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BtB2010 - Aurum Potestas Est by jawi

Bene 8 9 9 8
Bogey 8 8 8 8
Christian 10 7 7 8
Cory 8 8 8 8
DJ Full 9 9 9 10
dmdibl 8 8 8 8
Dutchy 8 8 8 7
eRIC 9 8 8 8
eTux 8 7 8 8
Eva 8 7 8 8
Gerty 8 7 8 7
Jay 8 8 8 9
JesseG 9 8 8 9
Jorge22 10 10 10 10
Jose 7 8 8 8
Josey 7 7 7 7
Kat 7 8 8 8
KawashiSquirrel 9 10 9 10
Magnus 6 5 6 6
manarch2 8 7 8 8
masha 5 5 5 5
MichaelP 8 7 8 7
Mman 7 8 9 8
Mytly 9 7 9 8
nerdfury 9 9 9 6
Obig 8 7 7 8
Orbit Dream 7 8 8 8
Phil 10 9 10 9
Raymond 10 9 10 9
Relic Hunter 8 8 9 9
repley 7 7 8 9
Ruben 7 8 9 9
Ryan 9 8 8 9
Scottie 10 9 10 9
Shandroid 8 8 9 9
TheStig 9 8 9 9
Treeble 6 6 6 6
release date: 01-Jan-2010
# of downloads: 133

average rating: 8.05
review count: 37
review this level

file size: 64.65 MB
file type: TR4
class: Venice

author profile(s):

Reviewer's comments
"(9) Gameplay & Puzzles: This linear adventure starts off very tame, with basic platforming and exploration. I was a little surprised by a banana jump that seemed out of place, but then I understood why as the builder then incorporated a very difficult timed-run mid-game, as well another difficult platforming sequence above the church near the end. When I finally conquered these difficult tasks, I felt a fantastic sense of accomplishment, and I think that the builder did a great job sprinkling in thrilling moments in-between chill exploration. While I would have liked to have seen more puzzles, the general flow of the level was great, and I never felt lost, or bored. Okay, the ladder climb for the tall tower is super boring, but aside from that, the gameplay was jolly good fun. (9) Enemies, Objects & Secrets: I don't think the enemies were over the top; in fact I quite liked the high-adrenaline battles that the builder sprinkled in across the adventure. I also liked that the builder didn't give out many medpacks. It created a sense of thrill and excitement as I tried to engage groups of baddies in the most efficient way possible, in order to minimize health damage. Decorative objects were used well, although I would have liked to have seen more traps in general. I think the 2 secrets weren't done very well; they were too easy, with one literally being a button in plain sight that you press. (9) Atmosphere, Sound & Cameras: The eerie night time atmosphere is done very well, as is the general architecture. The creepy ambient background loop fit perfectly and I enjoyed the builder's music usage here and there, especially the cheesy music track used when Lara used the zipline. Flybys were utilized well to set the scene and create immersion (the 2nd-to-last flyby moves too fast and isn't executed with much polish but it's not a big deal). (6) Lighting & Textures: I don't necessarily have an issue with a level set at night; the issue here is that the builder is not generous with flares, and that there aren't enough warm spots to balance out all of the dark areas. I think the level would have looked a lot more attractive if the builder had included some warmer interiors to add balance (for example, the library is far too dark). I noticed quite a few warped textures and occasionally there were strange colored blobs of lighting that looked out of place, and overall this category didn't impress me. Overall, this was an excellent debut with a few thrilling and memorable tasks, although the majority is the standard pull-the-lever-and-collect-the-key exploration. I would recommend it to advanced players who don't mind dark levels. 9/9/9/6." - nerdfury (02-Feb-2021)
"If you think you have a nice and easy raid, think again. This is not one of the easy ones. Reading the story you know what you have to do. Be careful and thrifty with your medipacks and other guns and ammo what you find, as the enemies never come alone. There are some nasty traps in here, the timed spike run is one; the breakable ledges jump is another one that comes to my mind. Also a few things didn’t really made sense but I got the Heart and the little girl was saved, so to speak." - Gerty (17-Mar-2018)
"Despite certain reservations, I found myself enjoying this. The enemies make their presence known right from the off and you need to have certain strategies to avoid losing too much health. This is a very atmospheric Venice rendition, with moonlit skies and beautiful canals. Try it out it's worth it." - Ryan (17-Mar-2016)
"This is another of the humbler offerings amongst the BtB-Venice entries and, to be perfectly honest, I feel it could have benefitted if it were slightly shorter. Gameplay revolves around basic lever to door progression with a couple of segments being different (draining/flooding rooms, timed jumps over breakaway floor tiles). There's this one timed run for the Carnival Mask that did my head in, I was actually resorting to flare cancels when I accidentally found the exact angle to jump across the mirror room in one go. From there on (and before that) it was pretty straigthforward without anything too taxing. Fellow reviewers have described this as a shooter, but I didn't think the enemies were overused, except, maybe, in the first garden area, but most of the other areas are rather empty. Atmospherewise, while it does have some nice and unique areas (I liked the Santorini manor), it just didn't click with me. 55 minutes, 2 secrets. 02/14" - Treeble (01-Mar-2014)
