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Level: BtB2020 - The Dharma Jewel back home search
Author(s): BtB 2020
total rating:8.48 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
Adrian 10 9 10 9
BlackWolfTR 9 9 9 9
eRIC 9 8 8 7
Feder 9 9 8 7
Jay 9 9 9 9
Jorge22 8 8 8 8
Jose 9 9 9 9
manarch2 8 8 7 7
nad 8 8 7 7
Phil 9 9 10 8
Relic Hunter 8 8 8 8
Ryan 9 9 8 8
Topixtor 9 8 7 7
Treeble 9 10 10 10
category averages
(14 reviews)
8.79 8.64 8.43 8.07

Reviewer's comments

"This level didn't quite click with me, although it's obviously very well built. I loved the little touches such as the torch vanishing when it's no longer needed, and boulders crushing either objects or enemies. On the other hand, being ambushed very early on by a giant guardian for simply picking up some shotgun shells felt a bit weird. You'd think these guys would be reserved for the finales, but fear not as there's one (alongside two hammer demigods) in a side adventure you get to experience if you shatter 10 vases across the level. On such technicalities, there were quite a few interesting features at play here, such as a low-gravity jump, some floating rising platforms, the bouncing pad (first time I ever saw it in a TR4 level), among many others. Gameplay is generally speaking rather linear, but I found myself stuck quite a few times not realizing new paths had been open after completing certain areas. Definitely worth checking out, maybe my timing was just poor. 110 minutes, 3 secrets. 06/20" - Treeble (06-Jul-2020)

"Halfway through this level I had my review all mapped out, figuring that with three BtB levels nearly under my belt I finally had a basis for comparison. I was all set to give this one a thumbs down, saying that with all the available tools the builder had elected instead to provide another good but run-of-the-mill underground level with drab appointments and excessive darkness to boost. But about the time we get to that timed torch exercise, things take a definite upward turn. The surroundings become much more pleasing to the eye, the gameplay becomes crisp and engrossing, and I didn't want to see it all come to an end. The icing on the cake is that gorgeous bonus area at the end if you find and shoot 10 vases along the way (and they're hard to miss if you're following Dutchy's walkthrough). This is obviously the work of a seasoned builder, and I'm surprised the scores haven't been higher than they are. My total playing time was just over two hours. High recommendations." - Phil (05-Jul-2020)

"Another fun level with special care towards gameplay and secrets which I am fine with. There are a lot of different tasks, some easier, some harder (the hard version of the excellent last timed run couldn't have been much more tight, while the torch one was very generous). There is clever usage of traps as well as the enemies which are decently used as well. Seldom there is a moment where you don't know what to do next, despite a few parts where you need to stop and think before going on. What I generally disliked was the quite dark lighting and at times flares are not working (too many flames?) or are removed from the inventory (??). The five secrets plus one extra secret are quite hard to find but rewarding, especially the last nice looking village (despite missing lighting) which you get to see if you shoot all the vases. In general the looks are a bit monotonous though, despite occasional highlights, and architecture is not as refined as in some other levels in this contest. Anyway this level is quite enjoyable and I left after 55 mintues with a good impression." - manarch2 (03-Jul-2020)

"This is a very neatly built level, with well used textures and music. The lighting leaves a lot to be desired in many areas, though, as it's simply too dark at times. This disturbs the game flow enormously. The tasks are not really innovative or spectacular, but you have enough to do, also because the level is quite long. You have to shoot down ten vases to get into the bonus level, a beautifully designed Tibetan village, the only real outdoor area. Also worth mentioning is the very tight timerun, which goes over a longer distance. There is a secret room in the game, but it doesn't count as a secret. It's a pity, since I found it." - nad (03-Jul-2020)

"Another surprisingly lengthy level in this superb competition. This particular entry tends to put the sole focus on the gameplay, with the general architecture and texturing being a generally secondary factor. Not that the looks are unappealing, but the room decoration is a bit plain, the textures a bit jarring to the eyes and the lighting tends towards the gloomy side the majority of the time. The gameplay provides a good mixture of tasks that should satisfy every level of raider, with some good uses of elevator platforms, surprisingly challenging traps, utilisation of Lara's ledge jump manoeuvres, a laborious but undoubtedly ingenious pushblock puzzle and a boss fight that gives a whole new meaning to the phrase "adrenaline rush". I also liked the way the secret system was set up - being able to access an additional bonus area by shooting 10 vases sporadically scattered around the level. I'd probably be rubbish at the guess the builder competition, but I've certainly got a good idea about this one (and no, I refuse to say in case I'm embarassingly wrong!)." - Ryan (30-Jun-2020)

"Another good and long level to enjoy with a lot of tasks and good features. The timed run in easy mode was ok, but the time for the first trapdoor was too tight. Try to shoot all 10 vases scattered around the level (not difficult to find) or you'll lose a part of the gameplay, with more puzzles, an extra secret and more bosses to shoot. Again, many dark areas without flares to properly explore, well placed cameras and correct use of musics and objects. Good work!" - Jose (28-Jun-2020)

"I did not especially liked the first underground area, but the fun really started for me in the second one and onwards the level is full of activities with rooms containing excellent gameplay : the large room with ledges and the adjacent one with the revolver , or the one with water and ascending/descending platforms. There are some good ideas in some other areas as well ; the level ends with a great timed trapdoor , then a boss. There is some bonus if you find all the optionnal vases to shoot. The setting is solidly made with an emphasize on diagonal walls, it's obvious that the choice of textures was not the builder's first concern and what i liked the less here is the lighting, often in the reddish tones , and anyway the level is not very easy on the eyes. This said , quite an entertaining level." - eRIC (28-Jun-2020)

