First Impressions: Shadow Of The Tomb Raider

It isn’t often I would necessarily continue with a video game that’s part of a series so soon after finishing the first or second one. I finished The Witcher 2 without having jumped onto The Witcher 3 just yet. And then there’s the Ace Attorney series which I have yet to complete all the games from the beloved Phoenix Wright games. The best way to describe my gaming mood is mercurial. But the reimagined Tomb Raider from Crystal Dynamics has managed to keep me wanting to continue through the end, and my latest gaming focus is Shadow of the Tomb Raider.

[Credit: Square Enix]

The third, and final for now, game of this series may not have had Crystal Dynamics’s involvement this time around, Eidos-Montréal took over Shadow of the Tomb Raider, but from what I have played so far is promising.

The start of the game immediately launches Lara Croft on her next adventure, along with her loyal friend Jonah, starting in Cozumel, Mexico to take down Trinity. Tracking their whereabouts, Trinity this time is interested in an ancient artifact known as the Dagger of Chak Chel. Not wanting Trinity to acquire the dagger, Lara takes it from the temple it resides in without heeding the warnings the Mayan murals illustrate about triggering “the Cleansing”, an apocalyptic event that will plunge the world in a permanent solar eclipse. After realizing her grave mistake and losing the dagger anyway to Pedro Dominguez, the head of Trinity’s High Council, Lara’s greatest mission of her life becomes more than just stopping Trinity—it’s preventing the end of the world.

I’m about two hours into the video game and so far the game mechanics are largely the same with some small additions. For one, Lara has the ability to rapple down or up from a mountain or cliff she latches herself onto with her climbing axe. The other new addition I’ve noticed is you can craft a whole slew of enhancement potions or clothing that could help boost Lara during your gameplay.

Aside from the optional challenge tombs Lara can seek and explore, there are now crypts she can find to obtain valuable items you can use for Lara. The first crypt I did find scored me some feathered boots I could craft and have Lara wear. These expansions to an already solid formula aren’t necessary but a nice to have to give seasoned players something new to experience.

As of the writing of this post, I’ve only finished up to Lara crash landing into the Amazon Forest and reuniting with Jonah. While I’m still not quite deep into the game, there was plenty of dangerous and stressful moments I had to deal with like fighting off a jaguar. Really? Did we have to throw in the wild animal bosses this early into the game?! This is why I much rather hunt and kill the non-predatory animals in a Tomb Raider game. My heart can’t take these encounters.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider brings the adrenaline and thrill seeking I expect from a Tomb Raider game, and the high stakes Lara is faced with this time will be worth knowing how it all plays out. Will she be successful at ridding Trinity once and for all? Can she stop the upcoming apocalypse? Time will tell.


2 thoughts on “First Impressions: Shadow Of The Tomb Raider

  1. Glad to see you diving back into the third game! I hope you have a great time. Will be intrigued to know your thoughts on the story once you’re done, as it tackles some interesting aspects of Lara as a character. 🙂

    1. Thanks! I’ll be curious to know how the game dives into other aspects of Lara as a character. So far I’ve been having a blast with it, so I’m excited to see how her story wraps up for now. 😄

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