"When I saw the Jawi's name, I knew the adventure will last for longer than I expect... I was right. Same as in case of his BtB2013 attempt, a climax follows a climax. This is achieved thanks to the plot opposing two powerful beings against each other, so we are supposed to retrieve something from one in order to fight the other. But the prologue breakout sequence is already very strong and realistic when a bunch of thugs gets provoked to fight in arguably the best way possible. Since then, we can explore the town, solving both linear and non-linear puzzles on our way through several minimalistic locations designed just for their presence, e.g. the outside channel and the mini-library in unusually and very nicely ruined version which are both possibly the smallest of their kind in any Venetian game. But all is built with great tile diversity and light/shade consistency, every square of those is necessary and no space is wasted. The last thing in the end contrasts efficiently with the final huge mansion, simply stunning with its staircases, main hall and patios. This is why, after a short hesitating if to award the overall graphic impression with max score, I decided to do so. When we finally break into the church and send the ghastly girl back to wherever she belongs, everything gets properly closed by a flyby, just like the one which opened it. What I only missed throughout the game was some unique element or puzzle that would differ it from other competing levels, all the rest is very nice. SUMMARY: I usually don't like night levels, but this one is an exception. Highly recommended." - DJ Full (04-Nov-2013)
"For a debut level,this is a superb achievement.It's a pity that(as part of the 2010 BtoB)it was surrounded by so many well crafted adventures from some of the most distinguished builders;as,despite a few stunning moments,it doesn't quite match the standards on display elsewhere. The final fifteen minutes in the skeletal Church are breathtaking;the frequent enemy encounters,bracing;and the level has a linearity which provides a good sense of forward progression while keeping backtracking to a minimum.What allows it to fall somewhat short of expectations is the lighting (too inexplicably colourful in parts,too dark in others);the often contrived areas,which clearly exist only to satisfy the dictates of the gameplay (the ridiculously high tower is but one example);and a couple of absurdly difficult sequences (the timed run over spikes to the raising platform;the banana jump)which stick out like a sore thumb amid the otherwise moderate and uncomplicated gameplay. The good moments nevertheless outweigh the bad,but you may find that the 90 minutes spent here become a little too irritating on occasion." - Orbit Dream (13-Dec-2012)
"The start reminded me on High Security Compound from TR 3, with Lara shooting a window to let a soldier appear and get out. Soldiers and also their dogs didn't come often in this level, but when they come, they come in big groups of five or more. The final battle with the female enemy was pleasant and it took all the ammo you had completely away. Sound was good, exspecially at the end in the church. The gameplay was at the beginning very linear, it grew all better in the last church room, with many traps and riddles to solve. There was a good atmosphere in this level, with the darkish night lightning, and it never was too dark, luckily. As you can see, this game is a debut level, and it was a very good one, I think. Maybe something of his own, now?" - manarch2 (04-Feb-2011)
"I'm pleasantly surprised by the quality of the debut levels we've seen this year, and this one seems to be no exception. Admittedly, it's a bit of a mixed bag, but all the elements for greatness are certainly there. Gloomy atmosphere, creative tasks and nice surroundings are the best things this level can offer. You traverse a fair amount of surroundings, starting from your prison cell, the sewers, canals, a palace and the ruins of a church. Even though the flow is linear, the surroundings interweave and change organically - and thus somewhere along the midway point of the game you can catch a glimpse of your cell again and get to see other places you've visited (for example, the tower). The camerawork is good, with some of the more memorable events being the dramatic showcase of the ruins or the fixed angle from the tower you climbed (though I was less enthusiastic about the excruciatingly long ladder climb that's required to get there). On the flipside - the game seems to contrast in almost every aspect - the tasks can range from dull running around to probably some of the toughest moments in the competition in form of the mirror room timed run and the collapsible tile gauntlet, not to mention the gunfights where you're seldom faced in a one on one fight. I could certainly appreciate the creativity behind the level's toughest moments, but they seem out of tune with the rest of what the level presents and I can't imagine how most of the casual players will be able to handle it. While the texturing is nice, as is the ambience, and the authors architectural ideas are translated in action nicely for most part, the lighting is flat throughout the entire level (i.e. no sun bulbs to give Lara a more 3D look) and the use of colourful lights seems random most of the times. As long as you have some shotgun ammo at hand (and in the last area you don't even need that), you really did not need the elevating of the blocks in order to shoot the bells and you could technically use a shortcut to get to the bag of powdered bones with a few creative jumps (though you still have to do the tile gauntlet later on to place the heart). The 2 secrets were also rather hard to miss. All that said - I did not enjoy every aspect of the level, but it certainly has its shining moments that make it a worthy raid. Give it a go!" - eTux (30-Jan-2011)