"I really liked this level's gameplay. Clever use of a wide range of TR tasks including elevator-platforms, boulders that smash object/open trapdoors, reduced gravity etc. Good puzzles. Liked the vase quest and the reward of an extra location to explore. My favourite so far of the 3 levels played in order." - Adrian (26-Jun-2020)

"This is surely one big mixed bag for me; on a positive note, gameplay is generally inventive and fun, and I personally LOVE the trolly level design (for example in the first cave when you pick up the shotgun ammo...); also nice little easter egg if you stand still for a while. There is also a bit more combat if compared to the other entries I played until now, and final optional boss battle was sure fun; found all secrets, and I must say they were all nicely hidden, but I still missed some more enemies here and there; so I decided to reward that category with one more point because I felt a 9 was necessary here. As for the negatives, this sure isn't much of an eye-candy level, with most places designed strongly with gameplay convenience in mind, or looking a bit abrupt and maze-like (without actually any mazes); texturing, while solid and without errors, often looked a bit random and with different materials clashing into eachother, and lighting was mostly using just one orange tone without many shades. However, the final optional area is a different thing: I don't know why, but the mood and polish of that small section is visually far better than the rest of the game in my opinion, texturing and geometry being more worked out and perfected; gameplay here as mentioned was fun too, and a nice reward for finding all vases, with all the random things tossed in here like the Quartz skull existing just for the little flyby it triggers; just a pity the market area didn't really contain anything (at least I think, since there was a gong but I found no gong hammer). All in all a fun gameplay oriented level, that will surely be appreciated by more experienced players who like a bit of trolling in their levels. Good job!" - Topixtor (25-Jun-2020)

"In contrast to the usual Tibet theme, the builder presents an adventure with a warmer feel here. The action begins outside with a brief visit to a lagoon before descending into caverns and catacombs underground. An earthen color palette dominates with browns, tans, oranges, greys and reds with an occasional cooler color thrown in to vary up the atmosphere. The gameplay has a task oriented feel that opens up other tasks for Lara to complete, from lighting braziers to reveal pickups to platforming for the right switches and opening new areas. Spike traps are thrown in to provide some danger, along with the occasional mercenary goon to shoot. There were a few nice platforming elements as well, including an optionally challenging timed run, platforming with rising and lowering platforms, and some use of the jump pad to get up to higher areas. Things come to an end with a Seth battle, and an optional visit to a neat secret village if the ten vases are found and broken. I feel that some more clear direction in the beginning areas would help tighten up the gameplay flow, and maybe finding ways to incorporate cooler colored themes would spice things up too. After a while the level does feel rather monotonous in its setting with many areas having a similar theme to them, though the secret village was a nice aesthetic change that unfortunately came a little too late. This was at times frustrating in the beginning, but once you can work out what needs to be done the game does solidly entertain. Overall I had a good time." - Relic Hunter (21-Jun-2020)

"Good use has been made of Lara’s ‘new moves’ in this lively level. The action takes place mainly indoors so there are few glimpses of snowy mountains, which may well be a preferable visit to Tibet for those with no head for heights. There’s a good mix of gameplay to achieve, with one timed run that I found really tricky, even using the easy option, but it was rather well devised for all that. Enemies are sparingly used and you’ll find more than sufficient pickups to deal with them. Another excellent, entertaining entry in this year’s competition." - Jay (20-Jun-2020)

"Another level suffering from "the lonely yeti" syndrom: one single yeti on the entire level, that just comes out of nowhere, like it's been lost in that cave a long time. And you can kill him from a safe distance, so it really has no point at been there at all. That being said, here we have a level that takes place in several underground caves and temples, with a couple of outdoor areas which were pretty good to look at. This level reflects some nice ideas, like the 10 vases to shoot at and its reward (which I couldn't get because I missed 2 of them), or the opportunity to choose between the easy or the hard way. Those concepts where well accomplished indeed, so gameplay was mostly fun and creative. You get plenty of ammo along the way, but since the boss is invulnerable, there is no point at saving it for the end, so better use it on those gunners. The weakest point to me was the lighting: it was bland and monotonous. And there were parts where it was cut between rooms (it can observed while walking on the tight rope outside). Something I noticed as well was that the items in the inventory had the wrong lighting, they all seemed very greenish and dark, don't know exactly why. Found 1 secret out of 5." - Feder (19-Jun-2020)

"Unfortunately, I ended the level one vase short from being able to visit the village... Well, I did start on the wrong foot with Lara trapped between the water and the starting island but, from then on, everything moved smoothly. Or did it? I can't complain of any lack of difficulty, among so many different kinds of traps and rather puzzling situations. Furthermore, that long timed run is almost sadistic during its first part and I've lost count of how many times I tried it before being able to proceed (in easy mode, yes). The final boss, a demon, isn't actually that difficult if you know what you have to do - which you're not supposed to... I can't remember getting any flares and I thought it was a little scarce on medipacks. This adventure takes place mostly in enclosed spaces and is looks well designed for the most part, even though not eye candy. The atmosphere is ok. And it's really very action-packed. Tough in many ways. Not for the faint of heart. A little overdone? I liked it, but I would have liked it more if I'd managed to visit the village without having to go back to the start of the level and if it were lovely and peaceful." - Jorge22 (19-Jun-2020)

"Really good level! Gameplay was mostly located in undergrounds but we also explore some open locations. There were many traps and nice puzzles, I really liked it. And I love how author give us secret village when we shoot 10 vases! Great Idea! This secret Village was really beautiful and we also have something to do in it. Secrets were ingenious hidden. Athmosphere and lighting was great but sometime a bit monotouns. I also very liked the idea of giving a hard or easy time trial version! I picked hard version :) The textures was good placed. I got 3/5 secrets and finished level in 1 hour 48 minutes. Reccomend, thanks!" - BlackWolfTR (16-Jun-2020)
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