Tomb Raider Legend Level 7 - NEPAL: THE GHALALI KEY

In the transitional cut scene between levels (titled "Home Again") Lara returns to Croft Manor.  Winston and the boys inform her that the Ghalali key was not in her father's collection, nor mentioned in any of his notes.  Lara examines the sword fragments and realizes she knows exactly what and where the Ghalali key is.  Next stop: Nepal.  Winston warns Lara to be careful, especially after what happened to her mother, but Lara is determined to salvage her father's reputation as well as the artifact.

A second brief cut scene ("Return to Nepal") shows Lara's arrival near the crash site.

DEEP CHASM WITH BROKEN PILLARS: From CHECKPOINT 1 at the start, grab the ledge in front of Lara and traverse to the left above the chasm.  When Alister suggests you keep moving, continue climbing and tap Interact repeatedly to get across the section of crumbling ledge before it breaks.  Climb on top of the pillar.  Slide down the slope on the other side and jump to grab the next pillar.  Pull up and take a running jump to grab the next pillar.  Depending on how far Lara jumped, she may be hanging from the top of the pillar just below the snowy boulder or on the white stone strip partway down.  If she is hanging below the boulder, drop down one level to grab the white stone strip.  Traverse around the corner of the pillar and continue to the left as far as you can go.

Jump across the chasm to grab onto the pillar behind.  The jutting stone slab you grab onto gives way.  Quickly climb to the right before it breaks.  Then climb up to the top of the pillar and turn left to face back the way you came.  Now you'll need to make your way back along this side of the chasm.  The sloping ledge ahead is also ready to crumble.  Take a running jump onto it and keep running.  Jump at the end to grab the horizontal pole.  Immediately swing around and jump again before the pole breaks off.  Grab the pillar ahead and climb to the top, which is CHECKPOINT 2.  The starting point is now below on Lara's left.

Before going on, carefully retrieve a secret.  Drop and hang from the far edge of the pillar (i.e., the side opposite where you just climbed up).  You must hold Walk as Lara steps off the edge.  At least in the PC game, simply tapping forward won't prevent her from falling.  Once Lara is hanging, you should be able to see the bronze reward (1/9) in a small alcove below.  Drop down twice to reach it.  Climb back up a little to the left or right of center.  Because the top ledge is slightly uneven, Lara won't grab it at the center.

Back on top of the pillar, use the magnetic grapple to hook the bell high above where the sloping ledge was.  Swing and jump to grab the first of 3 fat but fragile icicles dangling from the overhang ahead.  Before each icicle breaks, jump forward to grab the next one, then the next, and finally the narrow horizontal shelf in the ice wall beyond.  Traverse around the corner to the right.  Jump straight up to grab a higher handhold.  Then continue climbing to the right until you can jump up to grab the flat ledge.

There's an open area here where you could climb up, but first keep climbing to the right.  A little farther on, you'll come to another flat spot where you can pull up and get a silver reward (1/6).  Drop and hang from the edge and climb back to the left.  This time climb up into the flat open area.

Shoot the iced-over doorway to the right and follow the tunnel past CHECKPOINT 3 to an opening high above the airplane wreckage.  Zip asks Lara about the accident but she deflects the question.

CRASH SITE: To get down to the wreckage, first turn right and take a running jump to grab the top of the stone pillar.  Pull up.  Slide down the slope and jump at the end to land on another slope perpendicular to the first.  Slide to the end and jump to land on top of another pillar.  Turn left.  The next pillar is ready to collapse.  So take a running jump to land on it, then quickly run and jump to grab the horizontal bar jutting from the wreckage ahead.  From there, you can see a silver reward off to the left and a grapple point above.  Swing around the bar, jump off and quickly press Jump again to grapple.  Swing on the cable past the silver reward and jump into the manmade stone opening ahead.

To get the silver prayer wheel, turn around and shoot the ice wall ahead and to the right.  (The binoculars' RAD mode reveals the weak spot.) Grapple-swinging is difficult here due to the angle; the debris behind Lara prevents her from getting a long swing.  So instead take a running jump to grab the edge of the opening and pull up.  Grab the silver reward (2/6) and jump back across the gap.

