A reader looks back at all three recent Tomb Raider games and discusses what lessons he thinks should be learned for the next game.
The gameplay was pretty good, maybe even very good. The graphics and sound were great. The characters and story though were just sub par, and completely forgettable. I think that's what kept it from living up to the Uncharted series, or even the old Tomb Raider titles.
I agree with the above entirely. I'd even add in that the environments were rather poor. The first game I enjoyed and accepted it for what it was. It was supposed to be about the beginning of Laras adult life and the event that toughened her up. However the following 2 sequels missed the mark when it came to creating an adventure. It should have involved location hopping and different cultures etc. All supporting characters and villains were dull and forgettable. I miss the old adventures. I also think the new trilogy ruined what made Lara so iconic
Never mind Uncharted. It just needed to work. The first games was headed in the right direction, but from there, I feel they lost focus. Personally, while I MUCH prefer the old Tomb Raider series, I wouldn't mind them giving another crack at it. They just need to shy away from the 'blockbuster-that-needs-to -rival-Uncharted' and get back to the basics.
I don't know why people compare it to uncharted. An action-adventure can still be worth playing if it is not Uncharted, Last of Us, or Horizon Zero Dawn. They are a all great games. Tomb Raider Although the story is predictable and generic feeling the gameplay is very good. One of the best bow implementations in a game ever, and the story is secondary to all the exploration and tomb raiding. No, Tomb Raider is not Uncharted level but it isn't bad by any stretch and deserves sales.
I personally compare it to Uncharted because they are all action adventures Indiana Jones like. Tomb raider is more open world. Uncharted is more story driven. I played Uncharted 4 and Rise of the Tomb raider at the same time. Tomb raider was really good game and it was obvious it tries to be little like uncharted. But that feeling when you discover beautiful scenery or lost artefact in Uncharted 4 wasnt there. Music and scenery was there but not that feeling (for me). It was not also that moving. I dont know. Anyway, these last Tomb raider games are good and deserve next chapter.
The start was sooo boring
The first one (2013), was the best one for me.
Agreed. I really didn't care for the open hub world with 2 & 3.
true, it seem like the devs tried to have one foot in the linear realm and one in the open world realm and didnt necessarily pull off either as well as they could have.
I agree. The first one in 2013 was such a really good game & first start to this new Journey for Lara. I came to care for Lara, and liked Roth. But Lara’s other friends were just poorly done, especially Jonah who they brought back. After that game tho, it went downhill with 2-3 “in my opinion” Might not be an issue for you, which I understand, but it bothered me that they reused her walking/running/jumping animations from the first game into the next 2 games. Aside from U4’s wonderful storytelling/performance & great gameplay, the fact that ND always changed/improved Nathan Drake’s animations for each new game across the board added to the experience & made the game really feel fresh & new.
I honestly haven't played 3 yet, but yeah i agree with your points on the characters and animations. I also think that the world in 2 was really boring and didn't feel unique which is a hung bummer for a game like TA. atmosphere is a big part of gaming for me.
Thank you for this comment! I feel like no one talks about the re-used animations in the two sequels. That's what turned me completely off the most. The storyline wasn't the greatest(although still good), but I believe that if her animations evolved each game, it would've helped show her growth as a tomb raider.
It's a weird one for sure, You cannot deny that all these 3 games were actually pretty fun to play at times The Graphics were outstanding, Music was really well done and the gameplay was great too BUT The character Lara herself and her story was so forgettable in all three games, I get that Lara should have new personalities in rebooted games but in that process, the character we used to love is now lost... they obviously didn't get the charm of the Old Lara Croft personality but they didn't even get the new one right. It's just so bland and mediocre. The Story suffered too being very mediocre throughout the series with very little less to actually care about at all. I think Tomb Raider is one of those games if even the story is not tight but the character is well written then it can definitely flyover pretty well. And the most impactful thing that kept this game grounded is marketing and uncharted, The Marketing budget is obviously was pretty huge for 3 games but compared to modern standards the marketing effort was just not there...it's Lara Croft we are talking about once used to be one of the most recognizable video game characters is now going obsolete in spite of a whole reboot. Also...Uncharted happened. Simply put Uncharted is a superior game in almost every aspect if compared to all 3 games. Also, the marketing of the game was really done, no overhyping stuff but definitely letting people know that you can expect the best. Yes it's overshadowed by Uncharted and I think for right reasons, Tomb Raider is just not what it was used to be.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider was unremarkable to say the least. One thing I'll give it credit for is that it made me slightly like Jonah. What am I saying, I still hate Jonah.
