Backlog Attack! – 2019 Challenge – July

My dear readers, it’s that time of the month again where I look at another game off my Steam backlog, as picked out by Thero. July has seen some ups and downs in real life, as well as the British weather, and so of the three games chosen, I picked the less seemingly intense of the three to play in July.

Lara Croft: GO (played on Steam) is a port of the mobile game of the same name, released in 2015. Playing as Lara, the game is, according to Wikipedia, a “turn based puzzle video game”, controlled with fingers originally and just a few clicks on Steam.

Stats:
Play time:
Achievements: Yes
Steam Trading Cards: Yes
Enjoyed: Yes for the most part
Would recommend?: If you like puzzle games, absolutely, and more so if you want a bit of Lara in your life.

Thoughts
The game is pretty. Cell shaded in pastel colours with occasional pops of brightness, GO is gorgeous to look at. Beauty is only skin deep though, so let’s take a look at some of the other things that go into GO.

GO is absolutely a mobile game. The game feels directly ported to PC, complete with sometimes frustrating lack of direction or plot, or reason to hunt out the collectibles. But what jarred me most about the Steam version was the controls. I can’t really call it a control scheme, because you literally use the mouse and one button. Click and hold to drag Lara around one step at a time (literally, the game is tile based). Click on things to use them – click on levers to pull/push them, click on creatures when you have a spear to throw it at them and so on. Sadly, all of this ends up being picked up as you go because there’s no real tutorial or indications of how to do things with the mouse. Perhaps it’s intuitive on a mobile or tablet, but not so on PC. Too frequently Lara moves in a way you didn’t want her to, or a little lag means you miss the snake eating you. It’s my major issue with the game, and one that led Lara to her death one too many times for my liking.

There is a distinct lack of plot to GO, but after a few levels I found myself not caring and just solving the puzzles and collecting things. The overarching purpose became to get out of the cave/tomb/temple, and that became enough. It feels odd saying that plot doesn’t matter, particularly in a Tomb Raider game, but GO clearly wasn’t designed to keep you too hooked, perfect for mobile platforms.

Final Thoughts
Having said all this, I do think Lara Croft GO is a nice little puzzle game, particularly early on. Some of the late game puzzles, and the additional puzzles can be obtuse and I had to use a hint or two (free on the Steam version). Occasionally I got frustrated enough to quit the game, but came back later to see the solution staring me in the face. Puzzle blindness.

If you can work with the mouse controls, I do actually recommend Lara Croft GO – it’s short enough and the bite-size levels mean you can easily fill short gaming sessions with some tomb raiding.

Next month, some disco murdery madness!

2 comments

  1. I really enjoyed Lara Croft GO. Played it on the phone, as it was intended with the gameplay of the game but I do think it’s a really good game that has very few flaws to itself.

    Would have been lovely with a little more story but it was quite reminiscent of the very first Tomb Raider game.

    Wondering what to look forward to as the Backlog Attack saga continues.

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