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LB Advent Calendar 2004 - My Home Sweet Home by Miss Kroft

afzalmiah 7 8 9 8
Akcy 8 9 9 10
Bene 8 8 9 9
CC 6 7 10 10
Cory 9 10 10 10
drguycrain 7 8 8 8
Duncan 8 7 9 9
EssGee 7 8 8 9
Gerty 8 9 9 8
Jay 8 9 9 9
John 6 6 7 7
Jose 6 8 6 6
Kristina 8 8 9 8
Lady Lara 8 8 9 8
Lorax 7 8 9 9
Loupar 7 8 10 10
manarch2 3 7 7 6
MattTR 9 7 9 8
MichaelP 6 8 8 8
misho98 7 8 9 8
Mulf 3 6 4 6
Obig 9 9 10 10
Orbit Dream 7 9 9 9
Phil 8 8 8 8
QRS 9 10 10 10
Relic Hunter 8 9 10 9
Ryan 7 8 8 8
Sash 6 8 9 8
Sethian 5 4 4 5
Sherry 7 7 9 9
Treeble 7 7 8 9
Watck 8 8 8 8
release date: 09-Dec-2004
# of downloads: 128

average rating: 7.94
review count: 32
review this level

file size: 35.30 MB
file type: TR4
class: Xmas

author profile(s):

Reviewer's comments
"Miss Kroft always did a great job with these christmas levels. The atmosphere does a lot of the heavy lifting but the gameplay is also serviceable. Nice take on a christmas Croft manor. Great level to play around the holidays." - Lorax (03-Aug-2023)
"another cute christmas themed mansion level for players that are just looking for something light on gameplay and not too long, i have to admit i really like alot of the texturing in the rooms, all these pastel and creamy colours are right up my street! okay so again its one of those levels where you find keys and objects, light torches or fireplaces and find items that you can push or pull to order to find and place 3 items needed to complete the level. unfortunately theres nothing very exciting or original here with again no traps or enemies but i did enjoy exploring in and outside the mansion that (judging by 2 framed pictures i spotted) she might share with kurtis trent? who must of survived the events in AOD ;) the level really needed some lighting to it and maybe a couple more cameras but the music was nice enough and its definitely worth a play if your looking for something simple but pleasant to play" - John (17-Apr-2021)
"A good indicator of whether or not you may find any gameplay at all in a given mansion level is which version the builder chose for its exterior: TR2 hedge maze or TR3 quadbike course? This one, of course, has the hedge maze. A Christmas level and a mansion level rolled into one, this is a double whammy of no gameplay.
So, welcome to the dollhouse. This mansion’s floor plan may be similar to Lara Croft’s, but it clearly isn’t hers. It’s even bigger, has some rooms added (guest rooms for unidentified persons we never get to see), and almost everything else has been transformed into rooms for dining, lounging, and other communal and conversational activities that we’ve rarely ever seen Lara Croft engage in; while all those bits that refer to the extraordinary character that she is, have been cut— the trophy room, the subterranean aquarium, and everything relating to physical exercise, such as the gym and the pool room. While the hedge maze is present and correct, the path that would lead to the obstacle course is closed off by a snowdrift. The mansion has been redesigned so as to make it ordinary and cosy and twee. It’s the habitation not of a Renaissance woman, but of a Biedermeier character.
That character, moreover, seems to suffer from an early onset of Alzheimer’s, putting things in odd places and then instantly forgetting where they left them. This is a necessary requisite of the genre, since some semblance of gameplay must be maintained even if all the builder really wants to create is a virtual dollhouse. The mundanity of the tasks you’re asked to perform corresponds to that of the design, though what you have to do, which result any action has, and the cause-and-effect relation between the two is obscure. There is of course a lot of built-in backtracking anyway, but without the hints in the readme the level would probably take longer to finish than it’s ultimately worth. Contrary to the readme, however, there are in fact camera clues—well, a few—although three of the cameras are severely buggy and would go away only after saving and reloading. The triggers were presumably left in by mistake, but to create such a buggy setup in the first place is not something one would expect from a builder who by that time had no fewer than nine well-received releases on her belt. The distance fog works fine with the overall design, but it has the effect of making it look as though the house itself were filled with fog as well. Lighting tends to be flat as usual, and there are noticeable cracks at stairs. The texture set comprises pixelated TR2 mansion textures and a few from TR3, otherwise mostly custom textures in white and pastel colours; one texture often used throughout the map (wooden tiles) shows .JPG artefacts. The chandeliers have a tendency to disappear from view. The new-style ponytail must have been created with Wellinflex Ultra-Concrete Styling Foam (since taken off the market). Audio is bearable compared with the excesses in this department for which the genre is known, but the crickets chirping out in the snow are oddly out of place.
