The Tomb Raider franchise is more than 25 years old, and at the time of writing, there have been more than 17 video game releases in the series. The Tomb Raider games can be divided into three sagas – classic, legendary, and reboot saga.
If you have finally made up your mind to play Tomb Raider, you might know that there are an overwhelming number of games and are probably wondering which games to play first. The first Tomb Raider game was released in 1996 and the latest title was released back in 2018. Down below we have compiled the list of all Tomb Raider games of all three sagas.
Also Read: All Uncharted Games In Chronological Order
All Tomb Raider Games in Order of Release Date
It should be noted that the games that we have compiled are listed by their release date and the order should not be confused with the chronological order (order in which the in-game events happened) in which the game should be played for better understanding. Although, we will list them in chronological order as well and you can find the order at the end of this blog.
Tomb Raider Classic Saga | Old Tomb Raider Games
It all started in 1996 with Tomb Raider, nine games were released in the classic saga making it the longest saga of Tomb Raider games. All the titles in the series were developed by Core Design.
Tomb Raider (1996)
1996 Tomb Raider introduced us to who was going to be one of the most beloved female video game protagonists in the coming time, Lara Croft. In Tomb Raider (1996) Lara visits various countries in search of the Scion of Atlantis. In the game, she visits various tombs located across Peru, Greece, and Egypt while looking for separate parts of the Scion.
The enemies in the game are mostly animals including – wolves, bears, lions, gorillas, and panthers, although in Atlantis you can find bleeding demons. The game was originally released for PS1 and was a commercial success.
Tomb Raider II (1997)
Tomb Raider II was an overall improvement as compared to its predecessor. New weapons and vehicles for traversing long distances were also introduced in the game. The game takes you to four different locations of The Great Wall of China, Venice, Tibet, an oil rig, and a shipwreck at an undisclosed oceanic location in an attempt to locate and secure the ‘Dagger of Xian’ which is capable of turning its wielder into a dragon.
The game features vehicles such as speedboats and snowmobiles which can be accessed during the levels of Venice and Tibet respectively. To traverse large gaps Lara can also use zip lines. The game also introduced the use of flares to light up the dark regions inside the tombs for a limited duration which was a new feature for its time.
Tomb Raider III: Adventures of Lara Croft (1998)
In this title of the Tomb Raider, Lara Croft explores the regions of India, the South Pacific, Nevada, London, and Antarctica. The core gameplay of the title remains the same involving solving puzzles by rearranging items, manipulating switches, or pushing objects, jumping over obstacles, and fighting adversaries. Lara embarks on a journey to collect four pieces of the meteorite that if used in tandem could turn humans into monsters
The game features several weapons including a desert eagle, dual uzis, and shotguns to name a few. The weapons in the game have infinite ammunition and they can be used as many times as the player likes. The game also features stealth mode for the first time in the series, at one point in the game Lara temporarily loses her weapons and is forced to use stealth to progress further.
Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation (1999)
Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation follows the story where Lara Croft accidentally sets free the Egyptian God Set and then races to imprison him again. The gameplay involves Lara looking for artifacts and solving puzzles set up in locations in Egypt. The devs were tired of making the same Tomb Raider games continuously since 1996 and the narrative of the game was written such that it ended with Lara’s death.
The same engine that was used to design the previous two games was to design this game also. The game was designed better than its predecessors and much focus was put into bettering its graphics and improving enemies AI. The game was noted for being just another brick in the wall and was criticized for lack of innovation.
Tomb Raider – Game Boy Colour (2000)
The franchise of Tomb Raider took a generational leap with this release. With this title, Tomb Raider shifted to a 2-D platformer, as the game was released exclusively for Game Boy Colour. In the game, Lara attempts to halt a group of treasure hunters who are trying to get their hands on the ‘Nightmare Stone’ that can set free the evil god “Quaxset”.
The game received appreciation for Lara’s smooth acrobatic skills and animations. The fact that players can perform a set of 25 different moves with limited numbers of buttons on Game Boy is truly appreciable.
Tomb Raider Chronicles (2000)
The Chronicles storyline follows the events of Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation. Lara Croft is presumed dead after the final events of The Last Revelation, a large group of her several friends and other people gather at her home to pay their homage. The events of the game take place in the past as Lara’s friends and associates recall her previous exploits.
Despite the game taking place before the events of The Last Revelation, Lara has advanced abilities and has access to new items such as grapple hooks, binoculars, and crowbars. The game features three stories of her past in different places including Rome, Russia, Ireland, and New York.
Tomb Raider: Curse of the Sword (2001)
With Curse of the Sword, Tomb Raider marked its comeback to the Game Boy Colour. Continuing with the 2-D platforming, the game was a direct sequel to Tomb Raider’s first installment on Game Boy. This game had everything that was in its Game Boy predecessor. New mechanics like Lara shooting while standing on a ladder, falling on the ground, and doing loops in narrow channels were also introduced.
