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BtB2010 - The Rose, the Witch and the Godfather by Isis

Bene 9 10 10 10
Christian 10 9 9 9
Cory 8 8 9 8
Dick 9 9 9 8
DJ Full 10 10 10 9
dmdibl 10 9 10 9
Dutchy 10 9 9 9
eRIC 9 8 9 9
eTux 9 9 10 9
Eva 10 9 10 10
Gerty 9 9 10 9
Glouglouton 9 9 9 8
Jack& 9 9 10 10
jawi 9 9 10 9
Jay 10 10 9 9
JesseG 9 9 8 8
John 10 10 9 10
Jonson 10 9 9 9
Jorge22 10 10 9 10
Jose 10 9 9 10
Josey 10 10 10 10
Magnus 7 7 8 6
manarch2 9 9 9 8
masha 9 9 10 9
MichaelP 9 9 10 9
Minox 9 9 9 10
Mman 9 9 8 8
Mytly 9 9 10 8
nerdfury 8 9 9 7
Phil 10 9 10 9
Raymond 9 9 10 9
Relic Hunter 9 9 9 9
repley 9 9 10 9
Ruben 9 9 9 10
Ryan 10 9 10 9
Scottie 10 9 10 10
TheStig 9 9 9 9
Treeble 9 10 9 9
release date: 01-Jan-2010
# of downloads: 176

average rating: 9.16
review count: 38
review this level

file size: 43.45 MB
file type: TR4
class: Venice

author profile(s):

Reviewer's comments
"A level that starts off a little bumpy but gets quite thrilling as it progresses. The bumpy parts include using a palmtree as a pole to climb, which is creative but the collision makes the back jump a bit difficult. There's also a pushable that is rotated at an angle and tricky to interact with, and the wrong flame is used for the elemental puzzle, which makes Lara set herself on fire when completing it. There are relatively minor blips compared to the interesting challenges such as a timed monkeyswing ceiling, several timed runs, some tricky traps to jump or swing past. The visuals are pretty good, texturing gets a bit wallpapered in the underground areas but the lighting is nice and there are some architecturally interesting chambers. My favorite aspect is the use of the motorbike, which I enjoyed taking over several huge jumps and running over enemies with (including what seemed like the "boss fight", not sure if that was intentional but I'll take it!). It was a thrilling way to end the adventure. 52 minutes." - JesseG (18-Jun-2022)
"This has to be one of my favorite (if not my favorite) venice levels ever! It was just to die for. The gameplay is just fantastic, its so varied and fun with exploring, platforming, timed runs, dangerous traps, shooting challenges, tricky jumps(one jump was so tricky to perform that it left me hanging by a thread lol) followed by epic vehicle challenges, poles, ropes, ziplines and enemies to face so i was always having fun. i was so overwhelmed with the original challenges and tasks here especially with the bike challenge, monkey swing task and chandelier platforming in a variety of different areas such as libraries, halls, canals, caves and outdoor areas. The visuals were top notch stunning and i loved all the textures and lighting in the night time setting, the only thing i missed was more music tracks because i just wasnt a fan of the background ambient sound but i do understand its trying to invoke a certain atmosphere which aligns with the story so i guess that's more about personal taste. Please check out this level it was such a joy to play" - John (12-Mar-2022)
"(8) Gameplay & Puzzles: This level didn't really do it for me, yet it's one of the most creative levels in BTB2010. First of all, the gameplay aspects I really enjoyed were the innovative touches that I have never seen before, such as the monkey swing that disappears and reappears, monkey swinging under chandeliers, and the side area with the platforms over water that you have to drive the Vespa across. These were awesome. Unfortunately there were 2 significant gameplay aspects that brought my overall enjoyment down: A) Near the start of the game, if the player goes down the slope and lands in the canal water, instead of landing on the pillar, they need to either backtrack a lot, or reload a save game. However without following a walkthrough it is likely that the player will not think of doing the latter and instead run around in circles for ages. B) When you initially enter the large library hall, 2 wraiths chase you, but you have no idea where to find water, and there are many paths around this hub area. I couldn't kite the wraiths back to the canals because they wouldn't follow me there. So there's just so much trial and error trying to find water while wraiths are draining your health and it's not fun at all. Even if you were to quickly find the correct area leading to water, there are 3 fake windows and 1 shootable window. It's not good design in my opinion. Finally, of lesser importance, but still worth mentioning, is the fact that I think the builder had a chance to include some varied gameplay in the underground catacombs area (with all of the gravestones) but all you do is drive through it with the Vespa, which was a bit of a let down. (9) Enemies, Objects & Secrets: I enjoyed the enemy presentation throughout; not many enemies