Microsoft releases fresh Rise of the Tomb Raider footage from Gamescom 2015

Last week, Gamescom 2015 attendees got treated to an extended Rise of the Tomb Raider gameplay trailer complete with dev commentary. Microsoft has now released the fresh footage in all its archaeological glory.

Rise of the Tomb Raider is (somewhat controversially) Xbox One exclusive until 2016. A PC version will arrive in Q1 and a PS4 version in Q4. Lara's latest outing will take her head to head with the monolithic Fallout 4, both shipping on November 10th, 2015.

The trailer takes us into the cliffs bordering Syria while Lara hunts for an ancient artifact. Trinity, a corporation that serves as the game's big evil, is also on the trail of the antiquity that is said to hold the secret of immortality. The demo we saw was running on a Xbox One dev kit, sporting some of the most impressive visuals I've seen from this gen yet. The vista showing a Syrian city from the cliff was particularly impressive (3:10 in the video), giving us an idea of the detail and draw distance we can expect in the final code. Youtube's compression doesn't do it justice.

At the demo at Gamescom, we were joined by a representative of Crystal Dynamics who demonstrated the game in real time (indeed, sporadically dying in the process). She was keen to emphasise that Crystal Dynamics wanted to recapture the essence of the original Tomb Raider games. One pillar of this is exploration. The rep showed how straying from the main path would lead you to treasures, some of which serve as upgrades and others as simple collectibles.

Exploration takes a grander path in Rise of the Tomb Raider, owing in part to what they called the translation system. At 4:30 in the video, Lara spies a mural. She can attempt to translate the inscriptions on murals and other objects, which allow her to "level up" her language skills. You can use her skills to reveal tombs and other secret locations after translating the corresponding texts.

After a stint showing off the game's more dynamic climbing systems, we get to see some of Rise of the Tomb Raider's new tomb raiding styles. The simplistic water puzzle at 9:30 got described as being part of the game's tutorial. The full game will have far larger, more complex "nested puzzles", which are essentially puzzles within puzzles. Traps litter Rise of the Tomb Raider's dungeons as part of Crystal Dynamics' attempt to bring in some of that old school feel. They skipped through the final puzzle of this segment rather than reveal its solution.

The trailer ends with a gratifying homage to Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom, as Lara escapes the tomb flooding with water.

Crystal Dynamics is confident about going head to head with Fallout 4, as game director Brian Horton recently told Gamingbolt:

..."We're big fans of Fallout; it's such a great game. But we believe we offer something completely different from a gaming experience point of view. We feel good about the date and the quality of the game will speak for itself."...

After seeing Rise of the Tomb Raider running live, I'm pretty confident too.

Rise of the Tomb Raider launches November 10th on Xbox One, Q1 2016 for PC and Q4 2016 for PS4.

Jez Corden
Co-Managing Editor

Jez Corden a Managing Editor at Windows Central, focusing primarily on all things Xbox and gaming. Jez is known for breaking exclusive news and analysis as relates to the Microsoft ecosystem while being powered by caffeine. Follow on Twitter @JezCorden and listen to his Xbox Two podcast, all about, you guessed it, Xbox!

