I am officially caught up in the mostly Game Informer-generated hype over the upcoming Tomb Raider reboot — not just because “Tomb Raider: Underworld” was a sublime, surprisingly visceral experience, and not because I’m a pervert obsessed with, um, looting Lara Croft’s digital booty. I’m intrigued by the idea that developer Crystal Dynamics will be attempting to generate an origin story for the shapely, tough-as-nails heroine years after she’s already been cemented in the public consciousness. (The cinematic equivalent might be if Marvel had waited until “Spiderman 4” to reveal how Peter Parker got his powers.) The choice is both a challenge and an opportunity, but judging from this excerpt from Game Informer’s interview with Crystal Dynamics’ Tim Longo, the developers are feeling ambitious:
“Characters are way more important in games now. Lara had always stayed in that 2-dimensional Teflon. It was more about the raw fantasy fulfillment of doing what she was doing, rather than her being someone that people cared about,” says Longo. “You have to give things to people before they know they want them.”
In other words, now, baby got backstory.
There’s little I can add to GI’s extensive, ongoing exploration of the Croft mythos and week-by-week updates on the new game’s development. So, allow me to veer off onto a potentially polarizing — possibly detestable — tangent: Is it me, or does the new Lara Croft look a bit like the “Twilight” saga’s angst-ridden ingenue Kristen Stewart? It’s not that far fetched an idea; the folks at Crystal Dynamics admit that they researched actresses while re-imagining the younger, more vulnerable Croft that will soon enough be cliff-jumping across our flat-screens. And, if the reboot does re-ignite global love for the buxom, adventurer with the British accent, there’s a better-than-average chance we could see a movie revamp as well.
Hmm… that gives me an idea for a list. Stay tuned…