I reviewed the first of the Tomb Raider reboot games a while ago and I knew they were putting out a new one, I just completely forgot about it until recently when I picked it up. I thought the first game was pretty decent and had about the same expectations this time around. I actually like these games more as shooters than they are platformers, although they still have that element to them, but I’m more of an FPS guy than a puzzle solving guy anyhow. So did this game make any improvements from the first? Read on to find out.
The storyline carries on from the first game, now Lara Croft is on the trail of the city of Kitezh and her father’s last mystery, the secret of eternal life. Of course, along the way she gets involved in a fight against the Russians and a mysterious organization called Trinity, that apparently had her father killed.
The one thing that I didn’t like about it was that it was ridiculously on rails. Now I know it’s not meant to be an open world game, although there certainly are some segments that allow you to just wander around and explore, but for the story segments itself, you are forced to go through very specific actions or you just won’t get anywhere.
And this is something else that I had just as much of a problem with in the first new Tomb Raider game. They sure do beat the shit out of Lara a lot, don’t they? Every cut scene, she gets the crap pounded out of her no matter what you do. She walks blindly into traps that anyone, especially the player, can see coming from a mile away. It’s no a sexist thing either, games like Far Cry do it to their male protagonists too. I just don’t get why they want to make their characters such ridiculous punching bags. And the same thing happened to the side characters, as I noted in my review of the first Tomb Raider. They just walk into things idiotically. They get beaten and stabbed and shot because they’re downright stupid and then Lara has to go save them from their own idiocy.
There are numerous side quests throughout the game, although most of them seem like the typical fetch quests that you see elsewhere. The idea that Lara Croft ought to run around collecting things for settlers or putting chickens in pens seems beneath her. I’d rather have seen some side quests that specifically tied into the main story because most of them seemed rather generic.
Other than those complaints though, I had no real problems with the game. It was every bit as fun as the last one and once you got around the on-rails gameplay, it was entertaining just running around some of the areas, searching for secrets and shooting bad guys. I just wish you could have avoided some of the forced combat in the on-rails portion because it really feels like two different games. One, you have to do what the game wants you to do, the way the game wants you to do it. The other, you choose what to do and can do it however you wish. Can we meet somewhere in the middle please?