tomb raider

Tomb Raider 3 Beta [PSX / PC]

Overview: After Tomb Raider 2, Core Design released another Tomb Raider sequel in November 1998 for PC and the PlayStation. Based on the upgraded Tomb Raider 2 Engine, Tomb Raider 3 features new vehicles such as the: Kayak and Quad bike. These new vehicles enable players to experience a new challenge from navigating down the rapids of Madubu Gorge to driving quad bikes in the Nevada Desert. In comparison to the older Tomb Raider games, the game play mechanics became more dynamic and the engine supported more triangular room polygons plus coloured lighting. Tomb Raider 3 appeared at E3 May 1998 and ECTS August 1998. The game features locations such as: India, South Pacific, Nevada, London.



An interview with Andy Sandham, former level designer for Tomb Raider 3, was posted on Tomb of Ash with some interesting info:

I believe the optional routes were taken out due to time pressure – as our first Tomb Raider game as a team, we were really up against it, learning new tech, etc., so I believe we held out on the ‘hub’ system until tomb raider 4 to prevent ourselves from having nervous breakdowns!

I remember that Heather, level designer and artist on Tomb 2 had built most of Angkor Watt – but that team were offered their own project (project Eden?) and so jumped at the chance, leaving us with a ¾ complete level that was handed over to Jamie Morton.


There is evidence that Core Design had planned a section of levels set in Peru. There is no clear evidence as to whether these levels were actually created or if the area name was originally intended for another location, later renamed for the final release. Some of the level names changed during development for example (Final level names in bold):

  • Jungle Ruins -Jungle
  • Temple Of Shiva -Temple Ruins

This screenshot was taken from an unfinished beta copy of the game, it shows clear evidence of Peru’s previous existence. During a magazine interview, Core Design explained that the first level in Tomb Raider 3 would provide insight into the game’s story. Then players would be able to choose the start of their adventure set in 4 different locations: India, London, South Pacific, Nevada. It’s possible that the first level may have originally been set in Peru where Lara Croft was supposed to retrieve the first artifact? This is purely speculation and is completely unconfirmed.

All Hallows which is a bonus level was originally intended to come directly after Thames Wharf, a beta version of the game confirms that this was changed during the last month of development. It would make more sense for Lara to slide down a building near St. Paul’s Cathedral only to end up there.

Core Design did a major makeover on the PlayStation engine, it supposedly makes use of all the power the PlayStation has. It had been confirmed in several magazine reviews that the game would support 1-3 routes of completion. Looking at several magazine scans, some levels show doors to other areas which were removed from the final version. This was possibly to help avoid the gamer from getting confused but it would have been a more adventurous experience in my opinion. Also, the Kayak from Tomb Raider III was originally a boat, but blue that resembled the one from Tomb Raider II. Earlier builds show how Lara’s movesets changed, became more complex but some new moves didn’t make into the final game. An example of this is the roll whilst crouching ability. A video feature for Tomb Raider III also shows Lara Croft utilising a combat knife which they further explained was intended to remove objects from stone, or climb trees which yet again never saw the light of day.


On-screen Debug:


Tomb Raider 3 features an on-screen debug with several functions. One of which displays the POLYGON count on-screen so that the developers would know which environments are too large specifically for the PlayStation engine.

The syntax is as follows:


CURRENT_POLYS = Amount of polygons currently loaded (the engine hides some).
MAX_LOADED_POLYS = The highest current amount of polys reached (increases based on the current amount)
POLY_LIMIT = Polygon limit, the game should freeze once it exceeds this limit as it cannot be handled by the engine.

In huge areas the polygon limit is at breach of 1990, 1990, 2000 which is also common in Thames Wharf causing the framerate to drop on the PlayStation version.


