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Shadow of the Tomb Raider is the 2018 sequel to Rise of the Tomb Raider, and third and final installment in the Survivor Timeline.

The game released on September 14th, 2018 on PlayStation 4, PC, and Xbox One.


Lara Croft travels to Mexico in order to take down a Trinity cell along with Jonah Maiava, While traversing a treacherous cavern, Lara is trapped, though she manages to free herself. While climbing to get back onto the trail, Jonah informs Lara via radio of the imminent arrival of Dr. Pedro Dominguez. While Lara assumes he only leads a local Trinity cell, she later discovers he is actually the leader of Trinity's High Council.

Lara finds a site Trinity had already found. Lara took pictures of the site for later study, and Jonah joins her. Whilst inspecting the elaborate stone work, including a damaged portion of the monolith, Lara inadvertently triggers the explosives left by Trinity, leading to temple's collapse, and escapes. The pair head back to the town of Cozumel, during the Day of the Dead festival. Lara informs Jonah that she has deduced that the clues lead to Peru. Returning to the town, they find Dominguez, who is accompanied by Commander Rourke, leader of Trinity's military forces, and is seeking a temple.

Lara tails Dominguez and Rourke, making her way through the town and eventually into the nearby jungle. Finding another entrance, Lara finds a chamber inside, with a mural depicting several cataclysms, a tsunami, a storm, an earthquake, and a volcanic eruption. Finding a ceremonial Dagger, Lara realizes that it's what Trinity is after. Jonah urges her to reconsider, in case something bad happens. Lara intercepts a Trinity transmission that Dominguez is near. Lara impulsively takes the dagger. A sudden tremor causes part of the mural depicting the tsunami to crumble and break. Lara realizes she's made a mistake. She calls Jonah on the radio and warns him to get to higher ground.

Lara makes her way outside, fighting through a group of Trinity solders. One soldier catches Lara off guard and she drops the dagger. Dominguez arrives and tells his men not to hurt Lara. He asks for the box as well, Lara brushes him off saying it's safe. Realizing that Lara doesn't have the box, Dominguez reveals that by taking the dagger, she has set the apocalypse in motion. He takes the dagger, intending to undo the damage Lara has done and reshape the world in his image. Lara is horrified to see the first cataclysm, a tsunami, rushing towards her. She manages to get to higher ground, she finds Jonah and tells him they need to get to Peru now or else Dominguez will get the box first, Jonah yells at Lara that they need to help the people who are trapped before they do anything, leaving Lara to look horrified at the destruction she has caused.

After managing to get a plane, the pair head to Peru, near their destination the second cataclysm hits, the storm, and causes their plane to rip in half separating Lara from Jonah, and both sections of the plane crash. Lara awakens, and makes her way through the dense jungle after finding some gear from the section of plane that crashed nearby. Lara receives a transmission from the pilot, Miguel, who had also survived the crash and headed deeper into the jungle.

Lara finds Miguel dead, having been eaten by two jaguars. While making her way through the jaguars' territory, she is attacked by them; she manages to kill one, causing the other to leave with its body. Lara then heads to the plane's crash site and reunites with Jonah, who also survived the crash. While trying to get through a collapsed entry, Lara is attacked by the jaguar again, which mauls her back, though she manages to kill it. Lara and Jonah make camp for the night. Lara dreams of her childhood, searching through Croft Manor, for hidden secrets. She finds her mother's atelier, and inside, her jewelry box and bracelet. Lara hears a gunshot and rushes to her father's study, where she finds him slumped over his desk, dead.

Lara awakens, to find Jonah already up. The pair press on and find the town of Kuwaq Yaku. They go to a local bar and meet Abby, a mechanic and de facto mayor of the town. They join her for a drink and ask her about any local ruins, showing her photographs. She says she recognizes one of the symbols from a nearby temple. Lara heads to the temple, telling Jonah to stay and rest, having sensed a spark between Jonah and Abby.

