Shadow of the Colossus Review

You're just a boy, with a sword, a horse, and a dream.

So, let me start this off by just being truthful from the get-go, I DID NOT play Shadow of the Colossus back in 2005, nor did I play this game back in 2011, this is my very first time playing Shadow of the Colossus. Thus, these thoughts are all fresh and nice and good.

The Knight, from Playstation

The Knight, from Playstation

When starting up this game, and watching the first set of cutscenes, a player can automatically see the love that Bluepoint - the company that remastered this iteration of the game, as well as the one back in 2011 - put a ton a ton a ton of love into this recreation. Everything from Wander, the protagonist, riding along through nature, to just the way the nature looks, it is all astounding. Which really brought me further into the game as no real information was given about this boy and his goal. From there Wander meets a full blown double voiced entity and your goals are set, you must defeat the 15 colossi that rule this land.

This opens up the next best part of the game, the actual battles. Bluepoint did an incredible job with pacing on the action. The tutorial is minimal, but it doesn't need to be anything but, and after the first colossus tumbles to the ground, you have learned everything you need to know to continue. Even when you get hit real hard by long tendrils of black energy and essentially die on the ground, that all pays off in the end. With each battle, I never knew what to expect next, and that helped because every three colossi or so, they changed up how they fought. The first few were docile, then they started to attack me, then they got small (?????, I will never know why) until the last one is just a HUGE powerhouse where all of your grip matters.

The next fun thing about each of the colossi are the overall aesthetic of them all. They sort of are a combination of rock, and grass, and fur, and abandoned structure. It helps tie the theme of the land all together to represent overall power from the colossi, which mirrors the large expanse of the world Wander explores, as well as the overpowering loneliness someone can feel while exploring.

Wander surveys his environment, from Playstation

Wander surveys his environment, from Playstation

Then after you finish up killing all of the dang large rock things, you finally get a nice climax on the unknown origins of Wander and his goal, which hurt my heart, but felt good and worth the wait.

But, with all the good, comes plenty of the bad. Where Bluepoint nailed it with graphics, they destroyed my insides with the far-from-perfect controls. The scheme was good, but when riding Wander's faithful companion Agro, I felt like I was trying to control an animal that hated every essence of my personal being. More wonky controls found themselves with the gripping and jumping mechanism when fighting, but that is really only where the bad boil up to.

Eric's Take: A Big Solid 9 out of 10

Good Stuff:

  • Solid Graphics
  • A REALLY good double voice thing
  • My Sword Glows

Bad Stuff:

  • Is it a horse or just two people in a suit?
  • Not enough things to kill, for example, more colossi