Level: The Call of Cthulhu back home search
Author(s): Merlin
total rating:7.32 Gameplay &
Objects &
Sound &
Lighting &
Ceamonks890 6 8 8 7
DJ Full 6 6 6 6
dmdibl 6 7 7 6
eTux 6 7 8 6
Gerty 8 7 8 8
Jerry 8 6 6 6
Jose 6 7 8 8
manarch2 6 8 8 8
MichaelP 7 7 8 7
Obig 7 7 8 7
Orbit Dream 8 8 9 8
Phil 8 8 8 8
Ryan 7 7 8 8
Treeble 7 7 8 8
walter90 8 8 9 9
category averages
(15 reviews)
6.93 7.20 7.80 7.33

Reviewer's comments

"I'm not a man of culture, so I never read the story from HP Lovecraft, but what we get here is a rather spooky manor which we get to explore fully, including sewer systems underneath. Gameplay revolves mostly around finding serpent gems and a handful of keys, but I found myself getting lost rather often as the areas are generally rather open and have a bit of a samey look all over. I was aware of the climb-through painting and the unmarked climbing walls, thanks to other reviewers, so those didn't turn out to be an issue to me. An enjoyable experience with a few dead ends (I never opened the gate in the back garden now that I think about it), but curiously Lara leaves without any object of interest in her hands, and through the exact way she came in even, but hey, the thrill is in the journey. 55 minutes. 12/19" - Treeble (15-Dec-2019)

"This isn't bad at all for a TR3 level. The graphics are rather unsophisticated by NGLE standards, but this managed to keep me entertained for the duration. You get to explore a rotting house and the sewers area beneath in search of a couple of gems and Smugglers Keys and some enemies need a degree of strategy to avoid losing too much health (although I lost more than I care to admit!). Quite enjoyable." - Ryan (08-Nov-2016)

"A rather mediocre horror (?) experience of mixed themes and mixed feelings. Constant nauseous ambience and dismal, gloomy lighting spread over multiple rooms, many of which have no purpose at all. The confusion is intensified in the sewers, when we are able to paralelly unlock the puzzle area and the path leading back outside through the chimney. Yes, the flames were supposed to stop me, but they didn't and I understood it a half level later. It's good to see Antarctic mutants once again, but we deal with loads of enemies and can only use the shotgun on the final two - what the? SUMMARY: A level of such a promising architecture could have been filled much, much better. Optional." - DJ Full (18-Aug-2015)

"While the title screen may imply otherwise, you don't ever end up seeing Cthulhu during your 50 minute playthrough. But don't immediately walk away disinterested yet my fellow raider, as what's on offer here is still worth a look at the very least(despite some fairly bland lighting and unfair gameplay moments throughout), with appropriate objects/enemies, great texturing and an effective atmosphere, more than making up for the lack of attention in other areas. So overall, recommended if you're looking for something to keep you entertained for a considerable amount of time. Just remember to veer to the right on your way to the front door upon completing your goal, or otherwise you'll be trapped inside the house permanently." - Ceamonks890 (24-Jul-2015)

"For many years TR3 was my favorite commercial release, but it's getting to the point where the relatively crude graphics make playing a TR3 custom level something of an ordeal these days. Still, good gameplay covers a multitude of aesthetic sins, and I had a fairly good time with this one. Harry Laudie has paved the way with a walkthrough that documents a couple of what I would consider unfair devices used by the builder, including an unmarked climbing wall and a pull-through painting. All you have are pistols until the very end, where you get a shotgun and a measly six shells. Enemies are fairly profuse, too, but for the most part they're situated where you can deal with them from a safe distance. Not a barn burner, but a pleasant enough way to spend an hour." - Phil (06-Aug-2014)

"There is a part of the level you can play in the house and another part you'll play underground. In the house area there are some rooms with nothing to do, only to pick up items, but in the underground will be more work for Lara. There are not real puzzles, except moving some blocks; the remaining tasks are pull switches, look for keys and avoid some traps. I played all the game shooting mutants, rats and crocs only with the pistols, and found the shotgun only at the very end so I couldn't use it. The environment is appropriate in all cases, and the cameras are good, giving you always a hint to know where to go. Better explore carefully all areas before advance or the backtracking will appear. Be careful not to trigger the main door of the house at the very end." - Jose (22-Nov-2013)

