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Lara Croft

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After a few weeks of teasing, Crystal Dynamic's new Tomb Raider title has been revealed. Simply called Tomb Raider (that's how we do series reboots these days), the details of the game will be revealed in the next issue of Ga...

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Raziel, Kain, Kane, and Lynch spotted in Lara Croft: GoL


Dec 01
// Jordan Devore
This is what happens when you swap the character models in Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light for Raziel and Kain from the Legacy of Kain series. It's ... weird. Just weird. The bizarreness only increases when you see these...
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Lara Croft: GoL on PlayStation 3 gets online co-op


Nov 22
// Jordan Devore
The excellent Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light has online cooperative play for Xbox 360, and as of now, so does the PlayStation 3 version. Developer Crystal Dynamics tweeted that the latest title update is now live, enabl...
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Guardian of Light will get free downloadable content


Sep 21
// Colette Bennett
In our recent interview with Crystal Dynamics about Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light, we got to find out all kinds of cool info about plans for the title, but there was one we didn't see coming -- new content.  Cryst...

Crystal Dynamics: Bringing online to Guardian of Light

Sep 21 // Nick Chester
Making sure the online experience is up to par Stewart admits that the Crystal Dynamics team had decided very early on that both offline and online cooperative play was going to be a "huge component" of Guardian of Light. So what happened? "We reached a point in time where we evaluated where we were with the online, [and] we decided that the experience wasn't up to par. We believe it should comparable to the single-player and the offline co-op version [of the game]." That meant making the tough to decision to release the games without cooperative play, in order to fine tune the online experience to get it just where they wanted it. Simply put, the team just needed more time to make it a reality. Despite what you'd think based on many gamers' response to the lack of online co-op at launch, adding the functionality to a game isn't quite as easy as waving a magic wand or pressing a button. "There's complexities you wouldn't normally find in offline co-op," Stewart explains, "with leaderboards and being able to drop in and out. We just wanted to make sure that when players got their hands on it they felt that it was a consistent experience with everything they had played before that." More than just an online co-op patch Stewart even reveals that when the XBLA game receives an update (tentatively scheduled for later this month), it'll be more than just an online co-op patch -- it'll include additional content. "It will be a free title update, and we're also giving away the first downloadable content pack for Xbox 360 users for 30 days, free of charge," he says. This first of a monthly wave of DLC, the content will feature a brand new set of challenge maps created based on what both players and focus testers loved about the core experience. "They're pretty tough levels," he warns, "and they're made of a combination of exploration, combat, and sort of the whole traversal world we've built into Guardian of Light." While he wouldn't commit to this same content being free for PC and PSN when the titles receive their respective updates, he does say an announcement is forthcoming in the "very near future." Guardian of Light a success, highest-rated Tomb Raider game since series debut With or without online cooperative play, Guardian of Light has been receiving stellar reviews; we rated it a 9 out of 10, saying "it's not to be missed." Stewart says Crystal Dynamics was thrilled with the response, pointing out that it's the highest-rated Tomb Raider title since the first game's debut in 1995. "I think we've managed to everything that we said we wanted to do," he says, in respect to delivering a high-quality downloadable title, Crystal Dynamics' first. "We're even more excited to get the online portion out; that's our next big goal." "We want people to be able to play as we said they would be able to play, and that's with friends online," he says. "That's a unique experience that we know from playing online co-op games; it's a unique experience from playing couch co-op. We wanted to make sure we get it right."
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Much like the Xbox Live Arcade version that shipped last month, Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light won't support online cooperative play on PlayStation Network and PC when it's released on September 28. But don't worry, it'...

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Rumor: Open world for next Tomb Raider


Sep 21
// Nick Chester
According to rumors out of the UK edition of PC Gamer, Lara Croft's next tomb raiding adventure may be her biggest yet. According to the magazine, Crystal Dynamic's upcoming Tomb Raider game may be set in an open world. "Set ...