Follow the passageway to the next opening.  A helicopter, presumably Rutland's, passes overhead.  Turn right and jump to grab the ruined wing.  Drop down twice to reach the ground and CHECKPOINT 4.  Duck under the dangling propeller and use the magnetic grapple to grab a bronze reward (2/9) from the pile of debris behind the airplane wing.  Return past the propeller and hop down onto the small snowy ledge to the right.  (There's a broken wheel and some other junk there.) From there, you should be able to shoot the snow leopard in the clearing below.  Use pistols to save ammo.  When it's dead, drop down and approach the wrecked fuselage.

Before exploring inside, get a reward.  Climb onto the low ice ledge to the right of the fuselage.  Use the magnetic grapple to pull the pile of junk out of the way.  Then jump across the deep pit to the other side, where you'll find another silver reward (3/6).  Jump back across the pit and return to the plane.

Zip warns Lara not to go inside without first weighing down the end.  He's right.  Entering the body of the plane now causes it to tip and crash.  To stabilize it, stand in the opening and use the grapple to pull the big chunk of wreckage (part of an engine, perhaps) toward Lara.  When you've got it in the correct position, you'll hear and see the indicators for CHECKPOINT 5.

Move toward the cockpit to trigger an interactive cut scene.  Press the controls indicated on-screen to help Lara retrieve the Ghalali Key and escape before the wreckage crashes into the chasm below.

Once she's safe, Lara briefly examines the key then looks toward the ruined monastery she visited all those years ago.  At last she admits that all her life so far has been leading up to this.  She tells the guys she wants to make one more stop.  (This part of this cinematic is titled "The Key Obtained".)

CHECKPOINT 6 registers after the cut scene.

ICY SLOPES: From the trench where the wreck was, take a running jump to the icy slope ahead, which slants down to the right.  Slide and jump near the end to grab the horizontal pole ahead.  Quickly swing and jump to the next icy slope before the pole breaks off.  (NOTE: If you're having trouble making Lara swing around the pole immediately after grabbing, it may help to move the camera behind Lara as she slides down the slope before jumping to the pole.) This slope points down to the right.  Slide almost to the bottom and jump to land on another slope, which is perpendicular to the previous one and slopes down to the left.  Again, slide and jump to land on another shorter slope.  When you touch down here, press Interact to shoot the ice wall ahead.  Jump through the gap where the ice wall was and land on yet another slope, which carries Lara down to the right.  Near the end of this slope, jump to grab another horizontal pole.  Before it breaks, quickly swing and jump to the safe, flat ledge below.  (Seems like some sturdy nylon rope and crampons would be easier but, hey, it's Lara's call.)

Follow the path to the right.  When you reach CHECKPOINT 7, turn around to spot a bronze reward (3/9) across the gap.  Use the magnetic grapple to get it.  Then turn around again and continue.

ICE CAVES: Across the next deep pit you'll see several ledges and poles.  The ledge Lara is standing on juts out a bit on the right side.  Take a running jump there to grab the white ice shelf on the other side of the pit; pull up.  Alister comments briefly on the scenery.  Turn right and take a running jump to grab the horizontal pole ahead.  (Don't worry.  This one doesn't break.) Swing around and jump to grab the light-colored ice shelf on the wall ahead.  Traverse to the left.  Jump to grab the handhold across the gap.  This shelf starts to collapse, so use Interact to climb more quickly to the left.  Let go—or just wait for the ice to break off—and grab the solid handhold below.

Jump back to grab the next horizontal pole.  Adjust Lara's position on the pole so she's squarely facing the long icicle ahead.  Swing and jump to grab it.  These icicles are solid, so there's no need to hurry now.  Climb up and jump to the second icicle.  Note the bronze reward in the little alcove to the left.  You'll get it momentarily.  For now, jump from the second icicle onto the precariously balanced pedestal to the right.  Immediately take a running jump to grab the horizontal handhold on the wall ahead.  Traverse to the right and pull up on a narrow ledge made of ice.

