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Level: Egyptian Valley back home search
Author(s): Osvaldo
total rating:6.02 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
DJ Full 5 5 8 5
Gerty 6 7 6 6
Jay 7 7 7 6
JesseG 6 7 6 6
Jose 5 7 6 7
Leeth 3 3 4 3
manarch2 7 7 6 6
Phil 7 8 7 8
Rambo 8 7 7 6
Ryan 6 7 6 6
Zhyttya 4 4 4 6
category averages
(11 reviews)
5.82 6.27 6.09 5.91

Reviewer's comments

"There were times during this enormous five-level set where I wondered if it was ever going to come to an end. And therein lies its weakness: it is simply far too long for its own good. The basic structure of all five levels can be summed up as exploring huge, samey mazelike areas or empty rooms for a couple of items or switches and then backtracking across trying to locate whatever had changed throughout the level. The last level (The Labyrinth, pretty self-explanatory) took this concept to new heights of tedium, with large mazes of all shapes and sizes to run through, plus a huge main room that has to be explored painstakingly from different angles. I wouldn't normally mind this latter aspect, but the boring backtracking nature in this level just spoilt it for me. In terms of looks, it's rather uneven. There are attractive rooms with creative lighting often succeded by large empty rooms with wallpaper texturing and boring lighting. Camera clues are almost nonexistent, which is why I shamelessly used the walkthrough to bring it to an end in just short of six hours. A real shame because there are some good ideas here: the 13 secrets that often require preparation beforehand, the tense enemy confrontations (although the 20 or so ninja ambush in the first level was badly executed) and the timed runs are very enjoyable and well thought out. But did it have to be buried in so much tedium?" - Ryan (11-Jun-2018)

"AgentXP once asked if neon lights would improve lighting, and this game answers "not without any ambient dispersion" - though I admit the bright outside bits are less tiring. It's also hard not to admire scenery crafting, setting up the logic, color effects, music, flybys and entirely wiped out technical flaws, but it's all vanitas vanitatum if this immense effort and knowledge is utilized to miss all the points - insufficient hints, unimportant enemies, tons of backtracking, no feeling of any storyline progression, lack of goal whatsoever - playing one such level ages me more than a pack of cigarettes, and here we have five. Not that I smoke but I feel like if I did. Especially for secret hunters it's the worst design possible: after 30 minutes I read "pull the lever back up", but I can't return so I repeat for another 30 minutes - wasn't this issue also in the sequel of this one? After next 30 minutes and "DO NOT step on any of the scarab tiles", heck 30 minutes go again. I tried to predict what to omit to avoid ruining the game for me, but after the hintless "Down Down Down Up will open a Secret for later" I had the walkthru constantly open and never regained enough courage to close it since I knew it's a matter of time until I miss a thing I wasn't warned about - why do you prompt me to commit irreversible mistakes so the walkthru isn't just advised but inevitable? The labyrinth parts are more cancerous and hard to orientate in than smog over Warsaw - reference point shortage is torment even with wonderful maps taken from Fexinspect because of Gerty & Dutchy's self-respect. A lot of repassaging occurs, including a triple dark crawl one raising block would have sorted out, a backtrack through multiple levels of rocky cave, or retracing steps to sequence switches unlocking far destinations - but somehow elsewhere the builder could use a teleporter, so it's not lack of care but evil intention... in another place, just in case if you memorize the maze layout too fast, you get darts, with poison bug fixed to slow you down - it's just player abuse and time draining with cunning and cruelty on highest level I can only compare to Cain's levels, but at least in those you were aware of signing a death warrant, you expected the worst and here professional execution tricks you into trusting the builder, what you absolutely shouldn't do... and curse that boulder trap, how am I supposed to know the trigger tiles are delayed? SUMMARY: I swear one more of these and I will lose my sanity. This game is the reason why Trump is cutting off the Mexicans and if they redo this design again I will personally help him shape the bricks - wall done guys, but let's curve it into a maze for you to walk in order to cross the border, for as long as this perfectly disguised crap was dragging - and I should betatest Greywolf but it didn't want to let me out for three days. Did God give you skills as a tool to punish people for their sins? Did I really deserve? If I did, would a fair build make any sense? Damn, it's one of these works which make me question everything from basic particles way up to cat transcendence." - DJ Full (11-Feb-2017)