Lara heads to the temple where she is later joined by Jonah. finding the symbol Lara realizes that the mural has been tampered with and covered, and sets about restoring it. Finding a passage through, she sees another temple, and makes her way there. Lara finds a mural depicting a journey, starting at a jaguar's mouth. Abby calls Lara on the radio and tells her that the jaguar's mouth is back at the temple she started.

Lara heads back to the temple through the trees and sees Trinity soldiers being slaughtered by a strange creature. Getting back to the temple, she finds Jonah and Abby have uncovered stairs leading deeper down the temple. Stepping onto the path, a trap separates Lara from Jonah and Abby. Abby says she might know another way around.

Lara heads on an finds several challenges to be conquered, emerging at the other side, she finds a young boy in Mayan style clothing, being advanced upon by a man in Mayan armor, bearing the mark of Trinity. Lara kills the man, and frees the boy. Several other soldiers advance on them but they are quickly dispatched, by the boy's mother and her men, identifying the boy as Etzli. Lara is taken prisoner, a bag placed on her head to stop her from identifying the path.

Lara is taken to a room, where she is addressed by the woman who captured her, introducing herself as Unaratu. She the rightful queen of Paititi. She asks what Lara is doing, and Lara truthfully tells her that she is seeking the Silver box of Ix Chel, in order to stop Trinity from seizing the power to remake the world. Unuratu allows Lara to attempt to find the box, though she reveals that they have also captured Jonah, and insists he stay in case Lara is lying. She offers Lara a change of clothes allowing her to blend in, and leads her through the town to the entrance to the sacrificial chamber. In town they encounter a small procession, for Unuratu's challenger to the throne, Amaru. Lara is shocked to discover that it's none other than Doctor Dominguez.

Unaratu, gets distracted by a man who seeks to kill Dominguez, and stops him, telling Lara where to meet Etzli in order to find the entrance to the sacrificial temple. Joining the young prince at the temple entrance, he tells Lara to follow the smell of death, and that she can use the irrigation system to get out when she's done. Lara makes her way inside and finds thousands of people the cult has sacrificially slaughtered. Deeper into the cavern, Lara finds an item that is shaped like a serpent and figures it's what Trinity are looking for. Lara finds the irrigation system and leaves.

Arriving back in the village, Lara witnesses Etzli being captured by the cult, and is forced to flee as they chase her. She manages to escape her pursuers and makes her way back to Unuratu's home. She informs the Queen of Etzli's capture, and the group begins to form a plan, Unuratu seeing the object Lara had retrieved from the sacrificial chamber, recognizes it as a key to an area opposite the Serpent guard's barracks. She tells Lara that there is an entrance through the old salt mine, that she can use to allow a small group in to rescue Etzli, before she heads after the box.

Lara heads into the mines and dispatches the cultists who are patrolling the area. Unlocking the gate, the rescue party lead by Unuratu heads into the area. They manage to get Etzli, however Unuratu is captured, wordlessly telling Lara not to stay and help, Lara presses on.

Heading into the crumbling remains of a temple, Lara encounters feral humanoid creatures and fights her way through. Coming to a massive door, depicting the goddesses Ix Chel and Chak Chel protecting the box, Lara deduces that it must be inside and opens the door. Upon gaining access, Lara is accosted by more of the creatures, including a disfigured priestess, however they do no attack and simply seal Lara inside. Reading the murals, Lara realizes that creatures, known as the Yaaxil are actually protecting the box. Lara finds an altar, with symbols that match Unuratu's tattoos, however the box has been removed from its pedestal. A tremor (a foreshock preceding the impending earthquake) causes the door to collapse and the Yaaxil attack, Lara manages to escape and returns to the surface.

Lara and the rebels plan an escape, sending Lara in disguised as a Serpent guard. Making her way to the Temple district, Lara finds Unuratu with Dominguez, who pleads for her to join his cause, wanting only to protect Paititi from discovery and destruction from the outside world, however Unuratu is unwilling to allow Paititi's salvation to come at the cost of all else. Dominguez orders her to be returned to her cell, before telling her that the Box of Ix Chel is gone, stolen by Andres Lopez, and that she has no way to restore the sun.

