Level: Quest for Immortality back home search
Author(s): Sabatu
total rating:8.54 Gameplay &
Objects &
Sound &
Lighting &
Jay 8 8 9 9
Jorge22 9 9 9 10
Jose 9 9 9 9
manarch2 7 7 8 8
Mulf 8 7 8 9
Phil 9 9 9 9
category averages
(6 reviews)
8.33 8.17 8.67 9.00

Reviewer's comments

"After reading Mulf's encyclopedic review there's little more I can add, although whatever I would have to say would relate to aesthetics and not the technical aspects (about which I admittedly know nothing). I found this three-parter to be an immensely rewarding raid that required a little extra time to play (in my case four and a half hours) because I was writing a walkthrough along the way. The first level appeared fairly identical to the demo version recently released by the builder, although with a few added secrets. Altogether there were a generous 24 secrets to be found, but several of these were quite easy to stumble across. I have absolutely no reason to complain about the lighting, because at the end I had a whopping 392 flares in my inventory after having using them with reckless abandon during my progress. Indeed, some areas were dark by intention, but as a whole I was quite pleased with the lighting and the environs revealed by the lighting. Gameplay is fairly challenging on occasion, but fair to the player and consistently engaging. The second level is by far the longest and most complicated, but well constructed and a great deal of fun to play. The boss dragon at the end could actually be killed with gunfire, requiring only some deft side jumps just as the flame balls were about to be disgorged, and luckily I had ammunition to spare. One would think that finishing the level after that would be anticlimactic, but there's an apparently routine platform jump that took me a number of tries before I finally made the grab. In summary, this is classic tomb raiding, and I'd like to see much more just like it." - Phil (18-Jan-2018)

"Please, everybody don't start building Egyptian levels but this particular Egyptian three-level set I actually found to be rather enjoyable. After getting through the first part quite quickly (I already knew it from the demo) I ventured into the unknown... What else can I say that I haven't said already? The lighting is still great (better than in the demo, less golden yellow or maybe that's subjective), the architecture is still nice and the gameplay generally flows easily enough but not as much as to make it too simple (exception made for the tile room where you get one Ankh) and the secrets aren't too difficult and become rewarding for that, rendering the final result rather satisfactory. On the flip side, I had to use an alternative exe as my antivirus decided to totally block me from using the provided exe (adding it to the exceptions didn't work this time), Sabatu didn't manage (or didn't want) to change the animation so as to make Lara's moves less slow and pushing/pulling a couple of blocks in a certain room sounded like there were serpents in the place, which was weird. Still, I enjoyed the entire experience quite a lot and do hope to see more from this builder." - Jorge22 (16-Jan-2018)

"A good and enjoyable levelset overall, but I have to say that I'm a bit disappointed that the builder neither tried to do something with the extreme lag after a few reloads (added to this, there are even more crashes), but also didn't change the annoying running animation. As I stated in the previous review, it's not a nice idea to release demo versions of upcoming levels and let the players beta test them, but even if you do so, you should mind the players' comments - a short view over the review page of the demo shows that more than half of the reviewers complained about the animation. In general, I think this game wasn't properly beta tested (or the builder didn't mind the potential testers as well, I don't know). There are just too many issues that no serious game should have still included, to name some: the second ankh in the first level I never had to use because it appeared... out of thin air at some time?, too many obvious texturing mistakes (at one place, a lever was even placed above the fitting texture) and some objects (like the pillar at the last secret in the first level) going through walls in other rooms, several pits where you can drop in and survive but never can get out and the lattice in the second level which divides the two main halls is passable from one side (so you could possibly skip most of the level). It's really sad, because the second level at least is even more enjoyable than the first one, with a few creative puzzles and tasks (just a remark - those timed runs are not really timed as you could do all of them in half of the provided time). The shorter third level includes a rather superfluous maze for the element puzzle, but otherwise marks a nice conclusion to the game. Enemies are decently placed and the object design, while still slightly barren, is good as well. Perhaps the amount of secrets in the second level is a bit too high and some are almost unmissable, while only three or four are really worth to be called secrets. The atmosphere is the best element of the game, all rooms are designed carefully and the builder really tried to create realistic environments and in my opinion did quite well. I wished there were a few more camera hints and flybys here and there (the fixed cams should be breakable as well), but overall the large scale rooms are impressive on their own. On the other side the sound is also missing occasionally and sometimes messed up, while the background audio tracks are well chosen. The texturing is good, aside of the before mentioned mistakes, and creates a nice colour scheme together with a hard to fault lighting. If you ask me, the main issues in this game should be fixed and then this should really be a very good release, I just can't rate this higher in this rather prematurely released state. Found all secrets in 1:50 hours." - manarch2 (16-Jan-2018)

"If you played the 'demo' you'll know what to expect from the full three-part game. Unfortunately, the builder has not managed to address the reloading problem whereby the game slows down alarmingly or, indeed, sometimes crashes completely. Apart from that, the gameplay continues to be absorbing and entertaining with a good balance of enemies, puzzles, timed runs and traps. There's a bit of a boss ending with Apep (dragon), but if you position Lara behind it, the fireballs can't reach her and she can plink away at it with her pistols. Even with its flaws, it really is well worth playing and I look forward to future levels from Sabatu, especially if he uses a more agile version of our heroine." - Jay (15-Jan-2018)

"I've really enjoyed this three levels. Based mainly about exploration but with some puzzles to solve too; I didn't understand very well the puzzle near the lake in the room with many holes. The enemies are well balanced, the secrets are not difficult to find, but I couldn't find them all (only 19) and there is enough ammo for the extra weapons. Good use of cameras and sounds, I missed some more flybys. The lighting, even when there are hundreds of flares to pick up, is a bit dark for my old monitor but the texturization is quite good. Recommended." - Jose (15-Jan-2018)

