We race, almost panic-stricken, between the giant feet of the Colossus - just try not to be crushed! But surely one can hold on to something? In the Shadow of the Colossus, we are in fact not just running around in the shadow of the giant monster - we have to climb it and find its particular weak points. The original game from 2006 gave us quite a special gaming experience. Shadow of the Colossus concentrated on the important aspects, while revealing a depth that one initially had not expected. We are delighted to resume the journey with Wander and hope that many new players will also find their way to this masterpiece.
A huge step forward in liveliness
First the most important question: what is new? Fortunately, not all that much. We would say that the perfect balance between old and new has been struck. In direct comparison between the first PS2 version, the PS3 edition and now the PS4 remake the similarities are striking - even camera control has been kept almost unchanged. However, it is noticeable how fresh Shadow of the Colossus appears, rich in contrast and detail. The Colossus and the whole landscape give a much livelier effect, even if loneliness and melancholy are still very tangible.
16 colossi, in exchange for one girl
As so often, the brave hero of the story is acting out of love. Mono has been sacrificed, and Wander wants to bring her back to life at any price. To achieve that, he sets out for a temple shrouded in legend, in a hidden country where just this is thought to be possible. There, he learns from a ghostly voice of the power of his sword and the 16 Colossuses. Wander must defeat them, in order to liberate the power of resuscitation. He is recklessly determined to do everything to save Mono - regardless of the consequences
A sword as a compass
Our sword shows us the route to the Colossi: the reflections of the sun on the blade are our compass, leading the way. As in the original, we have to defeat the colossi in a particular sequence. Accordingly, the world is not completely open and accessible, and we are guided along the route by invisible barriers. Nevertheless, there is quite a bit of space for discovery, if we just ride on our horse Argo for a couple of turns off the route and quietly observe the enchanting natural surroundings.
If we have found the next Colossus, the challenge is to slash through its luminous sign with our sword. To achieve that, we need to climb high – compared with the giants we are just like ants. The great challenge consists mostly in finding the right starting point for the climb. Sometimes we first need to watch the Colossus, study its pattern of movement and perhaps distract it. Our efforts will finally be crowned with an epic crash, when the slain Colossus hits the ground, remaining only as a gigantic memorial. We are left with a curious feeling of emptiness, wondering what right we had to destroy such an ancient life...
Three reasons not to miss Shadow of the Colossus
- The capabilities of the PS4 pro are used: we can choose between two playing modes. In the Cinematic Mode our eyes are delighted by a higher resolution with 30 frames per second - the Performance Mode turns the resolution down somewhat, but on the other hand runs at up to 60 fps.
- The soundtrack has something magical about it - just like the story of Wander and the Colossi. In the remake, we are again accompanied by the the familiar chords with their mixture of classic strings, thunderous drums and oriental tones. The sound just rings somewhat more powerful and clear – it is otherwise almost untouched.
- The main reason to play Shadow of the Colossus (again): despite all the polished new technology, the emotions have stayed the same. When we ride through the stark and abandoned landscape on our trusty Agro and face the powerful Colossi, the same pleasant shiver runs down our spine as twelve years ago.