Today, Square Enix officially revealed Shadow of the Tomb Raider, the conclusion to the iconic Lara Croft's origin story. Aside from the trailer which showcased the theme and setting, a lot of preorder information about the various editions and season pass was provided.
The game is being developed by Eidos Montreal with support from Crystal Dynamics. The reveal trailer doesn't show much like actual gameplay, but it gives us a taste of the darker story and new environments. Gameplay is expected to be revealed at Microsoft's E3 2018 briefing in June 2018.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider features multiple versions like the "Digital Croft Edition" and "Digital Deluxe Edition". Preordering the more expensive ones can cost you around $100, but they also give you early access to the game. It's unclear how much sooner players will be able to experience the title, but it could be two to three days early. The Mayan-inspired infographic provides more details like which versions provide early access and what they contain.
Aside from the various editions, another Mayan-themed infographic reveals that starting October 2018 and ending April 2019, Shadow of the Tomb Raider will get a new content pack each month. The add-ons will mostly contain new "Challenge Tombs" and "Narrative Side Missions". However, those who want to change up the protagonist's clothing style will also get new outfits just like in Rise of the Tomb Raider.
It's great to see that Square Enix and the teams developing the game have planned such robust post-launch support. This will ensure that players keep on coming back for more each month as the game is primarily a single-player experience.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider is currently available for physical and digital preorder on Amazon and the Microsoft Store. The game should launch on Xbox One and other platforms on September 14, starting at $59.99. As with almost every "AAA" game nowadays, the title supports Xbox One X. The listing says that it features "HDR 10" and "4K Ultra HD" visuals. What's most surprising is that there's also "online co-op" mentioned in the description. It's unclear if it's only limited to the first challenge tomb or extends into other add-ons down the line.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider looks even better than Rise of the Tomb Raider. Instead of the frozen peaks of Russia, this time around we'll be exploring lush jungles and going through cities. It's clear that games like Uncharted 4 have influenced this title's aesthetics especially when it comes to the populated city segments. The survivors of Yamatai Island — Sam, Reyes and Jonah — join the fearless archaeologist on this adventure that will trace the crucial moment when she became the "Tomb Raider" we know from pervious entries in the franchise.
Be sure to check out our Xbox One X preview where we spent quite some time playing Shadow of the Tomb Raider on Microsoft's newest console. It looks great on the system and it might just be the best game yet in the series!
Updated March 27, 2018: Players who preorder the special editions get 48-hour early access to the game. Additionally, Shadow of the Tomb Raider primarily focuses on trying to prevent a Mayan apocalypse.
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