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Level: Shattered Ties back home search
Author(s): Dreamfall
total rating:9.16 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
ameliacrofty 10 10 10 10
Danpls 7 9 10 10
Gorty 7 8 10 7
Hdoyle11 9 10 10 10
Jay 9 9 10 9
Jorge22 9 10 10 9
manarch2 7 9 9 8
Mortensmor 7 10 10 9
Phil 9 9 9 8
SeniorBlitz 10 10 10 10
TRTheoP 8 10 9 10
category averages
(11 reviews)
8.36 9.45 9.73 9.09

Reviewer's comments

"Hands up if the subject matter of this level made you feel bad about all those times you shut poor old Winston in the freezer. Oh OK, just me then! It's certainly an unusual idea for a level and it works really well. The sombre colour palette fits the subject matter perfectly, even if I did have to draw the blinds to shut out the unusually bright sunshine the UK has been having lately. Gameplay-wise, the most difficult aspect is trying to negotiate the huge mansion with ghosts and mutants lurking in the shadows and, initially, no pistols (I dare say Lara thought it might be bad etiquette to take them to a funeral). I did rather enjoy luring one mutant into a cage to blow it up, I must confess. The atmosphere is delightfully creepy, helped in no small part by the unsettling music/sound files. It's definitely something a bit different and, for lovers of spooky mansion levels, this is an absolute must-play." - Jay (25-Jun-2018)

"The description for this game really intrigued me to start playing and all I can say is that I am glad I did. You start the game in a town, mourning over Winston's death and trying to reach to his family's mansion to inform them of his death. However, when you finally arrive to the mansion you realize that something strange is going on and all the scary things start to show up and terrorize you. In order to understand what's going on, the designer has scattered some diary pages which you have to find and read in order to get a clear point of what's happening. The story itself is very interesting and it really encourages the player of continuing forward. The sounds and lightning used really help to built a very dark and scary atmosphere. Lara doesn't have guns until you reach half the game, which was a pretty good element because you are forced to run away all over the mansion and quickly jump stairs to avoid enemies. The highlight of all these is the moment where you have to face a scary creature with no guns and you have to lock him behind some doors in order to activate a switch and blow him up. It was one of my favorite puzzles of this game. After Lara finds some guns, you can easily get rid of some enemies and then deal with an amazing ending boss which you have to defeat within a time limit. The ending boss was the climax that this game deserved to further boost up its uniqueness as a fan-made level. Through the game, there are also some secrets which are not so difficult to find and give the player the feeling of achievement. Despite its perfectly built scary atmosphere and story there are still some drawbacks, which mostly concern of its gameplay and puzzles. In order to proceed forward in the level, you mostly need to find keys and remember the position of the door which they open. This can be proven very difficult since the mansion had a lot of pathways, halls and rooms with lots of different doors. There are some cameras to remind you of where to go when you find a key but they are not so helpful in most of the times. There is also some backtracking in order to reach those doors which is a bit frustrating. Although you may enjoy the searching of the mansion at the beginning, it eventually becomes a repetitive mission of "opening a door, finding a key and then opening a new door only to find a new key for a new door". However, there are a lot of other puzzles in the game which are all cleverly built to entertain you and make you think. Conclusion: Shattered Ties by Dreamfall is an unforgettable experience which none should miss due to its well designed atmosphere and story that combine pretty well with each other. If someone has patience and remembers the positions of some elements through the mansion, this level will be really enjoyable for him." - TRTheoP (18-Jun-2018)

"I have to say, similarly to DJ Full's "Cakeworld" (but for different reasons of course), this level REALLY hit the spot for me, it might be because of the Silent Hill- ish/Resident Evil-ish atmosphere to it (which admittedly I'm somewhat biased towards since I love both series), but, I had a great time with this level. I think the package succeeds on all categories, the puzzles are nice and even if they are very few of them, the custom assets felt very well implemented, the fact that you spend most of the level defenseless helped create some very tense moments, the camera shots added to already very creepy and suspenseful atmosphere, texturing and lighting were almost perfect in my opinion and the music choices was phenomenal. The builder also managed to implement the story very well with the gameplay. I think the verdict is very obvious, you should definitely play this." - SeniorBlitz (10-Jun-2018)

"This is one of those levels where I'm glad I waited for the walkthrough to become available before attempting to play it. The gameplay is quite sprawling and complex, and after you reach the mansion everything basically boils down to opening doors, finding keys and trying to remember where they're to be used. Along the way there are many refreshing touches, not to mention having to deal with nightmarish creatures without any weapons at your disposal. An extended elements puzzle is thrown in for good measure. I had some problems with the ending sequence, having dispatched the enemies with time to spare and having to sit around and wait for the exit door to open. And when I dashed outdoors, everything seemed to become frozen in place and I had to try pushing various keys to make Lara move and cause the level to end. The level is dark throughout, but it's not the annoying kind of dark that I experienced with Forgotten Island, where the player can't see what's going on around him. And this builder has provided ample flares, although I rarely felt the need to use one. Colors are almost nonexistent, as everything seems to be presented with a purplish tint. Still, it's evident that a tremendous amount of planning has gone into this release, and it's quite effective in setting the desired mood of spookiness. 2018 has been a good year for raiders, and we're not even halfway through." - Phil (05-Jun-2018)

