"I finished this brilliant game with a
feeling of accomplishment, elation, but
also a tinge of sadness, because I really
liked this one. It's definitely not an
easy game and there are many difficult
(and possibly frustrating) sequences along
these three levels, including tight
swimming exercises, tricky timed runs,
jumping sequences and plenty of
acrobatics. There was one irritating jump
to a walkway in the second level that I
nearly thought was impossible to conquer
and was close to decreasing my Gameplay
and Puzzles score for that reason, but the
enjoyment and invention is so high
elsewhere that I refrained from doing so,
and I only rated the second category a 9
because the knights were just a little too
cumbersome to dispose of in tight spaces.
As well as the gameplay, the surroundings
are also on a high level and there is not
one room or corridor that is unfinished or
rushed in anyway. Once the Holy Grail is
obtained and Lara escapes in her
helicopter, the credits roll. A high
quality game that's not to be missed." - Ryan (23-Dec-2017)
"Paris under Snow (9/8/9/9, 90 min, 2 secrets): Right from the cool heli intro you dive into the snowy city setting after a few interesting jumps and monkey swing Actions, explore alleys, shoot soldiers and push boxes around. The city area is quite expansive but the game flows well nonetheless, with rather clever use of the various areas and levels. Towards the end of the Level though, as you get to the sewers and labs, I felt it was a Little too tedious, with one really long backtrack and the burners and more pushing that became a bit repetitive.
Medieval Castle from Nowhere (9/10/9/10, 80 min, 3 secrets): My favorite Level of the three, which again despite being so huge and expansive, never gave me the impression of being lost. There are quite a few fun jumps to manage here as you make your way inside, up and down and around this floating castle. The moving hydras were a novelty for me and as I did not kill the Iron Knights, they added an extra challenge. Gameplay still relies on the classic, find keys and push things around to trigger something, but the architecture is so convincing that I did not mind at all.
Forgotten Catacombs (9/8/9/9, 80 min, 4 secrets): Apparently a reused map from the builders BtB09 level, but 5 years later I had forgotten all about it, so it played as good as new. Again, a very cleverly constructed map that opens up step by step with smart use of boulders and spikes throughout. The one jump and timed run room is a great Highlight again and the laser room towards the end Looks nice.
All in all, I got more than 4 hours of great classic raiding out of this adventure, not always easy, but rarely confusing or requiring more than a few tries to master a task. Great fun and highly recommended!" - MichaelP (12-May-2014)
"When I have started the game, I looked the title and even it's a remake of the original eidos tr4 title, I immediately knew I liked this game ... and and I loved this game.
Lara start somewhere in Paris near some buildings and churchs and the goal is to join a strange stone circle.
There are many news enemies and objetcs in this game and there are just amazing ... exellent work.
A perfect atmosphere with a mix of buildings, castel and catacombs for a nice effect.
The three level are not really difficult but some objects are very well done (shame on me, I have forgot the easiest secret in this game^^, the uzis).
The levels is not to dark because I never use torch and the textures are perfect with a mix of tr6 textures pack ... I always like tr6 textures.
The ending sequence is also great and we have a cool credit^^.
So a perfect level recommended for everyone even for the begginners.
Thanks a lot thierry for this amazing adventure." - BigFoot (27-Jan-2012)
"Paris Under Snow: You land in Paris with a flyby
showing a very cool looking helicopter object. The snowy
Paris theme is pulled off well with some impressive larger
areas (including a glass structure centrepiece that you
enter much later). The gameplay suffers a bit from too many
corridor areas and too much backtracking, but it's generally
well-thought out between that.
