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Original Tomb Raider game makes 99-cent iOS debut

Step into the Wayback Machine to see how it all began.

The original Tomb Raider comes to iOS.
The original Tomb Raider comes to iOS.
Square Enix

If you're old like me, you can remember the first time you played Tomb Raider -- and what a thrill it was. Not only did you get a refreshing change of perspective (from first- to third-person), you also got to play as a female protagonist.

The game combined elements of Pitfall, the "Indiana Jones" movies, and old-school running-and-gunning, all unfolding with the character of Lara Croft, who would go on to join the pantheon of video game icons that includes Mario, Sonic the Hedgehog, and Duke Nukem. She would also spawn a steady stream of sequels, a pair of live-action movies, and various other related media.

Now, you can play the original Tomb Raider on your iOS device. The app debuted late Tuesday for the surprisingly low price of 99 cents.

Developer Square Enix promises a "full, unedited, unadulterated experience," meaning you're getting every level of the original game, which sends Lara on a mission to recover an ancient artifact. Along the way there's running, jumping, swimming, climbing, and the obligatory gunplay -- perhaps even a dinosaur or two.

You also get two additional chapters that were included in the 1998 re-release, giving you around 15 hous of gameplay, according to Square Enix.

Although Tomb Raider incorporates the usual assortment of onscreen controls (which can be tricky to manage, especially on the smaller displays of an iPhone or iPod Touch), it also supports game controllers, including the Logitech PowerShell and Moga Ace Power. Either of those would likely lend a more console-style feel to the game.

Of course, for a mere buck, it's probably worth taking this trip down Tomb Raider lane, controls notwithstanding. This is the game that sparked a revolution of sorts, and more than that, it's just plain fun.

Interestingly, this is listed as "Tomb Raider I," suggesting that sequels like Tomb Raider II and Tomb Raider III may soon follow. Think you'd like to see that happen?