Turn around and then move to the right side of the opening and look to the far wall of the cave, beyond the big icicles and the broken pedestal, to spot the bronze reward (4/9) you just passed.  Use the magnetic grapple to retrieve it.  (NOTE: It's not necessary but it may help to use manual aim here.  Press Z/R3/right stick button.  Move the targeting reticule over the reward until it turns blue, indicating a target you can grapple.  Then press Grapple, then Interact to pull, then manual aim again to de-activate it.)

GOLD REWARD: There's another reward nearby.  After getting the bronze, turn around and drop to hang from the other side of the narrow ledge.  Traverse to the left and then drop to grab another narrow ice shelf below.  Traverse to the left again and around the corner.  Drop to grab a third lower ice shelf, then a fourth.  Traverse farther to the left and pull up into a small alcove with the gold reward (1/1).  Return the way you came to the narrow ledge between the two caves (i.e., hang from the opening, traverse to the right, climb up twice, traverse to the right around the corner, climb up, traverse right and pull up in the opening).

When you have both rewards and are ready to move on, stand in the archway with the cave where the bronze reward was on Lara's left.  Grab the narrow ledge on the wall ahead.  Climb to the right as far as you can, then jump the gap to grab another handhold.  Drop to grab the ledge below.  Climb all the way to the left and jump back to grab the vertical pole.  Climb to the top of the pole and jump to the right.  Traverse all the way to the right.  Then jump to grab a break-away ledge on the opposite wall.  Traverse quickly to the right (tap Interact to go faster) and jump straight up to grab the ledge above before your handhold collapses completely.  Pull up into the opening.

CONFRONTATION WITH RUTLAND'S MEN: Follow the tunnel past CHECKPOINT 8 to an open area.  Lara sees Rutland's soldiers exiting the helicopter.

There are 6 mercenaries in all: 4 on the ground, another on top of the building to the right, and another sixth with a grenade launcher on the snowy ledge at the far end of the open area.  Grenades start flying almost immediately, so it's not wise to hang back in the cave.  Instead, run out into the open and kill the guys on the ground first.  Targeting the explosive tanks helps a lot with this.  Then take care of the sniper and the grenade-launching guy.  As you fight, steer clear of the icy pool on the left.  Even brief exposure to the freezing water can hurt Lara badly.  More than a few seconds can kill her.

When all the bad guys are dead, pick up whatever you need.  The guys on the ground drop SHOTGUNS, ASSAULT RIFLES or ammo for these weapons, plus grenades and possibly health packs.  Before climbing up to get the other men's stuff, climb onto the little plateau of snow near where you entered.  Shoot the ice wall to reveal a silver reward (4/6) and jump over to get it.  (The binoculars in RAD mode show where the breakable wall is in case you can't spot it.) Also be sure to get the bronze reward (5/9) near the icy pool.

Then climb onto the other snow plateau and take a running jump to the projecting ice ledge ahead.  Jump from the right side of this ledge to the ledge where the guy with the GRENADE LAUNCHER was.  (Take it if you want, but you may be better off with the rifle for now since more ammo is available.) Pick up the bronze reward (6/9) and then grapple-swing across to the building where the sniper was.  Get his RIFLE or ammo, grenade and health pack if he drops one.  Climb onto the higher ledge, jump to grab the angled cable and slide down to the ledge above the pool.

DARK CAVERN WITH ICY STREAM: Slide down the slope to CHECKPOINT 9.  Step out onto the ice.  It's safe.  You'll find another bronze reward (7/9) in a short, dark tunnel to the left.  Continue through the cave to an opening above a freezing pool with chunks of ice floating in it.  Again, don't let Lara fall into the water if you can possibly help it.  Even brief exposure is harmful.  Hop onto the first floating island of ice.  Jump from there to the second.  The next is too far to reach, so shoot the slab of ice hanging from the ceiling to make it fall into the water.  Now you can jump onto it, then to the next chunk, then to the opening ahead.

Hop down onto a snowy ledge on the other side of the opening.  It's very dark here.  If the PLS doesn't shed enough light, turn up the brightness either in-game or on your TV/monitor.  Just beyond the snowy ledge is a flowing stream of icy water.  After a few moments, chunks of ice begin to float past.  To get out of this area, you need to make your way upstream, hopping from chunk to chunk.  There's a ledge midway along on the right, where you can stop if necessary.  The entrance to the monastery, where you're headed, is beyond that on the right, but there's also a silver reward (5/6) on the left bank opposite the exit.  If you're collecting rewards, make your way to that ledge first then wait for a dense group of ice to float by and hop across the stream to the exit.

