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25 years Classic Engine Competition - The Railway Tunnels by PedroCroft_

BlackWolfTR 6 9 8 9
dinne 6 6 7 7
DJ Full 7 8 8 7
Jose 4 7 7 8
Kubsy 4 5 4 6
Mahetus 5 7 7 9
manarch2 3 6 5 6
MigMarado 7 8 8 7
Mman 5 6 5 6
Ryan 4 6 6 7
Wolf7 3 7 7 6
release date: 25-Oct-2021
# of downloads: 1122

average rating: 6.34
review count: 11
review this level

file size: 49.10 MB
file type: TR2
class: Cave/Cat

author profile(s):

Reviewer's comments
"Would be better briefer, but was fun both for good and bad reasons - e.g. I died in unexpected ways, the acid shimmy was unique, and I will remember that iconic keyhole forever. I'm curious about the newly released remake, will play it soon." - DJ Full (04-Feb-2023)
"This is a train level made in TR2 with TR3 Gold textures, it's also split into three relatively short levels, presumably for technical reasons. The design is fine and the texturing and lighting does what it can to portray a moving train in TR2, but it's somewhat repetitive with a lot of the interiors looking very similar, and more train cars with non-standard structures would have been nice. The similarity also makes the thematic evolution feel limited, with the third level feeling very close to the first visually. The gameplay has similar issues with being somewhat repetitive; most of the challenges are fine (outside of one or two overdone backtracks), but it's the similar keyhunt challenges throughout without too much escalation, so map 3 mostly feels like map 1; combat gets a bit tougher, but you also have enough equipment to overpower it fast. There's also some odd use of random kill tiles to enforce linearity, when better methods could be used (and already exist at other points). This also has the camera bugs the previous classic engine level did, although it's much less obnoxiously present here. There's some nice ideas in the execution of a TR2 train map, but it needed more dynamic design to really work as a concept." - Mman (16-Feb-2022)
"I never was a fan of Pedro's levels, but this time this set of three levels have a good design, with all the old ingredients of a train level, well textured with enough pickups, not difficult secrets, many cameras to help and a good use of objects and musics. On the other hand is the terrible backtracking, forcing the players to go back and forward excessive times with no sense repeating the same movements again and again, only to pick up required items or open doors to pull switches and press buttons. Not really a level for my taste; I prefer the levels with some puzzles to solve. I think the builder setup this gameplay so the adventure was longer, but perhaps the players prefer a shorter levels with more fresh tasks. Anyway a solid level to play without problems." - Jose (10-Feb-2022)
"I tend to be quite partial to train levels as they always instil a sense of nostalgia for Desert Railroad, but unfortunately this isn't one of the more enjoyable options out there. It's certainly not a bad effort, and the construction is perfectly competent and the enemy attacks are always nicely executed here, but unfortunately the backtracking here really drags things down. You are nearly always sent to opposite sections of the train just to trigger an action or find a necessary item, only to then go back to the other end and do whatever is required next, with barely any shortcuts to alleviate any boredom, which regrettably is what set in for me and about halfway through level 2, I was more than ready for it to end. Music could have been used better too, rather than just the occasional sound cue. It's certainly a nice idea to recreate a train section within the TR2 engine, but it's sadly severely let down by the very low enjoyment factor. Sorry." - Ryan (08-Feb-2022)
"Next CEC level I have betatested. This one is less enjoyable than DroneSpencer's level due to "a little" things that should been done differently. :]
Firstly, I have to give props for the idea of having train level on TR2 engine, that's very unique I must admit that, however the whole execution could've been better not gonna lie.
There's too much backtracking, yes backtracking is good when it's done properly, here there is too much of it and makes level extremely boring. I completely understand that Train levels aren't easy to do but come on TR2 also has things that other TR games do not have and it's possible to make gameplay interesting. Every level is basically the same in terms of gameplay... platforming, shooting the enemies, find a key, use the key, go from A to B, a lot of backtracking, repeat. Just why, there's so much potential that is completely wasted, I really hate when something like this happening. Even on small space you're able to create great things, just give it a try. I do think this level is rushed instead of being build properly and polished it in every aspect.
Overall, I think gameplay has the most of the flaws, the rest is done nicely. Secrets are hidden well, enemies are balanced and placed quite ok-ish. I did notice some objects seems to be too bright at some spots, I think this shouldn't happen
Cameras at some points are buggy which can be annoying, but it is not as buggy as in DroneSpencer's level, however again this should be avoided.
I think the texturing and lighting are the best in this level. It's done very well with some flaws, like for example visible magenta at some spots (ouch...). Regarding the lighting as I mentioned it is done very well. Almost flawless from what I've noticed. :)
Well, I have very mixed feelings about this level. Again so much potential wasted due to not taking care about "little" things that could make level better and polished. Unique idea with bad execution. It's just a pity in my honest opinion." - Mahetus (19-Nov-2021)
"TR2 Train is, as highlighted by other players, a very good idea. However, Pedro didn't execute it very well.

