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Old 11-10-13, 17:19   #131
Seth94
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Originally Posted by Vinkula View Post
Madubu Gorge is an amazing level!
I was just joking.

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Originally Posted by peeves View Post
The new bruno mars song reminds me of the gorillas.
Maybe that's because it's called 'Gorilla'.

Anyway, looking forward to Cistern. Somehow I don't think it will get quite as high a mark.
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Old 11-10-13, 19:43   #132
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Just as I expected.
I will have to disagree with you on some of the points though.

I don't think the switch pulling puzzle was a good puzzle. Basically you had to check the symbols above the respective doors and try to remember them. That's not too hard, is it? Basically this time Core actually was guiding you, for which we criticise certain developers a lot (rightfully). I think it woul've been much better to scatter around three keys and replace the switches with keyholes.

Then there are the siderooms. Now, the one which leads to a nice trek around the level is brilliant, but I feel the other two are greatly underwhelming. Especially the room with the spikes. Also I don't like how the "main room" is basically just one big box. I feel they could've come up with something to make that one room a bit less empty. Comparing it to the aquaduct room, the room near the end of the long trek or especially the garden*, it looks rather half-baked.

*I love that room so much. After I finish dealing with the animals, I always spend a few seconds just admiring the beauty of the room. It's so nice and cosy.

Of course this doesn't mean that Palace Midas is a bad level at all. Far from that. I just think it's not A+. Now, I believe childhood memories/nostalgia probably play an important factor in your decision and that's fine. Unfortunately for me TR1 wasn't my first aquaintance with Miss Croft, in fact I actually played TRA first (in fact that was my very first TR) so I would probably end up giving TRA or TRC levels more points than the average forumer would.

Edit: If my memory serves me right.... I read an article once on the unreachable medipack. It was supposed to be reachable, but Core forgot to actually build something that makes it accessible. In the end, they decided to leave it there as it is to tease us. They had no idea about the corner bug, it wasn't actually discovered until TR2.
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Last edited by tomee; 11-10-13 at 19:45.
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Old 11-10-13, 22:39   #133
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Thanks for the comments guys.

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Originally Posted by Seth94 View Post
I can't help but feel this is somewhat directed at me.
Maybe just a tad.

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Originally Posted by tomee View Post
I don't think the switch pulling puzzle was a good puzzle. Basically you had to check the symbols above the respective doors and try to remember them. That's not too hard, is it? Basically this time Core actually was guiding you, for which we criticise certain developers a lot (rightfully). I think it woul've been much better to scatter around three keys and replace the switches with keyholes.
I don't see how that would've been a better puzzle, honestly. It becomes a fetch-quest as opposed to checking out the clues on the doors and then using the correct switch combination.

Quote:
Of course this doesn't mean that Palace Midas is a bad level at all. Far from that. I just think it's not A+. Now, I believe childhood memories/nostalgia probably play an important factor in your decision and that's fine. Unfortunately for me TR1 wasn't my first aquaintance with Miss Croft, in fact I actually played TRA first (in fact that was my very first TR) so I would probably end up giving TRA or TRC levels more points than the average forumer would.
My score on Palace Midas actually has very, very little to do with nostalgia. Those bits are just extra for reviewing purposes. I firmly believe that this is one of the most solid adventures in the series. It portrays every facet that I want to see in the perfect Tomb Raider level, and it does it with flying colors.
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Old 12-10-13, 13:11   #134
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I don't see how that would've been a better puzzle, honestly. It becomes a fetch-quest as opposed to checking out the clues on the doors and then using the correct switch combination.
I doesn't necessarily have to be a key searching task, it can be any kind of puzzle. But I feel having to look up the patterns and then just pulling the right switches is way too simple and easy.

Quote:
My score on Palace Midas actually has very, very little to do with nostalgia. Those bits are just extra for reviewing purposes. I firmly believe that this is one of the most solid adventures in the series. It portrays every facet that I want to see in the perfect Tomb Raider level, and it does it with flying colors.
I see. We'll just have to agree to disagree then. As I said, I don't like the main puzzle that much, and two out of the three challenge room are a bit disappointing to me.
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Old 13-10-13, 11:38   #135
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Originally Posted by Seth94 View Post
I was just joking.



Maybe that's because it's called 'Gorilla'.

Anyway, looking forward to Cistern. Somehow I don't think it will get quite as high a mark.
I liked cistern as my favorite level in TR1 because of the beautiful atmosphere.
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Old 16-10-13, 02:47   #136
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GREECE
Level 8 - Cistern




You know what really annoys me? People who claim that a cistern is a sewer. No. Just no. It's an underground reservoir, for crying out loud. Maybe it's the rat problem that's got people misled, but a cistern is used for storing clean water.