Some tips: You don't needn't rush, since the water isn't moving that quickly, but try not to float farther downstream than the starting ledge.  If you do, Lara crashes into the low tunnel opening and dies.  If you make it only partway to the exit and run out of ice to jump on, float a short distance downstream, jump off on one of the ledges and wait for more ice chunks to come.  Then try again.

INSIDE THE MONASTERY: Once you've navigated the stream and reached the entrance to the monastery, follow the tunnel up the stairs past CHECKPOINT 10.  There's a snow leopard lurking at the top on the right.  You may want to draw it out and then back down the stairs while shooting.  When it's dead, climb the stairs again.

Step out on a balcony overlooking the ruins.  There are obvious grapple points ahead but before swinging across, go down the staircase on the right.  At the bottom, locate the break-away panel on the right and shoot it to reveal the final silver reward (6/6).  Return upstairs to the balcony.

Now grapple swing across to the huge Buddha, using the 3 bells dangling from the ceiling.  To do that, face the statue straight on, take a running jump off the balcony and quickly press Jump again to grapple the first bell.  As long as you're not doing a Time Trial, there's no hurry, since all three bells are stable.  Take your time and go carefully.  Swing forward until Lara is swinging high enough for you to see the blue grapple indicator on the second bell.  Then press Jump twice to let go and immediately grapple again.  While hanging from the second bell, turn a bit to the right so that when you swing, you can see then grapple the third bell.  Once Lara is hanging from the third bell, point her toward the ledge that forms the Buddha's "lap," work up a good long swing and jump to land there.  Then you can shoot the snow leopard from above without taking any damage.

Lara comments that the doors were open the last time she was here.  Before tackling the door puzzle, go after the last two rewards.  There's a staircase leading up on each side of the platform with the statue.  On each balcony, there's a bronze reward (8/9 and 9/9).  The one on the right balcony is near the top of the stairs; the one to the left is at the far end of the balcony.  When you have both, return to the Buddha.

BALANCE and BLOCKS PUZZLE: To open the door at the base of the statue, you need to get the golden block up onto the golden pressure pad on the ledge using the scales hanging from the Buddha's hands and the medium and small blocks, as well as Lara herself, as counterweights.

First, climb on the right platform of the scale (i.e., right when facing the statue).  Use the magnetic grapple to pull the small block onto the platform with Lara.  Leave the small block there and climb onto the empty left platform.  Lara's weight will carry it down.  Grapple the golden block and pull it onto the platform with Lara.  Now climb back onto the right platform.  The combined weight of Lara and the small block lowers the platform to the floor.  Grapple and pull the medium block onto the platform.  The medium and small blocks together are heavier than the golden block.  So you can hop down and the platform with the golden block will remain level with the ledge.  Climb up and pull the golden block onto the pressure pad.  This opens the door at the base of the ledge.  Go through to the room below the statue.

The door closes behind as you cross CHECKPOINT 11.  Go down the stairs to trigger a cut scene.

Lara reassembles Excalibur using the key she found—or, more accurately, Excalibur reassembles itself.  She attempts to place it in the broken stone but it doesn't work.  The ruins begin to fall apart.  (This cinematic is titled "Excalibur Reforged".)

Head for the door on the lower level.  Slash with Excalibur to blast it open.  CHECKPOINT 12 registers as you exit.  Once outside, you need to make your way across the crumbling stone platforms back to the other side of the temple where you came in.  To get across, first take a running jump from the ledge at the exit from the sword room to the square platform to the left.  Turn right and take a running jump to the rectangular platform ahead.  Turn right again (i.e., back toward the center of the room) and take a running jump to the next rectangular platform.  Turn left, keep running and jump onto the next platform ahead.  When it tips forward, bringing Lara closer to the ledge below the entrance, take a running jump to grab onto it.  Pull up to end the level.

In the level's final cut scene ("Chapter Closed") Lara tells her friends there's one more stop on the journey: back to Bolivia.

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