It’s been almost 18 years since Lara Croft first started raiding tombs. In that time, her adventures have spanned 10 games, 2 feature films, an animated series, several novels, and an ongoing comic book. The Tomb Raider series has provided us with countless memories. With Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition having recently dropped onto next-gen consoles and a new Tomb Raider series coming from Dark Horse Comics, Drew wanted to share his top 5 favorite Tomb Raider moments.
1. DINOSAURS! (Tomb Raider, PS, Sega Saturn – 1996)
I was 10 years old when the original Tomb Raider came out. At that age, my passions could be counted on one hand: video games, Power Rangers, Pokémon, candy, and dinosaurs. Forget the revolutionary graphics, intense platforming, and cinematic gameplay, I was solely focused on dinosaurs. One of my most vivid memories of Tomb Raider was dispatching a pack of velociraptors and then immediately running headlong into a charging T-Rex! Not since Jurassic Park had I been so scared of a rampaging T-Rex. It was both wonderful and terrifying!
2. Lara’s First Kill (Tomb Raider: Definitive Edition, PS4, Xbox One – 2014)
Jumping forward in time to the most recent entry in the series, this moment is by far the most intense and emotional moment (to me) in the entire game, maybe even the series. Lara is shipwrecked and stranded on an unforgiving island. She’s not the dual pistol toting badass from the previous games; she’s young, scared, and just trying to survive in this brutal environment. She is forced into a kill or be killed scenario. This is the single defining moment for Lara Croft, this is where she becomes the character we’ve all been playing for decades.
To say Lara Croft: Tomb Raider is a good movie might be giving it too much credit, but that didn’t keep me from being elated to see one of my favorite video game characters on the big screen for the first time. My 15 year-old self didn’t care that the plot made zero sense. The only thing that mattered was that Angelina Jolie WAS Lara Croft and she was running around with guns drawn for 100 glorious minutes.
4. Tomb Raiding…with Friends! (Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light, XBLA, PSN – 2010)
While not one of the core Tomb Raider games, Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light was a brilliant arcade style co-op game that breathed life into a fading and tired formula. Although it’s technically not a single “moment”, this game came out just when my roommate and I were desperately searching for same couch co-op games (a feature that has sadly gone out of style since online functionality became standard). It scratched so many itches. Many hours were lost trying to top each other’s high scores, swiping gems and treasures from each other, and generally laying waste to any enemy that stood in our way. TEAMWORK!
5. Sleeping with the Fishes (Tomb Raider, PS, Sega Saturn – 1996)
Drowning, it’s a horrible way to die. Nothing illustrated this more than watching Lara drown over and over again in the original Tomb Raider (and in the subsequent games). It was this exact character animation that makes me cautious to enter any body of water in any game I play, and it still haunts me to this day.
For more fun with Lara Croft, check out this week’s episode of Talkin’ Comics Weekly! What are some of your favorite Tomb Raider moments? Tell us in the comments!
By Drew Sacks