Showing posts with label Tomb Raider. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Tomb Raider. Show all posts

Monday, 10 April 2017

Tomb Raider Suite Live in Concert


Just a few weeks before the performance I was on facebook, browsing through people's posts as usual. It was then, when I saw it. I previously bought tickets for Pokémon Symphony Orchestra in Apollo on 19th of December and then when I saw that Tomb Raider Suite will be performing first time ever, I was a bit dissapointed I didn't know about it a lot earlier. About a week before the event, I got time off for Sunday as well, so thought why the hell not and bought tickets for TR concert as a Christmas present for me and my fiance.

On the night of 18th, we arrived at Apollo with quite a big crowd of Lara fans gathering around the theatre. Getting in was pretty easy as we flashed our tickets past the doors, bought the programme and made way to our seats. Surprisingly we were offered better seats as not enough tickets have been sold apparently. Indeed that was true as minute before the opening the theatre was less than half filled with many empty seats around. The darkness settled in and Royal Philharmonic Orchestra started playing the Tomb Raider tunes, then Shelley Blond made an appearance and was our elegant host throughout the entire musical journey. It is hard to describe this entire experience in word, but I'll try my best. The expert composer himself, Nathan McCree, made an appearance in an unexpected interview at the start, which made us really excited for the whole experience. Throughout the concert they were also displaying various gameplay segments from the games which made the feelings and nostalgia really strong.


Everything began with Tomb Raider 1, released in 1996, and its memorable and completely unforgettable main tune. As the orchestra started playing it, many tears were shed. It was beatifully and masterfully performed and with the crisp sound of all the instruments, the chants, everything felt absolutely right. They immersed us in most of the TR1 tracks you remember and even added a little twist. For example the T-Rex hunt theme was made longer, as McCree was finally able to realize the tracks in their full lengths, as he explained later, not being limited by the length or bit size of the individual pieces.

Then Shelley Blond narrated us the success story of TR2 and the orchestra opened with a brilliant rendition of its main theme. They even pulled the track which I thought would be really difficult to do, I don't remember the official title, but you all sure remember it when it plays as Lara sets her first steps within the temple of Xian. There I have also learned that one of my beloved TR2 tracks is actually called Vertigo, which plays when Lara tries to reach higher ground in a house in Venice. It was also prolonged and it was pure joy listening to it. Very popular was the snowmobile trick, or Skiddo, as McCree labelled it. I did not think that an orchestra coud pull successfully pull it off but it was completely the opposite and many heads rocking back and forth was the proof of it.

After that, we finally reached Tomb Raider 3 and its main theme. Again, it was masterfully played and brought so much nostalgia to me personally. TR3 was the very first true 3D game I have ever played and as such, holds a dear place in my heart. I was a bit surprised that the Jungle cutscene with the crazy scientist Tony was performed as well and it fit the orchestra like a glove. Spooky Jungle is another one of my favourites and worked well. Also the mysterious sounding Puzlle Element track made a great appearance. Of course you could not have a TR3 experience without Geordie Bob track, which was again perfectly performed and loved every bit of it. At the end, McCree made another appearance and the audience clapped and screamed with excitement. The last performance was a medley of everything we heard so far and I wished for it never to end. There were also fun parts in between where they have included one of the TR fans' reactions to the game's beatiful music which were really hilarious.

Overall, the entire experience was completely unique, deeply personal and something to witness in your lifetime, especially if you are a TR fan. Being able to see the brilliant songs made live by an amazing orchestra and its conducter, Robert Ziegler, see Shelley Blond, Meagan Marie and Nathan McCree (even Winston made a surprise fun appearance!) in person was worth every pound spent on this event. The only downside was that there were not enough people witnessing this masterpiece maybe due to not enough of promotion, which is a shame. I only hope that there will be more concerts and a CD produced from this, because such experience must be shared with everybody. Thanks to everybody involved in this project and my gratitude goes to Nathan, Shelley and Meagan for letting us see them in person and getting their autographs (asking about LOK was a joke, btw).

PS: And how did this masterpiece sound like? Have a look! Mr. McCree kindly uploaded a recording of his new track, In the blood:



He also uploaded three tracks to soundcloud.com if you want to listen.
 More info about the concert, pictures and its aftermath also found here.

