Please don't list this on a work's page as a trope. Examples can go on the work's YMMV tab.
Nightmare Fuel: Tomb Raider
open/close all folders
Tomb Raider (1996)/Anniversary
The centaur statue in Tomb of Tihocan, which explodes with absolutely no warning to reveal the skinless Atlantean demon beneath it, which then lets out an otherworldly scream as it starts shooting exploding balls of muscle at you.
The Hand of Midas (see image), a stone hand apparently broken off a big statue that turns Lara to gold, one body part at a time, if you stand on it. By the sound effects, she dies of suffocation just before her head is transformed. You need to use the hand to solve a puzzle. Original-to-Video Game Remakecomparison.
Some decorative objects in the levels were 2D sprites rather than being rendered in 3D. Meaning that when Lara moved, they would appear to spin around to face her. One especially jarring instance of this was a sprite of a mummified corpse seen in the first level.
The huge drop in the final two levels which gives poor Lara time to scream three times before falling to her doom. Oh yes, and the floor is made of solidified lava that causes Lara's corpse to burst into flames as soon as she hits it.
In the Tomb of Qualopec is a mummy which turns its head to watch Lara as she moves around the room. When Lara approaches her, it screams and launches itself at her.
The oversized rats that usually manage to sneak up on Lara are unnerving. They have a hideous screech and an unpleasantly wet 'n crunchy sound effect when you kill them.
The mummified creatures in the Egyptian levels, as well as the regular Atlanteans, are incredibly unnerving - even when they aren't actually attacking Lara. You can hear them stalking around, just out of sight, and uttering creepy, raspy groans. They're also fond of unexpectedly leaping around corners at Lara, shrieking, which usually succeeds in giving the player a good old Jump Scare.
The now-primitive graphics in the first game actually makes things worse because you couldn't see the mummified creatures clearly. You look at them and think "What the hell is that?" And the groaning...
The various Atlantean creatures bursting out of their eggs. The fact that not all of the eggs explode when you approach them (some explode much later on, others do so when you pull a wrong lever in one particular puzzle) makes the sections of the game with the eggs even more tense.
The Abomination. A large, legless creature with random patches of skin, and just barely enough muscle to function. Watching it shamble about on it's arms trying to catch you is as sad to watch as it is horrifying.
And there's her death at the hands of the aforementioned Abomination where it scoops a terrified and screaming Lara in one hand while dangling her by one leg then proceeds to thoroughly wreck her stuff by brutally smashing her against the floor three times (all the while you hear the sickening, breaking and crushing of her bones). Once the Abomination notices the now very broken Lara is dead, it just casually drops her body (which is now mangled enough that it easily contorts upon impact) to the floor as though she were some toy. Indeed, the scene seems to play out like a child given a very noisy toy trying to make it stop by breaking it adding to the Fridge Horror as the Abomination seems to very developmentally delayed. At the end of video (2:18) displays the scene in discussion.
The Playstation 1 versions were barely graphic when it came to Lara's many deaths. When it came to Tomb Raider Legend and the remake Anniversary, the death scenes were ramped up if players failed to keep her alive in a Quick Time Event. One gory example is Lara being killed by a T-Rex by being flung into the air and then being eaten alive in one gulp.
The Lost Island is pretty creepy in Anniversary... the flying demons were already bad, but where they come from...
The original Lara Doppelganger, A.K.A Bacon Lara which is basically Lara without any skin. It copies your movements perfectly, and acts as a puzzle, since you can't get past it. Its very firmly within the Uncanny Valley. In Anniversary, it not only looks more realistic, but the means of dispatching it (tricking it into jumping into a vat of lava) causes it to flail in a clear panic and scream in pain.
Tomb Raider II
The soundtrack alone for II... here's the one in particular that used to make the Floating Islands level so much worse.
In the Maria Doria levels, the main ambiance for the level features silent water drops and heartbeats.
Most players when they get to the end of the first level will use a zipline to cross a massive pit and reach the finish. More inquisitive players may decide to climb down and check out what shiny powerups could be down there. When you finally get off the cliff and onto the pit floor, as you're about halfway across the pit, a T-rex pops out of the cave in front of you.
Then, should you kill (or just run past) the T-rex and find the secret hidden at the back of the cavern and start to run back, a second T-rex appears.
Even better? Unless you're using your flares, the cave is almost completely in the dark.
The spiders in Tomb Raider II were quite creepy, what with how they appeared and the sound they made as they moved around. The giant ones in the Temple of Xian level were worse.
The giant eel in the Living Quarters level. It only appears once, but it comes out of nowhere & does huge amounts of damage.
