Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris Multiplayer Review: Explosive Fun

About Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris

Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris is an action-adventure game that allows you to collaborate with up to three friends, either locally or online. Your goal is to navigate through ancient tombs—filled with puzzles, traps, and enemies—to save the world.

You and your partners will solve a series of puzzles to navigate through each tomb—using various abilities and items—shoot down your enemies, and collect coins to open treasures containing armor and weapon upgrades.

Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris Multiplayer

Every aspect of Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris can be played in both local and online multiplayer with up to four players.

Local Multiplayer: Up to 4 players, shared-screen

Online Multiplayer: Up to 4 players

Systems: PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Windows

Genre: Action-Adventure

Review of Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris

Recently, we've been looking for a truly great game to replace our waning interest in Destiny. We've found lots of smaller, indie-type games that—while delightful—just don’t seem to have much staying power. Sometimes what you need is a big fat Hollywood production that’s filled with great effects, beautiful scenery, and something novel to capture your attention. And we finally found it in Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris.

Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris is a game that’s easy to love, featuring great physics and an extraordinarily rich visual landscape.

When characters jump, fall, or roll, it all seems so natural. There’s no double-jumping or rocket launching to get hard to reach places. If you need to make your way to the top of a pillar to nab something, you’ll have to rely on real-world physical capabilities, instincts, and nerve to make it happen.

As a consequence, controlling the characters takes a little while to get used to. There are no robotic, light-speed changes in direction at the flip of a stick. There’s momentum to deal with. This is what presents a lot of the challenge, and in the end, much of the satisfaction.

Also, while in most games all you have to do to fire your weapon is execute a single command—pull a trigger or mash a button—in this game, there’s an unusual weapon-readying control where you use the right thumb-stick to not just aim, but to ready your weapon. If, like me, you’d rather ditch lengthy manuals (or in-game instruction) and just start running around, it will be a bit tricky at first.

However, controlling your character becomes intuitive and quite natural rather quickly. The thumb-stick also provides excellent refinement of your aim; that is, you don’t end up in 15 degree angles all the time, but, instead, can track smoothly through the full arc.

The sound in the game is great too, which brings me to the bombs. Again, without referring to any instructional guidance, I blew myself up a couple times. But who cares?! The bombs are awesome!

The bombs may be my favorite part of the game. Not only are they a highly effective way to deal with swarms of enemies, but detonating them is super satisfying. They just sound impressive.

Tired of running around the staging areas? Plant a bomb. Is your co-op partner’s play leaving something to be desired? Bomb ‘em. In any case, you’re going to have to use them to get through some of the dungeons. No spoilers, but trust me, if you’re in a pinch and haven’t tried them yet, break out the bombs.

Being primarily a puzzle game, it’s not surprising that the enemies aren’t overwhelmingly strong, even the bosses. But you have to be careful when fighting them, as you’ll have to leverage multiple skills and weapons, perhaps on top of a rotating pillar, all without losing your balance.

But the game has more to offer than the refinement of your dexterity and wit. I’m playing through in the role of Horus right now, and he has a couple of really cool visual effects. His primary weapon is his staff, which casts a wicked blue energy beam with seemingly infinite range. That makes it easy to break open the jars, vases, and what-have-you that contain gems, health, ammo, etc. And it’s a nice to be able to get at these without having to physically run over every square inch of the world. I mean, hey, sometimes I don’t need that ammo way over there.

Horus also has a moderately effective shield that’s essentially an enclosed energy bubble. A still won’t capture how cool this item is because it’s animated, almost like a living thing. While fighting, I tend to do more shooting, evading, and (of course) bombing. But during breaks in the action I’ll light it up just because it looks cool. Deploying the shield will slow you down a bit. But it’s a very handy, and truly a necessary tool for navigating the world when playing co-op.

And speaking of the visual appeal, I have to say—and did aloud on many occasions playing through—the backdrop of your whole adventure is amazingly rich, detailed, colorful, and better-than-lifelike. You’ll find (and can actually influence) all kinds of weather. Somehow they managed to include all four seasons into the landscape. Snow, rain, and bright sunshine, all richly colored.

Another appealing way they continue the real-world feel of the game is through the use of in-focus/out-of-focus depth of field. For example, the areas immediately around your character are well in focus, while elements in the extreme foreground or deep background are somewhat blurry. Quite blurry, actually, given the fact that you sometimes have to perform actions in the distance while your partner is holding down the foreground fort. You wouldn’t think that you’d have to account for out-of-focus puzzle solving, but it’s one of those challenges that I was proud (and able) to figure out intuitively.

Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris has few downsides, but no game is perfect. The characters are pretty small on the screen. Maybe it’s because the visual detail is so captivating that I found this a little frustrating. I mean, we have a pretty large TV, but we still ended up scooting the couch up closer than normal. I think it’s worth finding whatever is hiding under your couch because the character kinetics are awesome.

The characters sometimes seem to react slowly to the controller. But it's something that’s easy to get used to. And while it’s rare for everyone to die at the same time when playing in a multiplayer mode, when you do all die, the game takes forever to load. You’ll wait for 30 seconds or more before you can get back to the game. In good news, though, the game saves itself frequently, so you never have to restart too far back from where you all met your unfortunate demises.