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New games: Lara Croft, puzzle solving and kingdom building


Pathfinder: Kingmaker brings an adaptation of the pen & paper RPG Pathfinder from the kitchen table to the screen. — dpa

Pathfinder: Kingmaker brings an adaptation of the pen & paper RPG Pathfinder from the kitchen table to the screen. — dpa

The latest PC and console games offer you the chance to build an entire kingdom, travel through time and take part in high-speed races through South America. But perhaps most important of all: Lara Croft is back.

Tomb Raider concludes its trilogy reboot

The final adventure in the Shadow Of The Tomb Raider trilogy sees the return of Lara Croft, the young archaeologist and grave robber with a love of pistols, but this time the game looks at her past deeds and asks whether she really is a heroine.

Croft is on the trail of a mysterious Mayan artefact behind which lurks a secret society. The gameplay is familiar with jumping, shooting and all sorts of puzzles still core elements of the game.

There's also an Easter egg integrated into the game which means that at a certain point Lara's character can be exchanged for her more coarsely pixilated predecessor from 1996.

The game is available for PCs, the Playstation 4 and the Xbox One. The entry version costs around US$70 (RM290), the deluxe edition US$90 (RM373) and the Croft Edition US$115 (RM477).

When time is relative

The puzzle adventure The Gardens Between finds two friends Arina and Frendt in a picturesque world full of gardens. So far, so conventional. However, the gameplay is quite unusual.

To solve puzzles, the protagonists must travel through time, creating parallel timelines. On these timelines players can directly control the characters at certain moments so the game requires a lot of lateral thinking and the ability to think unconventionally.

The game is seen from a bird's eye view. The developers say they were inspired by the Hollywood blockbuster Minority Report. The Gardens Between is available for PCs, the Playstation 4 and the Nintendo Switch.

Full throttle through South America

The most famous desert rally in the world gets a successor title after 15 years in the form of Dakar 18. The venue is a 14-stage rally from Peru via Bolivia to Argentina. Fans will enjoy the high degree of realism in this open-world game which has no predetermined routes.

Players can choose from five vehicle categories and weather, terrain and driver behaviour all play a part. For example, sandstorms can whip up and reduce visibility. To win the race, you need to be able to navigate safely and not over-strain the vehicle or the driver.

In addition to single-player mode, competitors worldwide can compete against each other online. Dakar 18 is available for PCs, the Playstation 4 and the Xbox One. The PC version costs about US$58 (RM241), the console versions around US$70.

Birth of a kingdom

Pathfinder: Kingmaker brings an adaptation of the pen & paper RPG Pathfinder from the kitchen table to the screen. From an isometric bird's eye perspective, the player controls a group of heroes, each of them with their own strengths and weaknesses. Battles take place in real time but can be paused for periods of tactical-strategic thinking.

Although Pathfinder: Kingmaker is a pure single-player title, there are many other players and minor characters that should provide variety and prevent a feeling of being alone. The goal is to build up your kingdom and then defend it. A harsh wilderness and violent competition are waiting to make sure the new kingdom doesn't grow too big.

Pathfinder: Kingmaker is available on Steam in four different editions. The basic version costs around US$45 (RM187) while serious fans of the role-playing classic can spend US$100 (RM415) on the Imperial Edition. – dpa
   

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