September 17, 2012

30-Day Tomb Raider Challenge Day 17: Have You Ever Created Your Own Playable Level?

Have you ever created your own Tomb Raider level using the TR Level Editor or another program? If so, what was it like and did you enjoy the process? Do you play levels created by other players and, if so, what are some of your favorites?

Today's question was suggested by Eldin and expanded upon a bit by me. Just can't leave well enough alone. ;)

Tomb Raider Level Editor
Tomb Raider Level Editor Screenshot.
Click to visit's TRLE page.


  1. I used to and I really enjoyed it, I can't seem to get it to work on my laptop now which sucks. Hopefully I'll get to go at it again one day. I played a few decent levels from others including the first 4 levels of TR1 remade which was pretty good.

  2. back in 2004 i use to create maps with the Unreal Engeier For Unreal Touranment 2004 and 3 for pc man i miss that engier so much now i wish Epic Games would hurry up with the Unreal Eniger v4.0 or V3.0 some of them unreal engier is comeing in 2013 or higher

  3. No. Although I've written tombs.

  4. This is an awesome question, since I'm actually a game and level designer! :)

    Before going to the Teesside University in Middlesbrough, England, to study Computer Games Design, I used to play around with the TRLE. In February 2003, I released an experiment level, called "The Labyrinth". I must say, I actually didn't put any effort into it and just copied some rooms to create a maze. :P I released it anyway, just to see how the reaction would be. Needles to say, the level did very poorly. :P But then, I had this ambitious idea for a game, to create a long side-scrolling platformer game, using the TRLE. I already planned 14 levels in advance and had already plans for all of those levels and even for several extra unlockable levels. This adventure would be called "The Jumps 'n' Runs of Sara Droft" and the level list for the game looked like this:

    1. High Hill
    2. Plant Panic
    3. Jungle Journey
    4. Unusual Underground
    5. Divine Diamonds
    6. Lava Level
    7. Transfer Trouble
    8. Fancy Fly
    9. Star Stage
    10. Free Fall
    11. Solvent Stuff
    12. Exotic Event
    13. City Criminals
    14. Electric Evil

    I then started to create the first level, "High Hill". It took me a lot longer to create this level than I thought it would, but eventually, I finished this one level (plus a secret small bonus level) and released it as a demo in September 2004. I received mixed reviews for my level. Some people loved it and thought it was the most original TRLE level they ever played. But many players did not like it very much, becuase I used a lot of fixed cameras to make it feel like a side-scrolling game, which made the controls a bit tricky and did not encourage the type of exploration that Tomb Raider fans were used to. Although I'm still proud of what I have created back then, I discontinued creating the other levels I had planned for this game, because for one thing it was incredibly time-consuming and I simply did not have the time for it, and for another thing, the idea did not overally seem to be well received by "traditional" Tomb Raider players. In 2006 I started my university education and finished in 2009 and now, I'm creating my own game, using the game authoring tool "Multimedia Fusion 2" and hope to be able to sell it on Steam early next year. I'd still love any of you guys to play the level "High Hill" that I created with the Level Editor back in 2004 and to contact me for feedback! I could even send a walkthrough video to anyone that is interested! You can find the level on either:


    I don't recommend the walkthrough on the website though. It's not written by me and it's parcially wrong. Please contact me personally for help. I understand if none of you guys would bother to play my level, but I would extremely appreciate it if someone does! ;)

    As for my personal favorite TRLE levels, I have to admit that I have not played many, but between the few that I have played, "Run Lara Run" was probably my favorite, and I also was very impressed by the "Techno Egyptians Portal" level.

  5. Siavash, your project sounds really cool. Like a cross between Tomb Raider and Sonic the Hedgehog. :D

    I didn't have time to post my own answer last night--barely got the question up--but I tried out the level editor when it first came out. It's totally fun and fascinating, but does take a lot of time and effort. Something I don't have enough of right now. Playing and creating is definitely on my "someday" list. I hope the program still runs on current computers by the time I get around to using it again. ;)

  6. Thank you very much Stella! That's exactly what it was! ;) I'd LOVE it if you would try it out some day. :D But I'd understand if you don't. :)

  7. i've always wanted to get into this because i've played the online levels for years, and many of them are actually better than some levels from the games. However, the couple times i looked into this, i found out it is an incredible amount of work just to learn how to use the software and even when you know how, it's hours and hours of work creating a level. Alas, i'll probably never get around to it. But i'll likely always keep playing player-designed levels! i hope that practice never dies out.


  8. No, but I thought about it a lot and then thought of the result.

    It might or might not have been useful to others, but not for me. Although I have some programming skills and experience, there are way too many people who are better at it than me.

    I would have a level which I knew intimately, with any traps or special features. Not much challenge there then ...

  9. No I haven't, I attempted to at one point but failed miserably :( I am now getting into making my own games but I use Hammer Editor, if I can use that highly complex editor you'd think I can figure out the TR one :p Maybe I'll try it again some time :)

  10. no tbh i actually have not made my own level. i would like to but oh well

  11. I haven't made my own levels, but I'd really like to give it a try at some point.