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Wheels of Kathar by PH

Andzia9 9 9 9 9
Blue43 8 9 10 9
Czar 8 7 7 8
DJ Full 10 10 9 9
dmdibl 9 9 10 9
Gerty 7 8 9 8
ggctuk 8 7 10 10
Hedteur 8 8 8 8
herothing 10 9 10 9
Jack& 8 10 10 9
Jay 9 10 10 9
John 8 7 8 8
Jose 9 9 9 10
manarch2 8 10 10 9
MichaelP 8 8 10 9
Orbit Dream 8 8 10 10
Phil 10 9 10 10
Phys 9 9 9 8
Razzi 10 9 10 10
Ruben 9 10 10 10
Ryan 9 9 10 9
Samu 9 9 9 9
SeniorBlitz 7 8 8 9
Shandroid 10 10 10 10
Steven Svorticher 8 7 10 9
TheStig 7 8 9 8
TombRaiderTim 9 8 7 9
Treeble 7 8 9 9
TrueRaider 7 9 9 8
release date: 03-Apr-2009
# of downloads: 113

average rating: 8.85
review count: 29
review this level

file size: 308.80 MB
file type: TR4
class: nc

author profile(s):

Reviewer's comments
"This mini game serves as an alternative to the official underworld game keeping the globe trotting, some similar locations and characters but with a slightly different story told through fmvs and of course new, fun and and engaging game-play which i just loved, you even get to play as the doppelganger in croft manor complete with her strengthened abilities and jumps! how cool is that?! well until you end up doing something shocking and unspeakable to Winston on escape lol. The game-play is mostly filled full of platforming with swimming, pole swinging, climbing and jumping, target shooting and rope climbing to name a few, a lot of these actions require thinking and planning because of all the nasty traps that this level is full of especially with the new moves and using the doppelganger! The variety of locations along with visuals, music and use of cameras were really good as it really added to the underworld vibes and atmosphere and there was great use of the snowmobile and then the new jump-switch springboards which were so much fun! The only negatives for me was the buggy swing poles, lack of polish in a few areas and the linear aspects of the levels really as everything feels quite contained with not much open areas to explore around in for secrets maybe, but i'm nitpicking here really because overall this is a very enjoyable game which i would happily replay in the future" - John (01-Aug-2022)
"This a rather short level package, there are a lot of neat ideas here, and Lara is as versatile as ever with her new moves and such. The gameplay could've been more polished, some areas don't have collision, and you could only use the symbols one time, so if the puzzle involved doing them in the right order and you ended up saving, you would be unable to proceed. The spider trap was also kind of cheap, since it comes out of nowhere. The atmosphere is rather decent, but, the texturing could have been more carefully applied since some areas look somewhat clunky. The best part for me was probably playing as the doppelganger, since it felt really good to screw around with it. xoP" - SeniorBlitz (25-Apr-2018)
"This is a challenging and enjoyable levelset, clearly inspired by the Crystal Dynamics games, primarily Underworld. Lara explores a variety of settings here, from the hallowed stone halls of Niflheim, an action-packed mansion section where you assume the role of Lara's doppelganger who has more advanced capabilities, giving a new twist to the standard theme, and finally to the snowy valleys of Helheim. There are a number of FMV sequences viewable from the download folder so be sure to watch them. I thought the atmosphere was on point, helped by the ominous Underworld music. Probably not for absolute beginners, but everyone should give it a shot." - Ryan (07-Jan-2017)
"Excellent! Every step brings something unusual, each enemy plays its own important part, animations are ridiculous but never boring and in certain places it's even worth to die to experience all the customization. The color palette lacks some life and the scenery allows so little movement I couldn't help impression of playing a minigame, but geometry is very clever and meta2tr makes it better not worse. Getting used to new physics is difficult as they change every chapter but a single switch would seriously damage the plot which is otherwise very good - the game tells a complete storyline, shows it from different perspectives and stands strong as a brief alternative for Underworld." - DJ Full (12-May-2016)
"What a nice map, i enjoyed it quite a lot ! Soon as you press "New game" you already are in a tricky situation and you mught die already. When you are okay, game gets a bit calm and then you already are in a worst problem ; a boss you cant kill with your guns, you'll have to use the environment to success. Some nice new moves, new items and textures ! [Spoiler alert] My favorite part is when you control the real doppelganger when you jump really high and run faster, the only problem is that jump and run system cannot be stop ; which means you can run too fast to do a running jump or when you jump too long or high and then miss your plateform, and it can be quite annoying... Still, there were lots of innovations, creative moments and a little scarejump with a spider that gave me the chills ! Find all secrets and finished the map in 3 to 4 hours." - Hedteur (06-Jan-2015)
"I'm probably at a disadvantage here,as I've never played Underworld (to which,this is intended to be a sequel).As a consequence,I found the storyline (excellent though the attempts were to relate it,through some accomplished FMV's)quite unfathomable.Not that it mattered particularly,as the levels themselves were basically linear and generally involved straightforward and easy to follow gameplay,where locating and pressing buttons was the key to progression.If anything,the gameplay difficulty was somewhat imbalanced;as the 'challenge quotient' was much more in evidence in the first hour than the second.A tough battle with hydra's,and a really nasty little curved jump to a grabbable crack in a wall were tough and somewhat frustrating - and yet hardly anything taxing occurred in the entire second half of the adventure,save for a poorly devised rope swing (impossible to perform,if tasks were undertaken in the wrong order).Nevertheless,the gameplay was always fast moving and creative;and often hugely amusing (especially the 'running up the walls' sequences).The atmosphere was stunning;while textures and lighting were beautifully applied.Overall,this is an initially challenging but thereafter generally easy multi-level set;and should be played and enjoyed by everyone." - Orbit Dream (23-Feb-2014)
