In the early stage of virtual reality games like Tomb Raider Game, the adventure can largely be divided into two section: those increase explicitly for VR, and those that switch on VR as a promotional bullet point. The latter is a great way to get people interested in the medium — hey, it’s Final Fantasy VR! — but because of a lack of investment, both in time and forethought, these experiences differ from forgettable to terrible. When VR is an afterthought, you can tell. Unfortunately, that’s the situation with “Blood Ties,” the newest downloadable add-on for Rise of the Tomb Raider.

“Blood Ties” is a curious thing. It feels kind of like a conclusion to a larger story. Instead of the action-heavy intensity of the rest of Rise of the Tomb Raider Game, it’s a very major relaxed experience that has you exploring the crumbling Croft Manor, reading old journals and examining ancient artifacts in an endeavor to prove that Lara is the rightful heir to her childhood home. It’s a great way to dive far into Tomb Raider Game love.

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Tomb Raider Game Controls and Experience :

tomb raider game

You can play the new chapter in the standard third-person mode, and too in VR if you have both a PS4 and PSVR. While you play in VR, the game offers two different options. The first choice is to play seated, handling the controller to both moves around and control the camera. But in my experience, playing VR with conventional camera controls has a trend to induce nausea — I was able to play for about five minutes before feeling sick. The second choice, to play standing still, is more comfortable. Instead of directly controlling Lara’s action with a joystick, you can teleport nearby. (You can choose to either look at a location to teleport there, or point to it handling the controller.)

The problem is that the extra immersion of VR doesn’t add anything to the experience. In most circumstances, it really makes “Blood Ties” more frustrating. There are some cool moments — like handling your controller as a spotlight while exploring dark crypts — but the game is poorly suited to virtual reality. It changes the perspective to first-person but doesn’t change how you interact with the world. No, you’re still staring at menu screens displaying the document from old journals — just now they’re very close to your face.

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Movement feels cramped no matter what mode you choose; the teleportation, in particular, is finicky, making simple actions take much longer than they should. Not to consider the dissonance of being an otherwise realistic human with the sudden capacity to teleport.

The basis of investigating an ancient house in VR is promising. But “Blood Ties” doesn’t add engagement, like how Job Simulator permits players to pick through objects, it just switches up the perspective, leaving virtually everything else the same. “Blood Ties” is around an hour long, but I ended up turning off the VR mode three-fourths of the way through. Some of the game’s last puzzles truly necessitated this: in order to solve them, I needed to jot some notes down on paper — not particularly something you can do with a PlayStation VR strapped to your face.

VR has the potential to expand more traditional games. PSVR ship title Thumper, for instance, is significantly more enjoyable in virtual reality; the continued immersion turns it from a rhythm game into being closer to a roller coaster. “Blood Ties” goes in the different direction. The wonky movement and excessive menus made me feel less like Lara Croft exploring her childhood home, and more like somebody stumbling awkwardly around a mildly spooky old building.

“Blood Ties” is available on October 11th as downloadable appeased, and is also bundled with the 20th-anniversary edition of  Rise of the Tomb Raider launching the same day.

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