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Level: Blue in the Blue back home search
Author(s): Qunai
total rating:6.02 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
alan 6 5 6 5
Dimpfelmoser 6 6 7 7
Gerty 7 6 7 7
Jay 6 5 6 5
Jbc21 6 5 5 8
John 6 5 6 5
Jose 5 4 4 4
Kristina 7 7 7 7
manarch2 6 3 4 3
MichaelP 8 5 7 7
Monika 7 6 7 7
Navi 5 4 3 4
Orbit Dream 4 3 3 4
Phil 7 6 6 7
RaiderGirl 7 6 7 7
Ryan 6 5 6 5
Salvin 7 7 9 9
Sash 7 7 6 7
Scott 7 6 8 7
Scottie 8 7 6 4
Torry 6 6 9 8
Treeble 9 8 5 4
category averages
(22 reviews)
6.50 5.55 6.09 5.95

Reviewer's comments

"I'm sure that back when this level was released (early 2001) it would have been no mean feat for some raiders. But in all honesty, playing this today... I've definitely seen more difficult levels, but I've also seen ones that are better constructed, even concerning the release date. The textures are crude and not well done at all and the rooms are bare and functional (I'm not saying that every room has to be filled with loads of objects but more could definitely have been done here). Enemies are also scarce (only one harpy and three demigods) so pickups are few as a consequence. Having no enemies isn't a bad thing, in my opinion, but I was hoping for a little more action. The gameplay isn't without its moments, but for me it wasn't nearly as difficult as others claim, but neither is it particularly varied (mainly trying to find the next square to jump to) and of the two routes to the end of the level, I naturally ended up taking the longer route. OK enough, I suppose, but nothing to rave about." - Ryan (17-Apr-2018)

"I must admit that I've not played any of this builder's later releases to completion (although I've tried), because they're just too danged difficult and are beyond the reach of the average (and perhaps even experienced) raider. This one, however, is manageable, although it's certainly no gem. It appears crude in appearance, and there are apparently two different paths to choose from in completing the level. I used Lizard Queen's walkthrough and chose the longer (and presumably more difficult) path, so my total playing time was just under 30 minutes. Your task is to locate a number of blue gems under sunny skies (hence the title of the level), and the fabled "Japanese jumps" are introduced to us in this quest. Enemies are few (most formidable are the demigods), and so therefore are weapons and ammo. The need for flares is nonexistent. A pleasant diversion but nothing to write home about." - Phil (24-Oct-2017)

"In a huge and open space with mountains and a big structure on the sky, your objective is to locate some crystals scattered around, then find out how to get them, then find their 'keyholes'. Some enemies will appear like demigods, skeletons, harpies. The jump to the water ceiling was strange but cool. The level ended when Lara approached to a room with many weapons and ammo. A shame because I wanted to collect all those goodies..." - alan (19-Oct-2017)

"Here's a classic example of how much one's perceptions (and abilities) alter in 14 years. I remember finding this quite challenging back then, but it's amazing how much easier it feels now. It's still a confusing level though - that much hasn't changed in the intervening years. I suppose this debut level sets the scene for the author's later fiendish works (yes CIL, I am looking at you) which I never managed to complete and probably never will as I suspect they won't seem a lot easier when I take a look at them. Looks wise, this does look rather roughly made and it's very enemy-light, so it's definitely all about the exploration and agility. Definitely not a level for absolute beginners, this one." - Jay (18-May-2015)

"When I began the level and I noticed the impossible "timed runs" to get the blue gems I thought: "This will be a level to abandone soon". But after a ride around the area doing some tasks I was able to go up the cliffs and get a gem and soon I finished the level (several gems remaining; uh?). The giant structure in the middle of the sky with the floating water was original, but for some reason I didn't get fun playing this level. The texturization is bad, perhaps 'cause the angulous architecture, and the gameplay is very confusing with some tricky jumps and unmarked climbable walls. I only found a couple of demigods to shoot and the entire level is empty of objects. Not a level for my taste." - Jose (29-Apr-2015)

