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The Fountain of Youth - Part 1 by Feder

Bigfoot 10 10 10 10
billie2001 10 9 9 10
BlackWolfTR 9 10 9 10
Cruzader 10 10 10 10
DJ Full 10 10 10 10
eRIC 8 9 10 9
g12STL 9 6 10 9
Hedteur 9 8 10 10
Jason L 7 7 8 6
Jay 9 9 10 10
Jorge22 9 9 9 9
Jose 8 10 9 10
Lizard Queen 8 8 8 8
manarch2 7 8 9 9
Mr XY 9 9 8 9
nerdfury 8 9 10 8
Nickelony 9 8 10 10
Nina Croft 8 9 9 8
p1kaa 10 9 9 10
Phil 9 8 9 8
Raina Audron 10 10 10 10
requiemsoul 8 8 8 10
Roberto 10 10 10 9
Ryan 9 9 9 9
ShadowZia 10 10 10 10
Teone 8 9 10 9
The Snarky Lesbian 10 9 9 8
 
release date: 24-May-2021
# of downloads: 356

average rating: 9.08
review count: 27
 
review this level

file size: 60.80 MB
file type: TR4
class: nc
 


author profile(s):
email(s):
fedelopo90@gmail.com

Reviewer's comments
"A mixture of TR 5 and levels like "TR4 Gold" or "Cape Fear" and I must say the atmospheris quite strong despite the style being used a few times before. Perhaps a part of the classic object design as well as Lara's outfit do not fit too well, but what is made out of some here is still rather impressive. The gameplay is generally rather easy and of the three almost equally long levels the second has the most involved parts, with more focus on puzzles and traps rather than mostly exploration - a few more interesting puzzles and platforming sequences had been appreciated. Nevertheless a fun affair taking me 70 minutes to finish, with all 12 nicely hidden secrets found." - manarch2 (17-Nov-2023)
"This three-parter is absolutely heaving with atmosphere, beginning in the elegant streets of New Orleans and culminating in an eerie zombie ridden mansion set in swampy alligator infested land. Just Lara’s sort of place! Given that this is entitled part 1 I assume there will be a continuation at some point; I certainly hope so as I had a great deal of fun with this one. Difficulty-wise, it should be within the scope of all but very new players and I would definitely recommend it." - Jay (29-Aug-2023)
"Excellent. A very good design with realistic environments, an entertaining gameplay with no much backtracking (except in the Plantation level), enough pickups, well balanced enemies, a good atmosphere... The ambiance is a bit dark for my taste, but at least I found enough flares to light the darker areas. Again, a fantastic work from this author; highly recommended. Looking forward for the next part of this adventure." - Jose (25-Mar-2022)
"Feder showed us "demo" of great vision of cancelled TR4GOLD. This game, containing three levels is really good and I liked it much. Gameplay was mostly good, with diverse tasks but I found it sometimes a bit too simple and also I have had feeling that some more puzzles could have been encountered. All three levels were beautifuly decorated with many objects but I found something missing in atmosphere. Some more suspenseful sequences and actions? Some rooms could also have more gameplay in them. But atmosphere was still very good though. Usage of textures was great, with much diversity and they gave new unique look for those levels. Overally, it's very good interpretation of cancelled TR4GOLD which is definetly worth playing!" - BlackWolfTR (17-Jun-2021)
"Solid, classic, very well made and somewhat on the easier side of the raiding spectrum, but that's not necessarily a criticism. There's sufficient challenge for the more experienced raiders out there, but the majority of the gameplay isn't generally too difficult. The surroundings have been crafted with a master's hand and the atmosphere is strikingly convincing, keeping you gripped right to the end despite the setting change in the final level. Lighting may be a tad dark, but as a whole everything looks very pleasant with some nice pops of colour in places. I'm not entirely sure why Feder didn't provide the crossbow in this first part (as there were corresponding arrows to be found), unless he plans to so in future installments, but a savegame would have to be provided or kept to have your supplies carry over which seems like a convoluted solution. Apart from that anomaly, definitely recommended." - Ryan (16-Jun-2021)
"I've really enjoyed this level here and let me tell you why. The author did an amazing job at setting the time and the atmosphere for this level. It feels like nothing too dangerous but there were parts that threw you for a loop. The ideation of New Orleans was pretty good for the most part as far as the imaging of what the town looks like in actuality. As well as capturing elements of culture such as Jazz but I didn't see anything about seafood! The difficulty was not bad at all, I would recommend this level to a beginner 'raider' to get a feel for the different levels that are out there. Great work to the author! I look forward to more!" - g12STL (14-Jun-2021)
