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I'm 3 Collosi in and hating Shadow of the Colossus - should I persist?

Forums - Gaming Discussion - I'm 3 Collosi in and hating Shadow of the Colossus - should I persist?

Biggerboat1 said: 

It seems to consist of riding through an empty, event-less, albeit pretty world, fighting a colossus... rinse and repeat... and that's it...

That's what the game is. No bullshit to run through, just bosses. If that's not your thing, no worries, move onto something with more bullshit to deal with. I think the draw for me back on PS2, was the sheer scale of the bosses. The next game to truly scratch that itch was the tower knight boss in Demon's Souls. 



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Just though I'd file a progress report - after my 2nd session I'm now 11 colossi down.

I've somewhat come around and am enjoying my time with it now that I've come to terms with what the game actually is.

It's quite an odd game - it has one formula and refuses to deviate even slightly (thus far anyway), right down to the repeating scene of the camera panning to the skylight in the temple to receive your next target.

I also think that the journeys to the colossi could do with some kind of challenge / puzzle element, as all they boil down to is following your sword's GPS until you arrive. The whole thing is just so unbelievably bare bones...

That said, I am quite enjoying the loop, as simple as it is.

It's definitely one of those games that is more than the sum of its parts - which is just as well, as apart from the art-style, it's parts are pretty average...

Even the boss battles themselves are actually quite basic, once you get passed the coolness of the design. There's normally a single gimmick that you need to figure out and that's all she wrote, which must have been a regression in boss battle complexity even back in the PS2 days... hell, even the PS1 / N64 days...

Anyway, I'll definitely finish it now, which is a big shift from where I was yesterday, so I'm definitely more positive about the game now - but a 91 in 2018 it most certainly ain't!



That is all the game is, for better or worse. Some people want a game that focuses on atmosphere and uses stretches of nothing to accentuate it. Some people want constant gameplay. Sounds like you're the latter, if you enjoy Spiderman. Might I recommend God of War or Horizon: Zero Dawn instead?



Just because the game is praised almost universally doesn't mean you have to like it. Just stop playing it if you don't like it, or just stick it out a little longer to see if it gets better.



I played SOTC first in 2013 on PS2 (!). I had no PS3, so I skipped the HD version. The longer I played the game, the more I liked it (although it's a bit repetitive).

Last year I began to play the Remaster on PS4, but the impact of the game wasn't that great as my first playthrough on PS2. The better graphics surely support the overall gaming experience, but if you know how to beat the colossi it's not the same experience like the first time. That's the fate of all puzzle based games, I think.

Ueda's games are always about friendship and escaping from an abandoned place. He's a master of subconscious storytelling. Have you recognized the change of Wanda's skin after killing more colossi? Have you felt the love Wanda has for the girl? He is willing to give up his life for her. And don't forget your faithful horse Agro, which has fear of the colossi but still supports you unconditional. Why do you accept to kill unique and innocent creatures? Don't you feel sorry for them?

Technically it's a simple game with a simple gameplay. But you need to try to read between the lines and play it with your heart instead of your head if you'd like to have chance to understand Ueda's messages. You should have many unanswered questions right now. It's a japanese game, not a western Hollywood movie. The high ratings are because of the idea of climbing your enemies, killing innocent creatures and questioning your approach, creating an atmosphere of a vast forbidden land and mostly because of the storytelling without words together with a brilliant soundtrack. 80 % of the (obvious) story are at the end of the game.



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siebensus4 said:
I played SOTC first in 2013 on PS2 (!). I had no PS3, so I skipped the HD version. The longer I played the game, the more I liked it (although it's a bit repetitive).

Last year I began to play the Remaster on PS4, but the impact of the game wasn't that great as my first playthrough on PS2. The better graphics surely support the overall gaming experience, but if you know how to beat the colossi it's not the same experience like the first time. That's the fate of all puzzle based games, I think.

Ueda's games are always about friendship and escaping from an abandoned place. He's a master of subconscious storytelling. Have you recognized the change of Wanda's skin after killing more colossi? Have you felt the love Wanda has for the girl? He is willing to give up his life for her. And don't forget your faithful horse Agro, which has fear of the colossi but still supports you unconditional. Why do you accept to kill unique and innocent creatures? Don't you feel sorry for them?

