Rise of the Tomb Raider

Good
  • Vast number of improvements and enhancements over the first title to create a more rounded adventure for all player preferences
  • An excellent setting that explores a blended world of realism and myth
Bad
  • Weaker story compared to the first game particularly in regards to the primarily plot twist that doesn't live up to the great setting
8.5

Offering a second game title in the rebooted Tomb Raider franchise, Rise of the Tomb Raider continues to follow the story of Lara Croft and her Siberia based adventures in the search for the city of Kitezh. Once again she will be racing against the military organisation (Trinity) who are intent on beating her and claiming the rumoured immortality it contains within. Released in 2015 this addition to the Tomb Raider Survivor trilogy is available across all major platforms with a similar blend of exploration, combat, stealth, resource management and questing as the first Tomb Raider in this story arc.

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Set only a single year after your last story as the archaeologist Lara Croft players are stuck in a state of PTSD in response to the chaotic and supernatural encounters of your adventure on Yamatai. To break the cycle of PTSD and return to themselves players turn their attention to the lost city of Kitezh that is similarly mysterious and said to hold the keys to human immortality. Having driven your own father insane though this is not a task that players take on lightly and quickly embroils Lara in a Siberia plot with the familiar Trinity organisation that investigate the supernatural for their own benefit.

Following through the various twists and turns that the story of Rise of the Tomb Raider has to offer will set a diligent player back around two dozen hours during which time you’ll command Lara from a franchise familiar third person perspective. Across these gameplay hours combat is just one of many recurring themes and also one of the most varied given the large array of weapons Lara can utilise. Primarily firearms players have access to bows, pistols, shotguns and several rifles that all handle differently and have varied upgrade options for players to invest into their preferred weapon choices.

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This isn’t to say that stealth doesn’t still play an important role if you prefer it and sometimes it is also required for specific game sequences where you’ll complete silent takedowns or distract the enemy AI. During all of these activities and questing players will also be generating experience points that are invested into improving Lara’s power. Split across Brawler, Hunter and Survivor players will find options to boost weapons, environment expertise and crafting.

Brawler for example offers players useful skills like thick-skinned to lower incoming damage, deadly force that improves your steal finishing moves and field medic that allows you to heal wounds with greater speed. Meanwhile in the Hunter tree you’ll find breath control to increase the steady aim time with bows, animal instincts for animal tracking and finesse to boost experience gained for your actions. Lastly in the Survivor tree options such as rapid crafting will allow you to craft items while running, avid learner to boost your exploration experience gains and crafting mastery which offers increased ammo per craft.

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With skills from each of these trees players will be stuck in an enjoyable loop of exploring new locations, acquiring resources and crafting or upgrading to reach increasingly powerful items. Exploration in particular is key to uncovering everything the game has to offer, unlocking Lara’s full strength and finding puzzle challenges for unique utilities. With a great number of new features and enhancements over what was already an impressive franchise reboot Rise of the Tomb Raider has once again solidified the franchise as a staple game in the genre.

Summary:

  • Continue the Lara Croft adventures with this title in the revived franchise of adventure games.
  • Invest across three different skill trees that allow you to design a playstyle across Brawler, Hunter and Survivor.
  • Use the deep crafting systems to create necessary supplies and combat enhancers.
  • Engage in combat with everything from bows to firearms and upgrade them with additional power as you progress.
  • Use stealth to evade the Trinity across Siberia as you hunt for a mythological city rumoured to hold the secret to immortality.

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Review Platform: Xbox One

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Written by
Samuel Franklin
Samuel Franklin is the founder and lead editor of the Games Finder team and enjoys video games across all genres and platforms. He has worked in the gaming industry since 2008 amassing over 3 million views on YouTube and 10 million article views on HubPages.

Games Finder is a Steam Curator and featured in the aggregate review scores data of MobyGames and Neoseeker.
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