Sonic Heroes (2003) (GC, PC, PS2, XBOX) Review

Happy New Year and to kick of 2016 we are going to be looking at another controversial 3D Sonic game

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Sonic Heroes released in 2003 and was Sega and Sonic Teams attempt at making a next generation Sonic game that uses Team based mechanics, just like Shadow the Hedgehog this game also has a reputation of either being a piece of crap or a pretty fun experience.

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Sonic Heroes is split into four main campaigns Team Sonic, Team Rose, Team Dark and Team Chaotix, each of these teams have unique story and for the most part a different objective which ties into the games main plot.

Team Sonic receive a threat from Dr Robotnik about some new scheme he is creating and so Sonic, Tails and Knuckles run off to find and defeat Robotnik.

Team Rose are on the hunt for Big the Cat’s Missing Frog and Cream the Rabbit’s Chao Chocola.

Team Chaotix work for a detective agency and they hunt down a new client who offers them a lot of money if they rescue them from where they are being kept prisoner.

Team Darks story begins with Rouge the Bat searching for a hidden treasure when she accidentally comes across Shadow the Hedgehog and Omega (a security bot built by Robotnik),  Omega is angry because Robotnik locked him away for so long and Shadow has forgotten everything about himself and his past, all three of them seek out Robotnik for revenge and answers to why Omega and Shadow were locked away.

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How you play the game is that you control three characters for each team one Speed Character, one Power Character and one Flight Character, In teams Sonic, Dark and Rose you will need to use all three characters to pass obstacles and defeat enemies while trying to get to the goal ring as fast as possible.

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Team Chaotix are personally my favorite team to play as they are the only team that offer new gameplay, while playing as Team Chaotix you will need to play through all the same stages as the other teams but each with a new objective for example in one stage you need to find and rescue a lot of Chao and in another you need to find and blow out a bunch of flames that are hidden through out the level.

A big problem with beating the game with all four teams is that you will literally be playing through the same stages over and over again, yes each team does use slightly different paths but most of the time its the exact same stage and its gets really boring and repetitive, this is why I enjoy Team Chaotix the most they offer a more unique gameplay and its a nice break from the action style gameplay of the other teams.

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While playing through each stage you will find small golden keys that you will lose if you take damage, these keys are very important because if you manage to survive a stage with a key you will be sent to a bonus level which will either allow you to earn lives or you can try and catch one of the seven Chaos Emeralds.

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The controls are some of the worst I have ever used in a Sonic game, the characters move way too fast which often causes players to hit unforeseen enemies, some areas in the game require rail grinding and these controls make these sections a lot more difficult than they need to be, far too often did I try to quickly switch rails and the game decided to fling me far into the distance making me fall to my death, the awful controls make the special stages almost impossible to play which is extremely annoying because you need to play these to get the Chaos Emeralds and just getting to the special stages isn’t that easy of task to complete in the first place.

Glitches are not uncommon in this game so be wary if you ever to pick this one up, my advice is to mostly use the power characters as they are strong enough to take out a lot of enemies as well as moving at a reasonable pace, flying characters are by far the most useful this is due to a glitch allowing you too quickly build up your Team Blast bar by quickly throwing  your team mates using the flying character, the speed characters move far too quickly and I recommend you never play as the speed characters unless you get to section where they are needed.

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Team Blasts are a new type of special attack where all three characters in your team will work together to destroy every enemy on screen.

The music in the game isn’t really anything special, I love the vocal tracks but the level themes are just basic and not very catchy which is a shame because for me the music is what I look forward to the most when I play Sonic games and especially when I play the 3D games as they have a reputation of not being some of the best games out there.

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The visuals are amazing in this game, Sonic Heroes looks like one of the old 2D sonic games brought into the 3D world, the level designs are perfect rail sections are only implemented when they need to be, surprisingly their isn’t too many loops, every area is unique and offers a new gameplay style for example in the jungle levels you will find frogs that can make platforms appear and disappear and the Casino levels offer pinball and bingo sections to help you earn a whole load of rings to help you on your adventure and its not too often that you will die due to bad game design.

 

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The game has three types of Boss battles within the four campaigns you will either fight Dr Robotnik in one of his aircraft’s, another Team you meet while on your adventure or a barrage of Robotniks robots, for the aircraft’s just use the speed character because you can glitch the game by spamming homing attacks on the boss killing it almost instantly and for the other two I recommend a fully powered flight character as you hover in the air avoiding enemy attacks and due to the flight character being very over powered by using this character you will beat the level very quickly.