Lara reaches Unuratu. Lara informs her that she has found another clue to the box's location, asking of the meaning of her tattoos, Unuratu reveals that they are linked to the last true emperor of Paititi, and the two make their way to the tomb to look for more clues. Making their way through the temple, they pass a mural which Unuratu explains shows that at the death of the sun, the box must be opened, and whoever opens will be tempted with a vision showing the most powerful desire. Lara asks Unuratu how she knows if she'll be able to resist temptation, to which she replied, she doesn't know, however the Crimson Fire will guide her telling her "When the Crimson Fire smokes, seek your mirror."

Reaching the tomb of the emperor, Lara finds a message left by Andreas Lopez, saying "The Heart of the Serpent is in the cup." The cult of Kukulkan attacks, and Unuratu is ambushed and fatally shot by Rourke. Before she dies, Unuratu urges Lara to resist the box's temptation. Lara fights off the squad sent by Rourke to kill her and escapes, informing Etzli of his mother's death. Etzli resolves to lead his people. Lara and Jonah leave by boat to continue their search for the box. While heading down the river, Lara and Jonah are attacked by a Trinity gunship, destroying their boat and separating them. Lara emerges on the bank nearby an oil refinery, killing a soldier who sets upon her. With no weapons except her knife, she tries to find Jonah.

The third cataclysm, the earthquake, begins, and the refinery bursts into flames. While sneaking through the soldiers, Lara is repeatedly taunted by Rourke, who has located her comms channel, and eventually tells her that his forces have killed Jonah. An enraged Lara takes a machine gun, slaughtering all of Trinity's forces in the area. However, she misses Rourke, who has been called away and left a soldier, Winters, to fight Lara in a helicopter. By shooting explosive barrels near the helicopter, Lara destroys it, killing Winters. Looking over the destruction she's caused and the sudden arrival of a still-alive Jonah, Lara breaks down. Jonah tries to reassure her and get her to figure out what their next move should be. Initially dismissive of Jonah's suggestion, she suddenly realizes that they are not looking for a Mayan site, rather a Christian site as Andreas Lopez was a missionary.

Lara and Jonah enlist Abby's help to get to the nearby Mission of San Juan, which is the nearest Christian missionary, as it is within walking distance of Paititi. Searching the grounds, they discover an underground church, where they discover the resting place of Andreas Lopez, and with him the Box. The floor gives way and Lara falls with the box, upon returning to the surface, Lara finds that Dominguez has arrived and has Jonah at gunpoint. Unwilling to lose another friend, Lara calls out to Dominguez, by his real name, offering the box in exchange for Jonah's safety. Dominguez offers that he understands Lara's pain, through his words, Lara realizes that Dominguez had ordered her father's execution. Jonah suddenly tackles Dominguez and runs with the box.

Lara makes her way through Trinity's forces, while being goaded by Roarke, all the while, the telltale signs of an impeding volcanic eruption are all around. Lara arrives to see Jonah being kicked from a helicopter, and sees that Dominguez has the box. Lara and Abby rush to Jonah as the Volcano erupts, Lara thinking there might be a chance the chopper will be grounded by volcanic debris gives chase as a mudslide ensues, though her chase is unsuccessful.

Lara and Jonah return to Paititi, and inform Etzli that Dominguez has the box, and the rebels launch a final assault on Trinity's forces. Spying a smoking fire Lara heads to the source and finds the Yaaxil priestess from before, and realizes the that they are supposed to work together. The priestess identifies herself as "Chak Chel" and Lara in turn identifies herself as "Ix Chel." Lara join forces with the Yaaxil and they all attack Trinity forces defending Dominguez. The entire Trinity High Council comes to personally oversee their victory, but the Yaaxil overwhelm Trinity's forces and massacre the entire council. Rourke joins the fight in a tank, but he is quickly overrun and slaughtered by the Yaaxil after running out of ammunition.

