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Mists of Avalon - First Clues by Titak

Adrian 10 10 10 10
Adriel 10 10 10 10
afzalmiah 10 10 10 10
alan 8 9 9 10
Alantos 10 10 10 10
AlexCroft 10 10 10 10
Alien Autopsy 10 10 10 10
Allicya 10 10 10 10
Andzia9 10 10 10 10
Bigfoot 10 10 10 10
Blue43 10 10 10 10
Bradley 10 9 10 10
CalrOsario 10 10 10 10
Capt. Abbey 9 10 10 10
Ceamonks890 9 9 9 9
cho7 10 10 10 10
Christian 10 10 10 10
Cosmos 10 10 10 10
DadRaider 8 10 9 10
Dark Sheep 10 10 10 10
Diz 9 10 10 10
DJ Full 9 10 10 10
dmdibl 10 10 10 10
Drakan 10 10 10 10
Dutchy 10 10 10 10
EssGee 10 10 10 10
eTux 8 10 10 10
Gabriel Oliveira 9 10 10 10
Glouglouton 10 10 10 10
Gorty 8 10 10 10
Hedteur 10 10 10 10
Isis 10 10 10 10
izzynoodles 10 10 9 10
Jack& 10 10 10 10
Janny 8 9 10 10
Jay 10 10 10 10
JesseG 9 9 10 10
JimmyBeon 10 10 10 10
JoeTheCrazyGamer 7 9 10 9
Jorge22 10 10 10 10
Jose 10 10 10 10
Juno Jim 10 10 10 10
Kara 10 10 10 10
Killer Gameplayz 10 10 10 10
Klona 10 10 10 10
Kubsy 10 10 10 10
Loupar 10 10 10 10
manarch2 9 10 10 10
mart256 10 9 10 10
McRaider 10 10 10 10
MegaGamer 10 10 10 10
MichaelP 10 10 10 10
Mister-B 10 10 10 10
Miya 5 10 10 9
Mman 10 10 10 10
Moonliteshadow 10 10 10 10
MrJavi94 10 10 10 10
Mrshina 10 10 10 10
Mytly 10 10 10 10
Nicky 10 10 10 10
Nina Croft 8 10 10 10
OlafRaider 8 8 9 9
Orbit Dream 9 10 10 10
OverRaider 9 10 10 10
Petaludas 8 9 10 10
Phil 10 10 10 10
QRS 10 10 10 10
requiemsoul 8 10 10 10
Ruben 10 10 10 10
Ryan 10 10 10 10
Sabatu 10 10 10 10
Sakusha 10 10 10 10
Samu 9 10 10 10
Sander 9 9 10 10
Sarikman 8 10 10 10
Shandroid 10 10 10 10
Soul 10 10 10 10
The Boo 10 10 10 10
TheStig 10 10 10 10
Tim 10 10 10 10
Tolle87 10 10 10 10
TombExplorer 9 10 10 10
TombRaiderFan 10 10 10 10
TOMBSAGE 9 9 10 10
Torry 10 10 10 10
totizedger 10 10 10 10
TRaider1996 10 10 10 10
Valdive 10 10 10 10
X-TremeError 10 10 10 10
young Lara Croft 10 10 10 10
release date: 24-Dec-2011
# of downloads: 1384

average rating: 9.83
review count: 90
review this level

file size: 372.00 MB
file type: TR4
class: nc

author profile(s):

Reviewer's comments
"This is one of the best i have ever played. Pure joy! Fun and relaxing! From a aesthetic point of view, never seen any over level comparable to this one. A great masterpiece!! I spend about 8 hours to finish. Loved it from start to finish! Absolutely to play!" - CalrOsario (20-Nov-2022)
"This level is perhaps one of the most memorable ones. I don't know what to say, I start with the negatives so I leave all the positives for later. The gameplay doesn't make much sense at times, but it still remains fun and relaxing. I have not been stressed at all, ever. I just wish some parts were clearer, especially as some stones are weird, as Lara can't stand on them even though they look straight. I often had to reload the save in some places, causing me to lose some immersion. From a aesthetic point of view, however, there are no comparisons. Absolutely to play!" - DadRaider (09-Sep-2022)
"Definitely among my top 3 faves, A lot of talent and effort has gone into this. I don't think I have a single bad thing to say except in The Lost Realm it's easy to continue on without an important item and it was annoying to have to back track for it. Very nice to start off in Croft Manor to give you the chance to familiarise yourself with new moves, especially for beginners. When the game moved underground it got pretty dark and usually I only point out when TRLEs are too dark if it feels like an annoyance, but I actually liked that it became quite dark (and the PLS is perfect for this kind of ambiance)! The entire levelset had a wonderful modern feel like that of the LAU trilogy. Good strong story involved with good use of camera angles, flybys, and music. You NEED to play this! Took 4 and a half hours to play" - izzynoodles (22-Mar-2022)
"I played this game already when it was released and decided to replay it as it is clearly one of the most remarkable custom level releases ever. Attention to detail is quite amazing and I think that this game remains visually still as one of the most well-crafted levels to this date. The reason why I have given 9 for gameplay instead of 10, is because some section, especially in the levels "The Lost Realm" and "Good and Evil?", contain a lot of usual ledge jumping, item hunting and switch activation but were lacking innovate puzzles or game mechanics that you would expect from the very best levels. Even though there are many interesting tasks that often involve figuring out what to do with custom pick up items, in my opinion this wasn't still enough to elevate gameplay to the same level with other aspects of this game. Having said this, the gameplay is nevertheless, highly entertaining and often times I found myself simply admiring the immersive surroundings without caring too much about anything else. Hopefully, we don't have to wait for too long until the next part of "Mist of Avalon" comes out, since I am sure that it will blow everybody's minds just like this one did." - Samu (02-Oct-2021)
"MofA is an artistic achievement that is a must play for all Tomb Raider fans, and one of the best customlevels ever. However, it is not without its flaws. The game tends to play slowly on some computers today compared to when it was first released, and now it sometimes can crash after too many savegames (a situation that has plagued some other customlevels with the game engine that was used to build the level). This is mainly due to the textures and objects used which are magnificent, but not as friendly to today's operating systems by Microsoft. Hopefully, Titak is improving her building design to prevent this sluggishness and minor crashes in gameplay for MofA 2 which is still a few years away. Changes in operating systems by Microsoft have not always been helpful to TR customlevels as evident in other levels with the "monkey" crash bug in WIN7 and above that was not present in WIN XP. MofA is highly recommended and a must play." - TOMBSAGE (14-Sep-2021)
"Oh my GOD! This level is the best level set I have played so far. I love this with a passion. I love this level so much I have completed the manor section 5 times in a week. I love it so so much. I want to live in this Croft Manor so much! Gameplay and puzzles - at first they are tough, but my GOSH they are rewarding. Like in croft manor with the puzzle that requires you to know the solar system planets, inside the telescope room from the movie!!! Its simply BRILLIANT. Enemies, Objects and Secrets - all of these points are well crafted and suit the environment they are in, the crypts remind me so much of the England level in TRL with a mix of TRU manor crypts from the expansion, and MY gosh collecting the shields in croft manor, AHHH i'm in love. Atmosphere, Sound and Cameras - Of course the atmosphere is the BEST, Titak has made a level set that suits the environment. From the cozy library of croft manor to which I feel warm and safe, to the dank and dreary catacombs where i am on edge but methodical, all of it feels real. To the calming sounds of the clean swimming-pool i want to take a dip in, to the eerie creaks under the earth I want to listen out for in case of danger. Lighting and Textures - All placed with love and care and so beautifully woven into such a wonderfully crafted world. I don't know what more I can say in that everything looks as though it should have if it existed in the real world, made with passion and love with the professional mindset of a builder who cares for attention to detail. Conclusion - I cant stop but love this level, its perfect. The legacy of this level and Titak will be remembered by this community forever. Titak - thank you for making a masterpiece." - JimmyBeon (18-Jun-2021)
"After 10 years I'm playing this for the second time and I found out I didn't review it back then. It seems Titak loves the LAU trilogy (so do I) and I love how this game turned out inspired by these three wonderful games. Carefully build with awesome atmosphere, sounds, animations, objects, textures, soundtrack... Well, everything! The gameplay is so smooth, not hard and not easy. Just right! And that's just the difficulty I enjoy the most in games. My favorite part is the entire exploration of Croft Manor. I love the additions like the bathrooms, planetarium, etc... I'm just giving a 9 in gameplay section because I had random crashes when trying to load some saves (I had to open the game again) and worse, in the last level I couldn't save at all. Anyway, this is one of my favorite levels ever. Good job, really! I can't wait to play part 2." - Gabriel Oliveira (14-Mar-2021)
"One of the best levels ever created which currently sits #1 in reviews count and download count. And no wonder it is #1 at the moment, this adventure will get you hooked instantly with eye-catching details, amazing gameplay, and the well-decorated mansion Titia had created something beautiful and I appreciate her hard work done over the last years. I am seriously excited to play the next sequel :)" - Kubsy (22-Feb-2021)
"I previously began this epic level-set twice before. The first in the form of a Demo (the Courtyard level),with the builder herself sitting right in front of me (we were in Gerty's apartment) giving me hints on how to proceed.(Actually,I'd watched Titak build part of the Mansion level a year or two earlier at one of the LevelBase meets; so I feel as though I've been there from almost the beginning.) The second attempt was a few months later - but having almost completed the Mansion section my PC crashed and I lost the file. Since then,it had been on my 'must eventually get around to trying again' list;but it was only in this Covid-stricken year of 2020 and a nationwide lockdown, that I decided the moment was finally right to play it all the way through. A week or two for completion was what I anticipated. Instead,I finished it in three days - so immersive and compelling it was,that (hackneyed as it sounds) I simply couldn't stop. It goes without saying that it's a technical masterpiece every step of the way;and you could package it up and sell it without a moments hesitation. The atmosphere (especially in the subterranean levels) is totally immersive,and draws you into the adventure completely. The technical skill is awe- inspiring;and the visual imagination of the builder is second to none. Nonetheless,you can sense an 'on the other hand' coming up,can't you? Despite the huge variety of challenges and puzzles on offer,there are a few jarringly incongruous moments - particularly in the Mansion section of the adventure. Some of the cause- and-effect scenarios exist simply because Titak wants them to (the notorious 'smoothie moment';the timed-lever disguised as a painting);without them making any logical sense. Yes,these elements have been disguised as part of a 'Lara needs to be challenged' sub-plot within the game;but that is,in itself,hardly of benefit to the player when trying to work out what to do,or where to go,next. Later on there is much running for the player to indulge in;around epic and confusing sections of corridors,wondering what's supposed to be happening. With the Walkthrough at one's side you're never stuck,of course - but you pity the player who resolves to make it through without any form of help! Nonetheless,once you get to all the stuff hidden beneath the Mansion you discover that the gameplay feels more fluid and contains a richer variety of tasks and challenges - none too hard,but always entertaining. I completed it after 6 hours;and had a hankering to do it all again - which just goes to show how much I was entertained. I haven't felt so energized by a custom level in many a long year; and I hope it won't be a similar length of time before I encounter its sequel." - Orbit Dream (14-Nov-2020)
"Dont mind me , im here for the comments...! Well 2020 here, korona era, alive and im just a little bit late for this masterpiece.. New generation lara and engine so the details and level crafting are nowhere near to find, its one of these trles you just watch and observe your surroundings It remind me very much the 'beyond the scion' from Ess gee ..the polishing of this game was so good..the mansion was my favourite level and one of the best levels i have ever played. my only thing is that i wanted better riddles and problems to solve.. 2 or 3 secrets were all too good and enjoyable, yes i advised the walkthrough,shame.. Where is the continuance ?they have passed 9 years i think" - Petaludas (04-Nov-2020)
"I have completed this game about 3 times mow, I think. It is always a pleasure to play it. It is one of the best levels ever made, if not THE best. Absolutely unique and amazing." - TRaider1996 (27-Oct-2020)
"A fantastic levelset. It all is just so greatly built and the surroundings look very realistic. I liked all the new moves and sounds, the cinematics were fun to watch (especially the one at the end), although the voice acting could need some more work. Anyway, it was cool while it lasted, and it's something incredible to think that all of that was under Lara's mansion! Who would've thought she has a huge cave with a castle- like appearance down there." - alan (12-Sep-2020)
