Tomb Raider (PS1)

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snakeboy
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Tomb Raider (PS1)

Postby snakeboy » July 30th, 2020, 3:50 pm

I have this as a digital download for the PS3 and started playing through it a few days ago and am now on the Colliseum level (level 6 I think). I've never owned the original Tomb Raider before, though I do remember playing it some back in the late 90's, think we may have rented it. Funny thing is, I mostly just remember messing around in Lara's home jumping around and swimming. Just that part was amazing. If you weren't alive at this time, I'm not sure if you could appreciate what it was like for those of us who grew up in the 70's and 80's to play a game where you could simply move around freely in a three dimensional environment. It was mind-blowing!

Playing through it now, I can tell you that in some ways time hasn't been too kind. And if you've grown up on games over the past two decades, you probably won't have much patience for it. There is no auto-saving, and the few save points you do get on each level disappear after using them. And it doesn't help that you're often asked to make a series of difficult jumps while contending with a janky camera and controls that are only slightly better than the ones in an old Resident Evil game. And then you will pick up a key or throw a switch and realize that you have to backtrack and make the same jumps again in reverse!

However, despite all of that, dammit, I'm actually having quite a bit of fun! Each level is unique so it's always fun to see what the game has in store next. And there is just enough save points so that if you die (and you will - a lot) you usually won't have to replay too long of a stretch. You can definitely see some holdovers of old school game design here where the game makes things tough on you, sometimes even feeling cheap, and you're forced to have a "try, try again" attitude. And once again, how much you will appreciate that will probably depend on what types of games you grew up with.

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VideoGameCritic
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Re: Tomb Raider (PS1)

Postby VideoGameCritic » July 30th, 2020, 4:51 pm

So did they enhance the graphics for the PS3?

snakeboy
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Re: Tomb Raider (PS1)

Postby snakeboy » July 30th, 2020, 5:30 pm

VideoGameCritic wrote:So did they enhance the graphics for the PS3?


This is simply the PS1 game released through the PSN online service with zero enhancements. The PS3 itself has settings that allow for minor enhancements of PS1 visuals like upscaling and smoothing, but other than that, it's the same old jagged graphics.

Cafeman
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Re: Tomb Raider (PS1)

Postby Cafeman » July 30th, 2020, 8:12 pm

Something sparked an interest in TR in me recently, and I replayed Tomb Raider on my PS2, I played until I completed the Lost World dinosaurs level. Then I remembered that I had Tomb Raider anniversary for PS2. I've been playing through that from the beginning, I beat the Peru levels and Saint Francis Folly levels including the Coliseum, and now I am in Egypt.

The thing is, I still found the original Tomb Raider be pretty fun. I don't think I have the patience to beat the whole thing though. Tomb Raider anniversary has made some parts of the game easier to play, but it is certainly not an easy game. Some of the jumps that you have to do with Laura's grappling rope seem to be near impossible to me.

You and I must be similar age, and I agree that being able to play in a world in 3D with a well animated 3D character was flat-out amazing back in the day.

TheEagleXIII
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Re: Tomb Raider (PS1)

Postby TheEagleXIII » July 31st, 2020, 10:31 am

I think I posted my recent experiences with the first Tomb Raider in the 'All The Way Through' topic earlier this year, so I'll pretty much just be echoing that.

I'm still a huge fan of the original Tomb Raiders, although my recent experience with the original was my first. I was playing on original hardware, so lack of being able to use save states put me off because of the checkpoint-style save system. But I actually ended up liking it. The save crystals felt spaced out fairly and also helped me figure out if I was making progress in-game or accidentally backtracking.

I can see why it was always regarded as the best of the original PS1 series, although at times I felt like it held your hand a little too much. It was the first of it's kind, so maybe that was necessary. It was fun to complete, though, and I loved the aesthetics of the final levels.

