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on November 21, 2015
The Overall:
I really enjoyed this game overall. I found the physical control of gameplay to be realistic and easy to adapt to, even using a PC keyboard. Lara’s animations for shooting, running, jumping, and climbing are all spot on, and have the right feel to them. Her movement through the environment is the star of this gaming experience (and not just because she’s attractive). The story is solid, but a little predictable. The tertiary characters are a little flat and one dimensional at times. Lara is definitely the star of the game, and she’s alone through much of the game.

The graphics are very good when played on high settings, and they’re not bad even if your system requires you to back off some.
I liked the story and the sneaking around nature of most of the gameplay. It, like other Lara Croft adventures, reminded me of an interactive Indiana Jones movie. The gun play is efficient and weapon upgrades are plentiful. It was especially fun to silently approach enemies and dispatch them quickly, before comrades noticed or could come to help. None of the gameplay was difficult, but some of the situations required a little thinking to solve. I would say the difficulty was good, but on the easy side of the scale.

The Bad:
On the downside, I did have moments when my suspension of disbelief was challenged; such as, why are there so many zip lines all over this island? This crew of adversaries has mostly undeveloped living conditions, but they had time to construct zip lines in even the most remote locations of this island? Also some of the bosses, one in particular, only had one way he could be killed. A shotgun blast couldn’t do what a handheld climbing pick could do?

I also found it disappointing that the game is pretty much completely over once you reach the end. The enemies don’t respawn, so a trip back to a previous battle location is pointless unless you’re just going to collect a few missed artifacts. I would love to repeat some of the battles or just roam around hunting bad guys, but it’s not possible without a replay of the campaign.

One last thing, the game is very linear. While this is not always a bad thing, this game would be so much more awesome in an open world environment.

It was definitely worth the money. I enjoyed it a lot, but a few changes could have made it so much better for me.
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on October 6, 2014
This is the first Tomb Raider game I have ever played. Overall it was fun. Not really my kind of game but in the end still a quality and fun piece of entertainment. As always my reviews are split into 3 categories, story, gameplay, and characters.

Story: 7/10
The story is pretty basic. Good but basic. Really reminded me of an Uncharted storyline. Basically you are shipwrecked on a mystical island and come to find out there are other survivors. You end up going on a perilous mission to rescue your friends and escape the island. The story keeps you going. It is entertaining...but it does begin to drag on a bit. If you didn't explore and went straight through and only did story you could probably beat it in about 12-13 hours. It took me 16 because I wanted to do a bit extra. Really I think this should have been about a 10 hour game. And the story is quite predictable as well. Nonetheless, it was an adequate story that did keep you going through the game.

Gameplay: 8.5/10
Like most shooters and survival games, the gameplay is really the star of the show. The shooting mechanics are fantastic in this game IMO. Climbing, jumping all the basics are superbly done. All of the survival minigames are done well as well. And the death scenes...wow...just...wow are they dark. But well done. Finding the artifacts and diaries are also really fun and help unlock some of the mysteries of the island.

My issues with the gameplay are all very minor but they add up. First, besides a few little optional dungeons, there aren't really any sidequests that take you off the beaten paths to do some cool exploring. The optional puzzle dungeons are fun but the rewards were often not much more than a bunch of scrap. No cool weapons or artifacts...just more scrap.

Characters 7/10

First off, they did Lara extremely well. Nice backstory. Nice development. Really great. Roth was also a quality character. Unfortunately, the rest of the cast was little more than back drop and not really that interesting. Alex and Whitman were memorable due to the parts they played in the stories. But really what carries this is the great job Squeenix did with Lara Croft. After all, she is the one you are playing.

Overall: 8/10
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on January 2, 2016
I've been a longtime player of Tomb Raider on the PC, back from the early days of Eidos' first version available for Win 95, till their most recent incarnations with Tomb Raider Anniversary, Tomb Raider Legend, and Tomb Raider Underworld (which was made by Crystal Dynamics who produced this version). With that being said:
1) Do I understand the need for a Tomb Raider reboot? Absolutely.

2) Do I like Laura's new look? Yep.

3) Are the graphics and visuals amazing on the game at full resolution, even on my 5+ year old (but still overclocked) system? Yep !

