E3 2015 opens in less than two weeks and the Tomb Raider fan community is already buzzing with excitement. Earlier this week, Xbox and Crystal Dynamics released a short CGI teaser trailer to whet the fanbase’s appetite while visitors to the game’s official Xbox page were invited to look for clues hidden across the page. These clues were little tidbits of information about the game’s plot and primary antagonists, narrated by Lara (Camilla Luddington) herself.
Crystal Dynamics have kept mum about plans to release the game for the PC or PlayStation once the exclusivity deal with Microsoft is up but we do know that we will finally be getting our first real glimpse of the game as well as an extended trailer and interviews with the development team during the E3 festivities. Not to mention first-hand accounts, photos, and footage courtesy of the E3 Tomb Raider Ambassadors.
The E3 Ambassador Program
What’s the E3 Ambassador Program, you ask? The E3 Ambassador Program is Crystal Dynamics’ initiative to get the Tomb Raider fan community to represent the Tomb Raider brand at E3 and get fans actively involved in the promotion of the upcoming Rise of the Tomb Raider.
Fansite admins were invited to apply for the program, which would grant them access to gameplay demos and interviews with the Rise development team. Dozens of admins applied for the program but only 11 lucky people made the final selection.**
- Ash Kapriyelov – Tomb of Ash (Russian Representative)
- Bartosz Listewnik – World of Tomb Raider (Polish Representative)
- Brandon Klassen – Tomb Raider HQ (US/Canadian Representative)
- Henrique R. P. Menezes – Lara Croft Brasil (Brazilian Representative)
- Jack Valentine (Tomb Raider Forums Representative)
- Jan Beinersdorf – Wikiraider (German Representative)
- Marco – Allgame: Tomb Raider (Italian Representative)
- Maxime Turpin – Tombeau Croft (French Representative)
- Patrick Johnson (Official Square Enix Forums Representative)
- Rachel Perkins – Guns and Grapple (United Kingdom Representative)
- Rodrigo Martín Santos – Tomb Raider Collection (Spanish Representative)
Fans are encouraged to join the official Tomb Raider forums and post any questions they may have for the ambassadors and/or the Rise development team in this thread. The most popular questions will be put forward by the Square Enix Forums representative Patrick Johnson during a special interview session with the dev team in mid-June.
** Since several people have already asked me this on social media: I wasn’t chosen for the Ambassador Program because I didn’t apply. Sadly, work and other commitments prevented me from taking time off in June so there was little point in applying. Maybe next time. 😉
E3 Events Calendar
Curious about when you can tune in for all the latest news and views? Here’s an overview of the events Crystal Dynamics and Square Enix will be participating in in this year’s E3:
- Monday 15th June 2015 (09:30 PDT) – Crystal Dynamics and Xbox will be showcasing a gameplay demo from Rise of the Tomb Raider during the Xbox E3 2015 Briefing.
- Tuesday 16th June 2015 (10:00 PDT) – Crystal Dynamics will be present at the Square Enix Press Conference.
- Tuesday 16th June 2015 (13:30 PDT) – Tomb Raider Community interview.
- Tuesday 16th June 2015 (16:00 PDT) – Rise of the Tomb Raider will be featured in that day’s episode of Xbox Daily – Live @E3.
- Wednesday 17th June 2015 (11:00 and 15:00 PDT) – Crystal Dynamics will hold 30-minute interviews on Lara Croft: Relic Run (11:00 PDT) and Rise of the Tomb Raider (15:00 PDT) during Square Enix’s annual show-floor production. There will also be a variety of live shows with media partners throughout the entire E3 period, details of which will be announced on the official Tomb Raider social media sites.
Many of these events will be streamed live on the Xbox website, the Xbox Live Events Player, Spike TV, Youtube, and/or Twitch. I’ll try to update this list with details on how you can watch the events live as they become available but I encourage you to follow these social media accounts and websites to stay up to date with all the latest E3 info:
- Tomb Raider – Twitter | Facebook | Tumblr | Instagram
- Xbox – Website | Twitter | Facebook
- Square Enix – Youtube | Twitch
- E3 2015 – Twitter | Facebook
My E3 Wishlist
The next few weeks look set to be an exciting time for Tomb Raider fans, though, let’s face it, non-Xbox owners may struggle to feel any real excitement towards a game they won’t be able to play on release day. But let’s push the negativity aside for now (hard as it may be) and see what the dev team have in store for us later this month.
I have a short wishlist of things I’d like to see (or hear) at this year’s E3:
- A full cinematic trailer – The teaser trailer released on 1st June gave us a sneak peek of where Lara’s next adventure will take her but it didn’t really capture my attention as much as last year’s announcement trailer. I’d like to see a trailer that not only gives us a better idea of what ancient secret Lara’s after but also explores the aspiring raider’s inner psyche, perhaps even answering one of the questions on many fans’ minds: Where on Earth is Sam?
- Gameplay demo – A gameplay demo has pretty much been confirmed already but it’s undoubtedly the thing I’m most looking forward to at E3. It’s one thing reading about the new gameplay features and locations on a website; seeing the game in action is a completely different kettle of fish. If the game really is coming out at the end of this year, there must be enough material for a fairly extensive demo. Just think how much we saw of Uncharted 4 at PlayStation Experience a couple of months ago when that’s not even due out till next year.
- A PS4 release date – OK, I know it’s extremely unlikely that Crystal Dynamics will announce a PS4 (or PC) release while they’re under Xbox’s wing but I wouldn’t mind knowing when – or should that be “if”? – Rise of the Tomb Raider will be available on other platforms. While I’ve come to terms with the fact that the game will be exclusive to Xbox for a certain (but undefined) period of time, I’d like to know whether I’d just need to wait a few months…or start saving up for an Xbox One. Perhaps I’m being a little negative but there’s always a slim chance that the exclusivity period extends beyond this game. After all, who’s to say that Rise won’t get a PS release until after its sequel is out in 3-4 years’ time? Some clarity on the matter wouldn’t go amiss.
So that’s all from me for now. I’ll try to watch as many of the live events as possible – free time and time zones permitting – and will do my best to keep you all informed of all the latest news and footage to come out of E3. Stay tuned!
What are you most looking forward to at this E3 2015? Do you have a wishlist of things you’d like to see?