NOTE: Combat strategy is based on the Medium difficulty setting, so your experience may vary slightly. In addition to the walkthroughs for each level, there are separate pages for Controls & Gameplay Tips, Skill & Weapon Upgrades, and Collectible Items.
SAVING AND CHECKPOINTS: Like the last several games, TOMB RAIDER uses autosave checkpoints. Whenever you pass a checkpoint, the game is saved automatically. Then, if Lara dies or you quit the game and restart, the game reloads at the last checkpoint. If you only rely on one autosave, you may run into trouble if you get stuck in the game, encounter a bug, or if your autosave file becomes corrupted. To avoid problems, I highly recommend changing your save slot at least once each level. You may also want to periodically back up your autosaves on a memory card (consoles) or into a separate folder (PC). See the controls page for details.
AREA 8: BASE EXTERIOR
Camps: Bridge Overlook (Day Camp), Radio Tower (Fast Travel)*
Gear: Fire Striker Weapons/Weapon Parts: Bow Part (1/2)
Documents: 2 Relics: 2 GPS caches: 1 Treasure Maps: 1
Challenge Tombs: none Challenges: none
Area Map: Base Exterior**
*See the section about base camps on the Controls page.
**Map includes all major collectibles and challenge items. Refer to the in-game map by pressing Tab/Back if you'd prefer no spoilers. The in-game map does not include a compass rose showing which way is north. So when I refer to map directions in my walkthrough, assume North is up, east right, south down, and west left.
OBJECTIVE: Climb the Radio Tower to Send an SOS
When you emerge from the tunnel with the steam pipes leading out of the Mountain Base, a light snow is falling. You can see the radio tower in the distance. Turn right, drop down off the ledge and approach the Bridge Overlook Day Camp just ahead. You can use the camp if you have any Skill Points or salvage to spend, but Day Camps do not allow for Fast Travel. Once you pass the truck up ahead, you cannot return to this camp except by reloading the "Last Campsite" save; however, there is another base camp a bit farther on.
When you're ready to move on, cross the bridge on the right side, where there's a narrow plank that will support Lara's weight. As you approach the wrecked truck, a Quick Time Event kicks in: a Solarii soldier lunges out from behind the truck and grabs Lara. As she hangs onto the truck to keep from being thrown off the bridge, wiggle the left stick or alternate pressing Left and Right on the keyboard to free one leg. Then, when the Melee icon appears on screen, and press that button (F/Triangle/Y) to kick the guy over the edge. This earns you 25 XP. (screenshots)
Go around the back of the truck to the other side to find the single GPS cache in this level. (screenshot)
COMBAT ON THE HILLSIDE BEYOND THE BRIDGE: Advance cautiously up the road beyond the bridge. If you run to the top, more enemies will appear than you can probably handle at once. If you wait near the bottom, you can draw them out a few at a time. Start by inching out to the right just a little bit from the end of the bridge. You don't even need to go as far as the pile of sandbags on the left side of the road. From here you can probably pick off 2 archers with your bow. Sometimes they will hide behind the low obstacles set up along the sides of the path; often one stays up on the roof. If this happens, take aim, wait for them to peer out and try to use your bow to get a headshot. (screenshots)
Move a little farther out to trigger the appearance of a third soldier with 2 machetes. This enemy type tends to charge you rather than hiding, so either try and take him down fast, using the pistol if necessary, or shoot him in the legs to disable him and then finish him off. (screenshots)
If you move out too far too fast, these three may attack more aggressively. Occasionally one or more of them will charge at you. Use the pistol or rifle if you have to, but try not to waste ammo. If one of them throws a petrol bomb, dodge out of the way and either take cover behind another one of the low barriers or run back toward the truck, hide near the end of the bridge and shoot them as they come to you.