"This level really reminded me of Resident Evil 1 and that's why i loved it, the scary ambience, the huge Mansion with a lot of locked doors, the intriguing story, the puzzles, really good! The textures were well chosen as the objects, the chases parts were awesome, i got really scared when the chaser first appears, really recommended!" - ameliacrofty (01-Jun-2018)

"The atmosphere is perfect for a horror/mistery level. Sometimes (many times) you have to goo back to many places to use a key/object and it can be really annoying. Also, I missed some more dialogue from Lara, but appart from that, is a good mistery level" - Danpls (01-Jun-2018)

"Through all pros and cons, the storyline and the horror atmosphere must really be mentioned as outstanding features of this game. Fans of the genre will definately enjoy this game for the nerve-wrecking scenes and I must really say that the builder did some great things with enemies, musics and cameras. Excellent! I also think that the builder made a good step in the right direction versus his debut level, as the overall quality of the environments is much better. There are some too simplistic parts, e.g. in the town at the start, and the texturing is not always clean, but some areas are quite believable too. I also enjoyed the gameplay to some extent, the motorbike path was fun and the first tasks in the manor as well (like the unique code puzzle). The exploration of the manor was also decent for some time, but eventually this turned into a very repetitive key hunt and tasks that only consisted of remembering where a certain keyhole was, opening the door and finding the next key item. It's not always like this and there are a few nicer puzzles along the way, the storyline and thrill also make things better, but a few more varied tasks could've really lifted this level into higher score ranges as the potential really was present. I found all four nicely hidden secrets in 1:05 hours and definately recommend this game but not for the faint of heart." - manarch2 (24-May-2018)

"A very good made level that reminds in some aspects of silent hill, resident evil and some horror movies. After a nice and long intro Lara finds herself on the streets of something. A call it something because it doesn’t look like a city, not even close. I did not had the feeling of being in a town, rather in a lifeless level editor room. The overall area needs more work, more light and more object decorations. Many objects had missing collision ( door frames, persons … ). After few easy tasks Lara gets to a river. I initially missed the motorbike, so I had to go back at one point. The part between the ˝town˝ and villa had some cliff environment that looked way too cubic and unnatural. I have to mention that the texturing is fine as long as there are no curvy parts. Whenever the wall needed to be more grinded to avoid stretched textures, the author missed to do that, instead left the stretched textures. Soon Lara enters the villa where she gets chased by a monster for a long period. The chasing reminds me of the movie the shining. Maybe it would be good to have a new monster made for the level and not something we seen a hundred times already. The villa was nicely designed. The light was monotone, but serves its purpose well, like in other TRLE horror levels. Few times a found the gameplay very hard to follow. Also, the gameplay includes too much key collecting. On the second chasing with the big guy I really wished I had pistols, as this is repeating the same thing from the villa. The overall gameplay was alright, but not to innovative or too interesting. Definitely the greatest thing about the level is the story, cutscenes, atmosphere, music and the overall execution of the author’s idea. Will be rewarded in the rating. Level recommended, especially for horror fans !" - Gorty (13-May-2018)

"I really liked the idea of this level, the atmosphere is amazing, didn't found any error textures, the tasks on the start are easy but then it gets harder later, loved the puzzles and the way to defeat that monster in the church was new for me. The story is also good, the journal was a nice touch the soundtrack and the objects are well put. I love these type of levels and it's hard to find good ones like this." - Hdoyle11 (13-May-2018)

"Still one more game whose exe gets eaten by Avast no matter what... oh well. I used Cakeworld Rebake's exe instead, I guess I'll keep an accepted exe available at all times just in case. Anyway, this was one huge step forward when you think of Rescue Hanna! I love it when builders do listen. Excellent. There are some easy to miss things in the game (crossing the pit near the start, for instance) and the whole area is enormous and pretty complicated if you don't have a fantastic visual memory. But I loved it globally. The atmosphere is good, the sounds are never annoying and the overall gameplay felt great in spite of a few minor glitches. The secrets are findable and highly rewarding and I really liked the grand finale. It takes a while because it's so hard to orient oneself but never boring, quite on the contrary. Recommended indeed." - Jorge22 (08-May-2018)

"A well-paced level with excellent atmosphere. I loved the concept of a journal, as well as the way in which Lara defeats and escapes monsters without weapons of her own. The mansion is pretty well-polished, but I think that the atmospheric highlights of this level are the yard/forest and the church. This is just like TR5 Ireland and I LOVE IT. I also loved the little touches: the elegant font, the secret sound. However, I've also had my annoyances with this level. It's easy to get stuck in some objects, which is particularly irritating after the difficult motorbike jump or when Lara is being chased (fixed camera angles didn't help). There were some minor problems (glitching through a closed trapdoor or through a chain- link fence) which caused me to reload the game. The layout of the mansion is rather complex, so if you're like me and don't have excellent spatial memory, prepare for some more backtracking." - Mortensmor (05-May-2018)
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