With Trinity leaderless and their forces in complete disarray, Lara climbs to the top of the temple and confronts Dominguez, who uses the box and receives godly powers. After a lengthy battle, Lara manages to steal away Dominguez's powers and fatally stab him. Dominguez accepts his fate and gives her the power from the artifacts, asking Lara to protect his people before dying. Just as Unuratu had warned, Lara is shown a vision of a life she could have with her mother and father alive, but Lara resists the temptation and walks away.

With Lara now holding the power of Kukulkan, is the sacrifice needed to end the cleansing. Crimson Fire approaches Lara, and Lara gives the Key of Chak Chel to her. Lara then lays on the sacrificial altar ready to sacrifice herself to save the world. Crimson Fire makes a stabbing motion, but moments before the blade hits it stops and draws away the power from Lara.

Two days later, Lara and Jonah attend the funeral of Unuratu. Jonah decides to stay in Peru for awhile, and spend time with Abby, while Lara wants to spend more time in Paititi.

After returning home. Lara hires back Winston.


  • Lara Croft - Putting her knowledge and skills to use, Lara spends her time traveling the world, tracking down and eliminating Trinity cells, Lara's drive to destroy Trinity leads to her making a rash decision that sets the apocalypse into motion. Wracked with guilt, Lara sets out to set things right and stop the world from ending.


  • Jonah Maiava - Lara's closest ally, helping Lara to eliminate Trinity. His companionship has become increasingly important.
  • Abigaile Ortiz - A pilot, mechanic, and the de facto leader of Kuwaq Yaku. A descendant of the Mayans who traveled to Peru to found Paititi. She offers assistance to Lara upon her arrival, and hits it off with Jonah.
  • Unuratu - Queen of Paititi, rightful ruler and leader of the Paititian rebels. Unuratu forms an alliance with Lara after learning they both want the same thing.
  • Etzli - Son of Unuratu and heir to the throne of Paititi.
  • Uchu - One of Unuratu's most trusted men and Etzli's bodyguard.
  • Crimson Fire - A Yaaxil priestess and representative of Chak Chel in the ritual to restore the sun.
  • Winston - The Croft family's aging and eternally loyal butler who has returned to work at Croft manor after Lara has accepted her inheritance and title.
  • Samantha Nishimura (mentioned) - Lara's best friend.


  • Pedro Dominguez/Amarau - Leader of the High Council of Trinity, he sees the upcoming apocalypse as an opportunity to reshape the world without weakness and sin. However, he has ulterior motives that Trinity seems to not be aware of.
  • Rourke - Leader of Trinity's military forces, he is in charge of all operations Trinity is undertaking. He holds a personal grudge against Lara due to how many of his soldiers she has killed.





The game retains the traditional third-person gameplay of previous entries in the series. More traversal techniques return to the series, such as using a grapple to wall-run and abseil. Swimming is expanded upon with Lara now able to swim deeper compared to the restrictive swimming in Rise. This is free swimming without a rebreather, with pockets of air highlighted so players can breathe. These indicators can be turned off to make swimming more perilous.[1] There is also a greater emphasis on puzzles compared to the previous two entries into the series.

Combat once again features Lara able to carry four weapon types (bow, pistol, shotgun, rifle/automatic). She is also able to use rope arrows in combat as with the previous games. Stealth also returns, featuring a new mechanic of using mud as a form of camouflage.[2] Enemies also appear in water which can attack Lara while she is swimming. Melee combat has been expanded upon, with Lara now wielding a machete as well as her climbing axe.

Challenge Tombs return, now being larger and more deadly than ever, with each tomb requiring specific traversal techniques to access and solve. The game has the largest hub area featured in the series thusfar. [2] In addition to this, the game also features a much higher number of friendly NPC characters, featuring crods that have not been seen in the series since Tomb Raider: Legend.

