Crystal Dynamics studio head Darrell Gallagher has said there isn’t an attempted rape scene in Tomb Raider, despite earlier reports to the contrary.
In a post on the official Tomb Raider website, Gallagher said the scene being depicted as an ‘attempted rape’ in the Crossroads trailer for the game, merely has a “threatening undertone,” and is devoid of any rape connotations.
“We had a great E3 with Tomb Raider and received a fantastic public and press response, with the game picking up numerous game of the show awards based on the new direction taken with the franchise. Unfortunately we were not clear in a recent E3 press interview and things have been misunderstood. Before this gets out of hand, let me explain,” he wrote.
“In making this Tomb Raider origins story our aim was to take Lara Croft on an exploration of what makes her the character she embodies in late Tomb Raider games. One of the character defining moments for Lara in the game, which has incorrectly been referred to as an ‘attempted rape’ scene is the content we showed at this year’s E3 and which over a million people have now seen in our recent trailer entitled ‘Crossroads’.
“This is where Lara is forced to kill another human for the first time. In this particular section, while there is a threatening undertone in the sequence and surrounding drama, it never goes any further than the scenes that we have already shown publicly. Sexual assault of any kind of categorically not a theme that we cover in this game.”
The scene Gallagher was defending, was described by Crystal Dynamics’ executive producer Ron Rosenberg to Kotaku last week at E3 as a defining moment in Lara’s life:
“Her best friend gets kidnapped, she gets taken prisoner by scavengers on the island. They try to rape her, and she’s literally turned into a cornered animal. And that’s a huge step in her evolution: she’s either forced to fight back or die and that’s what we’re showing today.”
Gallagher apologized for the deptiction of the scene, stating CD was “sorry” it had not been “better explained,” and that the team would “certainly be more careful with what is said in future.”