"I think the global construction of the game is very good and the approach with TR Underworld is closed (and anyway it isn't so easy by using graphic, structures ecc. from a TR4 game), over all in Croft Manor and Hellheim levels. But some scenes seem confusing, anyway I appreciate the author's effort.. so the hystory, even if is sometimes disconnetted, makes approach. A strange thing: the first level is quite hard, over all when Lara has to deal with Hydra's heads and some jumps with poles, while from 2nd to last level I didn't found so great difficulty. We find the doppel ganger in the third level: she seems weaker than what we could think, anyway nice her great jumps making her faster during gameplay over all during laser jumps. Enemies: nearly good, even if in the first level are the top and in the other ones a few of them. The last level disappointed a little.. I'd have waited something harder and not only a simple climbing..just consider an outro, even if it would have been better to fight against Natla (like in Underworld) and not only to see the cutscene. I found the fighting agaist Hydra heads a bit tricky: the name "hall of despair" is really suitable.. there are billions of locusts continuing hurting you.. you can't stop to think what to do or escape that you're just half dead and you have not more than 5-6 medipacks. So I consider this part too exagerate for those that play for the first time (without a walkthrough is very- very hard!!!). In the other levels there are enemies with the power of a demigod or snakes, soldiers.. a few objects, medikits and a few weapons.. no secrets. Besidess in some parts you can use the "magic buttons" but if you make a mistake you can use them no more. While atmosphere, music, settings are excellent.. textures-lighting too. I wanted to underline negative aspects, but globally I think it's a great serie of levels, it would have become a masterpiace like Flashback or Hymalayan Mysteries, but I didn't appreciate everything.. everything has been thought in an elegant way, but not apllied in the excellent one. There's also a bonus level you can play with the alter ego by discovering a password hidden in the last level: it seemed interesting.. over all the serie of traps at the end, but it ends strangely and incompletely like in Kathar level. Globally a quite good serie of levels where the first one, Niflheim, predominates on the other ones.. then original, particular aspects but also negative-incomplete ones in all levels. It's hard to rate, anyway very reccomended!" - Steven Svorticher (16-Jan-2012)
"Wow - what a game! I don't know how many hours PH has spent to create all the new objects and moves for Lara, but this has to be many many ones!
Let's start with Niflheim. After a short introduction level that is hard because you are underwater and do the few things quickly before getting air again (in the next level). The objects in the sea looked good and the special door was just well done. The next level, Hall of Despair, had more gameplay in it, at the start you had to find quite a lot of buttons but that never was boring because you had to use quite a lot of moves to get there. After a relatively calm start you get to the hydra room - total change - you get attacked by locusts and often have to safe/reload to get rid of them, then go around many different stages to find sometimes even timed buttons to kill the hydra. Pretty hard but doable. I found the architecture and general atmosphere wonderful, because these levels absolutely don't feel squaric and the great object usage made this game as unique as the "Forgotten Scribe" - level. The third level made you visit a gorgon, pretty hard to kill it, you get to know some buttons that will make Lara jump backwards quite long, you have to avoid a spider pit (nice cutscene if not) and find the huge Yggdrasil, the bird that tries to destroy it included. Highly atmospheric level and great implementation of the tree in the end, maybe (with exception of the jumping pillar parts) a bit too less focused on gameplay. After Lara found Thor's Hammer we now get control over her doppelganger while breaking in Lara's Home. She can run faster and jump more wide, this was used pretty well, I think, for some block pushes and to get out of a swimming pool... Also, in the second half, there is a great gauntlet of laser traps that will be quite challenging to master. The short escape level had some tricky jumps in it, one on an absolutely not seeming to be climbable pillar. These levels were maybe the most strong parts gameplaywise, I found, in contrary to Helheim, where I found only the bike ride was a bit fun, but not much more as you only find levers on your way and not much more to do, well, there is a nice replica of the underworld circle tower that is well done. Kathar, the last level, had the most impressive setting, and was again great fun to play as you have to make your way up first a little, then the final big tower. The tower had some texture mistakes, there sometimes where blue stripes in it, and the doors in the middle of the bridge didn't feel that nice somehow. The bonus level was an alternate version of Helheim, with a little fight and also some tricky climbing and at the end a big trap collection...
