Level: Escape from the Lost Valley back home search
Author(s): Tommy Poulin
total rating:6.48 Gameplay &
Objects &
Sound &
Lighting &
Bene 7 7 7 6
Blue43 6 7 7 7
Casual Raider 6 7 8 7
Christian 6 5 5 5
Diz 6 6 5 8
dmdibl 7 7 7 7
Gerty 6 5 6 5
Jay 7 6 7 7
Jose 7 6 6 6
manarch2 6 5 7 7
MichaelP 7 6 7 6
Miriam 7 7 5 6
Orbit Dream 6 5 6 8
Phil 8 7 7 7
Ryan 7 6 6 7
Scottie 5 5 6 6
TheStig 7 6 6 6
Torry 5 7 5 9
TRTheoP 7 8 8 7
Xela 7 7 8 7
category averages
(20 reviews)
6.50 6.25 6.45 6.70

Reviewer's comments

"A solid debut of about half an hour duration that stays true to the original Tomb Raider game, right down to the general simplicity of the gameplay. There's quite a few boulder traps that are easy enough to avoid, plus lots of jumping around and quite a few spike traps to get past (maybe slightly overdone here in terms of the curved jump methods). There's a nice sense of circular progression and a pleasant return to familiar territory in the form of the dead guide at the beginning of the original game. The old fashioned surroundings are solid enough and faithful to the original textures, although the sound was messed up in quite a few places. Enemies are quite fearsome when they attack on packs, but the shotgun takes care of them pretty easily. A pleasant return to the old days." - Ryan (27-Aug-2018)

"A beautiful level showing the aftermath of Lara defeating Larson and escaping the caves. It is built with TR4 engine but uses the TR1 textures giving a well-designed atmosphere. There are not actual puzzles in this level since the only thing that you do is to avoid spikes by jumping between slides and to watch out for boulders. Enemies are basically wolves, bats and raptors which originate from the original TR1 game and you can find a shotgun to easily get rid of them. Some places are like deja-vus that give you a lot TR1 memories like the beginning area with Larson's corpse (only the waterfall is absent) and the top of the mountain where you can see the dead helper guide of Lara and the dead wolves she killed in the FMV. The latter was my most favorite part in the whole level. The only drawbacks that I could find is the non-moving water texture and that sometimes the level would throw you similar obstacles like the previous ones you faced therefore becoming repetitive. Conclusion: It is very nice that someone picked up where an original game left off and gave a closure to it. Escape from the Lost Valley by Tommy Poulin is here to remind you of some great moments of TR1 and give you a nice adventure to entertain your evening." - TRTheoP (21-Jun-2018)

"Lovely excursion back into the realms of TR1. Nothing too taxing here. You commence with an earth tremor that shakes the surroundings but does not last too long and dissipates entirely as you move into the bowels of the cavern. Then you have a relatively easy course throughout with just a tiny bit of back tracking near the end. Unfortunately all the sound fx were screwed up which could have so easily been fixed, so a few minus points there. Graphics and textures were good and even Lara sported the pointers as she did in that very first game." - Torry (20-Jun-2018)

"This one is definitely for TR1 fans, which is a category I fit in nicely. Lara has just defeated Larson in Peru, and now must escape the collapsing tomb and surrounding caves. There are numerous nods to the original Peru levels here, with even the guide (who, spoilers, died in the opening to TR1) making a corpse appearance. The textures and layout of the area also gives off a distinct "Peruvian" feel when it comes to Tomb Raider, though there is quite a bit more danger this time around. Enemies are the familiar bats, wolves, and raptors, and traps mostly consist of spikes and boulders--fitting for the area. All of these factors add up to a apt recreation of the atmosphere found in TR1. My only real gripe about the level is that awful SFX mixup for the swinging blades; the sound bores right into your brain after a couple of minutes, and it takes forever to escape it! It did impact my enjoyment of the level, but not by enough to ruin my immense fun. Download this one if you want to see what happens after Lara knocks Larson on his tush!" - Xela (30-Aug-2014)

