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Thread: That fine line between fun & frustration

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
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    5

    That fine line between fun & frustration

    I'm trying hard to like this game, but it seems that the designers have gone out of their way in places to push the playing experience over that fine line by quite some way.

    As someone who played the original titles, one of my abiding thoughts is that things went wrong with the series as it evolved when instead of delivering a more polished version of the same with each iteration, the developers instead opted to punish the player for not being psychic enough to know what lay behind that door. Thus the games quickly descended into an endless series of reloads, and ignominy in terms of game design. Unfortunately it doesn't seem that much has changed since then.

    Lessons could be learnt from how Valve software design their games where in they educate you, the player as to how to face up to a particular challenge before the event. Sadly in this department, Lara's Journal somehow doesn't cut the mustard. The centaur fight was a stupidly punishing section, the solution for which wasn't remotely obvious, outside of looking around the internet (thank you Youtube).

    Also for the love of fun please leave the timed events out in the main game in future (leave that for the people who love speed runs). Yes I'm a completionist, but even I don't have the requisite patience (or keyboard dexterity) necessary to see through the masochists gauntlet that involves the eleventy hundred jumps required to get that artifact in the Obelisk of Khamoon in less than the 90 seconds or so. Personally I'd rather play a decent 10 hour fun game rather than one that's full of annoying time vampire elements like those.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Nov 2007
    Posts
    5
    I think the quality of an experience is always better than quantity, because it's the quality that people remember. Take Portal for example it's a great game and can be completed in a few hours and it succeeds because it stays on the right side of the line. I don't have a bad word to say about it as a gaming experience, Mirrors Edge however much as I liked certain aspects of it, suffers from steep difficulty arcs throughout that taint the experience and my memories of it. I fear that TRA seems to swim in the same waters....

  3. #3
    I LOVE timed sequences! They add challenge and thrill to the game.

    BUT...they kinda overdid it in Anniversary (Obelisk of Khamoon, Great Pyramid ), I agree with you on that.
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  4. #4
    More a case of memorization than reflexes:

    Obelisk of Khamoon sequence:
    http://rcgldr.net/tr/traok1.wmv

    It doens't need to be done quite that fast, Obelisk of Khamoon sequence redo:
    http://rcgldr.net/tr/traok2.wmv

    Long jumps are a problem on some PC's. Using fraps to slow down the game helps with these jumps:
    Video showing jump bug that is fixed by using fraps:
    http://rcgldr.net/tr/tragpbug.wmv

    One of the Great Pyramid sequences that I have to use fraps for:
    http://rcgldr.net/tr/tragp1.wmv

    On the PC one of the trainers has a speed hack mode. Example of speed mode with torso sequence:
    http://rcgldr.net/tr/trafc1.wmv

  5. #5
    I honestly still don't know what is frustrating about the closing door traps in the Obelisk of Khamoon level. All it is is watching them for a while and jumping at the right time. If you ask me some people just must be pretty impainatent with them.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Posts
    7,632
    Or something else is going on you've been blessed not to notice or you have a particular ability you take for granted.

  7. #7
    they frustrate me sometimes... but not always, they're quite easy in tomb raider. i found i got annoyed with the timed events a few times but didn't give up till i'd finished he timed events. god avatar the game frustrated me with a timed event to kill all the 18 enemies in about 5 mins... god it was annoying. i eventually did it after two days.
    tomb raider anniversary was quite easy... :-/ i did have to get a walkthrough on the internet for the centaurs though. ;p
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  8. #8
    I have a feeling it depends more on the system you are playing on than on your gaming skills. The wall runs in Obelisk of Khamoon and The Great Pyramid are impossible on this laptop if I turn the full screen effects option on. She just won't grab the ledge (in time). So either your pc is too slow or too fast, which can cause problems?

    A console is the same for everyone, I haven't read complains about for example The Great Pyramid from 360 players.

    Or is this complete bull ?
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  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by Love2Raid View Post
    I have a feeling it depends more on the system you are playing on than on your gaming skills. The wall runs in Obelisk of Khamoon and The Great Pyramid are impossible on this laptop if I turn the full screen effects option on. She just won't grab the ledge (in time). So either your pc is too slow or too fast, which can cause problems?

    A console is the same for everyone, I haven't read complains about for example The Great Pyramid from 360 players.

    Or is this complete bull ?
    I have both the 360 and PC version (for my laptop) and i did find the Shaft in the Great Pryamid a lot more bearable and do-able on the 360 version. But i think it was only really down to the camera. On the PC version i couldn't get Lara to jump in the right direction because i couldn't get the camera to turn to the right position before it was time to jump. I was using the touch pad of my laptop, but i don't imagine it would be much better with a mouse. On the 360 version i was able to control the camera very easily since all i had to do was move the right analog stick.

  10. #10
    I have to agree with the first post. The game was more aggravation than it was fun. This was the only Tomb Raider game so far that made me lose my temper to the point that I took it out on the controller. (It didn't survive). Every game since the beginning has some level of replayability for me but, I will not put myself through that again.

  11. #11
    I love replaying TR:A but believe it or not I only recently completed the game! Okay so I don't play it often but I got stuck in the Great Pyramid level trying to ascend to the Scion chamber, with those damned tricky timed jumps, wall-runs and winged monsters spitting fireballs! It annoyed me so much I just gave up and watched the final level and game ending on youtube But then I went back months later and somehow completed it myself.

    The backward jumps from the grapple wall-runs also frustrated the heck out of me! Especially the one in the pillar room at the end of Sanctuary of the Scion and the one in Natla's Mines. It stopped being fun and challenging and just repetitive and irritating! Still I'm going to attempt the time trials, even though I hate the idea of timed runs and switches or timed anything! lol

  12. #12
    I totally agree with you. Add to this the technical deficiencies of the PC game. Sometimes to make one jump I needed to change the resolution of my monitor :-/ what this has to do with the game quality ?!!!!!!! others places I was many times able to avoide fighting by just stopping at one place that my opponent was suppose to reach me but because of that technical issues it doesnt. Many Many Many times Lara was stuck or drowning in nothing and she just cant move anymore.. Seriously comparing this to other games of Tomb Raider, this one is lousy. I have not tried the new two games Lara's shadow and under the ashes. Please if any one know about those two games let me know before I do buy them.
    thanks.

  13. #13
    The PC version sounds a bit of a mess! I cant imagine playing TR on the PC now, it's been so long, although I did play TR2-TR5 on the PC lol
    Sanctuary of Athena in Rhodes, Ephesus in Turkey, Newgrange in Ireland, Stonehenge in England...where to next?

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