The End of Lara's Origin Story
Following countless Tomb Raider games, including the series’ reboot instalments, Tomb Raider (2013) and Rise of the Tomb Raider (2015), Square Enix are bringing Lara Croft’s origin story (and modern trilogy) to a close with Shadow of the Tomb Raider.
So what does that mean exactly with regards to the future of the franchise? A few have speculated that this could be Square Enix’s final Tomb Raider game ever, although that seems highly unlikely. Square Enix have confirmed that Shadow of the Tomb Raider is the “climatic finale of Lara Croft’s origin story”. The game will therefore mark the all-important milestone in Lara’s life where she becomes the confident and capable tomb raider character that we've see so many times in the past. As a result, I don’t think it would be unrealistic to hope for more of these games in the future, focusing on other areas of her story, potentially even slightly later in her life. Considering that the Tomb Raider IP saw another reboot this year in movie-form, I’d say we’ll be seeing even more of Lara in the next few years.
A Shift In Focus
If you’ve played the other rebooted games in the series, you’ll have likely noticed how Lara’s character has altered and evolved over time. In Tomb Raider (2013) the franchise was re-establishing itself, giving players the opportunity to get to know young Lara and try to understand the early events that shaped her origin story. It’s therefore fair to say that that game’s prime focus rested on exploration. Furthermore, Rise of the Tomb Raider (2015) introduced more threats, shifting the overall theme to survival. In Shadow of the Tomb Raider we can now expect to see the most capable Lara ever. From using the jungle setting to her advantage during combat to deciphering clues as to where various artefacts are located, Lara is now fully prepared to become the famous Tomb Raider that her name is associated with, and is ready to take on Trinity.
After playing a forty minute demo of Shadow of the Tomb Raider we know that Lara will be travelling to Cozumel, Mexico with her friend Jonah. In a conversation with him she also mentions that evil organisation, Trinity, have been looking for a precious Mayan artefact in Brazil, while she has deduced that it's actually in Peru.
In the demo we saw Lara enter a cave, discover an underground temple and retrieve a dagger known as Chak Chel. Lara runs into Dr. Dominguez, a man linked to Trinity, and he steals the dagger from her before informing her that she has caused an tsunami by removing the weapon from its resting place. Tasked with getting to high ground, she's then whisked through the city in the flood and forced to watch the destruction that follows. The demo concluded when Lara was reunited with Jonah where she spoke about beating Dominguez to the Ik Chel (a silver box).
It’s highly likely that we'll be seeing more natural disasters later on in the game. On the walls in the underground temple Lara saw depictions of tsunamis, volcanoes and more. So far, we’ve seen a tsnuami in the demo.
To read more about Shadow of the Tomb Raider, check out our hands-on preview!
New Game, New Team... Sort Of
Shadow of the Tomb Raider not only marks the end of Lara’s origin story but also highlights Eidos Montreal’s increased involvement in the series. Tomb Raider (2013) and Rise of the Tomb Raider (2015) were previously developed by Crystal Dynamics, although checking out the credits for each game you’ll notice that both teams were still involved. It’s not surprising that Square Enix have handed Shadow of the Tomb Raider primarily over to Eidos Montreal, who are widely known for their work on the Deus Ex titles, as Crystal Dynamics are now working on the Avengers Project. That said, in the playable demo and official reveal trailer, both teams were credited.
Will we be seeing a Shadow of the Tomb Raider & Final Fantasy Crossover?
In short, yes! During a panel at PAX East 2018, Square Enix announced that Final Fantasy XV and Shadow of the Tomb Raider will see a crossover. We’ve been given very little information on this so far but we’ll be keeping an eye out for more news at E3 2018 to determine how substantial this will be.
We’ve already seen Final Fantasy host these kinds of collaborations in the past, featuring skins from Half-Life and The Sims 4, alongside a timed festival surrounding Assassin’s Creed: Origins that introduced AC:O gameplay segments and skins. Many are hoping to see a beefier collaboration between Shadow of the Tomb Raider and Final Fantasy XV but we’ll have to wait and see what the developer has up their sleeve!
Path of the Stars
Square Enix posted the Path of the Stars puzzle on theback on March 19th. Featuring five levels, solving these puzzles unlocks exclusive clues to Lara’s next adventure in Shadow of the Tomb Raider. When each level is completed over 5,000 times, a new clue will then be unlocked.
The puzzle also gave fans in the US a chance to win a trip for two to play Shadow of the Tomb Raider at E3 2018.
Tribeca Games has announced that they will be live-streaming two panels today, covering Shadow of the Tomb Raider and God of War. Here is the summary for the panel found on
4:20 PM - 5:00 PM EASTERN: A Special Preview of Shadow of the Tomb Raider
"Join the creative team behind the critically acclaimed and world-famous TOMB RAIDER® franchise, which has sold over 63 million copies globally, as they discuss the evolution of Lara Croft and share in the techniques, tools and inspiration behind the series. Daniel Chayer-Bisson (Senior Game Director), Jill Murray (Lead Writer), Rich Briggs (Senior Brand Director) and special guest Camilla Luddington (performance artist for Lara Croft) will be on hand for this special event moderated by Geoff Keighley.
Note: Livestream will start at approximately 4:20 PM with the PANEL conversation. Exclusive gameplay will not be livestreamed".
Shadow of the Tomb Raider’s release date has already been confirmed and is set for September 14th, 2018. The game will be available on PC, PlayStation 4 and Xbox One simultaneously. Unlike previous titles, this will not be a timed exclusive. The game already has a spot on the.