer's comments

"Didn't really strike me as a Christmas level, but this seemed more like a typical Egyptian level with a few Christmas objects and textures bunged in for good measure. As such, and for a first level, it's not badly done, but it outstayed its welcome and contains a few unnecessarily tedious bits like long climbs and monkeyswings and a few unmarked walkthrough and climbable walls. Not bad, but it's definitely not the most inspiring of adventures out there." - Ryan (13-Dec-2017)

"I forgive Elke as this is her first level that she made and I am glad that her later levels are much better as I found this rather boring. It is dark and not functional dark, no… just plain dark. Longest boring monkey swing and shimmy. A lever galore and you could get to places before you are supposed to and then finding out that you missed a trigger tile, as they are not obvious at all." - Gerty (03-Dec-2015)

"I loaded this one up in the expectation of experiencing some gentle Christmas cheer;but,aside from the titular room at the very end,this was little more than a 'corridor run' adventure;with monotonous gameplay,tedious crawls,impossible to miss secrets (why all the medi's, anyway? There were no enemies),walkthrough walls,and one of the most boring monkey-swing/shimmy sequences I've yet encountered.Although there was nothing wrong with the texture placement itself,it was pretty non-descript throughout;while sound was entirely absent until the very last room.Nonetheless,like most people,I don't generally load up Advent levels for their scintillating gameplay;but rather for the festive spirit with which they are invariably imbued.In this particular case,I have played Cain levels which have left me with a warmer seasonal glow.Nothing festive came across at all;and it really felt as though this was a level that the author had almost completed building,when they decided that slapping on a few 'christmas stocking' textures on long corridor walls would somehow make all the difference.It's not that anything is particularly bad anywhere here;it's just that it disappoints far more for NOT being an Advent level as advertised." - Orbit Dream (14-Dec-2013)

"This debut level is very bad. I know that the begins with the Room Editor are difficult, but these days are lots of tutorials how to make good level, so I think it’s good to read some of them and then start building. In this very short adventure are lots of cracks, too dark or too bright places, some “thin” walls, objects that don’t look well, wallpaper textures and so on. Most of the rooms are square. Water in some places isn’t textured properly. As usual in debut levels there is soundtrack from TR4 what is VERY annoying. Gameplay is also poor with some push-puzzle which are boring. There is also a stupidly hidden key at the end of the level. I think it’s a bad level, not worth playing, but I’m sure that author’s next level will be better. I wish you, builder, great carrier in the Level Editor world." - jawi (11-Jan-2010)

"Another level that may have worked a little better had it not desperately been tweaked to be a Christmas level, simply by adding some pickup objects (found 20 chocolate Santas and 12 cookie packages) and a room with a Christmas tree at the end. Ignoring this fact, it is a well enough done debut work, which suffers from too many too long empty hallways that connect the areas, from a far too long monkey/climb sequence to a switch, from too many crawlspaces hidden in pitch black darkness (gets old quickly as a gameplay 'idea') and from a few unnecessarily long backtracks in case you missed a key ín any of those dark crawlspaces. It was still pleasant enough to run through for the 40 minutes it lasted for me, finding 5 secrets, although I really don't understand why the Christmas room had to be spoiled by two of the biggest No-No's in custom level building history: a walkthrough wall and an unmarked climbable wall - which has lead many players to believe that the room is the end and there is simply a finish trigger missing." - MichaelP (31-Dec-2009)

"This isnt a bad level at all, but it's definately lacking a Christmas feel. I get the feeling it was adapted from a standard release to cover the Christmas theme. That's fine, and there's no nasty surprises bar two rolling spike balls, but it's still missing the charm and soothing feel that you get from a nice Christmas release. That said, it's very well structured, and the lighting is excellent. I did detect one wafer thin wall in an under-water pool though, and the texturing in places is very repetative. There's pleanty to keep the player busy with well hidden keys and levers. Definately one worth playing. Took me an hour to complete." - TheStig (30-Dec-2009)

"It's much more like a labyrinth style level than Xmassy. Also, I must note it's a bit monotonic. Well, some of the rooms suprised me a bit, with it's nice texturing. But most of the rooms textured repetitively. Good point that this level contains lovely Christmas wads too.(The big medipack, the Xmas room...) Oh, the Christmas Room! It's really beautiful. But next time, with more twists in the gameplay, will be much better." - rtrger (30-Dec-2009)

"This is a solidly made Christmas level, but not one to earn any particular distinction. There's enough variety in the gameplay to keep the player occupied for the better part of an hour, but that particular charm that distinguishes the better Christmas levels seems to be lacking here. There are several unmarked walk-through (and swim-through) walls that prove somewhat distracting, and the provided crowbar was never put to use. Still, everything progresses quite nicely to a concluding puzzle that enables you to exit to a getaway car at the end, so the overall impression created by the level was a favorable one for me." - Phil (21-Dec-2009)

"The first level from new creator. But he/she have to work more to make good levels. The rooms are big but empty. At all every of it are gloomy. Only we can find two more lively rooms, with small christmas tree and vases and in the end of level. Outside is more pleasantly too." - Andzia9 (18-Dec-2009)