]Medieval Castle From Nowhere: This level is set in a
some kind of castle floating in the sky. The theme feels a
bit different from standard castle themes, and there are
some cool designs like the outdoor area with the massive
cross. The gameplay and design is an improvement on the
first level, and is challenging while still flowing well,
with a lot of exploration and climbing to and around the
outer walls of the castle. One slope jump seemed overly
Forgotten Catacombs: As the readme says this is
mostly a re-texture of the author's Back To Basics 2009
level "Finding Zorba". While the familiarity can feel a
little odd if you've played that the new textures and
lighting do a good job at making it look very different and
nothing like the Catacombs theme it was before. Gameplay is
an improvement again, with a large variety of challenges to
do, including a nasty timed run and a homage to the Palace
Midas fire pillars, along with another really hard slope
jump. There's also a new section at the end which provides
This pack improves as it goes along and some of the gameplay
in the first level can get a little irritating, but the
quality of the second and third (and most of the first)
levels are worth going through those initial issues for, and
this pack is mostly excellent." - Mman (24-Aug-2011)
"Very Good !!! Rooms, rooms and more rooms !!! There must've been a hundred rooms !!! Anyway, well worth playing, every kind of puzzle, jump, not so many baddies, which is OK - I'd rather explore..." - Juno Jim (15-Aug-2011)
"It's unusual to see two releases from one author come out back to back like this. This plays very differently to the VespaofthePaperRazzi, though there are the same massive spaces that you'll need to do a good job of memorizing. One of the threads common to my reviews is that I often mark-down levels which contain difficult 'pixel' perfect jumps, or timed runs on the edge of what you'll get away with on the control system. The HolyGrail contains a number of points where I imagine many players giving up in sheer frustration. This is why I've only scored this release a 8 for gameplay (which is a shame because I'd say that everywhere else it is worthy of a 9 or maybe 10).
Of the three levels presented, I would say that Paris Under-Snow was my favorite. It really does feel like a labyrinth with plenty to explore. Texturing is good for the most part, though the lighting in level 2 is quite flat in places. Gameplay is quite tricky in places as I've already mentioned, though you will be left with a strong sense of achievement when you have cracked each challenge. It's definitely a series to be played with open eyes and patience.
In total I got 6 hours worth of raid-time out of Lara Croft & the Holy Grail, which is very credible indeed. If you are an experienced raider, good at tight jumps and timed runs you'll definitely relish the challenge this provides and I can recommend highly. Stiggy" - TheStig (29-May-2011)
"Difficult, but great custom. We have to do some tricky jumps and pass many traps. Not many enemies, just few guards, dogs, hard to kill knights, which we can avoid, or skelletons. Wonderful atmosphere, beautiful city, and amazing castle. Very nice objects and textures." - Andzia9 (04-Jan-2011)
"This is quite an epic and I spend a few days going through this mini game. Don’t get me wrong I had a great time but I didn’t like the “finding Zorba” that much and the remake was no better, even if it was more “user-friendly” so to speak. All in all this is no walk in the park and just remember what you have seen and where it is as you be travelling quite some distances and then have to find your way back again. Make savegames at strategic places, as that is quite handy. Overall I found this a nice adventure and the setting was great. Some of the traps are devious, great use of enemies, nice puzzles. The only thing I had real problems with is that nasty jump sequence towards a walkway above, I had to use a saved game for that and I am not the only one who got stuck here." - Gerty (15-Nov-2010)
"After having played The Vespa of Papa Razzi which was quite good it took me a long time to decide for this level trio and it was absolutely worth it:
Paris Under Snow was a very good start for this one: Many different city quarters you had to explore very thoroughly to get on. There were some places where it was very hard to come further and it would have been a long running if there wouldn't have been the help of a very detailed walkthough. I expecially liked the idea of the deadly floor jumps: Very clever way of going on with jumping on a slide and immidiately monkey swing. Textures looked very realistic. I think the atmosphere is really well created here, mostly outside. The secrets, generally in all levels, are well hidden but there weren't much "presents" if you found them, except maybe the Uzis (9-9-10-9).
Medieval Castle from Nowhere was on a completely different place where you arrived by teleport. Nice idea, quite often seen in this year's levels. The iron knights were at first quite hard for me so I let the first two alive and just ran away before I got to know the trick with the shotgun. I don't know why the life counter of it didn't work, that was a pity. Atmosphere here was nearly equally good than in the first level and textures, I think, were a bit too grey and unicolored here but not so that they aren't appropriate (8-9-9-9).
