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Level: Tomb Raider: Anniversary II - Definitive Demo back home search
Author(s): Bojrkraider SrDanielPonces
total rating:9.27 Gameplay &
Puzzles
Enemies,
Objects &
Secrets
Atmosphere,
Sound &
Cameras
Lighting &
Textures
ameliacrofty 7 9 10 7
Cbl 8 10 10 8
Dark Sheep 9 9 10 10
DJ Full 9 10 10 9
Jay 9 9 10 10
JesseG 8 9 10 9
JoeTheCrazyGamer 10 10 10 10
manarch2 6 9 9 9
Phil 9 9 9 10
Ryan 9 9 9 9
SeniorBlitz 10 10 10 10
The Snarky Lesbian 8 6 10 10
Victoria 10 10 10 10
Wolf7 9 10 10 10
Woops 10 10 10 10
xManuelCroft 8 8 9 10
category averages
(16 reviews)
8.69 9.19 9.75 9.44

Reviewer's comments

"First of all, congratulations for this interesting game. The levels and textures are really wonderful and worked, and cinematics were a surprised for me. When I played, it made me feel nostalgic, remembering me as a kid playing TR2 with my brother, an incredible moment of my life. However, there's some things that I would like to talk about in order to improve some aspects. First, I think that there should be more music and themes in levels, which I really miss about. Another thing is that I know that you can exploit more the scenarios and make more innovations, with the classic TR's essence, of course, as Tr Retold did for example. I also think that it would be great if there's could be more enemies and puzzles, that I think it's very important on these kind of Tomb Raiders. I hope you'll still making this awesome project! ;)))" - xManuelCroft (16-Mar-2019)

"Great even as for a demo. From the screenshots I was afraid the HD buildings will look like paper but it's not the thing when you try the actual game. City gameplay has some confusing parts just like a city should, but the cabinet key just crosses the line - there should be some unmissable cabinet to teach you how to use it, because a lot of people will try this custom level as the first one in their life and they will be totally clueless you can even interact with those things. Some other things are plainly unfair, but those are all meant for minor or major secrets, what may or may not change in the final version but you could still debate if it should or shouldn't. Gotta take one point from graphics because I just couldn't ignore thousands of bent bricks - and while those can get compressed in real-life scenarios, it never happens on the surface, and in this Great Wall it's so notorious the entire room grid should be revised. That's all for now, waiting for the full version while this is already one of the best demos ever. Gooooooood job." - DJ Full (09-Mar-2019)

"I had a joyful surprise when I started the game as it really got the "Anniversary" point, so to change-the-game-and- improving-the-graphics. The game shows indeed the great ability of the authors, that cared a lot about the appearance and refreshed a little the gameplay. A demo of what might become a great remake of the, in my opinion, greatest Tomb Raider game. Wolfy Regards." - Wolf7 (09-Mar-2019)

"It’s been some time since a level’s atmosphere truly took my breath away, but this one did. The vistas that open out in the course of both levels are stunning: seeing the winding battlements of the Great Wall disappearing in the distance or the impressively accurate skyline of Venice across the water were both beautiful. The atmosphere made the levels fun to explore, since almost every moment looked gorgeous. The gameplay itself was largely exploration based rather than puzzles or traps, and I appreciated it immensely. Traversal is one of my favorite parts of early Tomb Raider levels in official games, and after all, these are meant to be introductory levels in a longer game rather than complete levels by themselves. The addition of new climbing and parallel bar swinging moves (and animations) for Lara made navigation especially fun. I found two things jarring: Lara’s scream when grabbing a ledge after a fall caught me by surprise since it really sounded painful rather than like an exertion. Also, the landing animation after a jump, with Lara’s slight stumble and screen shudder, became annoying over time. I also found some of the textures, while beautiful, to look squashed or stretched unnecessarily, especially underneath uneven ledges. That said, these issues are subsumed by the achievement of the grand scale visuals and one of the most faithful recreations of real places I’ve seen in a Tomb Raider level. Fun, easy to play, lots to explore, and lots to look at." - Cbl (03-Mar-2019)

