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KickStarter Poll - Best Tomb Raider

Which is in your opinion the best Tomb Raider game?


  • Total voters
    163

Semiurge

Cipher
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There are one or two instances of "surprise enemies and special hazards" that cross the line into being bullshit

Starting from the T-Rex encounter in TR1. It doesn't cross the line into bullshit unless the player completely loses his shit and doesn't run for cover in time. The problem there is that all the possible places that offer safety in that area can only be seen properly after you've crossed the encounter trigger, so you need to "think on your feet".
 

Lemming42

Arcane
Joined
Nov 4, 2012
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The Satellite Of Love
Btw, to anyone who wants to play the PC version (Unreal, please play the PC version instead of the Saturn version, protect your eyesight), this patch removes a lot of horseshit problems from the Steam/GOG versions and also re-adds the music, which is absolutely crucial.

There are one or two instances of "surprise enemies and special hazards" that cross the line into being bullshit

Starting from the T-Rex encounter in TR1. It doesn't cross the line into bullshit unless the player completely loses his shit and doesn't run for cover in time. The problem there is that all the possible places that offer safety in that area can only be seen properly after you've crossed the encounter trigger, so you need to "think on your feet".

The bullshit hazards that always stick in my mind are the boulders near the end of Atlantis where you've got about two seconds to react before death, but:
a) the devs intend you to get past in a very specific way (like by moving backwards and hanging from the ledge you just jumped over) which you won't figure out first time
b) the scare chord that plays whenever a boulder shows up is so loud and abrupt that you spend the whole two seconds just jumping out of your chair, and you're dead by the time you recover
 

Morenatsu.

Liturgist
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May 6, 2016
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The Centre of the World
I looked at the Saturn version the other day and it was worse than I remembered, though the water effect was very cool. I always heard it was a Saturn game, but in reality that's just because Sega paid for timed exclusivity and the actual intended platform was always Playstation. Except, the game was still designed with Saturn-compatible graphics, so everything's a quadrilateral because lol. But guess what? PC version seems like shit too, 256 colours (except with patch), missing music (except with patch), no environment mapping (gold Lara is very important, don't laugh), no special water effects (boring and lazy), but at least you can save anywhere!! Oh wait, you can just use save-states in an emulator (except Xebra makes that annoying, so I don't). That N-Gage version actually seems to look and run very well, so aside from using terrible phone buttons and screen, that's just the lemming being an unfunny retard again.


anywey you guise don't know what it means to die in turd raider, you just save-scum your way to victory, trolololo. you don't know what its like when a special accident happens (which they do, has nothing to do with normal platforming, that's easy) and then you have to replay the part where you watch boobgirl turn at a fixed rate and climb as slowly as she feels like and then get interrupted to play the shittiest combat minigame ever trolololololo

In more serious other words, it's just typical Westard game checkpoint bullshit where all the minor annoyances become major annoyances as soon as you have to replay something even just once, even in an easy game, and then in the end there's nothing actually satisfying about it. And the game isn't all that hugely compelling to make up for it, so... wish I were playing Dark Souls, lolz! Japanese checkpoints > Westard checkpoints, always, forever. sorri weebhaters
 

Lemming42

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You will regret your mildly complimentary words about the N-Gage after five minutes with the godforsaken thing, assuming you can even find one with a copy of Tomb Raider anymore. Tomb Raider is on the less agonising end of the N-Gage spectrum, especially when compared to the likes of the Red Faction and Call of Duty ports, but it's still a grotesque way to play the game.

Save anywhere is still the best system for TR because it lets the player reward themselves for clearing tough obstacles with a save, unless the player is a tarded savescummer. I think that's what the save crystal system was intended to be - save it up until you've cleared a really challenging part, then give yourself the save - but they just didn't give you enough crystals most of the time, leading to moments like St Francis Folly which I'd say is the one map where your criticisms apply, since having to clear the challenge rooms five times each because you keep slipping off the big tower and the game only gave you one or two save crystals for the whole thing really is a pain in the dick.
 

Semiurge

Cipher
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this patch removes a lot of horseshit problems from the Steam/GOG versions and also re-adds the music, which is absolutely crucial

The patch only adds situational music cues and chimes to Steam/GOG TR1, the basic ambient music tracks that play during levels are already there except for Unfinished Business - the original downloadable levels had no music or cues at all because you were likely supposed to use the TR1 CD-ROM for the music (I've no idea if that would work), and it's nice to have those levels included with the patch, in their full glory. All music and sound files are upgraded into high quality lossless versions. It also changes the water's color filter from the PC version's clear or light blue into turquoise, which makes the water look like mouthwash. Some apparently prefer that, and it fits the game's colorful look. The only problems with the Automated Fix that I've discovered are:

  • It prevents you from running the standard Steam/GOG version without some tweaking, if it even is possible without reinstalling those. If you try to launch GOG's version from their shortcuts you see the custom dosbox window launch but after that, nothing happens. The shortcut's target file paths haven't been altered by the patch, so the cause is somewhere else.
  • All FMV's have a fixed volume level that can't be controlled with the in-game volume controls, unlike in the software-accelerated DOSBox version. GOG's Glide powered version had the same problem though, it's nothing specific to TombAti or nGlide, it's the game engine.
  • You need to install (the included) third-party AV codec pack to see the enhanced FMVs.
 