Another teleporter transports you to Forgotten Catacombs, the real highlight of this game. The rolling boulders puzzle streched through the whole level was really innovative because the author planned the whole room with them so that the boulders had to fall exactly so as seen, with just little ramps causing the balls to roll ("by chance":)) to the trigger squares. The atmosphere created here was really impressing me deeply with the perfectly placed lightning and very beutiful textures. After exactly 3:30 hours of gameplay Lara Croft escaped with the Holy Grail and I wished there would be more levels like this one because this one is a real masterpiece one must not miss and I can highly recommend it (10-9-10-9)." - manarch2 (10-Sep-2010)
"This is an stunning level set, that had me glued to the computer in the evenings for the last two weeks. Lighting & Textures: The level looks professionally built and I was not able to spot any flaws in design and lighting. Everything seems perfectly placed. All the main areas have their own flair with lighting and color. From the cold and snowy look of the industrial area in Paris to the foggy castle and finally the catacombs with the lava area. Atmosphere, Sound & Cameras: Also perfect. Probably one of the best cameras and flybys I have ever seen. Same for the sound. It fits just perfectly and this combination just makes for a great atmosphere throughout the level. Enemies, Objects & Secrets: Another area where this level set shines. So many custom objects and never before seen enemies. The big metal knight where are pain to kill. As a matter of fact I only killed one. The other 2 that dropped from the ceiling got stuck on a small ledge in the outside pool area. I shot at them for like 10 minutes but they wouldn't fall, so I just left them behind. Gameplay & Puzzles: Here I have a bit of mixed feelings. The puzzles were good and logical and 95% percent of the game play was perfect. Good use of boulder traps. I loved the timed jump and run sequences although it took me many attempts to complete some of them. But there was one particular jump sequence where Lara has to jump back and forward until she can grab a walkway above. Unfortunately this area is so cramped that Lara bounces off by hitting her head all the time which got extremely frustrating, not to say aggravating after a while. Had this been right at the beginning of the game, I would have packed up and played another game, but after having logged a couple of hours already, you're stuck - so to say. With lots of luck and totally random she finally grabs and pulls up. I am still wondering if this was a design flaw or actually wanted by the builder. Anyhow, it's the reason why I am rating gameplay as 9 in an otherwise perfect set of level. I am convinced we have a future hall of fame level here and it will be deserved every bit. This is a must play for everyone." - Blue43 (10-Sep-2010)
"I've been nursing this gargantuan three-parter for several weeks, and while nearing its completion I started on the builder's early Setback series. Suffice it to say that the difference is as between night and day. You get about five hours of total gameplay in seeking the Holy Grail, and there are few moments that would even hint of boredom. The lighting is superb throughout, and I wish other builders would endeavor to emulate what's been done here. When you're not engaged in life-threatening situations you can step back and marvel at the beauty of the surroundings. I've been somewhat restrained of late in tossing out 4-10 reviews, but this one richly deserves that honor. And if I was supposed to recognize the third level as a remake of something released earlier in a BtB competition, it seemed as fresh to me as if I were seeing it for the first time. And even if my memory is faulty, that third level would be worth replaying a number of times in any event. It has a bit of everything, from timed runs to jumps and swims past spikes to convoluted gymnastics through huge rooms. I have nothing with which to find fault in this release, and Nina Croft has provided a detailed walkthrough that I needed early and often. A certain entry in the Hall of Fame, and recommended without reservation." - Phil (26-Aug-2010)
"An epic adventure , made of only three levels which are long and dense with plenty of things to do. There is more than one passage where bouncing on slopes is required and many simple pushable objects puzzles. Not sure that we have to make twice the challenge with the slopes in the 2nd level was a good idea , and I never noticed the tiny key that appeared when the ‘baphomet’ is placed , had to look at the walkthrough for this , surely these templar knights were even more wicked and bastards than what we can think of. I noticed a few changes in the gameplay of this last level , remake of Thierry’s ‘finding Zorba’ , which are good new turns , more user-friendly, for example the quest for the 3 gems is now straightforward. I like the addition of the laser rooms at the end, but I wonder if it would not have been easier for Lara to just break in the last building to get the cup, rather than going through all this adventure. The first level is maybe my favourite of the whole set, great and fun gameplay in many rooms , only the long swim near the end was a bit less inspired. The architecture is great in all levels , texturing , cameras , use of audios are perfect , not many enemies , good objects , and secrets hard to find (got only 3 of them). Strong raiding in excellently made environments and technically faultless. One of the best builders leaves the scene , but it is on a high note." - eRIC (06-Aug-2010)
"It's hard to remember the first parts of this giant game
when you've finished it. This great adventure starts in
Paris, some scenes and the atmosphere remember to Parisian
backstreets, a formerly work from this author. The outdoor-
areas in this new Parisian sequence are quite realistic, an
amazing atmosphere as only a few authors are able to create.
