Best Games Like Tomb Raider

The Tomb Raider games are best described as cinematic action-platformers that blend elements of puzzle-solving and exploration. In this list, we’ll be highlighting the best games like Tomb Raider to play in 2020 once you’ve finished the most recent entry, Shadow of the Tomb Raider.

The first Tomb Raider was released in 1996 and developed by Core Design and published by Eidos Interactive. Following the 2013 Tomb Raider reboot, Crystal Dynamics and Eidos-Montréal have become the series’ primary developers, with Square Enix fulfilling the role of publisher.

While the Tomb Raider we have today isn’t quite the same as the one from 1996, Lara Croft is still trekking the globe in search of treasure and adventure. Considering the last game released in 2018, we likely won’t get a new installment for a while. Thankfully, there are plenty of other games with similar gameplay as Tomb Raider on PC and current-gen consoles.

Related:Best Single-player Games 2020Best Platformer Games 2020Best Looking PC Games 2020

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Asobo Studio’s action-stealth period piece sees you playing as a pair of siblings as they try to escape their countryside estate while being pursued by the English Army and the Black Plague. Set in 1348 France, A Plague Tale: Innocence features human enemies as well as hordes of diseased rats that the player must bypass throughout the story.

Controlling Amicia and her younger brother Hugo, players traverse dark sewers, decayed city streets, and barren wildernesses trying to survive. Like Lara Croft, at the start of the game, both characters are basically defenseless due to their limited combat and survival experience.

However, as the story progresses, they figure out how to use common resources to make various weapons, traps, and distraction tools. The main two you use throughout the game are a torch and slingshot, which can be used to scare off rats and solve puzzles.

Similar to Tomb Raider, the Assassin’s Creed games have changed significantly throughout the years as the series strayed further away from traditional stealth and towards the realm of action-RPGs. 2018’s Assassin’s Creed Odyssey managed to breathe new life into the franchise while offering players a new historically-rich sandbox to explore.

If you’re a fan of Tomb Raider’s historical references and how they’re woven into the story, then you’ll surely have fun discovering secret chests, notes, and weapons throughout the many Ancient Greek temples, grottos, and vistas scattered across Odyssey’s open-world.

There’s a lot of variety when it comes to skill and weapon upgrades, something the rebooted Tomb Raider games have excelled at as well. Lastly, it’s also worth mentioning how satisfying it feels to climb Ancient Greek statues and architecture using Odyssey‘s tight controls.

Shadow of War is an open-world action RPG and follow-up to 2014’s Middle Earth: Shadow of Mordor. In it, players reprise their role as Talion, a ranger whose body is possessed by the spirit of an elf lord imbued with magical powers.

Combining their strengths, the two set out to forge a powerful ring and gather an army of soldiers capable of defeating the evil Sauron. The game builds upon the Nemesis system introduced in the first game by introducing new enemy types and randomly-generated Orc Leaders.

Like Tomb Raider, gameplay is a mix of exploration, stealth, and real-time combat. Instead of using a wide selection of tools scrapped together by hand, players battle enemies using a magical sword and bow and arrow, which can be upgraded via a skill tree.

Uncharted and Tomb Raider share many similarities when it comes to gameplay and overall themes. After all, both are about adventurers traveling to exotic locations searching for historical treasure while battling evil militias and organizations.

While Tomb Raider has much more gameplay variety, Uncharted‘s story and characters are more fleshed out, resulting in each game feeling like an interactive movie with action-packed set pieces. It’s best recommended for players who enjoy the narrative in Tomb Raider games and would be curious to see Naughty Dog’s take on Indiana Jones.

You can pick up the entire collection for the full story, but keep in mind the first two Uncharted games feel somewhat dated. However, Uncharted 4 does an excellent job of bringing you up to speed on everything while wrapping up the Nathan Drake saga.

Once you get past Metal Gear Solid‘s notoriously convoluted story, you’re left with a deeply rewarding open-world game with flexible action-stealth gameplay. MGS V: The Phantom Pain serves as the ninth installment in the series and notably the last installment developed by Kojima Productions.

Set after the events of Ground Zeroes, the game has you playing as Big Boss, who, after waking up from a coma, enlists a team of mercenaries to help exact revenge on those that put him in said coma. Things get messy along the way, but regardless of whether or not you connect with any of it, Phantom Pain‘s open-ended gameplay is enough to keep you going.

Enemy camps are scattered throughout the world and can be tackled with brute force or stealth, with the game rewarding you for taking non-lethal measures. Like Tomb Raider, there’s a lot of room to develop your own playstyle and prioritize certain weapons or strategies.

While The Evil Within and its sequel may full under the survival horror umbrella, they’re a lot more forgiving than games like Resident Evil or Outlast. Resources such as ammo are still scarce, but not to the point where you’re forced to roll back to an earlier save.

This is a very similar approach to the rebooted Tomb Raider games, which introduced ammo scarcity and combat scenarios where the player’s only option is to run and hide. Other features the two series have in common are a third-person POV, action-stealth gameplay, and crafting systems.

The game sees you playing as Sebastian Castellanos, a Detective who gets transported a twisted alternate reality brimming with blood, corpses, and otherworldly creatures. Enemies can easily overpower Sebastian at the start, but become much more manageable once you unlock new weapons and traps as well as increase your health and stamina.