All in all a nice game lasting 90 minutes only, but the object chose, new moves, enemies and atmospheric devices (great sound, impressive FMV's) made this game to nearly be a standalone level, not a classic tomb raider one. Some parts need a little more gameplay and textures weren't always correctly placed, lighting also could have been done a little better, but I found this to be a masterpiece, equally good as TRU." - manarch2 (17-Jun-2011)
"I have no comparison with Underworld since I haven't played it and really don't know the story line, but even without that, this was a really enjoyable set of levels that felt more like a professionally built game that a fan based level, although it does have it's flaws. Gameplay and Puzzles: This is one of those games where one never knows what s going to happen next and that's what makes this so interesting. More than once was I surprised after pushing a"magic button" when Lara suddenly flew across the room or ran straight up a wall. Or the parts where you play the Doppelganger and have completely different physical capabilities, like running faster and jumping further. Not much here is puzzle based. It starts a little confusing in a huge underwater area and it wasn't easy to spot the entrance to the underwater cave and finally the place where to get the air. After that part here is only a little bit of exploration, mostly is it straightforward and fairly easy to play if you know the new moves. I failed to read the Readme and therefore missed the fact that certain button could only be used once. So it was wise to save the game before using them. The end of the game - after that exciting climb up that tower - came a bit too sudden and a camera would have made that a lot better. Enemies, Objects and Secrets: There are not a lot of enemies here but the ones that show up are unique and sometimes tricky to kill. When I finished the game I was on the last Medipack as there was great health loss with the Hydra and Locusts and there were hardly any pickups after that and if there where any, I sure didn't find them. Sound, Atmosphere and Cameras: All nicely done. Good music and sounds, well chose at times helped to give this and exciting atmosphere. There was some good camera work here and I was really impressed with some of the cut scenes, which appeared half movie, half game and made an interesting game even more interesting. Also there is a movie in the beginning and in the end, which should definitely be watched at the correct time because it will blend in with the story line. Lighting and Textures: The textures here are mainly high-resolution stuff and look great. Especially the rock textures were always a pleasure to look at. There were a few flaws where textures were blinking or disappeared a few times and also a couple of light gaps, but none of that was enough to disturb the gaming experience in my opinion and the lighting look just perfect almost everywhere in the game. I found it interesting, that the builder chose a different Lara model for the levels. Besides that some levels are played as the Doppelganger there were also different models used for the other levels, instead of just different clothes. Not sure if that was a good or bad thing, but personally would have preferred the same model for consistency throughout the whole adventure. In conclusion I have to say that this is a wonderful set of levels that make one of those memorable gaming experiences. The game has a very modern and professional look and feel to it and a good story line. You should not miss this one! I am looking forward to play more of PH's creations." - Blue43 (20-Nov-2010)
"This was a nice idea. Levels were very interesting and beautiful. I liked very much Lara's and doppelganger's new moves. This custom was short but I had fun of playing it." - Andzia9 (09-Oct-2009)
"Beginning under the sea then, such level starts are often an unpleasant search for the first pocket of air, and 'Niflheim - Sea' as this first part is named I found to be reload hell for finding the right way to go. Lighting a flare doesn't really help because where to go doesn't really become that visible until you are pretty much swimming Lara through it, and in my case that was really done by accident. Once through the first entrance it's then a repeat performance to find the next thing to do in the spacious cave we find ourselves in. After a few more reloads, a lever is found and the way through opens, eventually leading to air. Before long we are on to the next level of this set, and 'Niflheim - The Hall of Despair' doesn't bode well with its title. The first key parts are easy to retrieve before we move on to some very awkward pole swings to get some large cog mechanism turning. Everything looks nice enough, being tiled with some good quality textures and lit in a reasonable way. Nothing too bright, nothing too dark. After several reloads and repositions of Lara, eventually the next gate is opened and it's on to the next pain laden arena. Now, there is a way to put an early end to the constant moth attacks apparently spat from the many mouths of the black hydra sat in burning waters in this part, sadly I didn't discover it until after much frustration. The, shall we say potential degree of annoyance with this part is so high that I won't be surprised at any quitters. Even as an experienced player this was no enjoyable section for me and I'm afraid that I simply resorted to the save/reload trick because I got so damn fed up with things here. There are some pole and rope swings that can be enjoyable, but do sometimes require a little thought. Happily, once the hydra is dealt with and the way opened, things improved for me. The following arrangement of things I found to be quite refreshing and enjoyable, and though it wasn't immediately obvious how to tackle one particular gate, eventually I moved on to the next level, 'Niflheim - Yggdrasil'. The Medusa area of the level I really enjoyed. I liked the use of slopes, specialised jump switches and transporters with this section so much I purposely reloaded to do it again once I'd reached safe ground. The spider trap, as I'll call it, was a really nice touch that I found quite funny, and it's always nice to see something different in custom levels. The eagle on the tree area though generally unspectacular in its arrangement I found to be quite enchanting for the way it was presented to the player and come completion I was left thinking that I must have missed something because things had seemed so special. The following dragon area was again enchanting though equally short, ended by a neat little slide to retrieve the hammer we are after. Once picked up it's a complete change of scene, and, indeed, character as we find ourselves playing the doppelgänger in 'Croft Manor - Infiltration'. Here is where we all learn to play Tomb Raider again, because not only are we playing a different character, but the physics are changed too, for our doppelgänger can jump further than Lara and this is exactly where we must change our thinking for how to safely traverse the environment. To some degree this is great fun and I really appreciated being able to span distance in a much quicker way. To another degree it can be very frustrating because doppelgänger's strength, as it were, can count against you when trying to get around and up one particular basement room. There are some very enjoyable laser traps in this basement, after a delightful treasure room, closely followed by equally well set up spike traps. Even some of the passages in this basement are arranged in a novel way. Once the ultimate goal of retrieving a dagger is done the player should feel a greater sense of achievement for the very careful manoeuvring required here. The last part of this section, 'Croft Manor - Escape' I can say little on, other than it is simply an escape from a burning manor that is filled with the ever annoying quake. You'll be so glad when it's done and, in my case, I was even happier to be back with Lara in the next level 'Helheim' and back to normal TR physics. So, in