Level: Ruins of Maya back home search
Author(s): justin
total rating:6.74 Gameplay &
Objects &
Sound &
Lighting &
Akcy 0 6 3 8
Dimpfelmoser 5 5 8 7
eTux 3 5 6 5
Gerty 6 7 8 8
Jay 7 7 7 8
Jose 4 6 7 7
Kristina 5 5 6 7
MichaelP 7 7 8 8
Navi 7 8 7 8
Orbit Dream 0 5 7 8
Phil 8 8 8 8
RaiderGirl 8 8 8 8
Ryan 5 6 8 8
Sash 8 8 8 8
Sheevah 5 7 7 6
Tombaholic 8 8 8 8
Treeble 8 7 8 9
category averages
(17 reviews)
5.53 6.65 7.18 7.59

Reviewer's comments

"Providing you can overlook the buggy aspects, there's a very decent bit of raiding to be had here in an attractive setting. The forced cheating element due to a dodgy crowbar lever does ruin the flow of the gameplay a bit though, as it should have been able to be finished without such means, and as a result, the gem you need is invisible. There was also an odd torch puzzle that seemed to have some sort of hint (maybe following the grey path first and then the green?) but I must have missed it and had to refer to the walkthrough. Still, the tasks are otherwise decent with a well executed movable block puzzle and breakable tile gauntlet, and a very well made setting. Worth a go if you can get past the aforementioned problems, but it still left a rather bad aftertaste." - Ryan (29-Nov-2018)

"I can't believe I've never played this game before. I honestly thought I'd played all Justin's levels. After some confusion, on checking the walkthrough I was alerted to the fact that a bug makes it necessary to use dozy at one point, but if you use the savegame editor to restore your inventory items back to their legitimate levels it doesn't spoilt the game. The only item I want in unlimited quantities is flares, anything else makes it all seem a touch pointless. Anyway, that aside this is definitely worth playing, but you may want to keep the walkthrough handy." - Jay (09-Aug-2016)

"The same style from the previous levels from this builder, this time I found an entertaining pushblock puzzle and another easy tasks, but I had to see the walkthrough twice. It's not acceptable the crowbar floor switch without trigger so I had to cheat to continue playing; also, it's not acceptable the room where you need to light four wall sconces in certain order and there's not a hint (or at least I couldn't find it) to know that order so I got totally stucked wasting my time looking for nothing. The remaining features are usually good, but that issues ruined the gameplay so, don't doubt to follow the walkthrough instructions if you are going to play this level." - Jose (15-Jan-2016)

"Here's a level that hasn't been played and reviewed for nearly seven years. And yet I enjoyed playing it, having known what to do and what to expect courtesy of a walkthrough that I wrote along with Anya Marie McDonald some years ago. A bum crowbar lever forces the player to proceed by using the flycheat, which I consider a bit of poetic justice, as this is the only level I can think of that cannot be completed without cheating. But since I do that all the time, it didn't bother me a bit. Anyway, you get a solid 45-minute level here, and I'm glad for this opportunity to replay Justin's older levels and provide the reviews that should have been written long ago." - Phil (01-May-2015)

"It's true folks, the subtlety's of beta testing were not as popular back in those days (or maybe the author had some project problems that disabled him from revisiting it? I certainly don't know) and it shows. It would generally have been a somewhat decent Angkor Watt inspired setting level, if it were not for the plethora of annoyances that clearly indicate the level saw the light of day too early. Other's have mentioned it before me, but just because it's so fun - I might as well list myself that a crucial crowbar switch after a puzzle doesn't work, so you have to DOZY to the area where the cause and effect chain induced by this would've ended up - pick up an invisible gem (invisible, possibly because it's hidden by the block that was supposed to lower), and later on complete a torch puzzle where only one of the 24 possible ways to light the 4 torches works to open a crucial door. True, there is a hint on the floor via a drawn path that indicates the sequence, but I would argue that the majority of players would not pick up on it - I certainly did not, till I realised there is a hint for the puzzle - and thus it ends up to be a very unforgiving element in an already trouble ridden game. I also found it odd that the grenade launcher is easier to find than the shotgun (which I don't remember finding at all - just learning about its existence through the walkthrough), but I guess this might be just something specific to my experience. It's not all that tragic though, as there are a couple of cool trap moments and fun rooms with collapsible tiles, and as said - the looks are nice, though don't stand out for anything in particular, but I agree with others that this was released too early for its own good. I would not approach the level without the walkthrough to get the least stressful playing experience, but if you feel determined to give this a try, I would not shy you away from it as well." - eTux (24-May-2008)

"Let's start with the upper side. The level is nicely set and decorated, lighting is great, I particularly liked the lense flare effect. Good variety of tasks, nothing difficult though. So this is a could have been fine level. BUT! I agree with Orbit Dream, this level - as it is - shouldn't have been released! Imho a level that cannot be completed is not a level, not even playable demo, because of the very fact that it's unplayable. Therefore my rating for gameplay is n/a, and the forced cheating also ruins the - otherwise good - atmosphere." - Akcy (14-Jun-2005)

"Some of my fellow reviewers can be very tactful can't they? A Crowbar Bug that makes it impossible to continue. A Fire puzzle that if you get the incorrect sequence prevents you from completing the game. A key pick-up that's completely invisible. And yet still they award it points for gameplay! Not me I'm afraid. A level which simply cannot be completed without cheating (the faulty crowbar) an unfair Pick-up AND a very large amount of luck (the fire sequence) shouldn't be released in the first place in my opinion. It looks rather nice and the textures aren't bad at all but that's about all it has going for it." - Orbit Dream (22-Nov-2003)