While retrieving a piece of holly that you need for reasons, you briefly encounter the shadow of the real Lara Croft. The item is placed in an implausibly out-of-the-way location—a room that can be accessed only via jumping across chandeliers, shooting out a grate, and a lengthy crawlspace (the large crates that you find in it must have been there first, and the room then erected around them). This is out of sync with the pretend-realism of the rest, but it’s the kind of thing that tends to occur in Miss Kroft levels." - Mulf (26-Feb-2021)
"You probably have to play this level around Christmas to truly appreciate it. I played it around June and it seemed slightly underwhelming, although nonetheless charming. I didn't really enjoy the gameplay, which seemed to revolve around the basic mansion gameplay: finding keys, pulling switches and doing some backtracking. The maze wasn't too bad though and I was able to locate the necessary trash can hiding an item rather quickly. An alright effort, I suppose." - Ryan (22-Jun-2017)
"In all honesty, it's fully okay to hide a few objects under pushables and even some in flowerpots... but in this level all except two of those are hidden in either of the two ways! Come on... but even this would be forgivable if there was at least a bit of decent gameplay in between. I'll tell you, there is not much to almost nothing. Well there is the torch puzzle (torch also hidden under pushable), but even this one felt largely streched out with four fireplaces somewhere in the house to light... the rest is just pointless running from point A to B in this house. Of course, gameplay is not the strength of the levels from the 2004 advent calendar, so you really have to play them around Christmas to be able to enjoy them. I still did that, mostly because of the lovely object design and some nice sound choices (although the background sound should've been the "Snow falls softly at night" given the short playtime, I changed it and the impression was much better). The texturing is quite charming too, yet is not quite clean and a bit eclectic at times; the lighting definately feels too flat though. I really don't understand the lack of gameplay elements in this advent calendar year so far, I really can't appreciate that so far. Took only 10 minutes to finsh without any secrets to find." - manarch2 (13-Dec-2014)
"Very nice Christmas level. The tasks are fun and the manor is nicely build. You can easily get lost, but is fun to explore everything. The level is enemy-free which if always good for a Christmas level. But the outside area was very small and it felt a little weird to get a banana from the garbage (but this is just a small detail). If you want a short and easy level you should try this." - misho98 (03-Dec-2011)
"This was a pretty good level. This level is really old but it will be kept in my safe of TRLE classics! Good custo textures and objects which really fit the rooms. It can sometimes be a bit hard to know what to do next but most of the times you should know where you're going. There was a lot of christmas decorations around the house and there is a maze outside. This maze was not as annoying because it is shorter and there is more than one way to get out. No one should miss this amazing level." - afzalmiah (04-Mar-2011)
"This was a lovely brief level. This is one of the better home decors i've seen. The real treat was the well-chosen music. That built a lot of atmosphere into the place. Lara's outfit was the best design feature. i felt like there was some very under-used space in this level. The maze was nearly unnecessary since the torch it holds isn't even really in the thick of it. And the pool area is near useless too. The space was there and already designed, so i'm not sure why the author chose to make it almost irrelevant to the gameplay. Something funny i kept asking myself was, how do you get a snowman onto a second or third story ledge??? But in general, the level would have scored much higher if it had just been lengthier. All around a nice mood setter though." - drguycrain (20-Feb-2008)
"Here is a visit to Lara's house during winter. It's Christmas time and Lara has decorated her house beautifully for the festive season. And doesn't she look nice with her hair in a ponytail. The house is adorned with many new and fun objects that are of excellent quality and there are some simple fun puzzles to complete. Texturing and architecture is very good in this level, but the simplicity of the gameplay leave it a little short of something brilliant. Everyone has their favourite style of level, but I think I've discovered that home levels aren't my favourite type. That's not to detract from this level. Although technically the level is well executed, the atmosphere is a little cold and clinical for me. Highlights for me are the Doll puzzle and the Xmas Pud - but be careful which side you approach it from, otherwise you might miss out on what's required. I also experienced a problem with the steady cams for a raising block and the only way I could break it was to save and reload. All in all a nice quickie to enjoy between some heavy duty raiding." - EssGee (10-Mar-2007)
