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BtB2020 - Shigatse Stone by illyaine

Adrian 8 6 7 7
Allicya 7 8 6 7
BlackWolfTR 7 6 7 8
DJ Full 8 8 9 9
eRIC 6 6 7 7
EssGee 6 7 7 7
Feder 8 8 10 10
Jay 7 7 8 8
John 7 7 9 9
Jorge22 8 8 9 9
Jose 7 6 7 8
Josey 8 8 8 10
Lizard Queen 8 10 8 9
Magnus 4 4 5 4
manarch2 4 6 7 6
MichaelP 8 8 8 9
MigMarado 8 8 10 10
Mman 5 6 6 6
Mytly 6 6 7 7
nad 6 7 7 7
Phil 9 9 10 9
Relic Hunter 6 6 7 8
Ryan 7 7 7 8
Samu 6 6 7 6
Topixtor 6 7 7 7
Torry 7 7 8 7
Treeble 8 9 10 10
Zuxuna 7 7 8 8
release date: 14-Jun-2020
# of downloads: 110

average rating: 7.38
review count: 28
review this level

file size: 94.10 MB
file type: TR4
class: Oriental

author profile(s):

Reviewer's comments
"Quite an enjoyable jaunt this one set in snowy Tibet exploring around and inside buildings and courtyards etc with a variety of gameplay elements including climbing and platforming, tightrope walking, navigating past nasty boulders, chain and blade traps, shooting tasks and pushable object tasks on your mission to find prayer wheels and other objects and keys. I feel some tasks are quite obvious and others like the shooting the bells was not, it’s the same with switches and items with some items are hidden away with multiple but simple tasks to do to get them and others are just laying unfairly disguised in the grass lol. Visuals have been done very well with some lovely decorated and textured architecture and also some good looking snowy/icy areas which were a joy to explore. Overall what separates this from other levels is the ending because you have a fixed birds eye view camera with limited controls of lara as you snatch the final prize and escape! all done with some great atmospheric music I’ve never seen that in a custom level before! very good." - John (21-May-2023)
"Pretty, underrated, and pretty underrated. Yeah I see the shimmy could be a drag but it didn't bother me enough to penalize it. Also I see an early find of the revolver makes the game a bit easier but missing it isn't a serious problem since there weren't many enemies to deal with anyway. The jumpswitch which gives access to it should be more obvious, because we run around the map for long enough to make additional passages tiring. Still, I quite enjoyed the thing as a whole." - DJ Full (28-Mar-2023)
"This level whilst being relatively easy in terms of raiding can become tedious with the amount of (albeit short) backtracking which is required time and time again as you will finish with one area only to have to come back to it to shoot the corresponding bell once you have the revolver disguised as an automatic pistol (please get these right) with the telescopic sight. The traps are quite obvious and easily avoided and there is a long rooftop shimmy and a long tightrope walk that really were unnecessary. Except for the constant retracing of steps this was quite enjoyable and came in for me at just under an hour." - Torry (24-Nov-2022)
"Fairly pleasing architecture, somewhat boxy, brightly lit but not moody. lighting - fair. Basic errors, with Pushable able to be dragged over furniture, and visible explosive bullet above statue. Apparent fault with one of Bell triggers. Fairly straight forward gameplay. Didn't like use of frozen windows with no frames. Found the one secret. Fairly easy. Camera clues - very fair. Suitable music cues." - EssGee (01-Aug-2021)
"A very competently built level that sends you back and forth between two main areas to find prayer wheels and other necessary items to open the place up. There is a comparably large amount of items to shatter here and I found the gameplay overall maybe a bit too arbitrary and uninspired to really draw me in. For example you get one rather long shimmy sequence, followed by tightrope walking soon after. And you get to find one plaque right on the floor in the flowers while for the other you have to work really hard. Similarly, some of the prayer wheels require work while the others are more like - open a door and whoops there it is.Still, the adventure is entertaining and fast paced while it lasts, the secret is a nice one and the ending is very unique and memorable (and cleverly done), so you are leaving the place on a high note. [55 min]" - MichaelP (29-Aug-2020)
