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Level: Lost Temple of Vaara back home search
Author(s): DOS
total rating:4.80 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
Catherin 6 5 5 4
eTux 4 3 3 3
G.Croft 6 6 7 6
Gerty 6 5 6 5
Jay 5 4 6 5
Jose 2 4 3 3
Kristina 3 4 4 3
MichaelP 4 5 7 4
Moonpooka 7 6 7 7
Obig 6 6 8 5
Orbit Dream 2 2 1 3
RaiderGirl 7 5 7 5
Ryan 4 4 5 4
Sash 6 5 7 5
Xela 5 4 5 4
category averages
(15 reviews)
4.87 4.53 5.40 4.40

Reviewer's comments

"Apparently,I played and reviewed the near-identical remake of this level thirteen years ago.Clearly,my memory had successfully expunged all the unpleasant details from my mind,as none of what I've just experienced felt even remotely familiar - and most of it was profoundly unenjoyable. Dreary corridor running;an annoying fly-by which didn't end until Lara had managed to depart an entire area;no puzzles;excessive darkness;stretched textures everywhere.One interesting room with platforms and levers was not enough to compensate for all the weaknesses;and the best description I can find for the overall experience is 'frustrating'." - Orbit Dream (09-Mar-2017)

"There are actually some good ideas implemented in this 40-minute level: some nice music, a fun sloped pillar jumping sequence and a nice lever puzzle. The downsides really let this level down though. Textures are extremely stretched and I even saw a missing one near the end. The never ending flyby camera in the fire tile room was a nice idea, but executed poorly. There are also potential stuck moments with a timed door and a shimmy sequence. Not bad for a debut, but it could have been better." - Ryan (19-Jan-2017)

"A level where you easily can get stucked forever and need to reload often is not a good level for me. The continuous flyby in the room with fire tiles is very annoying, even when you can use the "look" key to restore the camera only a moment. If you miss a lever there you'll find a closed door later and sure have to re-start the level from the very beginning; also if you slide down the ramp with the spiked ball to the very end and miss the final crack, there's not a way to continue playing. No hints in the dark room with many floor levers to know the dangerous ones. Later, in the corridors, pull so many levers only to open so many doors the same way, blasting skeletons and mummies is very boring. What all the guns and ammo in that room are for? There are not more enemies until the end. If you add the very bad texturization with all those elongated and stretched textures, the empty rooms, the poor architecture and the absence of puzzles, you'll find a level not worth to play." - Jose (27-Sep-2016)

"This level offered some interesting puzzles, blowing up a ton of mummies and skeletons, and way, WAY too many corridors. I'll start with the positives, since there are some good moments to be had. The slope room was fun, if a tad too easy. The blue room spiced up the level by adding visual diversity and a cleverer lever puzzle, compared to the rest of the switch puzzles. And the opening title was kind of nifty. Unfortunately the downsides outweigh the positives. Textures are stretches and are either not diverse enough in individual rooms, or are so totally different between rooms that no atmosphere can plausibly exist. The level is riddled with bugs, some of which make it impossible to progress. And there are so. many. corridors. 1x1x~20 passages litter the level, forcing unnecessary padding on the player. It's fine when an author does this to get Lara from one place to another in a reasonable amount of space, but I don't think that that's what went on here. It's a shame too, there are some wonderful ideas in here that, with better guidance, could have turned this level from drab to...better. I know that there's a revised version floating around out there, and hopefully it addresses some of the issues present in this one." - Xela (18-Jul-2013)

"When I first loaded this up I could tell it was someone's first level there are stretched textures and bad colors everywhere and the first few rooms are simple. If you ignore the first rooms though you're in for a real treat as the closer you get to the end the better the level gets. I personally thought the room with the revolving camera angle was a great idea and something we haven't seen before the boulder traps are good and get you when you least expect them there's a neat black room with floating platforms switches and doors elevator tiles that lift you up and there's a great slide/jump puzzle with lots of jumps to make - lots of clever ideas so I hope the author keeps building and gives us another level to play soon. Secrets found: 1" - RaiderGirl (15-Sep-2003)

"This is an interesting level. Sometimes the rotating cameras are a bit odd but using the Numpad0 you can always determine your position. The level seems to be unfinished I think it will be continued. The enemies are only some Skeletons numerous Mummies and a flock of Scarabs. But you have fine weaponry: in the beginning you will find the Crossbow and the Grenade Gun. Sometimes it's a bit boring running up and down on the corridors and in the small labyrinth. I found only 1 secret. The added sounds are tremendously gruesome. In the dark room you should be cautious about the order of the levers to be pulled. The textures are average but they fit well to the atmosphere of the level. I found the Crystal in the Temple which may be used in the next installment." - Obig (15-Sep-2003)

