Shadow of the Tomb Raider 2018 Review

Shadow of the Tomb Raider is a 2018 action-adventure game developed by Eidos-Monteral and published by Square Enix.

The game is technically the twelfth entry to the series but is only the third game in the reboot franchise, from what I understand this is also the game that is meant to catch us up to the plot of the original tomb raider from 1996.

Two months after the events of Rise of the Tomb Raider, Lara Croft and her best friend Jonah have dedicated them selves to destroying the terrorist organisation Trinity.

They head to Mexico to track Trinity’s high council leader Pedro Dominguez, while in Mexico Lara finds a temple which holds the Dagger of Chak Chel as well as hints of a hidden city within the country.

There are also warnings of a silver box of Ix Chel which is used to perform a ritual called the cleansing which is a Mayan apocalypse which will cause a permanent solar eclipse.

On top of stopping Dominquez Lara wants to find this box for studying momentarily unaware that Dominquez wants the box for much more sinister reasons.

The main gameplay style of the new trilogy is very similar in style to the older Assassin’s creed games and of course Uncharted, you will have to figure out how to traverse environments and sometimes this can be really tricky because there isn’t many visual evidence of the best way to do something but if you do get stuck you can activate a vision mode which does highlight clues to help you on your way through out these areas.

The same can be done in tombs which are handled differently in this trilogy because in all of the games they are more side content than something which needs to be done. I did all of the challenge tombs in the game and not once did they feel like they were getting stale and each of them had a different theme and various challenges for players to figure out.

There was a lot of moments in this game that were on rails stealth segments normally it was either flooding water or Lara running away from something, These were developed very well and I had no issue with the controls but I do feel there was just a few too many of them.

This game is gorgeous graphically with vast and beautiful environments, due to the locations and theme of the game a lot of the areas you explore are very old fashioned there is a village in the game that still looks the same way it did thousands of years ago its very captivating and generally feels like something out of a documentary due to how realistic it is portrayed.

Other styles in the game are pretty rare but one that stands out and I really wish we could have seen more of is Day of the Dead in Mexico.

I really enjoyed the colours they used here and how they genuinely set up the atmosphere with the music, it was fun to do the first mission here but I wish we could have explored the festival a little bit more as it really was the most interesting part of the game in my opinion.

A nice arsenal of weapons are back for this game and none of them were new but I don’t feel they needed to add anything else to what we already had in Rise. Very similarly I mostly used the bow and arrow and pistol in this one trying to get as many headshots as I could. The Bow and Arrow is by far the best weapon in all of these games because it has multiple uses, It can be used to kill people but it can also use fire arrows and poison arrows, another great use is the rope arrow that can bring down small barricades and of course help you get across wide gaps or get to lower areas very quickly.

The soundtrack composed by Brian D’Oliveira is breathtaking and that can be said for the music in the entire trilogy, while playing these games it often surprises me that me that the music is videogame music and not from a motion picture because as I have stated before it is so well composed that it rivals work from major composers like John Williams or Danny Elfman. The music here is perfect and is probably the best part of the game and that is not to put the rest of the experience down but a perfect soundtrack is hard to come by and this entire trilogy pulls it off extremely well.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider is often considered the worst of the reboot series but I disagree this game is so close to being as good as Rise and it wouldn’t surprise me if for some people they like it more.

This game explores Lara’s childhood and her becoming more mature, in the game we actually see a lot of flaws in her character which are often confronted by Jonah this is never in a malicious way but more out of care.

I thought it was good that we got see problems in her character for her to work on because I don’t feel the two previous games explored these aspects enough.

I really enjoyed the areas of the game and I genuinely found the mystery very interesting. I thought the characters were some of the best we have had yet, the moments that happen in the hidden village were specifically effective due to how well they wrote the characters and their relationships.

I don’t really understand why people thinks this is a weaker game than the first one, I thought it was outstanding, I feel they did the story well, the environments were gorgeous, the soundtrack is phenomenal and the side content was just as good as the main game. Personally I do prefer Rise for reasons I explain in that review but I think a solid 9/10 is a really fair score for this one.

I don’t know if we will get another one after this but if this is all we get for the Tomb Raider Reboots this is one of the best trilogy’s I think gaming has ever had.

Check out my reviews for the first Reboot game and Rise using the links below

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