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LB Advent Calendar 2020 - The Scottish Countryside by Bigfoot

Bene 10 10 10 10
BlackWolfTR 10 10 10 10
DJ Full 8 10 9 8
Drakan 10 10 10 10
eRIC 9 10 10 9
Feats 10 9 10 10
Jay 10 10 10 10
JesseG 9 10 10 9
Jorge22 10 10 10 10
Jose 10 10 10 10
Juan Carlos 10 10 10 10
Lady_Wise 9 9 10 10
Lioness_86 9 10 9 9
manarch2 8 9 9 8
Mman 10 10 10 9
Obig 10 10 10 10
Phil 10 10 10 10
requiemsoul 8 9 9 10
Ryan 10 10 10 10
ShadowZia 10 10 10 10
Teone 10 10 10 10
tuxraider 7 7 8 7
young Lara Croft 10 10 10 9
release date: 18-Dec-2020
# of downloads: 409

average rating: 9.59
review count: 23
review this level

file size: 458.00 MB
file type: TR4
class: Young Lara

author profile(s):

Reviewer's comments
"This is apparently a remake of a much earlier Bigfoot release (which is why I ignored that one), although looking at the shots they have seemingly nothing alike visually. This is another heavily BTB Northern Legends release, with various other themes mixed in, including a major shift at the end. It's mostly great looking with a variety of settings built into the basic theme. There's also a lot of creative and new object use to convey the storyline and support the puzzles. The lighting is a little flat at times, even if it does mostly fit the overcast UK atmosphere, and the way certain environments evolve somewhat was also well-done. Outside of those areas with weaker lighting there's very little wrong visually.
This is a Young Lara set, so there's no traditional combat, although there are a couple of other dangers and various traps. Like Tears of a Ptolemaic Dynasty this has several main maps (along with one or two short cutscene maps), although it's still overall much shorter and more straightforward in structure. After the intro segment you can solve the first and second map in just about any order, but the level structure is linear past that. Despite the lack of combat it provides a good mix of gameplay interactions throughout, and there's a good range of puzzles here, that are also quite varied (an improvement on Tears where some concepts felt slightly overused) while also feeding into the interlinked level design to provide multiple purposes to some areas.
There's also a well integrated story that provides some clue of your general goals and also leads to a decent conclusion that brings together some stranger interactions earlier; the surprise epilogue felt like it could stretch things a bit, but it ends at just the right time. Like most of Bigfoot's releases there's also a bonus for finding the secrets, and in this case it almost matches Tears in providing a whole extra level segment, along with some nice extra puzzles. This is another great and ambitious improvement from the author's previous releases, and by this point all their releases are excellent." - Mman (18-Jul-2023)
"A nice set of levels. Really good, but with some minor problems, and in my opinion slightly below the builder's usual output.
  • The starting area gives the impression that it's meant to be easy, with those hints that are displayed. But it's not: for example, near the start it requires a tricky custom move by grab-jumping up the movable box and some more acrobatics until you jump and grab the ceiling. (I could figure out the first one, but not the ceiling grab. Lara seemed to refuse to grab the ceiling at first, only after I looked at the WT I got it.)
  • Generally it often was annoying to move across, like having to wade back and forth through the sump while trying to figure out what you have to do next. It was like the gameplay didn't flow that well.
  • The sump had a weird bug that put Lara into some kind of surfing mode.
  • Gameplay is varied. There are some interesting puzzles and challenges.
  • I couldn't figure out the boulders/platform puzzle with the levers. The main problem was that I couldn't see anything. Wasted, I just solved it by WT.
  • The torch puzzle on the other hand was a thing I liked most about this game.
  • There is a story and story telling is implemented very nicely. Many cut scenes and talking parts. (But as always I wish I could skip them.)
  • Visually, it's good, but sometimes make a monotonous impression. The outside doesn't look that good, but I thought the courtyard and castle inside looked much better. I'm unable to tell why I got this impression, because it's obvious much effort was put into the texturing and decorations.
  • The castle parts had a really good atmosphere, these season/time changes were great.