The game features more merchants than Rise of the Tomb Raider with a total of six. Lara can now sell salvaged resources in order to pay for other items of interest from the merchants, such as ammo pouches, weapons, outfits and ammunition.[3]

An Immersion Mode will reportedly enable players to turn off English voices for background characters in order to have characters speak in their native languages.[1]

Players are able to unlock outfits from older games in the franchise, much like in Rise of the Tomb Raider. These include her appearances in Tomb Raider II and Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness.[4]

Flashback sequences has the players control Lara during her childhood at Croft Manor.


Players are able to change the difficulty of different game aspects, including combat, puzzles, and traversal. For puzzles, Lara will lose her Survival Instinct ability at higher difficulties, while traversable ledges and the like will no longer have their telltale coloring and scuff marks. Players can change the difficulty for all aspects at once, or customize each aspect individually up to Hard. Very Hard is its own setting and cannot be altered.[1]

Smart and Resourceful (Easy)
  • Combat Difficulty:
    • Aim assist enabled. Ammunition boxes are plentiful.
    • Enemies have lower health, do less damage, and have illuminated silhouettes.
  • Exploration Difficulty:
    • Obvious white paint on critical path. Longer saving grab timer.
    • Base Camps are lit.
  • Puzzle Difficulty:
    • Lara gives direct hints on the next action to perform.
    • Interactable objects are highlighted in Survival Instincts.
    • Objects necessary to progress highlighted in blue during Survival Instincts.
    • Longer window of opportunity for timed mechanics.
Rite of Passage (Normal)
  • Combat Difficulty:
    • Ammunition boxes are rare.
    • Enemies have normal health and damage. Enemies have illuminated silhouettes.
  • Exploration Difficulty:
    • Discreet white paint on critical path. Normal saving grab timer.
    • Base Camps are unlit.
  • Puzzle Difficulty:
    • Lara gives general hints on the next action to perform.
    • Interactable objects are highlighted in Survival Instincts.
    • Normal window of opportunity for timed mechanics.
One With The Jungle (Hard)
  • Combat Difficulty:
    • No health regeneration in combat. Ammo boxes are rare.
    • No hit marker on reticle.
    • Enemies have increased health, do more damage, and locate Lara more quickly.
    • Enemies are not highlighted in Survival Instincts.
  • Exploration Difficulty:
    • No white paint on critical path. Reduced save grab timer.
    • No Survival Instincts during exploration. Base Camps are unlit.
  • Puzzle Difficulty:
    • No hints given by Lara. No Survival Instincts. Shorter window of opportunity for timed mechanics.
Deadly Obsession (Very Hard)
  • Combat Difficulty:
    • No health regeneration in combat. Ammo boxes are rare.
    • No hit marker on reticle.
    • Enemies have increased health, do more damage, and locate Lara more quickly.
    • Enemies are not highlighted in Survival Instincts.
  • Exploration Difficulty:
    • No white paint on critical path. Reduced saving grab timer.
    • No Survival Instincts during exploration.
    • Base Camps are unlit and require resources to light. Game saves only at Base Camps.
  • Puzzle Difficulty:
    • No hints given by Lara. No Survival Instincts. Shorter window of opportunity for timed mechanics.

New Game Plus[]

Once a player has completed Shadow of the Tomb Raider, they unlock the ability to play through a mode with all-new features called New Game Plus. Here, the work they have done will carry over into the next play-through. This includes Skills, Weapons, Outfits, Equipment Upgrades, and Gear. New Game Plus also unlocks three new Paths that Lara Croft can master, each tailored to fit a particular gameplay style:

  • Path of the Serpent: features an emphasis on stealth and subterfuge. Players take down enemies using sound and decoys to sow chaos. Mud and camouflage lets players lash out before slipping back into the shadows.
  • Path of the Jaguar: features an emphasis on hunting and combat, focusing on agility and close-ranged combat via knife takedowns.
  • Path of the Eagle: features an emphasis on traversal and resourcefulness. Observe enemies from afar, scouting out to plan the next attack. Traverse with ease, attacking enemies from long range.