4) Am I crazy about the fact that the game has gone from being about mostly solving puzzles, to being Call Of Tomb Raider? Not so much. I racked up Arrow Head-shots in this game before I even knew you could unlock a special sight on your weapon and gain extra XP (experience points) for doing so, and Laura's axe kills are way beyond anything you could do in Tomb Raider Legend (for example, which I still play from time to time). But it gets kind of distracting that just as the game seems like its done with Laura being a Black Ops soldier (just off instinct btw), and finally lets you do some exploring, here comes another scene of Call of Tomb Raider where you have to take care of 25 or 30+ guys with computer AI that somehow always has perfect line of sight on Laura whenever she is discovered. Am I saying that it isn't fun the first few times that Laura has to murk a few hordes of these sailors (or whatever) who have become mindless followers of their "leader" in the game, no, but after about the 5th to 10th time it gets really annoying and repetitive. I would like to see in a FUTURE GAME, where in like Mirror's Edge (or even the old Metal Gear games) style the game actually rewards a player for being able to avoid combat using stealth and avoidance tactics, yes you can use stealth tactics in this game but there are too many parts where Laura fighting multiple enemies just becomes unavoidable.

5) The Story is good and the Visual looks great, I even like the fact that they introduced a new kind of adopted-father figure for Laura, rather than sticking to the she was raised by her father story-line of the older games.

6) MULTIPLAYER MODE - This was a first but the game also has a multiplayer mode, but I don't think there are many people who are active on the games servers, and its take some getting used to if you're more used to playing first person shooters online. There are more maps and levels available and they are all dirt cheap now on the Steam store, but my guess is maybe some people have given up on playing this in multiplayer and are waiting for the release of RISE OF THE TOMBRAIDER to see if more of the kinks got worked out.

7) Do I recommend this game? Yes, but NOT for YOUNGER gamers (unlike some of the older Tomb Raiders), even though Tomb Raider Underworld had some dark parts, this game is very graphic when you kill and enemy, particularly when you neck shoot an enemy with a flame arrow and then hear them both burn and choke at the same, (sorry but those are the kind scenes there are ). Sometimes the kills are violent to the point of being hilarious (let me explain), in one scene the leader for some weird reason wants Laura taken alive (after every other group is killed on the spot besides Laura's, but anyway), but then the minute Laura gets into a fight with the AI soldiers (did I mention the AI is much tougher in this game) and one gets close enough to Laura to kill her, they either string her up or kill her with an axe, or some other weird way, and all you hear is them congratulating themselves saying "Hooray the outsider is dead", wait just a minute ago their supreme leader wanted her captured alive, wt heck? Did I mention Laura can get mauled by wolves? Is it fun to avoid? Yes the first few times, but again I definitely wouldn't recommend this for adolescents or anyone younger than their teens maybe not even early teens, but not much different from a lot games these days (e.g. Grand Theft Auto IV - with its strip club scene, and police shoot outs), and it still manages to keep enough elements of the classic Tomb Raider games (puzzle solving, and exploring) to stay interesting.

Also recommend:
Tomb Raider: Underworld [Online Game Code]
Tomb Raider: Anniversary [Download]
Sleeping Dogs: Definitive Edition [Online Game Code]
Just Cause 2 [Download]
Far Cry 3 [Download]
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on November 26, 2014
Tomb Raider is a good game and it's pretty much the equivalent of a summer action/adventure blockbuster film but in game format. Meaning playing this game, straight-through, without straying too far from the main path and just focusing on the actual story will last you about 8-10 hours, which is pretty good, all things considered. A(n) (average) 90 minute film = 8-10 hours in the videogame world. Having said that, after you beat the main game, if you're a completionist, there's plenty to do once you get back in the game and there's also multiplayer but eh, I'm not really a big multiplayer kinda person so really, I can't fairly include a review of that portion of this game. There's a lot of time-sensitive action sequences à-la God of War so if you're not into that kind of thing, you might actually end up hating Tomb Raider a little bit. But at the same time, it's pretty violent and there's a decent amount of swearing (this one's not for the kids--well, not the small small kids). And in this iteration of Tomb Raider, Lara dies a lot. Like, a lot lot! Plus, nothing too unrealistic ever happens, in the sense that the protagonist is a fairly small female going against an entire island of mercenary-type men. She never overpowers anyone without the physics-type stuff making sense. There's even a part when she attempts to move a stationary gun in a way to shoot one of the bad guys but since the gun itself probably weighs more than Lara, she is unable to maneuver quickly enough before the baddie, yet again, overpowers her. Also, the amount of pain she can withstand (from all that falling down through trees and mountains and burning Japanese fortresses) is pretty much akin to that film Lone Survivor where all those army men in Afghanistan keep falling down the side of mountains to run away from the bad guys. Suspension of disbelief is key here! All in all though, not a bad way to so spend the weekend, or a few couple days. It's a worthy investment, especially at this point, since it shouldn't be too pricey anymore. Solid stuff. A welcome addition to the Tomb Raider re-boot, restart, re-imaginging, re-whatever it has no become ...sigh. Oh and the graphics? They're pretty neat too.
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on March 20, 2018
Great first play through. Once the controls become second nature the game is nearly effortless to move through. I bought this just because the price was great, and I loved the first franchise offerings. It is a solid entry into the Lara Croft games, and really gives you the option to go in quite, or cause a scene with each objective.

