Level: Create a Classic: 20 years of TR - Search for the Sun Seraph back home search
Author(s): kaufi-lc
total rating:9.15 Gameplay &
Objects &
Sound &
Lighting &
Adrian 7 8 8 7
alan 10 10 9 9
Bigfoot 10 10 10 10
DJ Full 9 10 10 9
Gian Carlo 9 9 9 10
Gorty 8 8 9 7
Jay 8 9 10 9
Jorge22 10 10 10 10
Jose 8 10 10 9
KBoaz 10 10 10 10
manarch2 8 9 9 8
Minox 9 9 8 8
MrJavi94 9 9 10 9
Mulf 8 9 9 7
Mytly 8 8 9 8
Orbit Dream 10 10 10 10
PedroTheGamer 10 10 10 10
Phil 10 10 9 8
phms2010 9 9 8 9
Raider99 10 10 9 9
requiemsoul 7 9 9 9
Ryan 9 9 10 10
SeniorBlitz 9 9 9 9
smcandrew 10 9 10 10
The Boo 9 10 9 8
Torry 10 10 10 10
category averages
(26 reviews)
9.00 9.35 9.35 8.92

Reviewer's comments

"I loved everything here, and the work of this author, sinrently, the sound of the TR2 are well placed, with the sound of '' NO '' when the lara says it's not the time to use it? so it's TR2, and TR2 has your idea anyway, everything here is perfect, nothing to comment, enjoy all your free time of the day here .... it took me 1:30 am to finish as the bonus level." - PedroTheGamer (17-Nov-2018)

"I found this absolutely enchanting and a very grand way to celebrate Lara's 20 years of raiding. This is classic raiding at it's best and with careful exploration there is no need to consult the walk through which is always a sign of good level design in my opinion. Some reviewers mention that this is too dark but I never had need of a flare so disagree on that point. There is one tough battle where I found myself out of health packs but I could have done that better on reflection. I absolutely loved this. The bonus level was a bit of a let down. Could have used a little more imagination or even left out entirely as it added nothing to the experience but I can see why it was included." - Torry (25-Oct-2018)

"Nice level. The Tibetan atmosphere was really cool (no pun intended) and felt nostalgic, the level also had some elements from "Temple of Xian" and the Antarctica levels later on. I just wish it was a little longer, since it is somewhat short, other thing to complain about is that some secrets are missable for the playthrough (so you have to restart if you want to get all of them), which is something that I normally disagree. Overall it was a faithful rendition of TR2's Tibetan levels with some extra elements and inspirations from other settings. *HINT*: There are actually 8 secrets, one of them is in the bonus level outside, on the maze, you need to find a way to skip the end trigger and then go to the place where is supposed to be a switch." - SeniorBlitz (13-Feb-2018)

"A level that tries to blend TR2’s Tibet levels and TR3’s Antarctica levels? Sounds good in theory. But in practice, this level was not as much fun as I expected. It starts off great, with Lara exploring a Tibetan monastery. The multi-stage puzzle plus timed run in the monastery is fun, and as is opening up a way into a deep underground canyon. Navigating the caves around the canyon can be a little tedious at times, but not too bad. The problem really starts when Lara finally reaches the underground city and the enemies’ camp. Multiple large non-linear areas, low visibility and a lot of combat – that’s like all three of my biggest pet peeves mixed together. The only time I really enjoyed myself in this area is while navigating through the underground river in the rubber dinghy. The final section inside the temple is not bad either – even fighting the four supernatural bosses is easier than fighting all the human enemies before that. Apart from the darkness, the visuals of this level are pretty good. The monastery is nicely built, though the lighting is a bit flat there. The canyon and underground city are pretty impressive – at least when it’s possible to see them properly. The thick blue-green fog is a little too all pervasive; I generally like fog, but it got on my nerves by the end of the level. There’s a lovely contrast within the temple at the end, with the Sun Seraph providing warmth and light, which then abruptly changes when Lara picks it up. There’s a tiny bonus level, in the form of the classic manor, which you can explore to find memories of Lara’s old adventures, including Midas’s hand that turns Lara into gold." - Mytly (29-Nov-2017)

