Tomb Raider is a franchise that I’ve grown up with. The first game in the series was released in 1996 when I was 10 years old. Unfortunately, as the years went on, the franchise went stagnant never improved upon itself. Those excellent adventure games we loved on the Playstation became old, diluted and mediocre at best. It, sadly, became a franchise where many of us were just waiting for it to die and go away so we could paint our memories of it with beautiful nostalgia, rather than constantly be bombarded with low quality followups to something we loved.
When the franchise was given over to Crystal Dynamics, Tomb Raider: Legend and Tomb Raider: Underworld attempted to revive the franchise, but it wasn’t enough to inspire faith in the Tomb Raider name again. Regardless of who holds the IP, the fact is the franchise has become old and stagnant, and whatever story the series had became a convoluted mess. It’s a lot like the Sonic the Hedgehog franchise. It started out great and there are still some gems here and there in the series, but the franchise has become such a beaten mess that nobody has much faith in it anymore — a new Sonic game elicits groans of exasperation (though, admittedly, not necessarily for the same reasons.)
However, I am happy to say that I’m excited about a Tomb Raider title for the first time in years. Crystal Dynamics has said fuck it to the existing Tomb Raider mythos and are rebooting the series in its entirety. I’m a big supporter of reboots to these massive franchises. Sometimes a clean slate is exactly what you need to breathe life into them. The Star Trek reboot in 2009 was one of the best things they could have possibly done for that franchise, for example. I would like to see the same done with Star Wars, but that’s unlikely to happen as long as George Lucas is around.
If you’re an avid gamer, you’ve likely already heard about the Tomb Raider reboot, but the teaser trailer embedded above was just released a few days ago. The trailer makes it all feel a little more tangible to me, and I’m eager to see how they handle this new iteration of Lara Croft. Within this reboot lies the potential to make Lara an admirable heroine again, undoing the damage done to her in the years since 1996 in which she has become a target of derision and a piece of the puzzle of madness that is Angelina Jolie.