Aug 16 //
Perhaps the biggest alteration that Temple of Osiris employs is simply the number of people that are in on the action. Whereas the first game in the series featured two-player co-op, Temple of Osiris drops up to four into the fray. The characters pair off into two groups with unique capabilities. Lara and fellow treasure hunter Carter Bell can grapple to distant locations, while Egyptian gods Horus and Isis are equipped with light staffs. Each proves essential for clearing certain sections, but no characters feel more powerful than others. In the event that there's only a single player, Lara is given a staff to assist with certain sections.
On the surface, Temple of Osiris is all about teamwork. Traversing across several tombs in an Egyptian setting in an effort to stop the god Osiris' evil brother Set is technically the reason for this dangerous endeavor. Your partners will feel invaluable as you fight monsters, solve puzzles, and wander off into intriguing nooks. Don't be naive -- they have an ulterior motive just like you.
Underscoring the entirety of Temple of Osiris is a sense of competition. The game ranks players after each level, elevating the top performer on a pedestal where they're showered with gems. These gems act as the game's currency, so it's easy to get caught up in wanting more than your compadres. Before long, you're scrambling to pick up the point bonuses, get the final blow on enemies, and find that secret area first. It gives you that one-up that isn't necessary, but you just want so badly.
The pursuit of gems is how the game accentuates its light RPG system. A treasure room that's available in between levels features a wealth of chests that all have random gear to equip. Chests vary in cost to open -- the higher the cost, the better the chance that it'll hold rare items. Crystal Dynamics isn't too willing to talk about the economy of Temple of Osiris yet, so it's unknown whether you'll be able to just buy specific items. Regardless, it's a certainty that gems are something you'll want lots of.
Temple of Osiris offers the ability to go back to previous sections and grind out gems if you so wish. After each level, an elevator option is available, which takes the team back to an overworld hub where everything's replayable. It'll end up being a great help when seeking to clear side challenges or set high scores, especially considering that doing so is how some of the game's best gear is unlocked.
These challenges won't be a cakewalk. In our demo, gameplay wasn't overly difficult, but it also gave the impression that it'd be tough to do consistently well. Dying resets a point multiplier along with a deduction in points, meaning that consistency is absolutely key. Compounding matters are the typical flaws associated with this style of game. Depth of field and precision platforming aren't Osiris' strengths, but it's likely that familiarity will eventually mitigate most frustrations that arise as a result.
It may not be perfect but it works, and it'll probably work really well. It brings with it a sense of exploration and adventure that'll be welcome by those who grew up with Lara. Crystal Dynamics may have taken divergent paths with her character, but Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris proves that it hasn't forgotten the series' roots.
She likes shootin' and lootin' Which Lara Croft do you prefer? Crystal Dynamics has two versions of her, splitting the iconic character into distinctly different properties. The recent Tomb Raider reboot and the scheduled follow-up Rise of t... read feature
Rise of the Tomb Raider launches next fall as a timed Xbox exclusive, and it will be fascinating to see how that affects Microsoft's fortunes.
There are millions of folks around the world keen on experiencing Lara Croft's nex... read
Except for that Tomb Raider thing
Microsoft's press conferences often leave me with cranial damage from head-to-desk impact, but their gamescom 2014 presser felt pretty okay to me. I'm excited to see Microsoft making an attempt to partner with more indies. A... read feature
Why couldn't you just say that yesterday, Microsoft?
// Kyle MacGregor
Put down your pitchforks, people. As it turns out, Rise of the Tomb Raider isn't really an Xbox exclusive. According to Xbox boss Phil Spencer, the deal "has a duration."
Microsoft didn't say that during its gamescom presenta... read
Rise of the Tomb Raider is coming to the Xbox One as an exclusive in 2015. For how long though? Crystal Dynamics Head of Studios Darrell Gallagher has an answer to that question, and you might not like it.
Speaking on the sub... read
Yep. Rise of the Tomb Raider, the latest from Crystal Dynamics, is coming to Xbox only. This was announced today at Microsoft's gamescom press conference. Note that "Xbox" was said, and not a specific console. Maybe it'll come to both Xbox One and Xbox 360.
Whatchu think 'bout that? read
Square Enix has just announced a "Gold Edition" of the upcoming Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris that includes a bevy of extras that Tomb Raider fans will want to pay attention to.
The Gold Edition comes rocking a three-in... read
The sequel to the critically-acclaimed Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light will arrive just in time to unite friends and family for festivities at the end of the year. Crystal Dynamics' Lara Croft and the Temple o... read
Lara Croft may have moved onto new and exciting hardware, but that might not mean that she's seen the last of the faithful standbys from yesteryear. It appears as if Rise of the Tomb Raider, the franchise's next installment s... read
Jun 16 //
Brett Makedonski [embed]276289:54359:0[/embed]
Dead Island 2 has followed in its predecessor's footsteps with a highly memorable trailer, albeit with a severely different tone. Many would argue that the caliber of Dead Island's cinematic trailer outshone the actual game. Only time will tell what the legacy of this one is.