"I really liked this level. Though it's on TR4 engine it looks like original TR1 levels and has it's atmosphere. It has rather smooth gameplay though endgame path might not be easy to find, there are some fancy jumping as well. Textures, enemies and Lara's model are all TR1 like and that looks great. Too many spike corridors that looked the same to me, slightly boring gameplay at times. But it's really good nostalgic level and recommended for bringing up memories." - Casual Raider (04-Sep-2013)

"A great piece of retro-raiding fun here. You set out to escape from the lost valley and events pick up just after dispatching Larson in the caves. Gameplay: Nothing too taxing here. Jumps, traps, doors and levers to pull. There's plenty of nasty rolling boulders to keep an eye out for too and beware that the odd enemy might sneak up on you from behind too! Environment: It has a classic and authentic Tomb Raider 1 feel. The author has chosen to stick to original geometry so there's no triangular ground sections etc, and I think it looks all the better for it. Some might be critical but I think the effect is very true to the original game. Architecturally it's great too, with lots of scaling and climbing to get yourself around. The view on the top of the caves seeing Lara's dead guide and the wolves below where the original entrance is a really nice touch too. Sound & Music: Most of the sounds selected here are from the original tomb-raider including the music & 'caves background track. These are fine, along-side the majority of the sounds pulled from TR1 for Lara's actions/pistols etc. Some weirdness does creep in with a few bits though. For instance Lara saying "No" when plummeting to her doom. Or the strange 'Daba Daba' voice (Lara's word for No in another language I think), when the swinging blades get going. So to summarize: What's good: Authentic feel, good architecture, appealing straight-forward gameplay. What's could be improved: Final polish on audio gremlins, add support for widescreen to TR4.exe, a few stretched textures. What's bad: Nothing :) Overall [6/10]: I really enjoyed escape from the lost-valley. I got approximately 30 minutes of good solid-gameplay and it's easily playable by anyone who's played the original Tomb Raider. If you're a fan of the original you'll love this. Recommended. Stiggy" - TheStig (06-Jun-2011)

"If you like TR1 this is a small trip through memory lane. Nothing too taxing, just play with your eyes open and you'll have no problem in getting to the end. If you don't find the artefacts, not to worry, you can finish it without them. The level is rather bright and the sounds are not what they should. There are no puzzles as such but there are enemies that keep you busy for a bit. With the passages, specially the underwater ones are very crooked and the result is that textures could use quite some attention. Although the swimming there is nasty but on the other hand luckily the passages aren't so long that you'll drown. Have fun with it." - Gerty (27-Sep-2010)

"This is a nice little time-killer that won't tax your playing abilities a great deal, although it's necessary to remain on your toes at all times due to the spike pits and other hazards that you're prone to stumble across when you least expect them. The level appears to be a tribute to the opening segment of TR1, and it reflects (perhaps unintentionally) some of the crudeness of that pioneering release. On the other hand, it's certainly a creditable debut level and I spent about 40 minutes here. You get the shotgun rather late in the game for it to be of much good to you, especially after having picked up all that ammo along the way. There were no secrets unless you count a couple of artifacts that don't have any function in the game. The enemies were bats and wolves and an occasional raptor. Not an instant classic, but definitely worth your while." - Phil (18-Aug-2010)

"It's lucky the initial earthquake was of short duration or I would not have carried on playing this level. I'm glad I did though as it's always pleasant to see the old TR1 textures again and this is a well crafted variation on a theme, rather than a slavish copy of the original For experienced players, this may seem rather tame, but if you're new to raiding it would be an ideal level to play as it consists of quite straightforward swimming, climbing and jumping, with bats, wolves and raptors to shoot and spikes and boulders to avoid. Plus, you'll get a taste of where it all began." - Jay (08-Aug-2010)

"When this first started I thought"Oh no, not another TR1 copy with added earthquake!" 'cos this has been done to death. But it wasn't. It was a strange mixture of an 'homage' to TR1, nicely crafted, good lighting, well placed enemies (bats, wolves and raptors) and some interesting, if fairly straight forward, agility, mixed with a lot of boring climbing up long, sometimes very long, rock staircases and sliding down long slopes and, oh look, there's another rock staircase! As an introduction to Tomb Raiding and a chance to play a TR1 type with better graphics, it wasn't bad but I think that a lot of players will find it annoying." - Diz (08-Aug-2010)