"This was a very....very long run. You know that feeling when you just want a game to end...because you don't want to be beat over by frustration. Well i had that feeling, even since i found out that there was more levels than just 1. If this game was just level 1, my scores wouldn't be so low, the fact that the author prolonged this monotonous game was not fun. Yes some puzzles are really good, yes i loved some ideas used, and yes it can be fun some times, but it's too much backtracking, too big levels, too many doors to open and some HUGE labyrinths areas. I wouldn't have finished this level if it wasn't for the walkthrough, which was lovely written and super easy to understand where to go. If there was a topic to evaluate the walkthrough it would be a 10. It's been a long time since i started this game, so i don't really remember any details that might had been featured in this review. To conclude, for me this was a terrible experience. I really think the author should keep his ideas but improve on the level design." - Zhyttya (27-Jul-2016)

"A well thought, with a great structure and simply amazing... walk-through! If it wasn't for him i would be completely lost in all the things this mess of a level has. It has great ideas with GREAT platforming but it is a bit to much, ambitious but rubbishy. Some of them were SO LONG that kinda defeat the purpose of a challenging platforming. And then we have the "open world" idea but with absolute no guidance at all! When you catch something you are completely clueless on where to go next, so you just have to explore the emptiness of this level. Another thing is the trial and error puzzles with switches or vases.. That's not challenging, that's just tedious. I can't deny the fact that everything is a great idea, but the execution was so bad that the fun factor was nearly zero. Not really recommended, and i really have to thank for the awesome walk-through" - Leeth (27-Jul-2016)

"This builder shows that he does know how the editor works as well as can change a WAD. He made a huge level set and it could be fun to go through them but for the mazes, yes plural. Not that I hate mazes so much but in here there is not much to do than run around like a headless chicken en hope you find what you need to find. One builder once told me, mazes are for lazy builders and I can only agree with him. Textures could use attention; lighting was somewhat bright in places and totally absent in one maze (luckily enough flares are provided, so that is OK). One could use more camera work to see what happened. Secrets are not too obvious so if you want them, you really have to look for them. I also know that getting great gameplay is not something automatic but something you have to work on so keep at it, as this was not a bad attempt for the first time around." - Gerty (14-May-2015)

"When I downloaded and started playing this massive game soon after its release, the crude Egyptian surroundings, the wide-open spaces and the relative lack of camera clues made me feel that this must be the work of a bumbling neophyte. I became stuck quite early on and laid the game aside until Dutchy came to the rescue with his well-written and thoroughly documented walkthrough. I then resumed play, and nearly a month and nine net gaming hours later any thoughts that this is a typical beginner's debut effort have been driven from my mind. However, although an enormous amount of forethought has obviously gone into this interlocking five- level marathon, I can't say that I found it fun to play. Some of the tasks are so difficult, and the backtracking so intense (particularly in the last level) that I made free use of every cheating tool known to man just so I could make it through until the end. (And when even that didn't work, I used a couple of the savegames provided by Dutchy.) The builder must surely be disappointed in the reviews to date, because this game shows that he has a firm grasp of the level editor. However, he does not appear to have crafted the gameplay from a player's perspective, and I'm confident that this explains the general negative tone of the reviews. He may have been better advised to test the waters by releasing a more modest level or two first, before attempting such a mammoth project, but that's just my opinion. I hope he continues to build, taking to heart what he has hopefully learned by the reaction to his maiden effort." - Phil (03-Apr-2015)

"Now I can explain myself why three months after the release only four players have reviewed this adventure. Once you finish the loooong first level with all that continuous and unnecessary backtracking, the very tight timed swim, etc. sure that you'll think twice before continue playing. Anyway there are also innovative ideas and always a classic style in the tasks, rude architecture and texturization, the entire game should need a lot of extra cameras when pulling switches; and more... And when Dutchy offers a lot of savegames (I had to use several) it means that it's not a good adventure. If the author wants his levels be played in the future, he should think about all this: no-backtracking, no-very difficult tasks, no-tight timed runs, more helping cameras, no-nasty mazes, more puzzles, no-excessive switches. But it's only my own opinion, of course, all this should be what I'd change." - Jose (19-Mar-2015)

"Gameplay & Puzzles: Whyever, I enjoyed this game very much, it's large, confusing (cameras are missing) and has some bad mazes but the rooms are nicely put together and there are some immersive tasks, good traps and platforming parts and some puzzles are really great. Enemies, Objects & Secrets: The placement of the otherwise boring enemies (ninjas etc. from TR4) is excellent. Objects are nicely used for decoration but there's nothing great to say about them as they are also from TR4. The secrets are very well hidden though. Atmosphere, Sound & Cameras: The builder created some nice large areas with good architecture, some are boxy, it's true, but the views are sometimes spectacular. It's not very great but has a few surprises, sounds are okay, cameras are often missing. Lighting & Textures: They are sometimes okay but there is not much work done here, very wallpapered look and flat lighting... Total: 7/10, confusing and a bit careless but in a way quite enjoyable." - Rambo (14-Feb-2015)

