Monday, April 18, 2011

Tomb Raider Trilogy for PS3 Review on

Lara Croft, ah yes that Lara Croft, you know the woman with incredible body proportions that got many a young gamers through puberty. Well she’s back and she’s been redone in high definition. Yes, there is a gaming god after all. So, let’s start from the beginning...Sherman set the way back machine for 1996. Back in 1996 there was an incredible 3D world being explored by Mario fans on the Nintendo 64 and Sony wanted theirs. Thus the ground breaking Tomb Raider was released on the Playstation One and it starred one buxom beauty named Lara Croft. Being a rich English socialite adventurer, Lara braved many ancient tombs with a wild zeal that could only be outdone by Indiana Jones himself. Lara has always been a beautiful, intelligent, and athletic archaeologist that spawned a huge fan following through so many adventures that I am beginning to lose count. Lara was envisioned by Toby Gard at Core Design Studios who brought us the Tomb Raider video game series for PS1. Later she started showing up on the Sega Dreamcast, PS2, Gameboy Color, Gameboy Advance and the list just kept on going.

Well, as cliche as it is, all good things must come to an end…or do they? Due to a decreasing demand for Ms. Croft's adventures she was cast into a hiatus after the lack luster sales of the super glitch PS2 game Angel of Darkness. The plan? “Lara needed to be rebooted for the next generation of gamers. Thus work began on a new retooled Lara with a new look, and a slightly more realistic body. Tomb Raider Legend was released in 2006 and was a respectable success as many core gaming fans were waiting for Lara’s return. The success of Tomb Raider Legend sparked the idea of a revamp to her original adventure but with her new visage and a graphic overall being the central focus, and thus Tomb Raider Anniversary was released in 2007. This gave the developers time to finish up Legends sequel, Tomb Raider Underground.” But did Eidos give us too much Lara all at once? Possibly since Underground, while being a fantastic sequel had too much competition to contend with.

So we have 3 awesome Tomb Raider reboots just aching for an HD retouch and PS3 owners looking for something they were denied until now. A few years back Square Enix acquired Eidos Studios and the Tomb Raider franchise, quickly announcing a new focus for the titular Ms. Croft, first as a downloadable Isometric adventure titled Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light (Notice she’s out of the tombs only later to be drawn back in). In 2010 Square revealed yet another reboot that borders on the unreal as it looks like we are going to get a photo realistic Lara that early pictures reveal to be almost too real to be true. If anyone can do it Square can. Square has given us PS3 owners something to truly enjoy, The Tomb Raider Trilogy. Three great games, all on one disc and at an incredible price. Legend is the oldest and though it does begin to show the wears of time, is still a great game with a great plot. This adventure has Lara seeking out King Arthur's sword Excalibur. The game can be a little twitchy at times and the camera control suffers in some areas but nothing to be overly concerned with as this game is still a blast to play.

Anniversary, While remaining a reboot does show that the developers took the time to fix some of the issues encountered in Legend. With the graphic upgrade and controls returning to what many demanded, this is the Tomb Raider we all cut our teeth on and it stills shows its relevance in the adventure exploring game genre. Underworld, this is where it gets good, being a direct sequel to Legend, all the little nicks and chicks in the armor are gone and you have a truly idealized Tomb Raider game. This is the most polished of the three, and though Legend is my favorite to the whole Arthurian Legend and all I have to say I enjoyed playing this one the most. This re-release was a good idea that seems to be part of a resurgence of sorts for truly classic games that deserve a second go around. More trilogies are coming from other developers as well and I can’t wait.

Thank you Square Enix, as it seems you have your finger on the pulse of the video gaming trend as of late and I hope you see fit to bring us more. I would like to pass along an idea...Kingdom Hearts in HD...just saying. So Zircon's a fan and it shows a bit, but great ideas beget great gaming experiences so if you have not yet traveled the globe with Ms. Croft, then here’s your chance before they bring us something amazing in 2012. Before I leave, I wanted to share this public notice: Due to recent budget cuts, the rising cost of electricity, gas, and oil, plus the current state of the economy, the light at the end of the tunnel has been turned off. The Z-man has left the Blog. (Just kidding about the light though I do love to play with the switch)

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