I just wanted to briefly share my thoughts on the final game I checked out at Comic-Con this year, Tomb Raider. I was lucky enough to get some hands-on time with Crystal Dynamics’ upcoming re-imagining of the franchise and - straight to the point here - I was impressed.
From the start, you get a strong, familiar feel of Uncharted from the game. You can see it in the environments as well as the way Lara moves and interacts with everything. Much like Uncharted, it’s these little things that add to the realism. Slight variations in movement, different animations when jumping and climbing, subtle interactions with the world around you as you’re moving through it. A little polish goes a long way.
Speaking of environments, the rocky, forested area you trek through is stunning. You get trees and rocks and animals and trees and rocks. All put together in a way that looks natural, yet incorporates platforming well.
The platforming-puzzles that made the original Tomb Raider games challenging were in there right at the beginning. You’re tasked with getting a bow from a hanging corpse in a tree. Searching around the area you’re in, you find a way up a rock formation, to the top of the roof of a shack, onto the tree limb adjacent to where your buddy is hanging - the bow, not the dead guy. It wasn't super obvious, lacking glowing indicators and such, which was a good thing. I find that it deters from the challenge of puzzles a bit, in games that you’re unable to disable it in.
Lastly, there’s Lara Croft, herself. I've not seen too much talk about the thoughts on the original versus the new Lara, but I’m sure there’s some flying around here-and-there. Personally, I like the new version of the spelunking heroine. She’s a more realistic and, possibly for some, relatable character. With the massive changes to graphical capabilities of consoles since Ms. Croft was introduced, it’s only obvious that she’d be due for a facelift. Yeah, the new Lara Croft is hot. There. I said it.
Well, that’s all I really have to say on Tomb Raider, for now. The demo was rather short, but it showcased a good mix of what to expect when it lands on March 5th, 2013. I was originally only semi-interested in this game when I first heard about it, but now that I've had a chance to play around with it, there’s a really good chance I’ll be picking it up next year. Anyone else set on that, as well?
---Mr. Creeper ~ Co-Founder & Website Administrator