It’s surprising that it took so long for Lara Croft to get a game out on mobile based on the adventure runner formula, but the time taken seems to be worth it. Lara Croft: Relic Run is perhaps one of the best entries to the genre to come out recently. It’s a perfect fit for the series, Lara takes on ruins in jungle, desert and arctic terrains filled with traps and obstacles to navigate as well as enemies to overcome. Its a great mobile title, perfect for quick bursts of exciting, cinematic gameplay and with enough progression hooks to make you return again and again.
Lara Croft: Relic Run is more than just your average adventure runner. The developers have made an effort to include the big spectacle events and stunts that Lara is famous for which mixes up the formula in an exciting way. While on a run you’ll be swan diving cliffs, swinging with vines along a mountainside and escaping a T-Rex. Vehicles such as the fan favorite quad-bike can be found and ridden to gain ground quickly. And all these actions are on top of sprinting through a crumbling temple. There are also encounters with enemies on each run. You have to take them down with your weapons quickly, or your run could end prematurely with a spear in your back.
The controls feel great, easy to play with one hand for on the go Swiping in the cardinal directions moves Lara and initiates jumping, wall running and sliding when needed. Shooting is done by tapping the enemies on your screen, with the ability to reload and change weapons assigned to two on screen buttons. The game is simple to play but as the level progresses the acrobatics required to navigate and accuracy needed against the enemies are make it more difficult to continue. Thats where the games upgrades come in.
Every time you run there a coins to collect which you can then invest in various upgrades to help you continue your adventure. There are both permanent upgrades, like unlocking new weapons and increasing the rate of health drop, etc. And consumable items that you use on your run in order to stay alive, such as health packs and ammo for fighting off the increasing tough groups of enemies that impede your progress. Going back to the shop and upgrading Lara’s toolset in necessary if you want to find all the Relics in the the temple, as each relic is found deeper and deeper into the ruins. The Relics are the main point of progression, they give you story information as well as unlocking the next temple when you collect enough.
The graphics of Lara Croft: Relic Run are the beautiful, creating a world of lush jungles and harsh desert, with beautifully detailed ruins to run through. The music in the game is also a great callback to the soundtrack of Tomb Raider games past. The overall feel is that of a classic Tomb Raider adventure and has been translated perfectly to mobile. The gameplay loop that is quick and satisfying – perfect for the platform – but without compromising on the high bar of quality that defines a Lara Croft game. This a a great game for any fans of the Lara Croft or anybody just looking for a fun mobile game to get their teeth into. Lara Croft: Relic Run has managed to get everything right.