Its hard for many people to believe that the Tomb Raider series has been around for over 25 years now. Since the mid 90’s Lara Croft has been widely recognized as one of the most iconic female protagonists in the history of video games. Since ’96 there has been a least twelve main installments within the Tomb Raider series. The trilogy of Tomb Raider games that appeared on the PS1 between ’96-’98 were among the best selling titles on Sony’s first generation console and are considered to be action-adventure classics from that era. The trilogy of Tomb Raider games that came out between ’96-’98 had managed to reach roughly over 19.8 million copies in sales all together on the PS1. Back the 90’s there had never been a female protagonist in gaming to have the level of popularity and success that Lara Croft had. In fact, there are many people would even go on record and say that eventually Lara Croft had managed to surpass Samus Aran from the Metroid series in terms of popularity. While Samus Aran was probably the first female protagonist in gaming to achieve mainstream success back in the late 80s-early 90s the Metroid franchise did not sell nearly as much as Tomb Raider did. In fact, the Tomb Raider series has managed to age like fine wine within the past 25 years in terms of graphics and overall gameplay. By the time we got to the early 10’s Square Enix and Crystal Dynamics had released arguably the most successful Tomb Raider game within the entire series during 2013. The Tomb Raider ’13 game had managed to reach over 14 million copies sold worldwide across multiple game systems including PS4, PS3, Xbox 360, Xbox One and Microsoft Windows.
Also, who could possibly for get about the two Tomb Raider movies from the early 00’s staring Angelina Jolie which were both considered to highly successful in the box office. The Tomb Raider movies from ’01 & ’03 managed to earn a combined total of over $434 million in box office revenue and ended up elevating the series to new heights in relation to popularity during the 2000’s. There is no question that Lara Croft’s unexpected surge in popularity in over the past two decades surprised many people especially as it related to Hollywood. Also, there were many people who loved Lara Croft because of her intriguing backstory as to why she choose to be an explorer along ability to carry an entire video game franchise on her own; while generating millions of dollars over the span of 25 years despite what company licensed the Tomb Raider series. While everyone may have their own respective opinion on who the greatest female protagonist of all-time in terms of gaming; Lara Croft would easily be in many people’s top five because the level of success that the Tomb Raider series achieved in the past 25 years is undeniable.