"Universally acclaimed TR2 Tibet/TR3 Antarctica hybrid based on exploration and combat and as such very much up my alley, although after a promising beginning it comes to a grinding halt at the 3-switches, 4- (actually 5-) pulleys puzzle, on which I spent way too much time; but the level picks up pace thereafter and doesn’t let up, quite possibly because it doesn’t have that many puzzles in it. The two that it has are in fact its weakest sequences: other than the one just mentioned, there is the ‘melt-the-icicles’ bit, which had me resort to the walkthrough (the steaming pipe simply isn’t enough of a hint, given that the icicles used to be so very keen to drop on your head on the many occasions where you had previously encountered them, and that the torch can be so easily overlooked). Very well constructed; a sizeable map in which you don’t get lost; bug-free, no glitches that I noticed; enemies and other objects worked fine, everything had its proper sounds (and how depressing is it that this needs to be explicitly pointed out?). The level is also muchly atmospheric, although the fog is a bit overdone (especially in the ice canyon and in an early underwater sequence), and combined with dim lighting and low-resolution textures (which appear rather less distinctive here than in the original Core levels), results in a somewhat flat, dullish 2-D look; on some occasions I found it actually difficult to see whether there was a ledge, a corner or an opening, or whether that wall was in fact completely flat. Enemies are placed well; while they have a tendency to attack in sets of three, and usually after you used a switch or made an Important Pickup, which does become a tad predictable, they certainly give you a run for your money. You are provided with the necessary pickups, though, if not much more besides (the grenade launcher sadly wasn’t among the four secrets I found). Yet I could have done without the yetis, which seem to have been inserted merely for the sake of variety, and pop up rather randomly on 2½ occasions (so beating your chest makes you impervious to bullets, huh? Who would’ve thunk). The part I liked best was the exploration among the ruins in search of the two Masks, but all things considered, the whole level must have kept me well entertained for 2½ hours, or else I wouldn’t have persevered, and I can certainly imagine replaying this level at a later date. Such gripes as I listed above therefore appear fairly minor, and I can thoroughly recommend this one to those favourably inclined towards classic TR2/3-style exploraction." - Mulf (30-Mar-2017)

"The only difficulty in this level is the battle against the 4 bosses. The hunt for secrets was also interesting. The whole seemed a little dull but not dark (I hardly ever lit a flare). This is a classic level to do." - Minox (25-Mar-2017)

"Excellent level. Aesthetically pleasant and consistent, very atmospheric, the gameplay is accessible and intuitive without being too easy, and it is also challenging without being impossibly hard for the more casual players. Even the hardest The puzzles were engaging and weren't something that only makes sense in the builder's head as a lot of builders do. The sound design makes the game even more immersive, intriguing and suspenseful. There's a lot to explore, and the builder really makes us look for places beyond the obvious path to progress. And the number of enemies provided a healthy dose of action while providing us plenty of opportunity to take our time to explore each environment. Just before ending this review, I need to mention my favorite thing about this level: the lost Tibetan city indeed seemed like a place where people lived, and suffered a painful fate. Often in the TR universe we can't connect emotionally with the people that inhabited the place we're exploring, but in this game, we can (I honestly felt a lump in my throat when I read the letter with the skeletons). And it pulls at your heartstrings in a way which isn't cheap or corny. You can really feel the pain of a whole opressed people, the melancholy of those facing the loss of their loved ones and contemplating their own certain death. That said, congratulations to the builder!" - KBoaz (18-Mar-2017)

"Excellent. Really a classic-classic level with a TR2 taste. Not hard tasks, incredible architecture recreating natural environments, well balanced enemies, good atmosphere with the old CD tracks... Perhaps a bit dark in some places, but never too dark. I had to reload in the final room and lure the samurais 'cause the first one began to run and trespassed the raised blocks so I couldn't kill him. I missed some puzzles to make me think too, but the gameplay is good with no much backtracking. A jewel highly recommended for everybody, not only for the TR2 lovers." - Jose (17-Mar-2017)

"This level is a very worthy finale pick in the contest. The atmosphere of TR 2 and TR 3 is very neatly implemented here, sounds and cameras are well done, the texturing is decent (not totally bar of mistakes but effective and rather clean most of the time) and the lighting works fine, even if a tad more contrast might help in a few area. The gameplay is quite classic most of the time, but quite enjoyable nevertheless and there are several nice features like the timed gates near the start and mostly the melting sequence. It also includes one of the most touching moments in TR history (not mentioning details here). Enemies are really well placed and the ammo is carefully provided here. Inside the temple where you find the seraph a bit more could've happened, you basically enter, kill some warriors and leave. Anyway the finale is quite decent and even if quite a change to the worse in terms of pace the house level worked okay as a conclusion, especially if you found all the seven nicely hidden secrets. I spent an hour in here and at the end of the day, despite some others having done this or that better, I think this game is my favourite of the bunch. Well done." - manarch2 (23-Feb-2017)

