Video Game / Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation
aka: Tomb Raider Last Revelation

http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/screen_shot_2014-06-02_at_4_20_55_pm_6589.png
I make my own luck.

Jean-Yves: Be careful, Lara. I fear there are things down there man was not meant to see.
Lara: I am not a man, Jean. And I am always very careful.
Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation is the fourth entry in the Tomb Raider series. It was also meant to be the last, until fans and Eidos Interactive persuaded Core Design otherwise. The game was released on PlayStation, PC, and Sega Dreamcast in 1999; the next game, Tomb Raider Chronicles, was released next year.

The sequel to Tomb Raider III, it marked a return to Lara's tomb-raiding roots. The story opens with a 16-year-old Lara accompanying Professor Werner Von Croy on an expedition to Angkor Wat, Cambodia, to recover an ancient artifact known as the Iris. Things go awry, and Lara barely manages to escape the collapsing ruins while her mentor is trapped by the Iris' defensive mechanism. Fast forward to the present: a more familiar, pistol-wielding Lara visits Egypt to recover the Amulet of Horus, located in the Tomb of Seth. Turns out this wasn't the best decision; she releases the evil god Set himself when she removes the Amulet from his sarcophagus, and as the world begins to fall apart around her, she needs to find a way to set things right...as well as deal with her former mentor, now her enemy.

The game was notable for several reasons: it marked a return to Lara's tomb-raiding roots, with far less emphasis on modern civilization compared to the previous game, Tomb Raider III, and focused mainly on exploring long-forgotten, ancient ruins. It was also the first Tomb Raider game to take place entirely in one location (Egypt, save for the tutorial levels), which would not occur again until Tomb Raider (2013), and feature no outfit changes. Other new additions include a remodeled Lara, the removal of the Spinventory, the ability to combine items, and huge, interconnected levels.

Overall, this is generally considered the longest, most complex game in the Core Design line of Tomb Raider games, and is legendary for its difficulty, though probably not to the level of its predecessor.

This game contains examples of:

  • All for Nothing: All the efforts made by Lara through the game are rendered completely pointless by the end - Set simply destroyed the statue and armour required to summon Horus. Miss Croft has to seal him in the summoning chamber instead.
  • Ancient Egypt: Where 99% of the action takes place. It certainly looks a lot different than it did back in 1996, too.
  • Anti-Hero: This side of Lara's personality is made much more apparent here. It is also her fault that Set is released into the world.
  • Art Shift:
    • Almost half of all cutscenes are in FMV format, which was quite an achievement back in 1999. The ones that are based on game engine are a big improvement since Tomb Raider III. For starters, lip movement was finally implemented, so characters no longer bob their heads to indicate talking.
    • Visions from the "flashbacks" are somewhat mind-screwing. The later in the game, the more surreal they get.
  • Artificial Stupidity: Certain ninjas will deflect Lara's gunshots by spinning their sabers. But if Lara holsters her weapons and draws them again, they'll let down their guard for long enough to take a few rounds.
  • The Atoner: Von Croy recovers from his possession at the end of the game and attempts to rescue Lara. Unfortunately he fails.
  • Attack Its Weak Point: Bronze automatons from The Lost Library have a blue gem on their chests. That's the only place they can be hit to receive any damage. For this reason shooting them In the Back while doing typical acrobatics when facing tough enemies doesn't work at all. Using more powerful weapons might not work as intended too if you miss the gem. Have fun with mounted version, where the gem is almost constantly covered.
  • Bare Your Midriff: 16-year old Lara has this as part of her attire in the Angkor Wat and Race For The Iris level.
  • Blinded by the Light: One of the types of ammo for grenade launcher are flash grenades. Anything having eyes and being alive will stop for a while upon detonation, trying to regain sight. You would be surprised how much this narrows down potential targets.
  • Bookends: Cambodia ends with Von Croy getting buried underneath some ruins. The game ends with the roles reversed.
  • Breather Episode:
    • Jeep levels, Valley Of The Kings and KV6, are generally considered as this after Burial Chamber. Finishing KV6 truly marks the end of easier early game.