Alpha Stage – Date, Late May 1998 (E3 Build)

The title screen is different and I quite like it. Such a shame it never made it to the final release. It is also known that this build has unique loading screens for the South Pacific level which use an unknown render. Although this looks complete, the levels are in early development and contain some interesting parts which got cut. The only known playable levels are: Coastal Village, Thames Wharf. The deleted roll animation can be seen at 0:32. The flare lighting effects look much better compared to the final release’s cut-down version. My favorite part is when Lara is monkey swinging at 0:57, the animation is different.


Alpha Stage – Date, July 1998

Screenshots from an unknown July build shown in some early magazine scans.


Alpha Stage – Date, Late July 1998

The Jungle screenshots are looking close to final but it is STILL in early development stages. There are some level differences on the second screenshot, the wall is missing which divides the water from the land. In the third screenshot you can also see there is no save crystal so it’s obviously using the standard Tomb Raider 2 Save system.

Also, the All Hallows screenshots show early deleted parts and the first screenshots lack the red lighting effects used in the final build.


Beta Stage – Date, Late August 1998 (ECTS Build)
Platform: PC

This build was shown at ECTS 1998. Some areas differ from the public September 1998 demo featured on various magazine demo samplers.


Beta Stage – Date, Mid September 1998
Platform: PSX

Here is a look at some of the left over weapons which can be unlocked within this demo. Some of them are still from Tomb Raider II like the Automatic Pistols and M16. Due to them being unfinished, Lara’s animations seem to glitch whilst using some weapons.

In this version of the game, Peru is on the map. No modifications are needed to unlock it, but the level itself is not there so the game freezes.


Late Beta Stage – Date, October 1998
Platform: PSX

Full playlist:

About this beta

This is a beta build compiled close to final. Almost everything is done but there are minor/severe bugs which can prevent you from completing the game. The beta still has the deleted sprint and crawl + pickup animation. The sprint makes Lara seem to be more ‘butch’ I believe it’s why they changed it. Whilst picking up items when crawling, Lara will reach out to her bag pack like she’s putting it in there which doesn’t happen in the final.

Glitch 1 – River of Ganges, Quadbike

Another glitch is where the quadbike is too bouncy or can be used underwater. If you drive into a wall whilst falling into the water, Lara will be able to use it underwater without it exploding allowing the level to be completed easily.

Glitch 2 – Rx-Tech Mines, Mine Cart

The most severe bug is with the mine cart, it easily picks up speed causing it to become uncontrollable. Along with this, it bounces up and down like a ball. It is impossible to complete Rx-Tech mines because there is a speed issue which causes the lower mine cart to crash every time if used. The only way around this is to use the DOZY cheat to fly rather than using the mine carts.

Glitch 3 – Lost City of Tinnos, Fire Room

In the fire room, you can walk on the floor which should burn Lara Croft.

Glitch 4 – Rx-Tech Mines, Mine Cart

There is a bug when putting in the scitimar it will not work if you press X (action) you must go through the inventory.

More differences

In the Jungle the first secret located near the tree doesn’t exist and there is no shotgun.

In Lud’s Gate in the room near the end where there’s a switch in the water. It is not there, there’s actually a button to open the next area.

1. Gh0stblade

Change log:
Gh0stblade – Reordering and several video/spelling fixes. 16/03/16
Gh0stblade – Fixed some problems, partial re-write in progress. 21/02/15
Gh0stblade – Added info on debug info and fixed errors 09/12/12
Gh0stblade – Fixed mistakes added stuff. 12/05/12
Gh0stblade – Added August 1998 E3 PC, July PC Screenshots. 2/04/12
Gh0stblade – Started write up, added October 98 beta info 14/12/11, Added Late August info, Added September 1998 Info.
Gh0stblade – Added E3 info, ECTS screenshots. 16/12/11
Gh0stblade – Added more general info, E3 video updated 09/01/11 

Tomb Raider: 10th Anniversary Edition (Cancelled) [PSP/PS2/PC]


After Tomb Raider: the Angel Of Darkness was considered a failure, Core Design, in 2004 came up with a new idea which was to do a complete remake of the first Tomb Raider game. Core Design developed their version of Tomb Raider: 10th Anniversary Edition for approximately 9 months until it was unfortunately cancelled early June 2006. It was then announced that Crystal Dynamics would be developing a new Anniversary game instead.


