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Author Topic: Tomb Raider: Legends Impressions (all platforms!)  (Read 2955 times)
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Ridah
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« on: April 13, 2006, 07:37:15 PM »

I'm about to head on over and pick my copy up now, I should have a good 3-4 hours of impressions this evening!
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« Reply #1 on: April 13, 2006, 11:33:57 PM »

finished the first 2 sections, & was just mucking around croft manor (what's with the new winston?!), &, in doing so, realized that maybe the single biggest problem i have with legend is - i'm not thinking! i figured the hand-holding would end with the first section, but it's pretty much continued, &, combined with the return of angel of darkness's smaller areas, has made figuring out what to do next so friggin' straightforward they might as well have posted directional signs - well, actually, they sometimes do!...

i don't know... i'm glad lara's back, really like how she controls, like how the game looks, but the way the gameplay's been 'mainstreamed', for someone like myself that enjoyed figuring out what to do / where to go, is pretty disappointing. i never really feel like i'm 'exploring', & the signature tr feeling of ambient isolation/desolation's now been replaced by the never-ending chatter of her 2 'ass-ociates' (as the band would say, 'you sure do miss the silence when it's gone')... maybe things'll get better as the game progresses (yeah, right...)...

(just to clarify: in croft manor, you're pretty much on your own, puzzle-wise...)
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« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2006, 12:49:29 AM »

I just got back from renting it for the 360 and will too post something once I have given it a go.  I am not expecting much more than a 6 hour fun little romp in TR land.  Nothing more nor expecting to be overwhelmed.   I had the choice to rent this or Battlefield 2 MC but the demo of this impressed me far more than BF2's, so...

Back after the break...
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« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2006, 03:29:02 AM »

-360 version-

I've only had a chance to play through the first level so far but so far my impressions are very positive.

First of all, the graphics are beautiful. Lara Croft is smoking hot and her character model looks really nice and curvy and the animation is fluid. I'm not sure how the game looks on the PS2 and Xbox, but the textures in the 360 version are crisp and shiny, just how I like 'em. So far I like the feel of the environments as well, good use of the color pallette (for example, the first jaguar you see in the ruins, it's gold color really shines). I've read that the frame rate is troublesome in the console versions but so far I've been in gunfights, ran across a bridge being destroyed by a helicoptor, and it a few big open rooms, no frame rate issues yet.

Lara controls well enough but there have been a few instances where the camera found itself a crummy angle causing me to miss my aim, but otherwise the controls are tight and responsive.

As far as how the game plays, the first thing I thought within the first 10 minutes of playing is Lara has an amazing array of attacks, movements, and maneuvers at her disposal. Its almost like Crystal Dynamics took some of the best elements of Splinter Cell, Prince of Persia, and Devil May Cry and melded them into a wonderfully intuitive and fun control scheme for Tomb Raider. So far I'm loving it!

As far as the puzzles go, I never played the previous Tomb Raider games so I can't compare, but I will say the first main puzzle room had me stuck for almost 20 minutes, infact I became almost frustrated. Perhaps I haven't been playing many games with puzzles in them lately, but I simply couldn't figure it out right away. I think it has more to do with me expecting something more complex than what they actually have to offer, but still I felt quite satisfied when I figured it out and would hope it didn't get too much more complicated than that.

All in all I'm loving Tomb Raider: Legend so far. I can see this being a really great action/puzzle game as long as the frustration factor doesn't get too high. The game, while it does the action genre gameplay right from what I can tell so far, also has some of its low points like some screwy camera angles and frustrating gameplay moments due to, you guessed it, the camera. As far as the puzzles go, we'll see if they prove to be logical or irrational.
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« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2006, 01:35:51 PM »

Just completed the first 3 levels with the 360 version, which is 40 percent of the game I might add and I am enjoying it.  Graphics are nice as has been stated and as everyone knows.  I understand the graphics in all the versions, so, enough of that.  

The puzzles are just the right difficulty level.  Cause you to stop and think it through, but not so hard that you give up and go consult a guide, unless you are an action gamer trying a platformer and you have no patience for this thing.  In that case, skip the game.  It is not about the action.  

