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Lara Croft: Tomb Raider - Anniversary

Moby ID: 28337
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Description official descriptions

Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Anniversary is a remake of the original Tomb Raider with a technically more advanced graphics engine. It has the same basic storyline, though some cutscenes and much of the dialogue within have been expanded or modified in other ways. Locations correspond to those of the original version and are accessed in the same order, but have been re-designed with different layouts and mostly completely different puzzles which allow implementation of new moves introduced in Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Legend: swinging on ropes and using a grappling hook at specific points.

Puzzles are generally more focused on acrobatics in this version, ledges being much more prominently featured as a level design element, requiring combinations of jumping and shimmying across them to access areas. This type of gameplay replaces the key-retrieval and block-pushing puzzles of the original almost entirely. Combat is similar to that of the first game, though the player must now manually activate targeting. Some boss fights have been made a separate enclosed stage rather than being part of the exploration as in the original version. These fights may have puzzle-solving elements and often require the player to use Lara's new "adrenaline dodge" ability, which slightly slows down time when the opponent charges at her while in an "enraged" state. Some cutscenes require the player to participate in quick-time events.

The version released for the Wii incorporates motion controls and also features some puzzles exclusive to that platform.

Spellings

  • 古墓奇兵:重返禁地 - Traditional Chinese spelling

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Credits (Windows version)

232 People (179 developers, 53 thanks) · View all

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[ full credits ]

Reviews

Critics

Average score: 81% (based on 103 ratings)

Players

Average score: 3.9 out of 5 (based on 101 ratings with 5 reviews)

A true classic remake

The Good
I played TR1 a lot, getting up to the T-rex. As a young kid seeing a T-rex pop out of the dark in front of little 'ol Lara Croft kind makes you jump out of your seat. By the time I was a little older, and had a little more courage to go on, I realized how much of a treat the game was.

  I didn't even realize how complex the games worlds were, and how large they were. So, I wanted to go farther into the game to see everything. Even finding TR1's box, in the game store for the first time, was like finding a lost artifact in a gauntlet of others, that were to much like DOOM or Myst clones. It had a nice cover art too :) But before I make this sound like a review for TR1, let me continue.

  Tomb Raider Anniversary will have the classic fans, having flash backs, in a good way, of course. The game wasn't entirely designed to play like the classic game. But everything will be familiar to the fans.

  There is new graphics and new physics technology in the gaming world. So, might as well put them to work. You will especially notice this in Lara Crofts glorious makeover. Her polies and animation grew up real nice :) Still it's not an ultra realistic character model of the human body, but its getting there.

  The level design is basically a makeover as well. You will recognize almost everything from the classic levels, with few or many updates. For instance, some structures that looked like they were supposed to be separated from the rest of the level design as a individual structure. Now small huts, buildings, arent blocked squarely into the level design any more. Overall, things look a lot more realistic. Instead of feeling like you are just going through a large subterranean structure, some places are broken up more, to feel like you are in a large open cave with ancient buildings inside. The geometry of design isn’t boxed up so much, anymore.

  Music and ambient sound pretty much like the classic game. Fortunately, that’s good because it was done well. It was re-mastered too. TR1 had a great intro track that can put you into a trance. The level sounds are updated to sound better, but still have the same edge as TR1. The raptors new sounds make them feel even more like stalking predators, then what they did in TR1. You can hear them sometimes echo down a tight corridor, around a corner.<br><br>**The Bad**<br>      There are few things I didn't like about the game. Most that doesn’t bother me at all, because they were done in ways to keep the gameplay fun.

  For instance, I expected to see maybe a little blood on Lara. The again, I am not sure how realistic her character model is, to add that kind of detail. It might look a bit unreal. They could have maybe shown a raptor ripping off her limbs, if she died. Then again, if the gameplay gets to realistic, it takes away from the fun of the game. Lara Croft never gets to tired or injured to do what she is supposed to, to make the game fun.

  I'm also not going to argue with some of the control flaws in TRA, because they are way better than TR1. Lara Croft may have seemed to move smoothly in TR1, but a lot of it made her feel a lot heavier than she really was. I can get through TRA a lot faster and easier than TR1.

  Then there is the fighting. You basically are defending yourself from wild-life, prehistoric, and fantasy predators, along the category of non-human. Except for what you see in some cut-scenes. That’s how TR1 was. So I'm not upset about it.

