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Old 04-12-19, 00:50   #81
LateRaider
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Originally Posted by Polaroidteam View Post
Maybe a little off topic, but this thought reminded me of a movie with Angelina Jolie.
It's called "Life or Something Like It".
I watched it a long time ago and don't remember much.
So I'll quote the necessary moments from wiki:
"Lanie Kerrigan (Angelina Jolie), a successful reporter for a Seattle television station, interviews a self-proclaimed prophet, Jack (Tony Shalhoub), to find out if he really can predict football scores.
Instead, Prophet Jack not only predicts the football score, but also that Lanie will die in seven days...
She is shot in the crossfire. Lanie dies in the operating theatre but is revived...
Lanie (in a voiceover) says that one part of her has died — the part that didn't know how to live a life".

I love parallels
That's really cool! Thanks for sharing!

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Originally Posted by Portugalraider View Post
One thing I absolutely love about SotTR's ending, which also more or less correlate to this, is how palpable the difference in Lara's state of mind is before and after the ritual, yet it still feels like she still is the same person, like nothing has changed.

The sacrifice definitely changed Lara, but instead of changing her to someone she wasn't and started to be, she changed from a person who isn't comfortable showing that side of her to someone who is. Like that Lara was always there, she just needed to finally be able to reveal it. I dunno, it's kind of hard to explain.

This isn't the bombastic scene the climax of a whole origin trilogy perhaps needed, but it still great writing and a great final none the less.

It's a shame really, I think SotTR's plot after the "campsite cutscene" with Lara and Jonah loses too much of a natural "scene-to-scene" flow to be considered a truly well written plot. But damn if I don't think that, on their own, most of those scenes are absolutely well written!
That's pretty accurate, Portugalraider. Basically my consensus as well. They did try to weave together story and gameplay by having the pacing drop in Paititi, but it wasn't the best choice after so much build-up. Bless the cutscenes, though, they're very well done.

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Originally Posted by Vaskito View Post
[Amazing post trimmed for brevity]
This was beautiful, Vasky. Thank you so much for sharing it.

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Originally Posted by Rai View Post
Nice write up, Vaskito! . Once again I find myself agreeing with your analysis. And alongside LateRaider's own analysis, it's not only reaffirming the conclusions I'd come to myself, but adding more depth and understanding of Lara's origin journey. And, imo, it also shows why three games were needed; there were different stages to her growth, which without each stage, she might not have gotten to certain points, certain realisations. Each new phase was needed in order to reach the destination.
Yeah, definitely. I think they could've tidied it up in two games if they were clever about it, but I didn't mind a trilogy and it definitely enhanced Lara's character.

------

Well, here's my postmortem on the trilogy.

While Lara's character arc in and of itself is strong, and the character rebooting went well... not much else did. When was the trilogy doomed? Was it the bow? The loss of the backpack? The endless explosions?

No. I think it goes back as far as the decision to include Grim and Alex, killing them off, and removing the death of Sam. After that, they refused to use her ever again and wrote her out of the story in the comics.

Though this hurt the new series, it didn't throw it off track. The end came when Rise of the TR was announced as a one-year Xbox exclusive. It's a story we all know well, so I won't revisit it.

Unfortunately, Shadow of the TR was the last thread of the rope. The bizarre marketing stunts stirred discontent among fans: lavish invite-only events showcasing the game, press tours, no public demo until after release. And the reused story beats just made the game real tiresome for most people.

I feel like it was forgivable to retread some ground between TR 2013 and RotTR, solely because a lot of the context is different. Lara could leave Siberia at any time in RotTR, whereas she was forced onto Yamatai; the Stormguard are revealed at the last second in TR 2013, whereas the Athanatoi are built up to some degree throughout RotTR; the Remnant were refreshing to talk with as opposed to the Solarii constantly trying to kill you; and so on.

SotTR just... well... redoes what RotTR did, and it wasn't OK because RotTR already did that. We already found an impossible hidden village in the mountains. We already allied ourself with the village tribe in hopes of repelling Trinity. We already fought an immortal godlike army that speaks an ancient tongue. "More of the same" gameplay-wise would've been fine, since SotTR takes RotTR's improvements upon TR 2013's formula and hones it to a razor-sharp edge, but giving us the same exact tropes again? Not cool.

And it's made worse by dropping the themes of immortality that connected the first and second games. I'm writing this while I'm in the middle of RotTR at the moment, and I'm sure I will or have argued that remaking the world and possession by Kukulkan is a sort of play on immortality in itself. But there's no denying that a broad focus of immortality is not present in SotTR. (Amendment from 60% of the way through SotTR: One of the documents states that Lara has discovered Trinity is trying to collect artifacts in general so as to exploit them to gain dominion over the world. That makes the connections of immortality being ignored a bit more forgivable, but still frustrating.)

Let's not get into the retconning and inconsistencies regarding Richard's death. Was Lara 9 or 11? Was their last conversation an argument or Richard telling Lara to finish her homework? If Amelia's crypt was hidden from Lara, how could Lara cry in front of it as her mother was laid to rest? Very little research went into making SotTR fit in perfectly with the other games and it's upsetting.