during most of the game, but then there's a thrilling double-boss fight, as well as mowing over lots of goons with the Vespa, which was great fun. Object decor was very attractive and the builder utilized movable objects cleverly for puzzles. Generally the "swinging box" traps are too easy to avoid in other levels but they are placed very well here. A couple of the secrets felt too straight-forward and seemed like part of the main quest; not a big deal though, and I enjoyed the secret-within-a-secret. (9) Atmosphere, Sound & Cameras: The spooky, gloomy atmosphere was done beautifully, with attractive looking buildings throughout. It was a nice touch at the very end to see a flyby with the gloomy curse being uplifted and we are back in sunny Venice again. The eerie ambient loop was a perfect fit as were the music cues. Cameras and flybys were good although I think there should have been a camera hint for A) the invisible shimmy at the canals, and as outlined in the gameplay section, B) I think there should have been some flyby camera guidance when entering the library hub, showing where water was available (to extinguish the wraiths). (7) Lighting & Textures: The lighting was OK (generally attractive outdoors, but in some indoors areas there are some unfitting "shadowy blobs", with Lara appearing too dark considering available light). The texturing needed much more care; it was not uncommon for me to find misshapen textures or even in some cases the completely wrong texture applied. I enjoyed the builder's clever makeshift kitchen using non-kitchen textures, however on the flip side, in other rooms, the builder made "decor" cubes out of door textures and they didn't look good. Overall, I didn't dislike this level, but I think the builder's "The House of Kuan-Yin Lo" was much more enjoyable gameplay-wise, and also had more care in texturing. Here I've tried to give a gameplay score based partially on my enjoyment (not very much) and partially on the level's objective creativity and uniqueness (very much). 8/9/9/7." - nerdfury (27-Mar-2021)
"I have to say that Isis did use some rather nice new ways to implement the objects that are in this WAD. There are a couple of challenges like the monkey swing and the Vespa ride through the cave area. That took me quite some time to get though as I hate vehicles and I stink at it as well. But trust Isis to come up with another great game." - Gerty (03-Sep-2017)
"Wow, undoubtedly one of the best levels of the contest. What it excels at is integrating the storyline into the level itself. We get to meet the rose, the witch and the godfather. Nice quirky title. Don't miss it!" - Ryan (19-Mar-2016)
"It's always a pleasure to play a level from BTB Venice. This one is quite well balanced and enjoyable. Some tasks are unecessary difficult (especially during the Vespa Riding) and for some rooms textures are repetitive (that's why the mark is 8)." - Glouglouton (22-Apr-2015)
"One of the most unique levels, if not the most unique level of the batch, as things are presented very differently in comparison to the other levels - a whole mansion is created with nice architecture and textures only, the gameplay is almost completely free of already-seen tasks and there's a great object design in this level as well. Even the secrets, while not very hard to find, are completely unique - there are three secrets in one room, which are hidden with an almost humorous touch, of the other two one was rather unmissable, while one requires a rather obscure move (maybe the builder tried something with object collision, I don't know). In terms of creative puzzles, you'll feel like being in heaven - they range from a mad motorbike course over raising blocks to an alternating monkeyswing room, and there's almost no dull moment in the entire level. Maybe everything is a bit too fast-paced in here and a few more classical elements like exploration would've helped to make this level feel more immersive, but it's pure fun nonetheless. The builder carefully implemented the storyline into the level and the numerous allusions are making up for more "ah"-moments, especially in the grand finale. The design of the level doesn't quite stand behind the gameplay, with clever room connections and particularly nice lighting, yet I sometimes had the feeling that architecture and especially textures felt a little secondary to the gameplay, because they aren't that carefully applied - but the excellent work in sound and audio makes up for it, so that is really a minor gripe. On the whole, this is one of the best BtB levels this year and just another very good level of this builder, I really should try out more levels from her. Finished in a bit more than 30 minutes - it really was over way too quickly, but still a very intense experience you shouldn't miss." - manarch2 (26-Apr-2014)