"Mists of Avalon - First Clues is a very special level. I'm really sure that literally ALL the TRLE community has played this level and, for most of them, this was their first custom level. Why those many have choosen this as their first level? And why many consider it the best level ever made? Well, I can try to give an explaination to those questions. I will try to be short to avoid spoilers, but will try to get the gist. The levelset is split into two parts: Lara's Home and the tomb area. Lara's home was majestically made, and it is clearly inspired by LAU's home. The thing is that it is not only inspired, but at times it looks EXACTLY like the original(textures, objects and architecture-wise), and a thought that will pop up easily is that we are not playing a level made using a Classic TR Editor. The tomb areaas also pretty good: it kept getting "magical" as we proceeded through the levels, and I swear I couldn't stop playing the game because it kept me interested the whole time. It is too difficult to talk about such a big level that is almost perfect, but there is still something that turned my nose up, and I will go in much more detail here. First of all, secrets. All of them are well placed, and I like the fact that there are some special secrets that are different than the normal ones. But please, avoid blocking the access to the big secrets if you don't have all the minor ones. It is really annoying(I mean, missing a secret is already bad, but missing 2 just because I missed 1 already? hell no). Also, it is even worse when you see that the room that leads to the special secret(in the last level) is in a normal room so there is no way you can miss that location. (Just want to be clear: I was lucky enough to get all the secrets on first run, so it is not anger that is talking for me). So in short, avoid the "secrets to unlock a special secret" setup please, it can be frustrating. Another problem that haunted me a bit, but probably personal, was the last level (X Marks the Spot). Compared to all the levels from this game, it felt a bit bland, generic and it got boring pretty easily. The idea of disabling weapon usage was cool though! Probably the reason behind that is that I saw the same pattern/textures/objects/stuff for 6 levels already and it felt as the game was getting repetitive by the end(also, the small areas from that level maybe have made it move obvious? If you compare it to the big and remarkable areas in the previous levels. Overall, this level is awesome, every area is polished and it looks like a PS3/XBOX360 game. The game keeps you interested through the whole level. The flaws are still not enough to bring this game down, so great job Titak! My favourite moment in the game(from the many good ones!) is when you are exploring Croft Manor: it is pretty quiet, and the rain clearly make those levels so relaxing! Recommended? Must-Play. Difficulty? Medium-Hard. Duration? Approx. 5h30m - 6h30m" - TombExplorer (07-Nov-2019)
"An incredibly fulfilling adventure from start to finish that really cheered me up and served as the perfect levelset to get me back into critiquing again after a long absence. What's offered here mixes and matches the best aspects of the manors from the Angelina Jolie TR films, Legend, Anniversary, Underworld and its Xbox 360-exclusive DLC Beneath The Ashes, expanding upon their general design with original ideas from Titak that makes exploring these levels very captivating whilst managing to possess their own distinct identity (with exquisite use of lighting, texturing, enemies and objects throughout). Gameplay is equally as enthralling with Lara's more versatile moveset making platforming and general traversal an utter delight (with excellent voice acting, charming writing, neat gameplay details such as Lara falling up or down upon touching coloured lava and an all-round immersive atmosphere helping to sell the comprehensive quality on offer). The only issue I have with this release however, is that it doesn't exactly run quite well on Windows 10 without having to download a newer separate version of a Tomb_NextGeneration.dll file to resolve various issues (such as diary images or save/load menus not being displayed properly). It's not the builder's fault in this respect, but even with this newer dll file added to your game folder, the game itself tends to crash randomly if you reload saves often which can become quite irritating after failing a difficult jump time after time. But in spite of that issue, this is still very much playable and well worth pushing yourself through it all, to experience everything this release has to offer. And I'm very much looking forward to the second part of Mists of Avalon when it eventually releases. On a side-note, here's the necessary dll file link for those of us playing custom levels among the ever-increasing userbase for W10-" - Ceamonks890 (04-Oct-2019)
"I played this game back then when it was released, but I was probably stunned by it, and forgot to review it then. Now I've played it again, and somehow, I am not that stunned as I was the first time... Actually, I am stunned by the amazing vista and beauty of the level, but it seems that this pleasure for my senses did not blur my objectivity and common sense as it did the first time over. Titak is definitely one of the best three TRLE builders of all times and we all know that Titak stands for the most beautiful geometry, vista and objects we've ever seen. In all these categories the review must be 10, and Titak absolutely deserves maximum scores for textures/lighting, sound/cameras and objects/animations. When playing, you can almost feel on your skin the love and effort Titak invested into creating every little detail, every object, room, animation, puzzle, switch, piece of furniture or architecture... She never fails in these areas, you can't find a flaw here no matter how hairsplitting you might be! But the score for Gameplay is significantly reduced this time. If we compare this gameplay with the gameplay of Himalayan Mysteries, we'll instantly notice a difference... In Himalayan Mysteries, everything was subjected to the gameplay (the vista was also stunning). But here, everything is subjected to the vista, even at the expense of the gameplay! Super easy tasks, pretty straightforward gameplay, too much attempt to get the "Underworld" atmosphere and imitate its gameplay, and what bugs me most are Lara's moves... Again, if we compare this gameplay with the Himalayan Mysteries gameplay, we'll see that a game with Lara's more or less standard moves is much more dynamic and interesting and involving than in this game, where we can get stuck for hours simply because we can't perform a pixel-precise new move... I humbly ask all the builders to focus on the BALANCE when adding new moves to Lara. Don't make a gameplay exclusively out of the new moves! In a sequence that involves a lot of platforming, classic moves should be used much more often than the new ones, otherwise it could be a torture for a player to get accustomed to new moves and to master them. A new move should come as a WOW moment, and if overused, it becomes annoying and spoils the WOW effect. OVERALL IMPRESSION: Absolutely a must-play! Titak is one of the best TRLE builders of all times, and for a reason! Whenever our TRLE Queen speaks, we bow down and listen! Therefore, if you somehow missed this pearl, download it now and enjoy the stunning vista of one of the best vista-builders of all times!" - Nina Croft (28-Mar-2019)
"What a wonderful level set that immerses the player in five hours of simply glorious raiding. Textures and atmosphere are the best I have seen and I have played many, many levels. This is just a joy to behold. Game play is classic raiding and some of the cut scenes we enjoy are marvelous.I really did enjoy the homage to TR2 at the end as Lara prepares to get in the shower. Indications of more pleasures to come and Titak, please, please finish this absolutely gorgeous level set for us all." - Torry (12-Sep-2018)
"No matter how many times I play this excellent level that always amazes me by the perfection and details, it is one of the best games I have played in years.. Very good work Titak and I wait the second part that will be epic!" - McRaider (29-Jul-2018)
"This project it's perfect, in every detail.The most beautiful Croft manor, and the following levels resemble the atmosphere of the Tomb Raider Underworld level on the underground of the Lara's manor. I loved play this! Congrats Titak." - Dark Sheep (06-May-2018)
"As I recently had a chance to take the inside look into the making of part 2, I decided to re-play this classic. I won't go much into the details because it's not possible to describe the eye-heaven of this level with just words. Let's put it simple - This is absolutely the best-looking level ever, there is no question about it. Titak's unmatched talents for environment building, paired with beautiful custom objects, animations and cutscenes make Mists of Avalon a unique and unforgettable experience. Starting from the best Croft Manor version so far, continuing with the more tomb-like environment at a dig site and finishing with some surreal places towards the end. Simply, the marks speak for themselves and there's nothing more I can add about visuals and objects, you just have to play it in order to realize what we're talking about. Now, the gameplay...I'll be totally honest - This is the first time that I gave 10 when I actually don't think it is deserved. If you imagined this level with ugly textures and standard objects, you would realize how much the gameplay is being carried by other marvelous categories. There are no big flaws, but it consists of a mostly simple tasks that are glorified by beautiful effects that go with it. There are even some parts near the end that can be a little annoying, but nothing really problematic. So why did I give 10 for gameplay? Basically for two reasons. First, because all other categories deserve 20 which I am unable to give. Second, out of pure respect for a massive effort and attention to slightest details that went into the building process. To summarize, this level represents absolute and unmatched enjoyment for your eyes and ears, but slightly less enjoyment for your fingers. Definitely a must-play while waiting for part 2." - Tolle87 (03-May-2018)
"fantastic and well done levelset, good textures/ lightning, animations and cut scenes. The story is interesting, especially when you are interested in english ancient history. I had to use the walkthrough, I really enjoyed it." - OlafRaider (21-Jul-2017)
"What a fantastic level set this was. I don't think I need to spend time writing about all the amazing good things in this game. A clear ˝10˝ in all categories besides the gameplay. Maybe it's just me, but I did get stuck a lot. Parts were very complicated for me and I just couldn't figure out what I'm supposed to do. It's probably because I'm not used to have this all new movements and possibilities for Lara. I remember starting to play this game a few times in the past but somehow I always just quitted playing in the gym after like 15 minutes. Maybe a too slow or ( I'll use this word ) ˝boring˝ long beginning for this adventure. With the help of the walk here on and some video walkthroughs on youtube, I was able too finally finish this game. The PDA notes didn't work for me ( I couldn't see them in game ). Overall, it's an amazing game with only few flaws in the gameplay. Nothing else bad to say about. Can't wait for the next part. Now while I'm familiar with the new moves and gameplay, I'm sure it wil be a 10 in all categories." - Gorty (05-Jan-2017)
"So after a long time I finally finished this famous TRLE custom level. If you like Tomb Raider you GOT to play this one. Amazing. Simple 10 to every single aspect of this adventure. Loved it so much!" - Allicya (15-Nov-2016)
"If you are reading this review to decide whether to try this custom level, stop right now and download it ASAP - reading the reviews reveals too much fun, it's better to play it without spoilers.
It was a rainy October day when I began to play. While rain poured behind my window, it also poured behind the windows in the game, adding to the atmosphere. I was instantly enchanted. Do you know that feeling, when you eat the cake so amazing and luxurious, that you have to eat it slowly/savour it little by little? I had to play this level very slowly, just because I wanted to appreciate every single room, every decorative piece of art I seen. The textures, design and 3d objects are outstanding quality. So many details. So many little easter eggs such as S. Hawking books and such. I couldn't believe this pack was made by one person. If you told it was made by group of professionals, I would have believed you.
The gameplay is a perfectly balanced mix of riddles/quizes, great secrets, original ideas, some shooting/action, a lot of non-linear exploration, a tiny bit of traps and extra action... plus these extra spicy bits to read/cutscenes which add extra polish to the whole pack and make it feel as alive as possible. Basically: a little bit of everything to ensure you shall not be bored even for a second.
Game introduces new moves/mechanics of gameplay. Example: pseudo-flying. Very interesting and original!
The adventure, while having the fantasy touch to it, also serves us some nice realism. Like, for example, the fact that a lot of loot (ammo and such) is left near skeletons of travelers, who failed before Lara. I really like it. It never made sense to me that in the middle of the old crypt there is a gun dropped without explaination, just waiting for Croft to find it.
We begin with the most detailed and enjoyable depiction of Lara's home I ever played, and I played plenty of them back in my days. Oh, and the cutscenes... and little riddles with codes... And the aquarium... and my favourite - arboretum with tropical feel. Oh God, I could go on and on, my jaw kept dropping. I love Lara's home levels and this was the best I ever played and I believe I will never find one better than this. So much fun! Delightful level.
Sound is as good as textures - suits mystical atmosphere and is overall well chosen.
