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Trailer Round-Up: Tomb Raider And Lego: Lord Of The Rings

June 6, 2012

I have to say that the new reboot of Tomb Raider had my ears pinned back since day one. For a fact, I disliked old Lara and her bloody tank steering. I didn’t like lining up every jump. Tomb Raider was never really my thing, but the fact that Crystal Dynamics and Square Enix had seemingly shifted the focus to survival really made me stand up and take notice, because although I love the Uncharted trilogy, I feel that the third person action adventure needs some new direction and subtlety. It would be quite fitting for the queen bee of Playstation action adventure to come back in style and change the hymn sheet.

0:21 – Lara seems to have some trouble with orientation and vertically.

0:22 – Dramatic sting to BLACK!

0:29 – Oh yeah, fire seems like a good idea…

0:30 – You know that feeling when you see you are about to trip up and you can’t do anything about it because its out of your control? Lara is having one of those moments

0:34 – Nice, dark and brutal. More of this and ONLY this!

0:44 – ‘Oh God, Steph’. Well, look on the bright side, they didn’t make her into a pinata like they seemed to have planned for you Lara, but yes. Dark and grizzly. This is the survival horror Lara’s new adventure should be about.

What follows now is a lot of the gameplay we have seen in the extended gameplay trailer.

0:56 – Go into the light, Lara. No, really, get a move on!

1:14 – A lonely first night in the cold and rain for Lara, this is where the game can really develop and focus on day to day survival, which is a very interesting concept for a third person game.

1:18 – A log over a massive chasm. Yes, thats all good and stuff, but hopefully Crystal Dynamics will make the usual into the downright terrifying and nerve-racking as you try to keep Lara alive in a hostile environment.

1:21 – *Cynical cough*. Have you seen Uncharted, Crystal Dyamics?

1:28 – Our first look at hunting. Now, the big question. Will this just be a tutorial to teach us how to aim for later in the game, or will hunting/cooking and foresting be essential to Lara’s survival? I hope for the latter.

1:29 – Its nice that they add a ‘sorry’ from Lara as she kills the deer. It adds a little character. A woman reluctantly killing for her own survival,.

1:31 – Cooking on an open fire. Hope she managed to find some pepper sauce to go along with her fillet of innocent butchered deer. What a monster! Call PETA at once!

1:39 – Dog attack, looks like a hard fight. Excellent. I want Lara to be completely over-whelmed.  She shouldn’t be a Nathan Drake. Yes, me likey.

1:48 – Lara found a friend. Lara has that hard, steely look about her. It says that she has had to adapt and become tougher to survive. Her friend, on the other hand, is all smiles and sunshine. Naive, compared to Lara’s new found toughness. Mmm, I’m happy, happy, happy.

1:54 – BEAR TRAP!

2:00 – Lara and friends, okay, so she isn’t alone anymore… umm, that, I don’t think is where I want this game to go. Hope that doesn’t mean the survival mechanisms disappear once you manage to meet up with your friends.

2:08 – Captured and BITCH SLAP!

2:12 – Ohh, sneaky sneaky through the camp, getting back into it…

2:18 – That impromptu game of hide and seek may not be the best idea.

2:23 – Hey! Lara’s a classy, well-bred, landed-gentry kind of girl. No copping a feel until you get her a nice fillet of deer, buddy. GROIN SHOT!

2:27 – Looks like Lara has to survive many kinds of attacks in this game. Still dark and over-whelmed by her surroundings. That’s good.

2:32 – No, my GUN! BANG!

2:34 – Yes, bloody and battered. Take Lara to the edge of surviving. She looks tired, exhausted and like she could give up, but she can’t! She has to survive! Good move and an impressing internal monologue, can she be the Croft she was born to be?

2:46 – (Slo mo- NOOOOOOOOO) NO GUNS! Please, no shooting, go back to the bow and arrow.

2:49 – An ancient city-like structure in the background, Lara sprinting over a crumbling bridge… ok, still, she is… surviving…

2:55 – Okay, getting quite actiony, Lara hanging off some wood…

3:00 – Okay, sorry, I have to say this, I’m getting a real Uncharted feel now, lots of action setpieces by the looks of it.

3:03 – Right if Nathan Drake was named ‘Dude Raider’ because he was doing what all Tomb Raider titles have done, what is this new game#s nickname? ‘Lady Dude Raider’?

3:05 – Okay, running away as something crashes behind you! Sorry, but please stop doing Uncharted. Be a survival game please, for the love of all thats good and holy. Be subtle so you can stand out from the crowd!

3:06 – OH about to be crushed by a crashing vehicle, then splash screen to Title. Where have I seen that before? Oh, only on a certain trailer, Uncharted 2, where Drake was tumbling head over feet as a train carriage almost crashes into him.

3:12 – Fair enough, the girl’s got wit. ‘I Hate Tombs’ made me chuckle.

Okay, I’m going to stop. I wish I had stopped about a minute ago because it was really showing what I wanted in those first 2 minutes. It showed me a survival game. I know it sounds weird to keep saying it, because it was always going to have action, but by survival I mean subtle use of action and enemies, where you are always fighting to remain alive even against a meagre amount of enemies.

It would be more interesting to see Lara overcome her mental ‘softness’ and be a completely changed person by the end without having to take part in lots of action set-pieces. Maybe I’m being over-dramatic. Those set-pieces in the camp, and with the plane crashing behind her, may be a small aspect of a larger game that does have what I want from a new Tomb Raider. This is the problem with trailers: they can give you an unbalanced view of a product. Crystal Dynamics may want to pronounce the action more to spice up interest in an larger audience. I just hope they didn’t push back to make the action the most dominate aspect of the game to appease the idea that players only want huge blockbuster set pieces.

Now to finish off, a small teaser trailer. Teasers are always the best kind of trailers because they just get you excited and you don’t get any more information than ‘look, it’s coming soon’.

0:10 – Okay, Galadriel having a little talk to utter blackness, very much like the excellent movie.

0:18 – Lego! I love Lego… okay, so Galadriel and Lego… can you see where this is going?

0:24 – LEGO FRODO WITH LEGO RING (which is huge! How could anyone put that on their finger, maybe round their neck but whatever) WITH THE ACTUAL VOICES.

0:28 – Oh my god is that Moria, are those the stairs when they… Sweet Jesus, that’s the epic music. OH MY GOD! AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH

0:40 – EXCITED EXCITED!

0:44 – Why are they all the same size? Shouldn’t 5 of them be smaller than 3 of the others. AH WHAT LEGO SCALE!!!

0:51 – Dumbledore? No, wait that’s Lego Gandalf, they look like brothers. And yes, you read those words. LEGO GANDALF!!

0:55 – LEGO BALROG… burping… Tolkien would be spinning in his grave if he saw this, but I CAN’T STOP BEING EXCITED.

1:02 – EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEE.

1:04 – It’s official! Oh, and if you hadn’t guessed, I love Lego games. I had them all apart from Pirates of the Carribean, and completed all of them to 100% apart from Lego Batman.

1:07 – LEGO SEAN BEAN (BOROMIR) EPICNESS! Bagsy Boromir!

So, yes, anyway. That’s how you do it. Short and simple. A bit like Lego.

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