"I rather like playing as Masurao from time to time - it's the tail, I find it quite irresistible. Well, where to start? This game does at times seem interminable, with its frequent mazes and backtracking, but there are undoubtedly some interesting puzzles and traps along the way - some of them quite challenging. Enemies are fairly routine ninjas, crocs, scorpions and mummies, but the ninjas really do gang up on you from time to time. Weaponry and medipacks are pretty generously supplied though. The scenery, for the most part, is fairly bland and I think the builder has concentrated more on the gameplay, which can be occasionally rambling and confusing. I missed playing this level when it first came out as I got sidetracked by the Advent levels and then forgot about it, for which I'm quite glad as I freely admit I needed frequent dips into the walkthrough to figure out where I was going! With assistance, overall I enjoyed the experience, but whether I'd have had the patience to slog all the way through unaided I really can't say." - Jay (29-Jan-2015)

"This is actually a true adventure if you can get used to the very complex building style that might drive you into madness at times. For me most things in this level were good to excellent - the gameplay always feels very classic but there are lots of unique ideas the builder came up with in this game that it seldom feels repetitive. With some excessive platforming sequences that are quite fun and a few tough timed runs here and there this game always manages to be enjoyable despite all levels being very huge and there are large spaces to cover (and quite a few missing camera hints as well and mostly only very vague hints given). The main downside are of course the mazes, which never got too annoying until in the fifth level which had about half a dozen of mazes of all kinds that were a plain ordeal to work through. This decreased my enjoyment quite a bit, but once this is done, the very huge area that you spend the rest of the time in was a fun and more worthy for the last level (together with the fire challenge in a previous level where the actual end is). The choice of enemies is a bit boring (mostly ninjas and some scorpions and you don't even get time to use all the ammo you find), but the placement is more than effective at times, resulting in quite interesting fight scenes (like the about 15 enemies arriving in one area subsequently). The secrets were all very well hidden, sometimes really obscure (the two with the lever combinations) but just as in the regular gameplay it's most of the times a fair task to find all of those. Lookwise, there is a large space for improvement; while some areas seem to be mostly created around the gameplay, some areas are unnecessarily large with many dead end passages and there's not really much to do in here. Architecture also suffers from the strange mix between firstly fairly detailed and natural, secondly very boxy and plain in other parts with only few decorative objects. The texturing is often squeezed on non-squaric tiles and sometimes heavily wallpapered, lighting is sometimes very bland, but nevertheless there are quite decent looking areas, the choice of textures is always good and there are a few nice, if a bit unrealistic, lighting effects. Overall, there is a lot potential visible, but I sincerely hope the builder is able to refine his skills a bit more regarding the visuals and maybe place his gameplay ideas in at least a bit more compact maps with more fluent progression. And one last thing - please - no more mazes!!!" - manarch2 (11-Jan-2015)

"If I were to describe this adventure in one word it would be: mazes. There were five levels in this adventure and every one of them has a maze in it, and the last level has four mazes: one normal maze, one maze with one-way doors, one maze with three levels, and one pitch-black maze. That makes 8 mazes total, unless I am forgetting some. It is certainly a great way to kill time, but I would rather that an adventure's gameplay consist of more sustenance than running around aimlessly for a majority of the time. I did enjoy some of the other things offered though, like the trap sequences and pushable block puzzles, but it is not for the faint of heart: one trap involves surviving in a room filled with spiked balls rolling back and forth forever for around 30 seconds until the exit opens. Texturing is only good in some smaller interior places. In large chambers or outdoor areas, it becomes very wallpapered, not to mention all of the mazes as well. Lighting follows the same pattern, so it is quite flat in the outdoor areas, mazes and large chambers. Some fly-by cameras are used which is good, but there is a serious lack of normal camera cues to show the player which of the many doors in an area has been opened due to a switch or key. Combat is also a mixed bag, it is a good amount sometimes, but some areas (especially the first level) have way too many enemies appear at once, sometimes over a dozen - thank goodness for that secret grenade launcher! Overall it is a difficult adventure that I would only recommend to very patient raiders. I found 6 secrets and finished in 6 hours and 25 minutes." - SSJ6Wolf (28-Dec-2014)
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