August 8, 2010

Tomb Raider Haiku Competition: Win A Guardian of Light Download

With just 10 days left until Lara Croft and the Guardian of Light hits Xbox LIVE, I thought now would be a good time for a quick competition—the operative word being quick. So this week, I invite you to create and share a Tomb Raider themed haiku. The writers of the three best poems will each receive a free LCGOL game download.

In case you're unfamiliar with the form, a haiku is a traditional Japanese poem with three unrhymed lines of five, seven, and five syllables. Haiku usually have have nature-related themes, but for this competition, the poems should be about Tomb Raider, Lara Croft or a related topic. They can be serious or humorous, but they must follow the traditional haiku format.

Need a few examples? Several years ago, we had a haiku free-for-all on the Usenet newsgroup. Here are some of the poems that were posted:

Jungle gleams with rain
Shadows hold hidden dangers
Someone's lost MedPack

What's behind that wall?
Is it a raptor or snake?
Maybe a cold beer.

Dig the chick in green
talking is not her long suit
she says it with guns
       –Gordian Slash

Those threads are still archived on Google Groups in case you want to take a look.

THE JUDGES: I'll be judging the contest along with three special guest writer-gamer-webmasters: Katie Fleming (Katie's Tomb Raider Site), Mary Goodden (Well-Rendered) and Jaden Morretti (Guns and Grapple).

THE RULES: This contest is open to entrants in the United States, Canada and the United Kingdom only. I'm really sorry about that, but due to regional restrictions, it's just too complicated for me to send online game codes to other countries.

To submit an entry, either post it in a comment below or email it to me. Be sure to indicate whether you'd like the PC, PS3 or Xbox 360 game should you win. If you post your poem here on the blog, please log in with your Google account first so I'll be able to reach you if you win. If you prefer to enter by email, I will post your poem here, but I promise to keep your contact info private.

Entries should be in English and should follow the 5-7-5 syllable pattern. Each entrant should only submit one haiku. If you submit an entry and later come up with something better, contact me about substituting the new entry.

The deadline for submissions is next Sunday, August 15, at 11:59 p.m. EDT (that's Monday 4 a.m. GMT). Winners will be notified by Tuesday, August 17. The judges' decisions are final. We'll try to be fair, but poetry is naturally a subjective thing. So please don't be offended if your entry is not chosen.

Thanks and good luck!

Haiku often juxtapose mother nature and human nature,
something Tomb Raider fans understand quite well.
Underworld concept art by Ben Shafer.


  1. Inside volcano
    Emerald ancient city
    The lost Golden Tears

  2. Grapple, tumble, shoot
    Stop the bad guys in their tracks
    Save the world once more

  3. Adventure now waits,
    poised to greet a long-time friend
    wielding two pistols.

    (XBox 360 for me, if you choose mine; my laptop definitely wouldn't be up for it!)

  4. Excellent entries so far. Thanks, everybody. (To those who've posted and retracted entries, I've deleted the ones you indicated. Feel free to try again.)

  5. Loading The Pistol
    She Is Ready To Take Aim
    Down Goes The Black Crow

  6. Hunting for Scions
    Through jungles and undersea
    Intrepid always

  7. (I am not from neither USA, Canada nor UK, but I just wanna post my haiku, just for fun :D)

    Lost sites and ruins
    Tombs, relics, Gods she will reach
    Almighty mortal

  8. Mute2ConversationsAug 10, 2010, 9:03:00 AM

    Silent, shadowed tomb
    Long dead voices calling out
    Revealing secrets

  9. a haiku challenge
    for free guardian of light
    i hope i can win

  10. Magnums or Uzis?
    Where does she keep her ammo?
    In her bra, of course!

    PS3 please! I hope I win! ^_^

  11. Here comes the T-Rex
    Quick! I must use a MedPack
    Well, so much for that.

  12. This is totally off topic, but as I've been posting the entries people have sent in by email, I noticed how totally weird the Blogger captcha images are. Y'know those little text samples you have to retype so the web form can tell you're a real person? What the heck is "blensca," "flenit" or "eingradu"? They sound almost like real words. Is that Esperanto or something? ;P

  13. She hunts mysteries
    They echo calls to explore
    Whispers...Come Lara

  14. Lara's guns blazing
    A few twists in the air, done
    She's just amazing

  15. I love the idea! Easy to do but creative... I'm from Germany and can't take part, but I'll post my idea anyway: ^^

    Mayan Warrior
    Strong and Gorgeous Amazon
    Guardian of Light

  16. (for anyone who, like Stella is fascinated by Captchas:

    Great haikus everyone! And nice to see some people posting simply for the love of poetry/Lara.

  17. Indeed. Love all the entries. It's going to be hard to choose just three. (And thanks for the link, Mary. That's great! And my son now wants to make a T-shirt featuring our new hero, Responsibility Scallop.)

  18. Lara is the name,
    treasure hunting is the game,
    this is tomb raider

  19. This comment has been removed by the author.

  20. One month exclusive
    Microsoft causes much woe
    Summer of Arcade

    (360 version for me!)

  21. Natla looking crushed
    Adieu, Pierre, mon ami
    Rex is full of lead

  22. Pistol lock and load
    Adrenaline surge and pump
    Lara's deeds inspire

  23. Dark ancient temples
    Hold mysterious secrets
    That Lara will find

  24. If theres more jungle you seek
    Find the light and you will shreek,
    Pray to the heavens they say and the light will accept as long as your heart is pure

    (PC please :D )

  25. Thanks for more great entries, everyone. :)

    astronamer4598, yor poem does have a definite Tomb Raider feel but it's not a haiku so I'm afraid we can't consider it for the contest. If you'd like to try again, check the rules and examples. Haikus are typically 3 lines, the first having 5 syllables, the second 7, the third 5, for 17 syllables total. Sometimes they do rhyme but usually not. You're welcome to try again if you want to.

  26. The flap of a bat,
    drip drip of monsoon waters.
    Ancient image stares.


    twitter @wicket2961

  27. Lady, loving life
    Seeks all answers she can find
    Sometimes she finds them

  28. She can be ruthless
    Danger lurks at every turn
    Speaks with her weapons

  29. Pellets fling throughout
    Death will befall thereupon
    All in an eye blink

  30. Firing her guns
    Lara takes down the T-Rex
    She takes the Scion

  31. Ladies are polite
    Debutantes do not raid tombs
    F**k off I'm not Emma

  32. I just noticed that last line has 6 syllables. Oops!
    Maybe it should read;

    Ladies are polite
    Debutantes do not raid tombs
    F**k! I'm not Emma

  33. Take down T-rexes
    Take down centaurs and mummies
    and collect the scion

    (PC please :D)

  34. Lara And Totec
    Fighting Spiders And Monsters
    Will Lara Survive?

  35. She's got her two guns
    "Right. Let's go adventuring."
    Under your control

  36. This is my Haiku. Please add it to the entry list for an Xbox360 code. It captures the great lighting effects in Tomb Raider games, The deep and strange presence of a mirror and also the mentioning of her Mother.

    First autumn morning:
    the mirror I stare into
    shows my Mother's face.

  37. Decided to change my Haiku last minute...shouldn't get in the habit of procrastinating!

    Lara hunts lost loots,
    In tanktop and muddied boots,
    A tiger! She shoots.

    Good luck everyone!

  38. Thanks for the wonderful entries everyone. I and the other judges will be re-reading all the entries today and will announce the winners as soon as possible.

  39. Whoops. This entry came in by email well before the deadline but I forgot to post it. Sorry.


    A new adventure
    Guarding the light together
    Totec by her side