• Publisher: SCEA
  • Release Date: Mar 13, 2012
Metascore
92

Universal acclaim - based on 78 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 77 out of 78
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 78
  3. Negative: 1 out of 78
  1. Mar 1, 2012
    90
    Journey celebrates the poignancy of nature, it startles you with the unexpected, and empowers you in an exhilarating, unforgettable conclusion...The hours spent completing Journey will create memories that last for years.
  2. Mar 2, 2012
    90
    By the alchemy of developer thatgamecompany's skill and vision, it is also unique, exciting, mysterious, and utterly lovely, with mesmerising landscapes and stirring music. It deploys more 'gamey' elements than any of the developer's works before it, and does so successfully, while maintaining the feel of an evocative, interactive art piece.
  3. Mar 14, 2012
    96
    Yes, there have been experiences like Journey before, but it has been far too long since we've seen one.
  4. Mar 1, 2012
    90
    Journey is a visual stunner thanks to some remarkable sand movement technology and excellent animation work, both on the main character and the strange creatures encountered along the way. For a game all about dry, harsh deserts, the way things move in the world make everything feel much more like a vast ocean. The graphical beauty is accompanied by an equally breathtaking musical score, which responds to character actions and changes in location with ease.
  5. Mar 1, 2012
    90
    If Journey is about God, then God has played an awful lot of video games. One of the most fascinating things about thatgamecompany's sand-blown chunk of spiritual eye candy isn't that it reinvents gaming, or extends the medium's reach: it's that it takes old ideas - sometimes very old ideas - and repackages them in clever, stylish, and unexpected ways.
  6. Mar 15, 2012
    100
    I haven't been more captivated by a video gaming in years. There were moments in Journey that I stopped pushing the directional stick because I was too busy taking in my character's surroundings. Should you play Journey? Yes. You should play Journey. Right now.
  7. Mar 13, 2012
    93
    One of the most emotionally charged gaming pilgrimages ever devised. Tiny but tremendous. [Apr 2012, p.92]
  8. Mar 1, 2012
    90
    Altough short and not very challenging, Journey is a different and extraordinary kind of videogame, an experience you cannot miss for every other title someone could advise you.
  9. Mar 23, 2012
    96
    Journey transcends conventional gaming and becomes more of an interactive experience designed to evoke (not force) emotional responses through subtle imagery, sublime music, and the perfect balance of adventure and discovery. It is easily one of the best games I've played this year and one of the top 5 PSN titles of all time.
  10. Mar 2, 2012
    90
    Journey is an unforgettable experience. Even when the details fade, the emotions that it evoked will stay with us for years.
  11. Mar 2, 2012
    100
    Journey is a different game that everyone will love. If you like videogames you must play Journey. It is a very special experience you will never get enough of.
  12. Mar 19, 2012
    95
    Anyone who loved Team Ico's games or thatgamecompany's other efforts like fl0w and Flower will love this – it's easily worth the $15 asking price.
  13. Mar 6, 2012
    100
    Journey stands head and shoulders above all other artistic games. It's truly avant-garde and pushes the boundaries of what a video game can mean to its audience.
  14. Mar 1, 2012
    80
    Journey's real issue, if it has one, goes much deeper than that. It's a resolutely linear game in which your range of interactions is minimal. For some, that will make it a pretty but hollow novelty; boring, perhaps. But for those who play games to explore strange lands, see beautiful sights and to immerse themselves – for however brief a time – in a new world, Journey is perfect. And what's more, they'll find someone like them to share it with.
  15. Mar 2, 2012
    90
    Where Journey truly excels is in its top-of-the-range visuals, inventive world and its tonal breadth. One moment you will find yourself avoiding the spotlights of menacing, sentient war machines 20 times your size in a barely lit dungeon, and the next plodding through the harsh mountain peaks with almost no visibility, all accompanied by a genuine sense of dread as your character visibly starts to die and can barely walk anymore.