"I chose this as the 9th level to play as it had the least amount of downloads to date. What I like about the level: 1) The little underground grotto where you find one of the prayer wheels is so elegantly lit and decorated…such a nice surprise. 2) Very few enemies will always get top marks in my books. 3) The absence of a timed run is a nice change. 4) I found no bugs, so this is always a big plus for me. 5) The ending is original and something I’ve not seen before and the use of classic TR music is so nostalgic, I just loved it. 6) The fact that there is no final boss fight is also a plus for me. What I didn’t like: 1) Just a personal preference of course but I’m not fond of simplistic gameplay where most of the activity is running and placing objects. In conclusion, this is a nice, straightforward level, well built with no bugs and very suitable for beginner or average players." - Lizard Queen (27-Aug-2020)
"This level wins my award for “most likely to have been built by a newbie” in this year’s competition. Everything, from the gameplay to the architecture to the lighting just screams “new builder” to me. Lara’s searching for the Shigatse Stone, and after a lot of research, she’s concluded that it’s in Tibet. Well duh, Lara. It’s not called Back to Basics 2020 Not-Tibet. Anyway, you’ll spend most of the level searching for five prayer wheels. After you’ve found all five prayer wheels and used them, you’ll open a door that leads to a plaque. That’s one plaque. You need two. Bizarrely, the second one is just chillin’ in a flowerbed. Guess which one is easier to find? To be completely fair to the author, there is a hint that it’s there, but it’s the kind of hint that you’re unlikely to notice until after you’ve already stumbled upon the plaque by sheer luck. At least the level is very compact, so there’s not too much ground to cover. Most of the rest of the gameplay is fine, but the level has some of the simplest gameplay in this year’s competition. I really didn’t like having to shoot five bells to open a door, because this levels has the finickiest bells I’ve come across, and I had to shoot a couple of them more than a dozen times before the game would register that I’d hit them. Had it not been obvious that I needed to shoot them, I would have given up. The architecture is really simple and the rooms are pretty empty. Mostly, though, it’s just a really small level and there’s not much to what’s here. After you’ve entered the main courtyard five minutes into the level, you’ve seen most of what it has to offer, and the rest is just small side rooms. The level ends after forty mostly uneventful minutes." - Magnus (27-Aug-2020)
"This is a rather short level, with an extremely small map: there are just around half a dozen small areas connected more or less directly to each other. There’s not really much gameplay in the level, though its length is somewhat artificially lengthened with a very long shimmying sequence, a couple of tight-rope walks, and by making you run back and forth across the level multiple times. The latter wouldn’t be much of a big deal, except that you also have to cross a corridor with swinging blade traps every time, which is kind of annoying. Most of the tasks are quite simple and straightforward, though I did need to wander around the place many times, first because I thought I had missed shooting one bell (I hadn’t, actually), and then because I had missed the gold key for getting to the final area. Getting all the prayer wheels and plaques can be entertaining, though some of them are rather randomly placed, such as the one that’s just lying out there among some flowers.
The level looks reasonably nice. There’s not much in the way of ambitious architecture, and most of the rooms and even outdoor areas are simple squares. But the lighting is good almost throughout and the locations are colourful. I especially liked the large courtyard with the central Buddha statue. I would have liked to explore the rather interesting-looking huge halls that form the final area, but for some weird reason, the builder has decided to make this a 2-D style sequence, so no exploration is possible.
