Its no secret that Tomb Raiders revival has been arguably one of the most successful in gaming. Both entries were considered Game of the Year contenders and rightfully so, both are excellent games that feature fun exploration and brutal combat. But they weren’t without their flaws, both featured rather thin plots and one-dimensional characters outside of Lara. This however, could all change with the release of Shadow of the Tomb Raider on September 14th. A release date trailer was just released depicting a brutally efficient Lara dispatching various soldiers in the jungle so that she could make her way to stop a ritual sacrifice. It’s a particularly thrilling sequence and showcases the evolution of Lara Croft.
In the first Tomb Raider, Lara was a naive, junior archealogist who had to quickly become a survivor when her ship was marooned on the fictional island of Yamatai. As it completely rebooted the character, players were introduced to a vulnerable Lara who was forced to do whatever it took to survive. It was grounded, gritty, brutal, and was surprising in the best ways. By the end of the experience, Lara was no longer a naive young adult, she was the on the precipice of becoming the iconic character that gamers grew to know and love.
In Rise of the Tomb Raider, Lara was more comfortable as a survivor and was far more confident in her actions. No longer was she second-guessing her abilities, she was a fighter and seemed less hesitant when an enemy had to be eliminated. Rise of the Tomb Raider was a brilliant follow-up that improved on the foundation its predecessor had laid down. When players arrived at bonfires, Lara would have various monologues that showcased her newfound determination and confidence. The experience had hardened her and Shadow of the Tomb Raider looks to be the next step forward in the series. Lara is now confident, cunning, and understands the requirements to survive any situation. If this is anything like the first two games, it should make for a brilliant experience and could very well vye for Game of the Year. Hopefully, this game adds new and interesting characters for Lara to interact with. The Tomb Raider sereies has had an amazing turnaround for a series that was once left for dead and seemed to be directionless. Now there is the potential for three excellent games and I can’t wait to see just where Lara goes next.
Get your pick-axes ready.