Looks Like Bluepoint Has Brought Back Sony’s Gem
PSX, as everyone knows, is a PlayStation experience. But it wasn’t going to be much of an experience for me without playtesting Shadow of the Colossus. Back in 2005, this was one of the greatest games on PlayStation 2, and it’s coming back as a remake. So how does a remake hold up this generation?
For the record, I played and completed the original Shadow of the Colossus and maintained a pretty good memory of each battle. This upgrade plays pretty well and looks swell. During the demo, I went up against boss number three, or the third colossus. There are still 16 bosses total, as far as I know, and from what I experienced, Bluepoint is very much staying true to the original game. Of course, this time I was taken by the upgraded visuals, the improved sound design, immaculate textures—just about everything. And for the most part, the controls feel like the original. Maybe a little less frustrating, but it has been a while. There is one tiny, little misstep I noticed in this build, and I just want to get it out of the way. What made this remake feel like an unfinished game was how the player character’s feet would clip when jumping on an uphill slope. Basically, his feet disappeared into the ground. More of a nit-pick than anything.
“Make no mistake, you’re getting a better, polished version of the same game that released in 2005.”
With all its features, Shadow of the Colossus was worth replaying and kept fresh via all the improvements. Make no mistake, you’re getting a better, polished version of the same game that released in 2005. But as I rode, swam, and climbed my way to Gaius (the third colossus), the world and effects utterly floored me. This game is more immersive than ever, more immersive than many current open-world games. Moreover, there’s still no game like it.
As you meet and lay witness to the colossi this time around, their majesty comes through in all the aforementioned upgrades. When they walk, the earth shakes; the particle effects are figuratively and metaphorically staggering. You almost feel the wind with every articulation of their bodies. Thus, as you’re climbing these colossal beings, you really feel like the tiny underdog. Scale has always been a pillar feature of the experience, and there’s still no comparison here. It is a game with visceral frames that I believe the original creators would have strived for. This is Shadow of the Colossus.
Like the original, the battle against the third colossus is as much a puzzle as it is a grief. What makes boss battling more difficult in this remake is the distraction of beautiful world as you avoid falling off what is essentially a moving tower. Like before, the key to winning is your power of observation. This is true if you’ve never played the game or if you’re memory is hazy.
Bluepoint is truly recapturing all the greatness of Team Ico’s original Shadow of the Colossus and refining it. These are my thoughts after taking seeing a battle through, from start to finish. From what I experienced, the game is easily worth a replay from veterans and a serious look from newcomers.