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Level: Back to Venice back home search
Author(s): AleXander81
total rating:7.36 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
Akcy 6 6 7 6
CC 7 7 8 8
DJ Full 6 8 6 7
Duncan 7 7 8 8
ersatz 10 10 10 9
eTux 6 5 6 5
Gerty 6 7 7 7
Jay 7 7 8 7
Jorge22 7 7 6 8
Jose 7 7 6 8
Kristina 6 6 6 6
MichaelP 8 8 7 7
Moonpooka 9 9 9 9
Obig 8 8 9 8
Orbit Dream 6 7 7 8
Oxy 8 7 6 7
Phil 8 9 9 8
Ryan 7 7 7 8
Sash 7 9 8 7
Scottie 8 7 8 8
category averages
(20 reviews)
7.20 7.40 7.40 7.45

Reviewer's comments

"This Venice level was much more enjoyable than the last one I played (Della Pescaia). Although enemies are still prevalent, there is enough ammo to dispose of the many ninjas, SAS and dogs you'll encounter. It's also less darker than the other one, although I still ended up running short of flares. If you like Venice levels, you could do much worse." - Ryan (28-Aug-2017)

"From the title flyby it seems like if this was to be much more than a relaxing Venetian raid, but nothing equally impressive to that sequence actually occurs in the game. Secrets are particularly creative and some places nicely require more effort to get out than to get in, but almost every corridor is too long, undertextured scenery quickly gets boring, and some stuff is core Egyptian, not to fit the rest at all." - DJ Full (24-Jan-2016)

"I wasn't really expecting an hour long adventure when I first launched into this, but alas, that's exactly what I got. Whether this is for good or bad, I can't say - it didn't feel unnecessarily dragged out, yet every now and then I felt less could've been more in this Venice setting. The good parts here are that you get to do some of the fun stuff you'd expect to find in a Venice setting - like hopping on balconies and canopies, attaining some of secrets is an inspired task, and there are some neat moments, that break the level out of the mold a little bit. For example, realizing that the player will have to backtrack to a greater extent, the author set up for events to happen when you traverse a certain path for a second time, and while usually this event happened to be an onslaught of baddies, it's the thought that counts, and it was appreciated here. And that brings us to the less than stellar parts of the game as well. The choice of enemies and objects from the city.wad did not always sync up well with the Venice setting, at least in my mind - and as far as I'm concerned, the one aspect of the original games that could've been left out was the great amount of enemies. While you're unlikely to encounter any problems, since the goodies are plenty, more than anything else it gets tedious trimming out the ranks of the already not so populous city. Other than that - while the looks were done fairly well - a cleaner, more sophisticated look that involved some more care put into lighting among other details would've made this a visually more pleasurable raid. As far as Venice games go, this one isn't exactly top notch in all aspects, but it's enjoyable while it lasts and you could do much worse than picking this one!" - eTux (02-Dec-2009)

"The story is told relatively fast: Lara is in Venice and must find two cartouche parts, so that she can open a big door. SAS-Soldiers, dogs and Baddies want to prevent exactly this. Now, this sounds in such a way as if one had to walk around just 10 minutes, but one must already invest 1-2 hours for it. Lara must open doors of all kinds, jump from balcony to balcony, crawl, dive and so on. This is a very well formed and built level. The textures are applied cleanly. So, this level is absolutely recommendable." - Scottie (19-Apr-2009)

"Venice is my favourite place for TR maybe because my adventure with Tomb Raider began from the second part. Back to Venice is a really great level, a lot of enemies , well hidden secrets and keys. Interesting story and fast action with that absolutly the best original TR climate. I hope that Alexander will make another part very soon because this story is like a promise of something bigger. I really enjoy it ! Well done !" - ersatz (20-Oct-2007)

"At the start the level seems to be confusing, but once we familiarise ourselves with the place it's straightforward, and very well layed out. Textures are decently applied, but the lighting isn't really good. Simple gameplay, just opening doors and shooting enemies, but as a first attempt is't not bad. The ninjas weren't fit, and a few flares would have been helpful, apart from that it's an easy but pleasant adventure." - Akcy (28-Aug-2007)

"I didn't like this very much. I got confused at some point with all those areas and I thought the SAS guys were out of place considering the Venice setting. The player has to find keys, use switches and it's all about that really. There is some swimming involved and you find yourself in an underwater maze which I hated, some climbing using long ladders and kill ninjas, dogs as well. In some areas it was too dark and the flares weren't near enough to get by. I found two secrets and couldn't bother searching for the rest. It's a good effort but I've played better Venice type levels." - Kristina (25-Mar-2006)