Each chosen path will unlock a variety of exclusive rewards that further complement playstyle and gameplay. By selecting a path, players unlock mastery skills featuring a variety of unique new abilities. On top of new skills available, chosen Paths feature unique themed weapons and outfits.[5]


SOTTR Ultimate Edition Several different editions of the game were released, each with different bonuses. Pre-ordering also offered 48 hour early access.

Standard Edition: Comes with the game, and wallpaper for PC or themes for consoles.

Digital Deluxe: Comes with 1 pre-order outfits, and digital soundtrack, wallpaper for PC or themes for consoles. Also featured 48 hour early access.

Croft Edition: Comes with 3 pre-order outfits, Season Pass, and digital soundtrack, wallpaper for PC or themes for consoles. Also featured 48 hour early access.

Croft Steelbook Edition: Is the same as Croft Edition, but in a steelbook packaging, plus 3 collectible art cards.

Ultimate Edition: Comes with season pass, 3 bonus outfits, digital soundtrack, wallpaper for PC or themes for consoles, and a 12" statue of Lara Croft, a flashlight, and a bottle opener modeled after Lara's climbing axe.

Downloadable Content[]

Seven DLC packs were confirmed for release post launch which can be purchased at the beginning with a Season Pass or individually. Each DLC pack will contain an abundance of new content, challenge tombs, co-op functionality, weapons and outfits, Score Attack and Time Attack modes, and additional narrative side missions. The packs were initially intended to launch monthly starting in October, however the first pack was later rescheduled to November 13th.

The Forge: Lara must brave the lava-flooded Forge of the fallen gods to uncover the secrets of Kuwaq Yaku. Throughout her journey, Lara will uncover details about a friend’s ancient legacy, and overcome a danger long thought to be lost in flame. The Forge delivers a brand-new challenge tomb, playable in both solo and co-op. Players who complete the challenge tomb will be rewarded with the Grenadier skill, Brocken outfit, and Umbrage 3-80 weapon.

The Pillar: Lara ventures into the tomb known as Path of Huracan to discover the truth behind the legend of the Maya apocalypse. To reclaim an ancient treasure, Lara must defy the treacherous storms of an all-new challenge tomb, all while fighting the forces of Trinity. Players who complete the challenge tomb will be rewarded with the Sinchi Chiqua Battle Dress outfit and the Oathtaker's Bow.

The Nightmare: Learn the secret Uchu has told no one else! In order to obtain a powerful and mysterious weapon, Lara must face the music in a brand-new challenge tomb, battle foes who look like but are not like any she's ever faced, and confront the deadliest enemy of all: herself. Players who complete the challenge tomb will be rewarded with the Scales of Q outfit, the Grip of Fear axe, and the White Breath skill, which grants Lara's Fear Arrows the power of an area effect.

The Price of Survival: Solve the mystery of Lara's greatest foe! While trying to crack the private codes of Trinity's leader, Lara must conquer a poisonous new challenge tomb and defeat the elite Paititian soldiers that stand in her way. “The Price of Survival” is an all-new single-player challenge tomb. Players who complete the challenge tomb are rewarded with the Hunter's Array outfit, the Silent Sting pistol, and the Raptor's Eye skill, which enables Lara to tag her enemies for persistent tracking.

The Serpent's Heart: Confront the repercussions of a failed uprising! In order to save the lives of dedicated rebels, Lara must navigate the treacherous waters of a never-before-seen challenge tomb, infiltrate an enemy barracks to stage a prison break, and face cultists in their mountain stronghold. Players who complete the challenge tomb are rewarded with the Dragon Scales outfit, the Serpent Lash bow, and the Divine Bounty skill, which rewards Lara with more gold pieces when looting fallen foes.

The Grand Caiman: A ferocious deity threatens the lives of innocent San Juan villagers. To save them, Lara will battle a deadly group of mercenaries in order to prevent a cataclysmic disaster. Solve the new volcanic challenge tomb and reap its powerful rewards.