"I barely remember most of the details of TR 1(heresy, I know) but I do remember what Lara looked like - all angles and no curves. Tommy has brought us back to our roots and it's a bit of a shocker; this is the Lara we all fell in love with? Hard to believe now but gameplay was innovative for its time and a female who could do as she pleased in a world dominated by men (at least in the virtual gaming world) was indeed a novelty but my, we have come a long way. The usual foes are here; bats, wolves and raptors but nothing to stop you for long. There's an off-putting beginning earthquake but a quick run to the caves and the quake is gone, bringing us to some interesting climbs and jumps and rolling boulders. All quite authentic to the original spirit of Raiding. The actual gameplay time would be shortened with some camera work and audio needs a fix but for a walk down Memory Lane it will do, quite well. It's a nice bit of nostalgia from a new builder and fun to play. Thanks, Tommy, for reviving old memories." - Bene (07-Aug-2010)

"Escape from the Lost Valley is a level which reminds us to classics tomb raider I levels. The outfit, textures and enemies where nearly the same, even platforms. Being an entretaining level with interesting jumps and platforms, I found textures and traps quite repetitive. There were over three rooms that looked nearly the same. I also think that water textures should be improved, becouse these weren't animated, what makes them look like ice. Moreover,sounds weren't correctly fixed, there was a trap which sounded like a Japanese saying "Tameta!". That's crazy! I would also have used more plants and furniture, because it looked empty. Anyway, here is an adventure which is quite enjoyable and not very difficult. On the other hand, there are a lot of things that can be improved." - Miriam (07-Aug-2010)

"Apart from the irritating earthquake at the level beginning the level was quite well playable. Though Lara ran only through a few empty rooms and many caves, but, at least, the level was well textured. And he has a few interesting jumps. The level builder could have placed the shotgun absolutely a little earlier in the level. And the black sky and horizon at the short flying visit beyond the caves did not look so great, the level builder could have made this better. Moreover, the lighting could have been better. But all together it was quite a well-arranged level." - Scottie (05-Aug-2010)

"There have been several recent releases paying tribute to early Tomb Raider that have been pretty good. This is one of them. It starts in the "Lost Valley" pool area, with an annoying earthquake, which made me reluctant to play the level, but this is the low point. Once Lara is out of the initial area the earthquake stops, and play becomes all original. I soon got into the enjoyable exploration and, yes, did begin to feel nostalgic, despite my efforts to resist. Texturing and enemies are taken from early levels of TR1, so we have "Caves" and "Tomb of Qualopec" textures for background, and wolves and raptors racing enthusiastically toward Lara. The lighting is similar to TR1, and some textures are stretched, as they were in TR1 (which is maybe taking imitation too far). A few sounds are off, in particular the unusual sound for swinging blades. Fortunately, I have a mute button on my keyboard that could be pressed while Lara was in the vicinity of swinging blades. Lara leaps spike pits, but there is never a chance to test that she can walk through spikes unharmed, a feature which should be possible with TREP. I found two secrets, but missed the third, and the secrets enhance the level, as they are side areas. There is one confusing moment of exploration when Lara seems to have circled back on herself, but if players persevere they will find that this has all been nicely planned out. Well done." - dmdibl (05-Aug-2010)

"This is a level with a very typical style from TR1. The same outfit for Lara, the same textures, the typical caves, the same enemies, the deep pits, the spikes, the rolling balls, the typical traps, the same look for the items, the musics, a lot of gymnastics... The game begins when Lara kills Larson in the lake at the end of the Lost Valley level, but it's not a remake; soon you'll find another passage and more caves with new challenges. On my way I found a couple of wheels (artifacts), one of them after a very tricky movement at the end of a pit and another one underwater, but I've finished the level with no use for them (when I picked up the second, only one counted in my inventory). Also I couldn't find secrets. Design is good, but I found wrong/strange SFX sounds for the swinging blades, the wall switches, when Lara hits a wall... there are a lot of stretched textures, missed sounds and more. I missed cameras to show what you're doing 'cause sometimes you get disoriented and you need to explore again the same areas, but it seems it's not the style of this builder. But even so, the game is very playable, over all for this people who loved that kind of TR1 levels." - Jose (05-Aug-2010)