"After having established solid credentials with older engines, this builder has finally given us a TR4 release and the wait was well worth it. Here we have three completely different levels with a common theme (New Orleans), each of which is of moderate length. They're darker than I like, but the player is able to see what's going on around him and I rarely felt the need to light a flare. You begin in the streets of the French Quarter, move on to a cathedral and surrounding graveyard, and wind up at a desolate mansion in the marshlands. This last level, which is the longest of the three, also presents the most convincing ambiance in my opinion. Gameplay isn't ridiculously easy, nor is it particularly challenging, so new raiders should have little difficulty with it. The only major flaw I can think of (and I'm surprised this hasn't been mentioned in the earlier reviews) is the lack of a crossbow (if Doggett can't find it, one can reasonably assume it isn't there), even though you find a number of arrow pickups (of all three varieties, no less). Two possible explanations come to mind: (1) The builder forgot all about it, which doesn't seem likely, or (2) he's planning to provide the crossbow somewhere down the road, perhaps in Part 2. The latter possibility would be of little help to those who have played Part 1 unless a savegame with all accumulated pickups is provided, but even that would seem to be an awkward solution. Anyway, apart from that faux pas I had a grand time with these levels and can recommend them heartily." - Phil (14-Jun-2021)
"I really enjoyed this level by Feder for several reasons. First of all, he captured the essence of TR4 extremely well in this journey, which obviously is a hard but necessary task here, as the level is inspired by "what could have been TR4 Gold". Second, the gameplay is very smooth and well designed, capturing the charm of TR4 once more, though a tad more linear than the original game, of course. In addition, the game's ambiance is really what stood out for me, as it really felt like I actually was in those somber, dark and haunted places once I reached the second and third levels. Finally, while keeping simple graphics from the TR4 engine and such, the game's design is really beautiful and the scenery of the levels fit perfectly to what the environment is supposed to be (colorful and rustic in the first level, dark and dusty for the second, gloomy and swampy for the last level) My only wish for the next part would be to add a bit variety to the enemies, as we're essentially fighting the same guards, dogs and bats. However, the zombies were a nice addition to amplify the "horror" and "dark" ambiance. To keep this short, Feder once again created an amazing level for the community to enjoy, and I honestly can't wait to play the next part(s) in the future!" " - Hedteur (11-Jun-2021)
"I decided to play this level as it is the first TR4 from this builder and I’ve not yet played any of their levels before. What I liked about the level: 1) The general kindness and consideration in gameplay towards not so seasoned players. 2) Lily pads in water pools are always beautiful. 3) Gameplay is super smooth, no lagging whatsoever on my older PC, so I am very grateful for that. What I didn’t like or thought could be improved: 1) The missed opportunities in gameplay. For example, when I saw poles and sloped blocks I expected a real treat only to find that all the normally fun challenges inherent in such sequences were simply not there. I expected to jump/grab between poles and wished for more sloped blocks to navigate not only horizontally but vertically. 2) No “thought provoking” puzzles. 3) Mostly exploration gameplay. 4) Not sure if intentional but it looked a little strange that Lara kept holding onto the flare casing long after it went out. Conclusion: If you like levels with mostly exploration, then you will enjoy this level. Good for beginner players familiar with TR moves." - Lizard Queen (10-Jun-2021)
"You know it's a good trle level when you know it's Feder who made it, very talnted guy and so creative, the puzzles are beautiful not hard and the levels are enjoyable, I love the variety of the levels and the link between them, each level is unique and has different environment, the last level reminded me of the swamp, the giant flying insects were the most annoying part I would say haha but the on each level they were enemies who makes sense and related to the level in some way, overall very enjoyable to play 9/10" - p1kaa (10-Jun-2021)