    • Desert Railroad is a great relief after visiting Karnak and its temple complex.
    • Alexandria, the next level, makes easy start for annoyingly hard remainder of levels set in the city.
  • Broken Bridge: You've find yourself a vehicle? Good for you, but have you got the ignition keys?
  • Camera Screw: Like its predecessor, this game sometimes shifts the camera to a fixed angle which provides a panoramic view of the area, but due to the controls of the game (which are based not on camera direction but Lara's), this can make getting around more difficult than it should.
  • Crapsack World: After Set possesses Von Croy, the Cairo and Giza levels take a very dark turn. The sky turns to a sickly shade of dark green to dark red, lightning storms constantly blow apart buildings, the cities have been turned into warzones, have been abandoned except for some soldiers who are being methodically slaughtered by undead mythical beasts, and everything is eerily quiet. The hanging clotheslines and materials suggest that Cairo fell very quickly.
  • Cutscene Boss: The dragon in Cairo cannot be defeated with Lara's weapons and must be avoided by sprinting past it the first couple times. Once Lara fully upgrades her motorcycle, she can take Sergeant Azizus to his ammunitions truck (loaded with explosives). He will drive the truck into the dragon, killing it at the cost of his own life.
  • Darker and Edgier: Last Revelation deals with themes of possession, being left for dead, and averting the apocalypse. The more whimsical and bizarre elements of the previous two games are gone, replaced by crumbling tombs and an ancient feud between two major Egyptian gods. The Cairo and Giza sections dip into horror territory, and at the end, Lara herself is buried alive under the collapsing Tomb of Horus, seemingly killed in the incident, setting up her memorial service in the sequel and her hardened personality in The Angel of Darkness).
  • Dead Guy on Display: one unfortunate explorer got impaled on some spikes near a plinth in Cambodia. Lara takes his backpack for herself. The eerie Cairo levels feature some dead soldiers with limbs ripped off; in one case, Lara needs to drag a body off of a trapdoor in order to open it.
    • Another skeleton appears under the Sphinx, clutching a sheet of paper with transliterations of various hieroglyphics.
  • Dem Bones: Skeletons, showing up after reaching Alexandria. They can't be killed in normal way - you can stop them for a while with a shotgun blask before they reconfigure again, use said blast to throw them off ledges or into water which will disable them for good or blow them apart with some explosive weapons. You can also disable them by sniping their scull off with scoped weapons, rendering their actions into walking aimlessly. They are extremely fast, agile and stubborn, following Lara around like no other enemy.
  • Delayed Explosion: in a rather cool sequence, Lara can fire an explosive arrow at a helicopter hovering behind two sentry guns, causing the helicopter to fall and explode. A few seconds later, the sentry guns meet the same fate.
  • Dem Bones: Skeletal knights lurk deep within the catacombs of Alexandria. Explosives are most effective against them, followed by shotgun blasts, which can knock them into deep pits. Otherwise, they're invulnerable to Lara's attacks.
    • In Cairo, Von Croy uses Seth's power to reanimate a couple of larger skeletons. These are invulnerable, and must be goaded into breaking certain walls for Lara to escape.
  • Depending on the Artist: The U.S. ad for the game, animated by Animal Logic, has a different-looking Lara than the one featured in the game's FMV cutscenes. It also makes the game look cheesy, for lack of better word.
  • Difficult but Awesome: Mastering use of scoped weapons to the point of being able to use them in combat and not only for Trick Shot Puzzles is immensely gratifying. Suddenly each enemy with weak spot, each bullet sponge stops being so intimidating when you can take effective shots from safe distance.
  • Direct Continuous Levels: So far, this is the only Tomb Raider to date that both incorporates level structure and makes them directly connected, with ability to go forward or backward between them.
  • Downer Ending: Lara's apparent death.
  • Dummied Out: This game was originally going to feature a "Diary" item. As Lara explored, her diary would fill up with observations, hints, maps, and background information. The item was modeled but unimplemented; it would eventually appear in the form of Von Croy's Notebook in The Angel of Darkness. Additionally, an entire area in Giza was cut, but left on the disk (internally named "joby1b.tr4").