Nearly perfect. What about gameplay in this first part of
the adventure? A lot of very great ideas so far. Some
running to and fro could have been avoided, some
monkeyswinging over toxic-water could have been shortened,
As I entered the 2nd level, a medieval castle, I was glad to
see that there is a walkthrough provided. It's one of the
most complex areas I've ever seen in a level. There's so
much to explore, so many possibilities to get lost. It was
nearly impossible for me to find my way here without the
help from the walkthrough. Stunning atmosphere also in this
part of the level-set, perfectly built, everything fits
absolutely together, supported by perfect lightning and
sound-effects. Can this be improved? Obviously yes. All I
said about the 2nd part, can be said about the 3rd one.
Textures and lightning are one more time brought to
perfection, some parts here are already known from a BtB-
competition - as far as I remember. There are especially two
timed runs I enjoyed playing again. They are a bit
challenging, but all in all tasks are not that hard in this
game. What an amazing set of levels! A must to play!" - Christian (05-Aug-2010)
"First of all I would like to say that Lara should be a bit ashamed of herself for stealing the Grail from an obviously quite protected spot in what appears to be a church! Just imagine the panic the church authorities would be in when they found out the beloved Grail was missing! Well, thankfully, this is fiction. Now, to the level! I just loved this level! Thierry has worked diligently creating each room's design, using the most imaginative combinations on walls and floors and objects. The puzzles were great, although a few too many pushing puzzles. I like how Thierry started the level out with somewhat simple gameplay to very challenging gameplay in the Forgotten Catacombs. I did see a couple rooms that were copies of other levels, complete with the same timed run! Didn't know what to think of that. Even though I loved the rooms, I also thought perhaps, there were a few too many rooms that really didn't help the level's progression much. Nonetheless, it was still too much of a good thing, which is better than too much of an awful thing! This level is just not to be missed at all, but keep in mind that there are many challenging jumping sequences later in the level, which really does aid the story, since it should get tougher as one gets closer to such an important artifact." - Shandroid (05-Aug-2010)
"By the time I finished the first level in this three level set, I was hooked. Accomplished flybys, audio and a snowy setting that I did not want to leave (I actually looked around to see if there was more to do before being transported) makes for a perfect Raid. Not easy, although the following two levels exceed the difficulty factor, it's a great beginning. By the time I finished, I was depleted. The last level in the set was a re-make of Finding Zorba and would have worked better as the stand alone it once was even with the remarkably well - done ending. Fascinating in all its details and complex in its execution, it belongs firmly in the Expert Category. Not that any part of this level set can be considered easy, it just seemed to get progressively harder. But the first indication that this would not be an easy ride comes much earlier and is that crazy back and forth jump between 2 V shaped slants that 'almost' works and in fact, after too many tries and a bit of luck, it does. But it can be, easily, a game-stopper and even an Expert can be forgiven for using the Savegames provided (here and elsewhere). There is something that I don't remember seeing before that is also frustrating and that's when a very simple jump and grab doesn't work the first several times but then, does. Not sure I get why that happens but it's seen over and over in this level set. The dream-like Castle is perfect in its setting and has spike trap columns that, at first glance, seem to lead nowhere and those Lion Knights, I think they're called, turn this dream into a nightmare. They can be killed with the shotgun but once they are gone, so is all the ammo. Easier to run from them then to do battle. The last is the