X360, PS3 Thursday, August 21, 2008 | 6:32 AM

GC08: TR Underworld gameplay

GC08: TR Underworld gameplay

Some might tell you we went through hell to get you some proper gameplay footage for Tomb Raider: Underworld but I won't. So here it is eventually, you just need to come inside to see Eidos' new baby.


To cut the long story short, the game seems to deliver on its promise by offering long sequences based on exploration and platforming. To me, the game is going to be closer to Anniversary than Legend in that area, at least in the level I had a chance to play yesterday.

Technically speaking, the game is solid. The environments are big and very detailed, Lara's animations have gotten more natural than before - though it's still close to Lara's original style - and the graphics are just beautiful.

The build I played must have been a bit old though since there were a few issues with the camera, the framerate and some glitches once in a while but from what I saw, the game is shaping up well and I'm sure all the fans will be happy to jump in as soon as the game is released.

GC08: Gameplay
Download: WMV | MP4 | AVI

All comments

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Commented on 2008-08-21 08:11:53
It looks good in shots but after seeing that video it suddenly dawned on me how little this series has evolved. It's still worth at least a rental though
Commented on 2008-08-21 08:17:25
Yeah, nothing looks too different than Tomb Raider Anniversary other than probably better gfx, more acrobatic moves or whatever, and new storyline and levels obviously. I did like the ability to aim at more than one target at a time, I guess that's new enough to enjoy I guess. Can't really say much about it till I play it of course. It could be really great.
Commented on 2008-08-21 08:34:55
Well I have to say it looks better in motion than I gave it credit for in the screenshots. The animation looks smooth, if a bot cartoony. The combat looks mindless, it would be nice to see them make combat a bigger part of the experience, much less than the puzzles/platforming but right now I don't even see a point in the combat.
Commented on 2008-08-21 08:40:50 In reply to RizzleQ
Posted by RizzleQ
Yeah, nothing looks too different than Tomb Raider Anniversary other than probably better gfx, more acrobatic moves or whatever, and new storyline and levels obviously. I did like the ability to aim at more than one target at a time, I guess that's new enough to enjoy I guess. Can't really say much about it till I play it of course. It could be really great.
Yeah you pretty summed up all the stuff a sequel to a game needs to have to be a better game. *sigh*

Ontopic: Wow much better than I expected. I'm sold.
Commented on 2008-08-21 08:47:49
Tell me know this doesnt look better than uncharted!!! WOW! Amazing ... they tweaked the animation so much it's looking like a totally different game and the lighting .... amazing ...... Really cant wait for this.
Commented on 2008-08-21 08:57:40 In reply to alimokrane
Posted by alimokrane
Tell me know this doesnt look better than uncharted!!! WOW! Amazing ... they tweaked the animation so much it's looking like a totally different game and the lighting .... amazing ...... Really cant wait for this.
Uncharted's animation is still better in my opinion, so far at least(when I say that I mean more fluid individually, TR looks to chain them together a bit better, not without some jerkiness though) . Graphics wise they are just different, Uncharted went for a vibrant look, TR is going for a real look.

Oh and Uncharted's textures are MUCH better, many of the textures so far looked stretched. Like I said earlier though it looks great right now, especially for a multiplat.
Commented on 2008-08-21 09:05:53 In reply to MvmntInGrn
Posted by MvmntInGrn
Uncharted's animation is still better in my opinion, so far at least(when I say that I mean more fluid individually, TR looks to chain them together a bit better, not without some jerkiness though) . Graphics wise they are just different, Uncharted went for a vibrant look, TR is going for a real look.

Oh and Uncharted's textures are MUCH better, many of the textures so far looked stretched. Like I said earlier though it looks great right now, especially for a multiplat.
Well having seen both in motion, I still think Tomb Raider looks better but like you said TR is going for more realism and that's perhaps why I think it's better but I think comparing the two on technical merits gives the edge to Tomb Raider still.

Anyway, it doesnt matter, I am just so happy, this is looking so good :D
Commented on 2008-08-21 09:38:42
So lush! Go baby.

Uncharted... go boy, RUN!!!. Yhea you do that, cry to your momma you little looser dude raider.
Commented on 2008-08-21 09:44:36
Graphics are gorgeous. The mid section of that level looked tedious as hell though despite only lasting a minute or two.

And the combat scene with the tigers was a mess. Think that may have been down to the person playing not using the camera however.

Saying that, still at the top of my shopping list :)
Commented on 2008-08-21 09:46:30
Is it just me or is the battle camera completely broken? It constantly centers and zooms in on Lara, not on the tigers attacking her.
Commented on 2008-08-21 09:53:00 In reply to starfox14now
Posted by starfox14now
So lush! Go baby.