"Sorry, but didn’t like this level. On the beginning of the level you have to fight with a lot of baddies. The shotgun dissapear sometimes, but the biggest problem is the darkness. But in basic, its not a bad adventure. If you like the many battle and the baddies. Because often 3-4 baddies attack you. Thats true you can pick up medipacks, but just a few. If you wont pick up the harder weapons, you will have a hard work here. I used one medipack too at the end. So just pick up the harder weapons ?. I can’t suggest this level for the beginners. It have a harder timed run, and those failing blocks at the end irritatings first time. Of course if you like the challanges, don’t miss this adventure. You can find a Hungarian walkthrough (as we don't have English version), savegames and pictures here:" - Obig (01-Jun-2010)
"Well builded level with a lineal gameplay, but some things to comment. There are some unnecessary hard tasks like the banana jump in the library, the very tight timed run for the mask or the very difficult jumps over the breakable tiles in the church. Also there's some situations where you can use the shotgun to shoot the bells avoiding some tasks. Full of hard enemies, don't waste medipacks, you'll need it. Secrets are easy to find. There are many dark areas but I couldn't find flares;, but generally the ambience is good. Well textured with a good architecture, a well playable level, but not easy." - Jose (01-Mar-2010)
"This solid debut level sort of grows on you. It starts in a bit of an odd fashion (shoot window and door opens) and I did not particular like the heavy flow of enemies at the beginning, but that soon changes into a 'find switch to open next door' type gameplay, which flows rather linear and smoothly. The drain/flood pool sequence is well done, but despite the nice camera view, the climb to the tower was just too long. Moving along, I thought it gets to be a little tiring vs actually being fun, despite the nice mirror room timed run, but then you finally reach the church and I really liked what the author built here architecturally and how gameplay fits into this area, with a rather challenging run high up over break tiles and a nice little to and fro for the necessary switches, two simple element puzzles and the fight to get the heart. With more focus on the latter part of the level and maybe a shortened first half plus a little more even distribution of enemies througout, I think the overall impression would have been even better. The author tried to do quite a few things with lighting, but it seemed rather arbitrary, with colourful spots here and there and dark corners thrown in, but no real sense of authentic atmosphere. Still, it is a long and busy adventure that will keep you entertained without being too challenging. (75 mins, 2 secrets)." - MichaelP (01-Mar-2010)
"A suprisingly good debut, free from the most of flaws characteristic for such levels. The gameplay is mostly linear, with two really challenging moments, but despite of that is rather fluent. The architecture is simple, except the final location, which is really impressing. However, the catacombs below the church are a bit dissapointing, and the element puzzle is too easy, because the required items are just lying on the floor nearby. The texturing and lighting builds a proper atmosphere, very similar to classic Tomb Raider 2 levels, such as Bartolli’s Hideout and Opera House. Reccommended!" - Kat (01-Mar-2010)
"Wait, blood burns now? That's even less believable than the bad guys locking Lara up with her guns still in her holsters. Not that realism is this level's strong suit. It's completely linear, so it feels more like running a race than visiting Venice. This makes the gameplay suffer. Your goal is always to open a door to the next area, so you never need to think much about what to do, and the solution is usually to find and/or reach a switch. But hey, at least you don't need to worry about getting stuck because you don't know where to go. The gameplay is padded with a large amount of enemies, which is never fun. You're given plenty of ammunition, though, so they don't pose too much of a threat (but they do attack in groups). There are some good ideas in this level, however. I liked a couple of the puzzles and there's a pretty neat timed run halfway through. Looks-wise, the level fails to impress. The texturing is decent, but unfortunately the architecture is a bit dull. There are some large areas with not a lot to do and some long corridors, but mostly it's just uninspired, and doesn't take advantage of what's possible with the Level Editor and the wad file. The lighting is a bit on the dark side. It's not so dark that you won't see where to go, but the darkness does make it hard to spot pickups and switches sometimes. In the end, this is a decent forty-five minute level. The gameplay lacks complexity, but there are some good ideas and the level is capably built, even if the architecture lacks flair." - Magnus (28-Feb-2010)
