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Level: The Time of the Castles back home search
Author(s): Nlabricole
total rating:7.64 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
Dimpfelmoser 8 8 8 8
eRIC 9 8 9 8
Gerty 9 8 8 8
Jay 8 8 8 8
Jose 5 8 7 8
kabal 7 7 7 8
Kristina 8 7 8 8
Magnus 5 5 5 5
MichaelP 8 8 8 7
Orbit Dream 7 7 7 7
Phil 8 7 8 8
Qwendo 9 7 8 8
RaiderGirl 9 8 8 8
Ruediger 8 8 8 7
Ryan 7 7 8 8
Sash 9 8 8 8
Scottie 9 8 8 8
Tortoise3 8 7 8 7
Treeble 7 8 7 8
WebKnight 7 7 8 8
category averages
(20 reviews)
7.75 7.45 7.70 7.65

Reviewer's comments

"A pleasant raid in a coastal setting. Lara has to look for a crowbar, then pry off 4 golden stars. But also she has to look for 2 pharos knots; good thing I found the last one by luck, otherwise I would have quit the level! There was a bug with a trapdoor that didn't open when I found the first star. But later I discovered that I had to go for the Ornate Handle first, then to the star. The enemies are some wild pigs, skeletons and crocodiles, and you get plenty of ammo to get rid of them. There are various tasks with torches to ignite some fireplaces and ropes so they drop a boulder. This was a good level and I recommend it." - kabal (13-Nov-2017)

"Ah, lovely. A Coastal level. I'll admit I'm quite fond of them and there's no exception with this particular level. It can actually end up having a short duration, but you get a variety of gameplay tasks including some uses of the torch, targets to shoot, boulder traps and some Pharos Knots, golden stars, Portal Guardian and a horsemen, all of which takes place in quite pleasant surroundings. Very nice." - Ryan (06-Mar-2017)

"I'm always up for a visit to coastal areas as I just love the whole look and feel of the genre. This one certainly gives a good chance to explore as, for a level of its age, it's larger and takes longer to play than the average. All the usual objects and enemies are present and correct - the builder manages to include just about everything, including torch work and target practice. It's quite nicely put together and if coastal levels are your thing, I'd recommend trying it." - Jay (12-Jun-2015)

"My goodness,that was a large and complicated playing area! Much of this vintage level is positively labyrinthine,with off-shoot corridors inevitably leading to yet more off-shoot corridors;some of which contain necessary key pick-ups,but many of which are bare.If you resist the Walkthrough,then you'll need to play this in one sitting and keep a strong mental note on where all the various locked doors and trapdoors are located.Lose track,and it could become uniquely frustrating.Nonetheless,with perseverance it should all come together in a fairly comprehensible pattern;while the traditional Coastal enemies are placed for general nuisance value.Lighting and texturing is adequate,and the atmosphere thus created is serviceable but nothing particularly outstanding.For those who enjoy lashings of exploration in a multitude of areas (and who are not averse to the occasional epic backtrack) this should do them very well for 75 minutes." - Orbit Dream (26-May-2015)

"This coastal level is long and complex, and from the very beginning it's supposed you need to find 4 golden stars, but when you're done you realize that you need a couple of extra artifacts, so if you don't explore carefully all the areas, the backtracking could be terrible looking for an item through the entire level (I forgot to light the basket near the last star). Also it seems that there's a big problem with some triggers here 'cause once you pick up the ornate handle it's supposed that the trapdoor to the sewers is open, but in my game it was still closed; I was lucky, and after triggering a skeleton in a corner, the trapdoor finally opened. Also at the end of the second part of the village, it's supposed that a door should be open as a shortcut to the first part, but in my game never open so I had to go all the way back through the same path to return to the first part. The shotgun and the grenade gun appeared too late, when there were no wild pigs to shoot, but there's enough explosive ammo for the crossbow to deal with the skeletons although. As usual in this author, look for the secrets in dark crawlspaces. The level is very well builded with many good touches (shadows, architecture...) but the gameplay has a very bad design, too no-lineal. Better play it following the walkthrough and even so I wish you good luck with the triggers!" - Jose (08-May-2015)

