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Curse of Xian by Elfy

Duncan 7 6 6 7
eRIC 6 6 7 6
eTux 5 6 6 5
Gerty 7 6 8 7
Gill 8 7 8 9
Jose 5 6 5 5
Kristina 5 5 5 5
MichaelP 6 7 9 7
Orbit Dream 7 6 7 7
Phil 8 7 8 7
Ryan 7 6 7 6
Samu 5 6 6 6
Sash 6 6 7 6
Scottie 7 6 8 7
Treeble 6 6 6 6
release date: 21-Nov-2004
# of downloads: 87

average rating: 6.43
review count: 15
review this level

file size: 17.19 MB
file type: TR4
class: City

author profile(s):

Reviewer's comments
"It is nice from time to time check these older levels that never were the most famous ones and went under my radar during the time they were released. Gameplay in this level is rather simplistic including mostly basic jumping, activating couple of jump switches, quests for different items, such as crowbar and laser sight, and running quite a bit back and forth. You can also easily skip big parts of the level, for example by jumping over fences that are supposed to block your way. There is also a pool, which you have to fill with water to gain access to a switch that opens a door. However, you can get to this switch from a nearby platform without having to fill the pool, allowing you to skip a large section of the level. The environment contains crude geometry, many stretched textures, and flat lighting. As long as you don't expect exciting gameplay and beautiful visuals from the level, go ahead and give it a try." - Samu (02-Sep-2023)
"A fairly standard city style level which has you hunt down a couple of pieces to proceed until you lay your hands on the ever elusive crowbar, then work your way back to a crowbar switch to eventually finish. The author might have not taken into account that it's possible to jump over most fences, which may in turn lead to illegal shortcuts and potential softlocks, and there were a few rooms in which the end of the world was within reach, sometimes as invisible walls and others as ceilings. I never used the lasersight, so I'm not sure it served a purpose at all, and generally speaking the level looked a bit dark - and I, careless, ran out of flares about halfway through. Ah, yes, there are a few unmarked climbable surfaces, but fortunately they're quite obvious. 35 minutes. 02/21" - Treeble (14-Feb-2021)
"Not a bad level, but not a very good design too. Not very care with the texturization, simple architecture, no puzzles to solve; the main goal is to find the crowbar to use in a crowbar switch near the starting bridge and, prematurely, open the exit door and finish the level. Even so I tried to follow Phil's walkthrough and do all the intended tasks planned by the builder, and even when I could shoot the hanging ball in the room with the hammergod without the crossbow and sight (another error in the design) the gameplay was not so bad at all. Playable level but without interesting features." - Jose (28-Jun-2017)
"Despite the low scores (from some reviewers anyway), I actually enjoyed this little romp. I suppose it's not the most overwhelming experience and the darkness is rather off-putting, but I liked some of the gameplay ideas such as the long dive into a small water pool, the ascension of the crane and the hammergod sequence. I also felt that the City wad audio really helped the atmosphere. If you're looking for a short and sweet level, then try it out. There are far worse options." - Ryan (02-Nov-2016)
"The same like Phil has happened to me. I have played through the level quite normally and already wanted to write a Review. Then, however, I have had a look before over again briefly at the other Reviews and had to ascertain which I had not played an area at all. However, it is not also in such a way which one would have to play this area now absolutely. Though it looks, like the whole level, good, indeed, it is insignificant for the other play course. The property in this level is which he does not look at all like a city level. Mostly look such levels which were built with the City of Dead-textures, boringly to plug-ugly. However, this level is a wholesome exception. One can compare this well, because Elfy has built with Towards the city a level which I have not liked at all. It is a pity, that Elfy has not built even more levels." - Scottie (19-May-2010)
"I admit this was nowhere near the top of my to play list, but since it was on another wishlist I wanted to help with, I gave it a go. And it started out in a fairly promising way - the torch lit street looked cool and the first task was creative enough to set my hopes relatively high for the rest of the game. And while it has its moments, the overall impressions leave an aftertaste of a rather mediocre TR experience. At times I was second guessing my own actions as they felt like ways the author had not intended me to progress and was perplexed at the odd object and texture use. For example, one part of the Cartouche pieces has a small fun task set around for getting it while the other just lies at the bottom of a pool, thus almost resulting in me almost missing it, since I expected something on par with what I had to do to get the first one. I also suspected that the author spread guns and ammo around listlessly - I never found any uzis despite finding some ammo, no extra ammo for the HK gun and no Crossbow as well, but according to the other reviews I probably just missed it, and could get through with the revolver anyway. I also missed flares for the darker points as my initial stack ran out soon. As far as textures go - while the overall looks are relatively decent, I was sometimes perplexed as far as the choice for monkey-swingable and climbable surfaces versus regular surfaces went. None of the items had script names, but that's also where my litany of complaints ends. As in the end - this did provide me with a fun 40 minutes to spend a lazy afternoon in and overall had the potential for a lot of great stuff to come. The author seems to have it in him, and if he'd release anything again, it would be interesting to note his progress, but would I recommend this particular level? If you like gloomy city settings - it's worth a glance, so if you can live with its imperfections, give it a go." - eTux (18-Jul-2009)
"Here's another older level I played for the purpose of writing a walkthrough. This time I broke with my usual practice and played the level to conclusion before starting to write. Then I read the reviews and I found to my surprise that I'd skipped a whole section of gameplay which, as it turned out, was completely unnecessary. I went back and played the parts I'd missed, so when I do write the walkthrough I'll hopefully have it laid out the way the builder intended that the level be played. It's a fairly straightforward, although a little too dark, romp through a castle area, with a lot of variety in the tasks that need to be performed. Plan on investing about an hour of your time in a fairly entertaining raid." - Phil (15-Mar-2006)
