A Classics student shares his thoughts on what he considers an era-defining game: the original Tomb Raider (1996). In his article, he highlights some of the historical inaccuracies of the original game (yes, I was also wondering about that “Thor” room in St. Francis Folly when I first played the game many eons ago) and explains why he believes Lara and Indiana Jones are two different conceptions of the heroic “archaeologist” character made popular in the twentieth century. A must-read for Tomb Raider fans!
Righto, then. Let’s talk a bit about computer games. Being a shy and somewhat awkward teenager, a lot of the most memorable experiences of my secondary school years came vicariously from a games console or our just-about-operational-most-of-the-time PC. I explored Super Mario World many times, I braved the twisted forests of Hyrule’s Dark World. I choked down a lump in my throat when Aeris died and I’ve had the waltz music from Balamb Garden’s graduation ball stuck in my head since 1999. None of that has much place in a Classics blog.
Instead I’m going to talk about the only game series from my teenage years that genuinely intersects with Classics and archaeology in a more or less (probably less) meaningful way: Tomb Raider. A lot has been written about Tomb Raider over the years. It was one of those era-defining games which breached the ramparts of even the…
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