Today’s Nintendo Direct featured a surprise announcement in the form of a collection of the first three Tomb Raider games titled Tomb Raider I-III Remastered Starring Lara Croft. Although this title is a bit of a mouthful, it suggests exactly what you’d think it does. The collection spruces up the original games with new HD visuals, although not to the degree where it strays too far from what those titles aimed to achieve. Developed and published by Aspyr, the collection will drop on consoles and Steam come February 14 of next year.
Although the updated visuals serve as the main draw of the collection, it’s notable how conservatively they appear to be handled. Certain details definitely look more defined and crisp than before, but it overall retains the blocky charm the original games exuded. Even many of the textures remain just as simple as before, only really enhanced by improved resolution and lighting. And if you don’t find the new visuals all that appealing, the collection includes the option to swap them out for the original models. So far, this seems like the best feature of the collection, and one that more remasters would benefit from adopting.
More than just the base experiences
To further sweeten the deal, the collection incorporates all of the secret levels as well as the expansions the original games received. These include The Unfinished Business expansion for the first Tomb Raider, The Gold Mask expansion for Tomb Raider II, and The Lost Artifact expansion for Tomb Raider III.
For those who have wanted to give the original Tomb Raider games a try for a while now, this remastered collection might serve as a decent, convenient way to do so. Of course, even with all of the cool features this collection has, there remains the possibility it will come out in a less-than-ideal state. Hopefully, the collection will end up not having that problem.