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YMMV / Tomb Raider (2013)

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  • Adorkable: Sam gets really excited when talking about cameras and film-making. It's happened enough times that Lara can readily recognize when she's about to go "bother" Whitman's film crew to talk to them about their camera gear.
  • Alternative Character Interpretation: Some of the fanbase considers Lara to have been too eager to attack the Solarii after her first human kill, indicating that she is no better than the Mooks in taking human life. Even though this was Hand Waved during a conversation between Lara and Roth shortly afterwards when Lara mentioned how easy it was, Lara never comments on this again. Mathias even calls her out on the high bodycount, claiming that she is not a hero. Lara does not respond to this, possibly as an affirmation that he is right. Then again, she does plead with the Solarii to stop several times and asks why they're doing this, so her kills are self-defense as opposed to the Solarii actively trying to murder her. Once Lara acquires the grenade launcher she becomes far more aggressive, and when the Oni summons its minions at the Chasm Shrine Lara has reached full Bring It mode.
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  • Anti-Climax Boss: With Mathias as the Climax Boss, and the Oni as one as well. Oni is the last gameplay boss, Mathias is the last QTE boss. Himiko's finished off with no player input.
  • Broken Base:
    • Lara's new face in the Definitive Edition (pictured on the right), with some people feeling that the old version is more natural. Others prefer the new face, feeling that it more closely resembles the game's artwork, as well as resembling Lara's two previous incarnations.
    • While the game has been mostly well-received, a lot of long-term series fans are extremely upset about its extreme emphasis on action at the expense of the puzzles which made the previous games so popular in the first place.
  • Captain Obvious Reveal: Many regarding what's happening on the island and explanations for the various phenomena, like the abnormal weather being controlled by Himiko and the Solarii wanting Sam so badly because she can be Himiko's vessel, which were easily guessed by many players. Lara's seemingly belated realizations can be justified by the fact that people playing a video game are more likely to assume the supernatural than someone living those events and the documents that support or even explicitly confirm theories are (mostly) optional, but it still sticks out to a lot of players.
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  • Cliché Storm: There's very little of the story players won't see coming, especially when it comes to the fate of many of the characters, and you're likely to figure out what exactly is going on on the island before Lara does. Of course Tropes Are Tools, and the story plays out like a check list of The Hero's Journey that works very well for the whole origin story aspects of the game.
  • Complete Monster: The first game of the 2nd Continuity Reboot has the Big Bad Duumvirate:
    • Himiko, the Sun Queen of Yamatai, extended her rule for centuries by possessing numerous women. When her latest sacrifice kills herself, Himiko brings a curse upon Yamatai, resulting in all her subjects dying and her soldiers transformed into her immortal slaves. She would also create storms to entrap hundreds of people into her cursed island; among these people includes the below-mentioned Mathias who she convinces to bring Samantha "Sam" Nishimura for her to possess. Though seemingly gone, the comic book series reveals that she has survived and inhabits Sam's body, driving her insane. With Sam being commissioned to an asylum, Himiko succeeds in obtaining full control of Sam's body, where she kills everyone there before escaping and brainwashing many men into servitude; she has one throw a grenade at a house full of innocent people because she thought Lara Croft was there. Himiko then heads back to Yamatai to reclaim her throne and the powers needed to spread her dark influence throughout the world.
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    • Father Mathias, upon being stranded on Yamatai island, tricks many of his fellow survivors into sailing off said island to prove that escaping by boat was impossible, uncaring about their deaths. Forming the Solarii Brotherhood based around the aforementioned Himiko, he only uses the Sun Queen to distract his followers while he tries to escape alone, showing no true loyalty to her or his cult; he has his initiates go through days or even weeks without food or water, with many driven to cannibalism. Callous to the deaths of his followers and allies alike, Mathias kills one of his own for objecting to his order to blow up a bridge some his men were on, and leaves Dr. Whitman to his death after convincing him to betray the other survivors. He then attempts to sacrifice Samantha Nishimura to Himiko, knowing that this would free her and doom the entire world.
  • Critical Research Failure:
    • At the start of the game, Lara winds up impaled on a piece of rebar and immediately pulls it out. Do not do this in real life. You'll begin to lose way more blood and possibly do horrible amounts of internal damage. That's not counting the potential infections that would occur if a wound like that were dirtied.
