Tomb Raider II and TR
II: The Golden Mask
This follow-up from Aspyr Media to Tomb Raider I introduced new moves, new weapons, new enemies, an improved Lara, and new adventures. Set in exotic locations - China, Venice, an oil rig, a wrecked ship (the Maria Doria) and Tibet - it is a very special adventure. It concludes with an explosive confrontation in Lara's home against the forces of evil.
It is visually stunning in hardware accelerated mode (Voodoo or RAVE). The richness of the locations, and the difficulty of the puzzles, make it a 'must' for Mac gamers. It's always an engrossing experience to guide Lara; to almost 'become' Lara for a short time. It's the sort of game that draws you back for another try at 'that level', to see if you can do it better or faster (or, maybe, just get through it!)
The introductory movie gives some background about the Dagger of Xian - the artifact that is next on Lara's 'must have' list. The first level is set at China's Great Wall. There's no explanation why Lara's there, but after a while the ambiguities of the game don't really matter after all. Who put the little dragons there? Who cares! After a series of puzzles and life threatening traps under the Great Wall, you arrive at the door to the temple containing the Dagger, but guess what? No key, of course. A cut scene confrontation sets Lara off to Venice to seek the infamous Marco Bartoli, and the quest for the fabled Dagger of Xian is underway in earnest . . .
Tomb Raider II includes a training level at Lara's mansion, where there is (of course) a butler - called Winston. At least, the Core Design team who developed TRII called him Winston - he has no name in the game itself. He is quite cute to start with, but you eventually tire of his constant presence and his strange noises. Still, he can be easily trapped in the 'fridge in Lara's kitchen - let him follow you in, then jump over him and close the door quickly. The mansion even has a secret area under the ground floor. (Hint - find the door to the right of the clock, then investigate the maze. It's worth the trouble.) It's also worth the trouble to make good use of the assault course to become accustomed to Lara's moves - there's not a lot of chances to practice in the game. Don't forget to practice swimming either, because Lara spends a lot of time in the water later on.
Expect to spend a lot of time on the first run through the 18 levels of TRII. To get to the end you have to investigate everything around you - explore every nook and cranny - leave no body un-frisked. This all takes time, but somehow you don't mind. Above all, expect to have a lot of fun!
My favourite levels have to be those set in Venice and Tibet. The decaying splendour of Venice in Voodoo has to be seen to be believed, and the variety of the terrain and the puzzles in Tibet are very challenging. The snowmobiles are a heap of fun! I've now run the complete game seven times, but I'm not sure if I'll do it again. Maybe I might just mess around and try to find more shortcuts.
The Golden Mask
The Golden Mask was an expansion originally available for download to those who already owned TR II, and was subsequently included in the TR Trilogy set, released by Aspyr Media 18 July 2001. It is no longer available for download so the only way to get it now is by buying a copy of TR Trilogy, which can be quite elusive.
Tomb Raider II Golden Mask is a set of extra levels for Tomb Raider II. It differs from the Tomb Raider I extra levels (Unfinished Business) in that the action takes place in entirely new locations, with many new textures for the scenery. The appearance of Lara's enemies has been changed in many instances as well - for example, the Guardian from 'Ice Palace' is now making an appearance as Big Foot.
Lara is on the trail of the 'Mask of Tornasuk' - a golden mask revered by the indigenous Inuit people. She found clues to the location of the mask in old newspapers, and you know Lara - that was enough to get her appetite up. To begin her new adventure, Lara travels to an old Russian Arctic base, on Melnikov Island in the Russian Aleutian Islands. Her travels take her from the Russian base to ancient underground caves, and finally to an area with a warmer climate and lots of lava...
During Lara's adventures she not only encounters lots of Russian bad guys, but also the spirits of the ancient people, and later those same people in the flesh. They are helpful - just as the monks of Barkhang Monastery helped Lara in TR II. Cross them however, and Lara's got more enemies to deal with. Many of the enemies from TR II make an appearance, and the puzzles will be familiar to experienced Raiders.
All four main levels of Golden Mask are long, and quite difficult, so save regularly. Keep your eyes open for three secrets in each level - gold coins, gold bars, and a gold skull. For those Raiders who manage to get all twelve secrets, there is a bonus - a fifth, extra level set in a hotel in Las Vegas. This is a shorter level than the first four, but don't be deceived - it's not easy.
Tomb Raider II Golden Mask is a great addition to my favourite Tomb Raider!
Playing in OS X Classic (7 October 2006)
For tips on playing Tomb Raider II in OS X Classic, I've now posted a dedicated page!
Walkthroughs (updated 9 December 2007)
These Walkthroughs and Tips are the result of my extensive experiences and have been carefully checked to give you the most direct routes. They give you enough information to complete each level, with hints or details about every pickup and Secret.
Look for the * in these walks - it means there's something nearby. All the pickups I flag are gettable, but some are very hard! Search every corner of every area you enter, but get rid of any threats first. Please note that I don't generally include any pickups the bad guys might be carrying, so always check them out as well (they don't all carry goodies though...)
When you extract the download, if the walkthrough won't open in your browser automatically by clicking on it, then open it from within the browser, or Drag&Drop it onto your browser's icon!
The TR II download contains the following walkthroughs:
Tomb Raider II -
Tomb Raider II Specials -
Tomb Raider II Golden Mask -
Notes - Look for the * in these walkthroughs - it means there's a pickup nearby. I haven't flagged the secrets separately, but if you find all the pickups I've flagged you should get all the secrets!
