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Old 03-10-19, 17:01   #11
ThatSassyKid
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Because Tomb Raider was never about the story.
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Old 03-10-19, 17:11   #12
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I still find TR1's Story to be the best.
An alien queen that betrays you to raise some skinless bastards isnt something you see very often
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Old 03-10-19, 17:13   #13
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Isn't it confirmed that they only brought Rihana in last minute then overruled her so they could keep the amount of combat in the game?

Basically, Crystal don't actually care about the story to have it flow with the gameplay like it should or put any effort into it.
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Old 03-10-19, 17:14   #14
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It's not that difficult in and of itself. The problem is more with video game writing in general and how some devs/studios tend to approach story-telling. A lot of the time, the writing is done by people who simply aren't very good at it and who only kind of slipped into it because they were already involved in the industry in some other way. And even if you do have a talented writer working on a project, there's no guarantee that you'll end up with a good story because, a lot of the time, other departments treat writing and storytelling as a bit of an afterthought. Writers are oftentimes not consulted when decisions are made that affect storytelling and don't always have a whole lot of creative control over the project which, if the game is very story-driven, can be a problem.

I do disagree with your opening post, though. There has been one Tomb Raider game with a great story: Angel of Darkness. (And Legend's story is half-decent, too, even though it completely misunderstood and ruined Lara's character and backstory and feels far too Americanised for the series.)
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Old 03-10-19, 17:17   #15
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Originally Posted by Zebra View Post
It's not that difficult in and of itself. The problem is more with video game writing in general and how some devs/studios tend to approach story-telling. A lot of the time, the writing is done by people who simply aren't very good at it and who only kind of slipped into it because they were already involved in the industry in some other way. And even if you do have a talented writer working on a project, there's no guarantee that you'll end up with a good story because, a lot of the time, other departments treat writing and storytelling as a bit of an afterthought. Writers are oftentimes not consulted when decisions are made that affect storytelling and don't always have a whole lot of creative control over the project which, if the game is very story-driven, can be a problem.

I do disagree with your opening post, though. There has been one Tomb Raider game with a great story: Angel of Darkness. (And Legend's story is half-decent, too, even though it completely misunderstood and ruined Lara's character and backstory and feels far too Americanised for the series.)
I would say AOD is one of the greatest stories in the series, I admit fully, that is not much (Though I argue the Classics are better than Reboot since they at least don't pretend like they have a in-depth story.), its sort of the Sonic Adventure, Yes there's a few mistakes/plot holes here and now (Though admittingly in AOD's case most of it is due to them not being able to finish the game and create the required cutscenes/FMVs since they're in the script)
but it at least tried, which is more than can be said of the later games if you ask me.

Also Lara does not get knocked out out more than once so thank Horus for that.
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Old 04-10-19, 12:07   #16
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I think getting away from Lara-centric storytelling would be a start. She needs more consistency for sure but that's not enough. The villains need a backstory too to make them more interesting. They tried and failed with Amanda, but Natla was successful in that respect. I think that's what made TR1 one of the best stories in the classic era. AOD kind of tried by telling some of the story from Kurtis' perspective but his entire backstory and motives were cut to shreds due to running out of time in development. So he ultimately felt out of place, likewise Karel was suppose to figure heavily but ultimately amounted to a last-minute shoehorning in the final scenes.

So I would say that the story needs to be bigger than Lara, have things happen around her that don't necessarily begin or end with Lara as a device for moving the plot forward but have her react to events as they happen, making mistakes or turning things to her advantage as the story moves along. Accept that Lara has flaws and doesn't necessarily need to be 'relatable' but don't make her a superhero either. Move away from family-driven motives.

Consider avoiding Mary Sue tropes https://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/Main/MarySue

and keep in mind the Bechdel test (for example, Lara co-operating with Anaya in TRL or the tribeswoman in ROTTR) so that Lara isn't unrealistically portrayed as the Only Female in a non-villain capacity.

Consider levity. TR games seem to either go for soap-opera styled drama or 'dark and gritty'. Allow for tonal shift within the game to add some relief. Uncharted did this well through adding in some jokes or one liners but still adding in darker scenes and suspense.
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Old 04-10-19, 19:06   #17
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TR4 comes into my mind when i want a good overall progress of the game.
You have Alexandria with a clear blue sky, Cairo where the sky is thundering and Gizah where the sky is blood red, foreshadowing the entrance of Seth.
She doesn't show it that much (except in the ending fmv) but i am sure that the girl is pretty tired after alexandria already.
She does her best to stop Von Croy and Seth, She saves her friend that helped her earlier (even here Lara isn't alone fighting Von Croy).
I wish we would have seen Lara being exhausted in an ingame cutscene here. For example after the Seargent commits suicide
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Old 05-10-19, 14:01   #18
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You know what I'm tired of--and this happens in UC games too (although they are a million times better written Tomb Raider) hordes of storyless, motivationless mercenaries.

In TR4, who are those guys? Are they actually working for Von Croy? They just show up and are barriers to Lara moving forward.

I don't need a LOT of work here, but these heros are so freaking successful at mowing through hordes of mercenaries, at some point, I feel like real mercenaries might be like, "there's easier gigs out there. Let's move on."

I guess henchmen are as old as villians, but when you reach small army size, it feels like plotkai. True believers aren't that easy to come by.
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Old 05-10-19, 14:09   #19
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You know what I'm tired of--and this happens in UC games too (although they are a million times better written Tomb Raider) hordes of storyless, motivationless mercenaries.

In TR4, who are those guys? Are they actually working for Von Croy? They just show up and are barriers to Lara moving forward.

I don't need a LOT of work here, but these heros are so freaking successful at mowing through hordes of mercenaries, at some point, I feel like real mercenaries might be like, "there's easier gigs out there. Let's move on."

I guess henchmen are as old as villians, but when you reach small army size, it feels like plotkai. True believers aren't that easy to come by.
I think it's said somewhere they're locals so probably hired by Von Croy but yeah the ninjas feel a bit out of place in TR4. (Yes I know they're actually not ninjas)

Its not as bad as some examples *Cough*Rise*Cough*

I know in AOD Lara I think kills less than 20 of Gunderson's mercenaries, most of which were at the Louvre when going for max kills and she only deals with the ambigous criminals/security/police guys at Le Serpent Rouge and Prague.

Same with Underworld sorta but I also think there are few spots where they infintely respawn (like at the very start of the ship in the first ship level.)
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Old 05-10-19, 16:24   #20
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Since TR is mostly about platforming and exploring (or at least should be), I think the storytelling should be more environmental. Since archeology is about discovering wtf happend in the past, the same feeling should be conveyed to the player. It's up to you to figure out the millenia long narrative puzzle.
TR1 did this in a few places, in the Tomb of Qualopec, you see how deperately the Scion is protected when the defunct undead guardian still looks at you intently and tries to attack you, but just crumbles to the floor, and the Great Pyramid when you come up to the throne room and see where Natla used to sit when she was a queen. Aeons ago. There is something so mysterious and magical about that.
And I agree with Reggie - get the story away from Lara.
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