After Lara's home, Croft shall begin some serious raiding. She will switch to more suitable clothes. We go into dark, dirty, mushy crypt filled with spiders, rats and bats. The mists are dense, the water is flooding and the old lights are barely working - I can almost smell the stench of decay and feel coldness of underground crypts. The atmosphere is oozing from every piece of detail. If you love graveyards, cathedrals and fancy some gothic stuff, you shall feel at home. It's a perfect level to play during October, because it has certain Halloween feel to it. Especially if you have arachnophobia, brr. Beautiful, just beautiful.
Then (spoiler alert!) there's this concept of heaven and hell (?). Or more like; frozen hell and hot hell. Levels are filled with symbolic and beautiful, colour rich sceneries. I loved the concept and execution. Stained glass was so pretty to look at. While hot hell literally almost melted Lara, cold hell made me shiver and had this angelic feel to it at the same time. It was a bit scary with these creepy enemies and eerie effects. I was especially creeped out before entering hot hell.
The ending was good as well, what else can I say... They were playing Tomb Raider II while waiting for Lara, nice choice! 5 hours and 300 saves of pure fun. Thank you, Titak, for making autumn/Halloween season even more amazing :)." - Alien Autopsy (20-Oct-2016)
"The TRLE starts in the Mansion where you need to unravel some mysteries and find the Crypt key to Locate the Dig Site where the real Raiding Begins. Working your way through Pitfalls and traps along with puzzles and Sorted Enemies like Giant Spiders and Harpies(Winged Skeletons). Very well designed and crafted. One of my favorite TRLE's so far !! Killer Gamplayz" - Killer Gameplayz (09-Jul-2016)
"The attention to detail in Titia's masterpiece is simply outstanding. From the salubrious, well lit hallways of the manor to the dark, dingy underground caverns of the Dig Site, everything meshes neatly together. With great gameplay and objects that shape the environment, what more could you wish for? I am definitely looking forward to part 2!" - Ryan (07-Apr-2016)
"Mists of Avalon is a cool game, but it is not really my kind of level, but a lot of people like it, so great Job, Titak. That being said it looks amazing and does have some intresting puzzles later in the game. Including a skeleton battle at the end. It does start really slow with a gym and just doing some stuff around the house, but it picks up at the end." - JoeTheCrazyGamer (14-Feb-2016)
"Gameplay&Puzzles: For me there are not that much Puzzles and they are not so difficult, but lot of exploring wonderfull and creative map. The level of difficulty was for me not so high. Enemies, Objects&Secrets: There are a little enemies, but that is ok. The Objects are very creativ designed and it was fun to search for the parts and to put them together. Atmosphere, Sound & Cameras: The atmosphere and sound is great. The music fits to the location and to the events. Lighting & Textures: Not to dark and not to bright, just perfekt. The textures are also great. If you play, you notice the effort and how much time it have took. Overall, it was fun and addictive to play." - Sander (19-Jan-2016)
"This is the best custom level I have ever seen... One word to describe it: PERFECT !!! Titak in my opinion is indisputably the best author of all and I love her works... So, "chapeau" and congratulations for all." - AlexCroft (29-Oct-2015)
"I don't know why I have waited so long with playing this titel, and now I just can echo the reviews before: Marvellous, fantastic, ingenious and breathtaking! I've never played a custom level like this and I'm really looking foward to the next "clues" of Avalon. Titak, you are just great. Non less than a ten in every class!" - The Boo (23-Sep-2015)
"In this moment we can't find better levels:D This is not amateur custom level. THIS IS LEVEL LIKE FROM DEVELOPERS :D BEAUTIFULL!!!!!!" - Sabatu (26-May-2015)
"A really cool level made by the great Titak ! It perfectly suits with the Tomb Raider Legend/Underworld game and she did a very good storyline ! Graphics are splendid, if you told me she passed a long time on it, i would believe you ! Same for the atmosphere, musics and sounds, really catching and of course, suitable with the environment. Puzzles are impressive and just as complex as i personnaly like, moreover the news moves reminds me the real Lara Croft, in a quite old engine, which is pretty cool. Little bonus, Titak included nice deaths animations (just play the game, you'll find out !) and of course some tricky situations. Recommanding this map to everybody ! 12 secrets, hours spend : 6 to 7 the very 1st time and 4 to 5 for my most recent gameplay." - Hedteur (05-Jan-2015)
"One of the most famous custom levels for sure. The atmosphere is absolutely breathtaking and gameplay very enjoyable and I noticed that many reviewers were complaining about gameplay and that you must look for puzzle items or switches, but well I have my own opinion about this and that looking for puzzle items were rather enjoyable for me because exploring such beautiful areas and environments was a pleasure and tasks to reach the switches were also entertaining and my only complain about gameplay&puzzle aspects is that it was really just too easy, but never mind because the whole game is very well thought out and many tasks where you pull the switch or solve the pushable puzzle were accompanied by animation sequence always a pleasure to watch. Also I loved the audio choice as well as background ambience choice but again why is foreground and background music playing at a same time? For example in Croft Manor there are several switches which trigger the nice classic piano piece by Beethoven and it`s just not a pleasure to listen that when background music was playing at a same time! But I gave 10 in atmosphere, sound&camera aspects by simple calculation: atmosphere:10 sound:9 cameras:10 => 9.67. There is no need to say anything about lighting and textures as those are masterfully done as also you can see that in screenshots. There are also new objects never seen before and all are placed perfectly and fitting to the breathtaking environments. I know all this have been already said and I don`t know what else to say. Hm wait, there is one thing what need to be mentioned and that this is how TRs from Crystal Dynamics should look like, and Crystal Dynamics team should definitely learn from Titak!!! A real masterpiece not to be missed by anyone! I also must mention that I liked Himalayan Mysteries - Full Version a little bit more (I also mentioned that in a review of HM-FV) but nevertheless I loved this game and loved every second playing it as well as admiring the scenery and environments. Titak thank You so much for Your creations, respect from me and I can`t wait to play the second part of Mists of Avalon. Playtime 3:30 secrets 12/12 which by the way are very nicely hidden and also very satisfying secret system reward. 9/10/10/10" - OverRaider (11-Sep-2014)
"Best. Level. Ever! Excited for part 2!" - MegaGamer (04-Jul-2014)
"Upon writing this review, this isn't my first play through of this gem. In fact, I played the day it was released. Playing it a second time through recently, I would say it impressed me then, and it impresses me now. Mists of Avalon is a testament to the progression of the level editor, and remains one of the strongest and most loved custom levels I have played. Titak's skill set is second to none, and is apparent throughout this adventure. From setting foot in the Courtyard's Gym, to passing through the vast architecture that lies beneath, there is always something to look at in awe." - Cosmos (17-Apr-2014)
"Absolutely...stunning. Exquisite detailing, fantastic loctaions and atmosphere, absolutely perfect lighting & texturing. Flowing, involving gameplay. I don't think there's much more I can say. Completed in just over 6 and a half hours. Loved it, cant wait for the next instalment! Stiggy :)" - TheStig (23-Jan-2014)
"Wonderful Level, was like playing one of the new generation games but with the original generation controls. The added moves Lara had mad the playing experience more enjoyable and interesting. Beautiful level with excellent attention to detail and lots of interesting challenges and enemies." - Kara (16-Jan-2014)
"Wow what an adventure. Im speechless i mean the story is Amazing, the graphics are spectacular and the atmosphere fits the levels perfectly. I've never played such an amazing adventure before. there are some minor faults like The Dig Site and The Lost Realm more could have been done there but still its dazzling. I got many hours of fun here and i must say that Titak has made a true masterpiece, the graphics for example is absolutely stunning i think even the best graphics you could possibly get with this engine. Highly recommended for all types of players because it was'nt too hard either. Thank you Titak for this awesome adventure." - totizedger (28-Jul-2013)
"After 50+ reviews for this levelset, there's not much else I can add except to say I got the same sense of awe playing this game as I did when I first played Piega's Sanctuary of Water, Ice and Fire back in the early days of custom levels. I have the deepest appreciation for everything that has been achieved in these levels, and can only imagine the number of hours Titia has committed to, to produce this level of detail. It's simply a totally professional release that ticks every box on the critique checklist. The manor levels are architecturally precise, whilst the underground levels bear the wear and tear and organic construction of the ages. The Meta2TR/ Metasequoia rendering is of the absolute highest quality. My favourite area of the game was the massive lava cave with the moving platforms - you could almost feel the heat. Fantastic work Titia! Loved it from start to finish." - EssGee (11-Jan-2013)
"Congratulations, such and amazing game! Not just the graphics/textures, the new lara's movements or the flashlight, the plot of the story is great too. I liked the PDA, such a helpful device where you could look for books or some clues trough the game. The dialogues, atmosphere, music and animations made me think I was playing a real Eidos Game (as someone said before). Enemies are great and original, mainly the skeleton bat. A little detail I found, the giant spiders are a bit buggy, they got stuck sometimes. The secrets were fine too, a bit easy to find to my taste. The healthpacks amount trough the game could be reduced too. I am waiting for the next part definetly." - mart256 (23-Dec-2012)
"One massive adventure! First class raiding and an awesome game, I enjoyed every bit !" - young Lara Croft (16-Dec-2012)
"Best TRLE game ever when i was playing i feel like i am playing an Eidos game.Every thing have great details enemies,objects,lighting,textures,sound.I cant wait for part II" - X-TremeError (02-Nov-2012)
"There's not much to add because the essence has been said in other reviews many times but still: thank you, thank you, Titak, for making this masterpiece and sharing it with us. I enjoyed every second of it. (Especially when I was almost scared to death by the cave's, eh, rapacious inmate.) It just never stops amazing me how this community has lived so many years, levels keep making progress, authors keep getting better and spend years with their massive projects, then give them away for free. Comparing this to the disposable crap that official game makers produce to the market nowadays shows what's true devotion and this level is a living, breathing and shining example for it all." - Valdive (31-Jul-2012)
"What a great level this is. Congratulations to Titak. The graphics are great and love the new moves. I loved the atmosphere and the suspense. There arn't many ememies but that's ok for me as I prefer the puzzles anyway.The enemies that were there popped up at just the right/wrong time :). The game was a little dark in places, even with the little light but the enjoyment of the whole level was not marred by this." - Moonliteshadow (03-Jun-2012)
"An absolutely masterpiece ! There is hardly anything to say about such a game that contains all the elements that a tomb raider custom level should have. It was a real pleasure to watch and explore the amazingly created and designed levels. It will be hard for any level creator to top this level in any segment. There are so many new and original objects that fit with the structures of the levels. With a huge help from the walkthrough I made it to the end of the game. Every minute was enjoyable. Looking forward for new projects from Titak." - Alantos (14-May-2012)
"I want to pay my respects to the amazing job of this creator. This is by far the best fanmade level I ever seen, making you doubt if it is still an old Tomb Raider you're playing to. Not only is the atmosphere very good, but the creator is obviously a well cultivated person with excellent taste in interior design and art. The story is amazingly good, the voice actors and the recordings as well ! Is that Jenni Milward as the voice of Lara ? Pure awesomeness ! I enjoyed walking in the manor just to admire every little detail that talked about so much background work... So finally, I wanted to say thank you Titak, we level makers are all conscious of the time and devotion you put into it. THANK YOU !" - TombRaiderFan (29-Apr-2012)
"Croft Manor levels:

Croft Manor - Courtyard - When I played this game for the first time, this was obviously the first level one has to play and it left me speechless when I was the opening fly by showing the raining afternoon in the manor.
Croft Manor - Downstairs - This level has not so much gameplay as the other ones have, cause the main objective is to read four books to talk to Zip and getting the key for her bedroom. The keypads are very interesting, overall for people who are so intrigated that they want to discover by themselves. There're a total of four visits in which the gameplay starts growing up itself.
Croft Manor - Upstairs - This level has more than one visit too, concretely two. The objective in this level is to get the DVD disk where's the recording of Winston inserting the code that guarantees the access to the basements.
Croft Manor - Basements - This one is possibly the prettiest out of the all four levels. In this level Lara complies with the objective of getting the Crypt she needed to access to the underground for searching some possible clues to discover how her father died and more.

