She’s back and she’s better than ever! This is Lara Croft as you have never seen her before. First impression is that’s she’s a softy, not a tough ol’ chick like we used to know. However, that clearly changes throughout the game. You can see the character evolving, not just by the visible scars that she gains through out the story, but her clothes become torn and worn which is bloomin’ brilliant. Her mentality also changes - you can see her become tougher.
Lara's ship “Endurance” becomes ship wrecked in a horrific storm caused by an angry god Himiko (sun queen) in the lost Japanese kingdom of Yamatai. Lara is separated from her crew mates and seeks to find them but gets trapped by a crazy savage man, in his cave home. Lara manages to escape but she's wounded and her captor gets killed when the cave collapses. At that point I was immediately hooked. The graphics are amazing and the cinematic to game-play is so smooth I hardly noticed on some occasions. Lara pulls herself together and gets on with the job in hand. She notices tribal paintings on the wall and soon discovers the island's inhabitants and the leader Mathias, who has kidnapped her friend Sam (female). Throughout the story, we learn the myth of the island that “nobody leaves” - you see this written and carved into the wall several times. The storms play a very big part and add that extra realism to the game. I don’t want to say to much about the story in case is gives it away, but I will say there are a few predicable moments - especially as we get the usual traitor in the group. He, of course, gets what’s coming to him. There are a few big bosses to kill which can be a pain in the bottom at times but I found the shotgun very useful for these as it's quite powerful especially when it has been upgraded.
Throughout the world there are camp sites that Lara uses to level up her skills in survivor, hunter and brawler upgrades. You can also spend the savage points you collect to upgrade your weapons. My favourite weapon has to be the long bow, it's awesome. Once upgraded, you can shoot fire arrows and napalm arrows, and eventually you can shoot out rope arrows that help you move from one place to the next. There are 10 camp-sites in total, which I believe mark the chapters of the story. There are also day camps which I tend to just use as save points. There is also a fast travel which sends you from one camp site to another. This is particularly handy when it comes to collecting relics and documents. If you click your stick on a relic that shows up as missing on your map it sets a marker and when using the instinct button ( LB) it clearly directs you to that spot with a very noticeable blue light.
I’ve played a tiny bit of multiplayer and I’ve found it to quite tricky, especially as it matches you up with anyone and if they are a higher rank, you die A LOT!!! Respawn takes about 6 seconds and you can respawn from your teammates or at base. You earn points which can be used to buy new characters or better weapons. I believe the minimum you need to purchase something is 250.
Overall, I really really enjoyed this game, and what I particually enjoyed were the credits at the end. It shows you photos of the people that worked on the game and they thank you for completing it. This game is definitely a buy and I give it 5/5