Cuphead took a lot of people by surprise when its trailer was showed on Monday morning. "What the hell is this, and why do I want it now?," many probably correctly thought. It's gorgeous, it's wacky, and it doesn't look like else out there. It's Cuphead.
Maybe the most intriguing of all E3 trailers was the one for From Software's Bloodborne. It's dark and creepy, and because it's From Software, we can expect it's good stuff. While a fine trailer in its own right, it didn't do anything to let us know how Bloodborne plays. Luckily, Dale was around to do that for us.
If this trailer is any indication, Far Cry 4 will thrive partially because of a strong and insanely evil villain. That was part of the charm of Far Cry 3, and it wouldn't be particularly surprising if Ubisoft went that route again. However, it probably would be particularly enjoyable. This trailer showed Pagan Min doing what he does best, and it made for fine entertainment.
Nintendo had a few interesting things to show at its E3 Digital Event. One of the definite standouts was Captain Toad: Treasure Tracker, which was inspired by levels from Super Mario 3D World. That's right, an entire game based on those intermission-style sections. No running, no jumping, just puzzle-solving and collectible-collecting. And it looks truly wonderful.
Sony capped off its press conference with the reveal of Uncharted 4: A Thief's End. Its accompanying trailer did exactly what trailers are supposed to do -- get people excited for the game. One more adventure, you say? Sure, we'll happily go along with you, Drake.
Lara Croft had a rough time in Tomb Raider. It's not surprising that she needs some psychiatric care to work through her trauma. Conveniently for us, that directly translates to getting a glimpse at our next experience with her in Rise of the Tomb Raider.
What can you say about this trailer for Dead Rising 3's DLC? It was Capcom having fun with things, and that alone is worthy of a mention. Oh yeah, and apparently the DLC was pretty good, too.
Sunset Overdrive made good use of its time in the limelight. Its trailer managed to act as an FAQ of sorts, show off some gameplay, and even make fun of conventional game mechanics. It's hard to imagine someone watching this and not thinking that all of that bouncing and sliding around looks really fun.
Valiant Hearts kind of went the other way with its E3 trailer. Rather than get the crowd all excited, it brought the room down. Armed with a puppy and a voiceover, Valiant Hearts made sure everyone knows that this one's going to be a real tear-jerker.
The world's a big place. The trailer for Hello Games' No Man's Sky makes sure to point that out. Starting in a dinosaur-laden swampland, it's not long before it jettisons off into space. It really drives home that No Man's Sky is a game of infinite exploration and endless possibilities.
We said that these trailers are in no particular order, but that was a half lie. The truth is, we saved the best for last -- Metal Gear Solid V. Anything said here won't do it justice, so just watch it yourself.
In no particular order That's another E3 in the books. After months of speculation as to what gaming's most important convention might hold, four quick days clear everything up. In a way, it almost feels criminally short given everything that's on ... read feature
Lara Croft had a rough time on her last archaeological expedition. It's no wonder that she would suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, or experience some other negative psychological effects. During Microsoft's E3 pres... read
Square Enix registered a pair of web domains related to Tomb Raider just days prior to E3.
Thanks to the wizardry of the internet, we now know the publisher has staked claims to both riseofthetombraider.com and... read
Xbox One deals straight from the console's digital marketplace itself are a welcome sight indeed.
This week's Xbox Live sales are available to Xbox 360 and Xbox One owners alike from March 28 - 30: Thief (50 percent off), Tom... read
5-6 million was the first month expectation -- it's taken a year
// Steven Hansen
The Tomb Raider reboot had series high day one and month one sales, according to studio head Darrell Gallagher. Despite this, Tomb Raider's estimated 3.4 million first month sales were deemed a "slow start" by Square Enix, wh... read
Jan 27 //
Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition (PS4 [tested], Xbox One [tested])Developer: Crystal DynamicsPublisher: Square EnixReleased: January 28, 2014MSRP: $59.99
To be perfectly clear, outside of the graphical upgrades, the Definitive Edition is basically the exact same offering as the original Tomb Raider package on 360, PS3, and PC. DLC has been bundled in (sans one previously exclusive character), mostly consisting of unimpressive multiplayer maps and even less impressive costumes. There's also approximately 15 screens of art from the official artbook which, while beautiful, isn't something you'll spend more than a minute on.
You'll also get a 28-page Dark Horse comic book, which serves as a nice little prequel, providing back stories to flesh out the poorly developed supporting characters in the game. It has a nice UI that automatically zooms in on panels, and it's pretty easy to read overall. There's also a six-part developer video series with Chuck's Zachary Levi. In other words, it's all ancillary content, nothing to get excited about, and nothing really meaty or new.