"Well, this is a nice three-level classic adventure, "classic" being the operative word here. I particularly liked the attempt of the builder to create a great adventure without NGLE or some tricky custom-made objects, and I must admit, this is a masterpiece of that sort. There are many tasks to finish here, some of them being: ignite the burners, find a crowbar, arrange the mirrors, get inside the mansion from the other side, find an item and open a door. All in all, quite classic and very easy to play. What I liked most, as I always like most in custom TR, is BALANCE between action, exploration, tasks, health and ammo, which is nowadays quite rare, I must admit. This levelset is quite refreshing in that sense. Great job, Feder! Gameplay & Puzzles: Three different locations, but gameplay is still consistent enough. We must solve several puzzles and find several items to proceed, the gameplay is easy to medium, and more importantly, very fluent. It is almost impossible to get stuck, if you're careful to observe every detail in the environment. The builder gives enough hints as you go, and again, balance is the best feature of the gameplay here. There's the inevitable torch puzzle, not often seen mirror puzzle, there's some easy platforming, several burner and spike traps, strategically arranged around the levels, crowbar quest and so on. The gameplay is rich and well designed. Enemies, Objects & Secrets: Some secrets in this level are not at all easy to find or obtain, to name the monkey swinging sequence through burners just to open a door to a secret, to name just one of the sort. I managed to find 10 secrets of 12 in total. Objects are mostly from classic games, well placed and not overdone, but also not underdone. Enemies are quite a few and diverse: from human enemies, via dogs, crocodiles, bats, to giant flying bugs, wraiths and mummies. You'll meet most of classic TR enemies in this levelset, and the builder provided enough ammo and health supplies to get you through this adventure. Atmosphere, Sound & Cameras: Camerawork is nice and not overdone. The builder gives camera hints and makes sure that each level has its necessary amount of flyby sequences. Sound is classic, there's not much to say about it. Choice of tracks is extremely good and there are no errors in terms of sound and music. Overall atmosphere is convincing and immersive. Lighting & Textures: Textures are from TR4 and TR5, plus some custom textures, but all in all, we saw them already. I always criticize cracks in walls, which are present in this levelset as well. Given the fact that Lara spends a lot of time under water, these cracks are something I cannot ignore. But other than that, nicely chosen textures. Lighting is excellent and contributes a lot to the atmosphere in a positive sense, of course. Overall impression: A levelset you must play! Very pleasant little game to remind you of those wonderful years of the classic TR. Highly recommended!" - Nina Croft (07-Jun-2021)
"(8) Gameplay & Puzzles: This is an easy-to-medium 3-part levelset, with very straight-forward gameplay. The platforming and (few) traps are basic, and as long as you're thorough with checking each area, you won't be pausing to think and problem-solve for too long. So, I would heartily recommend this to newer players. The heavily exploration-focused gameplay is pleasant, however I wish there were more puzzles. (9) Enemies, Objects & Secrets: My feelings towards the enemies were mixed. Sometimes, the engagements were well-executed, such as the goons popping out from behind a corner in level 1. These engagements added a thrilling element. I thought that the croc/dog engagements could have been improved; oftentimes the crocs die way before they can even reach Lara, and oftentimes there was a raised area that Lara can stand on while shooting at the dogs. If they can't reach her, there's no element of thrill. The final boss encounter is anti-climatic; she is disposed of too easily, and I didn't think it was good that she spawned in the darkness. Object decor was absolutely stunning and realistic, and I could tell that the builder put in much effort to make each and every room meticulously decorated. I was particularly impressed by the builder's use of overgrown vines/foliage objects to create an environment that looks very "ruined". There were a few traps, but they're easy to avoid. (10) Atmosphere, Sound & Cameras: The atmosphere/architecture is the star of the show in my opinion. The locations feel very realistic and eerie (my husband was looking over my shoulder and stated that the builder nailed the authenticity of the Mardi Gras level). The classic TR4 sounds and music cues were effective, as were the static camera hints. All of the immersive flybys were just stunning and really did a wonderful job of drawing the player further into the setting.  (8) Lighting & Textures: I would describe this category as good, but not great. The builder, on the other hand, is capable of better than great. The texture choices were beautiful, but I was surprised at the amount of misshapen textures (this is much more obvious when you're using flares/binoculars). Now, these misshapen textures weren't that common, but keep in mind that I know this builder is capable of better than great texturing. Also, the darkness across the 3 levels really started to wear me out by level 3. There are adequate flares (if you're thorough with looking for pickups), however, I really wish there were breaks from all of the darkness towards the later stages of the game. In other words, if there were some brighter areas for color balance (level 1 is a good example of a dark environment that utilizes pops of color, acting as a breather from all of the darkness). I also noticed that sometimes Lara's lighting looked flat. Overall, the gameplay isn't bad or frustrating at all, but for me, the atmosphere/architecture is much more memorable than the gameplay tasks. I wanted to take a moment to briefly contrast this levelset with "Into the depths of space" -- the latter which also had fairly straight-forward gameplay. The difference, for me, is that "Into the depths of space" excelled at creating a thrilling, fresh gameflow where I never wanted to leave my computer, but rather I wanted to find out what happens next, around every corner of each newly accessed room. "The Fountain of Youth", on the other hand, was missing this element of excitement. 8/9/10/8." - nerdfury (07-Jun-2021)
"Classic and classy. A quite well crafted three-parter in New Orleans and surroundings - that obviously means some voodoo, crocodiles and quite a few zombies on the way (too bad I didn't get the grenade gun). A bit on the dark side, which is fine since it's nocturnal, but not sight defying. Nice textures and atmosphere. Player-friendly, balanced. Would I have liked to see some fancy "new moves" and that type of thing? Maybe. But I found it enjoyable as is, so I'll be looking forward to the next part." - Jorge22 (04-Jun-2021)
"Another masterpiece made by Feder. Simply one of the best levels I've ever experienced. The only things I didn't like personally were the annoying zombie enemies and the barely visible jump switch at the end, but other than that, it just feels like an authentic Tomb Raider experience. I am very excited for Part 2! :)" - Nickelony (03-Jun-2021)
"Great interpretation of what TR4 Gold was supossed to be... the atmosphere is pretty well made. Gameplay was fun and not very boring, so I appreciate that. But now talking about visuals, lighting & shadows were a little messy... you can see Lara turning all black sometimes, when it's not even that dark (this is a comun issue in lot of TRLEs) and the abrupt ending without a "To be continued..." or any kind of flyby/cutscene got me dissapointed... Otherwise and as I said before, the atmosphere was really great and I enjoyed very much this first episode. Can't wait for Part 2!" - Jason L (02-Jun-2021)
"3 linked levels.We start from a town with medium difficulty. Excellent construction of environments and puzzles more and more intricate. Good presence of enemies.4 secrets to find. It continues with a cemetery section where in addition to infernal dogs there are mummies.Excellent construction of the environments even with aquatic and acrobatic sections. 3 secrets to find. You end up in a swamp infested with crocodiles, locusts and flying beetles with abandoned houses where some mummies appear.Abundant use of flare in the obscure part and wanting to throw grenades.4 secrets not easy to find and one to reach." - Roberto (01-Jun-2021)
"Oh nooooo, I found one bad texture in this... DISGRACE. Otherwise, while it's hard to name the best game of this builder, this one surely may be. It just has everything minor and major correct, even though of course as soon as Feder includes his first jumpswitch, this is precisely where I get stuck - so maybe it should have a different color in the full version. Now only waiting for Walrus to do something with his Spring of Eternal Youth and we'll have a holy trinity." - DJ Full (29-May-2021)