  • Egyptian Mythology: Like Tomb Raider, this game uses real-life elements of Egyptian culture as reference points, but delves much further into them than the 1996 game did. The gods Horus and Seth play integral roles in the plot, as does the High Priest of Horus, Semerkhet.
  • Flash Back: Occurs frequently while Lara is reading ancient inscriptions or scrolls. Her voice changes to Semerkhet's, and a surreal vision usually plays out, in the vein of original Tomb Raider.
  • Forced Tutorial: "Angkor Wat", the first level in the game, is Von Croy teaching teenage Lara how to move through the environment. Unfortunately, unlike the previous games in the series which had the tutorial as an optional level on the menu, this one is mandatory. Even Von Croy's dialogue can't be skipped.
    • Players who own the first or second version of the game on PlayStation and PC can skip the tutorial cutscenes by pressing the look button. This ability was taken out of later PS1 releases.
  • Gameplay and Story Segregation: Normally, the dragon in Cairo will begin lobbing giant firebombs at Lara whenever she's in range, and it is notoriously difficult to avoid. That said, it seems perfectly content to watch Lara help a wounded soldier into a truck loaded with explosives - which promptly results in its death.
  • Giant Mook: The Giza levels are infested with flying beetles and scorpions large enough to pick up Lara, skewer her, and throw her away. The scorpions can withstand up to *three grenades* before dying.
  • Guide Dang It:
    • One puzzle in the City of the Dead involves Lara luring two ice elementals into a pool of water, causing it to freeze over and allowing her to cross to the other side. The problem is that this behavior never appears in earlier levels. Normally, ice elementals simply enter water without freezing anything.
    • For some reason, there is a certain area where a sentry gun will continuously fire at Lara - but once she retrieves a certain key card from a completely unrelated area, the gun will not fire at her. There is absolutely no way for the player to determine this without trial and error.
    • The order of doing things in Karnak temple complex is confusing with guide at hand. Without it, it can turn into hours of going back and forth, especially since it's the first time interconnected levels are used, without any warning.
  • The Hero Dies: Hardly a spoiler after so many years, but the game ends with apparent demise of Miss Croft under tons of debris. The original reaction was utter shock from players.
  • Heroic Sacrifice: Azizas, the wounded Egyptian sergeant for whom Lara runs few tasks in exchange for explosives to defeat the dragon. In the end, he drives a truck full of them right into the beast.
  • Hypocrite: Von Croy tells a young Lara Croft that disrespect is the root to carelessness and that they should respect the tombs they explore. Once the duo reaches the Iris, Von Croy ditches his lesson as he tries to claim his prize. Lara calls him out on it.
  • Iconic Item: Lara getting her backpack from the body of a much less fortunate tomb raider in Cambodia.
  • Immune to Bullets: While this entry to the franchise is infamous for countless outright immortal enemies that keep on chasing Lara, most of those you can "kill" require explosives to do so - bullets will only slow them down. So until reaching at least Desert Railroad, where the grenade launcher is hidden as one of the secrets, mummies and alike can't be dropped either.
  • Indy Ploy: Set destroyed the only means to re-seal him back in specially designed sarcophagus? How about locking him in slightly bigger can, Miss Croft?
  • Instant-Win Condition: Crossing the trigger to end a level is an instant win for the player, regardless of Lara's condition or any enemies that may be giving chase. This is taken to particularly Egregious levels by the train level, where you can finish the level by killing yourself as long as Lara crosses the end trigger in mid-air.
  • Insurmountable Waist-High Fence: This occurs occasionally in Cairo, mostly due to Lara's inexplicable inability to enter/exit crawlspaces 1 block above the ground, instead of 2. In the first case, she needs to backtrack through the entire level to open a trapdoor, then jump up from below to enter the crawlspace; in the second case, she needs to backtrack through a dangerous set of high-pressure steam pipes. It rivals Lara's inability to retrieve the 2nd fuse in the first game's Natla's Mines.
