Tomb Raider: Legend Demo

By Maarten Goldstein, Mar 31, 2006 5:57pm PST

Over at FileShack you can find a Tomb Raider: Legend demo, allowing you to check out the latest installment in the third person action adventure game series. The 476mb demo includes a Bolivia level where you need to get your hands on an ancient artifact. Thanks 3D Gamers.

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  • Very impressed. As a little background I really should hate Tomb Raider by now - I had to QA test the first one ON PDA and the terrible last one from Core, Angel of Darkness, for 24 hours straight.

    Crystal Dynamics are really nice guys and a great studio and this is the game that will finally let everyone know (excellent as the Legacy of Kaine games were they're kinda niche). They've basically retained all that was great about the first two Tomb Raiders (acrobatics, puzzles, TOMBS), ditched what sucked (grid movement) and added some well considered extras.

    Movement is very smooth now as you all know and, while she's not quite the Prince of Persia, Lara is still one of the most fluidly acrobatic characters I've played. There are some nice extra moves like a quick grappling hook ability and a clever addition to shimmying where tapping "e" in time to her movements makes you move faster.

    They've sensible kept the lock-on thing; the challenge is not hitting enemies but rather dodging their bullets by running, jumping and dodging and I like that they've maintained this distinction.

    It also seems like that rare thing - an excellent console port. The controls were fine and fully customiseable, there were all the options you could want including widescreen, an in-game AA option and even a promising "Next Gen Graphics" option, though that was greyed out. It's not technically amazing but the artwork and animation is very nice, it doesn't feel like a PS2 port at all.

    The radio chatter with your team keeps the game more interesting and the voice acting is good rather than annoying. I was very impressed by the music too, much better than I expected - it's almost got a movie feel to it though I haven't seen the Jolie flicks so can't compare.

    Puzzles in previous Tomb Raiders could be a right complex pain in the arse, however the binoculars in this new one have a basic scan feature that can help with working out how to beat the puzzle and the main puzzle at the end of the demo felt like the challenge level was spot on.

    This is definitely the return to form for the series Eidos has promised. Finally. If you enjoyed either of the first two games or like 3d/action/adventure/puzzle type affairs do try this, it's a long overdue strong refinement and evolution of those two games. Ah shit, I just wrote a formulaic review of a goddamn demo, ah screw it

  • Impressions:

    -The controls are a little clunky. The turning to look screws up Lara's orientation when you're supposed to press -> and jump to hop to another ledge. It could be more fluid, but I got used to them by the end of the level.
    -Camera pull-in is a little annoying. When you are scrunched into a tight area, the camera pulls right next to you and it screws up what you can see.
    -If the puzzle difficulty and life or death requirement for nimble movement increases (which im sure it will), this game will be really fun.
    -I like the weapons and fighting. It reminds alot of Max Payne w/o the bullet time. Clean, simple. You can also use the enviroment, ie kick a rock down or shoot a rock wall to collapse it down on baddies. I'm curious to see how that gets mixed up in the full version.
    -I think the grapple is an awesome addition. I hope its use is really expanded in the full version.
    -Graphics are nice. Game runs super duper 1152 w/ everyone on. (x800xl, 2500+ 1gb ram)
    -I know someone wants to know, so: Lara breasts sway. She goes in the water, she gets wet and glossy when she comes out.

    I definately think I'm going to pick this up. I loved the first Tomb Raider and rate it as one of my all time favorite gmes. I hated the rest and never played AOD. I love the spelunking aspect of TR and I'm glad to see it is back. Bottom line, I think this game will be really fun.

    Since I like numbers to help judge stuff, i'd give this demo a 8.3/10.0.

  • impressions:

    - It has nice graphics... this is about the only time I've seen bloom done right, it doesn't destroy any texture detail or 'white out' things. Look of touches going on.

    - If you're wondering, and you are, Lara's tits do not bounce at all. Boourns.

    - The controls are console orientated. I would not buy this without a gamepad, the keyboard is not a good substitute. It's playable, but you'll feel like a tool using a keyboard for the sort of things you're doing pretty fast.

    - I found a bug? fairly easily where you can bounce into a previous save checkpoint, and set your restore point backwards. Weak.

    - Lara doing a handstand every time she climbs up a cliff, or most of the time, got retarded fast.

    Maybe worth a look for consoles.