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Tomb Raider

Tomb Raider PlayStation BoxTomb Raider is an action-adventure video game developed by British developer Core Design and published by Eidos Interactive. Released in 1996 for the PlayStation, Sega Saturn and PC it is the first installment in the Tomb Raider series.

Gamers take control of Lara Croft, an English archaeologist in search of ancient treasures. Lara is hired to retrieve an artifact from a tomb in Peru, which turns out to be one of three pieces of the Atlantean Scion. After being betrayed by her employer, Lara travels to Greece, Rome and Egypt to recover the other pieces of the Scion before it falls into the wrong hands.

Preliminary design concept for Tomb Raider began in 1993 by six members of Core Design with development starting in early 1995. Initially designed with a male lead character, the team entertained the idea of having two-character models and allowing players to select between, thus leading to the development of a female character.

Game Designer Toby Gard created a female character and as the team progressed further into the development process, they realized that by adding a secondary character model it would double the amount of work required for cutscenes. The additional effort was a lot to take on for a small development team with a game of such scale resulting in the need to scale the scope back down to one-character model. Favoring the newly created female character and influenced by observing how often the female characters were being selected in Virtua Fighter, a hit arcade game and console port at the time, Gard decided to scrap the original male character in favor of the new female character.

The game was an undertaking like no other at the time as fully three-dimensional action-adventure games where a new concept made capable of recent hardware advancements. The development team struggled to implement Toby Gar’s vision of the game, in particular allowing the character model to interact with freeform environments. To accomplish this task a game engine was designed from scratch by Paul Douglas and the decision was made to build the entire game world on a grid.

Core Design developed the Sega Saturn and Sony PlayStation versions simultaneously however released the game for the Sega Saturn first as they had a timed exclusive agreement with Sega. Upon release of the Saturn version of the game a number of bugs were discovered which affected both versions but due to the timed exclusivity the team was able to fix the bugs that were identified prior to the release of the PlayStation version.

The game became an instant hit and received critical acclaim upon release. The game was a commercial success selling over 7 million copies worldwide across all versions of its release. The game is considered widely influential, serving as a template for many 3D action-adventure games that would follow. The game spawned a series with four more installments released for the original PlayStation, a number of spin-offs, a remake released in 2007 for the games 10-year anniversary and a series reboot in 2013.

Tomb Raider Logo
Developer(s)Core Design
Publisher(s)Eidos Interactive
SeriesTomb Raider
SuccessorTomb Raider II
Sega Saturn
Media TypeDisc
NA: November 14, 1996
EU: November 22, 1996
JP: February 14, 1997

Sega Saturn
EU: October 25, 1996
NA: November 14, 1996
JP: January 24, 1997

NA: November 14, 1996
EU: November 22, 1996
Development Time18 Months
SalesTotal Sales
7 Million (Across All Platforms)

Individual Releases
4.63 Million -PlayStation
1.34 Million -Sega Saturn
1.03 Million -DOS
RatingESRB: T
PEGI: 12
Rereleased Platform(s)Ports
Mac OS -1999
N0Gage -2003

Digital Release
PlayStation 3 -2009
PSP -2009
PS Vita -2012
iOS -2013
Android -2015

Game Screenshots:

G4 Icons - Lara Croft

G4 Icons

Icons was a documentary TV show that aired on G4 from May 1, 2002, to March 4, 2007. It originally focused on significant people, companies, products, history, and milestones in the world of video games.

Jason Gosling 2Jason GoslingProgrammers
Paul DouglasPaul DouglasProgrammers
Gavin RummeryGavin RummeryProgrammers
Toby Gard 2Toby GardGraphic Artists
Original Concept
Heather GibsonHeather GibsonGraphic Artists
Neal BoydNeal BoydGraphic Artists
Derek Leigh-GilchristDerek Leigh-GilchristAdditional Programming
Andrew HoweAndrew HoweAdditional Programming
Profile PlaceholderMansoor NusratAdditional Programming
Lee PullenLee PullenAdditional Artwork
Peter BarnardPeter BarnardAdditional Artwork
Stuart AtkinsonStuart AtkinsonAdditional Artwork
Profile PlaceholderDavid PateAdditional Artwork
Nathan McCreeNathan McCreeMusic
Martin IvesonMartin IvesonSound effects
Jeremy Heath-SmithJeremy Heath-SmithExecutive Producer
Extra Special Thanks
Mike SchmittMike SchmittProducer
Profile PlaceholderFrank HomQA
Profile PlaceholderTom MarxQA
Matthew MillerMatthew MillerQA
Brian SchorrBrian SchorrQA
Profile PlaceholderJames PooleQA
Philip B. GelberPhilip B. GelberQA
Profile PlaceholderPhillip BakerQA
Profile PlaceholderPres GabrilloQA
Profile PlaceholderMichael R. KellyQA
Michael McHaleMichael McHaleQA
Profile PlaceholderPaul BaldwinMarketing Support
Gary KeithGary KeithMarketing Support
Sutton TroutSutton TroutMarketing Support
Profile PlaceholderLee WilkinsonMarketing Support
Profile PlaceholderKelly ZavislakMarketing Support
Ann CuadraSpecial Thanks
Charilette GrateSpecial Thanks
Colin BoswellColin BoswellSpecial Thanks
Dominic WheatleyDominic WheatleySpecial Thanks
Jo Kathryn ReavisSpecial Thanks
Profile PlaceholderJoseph O'DonnellSpecial Thanks
John KavanaghJohn KavanaghSpecial Thanks
Profile PlaceholderKarl HessSpecial Thanks
Mike McGarveyMike McGarveySpecial Thanks
Monique CollinsSpecial Thanks
Profile PlaceholderPaul MainardSpecial Thanks
Sandy JamisonSpecial Thanks
Steven GoebelSteven GoebelSpecial Thanks
Susan BoshkoffSpecial Thanks
Kim GishlerSpecial Thanks
Adrian SmithAdrian SmithExtra Special Thanks
Profile PlaceholderTroy HortonExtra Special Thanks
Mark PriceMark PriceExtra Special Thanks
Profile PlaceholderKen LockleyExtra Special Thanks
Profile PlaceholderAndrew ThompsonExtra Special Thanks
Profile PlaceholderAlex JosephExtra Special Thanks
Profile PlaceholderRyo MisawaSoftware Evaluation
Profile PlaceholderGaku SatoDirector
Profile PlaceholderInazou UranoAssistant
Profile PlaceholderHiroki TakasuAssistant
Megumi OgataMegumi OgataVoice Actor (Lara)
Michie TomizawaMichie TomizawaVoice Actor (Natla)
Wataru TakagiWataru TakagiVoice Actor (Larson)
Profile PlaceholderYasuhiro IshiiVoice Actor (Pierre)
Profile PlaceholderMasaru SasaharaVoice Actor (Baldy)
Yuji UedaYuji UedaVoice Actor (Cowboy)
Kōsuke OkanoKōsuke OkanoVoice Actor (SkateKid)


PlayStation (North American Release)

Sega Saturn (North American Release)

Sega Saturn (Japanese Release)

PC (North American Release)

Media & Promotional Material