    • Also near the start Reyes attempts to free Lara from a bear trap via shooting it, even though all that would do is risk shooting Lara in the leg. Then Jonah proceeds with brute-forcing the spring mechanism, instead of disarming it. And then Lara doesn't even have a limp, while by all logic trap like that should shatter her ankle.
  • Darkness-Induced Audience Apathy: The story puts its characters through so much suffering that it gets difficult to care about what happens next. Lara's motivation is to save her friends and escape an island full of murderous cultists who live in absolutely disgusting conditions. That alone provides plenty of horror, but as the story wears on it becomes obvious that unless Lara solves the island's deeper mysteries it will be literally impossible to leave. It takes a while for Lara to come to this realization, so on top of the constant attacks by the cultists, two aircraft crash attempting to respond to their SOSes. And why should we care about Lara's friends anyway? She goes to painful lengths to save them, but they're underdeveloped and simply inoffensive as opposed to endearing and drop like flies in Senseless Sacrifices.
  • Escapist Character: This Lara, less than the others. She's relatable on some level, but still larger than life, especially when it comes to the beating she takes throughout the entire game.
    • Arguably more so, considering how she kills alot of people in 2013, sets the series-record for human kills in Rise, has little-to-none of the training the previous Lara's did, survives injuries that should kill her a good few times (Something the older Lara's rarely did if at all.) and is a one-woman-army even before you start getting upgrades and the general low difficulty of the game doesn't help making it feel this way.
  • Fan-Preferred Couple: Lara/Sam. It is overwhelmingly the most popular ship in the fandom, to the point that they're basically treated as the Official Couple. However even those who don't view them this way are still upset that Sam and their whole relationship were left out of the sequel.
    • To a lesser extent, Lara/Alex. His adorkable Amazon Chaser tendencies endeared him to a certain section of the fan base.
  • First Installment Wins: As far as Steam ratings are concerned, TR 2013 still ranks a very impressive 95% more than five years after its release, compared to ~85% for Rise of the Tomb Raider and ~60% for Shadow of the Tomb Raider. Granted, Shadow was the subject of a massive backlash due to the publisher's ill-advised pricing strategy, but it already was the lowest-rated entry in the trilogy even before that hit struck.
  • Franchise Original Sin: Some players - particularly fans of the classic, Core Design-era and/or Crystal Dynamics' earlier trilogy - act as though this is the first time that combat has ever been big part of the series, and often accuse it of trying to copy Uncharted.note  The truth is that Tomb Raider has always had extensive fights that consist of nothing but shooting continuously until everything except Lara is dead. In particular, Tomb Raider II, III, and Legend were all Actionized Sequels, and they each got the same criticisms thrown at them that this game did. The only difference is that this game is the first time that the combat was the main focus of the game and not a borderline Scrappy Mechanic.
    • There is the fact that the series was originally more about exploration, in additon to combat being watered down in ways, while the most recent games do the reverse: expanding on combat, while exploration and puzzles being downgraded massively. In addition, combat in the older games was not consisting of 90% humans and including much more supernatural foes. AoD, for instance, only had a little over 100 total kills, while most of the more-kill-heavy previous games featured a decent amount of bats, spiders and rats that died in a few shots as well as mummies, mutants and other types of fantastic foes, rather than almost entirely human enemies. Lara kills over 650 people in this game, a number that would only go higher in Rise. That's about her whole kill count in the whole franchise up until that point, and only due to how many humans were present in Legend and Underworld.
  • Goddamn Bats: Sappers. Their molotov cocktails force you to keep moving from cover to cover, which besides exposing you to enemy fire, makes it very challenging to draw a bead on a target since you're constantly having to reposition to not get blasted. You have to be able to aim and shoot very quickly, (god help you if all you have is the bow and its very low rate of fire) and it certainly doesn't help that they have arms like Major League pitchers and almost perfect aim. Sappers will quickly make gunfights insanely frustrating, especially if there's more than one of them. They get worse when you start running into the ones that carry dynamite, which graduate into outright Demonic Spiders. Their saving grace is if you can wound them when they attempt to throw, they'll fumble and blow themselves up. There's even an achievement for it if you can cause a sapper to take out himself and at least one other mook with a stick of dynamite.