Review: Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light

Aug 16 // Nick Chester
Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light (Xbox Live Arcade [reviewed], PlayStation Network, PC)Developer: Crystal DynamicsPublisher: Square EnixRelease date: August 18, 2010 (XBLA), September 28, 2010 (PSN/PC)Price: 1200 MS Points/$14.99 Guardian of Light finds Lara on a solo mission where she unearths the Temple of Light, her tomb raiding ways leading her to uncover an ancient artifact called the Mirror of Smoke. When she’s ambushed by a mercenary who steals the mirror, an ancient evil known as Xolotl is released, prompting the relic’s long-dormant protector, Totec, to awaken. The story is told by way of a mixture of in-game cut-scenes and attractive, striking hand drawn comic book style animatics. But mostly, it’s secondary to the real reason for it existence -- to justify the game’s cooperative gameplay, a convoluted excuse to have Lara team with Totec to solve puzzles, hop platforms, and shoot the crap out of a Xolotl and his evil minions to save the world. At its core, Guardian of Light is a classic and familiar isometric shooter, with players using the analog sticks to move and shoot seemingly interminable streams of baddies. But Guardian of Light expands on this idea, adding platforming verticality to the mix along with nail-biting platforming sections across the game’s 14 massive, explorable environments. Guardian of Light is equal parts arcade action shooter, platformer, and environment puzzle solver, with each as fulfilling as the next. It's the games cooperative aspects that lend itself to some astoundingly entertaining gameplay scenarios, with both Lara and Totec bringing something different to the table with unique and notable abilities. Each player can use basic firearms (the ancient Totec picks up on automatic weapons rather quickly, it seems), along with an unlimited supply of bombs that can be placed on the ground and then detonated at a distance. Lara, for instance, is equipped with a grapple line which has various uses, including being able to create “rope bridges” for Totec to walk across or used to catch the ancient warrior before he falls to his death. Totec’s pretty useful himself, with a shield that can be used to block incoming enemy fire, and even put above his head to give Lara a boost. He also carries a endless supply of spears (don’t ask where he keeps them), which can be used as weapons, as well as to help Lara access new areas. By throwing the spears into walls, Lara can then stand on them reach ledges she normally couldn’t reach. (Don't try it as Totec; he's too heavy and the spears will break.) Because of each of the character’s unique abilities, the cooperative play -- especially when presented with environmental puzzles and obstacles -- is a dream. There are few games that can get this right (and make it fun), and Crystal Dynamics has nailed it perfectly with Guardian of Light. Working together with a friend to solve some of the game’s trickiest environmental riddles is a blast, with some puzzles requiring quick communication and timing that will demand both players to use their heads as well as fast fingers. While it’s advisable you take on the adventure with a buddy in tow, Guardian of Light’s single-player game shouldn’t be written off. You’ll be exploring the same areas, but the puzzles will be tailored for one explorer, in this case, Lara Croft. Going solo, Lara will have access to Totec’s spears, proving herself as a strong, independent raider of tombs. Everything about cooperative play applies here, from the fun, satisfying combat to the clever puzzle design. It’s so much fun, in fact, that even after completing the game with a friend, it’s likely you’ll go back to explore on your own. And there’s plenty to keep you coming back, as well. First playthrough you’ll probably see all of the game’s 14 stages (some of them are just boss battles) in about six hours, which would already make the $15 game an incredible value. But each level features a number of optional objectives, including hidden red skulls, scoring goals, sometimes brutally difficult challenge rooms, and more. Each unlocks something new, like a fresh weapon or an ability-enhancing relic or artifact. Unless you’re a savant (or extremely determined), it’s unlikely you’ll collect everything in one run, which could theoretically double the amount of time you’ll spend with Lara and Totec. Guardian of Light also looks phenomenal for a downloadable title, running on the same engine that powered Crystal Dynamic’s full retail title, Tomb Raider: Underworld. This means you’ll see all of the fancy particle effects and lighting that you’d expect from any current-gen title, and some of the best in the download space to date. Even more importantly, it's the engine’s physics -- especially with the abundance of rolling balls and crumpling floors -- that enhance that truly enhance the overall gameplay experience. With its first downloadable offering, Crystal Dynamics has come out swinging, with easily one of the best titles this summer -- digital or otherwise. More to the point, I feel comfortable saying that Guardian of Light may be the most fun I’ve had with Miss Croft in 14 years; it’s that good. Guardian of Light covers a lot of bases -- solid action, clever puzzles, nail-biting platforming, and remarkable cooperative play; it’s not to be missed. [Note: Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light for Xbox Live Arcade will not ship with online cooperative play functionality, as recently revealed by Crystal Dynamics. The title will receive an update on September 28, when the PC and PlayStation Network versions of the game are released. While much fuss has been made about this late omission, you shouldn’t in any way let it color your purchase decision. If anything, think of it as a reason to call up that friend you haven’t seen in awhile or get your significant other sitting on the couch with you for some single-screen cooperative play. Failing that, Guardian of Light still features six hours of an incredible single-player experience, certainly worth your time and money.] Score: 9 -- Superb (9s are a hallmark of excellence. There may be flaws, but they are negligible and won't cause massive damage to what is a supreme title.)
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Writing this is going to make me feel old, but here it goes: Lara Croft has been raiding tombs for some 14 years. In over a decade of adventures she’s seen her highs and she’s seen her lows (Angel of Darkness, any...

