Shadow of the Tomb Raider will tailor the problem to your private playstyle

The final decade of Tomb Raider video games has seen a considerable overhaul for its adventuring protagonist, Lara Croft...

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Shadow of the Tomb Raider will tailor the difficulty to your personal playstyle
The final decade of Tomb Raider video games has seen a considerable overhaul for its adventuring protagonist, Lara Croft – and the following entry within the sequence is giving gamers extra management than ever on how they navigate the sport.

Shadow of the Tomb Raider, out September 14, marks the tip of the trilogy that delved into the origins of the basic motion heroine to discover a character struggling to reside as much as her legacy.

That’s true on varied ranges: whereas developer Crystal Dynamics are to be credited for the dealing with of the enduring character, it was clear from the gross sales woes of 2003’s Tomb Raider: Angel of Darkness {that a} main rethink of the sequence was wanted.

We received our first hands-on with the sport earlier this 12 months, however within the months for the reason that improvement group have been quietly engaged on a variety of new adjustments – together with devoted troublesome settings for puzzles, fight, and exploration all through the sport.

No matter you need, no matter you want

Problem has been an ongoing concern all through the rebooted trilogy. 2013’s Tomb Raider noticed Lara as a rookie explorer barely in a position to survive, extra hunted than hunter, in a radical reversal of the butt-kicking however reductive portrayal that launched the unique sequence to success within the early 90s.

Ledges are simply out of attain, rope ladders pull taut and threaten to snap beneath your weight, and it is clear from Lara’s voice and animations that she’s pushed proper to the restrict following each transfer you set her via.

So a rethink of Shadow of the Tomb Raider’s issue settings looks like a pure extension of the gameplay defining the latest video games.

Now, relatively than making use of a blanket issue stage to all features of the gameplay, gamers can decide and select the place they need to be challenged, and the place they need extra of a serving to hand. 

You may be after harder puzzles, however not need beefier enemies slowing you down in your manner between tombs. Conversely, you would possibly fancy some actual edge-of-your seat fight with out giving your self a headache over determining your route via the jungle.

We spoke to Shadow of the Tomb Raider’s lead recreation designer, Heath Smith, and narrative director Jason Dozois about what this implies for the gamers.

“For us it was about fixing an issue,” Smith says. “For individuals who love puzzles? They by no means need a trace. And the individuals who don’t like puzzles or aren’t good at them, they need a clue immediately, and we knew we wanted to search out the candy spot for that.”

Shadow of the Tomb Raider

The brand new design decisions got here immediately out of conversations with gamers and the response to earlier video games on on-line message boards.

“We all the time hear from the group that they need extra puzzles and tougher puzzles, they need tougher fight and traversal, extra old skool gameplay,” Dozois says. “For individuals who need to expertise it that manner, they will do it.”

“There was a gaggle on-line, known as growl: Get Rid Of White Ledges. Some folks don’t need any assist in exploring the stuff – which by no means bothered me – however some folks need to be within the jungle, fully immersed, with all of the hints taken away. And it lets us make the sport as troublesome as you need it to be.”

In contrast to fight, the place it’s comparatively easy to tweak hit factors, injury stats or the variety of enemies, the puzzles and exploration posed extra of a problem, requiring “a whole bunch of additional strains of code” to permit for the variation the builders needed.

Lethal obsession

Shadow of the Tomb Raider

The 4 issue settings run between straightforward, regular and onerous – with a ‘Deadly Obsession’ setting for these actually eager to be challenged. We’ve run via the primary adjustments you possibly can inflict on your self beneath:


For fight, the degrees fluctuate the well being and injury stats of enemies, the illuminated silhouettes round potential threats, and the quantity of ammunition that may scavenged across the map. The simplest setting additionally provides an intention help, whereas the toughest removes HUD markers and well being regeneration once you’re getting your struggle on.


How do you make exploration tougher? By fading or eradicating the white paint that exhibits the route Lara must take via a stage, or lowering the period of time it’s a must to regular your self on slippery ledges. 

The Lethal Obsession setting provides an actual kick within the enamel right here by solely permitting you to avoid wasting at base camps, eradicating the short save characteristic completely and setting you up for lots of repeat motion when you don’t know what you’re doing.


Caught on a puzzle? Chances are high you’ll look to Lara to offer you hints on what to do, or examine the atmosphere for highlighted objects that may assist you full the duty at hand. Elevating the problem right here removes these markers, and even the Survival Instincts mode that helps you see animals or interactable objects within the space.


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