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Netflix's Tomb Raider anime wants to 'unify the timelines' between the original series and the reboots

Despite its setup as a kind of origin story, 2013's Tomb Raider reboot (and its sequels) take on Lara Croft feels a universe away from the Eidos originals. But Netflix this week announced that its upcoming Tomb Raider anime hopes to bridge the gap by bringing these two different iterations of Ms Croft together in one unified timeline.

In a short series update, executive producer Tasha Huo explains that Netflix and the team at Crystal Dynamics are "hard at work unifying the timelines" for the animated series. 

"The Tomb Raider anime series from Legendary and Netflix will provide fans like you—and me—around the world with some of the first steps toward unifying the Tomb Raider timelines, as we transition beyond the Survivor trilogy and start to follow Lara’s journey leading up to the first steps of that first Tomb Raider game," says Huo.

As part of that attempt, Huo revealed two characters making their way to the anime. Earl Baylon, who plays Jonah Maiava in the "Survivor Trilogy" (referring to Crystal Dynamics' reboot series) will be reprising his role for the show, while actor Allen Maldonado will be playing Zip, a character who appears in older Tomb Raider games like Chronicles and Underworld.

It'll be interesting to see how this attempt at unification plays out. Lara Croft was very much a videogame heroine of the '90s in her early iterations, all sleek outfits and pulp action adventure. Crystal Dynamics' 2013 revival was a pointed rejection of that character, painting Lara as a grittier, more grounded woman who stumbled into death-defying spelunking completely unprepared.

The Tomb Raider anime doesn't currently have a release date. But with an adaptation track record including the perfectly serviceable Dota anime to the properly great Castlevania series, there's every chance Netflix could pull off a fresh take on Lara Croft.

Natalie Clayton

20 years ago, Nat played Jet Set Radio Future for the first time—and she's not stopped thinking about games since. Joining PC Gamer in 2020, she comes from three years of freelance reporting at Rock Paper Shotgun, Waypoint, VG247 and more. Embedded in the European indie scene and having herself developed critically acclaimed small games like Can Androids Pray, Nat is always looking for a new curiosity to scream about—whether it's the next best indie darling, or simply someone modding a Scotmid into Black Mesa. She's also played for a competitive Splatoon team, and unofficially appears in Apex Legends under the pseudonym Horizon.