Underground levels:

The Dig Site - As the message said in the cutscene of the previous level, it's time for more serious raiding, and indeed this level has that. The gameplay is much more promising than happened in Croft Manor levels. The giant serpent in the main hall of the site is amazingly pretty and killing it is nothing hard, as it can be shown in the speedrun I did of the whole game indeed.
The Lost Realm - Another great level with good raiding. The cool objective in this one is to collect two cogs ( left and right) that guarantees the way up to the top section. The gameplay is very similar respect to the previous level, so they're actually similar in all the categories.
Good and Evil? - This level os actually segmented in two, because you must access to the two parts from The Lost Realm level.
Good part: This part is amazingly pretty. Lara must find her way to the Angel Halo item and get out of there. To accomplish that, there're three barriers denying you to move the pushable pillar to the spot where supposedly the door to the Halo opens.
Evil part: This is another short level, like the good part, and this time she's on the surface of a volcano. There's a timed run to get the Ruby key that guarantess the access to the main item, the Devil Horns.
X Marks the Spot - This was sadly the level I less enjoyed playing through, but that doesn't mean it isn't good of course. Apart from the original idea of the prohibition of shooting (if you want to find out what happens if you shoot, then feel free to do it, but Lara will never thank you, indeed xD). The objective here is to collect three bones and combine them to make the skeleton that appeared while turning the object in the spike room gives you your well deserved reward, the map with the X marking the Spot, I guess the levelname came from there indeed. After doing all so, she returns to the manor and talks to Zip & Alister about what she found in the underground and trying to solve it. After that cutscene, she goes to the shower to make an end of the first part of Mists of Avalon.
Overall rating & Conclusion - (10/10/10/10) - A great masterpiece by a amazingly talented builder(as usual) with a very awaited second part. Extremely highly recommended, and a must-play indeed. Remarkable Looking forward to the next part" - MrJavi94 (17-Apr-2012)
"Players' eyes will light up as they ask themselves "Is this the new standard of TR custom level gaming we can expect from now on?" and the builders' hearts will plummet to their stomachs as they ask themselves "Is this the new standard of TR custom level building we are supposed to commit to from now on?" One truly knows the envelope of our humble little subculture is being pushed, probably as much as are the level editor's limits in Titak's settings, when, merely to go upstairs in the same mansion you need to enter a new level!!! (the entire mansion being made up of no less than 4 levels). Welcome to the brave new world of the TR custom level scene, my friends. The professionalism oozing from every pore of this mammoth level set (that's only supposed to be the introduction to the real game, none the less!) is just staggering. I think it's needless to elaborate on the level's aesthetic qualities for any other reasons than to stroke Titia's ego - for one, I fear that any technical advice I could give would fall in line with a rude Latvian expression, which I'll paraphrase as "don't attempt to teach your father the mechanics of sexual intercourse," and two - if others' comments about the game, Titia's previous levels or even the opening sequence of this one don't convince you that this will be a raid of outstanding visual quality, I'm not sure what will. The tasks in the game aren't very challenging, especially the manor section practically leads you by the hand every step of the way - but I don't think that's a bad thing. It just makes it accessible to both new and expert players alike - and I dare say each will find something to awe about here. That put aside, I can't say all of the experience here impressed me equally well, and while the categories I maxed out, would even deserve a 10+ each - I don't quite subscribe to Michael's transferable point system myself, so can't award gameplay with the surplus from others. Before I start with the nitpicking, I do want to say that over the years of TR meetings I've attended - I've observed two things in relation to this particular game - the immense dedication Titak spent on perfecting even the most minute detail of the level's environments, spending even 5+ hours (if I recall correctly) on fine tuning a mansion door - and the awestruck look on people's faces when they get to see this level in action, either when sneaking a peek over Titia's shoulder as she presents it or giving it a go themselves. I myself have been that astonished spectator on numerous occasions and booted this up fully comprehending the (wo)manhours and care that went into the construction of game like this. I mention this to make a point that this aspect has not escaped my notice or appreciation. But judging the gameplay by its own merits, I found that it failed to impress me fully in two distinct ways: 1) The tasks clearly took the back-burner to the visuals, so there actually wasn't that much going on for such a sizable adventure, and 2) The tasks that were there were awfully conservative, not quite as revolutionary as basically every other aspect of the game. Even the game's biggest fans and supporters can't deny point one - it's true that the mansion, as well constructed as it undeniably is, is more for the show than the brain-exercise. Even in the spelunking sections you will first be much more busy exploring the areas and running from one place to the other than actually saving the world, solving riddles or what have you. But this may have been a deliberate choice, and can be respected as such. As far as point 2 goes - I'm not trying to rebel in a "here I am now, entertain me!" kind of way, and just shrugging the game off because it sticks to the well loved and well worn TR tropes anyone who's played at least a 100 levels will be familiar with. While not quite embracing his opinion fully, I can see where Miya is coming from with his criticism. Some of the setups just don't really make sense in the game's own frame of reference (does the fruit smoothie start a chemical reaction with the bowl it has to be placed in? Why juxtapose one level's 2 puzzle sections as good/evil when red/blue or hot/cold would've made more sense?). The fact that I'm even thinking about a game I got to enjoy for free over a couple of evenings this way might be a backhanded compliment to how much the atmosphere engrosses you, but to not quite back away from what I wanted to express here - the quality of the other parts of the game kind of made one hope that the gameplay would also transcend the well worn TR-logic cliche's in the same way the aesthetic quality transcends what we have accepted to even be possible with the editor. But even if that doesn't bother you - my main grief with this would be that, to some extent, I've seen Titia do the same things in all her other levels before. Mind you, she can do them very well - but I can't imagine coming up with most of the puzzles here required her to go too far outside of her comfort zone as a builder. Maybe the sheer amount of work involved in the settings was a distraction from this, maybe again it was a deliberate choice in light of the planned series' big picture - but I felt she has so much more in her than we can see here. While it actually is pretty essential criticism - it still does not mean that the gaming experience you will get here will be lackluster or uninspired. Quite the opposite. Most builders would do well to even attain a level of skill and dedication like this, lest know the perils being at the edge involves. And if it's of any consolation to Titia - if everything she built before "Mysts of Avalon" put the efforts of us lesser builders to shame, this one finally makes us look like playing with modelling clay while she's sculpting her equivalent to Michelangelo's "David." Much to both my amazement and chagrin, I may add. Needless to say, this gets my highest recommendations." - eTux (15-Apr-2012)
"The contrast between the Croft Manor levels and the Crypt levels was pretty interesting. Even if it took me a while to find certain items, it was nice to start off in a relatively light-hearted atmosphere with the banter between Lara, Winston, Zip and Alister. Then Lara has to plunge into the darkness in an area reminiscent of the England segment of Tomb Raider Legend in order to get a map leading to King Arthur's tomb in Avalon. I was amazed at the types of objects used in this level from the fruit in the smoothie to the devil horns and angelic halos. The beauty and the realism of the decorations were pretty amazing too, especially the pentagram, the huge cathedrals, the arboretum and the gym area. The gameplay involved a lot of exploration along with an ability to make several tricky jumps. Even if I understand why angelic and demonic deaths existed in this game, the deaths where Lara's soul would head towards the sky (in the "Good" level) or dragged into the lava (in the "Evil" level) eventually did get pretty frustrating, but they were quite an impetus to want to master a particular jump. The scorching corridor was challenging, but not impossible as far as timed runs are concerned. The spike traps weren't too difficult, but the collapsible ceiling can catch the player by surprise. There weren't too many enemies, but I liked the originality behind the showdown with the skeleton. While the secrets looked absolutely beautiful, I was only able to get three of the crosses unfortunately. I am really looking forward to the next part of this adventure." - Sakusha (08-Apr-2012)
"One of the best levels I've played to be honest, the puzzles aren't too easy or hard but still challenging. The enemies are placed well and not over-used, the secrets are well placed and the objects completely blended into Lara's surroundings, great use of meta2tr too. The textures and lighting is certainly amazing! Looking forward for part 2, Titak!" - Klona Croft (06-Apr-2012)
"Another amazing adventure from Titak! It's not difficult or easy, it's enjoyable. It is the complete opposite of linear! This is probaly the best tomb raider custom level I've played up to date! Croft Manor (entire manor) : The detail in this level makes it almost look PS3 or Xbox 360 worthy. For someone who has never heard of tomb raider or the editor, they would probably think it is. This is an amazing group of levels, however it isn't flawless : the hole juice and water puzzle was a load of rubbish. I hate it when people do things like this in their levels. I can't find any flaws in the rest of the level however. The basement was a very short and good end to this group of fantastic levels. Dig Site : This level resembles the tomb raider underworld "underneath the croft manor" level. I enjoyed this level a lot and the huge room was amazingly done. I though I was halucinating when I saw how detailed it was! The boss at the near end was a good one. Once again, I enjoyed this level alot. The lost realm : This is probably the best level in the game : The absolutly huge main room was extremely fun to explore and climb around. There is no such thing as linear in this level : it's a case of "just go where you want and you'll find a way". The annimated flames were so beautiful, and I love the hole heaven/hell idea that then continues in the next level. Good & Evil : Yet another brilliant level. There are two different ways to go in this level and by reading the title, you can guess wich ways. I went the evil way first and I enjoyed the "lava corridoor" in wich it was to hot to stay long. jumping between the floating platforms was also fun. The good way had wind to make Lara jump higher and further wich was fun. This way, you had to use a few switches to lower some gates to access a halo. It wasn't as fun as the evil way but it was still very enjoyable. I have another flaw in this level : the amount of time it takes for Lara to die if she falls into the lava, and you can't skip it. X marks the spot : The last level in the series was very good. I love the way you had to get bone dust to get the map from the skeleton as if it were magical and the way you cannot use your weapons. I also loved the ending to this amazing adventure and I can't wait for part 2!!!" - Bradley (04-Apr-2012)
"Titak have done wonderful work. This was very good game. Sometimes gameplay was very difficult, but that was one of it's values. Great and interesting puzzles. It was very nice idea of using PDA. I'm waiting for part 2." - Andzia9 (02-Apr-2012)
Another long review many will fail to completely read, but I don't care, because I want to take over the wordcloud... NO, JUST KIDDING!!
Titia's game. So way ahead of its time that it creates a whole new category I would call "RELATIVE GAMEPLAY", containing all possible feelings a player experiences from a game built with tools and techniques no-one has tried yet, and thus incomparable to anything else. This criterion will vanish as soon as psiko, teme9 and Walrus finally appear with their works, sculpted atom by atom for years already. I think what Titak presented here will become a standard for those builders, and - possibly - several more. I mean those silent we rarely hear from or maybe don't even know about. But as long as relative gameplay exists, it MUST affect the standard gameplay rating, and this is why it's so difficult to decide how much percentage of normal rating I should assign to it. So far, many might have failed to put a right mark into this field. By saying "might have", I mean I'll probably fail as well. For some time, I was also afraid overall hype on this levelset will make it overrated in all categories - because many people picked this level as their first custom EVER played, with NO knowledge about ANYTHING what has been built during past 10 years. Just few days after the release, over 20 people put their scores, half of them just starting their reviewing career. Then, something opposite occured: a single review denied efforts of 20 precedessors, throwing MoA off the pedestal and we call it democracy (WTF?). Sorry, but I can't leave this without comment. The reviewer probably didn't see a REALLY bad gameplay yet. Fortunately, after several more days, the rating has been pulled up again by some experienced reviewers (THANK GOD YOU ARRIVED AT LAST), and stabilized on a really fair level. Yes, I really think 9.88 was a PERFECT rating for this game, and I didn't want to change it, as it shows an already made conclusion - a great game, but not better than HM. This is why, wasting many hours of calculations, I decided to adjust my rating, for it to get as close to 9.88 as possible. If I didn't adjust, my marks would be:
GP 8
EOS 10
LT 10
And now for the actual commentary explaining it all:
From all NG upgrades, unnecessary and necessary, useless and useful, strange and beautiful, wacky and cool, there is one ultimate doomer - a double-edged sword called New Audio Engine. When I call its name, it should cause loads of thunders played on both channels, with these channels being exactly the sides of the sword I am talking about. From a dangerously long time, I become more and more convinced that almost NONE OF NG BUILDERS CARES ABOUT IT. Everytime I noticed a switch on the wall, responsible for turning on the radio, I felt uneasy, and many times I was right. Folmann and Beethoven just don't work if played in the same moment. Both pieces written in two completely different eras, what means different styles, tonations and tuning. Yes, TUNING. It means Beethoven's "a1" is NOT 440 Hz. Rules of math doesn't allow these two pieces to play simultaneously in harmony. I know 80% of You don't care. But for those who do, such setup can be atmosphere-destructive. This hurts even more if we think about a lot of beautiful sfx this game has in later levels, samples of well-thought usage, almost perfectly coexisting with background music. So please Titia, next time care about that. I am pointing this out just because You didn't know it can be a problem to anyone, and other builders may not have an idea about it as well.