  • Hilarious in Hindsight: This apes the gameplay style of the Uncharted series, which was jokingly nicknamed "Dude Raider" because both are platformer shooters that involve playing an Adventurer Archaeologist.
  • Idiosyncratic Ship Naming: Lara x Sam Les Yay ship has been dubbed S.S. Endurance (Same-Sex Endurance) by a portion of the fandom - most predominantly in Tumblr art
  • Jerkass Woobie: Reyes would count due to her Jerkass attitude towards Lara could be result of not just Roth's death and Roth's favoritism towards Lara then her as Reyes was in a relationship with him, but also because of being estranged from her 14-year-old daughter and the loss of her job as a police officer. Roth's death only adds salt on the wound to Reyes' stress and eventually causes her to vent out her frustration of the culmination of her personal problems towards Lara throughout the game.
  • Les Yay: If Lara and Sam were explicitly stated to be a couple or one was romantically interested in the other, absolutely nothing about their relationship would need to change.
    • They seem to be very couple-like during Roth's funeral, and their first scene (shown via recording) is straight out of dozens of romantic films, with the concerned Sam trying to get the workaholic Lara to take a break already. Sam even calls Lara "sweetie", and does so again in a later recording.
    • Sam being a Distressed Damsel is Lara's primary motivation for much of the game, is willing to go to extreme lengths in order to rescue her, and the final levels heavily resemble a Rescue Romance. Lara bridal carries Sam down the mountain after rescuing her, while Sam is wearing a white dress.
    • In the prelude comic, the last page is a splash image of Lara hugging Sam close with one arm with the caption "The Beginning."
    • Much of the in-universe Male Gaze comes from Sam's camera lingering on Lara's and Reyes's bodies.
    • Between this, Mirror's Edge, and Heavenly Sword, "close female relationships that can be interpreted as romance if you turn your head and squint" appears to be a Rhianna Pratchett trademark (and if you spot her Faith/Celeste).
    • Rhianna Pratchet stated that, from the stand point of a writer who wanted to challenge the limits of standard character conventions, she wouldn't have objected to making Lara gay, but it was only something that occurred to her in retrospect after hearing comments on Lara's relationship with Sam in the game, and were more like wistful fantasies of What Could Have Been if she knew then what she does now and the natural desires of a writer to expand their scope, but the use of such a comment stealing the headline comes across more as Did I Just Say That Out Loud? and maybe a bit of Trolling Creator.
    • The tie-in Comics to the Reboot have taken the Lara/Sam relationship Up to Eleven with Lara outright stating that she Loves Sam more then anyone else in the world, Sam calling Lara babe when she is talking to her. Scenes where they are together are acted out as if they are a couple with Sam calling Lara adorably awkward and Lara stating that she doesn't care what her enemies motives are as all she wants is Sam back. One scene even has Lara surrender to the villains, risking her life and the life of someone who had just helped saved her, because it was the only way to get to Sam.
    • There's also this from Gail Simone, one of the writers of the tie-in comics.
  • Moe: The game's executive producer Ron Rosenberg explained that the Attempted Rape scene was meant to portray Lara as such that the player would want to "protect" her, apparently implying her to be this trope. This led to backlash and the studio backpedalled on the statement.
  • Moral Event Horizon: Whitman's betrayal, handing Sam back to Mathias and trying to let everyone die just so he could have a good story to show the media. Needless to say, he pays for this big time.
  • Most Wonderful Sound: The little "Ting!" from collecting salvage never gets old. The chord that plays when you find one of the semi-randomly distributed weapon parts is even better.
  • Spiritual Licensee: Survivors on a creepy island which no one can leave because of weird weather, targeted by a cult of hostiles who either assimilate them or kill them and needing to go to a specific area so as to leave the island, this is pretty much Lost the game, only with a significantly tighter plot. Lara's outfit also resembles that of Kate in the series.
  • Squick:
    • Some of the death scenes when a quicktime event is failed can be very gruesome. For instance, there is one where Lara gets shot through the head from the chin up, which leaves her with a giant hole in her forehead and an eye popped out of its socket.