"This level is somewhat like having one foot in boiling water and the other in ice water. Most of it consists of almost too straight forward switch hunting, although with just enough variation to save it from being boring. On the other hand, there is also a short, but very tight and tricky timed run and a difficult run on breaking tiles. In addition, there are a couple of tough shoot-outs. Unfortunately I missed the shotgun, so the latter might have been a bit harder than necessary for me, though. On the other hand, the shotgun is fairly slow. The builder should take note that object collision is disabled when Lara is climbing. This did not affect the game play significantly, though. The action takes place at night and the level is generally rather dark." - Bogey (26-Feb-2010)
"I've just finished playing this, and I'll say that I enjoyed the level a lot. Aurum Potestas Est was extremely refreshing and it gave me loads of Tomb Raider 2 nostalgia, without being too similar to it. It was a solid level that was not overly difficult, but not super easy either. The thing I really enjoyed about Aurum was the fact that it had a lovely balance of puzzles, and did not excel in one paticular area of them. There's a blend of switch pushing, timed sequences, block pushing and of course, that mirror in the middle of the level! I did not feel bored by anything, as I was always presented with a new puzzle every now and then. However, the reason I did give it a 9 was because of the falling stone platforms in the later part of the level, as well as a certain timed run. I found these two particularly difficult and feel something could have been done to make them a little easier. That's just my opinion, though. There were not too many enemies, meaning I did not run out of medi packs, but there were quite a few that took quite a bit of damage, so that was certainly a challenge. The fight scenes were fun, especially with the awesome music to go with them. The boss was creepy but it was a great fight. In terms of decoration, the level looked great, with the objects. Once again, there weren't too many, but just enough to give some nice eye candy. The level had a very nice atmosphere, and sound and music was used well to achieve this. At certain points sounds of a street could be heard, people rushing around, dogs barking etc. I thought that worked very well. One thing I didn't like about the music was the main background music. It sounded as if I was inside a cave. I think another track would have worked better, perhaps one with wind blowing or a cricket chirping. The cameras were great, I loved the long shots, of the house and the part where Lara is on the roof of that tiny building. Lighting and textures were awesome, reminded me a lot of Tomb Raider 2, obviously because its the Venisian theme. Sorry I couldn't comment more on these, I really don't know what to say about them, but I did think they were very nicely done. Overall, this level was like a breath of fresh air. It didn't annoy me to no end like some levels do, and I enjoyed every minute of it, yeah, even those tough parts. I had an urge to play a Tomb Raider level and it looks like this one was the right one, it was certainly a good start to my BtB playthrough!" - KawashiSquirrel (19-Feb-2010)
"I enjoyed this great level that combines smaller-enclosed areas with spacious ones. I was impressed with how the author paid attention to the crumbling buildings and I liked how a window would be barely peeking out of the rubble which only added to the realism. The puzzles could have been a bit better and that timed run was so awful that adding another second or two to the timer would not have made it too easy. I was more fond of the last part than the first, but all in all the level was quite good. Nice job!" - Shandroid (15-Feb-2010)
"Not a shooter but you will need enough ammo and health to get through Santoriani's goons and attack dogs and then there is the glock - the equalizer. Once found, no further problems. Good texturing in the room before the library gives a real feel for the ruin it is but some textures were off-kilter in the library itself. There is an easier way to the upper library level than the intended block - I found it before I even found the raised block. Good use is made of a mirror room but the timed run was a bit too tight for most Raiders as evidenced by all the downloads of the Save. The jumps over the breaktiles will please all the jump-lovers - it is memorable. The large empty rooms in the Mansion may be perfect for formal Balls and parties but a few objects would have truly been perfect as the Mansion, itself, is. Once Lara brings the poor girl ghost's heart to it's rightful place, it releases her Spirit. Gold is power but then, so it seems, is our Lara. Recommended for experienced players." - Bene (15-Feb-2010)
"In my previous reviews I have mentioned how the standard of the levels has not dipped in the 15 that i've played. Unfortunately, I cannot say that this statement is true for this level. Gameplay is simple, with a good puzzle here and there, and then becomes difficult with a fustrating timed run and many, many, many baddies. The architecture in the church is okay, however, everything played in an unorganised way. Enemies were too frequent, objects were fine, and I only found 1 secret. The sounds at times were not appropriate, as the ending theme was played a good number of times. Atmosphere was not great, and could have greatly improved. The lighting and the texturing influenced this decision. Overall, a fine level, though definately not the best in this competition. 1 hour 1 secret." - Cory (13-Feb-2010)
