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Level: LB Advent Calendar 2006 - Icy Christmas back home search
Author(s): Clara
total rating:8.70 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
Akcy 10 10 9 9
CC 8 8 9 9
DJ Full 9 9 10 9
eRIC 9 8 8 8
Gerty 8 8 9 8
gfd 8 8 9 7
Ivan 9 10 10 10
Jay 8 8 9 9
Jose 10 9 10 10
Kristina 8 8 8 9
Loupar 9 9 10 9
MacRaider 9 8 9 9
manarch2 8 8 9 8
MichaelP 8 8 10 9
misho98 8 9 7 8
Obig 9 9 9 9
Phil 9 9 9 9
reborn1995 7 8 8 8
Ryan 8 9 9 9
Sakusha 8 9 9 8
Shady Croft 8 8 9 9
Shandroid 9 9 9 9
category averages
(22 reviews)
8.50 8.59 9.00 8.73

Reviewer's comments

"This is a very atmospheric Christmas level in a beautiful snowy setting. In fact, the whole level positively oozes visual appeal, particularly the castle under the ice. Some aspects are quite challenging, like the banana jump for the first secret (not required, but seemed a tad out of place) and the slope jumps past flame blowers and breakaway floors, but, in keeping with the Advent theme, they are not too difficult. Recommended." - Ryan (13-Dec-2017)

"Now this is a Christmas level that certainly delivers in any regard! The icy atmosphere is almost perfectly caught and the castle exterior and interior is just stunning, despite of a very complex design the visuals are quite accomplished with rather few mistakes in texturing and architecture, the lighting is a tiny bit too flat here. The camera flybys and the added sounds are well done too. This time gameplay is also high on the list with a very nice progression with varied tasks and even a few harder, yet not incredibly difficult tasks to solve, good puzzles and timed runs here. The object design is also nice with a nicely helping angel, an icicle used to break an ice pond, some walls that seem to hurt Lara for some reason (I think I know it... very clever of the builder) and lots of reindeer and other objects that spice up the design considerably. The two secrets are also well hidden. On the whole this is a level that both present visual eye-candy and at the same time not forgetting the gameplay design which most other levels of the calendar did until that point. 30 minutes." - manarch2 (21-Dec-2016)

"Considering this is called ďoldĒ nevertheless Clara made a nice Christmas level that still hold its own. The buggy ladders of course wonít be there now these days, but you still can go forward to finish this adventure. I liked the textures that were used in that building under the ice. Lots of lovely deer are running around throughout this wintery landscape. Exploring is of course high on the list as well as managing some timed runs. Do think a bit outside the box, as expecting to find the mechanical beetle was not really on my list. But hey, we are here to have fun." - Gerty (28-Feb-2016)

"This is possibly the most demanding Christmas level I've ever played, the beginning itself took me about half an hour to solve and I had to stay observant all the time until the second half, especially considering the ability to return from the very end to the very start. The part just before the guide maze is possibly the hardest to figure out, You need a bit of luck not to overlook that single spot, and I guess it's deliberately hidden too well... but it's possible to succeed with enough persistence, and all the other riddles are fairly solvable. One of them, at the icy pool escape, is particularly clever. The other remarkable thing is variety of icicles - don't You just have enough of levels where these only hang on the ceiling or fall down to kill Lara? Here they still show up as the falling ones but also as doors, statics and spikes, the latter timed, still and hidden to trigger, and also turned in various directions - it would take a bunch of ordinary levels to utilize that many types. And that's just one object, while numerous other kinds fill each room with something different to do. All is surrounded with rocky, icy landscape ambiented and accompanied with perfectly fitting audio Clara could already pick with master skill at that early time, and monitored by curious reindeers almost looking like contacting Santa via walkie-talkie and reporting to him the current status of Lara. They even feel more mysterious than the angel showing up for the first time in a level of this builder, unfortunately in a maze - possibly Clara wasn't satisfied either, for the next release has given this heavenly being much more space. While that part of the game is a bit narrow and claustrophobic, as soon as we solve the spikes to quit the cave for a breath of fresh air, we get an ending properly more solid than the beginning - unlocking the castle piece by piece from the above is like opening a gift indeed (this process will be later inverted with a mountain climb of The Golden Castle). I was a bit disappointed in the very end, because there's not much to do inside, and two doors located down the cave have never a chance to open. Well, we couldn't have it all... or could we? SUMMARY: Don't play it if running short of time but take it and You will be rewarded. Highly recommended." - DJ Full (19-Apr-2015)