I was just entering my teens when I finally got a PS1, and the first Tomb Raider was already outdated by then, so I definitely took the graphics and gameplay of games like this for granted, despite growing up in the bit-wars. But I was able to see how it would have been breathtaking when released - some of the level intros intentionally pan past the scenery with that intriguing musical cue. I did find it jarring that every level takes place in a 'room' - there's always a ceiling/roof, there's no illusion of an infinite sky.

I went on to complete TR2 afterwards, which some others consider the best. I do highly recommend it - it's geared slightly more towards action than the first but still a great adventure, and it's become my favourite one. I only ever so slightly prefer it to TR1, it's very close.

I was trying to complete the whole quintrilogy(?) but TR3 is so frustrating it stopped me dead in my tracks last year. I should go revisit them - as I'm really keen to check out 4 and 5 again and see how they stack up to the first two.

snakeboy
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Re: Tomb Raider (PS1)

Postby snakeboy » July 31st, 2020, 11:02 am

Cafeman wrote:The thing is, I still found the original Tomb Raider be pretty fun. I don't think I have the patience to beat the whole thing though.


It'll be interesting to see how long I can stick with it. This game can be pretty brutal at times - some of the jumps it expects you to make are pretty insane!

But playing this one has definitely made me want to play other Tomb Raider games. Funny thing is, it seems like I've played a decent amount of Tomb Raider in my life, but before playing this I think the only two games I can really remember playing a lot of are the second one and the reboot for PS3.

I think that I'll definitely check out Anniversary now that I know it's a remake of the original. I'm also pretty curious about Legend based on the VGC's review.

snakeboy
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Re: Tomb Raider (PS1)

Postby snakeboy » July 31st, 2020, 11:11 am

TheEagleXIII wrote:I can see why it was always regarded as the best of the original PS1 series, although at times I felt like it held your hand a little too much.


You call this holding your hand too much??? LOL

I don't know, maybe I've become soft by playing games that auto-save your progress every 30 seconds.

TheEagleXIII
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Re: Tomb Raider (PS1)

Postby TheEagleXIII » July 31st, 2020, 11:51 am

snakeboy wrote:
TheEagleXIII wrote:I can see why it was always regarded as the best of the original PS1 series, although at times I felt like it held your hand a little too much.


You call this holding your hand too much??? LOL

I don't know, maybe I've become soft by playing games that auto-save your progress every 30 seconds.


To be fair, I grew up playing 3,4 and 5 which were a lot less linear in their level design. I probably spent more time lost, stuck and wandering around than actually playing the game! So going back to the original where it was a bit more straightforward, and it feeling like the save crystals were 'lighting the way', may have made it feel like it held my hand more. :lol:

Maybe that was the wrong expression to use. I usually refer to it fondly as more of a 'My First Tomb Raider Adventure' in comparison to the others ;)

LuckyWDFN
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Re: Tomb Raider (PS1)

Postby LuckyWDFN » July 31st, 2020, 12:32 pm

I dug the original out last summer for the first time because I never beat it when I bought it originally. Like snakeboy, I very much remember being blown away by this game when it came out and spending more time just practicing moves at Lara's house and wandering around as opposed to trying to complete it.

When I played it last year, I struggled for a long time. Then, as I got through the levels, the game somehow became slightly easier for me as I got used to the jumps and the accuracy.

In hindsight, it's such a great game. The level of difficulty is high, but not ridiculous. The one thing that kept me from going all in on 2 and the rest of sequels is the way companies have a tendency to make an incredible game... and then ruin the sequels by making them 10x harder/more frustrating than the original.

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DrLitch
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Re: Tomb Raider (PS1)

Postby DrLitch » July 31st, 2020, 1:18 pm

Perhaps the best way to play this game now, at least aesthetically, is to download it from GOG.com. While the controls for old PC games do not support a gamepad there is an easy fix, download joy2key and map keyboard to your controller. The PC game has notably better visuals than the old PS1 game. Worth a thought - any old PC will play this as well and GOG are good about ensuring Windows 7 - 10 compatibility.


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