"Those are 3 custom levels that are made using for the most part just TR4 (probably a bit of TR5) assets, this includes both textures and sound effects and music. The levels are masterfully crafted and while the difficulty of the whole journey is easy this is not to say that the level design is bad, on the contrary, the level design is stellar and what I appreciated the most about it is how intuitive the levels flow. I only got a few criticisims/suggestions for the builder. In the 2nd level there are some tombs objects which are not solid, you can clip through them, these are just to decorate the environment but still they should be made solid. Perhaps this was just an oversight by Feder when he made the level. In the 3rd level, once you get inside the house, the empty bookshelf that blocks your way is completely covered by shadow; because of this I thought it was actually a door and that I had to find a switch or something to open it. I wasted quite a lot of time looking through the entire level trying to figure out what I had to do (if I would have used the action button on the object, this situation would not have happened). I think you should have made that bookshelf fully visible. Other than these things, I really enjoyed the levels. The secrets that I found (5/12 in total) were placed in inventive places and I'm sure so are the other secrets I wasn't able to find. I fully recommend trying this TRLE." - Cruzader (29-May-2021)
"Feder's first iteration with the TR4 is really good. The game is fluid and the tasks are easy. The color palette is very attractive and the best of the game. Recommended." - requiemsoul (29-May-2021)
"I initially had a hard time getting into Feder's first TR4 level-set, simply because some of the game's controls are a bit odd and the colours are questionable, but I know that it's an issue of the TR4 engine that textures are somehow always a bit too dark. Especially in the second level it becomes a bit tiring to look at the same dark tones of purple and grey the entire time. The level is fairly good, but it is tiring. Similar goes for the third level with the colours dark green and grey. I suppose it's just a downside of the engine. I will however point out, that this is only a texture / lighting issue, the artistic merit of these levels is pretty much perfect. The theme of the levels is a Southern USA vibe, and Feder achieves pretty much perfect cohesion within that theme. Especially in the third level this becomes very apparent, as early on it felt like the TR4 Version of Vagrant's Cape Fear to me, but the more I looked into it, the more it came together as the perfect fusion of what the base TR4 engine has to give. A perfectly swampy environment with dark corners, crocodiles and a creepy villa. Now TR4 has a pretty lame selection of background themes, so in terms of audio the creepy atmosphere of the Plantation or the Graveyard is a bit undercut by missing something like TR2's Floating Isles background theme for it's brutal eerieness. Yet it doesn't feel out of place either. So on the level of graphical fidelity, artistic cohesion and lighting, it's only really the lighting I am a bit bored by, as well as the samey-ness of the colours. Otherwise it is so very strong.
And the same can be said for the gameplay. One of the reasons I tend to be so annoyed by TR4 engine games, is that they tend to have a pretty bad gameplay flow (at least to me) and how often the solution to being stuck is "have you tried pressing control on this weird custom texture?". But there is very little of this here. Most of what has to be done is fairly obvious and then quite fun to do. Whether it is climbing over the roofs of a town in the Southern USA, in a level that keeps snaking around within itself, climbing through a twisting temple you reach after climbing through a graveyard or exploring a swampy plantation. The gameplay is fluid, fun, usually quite obvious in it's direction without obnoxiously hidden switches or custom objects. The exploration is fun, the secrets are very rewarding, the gameplay is very fluid and happens in a somewhat realistic way (meaning the places you travel through are fairly believable). The textures being so dark and generally too cloaked in the same two dark colours is a bit sad, but it DOES fit the levels. It's mostly tiring to my brain after a while." - The Snarky Lesbian (29-May-2021)
"This is a VERY good one! Feder went for a classic take on the cancelled TR4 Gold. The gameplay is fluent and very engaging. Very good atmosphere too. Some secrets are easy to find, some will need your full attention. Coloured lighting was well used. There are several dark spots that might or might not hide something but we are given a lot of flares. No hard tasks, so suitable for players of all skills. Highly recommended!" - billie2001 (27-May-2021)
"