  • Interface Screw: Getting poisoned in this game causes Lara to hallucinate, represented by the screen blurring and wavering until she heals herself. Oddly, her movement isn't impaired at all- it's just a camera effect.
    • A minor example is the flash grenades- they explode with a bright flash of white light that stuns all human enemies *and* the player. Justified, since that's their purpose.
  • Invincible Minor Mook: the bulls in the Guardian of Semerkhet, Trenches, and Underneath the Sphinx levels cannot be killed. The Minotaur in Chambers of Tulun is another example of this (although with some clever positioning of the motorcycle, it can be run over and killed instantly).
  • Ironic Echo: In the tutorial, Von Croy tells Lara, "Disrespect is route to carelessness." In the cutscene at the end of level 2, Lara repeats the line back to Von Croy when he tells her to pull a lever.
  • It Has Been an Honor: Mutual between Lara and Azizas by their final meeting.
  • Joke Item: Von Croy's broken glasses can be picked up at one point, but they serve absolutely no purpose except to clutter up the inventory, and they can't be discarded.
    • In Pharos, Temple of Isis, Lara needs to find 4 Black Beetle artifacts to activate a mechanism. However, some of the pickups aren't Black Beetles, but Broken Beetles that are completely useless. Furthermore, the game punishes the player for falling for the broken ones by sending a swarm of live beetles after Lara.
  • Justified Tutorial: Core Design decided to skip Croft Manor free-roaming in favour of plot-related first two levels, taking place in Lara's youth, where she is assisting famous Adventurer Archaeologist Werner Von Croy during an expedition to uncharted section of Angkor Wat. Instead of training room, Von Croy plays as a mentor, instructing Lara how to approach new challanges.
  • The Key Is Behind the Lock: One of the puzzles requires to get the keys from behind the bars with broom handle and cloak hook, point-and-click style.
  • Kill It with Water: Those bloody fire spirits. They can easily set Lara on fire and can only be extinguished by luring them into a pool of water.
  • Kneel Before Zod:
    Set: Come forth and you may bow before your god before he extinguishes your worthless life.
  • Landmark of Lore: The plot takes Lara around half of the Egypt, visiting all the famous ruins and finding in them ancient, magical artifacts needed to reseal Set back in his prison.
  • The Last Title: The second part of the title.
  • Left for Dead: A recurring theme in this game.
  • Level in Boss Clothing: The "battle" against Seth amounts to this. He's completely invulnerable to Lara's attacks; all she can do is climb back out of the summoning chamber and use the Amulet of Horus to seal Seth inside the shaft.
  • Light and Mirrors Puzzle: A minor one occurs in the Tomb of Semerkhet. Lara needs to block the light from hitting the mirrors.
  • Locomotive Level: Lara boards a freight train to Alexandria after posing as a mook. Not content to sit back and enjoy her ride, she manages to hop several cars, murder everyone on board, find a crowbar, and use it to derail all the cars except for the locomotive.
    • Traintop Battle: Of course, things don't go smoothly after Von Croy sends ninjas after her.
  • Magic Mirror: One exists in the strange, sadistic funhouse in the Coastal Village. The room it appears in is filled with hidden spike pits, and the only way to tell where they are is to look at the mirror on the other side of the room. Even the room's reward (the crossbow) is invisible and must be picked up while lined up with the reflection.
    • Another one occurs later in Alexandria-this time, it forms the wall of an underwater room. There is a fake opening on the roof of the room that can only be seen in the mirror's reflection. It gets a little strange when Lara breaks the surface and appears to be treading dirt.
  • Magikarp Power: Selection of crossbow bolts include: normal ones with stopping power of single shot from basic pistols, those spiked with poison, slowly turning living enemies into One Hit Wonders and then there are explosive tips, able to obliterate pretty much eveything that can be obliterated with single shot at unlimited range.
  • Marathon Level: Countless, especially since many of them are interconnected and you can (and often must) travell back and forth.
    • The Burial Chamber follows the tradition set by Tomb Raider III, giving a long and elaborate ruin complex as second level.
