Final Glimpse: This is not a reference to Luigi.
Beauty, passion, and obsession all rolled into one. That in a way is what playing ICO was like. ICO is one of the greatest achievements in the PlayStation 2's stream of life. This was an adventure game that sparkled with a world so imaginatively real you could sense it all over. A boy with horns had just been locked away in a tower, when he breaks free from his shackles. Finding a princess trapped in the same castle as he, it occurred to this mysterious young'un that he must help her from the shadow demons who apparently will not tolerate the freedom of this girl. That of course was a game from then, and this is now. Four years in the making, the game ICO fans have been waiting for are finally about to have their wishes granted to them. From the same team who brought us the tale of the horned boy and the chick with door unlocking powers, Sony is about to open its own door this month to another remarkably inspired adventure. Can you say Game of the Year before Shadow of the Colossus once and for all hits shelves? Let's find out.
Contained within a mystical world, the simplistic yet captivating plot in Shadow of the Colossus aims to unfold upon a spiritual realm where a boy on horseback carries a loved one; and she's dead. Riding forward, the boy eventually finds and approaches an altar. Placing the girl's carcass upon it, the boy hears a voice speak out to him. Learning that there is a way to revive his beloved, the voice iterates that for in order to bring breath back to this young girl's body again (for whatever reason she's fallen), he must first defeat an army of 16 ancient colossi across the land. Then and only then can he bring his sleeping beauty back to life. And so, hopping onto his horse the boy sets off to terminate each of these enormous beasts for the sake of his love's future.
For those who don't actually remember ICO, or haven't had the glory of embracing its undeniable artistry (there was
a reason why so many considered ICO to be 2001's sleeper hit, after all), ICO was heavy on puzzle as well as on combat. The basics were while playing as ICO, your task was to solve riddles concerning pathways that would lead not only ICO, but also princess Yorda safely across the castle grounds so she would utilize her powers for unlocking doorways. The only thing stopping ICO and her were shadowy demons that would frequently try to suck Yorda down into the depths of the unknown. Shadow of the Colossus, though not actually a sequel to ICO, will follow some of the same gameplay qualities ICO before it possessed. For example, the main character of the boy in the game will act like ICO did before him where the horse is kind of like his Yorda. The horse gives the boy speed to ride up to creatures in the game and climb onto them. Some of these moss-covered colossi will be slow moving, while others embody speed in their bones. In certain cases, the horse will be able to dodge obstacles on its own whilst the boy is able to focus on attacking a creature with a bow and arrow weapon.
What these goliath monstrosities actually are, is an assortment of giant rock creatures. Ranging from humanoids to water and birdlike species, it'll be up to the hero in this story to accomplish the destruction of every last one of them. He might be a small person, but even ants can scale to the tops of people. Shadow's concept follows the boy as he's able to ride through abundant fields hunting down these behemoths, then awakening them by use of his trusty blade. The boy's sword will glimmer into the sun, shimmering upon a motioning colossus's structure. When doing so, it'll track its weakness in addition to its actual position on the map. The mass of acreage will not just be some arena that takes a couple of minutes to cross. Rather, this will be one of those bountiful landscapes with no direct end in sight. Once found, the trick to downing every last moss-covered brute will be the hard part. Literally, the boy will have to ascend onto every colossus' body and kill them from once up high. Because every giant varies from the last one, figuring out how to get onto each one and kill each one will be the head scratcher players will need to itch each time. Some will walk on land, while others will soar through the air. In such cases as these, aiming an arrow while chasing the creature on horseback simultaneously will be one way to ensue the path of annihilation from certain hulks. Another example will see a land-based giant who wields a massive blade weapon. By drawing its attention and letting it pound its sword into the ground, the boy will be able to climb onto the blade and up its mass in order to make rubble out of the massive pile of rock. Don't think of the gameplay as simple get-onto-colossus-and-kill-colossus, though. Latching onto these giant things will present further problems as they are animated. They move. They strike. These things won't hesitate to squash the boy in the progress of his job, his quest, his adventure.
Very much in common with ICO, Shadow of the Colossus will be established as having none other than wondrously detailed visuals. Remember the surreal and lifelike polish ICO brought to the table, with doves, grass, water, and even sparkling sunshine outside and natural castle dwellings inside? In Shadow of the Colossus, the game is looking to eclipse that same type of reality and revise it for a new cause. Bigger and broader in design, immense fields will be the playing grounds for the boy, his horse, and the elaborate golems he's aiming to climb. Texture-filled mountainous beasts, storm cloud-ridden skies, and a whole extravagant world to explore are surely looking to give Shadow a very attentive eye for detail, and lots of it.