If you collect all seven Chaos Emeralds and manage to beat each Team’s campaign you will unlock Final Story which is the games real final boss and its eventual conclusion.

I wont go into too much detail here due to spoilers but I will say that this boss is a blast to fight, if 3D sonic games have one good thing about them it is almost always the final boss, the real enemy of the game is not Dr Robotnik but is a returning villain from past Sonic games that long time fans will surely enjoy fighting once again.

In conclusion Sonic Heroes is a really fun game with a lot of really big problems, it looks amazing but it plays and feels horrible, the soundtrack is not very interesting and the whole game feels rather repetitive, its not quite as bad as Shadow the Hedgehog but that doesn’t mean it’s a good experience.

Sonic Heroes is ok at best, its a shame because if all of these issues didn’t exist it would of been a classic 4.0/10

I still want a sequel though, come on Sonic Team its been almost 13 years and we want a Sonic Heroes 2 just make this one not so broken please.

I hope you enjoyed this review of  Sonic Heroes

If you respect my opinion, I will respect yours

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

 

 

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Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone (PC) (2001) Review

Alohomora

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I remember playing Harry Potter video games when I was a child, I used to own the Philosophers Stone on the Ps1 and both the Chamber of Secrets and Prisoner of Azkaban games on the PS2.

There are many Philosophers Stone games and the most rare of them all is the second generation version (Ps2, Xbox and GameCube) due to the price of this game being rather ridiculous I refused to buy it until I could find it for cheap in a flee market or a charity shop so when I saw the PC version being sold for penny’s in my local charity shop I quickly snapped it up expecting to be playing the rare second generation version only to be surprised that this particular game was very unique in itself and actually provided a completely new experience I didn’t expect.

The only question now is was that experience good?

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You play the game as the Young wizard Harry Potter who has just started his first year at Hogwarts school of Witchcraft and Wizardry, you spend the majority of the game attending classes such as Defense against the Dark Arts, Broomstick flying and Charms.

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When you attend a class you are almost immediately told to trace over a shape using your mouse, you will need to hit a certain percentage of the shape in order to proceed to next difficulty of the spell learning minigame, you are required to pass level 1 which will award you five points for Gryffindor and after you succeed you will be taken to the next level, the more levels you pass the more points you will earn for Gryffindor but you are only required to finish level 1 in order too continue with the main game.

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The only time that attending a class is any different is when you take part in a flying lesson because instead of tracing shapes this time you will need to fly through many different rings, this section works surprisingly well using the keyboards controls considering that for most of the lesson you will be using the speed up key which makes your broom stick fly much faster than usual.

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After you finish the tracing mini game you are always then told to complete a bunch of challenges which mostly rely on you using that new spell, you will often be taken into a number of rooms to perform these challenges, you will also have the opportunity to collect the challenge stars which depending on how many you can find will award you with different amounts of points for Gryffindor once the challenge is complete, these stars are really easy to find so you should almost always be awarded maximum points for completing these challenges.

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When playing through the main game you will also have the opportunity to collect other items, one of these items is the Bertie Botts every flavor beans which are only needed for you to give to Fred and George Weasley  as they need it for a top secret practical joke they are planning on Slytherin.

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The other collectible items are the famous Witches and Wizards cards which are hidden in secret areas all throughout Hogwarts, some of the cards you can get from Fred and George but the Majority you will need to find yourself, collecting all 25 cards only gives you a slightly expanded ending to the game so its not really worth the effort unless you really want to get 100 percent.

The general gameplay is mostly 3D platforming which works extremely well using the keyboard and mouse, the game runs smoothly providing you play on an XP operating system  otherwise you will have serious lag and slowdown due to the game being so old.

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You will play levels based on many of the famous scenes in the movie by far the most memorable part of the game for me was avoiding Filch and Mrs Norris in the forbidden section of the Library.

There are a few boss fights in the game but they are not that difficult as most of time just casting spells blindlessly will defeat them, the only boss I even had the slightest trouble with was the final boss and even he wasn’t that difficult.

The music is very memorable of the film which is a nice addition to the game, not all the music is from the movie but the original tracks are also very fun to listen too so its difficult to complain about

Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone for the PC is a decent title in the Harry Potter game franchise, this particular version is a lot of fun but it is way too short as it can be finished with just a few hours, the game also feels very bare as most scenes from the film are missing which really is a shame, on the bright side there is a level based on a section which was only in the book which is a nice touch, it has tight controls, fun music and ok game play.