The review goes further and further. Many of You have probably stopped reading it right after the preamble, but I am sure Titia is still here, so mwahaha I'll keep talking and no-one will stop me. Now for I had something against sound, because it's only ALMOST excellent, now I will make some balance and tell about...
In fact, my review should end now. I can't complain about anything here. If You REALLY want spoilers, I will say about one thing that touched me the most of the whole game: the rain. There's a rain falling on the manor glass roof, and everytime I look at it, I feel extremely safe and comfy, just like if I had a pair of warm, fluffy slippers on my feet:
Oh, it's a pair of duck-shaped ones. Also when I think about everburning fireplace below that epic roof, I like it more than all screenshots Titak proudly presented in her WIP thread. If I can think about any comparison from HM, I would say jeep tires, covered in snow in front of the Tannhauser Gate, bring the same feelings. If the whole MoA prologue manor was supposed to burn down in the sequel, with only surviving part being the rainy roof, the level wouldn't lose almost anything from its atmosphere. Such places are to remember. They show realism is not about polygon amount at all. I said this a long time ago, but I repeat it for any game which deserves it, as an expression of highest possible appreciation for atmosphere I can ever give. It applies only to those builders who would be able to create an equal climate even if their games would have no polygons at all.
But those players who REALLY care about hi-polygon stuff, and look for such things, won't be disappointed as well. Even if You are one of those hi-tech freaks who discard any game having less than 20000 vertices per a level, I am afraid You can't avoid taking a look on this one. The ultimate argument would be: a month after playing MoA, when I finally managed to launch TRU, I saw the initial manor corridor and thought: "Hey! I've already played this!"
Not as inventive as HM. I know Titak can do better. For example: There is a locked door. We dive 6 squares away and we find a crowbar for it. On the other hand, we have the NG eitr pad jump, being the only swan dive in the whole levelbuilding history which is survivable from height of 20 metres. Back on the same hand, almost every single door (forgetting for a second about the crowbar door mentioned a while ago) is supposed to open with a key. Green key, sapphire key, blue key, manor key, basement key, crypt key, chapel key, oh give me a break! Why not to find some kind of ancient hammer in the basement and smash through a fragile door? Why not to burn a door with a torch? Anyone ever thought about that? Oh, wait, someone did... there was a door unfreezing in No Xmas without a tree... whatever - why not to break through a window instead of using a door at all? Again landing on the other hand: we make some steps further and behold devil horns + angel halo, obtained respectively in Evil and Good levels, supposed to unlock a spinning Good/Evil portal, which all brings old good classic themes we feel really familiar with and comfortable in. It's like that in the whole game. Jumping from one hand to another, and somehow both hands manage not to collapse. Totally lame solutions mixed with absolutely genious ones. Anyway, I played the game two times, and I will SURELY do it once again, because I love it.
What now? Ah... OBJECTS
Are You still here, readers? Nah, it's getting more and more silent... If You managed to reach this point, it means You are extraordinarily patient (make a level because You are able to) and God bless You for that. Maybe He'll reward You with a detailed anthurrium, or a nicely shaped vase. Or He'll give You a huge telescope, if You like watching stars... Or a glass of banana/orange/coconut juice. Or a swimming pool, furnished with nice round lamps hanging on its walls, surrounded with nice pillars and a fish statue, plus a leafy chandelier hanging above the water. But actually, He won't have to give You any of the above - as all of these has already been given here. What really deserves a WOW, is the fact most of these objects don't lose details even if watched from a really, really close distance. Of course, the greenhouse rules in this field and it's a good idea to roam there for several minutes just for pure fun, what I of course did. Actually, it was Titak's garden what served me as a "benchmark" when I was testing FullHD upload to YouTube for the first time ever. And I really can't imagine a more pleasant place to perform such test. Let's build such garden in real world and make a TR meeting camp there. I reserve a place for my tent right under the first palm to the right of the entrance (the one which will NOT bomb me with coconuts).
Themed artifacts. Is there anything more a classic raider needs? Yes, it is: using them to get MORE themed artifacts. As it is expected from a greater reward, bonus artifacts are even more detailed than those required to obtain them. As it is NOT expected, two normal secrets in the manor are connected: if You don't find one, You don't find both the bonus and the other normal one. This should never happen. It's actually one of the worst possible setups.
Apart from official secrets, there is one more thing which should be counted as such: the trophy room. Its design made me truly smile, however I'm afraid no-one who doesn't know HM won't get it. And this is another reason why You should NOT choose MoA as Your first custom level ever played. You should also NOT try to lure the skeleton into the elevator, for him to shatter the grate with its sword - the dead guy won't go downstairs, as the steps are 2-click steep. Hmm, so why did I even try it? Never mind - it's NOT the proper way to get that cross, so don't waste Your time. Think of something really... REALLY different. If You have no clue what the above means, get to the last level and find out.
Scary and funny in the same moment. Unfortunately, spiders tend to get stuck in the cave architecture, so they aren't challenging at all. After You kill those, wait for a moment before progressing further. Behold their details, as they don't vanish after death, and look around: some of them hang on the cobwebs and threaten - a rare case when a static is considered an enemy. I tried to jumpswitch one of them, however with no effect. Take a closer look, admire, etc, etc... And don't enter that particular dark alcove... SUMMARY
Four years of building make four hours in statistics. I'm impressed and terrified in the same moment. Was it all worth it? Many must also wonder if Titia has any real life at all. But tell me: what is real life? If level building is UNreal, it means this game doesn't exist at all. If the game doesn't exist, WHAT THE HECK ARE YOU PLAYING RIGHT NOW?? Yes, sometimes virtual life is as real and solid than physical one. It's just made of a kind of matter physics don't apply to. The only force linking it to our reality is a lot of hard work.
Does this hard work, performed to make a short, but well-crafted game, equal a bunch of levels made in haste, anyway lasting for hundreds of hours? I currently watch progress in building HyperSquare, and Antonio has recently said finishing all cinematics will take several more months. God Almighty... If patience and devotion equalled life strength, many of us would have no power to breathe at all. Most of us would just shatter into pieces if only touched by someone else. If this happens to me one day, I will have no objections if someone brushes my scattered meshes from the floor, throws them all into a forge bucket and forms them into something I never imagine to become. Go Titia, and make our world prettier!" - DJ Full (04-Mar-2012)
"This was the most amazing creation I have seen yet from trle !!! It could easily go for $60 off the shelf. I looked forward to every evening I could play it. Starting in the gym was a good way to practice the new moves (just like the pros did). The realism, interesting gameplay, new moves, fresh ideas, good continuity, good story, animations, colors, everything !!! It amazed me as much as psiko's levels, when they came out. The tag cloud says it best !!! I've never commented on another reviewer before, but Miya should have played through the more than ten years of development this site has seen before being so critical... $20 to trle - thanks Titak, and all the others that helped on this one. In the words of our friend Anubis, EXCELLENT !!!" - Juno Jim (27-Feb-2012)
"The Croft Manor levels: These four levels are actually just one big level broken up for technical reasons. Titak has taken her inspiration mainly from the Manor of the Crystal Dynamics games, and superbly recreated the main hall, the pool room, the gym, the library and Lara's bedroom, and also added a number of new rooms, like the observatory, greenhouse and basement aquarium. All these rooms are amazingly beautiful, and give the impression of a being a real person's home, because of all the little personalized touches, like the lovely Impressionist paintings in the dining room and the Stephen Hawking books in the observatory. (I do wish Titak had not felt the need to recreate the long empty corridors that are such a prominent part of the Crystal Dynamics manor.)
The looks, objects and atmosphere are flawless, but the gameplay does leave something to be desired. These levels mostly involve exploration and simple switch- and artefact-hunts, as can be expected of home levels in general. There are a couple of cute brainteasers, for example, figuring out the codes for various keypads, as well as a fruity little puzzle, and a really nice pushable puzzle in the crypt. Sometimes, because of the huge number of new objects, the artefact hunts can be particularly frustrating and non-intuitive. For example, for one puzzle, you need to pick up a coconut from the half-a-dozen or so coconuts littered on the greenhouse floor. Only one can be picked up, and it looks no different from the rest, so there is no way to tell which is the right one except by trial and error - that is, if you realize that you need a coconut in the first place. There are so many such instances of some objects being interactive and similar ones being decorative that I wound up pressing action in front of most objects, hoping they would turn out to be the thing I needed.
The Underground levels: As Lara says, 'Time for some serious raiding'. These four levels have a completely different look and atmosphere than the sunny manor levels. The first two, The Dig Site and The Lost Realm, look somewhat similar, and consist of rather too many long dark corridors, though there are several visual and architectural highlights, like the chapel in TDS and a huge underground cavern in TLR. Enemies are well used - one of the highlights of the entire game is the scene when Lara is dragged away by a huge spider ... argh! The enemies and atmosphere get increasingly more supernatural as Lara progresses further underground, such as moving floating platforms and deadly liquid in Good and Evil and a map-stealing skeleton in X Marks the Spot. There are some cool moments in the first two levels, for example, a mechanism for moving a push block across a deadly floor and a low gravity room that enables Lara to jump higher. But there are some annoying problems as well, such as the poor placement of a cog in TLR, which almost inevitably results in the player needing to backtrack after reaching the top of the cavern. The last two levels are much more original and enjoyable, especially the jumps over the deadly liquid and timed run in GaE and the tasks for getting the bones and dealing with that pesky skeleton in XMtS.
Overall: Mists of Avalon - First Clues is undoubtedly a masterpiece, and a testament to how a highly talented and dedicated amateur can create a far better game than the professionals (Crystal Dynamics). Apart from the gorgeous looks and huge number of new objects, there are some cool new animations throughout, including several beautifully animated cutscenes, which also feature great voice-acting (it's very nice to hear Greenkey2 as Lara again). Gameplay is far from perfect, but I have given it full marks simply because I would like to give 11 or 12 to the other categories, but have to be satisfied with a mere 10, so I added those extra marks to the gameplay category.
