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Old January 14 2009, 04:52 PM   #1
MyCylon
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Tomb Raider: Underworld

I recently finished playing Tomb Raider: Underworld on XBOX 360 and I wanted to know what you people thought about it.

Let me say first of all that I'm somebody who played and loved the original TR on PS1. It was an amazing game IMHO and really something not seen before. I loved exploring these amazing places in 3D that Lara would go to, and the focus was really on exploring and adventure and not so much on action.

I also enjoyed TR2 and to some extent TR3 though things were getting rather repetetive at that point. Plus the two of them had some rather needless and IMHO badly realized action added in that really wasn't needed. TR4 IMHO was an improvement in that way though it seemed to have a rather weak ending.

I never actually played TR: Chronicles or TR: Angel of Darkness (I'd gotten a bit tired of TR by that point plus AoD got really, really bad reviews).

TR: Legend was the game that brought me back in again. It was beautifully realized, had interesting places to explore and was really a Tomb Raider game while adding many new elements to the mix. I did have my complaints, however. In particular, I didn't enjoy the combat very much at all. I felt it was, again, pretty unnecessary and badly realized. Plus the boss fights didn't do anything for me. Still, it was a good return to form.

Now, finally, on to TR: Underworld. First things first: I absolutely love this game. This is the closest TR has ever come to reminding me of the joy I got out of the first game while feeling new and fresh enough to firmly belong in this day and age of gaming.
The game looks and feels beautiful. It has an interesting story (thankfully picking up from where Legend left off), fantastic settings and visuals, some beautiful music and sound effects, as well as puzzles that are challenging and fun.
The sheer size of some levels can be daunting. But then, that also seems right somehow. It really conveys the epic feeling that the story suggests quite effectively.
My biggest complaint probably still lies with the combat. It's better realized here than in Legend, I think. But I still can't help but wonder why the developers feel the need to have SO MUCH OF IT. Part of the fun of TR IMHO was that you'd have huge levels where opponents would only appear every now and then. That meant there was always a basic tension there since you'd never know when you'd encounter another one.
In the later levels of TR: Underworld, well, you're just mashing away much of the time, so there's no real suspense to be drawn from that. Plus I very believe Tomb Raider is an adventure game, not an action game.

Nevertheless, I was very impressed with and highly satisfied that I picked up this game. Once I was through, I felt like doing it all over again. Then I felt like playing Legend and Underworld all over again. Then, when I thought about it some more, I felt like playing ALL the Tomb Raider games again!

It just really managed to re-ignite that excitement that the first game had inspired over ten years ago. As a consequence, I'm really eager to see what the successor will be like. Sadly, Eidos doesn't seem to be happy with sales figures so they might change things around quite a bit rather than evolving the good material that's been established here.

So, what do you people think about Tomb Raider: Underworld? Has anyone played the DLC?
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Old January 14 2009, 05:00 PM   #2
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

The boss fights in TR Legend are irritating and stupid.
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Old January 14 2009, 05:46 PM   #3
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

There's DLC for underworld? The only one I was aware of was a few new costumes for Lara - not actual content ...


Anyway, I rented the game a while back, but honestly only played through the first few levels before I had to return it. The first few levels were - meh - okay. But not engaging enough for me to want to re-rent the game or buy it.

That's not necessarily a criticism of the game - I'm just kindof lukewarm to the whole Croft franchise.

Overall the game felt like a solid TR, though - minus the shoddy camera which tripped over itself quite frequently. Lara's ass is nice and all, but I don't want a 100% zoomed in view of it when I'm trying to make a death defying leap across a chasm.
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Old January 14 2009, 05:58 PM   #4
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

^
The camera can be a nuisance at times, that is true. It's amazing how much of a problem this still seems to be for many developers (TR's not the only game with these problems, after all).


Deckerd wrote: View Post
The boss fights in TR Legend are irritating and stupid.
Amen to that.
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Old January 14 2009, 08:17 PM   #5
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

I wanted to give the game a shot but poor reviews plus news that the publishers were trying to black mail reviewers into giving it good reviews turned me off of it.
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Old January 14 2009, 08:57 PM   #6
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

clint g wrote: View Post
...news that the publishers were trying to black mail reviewers into giving it good reviews turned me off of it.
Seriously? Eeesh. What did they do?
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Old January 14 2009, 09:06 PM   #7
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

^
"Prior to the game's release, Eidos attempted to prevent any reviews rating the game at less than 8 out of 10 from appearing, with an Eidos spokesman stating "[t]he brand manager in the US that's handling all of Tomb Raider has asked that we just manage the scores before the game is out, really, just to ensure that we don't put people off buying the game, basically."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tomb_Raider_Underworld


clint g wrote: View Post
I wanted to give the game a shot but poor reviews plus news that the publishers were trying to black mail reviewers into giving it good reviews turned me off of it.
Did you try the demo? It gives you a good impression of the game, I think. It's a shame Eidos did what it did since I feel this is a game that doesn't need such tactics.