Forgotten Catacomb from Finding Zorba and while familiar, it's revised with a new, satisfying ending. It helps to really be aware of exactly where you are in this setting and where the previously locked, now open gates are and this is where having a good memory is a must. The famous timed run with slanting blocks over the lava isn't any easier this time around but at least one knows what to do ....more or less. There's great satisfaction in completing it and satisfaction in finding a short cut to the timed lever that begins that timed run. Thierry is a Master in design, even including short cuts back to other areas; everything fits together, with glimpses of other areas where one has already been or will soon get to explore. He shines also in the Atmosphere, Sound and Cameras Category as well as in Lighting and textures. It's true that gameplay frustration can, at times, rise to the nth degree but that doesn't overcome one's desire to finish play and it's also true that Thierry's abilities are as great as any professional game designer and that this may just be his best yet. Not to be missed." - Bene (02-Aug-2010)
"Another good work from this author. As usual, very well textured and a good ambience. You'll find several tricky tasks which can take you frustrating and another times a lot of backtracking through very huge areas. Few and easy puzzles, a lot of switches to pull and many gymnastics. I missed the shotgun in the first level and later I got many problems to deal with the skeletons in the last level. Also I don't know what's the reason to include a retextured old level in the package. Even so, the adventure is worth to play." - Jose (02-Aug-2010)
"Well what can I say ...... this is the sort of game which you can review with your heart ... and than it is worth 10, or with your brain ... in this case it is worth 9. Anyway, this is a very, very good game, a potential Hall of Famer - but it has some flaws too - I start with the good parts followed by negative ones.
This game contains 3 levels which get more and more better and tougher ... it is not for beginner raiders anyway, because it contains a lot of traps ... timed runs and very tricky jumps... one of these was particulary very frustrating - between 2 v-shaped slopes and try to catch the higher platform. In theory it was easy, but once you involved on it you discover that it is extremely difficult because the higher platform is not high enough and Lara bangs her head on it ... I needed over 50 tries to make it somehow ....
My heart pushed me to give 10 in the line .... but my judgement says because of the frustrating parts at gameplay it is worth only 8, all the rest is 10. Anyway it is a much much better one than his other game 'Vespa of Papa Razzi''..... one of the best games made this year - very good work!" - Jack& (31-Jul-2010)
"This is a beautifully made level, which manages to pull together three quite different areas into a cohesive storyline in a most satisfactory manner.
Paris Under Snow: Yes, it certainly is, although Lara does spend half her time indoors, crawling through ducts, avoiding laser traps and coping with some quite inventive jumping about. When she does finally emerge into the city, the views from the rooftops are spectacular and exploring the city is a pleasure.
Medieval Castle From Nowhere: This is a really magnificent castle in the clouds, but don’t worry if you’re prone to vertigo as most of the action takes place on solid ground. There are some interesting enemies at large, including huge iron knights and hydras, who poison you if you give them half a chance.
The Forgotten Catacombs: If you played Thierry’s entry in the Back to Basics Catacombs series, then you’ll be familiar with this section as it remains pretty much the same, gameplay-wise, with the benefit of upgraded objects and textures. It was great to revisit the lava room with all the wonderfully well devised bouncing about and the challenging but fun timed run. The end is good too – after the enjoyable laser and spike room, Lara grabs the grail and we get a final flyby of beautiful snowy Paris before she legs it to her waiting helicopter and we are left with some extremely cute credits.
