Level: BtB2020 - Nest of the Souls back home search
Author(s): BtB 2020
total rating:9.27 Gameplay &
Objects &
Sound &
Lighting &
Adrian 10 10 10 10
Allicya 10 10 10 10
BlackWolfTR 10 10 10 9
eRIC 8 8 7 8
Jay 10 10 10 10
Jorge22 9 9 9 9
Jose 7 9 9 10
manarch2 8 8 8 8
nad 10 10 10 10
Ryan 9 9 9 9
Treeble 9 10 10 10
category averages
(11 reviews)
9.09 9.36 9.27 9.36

Reviewer's comments

"Long level taking place in a setting designed with great impressive heights ; the first part consisting of 3 quests is the one i like the most especially the one where you get all the way down to the bottom, very fluent and enjoyable gameplay here. After the three quests the level becomes more straightforward , still with reentrances , and becomes a bit tiresome for me, i struggled to finish it, not because of the difficulty as it is quite balanced. This feeling was partly caused by the musics used by the background audio loops, chants instead of real atmospheric environmental audios, which i think is unfortunate , the one used in the last part was the worst , and those before interrupt each other in the same outdoor area. Other builders have used these same tracks for a short one time moment for atmospheric purpose , but here i got no atmospheric highlights. The setting is impressive somehow because of the fascinating heights (there is probably more than 100 clicks between the lower and higher points of the level) but the wallpaper effect in the blocky outdoor areas and the patchwork impression of the texturing in other places is rather obvious. Not many enemies except in the last part. Good secrets. This game has entertaining moments and a few good ideas as well (also a few things unnecessary), globally a lot of work has been put into it, but for me it was a bit too long and not atmospheric enough to be immersive." - eRIC (08-Jul-2020)

"I have just wrapped this level up and I have mixed feelings towards it. On the one hand, it's downright brilliant. I think this might have been the biggest single-level release I've ever seen, and not only it's extremely expansive in design but you end up exploring pretty much everything you see in the distance, be it the cliffside buildings or the lake at the very bottom, and then there's even more as there are areas you don't get to see from the get go. I kid you not, I spent the first 20 minutes just running around through all areas accessible from the start trying to figure out what my first move was supposed to be. There are quite a few fetch quests so exploration is the heart of this level, each collectible hidden behind a series of traps or a puzzle. Which brings me to the "down" side. Maybe I'm just getting old, but it's quite complicated for me to keep track of the lengths I had to go and been to, so when there's so much exploration and backtracking in place, I end up losing interest rather quickly. I was ready to drop it during the initial quest for the three dharma jewells, but thanks to a couple of pointers in the stuck forums I managed to find the ones I'd missed and, fortunately for me, from that point onwards it was slightly more streamlined. It's impossible not to appreciate the marvel this level is, but perhaps it was just a tad too much for a single level. That's probably just me, though. Much like all the levels so far, this is a very beautiful level, so it's safe to say we as players have been very spoiled this year. 140 minutes, 2 secrets. 06/20" - Treeble (06-Jul-2020)

"What a superb level. Looks like the winner for me so far. An enormous well constructed map with nicely connected areas. Particularly liked the re-entering the starting area after hitting the gong - a definite wow/aha moment! Absorbing and varied game play with nicely placed secrets (found 7/7). Enemies just right, though the Bosses weren't too tricky if you found the grenade stash or were happy to shoot away with the pistols from a distance. Loved the whole atmosphere - almost made me shiver and suffer from altitude sickness! With such large areas hard not to have a little wallpapering but not too much to drop the score. Took me 4:15 hrs & I loved every minute. If you rushed through in 75 mins you weren't savouring this magnificent level." - Adrian (05-Jul-2020)

"This is one of my favorite levels released. Differently from many of the others, this one does not rely on bunch of dialogs so you can understand the context of the story. I love the feeling that lara doesnt say anything most of the time but you can see from the context lots of nuances to the universe. I felt lots of classic feelings playing this level, and it is incredible that i really felt that i explored a lost place in complexity in this one. I loved everything about that monastery. It is really big but the gameplay is very evolving. I didnt have big problems with lagging due to object quantity (but i think this might really depend on the players hardware used too, but i am not sure). The scenarios are huge and it is the most complex scenario that i really have seen from all the entries. All places are impactful and this is something that is rare to see in levels. I loved the peaceful isolation feeling that the player has in the first part of the level. My favorite part was the yeti ambush, thats so epic. I didnt see any relevant texture issues. I found the lighting pleasant to the eye, its not always realistic, or too complex but i think it is artistic and beautiful. I really recommend this levels to everyone, a very classic but modern adveture with a great scenario and interesting puzzles. Congratulations to the builder!" - Allicya (04-Jul-2020)

