Level: The Desert of Despair back home search
Author(s): Alex Chap
total rating:6.83 Gameplay &
Objects &
Sound &
Lighting &
DJ Full 6 7 8 7
Gerty 7 8 6 7
Jay 8 8 8 7
Jose 3 7 7 7
Larabiker301 7 7 7 6
manarch2 5 6 7 6
MegaGamer 9 9 9 8
Mikki 6 6 5 5
Orbit Dream 9 8 8 9
Phil 8 9 8 8
Quentin 7 8 7 6
Ryan 7 7 7 8
Zentralfriedhof 3 3 3 3
category averages
(13 reviews)
6.54 7.15 6.92 6.69

Reviewer's comments

"This is definitely one of this builder's best efforts to date, and for the sheer creativity it offers it definitely deserves a playthrough. A few of the other reviewers mentioned sections that were quite buggy, but the only thing out of the ordinary I encountered was that the block underneath one of the Materials in the Mysterious Caves level never raised when I tried using the walkthrough's method, so I missed a secret. Luckily it only turned out to be the binoculars and I managed to finish just fine. Anyway, back to reviewing the actual level. There are some undoubted shooter elements, but it's much more than that. The range of tasks on offer are quite varied and impressive, including some fun push puzzles, timed runs, shootouts (that are not unfair or overwhelming in any way due to the plentiful supplies you'll find) and some interesting gymnastic exercises, while the settings are competent and not unattractive. What could maybe have worked a little better were the triggers, as it can be quite difficult and annoying to get the necessary enemies and pickups to appear. The darkness in the Mysterious Caves level was also a bit irritating, but not insurmountable. Definitely worth giving it a go, I think." - Ryan (17-May-2019)

"If you endure the flare bug in the cave level you may enjoy many bits of this one, remarkable for sound, secrets, enemy combos and even atmosphere despite of many graphic errors. I advise to get all ammo in the beginning and skip it at night village revisit so it doesn't drag. SUMMARY: Impolished potential is both inviting and warning so save often and try." - DJ Full (24-Feb-2017)

"No idea how this author set up the triggers in this levels, but in my opinion they're not well placed. I had to read the walkthrough a lot of times, and I think this is not a good indication of what a good level can be. If you go here you can trigger enemies who can drop a key you need, but if you go in another direction you're lost and unnecessarily wasting your time. The caves area was excessively dark, with few flares, but the environments are not so bad. Sorry but after several hours of confusing gameplay I can't recommend this adventure." - Jose (11-Oct-2014)

"Had to use the walky as the level was pitch dark at my end at a certain point and not enough flares and I got lost way too many times to make this enjoyable for me. Also no binoculars and the reason for this is the Flare Bug? Come on, you better improve the lighting (no need for so many wall torches) and anti trigger the wall torches at a certain time. For me this level was sort of buggy as I found that following the walkthrough to the letter, some triggers didn't work and had to do the sequence in a different order. Not nice was the trigger in that small body of water as I filled the skin in the other pond. I am not a fan of the 2D gameplay but that is OK in this one (still stuck in Alex' previous, due to a bug?? Can't be sure as it has been many month ago). I have to say that there is humour and creativity in here, I do like that. Unfortunately that doesn't mean that the gameplay is really enjoyable. At a certain point this is more of a shooter than anything else, no matter how much ammo you find." - Gerty (02-Oct-2014)

"Having explored this multi-level game quite thoroughly for the purpose of writing a walkthrough, I believe it's a bit underrated. The concept is quite compelling. You start off in a hub level with a considerable amount of gameplay, then you go off in search of three keys in three different levels that can be played in any desired order. Once you've done that, you come back to the hub level for a boss fight in a nighttime setting before leaving the Desert of Despair in a raft. Although the textures aren't as sophisticated as in other levels we've seen, and although the adventure in the wide-open spaces of the desert is a bit plain, everything is for the most part brightly lighted. You also get quite a bit of weaponry along the way, and the number of enemies you encounter seems to increase as you progress further into the game. In all, I spent well over two hours here, and this is a raid that I can wholeheartedly recommend." - Phil (22-Aug-2014)