"The biggest downfall of a level based on the Cthulhu story would be an atmosphere that fails to impress. Fortunately this one captivates you right from the start. While I think there was still room for much improvement, the author has done a lot of things right. The derelict house with secret passages and hidden doors, the greenish sewers, the creepy garden all make for compelling and spooky areas to explore, and the enemies are well chosen. The Tinnos/Floating Islands background track is perfect for the level and the mix of religious and occult imagery hint nicely (if not entirely accurately) to the level's source of inspiration. The gameplay doesn't deviate that much from the norm, but has a couple of fun tasks in store - fetching the key below the garden makes for an nice, brief excursion outside the manor, and the movable block puzzle in the sewers was clever and did not outstay its welcome. As for a number of other people - the walk-through painting in the house was a game-stopper, as was getting through the final door, and though I eventually figured out which walls are climbable - not separating them from the rest was not a good idea. As said before - the atmosphere is the strongest aspect of the level, but unfortunately it is in spite of the flaws and not because the level is polished to the last detail. The texturing and the objects are thrown together from various sources without a real attempt to marry them into something new, or at least something that looks like it could coexist in the confinements of the level (so you get the jade-wall sewers, a Tibetan mandala, Celtic runes, Tinnos statues, mutants wearing RX-tech anoraks all in one level), and while the author thankfully hasn't equated 'spooky' to 'excessively dark', more interesting things could've been done with lighting. All that put aside - it still is a rather entertaining game, just treat all paintings with suspicion initially and you should get through fine." - eTux (02-Mar-2011)

"I really enjoyed this level once I got past Lara's house in the beginning. I was a little bored there but once I got into the sewers the game became challenging. I needed to refer to the walkthrough on several occassions but I found the overall level very well thought out. The atmosphere was eerie and I actually felt like I was in a dank smelly sewer. I recommend this level highly!" - walter90 (29-Jan-2011)

"A real well looking TR 3 mansion type level. At the beginning, you can choose to directly exit this level after 2 seconds, or spend 50 minutes in the house and its cellar. Sometimes too repetitive, the gameplay was at some areas real nice, for example the block puzzle. Atmopshere was very good in the cellar. Objects were well choosen and fitted very good. There were also many enemies, at some points this was rather hard because you have limited space to kill them. However, I have to decry on the unmarked ladder I found here. Why not making regular ladder tiles? I don't know. Overall a nice adventure with an a bit abrupting end." - manarch2 (17-Jan-2011)

"It was a big adventure. We are in a house, then on the garden and severs. We have to find keys, Serpent Stones, sometimes we have to look behind the paintings. Enemies are rats, mutants, crocodiles, but you don't have to use medipacks, those are not hard enemies. We have to be fast after the switch of the door, then outside to the door. Try it, worth it to seeing it." - Obig (25-May-2010)

"An interesting level of about 45 minutes length which has you explore several floors of a house and then some mysterious caves and sewer areas below it. I liked the greenish setting in the sewers a lot and hated the initial phase of exploration without finding much, but once you climb through the picture to find that one elusive wheel to turn (bad choice of gameplay here), the rest flows quite nicely with a few small sidequests for keys and gems and some tough mutants to do battle with. An enjoyable raid!" - MichaelP (22-May-2010)

"Another entertaining level from this builder apart from the wall you need to climb almost at the end, with no indication that you can climb it. Nice progression with a bit of back tracking but nothing too strenuous. Enemies were place very well and could all be shot with Lara's trusted guns as you find the Shotgun right at the end. This is a nice gem and I wished this builder kept on building." - Gerty (18-Feb-2010)

"This is a thoroughly entertaining and well crafted non-linear level,filled with atmosphere and imaginative touches;which still manages to self destruct on a couple of occasions thanks to a couple of untextured climable walls and one really unfair 'climb in texture' which came with no clues whatsoever.Nonetheless,the gameplay is extremely varied and filled with puzzles,traps and enemies (some of which are unusually nasty and have a tendancy to leap out at you from dark corners when you least expect them).Lighting is vibrant and entirely appropriate to the locations,although shadow bulbs could have been placed with more care in one or two of the stacked rooms.Textures have been used very well indeed and camera's generally give you just enough hints to keep the gameplay progression moving along.If you can overlook the occasional unfair moment (keep the Walkthrough handy),then this really is a little gem;and it kept me absorbed for well over an hour." - Orbit Dream (30-Jan-2010)

"This is a little level to play some night when you are home alone and the wind is moaning in the eaves, and a tree branch scrapes a window pane like bony fingers clawing for attention. The house is plain and boxy, but what counts is the interesting basement. It is not without its effects. The tasks in the nicely rendered sewer held my attention for this brief level, and Lara meets creatures that belong here. In the house there may be some delay--something about Lara and a painting--and the sewer exit has four identical stone walls, without any mark of a climbable surface." - dmdibl (09-Nov-2009)

"The atmosphere of an old and ruined house is not bad in this level, although lighting is a bit bland (despite the few colourful spots) and could have been done better to improve the atmosphere, and texturing is a bit tapestry-like in some places. Level design and architecture of the house remind to Croft Manor on first sight, but it's different. Gameplay-wise it's looking for keys, gems and switches, and sometimes you end up in empty rooms with no purpose. In one place I got stuck in the wall and had to reload. Some enemies give you a nice little shock for their sudden appearance, but they can most often be shot safely from distance. There are more than enough medipacks to pick up, but I needed not a single one in the game. I didn't find the dangerous artifact mentioned in the readme, but near the end I found the shotgun instead, and I wonder why I went through all this just for the sake of taking a weapon home. ;o) But in the end exploring this house and its underground area was an interesting experience." - Jerry (26-Sep-2009)
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