a snow covered environment we must open the way that will allow us to make use of the snowmobile by Lara's side at the opening of this level. First we meet with a couple of wolves that are easily dealt with simply by getting on the vehicle, moving forward a touch and waiting for them to approach. Easy. After that there is the most annoying ice wall that it seems can only be climbed up at precisely the right spot. Once done and way opened it's a fun ride on the snowmobile and a neat imitation of the Underworld Helheim 'well'. A shame there are no mutants to smash though on the way down. At the bottom there is a great animation of the pole insert found in Underworld, but it's an unnecessary element as the already inserted pole is enough to reach the switch above the spike trap there. Going deeper into the caves the atmosphere is great. Being that these specialised jump switched can only be used once, the next set up may prove a problem in its arrangement as it is all too easy to trip these switches without first performing the necessary steps to make proper use of them. If that is done, you'll have to reload and do it all in the right order. The final cave here has a great death animation if you purposely jump Lara into the water, otherwise, it's on to the final level of this set, 'Kathar'. This is a great little arena to play in that is full of atmosphere and makes good use of the by now familiar specialised jump switches (which are incidentally obviously inspired by the latest incarnation of the Prince of Persia). I thoroughly enjoyed every aspect of what is actually a very short finale and was rather perplexed come the end as to if I had actually correctly finished or simply died. As things turn out, the final cutscene, or wmv as it is, has to be played manually from the downloaded folder, which is very odd considering all other custom scenes are played automatically throughout the game. If the player has been clever enough to note an obscured password in this final level, they can then go on to play the real final level, the bonus 'Doppelgänger Chronicles'. This is a short but very enjoyable level played, unsurprisingly, as the doppelgänger. Actually, despite the previous experience with the doppelgänger physics in this game, I was glad to get back to them in this bonus as I found it to be a generally free running little adventure that allowed for greater use and enjoyment of her specialised movement. Such a shame that is it so short. I would like to see a much greater use of her in the future in much larger levels. Over all then, there are aspects to this set which are irritant to average and which do not mark the set out as special. On the other hand, and particularly later, there are aspects which indeed are greater than average and which make up for shortfalls elsewhere in the set and which do mark this set out as special. There are a number of pre-rendered cutscenes, as it were, some of which don't really work, some of which work very well and whilst such things are generally an annoyance for me, in this case it was really nice to see the extended effort I think this builder has gone to. Unfortunately some of the audio in this set simply doesn't work. The voiceovers are drowned out by the background music and no matter how much I struggled to hear what was said, it was a wasted effort. Despite there being obvious copies of various aspects of Underworld, I really don't think this set falls squarely into the uninspired category of mere copy. I did find it to be special in its own right, and though not a stunning set is still something worth playing and worth some note. The builder should have made adequate effort to notify less experienced players of new moves in this level and how to perform them." - Czar (27-Jun-2009)
"Not going into the locust that comes at you every second as that is already in almost every review (irritating!!) but the builder should also pay attention to the sloppy work that shows. As a for instance the ropes swing through deadly water. If the water is deadly she shouldn't be able to drag her body through it, rope or no rope. The animation with the pole is also strange as Lara grabbed in my game in thin air. Other small irritation about Lara animations shows that the builder either just downloaded those objects and didn't care, or he has no patience to do it himself properly. Also in the bonus level where you get thrown to the main screen instead of the LOAD screen when Lara dies. Again a level where you can see that something new is not always better. OK all irritations vented, the level itself was not bad at all. Luckily the revolver bug is still there so I had no problems with my ammo in the beginning. There are lot of puzzles and exploring is also a must. The choice of textures was quite good and overall the lighting wasn't bad as well. Please read the readme as that is important. OK Philip, improve upon your next adventure as you have the skill and the imagination." - Gerty (17-Jun-2009)
"On the positive side, these levels grew on me as I played them. Not having played Tomb Raider Underworld, I have to judge these levels on their own merit, and as such, I'd recommend them to everyone. I really appreciated that the author has provided us with a unique adventure: new moves, a doppelganger Lara, magical scenes from Norse mythology, intriguing movies. (Though why is evil Lara always stronger than normal Lara?) On the negative side, I found the beginning with the Hydra to be agonizing. Lara kept doing pole jumps into lava. There were constant locust swarms--a save and reload trick will get rid of the locusts, but to say that this is irritating is an understatement. Then when I found the route to the second floor, there was no clue that the switch was timed. When Lara finally got to the third floor, it seemed impossible to kill the Hydra head. Lara shot sword after sword, reloaded and shot more swords. The problem was that Lara had moved to escape the Hydra's flames. Only if Lara stands where she first picks up the revolver can she shoot the proper sword to make it drop. I had similar problems with the Gorgon or Medusa, where Lara had to shoot while standing near the spot where she teleports into that area. For some reason I just wasn't in tune with the author's thinking. There is a real trapdoor spider (meaning he has a real trapdoor), with some excellent cut scenes as he pounces on Lara. I pushed a block in front of his niche, had Lara continue forward, only to watch a cut scene of Lara being dragged by the spider down into his lair. The push block should obviously go in front of this niche, but the author had other ideas. Then there was a clever bit where Lara finds a pole, and stretches up to plant it horizontally overhead. She jumps to the pole, swings to the next pole, and on to a switch. But since Lara can just jump directly to that second pole, the initial pole was unnecessary. Then near the end there were four switches that needed to be thrown in a particular order. Yes, I got it wrong, and had to redo this room. Most level designers would block off the wrong switches, instead of making them prominent so that players will be sure to err. Some of the new moves, such as switches that throw Lara completely across a room, were fine in this brief adventure, but needn't spread to general use. Still there is much that is good. The creatures associated with Norse mythology, and the legendary aspects of the story line make this a rewarding set of levels. Sometimes Lara's new moves, or the extra prowess of the doppelganger, enhanced the game play. The levels are professionally designed. The author has tried to stretch the limits of the TR engine, which can be tricky, and while I think game play sometimes suffered, he should be applauded for making the effort." - dmdibl (22-May-2009)
"A huge download and a significant part of the size goes into some of the fancy things that have this release look closer to a commercial package than most other custom levels - namely the embedded FMVs and movie files which serve the storyline overall rather well.