"I suppose I didn't really give this much credit from what I heard, but after finally playing it for myself I can honestly say: wow. I'm down to the last three levels in my BtB-Venice run and I still managed to be surprised with a number of things here, gameplay is quite inventive and I found myself enjoying it a lot more than I thought I would. It'd been a while since I last saw the bike and getting it across the raising blocks was rather nerve-wrecking (took me a few tries before I finally mastered it). Gameplay is varied but never obscurely taxing or dull, altogether a must play. 50 minutes, 2 secrets. 02/14" - Treeble (01-Mar-2014)
"This is filled with unusual usage of textures and objects. Some of these ideas, especially the kitchen, the guarding masks and the rotated chandelier, can be considered genious. Isis definitely has a crazy mind, seeing things differently than the builder majority. These, and several gameplay concepts I cannot spoil, are elements I have never seen in any other game before and must be rewarded with a 10 - and actually, only the graphics can't get one, due to some unexplainable shadows and certain wallpaper places. SUMMARY: Just like the HOF description says, launching this level will grant You everything mentioned in the storyline, with almost top-notch execution. Definitely recommended." - DJ Full (02-Nov-2013)
"Curse, artifact, gangsters? Yeah, this level is as good as it sounds. It starts even extraordinary – Lara (with intelligent adjustment to a static object) can climb a palm tree. After such beginning I have high expectations. It only goes better and better. Quite open gameplay with variety of tasks, followed by good texturing and lighting gives a great example of masterpiece. Maybe I’m overreacting, but this one is definitely one of the best ones from this (or previous ;-)) year’s BtB. And definitely one of the most unique ones too. What you can really feel in this level is atmosphere. It’s quite heavy – dark clouds, lightnings and ambience – these make up a mood effect. As a contrast, at the end (when you complete your quest) sun and life returning to Venice are shown. Builder is very skillful what can be seen in unique ideas throughout the game. Gameplay is filled with some unseen before (at least by me) elements like for instance a bike ride over raising blocks. I am simply blown away with such treats, because I like everyone else want to see something new, something creative. With sequences like above the level rises to, what can be called, an entertaining game. Well, it’ll entertain you greatly for about an hour. That makes me think, the level is short though. What also provokes my amusement is architecture. The villa and the city are quite huge and they are more realistic than those from the other levels presented in this contest. Another thing is that lighting fits perfectly to the environment and to the atmosphere. There is a lot of dark places and even the outdoor is “heavy” speaking metaphorically. Actually, there is nothing to be corrected. Even so (I don’t know why) the adjective ‘perfect’ just doesn’t quite fit to it. Anyway it’s still great and I definitely have to play other levels by this author. Maybe I’ll find another so brilliant rose, another so good witch and another so interesting godfather…" - jawi (01-May-2011)
"Still a very good level of Isis, it is a kind of game play that i like. There are some difficult jumps, but everything goes perfectly. The bike ride is fun. The lights are excellent, I was really delighted by this level.Congratulations." - Minox (11-Mar-2011)
""A disappointing level by Isis" is an oxymoron, I dare say. I've yet to play a level by the author I didn't care about, and this one proves to be no exception. One may be a bit stumped as to how exactly you should start in the initial area, but that shouldn't be a reason to give up on this Venetian trip entirely. The atmosphere is foreboding and sinister all the way through, so the level draws you in easily as you progress from the canals to the stunning library, and ultimately to the moody underground passages with the Vespa. What's especially amazing about the level, is not only the way it tells a story (as other reviewers have noted a number of times), but that Isis still manages to put in a touch of her own trademark elements despite the limitations of the competition. Namely, regular looking objects with an innovative use (the palm tree, the chandeliers, a door to imitate a box for vine), so anyone knowing what to look for could've had all hints right in front of his/her eyes, especially when comparing it back to back with Chikas Pupanqui (or maybe even some other levels of hers). The use of textures, lighting and fog is agreeable, though some areas are more memorable than others (the library and the final tomb area come to mind). Apart from the shotgun secret the others are relatively easy to locate, though I chuckled at the concept of 'secret within a secret'. The tasks are of the usual standard you would expect from the builder, but I found the whole Vespa track and the disappearing monkey swing to be my favourites from the lot. All in all - another strong contender in the already tough competition. A most recommended raid." - eTux (28-Jan-2011)
