Tomb Raider Underworld ‘Review’

Game: Tomb Raider Underworld
Published by: Eidos Interactive
Developed by: Crystal Dynamics
Formats: X360, PS3, PC, Wii Format Played: X360

Picking up from Legend this continues after. I feel like this game and Legend have now become Tomb Raider 2 and 3 because from Anniversary (TR1) Underworld continues the story from Legend but all the other TR games each have separate storylines.
First off the graphics are stunning and Lara’s looks and moves are impressive to say the least. You will see Lara look where she is placing her hands when she is climbing and when she is running down stairs she will do it properly to balance herself but occasionally she will also lose her balance and stumble forward which she will also sometimes do when she doesn’t quite make a jump and only manages to grab hold with one hand.
As with previous TR games the glitches are back but it’s not all through the game and only pops up here and there. Some of these glitches have been I managed to fall through a part of the land and sometimes a jump you know you can make she sometimes will not reach out to grab it and you end up falling to your death. These are only little things and they didn’t really distract me from playing through the game. I did have one major glitch in a room with blades and spikes and they froze but when I died they were still frozen so I could not move forward! Luckily the game auto saves so I had to go back and start that part of the level again.

The above and the fact the game is quite short are my only downfalls I am a huge Tomb Raider fan so it’s hard to me to criticize bits which have been in every TR game so far but in the end I think the fans have come to accept this as part of the game. Some reviews of this game have been average as they have said there is nothing ground breaking with this game………………………..so what? Look what they did to TR2 by taking it away from tombs! I would rather they stay true to the first tomb raider and have Lara searching through tombs and finding secrets! Also puzzles, we like puzzles and even though there are some in Underworld they are no trouble whatsoever and you will not spend too long before you move on.
Secrets are now in Pots which are dotted around everywhere and quite easy to see but there are so many of them that finding all nearly 200 in the game could be tricky! There is also a Relic in most of the levels and these are a little more difficult to find but I wish there were more then just 6 as I found 4 in my first play through.
I have to say that I was a little upset when I finished the game, the story got better towards the end and I knew it was coming but there was one thing I hoped to expect but it never came but the ending was left open for another game which is great news.

Lara has some new moves as well as some old ones returning. You can still swan dive, the grabble is back although you can now use the grapple to abseil down high cliffs and area’s, also her pointless flips are back but slightly changed and although pointless they look so good! The way she flips up when climbing rocks now comes randomly and quicker. Lara’s headshots can now only be pulled off when your adrenaline is full which will fill up by shooting enemies and once full you can now click action when the enemy is attacking, this will slow down the screen for a short period of time and once this happens you have to move the curser to the head of your enemy before the time runs out, this will kill them with one single shot. Lara also has sticky bombs which can be used to take out a load of enemies at a time and also great fun!

Every so often the screen will fill with small spiders and Bats which can be annoying, they only take 1 shot to kill but so many come out at time your auto focus goes mental! But if you don’t want to shoot them just kick them out the way!

The levels are open plan and you can pretty much go everywhere which sometimes makes you lose your way slightly but that’s the fun with Tomb Raider games, its trial and error!
Like I said the story is good, the game play is fantastic (apart from a few glitches), the fighting is fun but the puzzles are easy and the game is shorter then I would have liked but what the hell you can always play it again on Hard!
On first play through I have managed to get all but 4 achievements and they have go rid of the time trials……………..why would they do such a thing?

8/10

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~ by Martyn on November 7, 2008.

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