This is high quality raiding and should have something for everyone. If you are an inexperienced player, try it anyway, as the more challenging aspects are few and there are always kind souls in the stuck threads who can help you out with a savegame, if necessary." - Jay (30-Jul-2010)
"What a good 3 part level! Over 5 hours of gaming and I was sorry I’d finished. Excellent and imaginative game-play throughout, well lit and solidly built, it was a joy to play. If I was to be picky, I would have liked to have seen more enemies, timed runs and maybe a boss ending to use up all that ammo but that’s just my preference and the builder built it as it was and very good it was too! There was a couple of days gap between reading the Read-Me and reaching the final part and I’d forgotten that it was a re-hash of a previous release (at my age, a couple of days is long enough to forget my own name) so it was with a strange feeling of deja-vu that I played it. Jay, my better half, pointed out both the Read-Me and my senility. A cracking level which I enjoyed very much." - Diz (30-Jul-2010)
"I imensely enjoyed playing this amazing level. This is a
hard-core adventure, involving a lot of puzzles, jumps,
action, exploration and mystery. It comprizes of three
levels, one harder and requiring more skills than the
previous. You start in Paris, exploring streets, squares,
buildings, sewers, industrial compounds and labs. This urban
level may be a bit too easy for a hard-core player, but
that's just the beginning. The first level is not at all
easy, and the prime of it definitely is the triple laser
trap towards the end. The environment is convincing and
beautifully designed, especially outside areas such as the
big square in front of the cathedral. Trust me, you won't
find some switches and keys easily here. In the second level
Lara goes to a mysterious castle of knights templars, and I
must admit that this is best designed castle level I've ever
played. You won't get bored here for sure, as you try to
climb your way up the bunch of translucent ledges and
slopes, or during the fight with tough Iron Knights. This
level is huge and there is a lot of space here to explore,
as well as many useful shortcuts, interesting and exciting
climbing/jumping sequences, and open areas that will take
your breath away. And not a single timed run from the
beginning of the level... yet. Third level is a catacomb
type level, and I must say that I least enjoy this type of
levels. However, this one is so great that I definitely have
to change my mind about catacomb levels. And this one is
definitely hard, and requires a lot of nerves, skills, tries
and errors, time and reference, to beat. When you think that
you are saved from timed runs, there comes one grandious and
utterly hard run that will make you wish to jump out of the
window. However, these mercilessly hard traps and slides
above lava pools in the third level are awesome! This is, as
I already said, a hard-core adventure and the third level is
its peak. The overal game is very fluent, with almost non-
existent backtracking (you'll find dozens of shortcuts), and
very intruiging gameplay. Although you'll have a lot of
areas to explore and a lot of choices to make along the way,
you'll almost never get lost, you'll always know what is
your next goal. Overall ambiance is perfect: urban, medieval
and catacomb, all three settings are well designed and
grandious, especially in the second level. I highly
recommend this game for all raiders, it's not too long, but
it will take a few hours to beat. And you won't get bored
for a single second!" - Nina Croft (23-Jul-2010)
"Paris under Snow: After the good start where one had to search, actually, only one key, thought I which goes on it just calmly. But wrong thought. After just once 2-minute playing time one must already do heavy work. The ingredients in this room are a deadly ground, three monkey swings, a few sloping and a climbing grid column. Indeed, it was nevertheless easier than I thought. And this room looks really first-class. The same is valid of course for the staircase. And the backyards. And when I already thought, it cannot become better, actually, at all, I came to the area with the around glazed office house in the middle. I find it good which is killed Lara if a grenade explodes in her nearness. This had always surprised me earlier that Lara nothing passed if dozens grenades were shot on Lara by the SAS--Soldiers without which she got some problems. Then at the end of this level one is on the move briefly high on top on the roof and this view is really sensational. To me has also liked that one heard before dangerous situations a warning tone. Thus one could prepare, for example, for the opponents.
Medieval Castle from nowhere: This level plays itself, actually, very well, however, there is a water room which is a little bit irritating., On the one hand, there lies a key a little bit too well hidden and on the other hand must one hop on two opposite sloping under a footbridge so long to and fro, until one comes on top on the footbridge. And this can last. Another place which I have not liked was a room in which one had to push two statues on certain Bodensquares. and, besides, one was disturbed constantly by an invincible Iron Knight. So one could push a statue only one Square further and then had to run because the room was not too big fast to the other statue. It would have been better if one could have locked up the opponent somewhere. Then, however, I have got to know later that one can do these Iron Knights like the big dinos with a shot from the Shotgun. It would have maybe quite felt well if the level builder had responded this in the Readme. Otherwise this level very felt well to play And I had, however, one or two times the feeling which one could go ways which were not planned thus by the level builder.