Conclusion: it's a good game with some issues. But I don't want to overstate them. It's definitely still recommended." - tuxraider (07-Jul-2023)
"This has been on my "To Play" list for a while and I finally got around to playing it... and what a fun TRLE this was! A very enjoyable romp! I had a great time with this level set :) Loved the aesthetics of every beautifully crafted level with some lovely and helpful fly-bys included. Puzzles were well put together and not too obtuse, just how I like them. The secrets kind of passed me by (nothing new there) 4/10, but to have a part of the game locked off because of it I wasn't a fan of and the level it was in was much too short. Not sure if the length of that level would have been improved by the secret reward? Other than that nitpick a great set of levels which I'd highly recommend to anyone!" - Feats (15-Aug-2022)
"The start isn't good - it includes possibly the most monotonous design by Bigfoot, with some walls simply blasphemously wallpapered and uniform, just like if the author was testing if he can get away with them. Interiors are much better, though equally blasphemous repetitions of wood and stone are used. Gameplay is rather clear because Bigfoot uses his trademark double doors to provide a quick way to places visited earlier, however after opening a millionth double door and being required to return to the beginning I was had difficulty pinpointing where the beginning is. In such case the sidekick monk could be a good idea to use as a guide, but he was just standing around in his room all the time. Still, the builder’s true talent shows as I was still immersed and managed to find my way despite of those issues. What follows is a nicely looking castle with a nicely done puzzles, not much to complain except I would make it smaller but that's me. The god scene... oh deer... I even heard it promotes rape, but after the next dialogues I think the true goal was to expose the pointlessness of animal sacrifice by juxtaposing it with something equally bad, or even less evil - so please consider such interpretation before cancelling the builder. The ending is a great setting combined of several stock assets in a very non-stock way, building up to a grand finale as you'd expect from a full adventure. The epilogue... ugh - one more time: putting any puzzles in a finale part is a very bad idea since it ruins the pacing. But overall I had nice time here. I guess the strongest point was isolation, and the rain ambience strongly contributed to it. That bonus artifact was also beautifully crafted, though it's a pity not many players will see it since the secrets are rather difficult to find. Recommended." - DJ Full (19-Jul-2022)
"Excellent game very immersive given the surroundings , textures and objects used and the always interesting progression with some good enigmas. Not a hard game , the few timed tasks are not that hard. The storyline become stranger halfway through though , but Sylvain has become an expert in storytelling. Great flybys and plenty of elegant or innovative situations without repetitions of them. I particularly like how we have to walk instead of usually run on the ruined wooden floorings, or the new moves that are not used too often. Secrets are a big plus as some are not easy to get , a good reason to replay the game later." - eRIC (10-Apr-2021)
"This was my favourite game in the Advent Calendar 2020, and also the best Young Lara level of the whole trle database so far, in my opinion. Everything is perfect: the story, the design, the gameplay... never boring, never frustrating. I don't know what to say else except congratulate with Bigfoot for this masterpiece." - Teone (29-Jan-2021)
"Tricky and clever puzzles with intricate rooms allowing the player to see into many forthcoming areas. It is evident that this level was created with a great deal of thought and expertise. Not exactly what one would expect in an Advent level: Lara's "choices" and three "gods" for instance but truly imaginative and creative. And all's well that ends well with a surprise ending, time-wise, for Lara Recommended - if you have not played this one, try it - it does not disappoint." - Bene (26-Jan-2021)
"Exciting this level I have to say... Gameplay and story are interesting, atmosphere too. Puzzles are very good, I like that there are no enemies, so I could think about the puzzle in no stress :D Visuals are gorgeuos! One thing embarrassed me a little bit : Cernunnos had a very strange request for the information about the Cupan Druid Riogh / dont want to spoil/, Im not surprised what option Lara chose :D I recommend this level. Have fun!" - Lioness_86 (22-Jan-2021)
"With so many of our most talented builders seemingly fixated on dark, indoor levels with nighttime settings, it's refreshing to be able to play an extended adventure in idyllic outdoor surroundings under bright skies. Moreover, to keep things consistently interesting without enemy encounters is an additional challenge, but this builder has certainly accomplished that goal over five entertaining segments that consumes a little more than three and a half hours. My only quibble is that Bigfoot has used up all the spider webs left over from A Scarf Adventure (or vice versa), almost as if both builders were checking notes to see who could cram in the most of them. And there's an annoying fixed camera or two here, but not to a distracting extent. The graphics have been assembled with painstaking care, and it's been a while since I've played such a visually appealing custom level. I don't recall any flare pickups, but not once did I feel the slightest urge to light one. Each of the three main levels took a bit longer to play than the previous one, the fourth segment was short, colorful and felt somewhat like being on an LSD trip, and the bonus level at the end was a lever puzzle that went down like dessert at the end of a scrumptious meal. This year's crop of Advent levels is without question the best ever, and Scottish Countryside takes top honors in my book (but not by much)." - Phil (18-Jan-2021)