Niflheim - Sea / Hall of Despair / Yggdrasil (8/8/10/9, 1+20+15 min): From the nice intro movie you literally dive into this game and through a very cool door enter Niflheim. Great atmosphere and high res textures, nice audio and some cool objects used throughout. Gameplay revolves mainly around activation of the symbol tiles, with a timed run added for good measure. The infamous hydra is actually not all that hard to beat but certainly this would qualify as the toughest section of the game. Some fun pole-swinging and jumping eventually gets you to the next level and in Yggdrasil you get more of the same, set in an environment that seems a little brighter: transporters and jumps; oh and of course that super cool 'death scene' with a spider deserves a mention.
Croft Manor - Infiltration / Escape (7/8/10/8, 30 min): This is interesting as you play as Lara's doppelganger from Underworld, so you get to deal with enhanced moves, well enhanced jumps only, as the pushing and climbing is still as slow and tedious as it always has been. Navigating the lasertraps is fun and that one curved jump took me quite a few tries to master, but it is still a house level and I just do not like these much. Even though the embedded cutscene is great and the escape sequence could have been a little longer than the few jumps it took to actually get out of the burning house.
Helheim / Kathar (8/9/10/9, 25+5 min): Change of scenery again into snowy and cold here with a snowmobile to help you move around a little faster. Gameplay is even easier here and fairly linear now, but still entertaining and fast paced. The intermediate flybys are excellently done and the use of new animations for Lara serves the progression really well. On the downside these levels have a few 'stuck moments' if yuo do things in the wrong order, so make sure you keep enough saves. Also, there is one very deadly looking fire/lava floor that you can simply walk on without burning at all. The final level then offers a series of fun jumps up and down and up a tower before culminating in a very sudden and anticlimatic ending.
Bonus Level: Doppelganger Chronicles (not rated, 8 min): If you kept your eyes open and spotted the password then this bonus level allows you another 8 minutes with the doppelganger Lara in Helheim. A few more jumps and a proper ending to enjoy here.
All in all, a very diverse level series that convinces with many 'special effects' throughout, but a solid overall build alongside with those, so it is clearly worth a recommendation, despite the huge download." - MichaelP (16-May-2009)
"I was a little skeptical about this level at first, but I decided to give it a go either way. Visually speaking, all the levels are quite appealing and well crafted, gameplay is quite straightforward and not really taxing either, so it's something everyone can enjoy. Players who have not played Tomb Raider Underworld yet might not understand a few things, even though there are quite a few cutscenes included in the level. The voice acting is good, but in a few occasions it's not quite clear. Also, a number of animations have been modified, I don't think think there were any instructions for them but fortunately, for the most part, they're rather intuitive. Niflheim - Sea (1 minute): just an introductory level, you swim through a hole, pull a lever and swim into the next level. Niflheim - The Hall of Despair (15 minutes): this is where the adventure properly begins. You have a few tricky swingpoles to reach before getting to the Hydra room. If you think one of the TR4 locust dragons was bad enough, wait until you get here. I was forced to mute the game because the noise was unbearable and on top of that, you will waste all of your medipacks in the blink of an eye - then you'll remember the save/load glitch to remove all onscreen locusts and rely on that, saving and reloading every two seconds. Not quite my idea of fun and, come on, gameplay should never rely on glitch spoiling. Anyway, after doing the entire sequence and entering the next level - ignoring the revolver altogether because I had run out of medipacks and was near death, I found out it was needed in the next level, so I had to restart over as there was no other revolver to be found. How fun. Starting over was't actually that bad though - with the possession of the revolver and dropping the two swords ontop of the Hydra will actually make you only use the save/reload glitch half as long as otherwise (the locusts will stop) and spare you all medipacks you've collected. Niflheim - Yggdrasil (15 minutes): not much different from the previous level as far as visuals are concerned, gameplay involves a lot more platforming as you enter Medusa's lair before getting to Yggdrasil itself. Shortly after you collect Mjolnir, which looks quite different from what it did in Underworld. Croft Manor - Infiltration (25 minutes): it's the first level I play that features the doppelganger as seen in Tomb Raider: Underworld. Most of her moves are slightly different from Lara's, so it takes a while to get used to correct timing. As you explore the Croft Manor, you get to see Pandora's Box in the trophy room, an unexplained R2D2 in a tech room underground, and also an Egyptian area - probably inspired by the first movie. The doppelganger's goal here is to kill Winston and explode Lara's manor, so once she's done the former, the next level loads. Croft Manor - Escape (3 minutes): is more of a plot device than a level on its own. Return to the main hall and exit the burning manor. Helheim (25 minutes): once again controlling Lara Croft, we now arrive to a snowy destination which is somewhat similar to the Jan Mayen Island level in Underworld, including the Valgrind tower sequence. Blue pads are used to make Lara perform extremely long jumps, much like what happens in the new Prince of Persia game. I thought the ending cutscene to this particular level was somewhat anticlimatic. Kathar (5 minutes): felt just as anticlimatic as the previous level. The way it was designed actually suggested it would have been a rather short level, but