As for the action, I find it a mixed bag.  I like some of her moves and weapons, but the targeting system doesn't do much for me.  You know how auto targeting works-seems you are always locked onto all the ones except the very one you want to be locked on to.  And again, it takes entirely too many rounds to kill someone.  It is flat ridiculous to pop a guy 10-15 times with a machine gun before he goes down.  Stupid.  The shotgun is the only weapon that feels like it should.  The rest feel like I am playing paintball.  

Over all, I like it but agree with Gamespot in that there is no reason whatsoever to play through again.  Not a buy in my book until it hits $30 or less.  And then only if you are big LC fan.  But if you like platformer, light actiony, curvy women, pretty water effects kinds of games, at least rent it.  It is well well well worth that.
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« Reply #5 on: April 15, 2006, 07:33:44 PM »

Wow... I have to say that this game is simply amazing. I'm roughly half way through and so far I keep expecting the game to turn bad because so far its too good to be true. I love everything about the game so far, its a perfect blend of action, puzzles, and platforming. Controlling Lara is so much fun, I love her array of moves and the fluidity of her animations make her a marvel to watch. And can I just say that this game has a cool-factor through the roof? Seriously, the level in Japan screamed attention to aesthetic design.

Even the motorcycle portion that some of you were complaining about, I loved it. I thought it was fun and the perfect length. If the rest of the game can keep this pace then I'll definately be playing through it again, I've already unlocked some new outfits. Whichever reviewer said TR isn't worth a second play through is a numbskull.
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« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2006, 09:32:39 PM »

Then I am a numbskull too cuz I see zero enjoyment in going through again.  To each...
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« Reply #7 on: April 17, 2006, 12:05:53 AM »

Quote
Then I am a numbskull too cuz I see zero enjoyment in going through again. To each...


Then the question at hand is: Are you even enjoying the game your first time through? It doesn't sound like it to me so you don't apply to my comment =) I think anyone who is liking the game will like to go through a second time with the new outfits and to try and beat their time records. Tomb Raider seems like one of those short but sweet games, and I always play through those ones multiple times.
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« Reply #8 on: April 17, 2006, 12:19:03 AM »

I picked this up on Starshifter's glowing recommendation.

I'm glad I did.  I really, really like it.  And the best part?  I'm so pathetic with puzzles of any kind, that things you guys probably see as 30 second teasers take me 20 minutes to figure out.  Thanks to my ineptitude with nearly all things videogame related, I should get many hours out of this title.  Lara is just plain cool too.

As an example of my lameness... You know the room where you have to extend the bridge?  At least, I think you have to extend the bridge.  Anyway, there are like 3 boxes in the room, and 3 pressure plates, and a see-saw thing in the water.  I still haven't figured out how to solve that puzzle.  If I get really stuck, I can bring my 13 year old nephew over.  It would probably take him 3 minutes to solve it for me.  :?

But, if anyone wants to post a hint for me in a spoiler tag, that would be cool too.  A really, really small hint though please.  I want to at least fool myself into thinking I got the puzzle mostly on my own.


The game gets a thumbs Up from me so far.
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« Reply #9 on: April 17, 2006, 11:43:33 AM »

Quote from: "Lockdown"
But, if anyone wants to post a hint for me in a spoiler tag, that would be cool too.  A really, really small hint though please.  I want to at least fool myself into thinking I got the puzzle mostly on my own.


Spoiler for Hiden:

Think, "circus physics".
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« Reply #10 on: April 17, 2006, 12:34:29 PM »

Quote from: "Turtle"
Quote from: "Lockdown"
But, if anyone wants to post a hint for me in a spoiler tag, that would be cool too.  A really, really small hint though please.  I want to at least fool myself into thinking I got the puzzle mostly on my own.


Spoiler for Hiden:

Think, "circus physics".


Turtle - we are talking about Lockdown here.  Your "tip" is going to perplex him even more.  When dealing with Lockdown you have to think more on a Kindergarten level.  You know like "do this, then this" and follow it up with juice and cookies and a little nap time!  Tongue  :wink:
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« Reply #11 on: April 17, 2006, 12:37:26 PM »

Quote from: "mikeg"
Then I am a numbskull too cuz I see zero enjoyment in going through again.  To each...


