Tomb Raider 3-D Remastered old school Lara (Picture: Aspyr).
A reader is very excited to learn about the upcoming Tomb Raider remasters and tells us why they’re so different than modern games.
I thought it was a pretty good Nintendo Direct on Thursday. There were lots of games, some real surprises and a steady rhythm that never dragged much better than usual for the PlayStation State of Play. But one thing stood out to me above everything in the Direct, the announcement of Tomb Raider 1-3 Remastered.
As far as I know, this came out of the blue. Im ashamed to say that I could have whooped in excitement when I saw it. Tomb Raider was a hit in the game. I doubt it was the first I played, but I’ve forgotten it and the Tomb Raider I remember as the beginning of my love with games, and the Lara Croft who isn’t Mario or Sonic my personification of the hobby.
I think that if I’m not an idiot, I have a shrine to Lara in my basement, but I have many memories of the original games and have been indifferent to everything modern. They’re really good games, but they’re not great and they’re almost nothing like Tomb Raider. Even if you explained what the games were like to someone else, they tried to recreate them without ever playing them themselves.
One of the biggest problems of modern Tomb Raider games is that the gameplay has changed to something seemingly impossible to recognize, as well as Lara. I’ll tackle the second point first first. It’s a little more straightforward, but in the original games Lara was a super confident and snarky adventurer. That character was intended to be a James Bond-style character, bigger than life and capable of doing anything she wanted to do.
In modern games, they were trying to give her some depth, but it is hard to say what she really became. She is very unsure of herself, but even a murder machine that doesn’t seem to have any remorse for anything she does, either as a crime or as a crime theft. She is not a funny person or a witty guy who never seems to be enjoying herself. That’s a long-running downer.
Why can we do that if people like Lara Croft were crazy, how it made me even more mature? Have we ever been wanting it? I said to never complain, but repeated developers keep trying.
The game itself is more of a problem, because I really understand that the gameplay is the same thing as the style, which is acceptable in a big budget game nowadays. The problem is that the platforming and climbing was the original game, not the endless murder and stealth kills. It was not a uncharted style platforming where you just jump between coloured platforms, so you had to look at your surrounds very carefully and figure out the way you were going.
There were also simple puzzles that were not easy and also needed real thinking, which isn’t the kind of thing you see nowadays outside of a Zelda game. I will say that modern games are coming close to the game. They all were optional, but there were some good puzzle and platform sections in Shadow Of the Tomb Raider, who were interesting and hard but I can’t imagine anybody making them the focus of a new game.
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But that’s the reason I’m so excited about the remasters. It gives us the chance to play the originals again with better controls and graphics and enjoy Tomb Raider like it is. The new game they are working on which the remasters are likely to promote turns out well, but there isn’t any way it will be like the Tomb Raider I used to love.
People are very often on remasters and sometimes they are cash grabs, but this is the best news I have heard in ages. I can’t wait until next February when the remaster is out [on all formats GC].
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