Interview by PlanetLara 24th July 2007.

Richard: It was a strange time really, we’d just finished Free Running for PSP/PS2 and had developed a really good control system and camera, we started messing about with a Lara model on the PSP in the Free Running engine and the idea of 10th Anniversary was born. We suggested it to Eidos who allowed us to develop it, but when Core was sold to Rebellion it seemed like they didn’t want the franchise to go ‘out-of-house’ hence the cancellation of our project.

It is confirmed that PC/PS2 versions were in development however the existing leaked footage and in-game screenshots have been confirmed to be taken from the PSP version. The trailer which leaked from an unknown source seems to show various different builds of Tomb Raider: 10th Anniversary Edition, some later than others. It is confirmed that both Core Design and Crystal Dynamics were working on separate games (Core Design – Tomb Raider: 10th Anniversary Edition, Crystal – Tomb Raider Legend). Eidos (the game’s publisher at the time now Square Enix) requested that Core Design should alter their Lara Croft model so it looks similar to Crystal Dynamics’ Lara Croft model used in Tomb Raider: Legend. The Lara Croft model seen in early prototype versions of Tomb Raider Legend is very reminiscent of the one seen in Core Design’s Tomb Raider: 10th Anniversary Edition.

Official Statements:

Core Design ( – 15th June 2006, 11:02:06.

Following speculation on the internet, we would like to offer the following clarification.

The video of Tomb Raider: 10th Anniversary Edition that appeared on certain sites was an unauthorised release of an internal presentation of a game that was being developed by Core Design until very recently. It was running on PSP and used a Core-developed engine. However, following a recent review this project has been officially cancelled by SCi.

Core is alive and well and working on some great new projects, and we are still planning to announce some exciting news very soon!

Eidos Press Release – June 16th, 2006

Eidos Interactive, one of the world’s leading publishers and developers of entertainment software, confirms today that they are developing a special ’10th Anniversary Edition’ of Tomb Raider.
The new game is being developed by Crystal Dynamics, who recently launched Lara Croft Tomb Raider: Legend on Xbox 360, PS2, Xbox, PC and PSP, with versions on Nintendo DS, GBA and GameCube later in 2006.
“Our ’10th Anniversary Edition’ of Tomb Raider, is a one-off title to celebrate both Lara and Tomb Raider, it will appeal not only to the loyal fans of the Tomb Raider series but will also attract a totally new audience.” Said Larry Sparks, Head of Brands Management at Eidos.
Tomb Raider originally launched in 1996 and is still one of the best selling videogame franchises of all time, with over 30 million copies sold.
The special ’10th Anniversary Edition’ of Tomb Raider will be available on PlayStation 2, PSP and PC.

In 2016 an interview with Gavin Rummery was published. It provided some details as to how the game started and speculation about why it was cancelled:

Gavin Rummery (Studio Head)

He put the pieces together in his head and pitched Eidos/SCi (SCi having taken over Eidos in 2005). They loved it, so a team of Tomb Raider veterans at Core set about remaking the original game in the new engine. It was going well, Rummery recalls—both looking and playing great. But Crystal Dynamics didn’t want Core back in the picture, and the American studio built a rival demo.

“They convinced whatever the politics in SCi was like that it made more sense to just keep it all in one studio,” says Rummery. “Keep the franchise in one place. And so ours was killed, and you’d have never heard if it hadn’t been leaked by someone.”

In 2016 Steve Pritchard responded to Gavin’s claims with the following:

Steve Pritchard (Producer)

No worries. It was a tricky time in the studio when Crystal were doing Anniversary – a lot of hard work had gone into that idea and to have it taken away and handed to Crystal was a painful thing.