"I'll confess it's getting hard now for these back to basics levels to leave a good impression on me now, as I've played so many back to back. I'm therefore pleased to say this one stands out from the crowd. Visually this is very good, with excellent lighting and well planned rooms & structure. I also liked the way that some of the key routes arnt obvious and take a bit of running around and searching to find. Probably the most notable difference between this and most other back to basics 2010 levels reviewed is the inclusion of a long-ish underground scooter ride. I found this a nice touch. The room with the dissapearing monkey swings was a bit of a challange, but overall everything was very well balanced. Suitable for seasoned raiders, and inexperienced players. Completed in an hour and 20 minutes. Stiggy" - TheStig (02-Aug-2010)
"At the beginning it seems a complex level, but once you solve the first tasks you'll be trapped into the gameplay and you'll not be able to let the level until it's finished. Excelent design with very good puzzles like the monkeyswing flipped room, no impossible tasks and a professional touch in all the scenes, including an entertaining ride with the bike at the end. Perhaps I missed some more enemies and musics, but the work is very enjoyable anyway. Sure a candidate to reach the first places. Congratulations!" - Jose (01-Mar-2010)
"This level started off on the wrong foot, as it took me a while to even leave the first room, but it goes steeply uphill from there. The overall setting is believable and well structured, textures used in an original way in places, excellent lighting and good use of fog and you get a few really impressive areas to maneuvre through, like the explosion room, the flipmap ceiling monkeyswing and most notably the whole passage about first getting and then using the scooter, which is just fabulous. Also, it is most remarkable how the level does carry the storyline along and brings it to a conclusive ending. Without a doubt one of my favourite BtB Levels this year. Don't miss it! (70 mins, 4/5 secrets found)." - MichaelP (01-Mar-2010)
"Though it doesn't have as puntastic a name as Venice Vino Vendetta (nice try, though), The Rose, The Witch and the Godfather does an admirable job at creating a story. It's up to Lara to find Salvatore Luccio's heart and bring it back to his body to kill him and the evil witch who made him immortal, in order to gain control of the Fliorenti Rose. To do so, she will have to infiltrate Luccio's home and kill his guards, before venturing deep underground, where Luccio and the witch are waiting. It's not Shakespeare, but it's nice to see a level that actually resembles the storyline in the readme file somewhat. The gameplay is varied, with some puzzles, a scooter ride and some daring jumps, though it relies a bit too heavily on far-fetched things like climbing a palm tree that's only climbable if you walk up to it and press Ctrl and jump against it - not if you stand in front of it and jump straight up like you'd do (or I would) with a normal pole. There are a couple of other things like that, and they bring the whole experience down. The level looks okay, though most areas are fairly small (with the exception of a pretty nice-looking library), so I ended up feeling a bit boxed in. The different rooms in the level are intricately connected, though unfortunately a lot of these connections are just bland (and sometimes very long) hallways, which kills the sense of realism somewhat. The best thing about this level is the way it tells a story. The rest of the level doesn't quite reach the same heights, though you'll still enjoy the thirty-five minutes you'll spend in it." - Magnus (28-Feb-2010)
"It's a tribute to the quality of this year's BtB competition to say that this level would have been a likely contender in any other year. Its ratings are high, to be sure, but so are those of most of the other levels. From a rip-snortin' timed run to begin to action to a wild and woolly ride on the scooter near the end, we have a painstakingly developed course that shows the touch of a master's hand. The only thing that stumped me was the first secret, as Lara would never transfer herself from the ladder to the roof's edge. I finally flew there and got it just before inserting the rose at the very end, if for no other reason than to be able to say that I had experienced every delectable morsel presented by this wonderful adventure. Highest recommendations." - Phil (23-Feb-2010)
