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Level: The Quest for the Seraph 1 - Marine Research Base back home search
Author(s): Leandro Dubost
total rating:7.35 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
CC 8 8 8 8
Ceamonks890 5 6 6 6
Daniel 9 9 9 8
Dimpfelmoser 6 6 7 8
eRIC 8 8 8 8
Feder 5 6 7 6
Gerty 6 7 7 8
Jay 6 7 8 8
Jose 1 5 5 8
Kristina 7 7 7 7
MacRaider 6 7 7 8
Magnus 6 6 6 7
MichaelP 8 8 8 8
Monika 8 8 8 8
Nomad 6 6 8 7
Orbit Dream 6 9 9 8
Phil 7 7 7 8
RaiderGirl 9 9 9 9
Ryan 6 7 7 8
Sash 8 10 9 9
Treeble 8 9 9 9
category averages
(21 reviews)
6.62 7.38 7.57 7.81

Reviewer's comments

"Unfortunately, the first part of this level series didn't end on the best impression for me(with missing trancession animations for doors and switches that Lara interacts with, tedious enemy encounters and backtracking, unclear objectives, a ton of empty rooms and an overwhelming amount of monotony throughout). Texturing and general ambiance is OK however. Here's to hoping future parts have aged better than this one has." - Ceamonks890 (26-Apr-2019)

"This adventure didn't start well for me. First I missed the chip on the monk's body (nice detail, but poorly hinted) and I was unable to go back due to some collision problem with the pipes. Then, in one of the typical issues I've encounter on many of the oldest levels, the player is forced to fight an entire squad of SAS soldiers with nothing but the pistols. Aside from that, the overall design is mostly OK, with some noticeable lack of lighting in some areas. Gameplay isn't the highlight of this level, unless you're willing to endure large amounts of pointless backtracking. I've played this level out of pure nostalgia, but I came out less than satisfied frankly. Nevertheless, we'll see what the other levels have to offer." - Feder (08-Dec-2018)

"This is quite a pleasing setting in the style of TR2 and the background audio and music choices did bring those memories rushing back and I liked the end sequence with Lara getting picked up by helicopter. Unfortunately the gameplay wasn't at all to my liking. It's definitely a shooter, with wave upon wave of guards and dogs descending upon Lara who is scarcely armed, alongside far too much tedious backtracking, and overall it became more of an exercise in perseverance than anything else. I know others like this kind of gameplay, but I'm not among them. Hopefully the next level in the series is a bit more enjoyable." - Ryan (28-Nov-2018)

"This was a level that was more put together than some of the author's other levels like tomb raider is not enough or return to venice. A good way to start the series. Lara is in search of the seraph in a familiar looking diving area setting. It looks like an offshore base as well particualary with the good looking drilling hole so good point there. Gameplay is not bad but there are long and boring backtrackings which hurt it, especially in the underwater maze-like area where you must return two times and go back. Some minor issues are no animations for pulling switches, and at the last area a glitch happens and the hole you climb out of disappears. Couldn't figure out what the floppy disc does or how you open the doors with the prisoner and a gun in them. If you like these kinds of levels go for it." - Nomad (23-Apr-2017)

"The builder has done a nice job of recreating a TR2 feel in this, the first part of a series. It's very much a shooter and the only real challenge comes from trying not to run out of medipacks with all the guards, dogs and sentry guns around. The gameplay otherwise is fairly straightforward. I did like the underwater area with its access to different parts of a maze, but there is a tedious amount of backtracking that rather slowed the action down. I though the end sequence with the helicopter very effective, but confess I was glad to see it and am rather hoping for a more enjoyable outing in part 2 - Copacabana Palace. Yes, that does sound much more me." - Jay (15-Jul-2016)

"Again I can't understand the very high ratings for the gameplay in an old level. My experience: I missed the first card (I couldn't see it under the monk) and after a lot of tasks and a lot of exploring, I had to take a look on the walkthrough and I saw what I missed; the problem was that I couldn't go back to the room where the monk was 'cause the nasty pipes in the crawlspace; conclusion: I had to start the level from the very beggining wasting a lot of time. Later the gameplay was very very tedious and bored; going to a room to pick up a card, go back to a very distant room to use that card and get another card only to go back to the previous distant room to use the card and find another card to use in the previous distant room, and so on... Evenmore, I had to deal with the nasty sentry gun always shooted and catching fire many times. One of the worst gameplays I saw in all my life, so I was generous giving a "1" in that section. Also I got bored too by shooting hundreds of enemies in all rooms, and the uzi ammo were not enought to help in that task. The harpoon gun was unuseful (it never worked in my game) so, why all that harpoons to pick up? Where are the cameras? I only could see a single camera to show me what I was doing when placing a card, for the remaining times I had to figure out what I was triggering (usually in distant places). The only "ok" in this level were the musics and the texturization. Of course, not worth to play." - Jose (09-Dec-2015)

