Level: Abruzzo back home search
Author(s): Drakan
total rating:8.53 Gameplay &
Objects &
Sound &
Lighting &
Chel 9 9 8 8
dmdibl 8 9 9 9
eTux 9 7 9 7
Gerty 7 8 8 8
Jack& 9 6 10 9
Jay 9 9 10 9
Jose 9 8 8 9
Kristina 8 8 8 8
LolauMylenium 8 7 7 6
MichaelP 9 8 9 8
Minox 9 10 10 9
Orbit Dream 9 9 10 9
Phil 9 9 9 8
Ruben 9 9 10 9
Ryan 9 8 9 9
Shandroid 9 8 8 8
category averages
(16 reviews)
8.69 8.25 8.88 8.31

Reviewer's comments

"This is a doozy of a level. Much of the platforming in the latter portions is very demanding, and overall I wouldn't recommend this at all for newcomers. The encounter with the beast of the Abruzzi was absolutely brutal and much of my slog involved save scumming and dumb luck. I was praying the AI did something dumb so I could slip by it. Much of the puzzle solving made perfect sense and seemed logical to me. Sometimes the way forward was not very obvious, so I spent plenty of time running about because I missed a pushblock that had been in front of me or a switch tucked up by the ceiling in a tiny, dark nook. The moving pillars were evil. I hate those things. Counting the seconds between disappearance and reappearance, as well as knowing how long it takes Lara to complete a running jump and have her boots hit the ground afterward is the only way to get past it. Play with both eyes wide open and keep a walkthrough handy. This level languished on my hard drive in DNF limbo for over 2 years before I picked it up again and made my way to the finish trigger. Found 5 of 6 secrets on my own and would never have scooped up the 6th without the guide. No way. You'd need ESP to find that thing!" - Chel (09-Feb-2020)

"This humdinger of a level starts out rather challenging but placid compared to what the rest of the level has in store. Pretty soon after, the challenge quotient ramps up that little bit higher and by the end of the level, you'll not complain that you've been short- changed on gameplay here. Almost everything is included: pushblock puzzles, challenging but not frustrating jump sequences, a torch puzzle, alternating column room, a breakable tile room and a brief bike ride. The only thing I didn't like was the precise timing required for the dragon room and if it hadn't been for the walkthrough, I may have gave it up. Apart from that, I loved it and would highly recommend it to anyone who likes a challenge." - Ryan (27-Jul-2017)

"A good level, difficult but fun to play and a real pleasure to finish this level. The boss is probably too hard for my point of vue... I like... Un bon niveau, un peu difficile mais rigolo jouer ma foi avec un reel plaisir de finir ce niveau. Le boss etait vraiment complique, mais a n'est que mon point de vue... J'ai aime..." - LolauMylenium (19-Jan-2016)

"Inspired by Joels fantastic Barkhang Monastary levels I have picked up another jewel lost along the way. Here`s one of Drakans earlier works which already shows forth some of this builder`s skills in creating well worked out custom games . I must mention , however , I had to take a look into the good book of solutions for the gameplay drove me nuts sometimes. High adrenaline level guaranteed at certain points . The secret door at the end stays closed for me but that`s a fate I am happy to share with most other players. If you havn`t played it yet press the download button and go for it ! It `s definetely worth it ." - Ruben (16-May-2010)

"The Abruzzi (9/8/9/8, 40+15 min, 5 secrets): A surprisingly tricky adventure right from the start, which requires a few sneaky, clever and rather precise jumps at times, keeps you on your toes with spike and boulder traps and needs you to keep your eyes open for well hidden push blocks. There is a particularly touch wraith chase to master as well and some long and breathtaking swims. But it's all great fun too to master these challenges and as such a very rewarding adventure. Rather few enemies around - a few warriors, wasps and sharks, but the secrets are also interesting to go for.
The Monster of the Abruzzi (9/8/9/8, 35+2 min, 1 secret): The pace continues just like in part 1 and you get a multi lever hub room from which you branch out for the items you need. Again, some of the tasks are quite sneaky and tricky, but fun to eventually solve - even if the walkthrough may be your last resort here or there for a little push in the right direction - especially for the rather obscure solution to get the final secret. Indeed, I thought the monster (dragon) sequence was a tad bit unfair and it took a few tries to get by this monkey swing while the beast kept throwing fireballs, but soon after you drive home on a call trike and look back at an overall well rounded and nicely challenging adventure." - MichaelP (25-Mar-2009)