"Nice intended jumpseries to a chandelier. Pity... I found a much easier route and was wondering what the block was for till I followed that path... Too dark in a lot of places, more flares were needed. The ladder to a lever, well I hate those long boring ladders with nothing to do in between then wait till lara is up there, better think of something to do in between... I personally do not like shooters too much, certainly not without some firepower or plenty medipacks. Texturing was weird in some places, what I remember most were some pillars on the fist floor, where you get the last secret. The textures were tilted where they should have been horizontal. Use a diffrent texture there or organize the wall sections so this doesn't occur. Where the start of the level was so tame, the rest was too hard (4 or 5 enemies on a small square with trees) or quite difficult breakledge run, but that one I liked once I found out how to do it. Have the impression it is a first level, but certainly not a bad one.. Try it." - Dutchy (13-Feb-2010)
"This is my second back to bacis Venice review, and this one definately captured the atmosphere I was hopeing for. The texturing and lighting are sublime. The architecture is well thought out and the dark slightly gloomy atmosphere really takes me back to the old night venice levels in Tomb Raider II. Music and sounds are well selected (no weird Egypt music cues like the last level I played). The level itself is faily linear, and I got around 1 hour 30 minutes of game-play. There was also one particularly tricky broken tile jump squence that had me screaming and re-loading about 30 times so you'll need to have patience to complete the whole level. Overall though there isnt anything that should challange the experienced tomb raider player too heavily. The level reaches it's climax in an deteriorating church, which was a very nice touch. Highly recommended." - TheStig (13-Feb-2010)
"I've now played all but a handful of this year's BtB levels - and I have reason to believe I've saved some of the best for last - but from the standpoint of wildly fun and exhilerating gameplay this one is thus far unsurpassed. It starts off rather benignly, but after you get to that timed run through the mirror room it accelerates into high gear. It took me more than a dozen tries to get past the spikes, and once I finally did it I saved immediately, thinking that the next leg of the run would be a piece of cake. I was wrong; it took at least another dozen tries before I was able to jump with pixel perfect accuracy onto the bookcase and run to the block before it started rising again. I can't imagine anyone doing it all in one go, as the slightest misstep along the way will doom you to failure. The next major obstacle, of course, was the breaktile run, but the scenery and tasks in between were most varied and enjoyable. I've mildly chastised a couple of the BtB levels as being too "busy," but I didn't feel that way while making my way through this one. Everything here is done for a purpose, although the placement of the enemies was perhaps a bit heavy handed, and I predict that our builder is one of the more experienced veterans. The trick to solving that breaktile run is taking a rolling back flip off the chain so that you land on the first one facing forward. From there you take a series of S-shaped jumps, but I shudder contemplating how many tries it took me before I completed the run successfully. More than my customary quota, to be sure. But the best thing about it was that I was having so much fun that I never felt tempted to activate the flycheat. A stunning accomplishment - the level, that is - and I heartily recommend it." - Phil (12-Feb-2010)
"This is very well designed and rather challenging. It all starts with Lara emprisoned in a room. As she escapes, she has to deal with several mafiosi in a row. Others (and their dogs) are waiting elsewhere and she will meet with them later - that's very well done. The design is good, the music and sounds well applied and the puzzles ok. There are two nearly impossible moments in the level: a timed run to a block that quickly raises across a mirror room with spikes and plants along the way and another very tough run, near the end, over several separate breakable tiles. They're both doable but do require some patience and maybe some luck. In fact, that level of difficulty almost made me rate the gameplay with a 9, but I suppose that wouldn't be fair and the fact is I did it eventually and got a feeling of accomplishment from it too. Aurum Potestas Est is difficult above average among this year's contestants but it must also be included in the best, I have no doubts about that. Therefore, I say: highly recommended." - Jorge22 (10-Feb-2010)
"The most challenging level in this years competition. There are two hard sequences to be solved: A very tightly timed run through a spiked room in the beginning and a run over breakable tiles at the end of the level. I have to admit it took me several tries to finally perform this runs. Such challenges I missed in the running contest. Gameplay is elaborate, creative and fluent. The number of mafiosi doesn't increase the quality of the level - less could have been more there. Camera-hints and flybys are useful and adequate, but I couldn't see any atmosphere inspiring me. The elaborate challenges make the quality of this level. Not recommended for beginners." - Christian (05-Feb-2010)