Respawn was able to mirror the cinematic quality of games like Tomb Raider while offering a unique take on the galaxy far, far away in Jedi: Fallen Order. Set after the events of Episode III, the game sees you playing as Cal Kestis, a Jedi Padawan on a mission to uncover the mysteries of an ancient civilization.

Cal quickly finds himself in the crosshairs of the Empire and their deadly Inquisitors, who continue to hunt him throughout the game. Armed with a lightsaber and the power of the force, Cal is ready for anything the Empire has to throw his way.

Gameplay is a mix of close-range combat, open-ended exploration, and 3D platforming. Like Tomb Raider, Jedi: Fallen Order is filled with tons of lore and interesting character backstories to help flesh out the story and create a compelling game world consistent with the Star Wars mythos.

Those who admire Lara Croft’s archery skills in the recent Tomb Raider games would benefit from checking out Horizon Zero Dawn, one of the latest PS4 exclusives to be ported over to PC in 2020. The game casts you as Aloy, an outsider with a mysterious past who would do anything to prove herself worthy of joining the Nora tribespeople.

 Like Lara, Aloy has a complicated past and unresolved issues stemming from her relationship with her parents. As you progress through the story, more details surrounding her past begin to surface, along with the mystery as to how the world came to be filled with mechanical creatures.

The gameplay incorporates both long and close-range combat with an emphasis on stealth-based approaches such as placing traps and distracting nearby enemies. There are a good variety of different enemy types, each with their own unique behaviors, strengths, and weaknesses, and methods for dealing with them evolve throughout the game.

Control carries over a lot of the themes and mechanics found in previous Remedy games like Quantum Break and Alan Wake. In it, you control Jesse Faden, a woman equipped with supernatural abilities and a shape-shifting gun called the Service Weapon, as she explores a secret government facility called the Oldest House.

Combining elements of metroidvanias, third-person shooters, and science fiction, the game is a thrilling rollercoaster of frenetic combat and dynamic exploration. As Jesse delves deeper into the Oldest House, areas begin to shift and change, opening up new pathways for the player to explore.

Harnessing Jesse’s superpowers, which range from levitation to telekinesis, players can quickly navigate large, open environments filled with waves of enemies. While Control features quicker, more-demanding combat than Tomb Raider, both games see you playing as strong female leads who find themselves face to face with larger than life villains.

Serving as a soft reboot for the hack n’ slash PlayStation exclusive, 2018’s God of War portrays its series’ protagonist in a much different light than previous entries. While Kratos can still be seen ripping apart monsters and reliving nightmares of his dead family, he’s now responsible for raising a son.

The game introduces several changes to how combat, exploration, and progression work that feel reminiscent of the Tomb Raider series. For one, Kratos can upgrade his equipment and skills over time by collecting materials and experience points throughout the game.

Additionally, there’s a much bigger emphasis on exploring open environments instead of following a set path like the previous God of War games. If you enjoy the visceral and cinematic qualities of Tomb Raider‘s gameplay, chances are you’ll have a blast watching Kratos go toe-to-toe with the Norse pantheon of gods and monsters.

As is the case with every game Hideo Kojima makes, Death Stranding offers a strange adventure accented by tense moments and intriguing characters. While it might have its flaws, the game still manages to deliver thanks to an addictive, one of a kind gameplay loop.

In it, you control Sam Porter Bridges, a delivery man tasked with escorting packages across a post-apocalyptic United States. Out in the open-world, players are exposed to a variety of work hazards, ranging from invisible monsters called BTs to dangerous weather conditions that cause Sam’s gear to deteriorate over time. 

Just like in the Tomb Raider games, there’s an emphasis on crafting and exploration. Sam can use ladders and ropes to climb up mountains, as well as cross gaps and rivers. If you enjoy Tomb Raider‘s fluid platforming, there’s a good chance you’ll appreciate the level of detail in Death Stranding‘s traversal system.

Switching over to games with a first-person POV, Dishonored has a track record for delivering consistently satisfying action-stealth gameplay. While the series encourages you to use non-lethal approaches in order to receive the “good” endings, you can just as easily run around killing every bad guy you see.

Like in Tomb Raider, players are rewarded for exploring their surroundings with new upgrades, abilities, and bits of lore. The first game is set in the plague-stricken city of Dunwall and sees players controlling Corvo, a former bodyguard turned assassin after he’s framed for the murder of Dunwall’s Empress.

In the sequel, players could choose to reprise their role as Corvo or play as his daughter Emily. While the series’ overarching story focuses on royal lineage and magic, the Dishonored games are just as much about visceral combat and solving puzzles.

Far Cry 3 is a first-person shooter released in 2012 that manages to still hold up in 2020. While the series has been around for much longer than that, many would say FC3 is where Ubisoft began to hit their stride.

In it, you play as Jason Brody, an inexperienced 20-something-year-old who takes a trip to a tropical island with his friends. After they find themselves kidnapped by pirates, Jason sets out to rescue his friends and make it back home.

This is a very similar setup to the first entry in the rebooted Tomb Raider trilogy, which saw Lara attempting to rescue her crew after becoming stranded on a tropical island occupied by the evil organization Trinity. Just like Lara, Jason must use resources throughout the world to craft weapons and stand a chance of surviving.

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Justin Fernandez
Justin Fernandez

As a fan of both indie and triple-A games, Justin finds joy in discovering and sharing hidden gems with other passionate gamers. In addition to reporting on the latest and greatest titles, he manages GamingScan’s social media channels.