Xbox players who want to prepare for Shadow of the Tomb Raider's release next month can now perfect their grappling techniques old-school style, as two of Lara Croft's earlier adventures have been added to Xbox One's backwards compatibility list.
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Tomb Raider - Live in Concert premieres at the Hammersmith Apollo this December in celebration of the game's 20th anniversary.
HD remasters of Tomb Raider Legend and Tomb Raider Anniversary, as well as the full Tomb Raider Underworld game, are being bundled together exclusively for PS3.
This Tomb Raider Trilogy pack will be available to buy on 25th March.
Additional bundle guff includes a Trilogy theme pack, Lara Croft costume for a Home avatar, a Viking Thrall costume for a Home avatar and Making Of videos covering all three games.
Crystal Dynamics has confirmed the existence of a PS3-exclusive Tomb Raider Trilogy pack.
A listing for the trilogy popped up on the German arm of Amazon over the weekend. It revealed a 22nd March 2011 launch date and a €29.99 (£25) price point.
On the disc you'll find HD versions of two of the three Crystal Dynamics developed Tomb Raider games: Tomb Raider: Legend and Tomb Raider: Anniversary. Tomb Raider: Underworld, the series' last pillar-release, is also included on the Blu-ray disc.
Tomb Raider maker Crystal Dynamics would like to employ a lead designer to "effectively create and lead the multiplayer vision and design effort" of an unannounced "AAA title".
Dan Lin, the producer of Terminator Salvation and the forthcoming Tomb Raider film, has been discussing his plans for Lara's next big screen adventure.
Tomb Raider is back on track. Following 2003's berated and broken Angel of Darkness, which saw Eidos relieve Core Design of its duties and ship Ms. Croft over to Crystal Dynamics, the series has made a solid return to form. Tomb Raider Legend was a promising if cautious reinvention, while Anniversary was a glorious update of the original game. This week sees the release of Underworld, the ninth game in the series.
Following the successful digital release of Tomb Raider Anniversary over Xbox Live, Crystal Dynamics' Riley Cooper has told GamesIndustry.biz that Sony's PlayStation Network should offer more flexibility for delivering future titles.
The original Tomb Raider was the first game that ever made me yelp with fear. Since then I've played them all. I've spent hours running and jumping, shooting and swimming, pulling levers and pressing switches. I've spent hours marvelling at Lara's grace. I've spent hours wanting to murder her for refusing to do what she's told. I've visited Angkor Wat wearing my hair in a plait and short shorts and big boots (though I drew the line at suspenders and water balloons), and been told off by a security guard for trying to swing on a vine. I love Lara. Yes, a bit like that.
So I loved Tomb Raider: Anniversary, as did Kristan. That is to say, I loved it on PS2 and Xbox 360. As for the Wii version... I never thought it would come to this, but here we are: I'd rather play Angel of Darkness.
The problems begin at the beginning. I've played the first level of Tomb Raider, in various incarnations, dozens of times. Never, until now, have I been killed by the first set of bats Lara encounters. Bats. Well, you might think, the Wii must use a different set of combat controls. Surely a bit of practice is all it takes. Right, wrong.
Eidos has confirmed to Eurogamer that Tomb Raider: Anniversary will be out for Wii on 7th December.
Eidos has whipped the downloadable version of Tomb Raider: Anniversary onto Xbox Live.
Tomb Raider Anniversary
There was once a time when many teens would have given anything to have Lara in the palms of their hands. If the PSP had been around 11 years ago it would have been hard to get most teenage boys (and some girls) out of the toilet, at least without having to book the porcelain into therapy.
Impressively little has been lost during Lara's transition from PS2 to PSP. Levels remain complete and there's still 12-15 hours of gameplay packed inside the tiny disc. Visually it's on a par with the PS2 version (although never pushing the PSP to its limits) and load times are very impressive. However, it's when you experience the camera that you'll realise just how important a second analogue stick is and wish you were playing it on the PS2 instead.
