When Square Enix first announced Tomb Raider: The Definitive Edition for both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One, there was a mixed reaction from gamers. On the one hand, gamers the world over were excited about the idea of one of last year's best games getting a next-gen facelift for their shiny new system. On the other hand, once word got out that it would be priced as a full retail game ($59.99), some were left wondering if it was really worth double-dipping for a game they've already played. I've experienced both versions of the game (PS4 & PS3), and have some screens and impressions for you below.
First, a disclaimer: the screenshots featured in this article won't fully do the game justice, as you can only see the improved details and resolution that have been applied. What you won't see is the improved frame-rate, which is almost double that of the PlayStation 3 version. The screens included in this post will give you a better idea of how the added power of the next-gen consoles will allow for better, more detailed images.
There is a heated debate going on right now concerning whether or not there is a distinct advantage to having games running at 1080p/60FPS. Having played games for almost 30 years now, and being somewhat of a television fanatic, I like to think that my eyes have been trained to recognize and appreciate the visual fidelity achieved when a game runs at 1080p/60fps. As noticeable as the 1080p resolution is for Tomb Raider (especially noticeable to those that've played the PS3/Xbox 360 version), it's the buttery smooth frame-rate that really takes center stage. I wouldn't say it makes the game more realistic, but when you take a game that's as gorgeous as Tomb Raider, and couple it with the phenomenal character animation, the jump in frame-rate creates a new level of immersion with a more natural, fluid flow.
Whether or not this version of Tomb Raider is worth double-dipping will be a matter of individual preference. Gamers on a tight budget (Hey, we're all still feeling the effects that the next-gen launch had on our wallets) may just want to ride out the launch titles until new games start rolling out more consistently, starting next month. On the other side of the coin, those of you who enjoyed last year's Tomb Raider, or are avid Trophy/Achievement hunters looking to boost their Trophy Level/Gamerscore by playing through the game a second time on their new platform (note: while Tomb Raider: The Definitive Edition has a separate Trophy/Achievement list that can be earned, the Trophies/Achievements are the same as they were for the last-gen version), may want to consider taking the plunge again, as you'll be rewarded with a much improved version of an already excellent game.
If you've played both last-gen and next-gen versions of Tomb Raider, did you notice the differences between them? Have you enjoyed the upgrades enough to recommend a double-dip? If you didn't play last year's Tomb Raider (shame on you if you haven't!), are you planning on playing it on next-gen consoles? Comment below on your thoughts about Tomb Raider: The Definitive Edition.
Tomb Raider: The Definitive Edition is available now at most retailers, as well as on PSN & XBL.