Temple of Osiris gives the same feel as Guardian of Light with some quality of life improvements. It balances both challenges and puzzles in the right difficulty to let you have fun in solving them.
Genre: Adventure, Shooter, Puzzle
Developer: Crystal Dynamics
Publisher: Square Enix
Release date: 9 Dec, 2014
Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris is an action-adventure game with puzzle elements. Despite the Steam store page saying that it’s a sequel of Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light (our review), I didn’t find any correlation between both games at all. The only similarity lies in the gameplay, with some improvements on the “sequel”. The game also offers co-op mode, both local and online, for up to four players, but since I finished the game solo, this review will be based on that.
As a game that is released in 2014, the visuals are alright. Tombs mimic the ruin-themed environment well with the usage of dust particles and stone-like materials while the outdoors look realistic with the various weather that is applied as you progress the game. However, one area looks a bit odd in the snowy weather – a piece of ice that is floating above the water looks like a normal land with white paint applied on it.
Cutscenes are made in a way to prevent the game from being outdated quickly. 2D images that resemble their 3D counterparts are used, with a slight addition of some black outlines to sharpen their image. It works well to enhance the character’s expression while still looking similar to their in-game look.
There isn’t much in the story. The storytelling at the beginning of the game is told similarly as Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light, with it telling about the history of the artifact that our protagonist is trying to steal. Your objective will be explained right at the beginning with most dialogues revolve around it. I found that the voice acting of one of the characters, Isis, to be funny though, especially with her talking speed and echoing voice. Some small talks between Carter and Lara also put a smile on my face sometimes.
The gameplay is similar to Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light, in a way that you need to explore several tombs, defeat any enemies on your way, and solve some puzzles. Every tomb is connected to a hub-like area in the form of a huge island. Some parts of the island will be locked at first, which will be unlocked as you progress the game. Since the hub is quite vast, it’s easy to get lost. The game seems to know this and provide helpful statues that are scattered across the island to let you know where your next objective is located.
Levels are short – they can be rushed in ~10 minutes and normally finished in 10-30 minutes. Every tomb has some set of challenges that can be cleared to gain rewards. These challenges will make the level to be harder than usual, although I didn’t find them to be challenging to beat. The most that they will do is annoy you by giving some challenges where you need to do trial and error to finish.
Each dungeon has a different theme in it. There is a dungeon that revolves around mirrors, turning the whole level into puzzle-solving where you need to light some objects to proceed. There is also another dungeon that has a lot of spike traps, forcing you to be extra careful whenever you walk. Some bosses will also revolve around this same mechanic, and you have to think about how to utilize the mechanic to defeat them.
Enemies’ difficulty depends on the weapon that you use. Various weapons are available with different damage, reload speed, and ammo usage. Most enemies can die in 1-2 hits from the strongest weapon, and you don’t have to worry about running out of ammo – the game is generous enough to let enemies occasionally drop ammo packs, or even let you get some from breaking pots.
Bosses have unique attack patterns. Although they only have one attack pattern, their attack will be more intense as their health goes lower, adding the difficulty. Most bosses can be defeated easily except for one that requires you to launch an object with a bomb. Not only that you need to wait for the bomb’s cooldown if you fail, but targeting an object to go in a certain direction with a bomb is also not an easy feat to accomplish.
Length and Difficulty
I finished all levels solo in 11.1h. The game has fewer levels than Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light, although it helps to cut the repetitiveness that the previous game has. It was refreshing to take a break from the tomb raiding to explore the hub world, and both challenges and puzzles are not hard to solve. The addition of more bosses between each level also helps to break the repetitiveness, especially since I was burned out several times from replaying the levels to finish all challenges.
First of all, it was hard to read the map since you can’t tell where you are located. Second, you need to deal with RNG to get good accessories and grind to collect them all. Third, the scoring mechanic isn’t explained clearly – I had a problem in clearing the challenge that requires me to reach a certain score at the start. Four, there is no way to return to the hub area quickly once you start a level. Lastly, the bomb that you set on the ground can disappear if the enemy attacks it right after you place it.
I know that my review is based on the single-player mode, but if you are planning to play the game with your friends, forget it unless if you are willing to do it through the local co-op. Although the game supports online co-op, it will often glitch until you are out of your mind. Characters running in the air, the camera getting too close to the ground, and shots that aren’t connecting to the enemies are only a small part of the numerous issues that you will experience as you play. You’d better spend your time playing it solo instead.
Intel Core i5-9300H 2.40GHz, 8GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650
Surprisingly, the game is more enjoyable than Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light. I wasn’t sure whether I would like to play the game due to its mixed rating on Steam, but I’m glad I decided to give it a try in the end. It has a lot of quality of life improvements from the previous game, balancing both the shooting and puzzle elements in the right difficulty. The choice to focus on one mechanic in each dungeon also helps to give a sense of uniqueness in each dungeon. The game can be too expensive for its asking price though, so feel free to buy it on a sale.