"Over the years of playing custom levels I have noticed my dislike for Rome settings has worn off - meaning I'll still appreciate the level if it's well done no matter what - and that makes me happy, as I can play levels like this one from JoJo pretty much unbiased. And while, my ex-dislike here or there, I didn't find it to be particularly spectacular-looking all the same, the gameplay is what steals the show here consisting of numerous somewhat tricky jumps and other tasks just as tricky to keep you occupied. While initially it came as a bit of shock to be robbed of so much health during the first 10 or so minutes of the game, and I thought the underwater mirror and later on the dragon battle were a bit unfair (mind you - I managed to get through the latter fairly unharmed, probably due to some luck), my list of complaints ends there as this is a wonderfully inspired from start to finish and I enjoyed my entire stay here. As said before - I didn't find the looks to be particularly inspired, but they were overall solidly done, and there are a few memorable areas like the entrance to the dragon's realm, or the main hall in the first level. If anything else - I would've loved to see the dragon get his comeuppance, but I figured the new pillar in the lava pool had fallen from the ceiling and crushed him, so I think I'll be able to sleep well at night with that thought on my mind. Bottomline - this is an excellently challenging game that will keep experience players occupied for well over an hour, and while it wouldn't be my first recommendation to more novice gamers, it's still a good level to play! Found only 1 of the 6 secrets." - eTux (12-Jul-2008)

"Funny how one level can capture someone and can be annoying for someone else. I belong to the latter category, but I have to say that this could have been a great level indeed, if it weren't for some of the actions one has to do, as they made no sense to me at all. The four lever puzzle eluded me big time and although I could access all the rooms but one. I gave up, waiting for the walkthrough to continue. And even then it was pretty hard as Jose isn't as accurate in directions as I would have liked. But then thanks to Jose I could access the last secret although it is still a mystery to me, the how and the why. Also wondered why I had some bugs in both downloads of this game. One was after an earthquake when I had to climb and the other was at the four lever puzzle as one time the door didn't open and going back to a couple of saved games back, it suddenly worked. Feel very sorry for the sharks, not the killing mind you, as the poor beast would have perished anyway as they cannot survive in sweet water (apart from one species but even that one has to go back to the sea). This is for sure not a game for the faint hearted, as there are some difficult actions one has to perform. I have to say that in a way it is a pity that not all raiders can enjoy this game." - Gerty (08-Jan-2008)

"Very good level. After a bleak start, the game became brighter and taking, we want to know later. There are many puzzles to be found, the mirror room is superb , we must look to see the keys and the lever. I really liked the 4 levers to handle to open the doors, and especially the monster quite difficult to go past , to return to the 1st level. I must say that I did it a second time with the walkthrough for the 6 secrets . shame that it is not enough time to serve the motorcycle. I highly recommend it" - Minox (22-Dec-2007)

"This is an accomplished two-part release that clocked in at almost exactly two hours. I was prepared to put up my usual fuss in this review about the oppressive darkness I encountered in the beginning, but the second part was adequately lit so all is forgiven. This is not an easy game, but much of the difficulty is simply a matter of routine jumps having been made next to impossible by the builder's tactic of stretching out the distance to be covered, requiring a pixel-perfect jump for success. I have little time for this sort of nonsense, so after a reasonable number of unsuccessful tries I just used the flycheat to get where I needed to be. The most difficult part of the game is the ordeal with the dragon, and I was grateful during this sequence for the god mode patch that allows Lara to make like a human torch with no ill effects. Jose has also given us a very comprehensive walkthrough, which I found most helpful. Recommended for more skilled players." - Phil (15-Nov-2007)

"I admit that this level got my attention from nearly the beginning. The areas, not very imaginative as far as textures are concerned, have challenging tasks to complete and the overall gameplay is concentrated mote on puzzles than enemies. I am not sure all players will appreciate the challenge in this game but one should give it a try. The game is divided in more than one part and even though you see the upper levels you don't get to visit them until much later. The only thing that really made me anguish was the monkey swing in the part with the dragon. It is not so easy to grab it when the beast keeps sending fire balls towards Lara. Other than that everything else was pleasant and I wish we had more time in the level to ride the nice bike. I found only two secrets so I couldn't access what was behind the last door near the end and took me about an hour and forty five minutes to complete it." - Kristina (05-Nov-2007)

"Rome was always dangerous for Lara. This two levels adventure is really challenging with some tricky but possible tasks, interesting puzzles, few enemies and secrets difficult to find. Your goal is to get a trident to open the exit door, but this will take a lot of work. Sometimes it's easy get stucked 'cause you can't figure where to go or miss something as in the mirror room; another times you have to try a task many times. Good ambience, observing the cameras will give you some hints. I liked a lot the three-wheel motorbike but I used it very few time. Expert players will like this excellent adventure." - Jose (01-Nov-2007)

