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E3 11; Tomb Raider gameplay trailer shows Lara on form

Submitted by on Tuesday, 7 June 2011No Comment

Tomb Raider’s pre-E3 CG trailer showed us a new Lara and a bold new direction for the series. It still looks like an adventure game, but it now has more than a strong element of survival horror about it, and from what we’ve seen so far, it gives the series an edge it hasn’t had for years.

Nevertheless, style can only get you so far, and before officially returning to the Lara Croft fanclub, we needed to see some gameplay footage, especially after the disappointing showing from Underworld.

Thankfully, an opportunity to see Lara in action finally arrived yesterday at Microsoft’s E3 conference. Game director Daniel Neuberger and studio head Darrell Gallagher took to the stage to take us through a level from the beginning of the game. You can view the gameplay yourself in the video below.

It’s clear the team at Crystal Dynamics is following the Uncharted template of including semi-scripted set pieces and dynamic environments to create a cinematic feel. It looks very immersive, but when placed next to the Uncharted trailer from Sony’s E3 press conference, it’s simply not as effective. However, who can match Naughty Dog? This Tomb Raider footage is still exciting.

Tomb Raider has always been great at creating great puzzles and it looks like Crystal Dynamics won’t abandon that heritage. You can see this from Lara using the flames to free herself from her shackles and to a lesser extent in the way she uses the torch to light up rooms.

We’d like to see gameplay footage from some of the less scripted and more open sections of the game, but at this moment, you can count us back in the Lara fanclub. We’re glad to be back.