"The setting of this level is a little jungle and Angkor Wat. Lara finds a gem a vraeus two canopic jars and walks-jumps onto breakable tiles. I had a problem like everyone else using the crowbar at the area with the moving blocks but not with the torches as I was warned. It's rather nice for his age that is take a look at it." - Kristina (29-Aug-2003)

"This is more of a jungle level. Lara needs to find a blue gem first and there are five secrets. Textures were mostly ok same for the cameras. It is more based on puzzles but not quite to my taste.;) A level for in between." - Navi (10-Jan-2003)

"Really a shame that the rotating spike room didn't work as I must have had the download with the bug. I even downloaded the game again today but no luck. So I had to use the fly cheat to pick up the gem. The other crowbar lever trick did work. There are some nice puzzles in this one like the block puzzle. There are also some intricate jumping collapsing platforms and tiles nice use of spikes. Also the torch puzzle was not that bad except do save before you have a go at it. And right at the beginning if you are very fast you even can get the grenade launcher (that was sadly no secret) but the shotgun I also found in the beginning is one. None of those weapons have any use in this level as there are some pesky bats a croc or 4 warthogs and a couple of ninjas. Finding some keys a Vraeus and the 2 pieces of the Portal Guardian and of course the crowbar and the torch is a must. 01-01-2003" - Gerty (05-Jan-2003)

"I really find levels that have a certain jungle feel and are set around Incan Mayan or Aztec temples extremely interesting and this is no exception. With some great outdoor and indoor areas like the rotating spike room and the initial organic area tricky puzzles such as the intricate movable block puzzle the collapsing platform puzzle and the lighting torch puzzle with 24 different possible combinations and the wonderful placement of key pick ups and 5 secrets this is a really well made but for me sadly a little too short at 45 minutes because I liked it so much level. By the way there is a faulty version of this level that if you come across a crowbar lever and the crowbar doesn't respond to it then you have two choices either download the fixed version or use the flycheat to land on the block in the middle of the pool and then press action and although you cannot see anything there Lara will pick up a blue gem and then you can continue." - Sash (21-Jun-2002)

"I also played the version with the bug but knowing about it it did not get in the way much. All in all the level - while short at a little over 30 minutes - impresses with a nice variety of puzzles (breakaway tiles movable blocks slicer dicer spikes a jump sequence and towards the end a torch plays an important role). However it is all rather linear as you go from room to room and ends quite suddenly when you think there should be more coming." - Michael (21-Jun-2002)

"This is a good level. It has a great variety of puzzles and breath-taking inside/outside areas. Although I spotted a few glitches in texturization I still think that this level is awesome making a very good use of the textures from Angkor Wat. Although I had to cheat to proceed the level was still very challenging and I am sure you won't regret of downloading it. Well I am not regretting playing any of justin's levels so far..." - Treeble (21-Jun-2002)

"If you're looking for a good level to spend an hour on (rather than an epic) definitely give this one a go. Some good puzzles and obstacles await you in this temple-in-the-jungle setting. As of 20th September the version available for download still has a bug which will require using the flycheat to advance in the level." - Tombaholic (21-Jun-2002)

"In the Ruins of Maya I found a nice blend of all the things that make a good Tomb Raider level. Although the level was only half an hour long it is filled with clever puzzles that had me scratching my head many times trying to figure out what my next move should be. A little observation though usually had me on my way. Some puzzles though took a little careful jumping - there's a room filled with lava in which you have to run over various breakable tiles and I loved the hallway filled with spikes - too bad I got through on the first try. There were few enemies ninjas crocs and wild boars and I found plenty of ammo to get rid of them. I really enjoyed the Aztec look of the level as I don't see it very often - it alternates between an indoor and an outdoor setting and had climbable trees beautiful temples and sparkling pools of water. There's some great Tomb Raiding here!" - RaiderGirl (21-Jun-2002)

"Visually a very nice level but there are some points/bugs/faults that lower my rating: 1. In one of the first rooms there is a raising block in the middle of a water pool that Lara could reach only by using the fly cheat (Well as for me I didn't find any other way to get there). 2. There was an invisible (!) crystal placed on this raising block. How the heck can I find items when they are invisible?! If I hadn't read about this in the reviews I couldn't have gone further. 3. Near the end you have to light torches in a certain order to open a door. If you fail i.e. you light them in the wrong order the door keeps closed and if you don't have a savegame of an earlier point in the game you get stuck and can't go on. These are major bugs/faults that should have been fixed." - Sheevah (21-Jun-2002)

"Though visually very appealing the gameplay is somewhat half baked. I liked the run through the spikes and the jumps sequence over the collapsible tiles but all in all it's too linear and the torch puzzle is a bit of a mess. Not only does it send you straight to Stuckville if you don't get it right first time also as far as I can tell it is merely a matter of hit and miss and that makes it a real downer. I know the bug and how to deal with it is mentioned in the other reviews still it's highly irritating and once you used the fly cheat things will never be the same again. Secrets and enemies become completely negligible and if you cheated once you are tempted to cheat again. That spoiled it for me to some degree." - Dimpfelmoser (21-Jun-2002)
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