Did you know that Lara Croft could have had a whole different name in Tomb Raider? Besides, the famous heroine was not originally a woman.
He is an iconic video game character, just like Mario, Pikachu or Sonic. Moreover, she is undoubtedly the most famous female character in the video game industry, far ahead of Chun Li, Peach or Zelda. This is Lara Croft, the heroine of tomb Raider. Sign of its immense success, the license was entitled very early to the honors of the press and to adaptations to the cinema, from 2001, just a few years after the release of the first game, in 1996.
Lara Croft has also been played by two actresses on the big screen: Angelina Jolie, in two films, then Alicia Vikander, for a reboot. A first feature film has been released and a second is due soon. However, things could have been different for the Tomb Raider license if the first name that was imagined for the character of Lara Croft had been kept. Because the grave robber was not to be called that.
Lara Croft could have been called Laura Cruz
Originally, Toby Gard, the creator who imagined this heroine, wanted her to be South American. He had therefore opted for an identity reflecting his geographical origins. This is what we can read in the book The great history of video games, signed by journalist Erwan Cario. Thus, Lara Croft was originally called Laura Cruz. But marketing reasons have led to a more English name.
It turns out that the British studio Eidos Interactive, publisher of the title and owner of the Core Design studio that gave birth to tomb Raider, was afraid to cut itself off from Western players, who represented at the time and still constitute a very important market. Also decision was taken to anglicize Laura Cruz as Lara Croft. And how did they do it? By picking the name from a directory.
What you should also know is that Lara Croft was first imagined as a man. It must be said that the character of Indiana Jones, with his hat and his whip, made an impression. But there was a glaring lack of originality, not to mention the intellectual property risk. So the adventurer became an adventurer and her weaponry also evolved, with her famous two pistols.
Over the years, Lara Croft’s look has evolved significantly. First on a technical level, by following the progress of video game consoles: it should be noted that the very first model of the character in 3D consisted of approximately 230 polygons (it was at the time when the number of polygons was an important metric in video games), giving it a barely human appearance. Today, its most recent model is screaming for realism.
Its image has also evolved. The very first version of Lara Croft’s 3D model featured a voluminous chest. The parameters had been adjusted to increase its size by 150% compared to the initial version. Over time, however, and with regular criticism of the sexualization of nearly all video game heroines, Lara Croft’s figure and outfit have been revised to avoid making sexism into a promotional element.