Unfortunately as much as I enjoy this game it is not one of the best Harry Potter games I have ever played but it is a lot of fun for what it is so I am going to rate this game slightly better than an average score 5.5/10

I hope you enjoyed my review of Harry Potter and Philosophers Stone for the PC

If you respect my opinion, I will respect yours

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

You can find me on Miiverse by searching for draskafer

 

 

Kings Quest 2: Romancing the Throne Review

After being a little disappointed with the original Kings Quest, I jumped straight into Kings Quest 2 hoping to find a more interesting and satisfying experience. I have beaten the game and here are my thoughts.

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Yet again you take control of Sir Graham who is now the king of Daventry, Graham is lonely and wants to find a fair maiden to become his Queen who will help him rule the kingdom.

after many failures of trying to find a bride to satisfy him Graham consults the magic mirror to help him find his one true love, The mirror shows him a mysterious tower located somewhere in the Kingdom of Kolyma which holds a beautiful girl waiting to be rescued, Graham now sets off to rescue his future bride.

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Again we are given a simple to follow plot, and again I really appreciate this as the game does not need an in depth story line to be interesting and a simple to follow plot is going to benefit younger players of the game. Of course if you want a more in depth look into the games story consult the manual because Sierra did expand on the plot within the manual.

Kings Quest 2 has much better controls than its predecessor, this time around you cant use the mouse at all within the game, but using just the keyboard works really well. I complained that the first game had clunky controls when you tried to move but luckily this time around not once did I have that issue. The controls were smooth and it was easy for me to walk around and communicate with the games environments without stress.

instead of three treasures this time you need to find three keys, that will unlock three doors allowing you to travel through a portal to where the Princess awaits.

You have to ride a seahorse to Atlantis to find King Triton who will give you a key

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One key you can only reach by flying high in the sky on a magic carpet

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And the final key is inside of Dracula’s castle

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Reaching these keys is not easy because as you might expect there are a lot of puzzles to solve within the game and your not just dealing with these three NPC’s.

You also need to steal from a gnome, rescue a woman’s pet bird from a witch, help heal red riding hoods sick grandmother and so much more.

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Sadly just like the original Kings Quest, Kings Quest two also lacks in the audio department with very few audio samples within the game.

Overall I am still to find a kings quest game that I will truly love, Kings Quest two was an enjoyable experience, It was more interesting than the original and in my opinion it had more enjoyable characters and puzzles.

Again it lacked in audio but on the bright side it was full of detail and it looks fantastic considering it was released in 1984. Also the game is full of really cool Easter eggs and secrets to look out for.

In my opinion Kings Quest 2 was slightly better than the first game but not by much.

I give kings Quest 2 a 6.9/10.

and with that I say, Bring on the Third game.

I hope you enjoyed this Review of Kings Quest 2

If you respect my opinion I will respect yours

By Padawan

King’s Quest 1: Quest for the Crown (1990 Edition) Review

A few weeks ago a friend of mine begged me to play through and review a series of games called Kings Quest, I had heard about the games many times growing up, but I always skipped them because at the time I was more interested in my Sega so I tended to stay away from PC gaming.

I remember playing a Kings Quest game when I was in Primary school but at the Time I was way to young to be able to understand the puzzles and the complexity of the game.

It’s been over 15 years but I have finally finished Kings Quest 1: Quest for the Crown

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in the game you play as Sir Graham the most heroic Knight in all of Daventry

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The kingdom of Daventry is suffering from many hardships which can only be put to rest if a hero finds three legendary treasures that are hidden through out the kingdom, the treasures are a Mirror guarded by a ferocious dragon, a chest guarded by a towering giant and a shield guarded by the mischievous leprechaun king. During these hardships King Edward is dying and has called upon Sir Graham to find the three treasures and as a reward he will be crowned king of Daventry.

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I like that the game has a simple to follow plot as this is a children’s game, a lot of critics complain that the plot isn’t very immersive and in depth compared to other fantasy series such as The Elder Scrolls. I don’t personally agree with this theory but if you really want a more in depth plot take a look at the games manual because there is an entire section expanding on the games story.

The most important aspect is the game play and for the most part its really great, for those who don’t know kings quest is a typing adventure game, you have the ability to move Sir Graham around the kingdom by either moving with the arrow keys or clicking with the mouse.