Overall: A decent level, though a somewhat unimpressive one." - Mytly (27-Aug-2020)
"This is monastery with a few open courtyard areas as the centrepiece. The design is overall on the simple side, but the central areas look okay, unfortunately, the side-areas are mostly quite cubic and use objects somewhat repetitively, but it occasionally has nicer looking interior designs. Lighting and texturing are okay but don't have anything that really sticks out. This is the shortest entry so far, with all the gameplay being around a couple of areas. It's mostly exploration with only a couple of action aspects. While the majority is fine, given the length, there's unfortunately some moments that feel like filler, such as a long shimmy and tightrope sequence. The Revolver is semi-hidden despite being needed (the walkthrough currently lists it as the one secret, but that's actually somewhere else?) and not having a hint kind of messes with the flow if you find everything else but are left running around without it; I feel it would have felt smoother if it was more obvious. There's an interesting "2D" sequence at the end, but not much is done with it and it just makes the large areas it takes place in feel underutilised as a result. An okay level, but clearly somewhat of a learning experience for the author, but the more creative parts show potential." - Mman (04-Aug-2020)
"This is a short level containing rather simple gameplay that is mostly focused on basic platforming and finding items and switches. While the gameplay is quite solid, it is lacking original ideas and challenges, although I did spend some time trying to find all the bells that you have to shoot. If you miss an item, you might also need to do a lot of backtracking to find what you’re missing but this is not the type of challenge that you would like to have and it can make the game frustrating. In terms of environment design, the level looks descent including nice texturing but the lighting in turn, is quite bland and the room design overall looks simplistic. The side view in the ending was a nice idea and in general, this level offers a nice little adventure that is suitable for players of all skill levels." - Samu (31-Jul-2020)
"A beautiful environment, without challenges, in other words, a peaceful nice level. The map is not a big one, but even so there are a lot of backtracks - for example, one has to pass several times by a series of easy, but boring, traps. I didn't understand one thing: the Statistics says that there is only one Secret, and the walkthrough says that this Secret is a Revolver, but I found another one, a Quartz Skull, when Lara, before using a jumpswitch, shimmied to the other side of a room and used a lever, lowering a block below. The level has also some pointless areas, as rooms where there seems to be nothing to do. The light is good, and so is the music, and I liked the bells' quest, but the ending, although original, puzzled me a lot. In fact, I thought that I had found a game bug, before the Forum enlightened me. Thanks, pal!" - Josey (24-Jul-2020)
"This is a great short level, with a couple of randomly distributed important items that can slow one down. I loved the atmosphere all around, but felt that some rooms were pointless. There are few enemies, but that is fine with me. I'd love to see more weaponless levels, in fact. I recommend this level, especially for anyone looking for a fairly calm and short experience. To the builder I say: most of all, congratulations and thank you! Next time, bring out the drama some more ;)" - MigMarado (14-Jul-2020)
"The shortest BtB level this year at not even 25 minutes, but even for the limited time spent here I felt not too much is presented here. The gameplay design is too simplistic, almost bar any puzzles, platforming and traps (a few standard traps here and there are present), so highly based on exploration of large areas and a few things are quite sneakily hidden here as the jumpswitch on the pillar or the one plaque just hiding somewhere in the grass, while finding the other takes about 90 % of the entire play time. The bell task could've been interesting but it is spoiled with one bell not activating at all and some others only working if you stand in a certain angle towards them; I found that very confusing. Had no problems with bells in any other level yet. The looks are also more on the basic side with mediocre lighting, rather simple architecture and okay, but not very refined texturing that feels slightly wallpapered at times. There are some atmospheric highlights like the underground room and the final sequence which albeit does not add too much gameplaywise. Very few enemies in this one and only one quite easy secret to find. Not bad overall with some nice touches but not my kind of level either, I'm afraid." - manarch2 (10-Jul-2020)
"This is by far the shortest BtB level I've played so far in the early going, clocking in at about 45 minutes, but that didn't make it any less enjoyable. I don't recall having used a single flare, and the surroundings are gorgeous both indoors and outdoors. The tasks unfold in logical fashion - you have to find 5 prayer wheels to open a door to one of two plaques you need in order to obtain a pickup that opens the exit door, after having shot five bells to open the gate leading to the last prayer wheel. Enemies are few and far between, and none of the human variety that I can recall, but this too was just fine with me. After performing all the required tasks, you're treated to a nice 2-D ending with a final slide 'n jump sequence to wrap things up. Well done." - Phil (07-Jul-2020)