"Finally a level with a storyline that deserves its title. Lara needs to search for a rose, which is guarded by a witch and the immortal Salvatore Luccio deep within the walls and caves under the city. Right from the start, I found the atmosphere to be beautiful and accompplished; the author managed very well to separate the various areas of the level in terms of graphics and lighting. Thus, the outside areas, like the starting room, are in broad daylight, the canals are a little more creepy and drown in fog. Later on in the caves and underground areas light is rather scarce and a few effects accentuate the surroundings very well. You can see this best in the library where the mix of dark corners and bright spots create a wonderful atmosphere. The level is also very well textured in terms of texture selection as well as usage and application. I did not see any cracks. Matching the beautiful level architecture, the players is treated to well thought out and diverse gameplay. There are a few new ideas and I thought the puzzles, timed runs and especially the scooter ride to be ingeniously designed. Definitely one of the top levels of the contest. Bottomline, a very playable level, suitable for everyone." - Eva (21-Feb-2010)
"Good level, a nice (not too tight) timed run to start with and then some puzzles to solve in order to get all ingredients for the Fire Puzzle where you blow some TNT crates to gain access to the Library where the main course takes place. A scooter must be driven over raised platforms... that's new.. Took me a while before I figured out you had to release the sprint for a moment in order to jump from the last platform. Then we get to the Rose, the Witch and the Godfather. Down here were some passages of which I don't understand the meaning yet? Shortcut back to the canal (small door) a gate at the scooter ride. But I managed to get the Rose back to the start of the level where this great adventure also ends. For the Secrets, well you didn't loose much time collecting them... they were all neatly stacked together." - Dutchy (13-Feb-2010)
"Again a very nice level with a mysterious atmosphere, varied and pleasing gameplay and interesting ideas. After finding the way out of the garden of a Venetian priest over the rooftops, there is a jump combination at the canal of Venice, which is shrouded in fog. With the help of the zipline you can get access to a house in which a pushable puzzle and a torch puzzle to be solved. This opens the way to the library, the center and heart of this level. It stretches over several floors and Lara has to find two keys to open the path to the cave of the witch and the grave of Salvatore Luccio too. But to follow that path, they may need a vehicle, which is parked in a field next to the library. The background music is perfectly managed and created a suitable atmosphere. The use of followers Luccios belongs to story. Only the puzzles were too easy for my taste, and could be solved without much reflection." - repley (13-Feb-2010)
"Quite a pleasant raid through a well laid out level. Starting off in a small Venetian square (which is where you end), you have to perform compex jumps and you have one of the most clever uses for a tree that I have seen. When the level expands, it starts getting 'worse'. I say this because everything revolves around doing everything in the right order at the right time. This was one of the levels that I had to keep checking the walkthrough for to make sure that I was not straying away from the path. Even with this, I thought that gameplay was cleverly thought out and, at times, fun. Enemies were placed well (until the last bike ride) and I only found one of the secrets. Atmosphere was good, as were the cameras and the sound. The texturing could have done with a bit more work, as could the lighting, as there were mistakes here and there. Overall, a fun, but not too long, level that will provide a good raid. 50 mins 1 secret." - Cory (09-Feb-2010)
"Good title (nice play on the C.S. Lewis title) and good gameplay. Only a bit confusing as in getting the torch initially and not knowing where to use it and not spotting the metal strip that would act as a crack to an otherwise hard to reach ladder - all that is nothing as you see how well the builder has put everything together. A few tricky jumps, with and without the motorbike and a tree that can be climbed - I've look for that in almost every level! So it's good to see it here. Nicely done as are the fly-bys and the way to that shotgun secret. There's enough medipacks and a way back is provided if one were to need it. Once the witch and the poor fool who was the godfather have been dealt with, there is an extended bike ride where some goons can see the 'business end' of the motorbike. I didn't need wine to light the fire element bowl although I did have it and once the torch was in hand it could be lit without putting the fire back on. The library is impressive as is the disappearing monkey swing sections and speaking of monkey swings, the one using the chandeliers was brilliant. A memorable Raid ending with the ghostly demons fleeing Venice and one I recommend highly." - Bene (08-Feb-2010)
