Rise of the Tomb Raider is a third-person action-adventure game that features similar gameplay found in 2013's Tomb Raider. Players control Lara Croft through various environments, battling enemies, and completing puzzle platforming sections, while using improvised weapons and gadgets in order to progress through the story.
The game features a crafting system, allowing players to create items like different arrow types (poison, climbable, fire, grenade, rope) by scavenging materials from plants and animals in the game's harsh environment.
The in-game environment includes a weather system that both human and animal characters can react to and a day-night cycle. For example, to create a hardier winter coat Lara must hunt a wolf which only comes out during a specific time of day and specific weather condition. Lara can swim which will add to her mobility and combat tactics.