"Sun Seraph 8/9/10/9 This certainly hits all the right nostalgia buttons and what could be better than enjoying the atmosphere of TR2 and TR3 with none of the constraints of those original engines. This is very well put together indeed, with varied and fluid gameplay, a good choice of enemies and some innovative touches. There's a second 'bonus' level involving a visit to Lara's mansion, which may or may not take your fancy, but there's not a lot to do there in any case. Just don't miss out on the main body of the game - it's classic raiding." - Jay (09-Feb-2017)

"I can't enthuse as much as some over this level. Yes the map was well put together, but I found the lighting a little too dark and the texturing & atmosphere rather dull. I think the temple was a large area sorely underused as essentially a long corridor to reach the 4 bosses who were quite easily defeated by the grenades. The gameplay was straightforward and linear, but the secrets were well placed." - Adrian (28-Jan-2017)

"Any level that yanks four 10s from Ian certainly gets my undivided attention. I was greatly assisted by MrJavi94 in writing the walkthrough, as he gave me the locations of the seven secrets before I even got started. I found the gameplay to be everything it was billed to be, but I was a bit disappointed in the sparse lighting. To be sure, underground settings aren't usually accompanied by pomp and splendor, and I was able to see my way around without having to worry about running out of flares, but I would have preferred more ambient light. The house level at the end was a bad idea and should have been left out. It was almost like giving a hungry fat man carte blanche at the cafeteria line, only to present him with a piece of horse dung for dessert. It's a wonderful two-hour raid, worthy of high praise, but in my mind it falls a bit short of the highest tier." - Phil (25-Jan-2017)

"Amazingly crafted in the TR2 style and fashion but using the TR4 engine to make it much better. I must say I played a few other games in between as I wasn't enjoying the first half nearly as much despite the obvious astonishing looks and atmosphere of it all. I once read a novel just like that: if I hadn't put up with the first part I couldn't have enjoyed the rest of it so much. And it's like that for this level too: once it actually gains momentum you start feeling like you can't stop until the end, with a great final battle, is near. The bonus level is in a different league: so small, yet so nice as a 20th anniversary hommage. Nothing special to do but worth watching and a fit reward for having conquered the adventure. Obviously recommended." - Jorge22 (24-Jan-2017)

"After having completed this level for a first time, where on one hand I only managed to find 2 secrets, I decided to replay it again to try finding the rest of the secrets (something I still couldn't get) and to also the enjoy the splendid atmosphere created here. I personally admired the fog effect throughout the level and the way it fit within it. While this level lacked from puzzles, gameplay in general had some platforming and some challenging parts like the swinging spiked bags to get one of Guardian's masks. The author did a great job to create a very TR2- atmospheric level and also with a very good use of textures combined with objects which were also magnificiently used. On the matter of secrets, they are indeed pretty hard to find and I can only say the builder definitely wanted players to look to places they wouldn't look at firsthand, so if you want your reward you have to be focused on finding them at everytime not to miss a beat. This is in my humble opinion the best level of this event and I'm glad to have enjoyed it a lot. Very highly recommended, if you're looking for a very good-looking classic reminiscent game mostly, but of course to everyone, including old and new Tomb Raider fans." - MrJavi94 (21-Jan-2017)

"This is undoubtedly one of the most atmospheric levels I ever played. From the starting room, I was immersed in the TR2 reminiscent atmosphere of this level, thanks in no small part to the music, the background audio and the beautiful lighting and texturing. I found the gameplay to click with me real well, with some devious timed runs, traps, puzzles, exploration, use of the boat, items to find and a boss battle. When Lara approached her helicopter, I felt really proud and felt like I had accomplished something. Took me 2 hours 11 minutes and found 4 of 7 secrets. One of the best levels I have ever played." - Ryan (15-Jan-2017)

"Fantastic! This is a fascinating game to celebrate 20 years of TR. Though having the aspect of a TR2 game, it still has a varied gameplay with puzzles, difficult jumps, deadly traps, riding a boat and so much fun. Enemies are varied as well, as you don't only kill leopards, but mad mercenaries, and evil knights too! Atmosphere is stunning, especially the long, wooden bridge overlooking the long way down! I loved the blue fog in certain areas, and the slight darkening in some of them. It really looks like that place is so cold. Secrets are very well-hidden, I only found 3 of 7. I had no idea how to get the greande launcher behind the door, I had to leave it behind and fight the knights with other weapons after picking up the Sun Seraph. This was a fun 2 hours raid, highly recommended!" - alan (09-Jan-2017)