  Lara Croft makes action and avoiding traps of death it more interesting now, with her new or improved moves, and her ability to lock on, dodge, and attack with a deadly headshot all in one.

 For an updated game, the bosses were about the same level of difficulty in the classic game. The final boss in TR1 was also easy to defeat, if you knew the trick. The bosses have basically the same idea, but a few things have noticably changed to make it more interesting.



The Bottom Line
Tomb Raider Anniversary is one of the best action adventure games with a female character. If you played the classic, this has that, and so much more including new unlocks.

  If you are new to the Tomb Raider world, you should like it as well. Especially if you like the console style action adventure games. Just realize that this is a game that was improving on an older one. So, it's mostly a fan based game. But, I wouldn't doubt it attracting a lot of the new younger crowd, like I was 10 or so years ago.

Windows · by IKNOWPCGAMES81 (5) · 2007

Ooo, I'm scared and tense! I remember those feelings now.

The Good
Prowl around any Tomb Raider forum and you'll quickly learn that the fans are divided into two distinct groups. The first bunch loathe the direction Legend took the series, preferring the exploration feel of the earlier games. While the second lot embraced Legend's updated controls and fresh look, feeling that the previous control scheme was growing stale.

Now there's Tomb Raider: Anniversary, and it's managed to win the hearts from both of those crowds, which is a pretty amazing achievement.

The first thing I noticed when I begun playing, was the immediate sense of polish. Controls on cross-platform games are very finicky when it comes to the PC, but Anniversary works pretty darn well. While you have the option of using a gamepad, I never felt the need.

In particular, the general gun usage feels much more solid than Legend, with the guns drawing easily with the right mouse button (toggle or hold, choice is yours) and firing with the left. And a great improvement over the original Tomb Raider, is that Lara now draws her guns quick and fast, with a great hammer-clicking sound! Remember how you always ran around the original game with your guns drawn? Only ever putting them away to climb something? Probably wasn't what the designers intended. Thankfully in Anniversary, you can run around with your guns holstered knowing that should you need them, Lara can whip them out with speed. This may sound very similar to Legend, but I assure you that if you go back to Legend after playing Anniversary, you WILL find Legend's gunplay very cumbersome in comparison.

One of the big changes that Legend brought to the series was how Lara got around her environment. Anniversary has kept this pretty much the same, with a few new moves. The big difference though, is that the animations are much smoother and, as I said earlier about the game, polished. Now, this system was quite obviously 'influenced' from the new Prince of Persia games, but personally, I think Tomb Raider is all the better for it. And hey, the original designers admitted that they wanted the first Tomb Raider to be similar to the original Prince of Persia except in 3D, so things have come full circle. Despite using the WASD and mouse scheme on the Windows version, it works well and you'll never fight with the game to get Lara to do what you want.

When it comes to the graphics, there have been a lot of complaints because since the only console getting the game was the PS2, the developers didn't create any "Next Generation" graphics, meaning PC users do not get any "Next Generation" graphics. Let me tell you though, it's a misconception to think the PC version is simply using PS2's graphics, because that is not the case. While it's not Next-Gen, some areas are drop-dead gorgeous on the PC, not to mention very immersive. Speaking of that, they've pulled off a stunning job with the atmosphere. The sounds, graphics and lack of music (out of combat) all help hit home the feeling that you're very much alone in these places, which is exactly what old fans missed from the original game. A lot of the levels and rooms are inspired directly from the first Tomb Raider, but the challenges within them have changed drastically. You won't be pulling and pushing many blocks this time. Instead you'll be flipping, swinging, climbing and grappling your way around. There are a few puzzles in here too, but they're very good quality for an action game, and shouldn't leave you too stumped.

Another great change is the music during combat and cutscenes. Gone are the techno tracks from Legend whenever a fight breaks out. Instead, you'll be treated to some very characteristic movie-like scores during battles. Why do I say characteristic? Simply because each animal/beast you encounter has their own tune that plays when you go up against them, and for a lot of them they are very fitting! The themes for the bats, rats and T-Rex are good examples of this. One more thing about the music, if you're a long-time fan of the original Tomb Raider, you will notice some familiar themes cropping up, though most of the music is original work. The sound effects are also top-notch and won't cause any complaints.