    • Karnak temple complex is the first place where interconnected levels show up and marks the end of early game. This is the moment where many players just drop the game out of frustration.
  • Meaningful Name: The game's subtitle, The Last Revelation, signifies Lara's final discovery/adventure due to her being buried alive at the end of the game. Becomes an Artifact Title since Lara returns alive and well in a future game.
  • Misplaced Wildlife: A rattle snake in Egypt. Especially strange, since it's only present in the opening FMV cutscene, which would take additional rendering to make.
  • Nice Job Breaking It, Hero: Congratulations Lara for unsealing the can containing wrathful god of chaos. We all hope you enjoyed that big shiny ankh.
  • Noob Bridge: Karnak temple complex introduces interconnected levels without any warning. This not only can confuse new players, but was also able to surprise veterans of the franchise. No Tomb Raider before had such mechanics and end of level meant full completion of it, with no back-tracking or shortcuts. Sufficient to say, many people stopped playing the game at this point.
  • Not Completely Useless: Normal crossbow bolts are one of the weakest type of ammo in the whole game - it's equal to single shot from basic pistols, but unlike basic pistols, the bolts aren't unlimited. Their main use? Whenever there is some mechanism or similar to be shot from afar.
  • On Three:
    Werner Von Croy: On the count of three. One... Two...
  • One-Hit Polykill: The upgraded grenades, which are clusters of small explosive charges, able to clean whole rooms full of enemies. There are about 8 of thems in the entire game and you will need every single one of them to turn certain moments from insanely hard to simply hard.
  • Only Friend: This game introduced Jean-Yves, Lara's first real friend who cares for her safety and helps her with his research. Thus far in the series, he's her only one; in previous games, nearly all NPC's were hell-bent on riddling Lara with bullets.
  • Red Eyes, Take Warning: A visible sign of demonic possession. This also covers different reanimated enemies.
  • Redemption Quest:
    • Serving as the driving force behind the plot - for almost the whole game Lara is trying to reseal Set, whom she accidently unleashed from his prison. And doing so before he turns the world into literal hell.
    • Things only get more messed up when Von Croy gets involved and tries to settle a score for old grudge against Lara.
  • Revolvers Are Just Better: Short from explosives, revolver is the most powerful weapon in the whole game, working as reliable Hand Cannon able to put down most of killable enemies in less than four shots at quite long range. And you can combine it with a scope, turning it into crude, but extremely useful Sniper Pistol.
  • Scary Scorpions: In two variations - barely harmful, normal scorpions, which venom only influence camera for a short while... and their bigger brothers, in size of a horse and ready to kill everything on their way.
  • Schizophrenic Difficulty: The Difficulty Spike is on mood swings. Each Breather Episode is treated like a rare, celebration-worthy moment, after which the game is doing a brutal 180 degree turn into Nintendo Hard. It is generally even harder than infamously difficult Tomb Raider III, but there is no Checkpoint Starvation and the games opens with two enemy-free tutorial levels, giving the false impression that it's easier than the last time. After finishing said prologue levels, the game takes no prisoners, even in more toned moments: countless enemies that can't be kill, but able to drop Lara on the spot, timed sequences requiring perfect executions, secret collection being a vital part of ammo and weapons management, general application of survival horror scaricity in action adventure game and plethora of enemies Made of Iron. As a cherry topping, multiple levels are interconnected, creating massive labirynths with no indication where and how progress - you can "finish" level only to realise you simply entered new location without tools to penetrate it and then get lost on return trip, entering another level (this can start as soon as in 5th level of proper storyline). Any level that is easy to navigate and with countless, but human enemies is treated like a godsent. They usually indicate that the next three to five levels will give you depression.
  • Sentry Gun: Many of these are present in Cairo and will not hesitate to unload a barrage of bullets (or possibly a stream of fire) as soon as Lara comes within range. In at least 2 situations, it is impossible to avoid taking damage from them. She will need to find a way to sneak up behind them and target the red symbol on their back with the revolver or crossbow equipped with the laser sight; this will instantly destroy them.