The yetis in the Tibetan levels, hulking creatures that have loud visible stomping noise and loud roars.
Tomb Raider III
The Damned; they say they are immortal and have tried suicide to no avail, along with the fact you have to find embalming fluid to stop them rotting, which is scary in itself. There's also Lara shooting them in the previous level, when using bullets it can be assumed they just got up later or something, but she can also blow them up with explosives, which comes with the idea that they are still fully conscious while blown to pieces.
The Temple Ruins where you go into a room and find one of the explorers suspended in midair with a hole through his chest. Cue scary music.
The Xenomorph-esque enemies towards the end, who spit blue fire and take several rocket and grenade blasts to kill.
The unfortunate RX-Tech scientists, who have mutated horribly as a result of the energies from the meteorite. They come in two types: those who still look vaguely human aside from the fact that their legs have fused together and they can spit poison, and those who have become gigantic brutes who can pummel you to a pulp. The very first encounters with each type are huge Jump Scares, and the first type comes with a Scare Chord for good measure.
Towards the end of the All Hallows level, Lara is swimming through a set of flooded tunnels riddled with floating corpses.
The end of the level "Costal Village", where Lara ends up finding a mercenary who had his leg chewed off. While there are plenty of cannibals around, Lara notes that they don't eat down to a person's bones. As they continue to have their discussion, the tribal music starts and steadily gets louder. The mercenary mentions that the cannibal tribe's god lives up in the hills. Guess where Lara's heading next?
There's something spooky in that jungle.
Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation
Tomb Raider 4 has giant scorpions in later levels.
Towards the end of the game, things begin to get much darker. By the time you are in the last few levels, the sky has turned to an unearthly shade of dark green to make it clear just how bad things have become. The enemies also go from being largely human and animal enemies, to undead beasts and mythological monsters.
Tomb Raider Chronicles
The entire Black Isle level. From the heartless corpse hanging from the tree to the pale imps that would follow you around.
Whatever the Spear of Destiny does. It's never really shown what exactly its power is, but it is implied that it is terribly destructive and, worst yet displays some sort of intelligence. On top of that, all we ever really see is a creeping white light, but whatever the characters that encounter it see visibly terrifies them.
Tomb Raider: Angel of Darkness
The invincible sea creature found during the obligatory water stage. It can't be killed, is incredibly fast, and has an unusual looking mouth full of sharp teeth just waiting to gobble you up.
Wandering the deserted streets of Paris at the beginning of Angel of Darkness while that ominous music plays in the background is quite unnerving, especially since you've been hearing about the Monstrum and have no idea where it might be.
Coming across one of the Monstrum's victims in Bouchard's hideout. The loud gurgling noises he keeps making will give you nightmares for weeks.
The deformed prisoners in the Sanitarium. It doesn't help that they run at you pretty fast.
Tomb Raider Legend
As you're swimming towards the tomb of King Arthur, you hear an echoing growling/roaring noise. You don't see it, you don't know what's making it, and as such, Nothing Is Scarier.
Tomb Raider Underworld
The Kraken. The whole level around him is filled with Paranoia Fuel: you have be super careful and if you touch him, you're dead. The fact that you first meet his tentacle underwater (and you must follow it) and the noises it makes only add fuel to the fire.
Tomb Raider (2013)
The entire beginning of the game is this to Lara, seeing as she's still somewhat of a well off fresh faced British chick thrust into a terrifying jungle landscape with no survival skills whatsoever. Obviously she gets better at it, but still.
Some preview and review articles have mentioned that some of this game's particular death animations are EXTREMELY gruesome. The Kotaku review, in particular, has a very, VERY disturbing impalement animation planted in their review.
The entirety of the game has you trapped on an island full of insane, monstrous cultists that want to do horrible things to you and your allies.
The wolves that are sprinkled throughout the island that can leap out at you. In some cases, they'll leap at you in slow motion and if you're not able to put them down with a well-placed arrow, they will rip out your throat and break your neck.
There's one section in the game that finds Lara in a dark area that is littered with the various rotting remains of humans, blood splattered all over the walls.
An early section of the game finds you fleeing from a deranged madman. If you're not able to get away from him, a large boulder will fall upon your legs, followed by another crushing your head.
Really, the fact that the deaths are so startlingly brutal compared to the previous games.
It's not so much that they're more brutal, it's that Lara now looks photorealistic as opposed to more of an exaggerated cartoony type.
The series as a whole:
Drowning was particularly more graphic in the newer games.
Winston, Lara's butler, followed her around in II and III when you played in her mansion, leading to some scares (and possibly Accidental Pervert). He also got in the way a lot, so many players ended up locking him in the kitchen freezer.