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20x20x20 Challenge - Greece Artefact by Martini

afzalmiah 8 10 10 9
Bigfoot 9 10 10 10
Ceamonks890 7 8 9 8
Chel 7 9 10 8
Christian 7 9 9 9
DatoDavid 8 7 9 9
Diz 9 9 9 9
DJ Full 7 7 9 9
dmdibl 7 9 9 9
Gerty 4 6 8 8
Glouglouton 8 8 9 10
Jay 8 9 9 10
JesseG 7 8 9 9
Jose 4 8 9 9
manarch2 8 7 8 8
MichaelP 6 7 9 9
Mman 8 8 9 9
Mytly 7 7 8 8
Nomad 6 8 10 9
Orbit Dream 8 5 9 10
Ryan 5 7 9 9
Sarikman 8 7 10 9
Soul 7 10 9 9
release date: 29-Nov-2011
# of downloads: 161

average rating: 8.27
review count: 23
review this level

file size: 67.23 MB
file type: TR4
class: Rome/Greece

author profile(s):

Reviewer's comments
"This level is truly difficult to rate. The atmosphere is wonderful, texture work and architecture is pretty good. I loved the soundtrack in the last area. In general it felt like I was exploring Atlantis instead of just an underwater cave in Greece. Tricky trapdoor platforming was quite difficult but cool. But that last part, oh boy. First of all, I absolutely did not like that I could buggy climb the hole with the key in it. I first thought it was intended (seems I am not alone), and looked for a lot of minutes to find a way back up or progress. Turns out I shouldn't drop down to the pool, and keep swimming so I can 'leap' into the next water column, but the next problem is they phase in and out in milliseconds literally, and perfect (I mean the word) timing, positioning, and movement is needed. Absolutely creative, and I am sure it was tough to design it. Is it fun to play it though, definitely not. I was really annoyed as I was trying to figure out how to handle it and then to actually achieve that. This is what I dislike at custom levels (besides the extremely tight tasks I mean), it sucks when I can't plan what I should do in advance, without dying a hundred times. The same problem was also in the cave room with the spike at the bottom. I am unable to look around and plan ahead my platforming sequence. So I just jump up and back without a clue and pray that I can progress. I think some camera work tried to guide the player but it failed. I also did not like the spears in urns underwater but it is not a big deal. I can only recommend to those who love extremely tight levels." - Nomad (14-Sep-2020)
"This has to be one of the most frustrating little raids I've ever done. Rating is hard, because there was a lot that I liked and appreciated. The environment is gorgeous, but the play was mostly trial and error for me to make it through to the end. Some sections are extremely dark and I didn't find any flares to help illuminate my way through. Sometimes the way forward was very difficult to see, so as a consequence I kept putting the controller down and walking away because of eyestrain and irritation. Dark, cramped platforming isn't very fun. It's hard for the wrong reasons. The hit box on the big ol' spear jars was in some serious need of the 'fat' being trimmed. Spike hit boxes are IMHO, dumb as a general rule, often spiking Lara when she's not quite touching them, but these were insane. The final room with the inescapable pool and the gravity-defying water columns was another exercise in patience and save-scumming. Was quite relieved to finally lay my hands on the artefact so I could call it a day! This builder is talented, and I wish they would make a return with some new adventures." - Chel (01-Dec-2019)
"This level looks really beautiful and evokes a mystical Greek temple really well. It's a shame, then, that the gameplay turned out to be too frustrating for my liking. The beginning sections, with lots of shimmying, water currents and a fairly paced timed trapdoor puzzle, gives no indication of the final part, containing an extremely difficult water column puzzle. I must have easily spent at least 15 minutes here trying to figure out the correct way to pass them, and I got stuck a few times in the pool below after falling in a few times, due to there being no way out whatsoever. It's made even more difficult due to the fact that the columns blend in too well with the stable columns. Maybe if they had been timed a little more generously, or made more obvious, I would have been more positive about the level as a whole, but it ruined it for me. The looks are great, the gameplay not so much." - Ryan (14-Aug-2018)