  16. Mar 1, 2012
    90
    An immaculately constructed, expertly choreographed experience that tells a story in a unique, intelligent way, exploring themes of faith and fate, death and rebirth with a rare delicacy of touch. That it comes at a time where risk is routinely avoided, sent out into a landscape clouded by doubt and dominated by the safe, the tried and tested? Maybe that's the real wonder.
  17. Mar 2, 2012
    93
    Journey is captivating, beautiful and elegant. This game manages to be unusually engaging with its artistic proposal and unique gameplay. Absolutely brilliant.
  18. Mar 2, 2012
    90
    Journey is a defiant bridge between art and game, managing to emotionally connect without being cloying, and succeeding in being mysterious without becoming pretentiously vague and obfuscating. Journey's interactive, visual, and aural elements work together, rather than fight with each other, in order to provide a flowing, seamless, influential, and utterly exhilarating experience...This is interactive art. This is how it's done.
  19. Mar 30, 2012
    80
    Journey's worth playing for the unique experiences offered but the actual involvement with the mechanics isn't always engaging enough to match.
  20. Apr 17, 2012
    93
    Journey is a mysterious adventure game where you travel through deserts, caverns and blizzards while trying to reach a faraway mountain. Even though the game is only a couple hours long it makes up for it by being really atmospheric and original. There really aren't any other games like it. It also has quite a bit of replay value, since you can play it in multiplayer mode as well. [Apr 2012]
  21. Mar 5, 2012
    82
    All you need is two hours, two buttons to play with and when you're exploring you almost always get awards. This is one of the most compelling journeys in a desert you'll ever get.
  22. Mar 1, 2012
    85
    You can hardly call Journey a game, it's more of an experience. The images are hard to forget and the music is absolutely beautiful. The only disappointment is that the game takes only three hours to complete.
  23. Mar 1, 2012
    90
    Another amazing and beautiful spell from "that" game company. Don't think about it... just live it!
  24. May 12, 2012
    90
    Journey is short, very short, clocking in at a little over an hour. But that hour is an hour of unique and magical experiences.
  25. 90
    Less is most definitely more in this beautifully understated co-op adventure, that dares you to make sense of its enigmatic voyage.
  26. Mar 1, 2012
    90
    Journey's DNA consists of two intertwining strands: mystery and beauty. These two ideals weave together a wordless experience that manages to feel both familiar and foreign, which is no small feat. While this excursion through the sands may be just a brief stopover from the glut and glitz of other games' well-stocked campaigns and multiplayer suites, Journey still delivers a complete package with the artistic vision intact.
  27. It's one of the few games you'll genuinely reflect on after completion, and an object lesson in how less can be more when it comes to crafting narrative and eliciting investment. This is a game about which I would change nothing, and I can't remember having said that too many times before.
  28. Apr 4, 2012
    90
    Journey is an amazing achievement for thatgamecompany and it shows just how far Jenova Chen's studio has come since since flOw. The game controls like a dream, is startlingly beautiful and will be one of those games people will talk about for months.
  29. Mar 1, 2012
    90
    My gaming tastes are such that I'm perfectly conditioned to fall in love with something like Journey. Keep that in mind - if you're more about visceral action or epic 40-hour experiences, you should possibly look elsewhere. But in my opinion, this is one of the best games out there that can provide you with an experience - and a memorable, highly positive one at that.
  30. Mar 19, 2012
    90
    Whether it's seen as an incomplete art object or a transcendent masterpiece, Journey is beautiful from its solemn opening to its masterful ending.
  31. Mar 1, 2012
    87
    Its haunting atmosphere sure to leave a mark – just as, say, Flower did before it.
  32. 90
    The amazing finale to the "flying" trilogy puts high demands on players but the reward is satisfying – indescribable feelings of absolute joy. [Apr 2012]
  33. Mar 8, 2012
    90
    Journey is short. Too short. It's so brilliant, so magnificent, that you wish you could dive in its story and world for more discoveries, more wonder, more breathtaking poetry.
  34. Mar 5, 2012
    95
    A mesmerizing and extraordinary experience. It successfully taps into the deepest parts of ourselves, allowing us to simultaneously reflect and explore.
  35. 90
    I've never in my life experienced a better example of less is more. This game truly does take the player on a journey.