When your players forget who your characters were upon playing a sequel, you've done a shit job at storytelling and character creation. Looking at you Jonah. I only remember now because I've made an effort to remember how forgettable a character can be.
Lol I only remember Lara's name. The story was ok, but the action packed levels were fantastic, which is what I wanted from this series.
Really enjoyed the 2013 game. Rise was alright as well but had poor characters and story, Shadow for me was the worst, bland characters and story, stripped like 80% combat from the game and what is there is just mediocre, showered with weapons and skills with nowhere to use them. I honestly think at this point it needs another reboot, lol.
"stripped like 80% combat from the game " Don't tell me it's walking/climbing simulator like UC4? Or did I read that right?
Never felt any sense of excitement. All she says is Jonah, Jonah, where are you, What did you find. etc. The story was ok. But the gameplay wasn't gripping enough. I much prefer the older Tomb-Raiders.
Tomb Raider as a whole is still better than Uncharted. Drake was such an unlikable douchebag. Drake was never funny and tried way to hard. Tomb Raider games had exploration and it was fun to see what guns I would discover as the games went on. Tomb Raider had you going up against so many animals and other wildlife, as well humans. Uncharted 1-3 had the same trophies, same weapons, and lacked exploration. It felt like you were on rails and I hated that the game held your hand and you always knew where to climb or jump because of the yellow rope (really wish games like Tomb Raider, Horizon and others wouldn't have copied this). You could run through Uncharted games in a weekend and there wasn't a need to ever put them in your console ever again. I haven't played Shadow yet and it looks lame, so I'll wait til it's like $10-15. I will agree that the secondary characters in the new TR games were forgettable, just like all of the entire Uncharted cast. Only Lara was likeable.
The games were incredibly mediocre not bad but not very good either just in between.
Great start, and then never really went anywhere, and pretty much gutted any inkling of character from the series.
The last game was quite bad, despite it being well made. They turned Lara into action man. You kill so many people in these games it's not about raiding tombs, eerie atmosphere, wildlife and puzzles. The hub world doesn't work for Tomb Raider game imo. Such a shame as I love this series.
I appreciate the effort of rebooting the TR franchise with this trilogy, but I thought the become-the-tomb-raider arc dragged on for too long--like it took Lara 3 games to become the Tomb Raider, really?
I wish that Lara dual wielded pistols in the second and third games. It seemed like such a bait to have it happen in the end of the first game but never revisit it in the later games
9/10 Overall (a really great game especially at the $20 or less for complete editions) 6/10 Story (forgettable for sure) 9/10 Graphics (really fantastic on 4K/ultrawide maxed out) 8/10 Gunplay (it was pretty good) 9/10 movement and traversal (they've nailed it) 8/10 tombs/puzzles (oddly paced, some too few, some too hard, it's hit or miss) 8/10 facial animations
This game was trying to be uncharted. The bad thing about that is that why would i play an inferior version of a game that has almost made platforming/shooting perfect.
First one was fun, second one was okay, the last one was disappointing and boring as a result of lazy and uninspired development with nothing new to offer.
I feel the rebooted franchise suffered from trying to be like Uncharted but not having the budget or Naughty Dog at the helm (which would have been impossible as ND is a Sony studio). The devs would have been better off if TR had been more like the old series. It started off fine but 2 and 3 just didn't push far enough with having really good villians, or different locations and cultures like monkey 602 says below. Another thing that did not help matters was the time exclusivity of the second rebooted TR title which rightfully but the brakes on for the franchise as far as the Playstation was concerned. I bought the game two years after it first arrived on the Xbox One at a bargain price. Once PS4 fans were denied the game, TR became just another 2nd tier multi-format game in my opinion.
I like Tomb Raider and enjoyed 2 and 3. However, i felt that all these small missions and quick travel back and forth take away from the story. Uncharted had a great story and it wasnt boggled down by side quests. I was hoping it was the same for Tomb Raider 2 and 3.
Own the first two games but only played a few hours like most modern games it feels like a bit of a chore to play , too much menu bloat and upgrading crap for me , that said i will try and finish them one day lol who am i kidding .
Personally I really enjoyed the reboot and Rise of the Tomb Raider, but Shadow just wasn't calling out to me. I'll pick it up when it's cheaper, but i've enjoyed the reboot series alot.
I loved the first one, great origin story. IMO the second's story was uninspired & boring, it was tough to stay invested after about 2/3 done. I'm not gonna lie I haven't played the 3rd yet (it's in my backlog), but I'm hoping it has a better story than the 2nd.
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