"For a debut release, this is surprisingly good for the most part(demonstrating several creative ideas that would go on to define the builder's unique style of level design in his later work). The atmosphere of the level is absolutely exquisite to explore through with top-notch lighting effects, appropriate object/enemy utilization, immersive ambiance choices and convincing texturing helping to make this environment feel properly believable(with the odd missing texture or two not doing much to spoil the illusion). Having said all that however, the gameplay difficulty can unfortunately be quite rough around the edges at times, requiring many retries in order to get past a particular section(with the poorly-designed water columns bit near the end, being seemingly impossible to bypass in my case). So I tragically had to give up there out of frustration. Overall, this is still worth playing for those who have a lot of patience and resilience on hand. But if you're a more casual player of custom levels, I'd highly recommend playing TheTiger's other releases instead(as I feel that he got a better handling of general gameplay balance from then on)." - Ceamonks890 (30-Oct-2016)
"Congratulations for first making me believe there's no getaway and then presenting one of the most creative I've ever seen. Really, it's hard to imagine a more original execution of a Poseidon room, but the gameplay would be much better if that water was instantly deadly as it should be. There are some other impolishments, like a whole harpoon magazine taken to fight a single shark, a spike collision which is way too large, or a total lack of flares while there's a totally dark place applied, so in my case the quest for a crucial item up there was a blind trial and error. But as always in case of this builder, we can count on nice sights which keep pushing us upwards and onwards. SUMMARY: The beginning of something great, I believe. Recommended but save often." - DJ Full (16-Apr-2015)
"OK Den you have shown us you can build but now make something for everybody to enjoy and not only for the less faint hearted. This is a level where you for sure have to keep your eyes open, as it isn't so crystal clear where to go and what to do next. I hated that timed swim; that is just plain nasty. Glad I had a friend over that did that nasty swim for me." - Gerty (23-Feb-2012)
"A very inspiring level of about 25 minutes in many aspects. The look and feel is great, very mystic, the flybys draw you in and the initial climbing around the place, leveraging Laras new moves is cleverly conceived in cramped corridors with quite a bit of swimming to do. the timed trapdoor challenge is not so hard once you figure out how to do it and the burners and sinks add to the variety of challenges. And then there is the relatively original idea of the alternating water columns - reminisicent of The Copacuahana Idol level - and as Mytly says in her review, this is a great idea that was a bit poorly executed. Poorly in the sense of being very player unfriendly to the extent that many will give up on the level right there (even though that is pretty close to the end). Granted, once you get the hang of it, the moves are not all that hard, but it does take a few too many tries before getting the hang of it - at least that was the case for me and I am hardly a novice player ;) Still - that major gripe aside, I have been very impressed with this debut and look forward to much more from this builder." - MichaelP (14-Feb-2012)
"This one is a very good debut, with a nice environment and fresh ideas. I really liked the design, the marvellous objects, a good atmosphere and use of the cameras, very well textured... Perhaps I missed several enemies here and there, and more pickups, but the game was entertaining anyway. The challenge with the timed trapdoors was hard, but the area with the timed water columns completely ruined the gameplay; perhaps with some more seconds to change the position of the water it could be more funny, but that task can be impossible for many players. Evenmore, you can fall into the water below and go inside the crawlspace where the Poseidon's Key was, pick it up and then there's no way to continue playing. Well, each author has his/her own way to think how a level may be, but that kind of tasks are not for me; when I play a level I only play it to enjoy, not to prove I can beat anything. Very bad." - Jose (17-Jan-2012)
"I really enjoyed this level and I think it is the best level in the competition. The atmosphere and texturing was brilliant and the gameplay was also brilliant! The gameplay was good but there was a part at the end with the floating water blocks that was really hard. The object placement was perfect and there were no enemies except for a shark in the beginning but enemies were not important in this level it was all about puzzles and traps. The builder definately made the caves really realistic and I really want to play more levels from this builder. Recommended" - afzalmiah (15-Jan-2012)
