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Thread: Q&A with Kam Yu - Senior Artist

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jan 1970

    Q&A with Kam Yu - Senior Artist

    Hi gang.

    It's time for some behind the scenes goodness!

    Let me introduce you to Kam Yu with whom I'll be doing a Q&A. He's a Senior Artist at Crystal Dynamics. Kam is responsible not only for Lara's new and improved thighs but also for the character art you see in LCGoL and he has worked on previous Tomb Raiders too. If you have any questions about the Lara model, or any of the other character models you've seen in the game, how they were made, the thought process, what it's like to work as an artist in the industry, history at Crystal, what he prefers to eat for dinner then now is your chance!

    Obviously we can't answer all questions, but put your questions in here and I'll interview Kam next week and post the answers shortly afterwards.

    Fire away!
    "......It reminds me of Beethoven..... can you hear it?"

  2. #2
    YAY, First post!!
    "What do you usually observe, or get inspiration from while creating and going through the process of thought and conceptualization of a Lara Croft model? Are there certain "role models" for Lara's figure? Or are all her body parts her own?"

  3. #3

    Thumbs Up Lara's face

    Q1, Lara's face characteristics changed in every game. I'd like to know the reason(s).

    Q2, Is he responsible for Lara's transformation to doppleganger in Underworld?

    And here I wanted to praise for his work: I think Lara's Underworld/GoL models are perfect, but I love better her face in Legend.

    I like Amanda in Legend and Underworld.

    So.. thx answers in advance

    And... behind scenes goodnesses are welcome.. all of them

  4. #4
    Is Lady Croft better as somewhat of a redhead, or completely and utterly as a brunette? Which color do you think suits Lara best, and why? What color have you tried to make Lara's hair in title's that you've worked on?

    A pretty innocuous question, I know, but you've gotta make the decision for those diffuse maps!!!! In early concept art, and indeed, in earlier TR games Lara's hair is decidedly more reddish - I've noticed that Lara's hair, eyes, and lip color have consistently been paired (Box art of Legend, anyone??). Certainly, this is a conscious character design decision - well isn't it?

  5. #5
    Hello Keir! I love you oj

    My Question for Senior Artisit:

    2.) Senior Artist
    What made you go back to the original Lara outfit? because i think it is better.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    We've all seen that there's a variety of enemies in the new Lara Croft adventure. I would like to ask what was the idea or inspiration behind some of them and behind Xolotl himself.

    Thanks in advance.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    question: why does lara's hair keep changing? i can understand the face and body but her hair colour varies, and will we ever see an option to bring back the braid?
    "Die Potato" "Not today!"
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  8. #8
    Quote Originally Posted by Danielsun View Post
    question: why does lara's hair keep changing? i can understand the face and body but her hair colour varies, and will we ever see an option to bring back the braid?
    Hairs changes more frequent than face
    I didn't understand why lot of fans insist on getting Lara's original hair back: women often change their hair. They replace clothes every day (sometime it happens several times ).

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Middle Earth
    In LCGoL, Lara looks a lot like the Underworld model. Are there any major differences in the model itself? (not refering to the backpack or any other accessory! )

    And I always thought that Lara's face is somewhat "cartoonish", specially when comparing to other game charecters. With all the changes from game to game, have you ever considered a more realistic look? Is it a possibility for the future games?
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  10. #10
    AMAZING JOB with this model man..really.however i want to know whether there was any significant cange to laras emm..u know whats

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    What was the general theme of LCGOL was it sticking with TRunderworld or have you gone for something different?

    Do you draw your inspiration for character design such as enemies and even lara herself from anywhere?
    "Die Potato" "Not today!"
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  12. #12


    So which Tomb Raider model is your favorite. You have the classic Lara's (TR 1-5), AoD, Legend, Ann. or Underworld. Which one was your favorite and why? I personally liked Anniversary the best.

  13. #13
    Mr. Keir... how is your wife, dogs, cats... parrots...

    Now.. my question..

    Tomb Raider I, II, III, Last Revelation, Chronicles, AOD, Legend and Anniversary....
    released in a pack with TR: Underworld, expansions for I, II and III and a code for download the comming LCatGol

    How about that?

    Let´s gooo!!!

  14. #14
    My Questions:

    1) Did you get rid of that barrier fell that Lara Croft had in TRU? When she would run into things it felt like she was trap in a bubble of some sort. Is that felling gone in LCGoL? I hated that.

