The evolution of water effects

Tomb Raider (1996 onwards, Saturn to Xbox360)
Tomb Raider's seen its own progression. In the top-left here, we see the Saturn original. It's got white... things... on the surface, which we recreated by blowing on the surface of a cup of tea under electric lights (presumably the closest example of water the designers had to work from). But the game effect looks a mess if we're honest. TR3 (bottom-left) on PSone is more translucent but also cartoony, and the recent Tomb Raider Anniversary is almost there in terms of realism. The 360 version even has reflections in the surface, so you can see two wet Laras moving in unison. Sweet.

Above: Tomb Raider alone has seen water effects graduate from crap to sparkling

Justin Towell

Justin was a GamesRadar staffer for 10 years but is now a freelancer, musician and videographer. He's big on retro, Sega and racing games (especially retro Sega racing games) and currently also writes for Play Magazine,, PC Gamer and TopTenReviews, as well as running his own YouTube channel. Having learned to love all platforms equally after Sega left the hardware industry (sniff), his favourite games include Christmas NiGHTS into Dreams, Zelda BotW, Sea of Thieves, Sega Rally Championship and Treasure Island Dizzy.