In the game, a gang of robbers comes in and takes away a sword of Paveau that could bring dead people back to life. While attempting to stop the robbery, Lara is cut with the sword and her soul gets in danger. The game follows Lara’s attempt to retrieve the sword back or lose her soul.
Tomb Raider: The Prophecy (2002)
The game was released for Game Boy Advance. Unlike the previous two titles on the handheld console Game Boy, The Prophecy was played in a 3-D isometric viewpoint. It was the first and the only game to employ the isometric viewpoint until Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light. The staple elements of the franchise like run, jump, climb and shoot are at the core of the gameplay. Lara has access to her iconic handheld guns along with Uzi pistols, and golden guns.
In the game, Lara goes on a quest to gather the three magical stones before a cult and prevent the reawakening of a mystical being known as the Great Grey One. The game was praised for its aesthetics although it received criticism for its repetitive gameplay.
Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness (2003)
The last title of the Classic Tomb Raider Saga almost killed the Tomb Raider franchise. The Angel of Darkness is a direct sequel to Chronicles in which Lara Croft attempts to clear herself from the allegations of being the murderer of her former mentor while also busting the activities of a cult.
The game is mostly remembered for its poor controls and camera angles, and other technical issues which made it the biggest bust in the Tomb Raider franchise. Eidos wanted to release another Tomb Raider title on consoles as soon as possible and developers did a job in hurry to meet the deadlines which led to a game being made that felt unfinished.
Tomb Raider Legendary Saga
The Angels of Darkness was supposed to be the first entry in the trilogy of Tomb Raider games for new-gen consoles, but the disaster and backlash that followed after its release led to scrapping up the idea of the trilogy and marked the beginning of the Legendary Saga. All the games in the franchise are developed by Crystal Dynamics.
Tomb Raider: Legend (2006)
Eidos handed the reins of the Tomb Raider to Crystal Dynamics after taking it from Core Design following the disaster of Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness. The game’s development began in 2004 intending to breathe a new life into the franchise. Several factions of the game were entirely redesigned including the gameplay and Lara herself. Toby Gard, the creator of Lara Croft’s character, was deeply involved in the project.
In this title, Lara goes on a quest for a mythical sword named Excalibur. After its release, the game met with mostly positive reviews, and with this title, it was said that Tomb Raider was back on the right track. The game’s art direction and modern redesign were appreciated and Lara’s new character was loved by many.
Tomb Raider: Anniversary (2007)
2006 marked the 10th anniversary of the Tomb Raider franchise. Following the success of Legend in 2006, Crystal World started working on the remake of the first Tomb Raider game that was released in 1996. The game’s storyline remains the same following Lara’s quest for the Scion of Atlantis.
The narrative of the game was also expanded by Toby Gard and the whole music was remade using an orchestral style. Anniversary met with overall positive reviews although it faced some criticism for its graphics and some technical glitches. The game sold 1.3 million copies compared to 7 million copies of the original title.
Tomb Raider: Underworld (2008)
Underworld is the third and the last entry in the Legend trilogy. It directly follows the events of Tomb Raider: Legend. In this title, the developers wanted to experiment by amalgamating Lara’s character with Norse mythology. The Underworld’s narrative follows Lara racing in search of Mjolnir, which is the key artifact required to enter the realm of Helheim.
The game was praised for many of its aspects including environments, exploration, graphics, story, and puzzles but received criticism for its poor camera angles and combat systems. Selling 3.8 million copies, Underworld performed decently.
Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light (2010)
Unlike all of the previous titles, the title of this game did not contain Tomb Raider. It was the first time, that co-op gameplay was the main focus of a Tomb Raider game, although a single-player campaign is also included in the game that a player can play. In multiplayer settings, the players either control Lara Croft or a 2000-year-old Mayan warrior Totec, and they must work together to fight the evil of Xolotl and retrieve the Mirror of Smoke.
Unlike the previous entries, the game employed an isometric camera viewpoint, just the second game after Tomb Raider Prophecy to do so. The game met with mostly positive reviews and was very well received by critics.
Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris (2014)
Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris is a direct sequel to the Guardian of the Light that was released in 2010. Expanding the co-op multiplayer gameplay which now supports four players, The Temple of Osiris features a new story with stunning visuals. The game takes place in Egypt, where players must fight against the hordes of enemies and avoid deadly traps.
You play the game as Lara while your friends join in the action as Carter, Isis, and Horus each have unique weapons, skills, and capabilities. The game received mixed or average reviews, where the multiplayer gameplay, level designs, and music of the game were appreciated.
Tomb Raider Reboot Saga | New Tomb Raider Games In Order
The reboot saga began in 2013. The saga is the Survival Trilogy that re-establishes the origin story of Lara Croft once more and focuses on telling us how Lara Croft became the Tomb Raider.
