Generally favorable reviews- based on 76 Ratings
Jun 13, 2014A Playstation classic for sure.
I'll start by admitting that many gamers may not get into the game but I'd say that it can be appreciatedA Playstation classic for sure.
I'll start by admitting that many gamers may not get into the game but I'd say that it can be appreciated by everyone. Just like how some people can watch a classic movie and understand what makes it great but not enjoy watching it, everyone can play Shadow of the Colossus and see why its hailed as a masterpiece.
As most people will describe, its basically boss battle after boss battle with no smaller battles in between. In my opinion, this sells the game short. If you only gauge a game by it's battles then you're missing the point of this game entirely.
SotC puts you in the position of a wanderer who must save his love from a curse that appears to have put her into some sort of sleep. Each battle won brings us closer to her recovery but at the same time seems to sacrifice something of ourselves.
The player's journey to each Colossus is a huge part of the game. This is where some people feel bored because they're not engaged by the discovery of the world and finding where the Colossus is essentially hidden. Sometimes they're easy to find, sometimes you can go a while without being able to figure out where they are.
In some games, you look at your character and say "Why don't you know where to go. You've lived in this world forever you should know more than I do" but you ARE the Wanderer in the game. You are wandering with only the sword's light to guide you to your goal and its not GPS, its a guided direction that may take you to the face of a mountain or to the edge of a cliff. Its your job to figure out how to continue your journey.
The game gives you a simple mechanic and puts hidden features throughout. I don't recall anywhere it telling you that finding yellow fruit in a tree raises your health slighly or that killing and recovering the white tail of a lizard raises your stamina but its there. And guess what, it continues through multiple playthroughs so if you're a trophy hunter, this is a game that rewards that.
That is the biggest point to take away from the game, It will reward you somehow for your discoveries and your journey. Sometimes that reward is a beautiful view, sometimes its simply allowing you to unlock new equipment for the next playthrough. And upon doing so, some colossus change their places so memory doesn't always work in multiple playthroughs although I'll admit if you know where they all could be, you probably wont have much trouble.
Probably one of the biggest undersold parts of the game is the music. No other game has had a song that appropriately matches the excitement on the screen than the 5th colossus fight specifically (for me). Not to get too into that, I'll admit that fight is hard and also one of the more interesting battles to figure out.
This game does take boss battles and amps it to 11. Its not simply finding a weak point and stabbing it. Its getting to that weak point and dealing with the monster itself with it's personality and natural advantages.
If you're still considering buying this game:
Consider that this game doesn't hold your hand at all.
That the music is fantastic and environments, while now are dated in visuals, are still some of the most beautiful in design.… Full Review »
May 8, 2014Few games will give you a short playtime but lasting impression like sotc. Few games will ever be such a masterpiece like this one. You are onFew games will give you a short playtime but lasting impression like sotc. Few games will ever be such a masterpiece like this one. You are on an epic journey from start to finish and you never feel less than epic playing this game. It is for its best interest that this game has little story fed to you but rather lets you interpret it mostly the way you want to. An experience that must be shown to all who enjoy gaming… Full Review »
Feb 28, 2014I was very disappointed with this game, especially after how much I enjoyed "ICO". One thing I liked about the game is that the story isn't asI was very disappointed with this game, especially after how much I enjoyed "ICO". One thing I liked about the game is that the story isn't as subtle or minimalistic as it was in "ICO". I feel like this allowed me to get more involved in the game's world. The scenery here can also be very impressive at times even with the graphical aging that has taken place. I can see why this game is often used in the "are video games art?" debates, but outside of how beautiful and moving the game can be I find the experience to be throwaway. The gameplay really killed the experience for me.
The game is basically a constant stream of huge boss battles that come one after another. There's no enemies to fight in between these boss battles, and that is not a bad thing. I did find one or two of these battles to be particularly thrilling, and the sense of scale of some of the enemies is impressive and intimidating, but overall the battles are either tedious or boring. Some even feel downright broken. It is incredibly satisfying to take down one of these bosses, but often for the wrong reasons.
What really makes the bosses irritating are the controls. Aside from some odd design choices, things just haven't aged well. That being said I do not think the horse controls were ever considered good. The almost constantly draining stamina bar also adds a lot of frustration. The game eventually does get better as it progresses, but that is mostly due to the fact that as you play you will eventually get better with dealing with the controls inconsistencies and the stamina bar will grow. The boss battles aren't actually getting better, they are still stuck in a limbo of mediocrity, but all the issues get easier to deal with.
It's clear I did not really enjoy the game at all, but that's not to say that there aren't some good things here. The puzzles tied to beating these bosses can sometimes be ingenious, and this game gets a lot of respect from me for truly being a good example of video games as art. Overall I can't say that the game is horrible, but I can't bring myself to recommend it. If you simply must play it this downloadable PS3 version is probably the best way to do so thanks to things like trophy support. While I personally did not like the game it is clear that a lot of people do. All I can say is that the game has a lot of issues, both age and design related, so be wary of that if you decide to give this one a shot.… Full Review »