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Tomb Raider Xbox 360 Review

Mar 11,2013 0 Comments

Tomb Raider Xbox 360 Review

Tomb Raider Xbox 360 Review. It’s fair to say that Tomb Raider is a series that has had its ups and downs. From the very first game which introduced the world to the now famous Lara Croft character, through to today where we have the story somewhat starting over, the franchise has captured many gamers hearts over the past 15 or so years. And so we come to now. Crystal Dynamics wants to restart the Tomb Raider storyline and give fans an insight into how Lara came to become obsessed with raiding tombs – something which really hasn’t been explored before in the series. In short, it’s come off trumps and Crystal Dynamics has restored the series back to its former revered status.

The story begins with Lara travelling on a ship with her grandfather to film a reality TV series about exploring ancient areas of the world. Whilst Lara sleeps in her cabin, the boat hits a large storm and ends up running aground on the beach of a mysterious island. Lara damaged and broken – scratches and blood all over her – must figure a way to get off the island and save her friends.

Whilst the storyline is somewhat new, the gameplay and the way you interact with Lara is not. Controlled from a third person perspective, Lara tasks you jumping, shooting, hiding and puzzle solving to aid her in the quest of escaping. However, it is the atmosphere, and feeling of the character that has changed this time around.

Instead of instantly becoming a female killing machine, Lara is instead broken and distraught. Throughout the early sections of the game it seems as if Lara is doing many things (such as shooting deer) that she just does not feel good about at all. This is where some of the problems first crop up with the game, though. One minute you will find yourself apologising to a deer for shooting it to get meat, and the next you will be gunning down enemies, without a care in the world. What Crystal Dynamics have attempted with the series should be commended as it takes away from the usual generic story we see from shooters, but there are times where the game forgets this.

One such example is when Lara is hurt at the start of the game and further on. During the early sections Lara limps about with a clearly damaged body and you can almost feel the pain she is in. Then all of a sudden without medicine she is fine and running about only for further into the game for this exact sequence to happen again. It just seems silly.

Looking past this you find some truly amazing gameplay. There is no doubt that Crystal Dynamics is a huge fan of the Uncharted series because many of that series’ tropes has been carried over, but to be fair, Uncharted took a lot from Lara in the first place. As you progress through the levels you will come across puzzles built directly into the environment. These are incredibly well designed and not difficult enough that they will have you stuck for hours on end. We found that if we bashed our heads on the puzzle long enough, we would get it, with the longest puzzle only stumping us for 20 or so minutes.

There is a greater focus on the character of Lara as well with the gameplay revolving around how she turns from a timid, scared character through to a strong female lead. This has been the source of much controversy during the game’s development. The other thing about Lara is that she graphically changes during the campaign. As time wears on her clothes tear and her wounds get covered by increasingly larger bandages. It’s easy to see how far you are in the campaign just by looking at the Lara character model. The game is quite lengthy as well with the game taking us around nine hours to complete.

The other sections of the gameplay revolve around gunplay and environmental jumping puzzles. Generally the game does a very good job of letting you know where you should be heading next, but if you do get stuck, Lara can use a mode that mimics the eagle vision mode of Assassin’s Creed quite closely to find important areas of the current environment.

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