As for the reviews, well, depending on the source they're between mixed and favorable (see the above Wikipedia link). Metacritic has 75 out of 100 for reviews which IMHO is pretty good, while users aren't so lenient (6.2 out of 10). That's for the 360 version btw.
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Old January 14 2009, 09:06 PM   #8
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

heres the story

http://www.shacknews.com/onearticle.x/56037
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Old January 14 2009, 09:08 PM   #9
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

Justtoyourleft wrote: View Post
^
"Prior to the game's release, Eidos attempted to prevent any reviews rating the game at less than 8 out of 10 from appearing, with an Eidos spokesman stating "[t]he brand manager in the US that's handling all of Tomb Raider has asked that we just manage the scores before the game is out, really, just to ensure that we don't put people off buying the game, basically."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tomb_Raider_Underworld


clint g wrote: View Post
I wanted to give the game a shot but poor reviews plus news that the publishers were trying to black mail reviewers into giving it good reviews turned me off of it.
Did you try the demo? It gives you a good impression of the game, I think. It's a shame Eidos did what it did since I feel this is a game that doesn't need such tactics.

As for the reviews, well, depending on the source they're between mixed and favorable (see the above Wikipedia link). Metacritic has 75 out of 100 for reviews which IMHO is pretty good, while users aren't so lenient (6.2 out of 10). That's for the 360 version btw.
While 75 out of 100 isnt too bad, considering that there are so many 80 and 90 out of 100 games out there for me to play and so little money to spend I have to be realtively strict on what I spend my money on. Generaly speaking, unless the game gets really good reviews I probably wont consider it. I just dont have the cash to experiment with.
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Old January 14 2009, 10:29 PM   #10
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

^
I understand that very well.

Personally, I'm not the type to spend full price on games. That's why I usually don't pick them up until they've dropped in price.
In the case of TR: Underworld, however, I found it for only £25. That's really good if you consider the current exchange rate of the pound vs. the euro.
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Old January 15 2009, 12:45 AM   #11
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

I'm having tons of fun with this one. I've played Legend and the first one. The first one is still my favorite, maybe if they redid it but only added new graphics?
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Old January 15 2009, 02:37 AM   #12
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

^
Isn't that pretty much what they did with TR: Anniversary? I've never played it myself though.
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Old January 15 2009, 02:54 AM   #13
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

Justtoyourleft wrote: View Post
^
I understand that very well.

Personally, I'm not the type to spend full price on games. That's why I usually don't pick them up until they've dropped in price.
In the case of TR: Underworld, however, I found it for only £25. That's really good if you consider the current exchange rate of the pound vs. the euro.
It's on Amazon right now for £17.98....I am tempted, but I still haven't finished Legend or Anniversary yet, so I'll probably wait. Demo was ok though; shame about the combat system and apparent lack of enemy AI.

For the record, I'm a newcomer to the franchise. Played the TR1 demo back in the PS1 days, but never got around to getting the ful game (too busy with MGS & my N64.) From what I read in later reviews the sequels were getting progressivly worse, so I never bothered trying any of them either. It wasn't until a few months ago that I tried the TRA demo on Steam that I got into it an bought both of the newer games from the bargin bins. Even bought a joypad for the PC especially for them (that and my old Snes & megadrive emulators .)
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Old January 15 2009, 02:45 PM   #14
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

^
I'm glad you got into the franchise! I really got hours of joy out of playing TR myself. And, yes, definitely, sequels were indeed getting progressively worse. TR: Legend was probably the turning point when TR got back on course.

Still, I'm actually looking to pick up TR 1 - 6 for the PC at some stage. Eidos published a package with all six games some years ago but it seems to be out of print, unfortunately.

I've got some joypads for the PC as well (makes playing old console stuff that much more fun ), so they'll come in handy once I've picked those games up.
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Old January 15 2009, 03:04 PM   #15
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Re: Tomb Raider: Underworld

Well Yahtzee doesn't seem too impressed with it. I can't say I was impressed with the demo, so I never picked it up. I got Legend while it was going cheap and it seemed enjoyable enough, I did the same for Anniversary but I only played about 2 chapters and gave up.
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