While I love this game immensely, I think I still consider Himalayan Mysteries to be Titak's best work. Maybe Mists of Avalon Part 2 will change that. ;)" - Mytly (05-Feb-2012)
"Truly a masterpiece by a very experienced and talented author. The gameplay was perfect; the level was very well put together and implemented all the aspects of a perfect game. Just enough backtracking (not very much) makes it feel most satisfying to continue playing. All the objects suggested much better graphics than the original editor materials, and the new level editor engine made the terrain excitingly fluent. Secrets were perfect, cutscenes were awesome, and very impressive in the smooth animations between the characters. The lighting and textures couldn't have been better.The atmosphere of the bigger rooms gave a feeling of an epic adventure. I would feel bad in giving this level set anything but 10/10, but one thing got annoying, which was the death in the Good and Evil level, as it was a little too loud and dramatic to watch multiple times over. Still, the greatest levels I've ever played, nonetheless." - Nicky (04-Feb-2012)
"Wow, just WOW! This was probably the greatest custom level I have ever played. I enjoyed every second of it and there were no places where I thought the gameplay was bad or annoying. Everything was perfect. I'll do a review on each level: Croft Manor levels: My jaw fell right open the first time I saw the gym and thought "I'm in heaven!" After the gym and courtyard you explore the kitchen, pool, arboritum and dining room and I found it even more impressive than the gym. Making the fruit smoothie was good idea and using it was different but good. The main room was just brilliant x10! The whole place looked so good I just stopped and looked around! The voice actors were great as well. The hallways look really good as well. All the rooms looked amazing like the library, Lara's room and even a new observatory. I loved this manor so much! The Dig Site: This was another great level (but all of them are great) and a new atmosphere. It starts in a high and the gameplay is pretty easy. There are some good ideas in the level like the box transport. The huge hall looked amazing. That was my favourite place in the level. The animations were good as well like when the snake climbs down from the statue. Perfection. The Lost Realm: This level was just amazing. Most of the level is in this huge area with a few places to explore like the spider cave which was spectacular. I liked the crystals in the walls too. The only part i was stuck on was looking for the left cog but thanks to the walkthrough I found it. When you get to the roofs everything looks brilliant because it was so big. At the end of the level you get to choose which way to go: the good side (blue) or the bad side (red). Good or Evil?: This was another amazing level with two completely different parts. The good side was slightly longer than the bad side but it was enjoyable. The main thing to do is find three barrier switches to get rid of three barriers so you can move a crystal light rod thing. I loved the sunlight effect on the central structure as well. The bad side was shorter but still really good. The best part was the run to the key but the temperature it too high so you had to run quickly before the bar runs out. Another great level. X Marks The Spot: Another wow level. Lara has this purple glow around her which means that she can't use her weapons. I was a bit confused what to do at first because there were a lot of places and halls and I had no idea what to do but after I released the skeleton I found out what to do. Finding the bones were fun and I loved it. Killing the skeleton was brilliant. The animation for it was really good and all the purple makes it better! In conclusion I thought this game was the best from Titak and probably the best game I have ever played. If you haven't played this amazing game yet then you are missing out! Highly recommended." - afzalmiah (02-Feb-2012)
"Gameplay was funny, creative and enjoyable. Puzzles was clever and logical also for those who think that the fruit smothie and water is nonsence there is one clue Lara is a person who likes chalenges and really don't want to be bored so thats why she has those 3 guys here specialy Winston to hide her keys and make traps for her to make her entertained(did you saw the movie Miya?) also there is difference between the water and the fruit smoothie (chemistry) so thats why this puzzle can work. When you don't understand that Lara is a woman that loves challenges so you can't rate this gameplay and puzzles lowly. Also we love Lara like that. In case of enemies since game recovers your health they aren't so hard but they are at good spots you can go trought without medipacks. Objects here are beatifull and fits very well. Also whole game has a little visual slows but this is caused by engine theres nothing to do with this but it worth the whole visual look :). The secrets are greatly placed and connected together here trought the whole game also its not too easy to find them all. The whole game has nice cutscenes, natural (profesional like) voiceover, nice camera hints, great audio flippeffects on channel 2 (when you jump on the platform and you hear the sound of some falling rock and dust) also audio changes in different locations and i notice some volume change Flippeffects specially in the Lava Caves :). Textures was greatly used and well placed, also Meta2tr was outstanding. Lightning was brilliant and cleverly used (also you used my favourite color as the folowing light in X Marks The Spot). The only thing that spoil the impression was Lara's plane shadow..if only we could ge at least the shadow from the tr4 dreamcast :-(...EXCELENT GAME :)" - Mrshina (01-Feb-2012)
"Contrary to what some may believe, Titak is not a device for clamping a man's cravat to his shirt front to keep it from flapping about in heavy winds. No, Titak is synonymous with consistently imaginative raids that boast painstakingly detailed objects and textures. Mists of Avalon is no exception. I've been taking my time over the past couple of weeks with this long-awaited release, savoring it like fine wine. During this process a mini-controversy developed in the review forum over the quality of the gameplay. Frankly, I don't see it. There are so many unique and exquisite touches in this five-hour (nearly) adventure that I completely lost track of them. The notable things that stand out most in my mind are the "flares" that give light without Lara carrying anything, the spectacular way in which Lara dies if she falls into frigid water or lava, the wonderful cut scene after Lara finds several skeletal fragments and has them ground up into bone dust... The list could go on and on. After the lengthy opening house level with its generous lighting and stupendous beauty, I was a little let down for the rest of the game because of the dark and dank surroundings, but the atmosphere here is captivatingly spooky and I can't begrudge the builder her tastes in mood-setting. I can hope, however, that she will place the next segment in an outdoor daytime setting. If I had had to buy this adventure at the corner store, I would have considered it money well spent, hence my rating of four 10s. Everything about this epic game exudes class. Highest recommendations." - Phil (27-Jan-2012)
"Many could say that this level is the best in I don't blame them. The levelset is very well constructed. I think it is the most beautiful level ever. Everything is well made. It offers an excellent eye view. Titak knows well how to make 3D items. What I found needed in this game is a better gameplay. I am not saying it is not good, but it may become a bit boring and simile many times. Lara has many new moves, but she hardly uses them few times in the game. Mostly you have to explore the rooms for items and levers in order to activate a beautiful and magnificent trigger. But only beautiful places and nice triggers are not enough. I think the gameplay needs a little work. Sometimes I felt that something wasn't very right, like the deadly traps in the manor (who does it just for training) or the broken key, which seems like you can use it, because the second part is just the holder. Puzzles were way to easy and I have to say that was very disappointing. Most of them were about pushing and pulling objects. OK. Using few of this kind is good, but the game was full of them. I even got a bit tired, lost and confused about the last fight. It was clear what to do, but all this running around rooms made me lose my way many times. For me, the best parts of the adventure was the room with the rising temperature and the big air jumps. Titak knows how to make a well looking level and definately, knows how to make good animations and nice excellent triggers. In my opinion, if she tried to imagine a better way to activate these triggers would be perfect. And please Titak... let us play a level with a big fight. I really want to see you making something like this" - Sarikman (26-Jan-2012)
"I haven't played many levels over the years, I'm a useless player and tend to give up half way through if I can't manage a tricky jump or solve a puzzle. But at no point during Mists of Avalon did I think of not finishing it - in fact I enjoyed it so much I played it through again to try and find all the secrets and better my time of almost 10 hours. What an absolutely brilliant set of levels Titak has made - so much work must have gone into them, the amount of detail is amazing! I really don't know where to start. The new animations are flawless (I particularly liked the way Lara stumbles when she has fallen awkwardly), graphics and lighting are top-notch, the objects are beautifully made and textured (I loved the shining on the metal rails and bars) and those cobwebs everywhere - so realistic they made me shudder every time Lara ran through one! But for me personally the best thing was the atmosphere in those dark and spooky caves and ruins - the cobwebs, mouldy floors, damp walls and pools of water, you could almost smell the mustiness! And no human enemies or accomplices (at least in the lower regions) - Lara totally on her own with only her wits and raiding skills to see her through. For me that's real Tomb Raider. The only (slightly) negative moment I had was trying to find the right hand cog in Lost Realm. As SSJ6Wolf mentions, it is possible to reach the top of the cave without finding this first - and sure enough that's what I did. But it didn't take long to go back for it and the route upwards isn't difficult so it's a minor quibble. Some people have said these levels were too easy - I don't know if I would agree with that. Maybe they were not as difficult as some levels I've tried (and given up on) but is that really a bad thing? I've read the reviews of other very experienced players and most of them thoroughly enjoyed the game, and I being a fairly novice raider have also enjoyed it - which means it is accessible to all players. So to sum up, Mists of Avalon is a wonderful set of levels and I can't wait for the second part (and maybe a third, fourth ...?)" - Isis (25-Jan-2012)
"Having played "Himalayan Mysteries" it was clear, that there comes up something very, very special. And I was not disappointed. In contrary. Concerning graphic-effects, lightning and creating stunning atmospheres she has made a lot of progress. Gameplame is quite linear, storyline is stringent. One good times run, a few interesting jumps, but not too challenging at all. A real masterpiece!" - Christian (17-Jan-2012)
"There is not much I can add that hasn't been mentioned in all the previous reviews. I agree that this level is one of the best, and most likely the most polished custom level released so far. The graphics, atmosphere, sounds and lighting are just perfect. The only thing I was not too crazy about was the game play in the house part of the level. It seemed that there was just too much running around in the mansion and many rooms started to look alike after a while, but once Lara moved down into the dig area it became so good that I quickly forgot that. I was also glad that none of the game play was overly hard or frustrating. In my opinion, this level is a dream come true for people who love the look of the new commercial TR games but can't stand the controls. Thanks to the builder for this great adventure and I am already looking forward to the continuation. (4h 40min, 5 secrets found)" - Blue43 (16-Jan-2012)
"Raising the bar yet again, and one of, if not, THE best level yet. Certainly the attention to detail and graphical realisation are unsurpassed. Great atmosphere, textures/objects and storyline. If one could ask for more, and why not, from this very talented and probably perfectionist builder - perhaps there might be more multi-step/complex puzzles in the next installment. Overall a fantastic level. Bravo." - Adrian (13-Jan-2012)
"I've played this level and I didn't enjoy it. It's out of discussion that Titak has got superior skills making objects and designing settings, and regarding this aspect, this may really be one of the best trle level ever. Her level is also the first level I've played with such good sfx. My respect. The main problem is that in my opinion, the most important thing in a game is the gameplay, and in this level it's sometimes nonsense and often boring. Take the tropical juice enigma in the manor levels: why lara must fit a small fountain with a coconut+banana+orange juice for obtaining a piece of a key? The only reply I can say is: 'for elonging the level'. Why if she fits the fountain with water the mechanism doesn't work? 'Because there's a trigger that doesn't allow it', I thought. But a level is great when we can forget that there's a level creator behind it, when whe reach the state of suspension of disbelief, and to reach this goal a level maker must create coherent and appropriate enigmas (coherent and appropriate with the atmosphere of the level, of course). It's also strange that Lara is locked in her gym like a prisoner, at the beginning, or that there are puzzles with a serious risk of death in her own house. For example: why there are four levers with spikes under the pool? What is the necessity of the trap? For the thieves? why there aren't safety webs in the gym? In TR1-3 house it's (logically) very difficult to die. No-one trains himself risking life daily. Also in the Manor levels, there are a lot of 'throwaway rooms', rooms that clearly have the sole purpose of containing an object/enigma (one and only one!). It seems that titak created the setting first, and enigmas later... but when you're designing a level you must consider these two things together, and they must depend one each other, or you'll never reach the suspension os disbelief! Notwithstanding, the second half of first part is good because there's a little bit of interaction with other people. The problems are more evident in the dig site, where all the rooms have the same textures and same lights, green blue and grey, with same object inside, like an infinite corridor. Enigmas are here only for make time pass. Pull-a-lever, open-a-door. Find-a-key, open-another-door. The feeling of passing from a cell to another is strong. Ok, it's an underground excavation site, but in TR1, in The Cistern for example, there's a feeling of freedom, even if we're effectively trapped in a cistern. There's an article written by Ron Gilbert (the creator of Monkey Island), that contains a lot of useful clues for improving your gameplay design/storytelling: link here (Note that I've played this level twice, for to be sure that my first impression was right.) The second problem is that the settings aren't well characterized. Take for example the 'good side' & the 'bad side': they're exactly the same thing, except for the colours. They have the same lake full of deadly liquid (red-blue), same flying skeletons (red-blue), same textures. But they would express an opposite concept, and the architectures may reflect it! I expected radical differences, like a light, shining, colorful setting for the 'heaven' (floating in the air maybe?), and a dark, 'heavy' atmosphere for the hell, different from all that have seen before (as a reward for the raiders). Hope to see the second part with the same quality of design but with improved gameplay!