"This level has a lot of potential, which is unfortunately not being fully used. This is really a shame, because atmosphere and architecture of the level were really great, but i'm missing more gameplay and puzzles. The puzzles really only consisted of the search and use of switches, keys, and roses. However, the tasks have been exciting packed and embedded in the environment. Lara have to explore, climb, jump, dive and solve traps. This skill tasks increase in difficulty from the banana jump in the library, over a mirrored and spiked timerun up to a jump sequence over collapsing tiles. Especially the last two mentioned tasks are really very high difficulty." - repley (05-Feb-2010)
"This level starts off with Lara breaking out of a dark prison, fighting half a dozen mafiosi guards and their dogs along the way, then escaping through the sewers. Darkness, fighting and sewers: not my favourite combination at all, and about 15 minutes into the level, I was quite prepared to dislike it. But then I got out of the sewers and into some very nice canal-side houses, and the gameplay as well as visuals took a definite turn for the better. By the time I got to Santoriani's beautiful palace, I was too busy admiring the surroundings to care about the gangs who kept on attacking Lara. And then finally the ruined church, with no enemies except the final boss, and fantastic gameplay ... I thoroughly enjoyed myself here, and ended the level wishing there was a lot more of it.
The gameplay mostly improved in quality as the level progressed. I like timed challenges, so I enjoyed even the rather tough timed run in the middle of the level (though it would have been nice if the builder had made it a bit more fair by texturing the floor evenly with checked textures). The most unusual puzzle was the 'uncrowable' crowbar door - I didn't even know it was possible to open a crowbar door with a switch! The only jarring part of the gameplay was the fire element puzzle at the end - it looked like it was just tacked on at the last minute. Just four plain square rooms with all the necessary items placed in plain sight on the floor - it hardly even deserves to be called a puzzle at all.
There were definitely a few too many enemies, but many of them wound up getting stuck in the walls, making them easier to pick off even with pistols, and therefore they were not too annoying (not that this is to the builder's credit - it's essentially a bug, but with a positive outcome). The secrets barely deserved to be called that, since it was nearly impossible to help stumbling across them. On the other hand, cameras and music were used very well, so no complaints about that category.
With such mixed feelings, it's a little hard to know how to rate the level. Still, in spite of some of its flaws, I did enjoy the level on the whole. Not a bad level at all, rising at some points to brilliance." - Mytly (03-Feb-2010)
"Aurum Potestas Est - Gold is the Power. This name is irreproducible for me. This level is bad - bad lighting, exceptionally inside, bad architecture, because arbitrarily, without sense, too easy riddles, too short timeruns, too much enemies and too many medis and munition. I can not recommend this level." - masha (01-Feb-2010)
"In this level the inclined player must be hard on the ball. This already goes off well at the beginning. There a few mafia dudes come up immediately sometimes to Lara and want to talk to her a little bit. Well, the small talk limited itself to bullets. But who had thought that he must shoot now only wildly around himself, will disabused. Since now a few riddles are to be cracked first. And then still there comes a short, but heavy time run. For a change come once more several travel groups which be in a rage because her bus has left the station without them. And they must let out this rage now just on Lara. But it's not her fault. Then there are a few more very good riddles and after about one and a half hours is Lara at the aim. The time run was damn scarce. There one already needed a good strategy. Really first-class were the duties in the church ruin. There was, for example, quite high on top a heavy run above collapsing tiles. Less well were several quite long ladders. Though one could not find many Medipacks, but because one had at disposal revolver, shotgun, Uzi's as well as enough ammunition, this was no problem. All together a level which has given much fun." - Scottie (28-Jan-2010)
"If my name was Usain Bolt I could have raised my points for gameplay to 8 but I'm just a regular human being a little dissappointed by a rather dull story that suddenly gets hit by an almost impossible timed run. I do not want to reward any builder for game stoppers like this . People who fancy to spend a sleepless night on this may do so and even enjoy it , I don`t . Use a savegame , you might say . Well I did. Still all my fun was lost on the way..." - Ruben (25-Jan-2010)
"This level is a bit of a mixed bag; some areas look very good and have great lighting, others are empty and dull. This extends to the gameplay too; some parts have a lot going on and have some interesting ideas, others involve large areas with only one or two minor tasks to do. As these sentences may hint you go through quite a few areas in this level (and it's relatively linear), maybe a few too many considering the author obviously paid more attention to some parts, and cutting a couple of less developed parts could have allowed for further polish in those areas.
