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Old 24-12-19, 10:12   #1
_Seth
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Lightbulb How I would Reimagine

You know, when the reboot was first leaked back in the day, even though I loathed and still loathe LAU with the white-hot intensity of a thousand suns, I still thought it would be pointless and would muddy the franchise even further to reboot again. I soon, and before 2013 came out, came round to thinking that actually a cleaner, fresher start would be good. It would solidify a solid foundation for continuation, I thought. The game turned out not at all to be what I want from TR or Lara, even if it is fun in itself, so here are some changes that I think would have made for a better foundation establishment, and would have been more appropriate for the TR experience. You can hate it if you want, which you might, but meh, it's just my ideas.

MUSIC

No-one will agree with the following, but I think TR should have adopted something truly original that wouldn't be a complete departure for its music - orchestral metal. Think Nightwish. Listen to that while you read on. This would retain its orchestral roots, but introduce metal as an original edge which you never see in AAA adventure games. It would add bags of raw style and cement a new attitude. The original theme should most definitely have been adapted.

STORY, CHARACTERS & LARA

Instead of Lara being an unlikeable, wet blanket, dullard throughout the game, I'd have her conduct herself similarly to Alicia Vikander's 2018 iteration. She'd be likeable, spunky, have some good lines while being down to Earth, British and overall she'd have a fun and engaging screen presence. Lara's parents would be alive and well, everything else about her bio the same as Core Design's. Lara finds out about Roth, a family friend's, expedition and Lara's dad convinces him to let Lara and her friend Sam to come along as it would enrich her education.

For the story I'd retain only Lara, Sam, Roth, Whitman, Steph, Mathias and about 5 cult members, who'd each serve as boss battles only. I'd keep Sam as a descendant of Himiko. Steph would be introduced in the beginning and soon be seen sacrificed. Lara and Sam would be in a lesbian relationship which both their parents don't know about as they're posh and stuck up, but Roth being the cool uncle type knows and is cool with it and on their side. This relationship between Sam and Lara would be a twist revealed about a quarter into the game. It would be an extremely daring aspect to include and would show CD would have had balls of ****ing steel to implement. The stakes of Sam being kidnapped twice would be much higher (especially if both their characters are overhauled so they're actually likeable). There could be a backlash at making Lara a lesbian, but she was also somewhat ambiguous, but I would respect tremendously what a bold move it would be.

The theme of sacrifice should remain present, if a bit more prominent. The ending should see Lara heartbreakingly having to kill Sam in a boss battle, as the original ending intended, to do away with Himiko's rageful soul. Lara would be frozen and stunned after it's done, briefly in shock that she seriously just had to do that. As long as it isn't written and presented like low budget Spanish soap as per CD's untalented style, I could appreciate such a moment. I could appreciate Angelina Jolie's moments, such as when she had to shoot Terry, because if you like the character in the beginning, then you feel for them when they go through ****. Anyway, this would have been a great twist ending with emotion and shock value. This would also impression on Lara as a character, as this kinda thing really moulds you as a person, I'm sure, and here is why we would see Lara harden up.

I'm a big fan of characters having their iconic, consistent look when it comes to their outfit, similar to Indiana Jones. There should always be the defining outfit that remains for certain characters as to form their image identity. Classic Lara had a blue top, LAU Lara was brown, and Angelina Jolie's continuity was most recognisably black. I would have Survivor Lara wear black boots, black trousers, a maroon short sleeved ribbed top and a high black ponytail similar to Cradle of Life Lara. Instead of falling on the spike in the opening through her waist, it would pierce the edge of her thigh as in beta, causing that large rip on her inner thigh as you see in the final game. When Lara finds Sam's pack, it's a black backpack which she searches and wears. When Lara needs to bandage an incapacitated Roth's leg, she panics for something to use and rips her trousers into short shorts to successfully use as bandage material. (The ripped edges of the shorts would be rolled up a bit for aesthetics so they're not just an ugly rip.) Lara can later be given a piton instead of a huge ugly climbing axe, as it would be functionally the same but not become part of her image because I don't want that much departure. During the high winds segment when Lara's searching for Captain Jessop, there can be a cutscene which shows her high ponytail flailing in her face and getting in the way, she she embeds a hard braid from the hairline tip to the base of the skull, where she ties a hairband to have the rest as a low ponytail. Half Angelina Jolie's 2001 braid, tied off into a ponytail. Lara when Lara is given Roth's pistols she'd actually equip and use them. They should be an all-platinum finished pair of Heckler and Koch pistols, like Cradle of Life. This is a good in between of new pistols but finished to look reminiscent of what came before. Lara would take and wear Roth's holsters, completing the transformed new look.

BRANDING

Let's be real, the logo is as generic as it could possibly ever have been designed. It's as if the designer was specifically told to make it as dull and unidentifiable as possible. It's literally the same as Uncharted's, Just Cause's, The Last of Us', Call of Duty's and probably heaps more. The logo should be a modernised, tweaked, maybe recoloured recreation of the original, most widely used EU logo.

GAMEPLAY

This is where I really think the roots should have mostly been stuck to. Mostly.

2013 should have, IMO, played out as a level-after-level structure, similar to TR1-3, with backtracking and exploration within the levels themselves, but not in between levels. This does not mean less exploration, as each stage itself would be it's own fully explorable mini world. The game should feature levels with multiple paths, multi-tiered over-arching structures with animal enemies, reanimated statues, creatures and traps peppered about with their own keys and artefacts which can have their own lore behind them. Locations would include underground caverns, subterranean cities, desolate temples, dungeons, tombs and ruins. Rein in on documents whereby each time you find one, there can be a show-don't-tell kind of cutscene that tells whatever story there is. Instead of getting skill points for killing, each level can have 4 inscribed walls, which together complete a riddle pointing you to a hidden room. Upon finding this, there would be a scroll detailing ancient teachings (similar to Rise). Each skill would feel like something you'd truly earned, and there being 1 in most levels would mean there isn't an unnecessary overabundance.

CROFT MANOR EPILOGUE

After the main game has finished, the last level would take place in a remade classic Croft Manor and be called Epilogue. The beginning of this level would have a text card saying "Croft Manor, present day" and feature a matured Lara looking to be in her early 30's. This would show that the events of Yamatai was her origin story in full, and not mentioning any years when Yamatai, present day, or how long it's been in between ensures the timeline can be a floating one. Her age should be ambiguous and never change, tbh. This Croft Manor level would be indoors only (to allow further expansion in future games) and have crates everywhere like TR1. There should be about multiple documents with mini show-don't-tell-cutscenes that indicate some of the major pieces of Lara's history, whereby it is always the chronological order that the documents are revealed, no matter what order you pick them up in the game. The events mentioned through documents would be something like:

Swiss Finishing School Diploma
Necklace, gifted by Sam
Endurance ship ticket
Letter of disownment from parents and withdrawal from funds
Travel book publishing deal letter, whereby Lara earned money detailing her exploits over 8 years since Yamatai
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Last edited by _Seth; 29-12-19 at 21:38.
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