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Lara Croft will not have online co-op upon 360 release


Aug 09
// Conrad Zimmerman
While the Summer of Arcade has been impressive thus far, a lot of people are anxiously awaiting the arrival of Lara Croft on the scene next week. It's an exciting direction for Tomb Raider and I know I'm looking forward to pl...
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Lara Croft dated for PS3/PC, add-on content confirmed


Aug 06
// Nick Chester
Crystal Dynamics has confirmed that its upcoming downloadable title, Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light, will come to PlayStation Network and Steam on September 28 for $14.99. The game will hit Xbox LIVE Arcade as a timed-e...
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Avatar sexy time: Lara Croft items and theme coming


Jul 24
// Matthew Razak
Ah, Lara. I can't count the amount of times I've put on your outfit and hung around in bars (I'm a lumberjack). But on the days when I'm feeling like hanging out in booty shorts, a shirt that simply refuses to cover my entire...
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Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light has a new trailer


Jul 20
// Matthew Razak
As a fan of what Crystal Dynamics was doing with the Tomb Raider series, I must say I was a bit miffed when I first read about Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light. To tell the truth, I am still a bit concerned about it, but...
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Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light lands early on 360


Jul 18
// Matthew Razak
Good news for those who wanted to play Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light on the 360. It turns out it will be coming out 4 weeks earlier on Microsoft's console and then on the PS3 and PC. This is evidently because Microsoft...
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Destination Arcade release for 360 pushed back a week


Jul 12
// Nick Chester
Microsoft's fancy new Xbox LIVE Arcade dashboard, Destination Arcade, has been delayed. No worries, it's only a week -- expect it to hit your Xbox 360 console on July 21. Why the delay? It's a decent reason I'd say, as that's...
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Limbo, other 'Summer of Arcade' games dated


Jul 06
// Jordan Devore
We reported on the release date for Castlevania: Harmony of Despair earlier today, and now we have dates for the remaining 2010 "Summer of Arcade" titles. They put Limbo first in line! Hooray! July 21: Limbo (preview) July 2...
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Is Kim Kardashian Hollywood's next Lara Croft?


Jun 05
// Nick Chester
According to Showbiz Spy, "Hollywood insiders" are revealing that Kim Kardashian is in talks to star as Lara Croft in a reboot of the Tomb Raider film series. We've already heard early info on the film, which is said to be a ...
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Lara Croft heading to Steam because of piracy


May 20
// Jim Sterling
Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light is coming to Steam and Crystal Dynamics has assumed we're all going to be angry. After all, by using Steam, Lara Croft is using DRM, and that's evil. Of course, considering that most peopl...
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Eidos has held back on explaining a couple of features of Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light until yesterday at a showing in Santa Monica. We saw that the item-based power up system uses both Artifacts and Relics, found ite...