  • Awesome graphics but Lara loves moaning too much for my liking. Anyways,this is a must have game.
  • <insert joke here>
  • Wow anybody notice she has tighter breast and a bigger ass :)
  • She's upgraded with the times :)
  • There are.
  • LOL....will be cool though.
  • Go buy Witcher 3. 
  • Needs more cleavage
  • Needs more cowbell.
  • "Oh shit. Her butt is looked like your butt"
  • Moaning is more realistic anyway. She's not Master Chief....
  • This has to be one of the best looking games on the current gen consoles! But the floaty hair? Need to work on the hair!!!
    Besides that, awesome, looking forward to playing this!!
  • yeah, i noticed that in the car near the start
  • My sister is really looking forward to this game lol.
  • Her hair looks like it's under water. Or in slow motion. Very distracting.
  • Wen in hair.
  • Niiiice!!!
  • LOL
  • I was really disappointed by the GamesCom footage. The A.I. in this game looks sub-par. I have a hard time seeing how this game will offer any challenge when the enemies are too stupid to hear people's screams after they're shot in the throat and are easily confused (and enthralled) by tin cans and bottles. Hopefully the first game is out on GWG soon, because there's no way I would spend money on this game without seeing it isn't built with A.I. dumber than a stump.
  • i'm sure there is an option for increased difficulty. the gamescon presentation was probably played on easy (for the casuals) so they breeze through it....if i'm not mistaken, it seems like you've made this same complaint before and people were quick to give you this same reply. i'm starting to think that there are other reasons you don't like the game that simply goes beyond A.I. maybe you don't have enough money due to the variety of games coming or you are simply a PC or a salty PS4 gamer ?
  • Well, I was going to reasonably explain my point, but you went the gigantic fanboy rectal clown route, so screw being nice. No game's A.I. is built the way you suggest. Even on easy, that A.I. is trash. People gave me the same reply with no reasonable explanation or example of their suggestions. A.I. never drastically changes wthe way you and others keep suggesting, with World of Warcraft the only thing reamotely close (the same might apply for other MMO raids, but I haven't played them). Regardless, if you actually play games on multiple difficulties, you can figure such things out REALLY easily. Upping difficulties alters things like reaction time of A.I. and weapon damage to make encounters harder. The effects of distractions isn't anything I've EVER seen varied. But again, you're a gigantic moron fanboy incapable of rational discussion. I haven't owned a Sony console since the PS2, which I got After my original Xbox, and quickly traded in for my SECOND Xbox 360. I have a One and a PC. you're a complete idiot who can't stand anything as simple as a dissenting opinion, and you're pathetically naive about anything not Xbox-realted, I'm sure, I'll be picking up several of games this year, once the good ones are on the market, and this did nothing to convince me it will be one. Again, GtFO with your pathetic fanboy crying. It's embarrassing.
  • Are you suggesting World of Warcraft, the Dane Cook of MMOs, has the most advanced AI in video games?
  • Ugh, you're as ridiculous as the last guy. I mean, we'll first mention that you don't even bother to suggest a game with better/dynamic A.I. Then we'll point out that I dynamic and good aren't the same thing, and that I didn't call the WoW A.I. good, given how the gameplay's built on RNG and canned mechanics. This isn't even worth more words.
  • You say no AI adapts and then propose that World of Warcraft may be an exception to that.  This is so preposterous that I didn't feel I needed to supply examples of games with better AI.  It would be akin to saying Destiny has great AI.
  • Like I said, no interest in wasting time in your illiterate ramblings. Destiny's such a pile of trash in almost every facet that the fact you hold it up as good just furthers the reason I don't consider what you say to have any merit.
  • @Keith - well at least this ended with you both agreeing on something lol
  • Uh, he actually said the Destiny AI was bad
  • I'm not sure if its your reading ability that needs work, or your comprehension.
  • How old are you? I ask that because it seems you didn't played F.E.A.R. - game with most advanced AI till today. You should try on easy and above. ;-)
  • F.E.A.R wat a game it was. Reminds me of my college days
  • Um have you played videao games? Pretty much every stealth game works this way. Far Cry 4, Skyrim, Halo, Metal Gear, just off the top of my head. It's just a game not a real life simulator.
  • Eagerly awating this game
  • This has gotta be direct x 12! Will finally show Sony they have something very much to worry about :)
  • Lara is more attractive in the Legend-Anniversary-Underworld, especially the face and chest. This Lara is still ok, though. I need to know, is she 18?
  • You really don't
  • Totally not a loaded question... Fortuantely for you she should be in her early 20s by this time considering she's a college graduate. 
  • I'm really not warming up to young Lara's face. It is not a glamorous face or even a face that you remember. The hair also just is kind of there. To me the whole point of Tomb Raider is controlling and admiring Lara. I'll get this during the biannual Steam sale or a dedicated sale.
  • The modding crowd will take cater to your needs.  The developers can spend time actually building a better game.
  • I don't really care what anyone says, I've decided to buy this and Battlefront in November. I'll be needing all of September and October to play thru MGS V and Destiny. I think I'll save Fallout 4 for the end of the year when I've burnt myself out on everything else!
  • I'll be getting Halo 5 and Rise of the Tomb Raider this fall. Those two games seem the most interesting.
  • There are too many games! I think you're picking the right two. Fallout will get some patches and be prime when you're ready for it! :)
  • My money is reserved for Fallout 4 but this game looks stunning.
  • Why is she a raging psychopathic killer with brutal finishing moves? Poor Lara went to the dark side.
  • I find myself wondering this too...
  • The silicone went into her brain.
  • Loved the last one and can't wait to play this one.  Buy both games, why choose!?
  • I am super excited for this. I was pleasantly surprised by the reboot, and am definitely looking forward to the return of tombs to raid with boobytraps and puzzles! 
  • She looked better in the last game.    I really like the last Tomb Raider it was a game that I couldn't stop playing. 
  • This is really like an exact replica of Uncharted gameplay. The only difference seems to be that this game is a bit more violent, but the Uncharted series has some really memorable characters...Chloe, Elena, and of course the Cigar smoking father figure Victor.
  • I wonder how much it would've cost for Microsoft to purchase the Tomb Raider IP. A half a billion? I have no idea. Would be interesting to know what all the major franchises are valued at. Personally, I think Microsoft buying Mojang at $2.5 billion was a steal. The only other recent IP purchase that was as good as a bargain was Disney buying Star Wars for $4 billion and Marvel for $3.96 billion, both of which seem undervalued at those prices.
  • I doubt Square Enix is too interested in selling the IP.  
  • I kinda lost interest when this was confirmed as a Timed Exclusive :D I will probably just get this on the PC. Now I can't seem to wait till April 2016 comes (Quantum Break).
  • I'm hoping Quantum Break is as epic as it has the potential to be. They announced it almost two years ago, so by the time it comes out it will have been about 2.5 years since the first public demo. That means they had probably been working on it at least a year before that, if not longer. You'll notice the main character has changed versus the initial demo. Fingers crossed for something new and extraordinary.
  • Some of the comments here are kind of creepy.
  • I'm undecided as to whether to wait until early 16 for the PC release (better graphics) or get it on launch for my Xbone... Lara in the 'next-gen' TR 2013 release looked worse than PC. Oh the TressFX! Took three Titans in SLI to run it smoothly on my screen, but absolutely worth it!
  • I am super keen for this game.