I think that most people that didnt played first 3 games when they are out, are choosing some other series,
so most people don't realise that TR1/TR2/TR3 were one of best games of its generations, and we talking about generation with plenty of greats games.
Or, they just prefer something else. :)
I think he's right - I'd say that people who played Legend trilogy and only then got their hands on Core's TRs find them clunky in controls - which they are. But that moment you're stepping backwards, counting steps to the edge, preparing for jump knowing that one tiny misstep will kill you...only in Core TRs.
While I find them quite good, CD's Legend trilogy was much easier than previous games - and I can relate to people that were complaining about that when Legend released. But at the time, Core was sucked out of blood by Eidos and their yearly TR schedule (this is considered to be precursor to modern Ubi/EA/Activision eayrly sequilities), so anything after AoD felt more then welcome.