My ratings:
Manor: 6-10-10-10
Dig site: 4-10-10-8
Average: 5-10-10-9" - Miya (13-Jan-2012)
"It's quite rare that we come into level editor masterpieces such as the one Titak presents us with this time. Everything seems to have been dealt with rather wisely and carefully, from the script, to the stunning textures and sceneries, the music and sounds, the objects, the moves, the lighting and the dialogues. Even the first few parts at Lara's manor are pretty amazing. You can tell when someone has not only craftswomanship but taste as well - that's how I always know a game by Titak will definitely be among those one should always remember as important landmarks. For someone who's not that interested in house levels, tombs and Crystal Dynamics somewhat influenced levels, I must say I was amazed. But it's both eye candy and balanced enough in difficulty terms to keep one thrilled from the start to the simultaneously epic and funny ending. Regarding the secret templar crosses, I only got one, which was a shame, but I'm not that much of a secret finder anyway. I must say I was disappointed when these first clues were over, even though I knew they would. To sum it up, I'm really looking forward to the next release. Hopefully it won't take too long (fingers crossed)." - Jorge22 (10-Jan-2012)
"I don't know if this level needs my review, but here it is. This level sets a new standard, as far as I am aware, and is most assuredly a masterpiece. I was so grateful for such a wonderful pastime during my holidays. I am not really in a position to comment intelligently on the engine improvements, but I love them. I admit I was a bit bored with the ease of gameplay and with the King Arthur theme in TR7, but what does it say about the comparison between custom and official levels when a builder can use TR7 as a basis to create something far more entertaining, challenging, and beautiful, without being paid and starting with an engine that is at least seven years older? Perhaps my favourite part of Tomb Raider is the transition from the possible to the impossible. If you think taking the ladder down to the dig from the crypt is impressive, just wait, the further you go down, the wilder things become, until you are so far into the earth that Lara would not be able to breathe and you realize you must be somewhere quite different. No wonder Winston hid the key (however he managed to swim that far). I doubt I have seen a more beautiful TR landscape - if the Lizard King wasn't such a nostalgic all-time favourite, this would certainly take the cake. I love how much you want her to get back home afterwards - this was a new experience for me. Thank you!" - Capt. Abbey (09-Jan-2012)
"Probably the most visually polished game I've ever played. I was tempted to give it 10s all round, but there were parts which definitely dragged on for far too long and spoiled the fun, such as starting the level set with an overly long run around in Lara's mansion (which took me a good 4 hours). It's a beautiful place, don't get me wrong, but a mansion level doesn't exactly spell excitement when you're itching to go out and get raiding. And the start is nothing short of snail's pace (4 buttons needed just to open one door?). I was taken aback a bit when I saw that the next level (and basically the rest of the adventure) stuck you underground, but it grew on me eventually. What started as hate of the dark and dingy places turned to awe the more I played. The whole gothic feel of some areas was immersive and really reminded me of Devil May Cry 3. The perfect choice in music definitely helped too. I wasn't too fond of Lara's ability to shoot being taken away later into the levels, but to each their own. I've always believed that a good looking level set shouldn't deter someone from forgetting the game's flaws, but damn if this one isn't just gorgeous. I was surprised my uber old PC didn't explode. I can't wait for the next part of the adventure where we'll hopefully see some outside places or a temple or something to put those fantastic high quality textures to great use." - Janny (09-Jan-2012)
"Superb level, the score of 10 is insufficient to describe this adventure. A big thank you and Congratulations to Titak" - cho7 (08-Jan-2012)
"Whether intentionally or not, this seems to pose itself as a sort of "what if?" scenario for the series, in this case, "what if crypt Lara found under her house in Underworld was much larger and more involved?". Apparently, the answer is it would be pretty incredible. The amount of detail (and use of Meta for environment modelling) is beyond anything in a TRLE level before; if it weren't for a few of the unavoidable visual limitations of the old TR engine most areas could pass for something from the post AOD games, and there are all kinds of new animations and sequences. It's pretty much flawless in regards to visuals.
The gameplay comes close to the bar raised by the graphics. Things are moderately challenging, with nothing too tough, but there's some stuff that can be easy to overlook if you aren't careful. The difficulty curve seemed slightly uneven to me though, as the exploration in the Manor actually seemed more difficult than in the later levels, however, it is balanced out by the action sequences being easier. There's a large variety of things to do, from the various exploration challenges in the Manor, to things like the use of a temperature gauge at one point and some unique push- block puzzles. Outside of a few trial and error moments I had pretty much no issues, and the new objects and animations allows for things that have been seen very little before (object combining is used in a way I don't think I've seen before either). This is another masterpiece from Titak and an essential play." - Mman (07-Jan-2012)
"Honestly, does it get better than this? Don't get me wrong, I LOVE playing all levels, but Titia's masterpiece is so very topnotch, that it felt like I was playing a game by Crystal Dynamics with better Lara movements. In fact, Titia borrows heavily from the CD incarnations, but this just pulls old and new together in a lovely swirl of goodness. No one will be able to come close to this work without the new engine, and hopefully, more builders will be able to use it. I almost feel guilty for playing this game without paying for it, it is so good. The game starts out in a gentle manner with puzzle work in Lara's breathtakingly beautiful mansion. Some people won't like these levels, but I sure did. I love how the game has gentle gameplay and more difficult gameplay later on. Very quickly, I became immersed in the storyline and wanted to find all the secrets just so I wouldn't miss a single bit of eye candy. There was much thought involved to get through this game and I owe a great deal to the fabulously intelligent folks at the forum. I was very impressed with the fact that Titia would place a skeleton with almost every pickup. If I were ever to make a level I was going to do that. It makes sense and adds to the realism. There were a couple areas that were slightly annoying. First, it would be great if the PDA opened to the current page, or if Titia would include a game move guide in the inventory with game moves only. I hated having to scroll past the moves every time I wanted to see what Lara's notes are. I was also annoyed by the death in Good and Evil. The first couple times it was cool, but after that it got really old since I tend to die a lot. Other than that, I have nothing negative to say about this incredible work of art. I do have one more positive thing to say though: This is just the first part..WOO HOO!!! I will be first in line to download the next installment. Wonderful job, Titia!!!" - Shandroid (07-Jan-2012)
"Highly professional work . An amazing TRLR adventure of outstanding brilliance and quality. A class of its own !" - Ruben (06-Jan-2012)
"For more than four years of my last review although I continued playing levels frequently. This time I review because of having played the best, by far, of all I've ever played. The work with textures and objects is fabulous. The music is excellent. The reconstruction of scenarios includes parts of previous games and it does great, making us think of times past. The gameplay is relatively easy, with moments that are apparently difficult and certainly not as difficult as they seemed. I absolutely love this game I'll play again since I left on the way a couple of Templar crosses. An absolute delight and a totally professional appearance, with new moves and great scenarios. It's a game worth playing for sure." - Loupar (05-Jan-2012)
"So much has been written in the reviews that there is little that can be added. This level is an absolute masterpiece. The Graphics are breathtaking and there are many new and exciting puzzles and objects. So many Croft-Manor levels have been made that they are mostly boring. Not this one. You can go on for hours just admiring the attention to detail here. The puzzles are original and exciting. Some reviewers found the puzzles easy, I didn't. This game has just the right amount so that the gameplay is fluid without haveing to consult the forum every 5 minutes. I took nearly 4,5 hours to complete the leves and Lara covered 23km (!). Can't wait for the next installment. This is one set of levels ya gotta play :-)" - Mister-B (05-Jan-2012)
"First one notices that the levels are extraordinary in their appearance, in their realization of detail. This is clear from the beginning as players note things in Lara's manor: the wood molding, the fittings in corners, the octagonal floor in her bedroom. With the later levels, starting with Dig Site, this becomes an advanced game, no longer merely Tomb Raider. One could go on for pages describing the wonderful things to be found here. There are many effects where I don't even know how they were achieved. But, really, if one were to take away all the fancy effects, the advanced graphics, what would still make this special is the story. Lara is real in the sense that Sherlock Holmes is real to many people. Here Lara once again comes into her rightful place, and that makes us care about this adventure. The author has done what others have forgotten, and restored Lara and her world. This is truly the work of a professional with a heart. The voice actors deserve high praise in helping to bring this to life. This is impressive at the beginning, and then it just gets better and better as it progresses, with astonishing atmosphere. I think the author made a wise decision to make some of the levels smaller, so that they could be more easily grasped, and so that players would not be overwhelmed in complexity. This allows for a reasonably quick pace in advancing through episodes of the adventure. I know others have used the word masterpiece, but what else can one call this? Wonderful objects, cutscenes, animations, dazzling architecture, and a story that promises much, much more." - dmdibl (01-Jan-2012)
"There are always a few truly anticipated custom levels out there, but probably few have been more eagerly expected than Titias latest and greatest offering. As other reviewers have already said, in the last three categories this adventure clearly plays in its very own league and no other custom level work comes even close. The attention to detail, combined with her unique skill and now also the further enhanced tools, which have allowed her to bring many of her ideas to life make this an adventure that really has commercial release quality. On the gameplay and puzzles side, I was almost inclined to reduce a point or two, because there are several moments where you are largely running around a series of corridors and while Titia takes the player by the hand with the use of notes and hints, some of the required activities can seem a little obscure, despite often being logical (once you know what to do). But really, I could not deduct those points, because there are so many other reasons, why you should be scoring this 15 or 20 out of 10 in comparison to all those other 9s and 10s reviewers have awarded to other great custom levels out there. I took my time and enjoyed each of the levels and studied many of those great details. So I got about 5 hours of net gaming time and still missed 3 of the secret crosses in the second part, which means I will have the pleasure of going back for those one day. The new moves take a little getting used to, but are then very well leveraged throughout the game. Despite not being a fan of Home levels, the Croft Manor section was fun to play through and marvel at the fabulous looks and great story line interaction of the characters. The Dig Site starts a little slow, but then emerges into one breathtakingly beautiful area after another. The atmosphere created is gripping as it changes from spooky in the Lost Realm to fiery hot and freezing cold in Good & Evil. The use of moving platforms and elevators is unique and interesting, as is the low gravity room and the variation of the dying animations. I could go on for a while, but will close here by saying that I almost regret having played this masterpiece immediately after its release instead of saving it for later and looking forward to playing it eventually on day. Instead, I will now just have to look forward to replaying it for those secrets. And to playing the next part of course. We all want to find the tomb and Avalon and all that, don't we?" - MichaelP (01-Jan-2012)
"An excellent series of levels. Gameplay consists of plenty of action as Lara scales all kinds of caverns using her new abilities, clearly outlined in her PDA. There are also lots of different traps to avoid and inventory items to combine and combine again. Really the only flaw here is that missing an item can lead to a great deal of backtracking (try reaching the top level of the large cavern in The Lost Realm, and realizing you're missing the right hand gear). The objects are wonderful, mostly custom made to make the levels look and play in a unique manner. And of course Titak includes some custom death animations, like when you are dragged off by a spider. Unfortunately sometimes the objects get in the way when you try to jump. There is also an issue with the stereo players in Lara's house, because the audio from those will simply overlap with the ambient audio. The cameras are used well and provide some entertaining cutscenes, sometimes immersing the player with Lara's dialogue with her colleagues (or with herself). Some helpful HUD is used and I greatly appreciated it, like when it says how many switches you have left to pull to proceed. The textures and lights are just flawless and I wish I could give an 11 for it, because these levels are beautiful. Overall, everyone needs to play this one eventually. No excuses! Finished in 3 hours and 40 minutes." - SSJ6Wolf (01-Jan-2012)
"To put this into perspective after we've been cheerfully throwing scores of 9's and 10's at 'novelty' levels we should put this level in a class of it's own, a Premier League. It is head-and-shoulders above any other level I've played. Fluent gameplay with plenty of exploring in exquisitely detailed areas, and Titak has not made the error of over-egging it with absurd and unnecessary things to do. There is a realism, an aura of authenticity that pervades every area. This level is a masterpiece." - Tim (30-Dec-2011)
"For a long time I really didn't play a level that pleased me in all aspects. This time finally come to an end with this level. Mists of Avalon is the proff that great graphics can be done only using the editor. A lot of creative objects, animations ,voice acting and use of many tools make this level look like a"original" Tomb Raider creation. It's story is entertaining but I missed more action on it. I'm sure in the next part of the game there will be more action scenes. I know that nothing is perfect and even professional games have defects. But the effort put on the game and the very good moments that it provided makes it perfect to me. It really deserves the TOTAL 10 that I gave to it. Really excited about the next parts." - Adriel (30-Dec-2011)
"There will be so many superlatives used by reviewers for this level that I would need a Masters degree in English to think up some different ones (and I ain't not got one)! Suffice it to say that I've seldom seen a level that looked or played better. If I had one criticism it's that the gameplay needed to be beefed up to match the whole look and feel of the rest. The lighting is superb, dark and moody underground, warm and light in the mansion and the light pouring in through the windows - marvellous! As for the use of textures, well, with so many rooms in the mansion and caverns and rooms underground it would have been understandable if there had been some similarities. But no, all of them seemed to be individual, subtly difference, just enough so that there was no confusion - masterly! As for enemies, a deft touch here on the numbers and placing. A mention must be made for the excellent voice-overs and for the sound in general, most of which seemed to be bespoke! Overall - stunning!" - Diz (30-Dec-2011)
"One of the best level i have ever played. All is perfect. I wish the courtiyard and the basement had been a little longer, pleasure would have been bigger. Because i went quickly throught these beautiful areas without carrying some tasks.About the rest game of the year without doubt!!" - Glouglouton (30-Dec-2011)
"What about this adventure? It is a perfection from start to finish! Beautiful objects, mood lighting and perfect, easy gameplay with new puzzles, new animations (the leap of polerope is very original). I really enjoyed the final scene with Lara in the shower made ​​me laugh. I imagine the considerable time it took to get such an adventure with so many new things. I compare this adventure with an adventure official (legend, underworld ....) and I thank you Titak! Thank you, thank you for this wonderful Christmas present." - Drakan (29-Dec-2011)
"Take the graphics of Tomb Raider Underworld but add loads of eye for detail, clever puzzles and brilliant storytelling... Et voila: You have Titaks latest masterpiece, or better - the first part of it, as there seems to be a lot more to come. It's hard to believe, that this whole adventure was created by just one single fan of the franchise, as everything in this game felt perfect to me, starting with the great gameplay that has just the right mixture of action sequences, puzzles and climbing passages, right through to the beautifully animated cutscenes and the voice acting that help telling the story. Mists of Avalon starts in Laras home, that's seperated into 4 (!!!) levels and while I normally hate House-levels, it was the perfect beginning for me. The player was introduced to the new moves and could already gather some information about the King Arthur-legend. I especially enjoyed the hunt for all the secrets and admired the atmosphere of a rainy afternoon that was present in every single room. Indeed I found it really hard to leave this setting, when Lara finally reached the crypt as I would have never thought, that the following 2-3 hours of gameplay will be even more awesome. I don't want to give away too much though and so I'll just mention a keyword to honour the awesomeness Titak crafted here: spider attack :D And no stop reading reviews and finally download the adventure, guys - it's really, really, really worth it!" - Soul (29-Dec-2011)
"Most of the other reviews aren't out yet, but I think I will only repeat what they say. The ratings for the last three categories would have been rather a 20 than a 10 if possible.