"This adventure really defined what "20 Years of TR" is all about. I truly felt like I was playing an extension of TR2/TR3 while playing this level. The feeling of nostalgia is amazing - I didn't put the game down until I beat it! This author did an incredible job of creating an environment that feels and plays very authentic. The gameplay is a perfect mixture of TR2/TR3 elements. There is lots of platforming, exploring of large, believable areas, and combat with both animals and humans. There is a boat segment as well. I kept wondering to myself how this could all fit into one level! There were times that I lamented a few gameplay elements (a frustrating rope slide with a carefully timed jump near the end of the level is one example) but overall it was great to play. I felt that the enemies were well done and corresponded to their original in-game likeness (some, like the yeti, have newer, better features). The puzzle objects are believable and in-line with the level theme. The secrets are very hard to find. I discovered two with careful searching. I spotted areas that I now realize I did not explore by the end, but am not sure how I will access them in replay. The atmosphere is incredible. It is exactly like TR2 (particularly the Golden Mask) would play. The heavy blue fog was too intense at times (in one early underwater segment in particular) but, overall, I think it added to the impressive atmosphere. I especially liked how, at the end when Lara claims the Seraph, the room goes from warm and "sunny" to cold and icy. I disliked that multiple audio tracks would play at once (background and situational music) and I think a few more songs would have been enjoyed. The lighting was done well and in a consistent manner. I think the level could have benefited from a few stronger sun bulbs (ironic in this level) to give the level more of a "glow." As it is, most of the level is somewhat flat. I only noticed a few textures that were stretched (because of an angled wall) and took no issue with texturing otherwise. I thought it was brilliantly done and combined textures from multiple games. Overall I spent 2 hours on this romp and plan to replay so I can see the other rooms in the bonus level that I missed out on. What a great contribution to 20 Years of TR. Many thanks to this author!!" - phms2010 (30-Dec-2016)

"I really like the style of this game. It manages to combine my favourite settinges from TR2 and TR3! The gameplay is rather good for a classic one - sometimes even challenging, especially the fights if you missed one or two medipacks. I didn't enjoy the distance fog color and there are some wrong placed textures to find. But alltogehter a game to recommend if you like the classic TR ... well I guess we all love them. Play it!" - The Boo (21-Dec-2016)

"I've loved the cold theme and it's a very good and well made level. It combines the essence of TR2 and TR3's atmosphere in a big way. I didn't like that much in the beginning, but it gets way better as the level goes, since it flows really nice. By the way, the secrets were very well hidden since I couldn't find any of them!" - Gian Carlo (21-Dec-2016)

"As soon as I collected the Sun seraph, sadly, I knew it's going to end eventually, especially as I hoped to uncover more areas and obtain more weapons, I ended up having only pistols and shotgun without ammo, haha! Apparently I'm not that good at finding secrets also meaning they were really well hidden! Gameplay felt really classic, it was flowing nicely until the very end with nice puzzles, traps and lots of jumping. There was a nice choice of enemies, and each of them worked correctly with no error, both AI and sounds. However, I think music could have been added in few more sequences, just to make fights more enjoyable. The design of rooms, textures and lighting were really nice, however, lighting did seem repetitive at some point, especially with quite thick fog, but it did work together with the atmosphere of level, dark and cold. Unfortunately, I couldn't enjoy the bonus level that much as I missed 5 secrets, yeah, I'm bad at it, but from what I've seen, it was a really nice touch, so faithful to classics, kudos to the builder for this idea! Highly recommended!" - Raider99 (17-Dec-2016)

"The overall design of the game is great, but I have to say that there were enormous many texture errors everywhere, so the texturing seemed done without much care or in a rush. I don't think there is a single room with clear texturing. The gameplay, as the other reviews said, feels classic. I hated ( like in some other games of this competition ), that many switches don't show what they activated, which is very annoying. I also agree that some passages were maybe a little bit too good hidden. The lighting ( and texturing ) could be a bit more diverse. Few parts seemed very epic ( like the bridge crossing ). The distance fog was ok for me. Some flyby scenes were a bit ˝clumsy˝. In general, it was a great experience playing this game and I did like it, but it seemed, as I said, in some parts a bit rushed, unfinished and repetitive." - Gorty (09-Dec-2016)

"A camera hint on the torch would be great, just like wider fog range instead of constantly disturbing thick wall. Other than that it's a masterclass in making sense all the time. Play and understand." - DJ Full (08-Dec-2016)