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Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light is a new adventure for Lara, but it's important to note that this is not a new Tomb Raider game. Guardian of Light is about giving fans of the franchise something to hold them over until ...

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Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light official trailer


May 17
// Jim Sterling
Here's the big debut trailer for Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light, Eidos and Square Enix's long overdue series reboot. As we all know by now, Lara is ditching her classic adventure roots for an isometric perspective and ...
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Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light has a long title


Apr 29
// Nick Chester
Some days I'm tasked with writing stories about screenshots, and I have to admit, those days are the worst. Because really, I could just be all, "Hey, here are some new screenshots. Have a nice day." But what fun is that? Ins...
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Lara Croft bundles up for awesome, pricey statue


Apr 08
// Nick Chester
Despite the fact that Tomb Raider Underworld was released back in 2008, Sideshow Collectibles is still planning on releasing a polystone statue of that game's version of Lara Croft. And if I do say so myself, it's pretty awes...

Checking out Lara Croft with her top down... shooter, that is!

Mar 22 // Nick Chester
The Guardian of Light finds Lara exploring the jungles of Central America, searching for lost artifacts and other things buried in tombs and dirt, as she tends to do. In particular, she's searching for something called the Mirror of Smoke, an artifact that was key in an ancient war between The Army of Light and the evil overlord known as Xolotl (pronounced "Zo-lote"). Using the Mirror of Smoke, Totec (the leader of the Army of Light) banished Xolotl, and then entombed himself in the mirror to prevent it from falling into the wrong hands.Following along so far? Good -- here's where Lara comes in. Because she's good at her job, she unearths the Mirror of Smoke, but soon finds that she's been tracked by a band of mercenaries. The mirror gets swiped, which raises Xolotl back from the dead (of course), and gives him the opportunity to swipe the mirror before running off. Totec awakens from his slumber and blames Lara before the two reluctantly join forces to retrieve the mirror and save the world from an age of darkness.*exhale*Whether or not you were able to follow all of that, it doesn't much matter right now. The point is that it sets up the game's cooperative action, with one player taking control of Lara and the other of Totec. Each character has his or her own strengths and abilities, forcing players to cooperate in some interesting and clever ways. As expected, Lara wields her dual pistols, but will come equipped with a grappling hook, as well. The hook can be used to attach to grapple points in the world, of course. But more important to the game's cooperative spin, she'll also be able to throw the rope to Totec in order to help him across gaps and solve other puzzles.Totec's got his own sets of skills, as well. He'll be able to fire weapons (Lara gave him a quick class on modern armaments), but also carries with him spears, along with a shield. The spears (up to three can exist in the game world at any given time) can be thrown at walls, which Lara can jump to to cross gaps. Totec can also put his shield above his head, giving Lara a stepping stone or a moving platform.While much of the game will find players exploring sprawling, fully-rendered 3D worlds as they blast down Xolotl's minions using firearms and remote bombs, that's not the only focus. Using a combination of both Lara's and Zotec's unique abilities, players will have to work together to solve puzzles as a team.The hands-off demo I'm shown has Lara and Zotec exploring The Spider's Tomb, and tasked with finding four sun discs to advance (all the while killing lots of big ass spiders). This particular area isn't linear, with the players being able to pick up the discs in any order. It's a great opportunity for me to see the player team work in action. In one instance, Lara uses a wall run ability to clear a gap. Once crossed, Totec jumps as Lara throws out her grappling hook to catch him. It's one of many trust building mechanics built into Guardian of Light."The two players in the story are kind of building a trust and learning to work together," Neuburger tells me, "and I really wanted the two people on the couch or the two people playing online to have to go through the same struggle, and really learn to work together, to trust each other." Outside of these types of puzzles on the critical story path, The Guardian of Light will also have a number of "Challenge Tombs." In one particular "Challenge Tomb" (one of the game's easiest, I'm told), Lara and Totec need to climb a tall pillar in order to retrieve an item. With no grappling point in sight, the obvious solve is to use Totec's spears -- throwing them into the pillar will allow Lara to climb up. But thrown from the ground, the spears aren't high enough for Lara to reach. The solution? Totec heads up a nearby staircase, giving him a little extra height. Problem solved.This item, along with the gems that drop from fallen enemies, will be used for something linked to gameplay. Exactly what that is, Neuburger isn't really saying."All of the rewards in our game have gameplay meaning," he says, saying one of the team's goals was to make sure they weren't throwing in pick-ups just for the sake of it.Visually, The Guardian of Light looks stellar for a downloadable title. It should -- it uses the same engine Crystal Dynamics used for its last next-gen Tomb Raider title, Tomb Raider: Underworld. Although locked into an isometric view, the entire world is rendered in 3D, lighting effects, shadows, and bristling foliage.Although the game was tuned for cooperative play (both online and off), The Guardian of Light will also feature an adapted Lara-only single-player experience. Sorry, Totec fans. "We designed everything for co-op, because it's really important to hit that co-op experience pitch perfect," Neuburger explains to me. "We take those co-op puzzles and redesign them to fit for the single player experience, but with the overall goals of the co-op puzzles."But watching two players working together while playing The Guardian of Light, it's obvious that you'll want to grab a buddy for this adventure. As surprising a take on the franchise as it is, it's definitely shaping up to be one of the more polished downloadable titles in the space.I left my meeting with Crystal Dynamics with one thing on my mind: "I want to play this." The developer plans to show off more of Lara Croft: The Guardian of Light -- set to hit Xbox 360, PlayStation 3, and PC and their respective downloadable services -- at E3. I hope to get my chance then, and maybe they'll bring even bigger spiders for me to shoot.
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Bad story headlines aside, you should know that -- after having gotten a nice look at the game at GDC -- I'm pretty pumped about Lara Croft's upcoming adventure. Called Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light, this isn't your ty...