Croft Manor: The looks of these levels are absolutely spectacular and I loved every single second of the game. At first there is some not overly difficult climbing in a gym that seems to be more realistic than reality, then you have to make a smoothie and do a ton of tasks in a TR Legend reminiscent manor. There is plenty of humour in this level like in the part with the broken bottle and in the dialogues, but this level also had me running through many hours because of some obscure tasks - like using a key in two keyholes, finding a switch behind a plant and the search for the bucket - got a little boring.
Dig Site (with adjacent levels): This part was more dark and sinister, but with a breathtaking flare system players aren't able to have difficulties. In my opinion, it felt a little bit short in terms of gameplay in the first two levels, as they didn't contain many puzzles. The jumps and exploration were fun though, but it lacked a little more substance in my opinion. The jumps and technical gimmicks like the low-gravity tower, the lowering and raising platforms and all the great objects in the final level (that indeed was my favourite of this set) didn't seem to be of this world.
Summary: This levelset is undoubtedly one of the best ever released. Everything is perfectionated to a maximum - the secret system, the PDAs, the animations and cutscenes, everything. And it also is great fun gameplaywise, but I also agree with requiemsoul that more could have been done, especially in Dig Site and Lost Realm. All other levels with the exception of some smaller personal issues of me are, I don't use this word often, epic." - manarch2 (29-Dec-2011)
"when i saw first who made this wonderfull game i was know ill be a top notch game ...... and that feeling get stronger and stronger more i progress with ..... a masterpiece off game ..... i think in top 3 wich i played untill now ... castle + caves setting . with alot off trapps and very clever puzzes ... the graphics was the best i ever saw in a TR game .......only 1 frustrating part i witnessed . close to the ending . at a vertical poles jumps with burners preventing the jumps at it ...... but some friends halp me with that part ...... all in all is one off the best games ever built untill now Thx alot Titak baby ur great ......... happy new year at everybody" - Jack& (28-Dec-2011)
"Wow. This is an absolute masterpiece. The attention to detail is quite awe inspiring - you will hardly believe your eyes. The action begins in the mansion, with a training session in the gym for anyone who needs to brush up on Lara's new moves. After a good explore in the mansion, Lara heads underground to a dig site and thence to a lost realm where weird and wonderful things await. I can't find fault with anything in this game. The gameplay is balanced, fascinating, gripping and nicely judged in difficulty level so as to be accessible to most players. The actual building work is astonishingly good - you'll not see anything better constructed. Fabulous custom objects, animations, cut scenes, camera work and lighting, plus excellent choice of music and sound files all add up to an incredible experience. So much to praise in the nitpicking details too. The addition of a personal light source so that Lara can always see what she is doing is something I wish could be made a permanent feature. I also liked the realism vis a vis the enemies - yes, we could all expect spiders in basements, bats and rats in underground areas etc. Of course, once Lara finds herself in slightly more exotic areas than the mansion, one or two suitably bizarre enemies do turn up, but overall everything felt entirely appropriate and believable, after all Lara Croft isn't an ordinary mortal and winged skeletons probably are to her what spiders in the cellars are to me. It's a great idea for a game too. Titak is obviously a fan of the Marion Zimmer Bradley book, as am I, so I'm really looking forward to this series continuing, but since a level of this quality doesn't get knocked out in a few weeks, I expect I shall have to be patient for a long time. Finally, I really must commend the excellence of the voice actors - all spot on, especially 'Lara' and the sound balancing is just right. Outstanding." - Jay (28-Dec-2011)
"I don't really know what to say about this adventure. I'm speechless! It is just perfect in every aspect. I seriously could not find anything at all negative about it. It is simply put a masterpiece that will be a benchmark of how levels will be in the future. No bugs, no crashes no misplaced textures, places to get stuck, just nothing bad at all! I tend to like all kinds of games, hard or easy, it doesn't matter as long as there is good game play involved. This adventure has a lot of that! A good balanced game play with tons of new puzzles, mechanisms to keep you busy while exploring. I also loved the lack of enemies. Just the casual bat (or the not so casual big spider!)And a few key enemies and harpies. Just as it should be IMO. A lot of exploring and I really like that. The secrets ranged from easy to find to real hard (I did miss a few so I have to replay it!) Objects are so well done, and so many, that Titia should be rewarded "Object builder of the century!" When it comes to lighting and textures it is the same. Just perfect. Titia has a tendency to show how the room feels with the lighting in such a good way. Blue for cold areas, red for warmer areas and the lovely green colour for the caves etc. Nothing new to that really but the way she does it is spectacular! Usually, when I play a custom level, I tend to understand most of what has been built and how things are done etc. Even with some of the new TRNG stuff. Still this adventure had me thinking"How did she do that?!?" more times that I can count! Also, the touch of the meta tool (can't remember the name of it now) is just amazing. I really would love to learn that to make such realistic caves. Highlights of the adventure for me: The huge cave with the long, winding"Moria" stairs. Best architecture I have ever seen. The block you pushed of the edge and used on the floor mechanism. I really liked that idea a lot. The timed run in the lava area, the long jumps..and of course the spider killing poor Lara haha! So much work has been put into these levels. There is so much detail, not only for the looks but for the feeling and game play. 10 in all categories from me. Best adventure I have ever play, period." - QRS (27-Dec-2011)
"Titia's most beautiful christmas present for the TRLE community. Everything in this game is gorgeous. The game start in Lara's manor and we discover many new rooms of this manor, a kitchen, a greenhouse, a dining room. There are many puzzle in these rooms and it's great. The rest of the manor is also very exellent, specially Lara's bedroom and the observatory (just GIANT). The are a real gameplay with a lot of dialogues between Lara, Zip, Alister and Winston. The manor part is not really hard but some objects are very well hidden. I also really loved listening music in different rooms. This manor is just wonderful and I found the special secret (great item ^^). The second part is more dark and more difficult but absolutely superb. Even if this part is more difficult, it's not really hard but like the manor some items are very well hidden. I really like the level when Lara goes in hell or in heaven if she died, amazing effet and very original ^^. There are also many cutscene and like the rest of the game, there are superb. This game has a real atmosphere like an original game with great textures, objects, characters, cutscenes, dialogue and of course a REAL story based on the books of Marion Zimmer Bradley's Avalon and Atlantis books. For me, this game is better than the last Tomb Raider game and certainly the best level I have played since I have the editor. 4h27 and with all secrets ^^. A lot of big thanks Titia for this magnificient adventure. You are the GODDESS of the editor (I can't resist^^)" - BigFoot (26-Dec-2011)
"Because I was part of the Beta team I was able to follow the making of this Project. It evolved into a (in my eyes) perfect game, actually a real game, only with more player friendly Lara controls. After the first Beta test new possibilies were posible with the TRNG engine. Titak immediately switched to this engine and later even the Meta2Tr (if I say that correctly) was used to make the levels even better looking. It took some time, but the result is amazing. Some of the puzzles are new, new objects used in them. That can be a bit "of getting used to", but they are never too hard to figure out and gameplay is fluent. And this is only the start of the MoA series... Can't wait for the rest, but I think I will have to The perfect match for me, the looks of a "real" game with the controls of the TR4 game which we are so used to." - Dutchy (25-Dec-2011)
"Very good, with a almost perfect graphis ... but a bit short and easy .... this reminds me why I hate some builders divide an adventure in several parts. It's one of the best levels of the year but in the main, it's a little bit under the quality of Himalayan Mysteries. Titak is an example of the strengths and weaknesses of the Next Gen builders. It's necessary a retrospective vision and examine her previous levels like Stargate or the collaboration in Coyote Creek or UB... I missed more and complex puzzles, and more action would have been wonderful. I suppose the time and effort invested in art design was a sort of hindrance to take notice on another features." - requiemsoul (25-Dec-2011)
"About the gameplay, I think it's a very good gameplay 'cause although there are a lot of new objects it's intuitive, not very tricky tasks and difficult to get stucked. Perhaps I missed another kind of puzzles to destroy my poor brain, but no objection in that sense; the game is very nice to play and well balanced enemies, traps, exploration, gymnastics, etc. A levels for entertaining everybody and not only for a bunch of gurus. Good! And about another features, what can I say! Near perfection! Magnificent scenarios with all kind of details remembered myself when playing TR Anniversary years ago. Fantastic environments with a very good atmosphere, enough guns and ammo, impressive objects and high resolution textures, excellent architecture, well worked lights... Many people will cry when finished! LOL! Only may be thankful to the author to give me the honor to be one of the first players (beta-tester) to try this new masterpiece. The very best from this 2011. You can't miss it!" - Jose (24-Dec-2011)