  36. Mar 21, 2012
    90
    Keenly directed and liberatingly open, Journey is occasionally impenetrable - but that's the price of mystery. A short trip, but one to cherish. [Apr 2012, p.90]
  37. Mar 21, 2012
    100
    Journey is really an amazing journey from start to finish.
  38. Mar 2, 2012
    90
    Magical, impressive, inspiring – like an Arabian Nights' story. The world with its monumental vistas reminds you of ICO and Shadow of the Colossus while the game design continues the mysterious experience of Flower.
  39. Mar 12, 2012
    100
    Games that summon up emotions from a cold son of a bitch like me are incredibly rare... Journey had me grabbing the box of tissues by the time it was over.
  40. Mar 2, 2012
    94
    Its approach to control, cooperative play, failure, exploration, and gratification are fundamentally novel and indifferent to its peers. These deliberate alternatives might seem unwieldy because we keep implicit rules reserved in our minds, but Journey's pretends none of them ever existed and still manages to treat its audience with the utmost respect. What a joy that it's a lot of fun to play, too.
  41. Mar 4, 2012
    90
    Journey is a pure and decorticated experience where everything - music, graphics or interaction with other players - works together to form a perfect symbiosis. There are no highscores or leaderbords in Journey. There's just an uncompromising and personal adventure towards a mountain in the distance.
  42. Mar 19, 2012
    100
    There is nothing to keep you coming back for more besides the absolutely exquisite environments, the very-clean interface, solid controls, and Triple-A camera cutscenes.
  43. Journey's short length and limited replayability make it difficult to wholeheartedly recommend. It is, however, a tour de force of brilliant visuals and music, as well as a joy to play through and explore. It's absolutely worth experiencing at least once. [Apr 2012, p.78]
  44. Sep 20, 2012
    95
    If there was ever a game deserving of the word beautiful in it's description, it's Journey. The game is stunning to look at, satisfying to play and oozes atmosphere from every angle of its dynamic story and immersive world. Sure it's short by regular game standards but Journey is not a regular game. If your ready for an experience that will surprise you, move you and stick with you for many years after its done, then maybe this is the Journey for you.
  45. Even under duress, it's easy to lose yourself in this strange, enchanting world. Sadly, it's all too brief. We felt we'd barely scratched the surface when the credits rolled. Sure, there was a suitably enigmatic ending, but we wanted more. Much more. [April 2012, p69]
  46. Mar 19, 2012
    100
    Journey is a marvel, a hallucination of gameplay that feels as deep and immersive as the borderless desert where it begins.
  47. Mar 13, 2012
    100
    Certainly a game that offers up aesthetic beauty, both in its visuals and score. But where it truly shines is in the experience of playing it. In Journey, the mere acts of jumping, running, and sliding around a painstakingly crafted world are enough to invoke strong emotional responses from the player. Every element, every mechanic, every single little thing works in seemingly effortless concert to deliver a game that is experientially beautiful from surface to core.
  48. Mar 13, 2012
    95
    Great visuals, wonderful audio, varied gameplay, interesting idea for internet co-op and remarkable atmosphere make this Journey unforgettable. [April 2012, p.68]
  49. Mar 1, 2012
    100
    Journey is something that purely relates to who we are and what we are, an experience that will give you as much as you give to it, that needs to be absorbed and processed.
  50. Mar 5, 2012
    100
    When games take it to the next step and become art!
  51. 100
    Miss out on Journey, and you'll deny yourself one of the greatest gaming experiences on any platform to date.
  52. Mar 1, 2012
    100
    I don't want to be misconstrued as generic or uninspired when I say that Journey is an awesome game. In the most classical, archaic sense of the word, Journey is a beautiful, evocative and unequivocally transcendental experience.
  53. Mar 1, 2012
    90
    A brilliantly executed piece of interactive design that never fails to entice and engage. Thatgamecompany's best work yet.
  54. 95
    Some will be disappointed by how quickly the game ends, but the two hours that mark your journey is the most incredible and unique you can possibly have on your PS3.