    2) What dose Lara Croft face look like? How many Levels are in LCGoL?

    3) Are you ever going to consider giving Lara Croft her reddish Brown hair color back? Or would you consider giving Lara Croft red strikes in her hair? I loved Lara Croft reddish brown hair color.

    4) I see that in LCGoL Lara Croft got back her long hair length back. Are you going to keep it long for the normal TR games? I like Lara Croft long hair.

    5) Would you consider giving Lara Croft more body to her ponytail? To me it is too thin. Still looks like she is warring a braid. By the way love her ponytail hairstyle.

    6) Is this game going to be so essay that I can beat it in a day or two? I prefer a long 2 week game to beat.

    7) Would you ever consider giving Lara Croft her long jump back? It looks like in LCGoL she still has this short small jump. I like the fictional long jump.

    8) Is there water in LCGoL game that we can swim in? If there is would we be able to see underwater at all? In TRU we could not see much at all in the water levels. I hated that because it took away from the beauty of the scenery underwater.

    9) Is Lara Croft going to have a manor in LCGoL? I would like that just to play in, even if it has nothing to do with the game itself. Where is Lara Croft back pack?

    Just some advice I like to give. I like Lara Croft just the way she is now. She does not need to be any more realistic. To me I never started to play video games because they were realistic but because they were fictional. It was a chance for me to escape reality and to enjoy the fun of fictional game. Something you could not do in real life. Please stop trying to make everything so realistic. Fictional games are fun to with the hit of a little reality. That is the way it was in the original TR games. I did not enjoy the hair color in TRU. I felt that the brown did not suit her. The brown hair color in TRL and TRA was a better brown hair color for her. I would love to see some red color come in to Lara hair one day. Like a reddish brown hair color.

    Ok I am done. Hop you can answer my questions. Keep up the great work. Thanks for listing.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    I'm interested in getting into the gaming industry, so I'd like to know how you did? What did you go to school for and such.
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  16. #16
    Join Date
    May 2000
    Ok, so here's my chance to ask about Totec, lol.

    At first, I thought Totec's visual as a whole as a bit unnerving, but I came to terms with it. I'd like to know through how many revisions his visual identity went through before the one we see, with lots of exposed skin, 'empty' eyes and the little awesome horns on his face. Is this how every good-will deity would look like? lol

    Thanks for the opportunity Keir. You rock - but you already knew that.

  17. #17
    I have a few questions.

    Should this game affect our expectations on the normal Tomb Raider series?
    If so will it change how the normal Tomb Raider series is?

    Will this game have some what of a Tomb feeling or not?

    Will this game have any interesting yet really scary and dangerous traps?
    For some reasons I always thought the strangely scary and dangerous traps belonged in a Tomb Raider game.

    Is it possible to get a sense that Lara Croft is in this game or will it accidentally go unnoticed that she is Lara Croft?

    This ^ question was asked because I feel that the sense that Lara Croft was in Underworld and sometimes in Legend was not noticeable, cause sometimes she seemed like a stranger.

    Will Lara get back her red-brown hair?

    Will the Future Tomb Raider series every get back to being long and exciting having much to explore and be challenged by?

    Some things about me...

    I'm new to the forms and site but not to the Tomb Raider games. I've been playing video games for a long time. And truthfully speaking I'm not very good at playing the Tomb Raider games but I make a good navigator, and enjoyed how I could sense that Lara Croft was the main character and how also it seems you could forget you where playing the game and not living it. I've been a fan of Tomb Raider games for a while and not to be rude or insensitive but I like the earlier Tomb Raider games from the first Tomb Raider game to Angel of Darkness. I just seems that something was always missing from Legend, and Underworld, Can't really comment on Anniversary much but I miss the old exploration feel that danger possible hiding around the corner and all the hidden corners where you could explore and possibly find artifacts or guns or ammo. I had other thoughts I wanted to express but I'll leave that for another time.

  18. #18
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Can you confirm or disprove whether those leaked images of a young lara are official?

    I understand many people have said it was unofficial, yet major game sites such as Gamefaqs still say its official.
    "Die Potato" "Not today!"
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  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Danielsun View Post
    Can you confirm or disprove whether those leaked images of a young lara are official?