There's a box of rifle/SMG ammo near the low cement wall on the right side of the path and a fruit plant just beyond this wall. (screenshot)
Advance a little farther up the hill and take up a position behind the blue barrels and sandbags on the left side of the road. Draw your weapon of choice and look up to the right to the rooftop just beyond where the 3 rope lines are anchored. There are 3 more Solarii up there. Try to shoot one of them while they're still on this roof. When you do, one of them will yell, "Here she comes! Get to ground level!" The others will then slide down the zip line toward you. If you can shoot them off the rope, they'll fall and hopefully die before reaching you. If they manage to make it around the corner a the top of the hill, take them out as they run down toward you. (screenshots)
Occasionally, if you manage to take out the first man up here silently, the rest will not appear until you move to the top of the hill. Then they'll start throwing petrol bombs, and you'll need to run back down the hill to take cover.
You'll know you've killed them all when Lara stands up instead of crouching behind cover. Loot the bodies on this side of the fence, but don't go around the corner to the right yet, since this will trigger the appearance of more enemies. (screenshot)
Instead, pick up the pistol and rifle/SMG ammo (one box of each) sitting on the ground in front of the building at the top of the hill. Then climb up onto the ledge on the left side of that building and immediately take cover behind the broken wall on the right. As you climb up, the 3 men in the next building notice Lara and start yelling and shooting flaming arrows. As long as you stay close to the wall, they can't hit you. Turn around and face the ruined building where they're standing. Target the red barrels on the middle level with your bow and fire. The resulting explosion should take care of all of them. You'll also get a little XP bonus for your trouble. (screenshots)
Before dropping down from this ledge, go around to the opposite corner of the building, on this same level, to find a box containing a relic (1/2), Japanese Dog Tags, one of the Senshi Elite set. (screenshot) If you shot one of the soldiers on top of this building earlier, you can climb to the upper level to loot his body now. Afterward, drop back down to the level with the relic, then to the ground, and continue up the hill.
Move carefully from the cover of the blue barrels to the cement footing ahead on the left. When you reach this point, 3 more enemies—2 archers and another with axe and machete—run down the hill toward you. This is probably a good time to bring out the pistol or machine gun. (screenshots)
NOTE: If Lara is killed while fighting the enemies in the ruined building with the red fuel barrels or this last group, the game reloads at the checkpoint behind the blue barrels in the road leading up to ruined building. You'll then have to explode the fuel barrels again. You can probably target the barrels easily enough from here, but if you like, you can turn right and run back to the building with the relic, scramble up onto the safe ledge and repeat the sequence from there.
When you've dealt with the 3 men that come charging down the hill, you're safe for the time being. Take the time to loot all the bodies in the area. Then scramble up into the ruined building at the top of the slope to find a food cache and a document (1/2), an entry called "The Solarii" from the Diaries of a Madman series.
WELL-DEFENDED BUILDING AND FIRST SOLARII GUARD WITH SHIELD: Exit the ruined building through opening on the left (east) side and climb onto the wall ahead (or just jump from one ledge to grab the other and pull up). When you do, more enemies appear in the next building and launch their attack. A few slide down the zip line onto the ledge where you're standing. If you can shoot them off the rope as they slide, great. If not, just deal with them when they reach you. Others stay under cover and throw Molotov cocktails and shoot flaming arrows. (screenshots)
Maybe you're more nimble and aggressive than I am, but I prefer taking out the enemies one or two at a time, from behind cover if possible. If necessary, you can jump back down into the area where you were before. Good places to hide include the sandbag wall and the low cement barrier to the left of it—both are between the ruined building and the ledge leading to the next area. You can hide here and snipe at a few of the men up in the building. You'll need to climb back up onto the wall now and then to get the attention of the remaining enemies, but you should be able to kill most of them this way. (screenshots)
You may also be able to get a clear shot from up inside the building where you found the document. There's a corrugated metal panel there that offers a little protection. None of these hiding places are completely safe, though. So watch out for incoming fire and change position if necessary. If things get very bad, don't be afraid to run back down the hill, wait a minute or so for Lara to heal, and then re-enter the fight. (screenshots)
There's one especially nasty demolitions guy in the middle level of the opposite building. Whenever you climb up onto the ledge, he starts hurling petrol bombs, and his aim is pretty good. You may just need to tough it out and climb up onto the ledge, duck behind the corrugated metal barrier on the right, then inch out to the left and try to hit him with an arrow just as he's about to toss a lit bottle. If you can cause him to fumble, he'll drop the bottle and set himself on fire. You'll get a 10 XP bonus for this.