I was expecting more. I was rather surprised with the green switch making Lara wallrun, but that was pretty much the only exciting thing about this level. You climb up to the top of the wheels of Kathar and then the level ends. The ending is actually quite the opposite to what happens in the original Underworld storyline, though I'm not exactly sure the change is for the better. Spotting the password for the bonus level is also rather easy, as the level is short so a thorough playthrough to spot it wouldn't take much longer either. Doppelganger Chronicles (10 minutes): a little reward for the players, you get to play as the doppelganger again (this time around with customized voice sound effects). It's an alternative path through the Helheim level, and it ends as you spot Lara Croft running into the castle. After watching the ending cutscene prior to unpacking this level, I was convinced the extra level would have something to do with the doppelganger and Pandora's Box, which is in her possession now, but sadly it didn't. Bottomline, these levels are generally quite enjoyable, though at times I felt more could have been done with them. 100 minutes. 05/09" - Treeble (11-May-2009)
"At first I doubted whether I would like this game because I thought that it will probably contain only lots of unimaginative remade areas from TR Underworld. After it received good ratings, I however decided to try it and I'm glad I did so. Despite there is resemblance to TR Underworld in this game, it's not a remake and PH has clearly used a lot of his own imagination to come up with unique settings and gameplay. I for example spotted only few areas that are rather similar to areas in Underworld but majority of them are completely new ones which I appreciate. Gameplay is focused on linear progression and jumping which is enhanced with some new animations such as a huge jump which is initiated when you jump against a specific tile on wall which will bounce Lara a long distance. I was also quite surprised to see the new abilities of evil Lara including hastened running animation and longer jumps than Lara's normal jumps. In addition FMVs are a really nice feature and some new objects were as well created for this project containing some interesting enemies such as a hydra in first level which you have to kill by dropping a giant sword onto it. Choice of music accentuates the atmosphere very nicely and texturing and lighting are clearly higher quality than they are in author's earlier levels. In summary this is an original TR legend continuation consisting of well designed environment and gameplay elements that aren't used in many other levels which will surely surprise many players. I highly recommend it for every raider." - Samu (10-May-2009)
"A nice level set made by PH, it is nice to see a game based on underworld as it is one of my favourite games, the textures and lighting is similar to that of underworld, this game hosting some rather tricky puzzles to solve at every corner, some well hidden secrets and brand new animations for interacting with objects and lara has some new animations too. The music fits in well with the datrk atomosphere and the selection of textures used is good too. A good game to play." - TombRaiderTim (04-May-2009)
"This is a huge download, much of which consists of the transitional FMV files, but it's well worth it. You make use of some of the same new moves you may have encountered in Jesse's Wolf series, and the gameplay to me was flawless. My net playing time, including the rather short bonus level, was about two and a half hours, but with all the activity required of the player it seemed quite a bit longer than that. This is an adventure that's in the same league as the commercial gold releases, and I daresay I'd be willing to pay to play if that's what it took. The D&G walkthrough relieved me of having to figure everything out on my own, without which I'd probably still be trying to get past the hydra (even though I play in god mode, reducing the locusts to a minor annoyance). That's by far the most taxing sequence in the game, requiring mastery of a timed block jump (twice, first to turn off the flow of locusts and second to escape the area), but the rest of it is challenging enough to make this a most satisfying raid. Highest recommendations." - Phil (03-May-2009)
"Fabulous work! A set of levels full of new features, new and cool movements for Lara, new objects, good videos between levels (I liked very much the video after the helheim level), several cutscenes,and a lot of surprises. Really an adventure with a lot of work behind and very enjoyable. The first level with the hydra is ingenious, but very hard (locusts) and thanks to the forum users to give the hint to open one of the three doors (the buttons should have only an use). I didn't like the mansion level 'cause the very difficult jumps you must do, sometimes trying it too much times. The best level for me was helheim, laborious but enjoyable with good puzzles and more. Sometimes the author cath the attention of the player with cool musics or camera views with a proffesional touch. I missed some weapons and some secrets too; don't waste medipacks!. Lights and textures are perfect. The bonus level is short and when Lara is over the platform with the spikes and blades the movements are very slow, but an enjoyable level anyway. A levels you can't miss." - Jose (23-Apr-2009)
"I thought this entire level set was just brilliant. I loved the Underworld connection and the inclusion of the evil Doppelganger character. I was especially thrilled to be able to play as her. PH cleverly made the Doppelganger have enhanced abilities, which made gameplay fresh and fun. Even as Lara, these levels were totally awesome. I loved her new abilities, once I figured out how to perform them. PH included videos to add to the experience, which was a welcome addition. Most of the levels were expertly designed, with a few areas that could be devastating, including one where some buttons could be pushed before the other ones, and if that happens, you are stuck. The readme gives vital information regarding these magic buttons, so take heed. None of the levels are particularly difficult, but all are very fun. This level set is not to be missed." - Shandroid (19-Apr-2009)
