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ORC18 - The Witch's Blow by Dreamfall

ameliacrofty 8 9 10 8
Bigfoot 9 10 10 9
Cbl 9 7 7 6
DJ Full 7 7 7 7
Gorty 6 7 7 5
Jay 8 8 9 9
Jorge22 7 7 7 7
Jose 7 8 8 9
manarch2 5 7 7 6
Mehrbod 9 9 10 10
MichaelP 7 7 6 6
Mman 7 7 7 6
Nuri 8 8 10 9
Orbit Dream 7 7 8 8
Phil 8 8 8 8
Ryan 7 7 9 9
TombExplorer 4 7 6 4
Torry 8 8 10 10
Wolf7 8 7 9 7
release date: 15-Sep-2018
# of downloads: 164

average rating: 7.66
review count: 19
review this level

file size: 48.20 MB
file type: TR4
class: Castle

author profile(s):

Reviewer's comments
"This One Room Challenge 2018 Level is set in a fantasy world (something that is rarely seen and that I love) and you control this elf witch that has to rescue the princess from a fortress. A thing that really got me was that at times, some Skyrim music was present, which really fits in the fantasy theme. The main weapons were the "magic wands", made out of the pistols, and they were pretty good to use in this level! Although this level felt a bit unique(and being unique is something I love in games), there have been many design choices that were kinda bad in my opinion. I will cover the texturing and lighting first. It is too flat. Add this to a castle that is all gray and well, you get something that is too bland. Some contrast could have really helped this level to have a better atmosphere. The gameplay was mostly finding hidden switches or keys. Some of the things I disliked are related to some gameplay elements. First of all, the Wall Switch at the beginning requires a very pixel-perfect jump, and also it had no sense to have a switch there out of the fortress walls. Another thing(that maybe was a bug I got) was the puzzle with the red marks on the floor near the well. It opened the door after stepping over the marks some times. But the worst thing of the level was the boss fight at the end. The first part(where you kill the enemy witch) was decent. But the problem comes when you spawn the Tomb Raider 4's Dragon/Snake: you have almost no space to jump, you have this very big collision in the way, you have 2 very difficult to reach wall switches, and at the same time, this dragon shoots you fireballs that get you 99% of the time. This kind of bossfight was ATROCIOUS and a TORTURE. It could have been designed way better. I loved the idea you had to use the cannons, but you could barely reach/use them. By the time you pressed one, lara was already fried. That is why I am scared this level didn't have proper betatesting. To conclude, I think this level could have some potential but it was a bit of disappointment. I don't blame it completely to the fact that it is an One Room Challenge, because I am sure there are a lot of things that could have been done better. Recommended? Maybe, if you don't have anything else to play. Difficulty? Medium. The last boss fight is Insane though. Duration? Approx. 25-40 minutes." - TombExplorer (07-Aug-2020)
"What a peaceful, magical environment and level design. Lara being some sort of fairy warrior with her magic wands, has to find a way through a castle to fight a witch and save a princess. The whole level has the atmosphere of a magical fairytale. Everything is solved pretty easily except the last fight, or I mean the second part of it." - Nuri (04-Jun-2019)
"An enjoyable entry from the author, I don't quite have anything to complain about, except I lost lotsa' time in the intro - don't ask me why though -. I was quite unsatisfied with part of the texturing,'cuz it was kinda off, especially the castle, and the lighting did not help a lot, yet I can't complain (object limit). Neat, recommended. Wolfy Regards." - Wolf7 (06-Mar-2019)
"Another good level from this contest. Not a great gameplay with certain backtracking and a couple of bosses at the end, but not hard tasks except the final jumpswitches and I couldn't figure ou t where to use the Lute (where is the camera shot?). OK in architecture and texturization, good use of the musics, I missed some traps and extra pickups, even when they were not necessary. All in all another good level worth to play. Good work, Dreamfall." - Jose (29-Dec-2018)
"This is another Complex Simplicity themed map, this one is structured closer to an actual castle though, and the object use and texturing is decent in that regard. lighting is the weak point as it's pretty bland and flat, which is unfortunate as this could be a pretty great looking level with that area improved. The gameplay is okay, with a nice enough flow of tasks (although one bit of backtracking felt a bit unnecessary, and there's actually a very creative use of objects for one puzzle, along with a boss fight conclusion. Not amoung the best but another good entry." - Mman (26-Nov-2018)
