Tomb Raider II Is Now Available On iOS Devices

By Ishaan . December 4, 2014 . 10:29am



Tomb Raider II, the second game in the original Tomb Raider series, is out now on iOS devices. The game costs $1.99/€1.79/£1.49.


Originally released in 1997 for PC and PlayStation, Tomb Raider II has Lara visiting locales like Tibet and Venice as she searches for the Dagger of Xian. As with every Tomb Raider game after it, II added new moves and vehicles to the list of tools you had at hand to beat the game’s puzzles.



If you grew up playing these games, you’ll remember this was also the first time you actually got to see Lara’s ponytail within the game, as Core Design hadn’t been able to optimize the first Tomb Raider well enough to be able to fit it in. While the first game introduced Lara, Tomb Raider II was the one that defined her look for the rest of the original series.


The image above shows the evolution of Lara’s character model from the first Tomb Raider through Tomb Raider Chronicles. You’ll notice the biggest jump in quality is from I to II, both in terms of textures and character modeling.



Lara Croft comparison image courtesy Tomb Raider Forums.

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  • Fronkhead

    (Of course, Siliconera does cover the iOS indies. But I just knew this would go up as news at some point :P)

  • Codename: D.A.V.I.D.

    TRII includes my favorite Nathan McCree’s soundtrack: Venice Violins!

    Also talking about the evolution of Lara’s character model, it continues… On the fan levels. With the same engine as TR:LR/TR:C this is now the type of “outfit” Lara uses (By Horus-Goddess):

    On topic, I don’t know how a classic Tomb Raider game can work on mobile due the controls…

  • subsamuel01

    The controls on PS1 were pretty bad, can’t imagine how bad this plays on iOS.

    • raeldor

      ^ totally came here to say this, lol.

    • Codename: D.A.V.I.D.

      Bad? The controls were perfect for the type of game this was, unlike modern offerings where movement seems automated this provided an incredible level of precision which requires the player adequately reading the 3D space and act accordingly. No current game of this kind has that feel of control, freedom and solidness. Now for an iOS port I can’t disagree.

    • Fronkhead

      Pretty sure it’s MFi controller compatible, like how OddWorld: Stranger’s Wrath is and countless other traditional titles which don’t lend themselves well to touchscreen controls.

      That’s a bit like complaining about having to play a PC port which doesn’t lend itself well to keyboard and mouse controls when the hardware supports controllers…

      • raeldor

        Yeah, but how many people have you met who carry around game controllers with their cell phone? If I’m going to have to carry around a game controller for it I’d rather just carry my Vita.

        It’s a real dilemma. I think mobile gaming is great for certain types of games (ie, puzzle games, strategy games), but for something like this it’s a real compromise. For me I see this as a clear divider between cell phone gaming and hand held consoles, but I appreciate other people see it differently.

        • Fronkhead

          I was more thinking about the iPad and tablets, really, which are far better media consumption devices than phones, and much better for playing iOS games on anyway.

          A lot of iOS games are now blatantly made with iPad in mind, with interfaces which only work well on the larger display, and there are a lot of games which are now iPad-only, like the latest Skylanders (which comes bundled with a controller), Frozen Synapse, Monkey Island 2 Special Edition and Pokemon TCG to name a few, as well as SteamWorld Heist. It’s a big market.

          But yes, these traditional games aren’t the sort of thing I pick up for my phone if I had a tablet — agreed with you there. And there is the question of how many people own the controllers in the first place, though I’d imagine these sorts of ports are quite cheap to make (Oddworld in particular looks identical to the Vita version, the Vita’s GPU is basically an iPad 3’s)

    • Juan Andrés Valencia

      I’d love to see the poor kids playing this arriving with twisted fingers or hands at the hospital. The older Tomb Raider games have aged very poorly.

      • Codename: D.A.V.I.D.

        The character’s movement mechanic is what it is, Lara moves around a volumetric grid so the controls allow to do the gymnastic moves with precision around the level, how does it “ages”?

        • Juan Andrés Valencia

          It’s fairly clunky. I’d compare it to Resident Evil with parkour.

          • Codename: D.A.V.I.D.

            Then your opinion on them is that they are “clunky”, that’s OK, but still the game mechanics haven’t varied through time, they are still the same as in 1996-99; and given the nature of the game they are ideal to navigate the geometry the engine creates, the controls have ‘millimetric’ precision to transverse every part of the game’s 3D space, something today is hard (Or impossible) to find.

          • persona_yuji

            For some reason now I’m imagining Barry Burton backflipping all over the place while shooting zombies with his magnum.