Sunday, 27 September 2015

Lara Croft and the Faces of Evil

I did a little bit of research on Lara Croft figures recently and the results I found, in some cases, were really amusing. It is amazing how much of bad merchandise is out there but given Lara´s popularity, it is not suprising. What is surprising is the price on some of these items is way too high for the „quality“ of the build and accuracy to Lara herself. This article is just for fun with my descriptions below:



  1. Exhibit no.1 seems to have been sleep deprived for days and the surprised look on her face does not help the impression either. Her ponytail is also very thick and resembles more like another substance. 2/10

  1. This statue looks a bit better than no.1, however, the exaggerated features (especially the „neandertal“ brow) look really odd. 3/10
  2. This poor figurine has seen its better days for sure. The makers obviously heard nothing of body proportions and her giant shorts and shoulders make her look like she just fell of a cliff and this is her mangled corpse. There are straps on her chests for some reason and she wears a really thick red lipstick on her tiny face. One of the worst entries on this list indeed. 1/10
  3. This one is supposed to represent Lara from the movies, so it tries to look more like Angelina Jolie, which I do not think was fully conveyed. 5/10
  4. This is quite rare and expensive figure (around 70 dollars). While the body seems faithful and accurate to what she is like in Tomb Raider Anniversary, her face is quite atrocious with giant nostrils and bags under her eyes. 6/10
  5. Lara here isn´t too bad, however, her face does seem a bit off and her thick eyebrows and prolonged forehead does not help either. 5/10
  6. This Lara has huge eyes and lips resulting in a bit of a grotesque look unfortunately. 4/10
  7. Lara here looks quite alright, the only problem is a very long neck and a big „hair bump“ on her head. 7/10
  8. This was a set including a crocodile and Lara. Given her vacant look on her face, she does not seem to be too scared of holding crocodile´s mouth open like that. 4/10
  9. This Lara from Legend is one of the more expensive ones but it looks really good and worth the money. 10/10
  10. Another rendition of Angelina Jolie´s Lara, very bland looking. 4/10
  11. This was doubted „voluptous“ in the description, but the look on her face is more offputting if anything else. 5/10
  12. This „terminator-look“ Lara is another Angelina Jolie figurine, while a bit more distinct than the other two, the prolonged forehead makes her look like she is balding. 3/10
  13. This is a TR3 catsuit Lara. Her chin seems to be a bit too short, but it is not too bad otherwise. 7/10
  14. This is TR2 wetsuit Lara and I dare to say one of the best looking ones on the list in terms of being truthful to the in-game renders. Not too expensive as well, I really recommend it! 9/10
  15. The new Tomb Raider reboot got its own figures as well and this one has a lot of joints and accessories. It seems to be quite faithful to the game, so another good one to pick up! 8/10
  16. Angelina Jolie clones were quite a few and this one does not fall out of the line either. It seems just as bad as the others with a hint of trying to go for realism, which did not really pay off in the end. 4/10
  17. Lara even got herself to be a bad bear plush toy, if that´s your kind of thing.
  18. Based on Angel of Darkness, this statue seems alright. 7/10
  19. This is what happens to Lara when she rolls around in mud too much. The paint job on this figure is very sloppy, there are much better TR 2013 figures out there than this. 4/10
  20. Cheap version of no.10, this figure is trying to be faithful to Legend, but not as successfully. She seems to have too much of a make-up on her face and the eyes are quite off as well. 5/10
  21. Underworld rendition of Lara is actually quite alright and one of the better cheap ones. 8/10
  22. If this is the expression Lara has each time she exercise, then I rather not see it. It´s not one of the worst, but not exactly spectacular either. 4/10
  23. This is a very expensive statue released for the Temple of Osiris game and damn, it looks awesome (her hair seems to be a bit too big though). 9/10
  24. This is a very big statue and is very expensive. Her face seems alright but it is not quite looking like Lara though. 6/10
  25. TR4 Lara from the intro cinematic has her face covered to protect her from sand, but her very strangely shaped chest section takes the attention. 4/10
  26. Another Jolie Lara, one of the better ones I´d say. 4/10
  27. Angel of Darkness statue, quite large, but not really sure it´s any better than no.19, her jaw line seems to be too wide. 6/10
  28. TR3 Lara with a weird tiny nose, not much else to say here really. 5/10
  29. This is what would happen when you would try to inflate her head like a baloon... 2/10
  30. The only young Lara on this list with her head melted into her neck and with weirdly protruding breasts. 3/10

Bonus points for people who spotted the Lara Croft men´s underwear in the picture. Who would wear it anyway? 

Disclaimer: All the pictures are from Ebay listings and belong to their respective owners.

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Steam Holiday Sale and end of the year (or the world?)

Steam started its annual holiday sale today. Legacy of Kain series are on sale too, so you can buy the whole pack for 11,97e. Strangely, the LOK series are not part of the Square Enix collection pack, which on the other hand has older Tomb Raider titles. Which games will you or have you bought so far? Enjoy the holidays and I hope you will play some good games!

In the previous poll, 67% of people who voted like the new Defiance texture pack, so I am glad you tried it out. Be sure to vote on the new poll too. I personally own pc versions of SR1 and 2 on gog, Defiance on a dvd from game magazine. I got also SR on Steam as a gift (thanks Merty!), but don´t plan to buy them there as well. I have all of the games on PlayStation. What about you? Feel free to leave a comment on where you got your LOK games from.

My ps1/2 LoK collection