I actually didn't play the second level until I got all the bronze, silver, and gold artifacts.  I then tried trial mode on level one and didn't make it, so I went to the second level.  I will go back and try again until I beat that time, though.  I love little extras like this and instead of this game being 6 hours for me, it will be far longer.
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« Reply #12 on: April 19, 2006, 06:01:15 AM »

Finished this tonight.  Great game but, yeah, it felt short. And I don't mean that in some arbritrary time spent way (8:41 by the game clock) but in the sense of story and pacing- felt like there should have been one or two more areas before the ending.

Other than the length it was pretty fantastic all around.  Great level design that remained fresh throughout, perfect control (liberally taken from Prince of Persia), very good story and script, great graphics, wonderful music score, etc.  Though I didn't care too much for the motorcycle segments- they should have been shorter with less combat and more "theatrics."  

Looking forward to a sequel hopefully from the same team.
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« Reply #13 on: April 24, 2006, 04:16:10 PM »

I'm really enjoying this so far (on the 360).  My biggest complaint is that sometimes the game doesn't feel as smooth as it should, like the framerate is dipping.  Still, incredible graphics and fun gameplay.  I figure if it takes a normal person 8 hours, I'm in for 20, as some of the puzzles just take me a bit to figure out.  I'm used to sports games, none of this puzzle crap smile.
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« Reply #14 on: April 24, 2006, 10:11:22 PM »

Quote from: "Scott"
I'm really enjoying this so far (on the 360).  My biggest complaint is that sometimes the game doesn't feel as smooth as it should, like the framerate is dipping.  Still, incredible graphics and fun gameplay.  I figure if it takes a normal person 8 hours, I'm in for 20, as some of the puzzles just take me a bit to figure out.  I'm used to sports games, none of this puzzle crap smile.


The framerate issues are fixed in the 360 version if you play it in 480p vice 720p/1080i (though there is obviously a visual tradeoff in the process).
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« Reply #15 on: July 31, 2006, 05:05:58 AM »

I'm finding this to be pretty fun, but some of the damn physics related puzzles are so annoying  :x

Honestly, I'm glad I didn't pay for this one (free rental); plus it is so short I'll just finish it before I return it.
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« Reply #16 on: August 08, 2006, 05:45:13 AM »

Finally finished it after  realizing I was missing a key piece of the puzzle in Arthurs Tomb.  I failed to notice a moveable object which led to a couple of hours of frustration trying to get something to work, but then it became fun again.  The game was short, and the ending made me feel like they decided to cut what could have been a decent game in half in hopes of making more money.  Definitely worth the free rental, but if I'd paid full price for it I'd be slightly annoyed (a la Halo 2  :evil: ).
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« Reply #17 on: August 08, 2006, 06:24:12 AM »

I thought it was a pretty good length as a rental on the 360.  I finished it in under 9 hours...

A lot of the time the graphics (especially characters) looked pretty crappy to me.

Overall it was fun to run and jump and swing... nothing too challenging, but nothing too frustrating... I liked it.

EDIT: I'll qualify the graphics looking 'crappy'... because really they did have some nice stuff and some nice lighting, and at times a kind of cartoon look to them that worked... but a lot of the outdoor stuff seemed kind of dated and boxy with boring, flat textures.  I guess it was more of a 'it looked good if you didn't look too closely' sort of thing.
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« Reply #18 on: August 08, 2006, 12:20:38 PM »

I finished this up this weekend and enjoyed the heck out of it.  I thought the puzzles were great and I really felt like I was exploring these sites.  I enjoyed the story as well and loved how intense the ending was.  I am anxious for the sequel I imagine is coming.
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« Reply #19 on: August 08, 2006, 12:27:48 PM »

Quote from: "The Grue"
I am anxious for the sequel I imagine is coming.


Supposedly, Eidos is very happy since both TR: Legend and Hitman: Blood Money exceeded sales expectations, so I think a sequel is a pretty safe bet now.
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« Reply #20 on: August 08, 2006, 02:54:42 PM »

I think a sequel to a Tomb Raider game is pretty much inevitable.  How many does this make?  Five?  Six?  That said, I liked the demo and will be picking this up eventually as it does sound like they did a good job with it.
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« Reply #21 on: August 08, 2006, 02:59:20 PM »

Quote from: "warning"
I think a sequel to a Tomb Raider game is pretty much inevitable.  