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Pound Meat

Cipher
Joined
Aug 10, 2018
Messages
3,277
Eh TR3 continues the evolution, with engine upgrades, crawling and sprinting, non-linear level/country selection. It just so happens the devs fucked up taking away your inventory in Nevada and not giving it back (even 10 y/o me knew this was retard-tier design for goodness sake), and some of the locations are perhaps uninteresting or outstay their welcome.

AFTER THAT, then yeah the decline is apparent. Though some could acceptably make a case for 4 (more devolution than evolution, but that doesn't mean the design isn't still solid). 5 there is no argument to be made. It's lazy. Angel of Darkness is unfinished. Anniversary is just a dumbed down retread of the original. And Legend when it becomes modern definitive retard standard. Thanks Doug Church you sellout. Can't blame just him though. Crystal Dynamics just suck. Soulless assholes.

I don't even consider the Crystal Dynamics games real sequels. They're like the Disney Star Wars movies: expensive fan fiction.

3 is the pinnacle of the Core games, it's just a beauty, but it's not as fun or interesting as 1 or 2. The Last Revelation and Chronicles have their moments, but they get tedious and I've never finished either of them despite replaying them many times over the years.
 

Semiurge

Cipher
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but it's not as fun or interesting as 1 or 2.

TR2 had this

Guardian-of-Talion.png


image.jpg
 

Deflowerer

Arcane
Joined
May 22, 2013
Messages
1,956
Been playing Tomb Raider 3, in one of the last levels right now and even though it seems it's somewhat of a glitch, god damn this shit was unexpected and terrifying as hell:

 

Semiurge

Cipher
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Have any of you a fix for that broken fmv in TR3, the one that plays just before the end stats of the last india level? The file (Sail_Eng) is not corrupt, I tested an older version of it from a retail copy. I'm using GoG's latest version, dated 2017, with the widescreen fix and dgVoodoo. Resolution is 2560x1440p but I tried lowering it to 1080p.... and platform is Win10.

Deflowerer did you encounter this?
 

NaturallyCarnivorousSheep

Albanian Deliberator Kang
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Possibly Retarded
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I don't even consider the Crystal Dynamics games real sequels
I disagree. The differences the first reboot CD did was breaking with the grid layout, but that was something Angel of Darkness was already doing and automating the acrobatics a little bit, which may suit you or not but I don't think it's a deal breaker. The core idea of what these games were about is still the same - puzzle platformers in this treasure hunter style setting. The somewhat meh level design of Legend is visibly improved on in Anniversary - a cynic may have said that that's because they've taken a good game for inspiration, but the fact that Underworld has definitely delivered on this front as well shows that that was just a matter of a team having to iterate on stuff until they get how to do it right.

Don't bs about story because it's garbage either way.

The 2013 and later games however, that was just taking the franchise and making something that only resembled the originals on the level of checklist - does it have tombs? Check. Do you have to jump around sometimes? Check. Do you have to walk around to press a lever(solve a puzzle)? Check. See it's not Uncharted clone, it's real Tomb Raider!. In many ways the top-down spinoffs were more faithful to the older games.
 

Morpheus Kitami

Liturgist
Joined
May 14, 2020
Messages
2,006
Don't bs about story because it's garbage either way.
I feel like the originals do get a pass because the games IIRC, barely pretended to care about those, they were all relatively unimportant as soon as they were over. Whereas in the CD games if you disliked them, too bad, its going to be playing over the gameplay. No one really cares if you fail at story if you don't bother, but the second you spend significant amount of time on it, it better be good.
 

Bad Sector

Arcane
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Joined
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Insert Title Here RPG Wokedex Codex Year of the Donut Steve gets a Kidney but I don't even get a tag.
The differences the first reboot CD did was breaking with the grid layout, but that was something Angel of Darkness was already doing and automating the acrobatics a little bit, which may suit you or not but I don't think it's a deal breaker.

The Crystal Dynamics games didn't just automate acrobatics a little bit, they automated platforming and made it half-scripted in a way where the designer decides where you can grab and where you can't. I think i posted these images before, but here they are again:

In classic TR you can grab pretty much anything that looks grabbable regardless of if it makes sense. This has you try to figure out what the path to go where you want is - and most importantly fail in figuring out. In Core's TR you can just do this which may or may not be the first step in a backflip trying to reach another platform (this is a platform game after all) or even just getting to a higher point to look around the environment while trying to explore it:
3G7O4ct.jpg


Meanwhile the Crystal Dynamics Tomb Raider with its manually marked "climbable" surfaces, climbing this is impossible even though it is flat and a surface that would be climbable in Core's games:
lrRIUu8.jpg


I think this makes for a big difference in how you play the games.
 

Semiurge

Cipher
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Ha, solved it finally. Turns out the cause was GOG, in a fashion. Their current installer contains older versions of those three DLLs (WINPLAY, WINSDEC, WINSTR) than for example, TR2. I decided to play that problematic FMV in TR2 since they share the format, lo and behold - no glitching. After comparing their dgvoodoo configs, TR2's config being set by Automated Fix, I tweaked some settings to match TR3's, no effect. It's good that it was simply caused by one of those outdated DLLs. Their filesizes are different, the newer files dated 2018 are larger. I Wonder where the different versions come from, they're not part of Windows afaik. Multipatcher contains them but it has been abandoned for a while, and GOG obviously won't do any excessive tweaking on their releases.

The size of that particular FMV somehow figured into the freeze at around 4:00, it's the biggest video the game has at almost 50mb. The others play fine if their filenames are swapped around.
 
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