Uncharted... go boy, RUN!!!. Yhea you do that, cry to your momma you little looser dude raider.
EDIT: Nevermind, its not worth fighting. Have fun with TR :)!


...
Commented on 2008-08-21 10:25:38 In reply to insane_cobra
Posted by insane_cobra
Is it just me or is the battle camera completely broken? It constantly centers and zooms in on Lara, not on the tigers attacking her.
I believe the guy playing wasnt just adjusting the camera. Legend and Anniversary have been camera-trouble-free so I see no reason why this one should have problems.
Commented on 2008-08-21 11:15:26 In reply to alimokrane
Be my guest next time if you want some better footage. :p

The camera had problems even when walking around sometimes and believe me, I tried to offer you the best possible footage; clearly though, there were serious issues with the camera when using the guns. :)

Now all keep in mind it's not always easy to play the game when you don't have much time. I have played and finished all Lara's adventures so I think there are worse players than me. I probably could have done better but again the camera system is more to blame than me. Too bad I didn't film some of the fantastic glitches related to it to prove my point though. You're all gonna have to take my word for it. ;)
Commented on 2008-08-21 11:58:59 In reply to Driftwood
Posted by Driftwood
Be my guest next time if you want some better footage. :p

The camera had problems even when walking around sometimes and believe me, I tried to offer you the best possible footage; clearly though, there were serious issues with the camera when using the guns. :)

Now all keep in mind it's not always easy to play the game when you don't have much time. I have played and finished all Lara's adventures so I think there are worse players than me. I probably could have done better but again the camera system is more to blame than me. Too bad I didn't film some of the fantastic glitches related to it to prove my point though. You're all gonna have to take my word for it. ;)
Let's hope they'll get some time to fix it then. Anyway, the game looks and feel very good.
Commented on 2008-08-21 12:29:54
I think the improvements are quite obvious and pretty significant in driving the TR franchise forward, I absolutely love the environments, they are much more detailed than TR Legends, and the new animation system is pretty cool too, they're small things but adds a whole lot of the immersion, like in the beginning of the video where she brushes past the foliage and moves it out the way with her arms - it's just great.
Commented on 2008-08-21 13:06:31 In reply to Driftwood
Posted by Driftwood
Be my guest next time if you want some better footage. :p

The camera had problems even when walking around sometimes and believe me, I tried to offer you the best possible footage; clearly though, there were serious issues with the camera when using the guns. :)

Now all keep in mind it's not always easy to play the game when you don't have much time. I have played and finished all Lara's adventures so I think there are worse players than me. I probably could have done better but again the camera system is more to blame than me. Too bad I didn't film some of the fantastic glitches related to it to prove my point though. You're all gonna have to take my word for it. ;)
If I offended you please accept my appologies, that wasnt my intention :)
Fair enough, if you do think there are problems with the camera then I most certainly take your word for it. Let's hope it gets ironed out. Like you said, if it's a problem during combat, I couldnt care less, combat isnt the highlight of tomb raider for me .... if they take it all down, I wouldnt mind at all - Have only bosses in the game and be done with it.
Commented on 2008-08-21 14:16:15
Now this video clearly shows that it's not technical on par with Uncharted.

Vegetations are poping up, they not moving from the wind, in Uncharted they even change the momvments like the winds is changing, character animations are worser and so are the textures and not to mention the lightning which is way better in Uncharted.

I always liked TR games and im excited about thisone but it makes me a bit angry when people say this looks better then Uncharted, Uncharted is technical far superior but this new TR looks anyway damn nice, the only thing i really dislike is the auto aim, that's way too easy :(
Commented on 2008-08-21 14:20:36 In reply to skyform
Posted by skyform
Now this video clearly shows that it's not technical on par with Uncharted.

Vegetations are poping up, they not moving from the wind, in Uncharted they even change the momvments like the winds is changing, character animations are worser and so are the textures and not to mention the lightning which is way better in Uncharted.

I always liked TR games and im excited about thisone but it makes me a bit angry when people say this looks better then Uncharted, Uncharted is technical far superior but this new TR looks anyway damn nice., the only thing i really dislike is the auto aim, that's way too easy :(
Keep the meltdowns coming...
Commented on 2008-08-21 14:26:37
TRU Kick ass! Its very pretty! But I still think that Uncharted look better.