Tomb Raider (2013)
The franchise was again rebooted following the acquisition of Eidos Interactive by Square Enix. With the 2013 title, the Tomb Raider franchise took a whole new turn, and several of the game’s aspects were changed once again. It is the first installment of the Survivor Trilogy. The game was the first in the series of Tomb Raider to receive a Mature rating from the ESRB. The game follows the story telling us the origin of Lara Croft and how she became an adventurous survivor.
Camilla Luddington was hired to act as Lara Croft, replacing Keely Hawes and she did an amazing job. The game takes place on the island of Yamatai, where an inexperienced Lara must save her friends alongside fighting against a vicious cult.
Rise of the Tomb Raider (2015)
A direct sequel to the 2013 Tomb Raider and the second installment in the Survivor Trilogy, Rise of the Tomb Raider hit the market on Nov 10, 2015. The story of the game follows Lara as she goes to Siberia in search of the lost city of Kitezh while she battles against a paramilitary organization. The game features elements of stealth, raiding, and exploring. This iteration of Tomb Raider focuses on developing the character of Lara Croft and forging her into Tomb Raider.
The game was a timed Xbox exclusive for which the publishers were criticized by players and media alike. The game was a commercial hit selling more than 11 million copies as of now. The game was well received by critics and received critical acclaim for its story, animation, graphics, and gameplay. This title of Tomb Raider is arguably the best in the history of the franchise.
Shadow of the Tomb Raider (2018)
Shadow of the Tomb Raider marks the end of the Survivor Trilogy and was the last main entry in the Tomb Raider franchise. The final entry of the Tomb Raider is set roughly a year after the events of the Rise of the Tomb Raider. Like in the previous title the paramilitary cult organization, Trinity, is featured as the bad guys in this title also and their leader Pedro Dominguez is the main antagonist in the game.
The game was developed by Eidos-Montreal and not Crystal Dynamics (the studio that developed the previous two games). The game’s challenge tombs and puzzles received critical acclaim while the criticism was aimed at its story and combat system. The game was expected to perform much better in sales than its predecessors but it failed to surpass even the 10 million sales mark.
Chronological Order of All Tomb Raider Games –
Given down below is the table where you can find the list of Tomb Raider games in chronological order.
|Tomb Raider (1996)||PlayStation, Game Boy Color, PC, and Saturn|
|Tomb Raider – Game Boy Colour (2000)||Game Boy Colour|
|Tomb Raider: The Curse of the Sword (2001)||Game Boy Colour|
|Tomb Raider II (1997)||PC and PlayStation|
|Tomb Raider III: Adventures of Lara Croft (1998)||PC and PlayStation|
|Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation (1999)||PC, PS2, and Dreamcast|
|Tomb Raider: Chronicles (2000)||PC, PS2, and Dreamcast|
|Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness (2003)||PC and PS2|
|Tomb Raider: The Prophecy (2002)||Game Boy Advance|
|Tomb Raider Anniversary (2007)||PC, PS2, PS3, PSP, Xbox 360, and Wii|
|Tomb Raider Legend (2006)||PC, PS2, PS3, PSP, Xbox, Xbox 360, GameCube, Nintendo DS, and Game Boy Advance|
|Tomb Raider Underworld (2008)||PC, PS2, PS3, Xbox 360, Wii, and Nintendo DS|
|Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light (2010)||PC, PS3, Xbox 360, Switch, Stadia, iOS, and Android|
|Lara Croft and the Temple of Osiris (2014)||PC, PS4 and Xbox One, Switch, and Stadia|
|Tomb Raider (2013)||PC, PS3, Xbox 360, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Stadia|
|Rise of the Tomb Raider (2015)||PC, Xbox 360, Xbox One, PS4 and Stadia|
|Shadow of the Tomb Raider (2018)||PC, Xbox One, PS4, and Stadia|
We hope you found this article helpful, let us know in the comment section below which is your favorite Tomb Raider game and which game you are looking forward to playing next. While you’re here at Benettonplay we encourage you to take a look at our other blogs.
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How many games does Tomb Raider have?
There are 12 mainline series games of which 6 were developed by Core Design, 5 were developed by Crystal Dynamics and one game was developed by Eidos Montreal. The franchise also has 18 other spin-offs and mobile games.
What is the best Tomb Raider game?
According to us, the best Tomb Raider game is The Rise of The Tomb Raider. The story arc of the Rise is beautiful with graphics and animation complementing the game beautifully, the Rise has to be the best Tomb Raider game to date.
Which is the longest Tomb Raider game?
The older/classic Tomb Raider games are the longest. Tomb Raider III takes 18 hours on average to beat the game followed by Tomb Raider: The Last Revelation with an average beat time of 16 hours.
Which is the most-sold Tomb Raider game?
The first installment of the Survivor Series, Tomb Raider (2013), sold the most copies in the history of the franchise – 14.5 million. It is followed by The Rise of the Tomb Raider (11.8 million) and The Shadow of the Tomb Raider (8.9 million).