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Description Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider

Also known as Lara Croft: Tomb Raider between 2001 and 2008, is a media franchise that originated with an action-adventure video game series created by British gaming company Core Design. Formerly owned by Eidos Interactive, then by Square Enix Europe after Square Enix's acquisition of Eidos in 2009, the franchise focuses on fictional British archaeologist Lara Croft, who travels around the world searching for lost artefacts and infiltrating dangerous tombs and ruins. Gameplay generally focuses on exploration of environments, solving puzzles, navigating hostile environments filled with traps, and fighting enemies. Additional media has been developed for the franchise in the form of film adaptations, comics and novels.

Development of Tomb Raider, the first video game, began in 1994; it was released in October 1996. Its critical and commercial success prompted Core Design to develop a new game annually for the next four years, which put a strain on staff. The sixth game, The Angel of Darkness, faced difficulties during development and was considered a failure at release. This prompted Eidos to switch development duties to Crystal Dynamics, which has been the series' primary developer since. Other developers have contributed to spin-off titles and ports of mainline entries.

Games

The first entry in the series Tomb Raider was released in 1996 for personal computers (PC), PlayStation and Sega Saturn consoles. The Saturn and PlayStation versions were released in Japan in 1997. Its sequel, Tomb Raider II, launched in 1997, again for Microsoft Windows and PlayStation. A month before release, Eidos finalised a deal with Sony Computer Entertainment to keep the console version of Tomb Raider II and future games exclusive to PlayStation until the year 2000. The PlayStation version was released in Japan in 1998. Tomb Raider III launched in 1998. As with Tomb Raider II, the PlayStation version released in Japan the following year. The fourth consecutive title in the series, Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation, released in 1999. In 2000, with the end of the PlayStation exclusivity deal, the game also released on the Dreamcast. In Japan, both console versions released the following year. Tomb Raider Chronicles released in 2000 on the same platforms as The Last Revelation, with the PlayStation version's Japanese release as before coming the following year.

Gameplay

A gameplay screenshot from Tomb Raider: Anniversary, showing Lara jumping for a ledge below a door switch. While many mechanics within the Tomb Raider series have undergone changes, platforming and puzzle solving linked to this are recurring, standard elements within the series.

The gameplay of Tomb Raider is primarily based around an action-adventure framework, with Lara navigating environments and solving mechanical and environmental puzzles, in addition to fighting enemies and avoiding traps. These puzzles, primarily set within ancient tombs and temples, can extend across multiple rooms and areas within a level. Lara can swim through water, a rarity in games at the time that has continued through the series. According to original software engineer and later studio manager Gavin Rummery, the original set-up of interlinking rooms was inspired by Egyptian multi-roomed tombs, particularly the tomb of Tutankhamun. The feel of the gameplay was intended to evoke that of the 1989 video game Prince of Persia. In the original games, Lara utilised a "bulldozer" steering set-up, with two buttons pushing her forward and back and two buttons steering her left and right, and in combat Lara automatically locked onto enemies when they came within range. The camera automatically adjusts depending on Lara's action, but defaults to a third-person perspective in most instances. This basic formula remained unchanged through the first series of games. Angel of Darkness added stealth elements