Review by leveledclassic

"The very first video game I ever played and still one of my favorites."

The title says it all. This one was the very first video game I ever played. I recently picked up again and got to relive a lot of nostalgia and felt I should review it for every one else.

In Tomb Raider you play as the self made millionaire Lara Croft. She's an attractive(as far as pixels go) strong women who finds amazing relics for sport and has in turn made millions. In my opinion to many people enjoy this series for Lara's small shorts, and large chest but I am one of the few people who enjoyed this game for it's adventurous feeling. In this game you control Lara to the core, you dictate all her actions, at the start of the first level you control every jump, gunshot, and sprint. This game succeeds in giving you a real connection with the character, just like in a movie you don't want them to die because you feel a connection with them. You always feel sad when you see Lara fall 70 feet and get impaled by spikes. I don't like spikes to begin with.

Story~ 7/10
I can't can really say it's good or bad. First you go looking for a piece of an amazing relic call the scion in Peru. You start your adventure in some caves and make your way into hidden tombs, and even a lost valley where dinosaurs still roam. But one thing comes off as strange to me...If Lara's in Peru how is she not freezing to death UNDERGROUND. I mean in certain parts she's swimming, that's got to be really freaking cold! Anyways your adventure takes you from Peru to ancient Greek ruins and tombs all the way to hidden Egyptian tombs and even to secret Atlanta temples.

Graphics~ 7/10
Impressive for 1996. No I'm not going to be like every other review it and compare to some game like Bioshock or Gears of War. The graphics consists of polygons with no curved edges what so ever. The enemies look cheesy and pathetic up close but 3D games of this magnitude were rare back then so I'm not expecting much. The cut scene graphics weren't very good either. All in all the textures are nice and give as much of a sense of realism as a play station game made 11 years ago can give. The animation for this game is surprisingly good. Lara moves the way a real human would(Besides her gravity defying jumps of course) She doesn't just hop over large rocks like nothing, she actually struggles to climb on top and nothing she does seems that cheesy.

Sound~ 10/10
There isn't that much music in the game, every now and then you'll enter a vast underground coliseum and music will play that will give the game an incredible cinematic feel. For most of the game you'll here foot steps, just trot trot trot trot across the stone ground. The foot steps sound like real boots hitting against gravel and not high heals across marble floor like so many other games. The sounds always seem to echo giving the game an eerie feel when running down empty water corridors in the sewers of an ancient Greek palace. You can hear traps in corridors you have not yet been to yet. The voice acting isn't to good but voice acting was rare back then anyways. Lara makes realistic sounds when struggling to climb atop a large block of stone and of course real sounding death noises, like her groans when getting impaled by spikes. I hate spikes.

Game play~ 8/10
Most of the game consists of climbing onto one ledge and jumping to another and to a higher rock then on to yet another boulder. This may sound repetitive but it is actually a lot of fun. This makes for a very adventurous game. Overall this is a puzzle game, you enter a room see a series of rocks, or boulder, or random pillars, or blocks jutting out of the wall. Get to the top and pull a lever that opens a door somewhere near by and you go through it. CORE found a way to make it so this never gets old the puzzles you do get rather creative as well as the plat forming. Lots of traps are added for extra challenge, some are one hit kills while some just hurt a lot. They range from petty darts, spiked doors, and pendulum blades that cause lots of damage, and one hit kills like large boulders and spikes. I hate spikes. Lots of enemies are thrown in for you to fight, enemies like wolves, bats, dinosaurs, gorillas, lions, panthers, and crocodiles. These fights are difficult at first due to Tomb Raiders odd control scheme, but when you get better guns and better at controlling Lara they become a breeze. The control scheme is difficult to get used to for people used to the next-gen consuls because the analog does nothing. Just tapping the jump button does nothing, you need to hop back from and edge and get a running start while holding down the button to make Lara jump.

Replay value~ 8/10
There are lots of secrets in this game and it's just plain fun so don't be surprised to find your self playing this game more than once.

Rent of buy.
EBay it.

Pros.
+Old school plat forming fun
+Makes you feel like a real adventurer
+Nice animation
Cons
-Sometimes this game gets really unclear on what to do sometimes.
-Control scheme makes the combat either really easy or painfully hard.
-Why would there be shot gun shells next to an untouched monument to Neptune?

Overall score~ 42/50 or 8/10


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 12/21/07

Game Release: Tomb Raider (US, 11/15/96)


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