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Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light coming this Summer


Mar 10
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
New details have surfaced for Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light. The latest Lara Croft adventure will be out this Summer for the PlayStation Network, Xbox Live Arcade and PC. The new game offers about six hours of gameplay...
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So, Lara Croft is an isometric arcade co-op platformer


Mar 06
// Jim Sterling
Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light is an isometric arcade platformer. How about that? Didn't see that one coming, did you? Tomb Raider may be responsible for helping to craft the third-person action/adventure, but it seems ...
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Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light officially announced


Mar 04
// Jim Sterling
Crystal Dynamics has officially revealed its new Tomb Raider game today, except it's kind of not. The studio has eschewed the Tomb Raider name for this series reboot, instead calling it Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light. E...
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Lara Croft vs Slave Leia in a snowball fight


Feb 27
// Hamza CTZ Aziz
Look, it's Saturday morning. Nothing is going on, the videogame industry has stopped for the week and it's a slow night. Actually, that's all bullsh*t. We would have posted this no matter what. Why? Because why not! That's w...
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Tomb Raider creator refuses to draw Lara nude


Feb 11
// Jim Sterling
I find something deeply amusing about the creator of Lara Croft having a shred of dignity, but it's allegedly true. Toby Gard, the man responsible for massive-boobed Lara, refused to draw the lady in nothing but her birthday ...
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Is Tomb Raider going multiplayer?


Dec 06
// Matthew Razak
There's no doubt about it, multiplayer is the gaming industry's favoritist thing ever. If a game doesn't have multiplayer in it these days, it almost seems incomplete. For the non-multiplayer gamer such as myself this is a te...
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Lara Croft stripping in Silent Hill!?


Nov 18
// Jim Sterling
Oh advertisers, you so crazy! A new commercial for Pringles has appeared that is both awesome and ludicrous at the very same time. It seems to be a rather impressive homage to survival horror games at first, with a surprisin...
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Introducing: Square Enix Europe


Nov 10
// Nick Chester
Here's something you should get used to if you live in the UK -- Square Enix Europe is the publisher of those Tomb Raider games. I know, weird, right?  That's how it's gonna' be, as Square Enix and Eidos Interactive have...

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