The nights are so long these days (sorry, nights) that you could dress them up in angry forum posts and call them the delay between major Wii releases. Of the 12 Games of Christmas features we've done so far, this line-up saw by far the most chins stroked and calls placed in search of suitable candidates.
It is now dark when we walk home and birds are either dropping out of trees in frozen lumps or going somewhere much nicer for their holidays. And, as always happens, the shops are hoisting their Christmas decorations up and getting us all worried about buying presents because we never know what they want is it socks or aftershave. So, we thought we would join in.
Eidos is still unable to confirm exactly when Tomb Raider: Anniversary will be released on Nintendo Wii in Europe, but it did assure us today that it will be this side of Christmas.
Whatever the ins and outs are of Tomb Raider: Anniversary's protracted passage to the Xbox 360 [where's my house, Eidos?], there's plenty to celebrate about this tardy conversion. First up, Eidos has been smart enough to release the game at mid-price, with most UK retailers pricing it at just GBP 24.99 for the boxed version. Interestingly, owners of last year's Tomb Raider Legend also have the option of downloading the game in four separate 'episodes', each priced at 600 points. The latter option, in particular, offers superb value for the kind of gamers who never get beyond the first few levels - but forcing Eidos to restrict sales of the downloadable version to owners of Legend seems like another of those illogical Xbox Live rules that ought to be shot in the head. Like a bear.
Apart from being able to get it on the cheap, there's another good reason for Tomb Raider fans to feel upbeat about waiting five months for a 360 version - Buzz Monkey has pulled off a solid conversion which manages to feel right at home on the format, despite the game's humble PS2 origins. No one who played the surprisingly excellent PC version should be too shocked by that fact, though, and it's this sumptuous-looking version that serves as the template for the 360 release.
Visually, it seems that the developers stopped short of providing us with the ultimate version, with a few of the graphical bells and whistles apparent on the PC version (like Lara's glistening skin as she emerges from water) shorn from this version. There's also a sense that the game doesn't really take full advantage of the 360's high definition capabilities - instead upscaling rather less ambitious resolutions, perhaps to ensure the game runs flawlessly. That the conversion team hasn't even rendered the game's front-end font in high resolution perhaps tells its own story, but fortunately, once you dive into the game itself, there's really nothing to get hung up about for more than five seconds. Tomb Raider: Anniversary might not be pushing the boundaries of visual excellence on the 360 (nor did Legend, thinking about it), but it's still a great looking game - mainly because the peerless level design throughout conjures such an eerily evocative atmosphere.
Eidos has said that the Xbox 360 version of Tomb Raider: Anniversary will be in European shops next Friday.
Minnie Driver will voice Lara Croft in a new ten part animation celebrating a decade of the iconic heroine.
Eidos has confirmed that it plans to release Tomb Raider Anniversary on Xbox 360 as a series of downloadable episodes starting in September.
The content - Xbox Live's first ever serialisation of a full retail game - will be made available for owners of Tomb Raider Legend to purchase through Xbox Live Marketplace.
In September "Episodes 1 & 2" will be offered along with a free training mission ("Croft Manor"). The following two episodes will arrive "shortly afterwards".
The PC version of Tomb Raider Anniversary is no longer available to European users of Valve's digital download service, Steam, GamesIndustry.biz reports - with Eidos yet to explain why it has been withdrawn.
Eidos has declined to comment on rumours that Tomb Raider Anniversary is heading to Xbox 360.
It's just as well Tomb Raider fans are a patient bunch. For the large part of the past decade it seemed like the interminable wait for some kind of return to 'form' was never going to happen. But last year's polished but undemanding Legends was certainly a promising step in the right direction. All it needed, you felt, was to get back to basics - back to the sort of fiendish design vision that made the series such a phenomenon when it burst onto the scene in 1996.
