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A new Tomb Raider is coming, built on Unreal Engine 5

Lara Croft’s next adventure ‘just started development’

Lara Croft faces a temple amid jungle vines in artwork from Shadow of the Tomb Raider
Lara Croft in Shadow of the Tomb Raider
Image: Crystal Dynamics/Square Enix
Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

Lara Croft’s next adventure, the 13th mainline Tomb Raider game, is now in development, Crystal Dynamics confirmed Tuesday. The developer said the next Tomb Raider game will be built using Epic Games’ newly launched Unreal Engine 5 to deliver “next-level storytelling and gameplay experiences.” Crystal Dynamics has used its own Foundation Engine for recent Tomb Raider games.

Dallas Dickinson, franchise general manager for Tomb Raider, said that Crystal Dynamics has “just started development” of the next game in the series, adding, “Our goal is to push the envelope of fidelity and to deliver the high quality cinematic, action-adventure experience that fans deserve from both Crystal Dynamics and the Tomb Raider franchise.”

The most recent game in the franchise, 2018’s Shadow of the Tomb Raider, wrapped the Survivor trilogy, a second attempt at rebooting Lara Croft’s origins as a globetrotting adventure seeker, archaeologist, and treasure hunter. Crystal Dynamics said last year it planned to unify the timelines of classic and modern Tomb Raider games, as it develops new adventures for Lara.

Crystal Dynamics and Tomb Raider publisher Square Enix did not offer any kind of timeline on the new Tomb Raider, nor did they show any sort of visual teaser. But Crystal Dynamics’ announcement was followed by another revelation: Jeff Ross, who led development of Days Gone at Sony’s Bend Studio, announced Tuesday he had joined Crystal Dynamics as game director, but did not reveal for which project. “That’s all I can say other than I’m thrilled with the project, and especially the team of really wonderful people,” Ross said on Twitter.

Crystal Dynamics’ other announced projects include ongoing development of Marvel’s Avengers — also built in Crystal Dynamics’ Foundation Engine — and co-development of a new Perfect Dark game for Microsoft, aiding primary developer The Initiative.

Tomb Raider is also being adapted as an animated series for Netflix. The Tomb Raider anime will be written and executive produced by Tasha Huo, who is also working The Witcher: Blood Origin, a live-action spinoff of the popular fantasy series.