Ultimate Tomb Raider II Playlist
By Jessica Brister On 10 Jan, 2018 At 11:15 AM | Categorized As Best Game Ever, Editorials, Featured, PC Games, PlayStation | With 0 Comments

No GravatarSince I have a lot of hobbies and loves, it’s not uncommon for me to listen to music while playing a game (as I’m sure many gamers do).  One odd aspect of my gaming career is that I inadvertently made “soundtracks” to games that do not play more modern music (i.e. the GTA franchise is out because it already has a soundtrack).  I stuck to this so much that when I think of a game, I automatically think of the soundtrack I made.  Or, if a song is playing from that soundtrack, I immediately am transported back to that game and possibly even that level that I assigned the song to.  This might sound awesome to some people, or it might sound incredibly geeky to others.  I find that I love to flash back to the nostalgia of a game when hearing a particular song; I may not have thought of said game otherwise.  Add some years  to when I first started doing this, and I’m enthralled with what I had initially did: it’s helped me remember aspects of some games that I know that I will never return to.

Enter: Tomb Raider II

It’s one of my favorite all-time games, and it’s definitely the best puzzle-based adventure game I’ve ever played.  I just completely fell in love with it, even though I such at puzzle games and had to buy a walk-through (yes, I said buy; the walk-throughs on the Internet weren’t great).  It looks dated now with Lara Croft’s squarish appearance, so I’m glad I can think back to days when it looked so “real” in comparison to what games came before it.

Tomb Raider II came out in late 1997.  However, I compiled my soundtrack sometime in 2000 on my second play-through, so if there are any songs that are newer than the game, that’s why.  I felt the need to share this list with everyone, if not for the fact that I don’t want it to die in my memory, so enjoy…

Level 1: Great Wall

Song: Creed – Torn (from My Own Prison, 1997)

 

It was the album before Creed turned obnoxious: My Own Prison had some dark vibes, and the song Torn really delivered.  It’s also one of those songs that feels like it starts things off, so it was perfect for the first level, Great Wall.  Lara ran around the ruins of the Great Wall of China, and the level gave an intro for things to come.

Level 2: Venice

Song: Stone Temple Pilots – Sex Type Thing (Core, 1992)

 

I chose this STP song mostly based on the fact that I was listening through Core at the time and also because of the pacing of the song.  If you put Lara at her natural “run,” she runs to the beat of the song.  For whatever reason, this song “took on” the feel of the level.  The actual content of the song itself didn’t necessarily matter, so the song really isn’t some sexual objectification of Lara for me.

Level 3: Bartolli’s Hideout

Song: Stone Temple Pilots – Wicked Garden (Core, 1992)

Another STP song that actually is right after the above fore-mentioned song on the album, Core.  It ended up being a natural transition from one level to the other, even though I took me approximately forty minutes for each level (yes, I put the songs on repeat).  This is also one of the songs where if I hear it, I immediately go back to that level.  Every.  Single.  Time.

 

Level 4: Opera House

Song: Days of the New – The Down Town (Days of the New, 1997)

Days of the New made all acoustic cool again in the late ’90s.  The Down Town might still be one of my favorites from them.  In this case, it emphasized the cool location of Lara’s exploration of a run-down opera house, while highlighting how dilapidated and grungy the place ended up being.  The song also really feels cool listening to while Lara is running.

 

Level 5: Offshore Rig

Weezer – My Name is Jonas (Weezer, 1994)

This level in particular made me stick to the song, My Name is Jonas, even if I used the rest of the album for other levels.  I thought it was cute because of how the lyrics describe, “The workers are coming home,” and the level is on an offshore rig.  It might be a stretch, but this is another song where I can’t not think of this album when the song plays.

 

Level 6: Diving Area

Weezer – Pretty much the rest of the Blue Album (Weezer, 1994)

I ended up listening to the rest of what Weezer fans say is “The Blue Album,” noting the blue background of Weezer’s self-titled album from 1994.  I flash back to this level any time most of the album is on, and I love it!

 

Level 7: 40 Fathoms

Jars of Clay – Flood (Jars of Clay, 1995)

When you’re playing a level where you have to fight for every breath, I thought Jars of Clay’s Flood was perfect.  This is probably the band’s more famous song.

 

Level 8: Wreck of the Maria Doria

Pantera – Floods (The Great Southern Trendkill, 1995)

One of Pantera’s most haunting and beautifully written songs, Floods seems to just fit with a level where Lara is trapped in a upside-down shipwreck, using pockets of area to survive.

 

Level 9: Living Quarters

Machine Head – Message in a Bottle (The Burning Red, 1999)

Living Quarters explores the passenger side of the Maria Doria, and it’s a bit of a head trip, since this part of the ship settled upside down.  Machine Head’s cover of The Police’s Message in a Bottle continues with my nautical-themed, darker toned set of songs.

 

Level 10: The Deck

Alice in Chains – Grind (Alice in Chains, 1995)

The Deck is an expansive level that highlights part of the deck of the Maria Doria, which had crashed through a huge cavern.  I thought the song “Grind” was appropriate as this level is a bit of a grind.

 

Level 11: Tibetan Foothills

Static X – So Real (Wisconsin Death Trip, 1999)

Tibetan Foothills is probably my favorite level for TR II because of the fun puzzles and the snowmobile action.  The pulsing beat of Static X’s So Real fits perfectly with some cool snowmobiling across the icy mountains.

 

Level 12: Barkhang Monastery

Jars of Clay – Liquid (Jars of Clay, 1995)

Nothing echoes the feeling of exploring a huge monastery like the haunting notes of Jars of Clay’s Liquid.  This is also a favorite level, and you get some much-needed help from the monks as long as you don’t attack them.

 

Level 13: Catacombs of the Talion

Metallica – Call of Ktulu (Ride the Lightning, 1984)

Catacombs of Talion is an icy and particularly tricky level that is perfect with Metallica’s Call of Ktulu.  Because of this pairing, I love to drive in snow storms with this song on.  It brings me back to TR II.

 

Level 14: Ice Palace

Metallica – One (…And Justice For All, 1988)

Ice Palace is the last of the cold climate levels, and it definitely delivers.  It has some crazy puzzles and some tough baddies, which is why I selected Metallica’s One for this level.

Level 15: Temple of Xian

Metallica – Wherever I May Roam (Metallica, 1991)

Temple of Xian is probably the largest level for TR II, and if it’s not, it certainly feels that way.  The place is massive and has some crazy puzzles.  Metallica’s Wherever I May Roam felt perfect for the level.

 

Level 16: Floating Islands

Metallica – Orion (Instrumental) (Master of Puppets, 1986)

The Floating Islands level is a bit of a trip to play; the whole thing is quire surreal.  Because of this, I wanted a song that matched that quality, and I thought Metallica’s Orion (Instrumental), especially the beginning, really fit the level.

 

Level 17: The Dragon’s Lair

Alice in Chains – Again (Alice in Chains, 1995)

There’s nothing quite like a boss level with the completely rock-on song of Alice in Chain’s Again.

 

Level 18: Home Sweet Home

It’s such a short level that no song is necessary.

And for when you’re in post-Tomb Raider II blues after the game is completed, finish it off with:

Alice in Chains – Over Now (Alice in Chains, 1995)

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