Lara Croft is back for another spin-off adventure, in the sequel to highly acclaimed, Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light.
In Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris, the intrepid adventurer is joined by three others in a race to stop another world threatening plot. And yes, as you might expect, it’s possible for up to four players to band together in this new adventure.
One of these characters is Isis, who has somehow become best friends with Lara. That girl sure has friends in high places!
Anyone that plays as Isis can make use of a staff that produces a light beam. It’s an essential tool for when completing puzzles and progressing in cooperative mode.
The emphasis of the game is for players to work together when completing most of the puzzles. One such puzzle involves both characters stopping a globe and shooting/hitting it with the light beam from a different side. The mechanic worked really well in the early build I’ve been playing.
Most of the puzzles are themed around the concept of light. For instance, at one point it was necessary to push giant lit spheres into specified pedestals. Any torches that this sphere touches were immediately lit.
So far, puzzles are not exactly taxing, but they do offer a welcome break from all the fights that pop up as you play. There are all sorts of enemies to go up against and the characters must defeat them, wave after wave. It’s almost too overwhelming to try and fend off people coming from every direction. Without doubt, this is definitely one of the title’s strongest and most challenging aspects, given that surviving these encounters requires some skill.
Cooperation is just as vital outside of puzzles when playing with someone else. Levels are designed so that each character’s unique abilities are needed. For instance, Lara can use her grapple hook to climb up rockfaces and then, somehow, use it to pull up Isis – it’s obvious our intrepid adventurer has been doing some serious weightlifting.
Although trust is a vital element when it comes to surviving, players can also choose to sabotage one another. Found throughout the level are gems and other items used to help improve a player’s score. Obviously, whoever gets to these items first will find it easier to get a better high score when the level is over. This creates a few interesting situations where one player may choose to, for example, let go of the grapple button to collect the powerup, meanwhile, the character using it as a balancing rope falls to a rather gruesome death.
There are other ideas that could make for a competitive session, like rings that give characters certain status boosts. The twist here is that, whoever finds one of these rings first, gets to equip it and use it on a former ally. There are also items like elements, which are used by the whole team, to balance out a situation.
As with the previous title, moving the right stick, then pressing the right trigger will make the character shoot. The same can be done to use the character’s specific ability, then pressing the right bumper. Some actions like getting the character on the balancing rope are trickier due to the nature of the top-down view. But overall, the controls work quite nicely and it’s fairly straightforward for even newcomers to adapt to them.
Despite all the puzzles, The Temple of Osiris definitely feels faster paced when compared to Guardian of Light. A prolonged action sequence towards the end of one level sees our character being stalked by a giant creature. At first it attempts to kill them by destroying the supporting columns holding up a bridge.
It’s quite difficult to keep up with everything that is happening on the screen. In addition to the creature’s frantic thrashing, there are traps introduced during a second encounter with this beast. It’s necessary to avoid these traps and keep on moving to stop the monster from devouring the characters. It actually almost feels like it is taken from an Indiana Jones adventure. Although it was difficult to complete this sequence without dying, it remained very entertaining throughout.
Anyone thinking about playing as Lara will get both her guns as well as the grappling hook. As Isis, there will the staff and all the power that wields. There are no AI controlled characters and the levels are designed so that it feels more like a single player experience.
Whilst the game is not exactly ground breaking, there is no denying it is still amusing to play. Lara Croft and the Tempe of Osiris is certainly an enjoyable cooperative adventure and if the rest of the title is anything like this, then it is more than worthy of having Lara Croft in its title.