    • The impaling deaths, from spikes to tree branches to swords, are always gruesome. The designers seemed to have taken a perverse delight in animating Lara twitching and gurgling for a few seconds before suddenly becoming very still.
    • How about going knee-deep in chopped human carcasses which are not a mere textures, but objects affected by that walking? Or taking a literal blood bath? The game is littered with hundreds of corpses, many of them mummified, many... a lot fresher. This is unquestionably one of the most horrifying things to ever appear in a video game.
  • That One Level: The river rapids and the following parachute trip. Camera Screw makes it incredibly hard to tell where the safe paths through the obstructions are, combined with controls (at least with mouse and keyboard on the PC) that aren't particularly responsive. Furthermore, the console versions don't hint that you can use both analog sticks to controls Lara's movements (right stick for fine-tuned adjustments, left for big movements). Have fun seeing Lara die over and over again.
  • The Woobie: One of the reasons that the game's dark tone works so well is that it's almost impossible to not want to hug Lara by the end of it. Or after her first kill. But she doesn't back down once she's finally had enough and begins to fight back in-story.
  • They Changed It, Now It Sucks!: Old time Tomb Raider fans claim this, due to the introduction of cover-based shooting and almost no emphasis on puzzle solving compared to the early games.
  • They Wasted a Perfectly Good Character: The only characters (besides Lara) that get significant development are Roth and Sam. Reyes, Jonah, Whitman and Grim mainly only get enough to establish their personalities, that Reyes and Roth are in a relationship, Whitman's Face–Heel Turn is inevitable and Grim was also an old friend of Lara's father. Alex gets so little his crush on Lara comes completely out of nowhere in time for his Heroic Sacrifice.
  • What an Idiot!: Lara has a few moments, being Genre Blind. E.g yelling over the radio to Sam, when Sam says she has to hide the radio. Of course, she does get better.
    • Even in the final stages, she still has a moment of this, allowing Whitman and Mathias to pass right next to her, having perfect opportunity to stop them. Or using a bow during a powerful blizzard while shooting against the wind - she is visibly surprised that it didn't work. In Lara's defense regarding Mathias and Whitman, there were Stormguard in the the area, alerting them to their collective presence might not have been the best idea.
    • Just before that final fight, she had an arrow pointed at Mathias while he was performing the ritual. No blizzard yet, Mathias was obviously distracted... all she had to do was release it and it would've been over. Instead, she just keeps watching until the ritual is fully underway and the blizzard whips up, making it that much harder to get to Mathias and Sam. If the ritual was instantaneous, it would've been over right there and then.
    • Whitman could be a text book example how being a Glory Hound makes you so stupid that Too Dumb to Live doesn't even cover it.
    • By the time that Lara runs off to find Sam at the end of the game, when asked, Lara says she doesn't know why the Solarii want Sam. Are you sure, Lara? There wasn't anything at all that gave any hint whatsoever as to why Sam, a descendant of Queen Himiko, might be considered important to the Sun Queen's "power-transferring" ritual? You didn't witness any events or hear any conversations or find any clues that would possibly give any indication as to why Sam was taken? Really? The fact she only figures it out right before the Point of No Return when most players would have pieces it together hours ago only further drives that feeling home.
    • When Lara points out Whitman's claim about being chased is rather shakey and makes reference to something he did previously, rather than have her explain what happened, which would lead to the obvious rationale that Whitman was planning on betraying them and probably made a deal with Mathias' people, Reyes and the others basically ignore this and instead force the two not to argue....thereby giving Whitman chance to hand Sam over to Mathias as soon as Lara's away.
    • After Lara's friend and mentor Roth's funeral, Lara is so broken up that she requires some time alone (fair enough), and tells the others to go on ahead without her, and nobody calls her out on it. Seriously? On an island crawling with dangerous animals and deranged cultists, which she has just fought through tooth and nail to find them again, and has already claimed the life of two noted badasses, she decides to split up the group? The result of this decision is nothing particularly bad, beyond another couple of battles she had to fight alone, but it COULD have been much worse, and they would have had only their own stupidity to blame.


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