So once more the story has Lara - remodeled and back in figure-hugging green - heading to Peru to find a relic called the Atlantean Scion. It’s a trail that goes from Peru through Greece and Egypt and, eventually, to Atlantis, although - then as now - it’s the destinations, rather than the flimsy plot, that really matter.
See, what provided the brilliantly engaging atmosphere of the original Tomb Raider - something lost in the increasingly urbanized sequels - were the tombs themselves. Vividly imagined and tapping into an Indiana Jones-style matinee spirit, the archaeological environments were bursting with a character that the later, blander settings couldn’t compete with.
Now the revamped ruins are back, and they look incredible. Anniversary plays out across a series of stunning arenas - huge, almost theatrical spaces packed with a labyrinthine arrangement of platforms, pillars and other interactive obstacles. Occasionally, in other games, you’ll come across a grand-standing set-piece or area and remember it as a highlight - here you’ll find several on every level. There's a thrilling sense that you’re wandering around a masterful creation. The parallel is strengthened by the haunting emptiness of the world Anniversary leads you through - these are fallen civilizations, and they lend a somber feel to proceedings.
Just as crucial as these grand surroundings themselves, of course, is how Lara moves through them. The gameplay generally is a very sensibly selected mix of classic controls and the things that Legend got right. The grapple line stays, for instance, but its implementation is much improved - it’s now a hook rather than a magnet, so the “fire at will and see if it sticks” approach is ditched.