"A very good-looking set of three levels offering about 5 hours of classic tombraiding in an Egyptian setting. Its plot revolves around Lara’s confrontation with Apep, the giant snake who threatens Ra’s journey across the sky and had to be defeated each day by Seth (replaced by Horus in later versions of the myth) to ensure Ra’s safe passage, though in this game it’s of course Lara Croft who defeats Apep—once and for all, it would seem—before she gets to bag her swag (so she’s officially immortal now, I guess).
There is a good sense of progression over the course of the three levels: first you’re looking for an entrance on the outside, then you navigate through Apep’s ‘underground city’, and eventually you enter his lair. This is supported by congenial enemy placement (first there are various forms of wildlife for you to battle—the lions perhaps packing too much of a punch when compared to the crocodiles—; then magical enemies are introduced; level 3 centres, very appropriately, on snakes), though not by a rise in difficulty: the level remains mildly challenging at about the same level throughout, with one exception. Level 2 has a step-on-the-right-tiles puzzle, the solution of which, while not technically trial-and-error, appeared to me effectively just so, because its clues are given in such a manner that the player cannot conveniently follow them without first drawing a map (which isn’t all that easy either). This proved to be a real gameplay killer for me (thanks again, Dutchy, for providing that map!), though it obviously wasn’t intended by the builder to have that kind of impact.
Other ‘stuck’ moments are clearly intended. These have mostly to do with finding your way around the place (and result in a generous amount of secrets that you collect as a matter of course): in level 1, you need to scout the area until you hit upon the only path that actually gets you going; much of level 2 is non-linear, and the paths you need to take are sometimes obfuscated (especially in the underground lake area, which has a red herring in the shape of a structure the roof of which you can easily reach, but which doesn’t lead you anywhere); level 3 is more linear again, but includes a maze-like area (manageable), where the torch is hidden behind a passage in a corner which is shrouded in darkness (in a non-obvious manner—unlike the situation you often encounter in less accomplished levels, where a splotch of blackness produced by shadow bulbs clearly indicates a ‘cleverly hidden’ crawlspace or somesuch). I could have done without the latter, but I happily file the other instances under ‘exploration’, an integral part of the tomb raiding experience, which is supplemented here with a nice variety of tasks, occasionally timed (never in a frustrating manner), and involving puzzles, platforming (including two instances of ‘invisible platforms’, which should perhaps have been avoided) and traps such as fire, spikes, spikewalls and boulders. The spikewalls make no sound and pass through walls (no anti-trigger); the boulders are of the pre-TR4 variety (first use of a TRNG plugin I encountered) and therefore feel somewhat out of place in this state-of-the-art venture, isolated throwbacks to less sophisticated times.
So do the ‘Stones of Maat’ and ‘of Khepri’ in level 3, which, along with their puzzle holes, have been lifted directly from TR4, with no modifications to make them fit in with the entirely different aesthetic environment of this game. They are also, needless to say, ad-hoc inventions with no basis in Egyptian mythology other than their names, unlike the excellently fashioned Ankh puzzles (while the blue gems are generic enough to fit in just about anywhere, I suppose). This would be of no consequence in your garden-variety pseudo-Egyptian TRLE level, but one thing I particularly liked in this game is the knowledge of and care about ancient Egyptian culture that went into it and was abandoned in the instance of those ‘Stones’, but is otherwise evident in plot, choice of textures, etc. This is not to say that the game is archaeologically correct or even sound (textures are occasionally rotated so that people or gods are not standing upright, which means they’re dead even while presenting or receiving offerings; all arched structures would have to be of a very recent date, and architecture in general is of course built to accommodate gameplay more than anything else), but that this is the best approximation to a plausible ancient Egyptian environment I’ve seen in a custom level so far.
In fact, when it comes to design, I seem to detect a welcome striving for perfection. I can find no fault with the lighting—and more than enough flares (nice sparkles) are provided for any dark passage you might encounter. Texturing is generally excellent as well, albeit somewhat marred by the fact that the builder seems to be using two different sets of textures: one for terrain and another one for architecture, with no transitional textures between them, so wherever the twain do meet, the boundaries are thrown disagreeably into sharp relief; and if the ground is irregular, the textures on the walls above it tend to be distorted. The game doesn’t use many statics, but those it does use have no shading (perhaps it would have been better to move those columns to an Animating slot). Overall, the architecture looks fairly pristine for such presumably ancient structures.
Sound is used very well too, with custom audio files providing a suitably spooky ambience and tracks from classic TR games playing at opportune moments. However, in level 2 the flooding sound is corrupted (I seem to remember that the camera view was dodgy as well on that occasion; at any rate I was surprised to find the room flooded on my return), and in level 3 the sound of the push/pull animation got somehow mixed up with the snake hiss. These are minor issues, but they could easily have been ironed out prior to release.
Which brings me to the more serious issue of bugs. I understand that the problem of an intolerable drop in framerate and/or crashing on reloading is a fault of the current version of TRNG (cause as yet unknown) and therefore not within the responsibility of the builder; but players should be aware of it, as it tends to seriously disrupt the flow of the game. I have also had two instances of random death (one instant, one by bursting into flames) in level 3; other players report more, spread across the three levels. I do not now a probable cause for that one. Finally, in level 2 you can pass through a solid metal fence (wrong kind of Toggle Opacity). This doesn’t result in you getting stuck, but it is the kind of thing that shouldn’t be allowed to occur after beta-testing." - Mulf (15-Jan-2018)
Tag Cloud from Reviews:
back home search