"Lara's Home nicely decorated for Christmas. I like the place, and especially like when an author can make it with such care for details. Fitting textures and objects, the tasks are sweet, make everything ready the celebration. Play this, for festive Xmas atmosphere." - Akcy (01-Jan-2007)
"Everyone has always said that I should have a go at Miss Kroft's famous 'My Home Sweet Home Level'... so; I finally decided to give it a shot. Now, I'm not sure if it's the fact that I played this level in the middle of July and that I wasn't enough in the Christmas spirit for it, but something definitely seemed to be VERY wrong with this level, and I don't quite understand what the hype was about. I decided to give 5 for game play and puzzles. This is because I feel this level has absolutely no game play or focus whatsoever... all one does is run around collecting objects, and I didn't quite get the point of that... but even though I felt there was 0 game play in this level, I did admire the creator's skills in making some of the custom puzzles which were quite creative at least, even if they were terribly kitschy. However, this mansion was missing what I think is the best part in every Lara croft mansion: the trophy room. So, that is another aspect that took away from the game play for me. There were no enemies whatsoever in this level. This is not really a bad thing since I know it was the builder's goal to make it all safe and cheery, yet I did feel that some sort of adventurous thrill was missing. Lara also does not have her weapons visible in the skin, or gun holsters, which is also fine except for that part where one has to shatter a grating. My advice would be: if you don't want Lara's skin to have visible pistols, don't make the player have to draw them out of nowhere ;) object wise I thought this level was an overdose, which is why it got such a low rating in this category. The objects are made and textured very well, I must admit, yet they are used to such an excessive extent that they loose all of their beauty I think. More often then not, less is more. There were also no secrets in this level. I'm not sure if this was my stupidity in not finding any, or if it was the level's shortcoming. As I said: too many static objects everywhere! I did not feel that there was any good atmosphere in this level. All though there was a Christmassy feel to it all, I thought the lighting was very bad, quite flat, and did not evoke any sort of mystery that I usually love to see when playing tomb raider. However, the snow flakes tumbling outside where a very nice effect indeed, and so was the white distance fog... however, perhaps having the entire level at night might have given it all that more atmospheric feel to it ;) sound wise I thought the audio tracks were also a bit much, and at times I felt I was lost in some sort of Disney nightmare. I'm not sure if all this was meant seriously... whilst playing I was asking myself repeatedly "is this a joke?". Something that also seemed quite out of place were the summer crickets chirping outside in the freezing snow. Cameras were also quite bad... often times I would do something and have no clue what that just did, and then other times there was this one camera in the library that just wouldn't unlock... I had to keep making Lara jump back and forward till the camera finally snapped back to her. The author's texturing was very nicely done, although the textures that were used were - just like the objects - terribly over the top. At times I felt like I was running through Barbie's dream house, and I highly doubt that Lara Croft would ever decorate her home like this. I was also not a fan of the random sink and stove textures used above the fireplace... they seemed very out of place. In all honesty, the only texture I really liked throughout the entire level was the picture of Lara and Kurtis on the bedside table. Besides that I think this level is somewhat overrated and I'm sure the creator could do a whole lot better in giving us a proper mysterious and atmospheric tomb raider experience." - Sethian (17-Jul-2006)
"I loved this level, it was a very nice Christmas edition to the Mansion, there were beautiful textures, the whole mansion was basically redone amazingly beautiful. I enjoy roaming around the mansion during Christmas." - MattTR (18-Dec-2005)
"A easy and happy level. I play with it happily without worrying to see terrible enemy, completly different with those undernearth tomb." - Watck (12-Sep-2005)
"This is by far the most beautiful incarnation of the mansion I have come across so far, the lovely light wallpapering and slight reconfiguration of rooms made this such a joyful level to be in. There are also new objects to move, collect, and use and they are all brilliant touches to give the mansion such a fresh feel. Do not though expect anything too out of the norm as this is still a mansion level but who cares, this one is a delight. 30 minutes, no secrets." - Sash (26-May-2005)
"Rare and too much short background music. Lara taking a banana from the rubbish? I've got a problem when lighting one of the fireplaces, camera showed the library but don't go back to Lara and I had to reload a savegame. Could be a camera shot to show us what the library book-switch does. Which is the use of apples and bananas? Objects are quite well and pretty textures, but gameplay is not very good. Could be one secret at least to make the game more interesting. Only a correct level." - Jose (18-May-2005)
