Level: Recovering the Scion - Part 1 & 2 back home search
Author(s): levyhgb
total rating:7.92 Gameplay &
Objects &
Sound &
Lighting &
alan 8 8 7 8
Ceamonks890 6 8 7 7
DJ Full 8 9 9 8
Gerty 7 8 7 8
Jay 7 7 7 7
Jose 7 9 7 8
manarch2 8 7 7 6
Nuri 10 10 10 8
Orbit Dream 7 8 6 9
Phil 8 8 8 9
Rambo 8 8 7 6
Ryan 8 8 7 8
Torry 9 10 10 10
Treeble 8 8 9 9
vienna 8 8 7 8
category averages
(15 reviews)
7.80 8.27 7.67 7.93

Reviewer's comments

"I still remember this as one of the best custom games of TR1 engine. I played it once with glidos, then with tombati (unfortunately ati is buggy and the portal at the beginning of level 2 ends it), then I set it for Mawia into dosbox (because she told me she likes pixels) and replayed the entire thing on this occasion - and while I agree this is too drafty compared to the original, none of those times was boring." - DJ Full (29-Jun-2019)

"I didn't feel like investing the tim necessary just to go back and play the first Cairo level over again, seeing as I have just played the single level release, so I just used my savegame from that and continued with the game, retaining my inventory in the process. The builder has done a good job of squeezing every last drop of creativity out of the TR1 engine, and you'll find enough to keep you occupied here for around 2 hours. There's a switch puzzle, loads and loads of traps, plenty of exploration, box puzzles, timed runs and tense and involving enemy battles. The lack of camera clues was a bit irritating, but the environments are well constructed (despite a bit of wallpapering in both levels). Recommended." - Ryan (06-Aug-2018)

"Wonderful just wonderful TR1 three level set that brings back the glory days. Fun raiding with nothing too taxing in the first level of this set but that becomes much more difficult in the levels to follow. One secret had a push block puzzle to complete but again, nothing too hard about it. Level 1 Cairo City an Egypt bases level took just on an hour to complete. Level 2, City of Vilcabamba was much more involved with some decent timed runs and many many switches to find which took an hour 45 minutes to complete. The lastly level 3, Lost valley was a return to that old favourite hunting ground of Natla's Mines. This was even more involved with a fair amount of back tracking and one almost impossible timed run near the end of the level. (Save game available in the relative thread at the forum thanks to Treeble). This one took an hour 15 minutes to complete. Graphics were very good using the glide batch file through dosbox and this is a must play in my opinion." - Torry (04-Apr-2018)

"A nice adventure including 3 levels. The first level was exactly the same as "Recovering the Scion Part 1 - Cairo City", the previous custom level that was published by this author. It was actually a bummer having to play the whole level again after I've downloaded and played the previous one (there could've been a savegame or something for the people, that have experienced that previous custom level). But anyways, I enjoyed playing all 3 levels, although they were tricky and I sometimes didn't know what to do and walked around through the whole levels for several times. It has many secrets and some of them are well hidden, which I like. But something that annoyed me is that some rooms were too dark or some keys were too "invisible" (means they have the exact color as the texture under them, so you can't recognize them well) All in all, I'd say that this adventure is definitely worth to play if you are looking for TR1 custom levels. The length of all 3 levels together will employ you for a while." - Nuri (22-Feb-2018)

"A nice levelset made with the TR1 engine. This one has many areas to explore. Some of them look like levels of the original Tomb Raider game, such as Sanctuary of the Scion, with the great Sphinx. Secrets are well hidden and some of them are tricky or challenging to get. It's an enjoyable raid, recommended." - alan (29-Jan-2017)

"Sorry not my choice to have to force a player doing a level all over again, especially because nothing really changed in there. I am with Jose that there should be a saved game for those who indeed played the first level. Got a bit bored with the back and fro over sometimes-long distances, just to prolong the gameplay in this case. Oh well what is done is done and in hind site it is not a bad level." - Gerty (13-Oct-2016)

"The third level (Mines) was hardest. The silver key on stones is hard to notice. Some puzzles are hard but I liked these still. Graphics are OK. TR1-engine puts a limits on Lara's movements but designer has taken it into account. Enemies are strong so you have to use Uzis or shotgun. I needed walkthrought only few times. Very nice TR1-game, but I needed 32-bit OS (Windows XP on my second hard drive, X64 Windows 7 isn't supported)." - vienna (06-Aug-2016)

