The reimagining of Lara Croft yet again for another Tomb Raider title wasn't supposed to be this amazing. This was supposed to be a desperate move by a publisher looking to reclaim the past glory of the dusty franchise. Instead Tomb Raider will probably come off as one of the hallmark titles of the Playstation 3/Xbox 360 era when it lands next year.
We're giving this game our award for Best Jungle Shooter even though there's going to be plenty of exploration, puzzle solving and a rich storyline driving this one. The shooting will at least include some timely bow & arrow action (seriously, how do so many game developers get the same idea at the same time?) and we understand that the drama of the game should unfold in a way that gives Lara Croft her dual pistols for the first time. That's just one of the many treats we expect out of this prequel.
The character control systems are still a bit shrouded in mystery. We know you'll be able to choose and buy new skills for Lara that will shape her and your style of play. In one example, she could either gain the ability to retrieve arrows after shooting them or gain the ability to better see animals when hunting. You can likely gain both of those abilities once you have enough in game currency or points. These options show us, however, just how important hunting (and eating) and ammo management will be in Tomb Raider. And that's just what we've seen so far. There will be many more overlapping RPG-type systems in Tomb Raider. All of that solid gameplay will support outstanding visuals on the character, her movements and the environment.
Tomb Raider is shaping up to have quite the comeback.
Honorable Hot Coffee Mug for Best Jungle Shooter: Far Cry 3
The game that used to have jungle shooting all to itself is pushing substance experimentation and toying with your sanity this time around. That's a very tough to trick to turn and we'd love to be wrong on that.