Day 11: Do you like the movies? Why or why not?
The first movie was all right. I can’t say that I’m a big fan, because let’s be honest they are kind of bad movies. I do think Angelina Jolie made a good Lara Croft, but she certainly wouldn’t have been my top choice for the role. The fact that this was the first incarnation that introduced the parental issues is one thing I am not particularly fond of, but to each their own. I honestly would have liked them more if they had been in the same vein as the original games, but I understand that the filmmakers wanted to do their own thing and were encouraged to do so by Eidos. I am hoping that the new movie will do the Tomb Raider series more justice, but I’m not going to count on it simply because film adaptations of video games rarely go over well.
Day 10: Do you like any of the novels? If so, which one?
Honestly I haven’t read any of them. I’ve only read the novelizations of the two movies. They were all right, not too different from the films. I would be more inclined to purchase and read the other novels if I heard good things about them. However, when you hear from the vast majority of the Tomb Raider community that they’re rubbish I think I’ll pass. Haha.
The fan fiction, on the other hand, is superb. Sarah Crisman, Ostercy, and J.R. Milward have all done excellent work (just to name a few, there are so many). I could be biased, being a fan fiction author as well, but I think dedicated fans really bring a lot to their stories that you don’t see very often in professional novelizations of the series. Maybe it’s the freedom to do what they want because it is fan fiction that makes the stories better. Although I don’t know much about the authors who have penned the official novelizations, I’m sure they can’t be bad writers otherwise they would not have been chosen to write a Tomb Raider novel. *shrugs*
Day 9: Most challenging entry in the series.
Tomb Raider III for me was the most challenging. Probably the only games that could top it were the Gameboy Tomb Raider games. Does anyone remember those? Anyway, TR3 was the most challenging in my opinion out of the standard games. Even Croft Manor was harder! Getting through that door to get into the basement was such a pain! But I digress. It was a fun game just the same, but I won’t deny that several levels gave me pause if not outright frustration. The nice thing though was that you could take a break and crash the manor to lock Winston in the freezer.
Day 8: Favorite artifact.
The Dagger of Xian: The dagger is probably my favorite artifact. Tomb Raider II was a fun game and the dagger had a really cool mythology behind it. Also I’m partial to dragons and I think of all of the artifacts Lara has found having a dagger that can turn you into a dragon is pretty f-ing cool.
Day 7: Favorite weapon(s).
This is a tough one, because Tomb Raider has such a diverse selection of weapons and so many of them are good weapons. I think I will have to go with the crossbow with explosive arrows (Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation). This was a fun one. It was more accurate than the grenade launcher and just a really good weapon. It was so much fun to blow up enemies.
However, I am partial to the bow (Tomb Raider 2013 and Rise of the Tomb Raider). Yes, the dual pistols are Lara’s trademark, but I do like the introduction of the bow into the new games. Those that have watched my streams of the two games know that I rely heavily on the bow.
Day 6: Favorite enemy.
T-Rex: Dinosaurs! Seriously they are the coolest enemies in the Tomb Raider franchise. I’m an archaeologist and as such I’m use to being confused with a paleontologist (we don’t dig Dinosaurs!), but I’ve always held a fascination with the prehistoric beasts. Jurassic Park was as much a part of my childhood as Tomb Raider. So naturally putting the two together gets a big thumbs up from me. It’s been said that there’s two types of Tomb Raider players, those who flee the T-Rex and those who run right at the mofo. I am definitely the latter.
Crystal Dynamics if you read this, PLEASE BRING BACK DINOSAURS! Armies of the undead are cool and all, but defeating a prehistoric beast it a testament to how truly awesome Lara is. I mean seriously, she has a T-Rex head mounted on her mantle.
Day 5: Favorite outfit(s).