You can then communicate with the in game NPC’s and enviroments by typing an action such as look, talk, move, give, take, jump and duck

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I really enjoyed the gameplay in some ways it reminded me of old Zelda games with its vast world and complex puzzles, but thats not to say that the gameplay didn’t suffer from some major issues such as its controls. Long time fans may dissagree but to me the controls felt really clunky. If I wanted to use the arrow keys to move Sir Graham I couldnt stop moving in that direction and this often led to my death but I also found that if I used the mouse to move I no longer had this issue but instead I would get stuck behind in game objects such as trees.

The controls did not help in certain areas which required fast or careful movements such as climbing a beanstalk or walking across a tree branch.

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the puzzles and the layout of the map is perfect nothing really feels out of place and the map isn’t so big that the game gets too complicated but I do feel that younger players really struggle to figure out some of the games puzzles as their isn’t many clues and the player is left to figure things out by them self, I feel that the game could have benefited from a couple of difficulty options.

The game looks fantastic, I must say that for a game that came out in 1990 I am very impressed, the in game environments and NPC’s are absolutely full of detail and the game really benefits from a great mix of colours

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My biggest issue is the lack of audio in the game, there is very few audio tracks in the game and the majority of the game has hardly any sound at all. I would be more forgiving if this was the original and not the remake as this is an issue they could have fixed for the re-release

I really enjoyed kings Quest 1, it was not as good as I expected it as it suffered a lot of major issues but when it shined it really shined. I had a great time and I cant wait to play the sequel 6.7/10

I hope you enjoyed this Review of Kings Quest 1
If you respect my opinion I will respect yours
By Padawan

Why is the Sims Fun?

I’ve always wondered why people love The Sims Video games so much, all you do is control a virtual human through mindless everyday tasks like taking a Dump, reading the newspaper, going to work, taking a shower among other things.

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Why is this fun?, what about this game makes it so interesting?, What aspect keeps bringing us back game after game?

Well lets begin by discussing the general lifestyle of the average human being, most people live by a routine of how they do things and in what order, for example when I wake up I will use the toilet, have a shower, brush my teeth, get changed, walk my dog, make breakfast, wash the dishes, go to work, come home from work, use toilet again, watch TV, make Food, Play video games then I go to sleep and repeat everything again the next day. That is my routine and I use that routine almost every single day.

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As I stated most people have a routine which they use to help them get through life every single day. But here’s the problem life can be pretty depressing, we may live by a routine but what happens when things don’t go to plan one day and something terrible happens for example maybe you will go bankrupt or you may get fired from your job cutting off any income, meaning you cant pay your bills, water rates or rent. If things like this do happen you may need to change your routine to fit around your newer lifestyle and in some cases you can literally be doomed as you will be constantly in debt causing you to live a stressful and depressing life.

The Sims is literally everything I just said but in a video game, you take control of virtual human and you make them perform everyday tasks like go to work, have a shower etc. So why do we play these games? is it the funny language they speak or the fact that you can give them hilarious names and motivations.

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I think its because the Sims isn’t really a game , its more of a life simulator. Have you ever noticed that a lot of people who play the Sims create big mansions and buy loads of really cool sound systems, massive TV’s in every room, Arcade machines, a big swimming pool.

A lot of people have dream lives that they want to live and for the most part The Sims allows people to create a virtual reality allowing the player to create their own family, house and lifestyle and they can choose how they want to live it. the best part is that if anything goes wrong you can just start again something which is extremely rare in real life and that is why I think people get so addicted to The Sims, even if they may not realise that they return to the game just so they can live their virtual lives for just a few more hours each day.

The Sims = A virtual Lifestyle without any of the Bullshit !!

Thanks for reading my Theory to why the Sims is fun
Do you agree with my opinion or do you think i’m just a crazy mumbling madman?
By Padawan

Tomb Raider 2013 (PC, 360,PS3) Review

I have wanted a really dark, action filled and serious Tomb Raider game for quite some time now, little did I know that in the year of 2013 my dream Tomb Raider game would become a reality.