Crystal Dynamics are in no way at fault for this – Eidos had become SCi at this point and that whole Eidos/Core/Tomb raider multi-brand was something that hung a little heavily around a few necks. Someone, somewhere, realised that handing a TR title back to the now-not-Core guys would have seemed like a strange commercial move, and with CD having a lot of cool tech all ready to go, it was a straightforward choice for them.

Yeah, it was a massive, massive kick in the nuts for those of us who had done a lot in a very short space of time to get Anniversary running, but from a business perspective it was understandable.

Gav was right to be angry about the way the whole thing unfolded and he’s also right in saying that SCi were up for it – Ian Livingston grinned a smile a mile wide when I described the concept as a “director’s remastering” of the original, with additional content filling out the whole TR1 game. So yes, it was a winner and yes, at the time it looked like me might claw it back. But someone, somewhere realised the media issues that might arise from the old Core lads doing another Lara game . . . and that was where the split began, not with CD.

I put more hours into the Core version of Anniversary than anyone else on the team – production tend to do that – and as we had such a small team most of what is seen in the leaked video was stuff I pulled together across a couple of evening shifts, the thing cut together by Gaz Tongue later. We were all gutted when the project went away. Projects do, all the time, but this one really felt like the last chance to grab back a bit of TR.

The last presentation to the SCi board had Gav and I demoing the Playstation version AND the PSP version, both of which had co-op gameplay in it. They were rough around the edges, still some way from alpha, but if you knew the original game well you could see where we had added real fan service, extra content and just cool stuff that expanded on the original narrative. It felt good to show off, it was received well, but that last presentation had us re-introduced to Toby Gard and some of the CD team who were there to see it. Two days later we got the news that they were going to do the Anniversary project, using their engine and tech from TR Legend. And that was that.

Horrible end to the story but I find it really difficult to lay the blame at Crystal’s door. SCi made the decision, and they really weren’t very good at decisions. They are not there for good reasons.

Not too long after that the studio was sold to Rebellion, Gav moved on and I ended up running the show for the next 18 months to two years. By then Core were a bit battered and bruised and being asked to shift their skills to “quick and dirty” work that was almost outsourcing saw all the talent start to pour away to other companies. “Corebellion” fought on for a while but the writing was on the all by then.


Tomb Raider Legend Beta [PS2 / PSP / PS3 / XBOX / XBOX 360 / PC / WII]

Overview: Tomb Raider Legend is the first game developed by Crystal Dynamics. Crystal Dynamics worked along side with Toby Gard (the original Tomb Raider designer). They wanted to reboot the game after the failure of Tomb Raider Angel Of Darkness. Development of this game started in 2004 just after Eidos transferred the Tomb Raider development rights to Crystal Dynamics.

There are trailers from around the E3 2005 time which show various different levels which were not present or drastically changed for the final release. Around this stage of development it is confirmed that most of the areas were just for proof of concept and used for testing for example, Lara’s Beach House. There were weapons which were cut from the final release: Smoke Grenades, Rocket Launcher, Revolver.

Early Alpha Stage – Date, May 2005
Platform: PS2

This is the build which was shown at E3 2005.


Alpha Stage – Date, August 2005
Platform: PS2

This is the build which was shown at GC 2005.


1. Gh0stblade

Change log:
Gh0stblade – Added PSP info and cleanup with dates 14/01/2013
Gh0stblade – Updated basics of post, removed all old info and updated 20/03/2013 

Tomb Raider: The Angel of Darkness [PS2 – Beta]


The overall result suggested that the development of The Angel of Darkness had been rushed, despite numerous delays prior to its release to possibly improve the final product; difficult-to-overlook plot inconsistencies (or leaps) and frequent continuity errors added to the belief that significant ‘cuts’ were made from the original design. While it was not the first (or last) game to suffer such abridgment, the results were especially jarring and confusing. For example, in the final encounter between Lara and the overall perpetrator, they appear to  