"Another perfect game, full of stimulating tasks. Textures, perfect. Gameplay, without a flaw. Environment and lighting, excellent. Moto run, a great fun! And I enjoyed very much the monkeyswing sequence. My congratulations to the author, he is the man (or the woman, of course)." - Josey (05-Feb-2010)
"Some extra thought has gone into the gameplay with this level - like right at the start for example. Further innovations in gameplay concern the bike: as you are preparing to make it ready for use you may well wonder how the various tasks you are performing could possibly get the bike from A to B. Have faith - that little Vespa can really get about! Visually the level was mixed. The library was impressive but other areas (particularly in the first half) seemed rather plain by comparison." - Dick (04-Feb-2010)
"This level gave a dodgy first impression with some oblique tasks (although it does make logical use of an object) and lots of backtracking if you don't realise what you're doing. However it picked up soon after and the second half of the level is great. The interesting use of objects continues throughout (and more successfully), including some great use of flipmaps. It also includes an excellent use of the bike.
The visuals are a little lacking at times, the apocalyptic atmosphere is quite unique (and there's a good pay-off at the end), but it's let down by some very blocky areas and some unconvincing texturing (like doors on the floor), although the attempt to make stuff like cookers and cupboards despite the limits of the given textures and engine was nice. The caves and lair at the end had great visuals and atmosphere though, and a couple of areas make good use of fog." - Mman (01-Feb-2010)
"Another outstanding level in this competition. One of my favorites up to now. A lot of refreshing new and interesting ideas concerning gameplay; there is this climbable palm-tree at the start of the level, a nice, but moderate timed run over the roofs; the tasks you have to do are partially inconvenient, not seen a hundred times before. Everything fits together. Atmosphere and lighting are absolutely convincing. Highly recommended to everyone!" - Christian (31-Jan-2010)
"I have already played some good level of BtB2010, but this level belongs definitively to the best. He does not have the heaviest riddles. He also does not have the most opponents. And he also does not have the most difficult time runs. But he has the nicest story and the best Gameplay in my eyes. He is built completely very well. If me somebody asked to name the in my opinion most beautiful place in this level, then a lot of places would occur to me. It was very interesting, for example, of the monkeyswing fliproom. Or the villa with the chandeliers which one could use in two kinds. Or the stunt with the motorbike about the Raisingblocks. The fight against the witch and the Mafia boss was very nice also. I could still name several other places, but then I could also write immediately a WT. Especially worth mentioning is still the level end with the fleeing ghosts. Another plus is the successful lighting. All together I must say that this level belonged anyway to one of my favorite levels of BtB2010." - Scottie (30-Jan-2010)
"realy very good game with some tricky jumps / ballancing crates avoiding ........... 1/2 timeruns ... not very hard albeit and a magnific bike ride at the end .... excelent level ..." - Jack& (30-Jan-2010)
"It is the first level of this contest with a palytime about 1 hour. And this time is full of fascination and fun. The ambience is very successful, the gameplay goes with the story optimal. Textures and lighting are nearly perfect, sound accent the eerily ambience of this level. The riddles are not too involved, the jumps and timeruns are fair and doable. The stunt with the bike was very tricky - it was the fun and pleasure pur. Result: short and good. Recommendable for all players." - masha (25-Jan-2010)
"Another very good level in the contest! I think the best about this level is, that the story fits very well with the level design and gameplay. All is of very good quality with only some minor faults. The outstanding gameplay feature is the extended bike drive with a well conceived stunt over some raising blocks. Here and there you'll find the one or the other good touch. So this relatively short adventure is always entertaining and you`ll have a lot of fun playing it." - Raymond (20-Jan-2010)