"Although the 'Temple of Vaara' is an easy and short level it's a good debut level starting with a great title flyby room and music. The fire room with the revolving flyby camera was a pretty good idea (whether it was intentional or not). And I also liked the room where you have to find your way jumping over all the ledges and not to forget the amazing blue room where you can fall off the path so easily. There are a lot of levers and buttons to pull and push. And a few skeletons show up but you can get rid of them quite easily as you have enough ammo. The level took me about 50 minutes to play and I found one secret. (Referring to the textures it would be nice if the author added additional texture segments to the wall in order to avoid stretched wall textures in the future.) But I think the author has potential and I would like to see a new level in the future. (21-07-2003)" - Tinka (23-Jul-2003)

"This is a first time level and to a large extent that does show although it had some interesting moments. There was one rather ingenious fire room where the dizzying and slightly nausea inducing use of the camera made it an interesting feat to find the way through the flames. It also made it easy to miss a switch and a secret (which I did and had to go back because I got stuck). I also loved the massed ranks of skeletons in the blue gem room. It's always great fun seeing how many you can blow up with one shot. Otherwise this is quite a straightforward level with few enemies and no great challenges. However despite the lack of sophistication in either the textures or the gameplay there were flashes of talent evident that made me think the author might produce really good stuff with a little more practice. I enjoyed the use of audio files in particular. In the readme the author says he created this level without any outside assistance or guidance and insofar as that goes it constitutes a brave first attempt. Keep going DOS. 20.07.2003" - Jay (21-Jul-2003)

"For a debut this was a nice little 35 minute level but for the player out there this probably won't grab you by the throat and take you on the journey of a lifetime. Firstly some lowlights. This level has way too many stretched textures and the ones that aren't stretched don't really make for a very attractive place to play the one secret I found was almost impossible to miss as you had to pass it to proceed there was a massive amount of ammo to find a couple of minutes before the end that came into no help as all the enemies had been dealt with as of then and finally there were way too much mazelike tunnels near the end with the predictable push a lever then get ready for a skeleton mummy or pack of all to attack. Now for the highlights. There is the use of a revolving camera from above when you need to cross a fiery floor that was very innovative and I liked it very much the way the route would bring you back to areas you had already been without realising you had found your way back was architecturally a nice move the texturing in one room to make it look like you were playing on floating blue platforms and that anytime you could fall off into the black void was really good. Summing up this is a really nice first try with some quite good moments but I hope that the author will try and improve with his next levels on the gameplay with some more puzzles not just based on buttons and levers or at least add a timed element to them to increase the difficulty and that a little more time be put into the texturing." - Sash (20-Jul-2003)

"I think this is a good level for a first one. You can see that the author has wanted to try out many of the possibilities of the editor ('original' editor - no extra programs or other stuff used the readme says). The quest is to find the Crystal of Vaara and near the end Lara finds another treasure of weapons ammo and medi-pacs. I liked the fire room with the turning camera - find your way through the firey floor while the camera turns around the room (without it it would have been too easy). Some other nice flybys too. Not too many tricks or traps but many levers to find and pull. The 'labyrinth' could have been a little more labyrintish thus more challenging. At one point Lara got stuck which I don't like - either a way out or instant death. Enemies were skeletons mummies and beetles. Anyway - I enjoyed the 45 min it lasted. Keep the good work up DOS and I'll look forward to your next level!" - G.Croft (20-Jul-2003)

"This is a fast paced almost straight forward level with a lot of levers to pull. For enemies you get skeletons some mummies and beetles and none are a threat as you'll get the enough explosives to kill the skeletons. Most rooms are huge and there is an incredible fall into some water and I hope you saved before that. There are some trigger tiles and if they were timed runs I didn't notice. There is however one very annoying flyby that is in a loop and I did try my hardest to get rid of the thing. No way so you probably have to suffer as it is in a room with burning tiles and you have to fumble your way through there. Found a blue gem and Lara took that with her in her backpack and almost at the end there is a big piece of texture missing you can't miss it. All in all I found it a strange level with strange textures. Hope you kept up your jumping skill as that is also needed also this was another game where I sat with very sweaty palms and not because of the hot weather we were having. There is a flare bug in one room but the author mentioned that in the readme. 16-07-2003" - Gerty (20-Jul-2003)