Tomb Raider Beta [PSX / Saturn / PC]

Overview: Tomb raider was not only one of the best selling, early 3D games, but it was the most recognizable icon of the PlayStation brand. Tomb Raider’s design and concept started in 1994, Core Design, of Derby decided that they wanted to make a video game based on ‘Tomb Raiding’. Subsequently the game was released early October 1996 on several platforms such as: PC, Sega Saturn and PlayStation. Tomb Raider was then re-released on the N-Gage Nokia phone to promote the franchise further. The original concept showed early drawings of a male character which they changed to a female named Lara Cruz then to the heroine we know as Lara Croft.

It is *rumored* that early revisions of Tomb Raider were to be planned be released on:

  • 3DO
  • Atari Jaguar

It has been confirmed that there was an N64 port in progress but this got cancelled due to “contractual agreements” presumably with Sony.

As Tomb Raider was in development through 1995. The expected release date had been targeted for 1st QTR 1996. It has been confirmed that this revision was cancelled. This led to Tomb Raider being rescheduled for QTR 4 1996 after Eidos acquired U.S Gold.

As noted in an interview by Ross Sillifant with Mike Fulton:

Mike:This is the first time I’ve ever heard anything about Tomb Raider and Jaguar in the same paragraph. It seems very unlikely to me… the first released version of Tomb Raider was late 96, even later than Quake’s release.

Tomb Raider, in anything like the form we know, would have been very difficult to do on Jaguar.  It used OpenGL for 3D and there was nothing like Open-GL for the Jaguar, and few games had made any sort of attempt at texture-mapping the entire display. I’m not saying it would have been impossible but it would have taken a pretty good development team to pul it off.

Also Core in early interview with Edge talk of Tomb Raider starting out on MCD, 12 months BEFORE BC Racers was finished, but could’nt get camera system working. Interview with Core Design in EDGE issue 41 (Jan’97) Has Jeremy Smith talking of concept of character in a cinematic enviroment, being inital concept for T.R, but they had immense issues designing a system around the character that would let them move within a camera system and  Artist, animator and designer at Core, Stuart Atkinson said: ‘We already had the sketches and ideas for the game for about a year before we even finished BC Racers (on MCD).   So any claims Tomb Raider was ORIGINALLY designed for Jaguar CD is not true, it was designed during MCD era, Core just waited for tech to reach point concept/ideas could be turned into full blown game.

Also Ross Sillifant wrote us that: “The Jag Tomb Raider claim?  Comes from a SUPPLEMENT MAG, EDGE supplied in a 1-off, back in it’s early days, paid for by ATARI to promote up coming Jaguar games. I’ve never seen said supplement itself, despite owning complete eDge collection, and no-one that continues the claim seems to have copy either, lol.   Basically in it were up coming Jaguar games from Core Design, Soulstar (which we know was being worked on) but claim has Swagman down for Jaguar as well (only early confirmed version i know of, was 32X) and very early Tomb Raider, with character known as Laura Cruz or something similar.   Myth made ‘worse’ by a PHOTOSHOPPED image from sister mag Next Gen (i think) from USA where SAME screen shot, but in box out detailing system info someones (crudely) photo-shopped Jag CD logo over where it originally said Next-Gen systems.


Prototype Concept & Game Design – Date, 20th March 1995


Scans of a game design booklet from early 1995 arrived on the internet a few years ago. This booklet shows a similar story line, featuring a character named ‘Lara Cruz’, she was supposed to activate the Pyramid using the Scion supposed to be found within the first 3 levels of the game. This variant of the storyline also suggests that Natla used to be a male character named Hamilton who sent Lara Cruz on this path to retrieve the artifact. The original games design document currently resides within a museum.