Hurry up November! :)
Commented on 2008-08-21 14:46:00
Lighting makes or breaks a game graphically this gen, and this game has some fantastic lighting, and in the right places. Very atmospheric. I like how solid and organic the jungle looks. One of the main things about what I remember of the original TR on the PSX was obviously not just the graphics, but the atmosphere of the game. If this game recaptures that feel, then it won't matter how dated the game play mechanics may feel. The whole point of TR was discovery and the claustrophobic tension.
Commented on 2008-08-21 15:42:20
Uncharted is a technical powerhouse largely because it's made by essentially Sony's mistress Naughty Dog, who've been focusing all efforts on ONE piece of hardware. Having Uncharted run before you on an HDTV with proper adjusted colours is quite a sight, and it's a bit unfair to expect a game that is on every imaginable format with a decent sized dev cycle to compete.

That said, I thought that Tomb Raider Legend had moments that were more visually appealing than Uncharted. It's their ability to craft a more "intriguing" frame by simply making the environments so much more characteristic.

When you aren't monkeying around, Uncharted falls victim to the Gears of War, slabs-of-symmetric-concrete-for-cover-system-to-work sydrome only with jungle themed textures on top, removing a lot of opportunity for making things look nice and cosy in favour of a distinct *you can stick here and here and here* effect. When you ARE monkeying around, it has similarly square shaped objects dotted around the place because you're meant to be grabbing them and knowing what to grab. Good design choices in terms of gameplay becomes its visual downfall.

In the case of Tomb Raider, set pieces have not only become the focus, but with its freedom in terms of combat and exploration there is plenty more room for the artists to decorate however they like.

This is my take on it anyway. I still don't think TR is up there with Uncharted *graphically*, but I do feel it tends to give you a more interesting visual experience.

And also, Tomb Raider Underworld, dammit! Woo! I can't wait! :D
Commented on 2008-08-21 15:48:49
game looks the same as what we've been playing the last 10 years. time to move on lara, me thinks.
Commented on 2008-08-21 15:51:22 In reply to KORNdog
Posted by KORNdog
game looks the same as what we've been playing the last 10 years. time to move on lara, me thinks.
I really can't understand how someone could say that. Are you implying Angel of Darkness matches Legend or Anniversary in quality, presentation, and overall fun? Have you not noticed how the games handling has changed dramatically in the process? It looks great. The only thing that stands to do Tomb Raider better than Tomb Raider is Prince of Persia.

Ironic, since the original TR was a 3D version of the original POP (with guns). Have we come full circle?
Commented on 2008-08-21 15:58:39 In reply to KORNdog
Posted by KORNdog
game looks the same as what we've been playing the last 10 years. time to move on lara, me thinks.
Yeah because all other games in this particular genre have taken off already! *sigh*

Before you move on to Prince of persia, YES it was a huge step forward and that happened with Sands of Time but since then it's been the same thing and even the new one hitting the the market later this year looks more of the same - which is NO PROBLEM at all for me but I simply hate the fact that Tomb Raider gets all the slacking off! Same thing applies to Uncharted.

Crystal Dynamics has done a brilliant job resurrecting the franchise after Angel of Darkness and have managed to make the best remake of an original game ever with Anniversary but above all, has made waiting for a new Tomb Raider an exciting experience. Based on that, I think the franchise is still very much alive and with the focus on story and Lara's character through the legend myth, I think Lara will be with us for a very long time and I *really* cant wait.
Commented on 2008-08-21 17:38:25
angel of darkness is the first tomb raider since the first game that has moved the series in a different direction. a fresh take on an old...OLD idea. but ultimately it failed to deliver. so instead of making a better game they just took a few steps back to what we'd seen before in tomb raider 1. the series hasnt evolved successfully in its entire lifetime. and even with this game, its yet to do it. its just more of the same. even the combat looks just as rediculous as it did before. jump flips while shooting??? we where doing that in tomb raider 1 FFS... its still all lock on based and its still completely skill-less.

legend and anniversary where good games (btw, anniversary is far from the best remake we've seen) but nothing amazing, the series hasnt given me that "wow" feeling since the first 2 on the PSone. and you can see by the reviews that tomb raider just isnt as popular or as good as she used to be. she's old news. i admit legend and anniversary brought the series back up a little, but even then it wasnt getting reviews as possitive as the original tomb raider and its sequel. if they want that success again they need to do something with the franchise, instead of just repackaging the game and adding a couple new moves which is essentiallty what we've been given since day one.

theres no denying the game LOOKS nice...it does...but all that gameplay video proved to me personally was how little the series has moved on. its legend on a slightly bigger scale...and thats about it.

i hated how resi 4 changed the series so much, but in the case of lara croft. i prey for the day the developers make that level of change to the series. cos for me. it NEEDS it.
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