Forgotten Catacombs: These forgotten catacombs look very good. Indeed, there is something what displeases me. Namely Lara loses a lot to life energy if she pulls high on top a Jumpswitch and falls not into the water, but on the footbridge. Such a thing must not be and is unnecessary like a goiter. But otherwise it looked after a relaxed Raiding. Then, however, this had fast changed. Since while one was on the move first in a water room, it looked quite different in the next room. Deadly water, Spike Traps, fire traps and many sloping. But it looked worse than it was in reality. And the time run was also no big problem. Though he is scarce a little bit, but then one has enough time for a few smaller corrections. Such difficult places were rather the exception. Most time one was occupied to search new rooms and new levers. And with it I am at the central problem of this level. He was a little bit too long-winded for my taste. Constantly to investigate new rooms with several levers can make fun absolutely, above all if they are built as well as here. But the level builder could have left out a few rooms. Or other riddles than always only the many variations of a lever search.
Result: This Level has made really fun, apart from the irritating jump to the footbridge in the second level and a few lengths in the third level." - Scottie (20-Jul-2010)
"Ahh, the search-adventure is on! This game is a great combination of some tricky gameplay and massive amounts of investigation. The venues are pretty massive in their own right. You will begin your adventure in Paris where you will find the successful exploitation of one area leads to another. Mostly it's finding the switches and a couple of fuses to open the doors, etc. and fighting off a few enemies (guards)in the process. I love this kind of game - there is so much to explore and Thierry makes it great fun as you go. From Paris you will be transported to a really cool and spooky castle. You will spend a lot of time (if you're like me) getting the "lay of the land". The four corner gates are Lara's main problem - getting them open (3 containing vital switches, the 4th containing some goodies)will ultimately lead to the red cross which holds the key to the next adventure, the forgotten catacombs. But, before we leave the castle, be prepared to meet an army of behemouth spartans. Seems to me you can waste these guys with enough weaponry (like shotgun), but I missed the shotgun so I spent a lot of time figuring out how to outsmart/outrun them. It can, at least, be done. The catacombs brings you back to one of your favorite nightmares - that retched timed run over the lava water. I'm pretty sure I copped out last time and took a savegame, but not this time. I finally did it and it always feels so good to say ya "licked it". There are some interesting slope jumps to make in this round and I like figuring out these puzzles. My advice here is: the right approach is not always the obvious one. More great fun as Lara finally locates the chambers protecting the holy grail and proves how masterful she really is. The ending credits were creatively done and I can't tell you how impressed I am with all these videos running through these new releases. Great stuff ! Thanks !" - Mugs (20-Jul-2010)
"This level contains the most professional cameras I've ever seen in a custom. They tell everything what player should know. What is more, they are perfectly synchronized with music. Samples are taken from original TR, but it doesn't matter, as we admire every single flyby. 10/10
I think the lighting is nearly the best we can get at this time. Texturing is done with a kind of poetry, proving that winter, even filled only with what seems to be grey, dirty and blurred, isn't a boring season and can attract you with it's variety of light, shade and soft, elegant colors. This reminds me of Downtown District of GTA2 - the city sleeps, but somewhere beyond its dream there is something more - a hidden life. And here - we have Paris, with its rooftops covered in snow, fog and clouds as the life sleeps, but still exists and waits for its discovery. So you go for an expedition and simply can't turn around from the monitor. 10/10.
In this level it is mostly everything except the gameplay that attracted me. It is non-linear, but we find what we already know: pushables, rollingballs, firetraps, spikes etc. Some timed runs, not very challenging. Technical parts are of average difficulty. However, I noticed two special thing: one is the storyline that moves us smoothly from Paris to the lost castle in nowhere. But it isn't as important as the second one: gameplay is constructed mostly WITHOUT BACKTRACKING. There's often one way in and second way out. When one designs gameplay in a common way that everybody already knows, he/she risks that players will feel boredom. In this case, lack of backtracking - difficult to achieve - is precious, because it keeps the action going. When one uses known ways of making puzzles and still CAN attract people - it means a builder made a good level. 8/10.