  • Short-Range Shotgun: This instalment introduced ammo types. In case of shotgun standard shells they can kill the same human enemy with two shots at point blank, six at medium range and between ten to twelve at maximum range, depending how unlucky you get with the spread.
  • Spikes of Doom: They're still everywhere, as usual. For some reason, it's no longer possible to safely walk through them, so Lara needs to avoid them altogether.
  • Spinventory: This time, it's not a Ring Menu anymore. It still loops while scrolling and is used just like the previous games' version, but visually it's now a simple side-scrolling list of items. Some objects can now be combined to form others, such as relic pieces, or the Laser Sight with certain weapons.
  • Summon Bigger Fish: After accidently releasing Set free from his eternal prison, Lara's only hope is to summon Horus, so he can seal Set again.
  • Surpassed the Teacher: Invoked by Von Croy if Lara beats him to the resting place of the Iris artifact.
    Von Croy: And so, the pupil excels the master. I congratulate you on your agility. Take your prize from the plinth; you have earned it.
  • Suspicious Video Game Generosity:
    • In the very start of the game proper there is a shotgun right in the starting location, in plain sight. You will need it. You will need it really, really bad.
    • If not picked as a secret during Desert Railroad level, grenade gun can be obtained much, much later in the game, where it will be laying in plain sight, but reaching this point of the game without the gun is quite a feat.
  • Tank Controls: Turning monkey swings from one rope to another into a nightmare.
  • Teeth-Clenched Teamwork: Let just say that Lara and Werner didn't get along during their joint expedition to Cambodia.
  • Three Plus Five Make Four: Used in multiple puzzles during The Temple of Horus, the final level, requiring different amounts of water each time. As an allusion to Egyptian believes about afterlife, Lara has to use scale with proper measures to prove that she's worthy... or will unleash Ammit from her cage.
  • Tone Shift: After three games that were in vibe of Indiana Jones, with openly pulp plot and exotic locations all over the world, this one is somewhere between original and then-recent remake of the Mummy and much more darker in overall tone. The story itself is more close to dark modern fantasy than the classic pulp adventure.
  • Too Awesome to Use: The revolver stands out as it's nearly as powerful as the Desert Eagle in the previous game, and can be manually aimed with the laser sight. Revolver ammo is really scarce compared to any other standard ammo.
    • Subverted in case of all kinds and types of explosives. They are rare, but they are also integral part of dealing with otherwise unkillable enemies.
  • Trick Shot Puzzle: The main use of laser sight and normal bolts for crossbow - their actual combat use is almost impossible, the latter because of lacking stopping power and the former because of controls.
  • The Undead: Mummies of the Ancient Egyptians, skeletons of Greek hoplites, reanimated corpses of crusaders... just name it.
  • We Used to Be Friends: According to the manual, Lara was on good terms with Von Croy at first. By the time the game starts in Cambodia, however, they're already bickering somewhat, and after Von Croy returns from being trapped under the ruins, he bears a deep grudge against Lara - enough for them to antagonize each other completely, and eventually cause him to combine with Set.
  • Video Game Caring Potential: In Giza, Lara encounters a soldier tussling with, and losing against, a giant scorpion. If she manages to destroy the creature before it kills the soldier, he will thank her and give her both the Soldier's Keys and the Armory Key, allowing her to get a secret later on.
  • Video Game Cruelty Potential: Just like in previous games, Lara can kill most of her allies. Sometimes she'll be rewarded with ammo for various weapons.
  • Violation of Common Sense:
    • In order to get all 70 secrets, one has to purposely lose the Senet Game in the Tomb of Semerkhet.
    • Same applies to prologue. If you collected all 8 secrets from the first level, the race in the second is considerably harder to win.
  • The Von Trope Family: Werner Von Croy.
  • Walk on Water: One of the puzzles requires from player to activate magic mechanism that allows to walk on water over certain pool and get to otherwise unreachable location.
  • We Can Rule Together: Von Croy/Set offered this to Lara.

Alternative Title(s): Tomb Raider Last Revelation

http://tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pmwiki.php/VideoGame/TombRaiderTheLastRevelation?from=VideoGame.TombRaiderLastRevelation