  • “Just because you can, doesn’t mean that you should.” – A quote from some random, but wise stranger.

    • Fronkhead

      But MFi controllers exist on the platform now, so there’s a market for traditional games, much like how there is on PC where people own all sorts of input devices (fighting sticks, 360 controllers and the like).

      But yes, playing Tomb Raider with touchscreen controls on a phone is going to be compromise. People should pick up games made for the platform from the ground up instead. Like the amazing 868-HACK or DEVICE 6.

      • “Just because you can, doesn’t mean that you should.” The quote is all-encompassing here. It’s like that PSX emulator for that iPod watch thing.

        • persona_yuji

          There’s a PSX emulator for that thing? How the hell do you control anything without a controller?

        • Fronkhead

          Like I said, it supports controllers, so comparisons to having that sort of game be on a 2″ watch screen are a bit unfair.

          • The thing is that the controllers you talk about also work for the iPod Watch thing. So, no. It isn’t unfair. It is as fair a comparison as it can get at the moment.

          • persona_yuji

            That’s gotta be pretty wierd… you’ve gotta either be in a awkward position to be holding a controller and see the watch’s screen, or you adjust the thing… you know what? It’s awkward no matter how you think about it.

          • Fronkhead

            No they don’t. The Apple Watch does not support “Made for iPhone/iPad controllers”. Not sure where you got that from, especially when an Apple Watch needs to be tethered to a secondary device in the first place (with some compute being done on that secondary device).

      • SobriK

        I’m really torn on the MFi controller thing, as I’m not sure it really has traction on mobile. On one hand it allows ports (this, Bioshock, MonHun) to be played closer to the spirit in which they were intended to. But using a controller sacrifices the core strength of a mobile device (be it a phone or a tablet) – its portability, because now it’s no longer a pull-out-and-play device.

        I imagine that most people who have a tablet and a MFi controller also have enough money to afford a decent gaming PC or a console, so if they get into a situation where they want to play something that requires better controls than a touchscreen device affords, they’ll probably turn to those other options.

        I *really* want to like the idea of controllers for mobile devices, but I can only see them being applicable to people who travel a lot, have a ton of disposable income, and – for whatever reason – are dead set against owning a 3DS or a Vita

        • Fronkhead

          You raise some great points. It certainly raises questions as to where this sort of traditional gaming experience fits in one these devices. I do play PC games on my Surface Pro 2 with a 360 controller, but I’m in the minority, and most of the time I end up playing the games on the TV on 360 anyway.

          It’s telling that I spend most of my time playing the games that shine to the iPhone/iPad’s strengths: stuff like 868-HACK, Year Walk, Sailor’s Dream, DEVICE 6, Proun+, Helix, shmups, any other text/adventure/strategy game, Jubeat, Groove Coaster to name a few off the top of my head.

          I think had it been 2009/2010 where iOS was an industry darling, before Nintendo/Sony/MS lowered barriers to entry for devs it would probably be different: you’d play traditional controller games on iOS probably because indies saw that platform as the only place to make them, whereas nowadays “traditional” indie titles are so commoditised, and tend to only be exclusive because developers lack the resources to target several platforms at once…

          • SobriK

            >>I do play PC games on my Surface Pro 2 with a 360 controller, but I’m in the minority, and most of the time I end up playing the games on the TV on 360 anyway<<
            I used to play PSP Go games using a PS3 controller so, I think we're kinda in the same nontraditional boat here :)

            I agree 100% about playing games that shine to a system's strengths. Monument Valley, The Room, etc. are all great cases for the strength of mobile as a unique game platform. I generally shy away from mobile games with virtual control options since my Vita or 3DS can (to me, at least) offer a more satisfying experience. The sole exception is FFVI, because I'd play that game on a toaster oven if SE ever ported it over.

            I was tempted by case/controller combos like the Razer Junglecat, but the fact that phone form factors change so frequently, it's just too expensive of an investment to take a chance on. If I had spent $80 or $100 to use it on an iPhone 5, I'd be S.O.L. trying to wedge my 6 into it… and that's, at best, extremely nnoying.

  • persona_yuji

    While I do apreciate their effort in porting these kind of games… they just don’t really fit on tablets. They need buttons and analog sticks, that’s just the way they were designed.
    It would be better if they made games designed with touch controls in mind.

  • Jadfish

    the original tomb raider games were difficult enough to control back on a dualshock. Can’t imagine this being easy to do

    • persona_yuji

      Back in the day, I only played the original Tomb Raider on the Saturn and it wasn’t that hard to control, altough it isn’t a game you pick up and play like Crash 3.

  • Harry Potter

    we already have emulators

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