Developer: Crystal Dynamics | Released: 2014 | Genre: Platform, Isometric
This is the sequel to Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light which I completed back in 2015.
It was basically more of the same. Platform jumping from an isometric viewpoint, solving puzzles and occasionally shooting monsters. Because I was playing solo, the other three coop characters were always left behind. I even had the staff that one of the other guys usually wielded. The staff was good for blasting vases for gems, but could also raise specific platforms when held up.
Better weapons and amulets could be found and equipped in an old-fashioned inventory that looked like it was nicked from an RPG. I also had access to a torch for lighting braziers, and a rope for ascending a wall when clicking on a specific wall ring. Big spheres returned to be pushed onto switches or into cages. There was even a time bomb version that could have its timer slowed down by raising the staff.
I must confess I wasn’t always a fan of using the mouse to move a cursor for indicating the target of my weapon fire. When the going got tough and there were a lot of monsters chasing me around, I sometimes couldn’t see the cursor and I ended up firing away from the monsters.
But the game was not too difficult for a few hours to begin with. In fact, monsters were far between. There was a lot of running around on my own, solving puzzles, even zapping several glowing spheres at once using mirrors. I got access to sort of a hub, where the body parts of a god collected from the tombs were displayed. There were also a ton of treasure chests, but not all of them could be opened.
There was one first boss fight in a round sand arena where things started getting difficult. Unfortunately that’s also where my PC started regularly rebooting Windows. It’s an old desktop computer from 2015 but it has always worked flawlessly. Unfortunately I have seen it doing that once before recently.
Everything got significantly harder after that boss fight. Monsters started using shields, there were more multi-phase boss fights, and the puzzles got longer and more complicated.
The last straw was a long puzzle segment where I had to release a time bomb sphere and lead it through several spear gates by standing on various pressure plates for opening them. There were lot of trial and error, and when the sphere finally dumped into a pool, I couldn’t seem to swim ashore with it…
…and then my PC rebooted Windows again for the umpteenth time.
That’s when I decided I had seen enough of this game. In my defense I did last long, and maybe I would have completed it too if my PC wasn’t like that. I had even lowered the resolution to 1920×1080 instead of the usual 4k resolution, but although it did last a lot longer, I still got that reboot in the end.
First abandoned after 4.1 hours.
The next day I still retried that last bit to see if I could move the sphere in the water. Turns out I just had to use a grenade to lift it out. But I also found out I was solving an optional puzzle tomb. I thought is was the way ahead because exiting the real story tomb before it dumped me just outside the entrance next to that one being open. Turns out I had to run all the way back to the hub myself to deliver the next body part.
That was very confusing to say the least.
I then saw that I had actually only collected 4 out of 10 body parts. Not even 50%. I decided I didn’t want to continue. The game wasn’t fun enough to warrant fighting the computer rebooting once in a while.
Finally abandoned after 4.8 hours.