VG ReviewsVideo Games

Shadow of the Tomb Raider

Shadow of the Tomb Raider is the latest installment of the new Tomb Raider starring a younger Lara Croft. She’s on a determined mission to stop Trinity, almost to the point of being her only focus in life. To do that, she’s taking ancient artifacts before the enemy does to stop them from using the powerful magic inside.

It’s a romping adventure through jungles and ancient cities in this Tomb Raider.

Find it on Steam. All screenshots here are from the official steam page.

Getting into strange places

This time, the focus of the game is on exploring and adventuring. Combat scenes happen fewer times in this game, and enemies don’t respawn. So once you clear an area, it stays that way. Which is a shame sometimes since you have some new toys and moves to play with. The game play is great. You can feel like a stealth warrior, taking people down one at a time, or even two at a time. That’s if you’re good. I happen to trip the alarm and have to go in hot.

The bow and arrow is still satisfying to play. The other guns are good, too. Each weapon has sub ammos that do different things, and there are objects around battlefields that can be crafted into makeshift grenades. There are a lot of options in combat, and it’s done well.

Welcome to the trials

On the other side of gameplay, exploration and tombs, those are great, too. The tombs are varied with some cool puzzles. You can also choose to turn on or off the convenient colors that tell you what’s climbable leading to a more immersive experience. You go through several tombs in the main game as well, most of the time without combat. Those are great, too.

Also, the DLC each comes with a tomb. Those kick things up a notch in terms of mechanics and are all enjoyable to go through. They boast some impressive locations or challenges.

A cool contraption to climb

Where this game falters is the story. I would consider the other two games to have better story. This game feels like it’s rushing a bit to clean up the Trinity stuff while not really focusing on Trinity much at all.

There are some cool characters. The main bad guy is compelling, and Jonah is great here. Lara is much to single-minded, though. And the side quests, while cool, feel more random in what they have you doing. Just the overall way things unfold feels weaker than the previous games.

A peaceful(?) city

Shadow of the Tomb Raider has perhaps the best gameplay out of the new Tomb Raider games, but the story is lacking. It sports cool locations to climb around in, though, and I enjoy that well enough.

Find it on Steam.