When you've taken care of all the enemies in the building—I believe it's 7 enemies in all—Lara will stand up as though all is clear. Take a look over the edge of the ledge but don't drop down yet. Note the position of the ammo pick-ups in case you need them. There are 3 boxes of rifle/SMG ammo, one near each of the low walls, and a bunch of arrows near the ammo pick-up in the middle.
When you drop down, the doors open and a big, armored Solarii with a metal shield emerges. Select the SMG and hold the Aim button, keeping him targeted as he approaches. When he lunges toward Lara, continue to hold Aim and press Dodge/Roll (Shift/Circle/B) as you move to the left or right to evade his attack. When you dodge this way, the enemy turns aside momentarily, exposing his body so you can shoot him. Repeat this as many times as it takes to bring him down. Once you get the move down, it shouldn't take long. (screenshots)
NOTE: You may also be able to perform a dodge without moving to either side. Continue to hold Aim and when the big guy attacks, just press Dodge/Roll. I found moving to either side worked best, but try both and see what you think.
When the big man falls, the doors burst open again and another demolitions guy starts lobbing Molotov cocktails at you. (screenshot) Take him down quickly to avoid getting burned. The 2 guys who opened the door for the big man seem to have run off rather than face Lara. Can you really blame them?
Loot the bodies, especially the big guy, who carries a BOW PART. This is one of two parts you'll need to upgrade the Makeshift Longbow into the more effective Recurve Bow. You'll get the other part a bit later in the game. (screenshot)
NOTE: If you forget to loot the big guy's body and leave the area or reload so that his body disappears, don't fret. You can return here later from any fast travel camp and you'll find the BOW PART in one of the salvage crates on the middle floor of this building or in the locker in the room on the ground floor.
Be sure to loot the other bodies as well, take as much of the extra ammo as you can carry, and pick the edible plant in the corner on the left side of the building. There are also rats and birds throughout this level that you can hunt for extra XP and salvage if you like.
INSIDE THE BUILDING: In the first room on the right there are 2 more boxes of rifle/SMG ammo and a salvage locker you can pry open with your axe. While you're there, light your torch at the burning barrel. Move farther in and climb the stairs to the next level. Use the torch to burn the salvage net hanging above the stairs. Drop down and crack open the crate. Extinguish the torch, return upstairs and break open the second salvage crate. (screenshots)
Now pry open the door just to the right of the second crate. Inside you'll find a relic (2/2), a Marksmanship Badge, the second in the Senshi Elite set, sitting on some wooden boxes. Examine the relic by turning it around to see the kanji on the back for bonus XP. (screenshots)
Return to the previous room, head outside and climb the next set of stairs to the upper level, where you'll find the Radio Tower Base Camp and sitting on a rug next to the campfire, another document (2/2) from the Diaries of a Madman series. This one is titled "Research." Use the camp if you like. If you've been following this walkthrough, you should have a Skill Point to spend and possibly enough salvage for a weapon upgrade as well. (screenshots)
There are also a few other minor pick-ups in this area. From the ledge next to the campfire, ride the zip line down to the roof of a small building where you'll find a food cache, more rifle/SMG ammo and the Treasure Map for this area. You won't need the map if you've been using this walkthrough, since you will have found all the goodies already, but it does help with 100% completion. Jump up to grab the end of the same zip line you just used, climb back to the top end and drop down near the campsite. (screenshots)
Hmm...now why did we come all the way up here again? Oh, yeah! The radio tower!
CLIMBING TO THE TOP OF THE TOWER: Move to the northwest corner of the upper floor and jump to grab the rope that leads out to the base of the tower. Climb across and drop down on the metal platform. (screenshot) Go around to the side of the platform and approach the ladder leading upward. The next sequence alternates between cut scene and your control. You just need to keep moving upward to reach the top.
