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Which Console Did You Buy/Receive Over The Holidays?

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Game Profile
Game Boy
Core Design
GENRE: Action
June 30, 2001
Rise of the Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider 9

Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light

Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light

Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light

More in this Series
 Written by Alan Rumpf  on August 01, 2001

Review: Lara Croft can curse my sword any day!

The Tomb Raider series first appeared on the Playstation game console, and since that time has been released on multiple platforms, including the Game Boy Color. While THQ published the original GBC version of Tomb Raider, the sequel's rights have been handed over to Activision. Though some may think this was released just to cash in on the Tomb Raider movie frenzy, it actually has turned out to be one of the better titles available for the Game Boy Color days before it retires.

The plot is quite complex and involves mystical priests and an ancient sword that cuts Lara making her the body that is needed to sacrifice. The story is portrayed through ?cut scenes? at the beginning and ending of each level. The scenes feature high-color images and text in order to tell the story of Lara's travel and troubles. You can help Lara save her soul by taking control of the misproportioned heroine through six huge levels. Of course she wouldn't be able to get by without the multiple weaponry and items featured through out the game to find and use to her advantage.

Gameplay is pretty much like the first title, with only slight modifications. Since there are only two action buttons, and select and start, the controls can become a little tricky at times, with about three to four pages of manual pertaining to Lara's movement. However, after playing the game for a good 10 minutes you should be able to pick up the general gist of the movement. Most of the game is just finding keys or items to unlock doors and advance further, however generally speaking the exploration is fun and at certain times very challenging when you are trying to beat a clock or shoot your way through enemies blocking the path.

The visuals are very well for the Game Boy Color, although nothing you wouldn't expect to see. Lara is animated pretty fluently and the backgrounds are impressive, making the game's visuals anything but boring and repetitive. All in all the graphics are very nicely done and it the little things that make the difference. For instance, when Lara is racing on top of rooftops and birds fly away as she approaches, or when papers shuffle as she walks by. They're little details, but they mix well with the rest of the graphics, and add a nice overall atmosphere to the game.

The games audio is pretty standard fare, the sound effects and music aren't anything to shout about but they all match up with the events going on. In Curse of the Sword's case, the audio neither adds nor takes away from the gaming experience. One feature that is nice to see is a battery save feature. After playing many a title with password save options, the inclusion of a battery save feature at a couple of points per level in TR: CotS is vital to the game being an enjoyable experience.

Once you're finished playing through this title, you're done. As entertaining as the game may be, like many Tomb Raider titles, there is no real reason to go back and play through it again. There is no multi-player mode, though this is more than understandable seeing how there is no place for one to fit into game.

Bottom Line
Tomb Raider: Curse of the Sword's gameplay is solid. While sometimes control does become a bit of annoyance when Lara doesn't stop running in time, over all the game is done very well. For some reason finding keys and objects doesn't seem as tedious in this title. Although if you had to search for cannon balls to shoot at an enemy who doesn't even see it coming, wouldn't you put in the effort? The visuals are nice, the gameplay is good, and the fun factor for a Game Boy Color game is pretty high. Tomb Raider fan or not, in buying this game, you're sure to experience some nice Game Boy Color gameplay.

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