After my first play through, I'm not to interested in playing it again. The story was solid, everything was top notch, but I played the game so fully my first time through, that the only thing now would be to increase the difficulty just for the sake for it.
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on July 5, 2015
The reboot of the Tomb Raider series took some unexpected turns and I had some unexpected feelings about them. All in all, it was a very solid game. It didn’t exactly know what it was and what it wanted to do, but I did know exactly who it wanted Lara Croft to be and knew exactly how to approach her as a character. At the beginning of the game, Lara is taking an expedition with her crew. The ship crashes on an island and Lara wakes up in a tomb by herself, tied up and left for dead. The feeling that I got in the first bit of the game perfectly encompasses the feeling that I got in every other mission; that no matter how awesome I think I am, I do not want to be Lara Croft. In the first 30 minutes of game-play, she goes through more than I have ever seen a main character go through in a video game, and she takes it like a man.

The adventure aspect is overall stunning, and the gameplay is fantastic. The graphics look mind-blowing, and Lara as a character will surprise you. It’s a great game, and is arguably one of the most under-appreciated games of the generation. Overall, Tomb Raider was an excellent reboot with plenty of spine-chilling moments and is complete with a stunning main character. It will give you at least a solid 12 hours of enjoyment, and you won’t leave unsatisfied.

Story: 12/15 Visual Appeal: 9/10
Characters: 12/15 Audio Appeal: 9/10
Gameplay: 10/15 Machanics: 7/10
Atmosphere: 13/15 Congruency: 8/10
Cost: $19.99 Worth: $24.99

Overall: 80%
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on September 24, 2013
*Played on PC*

I was never a Tomb Raider player prior to this game, so I don't have any notions of what Tomb Raider and Lara Croft "should" be to stay true to the classic games. As a newcomer to the series however, I was pleasantly surprised by this game. In a lot of ways it's a rip-off of PS3's Uncharted series (though to be fair Uncharted ripped off the old TR games first), but that's not a bad thing, and in some ways it's actually better than the UC series. This game is basically a third person action-adventure with a lot of platforming, some stealth, some exploration, and some light RPG elements such as basic skill trees and weapon mods.

The voice acting is excellent and the sound it very good overall. Graphical performance on my PC was excellent. I was able to max out most of the settings while still generally getting decent fps with my hardware (i5-2500k, ATI 7870, 8gb RAM). The much vaunted AMD "tressFX" hair physics didn't work well on my machine however, so I had to turn that off.

The mechanics are quite competent. I found the shooting to be satisfying, and the bow adds a lot to the stealth portions of the game. The platforming is very good in most places. The skill tree and weapon modification elements are a nice touch, but ultimately felt a bit meaningless as I was able to max everything out by the end of my playthrough, so there ended up not needing to be much picking or choosing between skill paths or what weapons to improve. The open world was also nice, though again it's a bit misleading since the missions themselves are very on-rails; the open world parts are not huge and are really only there to facilitate finding various treasures hidden around the map. The one mechanical thing I really disliked was the common and annoying quick time events. Why game developers continue to use this frustrating, immersion-breaking, outdated game design concept is beyond me. In a game like The Walking Dead it fits. In most other games, including this one, it's just bad, especially on PC where the QTE's are poorly optimized.