When Lara makes it to the panel, she contacts Alex using the walkie talkie. He explains what she needs to do. Following the on-screen prompts, first, swivel the left stick clockwise or press the Left direction key on the keyboard to tune the radio. When the needle on the readout on the right points to the fourth tick mark from the left, you should hear an announcer's voice saying you're tuned to the International Emergency Response System. Press Interact to make Lara move her hand to the left dial. Now swivel the left stick clockwise or press the Left direction key on the keyboard to "Adjust Squelch" (whatever the heck that means). I'm not sure if there's a particular sweet spot on the left dial, but after a bit of rotating, the on-screen message changes to "Hold The Signal." Then you just need to wait until prompted and press Interact to broadcast the S.O.S. Message. (screenshots)
A nearby rescue plane picks up Lara's signal. The pilot tells her he heard the Endurance's original distress call and has been trying to track them. He then suggests she send up some kind of signal so he can locate her position. Lara says she'll figure something out. Alex and Reyes, who've been listening over the walkie talkie, congratulate Lara on a job well done.
After the cut scene, you find yourself midway down the tower with 100 XP and a new goal.
OBJECTIVE: Start a Signal Fire
Slide down the zip line into a small clearing to the southwest of the tower. Move forward down the steps. Aha! Conveniently placed fuel tanks...but how to ignite them? First use your axe to crank open the red valve near the tanks. (screenshot) This forms a puddle of fuel on the ground.
Grab the rifle/SMG ammo near the corpse leaning against the embankment on the right. Then enter the building to find more rifle/SMG ammo and a new piece of gear: the FIRE STRIKER sitting on a table. (screenshot) This allows you to light your torch by simply holding Interact, instead of having to find a fire source each time.
Go back outside, light your torch and use it to ignite the puddle of fuel by standing near it and holding Interact. (screenshot) The fire spreads to the tanks and causes them to explode, netting you 400 XP and sending a clear signal to the rescue plane.
THE AFTERMATH - OUTRUNNING THE CRASHED PLANE: As Lara watches, first excited then horrified, storm clouds appear out of nowhere. A bolt of lightning strikes the plane, causing it to catch fire and plummet to earth. Lara must then make a mad dash to avoid being crushed. She then tumbles ass over teakettle down a muddy slope, with pieces of the broken aircraft careening down behind her.
OBJECTIVE: Keep Moving Forward to Survive
You can move left and right a bit as Lara slides, but this isn't really necessary until the camera shifts to show the slope below and ahead of you. Then you need to steer left then right to avoid the fence-like barriers made of planks and barbed wire. These can do a lot of damage if Lara crashes into them. A bit farther down the slope, there's a burning pile of wreckage. Avoid it by steering around it to the right or going up the ramp to the left. If you hit the wreckage, Lara will be impaled and you'll have to start the sequence again. (screenshots)
Steering up the wooden ramp on the left seems preferable. You'll come out on the other side and slide down onto a wooden ledge. If you go to the right, you'll need to avoid several more spiky barriers before reaching that same flat, wooden ledge.
As Lara rolls out onto this ledge, the camera shifts again to point uphill. She tumbles over the edge and you must press Interact to regain her grip or she'll plummet into the chasm below. Pull up onto the wooden ledge and wait briefly for more debris to come tumbling toward you. As soon as the camera points to the right, run forward and jump across the gap onto the next wooden ledge. You receive 100 XP for surviving and find yourself in a brand new area.
†UPDATE HISTORY: 4/4/13 - First draft of walkthrough posted online.
4/5/13 - Added missed salvage locker in the building after the guard with the shield. Thanks to Terry and Robin for pointing it out.
4/11/13 - Added annotations for collectibles to the level map. Also updated the formatting of the header.
5/10/13 - Clarified the dodge maneuver, thanks to feedback from Tom A.
7/7/13 - Updated weapon parts info with help from Jerad Z.
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