"What a nice little gem. Another city level by Elfy and this time it was more solid than the first level. Finding the crowbar is a must and that you will find in a roundabout way. There aren't that many enemies in here but the Hammerguy was a bit out of place so was the Cartouche. In the room with the Hammerguy is some (hard to see) practice shooting to do but by that time you should have the crossbow so give it your best shot. Maybe it was not intentionally but there are two ways to play this level a short and a long version. I know it does pay off to examine a room thoroughly before moving on keeping a saved game at strategic points so I search first one direction and going back to the save the other direction. There is nice jumping to do. Keep some flares handy as I completely overlooked a crawlspace and by lighting a flare I could slap myself. Try it this is a nice level to play. 27-11-2004" - Gerty (13-Dec-2004)
"I am really not a fan of city levels but I thought this overall setting was rather nicely done as far as atmosphere goes and has a few really good moments. There are a few nice jumps two gems and a cartouche to get and use a hammergod a wraith some SAS and some skellies to deal with and I also liked the ending with a simple mirror room and the meeting with Sophia who probably wants to talk to Lara about that dagger she just picked up in this level. I would even have rated gameplay a little higher but there are a number of rather severe design flaws in it as you can short cut a variety of things and therefore play the level quite differently to the author's intentions or even get stuck with no way back. Even the rope in the hammergod room is not needed as you can directly jump across to the area from which you can then target shoot the swinging thing and the fact that you can sidejump over those fences was probably unknown to the author. So it can easily turn out to be a very confusing level but it's fun if you are lucky enough to play it the way the author wanted you to." - Michael (11-Dec-2004)
"It's a short level where a player can skip a part of it unfortunately. The rooms are mostly empty and most of it is dark. There isn't much to do here you have to find two gems and finally get to the Dagger of Xian. The skeletons are annoying but there is a problem with the level I got to an area with a grate in the floor which I never opened and I think I should have flooded another area but never did. I finished it anyway but I think some parts have to be fixed." - Kristina (09-Dec-2004)
"Dark city skeletons hammergod SAS a wraith it's got it all. Well maybe not it all but this is quite a compact fast at 40 minutes and intriguing level sadly though that indefinable something is missing. Half of this level is in the pursuit of the crowbar and once you get it you are supposed to then go on a 10 - 15 minute adventure to flood a large pit with water but after having finished the level that way it is obvious that this is not necessary as you can reach a crowbar switch without having to use that water to swim to it. There is also a crane arm in this section that seems impossible to get on which a flyby insinuates you need to do but as I couldn't get on it I found a much easier way to wherever I was going. These things aside this is a nice atmospheric level that is neither too easy nor too difficult I just wished there had been some secrets to collect." - Sash (29-Nov-2004)
"This is one of those levels which impressed initially but irritated ultimately. The high points are the clever jump sequences; the returning to earlier areas from a different direction; the occasionally clever puzzles and the fabulous swan dive into the top of a small building (replayed five times in my case). The low points are the occasionally infuriating puzzles (at one point you can easily miss a diamond and not realise until quite some time later resulting in a 'replay rather a lot of the level' syndrome) the backtracking the darkness and the frequently awkward scenery which was sometimes blatantly missing textures and often failing to conceal large stretches of 'the end of the world'. As a result the atmosphere was somewhat lacking and the darkness often hindered the gameplay. Nonetheless this is still rather an intriguing excursion. The swan dive (as I've already mentioned but I can't write it enough) is sensational and many of the jump sequences are quite original and fun. For those wishing to return to the somber and murky 'dark city' scenarios (so popular in the early LE days) this has a somewhat nostalgic feel; just be sure to play it with the curtains drawn and the lights out." - Orbit Dream (28-Nov-2004)
"A typical 'city of the dead' level with the same atmosphere and a few SAS with also a few different textures objects and enemies. Your goal is to find the dagger of Xian and meet a good friend of Lara at the end. A good little level with puzzles exploration and jumps. It lasts one hour but you can also hit the end trigger after 15 minutes if you don't go placing the first gem you've found and use the crowbar on the switch to open the ending area. If this shortcut was not the author's intention half of the map she has built can be totally missed malediction!" - eRIC (28-Nov-2004)
"I believe this is the second level for this author and a considerable improvement. The level starts on a bridge between a flooded area with a crane and a deep pit with skeletons (not enemies). Most of the action involves the area around the deep pit - I'm not sure why I even bothered with the area with the crane. There are some tricky bits to this one. Once you get the dagger try a side jump over the railing. After you get the dagger it looks like a set up for a 'boss' confrontation - but the level just ends. This is well worth playing and I hope the author keeps going and keeps improving." - Duncan (28-Nov-2004)
"This was a lovely city level and I thoroughly enjoyed playing it. Textures lighting & layouts were brilliantly done. Your aim in this level is to find the crowbar and flood another big area. You will encounter a few sliding jumps but there not too difficult to master pulling some jump-switches retrieving 2 parts of a puzzle piece and a gem. Your main enemies are dogs skeletons a few gun men and the great hammer god makes an appearance. There's a rope swing pulling some floor lever switches which you need your crowbar for and once all this is done you enter your last rooms blasting or dodging a few more skeletons getting past a fire trap to retrieve another gem and the weapons code key which will end this lovely level. It's quite a short level but it does have a lovely atmosphere and some great game-play and worth the d/load." - Gill (28-Nov-2004)