And so it has proved. By re-energising and revitalising what people loved about Tomb Raider in the first place, Anniversary is, in all respects, the best Lara Croft adventure to date. It's back to palm sweating platform puzzling on an extraordinary scale, with feisty combat elements put well and truly into the background to add tension and drama only when required. It feels like its own game again despite 'only' being a remake of the celebrated 1996 original. But it's also a 'celebratory remake', and one that manages to improve on almost every aspect of the original by rebuilding the game from the ground up without taking anything away from what made it so special in the beginning.
Pixels bigger than your face
Eidos has revealed that Tomb Raider Anniversary will be digitally distributed through Steam.
Lock up your wolves, bears and dinosaurs, Peruvians! Lara's on the loose again, and this time she's using the Tomb Raider: Legend engine so she doesn't fall off ledges all the time. You can see how things are shaping up in the newly released Tomb Raider Anniversary demo.
Eidos has announced that a version of Tomb Raider: Anniversary is in development for the Nintendo Wii.
Eidos has confirmed that the PC and PS2 versions of Tomb Raider: Anniversary will be out across Europe on 1st June.
When a preview version of this celebratory remake of the original Tomb Raider turned up in the post, it seemed like it would be fitting and respectful to do a little archaeology ourselves. Vaults were cracked open, dust brushed, ancient code decyphered; the trash and treasures of a long-lost era were rifled through on a quest for answers. The Tomb of PlayStation the First was gutted in search of a copy of Core Design's 1996 classic. When we eventually unearthed one, and subjected it to the harsh glare of modernity (in the form of a PS3, an HDMI cable and an acreage of liquid crystal Lara herself would think twice about scaling) we got a couple of shocks.
According to most major retailers, Tomb Raider Anniversary will be out on 25th May.
Originally conceived as a celebration of Lara Croft's 10th anniversary, Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Anniversary is now a celebration of eleven years of Lara. Obviously good timekeeping isn't a prerequisite for lissom archaeologists, but is Lara's platforming action more impressive than her punctuality? Eidos recently offered a sneak preview to provide an answer in advance of the game's release.
Looks like it's time to test Ian Livingstone's claim that you'll be "drooling" at the sight of the new Lara Croft, with the first trailer for Tomb Raider: Anniversary up on Eurogamer TV.
Showing off Lara's younger look, with Keeley Hawes purring over the top and dinosaurs and jumping and all sorts, the trailer's certainly a tempting glimpse of Crystal Dynamics' follow-up to the surprisingly good Legend earlier this year.
And you won't have to go far afterward for more on Tomb Raider, of course, as you can just sidestep in the direction of the latest episode of The Eurogamer TV Show, where Livingstone gushes as we celebrate 10 years of Tomb Raider, along with the recent Wii launch and other excitements.
Having restored Tomb Raider's dignity with this year's Legend, developer Crystal Dynamics is already hard at work on the true next-gen follow-up. And Eidos big cheese Ian Livingstone OBE has revealed that the new Lara looks so good it's like watching the telly.
Eidos has revealed that the upcoming anniversary edition of Tomb Raider, inspired by the very first game in the series, will be released on PS2, PSP and PC in 2007.
And it's not just a straight-up remake either - while developer Crystal Dynamics has apparently been "inspired by" the original, Tomb Raider: Anniversary is described as a totally new adventure "faithfully preserving the elements which made the original Tomb Raider such a classic". So Lara's probably still in it, then.
Eidos' Kathryn Clements expands on that. "We've taken all of the key moments from the original game and put them into the context of a brand new Tomb Raider adventure which will make fans of the franchise extremely happy but also attract a completely new audience," she says.
Cheer up, Tomb Raider fans! It turns out the 10th anniversary remake of Lara's first adventure hasn't been cancelled after all - and it won't just be appearing on PSP, either.
Rumours that the game was cancelled emerged after a statement appeared on Core Design's website saying that it was cancelled.
But that's not the case at all, according to SCi-Eidos. They've issued a statement saying that Tomb Raider: 10th Anniversary Edition is very much in development - and will appear on PC and PS2 as well as Sony's handheld.