"A very strange level but I don't mean that in a bad way the music was weird and the atmosphere quite spooky the dark red textures in most rooms gave me an eery kind of feeling and with the skeletons running around as well all in all was a well presented level. Did I enjoy it? Yes because there were some good additions like the revolving camera in the red room the elevating steps that rise up when you stand on them and the room with the zillion jumps I absolutely loved! The blue room with the ledges and I don't know how many floor levers seemed a bit boring to look at but when I got going I did enjoy it. Nice little maze to get a bit lost in but nothing too difficult plenty of ammo and medis and of course the crossbow very early on to deal with those skellies. Ok you're basically making your way through some weird looking rooms and finding levers to open doors find that door and move on with a right round trip back to the chapel type room to exit the level. I liked it and it felt different but I think it could have had a few bits more like some different enemies other than skeletons and a few beetles to cope with but I give it a thumbs up!" - Moonpooka (20-Jul-2003)

"This level starts out better then the scores may indicate. A nice little title flyby room interesting choice of music mainly based on the City texture set with some Catacomb objects and quite an interesting Church-like room (with a neat flyby) await you. You find the crossbow and some explosives early and later the grenade gun as a secret so the two dozen skeletons and mummies along the way are not really a threat. Also the fire floor room with the rotating camera is a new idea which I found interesting and if you are all confused by it just hit the look key to see where you are. Unfortunately in the latter half of this 40 minutes adventure it turns into a lever/button/door-and-lots-of-pointless-running-in-long-mazelike-hallways game - very tedious. The blue room with lots of blackness was interesting but overall a lot more work needs to go into the textures (a few missing many very stretched). The biggest gameplay error is that you are stuck for good if you don't do that one slide backwards and shimmy across to the lever. So a solid attempt at a first level and the room full of goodies near the end suggest a sequel so I hope it will be out soon." - Michael (18-Jul-2003)

"This is a first effort of the author and he claims he has done it without any help of the forum and has put a lot of work into it - and that's great but I didn't soften my review because of this as I want to present this as fairly as I can. There were not many things to the gameplay - lots of levers and buttons to activate a room with a burning floor (where as the author states in his readme the flare bug occures - so be careful here!) where the flyby never stopped and kept spinning around so to see my way I had to hit the 'look' key to break the flyby but then again when I let the key go the flyby went on and on - I don't know if this was done intentionally (probably not) but the author should've hit the ONE SHOT button for the fly-by's trigger in order to avoid this. There is an escape-the-rolling ball bit a fine jump sequence after getting the gem and I liked the bluish area with the doors and levers quite much actually but there still are too many levers/buttons and too less puzzles & action. There was no real use to the laser sight too as far as I'm concerned and the mummies and skeletons were no big threat after finding the crossbow too - I didn't even have to use the grenade launcher I found along the way. There were also a bunch of other weapons and ammo near the end of the level which is not very useful unless there's a sequel to the game. I also don't understand why the author included the catacomb and title wads in the download as both - the title level and the actual level didn't use anything I haven't seen in those wads before and all of us who have the level editor have those wads too so he could've provided only the TOM's for these levels. Might be just me missing something and sorry if it is that way but I just wanted to mention this. The textures were stretched thorough the whole level and there was practically no lighting - only the ambient one in most of the rooms while the lighting is very important for a great atmosphere! Overall I'm not very impressed by the author's efforts but I hope this doesn't let him down and he'll try to make his next level even better and maybe will gather some experienced reviewers/players to beta-test his work before releasing it for a wider range of public." - eTux (18-Jul-2003)

"As much as I want to be 'gentle' in my comments about this level it's not very easy. A first try is always admirable how someone releases a level that knows it has many and sometimes big problems but yet puts oneself in a vulnerable position. The level is all about pushing switches levers and opening doors but has some traps and enemies too. The fire room was nice but the camera was so annoying that I was cursing all the way in and out. The author does warn in his notes about this but not exactly. The camera is supposed to stop when you are off the trigger tile well I am sorry but did he mean off the entire room because I couldn't see where I was going and when I had to turn in a corner the big blocks were in the way so it's very difficult to navigate Lara. Also I can't forgive the stretched and badly placed textures at least that is not hard to get rid of. I am sorry but I can't have any fun in a game that has annoying cameras looping over and over again around the room or rooms that give a bad feeling the way they are textured. The skeletons and mummies were of no threat with the crossbow and grenade gun at hand. There was a room that looked like a church a nice effort. Do not jump into the water after a long slide and a spike ball coming down you will know when you get there before you find a switch to open the door inside the water. If you do you are stuck for good. I am really not interested if someone warns me about these kind of problems or even bugs I do want to know of course and I am grateful when authors point them out but what I mean is I can't enjoy a game that can get me stuck with no way out. I do encourage the builder of this level to continue and use the reviewers comments to get better. I have to rate the level though according to gameplay enemies and all the categories and not according to how much time it was spent to create it. Not even a medium level but it is worth having a look at it if for nothing else to help someone improve and give us good games to play in the future." - Kristina (17-Jul-2003)
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