"This is one of the earliest levels, and it shows. That being said, I found it fun to play, even though gameplay consists mainly of finding artifacts to open the many doors and ultimately to exit with a quartet of stars and a pair of knots. It's a routine Coastal level with all the crude trimmings, but even with Gerty's concise walkthrough it took me about 75 minutes to complete. Some well-hidden ladders and crawl spaces in dark places are the exception to a brightly lit environment and scads of skeletons. Armament and ammunition are profuse, however, so adequate defense is never a problem. A level such as this would make most of us yawn now, but back then I imagine it was a crackling good raid. Recommended for a fun-filled and fairly easy romp." - Phil (06-Dec-2012)

"After about 10-minute playing time I wanted to send this level actually already in the data nirvana. I saw no possibility to play further. Since there was, after I had broken a star from the wall and took the Ornate Handle to myself, a Dead-End. A trapdoor in the courtyard should open, but she remained closed. Then luckily I had read in a Review from Treeble (thank you Treeble!!), which one must wait a few seconds after quarry out the stars. Then I have made this and then I could play through the level. And this is a good thing too. Since otherwise I would have missed a great level. However I have missed a few camera hints. But this is already the only negative point." - Scottie (23-Feb-2010)

"I've just a few hours ago played another level which had castle on its title but none in the game, and this is pretty much the same thing. Either my conception of castle is just wrong, or the titles are a bit misleading. This is a fun level, when taking the whole thing into account, which will have you blasting a number of skeletons and wild boars on your quest for the four stars and two knots (pay attention as one is sneakily hidden). Gameplay is pretty straight forward once you get started and be sure that whenever you pry a star off the wall you stay a while (2 seconds should suffice) on the spot, or else the doors won't open and you'll be wondering what else you have to do. 50 minutes, 2 secrets. 01/07" - Treeble (01-Feb-2007)

“I stopped playing this level a long time ago when a trapdoor didn’t open. Now a year later I finally restarted it and played it to the end. It’s just a shame that this level was about as much exciting as I remembered it. That means that it was everything but exciting by the way. The problem I have with this level is not that it’s bad it’s just mediocre in every way. The gameplay the secrets the atmosphere the texturing – you name it. So it’s not really a bad level it just doesn’t stand out in any way. It’s not really clear what Lara has to do in this level. At first it looks as if she has to find four stars but when she has found them she is also supposed to have two Pharos Knots (which transform into Pharos Pillars when placed). It feels like a punch below the belt – at least if you haven’t found them because they’re hidden along the way. The enemies are mainly skeletons and warthogs and a few crocodiles thrown in just for the fun of it. The gameplay mostly consists of repetitive things and it never picks up. The level ends after about thirty minutes and I have to say that I’m glad it wasn’t longer.” – Magnus (29-Jan-2004)

“I liked this coastal adventure. The areas are well connected with a few items to find such as knots stars a gem and the portal guardian. We have two torch puzzles and at one time you visit the sewers with the crocodiles and skeletons. There are also wild boars around easily killed with all the weapons available. An underwater small maze boulders coming down are some of the things to find in this level. Most levels that have as base the original ones are boring but not this one. I got through in fifty minutes with one secret. It’s a good level to pass the time and have some fun.” – Kristina (03-Sep-2003)

“This level takes place in a nice little coastal village made up of many smaller areas you must explore in order to find four stars and two knots - all while being chased by wild boars and skeletons. With the crossbow and grenade gun handy it really turned into a level of exploration rather than one of battle - the objects can be difficult to locate and there seem to be pickups around almost every corner. I actually started this twice before and couldn't find all the objects so I took a break from it and started over after some time had passed - I couldn't seem to find the second knot and had a hard time figuring out how to get a trapdoor open. I enjoyed my search though and was disappointed that the level was over after placing the stars and the knots - the clever puzzles and spike and boulder traps made this hour long level very enjoyable.” – RaiderGirl (14-Sep-2002)

“This is great TR entertainment where everything is quite right. The atmosphere the gameplay the enemies the environment. Perfect really. Ok it's nothing spectacular or out of the ordinary but at the same time it's a solid work with some very traditional raiding. The little village is beautifully done and I really loved the little sewer area; the course is cleverly constructed there are a great many different tasks to complete some nasty traps everything really. The only time I got stuck (after I had installed the thing properly) was when I couldn't find the second Pharao's knot. It's a bit misleading as there is a star to collect nearby and you might think you're done with the area. A highly entertaining and fast paced gameplay in a convincing coastal setting. Do I need to say more? It's your loss if you don't go there and have some fun.” – Dimpfelmoser (14-Aug-2002)

