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 21: GONDOLA TRANSPORT
Note: This level has no camps or collectibles.
OBJECTIVE: Find a Way Down to the Beach (continued)
As Lara rides the gondola down the mountain from Shantytown, Sam hails her over the radio. Lara reveals her suspicions about the island and her plan to take the PT boat inland. She asks Sam to keep it a secret for the time being. You receive 100 XP and a new goal.
OBJECTIVE: Travel to the Survivors' Camp
The gondola descends further, approaching some sort of loading station. It stops some distance from the terminal, though, and Lara appears to be stuck here. Stand near the anchor post built into the corner of the gondola car and shoot a rope arrow into the rope-wrapped girder on the tower off to the south. Slide down the zip line to the tower. Go around to the left, pick up pistol ammo and shotgun shells and continue around to the opposite corner from where you landed. Climb the ladder to the top of the tower. Turn right, move to the next corner, and then ride the zip line down to the ship's hull suspended in space. (screenshots)
SKYSHIP COMBAT: The Solarii see Lara coming and send up a flare. Men begin sliding down the lines from the towers to the left and right. When she lands on the deck, she immediately starts taking fire. Crouch behind the low barrier near the mast and get your bearings. Then draw your weapon of choice and start eliminating bad guys. I prefer the rifle here against multiple enemies, but fire arrows are also handy. A grenade or two will make short work of small groups clustered together. (screenshots)
The round, red, explodey things are quite dangerous. Stay away from them. If one rolls down the deck toward you, either get out of the way or kick it away from you with a tap of the Melee button. If you see one or more enemies standing near one of these red things, shoot it just as you would a fuel barrel. (screenshots)
NOTE: I have no clue what these exploding objects are, and apparently neither does TR's Art Director Brian Horton. He likes to call them sake bombs. So sake bombs it is! ;)
There's a box of rifle/SMG ammo sitting here behind the barrier and more rifle ammo behind the small structure ahead on the left. When the men start throwing petrol bombs or dynamite, scramble over there for fresh cover and an ammo top-up. There are two more low barriers on the right side of the deck. You'll find shotgun shells sitting near the farther one, though you probably won't need them. (screenshots)
This fight also offers several opportunities to shoot enemies off zip lines for the Deadeye Achievement/Trophy. They slide in from both sides at various points during the battle. If you're working on unlocking Deadeye and don't manage to shoot a few men off the lines, just reload the checkpoint at the start of the fight and try again. (screenshot)
It's a challenge to loot bodies here without getting decimated, so you may just have to let the extra salvage go. You'll have plenty of opportunities to get more when you get to the beach.
The bad guys don't all appear at once, but as you kill each small group, more slide down the zip lines. I counted 20 enemies in all—mostly archers and riflemen with Molotovs, plus a few demolitions men. The last to arrive are 2 men with axes and machetes. Even if you don't kill those two, a cut scene kicks in.
DESERTING THE SINKING SHIP: A grizzly guy gets his hands on a mounted machine gun and starts shooting at Lara from one of the towers. As she scrambles for cover, he blasts away the cables supporting one side of the skyship. The floor tilts and Lara barely manages to hang on. She loses her grip, falls several feet and grabs onto a railing.
When you regain control, climb upward along the yellow slats as the shooter peppers the deck of the ship with bullets. Wait for him to shoot away the decking to the right, exposing the yellow slats beneath and killing one of his comrades in the process. Then climb over to the right. Jump across the gap to the right. Jump straight up to grab the next higher yellow slat. Then continue climbing into the open hatch above. When Lara lands on the ledge on other side of the opening, the gunner opens fire. Immediately start running to the right. When you reach the edge with the red planks, jump across the gap to grab the yellow metal thingy ahead. (screenshots)
In an other short cut scene, the gunner destroys another set of cables, once again causing the skyship to tilt wildly. Lara loses her grip on the yellow ladder and falls to what is now the bottom of the ship. She attempts to grab several handholds on the way down, but the whole structure is coming apart. After several thumps and bumps, she manages to catch hold of a rope line and you regain control.
ANOTHER PERILOUS DESCENT: Slide down the zip line and when you see the on-screen prompt, press Dodge/Roll (Shift/Circle/B) to drop and grab the perpendicular line below. Keep sliding until you approach a third zip line. This time you don't get a prompt, so you need to time it right. When you do let go, momentum will continue to carry Lara forward a bit as she falls. So drop a little before you reach the other line to ensure that she's able to catch it with her axe. She'll then start to slide down to the left. Next you need to drop off the line before Lara smashes into the sharp metal on the roof of the tunnel. So wait until she's just above the green metal panel at the tunnel entrance and then drop. Momentum will carry her forward, but as long as you don't drop too late, she should land in the tunnel. (screenshots)
As she slides, Lara will automatically equip the shotgun. Aim and fire to destroy the plank-and-barbed wire barrier blocking the end of the tunnel. When she passes this barrier, she'll automatically grab onto the yellow metal bar, swing and jump to the next rope line. As she slides down to the left, toward the tower with the tangle of sharp metal on top, the picture goes a bit monochromatic, and the on-screen action slows down. This is the signal to drop to the perpendicular line below. Drop too soon and she dies from the fall, too late and she gets skewered. When you manage to grab the last zip line, let Lara slide until she is hanging above the water rather than the rocks, then drop. As she moves through this second tunnel, aim and fire to blast away another plank barrier. Lara then sails over a waterfall into the pool below. Whew! (screenshots)
Climb out of the water onto the little wooden dock and follow the path down to Shipwreck Beach.
†UPDATE HISTORY: 5/19/13 - First draft of walkthrough posted online.
5/26/13 - Added note from Brian Horton about the "sake bombs."
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