Monday, 23 December 2013

Well-Rendered's Games of the Generation #14: Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider, Square Enix/Crystal Dynamics (2013)

Although I am enormous fan of the Tomb Raider series, I enjoyed this year's reboot for reasons that have nothing to do with Tomb Raider.

For a start, the motion-captured protagonist was immensely fun to control. She felt satisfyingly heavy and interacted believably with her environment. The action was tactile and fun, making the exploration hugely enjoyable rather than a chore. I liked the fact that she was a woman, and looked like one. Never have I felt more like I was controlling a person, rather than a video game character.

The environments were impressively diverse for a game set entirely a single island. Many of them, particularly the abandoned bunkers and the beach, reminded me of the ex-MOD wastelands and abandoned warships that marked the naval port landscape where I grew up.

The things I loved about Tomb Raider series up until this point (lots of puzzles and minimal combat) weren't really present in this game, to the point where it didn't feel like a Tomb Raider game at all. But that didn't stop me massively enjoying it, being thrilled by the ending or playing it three times in a row as soon as I got it home...

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