Nevada outfit (TRIII): Okay, I’m biased on this one. I’m from Nevada so you can imagine my thrill when I played Tomb Raider III. Also blue is my favorite color and for a period of time I was really into camouflage prints. Haha. It’s one of the few outfits that she wears in the classic games that includes pants versus shorts, which is more practical for tomb raiding. I say this as an archaeologist who can tell you that you really don’t want to wear shorts while running around in the wilderness. Pants are always the way to go, protects you from the elements, plants, and animals a lot better. The tank top, well it keeps you cool while the pants protect your legs! 😉
The Tomb Raider Community article is coming along great! As we head into another year, I thought it was important to shine a light on the dedication of Tomb Raider fans. Recently fans have been inundated by negativity within the community itself and I wanted to contribute something positive.
There’s been an on-going conflict between “Core Design fans” and “Crystal Dynamics fans”. Sadly this conflict has existed for over 13 years, since Core Design was let go and Crystal Dynamics was brought on to reboot the series. This is an article in itself that I plan on writing, so I won’t go into a lot of detail here. All I will say on the subject for now is that we are all Tomb Raider fans, regardless of which version we fell in love with.
To prove that point are the fans! I encourage everyone to read the article, especially if you find yourself bullied or feeling overwhelmed by bickering. The majority of fans have not drawn a line in the sand.
I would like to give a big THANK YOU to Robert, Kelly, Alonzorion, Daniel, and Lucas who have answered the interview questions and shared their stories. You guys rock and I really appreciate your willingness to help in this endeavor. 🙂 Stella, June, and Jenni I also thank you guys for your tip and look forward to your stories too!
If you would like to participate, please do! There is a form in the article that you can fill out. There is no prerequisite to fill out the form, just that you love Tomb Raider!
Day 4: Favorite antagonist(s).
Jacqueline Natla: Natla is by far the best villain Tomb Raider has had. She is definitely Lara’s arch-nemesis in the same vein as the Joker/Batman dynamic. The two go hand-in-hand. What is really attractive about Natla as a villain is that she’s intelligent and witty, she keeps Lara on her toes. I really would love to see her return to the series even if it’s in movie form. It always bothered me she wasn’t included in any of the movies. Sadly I’m not sure that we’ll see Natla again since the reboot series is trying to maintain a more realistic demeanor and Natla is very Sci-fi/Fantasy. As a critic of the Tomb Raider: Legend timeline and trilogy, I wasn’t fond of the games themselves but I really liked how Crystal Dynamics weaved Natla’s role into the storyline of the three games. I really liked the idea that Natla had been a behind the scenes figure, leading Richard Croft to his own grim fate (hint, hint Crystal Dynamics 😉 ). In fan works, Natla has also gained a following of her own. Seriously, if you’ve never read Ostercy’s The Atlantean Way you’re missing out. The best part about Natla is that she’s a woman. Just as Lara is a trail blazing female-icon, Natla is too. Lara needed someone to match her and what better way to do that than have a female enemy? Yes, Lara has had plenty of male foes and Natla certainly wasn’t the last female villain (Sophia Leigh and Amanda Evert), but there’s something to say about the role Natla played in making Tomb Raider what it is. Who else would think to create the Doppelgänger to take down Lara Croft?
Day 3: Favorite character(s) besides Lara.
Winston: Come on, who could pass up locking poor Winston in the freezer? He was the first friend we were introduced to (first appearance in Tomb Raider II) who became a reoccurring character in the series, even making a cameo in Rise of the Tomb Raider‘s Blood Ties DLC. Although we never really got to know Winston in any real depth, I always saw his character as being very important to who Lara is. While the exact dynamic of their relationship was never really delved into, in Tomb Raider: Chronicles you get that Winston was the family butler (maybe having been around since Lara was a girl) and that he went to be with Lara after her parents disowned her. His devotion to the Croft family is also apparent in the Tomb Raider: Legend timeline and he plays a bigger role in the games than in the original timeline. His role as a guardian to Lara was also hinted at in the Rise Blood Ties DLC. In my own writings, I’ve very much viewed Winston not just as the caretaker of Croft Manor and Lara’s living target for target practice, but also her friend and part of her family. When she no longer had anyone (disowned or orphaned) Winston was there.
Locking Winston in the freezer.