"Absolutly gorgeous game. New ideas, new traps, amazing history. Atmosphere is perfect. Some puzzles are really lovely. Normally I hate solutions against time, but here, the one with the torch and the timed roof, and then, this roof becomes the floor for a secret, I enjoyed a lot playing this game. Textures, objects, animations, everything was great. Unfortunally I was not able to get all secrets, sometimes it would be good to know how many secrets are in each level, and go for them. As I couldn't get all secrets, the game suddenly became to short and I arrived too soon to the end of game." - Juan Carlos (07-Jan-2021)
"I loved the storyline for this level and getting to meet some of the Celtic gods was great fun. This is a beautiful looking level and evokes the Skye countryside rather nicely. Although not a Christmas level as such, you do get a bit of snow at the end and, being a Young Lara level, the lack of enemies is seasonally appropriate. It also really helps to perk up Young Lara to have her employing the ‘new moves’. Gameplay is inventive and enjoyable with some good puzzles and a difficulty level to the timed runs etc that should make it accessible to most players. Highly recommended." - Jay (02-Jan-2021)
"What a stunning Level. I was truly amazed by this game, the setting and theme are just my cuppa tea. Felt a bit naked without any guns, but it was a nice change, and puzzles required you to think. This I liked a lot. Textures, lighting and the buildings were stunning. I really cant think of anything other then WOW! Great game! You must play this - you WONT be disappointed!!!" - Lady_Wise (28-Dec-2020)
"Despite this being another fabulous offering by BigFoot (as to be expected) I am not certain whether this game should be rated among the very best levels out there. The gameplay has some nice quirky moments and some very good puzzles like the expanded torch puzzle in the third level that even includes a return much later, but most of the time consists of relatively mundane progression and there are a lot of long passages to cover and also several (not too annoying) backtracks. This game delivers more from the atmosphere and fairytale textures and objects, very nice looks in most of the rooms and decent usage of sounds and cameras as well. The texturing sadly leaves things to be desired with a few oddly wallpapered areas; some intendedly natural cave areas feel slightly flat and the lighting is also lacking contrast. Despite of that, the choice and usage of the material alone is worthy of a decent, if not perfect, scores. An elaborate quest for ten not easy to find secrets rounds this experience up and the storyline which is nicely carried through with good cutscenes is coming to its end after 1:45 quite enjoyable hours." - manarch2 (27-Dec-2020)
"This adventure containing 6 levels is published in Christmas, although it is not really holiday-like. There is no Santa Claus neither decorated christmas tree. We still can feel the festivities, maybe it is because of the 15 years old Lara. These levels are not easy, you have to pull your socks up. There are hard time-runs, and even you have to outplay a bear to have it destroy a trigger but not to hurt you. It contains 10 secrets, some of them are well hidden. For the tenth one you have to find 9 golden keys. The adventure takes place in the Scottish Highlands with wooden cottages, log houses, an abandoned mine, temples, castles. With a teleport you will visit a beautiful, colorful place for the last item. You do not have any weapon, and it is not necessary, there are no real enemies. Medipacks can be found, their only usage is when Lara takes a hard fall. :) These levels deserve maximal points, it has meant a great joy to play them through. I highly recommend this adventure! Hungarian walkthrough, pictures, and savegames:" - Obig (25-Dec-2020)
"Great adventure and amazing atmosphere! It's well build and a pretty fluid gameplay, no confusing cameras or unnecessary roaming. Love the story behind this and the cast as well. It's a must play for anyone who loves fantasy. Thank you for making these levels possible!" - young Lara Croft (24-Dec-2020)