  55. Mar 1, 2012
    100
    From the first spec of sand to the last flake of snow, developers thatgamecompany have managed to get more emotion and more life into a video game than anything else in recent memory; and the striking confidence that the game exudes drags you along for the ride without once letting you go, until the credits roll by two or three hours later.
  56. Mar 1, 2012
    100
    The fact that Journey has so effectively condensed the experience into a two-hour interactive poem is an astonishing achievement. It is the evolution of Jason Rohrer's art game Passage, bringing an unmatched humanity to the experience through its multiplayer.
  57. 90
    Journey may be short, but it will leave you entranced for the entire ride. You will go from being mystified to intrigued to moved to much more. Throw out your expectations for platforming games and enjoy either the loneliness or the community in the desert of anonymity.
  58. Mar 13, 2012
    85
    Journey can be a commentary on human life, a story of redemption, a parable on futility of all efforts, or, quite the contrary, perseverance in the face of obstacles – even if you're not into waxing philosophical, you will still discover your own meaning of this three-hour journey.
  59. Mar 1, 2012
    100
    Experiences like Journey don't come around very often in any form of media. thatgamecompany's crafted an interactive tour de force that's triumphant in its ability to cycle through human emotions. It's a game that demands your involvement on a spiritual level, rather than a purely mechanical one, and while it's never preachy in its philosophical intentions, it's hard not to get wrapped up in the divine nature of Journey's tale.
  60. Mar 5, 2012
    100
    Journey is the surprise of the year. It is also a must-have title for everyone thinking that virtual worlds are meant to be more than just a playground where they would while a couple of mindless hours away.
  61. Mar 13, 2012
    90
    Journey is not the kind of game that you finish once and then shelve it forever. Here you play for the enjoyment of playing itself, not to reach a certain goal.
  62. Mar 12, 2012
    95
    I can ramble on about Journey for pages and pages on end but nothing I say can really explain the delight of such a game.
  63. Mar 1, 2012
    100
    Journey isn't a game - it's an experience. The few hours that this complete gem contains are completely breathtaking, and cement Thatgamecompany's status as visionaries.
  64. Mar 21, 2012
    100
    Journey is incredibly short - you'll finish in about two hours - and it's not really all that challenging in the traditional gameplay sense. But it will be meaningful to you in a way that a bigger, louder, flashier game won't.
  65. Mar 5, 2012
    90
    Once in a while a game comes along that makes you proud to be a gamer. It's the kind of game you want to show your parents to prove to them that it's not all explosions and fast cars. It's the kind of game that you want to tell Roger Ebert to go play after he makes inflammatory statements about how video games can never be art. And it's the kind of game that given the right platform and exposure, has the potential to resonate with an audience that doesn't usually care about games. Journey is one of those games.
  66. Mar 5, 2012
    97
    Even though it's only two hours long, you won't forget playing Journey anytime soon. And more importantly, you won't regret it: this game is absolutely gorgeous, complemented by simple, but incredibly effective gameplay. If you're a gamer with some form of self-esteem, you'll pick this up as soon as possible.
  67. Mar 2, 2012
    95
    The game is mighty abstract, but it's through this abstraction that it finds it greatest power. I feel very strongly that game designers don't latch on to enough mystery and narrative obliqueness; Journey is out there; its expression is magnificently visual and deceptively interactive.
  68. May 14, 2012
    90
    Clever, emotive, and easily the best downloadable game so far this year. [June 2012, p.58]
  69. Mar 22, 2013
    100
    An ethereal, innovative, emotional cooperative experience, thatgamecompany’s Journey is one that any PlayStation 3 owner should take.
  70. Mar 30, 2012
    90
    Some will find Journey too slight and too sparse an experience to justify the asking price. And that's fine, it deliberately speaks to an audience that will fall head-over-heels for its painterly style and worthy metaphors. But whatever camp you fall into, never say Journey isn't a video game. While it is one of the most expressive and unique titles of the medium, it is a video game. A magnificent one. Embrace it.