Sure, but the bigger concern would be if the approach was successful enough (ie gets enough sales) to keep Crystal Dynamics on as developer and continue the story since Legend is obviously being targeted as the first in a series.  Angel of Darkness was supposed to start a new series too, but after it tanked the franchise was pulled away from Core.
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« Reply #22 on: August 08, 2006, 09:09:49 PM »

Who's the blond chick with the tattoos? Only saw a preview of Tomb Raider Legend and they had a blonde woman (dressed quite nicely!) with tattoos. Don't know if she's Lara's nemesis in the game or maybe even an ally.. I may get Legend when the price goes down but I cant justify 40 bucks on a singleplayer-only game that once you beat the campaign has nothing left to offer.

Btw Ridah - you aren't Ridah the author of the Quake 2 Eraser Bots are you?
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« Reply #23 on: August 08, 2006, 09:25:48 PM »

Quote from: "corruptrelic"
Who's the blond chick with the tattoos?


She is Lara's nemesis in the game.  There is more to it, but I won't spoil it.
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« Reply #24 on: August 22, 2007, 02:54:02 PM »

I picked this up as a rental Monday night (had a coupon that expired for a free rental).  I'm not very far into it, but I'm totally sucked in.

At the time, the original Tomb Raider was the most amazing game ever. Tomb Raider 2...I never finished. 3? Never bought. All the others, I ignored.  So I wouldn't consider myself a fan, but I really enjoyed the 1st game.

It appears that this is very much like that game and so far (I'm VERY early into it) I'm having an absolute blast.

It's a good foil to the seriousness/tension of Bioshock.
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« Reply #25 on: August 22, 2007, 03:38:13 PM »

Quote from: ATB on August 22, 2007, 02:54:02 PM

I picked this up as a rental Monday night (had a coupon that expired for a free rental).  I'm not very far into it, but I'm totally sucked in.

At the time, the original Tomb Raider was the most amazing game ever. Tomb Raider 2...I never finished. 3? Never bought. All the others, I ignored.  So I wouldn't consider myself a fan, but I really enjoyed the 1st game.

It appears that this is very much like that game and so far (I'm VERY early into it) I'm having an absolute blast.

It's a good foil to the seriousness/tension of Bioshock.

the game was a blast.  I'm eagerly waiting for the next one to be announced- hopefully it'll be by the same team.
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« Reply #26 on: August 22, 2007, 03:51:14 PM »

Quote from: CeeKay on August 22, 2007, 03:38:13 PM

the game was a blast.  I'm eagerly waiting for the next one to be announced- hopefully it'll be by the same team.

In the interim you've played TR: Anniversary right?  Right?  'Cuz you should. 
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« Reply #27 on: August 22, 2007, 03:53:27 PM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on August 22, 2007, 03:51:14 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on August 22, 2007, 03:38:13 PM

the game was a blast.  I'm eagerly waiting for the next one to be announced- hopefully it'll be by the same team.

In the interim you've played TR: Anniversary right?  Right?  'Cuz you should. 

both Anniversary and Legends are great
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« Reply #28 on: August 22, 2007, 03:54:57 PM »

Quote from: KePoW on August 22, 2007, 03:53:27 PM

Quote from: Kevin Grey on August 22, 2007, 03:51:14 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on August 22, 2007, 03:38:13 PM

the game was a blast.  I'm eagerly waiting for the next one to be announced- hopefully it'll be by the same team.

In the interim you've played TR: Anniversary right?  Right?  'Cuz you should. 

both Anniversary and Legends are great

I started to on Gametap, but haven't gotten around to finishing it.  you're right though, they did a great job with it too.
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« Reply #29 on: August 22, 2007, 04:15:27 PM »

Quote from: Kevin Grey on August 22, 2007, 03:51:14 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on August 22, 2007, 03:38:13 PM

the game was a blast.  I'm eagerly waiting for the next one to be announced- hopefully it'll be by the same team.

In the interim you've played TR: Anniversary right?  Right?  'Cuz you should. 

Wasn't released on 360 was it?  I've got enough of a PS2 backlog as it is.
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« Reply #30 on: August 22, 2007, 04:21:11 PM »

Quote from: ATB on August 22, 2007, 04:15:27 PM

Quote from: Kevin Grey on August 22, 2007, 03:51:14 PM

Quote from: CeeKay on August 22, 2007, 03:38:13 PM

the game was a blast.  I'm eagerly waiting for the next one to be announced- hopefully it'll be by the same team.

