With a new movie set to arrive in 2018, Rise of the Tomb Raider set to come to the PS4, and the 20th anniversary of Tomb Raider underway, Crystal Dynamics decided to release a few never-before-seen images from the illustrious history of the series.
IGN posted up some of the images that Crystal Dynamics let loose, featuring the titular character Lara Croft in a number of poses across various box art iterations, concept art and everything else in between. They released a series of images that chronicle the massive change in Lara Croft's design over the years, going from the tight t-shirt and short shorts to the longer cargo pants.
The images start from as far back as the original Tomb Raider from way back in 1996, and they lead up all the way up to Tomb Raider: Anniversary from 2007. Apparently they didn't have much to share of Tomb Raider: Underworld, which was the last outing in the series before Square Enix and Crystal Dynamics rebooted the series with Tomb Raider.
Some of the interesting images in the set include images from the editor that was used to design Tomb Raider IV: The Last Revelation. It's an extremely crude editor, where the designers have to place everything down in a grid, using color coordinated blocks to determine what the particular area of the grid does, such as being a floor, a wall, a door or a box. You get to see what the texture sets look like as well as what a final version of the stage would appear as when rendered in-game.
Another image shows one of the enemies in the game with data on its animation set, its textures and shading data. There are quite a few promotional renders showing Lara in various poses throughout the Tomb Raider history, holding a gun pointed at the screen or ready to leap into action.
One interesting thing is that in a lot of older art before they rebooted the series, Lara is constantly seen holding a Desert Eagle Magnum. She was known for being able to dual-wield the hand cannons, blasting any and everything in per path to smithereens. For the newer games, Tomb Raider and Rise of the Tomb Raider, they mostly show her wielding the pick-axe or a torch or a flare.
It's also interesting that in the newer Tomb Raider games Lara can no longer perform her acrobatic moves, such as shoot-diving or using martial arts or being able to flip side to side. She can also no longer lock onto enemies and flip over them while filling them full of lead. Maybe in Rise Of The Tomb Raider 2 Lara will be able to shoot-dive and dual-wield again? One can hope.
Anyway, you can check out the older promo art, concepts, game editor images and CG renders with the gallery below.