"A TR1 deja-vu. Starting with an earthquake, that fortunately will tops after some meters if you survive the falling rocks. The rest is straight forward linear gameplay. There are no alternate routes to the one leading to the end of the level. It's simply running forward through rocky corridors and caves, killing some raptors, dogs and bates, avoiding some spike- traps, doing 2 or 3 a bit tricky jumps that are not really challenging. There's not much to explore. Some sounds a strange, so e.g. the sound of throwing a lever or the moving blades. The atmosphere is not really convincing and far away from what we had in TR1. Bu all things considered: It's solidly built debut-level with some nice ideas." - Christian (04-Aug-2010)

"Just finished this one and just as every time when I play a TR1 style game, I really enjoyed it. As a matter of fact, this is probably one of the closest "TR1 feeling" levels I have played so far. The foot steps, the sound of the guns, Lara's looks and movement etc.. Everything very much like the TR1 engine was - I really liked that. Of course the level has a few flaws: Some sounds were wrong, missing or just strange (like the swing blade sound). The earthquake in the beginning was a bit too long for my taste and there was a bit too much back and forward jumping over spike pits. The texturing is solid but the lighting is rather flat. The game play is simple and fairly straightforward. Unfortunately there are no cameras, so it is a bit hard to figure what a lever did when pulled. Other than that this is a great level and a very promising start since this was a debut level. I would say, this is in the"must play" category for TR1 fans. I hope the builder will release more levels in that style and keep up the good work, with some improvement in the lighting and sound department." - Blue43 (03-Aug-2010)

"It was very close to a TR1 level. Even the font was nearly equal. I liked the continuation of the Peru levels but the level was quite linear. The only tasks were finding the right levers. I found two secrets here in form of artifacts, but they weren't hard to find. The jumping parts were challenging and made the level acceptable. I liked the atmosphere and the original sound, sometimes it was a bit strange - Lara said "NO" when she stood in front of a pendulum. If you want to have a go at a nostalgic TR1 level interpreted with the TR4 engine, have a try. It's definately worth." - manarch2 (03-Aug-2010)

"A debut level that brings up the pure nostalgia of TR1 again and shows great promise. Solid work on the texturing here, but too little done with lighting to further enhance the atmosphere. The raptors are quite tough to kill, but not a major threat, neither do the wolves and bats or the rolling boulders deter Lara much on her way out. I really enjoyed the course that is quite linear and sometimes circles you back to a door you ran by previously - so keep going, even if you get no camera clues when you pull the few levers along the way. A few rooms have interesting jumps to master - nothing difficult but not alway immediately obvious. There are a few mixed up sounds, which is actually quite funny with the swinging blades, but that does not take away from this decent game of about 25 minutes. Looking forward to seeing more from this new builder!" - MichaelP (02-Aug-2010)

"Another journey back in time to the gold,old-fashioned TR1 era.If it's a completely unpretentious game you're after,this should do the trick.It's all about running,shooting and jumping;in a somewhat circular fashion,with a few levers to pull to open doors back where you've previously been. Gameplay is fine,although the enemy attacks inflict comparatively little damage (the raptors prefer to push you around rather than bite);there are no actual puzzles per se;and there's at least one too many 'jump back and forth over the spike pit' challenges.I had peculiar sound issues with the swinging blades;there was no music anywhere and a complete absence of camera clues.Nonetheless,the texturing and lighting was well up to standard;and there were several exciting sequences (I especially loved the big slide toward an awaiting enemy) which helped maintain the interest over the 40 minutes which this took me (I become lost and inadvertantly re-traced my steps at one point - an occurance which a camera clue would have helped avoid).Nonetheless,a solid and unpretentious debut." - Orbit Dream (02-Aug-2010)
back home search