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Old 12-07-22, 20:25   #1
Craig Michaels
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Default Archaeology on Raidercast

Heya! I'm an archaeologist and long-time Tomb Raider fan / level builder. I was just interviewed about archaeology on Raidercast. If you're interested in some of the inspiration behind the games and the perspective of an archaeologist, check it out!



https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FoXr...nel=Raidercast

PS - Late in the video I say "Amun" instead of "Aten" - I'll correct it if I'm ever on again.
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Old 12-07-22, 21:04   #2
jackali
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Thanks for sharing. Was really nice to see your passion for archaeology and level building.
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Old 12-07-22, 22:08   #3
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Thank you for sharing.
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Old 13-07-22, 02:11   #4
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Chris, you did such a great job giving context to a lot of this stuff! Really enjoyed watching this and can't wait for part 2.

Was super intrigued by the bit about the non-Incan "calendar" and your mention of the smell of the burning still being there all those years later. I think hearing an archaeologist's take on the definition of archaeology can allow people to reimagine what it means to be a Tomb Raider and hopefully can inspire Lara's character to do the same as discussions like this continue.
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Old 13-07-22, 07:08   #5
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I found this insanely fascinating! I could listen about this for every classic, level-by-level, room-by-room!

Where there were inaccurate statues and decorations, I'd be curious as to what historically accurate, approximate alternatives you would suggest be there instead. For example the tiled snakes in Vilcabamba, is there a similar-ish decoration that would make more sense?
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Old 13-07-22, 15:07   #6
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I watched it, and it was really cool! I actually wanted to ask about the Atlantis angle and the authenticity of the archaeology a bit more.

In many video games, they mix and merge multiple Meso American cultures into one. I understand that it's a bit wrong. But how accurate should the video games be? (My Avatar is from Broken Sword II the Smoking Mirror, which is a game that is kind of notorious in this regard. It mixes up the Mayans and the Aztecs multiple times, but it introduced me to these cultures)

For example, in my opinion the Mayan archaeological sites all look quite diverse. The archaeological sites of Chichen Itza,Tikal and Palenque look quite different in terms of their architecture. If a video game uses elements from all three of these sites, in a fictional setting would it be still inaccurate?

Also some of the lesser known Meso-American cultures such as the Mixtec, Huastec, Zapotec or the Olmec cultures rarely get any screen time in the popular culture. Is it wrong to use elements of these cultures, in a predominantly Aztec, or Mayan setting?

Thanks,
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Old 19-07-22, 16:05   #7
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Hello fellow archaeologist
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Old 20-07-22, 12:26   #8
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Great interview Craig. I always enjoy all of your insightful posts and comments. I hope you're still working on your India TRLE.
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Old 22-07-22, 19:52   #9
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Watched the first half last night - was really interesting and thank you Craig for the info as it was great to get some insights into the developers inspiration! Will definitely watch the rest this weekend for sure.
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Old 10-08-22, 11:27   #10
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I was a bit surprised to hear Chris go on about the 'Lara is a colonialist oppressor' idea around 5 minutes in- anyone familiar with the franchise knows that Classic Lara is an equal-opportunity kleptomanic sociopath.

Quote:
Originally Posted by laracroftswest View Post
Chris, you did such a great job giving context to a lot of this stuff! Really enjoyed watching this and can't wait for part 2.

Was super intrigued by the bit about the non-Incan "calendar" and your mention of the smell of the burning still being there all those years later. I think hearing an archaeologist's take on the definition of archaeology can allow people to reimagine what it means to be a Tomb Raider and hopefully can inspire Lara's character to do the same as discussions like this continue.
I do like that the classics used those photo references of ancient architecture. It does lend a certain air of authenticity to the environments.
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