"My savegame, despite being done with the earlier release, actually worked so I managed to load up the game right at the final door of the first level, thus keeping my inventory (it wasn't a whole lot to be honest, but hey) and jumping right into the new levels. There are several neat ideas in game here, such as the rotating bridge with the multiple gnashing teeth or the fun quest towards the two puzzle items, very true to TR1 spirit. The main chamber in which we fend off Larson was very nice, part of me wished we had a nice skybox to go with it instead of pitch black. The second, or rather, third level switches environments completely and feels a lot like a remixed version of Natla's Mines. You have to find the three fuses and lots of levers, so there's a lot of running back and forth as you dispatch Natla's goons before you ultimately open the doors to presumed Atlantis - and possibly an upcoming level from the author. There were a few things that I thought were rather unnecessary in these mines. For one, the silver keys are nearly invisible where they're placed, and then there is that very, very narrow underwater space you have to swim through, surely it could have been a click wider. Otherwise, this is a remarkably lenghty but also fully fleshed and impressive pair of levels. 105 minutes, 7 secrets. 01/16" - Treeble (02-Jan-2016)

"The remaining two levels of this adventure are undoubtedly the most ambitious TR1 custom releases,with a scale that is really quite startling.They are also extremely confusing and aggravating.A minimum of camera hints combined with miles of backtracking,criss-crossing the same expanses over and over again don't necessarily add up to enjoyable gameplay - despite the amount of variety in puzzles and challenges on display.Even with the Walkthrough to hand it became something of a confusing mess at times,although the many enemy confrontations kept things exciting.Occasionally buggy (especially the boat sequences);sometimes extremely tricky (particularly the final timed run);but often ambitious and spectacular,this will appeal to those who love exploration in extensive non-linear environments.Graphically,it's almost as good as can be within the primitve limitations of the TR1 engine;and the textures and lighting have been diligently applied.It will certainly keep you occupied for at least two hours,and is an admirable example of what can be achieved with the TR1 Editor in the hands of a dedicated builder." - Orbit Dream (03-Sep-2015)

"Gameplay & Puzzles: This is the first TR1 level I managed to play, never managed to get the others to work. And it's better than I thought. The gameplay is fun with good tasks everywhere and the puzzles are plenty and interesting. There are a few too many pushes, a bit too slow. Enemies, Objects & Secrets: I liked the use of enemies and objects are okay, maybe not enough for decoration. But the secrets are excellent, very tricky to find. Atmosphere, Sound & Cameras: There is some poor architecture but I liked the atmosphere which is very much like in TR1. The sounds are okay but nothing special and the cameras, as far as it is possible, are well done. Lighting & Textures: The textures are rather mediocre in some places, but not badly used. The lighting is absent most of the time but has a few effective uses. Total: 7,25/10, a surprisingly fun old style game." - Rambo (08-Jul-2015)

"Part 1 consisted of one level, Part 2 consists of two levels. Logically, then, if there should be a Part 3 we might see three new levels. However, it borders on narcissism for a builder to release his levels cumulatively and force the player to replay the earlier levels each time. Therefore, if this series should continue, the builder should either not include levels 1 through 3 with Part 3, or he should provide with the download package a savegame at the end of level 3 with all accumulated pickups. All this having been said, I thoroughly enjoyed reliving the TR1 experience provided by this release. I reviewed Part 1 elsewhere after having played it, and if anything the gameplay in Part 2 is even more complex and exhilarating. Playing time for these two levels was about an hour each, and Jose has provided a well-written walkthrough that documents everything. Best of all, no cumbersome installation procedures are required; simply go to the DOSBOX folder after unzipping the download and double click on one of the two batch files. We all cut our teeth on TR1, and it's been years since I played it (although I replayed it several times before the novelty wore off), but I found Recovering the Scion to be as good as or better than the commercial release. That should be reason enough to give it a try. Recommended." - Phil (02-Jun-2015)

"First of all, I can't understand how the author forces the players to replay the first level; I finished with the Scion, so I think the story will continue... If it's so, I hope the author provide a savegame in the next release 'cause I will never replay this three levels again. The architecture and design is clever and the levels are entertaining with variety of tasks and well balanced enemies, but the gameplay in the second level was not so good 'cause there's a lot of backtracking if you (easily) miss something in the sphinx area. The last level was better in that sense, 'cause there is less backtracking and the distances to go back to previous places are shorter. I found enough weapons and ammo to deal with the enemies (good!), and the secrets were not very hard to find. Why the missing names for the keys or the artifacts in the inventory? The cameras are the best of the game, always helping you to go directly to the next task, but unfortunately, even when I had the TR1 disk in the CD reader, I couldn't hear any CD track or music. I found some stretched textures here and there, and also they don't fit very well in big surfaces, but the environments have a good appearance anyway. Even with the backtracking I've enjoyed this couple of levels. Thanks Levy." - Jose (28-May-2015)