With that little blip out of the way, this level made me realize how much the PC version of this game has spoiled me. When I played this game the first few times, Cistern is where I noticed the challenge ramping up. There are a few parts in here with tricky jumping sequences, and the level layout as a whole is not quite as a linear as previous levels. Therefore, the placed save crystals made it challenging in some parts where I had to nail the jumps, or I would be reloading a fair distance. On the PC, however, I can save wherever I want, whenever I want. I could replicate the old days by only saving in the spots where there are PS save crystals... but eh.


Now where did I put that cigar?

You know, the Cistern represents two different extremes for me. On one hand, the level design here is pretty cool. This becomes even more evident when the design is deafeningly simplified in Anniversary (at the benefit of having a cool central puzzle that the original version lacks). As stated earlier, the difficulty feels a little more ramped up even though there aren't many traps to speak of. The atmosphere is also incredible - more so than any level thus far, save for City of Vilcabamba. The only thing that lessens it is the appearance of Pierre DuPont, but that's not a big deal.

However, there doesn't seem to be a lot of variety in gameplay here. There's some jumping bits, some swimming bits, a lot of key-fetching... and that's pretty much the level in a nutshell. Honestly, the most memorable parts of this level don't come from the gameplay at all, but more the main cistern room itself where the vermin and crocodiles all gather to play [see screenshot below].


Crocodile Dundee would be proud. I think.


Did you know that a group of crocodiles is called a float?

OK, I take back my previous comment. Crocodiles and rats are also two of the most memorable things about this level. The rats are monstrosities that seriously give me a chuckle because of how... creepy they look! They make those gruesome sounds too when they die. I don't know about you, but if I saw a rat the size of a dog coming my way, I'd freak out a little bit. Unfortunately, TR2 and TR3 revert back to normal-sized rats.


At this point, I just have to chuckle at Pierre's shenanigans. He's like that annoying little kid that keeps following you everywhere.

Conclusion

I'm actually really surprised at my interpretation of this level, since I think that I came into it with slightly negative views. But I honestly enjoyed the experience this time around. Cistern is not perhaps the most technically proficient level in the game, but it sure doesn't fail on uniqueness. It has a clear theme with all of the vermin, water, and key-fetching. Pierre's cameo appearances are very well-placed. They really pulled off the atmosphere too with the fantastic background ambiance and the moldy wall colors.

I like it. I really do.

Rating - 8/10
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Old 16-10-13, 08:28   #137
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However, there doesn't seem to be a lot of variety in gameplay here. There's some jumping bits, some swimming bits, a lot of key-fetching... and that's pretty much the level in a nutshell.
That over-simplification could describe any underwater level in any Tomb Raider game.

Some constructive criticism:

1) Your review could do with more in terms of commentation of the level in relation to Tomb Raider as a game. I want to see thoughts on how Cistern fits in with the other preceding Greece levels, and more of a comparison to other underwater sections encountered to that point;

2) I feel the review has veered to much to the personal - maybe inevitable for a game as well-known or as well-played as the original TR;

3) A nice twist would have been a brief paragraph on the architecture, and the use of such water systems and aqueducts in Greek and Roman construction.

It may also interest you to know that a cistern does not have to be underground by definition; any enveloped body of 'clean' water is a cistern. A toilet, a storage break tank or a heating pressurisation unit are all examples of artificial cisterns.

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Old 16-10-13, 09:30   #138
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I enjoy many things about the cistern such as the nice environments, the colors, it's not such a long level and you don't hefta do much backtracking.
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Old 16-10-13, 10:11   #139
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You know what really annoys me? People who claim that a cistern is a sewer. No. Just no. It's an underground reservoir, for crying out loud. Maybe it's the rat problem that's got people misled, but a cistern is used for storing clean water.
I think the trouble is that they make it look too 'sewer-like'. The rats along with the dull dirty looking textures help portray that. Of course, as a result people play the game without researching the word cistern and then just assume.

Quote:
However, there doesn't seem to be a lot of variety in gameplay here. There's some jumping bits, some swimming bits, a lot of key-fetching... and that's pretty much the level in a nutshell.
Agreed, which is why it just doesn't standout for me. It certainly ranks above the likes of Caves but it is also one of TR1's worst in terms of gameplay. It just feels like a chore to get through...

Quote:
...TR3 revert back to normal-sized rats.
Normal-sized? You really think the ones in TR3's London are normal sized?

Anyway, I'd give the level a 7/10 in all honesty. There's nothing in the level really that makes me want to rate it any higher.

EDIT: Also I forgot to mention the awful link between Palace Midas and Cistern. There was no transition whatsoever.
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Old 16-10-13, 10:13   #140
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I'd give the cistern a 10/10 and you can make the level shorter by using the bug.
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