So as you can tell from the video above, I have decided after much consideration that I going to be cosplaying as the ‘Tomb Raider Reborn’ Lara Croft from the newest Tomb Raider game. This is an idea that came to me after browsing through the crafts site Etsy, which is also a website that caters to a lot of Cosplay pieces that people can buy. Here, I had found while looking for Cosplay inspiration there were a lot of items and props that were replicas of Lara Croft’s look from this game in particular. After nearly becoming a little bit obsessed with the amount of Lara Croft Cosplay that I had been seeing since starting this project, the idea came to me that I should try and Cosplay as Lara herself, especially since the ‘Definitive Edition’ of the new game has just been relaxed for next gen consoles. Before this, I had originally just assumed that I should go to the Wales Comic-Con as my version of Poison Ivy; however I found this to be a little boring as I had already cosplayed as her at Thoughtbubble, and in all honesty I wanted to do a character from scratch. Especially as now I have decided to add in a photo-diary of my cosplay journey, which would obviously need to be documented, which I couldn’t do as Poison Ivy because I had already made the costume.
One of the other reasons why I have decided to Cosplay as Lara is mostly due to the fact that she is a feminist icon that I have looked up to since I started playing video games from a very young age. What I also like about this version of Lara is that she is not sexualized in any way in the marketing of the game like she has been quite a bit in previous incarnations. In true Cosplay form I have always found her a very relateable character, and more so now in this new game as she shows elements of her vulnerability and determination, as well as being the same age as she is depicted in this story; making her by far my favourite version of the character. Also, I tend get told that I look like her quite a bit, so interpret that however you may like! Ultimately however, I feel that with this Cosplay I could really document the journey of design and make to getting in to character and presenting it to Cosplay world in a way that would educate the readers of Geek Magazine with this feature, and really let them know how much time and effort goes in to dressing up as your favourite characters. With this piece of journalism, I hope to show my progression thoroughly, from the difficulties that I may come across right up crafting the props so that readers may understand why this is as a legitimate form of fandom as they come.
Obviously, there are a lot of versions of Lara to choose from. Whether it be the 90’s original Tomb Raider games or the revitalized Crystal Dynamics variants of her; however, I feel that the costume and version of her I want to Cosplay as is the ‘Reborn’ version of her. I have been really inspired by a lot of female cosplayers who have dressed as this version of her from what I have seen in my study of Cosplay photography, and so feel that this is the version of her that I would choose to cosplay as most of all. From what is seen in this new video game, Lara has been completely stripped of all her worldly goods and forced to defend herself and her ship’s crew members as they are left stranded on the island of Yamatai in which she must find a way for them all to survive the island’s deadline inhabitants with little to no experience with combat.
Within this game, Lara’s weapons consist of a pistol, pickaxe, shotgun and assault rifle; however her primary weapon is a bow and arrow and because I have chosen to cosplay as her, this is a weapon that is a must props for my costume if I wanted to be recognizable to convention-goers. As you can see from the concept art, the rest of the costume has seen a lot of wear and tear due to Lara’s activities throughout the game’s story; so for this I will need to find and make the pieces according how it looks in the picture above.
One of the most pivotal points in the game’s story is Lara making her first kill, this has been titled to many fans as the ‘First Blood’ scene. Bearing in mind that I have had very little experience within making costumes and props before, this point in the game Lara has very little weaponry besides a bow and arrow and a pistol. I feel that due to this scene’s iconic moment within the making of Tomb Raider and my lack of prop making skills it would be best to Cosplay as Lara when she is at this point in the game which means that I will only have to worry about making a few props so that I can focus on writing about my making of the costume itself.