"It's rare that I dole out four-tenner scores to three raids in a row in such a short amount of time, but we truly have been blessed with some excellent, top- quality entertainment lately and this adventure definitely deserves it. It may not be Christmas-related in the traditional sense and although it is billed as a remake of Bigfoot's "English Countryside" level, it's still an astounding raid in pretty much every sense. The gameplay is mostly pretty serene as in most Young Lara adventures, but the puzzles and the exploration and the way it is set up are all absolutely brilliant. Head-scratching in places (particularly with the timed runs and the centrepiece torch puzzle in the Gods and Beasts level), but always in a friendly fashion and the atmosphere and surroundings are positively stunning, leading to a very pleasurable experience overall. The bonus area for finding all secrets was certainly a different experience, put it that way. The ending was also rather unexpected, with the gods turning out to be friendly all along, and they were just understandably miffed at being trapped in the one place for so long. Many thanks, Bigfoot, for a truly special Advent Calendar gift and Merry Christmas to you." - Ryan (23-Dec-2020)
"This was quite the fantastical adventure. Lara will explore a beautiful countryside, church, mine, and alternate dimension while interacting with a variety of (mostly) friendly strangers. There's quite a few great puzzles here, my favorite being the elaborate multi-level boulder routing puzzle. Lara will also conquer several timed runs, sometimes with a torch in hand. The diary makes it very clear what Lara's goal is throughout her journey, making this adventure one that should be extremely approachable to all types of raiders. 2 hours 32 minutes." - JesseG (22-Dec-2020)
"Even when there are not weapons or enemies to shoot, this adventure has got a good quality, with perfect texturization, good architecture and atmosphere, innovative puzzles and nice areas to explore with fresh ideas. However, the secret area that you access if you found all the keys I did not like so much, a lot of gold and great decoration but the way of proceeding seemed "obscure". Anyway, the game is one of those that hooks you and you can't stop playing until you finish. Bravo, Sylvain!" - Jose (21-Dec-2020)
"A solid level. The challenges are perhaps a bit simple (except for the magnificent retractable cover puzzle of the third map). The amazing fourth map is sadly a "bonus" and there are too many corridors and empty rooms. Anyway, it´s an excellent game and very entertaining with some line of dialogue as funny as inappropriate for Christmas." - requiemsoul (21-Dec-2020)
"Another amazing entry in advent calendar this year. Not typically xmas but still amazing. Here we have young Lara exploring scottish island with houses, churches, castles and also other dimensions. All levels have very good scottish atmosphere, I really liked that. Gameplay was phenomenal with many interesting taks, many clever puzzles and sometimes cutscenes. Secrets were well hidden. And also Lighting and Textures were very good and diverse. Overally, truly amazing levelset in Scottish environment with young Lara, wonderful atmosphere and interesting puzzle. Definetly recommended! :)" - BlackWolfTR (20-Dec-2020)
"Well, not being a Christmas level at all, this is as Christmassy as it gets in its lightness and the snowy ending of it all (let's say Lara got back to planet Earth just in time for Christmas). It's also the so far missing evidence that a Young Lara level, furthermore one that's divided into several parts, can actually capture one's attention. Since there are no guns, the level relies heavily on exploration and puzzles, with at least a couple of excellent timed runs along the way. I wasn't too convinced when I started to play, and I didn't think all that earlier backtracking was a good idea, but it didn't take long to get me hooked. And I loved the clear lines of the entire surroundings, I really thought they were perfect, whatever that may mean. The fact that one can build a level set with all those "new moves" and everything in between without sounding all the red alerts among antivirus programs also deserves two thumbs up. The downsides aren't really downsides... The game is made easy and entertaining without making you feel it's simplistic, so that can't be a downside. There was that column puzzle to get the torch across that kept me scratching my head for a while, but that's not to say it was overly complex, I just failed to see it. And I didn't find all the secret keys, so the final secret (or was it a bonus level?) stayed out of my reach. All in all, I thought it was lovely and captivating, so well done and thank you." - Jorge22 (20-Dec-2020)
"This was an absolute beautiful level. I really enjoyed it. It has the Tomb Raider feel. Interesting clever puzzles very unique. This Lara seem bit older then 15 to me. That deer was gorgeous. We have big ones here like that. In the beginning the outside gave me such Alice in wonderland feel, I luv it. I didn't find the secrets this time round but one, area of the crosses & it was by accident found that cause was looking for a torch I did find the torch tho. But I will play it again to search. I wouldn't mind it since the level was enjoyable. Time runs were well placed made sense to me. The level keep my attention & not once felt "ok are we ending now" it was much fun. I'm glad got the chance to play & thank you for building it. "Cheers"!" - ShadowZia (19-Dec-2020)
"Young Lara must retrieve the Cupan Druid Riogh that is in a Scottish castle. It's a great, well-lit, textured adventure that's relatively straightforward. The only place Lara has to fight is against a badly licked bear, but nothing difficult. The most of this adventure are the secrets, you must find 9 to be able to access a bonus game. Excellent !!!" - Drakan (18-Dec-2020)