"With a name like that, how could I resist this level? And indeed, it doesn't disappoint - when it's all done, that is. Till about one-third of the way, the gameplay drags a bit. For example, after a timed run near the beginning, it's quite easy to miss the pillar you're supposed to jump to - or not realise that you're supposed to jump to it at all - in which case, after floundering around cluelessly for a while, you have to backtrack and do the timed run all over again. You can light a torch well before you need to use it, and so have to keep carting it around, hoping in vain to find some use for it. But once you get to the library, all is forgiven (almost!). The beautifully textured and lit grand hall is not only the visual highlight of the level, it's also the hub of the gameplay for nearly the rest of the level. There's a lot to do: monkeyswinging your way across bars that keep changing, monkeyswinging on chandeliers, raising blocks in a canal for the Vespa to get across, and finally a fun Vespa ride and a confrontation with the Witch and the Godfather, to get - what else? - the Rose.
The story is quite interesting - indeed it's quite a pleasant surprise to find that the level design and gameplay actually fit the story, as opposed to the majority of custom levels in which the story is usually just an excuse for Lara to hunt for an artefact (not that I'm complaining, of course ;) ). I liked the last cutscene with the evil spirits being driven from the city, and Venice returning to its sunny self instead of the stormy (but very atmospheric) place it's been for most of the level.
The use of textures is mostly very good, and even innovative, like creating a believable looking kitchen with the given texture set (which, needless to say, does not include textures for kitchen appliances). But on the other hand, textures are also used rather inappropriately in places, like door textures used on floors, ceilings and blocks, or window textures on what is presumably a coffin or tomb of sorts.
Overall verdict: A very enjoyable level, but one that picks up pace only after a while. Recommended." - Mytly (17-Jan-2010)
"Own up, it's a great title, isn't it? Whoever built this level is definitely an original thinker and there really are some marvellously different little touches - reappearing/disappearing monkey swing, chandelier monkey swing, a moveable object swivelled round to make it appear unmoveable and the delightful quirkiness of finding three of the secrets in really close proximity. It's all clever stuff and it just made my new favourite of the competition, which is saying something given the incredibly high standards this year. Kudos to the builder for making something so fresh and enjoyable." - Jay (17-Jan-2010)
"While more on the slightly complex side, this is a very well made adventure. The level may seem a little daunting at first as it's not obvious what must be done (I was stuck at the beginning for a good five minutes, hehe), but once the flow gets going it keeps flowing quite steadily. This has some pretty nice challenges: Timed runs, wraiths, gunmen and their hounds, as well as some abstract thinking will test your skills. Speaking of abstract thinking, the author incorporated some interesting ideas into the level. The climbable tree at the start may take some time to realize, but it shows that there are alternatives to using the standard chain in the WAD, and stretch gameplay possibilities. Same goes for the chandelier monkey-swing; not obvious at first, but clever. In other categories there is much to enjoy too. The ominous atmosphere is nicely done, the level has solid pacing, and the environments are skillfully made. Keep up the good work!" - Relic Hunter (13-Jan-2010)
"There are (at least) two ways in which one can consider this level: a slow paced, regularly worked, level that suddenly explodes after Lara gets to the library or a very professional level that purposedly evolves in a brilliant crescendo. After giving it some thought and looking at the whole package, I choose the second. That means a difference between a 9 and a 10 concerning the gameplay. That also means that after getting to the library, I started enjoying this level immensely. Action packed, with very nice puzzles and a nice use of the vespa, not one where you'll become stuck every five minutes but still not obvious, lovely in several of its settings, without any major faults that I could notice, one among the best. Whoever built this level, whose name was the first to capture my attention, certainly did a fine job. Congratulations!" - Jorge22 (09-Jan-2010)