"As an avid fan of Tomb Raider 2 I definitely had to try this, however it isn't necessarily what I expected in a remake. It has TR4s controls, yes it is in TR4's engine, but with a lot of the weird extra controls TR4 has, including some I've never seen before, even in other levels. Leaving me dumbfounded in many areas until I started pressing random buttons and found out that Lara can do wall leaps ala Assassin's Creed or tosspot games like Tomb Raider: Legend. They do however work fairly well here, that fairness I have to grant. And similar goes for the graphics and textures. They are much more high res and artistically sound, slight changes to the geometry of the original levels were used to create way bigger areas than the original presented, rewarding the player with some stunning views and vistas from little waterfalls, to grassy caves and deep dungeons. Especially the second level (which is not a remake but a new level entirely that bridges the gap between the original first two levels in a nice way) is an artistic achievement. Presenting you with a little part of Venice to explore for yourself, and that level is gigantic. With the whole cityscape and little NPCs that do not move it is, as mentioned previously an artistic achievement of the highest degree that will definitely surprise you in a good way. However... The problem herein is, that in order to create a great Tomb Raider level you do not just need artistic talents, you also need to be a good level designer. And this is this level-set's biggest issue - Level Design. While the Great Wall level isn't as problematic in this because it tries to somewhat follow the original's design, it still kind of mianders around with a lot of open and empty areas, and this game has very little pickups overall. Worse yet, the second level. As stunningly pretty as it is, I'm not sure I'd consider it an actual "Tomb Raider" level as 90% of the level is spend running around the city like it's some kind of maze to find something, anything. And after a while you have already seen all the cool city walls, and you see it for what it is underneath. A bland boring hedge maze. The whole thing containing about 5 enemies in total. Defeating me made me almost feel a rush of adrenaline as it allowed me a break from the tedium that is the rest of the level, which goes the following way: You find two keys, each of these keys opens some kind of little hut, which has a enemy inside that drops one half of a key item. Put that key item into it's keyhole and you can essentially enter the area the vanilla game's "Venice" level starts in. That is about 10 minutes of actual Tomb Raider gameplay and 90 Minutes of Secret Files: Tunguska coupled with finding side-grade secrets. Otherwise the entire level does not have a single form of ammo pickup. Wait I'm lying, I found blue shotgun shells somewhere. Then like 3 med kits and that is it. Though in all fairness, maybe I felt that way because I'm an old school TR2 shooty-bang-bang knucklehead. So if you really enjoy a bit of (often fruitless) exploration, don't mind a bit of downtime from the action but absolute love seeing some magnificent artistry, then you will love this Demo. The textures alone might change your perception on what is doable in this older engine. If however you are like me, and not being able to shoot a mass of pixels for like 10 minutes gives you a prickly feeling on your skin, then you are unlikely to enjoy this." - The Snarky Lesbian (25-Feb-2019)

"We've had our share of TR2 remakes lately, complete with the annoying and totally unnecessary FMV sequence from the original release. At least the one here is abbreviated. For some reason it's been given the name "definitive" demo, whatever that means. It could be an intended slap at Tombraider95's partial remake released back in June. Probably not, however, since that one was not billed as a demo, but the inference is certainly reasonable. Anyway, we once again get to explore the Great Wall and Venice. To me Great Wall was little more than a rehash of what we've seen many times before, with tigers and crows and spiders and - you get the picture - and it's unnecessarily dark in too many places, but the remote views of the wall and surrounding countryside are breathtaking. For my money, the reason you play this one is the delightful romp you get in St. Mark's Square. It's remarkably accurate (I know, I've been there) and a far cry from the Venice levels we've been offered to date. You spend a little time in the water, but most of the gameplay takes place in and around the iconic buildings of Venice's trademark tourist attraction. All told I spent about an hour and a half here, but the latter segment was by far the more enjoyable. Highly recommended." - Phil (15-Jan-2019)

"So much fun in what seemed like so short because playing this made time go by fast! Venice was my favorite demo level. The atmosphere and the graphics were just amazing. I can't wait for more levels to be released!" - Victoria (13-Jan-2019)

"Wonderful atmosphere, nostalgic however with new and very well built scenarios. I loved every detail, congratulations to the work." - Dark Sheep (12-Jan-2019)

"This is a very promising demo with excellent looks, both parts of the first and the whole second level are pretty stunning to look at and especially the second level is a very realistic picture of Venice that makes this game worth to see. Not sure if I can say it's worth to play, because the gameplay is really not to my liking. Much of the first level is highly reminiscent of the original level and even if some traps and jump sequences are different, it wasn't that interesting to follow. The second level is basically an extended sightseeing trip, as said it's nice for visiting all the locations alone but there's little to do actually, else than finding a lot of items (most are secrets in one form or another). Sometimes a few decent acrobatics make up for the change. I wished there were a lot more puzzles and actual tasks in there. All the secret items are fun to find but there is not enough substance to the main gameplay path. What could have been better were the many parts where Lara just looks onto plain walls, often there is something important around but not where she looks at, but that's a minor thing - all other aspects are very professional and it's an extremely beautiful game, despite a few textures needing some more attention. I also liked that you get an explanation on how Lara enters the "real" Venice level at the end. Maybe there is more to come in other levels of the full version, I really hope so because otherwise the talent of the builders is not used to its maximum. Finished in 50 minutes." - manarch2 (11-Jan-2019)