"Probably the smallest level I've played so far among this year entries (playing them in order), but still a solid adventure. I thought it was ingenious that so much gameplay was crammed in just a handful of areas, and later when you get the lasersight you revisit them all yet another time to shoot all the bells to gather a prayer wheel. Some of the bells were a bit iffy, as in they required to be shot from a specific angle and one didn't toll at all, which was brought up on the forums by EssGee as well. Regardless, this was a fun romp and the ending sequence was also quite intriguing, by limiting player's movements to create a more "cinematic" escape. 50 minutes, 1 secret. 06/20" - Treeble (06-Jul-2020)
"This is a very easy level, without much brain acrobatics or other difficult tasks. Textures, music and lighting are well used without being spectacular. Probably that's the intention. With a bell that I had to shoot, I had real trouble. Nothing wanted to happen for a long time. After several attempts it finally worked out. I didn't like the end with the changed camera view, where Lara just runs straight ahead. Otherwise, well playable." - nad (03-Jul-2020)
"This is more of a humbler entry than those I've played insofar, but it does provide a pleasant respite from the more challenging raids, so as another reviewer mentioned, it would be a great choice for less experienced raiders due to its lesser challenge quotient. Hiding a necessary item in plain sight within an inconspicuous blade of grass seemed a bit arbitrary, and I also wasn't a fan of the more long-winded sections (i.e. the roof shimmy, tightrope walk and fixed camera angle sequence), but the whole concept of the level being built entirely around locating 5 bells to shoot is a really nice one (despite the odd bug with a trigger for one not being immediately apparent) and the environments are still solid though not unbelievably inspiring. Nonetheless, it was an enjoyable enough jaunt while it lasted." - Ryan (30-Jun-2020)
"There were some good ideas here including the half-hidden push-block, bell quest, long shimmy and the underground Buddha below the main square Buddha, but overall would have been a little too straightforward but for the non-tolling bell and plaque sneakily (but legitimately, IMHO) hidden in the flowers. The secret wasn't really difficult as the switch was in plain view and you had to get up to that level anyway for another switch. Unlike others I wasn't a fan of the anti- climatic ending of a long unnecessary run with the fixed camera and limited control of Lara." - Adrian (28-Jun-2020)
"Very solid and nice build level. I think everything was fairly well done but i get the feeling that the builder didnt have much time to do a big or very impressive level. All the areas are good done and i love the fog used in the areas.Even though everything is good, some things could have been espectacular if applied with the right time... Gameplay is ok but sometimes i felt that the way players proceed on the gameplay should be more natural. Finding various hidden bells and hidden objects felt a bit repetitive in this one. My favorite moment was the cameras towards the end when lara run through passages to take the stone. Its a good level, and i recommend it for the ones who are looking for a nice raid that does not demand to much time..." - Allicya (26-Jun-2020)
"A level which globally is solidly made , rather pleasant to play with not many enemies, but it is not without some flaws, not so much technical flaws but about some builder choices : there is no difficult actions to perform but some that do not offer more fun (a long shimmying sequence , walk on tight rope) , the map is not big but backtracking is a great probability here in the case you are searching everywhere for an elusive object you missed (placing a key object just on the ground somewhere among flowers is a big no no) and the end is original but can reveals itsef a bit awkward (if Lara is not completely straight at the beginning of the sequence you will have to reload a savegame , even if you have done nothing wrong as you are not forewarned). Texturing is correctly done, and lighting is rather bright. Atmosphere and cameras are good." - eRIC (25-Jun-2020)
"This is a shorter adventure of the ones I've played in this year's BtB. The action takes place mostly around a monastery that includes several outdoor courtyards and indoor chambers. The gameplay takes you through a succession of rooms to find the necessary switches to progress, a quest for prayer wheels and garuda plaques, finding bells to shoot, exploring the monastery grounds and overcoming the occasional trap. In my experience the gameplay flow could have been better. Without getting the revolver early on, which was easy to miss, the gameplay comes to a crawl as shooting bells is needed to make progress. One of the necessary bells also doesn't ring when shot at which can make the player question if that did anything. The placement of one of the garuda plaques is also easy to miss - hiding a puzzle item inside tall grass seemed lazy and caused me to run around aimlessly for some time. The level's initial visual impression is nice with the outdoor areas and courtyards, but the indoor areas felt plain. On the other hand, the visuals take a good notch upwards at the final 2D platforming sequence. The colors from the textures and the lights were used well and made each area feel distinct, so orientation through the level wasn't an issue. This isn't a bad level by any means at all - I just feel that it would be more of a success if the gameplay flow is smoothed out with some hints towards getting the revolver and the bell locations. Finished in about an hour and found the lone secret." - Relic Hunter (21-Jun-2020)