"A level with some good ideas and with a very interesting progression at times. I was a bit puzzled at the beginning but not for long , and there was the satisfaction to find out what must be done. The following sections are somewhat easier although still interesting until arriving at the Library which is the core of the level , and this part was fun to raid too , with 3 easy secrets in a row , a puzzle with monkey swinging , and a room with dancing crates which are both easy but fun, the raising of the blocks in the adjacent canal so to drive the Vespa into the Library was well thought out, and the use of the range of chandeliers. The end of the level is about driving the Vespa so to place the Heart artefact back where the level started. The looks are good , the use of objects too (although I wonder about the placement of the Heart in the crate , so far from the end). What I especially appreciated here the most is the good atmosphere , and the always interesting progression. A level without frustrations but that is intriguing , and I enjoyed it very much." - eRIC (07-Jan-2010)
"Wow, I really enjoyed playing this level. It contains fresh ideas and enjoyable puzzles. The whole level is very enthralling, and I think this is the reason, why you can't stop playing this one. There are several tasks to do, so the gameplay never gets boring. Objects and enemies are placed well. The atmosphere is great, because the whole level is supported by the TR2 Cave loop, which creates a very thrilling mood. The author also employed some fog bulbs, which induce a fascinating effect. Not the best architecture, but its O.K.; I would say it is the same architecture as the architecture in the TR2 Venice level, which is not perfect as well. The lightning is also O.K., but I x to use bump mapping to gain better effects. To sum up: A very good level, and playing is highly recommended." - Jonson (06-Jan-2010)
"Brilliant, but with a couple quirks. Lovely to look at, if Lara can take time from puzzles and gymnastics to appreciate the architecture. The library is particularly imaginative with its tinkling overhead chandeliers. Using the motor scooter, Lara can do slope jumps and run over plenty of henchmen. I had to give up the first time playing this, all because the author made only one window of three shootable. Lara shot the right window in the huge library. Nope, unbreakable. Then she shot the middle window. Nope, unbreakable. Only an obsessive-compulsive would continue and shoot the left window. So Lara didn't bother, and later faced a chasm with no way to get across, leading to wasted frustrated hours. Levels are real when they are consistent in their logic. Identical windows in a row should all be shootable, or all be unbreakable. That said, the replay of the entire level took only an hour and ten minutes. This time I enjoyed the attractive scenery, and had no trouble with the initial rooftop timed run. The crazy curved jump to the wall ladder is a sore point because Lara is blocked by a collision with the gondola. But on replay this jump took a minute, then Lara got the shotgun secret. All of the tasks for Lara in the well-designed library are entertaining. Lara has to cross monkeyswings that blink in and out of existence. When one looks back through the whole level the variety of tasks is large. Lara zipping around on the motor scooter Vespa is a highlight, and leads to a dramatic confrontation. There is fitting conclusion back where it all began. Highly recommended." - dmdibl (05-Jan-2010)
"As usually , I submit my review once I finished playing the game and my experience and feelings on the game itself are still fresh and new with me giving it a rating from my own personal point of view . I have experienced myself that waiting out on other reviewers comments and ratings does somehow show a certain impact on your own review for the better or the worse Picking on from the bottom of the list of this years BtB served me well. In RWG I found a very well designed clearly concepted work and I enjoyed every minute . Great puzzles and gameplay here , a TRLE adventure game for everybody to play! As to lighting and textures : It was clear from the beginning that in this years BtB all competitors alike would benefit a great deal from Nadines fascinating skills in working out textures sets . The TGA she provided for the event is in a class of its own still giving the builders more than enough freedom to make the best of it to decide how to decorate their own custom styled Venice , both indoors and outdoors. So take my comments as a big "Thank You" for both our fantastic builders but also the people behind the scene who worked hard giving us players so much joy in a BtB that appears to be the most fantastic one ever released !" - Ruben (04-Jan-2010)