"For the most part this was a fun level to play. The new ledge moves are used in interesting ways, and there was a nice and challenging trapdoor sequence. However there were some rooms that had nonsensical water currents (the room where you pull two uw switches to open the way above) and there was a place that is very easy to get stuck in - the water columns room. I dropped down, saw a key and grabbed it only to realize the author provided no way of getting back up. The objects are decent, but Lara comes with an annoying somersault animation that occurs when you press the walk key while running, as Lara is stepping on her left foot (on her right foot she slows to a walk as normal). The walk key is a core mechanic to the game, preventing lara from falling places, so this weird addition was not welcome to me. There were some helpful camera cues that helped remind me where certain things were. The texturing is nice but the lighting could be less dark in some places (but a flare fixes the problem rather well). Overall a challenging little level that ends abruptly after 24 minutes." - SSJ6Wolf (17-Dec-2011)
"Geez, was there a 'make the level as frustrating as possible' rule in the 20x20x20 Challenge that I'm not aware of?! Of the three levels in this Challenge I have played so far, two have had me pulling out my hair in bunches (and made me wary of tackling the fourth). Unlike 'The Venice Incident', 'Greece Artefact' has almost no enemies, which may lull you into a false sense of security at first. But beware - the gameplay is very difficult, which is made only more annoying because of issues like the lack of a readme that details the new moves Lara needs to make in order to make any progress whatsoever. The disappearing water columns room is a really rather cool idea, but it's implemented very badly. Simple things like colouring the water columns differently from the surrounding room would have made this section so much more player-friendly. Not to mention that the cramped surroundings make it difficult to get a proper look at what's ahead. Plus, the fact that you can fall into the water below and not only survive but also get a key means you may not even realize that that's not the correct way to proceed. The earlier parts of the level are not so bad, but they too involve a lot of blind jumping in cramped spaces, some unnecessary backtracking, and a whole lot of shimmying. The only part I enjoyed unequivocally was the trapdoor jumping sequence.
The looks are quite good - the cave at the beginning looks particularly nice. But there are some areas which are pitch dark for no reason (and no flare pickups are provided), and the uniform bright blue lighting in the water columns room is detrimental to gameplay (as noted above).
Overall: A bunch of good and original ideas, but implemented poorly. This level would have been much better if the builder had taken his time with these ideas, and not tried to incorporate them in a Challenge like this." - Mytly (15-Dec-2011)
"So, this is a very nice level. Very nice textures and some new moves. Lighting is very good, but it is boring at some parts. When I read that this is a challenge level, I thought it would be a real challenge. as it seems, the level isn't so challenging, except the last part with the flying water. The lack of enemies is a bit monotonous. I believe that the author should build larger rooms. He is talented, but these small rooms don't seem nice. Also, the level has great atmosphere and is enjoyable. It worths a try. We are expecting more from this builder." - DatoDavid (10-Dec-2011)
"Given the high review scores, I was expecting something pretty good, and this does have a beautiful design with ruins, caves, and water. But since there is no readme file (and this was the first Challenge level I played), there was no progress for a long time until I discovered Lara had new moves. The 20x20x20 Challenge is great if it encourages debut levels, but in this case it also seemed to constrict--it felt like rooms should be larger to express the builder's flowing designs. I'd love to see this author tackle a regular level with such ideas. Then maybe there wouldn't be a rush, so things like readme files wouldn't be left out. The ending could be improved upon. The water columns that oscillate in and out of existence, with Lara forced to swim through them, is a clever idea, but in this level has problems. Lara falls out almost at once, and ends up in freezing water to find a key. I thought Lara was supposed to be there. She finds a ladder out of water, so I reasoned that there must be a new move for Lara to grab a ladder from water, and tried to find it. Players are completely stuck here and don't even realize it, which isn't a good way to implement this. I had to resort to the stuck forum, where the author explains that players should time the water columns, and swim out just before they change. The trouble is I could only see water columns by looking upward, and seeing top squares. I couldn't distinguish different pale blue water columns in front, and it was only chance when Lara advanced. This took hundreds of tries. It is the simplest thing to change water color and brightness in the level editor, so shouldn't some of the water columns have been greenish and darker, or maybe even other colors, so players could see alternating columns? Overall, this accomplished level is very promising for future levels." - dmdibl (08-Dec-2011)