"The game begins with a 4 minute long intro which you can play from the main folder. It's nicely edited with a mixture of real FMV, stills and scrolling text. Really good considering we don't have the technical wizardry at our disposal. It sets up the plot well, you know exactly what you're doing so a big plus there. So, on with the game. Once you've figured out how to find your way into Niflheim you're confronted with an oppressive atmosphere and dark brick walls. Very other world like, somewhat cult-like considering the symbols on the walls, which also ingeniously act like switches. It's not an environment you can pin down, it wont remind you of anywhere but that was the intended aim I guess. It's action packed for sure with a few really neat puzzles. Getting the wheels to move and figuring out how to drop 5 swords from the ceiling and kill part of the monster - all very clever and original stuff that I haven't seen before. However, there is a massive gameplay hindrance which comes in the form of constant locust swarms. They are so irritating it's untrue, not at all fun. Here's a tip, when a swarm reaches you save and reload and it will be gone for a little while. I had to save and load upwards of 30 times until I figured out how to stop them from coming. It's such a shame as the rest of the level is a great pleasure to play through, but you should never have to constantly reload because of a gameplay flaw, so unnecessary. Some of the moves from TR Anniversary Retold feature here too, including some of the irritating ones such as not being able to look around when hanging for a ledge (or she'll jump off and die) or if you decided to jump upwards from a crevice and don't catch anything, she'll just fall to her death again without re-catching the ledge on the way down. In some cramped corridors where the route isn't obvious this makes for yet more reloading. Just make it through this and I assure you the worst is over and it would be a shame not to continue as there are so many clever little animations and cutscenes. The next level, Vggdrasil, begins with a fantastic Medusa puzzle. I wont spoil it, but it's great fun to figure out. The rest of it is similar in style to the first level with a many more cool moments and cutscenes. Could have done with some more flares and camera hints though I felt. Now you enter a unique take on Croft Manor as the Doppelgänger. I like the atmosphere here and the traps. You can also jump a lot further than normal which was fun to play around with. There were a few minor niggles which could easily have been ironed out, for example the underwater sound when baddies fire, the wrong sarcophagus animation when opening a drawer and a rotated pushblock which kind of absorbed Lara when you went near it, but small issues all in all. Escaping the manor is just as fun as long as you do it within a couple of minutes before the constant earthquake gets too annoying. You get a nice change of atmosphere now in a snowy setting before you gradually reach the finale. This game has a unique feel to it. It's quick, action packed and cinematic, particular praise going to the cutscenes and well edited FMVs which are not to be missed. Finally, a story with depth! It wont appeal to all, particularly those who like a more traditional pace and setting, but nevertheless an entertaining couple of hours. If the game killing gameplay with the Hydra doesn't put you off, the rest is plain sailing and well worth it." - TrueRaider (14-Apr-2009)
"There's allot worthy of praise here. Some of the game-play (especially the sections involving the doppelganger), were quite innovative; with her enhanced moves and speed. Throughout the game the environments were believable. Textures, lighting and use of fog bulbs etc were excellent. Game-play wise I got two and a half hours (that's getting stuck occasionally and having to sneak onto the forums for tips!). The wonderful cinematic style and flare really does mark this level above many others I've played. While this level is superb, I've deducted marks for game-play (would have otherwise stored a 9), due to a few sections which I found needlessly frustrating. Having to re-load 30 times to achieve a single jump which is just barely within the capabilities of the game engine isn't good game-play (this happens a number of times) and I'm sure would send many gamers either giving up or using position editors/save-games to progress. I nearly downed the game at the beginning with hydra because of one of these frustrating jumps (and those blummin locusts!), but ultimately the frustration is worth-while for the strength of the rest of the game. The video sequences and voice acting were also a nice touch." - TheStig (13-Apr-2009)
"Much to my surprise the author has developed his skills in editing in an almost unbelievable short while. Here he comes up with an issue inspired by Underworld , a very good idea indeed ! I only hope Chrystal Dynamics will not get too excited about how Philip makes use of their flybies and cutscenes or even voices and music ! Nonetheless , it takes a lot of time and effort to create such a great game as this surely is with the NGLE and I think a lot of other players will enjoy this marvelleous adventure the same as I did ! I have never been too fond about these new moves taken over from the Chrystal Dynamics Playstation Engine , it looks so unreal and almost impossible for a human being such as Lara to jump backwards across huge gaps . I almost felt sorry for our dear Lara when they make her crawl up a wall like a spider or a fly ! It looks so ridicculous and silly ! Apart from that this game is simply wonderful and definetely a must-play . Thumbs Up !" - Ruben (12-Apr-2009)
