Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition Review

Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition Review

Developer: Crystal Dynamics | Publisher: Square Enix

Reviewed on: PlayStation 4
Also available on: Xbox One
Reviewed by: Darryl Linington

When I first played the latest Tomb Raider reboot, available on the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, I was in absolute awe with how the game looked, sounded and played. It was spectacular to see Lara in the detail she deserved. Fast forward to 2014, and Crystal Dynamics have once again blown my mind with the same game. The Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition not only gives the original game an amazing graphical makeover, but also includes all the original DLC, unlocks all Lara’s outfits, and also includes an extra tomb to raid.

Tomb Raider
Tomb Raider follows the story of Lara Croft, not the iconic woman, but more the inexperienced young lady who will become the Lara we know so well. The game opens up with Lara aboard a ship by the name of the Endurance. However, it is not long before the ship sails straight into a storm and is torn apart. Most of crew seem to make it to safety, but Lara ends up separated from the group, gets knocked out and is taken captive.

Lara will now have to do whatever it takes to survive the various dangers of the island, uncover the sinister plans of the island’s inhabitants and ultimately find a way home. Check out Brady’s original Tomb Raider Review here to get an in-depth analysis of the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 version of the game.

Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider Gets a Well Deserved Makeover in the Definitive Edition

Along with the rather beautiful visual upgrade, the PlayStation 4 version of the Definitive Edition adds a few extra touches that just make the game that much more enticing to experience. Owners of a PlayStation 4 camera can now use voice commands in order to tell Lara to switch from stealth weapons to much louder weapons. Additionally, you can pause and resume your game simply by saying “Pause” or “Resume”, or even bring up the map and skills menu. The voice commands work rather well in a quiet environment. However, if you live in a busy or loud household you may find it difficult to utilise these features properly, as the game may randomly pause, or Lara may switch weapons if there is an active conversation going on around you.

In addition to the voice commands, Crystal Dynamics has also put the DualShock 4’s light bar to good use. When Lara lights up her torch, the light bar begins to cycle through various colours in order to set the mood. Furthermore, when firing handguns, shotguns and machine guns the light bar flashes each time a round is discharged.

The DualShock 4’s touchpad also comes in handy when scrolling through the map or viewing artefacts found. Furthermore, the control’s built-in speaker broadcasts the voiceovers of hidden journals found throughout the game. While these features are great to experience, I did however find that any audio that is broadcasted from your TV’s sound system, as well as the DualShock 4’s built-in speaker seems to be out of sync when combined. There were many times where I would hear something on the TV and then a second later the same audio gets relayed on the controller. This sort of delay can become a bit on an irritation, which made me turn down the DualShock 4’s built-in speaker volume.

Tomb Raider
Graphically, the Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition looks absolutely amazing. The environment is incredibly detailed and so are the character models. The Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition runs at a smooth 60 fps, at a native 1080p resolution, on the PlayStation 4. This made a huge difference when comparing the visual quality of the Definitive Edition against the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 version.

What really grabbed me was the fact that you can now see the sweat dripping off Lara’s skin, as well as her wounds and scars, as she journeys through the supernatural island of Yamatai. Lara no longer looks like an action figurine, she now looks more natural and more defined. When it comes to the island itself, the lightning effects now look more realistic than ever before, and the environment and foliage seem more lifelike and natural… especially when Lara is in a rather windy environment. While I was skeptical that the Definitive Edition was just going to be a simple port, it is clearly not. Crystal Dynamics should be applauded for the amount of time and effort that they have put into making this title look absolutely stunning.

Tomb Raider
If you have finished the Tomb Raider reboot on the Xbox 360 or the PlayStation 3, then it is really up to you whether or not you should replay through one of Lara Croft’s greatest adventures. However, if you do own a PlayStation 4 or a Xbox One, and have never ventured into the latest Tomb Raider adventure, then be sure to pick up a copy as this game is phenomenal.

The Breakdown:
Story: 9/10
Gameplay: 9.5/10
Multiplayer: 7.5/10
Graphics: 9.5/10
Sound: 9.5/10

If you are looking to pick up Tomb Raider on the Xbox 360 or PlayStation 3 then check out Brady’s review here.

The Overlord, the master, the one who tries to get things done… I think they call it the “Editor-in-Chief”… I may even be cooler than Master Chief, but that remains to be questioned.

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The Verdict


The Good: .
– Tomb Raider looks better than before
– Exciting Combat
– Must Play Single-Player Campaign

The Bad: .
– Pointless Multiplayer

  • McFancypants HD 3.0

    Not sure which “extra” tomb you’re referring to, but if it’s the one found in the coastal forest, it was included as DLC for those who, prior to its release, had pre-ordered the previous version, last year. Unless, it’s not that one and is a tomb found later in the game? Still, seeing as it’s an add-on (as with the MP maps), it’s nice (and in a way, expected) that it be included in a “Definitive Edition”.

    Then, there’s also the outfits available to Lara which made for a nice touch. Although, I prefer her standard attire, and if made to choose one of the newer outfits, I’d go with the mud coated guerrilla option.

    Darryl, you excluded the MP from your updated review; have you tried it? Is it the same unnecessary add-on as it was, last year? Or have there maybe been improvements made?

    Anyway, always a pleasure reading your reviews, mate.

    • Darryl Linington

      Same pointless multiplayer experience. They should have revised it, or even excluded it and added in more game time or extra parts and tombs to explore.