The lights are on
When Crystal Dynamics started working on its next Tomb Raider title, the team decided that it was time for Ms. Croft to have an adventure of a different kind. The developer took the engine it had used to create the last few Tomb Raider titles, and set to work on a downloadable action adventure game that Lara could share with a friend. We saw the game earlier this year at GDC, but now that we’ve actually had the chance to get our hands on the game we can honestly say we’re more excited than ever for Lara’s next archeological dig.
The game opens with Lara in the middle of one of her classic adventures. Deep within the jungles of Central America, she stumbles upon an artifact called the Mirror of Smoke. Legend surrounding the artifact holds that it once banished an evil entity by the name of Xolotl. But if Tomb Raider has taught us anything, it’s that nothing stays banished forever. As soon as a group of mercenaries steals the mirror, Xolotl is resurrected. Fortunately, an ancient guardian of light by the name of Totec also arrives to help Lara retrieve the mirror and prevent the world from plunging into eternal darkness.
Our time with the game had us exploring the inner workings of a cavern called the Spider Tomb. A large Shelob-like boss awaits players at the end of these tunnels, but we had plenty of smaller foes and puzzles to solve before we got that far. The whole game is played via a top-down perspective, which gives this Lara Croft adventure a distinctive feel (hence the lack of Tomb Raider in the title). We found ourselves checking out the game’s map quite a bit, which is handy since certain sections of the game are not linear, but will require you to explore different parts of a larger tomb to solve puzzles and collect artifacts. Bonus puzzle-like challenge tombs are also scattered around the environment, which encourages deep exploration for all the junior archeologists out there.
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I doubt I'll play this game.