Prototype Stage – Date, October/November 1995
Platform: Sega Saturn

The screenshots come from a Sega Saturn preview magazine which also claims the game was supposed to be released ‘1st QTR 1996’ it seems that CORE must’ve scrapped this nearly complete version of the game and remastered it ready for the year after! The levels look early, huge and the models all seem to be different, Lara, bear, wolves etc. The simplicity of the levels may have a negative impact in comparison to the final release. But I find it quite intriguing and it’d be great to see more of this prototype! Magazine scans are from both an October/November issue.


Pre-alpha Stage- Date, Early 1996
Platform: PC


The first video on this page, is one of the earliest known builds of Tomb Raider. It was compiled some time late 1995, apparently used to show U.S Gold the progress of what Core Design had made with the game. The video, shows early footage of the first installment of Tomb Raider, it seems that she has a braid. There are also rumors that the braid was removed because it caused frame rate drops in-game. It was then remastered for the next game Tomb Raider: II. Also, her main weapon is the ‘Magnums’, Core Design originally planned for Lara’s main weapon to be the Magnums, rather than the pistols. In this build, Lara’s model is very reminiscent of what is seen in the final. All that was changed was the head mesh and removal of the braid. There are also various animations which are significantly different from the final. It appears, that Lara Croft has the Sunglasses on her face which was removed from the final version but she has them in FMVs. The levels are currently unknown, the textures resemble the second level (City Of Vilcabamba), it looks more like a test level. The build comes with a debug feature, it allows you to pause, change the camera angle and even zoom to take a look around in other places. The enemies are barely different from the final version, it seems that the AI is less challenging. The locations, while only early placeholders, already display complex and haunting environments.

Early Prototyping Stage FMVs – Date ???? 1995
Platform: Sega Saturn / PC

These videos apparently come from a similar or possibly the same prototype or press-kit as the one above. They show a completely different intro to the game with a brand new ambiguous storyline. The Scion also looks different and it appears that she already has all the pieces.


Alpha Stage – Date, Early March 1996
Platform: PSX/SATURN


In this version you can see the deleted jump animation is present, there is no water in this version so we know it’s before the alpha shown below where Lara cannot swim. Some of the screenshots of the third level show how different is was, it’s just not recognisable anymore.


Alpha Stage – Date, Late March 1996?
Platform: PC


This alpha version of Tomb Raider was compiled before May 1996, the May 1996 version has the ability to swim. Therefore, I can tell this was compiled before May 1996, the Diary, Dynamite and placeholder inventory items are included in this build, just as seen in later builds such as the May 1996 version.

It’s the first level, ‘The Caves’, but it seems that Lara spawns later in the level, Lara’s model is final, the animations are still different in some cases such as climbing up and jumping. She also has the ability to aim on 2 targets also shown in Tomb Raider Anniversary Edition (CORE) trailer. The skulls in the pit, are not present in the final version. The gun fire effects are simple sprites which resemble stars, Similar to the ones on the July 1996 PC Demo and May 1996 Alpha. Although Lara cannot swim the room flags can be set to water so the effect can be seen.


Alpha Stage – Date, March 1996
Platform: PC

Here is a video similar to the alpha above this, it could be the same. However, it was shown at an E3 expo video and looks like it’s for the PlayStation 1. It ends with and unused intro/cut scene deleted sometime in August to make way for the final cut scenes/FMVs

Alpha Stage – Date, 9th May 1996 (E3 Build)
Platform: PSX

This is the build shown at E3 1996 and is similar to the build shown above. It contains deleted diary and dynamite, it seems that dual aiming has been removed. There is still no sound in this version and a lot of the swimming animations are different, exiting water is different. Items on the floor are way larger than the final version. Dynamite icons are only seen in this version of the game so far. It is barely functional and has many minor bugs. There are different animations like the vaulting and land from jump animations. Lara cannot dive or roll, the circle button is used to swim. Lara cannot shoot without being locked onto an enemy, the controls are slightly different since circle button is walk rather than R1.

