In celebration of its 25th anniversary, Square Enix has also released videos of the Tomb Raider: Ascension prototype.
The first Tomb Raider was released in 1996, and Crystal Dynamics, which is currently working on the franchise, are celebrating the 25th anniversary of the series by giving away all sorts of gifts throughout the year. Recently, for example, they showed off the game that the 2013 Tomb Raider reboot was originally intended to be survival horror, Tomb Raider: Ascension. They also shared three videos of it, which you can watch below.
The most interesting is the one showing a prototype of the gameplay. Graphically, the gameplay is quite lacking (most of the textures are out of place, for example), but it shows the essence of the game. Lara Croft crawls through dark caves while truly horrendous creatures try to tear her apart. There were already some elements here that were used in the later version, such as the bow, the pickaxe used for climbing and the fire, although the latter would have been implemented here with Lara hanging petrol can on her back to acting like a flamethrower. What makes it more interesting is that the archaeologist could have been riding in the open air (open-world course?), at one point being chased by a huge monster with smaller horrors clinging to it.
In the second video, you can see concept sketches showing the visuals and atmosphere intended for the game, in which you can also see some other characters. And in the third video, the potential cover art is shown as Lara explains that she is “not the British princess” who runs around with “shiny guns”, but does struggle, has doubts and knows fear. So it is apparent that the developers had already invented the more human and believable character that was finally introduced in the 2013 reboot.
Crystal Dynamics revealed back in January how they plan to continue weaving the Tomb Raider story, but also that we shouldn’t expect a game announcement for a while yet.