"I have played a few 'home' levels and some x-mas levels but this one has to be the best by far! Even if I played this level in February, I got that special feeling that comes during x-mas :) It took me a long time to finish.. mostly due to the beautiful atmosphere in the house.. the falling snow and all the fine objects and textures. I just had to look at it over and over. It would have gotten a full score from me, if it were not for the lack of gameplay. The rest is perfect for a home/x-mas level! 2005-04-30" - QRS (01-May-2005)
"This one probably has got the most interesting plot so far: Winston is taking a day off, went shopping, and Lara is left all alone in her home. It's the Christmas Eve and soon her guests will arrive and there are a few things left to do. So off you go to find some items (including Winston's present, which was hidden) to have the perfect Christmas night later. It's just a pity we don't get to see the guests entering, but that's ok. I thought the replacement of the medikits with fruits was funny (and to be honest, I am sure I wouldn't eat a banana that I found beneath my own garbage outside...). If you are a sucker for home environments then make sure you don't miss this one out, it's great fun. I know March ain't Christmas time, but I really needed to play something and I decided to have a go at these levels, heard wonders of them and now I know why. 30 minutes. 03/05" - Treeble (13-Mar-2005)
"Great Christmas level! This is the nicest rendition of the mansion I have seen. Loved the falling snow outside and the interiors. No enemies to ruin the Christmas feel of the game. Very enjoyable." - Sherry (04-Jan-2005)
"Very nice level to play in Christmas. No enemies and only few puzzles (just looking for the torch and finding some keys and fruits). The house is like a dream come true and along the game it sounds an endless music. Lara is very pretty and all is ready: she's waiting for her guests. All the presents are around the tree.... no... Where's Winston's present? A good and short level enjoying and beautiful." - Loupar (03-Jan-2005)
"I loved the way the builder made this level it really made it feel like it was Christmas. I found it very tricky though and you had to search every plant pot in the level or you will get stuck. I at first thought the torch was a piece of holly but I eventually found out its use. I liked how the builder changed medipacks into apples and bananas. Well Done :D" - Cory (18-Dec-2004)
"This is another nice Christmas level that involves a leisurely search through Lara's house (with one chilly chore outside on a balcony) and no enemies to overcome. Yoav has provided another helpful walkthrough which helps reduce the playing time to a pleasant thirty minutes. These Christmas levels are a welcome diversion from the nail-biting tension of the regular TRLE releases. Give this one a try if you haven't already." - Phil (17-Dec-2004)
"An absolutely delightful Christmas level. We are in a beautifully designed mansion and Lara looks very beautiful too lovely outfit and her hair in a ponytail. I'm hiring Miss Kroft to design and furnish a mansion like this for me if I ever win the lottery. The details are gorgeous poinsetta plants trees decorations furniture snowmen pudding and a lovely angel doll. Lara finds a berry stalk to light fires around the house then looks for a holly to place on the pudding and gets Jeeves present from where she's hidden it and places it by the Christmas tree. We have a bit of chandelier hopping pushing retextured objects torch puzzle (lighting the fires) finding hidden keys to open bedrooms and finding apples and bananas (medpacks). There are no enemies but I did set Lara on fire once when I stood too close to the fireplace blush ahem! This beautiful level cheered me up so much and put me in the Christmas mood thank you Miss Kroft." - CC (17-Dec-2004)
"Very charming setting with a slightly modified Mansion set in snowy surroundings. I really liked its kind of puppet home style and Lara looks great in her new outfit and hairstyle. Gameplay is of course the classical and for me always rather boring 'run around the house find the right things to do in the respective sequence' but it is spiced up through a number of nice objects and effect like the turning doll the new pushable objects you get to move around to find keys and the lighting of the four fireplaces with the help of the mistletoe branch or whatever it is. Just right for the season and won't take you too long." - Michael (16-Dec-2004)
"You can always depend on Miss Kroft! Here she's given us a quite delightful (and gentle) Mansion outing where the gameplay consists of searching thoroughly and locating keys and various seasonal objects. Some of this was a little esoteric (you needed to run around a great deal to discover what resulted from a particular action or discovery) but it was always enjoyable and at times even enchanting. Lara's Mansion has become perhaps a little too effeminate (unless Winston's partaken of some interior decorating in her absence?) schmaltzy (she listens to The Nutcracker Suite) and cluttered but the atmosphere thus created is nonetheless enjoyable tranquil and sweet; which sums up the level perfectly." - Orbit Dream (16-Dec-2004)