“With wonderfully long and interesting gameplay this 70 minutes level was extremely well designed with the aim being to retrieve 4 stars spread perfectly throughout a coastal like setting although by the name I expected to be playing in a castle which if so was not obvious at all. Having a great mix of inside and outside play enemies that actually pose a slight threat at least up until getting the crossbow secrets and some nice uses of targets this is well worth a look.” - Sash (21-Jun-2002)

“I am really a fan of coastal levels and so this one does have its charms for me as well. Very long and busy gameplay as you have to find and place many puzzle pieces to eventually have the four stars. Quite believable lighting with the switch from outside to inside areas the usual pigs and skeletons and some really good and helpful cameras make this level a great playing experience. I found it a bit disturbing that the Revolver which turns out to be so useful is a secret that you should not miss.” - Michael (21-Jun-2002)

“A nicely done coastal level with many puzzle pieces (4 golden stars and 2 Pharos Knots). Enemies are lots of skeletons a few crocodiles and many wild boars. Outside passages alternate well with darker inside areas and you can progress well through the level as you can return to all the rooms in case you forgot something (like I did with the Hathor piece). Also you can find all the weapons (revolver as a secret) but mainly need the crossbow for some target practice. After about 80 minutes this entertaining level is over.” - Qwendo (21-Jun-2002)

“Although I do get tired sometimes of running around to see what door Lara opened this time it still is a pleasant level to play. I was glad to find the crossbow to blow those skeletons to high heaven. Also some target shooting is needed. Find 4 stars and 2 Pharos Knots to end the game. In between you have to get more artifacts and looking for those you’ll find loads of ammo too. I like the idea of looking in every nook and cranny and get a reward if you do so. There are two boulders with ropes you have to burn. The second one had me puzzled for a while as the boulder came down and although I did found the torch later I forgot to use it in a different way so I couldn’t access the area where you’ll find the second knot. The game ends after you place the stars and the knots. 25-05-2002” – Gerty (21-Jun-2002)

“So another coastal level? Yes it is. Nice bright and colorful – I liked it. Nothing special but fun to play. The handle for the portal guardian is hidden so well - I didn’t find it (Thanks to Qwendo for the tip). It uses the standard-coastal-WAD and so there are the boars the crocodiles and the skeletons. These skeletons were definitely too easy to fight because Lara gets weapons like Rambo in this level. So what? A skeleton? EAT THIS! BOOM! Too easy... so it is only a 7 for the gameplay. But all in all a level worth to play!” - Webknight (21-Jun-2002)

“I think that this is the best level from the author. A nice Coastal setting with some big buildings with good architecture and also some coastal villages where I always want to spend more time than necessary because of the atmosphere. The puzzles are very good especially those involving torches. In all those pleasant courtyards and buildings you have to find 4 stars and two knots to reach the end. I was stuck for a while to find the ornate handle but it was not really my fault who wants to explore nearby dart emitters? This level is very cleverly built it is not always straightforward and you can backtrack at anytime if you have forgotten something.” – eRIC (21-Jun-2002)

“I played four levels by this author and this is clearly my favorite one. Tasty castles in this landscape. The enemies are making sense: you meet skeletons in the crypt wild boars outdoors - some authors just mix up all baddies they have available but not here. Instead of just pulling levers you need for example the Horseman's Gem to light a fire - there is variety in the puzzles that keeps things interesting for 1 1/4 hours. The difficulty is just right for the average player whereas the TR freaks may find it a little too easy for the powerful weaponry enables you to blast skeletons off the stage just like that. Yes Lara won (LOL).” – Rüdiger (21-Jun-2002)

“I really do enjoy these coastal levels mainly on account of the brightness and scenery. The problems I encountered were of my own making ie. not using flares and so missing the crawlspace by the darts and also the ladder up to get the second torch. The lack of cameras did not make a great deal of difference because the way through is fairly obvious. Plenty of pickups so no need to worry about running short. The enemies are skeletons and boars and I would have liked a little more variety. However a very clearly thought out game that is a pleasure to do.” – Tortoise3 (21-Jun-2002)
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