Tuesday, 31 August 2010

DVD Raider

For a while, I've had the Tomb Raider Interactive DVD, but never got around to actually completing it. For one thing, it's not like ten minutes to complete it. It is three Acts, and they take a while to get through as there are lots of cut scenes to watch. In fact, there are more cut scenes than there are scenes in which to interact.

Another reason I haven't been playing it is because it's buggy. There are 25 interactive sequences (which may comprise of a few interactive moments), which are scored from 0 to 5, and at the end of each sequence you get a code that you can enter to skip to that section again, rather than play through the previous game. Which sounds good, except, as you might guess, the buggy-ness kicks in and the codes aren't given properly, so there really is no option but to play through the previous bits, and I haven't had the time, nor inclination, to go through it all.

Until last night. Finally decided to complete the damn thing. And... I'm not sure that I want to say "fun" as such... I'll go for "mildly entertaining and distracting". Which is the best you're going to get, considering the story content. This is a cut down version of The Angel of Darkness, and by "cut down" I mean "incoherent". There are lots of characters that turn up and Lara knows them for some reason. There's a whole lot of mystical rubbish that comes out at the end out of nowhere. And... basically... the game runs like we're watching someone else play through it and there are moments in which we get to do things. (Which is basically what it is.)

The game play is rather odd. In most sequences, you are directing Lara to go somewhere (around a room, going somewhere in the cities is entirely in cut scenes, as can't have a moment where the player might do something themselves). Typically, there is one sequence to get what you need, otherwise Lara dies, so then you have to go through it again (possibly including unskippable cut scenes, although most are skippable) until you get the right combination. [It does pay to look around to sometimes get some extra points. A two-team version can be played, but I had enough with just the one-team option.]

The main style of action sequence involves entering in a combination of up/down/left/right with the remote in some prescribed sequence. Which raises a really annoying point for me, in that the DVD controller I have is not exactly the best for that sort of play. There were a few sequences I couldn't get, or barely got, because of the control panel not exactly being arrows but more of a wheel (like the old ipod control). Fortunately, there are "Play Safe" options which gets through the sequence, but without as many points.

Aimed more for the 'non-gamer' market (or extreme completists), this could have potential... but the fractured nature of the story, and the sense that you are watching someone else play, means that it is unlikely to appeal to actual Tomb Raider fans. Pity about that (but then, they probably have the proper game).


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