"Very entertaining Christmas level with linear gameplay including some interesting puzzles. The one with the two pushable statues and the mirror can be called 'the main puzzle'. I really liked how the blue crystals don;t hurt you, but the red ones do. Even if it is a Christmas level it didn't feel like it. I didn't had any music, I don't know if that is a problem with my computer or there really is none. There were always cameras showing you what have you triggered, but some flybys were a little bit too long. Lighting and textures - great, only some badly rotated textures, but this level is an oldie so I can forgive it. Great level, great ideas, but I expected a better holiday feeling." - misho98 (01-Dec-2012)

"The mix of fire and ice in this Advent level was quite intriguing. Lara was surrounded by beautiful scenery, gorgeous animated reindeer and challenging traps at the same time. It took me several attempts to get through the fire traps as well as some of the jumps (particularly the diagonal jump after the pushable statue puzzle and the jump where Lara had to avoid the spikes when grabbing the ladder), but these difficulties were rewarded by discovering the next part of the level. It was also original to have an angel guide Lara at one point in the level. I also liked the unique castle at the end." - Sakusha (26-Mar-2011)

"Damn it ! Would it be that I really start to like Advent levels ? After Sheevah and Bagi Ďs 2005 levels I played these last days , this is the third in a row that i really enjoyed. Except for the movable block at the very beginning and the blue thing we have to shoot in the sloped trapped corridor, all the rest flowed very well , and the gameplay is quite satisfying with some smart flip maps , a couple of perfectly timed tasks , the gameplay in the big icy cave with pillars where an icicle has to be shot and a few reasonable stunts be done, twice the use of a torch , once the use of an angel as guide, a well made mirrored room , and the timed platforms at the end. All the other categories that make a good level are solid too , the level looks harmonious most of the time , and the audios pleasant. Thank you for this good level [ 50 minutes ]" - eRIC (23-Dec-2009)

"i am very torn in my review of this level. As a general tombraider level, it was pretty well done. As a Christmas level, i feel it's quite poor. The decor definitely reflected careful effort, but it didn't come across as very Christmassy (Jewish stars and Muslim crescents on Santa's castle??), and really it didn't come across as a terribly consistent look (Roman features in places and Egyptian/Babylonian styles in others). The overall mood and atmosphere also wasn't consistent either--frolicking reindeer, Santa's castle, and then frequent fire/spike/various deadly traps. And i really was kinda put off by the constant death traps. Would Santa's castle really be surrounded by gory spikes and fires? The gameplay was very challenging with plenty to do, but the timed run was difficult to the point that after the 16th or 17th game reload, i wasn't having fun anymore--just annoyed. And jumping to the ladder over the spikes is the most difficult spike trap i've ever played in any level. i realize that some agile-experts appreciate those expert-level challenges, but it can make a level less accessible to everyone and even frustrating to some rather than enjoyable. So there is some craftsmanship to be appreciated in this level, and i have to score it high for that, but i think it falls very short as a Christmas level, and i had to score it down for that." - reborn1995 (02-Jan-2008)

"Itís a nice Christmas level with a lot of action in an icy setting. There are some timed sequences in the beginning and the end of the level, some swimming and target shooting as well. I liked very much the part where there is an angel helping Lara with the torches and the last part with the castle under the snow which was great. There are no enemies and you need a few items along the way to proceed. I found two secrets and it lasted about forty minutes. Itís definitely worth the try although the end is like most Christmas levels with Lara accessing the room with the Christmas tree thatís surrounded by gifts." - Kristina (09-Apr-2007)

"Aww! How sweet! Lovely opening flyby showing a herd of reindeer cavorting about in front of a high temple type building, accompanied by the well known Harry Potter Christmas music. Lovely! By the time we reach this building ourselves it seems all we can do is watch the deer, until we eventually find the extremely well camouflaged moveable ice block. Once found, the level evolves very nicely, with good gameplay, and covering vast areas. There are some very nice object pushing and torch puzzles, great climbing and jumping to columns in a high icy cave, meeting a helpful angel who opens gates for us, and finding lots of useful items. Two of which are the beetle and winder in a gorgeous golden room with pushable statues and mirror to show where to push them. The beetle is used in a lovely cave where the 'spikes' are icicles. Having made our way through the mountain temple building we find ourselves outside again, in the snow, and we can see a beautiful castle underneath the icy pond. Our ultimate goal is to get down there and find the present Santa left for us under the tree. This castle is very beautiful, and I loved the timed route around the outer walls to switches and trapdoors, and eventually down to the front door where Santa's reindeers are waiting to fly off on Christmas Eve. Gorgeous textures, great lighting, lovely music, excellent and fun gameplay. A wonderful Christmas present for all players." - CC (20-Mar-2007)