"This level is described as 'challenging'.Really?It took me 12 minutes to complete and,aside from a couple of trickyish jumps to reach two gems,there really wasn't much to it;especially as the builder provides you with two routes to the final area (one of which seems to be too tricky;the other,way too easy) even though it's possible to use a somewhat more unorthodox path unenvisaged by the builder,but which prevents an important flip effect from occuring.At least one gem remained uncollected for me;and the final tedious monkey-swing could be easily bypassed with a standard banana jump (which the builder presumably considered too hard).The looks are decidedly scrappy,while enemies seem to have been inserted as an afterthought.Perhaps this was considered to be at the sharp end of level playing back in the day,but after all those intervening years (and 1700 levels)it now seems somewhat unremarkable." - Orbit Dream (15-Jun-2013)

"Well... opinions differ. The ratings for the latter three categories are way too high in my opinion as the environment is very crudely designed with mostly one or two grass textures from the cleopal tga used for the environment and only a couple of others used for the buildings and blocks, there are misplaced textures in all forms (especially the heavily streched ones in the central tower), the architecture is very strange with a lot of odd structures and there were several paperthin walls that didn't have collision. That said, the gameplay is the real strength of the game although it was not exactly great - there are a lot of tricky jumps around the functional setting and the builder sends you up and down for the five gems in a very clever way and with using of a couple of interesting flipmaps; the downsides are the heavy shortcuts throughout the whole level that make most of the challenges being too easy and completely take the challenge away; I think the level could be finished in three to five minutes of net gametime because of them and even if you are going for the longer route, there are smaller shortcuts within the paths and also ways around the valley that don't lead you anywhere but to total confusion. With using the walkthrough one still can have a lot of fun trying out all the different tricks and it never got overly boring. Getting all the gems, I spent 20 minutes of net gametime in here which is surprisingly short in comparison to the real time, found no secrets but the two extra weapons. Not overly bad for a debut, especially considering the age of this level, but it clearly could have been so much better with little more care." - manarch2 (20-Sep-2012)

"This level is as ugly as a mud fence, but one may not see on the appearance. The intrinsic values count. Indeed, I am a little bit disappointed. Supposedly this should be one of this typical Japan level with very heavy and very scanty jump actions. I did not feel it, however, at all as difficult. With the time run one had to pick out only the right field Trigger and then run simply fast. The jumps were also not all too difficult. One could shoot the Demigod and the harpies with both pistols and one could ignore the skeletons or send them with the explosive ammunition to the afterworld. And at the end I had one more precious stone left. Of course lighting, stretched textures and the level architecture were partly really bad, but it has given a lot of fun to play. And who wants to test just sometimes his jump abilities, is exactly right here." - Scottie (13-Feb-2010)

"This is another of those levels I've started countless times and dropped right at the beginning for not being able to figure out whatever I was supposed to do. Well, after coming back to it once again, now thankfully a walkthrough was available. It's quite a non linear level, so I only used to point me in the directions of the missing gems, which are there teasing you most of the time but you have quite difficult paths to follow before getting them (I never got the one burning right in the beginning). After using them and setting off a few flipmaps (including a floating water shaft), you slide to the end of the level. Visually speaking, this level is horrific, with lots of flashing rooms/horizon braking in most of the time and no lighting effects at all, but gameplay is really quite challenging. 35 minutes. 02/07" - Treeble (18-Feb-2007)

"This is another one of those advanced levels from our Japanese friends but at least this game is playable not like some others. Here you start off in an area beneath an alien spaceship high in the sky and firstly you need to bring it down to earth so you can explore within. To do so you need TWO gems. I know some people say three but you only need two. Use one on the only door and inside is another receptacle and once the second one is placed the ship comes crashing down. There is another receptacle by the water high on a ledge but when I placed this third one nothing new happened. Anyway the first two gems are acquired by rope swinging and jumping into alcoves and you need to position your swing slightly off centre to get these. Pretty easy actually. The third gem I got by picking it up in the fire and running for the water sucking down health packs like crazy. To get to the third receptacle go behind it and run/jump over the creek and grab the face as this side is climbable. To get into the ship there are a few tricky jumps but once done you simply climb up. Inside is a huge suspended water tank which Lara can jump up into and swim to the surface. Here is a fourth receptacle and the gem for it is directly behind you. Place that the door opens and you commence a long slide to a stash of goodies where the level abruptly ends. Pity looked like the aliens absconded as I could not find any." - Torry (22-Jan-2003)