"This young builder was remarkably prolific during the early years of the level editor. His ratings were not outstanding, but his levels got consistently good scores. In all these years I had played only one of his levels, the last one, and that was for the purpose of writing a walkthrough. Treeble has contributed a complete walkthrough of his own for this five-part series, all segments of which received decent scores, so I decided to give it a whirl. This first part is a fairly typical base level, nothing particularly noteworthy, competent but somehow less polished than the other older levels I've recently played and reviewed. There's also a bit of annoying backtracking where you find a card, go back to use it, etc. There's a harpoon that works out of water, but not underwater. Go figure. The animation at the buttons and switches was incorrect, but the job got done. On to the next level in the series." - Phil (03-Aug-2012)

"'Quest for the Seraph' is Leandro's homage to TR2, and the adventure starts with a level loosely based on the 'Offshore Rig' location. This level does a reasonable job of capturing the feel of the location, although the gameplay is fairly straightforward and by no means matches the original. I did like the wire-fence maze which although not difficult was a little different. There is quite a lot of swimming but as it was appropriate I didn't mind it at all. You meet the usual suspects such as sharks and armed guards on your search for the Seraph, and have to find your way through the base to escape at the end in a helicopter, which at the time this was made was a very nice touch. The only real issue I have with this level is the last room, which is packed with armed guards and difficult to get through without running out of medipacks unless you've been very careful with them!" - MacRaider (05-Nov-2005)

"Lara barefooted and with her swim suit is wandering around a ship-base looking for the Seraph. In her quest she will have to find key cards and a floppy disc to access the necessary areas that will lead her to helicopter. Many SAS guards and sharks are the enemies with a nice surprise the harpoon gun which unfortunately doesn't work underwater. There is a problem with the animations when Lara is pushing switches lets say she is trying to because she freezes with her hands down and the switches pull themselves. An interesting game and a good start of a series with the Seraph being the main quest item." - Kristina (29-Aug-2003)

"The weather is really hot so instead of sweltering away outdoors I was rather glad I stayed indoors and did my time away with this series. Starting in a base of sorts you have to find the way through it. A lot of stairs and swims to get coloured cards to open yet another door. The swimming was a bit too much for my taste as you have to get from one hole to another and end up a bit further in the same room. And you have to do this several times as there is a red and a yellow card you need to find. Enemies are aplenty so be careful with your medipacks. The animation was wrong at least it was in my game though. The best was that helicopter that flew in. 14-07-2003" - Gerty (20-Jul-2003)

"Yes! I love TR2 and this level is very like the offshore rig/living quarters levels from the original game even though at one time it looks like you're on a ship outside with davitts on a 'deck'! Leandro says this is a Brazilian marine research base on the coast of Rio de Janeiro how exciting. A LOT of stairs huge almost empty rooms and a confusing swimming setup where you have to swim through large tunnels and climb out of holes to use different coloured cards. One unfortunate monk has been unceremoniously dumped at the end of one stairs poor guy but you can search monks for pick-ups. Enemies are SAS and surprise surprise sharks. Good old fashioned non-tomb raiding. Lara finds the seraph in a very odd place considering its importance. It's been stolen from Barkhang and the monks have tried and failed to get it back. All the same gameplay is straight forward and the level holds your attention 'til the great ending when the helicopter comes in to land on the deck to rescue you and take you off to the Copacabana Palace." - CC (01-Jun-2003)

"When I tried this the first time it was actually in the top 50 and back then I couldn't understand why cause the gameplay revolves mainly around picking up magnetic cards and using them at the other end of the base. In between you have to battle large amounts of SAS guards which used to be exiting in the good old days but has become a bit of an ordeal when you know how to do it. The missing animation and the end of the world has been already mentioned but what I found more of a drawback was the plain and charmless interior of this base. Endless staircases and long swims don't really do much to push the story forward. On the upside the helicopter at the end is truly magnificent the harpoon is a nice touch and avoiding the hammerhead sharks is always thrilling but still it's not my favourite part of the series." - Dimpfelmoser (15-Oct-2002)

"There was a bit too much 'to-ing and fro-ing' and that final water tunnel was damn hard to navigate but I loved this level in all other respects. It was a real 'boys own adventure' of a game complete with dastardly guard attacks great TR2 'Oil Rig' atmosphere amusing use of objects (including hammerheads) a barefooted Lara (where are her toes or was she wearing stockings?) doors that magically opened (I don't care whether that was a bug) and the helicopter at the end. Great stuff!" - Orbit Dream (24-Sep-2002)