"I am not sure whether it is a good idea to put levels like this into the advent calendar. Apart from some reindeers and some chocolate santas that can be found on your way christmassy atmosphere is totally missing, the more so because there are some Egyptian doors and objects used. Texturing is mostly dark, and so is the lighting, so the atmosphere is gloomy rather than christmassy. There is little more to do than push some opjects and run through maze-like corridors on the search for switches (some of whom are behind hard to spot crawlspaces in very dark corners), and step-on squares to open timed doors. After playing this level I still wonder what induces a download this big and the necessity of a custom tomb4.exe." - Jerry (18-Dec-2009)

"Not interesting this level for me. It's quite playable, with some Christmas touches but I got bored when playing it and I only was wishing to finish it after half an hour. There are a couple of timed rooms and some moveables to push/pull, but all the game is about looking for switches to open doors, sometimes hidden behind solid surfaces. There are a lot chocolate to pick up (bars and Santas) and architecture is simple, with few ornaments and a lot of mazes to explore. Not difficult secrets (I found six). Musics and cameras not very worked too. Even so, the effort is always appreciated, and to be a debut is good, so we can expect better levels from this author in the future." - Jose (10-Dec-2009)

"In spite of being hesitant early on in this level due to very poor lighting and a lack of visual clues as to what some actions resulted in, I am glad I persisted thanks to a little bit of help from the TRLE Community Forum members. Once I realised it wasn't going to be a succession of tightly-timed runs I actually began to enjoy this little search for the ultimte room containing the grand Christmas tree and the array of colourful gifts and candy near a roaring fire! It wasn't Christmassy all the way but the end was a sight to behold - all rounded off with a rather befitting cathedral choir hymn. A good first effort." - High Priestess (08-Dec-2009)

"For the most part this isn’t very Christmassy, although there are some nice touches here and there – occasional glimpses of reindeer, cute chocolate Santa medipacks etc. and of course the final Christmas Room - but mainly the décor is a slightly odd mix of objects and textures placed in maze-like rooms. Gameplay is quite inventive and occasionally somewhat confusing as you will need to keep a sharp look out for walkthrough (and swimthrough) walls etc. A good debut level." - Jay (05-Dec-2009)

"A different type of level here , as Lara is mostly in underground rooms, and eventually has to find the Christmas room and how to get out there. According to what I read in the forum , the level was first meant to be with enemies that is why there is a lot of medipacks or rather bars of chocolates. I was pleased to see again the not so often seen City textures in the first part of the level , part which was interesting to play gameplay wise despite some darkness, with a few keys to find and a good timed door. Farther on, the rooms get bigger and the texturing changes too along the progression where there is a long monkeyswing/shimmying sequence , and walkthrough/swimthrough textures passages to find, which was not difficult to spot so the progression for me was quite good. I just wondered about what was the use of the first rising block in that pool and after that all the moving objects , I did not touched many of them. Also the monkeyswing is in the dark and if a flare is used by the player -which is quite likely to happen- Lara will of course not grab the wall at the end but throw the dead flare instead. Anyway the level remained interesting to play from start to finish and is a solid first release from the builder. [42 minutes – 4 / 7 secrets ]" - eRIC (05-Dec-2009)

"This level is more or less one large maze through basement-esque rooms, hallways, and small pools. i think it's nearly impossible to keep an accurate mental map of where you are in relation to where you've been. As rookie levels go, it's some pretty good work. There are lots of walk-through and swim-through tiles. There are medipaks galore. The level doesn't come across as particularly Christmas-themed though except for the last room and the reindeer at the beginning. i think for me, the environment eventually got monotonous rather than atmospheric. All in all not a bad debut level. --Guy" - reborn1995 (04-Dec-2009)

"And one more first work. One does not believe at all from which corners all these first works come. The people who were known up to now only as a level player suddenly start building levels. But this can be only good for the level construction scene, because fresh meat is always welcome.
This time it is Eelkemama who honours us with her debut level. And as this is simply with first works in such a way, everything cannot function immediately right away. With the textures there were no problems. They were applied everybody cleanly. However, it would have been better if they were applied at some places more harmoniously. One can see there clearly the Squares. A few actions, as for example the Jumpswitches and the Spikeballs, had no sound. A paper-thin wall was to be seen. A few places were a little bit too dark. This becomes apparent in particular when one should find a key immediately at the beginning. Because one has first only three Flares, one does not have the idea at all to light this. A small problem is there then also a longer monkey swing. Actually, one would need a Flare to recognise the way exactly. indeed, the Flare goes out in the middle on the distance and because the monkey swing go on on a wall, one falls on the ground, because Lara not holds on, but only the Flare throws away. Another a little bit unsightly problem are the passageways in a ceiling or on a wall which are covered by normal textures. One finds such openings then only pure coincidencially. A little bit unsightly it is also which is absent the climbing texture at one place. Now these may be maybe only little things, but if one does not recognise thus at all that one is able to do somewhere by or can climb upwards, then is irritating already a little bit. A little bit strangely are also the many Medipacks. One can use that in a normal level, but here there are no opponents, nevertheless, there they are rather superfluous. Not so completely succeeded is a place with a grid door with a ladder behind. If one pushes the Pushables aside, one would be able to go from the left or the right to the ladder, but then this does not go because of invisible blocks. For the fact which one must search, actually, only one certain room the level was too long in my opinion, particularly as there was not to many things to do. One had to run most time just by several ways or dive and find some lever.
But now enough grumbled. Apart from the appealed things this was quite a well-arranged level. There I am already curious on the next works by Eelkemama" - Scottie (04-Dec-2009)
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