PAX Prime 2014 Impressions: Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris

In the third person style shared by such classics as the Diablo series from Blizzard, Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris is the next installment of 2010’s Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light. Unlike previous games, however, this is the first one of the beloved series playable by four people at once. Set to release December 9 and playable on Xbox One, PlayStation 4 and PC, this is definitely a title not to miss.

The story follows our hero, Lara, as she explores the Temple of Osiris. Lara and rival archaeologist Carter break into an ancient temple and are subsequently marked with a curse of death. Much to our protagonist’s luck, however, the gods Isis and Horus arrive, offering a way to remove the curse before any real harm is done. As the title suggests, the game revolves around the ever popular ancient Egyptian theme and even follows the rivalry of Osiris and his brother Set. The story even offers players an overworld map with story not limited to tombs.

Aside from map expansion, the Lara of this game is held at a different standard than the Lara of the recently revamped Tomb Raider, going so far as to have a completely different voice actress. This gives fans the chance to keep playing Lara at her most intense and experienced where running from a giant scarab is merely all in a day’s work. Those that are enjoying her back story as the tomb raider will find that next installment released in 2015.

Unlike its predecessor, the best and biggest upgrade is its ability to support four different players, Diablo-style. Lara packs her guns, Carter has burning brands, and the “gods” carry the Staff of Osiris to aid in blocking incoming attacks and the power to raise platforms. Because of this, the gods are the developers’ first foray into a magic class for the series, and it works well. However, it doesn’t come without a catch.

Even though it is a co-op game, you score yourself the chance to be an absolute sadist to your friends. From dropping their rope as they try to scale a wall, pushing them off of ledges or blowing them up with remotely detonated bombs, this game offers plenty of opportunities for laughs and mischievous fun with friends. You and your friends can quickly turn into enemies as you race to grab the dropped loot. If you do happen to die by way of your own mistake or the purposeful calculations of a so-called friend, you lose a bit of the loot you’ve collected.

To ensure everyone has a chance to play with others whether they have four friends around or not means that an online matchmaking system has been implemented, guaranteeing that even the loneliest of us can find partners. With the competitive nature of the game, the developers, Crystal Dynamics, have built in a way to keep things civil. If any one person is purposefully not playing well with everyone else, they can be kicked from the group. No matter your play style, though, this game promises to be nothing but fun.

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