"There's nothing more to say about the first level - it hasn't changed from the last release and it's still rather good for a TR 1 offering (30 minutes). The second level is new and I found it to be even better than the first. The gameplay is much more complex than I initially thought and actually offers plenty of varied tasks, from timed runs over very well thought-out block puzzles to trap sequences and much decent platforming. While there are several occasions where the gameplay is a bit confusing (the keys in the dark cave and in the underwater passage are too sneakily hidden), the progression is mostly fluent and entertaining. Unfortunately there are also a few dead ends, such as when you drop into the water too early, and also some unintended shortcuts. The architecture varies from quite sophisticated to plain and boxy, and in the latter parts the texturing also feels very wallpapered. Not much effort is put into the lighting but there are changes to be seen here and there at least so it's not totally flat. The fixed cameras used from time to time are nice as well as a few audio tracks, yet the level is fairly silent overall. Enemies and objects are decently used with quite a few occasions to use the heavier weapons (50 minutes). Quite irritatitingly because of the title, there is also a third level in an Atlantean setting that first reminds strongly on Natla's Mines from TR 1 but it's a totally different level and certainly my favourite one, with a very engaging gameplay that keeps you on your toes with a mass of timed runs, block puzzles and traps that all form a very fluent and entertaining level. There are only few (rather long) backtracks and a few missing cameras but overall the progression is clear and everything is quite fun. The enemies are now all of the human kind but you get enough Uzi ammo to get rid of them easily. The architecture is quite neat sometimes and the room connections are nice but still there are fairly rushed areas and the texturing is wallpapered and badly rotated, so lookwise it's probably not a very good one (40 minutes). This is the longest and one of the most involved TR 1 games that is surely worth a look as it has a bit of everything and especially good gameplay in the last two levels. 120 minutes, 12 very good secrets." - manarch2 (26-May-2015)

"When I saw this was a TR1 level, playable in DOS box, my heart sank and I thought why, just why would anybody make a TR1 level these days? Surprisingly, therefore, I found myself enjoying this. For one thing, the whole DOS box thing has been made much easier to use, with full screen and reasonable quality graphics - that helps a lot. So, without all the usual massive irritation factor I was able to let the nostalgia wash over me and I must confess that I've always loved the beautiful blue and gold TR1 Egyptian textures. Even the clumsy mummified enemies and the grinning panthers are oddly endearing. Obviously, being a genuine TR1 level, Lara's limited moves mean the gameplay is similarly constrained, although on the plus side you do at least know there will be no endless navigating through crawl spaces. Having said that, there are some rather enjoyable timed runs and for a TR1 level there are times when it feels positively sophisticated. I'd say the builder really managed to wring quite a lot out of such an old engine and, if you like TR1, you should definitely have a look at this. Still not sure how I managed to end up with 4 of 3 secrets in part 2 though!" - Jay (26-May-2015)

"Well, well, well... a new TR1 custom levelset after a drought of almost three whole years. And I'll be frank here. I just didn't understand the inclusion of Part 1 within this levelset at all, as a lot of players have had the opportunity to play it for a long time now. And it's not like its an obscure one either, considering the first part of Recovering the Scion was the last TR1 custom level to actually come out on until recently! Which wouldn't be so bad if it had been updated in any way from the originally separate 2012 version, but nope. It's the EXACT SAME level from all those years ago, warts and all. So overall, a poorly thought-out idea on the builder's part that merely comes across as nothing but needless padding to me. And if you want to read my full thoughts on the first level, then go check out my review for the 2012 version. But anyway, onto the actual new content of this levelset via the two new maps included, that raiders will have wanted to download this essentially for, and in all honesty, it's a bit of a step back in some respects(with the only real notable highlight being a more detailed sphinx at the beginning of Level 2, which makes the ones in the main TR1 game look primitive by comparison). Gameplay is reasonably challenging for the most part(even if some of the pushblock puzzles do start to outlast their welcome after a while), level design is decent(even if some rooms look a little uninspired and/or have little purpose for their inclusion), texturing and lighting is done about as well as it can under the engine of choice and finally, the limited enemy and object choices fit the environment as effectively as you'd expect. So in conclusion, an okay follow-up that is let down by some questionable design choices, but is still generally worth a shot for those willing to take the plunge." - Ceamonks890 (25-May-2015)
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