Rise of the Tomb Raider is an action-adventure game developed by Crystal Dynamics. It features Lara Croft in an Indian Jones like story where she is looking to discover long lost artifacts while also defeating bad guys.
The gameplay consists of 3rd person view action adventure platforming and gunplay.
Pro Puzzles often use the whole stage
The puzzles in the game (though there are less of them over previous titles) often use the whole stage as one big interactive puzzle. Often Lara will have to traverse high and low in a stage in order to unlock hidden areas or just to advance to the next large set piece. As the game progresses the player can unlock new abilities that will also allow going back to solve yet unsolved puzzles. Things like being able to reach new heights through new climbing abilities will give access to areas that have items that can be interacted with, such as breaking an ice barrier or using some hidden away pulley system, which in turn could reveal a new area or item.
Pro Tons to explore
Each level is large and almost open world like, so there is quite a lot to see and do in each. The player can be rewarded for exploring as there may be hidden items or weapons all around, as well as good views. With so much to see and collect, there is no real reason to not take ones time to explore everything each level has to offer as it will often pay off.
Pro Replayability through unlockables
Once a level is competed, the player can go back to then try to complete unfinished or new objectives, many of which will unlock new outfits or other items. This incentivizes the player to play again and again for those that want to find every item that can be found and complete each and every objective, some of which that can be quite tough.
Pro Built weapons add to the complexity of gunplay
The player can now build their own weapons such as nail bombs or special ammo. This greatly expands on the type of weapons that can be used during a gunfight (of which there are many), which allows the user to change up their styles of attack in the game.
Pro Jaw dropping graphics
While the first game in the reboot was phenominal in the graphics department, Rise of the Tomb Raider takes a step beyond that with some of the best graphics in a game out there currently. Simple things like the snow moving as you step into it or how Lara's hair moves in the wind add polish that many games do not bother with. The character models and animations are also phenomenal, creating a movie like experience all their own as every move in the game is convincingly real.
Con Very average looking Lara
The fact that Lara is a good looking woman is defining to the franchise. That notion reached its climax in 2013 when they made the best looking Lara so far in Tomb Raider. This makes the contrast to 2016 RotTR Lara all the greater. Crystal Dynamics had the misplaced idea of making this Lara look a bit more like her voice actress Camilla Luddington. This combination of looks doesn't really work too well. While Lara is not 'ugly' in this game, she is a far cry from the sky high standards that were set in 2013. Shame.
Con Flakey keyboard and mouse controls
It is recommended to play the game with a controller as there are some instances of poor keyboard controls where the character will not go exactly where she is being directed to go. This can cause issue with completing tasks as well as just frustrate overall.
Con Focuses on action over puzzle solving
The original games in the series ha many puzzle solving elements, sadly they are less of a focus in the reboots as the game now focuses more on action such as constant firefights with enemies. it would have been nice to see more puzzles in the game overall.
Con Overused and overly familiar plot
The gist of the plot is that Lara is searching for the key to eternal life. This plot has been used in the third Indiana Jones movie as well as Uncharted's third game. Being that this game resembles both of those franchises it does seem a bit lazy to see such a similar plot being used. While the story does contain its own original characters and surrounding plots, the main plot point still seems way too similar for such a high profile franchise.
Con Stealth seems pointless
While there are stealth takedowns in the game and many areas allow for stealth, there is no real incentive to be stealthy while traversing each level as Lara is a very competent fighter, which is now expanded upon by weapons that can be built. So yes you can accomplish many section with stealth, there is nothing pushing the player in the game to do so as there is never a point where Lara will be out manned or out gunned.
Con Very linear
Much of the game pushes the player into only one direction, forward, but often forward has some trap to fall into or a skill that has to be used otherwise you can not progress. It does lend well to the design of being a large scale interactive movie, but for those that like a bit of free roaming and multiple ways to solve a problem will be left really wanting.