Quite a few Tomb Raider fans and fansite admins have been taking part in the “Tomb Raider 30-Day Challenge” over on Twitter and other social media this month and while I’m normally useless at keeping up with daily challenges, I thought I’d go ahead and jump on the proverbial bandwagon.
The Tomb Raider 30-Day Challenge was launched by Portuguese fansite The Croft Tomb a couple of years ago and covers the full scope of the Tomb Raider franchise, from the games themselves to the spin-off media and movies.
Participants are encouraged to post one reply per day (it *is* a 30-day challenge, after all) but I’ve decided to take some liberties and post all of my replies in one long blog post instead. It’ll take me some time to work my way through the entire list so be sure to check back here every couple of days for new updates!
Day 1: Favourite game in the series.
My favourite game is – and probably will always be – Tomb Raider 2.
I’ll admit that nostalgia is a key factor. Tomb Raider 2 was the first full Tomb Raider game I played (bar the PC demo for the original game) and it offered a pleasant, much-needed escape from the stress of studying for GCSE exams and other non-academic worries. I spent a good many hours searching for ancient treasure, exploring every nook and cranny…and finding creative new ways to kill off Ms Croft (who hasn’t?).
Add to that a compelling plot, brain-teasing puzzles, exotic locations, a captivating soundtrack, and a snow-mobile and you have the recipe for a near-perfect game right there. 😉
Day 2: What was the first Tomb Raider game you played?
While Tomb Raider 2 was the first full game I played (it was the first game I bought for the Playstation), the PC demo for Tomb Raider (1996) was my first step into this larger world.
Gaming has come a long way in the last couple of decades and it’s easy to forget just how revolutionary the 1996 game was when it first came out. It wasn’t just its then sleek 3D graphics and archaeological setting that caught my attention; it was the fact that the game had a female protagonist, which was a rare sight back then.
Lara may have been designed with male fans in mind but her bad-ass attitude and intellect won me over in a heartbeat.
Day 3: Favourite character(s) besides Lara.
A bit of a left-field choice but I’ll go with Carter Bell, the archaeologist introduced in Lara Croft & the Temple of Osiris. He’s been a little underused (or simply misused) in some of the more recent spin-off media – *cough* Blade of Gwynnever *cough* – but I enjoyed his banter with Croft in Temple of Osiris and he gets some bonus cool points for his interest in falconry.
Honourable mentions go to Natla and the Doppelganger, who I’ll come back to shortly…
Day 4: Favourite antagonist(s).
It’s impossible for me to reflect on the Tomb Raider franchise without thinking of one of its most enduring themes: that of the evil blonde. And if there’s one evil blonde that stands above all others, it’s the ambitious Atlantean, Jacqueline Natla.
I have mixed feelings about her portrayal in the Crystal Dynamics trilogy but she seemed like the perfect foil for Lara in the original 1996 game. Intelligent, manipulative, and determined, Natla was someone who could go toe to toe with our heroine and almost come out on top. And it was refreshing to see two women fight each other over something other than a man…
Honourable mentions go to the Doppelganger from Underworld – simply because she’s proof that one can truly be their own worst enemy – and Ana from Rise of the Tomb Raider, who was a villain you could empathize with (to a degree) and whose close relationship with the Croft family made her actions all the more treacherous….even if we could see that twist coming from a mile away.
Day 5: Favourite outfit(s).
Choosing just one or two outfits from Lara’s enviable wardrobe is a mammoth task but I think I’ve managed to narrow it down to two outfits: the bomber jacket from Tomb Raider 2 and the blue winter outfit (with or without coat) from Legend.
Honourable mentions go to the leather jacket and “Valient Explorer” outfits from Rise of the Tomb Raider, the “Jungle Heavy” outfit from Underworld, the wetsuit and night gown from Tomb Raider 2, and the Ducati biker outfit from Legend.
See? I told you it’s hard to choose just a couple…
Day 6: Favourite enemy.
Day 7: Favourite weapon(s).
Day 8: Favourite artifact.
Day 9: Most challenging entry in the series.
Day 10: Do you like any of the novels? If so, which one?
Day 11: Do you like the movies? Why or why not?
Day 12: Do you own any Tomb Raider merchandise besides the games?
Day 13: What is your favorite piece of merchandise/memorabilia you own?
Day 14: Has Lara Croft or the Tomb Raider series made an impact on your life?
Day 15: Favourite level(s).
Day 16: Least favourite level(s).
Day 17: Favourite main theme.
Day 18: Favourite moments(s).
Day 19: Scariest moment(s)/level(s).
Day 20: Saddest moments(s).
Day 21: Favourite location(s) Lara has adventured to.
Day 22: Favourite live-action model.
Day 23: Favourite voice actress.
Day 24: Favourite quote(s).
Day 25: Favourite boss battle.
Day 26: Are you a Core Design or a Crystal Dynamics Supporter?
Day 27: What are your thoughts on the reboot?
Day 28: Do you like the new Lara?
Day 29: What do you think of the new comics?
Day 30: What fond memories do you have of Tomb Raider/Lara Croft?
Extra: If you could suggest one thing to Crystal Dynamics in regards to the Tomb Raider series, what would it be?
Last updated on February 25, 2017.