Thursday, June 07, 2007

Tomb Raider: Anniversary Update 2

The Lost Valley (part 1)
  • First really big level. Good stuff so far. Originally, I was a bit disappointed.
  • It's stupid to have "shoot this glowing thing to change the environment" mechanic. A real innovation would be allowing me to do that to any rope and wood structure, but then that would require them to think about what they're doing.
  • I am pleased to see that there is some flexibility in how you maneuver through the level. There is a place where you can swing from a rope to a platform and then climb up to the gear and then get to a switch. Or you can do what I did and see a way to use the swing rope to get to the switch directly and then backtrack to get the gear.
  • I DO NOT CONTROL LARA. That is, when playing TR1 you can make Lara go into her grab animation, jump animation, etc. at any time. In this game you can't make her do the grab animation unless the game realizes you're in a place where that animation makes sense. I liked the other way better, and this just emphasizes how scripted they've really made this game. Despite having a little flexibility as noted in the last bullet point, there is really just one way through the level that they intend you to take to do everything you need to do.
  • We'll see when we get to the next level, the Tomb of Quoalopec (or whatever it is) whether the game really allows you to solve any of the various puzzle rooms independently of each other. If they must be done in sequence somehow, then that goes to just what I hate -- tightly scripted game.
  • The T-Rex starts with a scripted interactive cut scene. I did not like it. I liked it better then the T-Rex was something you could move around and continue to solve the level despite his interference.
  • He wasn't a boss before, he was just a big animal who happened to live in that level. Now he's a boss who must be confronted. I don't think I like that change.
  • He also didn't look like he died for sure when I killed him -- I suspect before I leave this level I'll have to deal with him again. That's a really tired, lame device that we don't need in movies and surely don't need in games.
  • I'll finish this level tomorrow.

1 comment:

rufbo said...

"I liked the other way better, and this just emphasizes how scripted they've really made this game."

"Scripted" is an awfully good word for it. When I played the *very* little I've played on Win2k (so no 360 controller, dang it. That sounds cool), I got a bit of the Dragon's Lair feeling. It wasn't enough to comment on officially or confidently, but your comments make me feel like I might have been on to something.

You should play through about an hour of BloodRayne now. At the lower levels (indeed, nearly half the game), it can be bested by button-mashing, which stinks, but I think you'll get the feel for it's relatively good controls if you play it straight.