One tiny moment in Shadow Of The Tomb Raider will make a big difference for the players
It happens pretty early on, and lets you know immediately just how different this is going to be.
Following on about two months after the events of Rise Of The Tomb Raider, we pick up with Lara surviving an epic plane crash.
However, before we can properly get our bearings, Shadow Of The Tomb Raider jumps back two days time and dumps us in the middle of a small Mexican town as the locals celebrate the Day Of The Dead.
Some light raiding of tombs later, and Lara discovers a dagger that warns that anyone who removes it from its resting place will trigger a series of cataclysms that will eventually result in the end of the world.
Ignoring the warnings, Lara takes the dagger and tries to escape, but the evil conglomerate Trinity catches up with her and takes the dagger for themselves. However, in the background of this back-and-forth, it would appear that the first cataclysm has begun, and the small Mexican town gets engulfed in a huge tsunami.
A huge action set-piece kicks in, with Lara attempting to navigate the now flooded town and make an escape to higher ground. On her way up the side one of the buildings, we see a very young boy gripping to the ledge of a burning building.
As in any other game, Lara makes her way towards him and saves the young boy just moments before he loses his grip, and she pulls him to safety...
Except, this isn't any other game, and here, Lara doesn't make it in time. The boy falls from the ledge and is swept away in the violent waves.
It is a tiny moment, in the middle of a massive sequence, that fully hammers home the difference between this Tomb Raider game and the ones that have come before. In the first reboot, the makers hammered home the horror of Lara having to murder people in order to survive.
Here, Lara's actions go beyond taking a life to save her own. The hero is facing the consequences of her actions in a way that very few video game characters have had to endure, and it makes a huge difference for the player knowing that these consequences do exist.
Check out the full tsunami sequence below:
Clip via Zanar Aesthetics