Lara Croft GO

App review by
Galen McQuillen, Common Sense Media
Lara Croft GO App Poster Image
Awesome logic puzzles add a new twist to Tomb Raider.

Parents say

age 7+
Based on 1 review

Kids say

age 4+
Based on 1 review

A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can learn logical sequencing, spatial reasoning, problem solving, and perseverance. Because the game requires a fairly strong ability to succeed but also features a gradual learning curve, it's essentially scaffolded practice, and kids can try out their strategies with no devastating consequences: If Lara Croft dies, the level just starts over. Also, kids probably won't ever realize they're learning these things, which means they'll likely put in a good amount of productive playtime. While Lara Croft GO was made to entertain, and its skills don't easily transfer to the real world, it does require a lot of problem solving and persistence.

Ease of Play

Controls take a little while to figure out (there's no tutorial or guide), though once you get them down, they're very simple; however, sometimes swipes don't register correctly. On smaller screens especially (such as the iPhone 5s) this causes problems, but the issue still persists on larger devices (such as the iPad). 

Violence

Main character uses guns and spears to kill oversized wild animals (snakes, spiders, and lizards), which attack violently, and physical obstacles such as spinning saw blades and rolling boulders can kill the enemies or the main character. There's no blood or gore, so the violence is all fairly cartoonish, but with realistic sound effects.

Sex

Lara Croft's signature skimpy outfit with a low-cut tank top showing minor cleavage and very short shorts showing lots of leg. Unlockable outfits vary in modesty.

Language
Consumerism

Big link on the main screen to other titles by the developer, plus in-app purchases in several places. Persistent icon on every screen to unlock all the solutions for $4.99, which begins to pulse if you fail too many times on any level, but no purchases are necessary to enjoy the game.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Lara Croft GO is a logic puzzle game that features the female protagonist from the Tomb Raider series of games who wears a very revealing outfit and uses a pair of pistols to kill enemies while hunting treasure in ancient ruins. The violence is cartoony with no gore and directed solely at large animals (huge snakes, spiders, and lizards), which might be scary to younger kids, and a small number of jump scares will startle everyone. Compared to other games in the franchise, this is probably the least racy and violent title, and the logic puzzle gameplay actually offers some very good critical-thinking practice. Note that there are social media links in the app, and read the app's privacy policy to find out about the types of information collected and shared.

User Reviews

  • Parents say
  • Kids say
Parent of a 11 year old Written bySam G. January 3, 2017

Great Family Friendly Game w/ interesting puzzles!

My 11 year old son recently bought this game for his iPod touch. He let me have a go and I'll admit - it was tricky but soon I got the knack of it. Some vi... Continue reading
Teen, 17 years old Written byKyleKirkpatrick123 September 6, 2018

Fantastic Spin-Off of the Tomb Raider franchise

As somebody who has been a Tomb Raider fan since I was about 4, I really do appreciate a game like Lara Croft GO. It's a simple, yet well designed puzzle-g... Continue reading

What's it about?

LARA CROFT GO is a puzzle game featuring the protagonist from the Tomb Raider series of games. Players guide Lara through beautifully rendered ancient ruins on a grid-based track with step-by-step swipes and taps. Through 101 increasingly difficult levels, she deals with vicious wild animals, switches, moving platforms, spinning saw blades, and crumbling floors. Hidden throughout each level are relics and gems, which players can hunt for to unlock extra outfits when complete sets are found. The game is a departure from previous titles in the franchise and shares much more in common with puzzle hits such as Monument Valley than any of the Tomb Raider action-platform games. 

Is it any good?

It's an extremely good game and well worth the cost of admission, but make sure to use the controls precisely. The gameplay is simple, but the puzzles are challenging enough to make getting through each stage feel like a real accomplishment. The graphics are absolutely phenomenal, and the soundtrack is full of beautiful ambient tracks that almost make you want to leave the headphones in and bliss out for a while. If a player gets too eager and swipes too quickly, however, Lara sometimes goes in the wrong direction and dies, which requires a player to start a level again. It's also important to note that the game requires some pretty high-level critical thinking: If your kids absolutely hate puzzle games, there's a chance they won't enjoy this one, but the action-packed animations and persistent sense of danger may lure them in anyway. If you're looking for a way to encourage persistence and patience and can tolerate a bit of fantasy violence and skimpy costumes, this would be an awesome way to do it.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about logical thinking and persistence in solving puzzles. How can you discover new rules and patterns and then use those to figure out solutions? What are ways you can cope with frustration when games (or real-world problems) get difficult or when nothing seems to work?

  • Discuss the portrayal of women in games and other popular media. Why do female characters in video games often wear revealing clothing or have exaggerated body features?

  • Given the series' emphasis on discovering ancient relics, it's worth talking about the ethics of archaeology and treasure-hunting, especially in reference to Indiana Jones or the National Treasure films. It might even be a great way to raise excitement about a visit to the museum.

App details

Themes & Topics

Browse titles with similar subject matter.

For kids who love puzzle games

Our editors recommend

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

See how we rate

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

Our ratings are based on child development best practices. We display the minimum age for which content is developmentally appropriate. The star rating reflects overall quality and learning potential.

Learn how we rate