Legend didn't rate very high in the 'length' factor, and while Anniversary isn't extremely long, it is about twice the size of Legend in comparison. And a better ratio of it is actual gameplay.

The story has had some modifications too, some of it good and some of it bad. The good is that there is a lot more involvement between Lara and the rest of the cast. This is no longer a simple case of Good vs Evil. One scene in particular will be very interesting to Lara fans, and is pulled off pretty well.

The Bad
What didn't I like? Well, I love a lot in this game, but there is a large amount I don't like. Unfortunately, a lot of it has to do with the story and quality of the lines.

The original Tomb Raider had a very basic story, but it wasn't bad. Do you recall the speech from the main villain in the original game? Do you remember that person's motives? Well, they've changed. In Anniversary, while the same scenes play out and the story follows the same arc, there is a different motive driving the villain, and I feel it is much weaker in comparison. But hey, at least if you know the original story, you'll get something new.

My other complaint is at the quality of the script. No matter how many insults were flung at Legend, there's one thing that people could not mock, and that was the lines. Sure, people disliked the story (Why? It was better than TR 1 - 5) and people disliked the new Lara, but despite all this, it was clear that Legend's lines were professional and well-written. That's the problem with Anniversary, you see. The one-liners, the conversations... they're all quite weak in comparison to Legend. It's understandable that there's less talking in Anniversary, since that was the goal, but when there IS talking, it's pretty cheesy and cringe-worthy. Lara loses her british flair a bit in this game, whereas Legend enhanced it. The voice acting is still good, but let down by the dismal script. I'm sorry, but it just wasn't down-to-earth enough for me. It was also more melodramatic than Legend, though I can understand this was an attempt to portray a younger, more emotionally-vulnerable Lara.

My third complaint is the AI, though it's an odd one. At the beginning of the game, the AI was terrible. While the rest of the game felt polished, the enemies intelligence seemed extremely lacking. Often a creature would get trapped by something or simply just stop moving, STARING at me while I shot it to death. Funnily enough though, as the game progresses, these occurrences seem to become non-existant, rendering this complaint invalid. Weird indeed!

My last complaint, a small one, is one scene in the game. Anniversary has a lock-on system when shooting. This works fine throughout the whole game, but one difficult-to-navigate area has shootable buttons on the walls. The problem is that when there are enemies (of which this scene has a lot), the game doesn't prioritise enemies over buttons. This means often Lara would lock onto the button when I desperately wanted her to shoot the threats!

The Bottom Line
Overall, this game is awesome. There are some complaints mentioned above, but if you love Tomb Raider for whatever reason, then you'll love this game. For old fans, this is the first Tomb Raider in a long-time to capture the original's feeling of isolation and tomb exploration. For new fans, the control scheme is very modern, and a it's good introduction to what made Tomb Raider famous in the first place (besides Lara, of course).

I can honestly, hand-on-my-heart say that you will enjoy this game if you have any fascination in third-person adventures.

Windows · by Richard Kaplan (14) · 2007

Back in 1997, you must have been playing this game!