Gameplay & Puzzles: Theis game consists of 3 levels which are basically the same and boring. You shoot lots of enemies and collect keys and cards (quite a standard in TR4 levels anyway) however, as Dinne said, I think the level would benefit more if 1 level focused on a train station and then the rest is a train ride so that there is more variety, but we got 3 annoying levels which are practically the same.

Enemies, Objects & Secrets: Enemies are varied here and balanced and object usage is ok though I think the inside should've been more decorated.

Atmosphere, Sound & Cameras: Cameras were hell in this level, cameras would go crazy while climbing if you spam look button, and putting sideway camera while climbing isn't a very good idea. The atmosphere is quite dull. The keyhole on a sign made no sense.

Lighting & Textures: Texturing was good, I have no complaints about that, same with lighting. Although Pedro should have fixed those magentas in some objects and textures.

Summary: An okayish level, with a great idea. However, not executed well." - Kubsy (12-Nov-2021)
"A TR2 engine train level is a great idea but the execution could have been way better, and especially... The length. The game offers 3 levels of basically the same gameplay refilled with a lot of backtracking and basic tasks, so, definitely, the first level only would have been enough to keep the general experience good, instead of becoming so annoying. I think we could have got, for example, a train station instead, or just a more innovative gameplay. TR2 is limited and a train is even more but this isn't an excuse: a train is an audacious choice and builders take responsibility of that.
Gameplay is often monotonous, lot of backtracking involved, lot of forced damage, basic tasks (lever-key-door) and few shortcuts. But it can be fun for just 1 level. Combat is nice, weapons and medikits are balanced. Secrets are ok (just, the last one requires to climb a pipe that... Just doesn't look climbable.
Appearance: actually nice, only some issues are found such as inconsistency with the ladders and magenta borders near the end of the game, some sounds are missing.
I reccomend this game only if you want to see a TR2 Train and are not interested in finishing the game but stop at the end of the first level." - dinne (11-Nov-2021)
"A really nice idea to create a TR 2 train level with some alternating textures and some other things like flipmaps; but this turned out to be most of the good stuff already. This three-parter is the classic example of a backtracking shooter, and not a particularly fun one as you are constantly sent back across sometimes the entire accessible map, just to find a lever or key you have to use where you've just come from. Only a few times (like for the trapdoors) the builder actually created some shortcuts, but then even some doors that could just prevent another boring climb-up on the roof remain closed for whatever sake. Level two plays like level one, level three like level two, come on... and it's also possible to get stuck for good if you use a key card in the wrong place. Sounds are almost non-existant, at least for me as even if present in the folder most just wouldn't load (?) and cameras, like in the previous competition level, were also messed up when you press the Look button. Sadly so because this could've been an atmopsheric level otherwise. The three secrets are interestingly hidden but not very hard to find, enemies at least are well placed, so not all was bad - but I was more than glad to have finished this after 55 mostly tedious minutes." - manarch2 (09-Nov-2021)
"This level was a pain to play, here is why:
We got 3 levels of uninterrupted "train action", that while at first might feel innovative and quite charming to play the more it is delved into the game the more horrific and bad it really starts to feel. The gameplay is awful. It is a train level and you cannot do much, this statement is crap, there are good train levels for example one level in TR95's Biohazard, oh it is a different engine you might say? But even if such you do not create 3 levels where you do for circa half a hour the same thing, you go back and forth, back and forth and achieve nothing, repeat the same tasks often interrupted by awful camera work which I am not sure is the builder's fault. The second level is without any doubts the worse, with the strongest presence of backtracking. The third level has the strongest presence of sudden death tiles everywhere for no absolute reason if not to prevent the player going somewhere, a railing would have worked fine... I cannot go higher than 3. It does not feel right at all, a bit of backtracking can work, if done this way: "You see a door that is closed and you wonder what you will need to open it later, you get an object and paff you make a connection to that door, you backtrack to it and boom you got game!"
On the other hand object usage is quite decent and we get some adorable sprites for some non TR2 objects which were quite charming to see, plus the combatting is quite nice and balanced and the amount of firepower can make you feel badass when needed!
The atmosphere for what it goes for is really spot on, I am not sure for the camera that sometimes the game chooses and the TR5 soundtrack quite felt dissonant with the rest of a mostly TR2 and TR3 OST.
The texturing was mostly great in the insides, I was not too convinced about the outside area of the tunnel, I did find two non moving textures among the moving ones which screamed at me "You are in a simulation, wake up", how odd. Anyways the lighting was instead quite meh and sometimes in the insides of the train it did not make any sense. Point detracted from the 7 I was gonna give for that awful ladder in level 3, why did you leave the magenta, oh Pedro...
Concluding this is not a game I would recommend at all, or if you are forced to play do not do after level 1, there is nothing unique awaiting in level 2 and 3, if not confusion. What a waste of my time... 1 hour and a quarter. Onto Drone Spencer next. Wolfy Regards." - Wolf7 (09-Nov-2021)
"A typical train level, divided into three parts, that provides a bit of fun along the way. The story in the description didn't make a lot of sense to me, still the level plays out fine, as Lara fights off the mafia to gain control of the train at the end.