"Well, it was a very cold Sunday, too cold to go outside and I did play it of and on, but still in one go, but what a very confusing level this was. I love jumping, so I wanted to try and finish this level and by doing so, died a thousand deaths. Figuring out where to go and what to do first took a while as I saw some blue gems, but how to get them. The figuring out part is fun, but tedious and I am glad I reserved a day for this game, or else it would be in my bin for sure. Because this is quite a hard level to do and also the author does use the 'running in water' bug. Getting the gem with the timed fire finally, gave me a great feeling, and the minute the music started I did jump in my chair as I was so focused on what I was doing, that the skeletons hacked at Lara and before I even could draw the crossbow Lara was dead. And of course I didn't save, so had to do that part all over again. Well I am glad I made it, and readings Sash's review I for sure will try on a later date to find that hidden tunnel as I kept a saved game, just for that. 09-12-2002" - Gerty (15-Dec-2002)

"Many didn't like this level because of it's difficulty but for some strange reason I did so I played it twice not in one day but in several months apart. It's true it has some difficult jumps especially if you want to avoid using the 'shallow jump' like I did. There is a way although I am afraid an illegal one. After those floating platforms meaning when you get up there it's possible to jump to the wall and from there make your way up to the rocks eventually you will find a way to walk all around the rocks and when reach the area close to where the crossbow is you can angle a jump to the right and then it's easy to jump onto the high blocks and continue. I did it both ways of course the illegal one and the legal one. The harpies and demigods will give you some trouble and of course the gem on fire. I tried many times but in the end I grabbed it and run like the wind to the water you guessed right Lara's bum was on fire. It's not much to see nothing original about the textures but it's a good practice." - Kristina (10-Dec-2002)

"This level takes place in a huge outdoor area sort of a valley surrounded by mountains and containing a beautiful body of water and some tall pillars. Using all of your climbing and jumping skills as well as a little rope swinging your objective is to get to the top of these pillars to collect some blue gems which are needed for access to the giant floating fortress in the sky (you can't miss it). Once you get up to the big structure there's a cool water effect which will take you to that final slide during which you'll see a room full of goodies - the levels one secret. If you want the secret you have to make your way around the top of the mountains and your reward for doing so is the uzis the revolver the grenade launcher and some ammo - you don't really need it though as there are few enemies and you'll find the crossbow on the side of the mountain and some explosive ammo as well which is useful on the skeletons. After you get the secret you can also have fun getting back down to the valley floor quickly by jumping down into the water far below. Overall a fun level if you like a bit of exploring." - RaiderGirl (01-Nov-2002)

"I had abandoned this level two or three times long ago because I just could not get to any of those gems and now with one year and 500+ levels more experience it was actually not that hard at all and took me 40 minutes to complete. You can get 5 gems ('Stones of Astral Body') in total. I used four but I think you can even get by using only two. It is basically one large room with that 'astral body' above which you need to reach to dive 'upward' and exit. The fun is in the challenge to get to the gems as this will require a number of rather smart maneuvres with jumps on triangles twists and turns in mid air rope swings and the likes. I even managed the timed fire as it is a matter of starting out from the right place. Two skeletons two demigods and two harpies are thrown in as enemies but as you have crossbow and explosives there is really not much of a point there. Worth a try if you want to test your skills." - Michael (06-Oct-2002)

"This is an outside level which takes you on a wild goose chase on the hunt for loads of blue gems these gems are placed up high on ledges and are really hard to get for example you can see them easily enough but it takes you about 20 minutes to figure out how you might be able to get to it as you have to do a lot of jumping ledges across gaps and slopes it is very hard. The thing that makes it harder is that you can spend ages trying to get into a certain area only to realise that a block or pillar near it is climbable and it was only by luck I discovered this. The level was enjoyable though even though it was hard and tedious I really did have a good time trying to figure out how to get these gems. You also have to swim a little and use a rope to progress and I liked the way the level was set so that you could discover where these gems were and didn't have to collect them in a certain order. There was no other puzzles really and only a fire trap and a few harpies and sphinx's to keep you at bay. The end water room had me wondering whether there was a bug in the game or not it was very interesting. Textures and lighting were ok could have been better and more puzzles and traps might have been nice as well as maybe the difficulty rating could have been lowered but this level was mildly fun and definitely one to check out :)" - John (12-Sep-2002)

"I was a little disappointed by this level. For one it was very short and Lara had only a few crystals to find in order to finish the level. A few demigods and two birds crossed her way. The diagram was not like that thrilling. What should it actually represent? Camera guidance was not helpful. I could not solve the mystery with the burning crystal although I tried all possible things. I finally left it and could finish the level nevertheless. Broken eyeglasses were there to find. I liked Eye of Eve better. This one was also not that difficult." - Navi (10-Sep-2002)

