Despite being fairly antiquated by today’s standards, the original Tomb Raider was groundbreaking at the time. The PC/PlayStation action game broke molds with its mix of 3D platforming, exploration, and combat, and protagonist Lara Croft is now a media icon. Ten years after her 1996 PC debut, a glammed-up remake for the PlayStation Portable was planned, but never released.
Now an alpha version of that game, titled Tomb Raider: 10th Anniversary, has been discovered by super-fans at Tomb-of-Ash.com. The PSP ROM of the cancelled game can be played on a PC with a download, a patch, and a standard controller. It’s pretty basic, with empty levels devoid of enemies and dialogue, but players can side-jump around Peru, Greece, and Croft Manner to take a look at the game’s updated visuals.
Tomb Raider: 10th Anniversary was scrapped as publisher Eidos moved the franchise from the original developer Core Design to Crystal Dynamics, which released a a reboot game in 2006 (Tomb Raider Legend) and a more comprehensive remake of the original (simply called “Anniversary“) in 2007. Core Design was closed a few years later. The work on the cancelled game was at one point put towards an untitled Indiana Jones project (ironic, because Tomb Raider is very much inspired by those movies), before being tossed completely.
This resurfaced game is a footnote in the history of the series, and as a remaster of the original, isn’t particularly noteworthy aside from being made by the original developers. The original Tomb Raider and its two sequels are still available and playable on PC.