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View Full Version : Tomb Raider - What really works, and what doesn't?



dhama
18th Oct 2003, 21:01
It's been many years since I embarked upon this great journey with the restless soul that is Lara Croft. There have been many highs but too many lows, but what exactly did Core design get right, and just as importantly; what did they get wrong?

My thoughts...........

Well above all, exploration is the ultimate for me when playing such a game. Terrain, tombs, buildings..... the recipe for an enjoyable game should be in the wish to continue in a realitivly flowing manner..... now, puzzles can hold you back but the brain is still flowing trying to find the solution.

I guess the main downside to any game of this genre, for me, must be the relentless shooting at one target for more than is necessary. The fact that the 'boss' appears to be completely unharmed for the ten or so minutes of mindless shooting, and then suddenly dies without warning, spoils the whole show for me.

I would rather wait for a game (Doom III springs to mind) until miles of scenery is just waiting to be traversed without the need for delaying tactics such as described above.

Of course, realism can't be properly portrayed in a game.... just imagine having to reload Tomb Raider everytime Lara was shot just once. Games are an escape for many players...... the hero needs to be at least a little impervious to enemy fire, but when it comes to the final enemy, 'boss', the laborious task of hitting the fire button till my fingers bleed, ain't a lot of fun anymore....if it was ever.

Space invaders did it with style and originality, so in my opinion, lets knock insessant shooting on the head please!!!!

Leigh Croft
18th Oct 2003, 21:14
They definately got the first ever perfect mix of the Action and Adventure genres, to menion but one positive thing...

AndrewIII
19th Oct 2003, 06:58
Tomb Raider biggest problem - Gameplay. For the longest, Tomb Raider have suffered from nothing but repititive/boring gameplay. These days gamers don't want to play a game where the entire objective is solving the same boring puzzles every level. What gamers want, is well-balanced, hardcore( a la Devil May Cry), and rewarding/stylish gameplay. Now I'm not saying anything is wrong puzzle solving since its the basis a well-balanced gamplay,but the puzzle solving have to be toned down in favor of more gameplay options.


To put it straight, I don't want to play a game where I'm going to be pulling levers,dodging traps and finding items every level, I want a game where the character show that they're a hardcore kickbutt characater.

thanhkim
19th Oct 2003, 08:54
I'm the same I prefer a game with less puzzels and more moving through the game to get to the final end. Shooting doesn't bother me I like it. Kick ass Lar's.

dhama
19th Oct 2003, 10:25
Originally posted by AndrewIII
To put it straight, I don't want to play a game where I'm going to be pulling levers,dodging traps and finding items every level, I want a game where the character show that they're a hardcore kickbutt characater.

So if I understand you, you just want wall to wall fighting?...

My argument, is with repetitive play...... the shooting; especially with the 'boss'. I can't see anything wrong with pulling a few levers and dodging traps as long as they're not there just to stretch the playing time and don't get tedius along the way....like my long sentences I guess :D

John Carter
19th Oct 2003, 13:28
Wow! A useful thread in the chat forum! Wonders will never cease! :D

I find myself in complete agreement with dhama here for once, his evaluation of what's good and bad with TR is spot on from my perspective.

dhama isn't minding the shooting, shooter fans, he's minding spending interminable minutes pumping virtual lead into the big ugly to little good effect. The mass shooting of multiple-Eckhardt til he expires comes to mind. However, they may have been on to something with the fate of Karel, for Lara to have to perform some task, under fire as it were, to cause the boss monster's demise, other than pumping him/her/it full of lead, is a good start. That sort of thing could be done in many different ways that advance and culminate the storyline.




Of course, realism can't be properly portrayed in a game.... just imagine having to reload Tomb Raider everytime Lara was shot just once.

Actually, can't resist....;) Depending on bullet size/velocity, health and adrenaline state of the individual, where shot, etc, etc, one shot one kill isn't as realistic as one might think. As an example, check the link below, my dad knew this guy-

http://www.mishalov.com/Morris.html

eurisko
19th Oct 2003, 14:04
A large part of the problem is the sheer magnitutde of players and subsequent opinions. Basically, for every person who is unhappy about something, there's another person who is equally happy that that something was included. That, and the fact that everyone has an opinion. Liking/disliking things is subjective and varies wildly from person to person in accordance with a thousand different things.

There can be no master list of what gamers want or do not want, because everyone likes/dislikes different things. That is why sweeping statements based on generalisations simply do not work.

That is why we saw such uproar when AOD was released and people managed to get their grubby little hands on it.

What is good and bad to one person could quite easily be bad and good (respectively) to someone else. It's a very fine balancing act.

what exactly did Core design get right
They've managed to do something that is rare in the entertainment industry: create a successful entry-level piece of entertainment that went on to allow a successful franchise to grow. Six games, millions of fans, worldwide acclaim, many millions of dollars and entertainment-arena-crossover. I don't care who you are, that's doing something right :)

and just as importantly; what did they get wrong?
Unfortunately, by releasing something into the public arena you inevitably open yourself to criticism. I think Core made a critical error: they let biased, subjective, emotional creatures get their hands on it. If they'd just kept it to themselves, it's aura would have been unsullied by the likes of us peasants :)

dhama
19th Oct 2003, 15:04
Originally posted by John Carter
Actually, can't resist....;) Depending on bullet size/velocity, health and adrenaline state of the individual, where shot, etc, etc, one shot one kill isn't as realistic as one might think.

Actually JC, t'would be nice to have Lara in the following set of circumstances....
If Lara was shot, it could be a random factor. If the shot hit the right arm, Lara would no longer be able to shoot with the gun that side, or if the bullet hit say the left leg, she would have to limp on that side.

If a bullet hit the torso, she could continue, but would be doubled up with pain.

Of course, if it were the head; instance death.

After such a gun battle, presuming Lara was only injured, she would continue to show it, until a medi pack was used.

I understand it would be tedius to watch Lara patching herself up each time, so I could do with out that bit anyway

The same applies to the enemy, they should react more to being shot rather than the obligatory splatter of blood and recoil animation; I know the animation guys can do better.....

EddyBones
19th Oct 2003, 15:19
A bit off topic, sorry, but all this talk of getting shot reminds me of when she got shot in the back in one of the comics......

Anyway, it definitely would be cool if it worked that way ^ with the not being able to use the part that was shot. It would make the game more interesting. But you would then need less things shooting at you all the time, or some better way of dodging fire. What we need is VR TR. Then we could control Lara with our own actions.

Cleber
20th Oct 2003, 01:15
You should know that VR is not well developped.
VR does not solve focus problem on objects. It means that without almost perfect focus treatment no human brain can take VR for more than an hour. Your brain gets confused and your head really starts to hurt.
So VR is only for research for now and it must take a long time to solve this problem and others as well.