There are a lot of cool enemies, and loads of weaponry and ammo, so if you like getting rid of these crazy goons, you'll enjoy the action. The gameplay does get repetitive, there are some minor problems with the textures and with the sounds, some unmarked death tiles that take away from the fun, some poorly labeled items, and lack of actual puzzles.

The positives, though, make up for most of these minor issues. There are new types of wagons that provide diversity, and there are unexpected items that drive the TR2 engine forward. Exploration and gun duels are the main thing, and I enjoyed getting to know and assume control of this underground train. It took me around 1h30min net gameplay and I found it easy, recommended for adventurous beginners.

PS: Pedro, parabéns! Muito obrigado! You're the brains of the operation when it comes to the Classic Engine Competition, so I thank you and congratulate you for it as well. For me, it was a success. I left my last CEC review, and my 100th review overall, for this level. It's a little gesture of gratitude, to motivate you to keep building and keep being a positive part of the community! Let's see more CEC, shall we? ;) Great job!" - MigMarado (28-Oct-2021)
"The whole idea for making train level on TR2 engine is brilliant and very fresh, we have never seen anything like that before. Altough, the gameplay could have been better. There was much backtracking even as for a train level + level actually doesn't contain any puzzles. I know it's hard to create puzzle on such small and limited rooms but it's still posibble. Another thing was that some switches were in my opinion too much hidden and it was hard to find them. Placement of enemies was very pretty, maybe venice goons didn't fit into train level but oh well, it's not a big deal. Secrets were nicely hidden, not too easy, not too hard. Another thing is camera. Personally I think more camera hints could have been done because sometimes it was confusing what switch or button is doing. Also there were some a bit annoying camera bugs; camera sometimes went out of map. There was missing sound of small switch. About level design... It was very well done, with much variety of textures and it didn't feel empty. Overally, as for TR2 engine it's innovative level with some flaws but still pretty good. I definetly recommend it." - BlackWolfTR (26-Oct-2021)