There seemed to be too few medipacks, in fact, this is quite possibly the only TRLE level I've ever played where I've come close to having a health crisis. Pretty much the only health I found earlier was in a secret area, and there are parts which have you fight 4-5 gun enemies at once in open areas with some dogs thrown in too. You also don't seem to get better weapons like the Magnum until you're already past the toughest fights. It suggests a lack of testing, although I'm not 100% on that considering every other area of gameplay is fine outside of occasional emptiness (with the exception of a timed run that may be too tight for a some players and some very tough collapsing tile jumps). Despite these issues it's a good level with some very atmospheric areas and generally smooth gameplay." - Mman (24-Jan-2010)
"An entry with a more striking design and known for lots of enemies, this isn't quite bad. In fact it's a very good level. Aurum Potestas Est is a fairly linear adventure with fun gameplay set in an atmospheric nighttime Venice with some neat parts to it, others a bit frustrating, but the overall package is very satisfactory. It's true that there's a lot of enemy opposition that likes to come in packs of 3 mobsters at least, but one will quickly learn that the shotgun is Lara's best friend here, and it helps to hide behind walls. Some neat moments, like the very brief shot of being on top of a clock tower, fun with careful slope jumping, and while frustrating, the timed run through the mirror room and the collapsible tiles up in the church made for interesting challenges. The level has some nice Venice architecture throughout, giving a well constructed town. I also liked how some parts of the level would come full-circle, like how you can see the exterior of the building you started out in about mid-way through, and how you finally can get to a certain rose you eyed through a window at the beginning. Lights and textures are applied very well, perhaps it's a little dark in a few places, but great across the board. In all, a very fine entry for the contest." - Relic Hunter (24-Jan-2010)
"As the initial flyby suggests, the baddies really gang up on poor Lara at the start of this level. In fact, mainly the enemies do tend to show up in what can only be described as a mob. This is notable for a rather different and slightly fiendish timed run through a mirror room, plus a challenging (but great fun) collapsing tile run. The whole section in the ruined church is very good and the ending cut scene is also rather memorable." - Jay (14-Jan-2010)
"It is a dark night in Venice... Initially Lara roams through underground hallways and sewers and looks for access to the streets and houses of the city, in which at this late hour only a bunch of watchman is around. Right away, Lara runs into a whole group and with that fight I almost spent all my medipacks already - shooting is just not my thing ;) After draining and flooding some water, Lara goes deeper into the city and after a few challenges she reaches a church. It hides the heart of Venice and Lara masters all the tricky tasks to get it of course and places it in its rightful spot, which ends the level. It is a rather dark adventure, but this nicely supports the nightly atmosphere and the dangerous mission. Textures have been applied cleanly and sounds suitably added. The architecture did not really blow me away as some buildings look a bit arbitrarily built and connected. Gameplay is fairly linear and not too difficult except for the rather many enemies, a tight timed run at the mirror room and the run across breakable tiles in the church." - Eva (13-Jan-2010)
"Quite a satisfying level ! The course is mainly straightforward , but very interesting all along, whatever it is in the sewers at the start , in two little outside sections of the town , in the palaces , or in the church at the end. Good shaping of the blocks , the texturing could be a bit better ( these white metallic textures in the underwater canals look odd ), and in a few places lighting seems to be missing , generally in small rooms. Nevertheless good lighting and good looks overall and especially in the magnificent palaces , and I like the fact that some places seem ruined or old while others are intact. Now this level is much appreciated for the always interesting gameplay and some good ideas for puzzles and progression. For example the puzzle with the two"crowbable" doors. Well maybe the timed lowering block could be more user-friendly as it is quite hard, and I don't count the number of times where Lara has been screwed by spikes. The run on collapsible tiles was also challenging , and it takes some thought and some tries to know what is the best method, which was to make smooth runs in the side walls so to make Lara always facing the best direction for the next jump. That was fun. There is not a lot of places where enemies show up , but they appear by packs , fortunately a few got stuck in walls , gunmen and dogs. Anyway there was enough weapons and medipacks. A level with a couple of challenging places , but where I always knew what to do and never got stuck. The level is quite good in my opinion , belonging to the most interesting ones to play in the BTB2010 edition , and I like the closing fly-by showing the phantom getting expelled [ 1 hour 20 - 2/2 secrets ]" - eRIC (13-Jan-2010)