Objects are fine. But secrets are obvious and typical. I don't know why are all these things in common scoring category - but they are, so in this level badly done secrets are balanced by the enemies, that are just great - so 7 for secrets, 10 for enemies... and 9 for several custom objects in the inventory and pillars that make an impression in certain locations. They are placed very well. All together in this category: 9/10.
OVERALL: Recommended for everyone. Must play for those who like winter, its nostalgia and cloudy sky. Must play for those who would like to improve their visual-spacial perception. IMO: the best custom in July, and I think the castle level has better atmosphere than the best level of "Complex Simplicty 2010". Thierry, if You took part in this contest, I think it could have won the first or second prize. But never mind - like The Golden Mask was released after "The Dagger Of Xian", here came the castle level of "LC and the HG" after "Complex Simplicity 2010". So I'll treat this level as a bonus after "CS2010". One of the best customs so far this year, and maybe one day we'll find it in Hall Of Fame." - DJ Full (17-Jul-2010)
"A First Class Adventure in classical TR style . The author has designed a game which may even compete with the giants in TRLE history in many aspects. As Lara travels on she encounters various beautifully designed locations and areas which will often cause the player to interrupt his duties only to enjoy all there is to be seen , and there's a lot of it about. The gameplay is fluent and very well designed as Lara drifts from challenge to challenge on her way towards victory . Three mighty invulnerable tin soldiers seemed an enemy too big for our little heroine but Lara being a careful girl still finds a way to avoid these warriors ,leaving them behind in their own despair . There is only one single spot in this game where Lara's (and the player's) dexterity is tested to the very limits: the jump sequence in that room with the golden blocks. It has taken me quite a few (to be honest: almost innumerable ) attempts to overcome this very tricky challenge but any player in desperation must keep in mind that we all believe we've seen the most of it , so try it one more time , others could do it , why not you ? Cameras were used almost to perfection as in a real movie . I loved playing this excellent game which yet only lacks one thing : A first class stamp to send this truly outstanding package towards the hall of fame . I am almost sure I shall not remain the only reviewer who will make his way up to the nearest post office for that. Merci Beaucoup , Thierry !" - Ruben (17-Jul-2010)
"Three excellent levels. The first is a meticulously crafted Paris under snow. Scenic, with a central office building and a large church or cathedral providing action. Snipers on top of buildings leave keys to assist Lara. There was one T-junction where if Lara swims to the right, she eventually reaches a deadend, but if Lara realizes the right direction is left she saves some minutes. There are rotating lasers to jump, and later four flame-trapped switches in the church are challenging. Lara reaches an office building, where she activates a temporal transporter (jaded Parisians no doubt assuming this large piece of open-air equipment is just modern art). I thought that the middle level, a medieval castle from nowhere, was the best of the three. I really liked the surreal appearance, and the jumping maneuvers and explorations, as well as the puzzles. There is a magnificently realized area that seems to be the showpiece of the level, but then there are equally great areas later on. Game play gets a bit harder. Maybe the only bad moment was when Lara got one Red Cross, and the big doors needed two of them to open, and there was no way to know where the other puzzle item might be found. Then Lara found on closer inspection that the left cross had already been placed--it's hard to tell--so after all only one Red Cross was needed. The last level is a slightly modified version of "Finding Zorba," well worth a replay. I vaguely sensed changes to lighting and textures, but the major challenges are the same. Players will be familiar with the timed run in the large lava room, or the climb up a flame-emitter pillar, or the timed run over burning platforms. Those who have done these things before may now find them easier. Thankfully, there is a new ending, with Lara going through security traps to finally reach the Holy Grail. She exits with the prize, and the ending fly-by of waiting helicopter, church, and office building, ties everything back to the beginning for a nice sense of completion. I liked the middle level best, but really it is enhanced by the bracketing levels, all three levels working together. Also take time to watch the included title, which is cleverly done. It follows the original title in all its traveling camera movements, rooms echoing the originals, but everything is new. Tomb Raider fans are blessed to have such levels to play, and much thanks to the author for this beautiful work." - dmdibl (15-Jul-2010)