"This levels lacks the sophistication of some of the other ORC levels, but's fun to play and provides nearly a half hour of solid entertainment. You'll never hear me complain about too much light, and I'll take "able to see" over "garish" any day of the week. Lulling the fierce dog to sleep was something I never would have thought of on my own, especially as there's no receptacle in the dog's snout to telegraph the need to use the lute there. Moreover, it was a pain to get past the sleeping dog once the deed was done. I finally got past, not by running or jumping over him but by squeezing past him to one side. A good, solid level." - Phil (12-Nov-2018)
"Quite a charming little adventure that manages to create a sense of story in the 25 minutes it lasts (and don't we all secretly dream of rescuing the princess one of these days? ;) ) From the nice intro with the raven you get a mix of quick tasks, including swimming through a tunnel with spike traps (twice), and while progress is generally clear, it would not have occurred to me to play the lute to get past that beast there, so that stopped me and had me glimpse at the walkthrough. Oddly, Lara was not able to jump anymore for a little while after playing that lute, but soon after her full range of skills was back (and needed) for the double boss battle at the end. So - entertaining story here, but atmosphere falls short a bit, mainly due to very little attention given to lighting the rooms." - MichaelP (23-Oct-2018)
"This turned out to be quite a sweet and charming little fairytale adventure. I was somewhat put off by the overly bright lighting, which was too garish for my liking, although the texturing and construction was actually rather well done. I also liked the different playable character, the beginning sequence with a message being delivered via a carrier...raven, the lute puzzle and the dialogues, as well as the happy ending with the Witch being vanquished and the rescue of the princess. A feelgood adventure and sufficiently enjoyable." - Ryan (16-Oct-2018)
"Another good entry of this One Room Challenge of this year 2018. Not Lara this time but another special character ... a kind of magician or wizard woman. This level is not really hard and I really like the various events who happened like the lion who sleep after playing guitar. It's very fun. Just maybe not very fan of the dragon in the final room because I need to laod and load a lot of time my game because he burning me. It's the only thing, the rest of the game is fabulous. There are also a very good use of the textures. I recognize the Complex Simplicity textures set here and the use is perfect. The game is just maybe very clear sometimes, whitout real contrast between interior and exterior and it's maybe a pity. But the adventure is however a good entry, playable by everyone and very recommanded. Congratulation Dreamfall ;) !!!" - Bigfoot (08-Oct-2018)
"The third level from the author dreamfall I’ve played. I didn’t liked much the second one, Shattered ties, but this one seems to be a step back. It starts with a nice cutscene with a bad voice acting cover. After that Lara starts to explore a castle like environment, starting from the outside. The gameplay is somehow standard with many switch pulling, some missing camera hints, but overall acceptable. Doesn’t offer anything too interesting, but is often unnecessary very confusing. I liked the final 2-stagged boss fight, which made a nice ending. I had some problems finding the tower key as it melted into the environment and made it impossible for me to notice. Without a walkthrough I would be stucked there for an eternity. Some object had missing collision ( mostly door frames ). The texturing was mostly good, but I can’t say that for the light. Most, if not all, rooms look extremely pale, monotone, uninteresting and with probably no work with the light. The overall design or architecture is very mediocre. The end of the world can be very easy seen and reached. Some more depth in natural environment is missing. Object use is good, but more decorations are missing ( mostly some plants or architecture add-ons ). Overall, a step back for the author." - Gorty (05-Oct-2018)
"Nice level in a fantasy world with a few, varied enough, tasks to perform and a double boss ending. I got burned by the dragon a couple of times before actually noticing the cut scene that comes before it. Textures ok, atmosphere a bit bland, music struggling not to go into loops. Enjoyable though." - Jorge22 (28-Sep-2018)
"Good idea, unfortunately very underlit, inconsistently textured and involving certain amount of gameplay design flaws - e.g. 1) if you pull the poles in wrong order you're not hinted they're even interactive, 2) if you activate the lute on a red marker tile the keys get disabled too soon so you can't progress, 3) one of those blocked keys makes it really hard to recognize how to solve the game ending. Saving on different slots you might still enjoy this game, nonetheless it can be felt how much of it could have been polished or executed in a better way." - DJ Full (27-Sep-2018)