"This level was a great adventure. The story takes place in Venice. We adventure in sewers, in houses, on balconies, in libraries, among gondolas and boats. The enmies are gunmen, ninjas, dogs and bats. What kind of allies this Bartoli guy has! :) There are 6 secrets on the level; some of them are very well hidden. We even have to take a look behind the bookshelves. I didn't need to use medipacks, although there are many of them. The other weapons we can find at secrets, though the Uzi can be picked up twice. We have to find the two pieces of the Cartouche. For this we have to collect several keys from the gunmen, but a movable block has also role in it... Well, for the first time we run about helter-skelter in the district until finding the right path. The textures are beautiful. It's nothing extra, but it is so "Venice-y". :) We also get some sounds and music from the TR episodes. I can only suggest this great adventure. You can find a Hungarian walkthrough (as we don't have English version), savegames and pictures here: http://treditor.hu/15/back_to_venice.htm" - Obig (25-Jan-2006)

"Admittedly the Venice levels can be a bit of the same, you can almost picture the locations before you even start the level, and there is sure to be a lot of swimming, some red awning jumping and the like. And this level is no exception. Yet I found myself really enjoying the map used for this one even though there was nothing overly special about it, just the way progression didnít feel too linear yet most likely was. I had the most fun however in going in search of the 6 secrets as they are all well placed and when I got to the end and realised I missed the crossbow one I just had to go back and get it, thankfully you get a hint of itís location and the ingenious way itís entrance was camouflaged was very smartly done. So of all the Venice levels out there I would say this is one of the better and unlike me if you are going to play then try to find that crossbow secret as early as you can because it will help with all the SAS, ninjas (yes, a slightly odd enemy in Venice) and the wild dog packs roaming around." - Sash (14-Jan-2006)

"I always welcome Venice levels, there never seems to be enough of them and I simply adore being in these surroundings. This is a true to style Venice level, with its waterways, pretty buildings, and well kitted out dťcor. There are keys to find and eventually you will need the two halves of the cartouche to make your exit. Enemies are guards (who seemed to me to be a bit more lethal that normal) Ninjas and dogs. Game play is fun; I enjoyed the tasks in each room, but keep your eyes peeled as levers are well hidden. There are six secrets to find and all are located in good places; I particularly liked the penultimate one which you could see though a window and spent ages trying to get into the building for it. All in all, this is an excellent Venice level and I hope to see more like this in the future." - Moonpooka (23-Dec-2005)

"Another venecian level without very interesting features, although is very correct and I haven't found bugs. Enemies are well, but during a long time you have to shoot them only with your pistols. There were some dark places along the level, but I couldn't find flares. There is also few music and some missed sound effects in enemies and objects, few cameras too. The same old textures but well applied, and no difficult tasks. A level you can play but with no very innovative ideas." - Josť (14-Dec-2005)

"On the one hand this feels as if things do not fit together so well with ninjas in Venice and some Barkhang Monastery symbols around. Also the textures are often rather listlessly applied and much more could have been done with lighting, but where this hour long level succeeds is in providing rather fun gameplay that only on occasion becomes a bit annyoing with a few too many backtracks, but is overall rather cleverly connected. Quite a bit of thought also went into placing the six secrets and the rolling ball near the end was a fun little surprise. Had to chuckle at the vampire ninja that showed up and was not visible in the mirror. Plenty of SAS to kill throughout and a cartouche to place to end the level." - MichaelP (11-Dec-2005)

"I had a considerably better time here than in a virtually contemporaneous Venice level, The Theatre of Venice. The gameplay is less complex but it's not all that easy, either. The balance was perfect for a player of average skill, which is what I am. There's a generous sampling of six secrets, five of which I found on my own. The only reason I missed the sixth one (the location of which Val pointed out to me) was sheer laziness down the home stretch. Enemies consist of a culturally mixed bag of SAS, ninjas, assassins, dogs and a bat or two. You have to make do with your pistols until fairly late in the level, when you find not one but two uzis and the shotgun. We have green skies here rather than blue, which makes the overall effect somewhat darker than I like in these Venice levels, and since I don't recall any extra flares being provided I added an unlimited supply on my own. This extended venture through canals, buildings with multiple levels and various balconies takes something on the order of two hours, but it's a fun romp all the way. Recommended." - Phil (05-Dec-2005)

"Wow, this one was much bigger than I though it would be and your goal in here is to get the two pieces of the Cartouche so Lara can leave Venice. Somebody for sure loves Maria quite a bit as you can see on the walls LOL. Then you are off for a lot of running and it is rather back and fro if you would like to find the secrets, at least I thought so, I got five of them. Lucky me that I took a dive in the water first and then climbed the pole or else I would still be roaming around. That is a big NO, NO in my book. I think it is quite ambitious to make a Venice level and there arenít that many good ones out there. But on the other hand this is a nice little adventure you should try. 22-11-2005" - Gerty (05-Dec-2005)

