7 reasons you should play Shadow of the Tomb Raider

Ms. Croft is back for her most epic adventure yet. In Shadow of the Tomb Raider, Lara heads to South America in a desperate attempt to avert a Mayan apocalypse. The twist here: she caused it. Oops!

But there’s no time for self-blame as you go off on your merry Trinity-hunting, outfit-crafting, resource-gathering way. With developers Eidos Montreal upping both the ante and the entertainment, take a look at the seven reasons you’ll want to sit down with Shadow Of The Tomb Raider.

1. It features the series’ largest level

You can go at your own pace in Shadow of the Tomb Raider’s open hub levels. One of these is the Peruvian village Kuwaq Yaku. Here you can buy weapons from merchants, chat to fishermen at the dock, and take on optional quests. A later hub, Paititi, is even bigger – it’s actually the largest one ever put in a Tomb Raider game.

2. Truly customisable difficulty

With separate difficulties for platforming, exploration, and combat, you can finetune the challenge. Want to make climbing sections harder? Turn off the waypoints. Hate fighting? Give yourself more ammo. This turns Shadow Of The Tomb Raider into the game you want.

3. Photo mode is hilarious

Capture every moment with Shadow of the Tomb Raider’s deluxe photo mode. Whether during thrilling jaunts up crumbling architecture or heated talks with horrible men, you can stop time and snap away. The best bit is changing Lara’s expressions, as you can see below in this image from Twitter user @BR3TON

4. Fierce wildlife is fun to fight

True to form, Lara doesn’t think twice about roughing up mother nature. Throughout the game’s course you’ll bullseye snarling jaguars, tackle wild dogs, grapple moray eels, and hide from hungry piranhas in tense sections set, as you’d quite rightly expect, underwater.

5. Severe weather tests your skills

If you thought Britain’s climate was unpredictable, take a long look at the weird weather in Shadow of the Tomb Raider. From freak tsunamis, to biting hail storms, to the sorts of earthquakes that make your guts go gaga, you’ll need to brave it all.

6. Jonah is back

Fan favourite Jonah Maiava returns in Shadow of the Tomb Raider. Sturdy Kiwi and former cook of Tomb Raider 2013’s doomed research vessel, The Endurance, Jonah offers both brotherly advice and backup, even helping you through a puzzle or two.

7. Optional outfits are retro-heaven

Not only can you craft ability boosting apparel like noise-reducing Vest of the Empress Jaguar, but don classic garb – great if you’ve ever wondered what PS1-era Lara would look like in an otherwise realistic world. You could go low-res in the last game, but the option is open to you much earlier here.