"An interesting level with beautiful textures lightings (especially the room in the beginning) and some clever ideas. I liked the water area wih column even it's was hard to find the solution. I think also the fact you may fall in poisoned water is a big mistakein gameplay. That's why it's good beginning for a newbuilder but in the future he must take care of this type o mistake." - Glouglouton (08-Dec-2011)
"Be warned this level can suffer from major input bugs that make it nearly impossible to play. I had it at first but it fixed when I started the game again, but others have apparently had less luck. This level is set in a great looking set of Greek caves and structures, with well-applied textures and lighting, along with an interesting camera angle at one point. Gameplay is pretty difficult with various jumps around tricky architecture and timed sequences, including an original, but somewhat random feeling floating water sequence. This might be the best of the three contest levels I've played so far." - Mman (07-Dec-2011)
"A stunning and unique debut, which impressed from the first moment. And it kept what the 1st impression promised. The new moves were used cleverly, a jump combination over raised platforms p.e. made gameplay demanding. Gameplay was nearly perfect, but only up to one of the last challanges. Principially I don't like pheomenons that are physically impossible. Flying watercubes belong into this categorie, even if the change theit direction. I tried this sequence at least a hundred times and - as the stuck-thread shows - I was not the only one. Without a hint it was not clear, that I had to cross the cubes, because when I fell down I could manage to reach a key in time wlking through cold water. This sequence made me give lower ratings for gameplay. So it was a bit a frustrating end of a really great game. The atkosphere was unique, the author shows in his first work, that he has his own style. He created a very pleasant atmosphere with nearly perfect colors and lightnig. Very well done!" - Christian (04-Dec-2011)
"My favourite level of the whole contest. Starting with a great cutscene in a brilliantly looking area, I knew this level can't be bad at all. The temple area was simply breathtaking and it was great fun for me to wander through the areas. Gameplay is on the challenging (easy Japanese) side right from the start, there are intensive climbing sessions in extremely narrow chambers where you at first don't know where even to jump to. The trapdoor challenge was the hardest part of the level in my opinion, but the changing water pillars also did have their difficulty, both however were great fun to master and at the level end every player can be proud of himself. There was a nice usage of rebuilt key and lever objects, but at one place there was a strange object collision where there even was no object, so it took its time for progression here. In my opinion, the dolphin textures at the level end were rather childish and didn't fit to the setting so much, that prevented from a perfect score in this category. Also, the gameplay could have had a little more variety than only climbing and jumping, but these things were so greatly done I couldn't help myself giving a high score. I was very sorry that the level already was over after only 20 minutes, but I'm looking forward to the builder's next ambitious project." - manarch2 (04-Dec-2011)
"Hey,do you remember the good old days when playing Custom Levels used to be fun? When everything was pretty much do- able,for people of all gameplaying abilities? The builder of this particular level is clearly NOT pining for that era,as he fills this (his very first) Custom level with gameplay which teeters perilously on the brink of 'nasty';but,ultimately,comes up trumps for those that persevere.It's first and foremost a 'work out what to do and how to do it' level;and you'll be scratching your head in puzzlement numerous times before you hit upon the correct way for progression (cunning shimmies;a devious and wonderful timed trap-door challenge;a positively sadistic 'timed water-cube' swim);but you'll pat yourself on the back when it's all over. You'll also fully admire the technical skill of this builder: the watery Temple atmosphere which is gorgeous and almost makes you feel the dampness in the air;the evocative and beautiful lighting;the stunning and ingenious construction.Wonderful stuff;and the fact that your net gaming time will probably be somewhat less than half an hour matters absolutely not a jot.Nor will the lack of enemies,for that matter. For those who consider themselves up to the job:swallow some valium, settle in and relish the challenge. More please (although the builder could perhaps make it a little kinder next time!)." - Orbit Dream (03-Dec-2011)
