Raiding tombs … again

The first Tomb Raider shook the videogame world, but I was on another world – no PS1 and not playing any videogames (sort of Max dark-age). So overbreasted Miss Videogame just marginally hit my interest. Then it came a time when I started playing on PC and I got a bonus copy of “Tomb Raider III”. I started playing it with my wife… Lara’s moves were rather clumsy, puzzles not always so intuitive and micrometric precision was required for jumps. All these factors and an overall technical obsolescence let me lose my interest around the 3rd map. The second encounter in tombs came for work reason. I was chosen to be the lead programmer for Tomb Rider – The Prophecy the GameBoy Advance Game. The idea of working with this subject was really amazing, unfortunately the project was on a such aggressive schedule that it bit. 3 months to modify engine and implement the game, while another game was ongoing.
At last I played through all the game and I enjoyed it. Despite some repetitiveness caused by the shrunk time.
Fast forward about one month ago. I had a buying impulse I couldn’t repress, so I was choosing among a bunch of XBox titles, and Lara blinked her eye from the cover. I had read some positive review so it could have been a good choice. So I get out of the shop with my brand new copy of “Tomb Raider – Legends”
The game is nonetheless good. From the technical point of view is quite strong, even if you would expect a better implementation of the character shadow. I think it is better to have no shadow rather than a wrong one, it just breaks the suspension of disbelief.
Puzzles are quite easy (I got stuck just once), the jumping, grasping is quite forgiving and often delivers a good cool-factor.
Scenarios are intriguing and the story, at least from what I have heard, should be entertaining. In fact the dialogs among characters were unbelievably soft, I barely could hear. I don’t know if it is just my TV set becoming too old, or the Italian translation that had some problem.
Beware of the spoil
What is disappointing to me is that the game is very short, I spent about 10 hours and that means that a good player could get through in half the time. No comparison with the endless Serious Sam I played before.
The other really disappointing part is that there is no ending. Just defeat the last boss and you get some hints that the story is not over that there is still something to do (don’t ask me what I couldn’t hear) and … credits.
It is even worse than Halo 2. At least with Halo the ending offers a good satisfaction to the player, the story is not over, but this chapter is well closed.
It seems much like the developers ran out of money or time and were forced to put an end and shipping as the game was.
Anyone interested in a second hand copy? 🙂 Well, it’s not that bad, I would rate it 6.5/10, for sure I don’t want to replay it, there’s no sense in playing it again just for searching all the hidden objects (3-4 per map) that just allows you to see new dresses for Lara or weapon power-up.

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