Video 2 also shows footage of the ending of the level which required Lara to be ‘moved to the next room’ in order to get there since the trap door causes a crash. They must’ve been out of time and hadn’t finished the trap door features.

Video 3 shows the early ‘prototype’ jump in action, it was activated by manipulating the E3 version. It also features a new animation where Lara crosses her arms. The jump animation is exactly the same as the ones shown in the first two videos, but was removed later in the June/July versions.

Video 4 shows a series of animations, there are several unused animations, it’s fun to watch.

Video 5 shows the unused sprites.

Video 6 shows the unused in-game models.

Video 7 shows an unused Lara croft model found in-game with no braid unfortunately. Must’ve been used for testing at one point in time and is most likely a very early revision of the Doppelganger.


Alpha Stage – Date, 7th May 1996
Platform: PC


This build is very similar to the PSX E3 demo. Containing differences to LEVEL2 in particular. It contains the first 3 levels of Tomb Raider. The third which is in very early stages. All the sound effects in this build are placeholder and were not present in the final game. The first level shows some significant differences in some rooms.


Beta Stage – Date, Late May/June 1996?
Platform: PC

This beta shows Larson in the second level of the game. He normally appears in the fifth level of the game, Tomb Of Qualopec. You can see his gun is untextured, the star sprites are still present when Lara Croft shoots. They must’ve been experimenting with Lara competing against Larson in the first level so that Lara would get the scion before Larson, ordered by Natla would. You may have had to kill Larson before he kills Lara of course.

Also, in the Lost Valley, you can see that there are crocodiles which were deleted form the final. There are some minor level differences like the bridge debris, waterfalls in different places and missing dinosaurs.


Beta Stage – Date, 2nd July 1996
Platform: PC

This build, is similar to the one above in some aspects, it still contains the star gunfire. There are several texture issues which can be seen throughout the demo. In this build, the Diary was replaced with the Passport, the fonts are different, and the Golden Idol is positioned above the collapsible ledges where a health kit is in place in the final version. It also contains a debug option, the map allows the user to explore a birds eye, view of the entire level. It is currently unknown if it features anything else since it’s a self playing demo. Similarly, in the inventory, the Grenade is present, Core design decided they’d like to replace the Dynamite with a more modern explosive device, ‘The Grenade’. Also, the doors which open to the Caves aren’t actually there.

There are various texture bugs and pressing E/F will change some texture rendering options. Pressing Z will also initiate “DOZY” where Lara can swim throughout the level and it also replenishes health. The map feature is handy as it allows viewing of all rooms which have been visited dynamically.


Beta Stage – Date, 22nd July 1996
Platform: Sega Saturn

In the first video, there are several differences. Lara has her original costume (not gym), she has the ability to shoot. The level is called ‘Gym’, rather than Lara’s home, there is no voice overs, several collision issues (Lara can walk into objects), and there is no end trigger so the level cannot end. There is a bear in the gym room which isn’t there in the final version. In addition, it features a record demo option, this option isn’t functional like some of the other place holder options in the inventory screen. Level select is automatically unlocked like most other Tomb Raider Betas, however, this is only a 2-Level build. Notably, her footstep sounds are different, when she draws guns, multiple annoying sounds are played which is a glitch and was only fixed Late August 1996.

In the second video, there is pistol ammo. Core Design, planned for the Pistols not to be unlimited, there is ammo placed in various places of the level. The health bars are also different, the level is pretty much the same, just that the Golden Idol is placed elsewhere and that there is no end trigger. This version, also has the Grenade feature, once selected, it does not work since it’s a place holder option. Core Design, decided to scrap it, it is no longer present in builds after July 1996, removed possibly due to time running out.

In the third video i show you some unused models from the game including the doppelganger which shouldn’t even be in this level. She’s quite different as she moves a few seconds after Lara Croft.