  71. Journey isn't a game, it's an experience. An awe inspiring experience that will give goose bumps at every other turn. You will notice soon enough when you flying through the bright blue sky accompanied by creatures that look like the love child of an octopus and a flying carpet. [April 2012, p.98]
  72. Mar 12, 2012
    90
    The game evokes an incredible amount of emotion from you, and it is the kind of game that its fans will play over and over.
  73. Mar 20, 2012
    93
    It still astounds me that a couple of hours of gameplay left such a profound impact.
  74. Mar 14, 2012
    95
    It might sound like like an exaggeration, but it's not - Journey makes people stop what they are doing and then it holds them in its thrall, making them sit down to watch in silence (barring the occasional exclamation.) When I played it towards the end of an entertaining Saturday night, my living room slowly filled up with my roommates' guests, none of them saying anything, just sitting and watching. If thatgamecompany ever decides to take over the world we will all be in trouble.
  75. Mar 13, 2012
    100
    Journey's visual and sound design sets new standards for interactive entertainment. This alone makes it an extraordinary work, but it's the way that these aesthetic elements come together with beautifully subtle direction and storytelling to create a lasting emotional effect that elevates this to one of the very best games of our time.
  76. Mar 19, 2012
    40
    It mostly reminded me of some of the dull and barely interactive bits of Uncharted 3. I think the lesson here is that deserts are often poorly suited to games without dune buggies...There's no challenge and no real gameplay, which isn't necessarily a criticism. It's sort of like Shadow of the Colossus without any colossi, or Ico without the little girl.
  77. Mar 1, 2012
    90
    Even though I often struggled to find meaning within the game's mysterious world, Journey doesn't need to be explained. It's still a fulfilling experience.
  78. Mar 12, 2012
    100
    After playing Journey, I couldn't get it out of my head for days. Journey goes left, where every other game goes right; the game is a crafted experience that has been built with such care and attention that it easily transcends the label of "game" and expands into a broad, delightful experience.
User Score
8.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 1129 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 34 out of 356
  1. Mar 13, 2012
    10
    Are you are tired of gaming? Has your interest in gaming been dulled over time with the endless games that are just the same but in a different clothing? Or are you just plain fed up of all that DLC and penny pinching that is plaguing the industry these days? Then let me tell you, you need this game!

    Save this game for a rainy day where your feeling a little melancholy, a little tired of the world around,
    close the door on society and make sure no one can interrupt you for the next two hours and be absorbed into what will be the most touching two hours of your gaming life!
    You will embark on a journey with another, they will become your video gaming soul mate for the next 2 hours. Both will share an understanding, like two people who speak different languages but can communicate just by knowing what the other person is gesturing. This is gaming nirvana and it has given me a little faith back in video games.
    When its done like this no other medium can speak to you this way! I'm afraid companies like this are in a minority but by god am I going to support them to put out more games like this. Ive stood up and applauded my favorite bands, Ive even stood up and applauded my favorite movie in the theater! But never and I mean never have I stood up and applauded a game after I have completed it, that is until now and I'm not ashamed to tell you that is exactly what I did...even shaking my own head in disbelief of what I was doing!....this piece of art is THAT good!
    Full Review »
  2. Mar 13, 2012
    10
    The word "experience" is thrown around a lot in the gaming industry these days, but this game is truly an experience like no other.From start to finish, it is a beautiful, emotionally engaging adventure and a real masterpiece. For anyone who says that video games can't be art, this game might have a few things to say to you. Full Review »
  3. Mar 14, 2012
    10
    I had never heard of this game when I bought it... I was just bored. When it finally finished downloading and I got to start playing, it quickly became one of the best things I've ever downloaded from the PS store. I love the silence, the lack of direction, and the mood music. I didn't realize that the other [whatever you are] that showed up at some point was actually another person. I thought it was just the computer... It was pretty jarring when the game ended so soon, but the environment was so rich that I didn't mind at all. I just liked running around the world, so I just played it over again... At least as much fun the 2nd time through. I'm going to have to go check out Flow and Flower now as well because Journey was just an incredibly enjoyable experience. Thanks ThatGameCompany! Full Review »