"An hour-long adventure through the night. I was immediately blown away by the lighting in this level - the colors were blended well, though perhaps a little dark at times, and the textures were well-placed, aside from one "fake ladder". Combat was a little difficult at the start, but with the more advanced weapons it becomes rather engaging. With that aside, brace yourself for a very tight timed run, as well as a tricky trot across some broken ledges (to make things interesting, the command 3 polejump bug prevents you from grabbing them, though I do not hold this against the author). Overall a challenging and engaging creation." - SSJ6Wolf (11-Jan-2010)
"At the very beginning, a surprise: Lara was imprisoned, but her captors didn't take away her pistols. Incompetence or a display of Italian courtesy? Never mind. They would certainly pay for that with their lives - specially considering that I was forced to give Lara all the weapons, flares and medipacks from the beginning, because the number of enemies was excessive for her poor little pistols and few medipacks, and, besides that, the game was quite dark and the flares were scarce. Yes, a dark game that proceeds mainly in a claustrophobic complex of cisterns and sewers. The environment was not attractive. And, arriving at the surface of Venetia, Lara found... what? Very, very difficult tasks (I needed 2 savegames). But one thing at least must be said: the author is quite talented and skilled." - Josey (10-Jan-2010)
"Lara makes her way through an italien village, dealing with a mafiosi gang in her quest to free a soul of a little child. So you can await an more action packed level with gun difficult, strategic battles, some hard runs and some quieter phases with finding levers and keys in some little puzzles. In the beginning she has to find the way to the mafiosi palace through the small canal streets and sewer parts to get the entrance to the grand finale in a church ruin. Texturing and lighting is well done throughout the level. The architecture of the all parts of the level is very well conceived with nice touches with the most impressive part at the end in the church ruin. So the story is very well staged and I was sucked in from the beginning. So this is an excellent level from a builder, who knows, how to deal with the editor and where only a few, minor things can be flawed. Highly recommanded to every one! The not so expierenced ones may need a bit of help in a few places." - Raymond (07-Jan-2010)
"This starts out fairly ordinary, so you think that this is going to be a relaxing level in the contest. Don't count on it. As Lara progresses one notices how uneven the texturing and room development are. Where not much is happening, and author interest is low, the textures can be sloppy (the lighting is dismal here, so players won't notice). In the mafioso palace complex, more effort is made to create something worthy of the action. Lara does a banana jump early on, and this is the first hint that any demands will be made on the player. Then there is a timed run through a mirrored spike room. I really disliked this as the floor texturing is supposed to be a checkerboard, but isn't--whole patches are white--so it's hard to detect the borders of tiles, and thus difficult to accurately place jumps. There is a major gun battle at the mafioso palace. Here Lara encounters the crowbar door that isn't. More gun battles. Lara has trouble shooting high window panes, but it doesn't matter; she can shimmy through shootable windows. At last Lara reaches the church where the ghost of a girl is to be laid to rest, which was her original quest before gangsters got involved. The church is interesting, but I wish that players had a clue what is going on. Lara climbs a ladder and does back-and-forth slope jumping to extend a leap to reach a small medipack. Standing over it, she can draw Uzis, step back off the ledge with guns blazing, and shoot a bell. I could never figure out what that did, as there is no screenshot. Then Lara climbs a chain high up in the church, and leaps to a series of collapsing tiles. (The short-takeoff jump comes in handy here--it can be used on collapsing tiles when Lara is in an awkward position.) Lara reaches a lever, which raises a platform so that the bell can be shot, even though Lara has already done that. Maybe ringing the bell raised a platform so Lara didn't even have to do any of the high run over collapsing tiles. Anyway, there is a bag of bones element puzzle, and then Lara sets a bottle of blood on fire, though one wonders why this is flammable. Lara climbs back up, places the heart, and vanquishes the ghost. I hope it is clear that there is good stuff here, but also much that jars a player from any illusion of reality. The first part of the level is ordinary, but what players remember, and what should be enhanced, is the ending, meaning the sections around the mafioso palace and beyond. This seems like an author who is developing his or her craft, and has a lot of potential for the future." - dmdibl (06-Jan-2010)