"A short level (too short as I was enjoying it!) but challenging. As far as enemies go, the shark at the beginning is about it but, don't worry, there's plenty for you to do. It starts off slowly, more 'throw a switch to find a switch' that anything and then speeds up significantly by the time you're towards the end with one of the most innovative uses of the moving tile sequence I think I've ever come across. Good lighting and use of textures make this a visually attractive level. The new moves are well exercised in some agility tests. The only shortfalls are lack of timed runs, enemies to splatter and maybe a few puzzles, but you can't have everything in such a short level. Good fun though and the sense of achievement getting through the sequence near the end gives this level a high 'satisfaction' quotient. A bit too hard for beginners but everyone else should give it a try." - Diz (02-Dec-2011)
"This is a really well made level, even more impressive for being a debut. The gameplay emphasis is mainly exploration and agility - enemies are virtually nonexistent apart from an easily killed shark at the beginning of the game. The highlight of the whole proceedings is probably the ingenious and somewhat fiendish swimming puzzle at the end - a definite challenge. I'm very much looking forward to more levels from this builder." - Jay (02-Dec-2011)
"A nice short level. Maybe a little bit confusing at some parts.Lighting was good, but there were areas where there were room connections and the lighting was stopping suddenly. Most parts have a successfully placed lighting. Sometimes it is a bit boring playing all the level and face that light effects and in some rooms the effects made them seem blanc. Texturing was nice. I didn't like some rock textures at the beginning and at the end, but that's not a problem. What I found wick was the gameplay. Mostly you have to find switches and open doors. What was fascinating, was the trapdoor jumps. The water flipmaps was something new. I thought about using something like that once, but I thought it unatural, but this is just a game and everything is possible. Anyway, that part was nice but very confusing. A readme file or a flyby would help more." - Sarikman (02-Dec-2011)
"Let's all remember this builder, people! In this debut "TheTiger" shows that he knows how to properly use the editor and I'm almost sure that his next level(s) could be "Hall of Fame"-material. Lara gets to explore an amazingly crafted little cave somewhere in Greece and even if the size of the level is limited, as the name indicates, it's full of eye-candy and has many different locations, that are very nice to look at. Lighting is mostly top-notch and mixes all kinds of green/blue/yellow to give the whole area some kind of a fantasy-touch, though without making it seem unreal. Indeed it looks very realistic...until you spot some snowwhite cracks in an almost pitch-black area...It might be nitpicking but this somehow destroyed the atmosphere imo. Gameplaywise I really enjoyed this level, even if I expected a bit more variation. At the beginning it's mostly searching for switches that open doors. Later in the game we get to encounter two very nice challenges though, including the ingenious last puzzle that turns our well-loved "blinking" floortiles to a whole new level! That said I think that beginners and maybe even some "normal" players won't enjoy it as much as I did, especially as it's not 100% clear what to do in the last room, as the pool below isn't deadly, as it should have been imo! All in all it's an amazing debut one shouldn't miss!" - Soul (01-Dec-2011)
"Interresting and amazing little level. The gameplay is very good but maybe hard and confusing in the end with the water flipmap. There are new animations so maybe a README should be necessary in the file. The news objects are really beautiful and adapted for the theme. Not really enemies exept a shark I also really like the lighting. Very beautiful water and sun effects and wonderful textures. To conclude: an exellent little and nice game ... maybe a bit short. Great job. Very recommended "Maybe ad a README in the file for explain new animations and water flipmaps"" - BigFoot (30-Nov-2011)