Technically it's a simple game with a simple gameplay. But you need to try to read between the lines and play it with your heart instead of your head if you'd like to have chance to understand Ueda's messages. You should have many unanswered questions right now. It's a japanese game, not a western Hollywood movie. The high ratings are because of the idea of climbing your enemies, killing innocent creatures and questioning your approach, creating an atmosphere of a vast forbidden land and mostly because of the storytelling without words together with a brilliant soundtrack. 80 % of the (obvious) story are at the end of the game.

That's a wonderful post!

Topic: I remember being in the same boat. When I played it back in the days I also asked myself what's so special about it, but I began to like it the more I played it. Now that you already decidied to finish the remaining five collosi, I think you will enjoy the rest of the game.



Gameplay > Graphics

Substance > Style

Art Direction > Realism

Last update. Just finished!

I have to say, some of the last bunch of Colossi were exhilarating, whereas the final one had me wanting to throw my controller through the TV. It's like they decided to build a boss to emphasise all of the most annoying aspects of the character movement (endless thrashing / imprecise jumping & climbing / misbehaving camera).

And that kind of sums the game up for me - it does some things really well and when it's firing on all cylinders it's a transcendent experience - the art, the music, the majesty of the colossi. But it also tests the patience pretty regularly...

Anyway, glad I played it, thanks to those who suggested ploughing through.

And I guess the main character is reborn & redeemed at the end, regardless of the horns...?



Biggerboat1 said:
Last update. Just finished!

I have to say, some of the last bunch of Colossi were exhilarating, whereas the final one had me wanting to throw my controller through the TV. It's like they decided to build a boss to emphasise all of the most annoying aspects of the character movement (endless thrashing / imprecise jumping & climbing / misbehaving camera).

And that kind of sums the game up for me - it does some things really well and when it's firing on all cylinders it's a transcendent experience - the art, the music, the majesty of the colossi. But it also tests the patience pretty regularly...

Anyway, glad I played it, thanks to those who suggested ploughing through.

And I guess the main character is reborn & redeemed at the end, regardless of the horns...?

And that is how you get ICO on PS2/PS3 ;)



I'll be honest. I loved Ico...and I loved Shadow of Collosus. But After Breath of the Wild, it would be difficult to go back to SotC. There just isn't enough to keep you moving forward. BotW owes a lot to SotC, but sometimes the student becomes the master.



It's one of my favorite games, and yet I can admit it's for everyone.

That said, the gripes with the controls seem to be an issue for many modern gamers. I loved Spider-Man as well, but the point of the gameplay is completely different.

In SotC, the controls shouldn't feel like your flying through the air doing whatever you want like a superhero. I actually enjoyed the immersion allowed by how tactile it feels. When the colossi move, Wander and you feel like you have to really hold on (him the monster, you the buttons on the control). Also, getting through a desolate world is another part of the immersion, but if you had controls like in Uncharted, what would there be to do? Just press forward? You would bounce off everything because of the assist and there's nothing else to do but travel and find/beat bosses (aside from the small side things like killing lizards), so making you work for it actually makes sense to me. Finally, the controls with Agro (the horse) seem to be hard, but they make sense. It's like steering a horse. You don't ride horses like you do motorcycles. Most games aim for ease, but this game wants you to be in its world. The controls, as polarizing as they are to some, seem completely intentional no matter if the game was made back 2005 or now.

I won't try to convince you to finish the game, because it just may not be your style. But if you do, embrace the design and don't try to mold it into other games that make things simple, easy, and gamey. Not saying those games suck. Like I said, I loved Spider-Man. But this is not that type of game.

The ending has a very big payoff, but if you can't overlook the game design. It might not be worth it to you.

*Edit just realized you beat it. Good on you for sticking it out. I typically just give up on games that I know aren't up my ally, because I don't have the time as a full-time working adult. But the types of games I like are super atmospheric and/or offer challenge. Bloodborne is another favorite.

Last edited by danasider - on 05 March 2019