"This level is so wonderfully reminiscent of the Offshore Rig level from TR2 that it could have been slipped in after it without anybody noticing. Set in a marine research base that I assume is located somewhere at sea the aim is to locate an artifact and find your way to the helipad where you need to wait for a chopper to rescue you. There are so many great new things about this that I will just name some of them there's the inclusion of the hammerhead shark or should I say sharks with a couple of hair raising moments as you need to swim through a pack of them and then back again at one stage as well as a couple somewhere else there is also the use of new pick ups and weapons such as a floppy disc coloured cards a mechanical chip retextured pistols and a harpoon gun that unfortunately doesn't work underwater although it sure works a treat on land but the most awesome thing is when you eventually reach the end an actual helicopter flies in and hovers above Lara which just blew me away. There's always a price to pay when you are given such new and fantastic elements though it isn't a bad price to pay just a deadly one and that is the enemies don't come one at a time they come in packs which takes a toll on your health and this was mainly evident in the final large room when I was ambushed by about 7 men with not much health left having used 10 medipacks until this point and somehow after a lot of reloading and frantic moves shooting blindly I finally made it with no health left bar an absolute minute amount so all I can say is be cautious but have a lot of fun when you play this fantastic level. And the secret's out Lara doesn't have any toes!" - Sash (21-Jun-2002)

"This is a must play level as it is unique in a few aspects. Lara is wearing her swimsuit and runs around barefoot the harpoon gun (works outside of the water only but is still fun) many nicely placed objects hammerhead sharks (that scene where you meet the pack in the dark sea is hilarious) and of course the greatest of it all - the helicopter that comes to pick you up at the end which for me was after about an hour of fun gameplay. So why am I downrating it a bit: Well for my taste there were just a few too many SAS (25 or so) even though the larger battles were fun and quite a few of those minor but annoying glitches (doors jumping aside switch animations not working) and I found the textures nice but a little repetitive and some of the rooms just a little empty. But trust me you have to make your way through this one for the helicopter at the end!" - Michael (21-Jun-2002)

"This is a must play for the TR2 lovers! It's set in a base in the coast of Brazil and it is very clear that it was highly based on TR2. Weapons keys and the textures come from the 'wet' levels of TR2. Lara Croft is using a new version of the wetsuit but is just as sexy as the original. Her quest is the Seraph an artifact that was in Barkhang Monastry (in TR2) but was stolen by Fiama Nera who is controlling the base right now. Though I wasn't able to get the sounds file I really lived this experience! So take 40 minutes of your life to play this awesome adventure!" - Treeble (21-Jun-2002)

"Reminding me of the ocean levels from Tomb Raider II I absolutely fell in love with this level! It was great to see Lara in her sexy diving suit again the textures were used perfectly and looked as good as in the original levels plus there are some great new weapons. They will be needed though as there are a few times you will find yourself surrounded by gun toting soldiers. Some great camera angles are used in these battles making them even more exciting. The objects are some of those used in TR II and include a few of the colored key cards. Very clever and well-done level especially the end where you get outside with the seraph and find a helicopter waiting to whisk you away it even lands right in front of you! Don't forget to search the monks in your travels and stay clear of the machine guns and sharks and you'll do fine." - RaiderGirl (21-Jun-2002)

"I didn't really like this level. There are a lot of enemies and you often have to fight several of them at the same time (it wouldn't be very hard to kill them otherwise but still). What I hated the most about this level was the design. The base doesn't seem real at all. You have to jump through lamps to reach buttons and keycards swim through (yes through) an underwater fan to reach a room with no other entrance and much more. The buttons and levers don't have any animations (at least they didn't for me) and Lara just stands there while the button or lever pushes itself. They are also often placed in very stupid places. The texturing is nice though. I think this level was considered better when it was new because of the new objects but today when new objects aren't anything special... well it's worth playing but there are better levels out there." - Magnus (21-Jun-2002)

"It's a must have for everyone who played TR2 and loved Offshore Rig or Diving Area. With some objects of both levels the author created really nice puzzles and some very hard areas with a lot of SAS guards. The diving area full of sharks is a nice idea. The atmosphere of this level is great too. I loved to play this level and I'm waiting for the next level of the series (if the author is really creating one! I hope yes!)... Really good level worth a 5 MB download (plus 7 MB because of the soundtrack.)" - Daniel (21-Jun-2002)

"Lara is looking for and finding a Seraph in this level. She has to fight with SAS often coming in groups and on top of it some dogs too. There are not too many medi-packs in this game. So watch your health. The Uzi comes later and the harpoon is better kept for the last showdown with 6 or 7 SAS. I didn't even have time to count them while trying to stay alive. For my taste there are too many SAS in this level. There are also machine gun turrets you have to get by. In the underwater world are sharks. One time you can kill them the other time you just outswim them. Don't forget to search the dead monks. To go on you have to find Card Keys in different colours. The switch animation doesn't work. You just see that something happened to the switch. The highlight of the game is when in the end the helicopter lands to get Lara off." - Monika (21-Jun-2002)

"In a convincing marine base Lara walking barefoot has to find the seraph and escape in helicopter. On her way for 45 minutes many cards to find and many SAS to kill. Some sharks in sewers you can't kill them with the harpoons when swimming as the harpoon-launcher is in fact the crossbow. Texturing and lighting are good and no hard puzzles to solve but this level can't be compared to The U-boat sarcophagus the other marine base level. Well worth a download though if you like this kind of mission." - eRIC (21-Jun-2002)
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