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A lot of people were sceptical when this game got announced and I am not going to lie I was as well, but can you blame us for being sceptical over a Tomb Raider game with an age rating of 18. The idea of a Tomb Raider game having such a high age recommendation is un-heard of, so how was this new Tomb Raider? lets take a look

You play as Treasure Hunter Lara Croft

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Lara and her crew are on a Research Vessel called the Endurance, Lara and the crew are looking for the Lost Fleet of Kublai Khan. When Lara notices an island in the distance she tells her crew that she wants a closer look, upon approaching the Island the Research Vessel is split in half separating Lara from the rest of the crew. Lara goes searching for the rest of her crew and she eventually finds her friend Sam who is sharing the heat of a fire with a man called Mathias.

Lara falls asleep and awakens to find both Sam and Mathias missing. Later on Lara discovers that Mathias and a bunch of other men have Sam captive and plan to use her as a sacrifice to Himiko the sun queen. Himiko’s soul is transferred to different females generation to generation, when one Himiko gets old or dies her soul is then transferred to the last chosen Himiko, Sam is the female chosen to be part of the soul transfer ceremony.

Also some mysterious force is preventing Lara or anyone else from leaving the island. Lara’s new mission is to find the rest of her crew, rescue Sam and to discover the curse preventing them from leaving the Island.

Tomb raider has such awesome game play, Lara will find multiple tools and weapons through out her adventure such as pickaxe which will allow her climb mountains, rope which she can shoot from her bow to bring down doors and to help her get to hard to reach areas.

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As well as useful tools Lara is also carries a pretty kickass arsenal of weapons this includes a Bow and Arrow, Hand Gun, Shotgun, Assault Rifle and a Grenade Launcher. Each weapon has its own uses the shot gun can be used to destroy wooden barriers that may be blocking your path, the grenade launcher can be used to blow up metal doors and the bow and arrow has multiple uses such as setting fire to wood and explosives and it also helps Lara to use the rope to more of an advantage.

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By far the most useful weapon is the bow and arrow not just because it has multiple uses but it can also be used to take out enemies quietly, if there is a group of enemies Lara can shoot an arrow at a near by wall, this will cause some of the enemies to search away from that area leaving just one poor guy to be killed without anyone else noticing.

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When your not sneaking around and killing bad guys, Lara will stumble across some unfortunate environmental hazards these can include Lara falling into a fast flowing river and having to avoid any obstacles in order to survive, or she may be running across a bridge which is quickly falling to pieces beneath her feet. One of my favourite parts of the game is about half way through Lara is using a parachute and has too avoid trees so that she doesn’t get injured.

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So what happens if you aren’t able to avoid these obstacles? oh dear

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As well as this the game controls perfectly, I played on keyboard and mouse and found no difficulty getting use to the controls what so ever, I even played a bit using an Xbox 360 controller and again the game controlled perfectly so no complaints for that. I do however have one complaint about the game play, There are way too many quick time events in this game, I don’t mind a couple but at least 50 percent of the game play requires them and it really gets annoying after having to use the same quick time events for the same things over and over again through out the game.

Now as it is a Tomb Raider game you will be pleased to know that there are loads of hidden tombs that Lara can raid, when in these tombs you will usually be faced with a puzzle or two before you are able to reach any treasure that hidden within the tomb.

As well some awesome game play, tomb raider also has a really awesome soundtrack, the music is all orchestrated and it sounds beautiful a lot of the time the music made me wonder if it was composed by John Williams because the music really sounds like something out of an Indiana Jones film, as you can tell this suited the game quite nicely.

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A beautiful soundtrack needs some beautiful visuals to go with it and let me just say you wont be let down with the way the game looks. Everything in the game looks amazing and you can tell that the developers really went a long way to make this game as breathtaking to look at as it is to play.

First of all Lara’s new character model is so freaking cool, she has this really awesome roughened up look to her that just says “stand in my way, I dare you” but she also doesn’t look like a complete killing machine which allows the player to sympathise with her character.

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Here are a few pictures of the Island

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Tomb-Raider forest

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Seriously the graphics and visuals in Tomb Raider are amazing, the game would often play a cut scene and when it returned to game play I wouldn’t move for a minute because I thought the cut scene was still playing, yeah the visuals are that good.

Tomb Raider was an incredible game, this is by far my favourite Tomb Raider game ever and it’s also the only Tomb Raider game I have enjoyed enough to actually finish, It has flawless controls, really awesome game play, breathtaking visuals and a beautiful soundtrack, the only problem is the constant quick time events and I really hope they work on those for the sequel.

Tomb Raider was one awesome adventure 9/10

I hope you enjoyed this review of Tomb Raider
If you respect my opinion I will respect yours
By Padawan