"This is far and away the best release from 'Chap Industries' to date (July 2014).A multi-level set with a fun storyline (although the game doesn't necessarily carry it too well)and filled with creative ideas at practically every step.The structure of the gameplay is interesting - anyone stating that this is a 'Shooter' is simplifying the adventure greatly.Yes,there is killing aplenty,but (aside from the giant scorpions)it's never particularly challenging(you collect oodles of ammo and artillery along the way);but none of the action obscures the fact that there is a vast array of different tasks and challenges which need to be negotiated.Not all of these work quite the way they should (and there are moments of obscurity);but there is always something to keep you occupied,over a wide variety of playing areas and themes.From pushable puzzles to timed runs;interesting climbs to various side quests - the entertainment value rarely falters. Enemies are copious.There is a good use of objects;atmosphere works well most of the time;cameras are used creatively;while lighting and texturing is adeptly handled. The scope of the desert areas is a little too big for its own good;and there is a degree of confusion about what to shoot,at which particular stage of the game - but this does little to diminish the overall experience.There is also the usual trademark humour of this builder (intentional or not,I thought the Ninja's doing a little dance in the Disco Hall was hilarious).This adventure is the most conventional of Alex' levels,(in a very liberal sense of the term);and is probably all the better for it." - Orbit Dream (05-Jul-2014)

"I had an awesome time playing this adventure. Of course, there were some discrepancies so I'll just get those right out of the way. First, gamplaywise, everything was okay, and I have nothing much to complain about except that there wasn't really much to do as the concept was a bit consistent throughout all the levels. It was basically find an area, solve some rather easy puzzle, dodge a trap or two, and grab a key. Although, you are really pulled into this adventure in the beginning, but by the end, you are really exhausted so; I do praise the author for managing to grab hold of the audience's attention. And they're some memorable moments in this game like the wraith escape and the escape from the crumbling caves. The enemies were well displaced and I certainly favored that Ninja ambush sequence in one of the separate levels. Objects were mostly of the coastal wad but they added to the overall eastern vibe so I didn't take any points off. The atmosphere for the most part, was okay. Some areas needed a bit more work like the outside areas (a lot of end of the world areas and such) and areas of the caves that could have been touched up a little more, but overall, I was pleased. Nothing about the sounds, but the cameras....oh the cameras. I liked them....then I didn't like them. Some were too much into the way of me having a good time platforming that I killed Lara way too many times than I should have. It's hard to see what I'm doing from 10 feet away. But the flybys were alright. Texturing definitely could use some work but I think the author already stated something about some texturing thing in their readme. Lighting was...dark. Their were points where I had to constantly light a flare and that wouldn't be bad of the fact that the author had forgotten to untrigger a few flames. I think if you trigger too many flames in a level, flares will refuse to activate until thrown. There were definitely areas with lighting I did like, like in the large sand areas. The orange and red should really have been more emphasized throughout that entire level. But, I did like the theme change from day to night in the last level. Overall, this is an enjoyable level and you are sure to have a swell time here shooting your way though enemy after enemy, solving not-to-complicated puzzles and traps, and looking at all the good scenery. Time 1-2hrs, difficulty easy-medium, secrets (5/12), recommended" - Larabiker301 (03-Jul-2014)

"If you don't normally bother with shooters (and I freely admit they're not my favourite genre), I urge you to take a look at this one because there's so much more going on than mindless mayhem. I actually really enjoyed myself. Pistol ammo is limited, but there's more than enough to pick up throughout the game - not to mention plenty of alternative fire power - and the ninjas aren't ridiculously hard to bump off, so even when they arrive en masse they are still not annoyingly difficult to deal with. The giant scorpions are a somewhat different affair, but I found that shooting them with poison crossbow ammo and staying out of the way until they died was an efficient method. I liked the format of the game, with the main hub area and three separate areas off this, each with a nice variety of actions, so not just a shooter. Something for everyone I would think." - Jay (11-Jun-2014)