The real question is does it look better? Yes. Yes, it does. That's evident after the first ten minutes with the cave-in sequence and all of the particles that dance about in the environment, whether it's embers from your torch's flame or just general dust. Pretty much everything is better, which not only makes the game enjoyable to look at, but makes combat that much more intense when all of the enhanced filters are applied. Lara's impressive new hair effects are a standout improvement as well, and her face has been completely rebuilt. Every strand on her head is active (and it shows), and effects like sweat are now more noticeable.
Bushes also sway in the wind, the water is more clear, and just about every single environmental aspect of the game is improved. It's a good thing, too, as Tomb Raider's island is pretty iconic, and I found myself looking at some of my favorite sequences in an all new light. Although I don't think most fans will care or notice the differences, I was fairly impressed by them.Does it look sixty dollars better (or that much better than the already souped up PC version)? Not really -- at least to most people it won't. It runs at 1080p and 30/60 fps (Xbox One/PS4 respectively), so it's at the very least on par with the PC version, even exceeding it at points with the completely reworked portions. There are other gameplay-related extras like Kinect support for the Xbox One and remote play for the PS4, but again, nothing major. The DualShock 4's lightbar is a factor, as it flashes when you fire a shot or light a torch, and the speaker also plays random ambient sounds (which can get annoying after a while). Along with the PS4 version's 60 fps, it's the clear-cut winner here.
The Definitive Edition of Tomb Raider truly is meant for those who haven't played this great game yet, and in that regard, it's a shame that it wasn't competitively priced. A clear amount of effort went into making this look like the best version, and with all existing content in tow, it's also the easiest way to get everything. The catch is you'll find it much cheaper on the 360 and PS3 sans visual upgrades, and even cheaper on PC during a Steam sale. If you've never played it though, wait for a price drop and try the Definitive Edition.
Definitive version, not so definitively priced Tomb Raider had a rather interesting development cycle. It went from pure hype, to "this looks like an Uncharted clone," to controversy, and back to hype. But all of that dev drama aside, when the game actually came... read feature
We saw the comparison video, now developer Crystal Dynamics shows us exactly what went down to making Tomb Raider all next-gen-y. Lara looks more lifelike than ever, especially with her facial expressions as her face was re-... read
Square Enix initially expected to sell 5-6 million units
// Alasdair Duncan
Last year's Tomb Raider reboot has finally reached the land of profitability, despite initially failing to meet the sales targets set by publisher Square Enix. In an interview with Eurogamer, executive producer Scott Amos rev... read
Our friends over at IGN just posted a video comparing Tomb Raider to Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition, along with an interview with with developer Scot Amos. It's a nice interview, but it's a lot of preaching to the... read
Lots of fan films are great, but this Tomb Raider is above and beyond the average homage you'd normally see. The team at CanCinema did an amazing job, and it captures the brutality that the new Tomb Raider brought to the series. read
Sonic and Final Fantasy on the go and on the cheap
// Wesley Ruscher
Hopping on the old St. Nick bandwagon, both Square Enix and Sega are sharing the holiday spirit with sales on some of their mobile games for iOS and Android platforms.
Highlights from the house that Final Fantasy built ... read
Square Enix's online store is offering up to 50% on select games. You have from today to January 5, 2014 to save, and while supplies last. Here's some of the more desirable deals
Army Corps of Hell -- $14.99
Hitman: Absoluti... read
In case you haven't heard, the original Tomb Raider is available on iOS for a buck. I was trying it out yesterday, and I have to say, so long as you're using a controller option, the game works like a charm. The only han... read
Square Enix just released the original Tomb Raider for iOS, and it's just $0.99. The old Tomb Raider games were really good, so it's tempting to grab this for this cheap. It comes with the extra chapters from the 1998 re-rele... read
During VGX Square Enix unveiled a trailer showing the pretty graphics from the upcoming Definitive Edition of Tomb Raider for the Xbox One and PlayStation 4. It looks really pretty, but it looks almost exactly like the origi... read
Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition is coming to PS4 and Xbox One on January 28, 2014.
The Definitive Edition has been "custom built" for the next gen consoles and includes all of the original DLC, digital versions of the Dark Ho... read
[Note: YouTube's still processing the trimmed video. The show actually starts at the 20:10 mark]
Hey everybody! If you missed it, Spencer and I went live earlier this afternoon with a very low-key, laid back episode of The D... read
Brian Horton, the Senior Art Director at Crystal Dynamics, is really excited that the next Tomb Raider has been announced so he can talk about it. Horton explained the direction of the sequel's story, saying that "The Tomb Ra... read
Despite apparently "failing" in its publisher's eyes, it's no surprise that there's another Tomb Raider game on the way and we might see the first trailer at VGX. A Square Enix rep has told IGN that fans should "keep an eye o... read
On Amazon's Italian site, there is a PlayStation 4 listing for something called Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition that's said to be releasing on January 24 for €59.99. According to the description, this re-release includes... read