"If you fancy a level that takes no prisoners, look no further. It's really good, but it doesn't flinch from putting Lara in lots of situations where she can't help but lose health. It's enjoyably challenging rather than frustratingly challenging and the Rome style settings are most attractive. The only part I didn't absolutely love was trying to monkey swing across a lava room with a dragon setting poor Lara on fire all the time (not to mention the awful locusts). That was a nightmare of epic proportions and if I hadn't kept saving and reloading every time the locusts appeared I would have run out of medipacks. That aside though, I had a really good time. Nice one." - Jay (18-Oct-2007)

"well this one is a nice piece of work ... start a bit gloomy and uninteresting but after progressing in the game become very entertaining and challenging . ,is alot off tricky jumps / clever hidden keys and levers all nice done only thing wich pull this game back to be realy good is the Monster room part ... at wich u need to get at a monkeyswing and further at a crawlspace without be cooked... the way at a safe place behind the pillar after get on the monkeyswing without be ignited by the monster missiles is more luck than timing ,, however all the rest off the game was very nice and i recomand to anyone wich like the complex challenging levels .. ;) keep it this way JOJO nice jobb" - Jack& (11-Oct-2007)

"Were it not for a couple of unfair Gameplay moments (one involving a sneakily hidden key and the other a poorly chosen climbing texture) this would have received a 'Gameplay 10'.After a deceptively gentle start it progresses into a (seemingly never-ending) series of challenging sequences,cleverly combining physical dexterity with brainpower.The sheer variety of challenges on offer is impressive and the solving of each extremely rewarding.The locations are imaginative and always well-assembled and atmospheric,while the enemy placement is particularly effective (especially as the physical attacks are used sparingly).Also of note is the beautiful overall design of the adventure with the two levels seemingly intertwined and involving the player continually returning to places he's already visited,but from a different perspective. Although it took me far longer to get through than expected I found the several hours spent here to be continually absorbing and entertaining,although possibly aimed at the TR expert rather than the novice. If it's a constantly involving and challenging adventure you're looking for,combined with skillfull construction,then you need look no further.Highly recommended." - Orbit Dream (09-Oct-2007)

"Whew, this was a really challenging level in parts. I was almost ready to chuck it, but I kept on going because I didn't want to be a quitter, and well, it is very much worth playing. Gameplay, as I stated was challenging and confusing at times, and definitely not for beginners, but for skilled raiders, this level should be enjoyed. I felt that the atmosphere was pretty good, but could have been a bit better. The enemies weren't very varied, but I loved the gladiators, they are really fast! There is a beast that will challenge most folks, but when you do defeat it, you will feel pretty good. There is a darn fancy three-wheeler at the end that you get to ride for about 3 minutes (shame!), and don't get me started on that final secret. Anyway, there are drawbacks to the level, but it is really worth playing, so give it a try." - Shandroid (08-Oct-2007)

"Good solid game play and fine attractive levels. Most fans will whip through this entertaining adventure without any problem, and find the Neptune trident. A lot of work has gone into their design, cleverly integrating the two levels: reach the upper levels of the first by returning from the second. Nothing here is particularly difficult, which makes it so maddening that the simplest tasks tripped me up. I didn't immediately grasp the twist the author had added to the torch puzzle, and wondered why lighting the four upper-level braziers didn't seem to do anything. Then there was the crawlspace Lara couldn't grab near the end of the level. A hinged metal grid flips up to open the crawlspace, but when Lara jumped for the opening all she did was bump the metal grid and fall down. If the hinges had been on the side instead of the top, there never would have been a problem. Trivial, yes, but it sure delayed the game. And the block Lara stood on got stuck in the entrance to the room; no matter what I did this block refused to advance beyond the doorway though there was a level square in front of it (so I never did get the block directly in front of the crawlspace, even after reloading games and trying repeatedly). Also, Lara doesn't kiss columns or frogs. Then there was the room with the pillars that flickered in and out of existence. Normally one watches to get the rhythm of the change, but here the room was so dark it was hard to see what was going on. Or maybe I was just inept. I enjoyed the ending where Lara drives her snazzy tri-wheeler outside. It is almost a cliche in custom levels that as Lara approaches the light to the outside there is an abrupt end. I thought that would happen here. But instead Lara actually gets to drive outside to get a quick secret, and then zip off through the trees, a nice touch." - dmdibl (06-Oct-2007)
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