"Ah the ultimate Christmas raiding treat - a level from Miss Kroft. I just love Lara's new hairstyle and beautifully redecorated bedroom (complete with photo of herself and Kurtis Trent on the bedside table lol). The attention to detail is superb as usual so do take time to admire and enjoy every little thing. Inside the Christmas decorations are delightful and outside the snow is falling. Bliss. Basically you have to put the finishing touches to the house before your guests arrive such as lighting the fires (beautifully redesigned torch) trimming the plum pudding and finding Winston's present. This is an absolute pleasure and will really put you in a good Christmas mood." - Jay (16-Dec-2004)
"Probably I'm always overrating Christmas levels a little bit. But I can't help it; somehow these mean more to me than any of the levels during the year. This is the beauty feast of the year the feast of donation and the creators present us with these levels. Many thanks for them! :) This is a wonderful Christmas level also. We have to find three keys among flowers and under pushable furnitures and of course we have to gain the branch to light the fire in the fireplace. We can also find the Duracell Battery; with it we can turn on a swinging puppet. We'll find Winston's Present and we can put it under the Christmas-tree. In addition we can put also the decor of the cake the Holly in its place. This is the end of the level let the guests coming. :) The textures are wonderful as well as the added sounds. It was a real fun to walk through the castle. Merry Christmas Miss Kroft! :) You can find a Hungarian walkthrough (as we don't have English version) savegames and pictures here: " - Obig (14-Dec-2004)
"For me this home level is certainly a home I would feel comfortable in because Monika made it so beautiful. I roamed around in this house looking at all the small details that went into it. Also because I found the torch rather early in this level and I wouldn't let go of it so it took a while before I started to push the furniture around LOL. In this level you are in search of keys to open up the rooms so you can lit the fires in the fire places and at the end find the present you've bought for Winston. A well deserved present for the old boy. There is however one gripe I had severe problems with getting control over Lara after a cut scene especially the one when raising the block yes I jump backwards and jumped and jumped and ended up in a cupboard when the control finally kicked back in. 12-12-2004" - Gerty (13-Dec-2004)
"Another lovely fun Christmas level. I love home levels and this was a real treat. Loved the new 'girlie decor' in the bedrooms. Collected some keys holly battery and a present. The angel was a very nice addition! Also thought Lara's new outfit was great - especially the nice big bow in her hair. Nice use of music too. Kudos!" - Lady Lara (12-Dec-2004)
"Lara is looking very relaxed in a comfy sweater and slippers. The Mansion has had quite the make over and the decor is softer and more lady-like than usual. The gameplay is basically a puzzle and some of the pieces are hidden quite well. This is not one to play by habit as it requires a bit of attention and thought. The bananas and apples are good for the 'health' but shouldn't be needed. An extremely attractive and well-made level that is a perfect holiday offering." - Duncan (12-Dec-2004)
"What a nice cheery Christmas level. On a snowy day at Croft Manor Lara has planned to arrange a Christmas party but there are still lots of things to do! She has to light the fireplaces place the holly on the pudding and find Winston's present and put it near the other gifts. The manor is very nicely decorated with all kinds of festive Christmas ornaments that just put you in the holiday spirit. I had a very fun time playing this level even though I found it a bit confusing sometimes but still this level should be played for its beauty and the lovely Christmas music. If you'd like a calm level to play with no enemies or traps then this level is the perfect choice for you." - Relic Hunter (12-Dec-2004)
"The mansion is almost ready for Christmas and Lara has a few tasks before quests arrive. Fireplaces must be lit and a present for Winston and a bit of holly must be found. This is a very young looking appealing Lara with a bedroom suite and is that a pic of Curtis on her night table? Not too many places to be stuck but where does that present go?.......and that bit of holly? There is that wonderful falling snow and a chance to swing on the chandeliers in Lara's beautifully decorated Christmassy home.. All in all a fun time in the ol' mansion but where is Winston? Ahh he must be wrapping last minute gifts for Lara." - Bene (11-Dec-2004)
"What a wonderful Christmas level! Lara with a great hairdo within her mansion is searching for hidden items such as a Holly a battery and Winston's present which she has to place and finish decorating. I just love these Christmas atmosphere so as one can imagine I enjoyed playing this level immensely. The music is nice the trees the angel doll and presents all around and the new moving objects. It is about forty minutes long with no enemies which makes it suitable for kids. The snow outside was a nice touch. Definitely give it a try during Christmas time." - Kristina (09-Dec-2004)