Beta Stage – 2nd August 1996
Platform: Sega Saturn


Tomb raider development continues, this build still contains no Cut scenes, no FMVs. The grenade is also removed from this version, Pistol ammo is still present, they scrapped the Pistol ammo late August 1996. Again, the first video, is very similar to final, there is a missing slope, missing darts, and the buggy weapon draw issue is still present. Other than that, it’s pretty much the same as the final build. It is only a 4 level build.

Very similar to the final version, the doors have finally been added, where the Golden idol should be, the items from late July 1996, have been removed. It’s just an empty room.

In the third video, there is no entrance to where Lara comes from in the FMV, Pierre is missing from the game, Lara doesn’t have the ability to jump off slopes, the first secret at the top is missing. Some of the rooms such are very unfinished. Thor doesn’t have lightning, nor does the hammer appear to be there. In addition, the Damocles room has no swords which are supposed to drop then kill Lara.

In the fourth video, this level is also very similar to the final build, but it is also very buggy. Accessing certain parts of the level will result in a crash, some of the objects are texture less especially doors. Pierre still isn’t on this level either. When you complete any of the levels, it shows a deleted stats screen which shows how many rooms have been explored.

In the fifth video, I demonstrate the debug option camera freeze. It allows you to change from an automated camera to a frozen camera to check out Lara or play with a fixed camera etc.

In the sixth video, I show another hidden debug option which allows you to place the camera where ever you like.


Beta Stage – 16th August 1996
Platform: Sega Saturn

This is a demo, from the Sega Saturn preview vol, series. It is similar to the August build above, some bugs have been fixed, the weapon draw issue is no longer present, health bar colour is now final. All pistol ammo has been removed from the stage. The level ends after pulling one of the blocks. This is actually identical to the final version now. Just the ammo display text is different.


Beta Stage – 4th September 1996
Platform: PSX

This rare beta version of Tomb Raider for the PlayStation has different sound effects, those of which are exactly the same as the ones in the August, July beta versions for the Sega Saturn. There is also an ammo count at the top right of the screen which counts differently compared to the final. In addition to this, another difference is that the Golden Idol is in a different place. The save crystals are Gold but in the final they are purple. If you try to use one of them the game will freeze as the feature was not implemented yet. The title screen picture is also different.


Beta Stage – 4th September 1996
Platform: PC

Lost Valley
Tomb Of Qualopec
St Francis’ Folly
Palace Midas
Tomb Of Tiohocan
City Of Khamoon
Obelisk of Khamoon
Sanctuary of the Scion
Natla’s Mines

An amazing FULL beta version located on a magazine disc. There are several differences but it’s very close to the final game.


Beta Stage – 26th September 1996
Platform: PSX

This is a video of a PS1 beta which is close to final. There are several differences such as names, inventory items missing etc. The controls are also similar to the Saturn version for some reason.

1. SquarePulse
2. Gh0stblade

Change Log:

Gh0stBlade – Added very HQ 1995 screenshots.

Gh0stblade – Updated some small things 23/11/14
Gh0stblade – Added new videos PC Sept 4th footage 12/08/14
Gh0stblade – Added new footage and updated some areas 20/01/14
Gh0stblade – Added more info and fixed errors. 08/12/12
Gh0stblade – Added PSX Early September 1996. 08/07/12
Gh0stblade – Fixed mistake, added Early September 1996. 02/04/12
Gh0stblade – Added new footage, layout changed. 19/08/11
Gh0stblade – Added E3, August video footage + descriptions. 23/10/11
Gh0stblade – Added 12 videos, edited spelling errors and mistakes. 21/11/11
Gh0stblade – Added 2 new videos, screenshots. 24/11/11
Gh0stblade – Added 1995 images, Merged October/November, Fixed mistakes. 05/12/11
Gh0stblade – Added new alpha magazine scans (before May), changed date 08/12/11
Gh0stblade – Added Concept & Design 20/3/95, changed May/June 10/12/11


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