"My kind of level as well, i love these cute levels, this little adventure was great, the gameplay is good the only thing i have to say is that the player may not understand that the polerope at the beggining is actually a chain. The objects and enemies are great i liked the medieval atmosphere and the bright lighting kinda fits the "fantasy tale" atmosphere. The highlight for sure is the boss fight really creative!" - ameliacrofty (26-Sep-2018)
"Creative fantasy world, with accompanying medieval music and some clever ways to navigate through a castle environment, including pulling an item out of a well using a broken pole from a crate. My favorite moment was the solution to a puzzle straight out of Harry Potter, putting a ferocious demon lion to sleep with lute music. Despite the fun gameplay, there were several frustrating things that could have been fixed easily. The first was the almost complete lack of lighting. While the textures were fine, the game looked flat and boring without any shadows or colors, reducing the atmosphere considerably from what would, with even a little bit more lighting work, have been a very pleasant looking level. I also found several parts, including the underwater spike passage that had to be traversed multiple times, annoyingly constructed in ways that caused Lara to become stuck against slanted floors. Triangular doors underwater = no go for me. I also found the final fight to be frustrating after the ultimate transformation. I liked the idea of dodging the dragon's fireballs, but the placement of the gargoyles (the black statues) made jumping difficult in the confined space, and I quickly found the 90s-sounding movie soundtrack in the background to become annoying with each successive death of Lara's. I think the ending was a good effort at cinematic, and the idea of a witch transforming into a dragon was cool, but I wish the atmosphere and the navigation had been smoother." - Cbl (23-Sep-2018)
"I found this level very much to my taste. It's quirky, bright, good looking and has interesting gameplay. Although it's not always immediately obvious what to do next, I managed not to get stuck for long and there's a well rounded set of tasks to achieve, including a boss ending with a dragon that should set your pulses racing. I also really loved the witch's outfit, complete with 'magic branch' weapons. Super fun!" - Jay (21-Sep-2018)
"This was a charming little adventure,filled with creativity and imagination;but marred by a few little details:the lighting,although arguably suitable for a fairy-tale level,was a little too bright and prevented much atmosphere from being created;a climbable wall wasn't textured as such,and it was possible to get stuck behind objects,or at the end-of-the-world. On the other hand,progress was never difficult or challenging (if,for example,a jump appeared too difficult,there was clearly something else which needed to be achieved first);the playable character was rather charming (as was the messenger bird,the Lute moment,and the various animations);the action was often fast and furious;and there was a clear story-line with an exciting resolution - all wrapped up in a succinct 40 minute package.Recommended." - Orbit Dream (19-Sep-2018)
"Good little level that had just a few things that could have been so easily corrected. Right at the start there are two pull chains that look and act like climb poles. How (except by dumb luck) is the player supposed to discern that these are in fact pull chains? The Lute could have used a hint but trial and error will get you there in the end. This is not a bad level by any means, just that it could use some polishing in my opinion. I did so love the pixie Lara and her outfit was magnificent." - Torry (18-Sep-2018)
"Well, the main character was so cool that I laughed a little at first playing the game... Nice creativity. This debut was somehow different from other previous ORC distributions, in many aspects to consider. Good job. Thank you!" - Mehrbod (18-Sep-2018)
"My first pick in the competition and I presume it might end up somewhere around the middle. Not saying at all this is a very mediocre game, as the bright and fairytale atmosphere works fine and there are several nice touches here and there. The lack of ambient lighting and some end of the world moments disturb the visual presentation slightly, although the texturing was rather competent and the over-brightness works in its way. Gameplaywise, there's a decent variety with a timed run, a few easy puzzles and some exploration (including a few backtracks but nothing too bad), which is overall nothing groundbreaking but still pleasant for the 10 minutes it lasts. Sadly there are no secrets to find, but still it's a commendable effort considering the restrictions." - manarch2 (18-Sep-2018)