"It was a very long and complex level for me. The first part was "obscure" 'cause I decided to explore the deep pit first, but after I found the first key, the gameplay was not so bad. There's a good architecture and texturization with enough pickups to take a good riding; a perfect use of the background musics, I liked the lighting too. No difficult tasks, but a lot of exploration (perhaps too much exploration) and well hidden secrets. It notices a good effort to create "real" environments using certain features, and there are some interesting tasks. Really an enjoyable long level. Good work!" - Jose (04-Jul-2020)

"This is another hugely complex, expansive and intertwining entry into this contest. I cannot even begin to comprehend how the builder was able to construct this absolute behemoth of a raid, as well as set up the traps and puzzles in such a complicated environment yet never allowing the player to come to a fatal stuck point. For that reason alone, he/she should be commended. However, I did also feel that it was a bit overambitious at times and that there were a couple of things in each category that were rather overdone. Firstly, as mentioned, the gameplay progression connects rather neatly with the geography of the various main areas, but the backtracking and climbing segments were a little too long-winded for their own good. Secondly, the object placement was a little cluttered at times and made movement a little tricky. Thirdly, the chanting sound effects serving as background audio grated on the nerves after a while, as did the constant switching from one ambient track to another. Finally, the texturing seemed a bit oddly applied in the canyon area (I bet you builders will be able to find more fitting terminology here). I've therefore decreased each category by one point. But overall, despite these nitpicks, the builder has constructed a remarkable piece of work here and should be rightfully proud of themselves. And I have no idea how manarch2 was able to breeze through this level in just over an hour. It took me easily nearly twice that!" - Ryan (03-Jul-2020)

"Phew! This is one title I noticed right away - classic, yet appealing. As for the level itself, I feel slightly divided, albeit more on the positive than on the negative side. It's vast, huge and enormous. It makes you backtrack without an end in sight and it fails to provide so much needed queues too often. So, it's exploration in its rawest form. The traps, several of them, are interesting but perhaps a bit overdone - interestingly crafted, but almost impossible to overcome without saying goodbye to much of one's health. It transforms rooftop jumping (necessary) into a kind of floating isles scenery that isn't really what you'd expect from the floating isles - and that's actually a good idea. Well, it's complicated. The general design looks pretty good and the atmosphere, without really being enticing, is ok, perhaps especially in the final boss fight with all those fire wraiths that don't die in the water. There were a few third person views I'd rather I hadn't had. I missed at least a couple of trapdoors and the revolver, which I could see through a crevice. Final thoughts: I could have done with less, but there really isn't much to fault here." - Jorge22 (03-Jul-2020)

"I am in two minds about this level. On the one hand, it features a lot of impressive sceneries, large open spaces with lots of exploration to be done, several fun traps and puzzles and all that without serious construction errors. On the other hand, I think it's a bit too ambitious for its own good. The texturing in those large and albeit fairly boxy outside areas often feels quite wallpapered, the lag because of quite massive usage of objects is a problem and the background audio is also not ambient and also becomes rather distracting after a while. The lighting is also not quite as realistic as in some other entries in this competition. The progression is rather decent, at the start you might think this is an excessively complex level but actually it isn't so confusing with little backtracking and seldom a moment where you don't know what to do, perhaps in the large courtyard in the second half. I enjoyed the puzzle with the birds, it is a bit obscure but still solvable without guessing, and the usage of the torch is also fine. Enemies are decently used and the seven secrets are quite nice as well. Overall a very solid entry even if less is sometimes more. 75 minutes." - manarch2 (01-Jul-2020)

"This is a huge, complex, fascinating level and definitely not one you’ll be able to finish in an hour! I certainly did get quite confused at times and ended up doing a great deal of exploring, but the gameplay is so absorbing and the different areas so beautifully rendered, that I really didn’t mind at all. The traps/puzzles/enemies elements are well balanced and managed to keep me fully engaged and entertained throughout what is likely to be one of the longest entries (although I’m not quite half way through yet, so I could well be wrong). Magnificent." - Jay (28-Jun-2020)

"What can I say? An extraordinary level. A fantastic setting that at first glance suggests a very long and draining adventure. But as the game progresses you will soon notice that the gameplay is very well thought-out and you hardly notice the size of the area. Because that is really big. But all areas are very well designed, the music fits well to the tasks and the lighting is simply good. One of the strengths of the game is, as already mentioned, the gameplay. With such a large area you never had the feeling to be lost. A compliment to the LB. For me a highlight that I can warmly recommend to everyone." - nad (26-Jun-2020)

"Great level! This level is very enormous but everything is thought out. Sceneries are very beautiful. I really liked the atmosphere, wind blowing and nice music playing. Gameplay was various and we have a lot to do. Environment was great. Various enemies and boss battle. Lighting was very good but sometimes a bit monotonous. Textures also was nicely placed. In different locations there were nicely different soundtracks was playing. I got 4/7 secrets and completed it in 2 hours and 11 minutes. I really liked this level and I definetly recommend it! Thanks!" - BlackWolfTR (21-Jun-2020)
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