The strange thing about it is that when you take SotTR as it is and not as it was promised... it becomes very, very good. As I played through, I was able to divorce the game itself from the canceled Croft Manor DLC, the idiotic marketing, and so on. It's the best Tomb Raider we've had in ages and I only wish it had respawning enemies and the outfit restriction removed in New Game+. (And rain in the Oil Fields, but that's less of an issue.)

In the end, the trilogy is what it is. It's above average when you take it as a whole, but it suffered major executive meddling and could've been much stronger.
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Old 04-12-19, 01:41   #82
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I agree with your analysis above about the trilogy. I love all three games and Shadow is definitely the best of the three as a game and as a TR. Unfortunately, the trilogy suffers from some bad executive decisions which Rise, and then Shadow suffer from. And sadly, there wasn't enough consistencies with the overreaching story arcs through the three games (and the novels and comics). While I stand by my comment above about the different stages of growth Lara goes through, I do agree, this could have been handled just as effectively in two games, if they told it right. Personally, Rise is the game that I feel wasn't needed. Richard was researching Paititi as well and Lara could have easily have used this as her first proper tomb raiding adventure. They would have needed to make a few minor changes, such as introducing Trinity earlier so that Lara and Jonah hunting them down could be explained, and also perhaps, like in the film, made the supernatural as a whole Richard's obsession rather than immortality myths in particular. Still, like you, I can see the good in these games, while accepting those few imperfections. They don't distract me from enjoying them and I think I'm going to be looking even closer at Lara's personal story when I play them in the future. In fairness all these observations are all well and good in hindsight. I feel perhaps that CD/EM and SE needed to maybe plan ahead a bit further, gathering the details together from the beginning and do better in communicating between the higher ups, the writing teams and anyone else involved in the plot, story and basic lore of Lara's origins among a few other inconsistencies. If you look closely enough, they did incredibly well with Lara's arc when it comes to the finer details, leaving clues; it was perhaps a little too nuanced in places.

You've done such a good job of writing this all up and looking closely at the finer details. .
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Old 04-12-19, 07:11   #83
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Let's not get into the retconning and inconsistencies regarding Richard's death. Was Lara 9 or 11? Was their last conversation an argument or Richard telling Lara to finish her homework? If Amelia's crypt was hidden from Lara, how could Lara cry in front of it as her mother was laid to rest? Very little research went into making SotTR fit in perfectly with the other games and it's upsetting.
I dont think Lara's seeing her mother grave is supposed to be what really happen since the level is called the Nightmare. It's just a way to show the death of Amelia Croft have fragilised both Richard and Lara.
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Old 04-12-19, 21:56   #84
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I just read your whole thread LateRaider and I loved it

I'm currently replaying the trilogy (I finished TR2013, I'm playing ROTTR at the moment) and it feels like I see the story and Lara with a whole new point of view.
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Old 06-12-19, 01:43   #85
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Originally Posted by Rai View Post
I agree with your analysis above about the trilogy. I love all three games and Shadow is definitely the best of the three as a game and as a TR. Unfortunately, the trilogy suffers from some bad executive decisions which Rise, and then Shadow suffer from. And sadly, there wasn't enough consistencies with the overreaching story arcs through the three games (and the novels and comics). While I stand by my comment above about the different stages of growth Lara goes through, I do agree, this could have been handled just as effectively in two games, if they told it right. Personally, Rise is the game that I feel wasn't needed. Richard was researching Paititi as well and Lara could have easily have used this as her first proper tomb raiding adventure. They would have needed to make a few minor changes, such as introducing Trinity earlier so that Lara and Jonah hunting them down could be explained, and also perhaps, like in the film, made the supernatural as a whole Richard's obsession rather than immortality myths in particular. Still, like you, I can see the good in these games, while accepting those few imperfections. They don't distract me from enjoying them and I think I'm going to be looking even closer at Lara's personal story when I play them in the future. In fairness all these observations are all well and good in hindsight. I feel perhaps that CD/EM and SE needed to maybe plan ahead a bit further, gathering the details together from the beginning and do better in communicating between the higher ups, the writing teams and anyone else involved in the plot, story and basic lore of Lara's origins among a few other inconsistencies. If you look closely enough, they did incredibly well with Lara's arc when it comes to the finer details, leaving clues; it was perhaps a little too nuanced in places.

You've done such a good job of writing this all up and looking closely at the finer details. .
well put, rai. i hope with the next game, the devs give themselves a game or two to just do some standalone stories. it would really do the series good after several trilogies in a row.

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I dont think Lara's seeing her mother grave is supposed to be what really happen since the level is called the Nightmare. It's just a way to show the death of Amelia Croft have fragilised both Richard and Lara.
yeah, that's how i interpret it too. i also interpret that amelia died when lara was 9 and richard died when she was 11, and she just kind of mixes the two memories together b/c they're both tragic. but sometimes it shouldn't take interpreting to understand the basics.

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I just read your whole thread LateRaider and I loved it

I'm currently replaying the trilogy (I finished TR2013, I'm playing ROTTR at the moment) and it feels like I see the story and Lara with a whole new point of view.
thanks thirteen! i hope it helps people who needed a fresh take on the story.
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