The 'Venetian Level Shortcuts' give alternative ways to complete all three Venetian levels. The 'EcoTours' avoid the use of the vehicles, thus helping save the environment from exhaust pollution ;-)
Hints and Tips (updated 9 December 2007)
This Gameplay Tips download contains information on all versions of TR up to TR Chronicles, most of which is applicable to Mac, PC, and PlayStation!
Topics covered include the Weapons, Enemies, Moves, Vehicles, Bugs, and Cheats; as well as some Mac-specific information about watching the FMV's, and a neat way to see the TRC Main Menu Flyby and Special Features without that annoying text!
Downloads (Mac game only!) (updated 9 December 2007)
Savegames should be dropped into the Save folder in your Tomb Raider folder. Don't forget to remove your own saves first, and keep them in a separate folder. If a ReadMe is included, check it so you know what to do. Note that you can use a maximum of 15 or 16 savegames in the Save folder at one time depending on the game.
tr2_levelsaves.zip (40k) These 'levelsaves' put you at the start of each level from 'Venice' to 'Home Sweet Home' with plenty of ammo and Medi Packs - there are two folders in the pack. Drop the contents of one folder at a time into your Save folder.
tr2_vehiclesaves.zip (12k) These 'vehiclesaves' put you ready to use all the vehicles in Tomb Raider II.
tr2_40f_burners.zip (3k) This savegame puts you just after the burner puzzle in '40 Fathoms'.
tr2gold_levelsaves.zip (12k) This is a pack of the starts of all five levels of Tomb Raider II Gold.
iMac 32 bit graphic
Tomb Raider 2 Intel re-release
Aspyr Media have re-released Tomb Raider 2 for Mac OS 10.6/10.7 Intel. It is available through the Apple app store for US$7.99. I have started playing the game and it does appear that they have spent some time replacing some of the textures. For instance, the paintings on the walls of the interior of Croft Manor have been replaced with recognisable images. (interestingly the paintings above the entrance to the Library are still upside down). Some monitor resolutions/set ups are not supported which can affect the aspect ratio i.e. Lara will be either be stretched or squashed (see below). The game now supports a couple of controllers but the PS3 sixaxis is not one of them. All in all this would appear to be the easiest way to play TR2 on your Intel Mac. Needless to say that Kerrie's walkthroughs for TR2 would still be relevant.
Manu has given information on how to get wide screen and anti-aliasing working with the new release of TR2. It involves modifying the .plist file with a special app. For those of you keen to try, the instructions are as follows:
To modify .plist files you will need an app that allows you to do this. Manu has suggested PlistEdit Pro which is available for purchase (although there is a trial period) or Prefsetter http://www.nightproductions.net/prefsetter.html which is a free app. I used prefsetter as I don't anticipate doing much of this work and it seemed to work fine.
You will need to locate the USER/Library/Preferences/com.aspyr.tombraider2.plist" file. You might like to copy this file to another location in case you want to restore the defaults. Open this file with your chosen plist editor application and type in the following values:
Locate the nFSAA key, and set the value you wish (2, 4, 8, 16 ).
For widescreen (only works in windowed mode):
Locate the nAspectMode and set the value to 1 (16:9). If you want to play the game in 4:3 again set the value to 0.
Locate the nWindowHeight and nWindowWidth keys, and set the appropriate values. Remember to set a 16:9 resolution if the nAspectMode key is set to 1 (e.g. nWindowHeight 1080 and nWindowWidth 1920) and a 4:3 resolution if the nAspectMode key is set to 0 (e.g. nWindowHeight 1200 and nWindowWidth 1600).
Note that you may have to play around with the settings to suit your monitor/resolution set up to avoid cutting off portions of the screen.
Save your changes to the file.
Thanks to Manu for the preceding information.
Note that if you want to try to play the Golden Mask levels using the technique below, you will not be able to save your game as the game tends to quit to the desktop when you try.
To play the Classic TR2 Gold levels in the Intel version you will obviously need a copy of TR2 Gold or you can download the Golden Mask levels at Stella's site: http://tombraiders.net/stella/downloads/TR2files.html#bonus in which case you will need to extract and unstuff the file. Then:
In the TR2 Gold/data folder, rename the following files:
level2.tr2 to venice.TR2
level3.tr2 to BOAT.TR2
level4.tr2 to OPERA.TR2
level5.tr2 to RIG.TR2
Browse to the Contents/Tomb Raider 2 Data/Data
Rename the following files (so you don't lose them when you want to go back to the original levels of the game):
venice.TR2 to venice-old.TR2
BOAT.TR2 to BOAT-old.TR2
OPERA.TR2 to OPERA-old.TR2
RIG.TR2 to RIG-old.TR2
Run the game, and chose "NEW GAME".
Thanks to Attila for the above information.
Alternatively it has been suggested that you could make a copy of the entire Intel TR2 game and change the file names in that copy using it as a 'Gold' game.
Note that although these modifications have worked for me, you undertake these actions at your own risk and I take no responsibility for any lost or damaged information. ALWAYS BACK UP YOUR FILES BEFORE MAKING ANY MODIFICATIONS.
At this stage I have found that .savageme files from the Classic TR2 do not work with the Intel version.
UPDATE 1/9/2014: I have received an email from Fabien who reports that he is able to save his game in levels three to five of the Golden Mask although not in levels one and two. He also points out that re-naming the files as described above could make some levels load in the wrong order i.e. BOAT instead of venice.
I have not as yet been able to verify either of these findings so I would be interested to hear from anyone who has experiences anything simmilar. Thanks Fabien!