"Yay. Another visit to Venice! And this is a big level too, opening into more and more canal areas as we find and use the numerous keys and switches. A lot of switches are very well hidden so the player will have to look in every corner. In fact I'd recommend saving and using flares to look around because some corners and nooks are very dark, and the ones that aren't hide the switches so well in the textures or behind things. That goes for keys as well. I was totally stuck for ages until I lit a flare and found a key on the ground where I shot a guard. Although I spotted a lot of odd textures, the overall look of this level is great, and the lighting is excellent in my humble opinion. There is plenty of the usual Venice actions like jumping red awnings, block pushing, climbing, shimmying, swimming, running and jumping. I liked the route to the secrets. Long, a little tricky and well hidden, just as secrets should be. I also liked how we see the artifact, which is our goal, and when we finally get inside the building the level ends. What a tease! Lara needs two half cartouches to open this building, and again I zoomed past the first half and got irretrieably stuck because once we go over the waterfall there's no way back. So, a word to the wise - when you see a pole to climb in a water room, dive in first and swim to the left, then use the pole. There are a lot of vases to shoot, but I've no idea if that actually did anything, especially the ones in the crawlspaces. Speaking of which, there's a fair amount of crawling to do here too. Enemies were the usual dogs, guards, and two types of ninjas, which were strange to see in a Venice level. Some rooms are quite beautiful. There is a mirror room, with a Lara reflection, that had me baffled for a while. I got all six secrets, and thought there might be a purpose to this mirror; but no, it's simply a beautiful room. This is one of the superior Venice levels, and highly recommended." - CC (30-Nov-2005)

"Call me picky, but when Iím in Venice I expect henchmen, not guards and certainly not ninjas (one of whom was obviously a vampire as he had no reflection in the mirror room). Still, Venice is Venice and always a pleasure. Thereís quite a bit of running around large areas with not a great deal to do, but I enjoyed it anyway and itís certainly a very decent first time build. Easy, linear and attractive Ė give it a go." - Jay (28-Nov-2005)

"Interesting level because I like Venice's levels but it is, in fact, very hard to recapture TR2's ambiance and I've only seen that happen a couple of times. Somebody said the game was pretty straightforward but it isn't so... There are many huge rooms with nothing special to do and loads of ways to go which makes it a bit complicated. Specially, when most of the times you pull a lever there's no hint wahtsoever as to where you should go next. It's interesting enough to keep you occupied though, so why not give it a try? That having been said, what are all those arabs and all those egyptian soldiers doing in Venice? I really, really think that's the kind of thing a builder should avoid." - Jorge22 (23-Nov-2005)

"Venice levels (outside of the original TR2) have a tendancy toward being rather dull switch-activiating run-arounds;and unfortunately,that's the case here. The playing area is rather huge (although,commendably,never confusing) and the usual rectangular baroque rooms become awfully repetetive after a while.Key placement (especially at the start) is rather ingenious and the atmosphere is well maintained,but this is all rather sequential and predictable (both in terms of gameplay and general appearance)and boredom sets in quite some time before the end. That's not to say that it isn't worth a look,as the LE has been used solidly and the player is rarely stuck.However,personal flourishes are rather few and far between(the mirror room,although fetching,serves no actual purpose)and the Builder seems determined to use up the full quota of available rooms,even though quality in this case would have been preferable to quantity. Technically quite accomplished however,and worth playing for a generally relaxed raid." - Orbit Dream (22-Nov-2005)

"I've always been fond of the Venice setting, and fortunately it doesn't get used as much as Catacombs. This one is a straight-ahead romp through the canals and palaces, and Lara barely needs to take time to catch her breath. Like all Venice levels it has lots of twists and turns, but it is well laid-out so that shouldn't be a problem. Watch out for that key hidden in the jar LOL. I enjoyed playing this one, and the author clearly understands the editor, so I hope we get to see more from them." - Duncan (20-Nov-2005)

"After watching title flyby you can visit Venice. Very nice linear game play - if you find everything on your way, suitable also for beginners, without timed runs. Short cameras, which shows new opened doors, are placed well. Two jumps must be done precise, not very hard to do if you think beside. Enemies are SAS, baddies and dogs. I saw also a sentry gun but it didn't do any harm when Lara passes by. In game is also one short water maze, a lot of shatters to shoot and a lot of rooms to explore - nice setting with Venice textures, placed well. I missed some bright, warm lights. I didn't have enough flares, so I had reload game to spare them. With last flare I had to shoot into the dark corner to see what's hidden in it and also SAS and dog - barking out of the black area scared me :-) . I enjoyed nice flyby with running SAS out of the room and when door closed behind him I had to ask myself: "Where did he go?" No worries, he came back later. :-) In game door closes all the time and you get the feeling that you're trapped. Once I though that was a bug, but I found the switch after awhile to proceed the game. Also some fires on the wall were nice to get at least some warm atmosphere. I found two secrets. I didn't get the point of the end, Lara just leaves into the darkness." - Oxy (20-Nov-2005)
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