With this three-parter, Feder proves that he not only masters the engines of the first three TR games, but can also handle the TR4 engine very well.

The game starts in beautiful New Orleans and immediately inspires with harmonious lighting and well-chosen textures. My favorite among the three levels. The catacombs and the swamp are also very atmospheric, but not quite as fresh as the Mardi Gras setting.

What I particularly liked is that there was not one stuck point, I always knew where to go next and the intended path was never unfairly hidden, that gets a bonus point in gameplay.

Some puzzles were taken directly from TR4 (Car jack, Sun Goddess, etc.), I liked the new ideas better, like the mirror puzzle and the timerun with the chain in the spike room. Objects were used well and always fit well into the setting. There is an object in level 2 that does not have a collision, but that is not tragic.

Camera notices were always there, and flybys provided support that perfectly staged the surroundings. The sound and music are from TR4, unfortunately the ambiance played over the music tracks a few times, which was annoying. The ambiance in general was not always suitable in my opinion and I missed some completely new audio tracks. Why not have some jazz music in the jazz club?

What else? In the catacombs I noticed that some large rooms were left very unused. This usually happens when rooms are first built and then gameplay is added - which is not a bad thing at first - but if you enter a large room, do something for 2 minutes and then you are out again, that's a bit of a shame.

And despite the criticism (at a high level), this level set can only be recommended, it is fun and actually looks like it could be the official TR4 Gold.

Game Duration: 2 hours.
Difficulty: Easy / Medium
Recommended: Absolutely

" - Mr XY (27-May-2021)
"Excellent adventure made with realism with good choice of objects and textures and thoughtful ideas for use of this stuff for the storyline. It was great to see for example the carjack or placing the statuette at the end. As for the audio files , all from the last revelation , they are perfectly used. It all seems fresh and to the point. The game is easy but remains immersive and moody all along. Found only 4 secrets so the the rest may be well hidden , i would have liked to find the grenade gun or the crossbow so to deal with all the zombies in the last level." - eRIC (27-May-2021)
"This looked excellent on screenshots and I am glad to report that the first part did not disappoint. It felt good to play a proper TR4 experience with the original move set and plenty of TR4 music cues which made it feel very authentic. The gameplay in these three levels is fluid and each level plays and feels distinct. The secrets were especially fun to hunt down in the first level. It had a lot of verticality while jumping across balconies. The purple sky added a cool and gloomy atmosphere. The only thing which I did not like as much was the tomb ambience playing inside buildings which was a bit odd, but that is a minor issue. The second level has a spooky cemetery/tomb atmosphere and I jumped a few times when I triggered a few traps (the blades especially). Well played, Feder! The last level, Plantation, was really well designed and featuring some swimming and surprise crocodiles. The amount of zombies in a tight corridor while dragging a wardrobe was a bit much, but manageable (I missed out on the grenade launcher in the tomb). Overall, even if we did not get an official TR4Gold, this level set is a worthy replacement. Can't wait for the full package!" - Raina Audron (26-May-2021)
"I'm not going to compare this rendition of TR4 Gold story with the previous by Cowboy. I'd like to see 1000 renditions of this story because it's a very powerful and suggestive story by its own and it deserves to be told in every possible interpretation. I'm also glad to see Feder become acquainted with TR4 engine, finally. This first part of the story is very enjoyable and promising for what still have to come. Not difficult, most focused on exploration, I'm sure it will become a classic for all raiders." - Teone (26-May-2021)
"Now this is a Tomb Raider adventure I look for. This was a VERY pleasant level. These kind of levels are rare these days. Thank you for building it. Now for those zombie mummies I really hate when they gang up on me. lol & that sound they make "woof". I was actually excited to see an alligator lmao I have not seen one in a while in recent trles. I really look forward in more of these. Cheers!" - ShadowZia (26-May-2021)
"I stop everything I do to play this game. Absolutely perfect. This first part in New Orleans is just amazing. After a lot of adventures with tr1/2 & 3 engine, Feder offer to the community a wonderful TR4 set with the 3 first levels of TR4 Gold. The adventure is not hard and can be played by everyone, even by the begginners who want discovered trle world. I liked so much how Feder use the TR4 classic audios for his adventure, just perfect. But now I want discovered the sequel and I hope play it nearly :-) !! There is nothing more to say, except "PLAY IT". Highly Recommended." - Bigfoot (24-May-2021)