In the interim you've played TR: Anniversary right?  Right?  'Cuz you should. 

Wasn't released on 360 was it?  I've got enough of a PS2 backlog as it is.

360 version is coming this fall, as both downloable content if you've go the Legend disc, and later as a retail release. 
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« Reply #31 on: December 28, 2008, 03:42:58 AM »

I just finished Tomb Raider Legend on the X-Box 360, and I enjoyed it very much.  There were some noticeable framerate drops, but nothing that ever affected the gameplay.

The platforming was excellent thanks to clear objectives and precise controls, and while the puzzles got me thinking, they were never so devious that they became frustrating.

The thing that really struck me the most, though, was the quality of writing.  Lara Croft is not some heroic Indiana Jones clone who wants to dig up ruins for the benefit of academia -- she seems just as motivated by her own personal ambitions as the so-called "villains" of the tale.  So many difficulties stem directly from her own hubris and impetuousness that, by the end, she hardly seems any better than the people she's fighting.  Lara might be one of the least heroic protagonists I've played; at least Kratos' insatiable thirst for vengeance inadvertently takes down a greater evil than himself once in a while.

The interesting part is that the story is told from her perspective, and she's so earnestly convinced of her own righteousness that she still *seems* like a heroine.  I suspect that if the story had been from Amanda's point of view, buried alive and abandoned by her friends in a forgotten crypt, Lara might seem somewhat less sympathetic.

There aren't many games where the distinction between good and bad are so ambivalent, so I was surprised at how well the plot was handled. thumbsup

Now I need to decide whether to jump right into Anniversary or try something else for a while....

-Autistic Angel
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« Reply #32 on: December 28, 2008, 05:42:53 AM »

I'm stuck on the final battle and don't see any real way I'll ever get past it, too bad since I've enjoyed the game so far.  I just don't have enough health packs to take the boss down.  I'll take a break and then maybe try Anniversary next and move to Underground after that.
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« Reply #33 on: December 28, 2008, 05:47:18 AM »

Considering how she loves smashing apart pottery in the ancient untouched ruins she explores in Underworld, that's just really evil.  Ancient pottery is a treasury of information to archeaologists.  From how they're decorated, to trace residue of things stored inside, to even the way the pottery was made tells a story.
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« Reply #34 on: December 28, 2008, 05:26:08 PM »

Quote from: Turtle on December 28, 2008, 05:47:18 AM

Considering how she loves smashing apart pottery in the ancient untouched ruins she explores in Underworld, that's just really evil.  Ancient pottery is a treasury of information to archeaologists.  From how they're decorated, to trace residue of things stored inside, to even the way the pottery was made tells a story.

I'm not surprised to hear it: even in Legend, she's busy defiling graves and collapsing ancient ruins because she's too proud to carry proper rappelling gear.  For all the disdain Lara expresses for "tourists" like Rutland, his armed guards and SUVs don't cause a fraction of the devastation that she triggers by herself.

The interesting thing is that the game's writers seem acutely aware of the irony.  Lara's associates remark on her wildly destructive habits, not once, but multiple times throughout the story.  Her old friend Ayane even tells her point-blank that she doesn't want anything more to do with her crazy death-defying exploits.

Lara Croft views herself as a world-class archaeologist who takes action while stodgy old conventional types are sifting through dust, but if you taking a few steps back from her personal narrative, she seems more like a spoiled rich thrill-seeker who's working out her personal guilt and abandonment issue by charging headlong into ancient crypts and daring them to kill her.  I'm not sure I'd go so far as to call her a villain, but based on the events of Legend, neither Amanda or Rutland seem like bad guys either. icon_cool

EDIT: I'll also add: some people might argue that the Prince of Persia games featured a similarly prideful character.  The difference I see is that the Prince was deliberately tricked into releasing the Sands of Time and spends three games trying to undo the consequences, while Lara Croft *chooses* to do irresponsible things and doesn't seem to give one whit about anything beyond her own ambition.  Boo to her as a person, but yay for interesting videogame writing! icon_surprised

-Autistic Angel
« Last Edit: December 28, 2008, 05:32:28 PM by Autistic Angel » Logged
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