The Good
Tomb Raider: Anniversary is the follow-up to successful Tomb Raider: Legend by Crystal Dynamics mostly known for their Legacy Of Kain series. While Legend being a great game on its own and certainly a welcome addition into a long-run Tomb Raider series I felt it was somewhat lacking. It was a sunning professionally executed brilliantly written game. Superb action and a new revised look of the main heroine showed that finally after years long years of constant failure, franchise started to move in right direction. But still it remained just number two in my book. Despite of mind-boggling action of this new offering the game was extremely linear. The exploration was the centerpiece of each Tomb Raider. And there certainly wasn’t enough of it in Legend. I always felt led by hand through a sheer dozen of beautiful levels with no step left or right allowed. So to remind myself what once made the original Tomb Raider such a hit I took my old dusty copy of this oldie …. and was utterly disappointed. “What the #@$% is this?” I cried. It’s not the game I played ten years ago. How on earth could I see ancient Coliseum in those lumpy sets of polygons or be impressed by the detail in that triangular breast? Now mind you, I’m a very tolerant person in terms of old titles. I still think of the VGA-era of graphic adventures having the most beautiful artwork and ingenious game design this side of Milky Way has ever seen. But on the dawn of 3D era the game engines were so limited and controls were so atrocious and unintuitive that it’s pretty understandable that those titles crumbles under heavy weight of sands of time, especially those from a third-person perspective (another one that immediately comes to mind is Fade To Black). And then like a send from the heaven a new game in the series was released. And what a game it is! Tomb Raider: Anniversary is not simply a remake; it’s the reinvention the old genre in regard of modern gamer demands. My memory must be playing tricks upon me, but this is THE game I played 10 years ago, and not that monster from 1997 I carelessly installed a year ago. I am not talking about specific details because most of the game has been altered due to all the possibilities that exist in game mechanics these days. I am talking about the spirit and the essence of the original Tomb Raider. And it most certainly resides now in the body of Tomb Raider: Anniversary. The game firmly reminds players why it’s actually called Tomb Raider and not any other title. It’s about exploring tombs, for god’s sake, finding lost civilizations and experiencing the sense of grand adventure. Obviously not shooting cops in Louvre gallery or hiking through military base number 245. Above all I’d like to mention an incredible level design. Taking basic ideas from original game the designers have revised them and then expanded upon them. No room serves no purpose. Each level is unique and aesthetically pleasing. The Greek-inspired level with a crumbled stairway is a bright example of what most of the current game designers aren’t capable of. Except for Crystal Dynamics, with a little help from Core Design. As for others aspects of the game, everything is really top-notch. The game features the most fluid animations of animals I have ever seen. The battles are fast, dynamic and really vicious. Be sure to the turn the lights on while playing Tomb Raider: Anniversary or you might lose a bit more of them nerve cells then you would do otherwise. The music is beautiful and fits the game so well that you start to feel affection for it on a really close, personal level.


The Bad
This game is faithful to the original. Maybe too much faithful for it’s own good. Of course it’s nice to see so many familiar places spread over four grand levels of the game, but Crystal Dynamic doesn’t have to prove us anything, we know what they are capable of, so a bit more of creative freedom would have been certainly welcome. The only major grudge I have with this game is the unfortunate decision not to include next-generation content at all. I can’t care less about marketing policy Eidos is taking, so don’t start on me. If they don’t want to release it on the next-generation console then why we the PC gamers have to suffer technologically dated graphics. Just imagine what would the game look like with the entire next-gen extravaganza… Not gonna happen! Sorry.

The Bottom Line
If you still remember what the word “adventure” actually means, if forgotten civilizations still send you spinal shivers, if you young at heart and open in mind, then don’t miss this one. You wouldn’t forgive yourself if you do!

Windows · by St. Martyne (3648) · 2007

[ View all 5 player reviews ]

Trivia

Audio commentary

There's a unlockable commentary track by Toby Gard and Jason Botta in which they not only talk about the making of the remake but also about the original Tomb Raider. It's also possible to unlock the Lara model from the original Tomb Raider and play with her.

Core Design version

A different version of the game was under development by Core Design, the developers of the older Tomb Raider games, but Eidos called Crystal Dynamics to do it simultaneously. Core Design's version was ultimately scrapped completely.

References

As it already happened in Legend, once again the folks at Crystal Dynamics take a chance to tip their hat to their own Legacy of Kain series: if you find level 12's relic (The Great Pyramid) you'll unlock the wetsuit Lara wore back in Tomb Raider II, only this time it has a b&w logo on the chest. You might recognize this logo as Raziel's clan symbol.

Information also contributed by Dr. M. "Schadenfreude" Von Katze

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Related Sites +

  • Apple Games Article
    An article discussing the Macintosh version of Tomb Raider: Anniversary.
  • Game Review: Switching to Mac
    A review of Tomb Raider: Anniversary by Ross McKillop at Switching to Mac (September 24th, 2008).
  • Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Anniversary
    Wikipedia: article in the open encyclopedia
  • Official Webpage (Mac)
    The official product page for the Mac version of Tomb Raider: Anniversary on the publisher's website, which provides a trailer, an overview of the locations and tools within the game, desktop wallpapers, a demo, and purchasing information, among other such particulars.

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Contributors to this Entry

Game added by Sicarius.

Macintosh added by coolfrost. OnLive added by firefang9212. Wii added by Sciere. Xbox 360 added by Diogo Ribeiro. PSP added by klf9j3skld.

Additional contributors: Sciere, Zeppin, Paulus18950, Patrick Bregger, Plok.

Game added June 2, 2007. Last modified March 7, 2024.