"Definately another large step upwards from this talented builder. This time, the "concept level" attributes experienced in the builder's previous games are mostly gone. I really enjoyed the diverse locations which are all fairly nicely constructed, even including a change between day and night and many interesting maps, with mostly interesting and fluent gameplay - firstly some (rather tame) exploration in the hub level, but later on gradually getting better with some interesting platforming up a large rock formation, puzzle solving in the caves and more exploration in another desert area before you finally return to the hub level and enter the disco. But (since a solid foundation in building experience is proved) the builder should work on the fine tuning a bit. I encountered a serious save bug in which several important enemies vanished after a reload, and in the cave level the darkness was overly prevailing which is not really fun combined with the flare bug. In general putting so many triggers after shooting enemies might not be a good decision, because it is a bug generator, but luckily I managed to finally get to the end. The enemies are rather well placed by the way, often introduced with nice cameras and/or musics. The atmosphere is certainly the strongest part of the game, with all settings having their certain, if rather Spartan, charm to them, although they are not perfectly made either. I guess there could've been a more gentle way to avoid those invisible walls and the end of the world, even if the builder did a good job mostly it's too much based on obvious "tricks". While the texturing on closer look does look a lot mirrored and slightly wallpapered, it does its job well enough, and the lighting is often effective, sometimes it suffers from inexplicable shadows and too flat surroundings. Overall this was a fairly enjoyable and - yet again - different offering from this builder and I believe that with a bit of endurance he will eventually bring us something really great in the future. Found all 12 secrets (the system is nicely constructed) in 1:35 hours of raiding. Recommended." - manarch2 (09-Jun-2014)

"Unfortunately, this level has many Bug , compromising the final judgment. We note the commitment of LD but there are still errors of lack of experience. I believe that the LD of this level has good ideas and I think that in the future will achieve great things, unfortunately, for now the final judgment is not enough. There is much to improve both in terms of graphics than all the rest. If there were fewer bug you might enjoy" - Mikki (09-Jun-2014)

"Here, we have another level from Alex Chap. It appears that this level is not getting a lot of attention, probably because it's a shooter level. In my opinion, this level deserves some more attention, because I found myself having a good time playing this level. The gameplay was very intense, especially with all the enemies to make it intense. The desert atmosphere was nice, and areas were well lit. The textures were a little bland, but it didn't really affect the gameplay. I did notice, a couple bugs, like Alex said in a readme, but that didn't really affect me either. Overall, I thought this was a great shooter level. If you have time, give this level a try. You may or may not like it, but I had a good time playing this. I recommend this shooter level. :)" - MegaGamer (08-Jun-2014)

"This level has some interesting and well found ideas for the gameplay, but they are not always fun (at one point, you have to jump with a torch on platforms). I liked the "barter" to get special items. In addition, the objects are many and varied. The different places have different gameplay, in any case, I recommend this shooter. ;)." - Quentin (05-Jun-2014)

"This could have been a really good one. I appreciate the work, but I experienced a lot of bugs as: - Enemies dont't show up, sometimes I had to visit an area a few times to conjure enemies with important things - Blocks don't lower or raise - Triggers don't work - Doors open without action or don't open despite action - Bridge doesn't collapse, sometimes does And there were a lot of invivible walls in every level, which only dissapeared after shooting a special enemy, as far as I understand. There were a few nice and interesting ideas, but the game was almost unplayable with the bugs and some illogical quests. Don't get me wrong and no offense. With a bit more testing, this would be a really good shooter! Thanks and Greetings out there. (Can't write in the forum, forgot Nick and PW, even old EMail address...)" - Zentralfriedhof (04-Jun-2014)
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