"This is another outstanding level in the 2006 Advent series. It's also the most difficult of the ones I've played so far. There are no enemies, or at least no live enemies. However, there are plenty of opportunities for you to die, whether it be from spikes, fire tiles or falls from extended heights. In one place the game crashed when I died, but that's an apparently known bug that didn't cause much of a problem for me. This is definitely not a level for the kiddies, or even beginning raiders for that matter. I had to enable the flycheat in lieu of that banana jump for the first secret. Even at that I had trouble squeezing into that space occupied by the huge column. That particular move was a bit unfair, in my opinion, but at least you didn't need to conquer it in order to proceed. The scenery was quite well done, especially at the end where you could see cavorting reindeer on several occasions. I had the advantage of Harry Laudie's typically well-done walkthrough, but even so it took me more than an hour to get all the way through. I don't think there can be any doubt that 2006 is the best year yet for the Levelbase Advent level releases. Highly recommended." - Phil (22-Feb-2007)

"The best advent calendar level I've played this year. Very nice environment, good puzzles with not too much difficult tasks, new objects, textures, animations,... Santa's castle is really sensational. The level is really a very good present for all the players. Thanks!" - Josť (17-Feb-2007)

"From the great title with the running deer, this is a wonderful adventure that last about 45 minutes but keeps you constantly entertained with plenty of diverse activity in a nice setting. Pushing objects around, using a torch, target shooting, timed trapdoor, acrobatics in an icy cave, a mirror room, an angel as a guide and more. The castle under the ice near the end is an impressive sight, too. I really liked the audio choices here, which help to create a unique atmosphere. Don't miss this one!" - MichaelP (08-Feb-2007)

"From time to time it's good to play a Christmas level which - except enemies of course - gives us demanding gameplay, like the regular levels. Therefore this level may not for the very young, but highly enjoyable to the more experienced raiders. Good puzzles with pushy objects and the nicely retextured torch, timed platform sequence, rope swingings, and be on the lookout for shootable things. The first secret was particularly for my liking. There were deers in many levels in the past, but I've never seen them animated before, very nice. The angels who helps Lara was also a nice touch. Pleasant music and fitting textures, Santa's place is great. It must be helpful for him, that this time he don't have to deliver the present for at least one person, as Lara came for it. This level was a real present too, for us, thanks Clara." - Akcy (15-Jan-2007)

"(Mac users, I played this level on a Mac with the classic Level Player in Panther classic with a GeForce4 Ti graphics card. It probably won't play on every Mac, but it's definitely worth a try if you're feeling adventurous!) Wow, what a lovely Christmas level this is! It's certainly not short nor is it straightforward, and although having no enemies it does have a variety of ways for Lara to come to grief so is probably not suitable for either younger children or inexperienced players. The level starts in a location reminiscent of one of my favourites, TR2 Tibet, and keeps a good atmosphere right through. Despite the fact that on several occasions I ground to a halt the solutions to the puzzles aren't too far away, but maybe not obvious at first glance. Or even second glance for that matter - if in doubt, shoot something :) The mirror room is very nicely done, although slightly lethal, so save before trying anything in there. In fact the whole level looks great, and it's so much fun I was hardly able to leave it alone! My only (very small) gripe is that it could have used maybe an extra camera or two, but it works pretty well as it is. And you even get to use the mechanical beetle, which is generally a bit under-utilised IMHO, so I left with it in my backpack. At the end I had a bit of a giggle at the two reindeer harnessed to the sled, and there was a door in the final room that didn't open for me, but it may not have been meant to open. Thanks Clara, this is a thoroughly enjoyable level!" - MacRaider (10-Jan-2007)