""The Wheels of Kathar are already in motion!" I didn't catch this term in Tomb Raider Anniversary, but PH did. I think this game is made very well. I like all of levels (the most Croft Manor featuring Doppelganger the least maybe Kathar, because it is shorter that other levels, but great!) Gameplay is amazing! Love the Hydra in Niflheim and Medusa in Yggdrasil. It's simple great! (Btw. I like new animations a lot!) Atmosphere is for every level specific what is very good! I enjoyed first level, because I was blind to find that hole on the ground. But the best was croft manor because I simple like Lara's "twin" and the home background is great! The Egypt passage is very good done, because I think it was good relax for me to explore this area and get the key to open winston's room (and then kill him :( ) Right! I think it is very good level set and I will play it again in future!" - Razzi (11-Apr-2009)
"This is an impressive, multi level game that begins underwater, which could mean quite a lot of drowning before you find your way into the building, but don't relax just yet - there's a hydra to battle. The settings are varied, ranging from lofty halls to icy wastes. There is also a mansion section where you play as a doppelganger and 'Lara's' movements are enhanced, which can take quite a bit of getting used to. The last section involves making your way up a high tower, which is rather fun, and if you spot a password you can play the bonus level, which is a short, but eventful return to the Helheim level, this time playing as the doppelganger, and ends with a great little cutscene of the real Lara entering the area. I loved this - the gameplay is intriguing and absorbing, involving use of 'magic squares' and there are some unusual and well placed enemies to battle, sometimes with your wits rather than firepower. The settings are well made and attractive and the clever animations really spice up the proceedings. A definite must play." - Jay (09-Apr-2009)
"Hmm... I've learned a custom where saying nothing means the greatest compliment. HOWEVER, I did notice some of the enemies were slightly lower-res than the environment (such as the TR2 spider and TR2 Dragon models which could have been retextured). But I didn't mark horrendously low for it, it kind of adds to its charms. Well done, keep up the good work!" - ggctuk (07-Apr-2009)
"An excellent game. The puzzles and gameplay were great and they had me fooled most of the time. I was delighted to see that there actually was a difference in gameplay from the doppelganger and Lara. The enemies and such were very pleasing and i liked the hydra the most although i thought that the locusts were very overpowering and i didnt have time to think about how to do the level. The sound and cameras were spectacular and most of the time i could see what i was doing and on most games i cant so congratulations. Finally the lighting was almost perfect although in some areas such as Yggdrasil i couldnt see underwater in some point, also the texturs were well placed and i couldnt agree more with you for the textures used." - herothing (05-Apr-2009)
"well i even dunno how to start this rewiew ..this is a big game with 4 or 5 levels very well builded i refer at arhitecture - should take alot off work ,,,,,also is some new moves on this one wich need some time and tryes to master ...also this is a tuff one filled with alot off trapps /timed runs / and nice puzzles .....well have some minor mistakes off course like the part at wich u get at a huge room with a big Hydra in the middle .. well this i find the moust tuff part off the game ..... u need to activate alot off buttons and those buttons is located on 3 levels around the giant Hydra u need to get up and down and up again in order to could push all buttons ..... the tuff part is that the medipacks provided off the builder is simply not enuff .. cos the Hidra throw alot off locusts wich lower the health very fast and u need to cover alot off road up and down - i admit needed to add some medipacks to could survive untill i managed to push all buttons ... also i find a mistake from the builder to not make those buttons one time use only cos u get very stressed to save ur ass from locusts and accidentaly u could push one button 2 times wich stop u to finish the level cos those buttons open some grated doors at upper level and is 3 grated doors one after another so iff u push same button 2 times one off the grates close and u cannot get through .. also i find frustrating some jumping at ''Manor infiltration '' level cos Lara here jump unusualy long and high and the platforms are set up too close so offten i get Lara Jumping over platform at wich should land cos too long jump....ok this was the negative part ...... the positive is that this game keep u in the chair for long time cos is very adrenalin packed- i recomand it only at experienced riders .... also flybyes and cameras are very proffesional made / enemyes are variated from dogs to giant spiders .. at last level ''Kathar'' u need to think a bit how to get close at the central tower structure after that u need to climb it to the top and the game ends abrupt after ..... this could be easy a 10 in the row game but i find it a bit unpolished but all in all a excelent game the best so far from PH who is a very promissing builder. keep it this way PH and i wait for ur next game cheers" - Jack& (05-Apr-2009)
"I must say I got much enjoyment out of this game. Wheels of Kathar is PH's fourth released level on, and it definitely deserves praise. Much work has gone onto this level set. From playing as Lara trying to find a way past a massive Hydra, and flying locust, to infiltrating Croft Manor as the evil doppelganger, this game is full of action. You'll find it hard to stop playing! Gameplay keeps you on your toes. The locust can be really annoying, but once you find out how to stop them, you'll grin with satisfaction. I was VERY impressed with the Hydra and other objects so high points to this category. The atmosphere, sound, and placement of cameras also deserve high points. Lighting is good and textures are placed nicely. Overall: An excellent new addition by PH and much improved over his last instalments! Good job! I definitely recommend you play!" - Phys (04-Apr-2009)