    I understand many people have said it was unofficial, yet major game sites such as Gamefaqs still say its official.
    man eidoss lawyers asked for the images to be withdrawn..of corse they are moment they showed up in several sites and the next they were withdraan.use ur logic.and people stop askig this poor man about all kind of things that has not to do with the ast part.u can ask the artist to confirm such a think.nor can u ask anout gameplay matters..

  20. #20
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    Quote Originally Posted by qwerty View Post
    man eidoss lawyers asked for the images to be withdrawn..of corse they are moment they showed up in several sites and the next they were withdraan.use ur logic.and people stop askig this poor man about all kind of things that has not to do with the ast part.u can ask the artist to confirm such a think.nor can u ask anout gameplay matters..

    thanks for trying to be little me, if you had used your logic you would have known that i did not know about said lawyers getting the picture removed all i know is that it was a leak, and then it was all over official game sites, next time you feel like doing this send me a PM
    "Die Potato" "Not today!"
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  21. #21
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    This is cool. I'll think of some questions then.

    "When you are faced with redesigning the Lara model, how important do you feel it is to be somewhat faithful to the Core models? It was a long time ago, but especially in the earlier games Lara received a lot of attention for her looks."

    "If you drastically changed the Lara Croft model for a future game, how could that be beneficiary to the game?"

    "What do you think is Lara's most defining feature, appearance-wise?"

    "Natla was newly designed for Anniversary, but then changed quite a bit for Underworld. Why was this?"

    "Not including Lara, who is your favourite character from the Tomb Raider games series?"

    Cool, that's it for now.

  22. #22
    Join Date
    Jan 2010
    What feature of Lara stands out to you the most either personality or appearance wise?

    If you could change anything about Lara without restrictions what would it be?

    How many stages or processes are there when designing or redesigning a character and how many people are involved?

    Have you ever found working on characters in Tomb raider and Lara herself, stressful/timed or is it quite relaxed
    "Die Potato" "Not today!"
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  23. #23
    every lara game is amazing for me!!!
    and that one would be the first co-op mode!
    i always wanted to play it with my friends!!!!!!
    I know it will be amazing!
    Cant wait to play it on my xbox as a single official released game!!!!!!
    And why not to visit San Fransisco studios to play it before its' release!
    Greetings from GREECE!!!!!!

  24. #24


    Hi, Keir - I appreciate the fine people at CD and you for taking time to answer the fans!

    1. Are there going to be any "above ground" scenarios for Lara coming up - I note by pics, LCGoL seems very "Underworld-ish" to me. I loved Thailand in TRU and also my reason for TRL being my "sentimental fav" is due to the gorgeous outdoor scenery. I really missed that in TRU for the most part.

    2. How much DLC will there be for the upcoming TR games? Will it be like TRU where the 2 following 'mini games' (Beneath the Ashes / Lara's Shadow) were DLC only? Will extra outfits come a la TRL where one can earn through achievement or will they be DLC?

    3. Why the decision to add another simultaneously playing character? I have to say, I'm not particularly thrilled about this but I trust you. That's one of the things I have loved about TR is it's a solitary game for the most part.

    4. After recently playing Uncharted 2, I fell in love with the rich, lush textures of the scenery. I guess this goes back to the first question of if there will be more above-ground activity? I'd forgotten how much I've missed it!!

    5. Why the decision to title it "Lara Croft" instead of under the "Tomb Raider" heading?

    6. Will there be an online gaming portion where players (like Uncharted 2) where online gamers can compete simultaneously, say for relics, or what have you?

    7. We loved the motorcycle in TRU. Do we get more of that soon?? lol

    All in all, great job - I cannot imagine the levels of creativity and hard work that go into one of these games! Please do not take anything I say as offensive - you all are doing one hell of a job! I am so glad you are keeping the franchise alive and well.

  25. #25
    Here are my questions:

    Hello from Greece.
    1) First of all i wanted to ask about the new game, for its' gameplay. We will have only co-op mode, or we will have a single player mode, like all the TR games? And if yes, will there be differences in these 2 modes, or not?
    2) Will we have levels of difficulties?
    3) About the soundtrack? Who created the themes?
    4) How many hours long is the gameplay?
    5) Will we be able to play it online with friends worldwide?
    6) Anything that could be revealed about the T.R. 9?????? Just something we can learn.
    Greetings from a huge Greek fan and keep up the good work there.

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