"Lara explores the Great Wall and Venice just like the old times. Gameplay is mostly exploration and traps with a fair amount of combat, but a bit lacking in the puzzles department. The levels are decorated nicely with a variety of objects, including people that help Venice feel just a bit less sparse. The geometry is good and the levels are immersive, I particularly liked the new part of the Great Wall level and how it gives a sense of a vast landscape. The cutscenes are put together very well. Textures are applied well, a few get warped due to the geometry which prevents them from lining up with each other, but that is a minor complaint. Lighting is nice but more color variety would please me. Overall I am impressed with the attention to detail and this reiteration of Tomb Raider 2 blew away my expectations. 1 hour 15 minutes." - JesseG (08-Jan-2019)

"Simply stunning. I personally don't enjoy the original Tomb Raider 2 that much but this pack is simply stunning. the new areas added in the Great Wall are mesmerizing. The entirety of the second level is just great. Amazing work! Can't wait to see the full game!" - Woops (07-Jan-2019)

"TR Anniversary 9/9/10/10 What a treat this is: a beautifully updated version of the first two TR2 levels. The Great Wall level is truly impressive, but for pure, jaw-dropping amazement just wait until you get to Venice and view St Mark's square. It's entirely realistic and, as someone who adores Venice levels in all their incarnations, I was happy just to wander around sight-seeing before getting stuck into any actual gameplay. It's not a slavish re-creation of the original levels (although quite a few parts of the Great Wall will seem familiar), more a re-imagined version of the old favourites, with Lara's up to date moves and vastly superior graphics. There's plenty of fun to be had with the gameplay too, whether emulating the fun traps etc., from the Great Wall, or the largely new aspects of Venice. I had a wonderful time and was really sorry when it ended. I just hope we don't have to wait too long for the full version, but obviously games of this quality can't be rushed. An absolute must-play." - Jay (07-Jan-2019)

"A very impressive Demo that improves on all aspects of the previous Trials, the new areas are integrated in such a nice way, without feeling like they were shoehorned, I also have to praise the implementation of the alternate secrets and artifacts, the amount of things to collect might be overwhelming to some, however, the implementation of such felt right, well hidden, but not cryptic, with a nice in- sight into the development of the level and some extra trivia as a reward. The atmosphere was spot-on, full of visual details and a sleek look, the highlight for me however was the new level, a really nice intro and it fills in the plot gaps really well, with nice pacing and build- up." - SeniorBlitz (05-Jan-2019)

"I have to say that this demo really improved from the last one, the great wall level was really beautiful and enjoyable but I saw some distorded textures and some strange shadows that makes the room kinda weird. As for the second level the gameplay gets slow, basically you just walk around and search for keys to go forward and the map is really difficult to follow. I got lost a lot of times, the first level was great but the second needs more improving, looking forward!" - ameliacrofty (04-Jan-2019)

"Remakes of official levels aren't among my favourites, as it would have to really surpass my expectations for me to find it worthwhile to play without getting a sense that I've been there and done that (but that's just me, others might feel differently). So I was actually very pleasantly surprised by this effort and found it thoroughly entertaining (rather perversely). It's based around the Great Wall and Venice sections and manages to be faithful to the parts that are recognisable, but it adds a significant amount of new gameplay to the format, making it a much more enjoyable and rewarding experience overall. The locations themselves are also beautifully crafted and textured. In particular, Venice looks absolutely stunning with the new textures used. The secret system is very different to the one from the original game. You still get the pickups reward for collecting all three in a level, but you can also acquire gold bars and Venetian masks in the respective levels for a bonus of a little behind the scenes look at the project. Not as useful as ammo or medipacks but a nice touch nonetheless. Overall, I enjoyed this much more than I expected to, and I'm looking forward eagerly to the next sections." - Ryan (04-Jan-2019)

"This demo looks good, has amazing gameplay it also has a good atmosphere, 100% recommended, Can't think of any reason not to give a full score. Can't wait till the full game comes out." - JoeTheCrazyGamer (01-Jan-2019)
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