"My second favorite map of this contest. Very nice visually and excellent tribute to Tomb Raider 2 . The tasks and gameplay are a bit generic. A lot of fun final combat. Some trap-section would have been great in that temple. Recommended." - requiemsoul (08-Dec-2016)

"It's the third level I play of this 20 years competition and I just can say it's certainly one of the best. In this adventure Lara is searching a Seraph hidden deep in the underground. The gameplay is classic and we feel very well the tr2 tibet atmosphere. The game is also not very hard but some objects and passages are sometimes very well hidden. Like tr2, we can find tr2 enemies like baddys, yetis and also leopars very well placed through the map. The adventure is divided in 2 aeras, the first one with the canyon and the 2 bridges and the second one in the underground with the hidden monastery and the river with boat. And my personnal favorite is the second because I have just loved how the builder build the entire giant cave with the monastery, the lost camp and the facilities near the river ... IMPRESSIVE :D . I have also very enjoyed the great battle with the four statues after taking the Seraph and the escape with the elevator to find an helicopter in the end ... End who remember tr3 ending ;) . The final surprise is the "bonus" level and the various hidden place we can discovered if we obtain all secrets. Unfortunelly I just find 6 secrets of 7. So I suppose I will replay the level when a walktrough will be release to obtain the last hidden places in the bonus. I can just congratulate the author for this game. A jewel of tr2 atmosphere and also one of the best level of 2016." - Bigfoot (08-Dec-2016)

"What a simply majestic level.It's staggering how much the builder managed to cram into this - from engaging puzzles (particularly the stalactite melting sequence);the fun boat navigation;the excellent placement and variety of enemies;and the huge and stunningly well crafted (and well connected) areas.The whole adventure simply oozes atmosphere,and the ways for progression have been superbly devised.It's exploration of the highest order;but,in addition,there is a degree of palpable suspense which builds as the adventure progresses - until the Finale;which,although straightforward,is brilliantly set in scene - and then,just when you think it's all over... Objects are incorporated with great attention to detail (extending even to the inclusion of a poignant letter);secrets are so well hidden that,despite apparently investigating every nook and cranny,I only discovered one;and the textures,skillfully applied. I clocked up over 2 1/2 hours (not including the bonus level),but was absorbed from first moment to last.One of the best custom adventures I've yet played." - Orbit Dream (07-Dec-2016)

"Search for the Sun Seraph First of all, what a fantastic level. The level felt so authentic that at moments I forgot I was playing a TRLE game and thought I was playing TR2. The main level was so well designed I felt that it was actually a complete level set. I will try not to spoil anything in the below review. In relations to the 'Create a Classic' theme, this level really stands out. The gameplay elements employs aspects from TR2 to TR4 incredibly well and the puzzles and traps vary in difficultly as the level progresses. The puzzle containing the pulleys to lower the platform was very well done by combining different jumps in order to reach the four pulleys. In turn, the puzzles to light the four flames was equally as enjoyable with absolutely no faults there. As the level progressed, the difficulty increases with the stalactites falling and boulder traps that keep you on edge. The final parts of the level when trying to find the Guardian's Masks was brilliant - at first I struggled to find one of them until exploring further to find it cleverly concealed in an area that I originally overlooked. I enjoyed the rubber boat section of the level and thought the puzzle to get the key to reopen the gates was genius! The final battle was amazing and really brought back the nostalgia before reliving an area that brought back memories of TR3. The enemies were classic TR, some with a new twist being retextured and modified for the TRLE engine but all worked perfectly - the sounds with the enemies worked perfectly, especially when you initially hear the footsteps of an enemy around the corner and the suspense builds until you find out what it is. I especially thought the way the setup with two enemies in particular were very clever, one using it in the Baddy 2 slot to utilise the temporary invisibility animation to make it harder to defeat and the enemies towards the end of the game were even better than when they made their first appearance in the TR series! The lighting and textures were classic TR and I felt captured the essence of the Create a Classic theme. The classic design, both visual and audio made it feel that this level could have easily slotted into TR2 and I would even say this individual level stands out more than TR2 Gold. I found the secrets incredibly difficult to find, only noticing one towards the end of my gameplay - but this is how it should be, it could have been caused due to my lack of fully investigating the area or not noticing specific things that would lead to the secrets. I wish I had found more secrets as the bonus level that is accessed after completing the main game is the perfect way to celebrate 20 Years of Tomb Raider. Overall, the level was a complete pleasure to play and I congratulate the builder on creating such a detailed well-built level. I would definitely recommend this game to old and new fans of the TR series." - smcandrew (05-Dec-2016)
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