The Path Home: After the story, Lara seeks to find out what happened to the Yaaxil. Traversing a series of ancient areas near the Mission of San Juan, Lara discovers a doorway that the Yaaxil used to return to their plane of origin.

Hints for Plot[]

Hints of the Future

Map of the future?

The ending of Rise of the Tomb Raider showed a map of the Yucatan Peninsula in Mexico, implying that Lara's next adventure would involve Mayan culture, much like in Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light.

An ID card belonging to Kennard Montez could also be seen beside the map. Montez is an agent of Trinity who Lara had several encounters with during the events of the novel Tomb Raider: The Ten Thousand Immortals. He is also believed to be the man who infiltrated Croft Manor, attempted to assassinate Lara, and stole the book on Kitezh during the early events of Rise of the Tomb Raider.

Starting on March 19th, the official Tomb Raider website launched Shadow of the Tomb Raider: Path of the Stars, a puzzle game to promote the upcoming release of Shadow of the Tomb Raider. A new puzzle is to be added each Monday, leading up to the full reveal on April 27th. When each puzzle is completed 5000 times, a new clue unlocks. The first puzzle piece was an audio log between Lara and Jonah discussing a clue to a hidden city, indicating that the game would take place in the Amazon rather than Mexico. The second audio file revealed that Trinity were seeking a Creation God. The final puzzle revealed the constellation of Orion.


Square Enix inadvertently confirmed the game to be in early stages of development as early as at least June 2015, during E3 of that year[6].

In August 2016, Ian Milham, who served as the Art Director for the Dead Space series and Creative Director of Battlefield Hardline, was hired at Crystal Dynamics to serve as the director for the next Tomb Raider game [7]. However, in September 2017, Milham departed from Crystal Dynamics to work in the studio Outpost Games. [8]

It was announced that Rhianna Pratchett would be leaving the Tomb Raider series in January 2017, as such, it is unknown if she contributed to the game.[9]

In December 2017, it was officially announced that a new Tomb Raider game was in development, and news would be shared in 2018. It was also stated that there would be a short window between the official announcement and release of the game. [10]

On March 14th, The Tomb Raider website was changed to show an abstract image of what looked to be a solar eclipse, indicating a time and date of March 15th, 2018, 6:00 AM PDT for the official reveal. [11] The trailer did indeed release as scheduled, offering a release date of September 14th, 2018, as well as an official full length reveal trailer for April 27th.

Camilla Luddington confirmed that she would be returning to portray Lara Croft via her personal Twitter.[12]

The game was developed for PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC, launching on all platforms simultaneously. Shadow of the Tomb Raider went gold on July 24th 2018.

Unpatched ending[]

For those who purchased a physical copy of Shadow of the Tomb Raider and beat the game before downloading the Day One patch, an alternate post-credits ending can be seen. The dialogue remains essentially identical, but background items are a nod to Lara's dual-pistols and an unopened letter from Jacqueline Natla, the antagonist from 1996's Tomb Raider as well as its remake Tomb Raider: Anniversary and the 2008 sequel Tomb Raider: Underworld.

Cancelled Croft Manor DLC[]

Upon the release of Shadow of the Tomb Raider, the game listed eight challenge tombs for its DLC offerings. However, only seven were announced and subsequently released, leading many fans to speculate the meaning of the additional slot.[13] Dataminers claimed to have discovered evidence within the game files that suggested the final DLC was related to Croft Manor.[14] With patch to accompany the release of the Definitive Edition of the game, the additional slot was removed from the menus. In 2019, unused voice lines were discovered in the game files which included Lara referencing Samantha Nishimura and Joslin Reyes, Lara building a motorcycle, and adventures from the Original Timeline. In 2021, on a community stream of Shadow of the Tomb Raider, Crystal Dynamics confirmed that the eighth DLC was scrapped due to it not meeting quality standards.[15]


Shadow of the Tomb Raider was subject to an unusually high number of leaks:

  1. On October 31st 2016, a Reddit user caught a glimpse of a laptop screen on a subway in Montreal, with a banner image showing a logo for a project titled, "Shadow of the Tomb Raider." The leak indicated that Crystal Dynamics may not be the developer and that Eidos Montreal, developer of video game series' Deus Ex and Thief would be taking over. Eidos Montreal previously worked on the multiplayer for Tomb Raider. However, given that Ian Milham was hired as the new director for Tomb Raider at Crystal Dynamics, it was deemed unlikely that Crystal Dynamics would not be the primary developer. However, it was later confirmed that Eidos Montreal was indeed the lead developer on this project.
  2. In January 2017, It was announced that Crystal Dynamics were co-developing a game based on Marvel's Avengers series with Eidos Montreal. Crystal Dynamics' community manager Meagan Marie confirmed that Crystal Dynamics "are still very invested in the future of Tomb Raider", confirming their involvement with the development of future Tomb Raider games. In April 2017, Tomb Raider fansite Turning Point, had a Q&A session with Marie, who stated that there would be no Tomb Raider news at E3 2017, but instead hinted that there might be news later in the year. [16] However this may have been in reference to the next comic arc to bridge the gap between Rise and the next game.
  3. In June 2017, another leak showing possible logos and concept art surfaced. The concept art showed Lara with what appeared to be an Aztec pyramid in the background, which supported theories of a possible Mexico setting. Lara was also shown wielding a bow, knife and smoke grenades, as well as new weapons, such as a machete and a spear.
  4. In a December 2017 update released by the official Tomb Raider social channels, a secret message could be found. Taking the first letter from the start of every sentence spelt the word "SHADOW", which implied that the original Reddit leak was legitimate. [17]
  5. The teaser trailer for the game leaked a day ahead of its scheduled release of March 15th at screenings for the 2018 film adaptation, Tomb Raider, showing a dense jungle setting and an Aztec pyramid. [18] The trailer confirmed prior leaks such as the title and the Mayan theme.
  6. On April 26, one day before the full reveal of the game, a magazine was leaked online that seemingly revealed that Sam and Reyes would be returning to the series. Lara's voice actor, Camilla Luddington, later denied this claim. [19] The magazine also revealed that the game would have three special editions, including the Steelbook, the Ultimate Edition and the Croft Edition. It also stated that the game would have a Season Pass. The Ultimate Edition was said to have a number of exclusive physical items, such as a statue of Lara, a bottle opener that is designed to look like Lara's climbing axe, and a flashlight. The Ultimate Edition would also include 3 unique in-game outfits and weapons. [20]


Shadow of the Tomb Raider received "generally favorable" reviews on Metacritic getting a metascore of 77/100 on PC,[21] 75/100 on PS4,[22] and 82/100 on Xbox One.[23]


  • This is the fourth Tomb Raider game to feature in Peru after Tomb Raider (1996 Game), Tomb Raider: Legend and Tomb Raider: Anniversary and third Tomb Raider game to feature Mexico as a locale after Tomb Raider: Underworld and Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light.
  • It has been theorised that the unusually large number of leaks associated with this game were intentional as a form of guerrilla marketing.
  • A crossover between Final Fantasy XV and Shadow of the Tomb Raider was announced.[24] Lara's outfit from Shadow was included for use in Final Fantasy XV's multiplayer mode, Comrades. Additionally, Tomb Raider music tracks were added to the music player in the main game.[25] There is also a chance for Lara photobombing Prompto's pictures, similar to characters Shiva and Carbuncle.
  • The game's launch trailer featured Lara reading the poem "Because I Could Not Stop For Death" by Emily Dickinson.


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2
  2. 2.0 2.1
  21. Metascore for Shadow of the Tomb Raider on PCMetacritic, Retrieved May 13, 2020
  22. Metascore for Shadow of the Tomb Raider on PS4Metacritic, Retrieved May 13, 2020
  23. Metascore for Shadow of the Tomb Raider on Xbox OneMetacritic, Retrieved May 13, 2020
  24. IGN article on the crossover