"This was my second try to play this level and this time I succeeded. I used the shallows jump bug to get one of the three necessary Stones of Astral Body. I found the way with the timed sequence to get the Stone of Astral Body that is in a fire. I never got there in time so I just let it stay where it was. I think that this is an extremely difficult level with some jumps that are out of the ordinary and a few times it was not at all obvious which way to go. The enemies I met were 3 demigods and one ore two beetles nibbling away Lara's health. I didn't find any secrets. The end is a bit disappointing. Sliding down towards all the goodies and then the level ends before you get there to pick them up. My playing time was 40 minutes (statistic) but it took much more time and a lot of patience. (09/2002)" - Monika (03-Sep-2002)

"As Jbc21 said this is a confusing level but only in the sense of working out how to reach certain areas that hold pick ups. The first time I played this I gave up because of the difficulty in obtaining the 4 blue gems scattered around the large open environment where all of the level takes place but I have now learnt that one of them is only reachable using the running in water bug one is a bit of a red herring as you only need 3 gems initially and in any case it is almost but not impossible to get as even if you go the long way around to extinguish the flame that surrounds it it ignites before you can reach it and then you have to try and run to the water alight using almost all your health and the other two need precise rope jumps to get them. When you do find and place the gems you are then able to climb into a huge hovering structure in the sky fight one demigod and swim to a long slide to the end. I also found out through hard work that there are two ways to reach the end there's the one I wrote that after 23 minutes ends before you hit the bottom of the slide where you can see a huge stash of pick ups and the other taking 32 minutes is a grueling series of jumps around the outer terrain to find a hidden tunnel that leads to that stash the only secret and a few enemies but it doesn't trigger the end so I guess if you want you can go the long way back and do the slide. I probably wouldn't recommend this level to players that aren't confident in making tricky jumps but for the seasoned player this will be a good short fun test of your skills." - Sash (21-Jun-2002)

"God! This level is so confusing! I really don't know what to think. It is probably one of the most difficult levels I've played! I roamed in the main room for ages before finding my way to the blue Stones of Astral Body! The architecture is definitely superb especially this central Astral Body. Textures are nice but often stretched. Well I didn't manage to get the burning blue stone. I found the way up but wasn't fast enough in the slide to catch it! Never mind I realized that it is useless for the rest of the game. OK I was desperate for action after an hour of raging and I got it when I reach the platform of the space ship. Big monsters are waiting for you! The idea of the water gate was great! But from there the game becomes easy and short! I was so happy and relieved to find this room with all those attractive-looking pickups and skeletons but no chance! Here again there seem to be no secrets although all upper galleries in the mountain could be one as well as the crossbow and arrows hiding places. Well this level is certainly worthwhile playing if you like challenges but the beginners should avoid it if they don't want an epileptic attack!" - Jbc21 (21-Jun-2002)

"Well I generally liked this level. It was a bit long. I really think the author needs some lava textures real bad. There is also a lack of camera cut-aways. The baddies are good but every single enemy was a difficult to kill enemy there were no simple ones. I loved the atmosphere and puzzles even if they were a little on the linear side." - Scott (21-Jun-2002)

"Ok this is a simply built level. It uses a typical wad and typical textures. But I love it. I was very enjoyed to play it! I very much like the strange Astral Construction. Is it made by the Aliens? Beautiful. I think that Masashi is a great Tomb Raider Level Designer." - Salvin (21-Jun-2002)

"Although the concept of this level is quite ingenious I found it deeply frustrating as some of the jumps that seem possible are not and some that seem impossible are in fact manageable and you don't get many clues where to jump and grab. Also the thread in the forum didn't make much sense to me as I couldn't find a way to finish this game with only three gems and I didn't know where to start with Sash's elaborate advice about how to employ the useful bug. So in the end I just grabbed the gem in the fire and used all my medi-packs on my sprint to the water. Mind you I just came back from the Underworld and was used to that. There were three lonesome beetles looking for something to nibble at two banshees and three demigods. Well that was the easy part. It's all set in one area but you reach some higher ground in the course of this. The main focus in this game is finding the jumps that get you to the final slope. There is not much else really but if you like this kind of thing go for it." - Dimpfelmoser (21-Jun-2002)
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