Shadow of the Tomb Raider Review: Let’s Dig Some Tombs

In the 90s, Lara Croft, the first love of the male players, dragged into many different places in time. And also appeared on dozens of platforms including mobile. After that, the team of Eidos and Crytal Dynamics took over the series. So the Tomb Raider brand was made from the beginning to the next generation of players. The first game that received praise from the mechanics like Uncharted game mechanics. And the second game following the traces of the first game was able to achieve good sales figures. But, did the idea of making the third game using the same mechanics again, satisfy us? Let’s take a closer look with our Shadow of the Tomb Raider review.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider PC/PS4 Review

Lara Croft, who chased Trinity in the second game, continues her adventure in the third game. Lara Croft, who wanted to stop Trinity, and pursue her father, firstly begins her adventure in Mexico. She hunts down Pedro Dominguez, who is the boss of Trinity, at the entrance of the game. Unfortunately, she loses Key of Chak Chel to Trinity after she finds it. Our hero, Lara, is responsible for the mission of searching for the Silver Box of Ix Chel’s historical monument in Peru in order to stop the event that started the Mayan apocalypse.

With the help of his close friend, Jonah Maiava, we seek to find graves in the wilderness of Peru. We also travel to Lara’s childhood sometimes in this game. In these parts, which are similar to the Uncharted 4 where we can play Nathan Drake’s childhood, we can witness the events that have remained secret in Lara’s past. As we progress through the story, which we can discover perfect landscapes like Paititi. I have to mention that there are a few logic failures in the game. To give an example, in addition to fluent English of Paititi people who isolate themselves from the world. Lara doesn’t die when she jumps from the very high places according to the scripts, but she dies because of the smallest strike.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider Review

The third game, Shadow of the Tomb Raider, follows the traces of the first two games in terms of gameplay mechanics, unfortunately, does not contain much innovation. Game mechanics have almost no innovation. But in terms of stealth, I have to underline that Shadow of the Tomb Raider is better than Uncharted 4. If you want, you can pass all of the conflict sequences with stealth. And the designs we have in those sections are also very well arranged. As an additional innovation, Lara covers her body and a part of her face with mud and hides on the walls and it is a pleasant detail in the game.

The puzzle parts of the game are more successful than the first two games and Uncharted games. Some puzzles are easy to solve, but some are pretty hard. You encounter these puzzles, which reminds you of old adventure games, in Mayan temples. In fact, you spend more time with puzzles rather than killing enemies. On the other hand, it is possible to adjust the difficulty of these puzzles. If you choose the “easy option” in the puzzle difficulty menu that the game offers you before you start the game, it is especially clear where you should go to puzzles which you should climb. As a matter of fact, I personally welcome this situation as a nice feature. Developers, who thought about the players that is bored with the puzzles and want to take action directly, added such a convenience to the game.

If you played the first two games, I can tell you that you will not be alien to the Shadow of the Tomb Raider. You can reinforce Lara Croft from the character development screen divided into three parts depending on your gameplay style. You can also customize your weapons over the fire. However, it is good to say that the weapon development screen is not well designed.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider Review

As another detail, developers have added Lara Croft’s survival mechanics. Thanks to the features we acquired during the game and the materials we collect around, our main character can heal herself in moments of conflict. And she can find materials that can be useful to her in wild with her instincts in a short time. Besides all of these, it is possible to change the clothes of Lara Croft in the character development menu. Some of the outfits give you additional features to strengthen Lara Croft. And while some clothes give you access to Lara Croft’s PS1 look.

The open world of the game is large enough. In the open world where we can fast travel with the help of camps, you can go back and do side missions if you want. The vast majority of the open-world consists of frequent forests. With maps that have a semi-open world structure, you can notice how much work is done on the details of the open world, especially when you stop and listen to the forest. But this situation is no longer valid when Lara Croft visits the towns. Unlike Uncharted 4, the tiny towns of the Shadow of the Tomb Raider are designed to be very superficial. You want to run away from the towns to the forests asap. Because of the bad a non-realistic animations that NPCs make.

Let’s skip to the most noteworthy part of the game, graphics. In addition to the fact that the details of the forests are very high, the coverings of the Shadow of the Tomb Raider are unfortunately not quite suitable for today’s standards. However, the graphics of the game is still not bad at all.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider Review

The sounds of the game was another remarkable element. You can understand why Crystal Dynamics made such ambitious statements as they worked exclusively on sounds and music during the game. The game, with its special instruments of Mayan culture, can become quite tense from time to time.

In the end, we can say that Shadow of the Tomb Raider cannot satisfy the players who are looking for innovative TPS action games. But it can satisfy the fans of Tomb Raider. In addition to the structure which is very similar to the first two games, we recommend the game which has simple storytelling only to the players who like this type of games. Hope you enjoyed our Shadow of the Tomb Raider review.

Murat Oktay

Video games have been my passion for as long as I can remember. I have been writing and managing in the game industry for more than 30 years. I've been playing Diablo 2 nonstop since it first came out.

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