"This is a great level. The textures are beautiful, and the chosen added sounds are also good. Although there are no enemies, there are many places where you can die, so I'm sorry, but I couldn't feel that cristmas-feeling I felt in case of the other levels. But in fact this is really a great adventure with many ideas and many challenges. Sometimes the challenges are not easy. There are timed-runs, jumps and you mustn't forget why we get the revolver and the lasersight. You have to look for the icicles above, and for a little bell also. There are two secrets on the level, and the first one you can only reach after a hard standjump, or at least the lever for the platform. :) In all, this was a good adventure, but I wouldn't advice it for children or beginners. You will need some skills at some places. :) You can find a Hungarian walkthrough (as we don't have English version), savegames and pictures here: http://treditor.hu/16/icy_christmas.htm" - Obig (08-Jan-2007)

"Great Christmas Level with snow falling, reindeers everywhere and a gorgeous Santa's Palace. Puzzles are not difficult and timed platforms have enough difficulty. I was stuck at the point of the icycle cave because the ball to shoot was very well hidden. It's a very nice level and one of the best in the Advent Calendar 2006." - Loupar (04-Jan-2007)

"Gorgeous Christmas atmosphere Ė the snow is falling, there are reindeer about and the charming sound of their bells tinkling just finishes it all off nicely. Thereís a lot of highly enjoyable climbing about in icy caves, a good variation on the mirror room and a fun (but not at all difficult) timed run sequence. In the end, you get to visit Santaís castle and pick up a present. Another charming entry in the Levelbase Advent Calendar series." - Jay (02-Jan-2007)

"What a very nice level! Lara is off to look for Santa Claus' house and before you get there you have to go through amazing icy places. The courtyard and the structure at the begining are very beautiful and quite smart. Once you're inside the structure,you have to go around and from here to there in a smart way and then you move onto a huge icy cave where Clara has done a great job,the gameplay wasnt linear and was really fun with a number of creative tasks to do like shooting an icicle to break the frozen surface of the lake,and the angel guide was amazing (but I wish it had stuck around abit longer) and at the end you'll be rewarded with a chance to have a look around Santa's house (right under the surface of a lake....that was some art work done by Clara) and entering it to find a gift for Lara. The atmosphere and the presence of really nice music (including some of my all-time favourite....Harry Potter) and the presence of reindeers really make this level one of the best in the advent calendar." - Shady Croft (28-Dec-2006)

"Iím not keen on levels where you get stuck right at the very start Ė like this one. In fact I was almost ready to throw in the towel, until I had a good look at my snowy surroundings. This level used some very nice incidental music to either accompany your travels or signify an important event. These musical interludes were well chosen and helped to give the map that extra little bit of film-like quality. A small map sometimes dark map though, so judicious use of flares and binoculars will help you if you get stuck. I liked this level (and had particular praise for the Angel who helps you) itís just that I think it sometimes get a bit too hard for beginners and doubly so considering itís Christmas level. It took me 1hr and 30 to finish this one but I found 2 secrets." - gfd (26-Dec-2006)

"I looking forward to see new snow level which Clara made and this is excellent joy for christmas time. Nice deers which moves and run near to you make nice landscape of frozen area near the nice castle. Colors of inside and outside castle are good and filling adventure. Shadow make complete charm of searching and timed-run parts where you not need so much exibition and knowledge, but enough to try several times, when at last job is done. Its amazing when you watch what happening from boulder action, when big frozen parts are crashed and you have ability to search and invetigate new opened areas. Icy spikes, frozen lakes, snowy white boulders, trees and passages will frozen you on your computer until you finished this cute and lovely crhistmas tomb raider level." - Ivan (25-Dec-2006)

"What a lovely Christmas level by Clara! Lara is searching for St. Nick's castle and strangely, it is hidden below ground. I thought the gameplay was quite good with some relatively simple timed runs and some thought-provoking puzzles. I was stumped right at the beginning, then literally fell into the solution (darn those snow-covered switches!). Things went fairly smoothly from there on. I wasn't too fond of seeing spikes and fire traps in a Christmas level, but that is just me. I loved how Clara had Lara do many things to proceed that she would definitely do in real-life if in that situation. I, as usual, couldn't find all the secrets, they were very well hidden. Textures were very beautiful, and I loved Santa's mosque-like ice castle and a very nice mirror room. This was a very fun and involving Christmas level not to be missed!" - Shandroid (25-Dec-2006)
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