Not to spoil the story, but it is...well, from what I hear it's par for the course for a Tomb Raider game, but personally I think it veered deep into eye-roll territory a few too many times. Again, similar to Uncharted, except that Uncharted at least tries to give itself an out by usually spinning some sort of pseudo-scientific reasoning for why various events in the games happened. This game pretty much just says "because magic" and leaves it at that. It's not a bad story; I just found it harder to suspend disbelief for. A single playthrough on normal took me about 15 hours, though I took my time and gathered almost all of the collectibles. If you just played through the story and ignored the bulk of the side quests, I think this would be a 10ish hour game. That's still better than most single player experiences these days however, and replayability is moderately high. I didn't bother with the multiplayer and so can't give an opinion on that.

All in all though, this is a great game and I'm excited to hear that Square Enix has greenlit a sequel. I think I still slightly prefer the Uncharted games as a whole, but since I can't get those on PC this is a great alternative.
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on September 7, 2017
I believe Rise of the Tomb Raider is everything it was meant to be. My grand kids love it. Me? I seem to be having problems getting out of the first stage, the poor girl keeps getting killed by some cannibalistic (I think) character that's chasing after her. One of these days I'll ask my grand kids how to get her out of there.
NOW, about the download to my computer. It comes from Steam, who normally sells it for $79.95, that's why I pulled the trigger on Amazon and not Steam. To begin with, the download takes forever, nearly three full hours. The first download had something missing and it wouldn't function at all. But after close to six hours, Steam got it right on the second try. Mind you, I've got an i7-5820K six core on an EVGA X99 FTW K mobo with 64 gigs of ram. Everything is top of the line, a CM HAF932 case, EVGA 850 watt PSU, a pair of EVGA GTX 970 FTWs in SLI, Samsung 500 gig 850 EVO SSD, a pair of WD black 500 gig HDDs, a CM Hyper 612 v2 for the 2011-v3 socket, and the list goes on. So there shouldn't have been any reason for a faulty first download.
As far as the game goes, it looks great across three 24" Samsungs in NVIDIA Surround, couldn't be nicer, and the effects are rather convincing too.
If you're into the Tomb Raider series, this is the best I think I've seen the kids play, and recommend it. . .
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on April 23, 2014
I used to play tomb raider as a kid and loved the sense of exploration and adventure but hated the tediousness of some of the levels and the controls were awful. I was excited for the reboot and it did not disappoint. For me, the main talking points are a. gameplay, b. level design, c. story, d. graphics, and e. multiplayer.

I loved the controls in TR and the combat was gratifying, particularly the bow and arrow. I don't recall ever having those (oh $@#%) moments like I did in the old games when I accidentally fell off a high ledge because of a glitch in the controls or level. There was small, but variable enough selection of weapons and gadgets that kind of reminded me of Zelda in that you couldn't access certain areas and secrets until later stages of the game. I liked the pace of the game, it kept me hooked and wanting more. I was not a big fan of the cut scene game sequences that were very console-like, but they did not occur too frequently. My biggest gripe with the gameplay was that the A.I. of the enemies was pretty limited. Other than charging you or taking cover, they didn't present a great deal of variation and fights were often predictable and boring.

In terms of level design, the levels are gorgeous and despite the game taking place on an island, they are surprisingly varied. They are somewhat linear but there are some areas that are more open. I was a bit disappointed with some of the secret tombs with how small and brief they were but I can appreciate the difficulty of finding a balance because some of the older Tomb Raider areas were overwhelming and intimidating.

The story was not horrible but not really remarkable either. The history of the island was the highlight and I was pretty incredulous until the end when I could not deny what was happening. My biggest gripe with the story was that Laura would keep getting hurt in near-death experiences and then bounced back like she was superwoman. Surely, you can create a sense of desperation or seriousness without having near-death sequences at the end of EVERY level...

The multiplayer... oh man. Why even bother including it?

Overall it was more than worth the 5 bucks I got it for on an Amazon sale!
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on April 25, 2017
One would be remiss to expect a deep and thought provoking story from this game. What you do get is a crazy over the top action/platformer that is definitely worth your time to play. Fast paced combat with a sense of urgency, coupled with a decent weapon variety keeps fights reasonably fresh and exciting as you continue on. During the platforming bits you'll find yourself evading rock-slides and explosions aplenty, kind of like what you find in a Michael Bay movie. It's an absurd kind of fun, but changing environments keep you on your toes for an enjoyable challenge. The graphics are absolutely gorgeous and will probably give your machine a workout if you aren't at the higher end of midrange specs these days. With two 650 Ti's in sli I managed to run it well at mid-high settings, when I upgraded to a 970 I got about 45-55 fps ultra, but without hair-works steady 60 fps was easy to attain.
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