"Action-packed? No, not at all, except for a couple of eagles and the large snow balls that are created in such a way that they're only meant to contribute to the (very clean) atmosphere, not to hit Lara. So, what's really left is a rather well designed large puzzle - and quite puzzling at that, but every piece of it eventually fits. I must say I had a hard time finding the easiest prayer wheel by far. Oh well... There's a bell that doesn't move when shot, but let's call that a minor detail. The final, third-person part was original and quite cleverly made - but so was the entire level. A good entry." - Jorge22 (21-Jun-2020)
"This is a somewhat ‘gentler’ entry in the competition and you get to explore without constant enemy action or traps. That’s not to say it isn’t good fun, but it’s not quite as challenging as its predecessors, which may of course endear it to less experienced players. There are bells to shoot and I took an unbelievably long time to find the laser sight (sheer lack of observation on my part) and five prayers wheels to find, all of which involved a pleasant trip around the various rooms of the level. The ending is also rather different with Lara seen from a fixed angle perspective. A solid, enjoyable level." - Jay (20-Jun-2020)
"This one didn't really catch me... gameplaywise, there is quite a bit of backtracking trought long and sometimes empty corridors/large areas, often having to navigate the same (and not so inventive) traps, and puzzles consisted only in one (not so bad) pushblock and a hunt for a couple of bells throught the whole area - that was a nice one, but the aforementioned backtracking and one of the bells not moving when shot (was it even supposed to be shot at this point?) did ruin it for me; also there were some things that did not make sense, like the broken snowmobile at the start without any other human found in the level (speaking of enemies, only 3 eagles in a whole level is pretty anticlimatic); texturing felt pretty off in some places and uninspired overall, but still decent, while lighting was simply pretty flat; overall the level gives an unfinished feeling, and there was a lot of wasted potential for sure; I think the builder can get a lor better with experience and patience, as there were anyway some nice ideas in there aside from pulling levers and picking up randomly placed items: for example, the ending was a pretty nice touch but executed pretty badly, as that was probably the better looking area of the whole level and we didn't even get to see it properly, and Lara is forced to do an useless path since the last "bridges" were connected and there was no need for the jumping slopes sequence if controls were enabled... Take your time next time and keep experimenting!" - Topixtor (20-Jun-2020)
"I think I enjoyed this level more than many. I found the atmosphere very appealing, the freezing cold wind effect and the design of the courtyards of the monastery succeded on giving a very immersive feeling. Architecture, textures, lighting and decoration were perfect: not too much, not too little, and very neat. Gameplaywise, this level overall is a big treasure hunt, that will make you wonder where to go next more than once. It isn't long in fact, but most of the time is spent on the comings and goings through the mentioned courtyards. It includes a different (and obligatory) camera angle at the last part, that maybe wasn't such a good idea because, for some reason, I didn't enter the room with Lara at the middle of the tile, and I couldn't line her up afterwards, causing her not te be able to pick up the final item. Luckly, it wasn't needed to finish the level so I kept going anyway. Another bug I encounter is that one of the bells didn't move or made a sound when shot, so I kept on shooting until I was out of ammo thinking it wasn't triggered, but eventually I realized it was triggered despite that. There is no much fight to do apart from the 3 eagles, which was a little dissapointing, as well as the one only secret, but it compensates with entertaining gameplay. In conclusion: not groundbreaking, but solid and classic oriented." - Feder (19-Jun-2020)
"I'd say I enjoyed this fun aventure . Not too short, not too long . Probably around 30 minutes of gameplay if you're familiar with the level . Nothing overly complicated here in terms of gameplay . The atmosphere I can appreciate and I also liked the fixed camera angle near the end of the level . Lighting is good and textures too . One of the things I could potentially ask for more, is maybe a few more actionpacked sections . Overall a nice experience for casual playthrough ." - Zuxuna (17-Jun-2020)
"I think it's a bit short for btb, I completed it in 50 minutes. We need to collect 4 prayer wheels. We move around the monastery and the yards. We have there some puzzles. I liked that where we need shoot 5 bells. Atmosphere was ok. Textures and lighting were not very good but ok. Decorations and environment were a bit poor. I liked the ending, we had nice run in "2D". I also got 1 secret. It was not difficult to find. But its still good game, that I recommend. Thanks!" - BlackWolfTR (17-Jun-2020)
"Perhaps this level wont be in the first places of the contest, but for me was entertaining, with a gameplay not too hard and no much backtracking. Not very long, your goal hee is to find 5 prayer wheels to get the second plaque and reach the exit. The rooms are well ornated and there are some puzzles to solve; I got disoriented with the malfunction of one of the bells but finally the door opened. I missed some more musics here and there to create a beter atmosphere and, specially more enemies because the few eagles you find don't bring much action to the game. The cameras were Ok, and the texturization is reasonably good. The secret is not difficult to find. Not a masterpiece but solid and well playable. Good work." - Jose (16-Jun-2020)