Shadow of the Colossus | REVIEW | PlayStation 4


Shadow of the Colossus isn’t a new game by any means, and I’m sure there are some younger gamers who may not have even heard of the game. The game first launched in 2005 on the PS2, it was followed by a remastered version in 2011 on PS3, and now it’s considered as a remake on the PS4. Is the third time really a charm? In one word, yes.

Basically, you play the part of a young boy who wants to resurrect a slain young girl, and you do this by slaying colossal creatures that roam a forbidden land. Seems logical. Other than the 16 colossi that you have to slay, the game offers no enemies, and nothing can really kill you aside from a steep fall. It’s cinematic in a way, and you’ll realize this within the first 10 minutes of play.

Playing on a PS4 Pro is definitely the ideal way to enjoy Shadow the Colossus, and I think it goes without saying that you should be playing on a good 4K TV w/HDR support. I made the switch between 4K and HDR myself just to see if it was a noticeable difference and I immediately such a huge upgrade in quality. It’s extremely pleasing to watch something as simple as your horse riding across the countryside and the hairs from its mane and tail flowing freely in the wind. The draw distances with far-off mountains, canyons and dense forests are simply stunning.  Furthermore, the shadows and rays of light parsing through the trees, against the mountains, or across the open fields is purely eye candy.

Remakes, remaster, whatever you wish to call them, are sometimes really amazing. At other times this may not be the case. One thing we’ve all come to see in types of games is the fact that a new coat of paint doesn’t necessarily make the game all around better. As a recent example, let’s briefly mention Crash Bandicoot. Great classic games, fun and challenging… and the new one is offers this, but it also features some archaic controls and basic mechanics. That being said, if you’re expecting a totally modern game with this release of SOTC, don’t. It’s still the game at its core, and sometimes the camera angles will be nothing short of terrible, and the same can be said for that of its climbing mechanics. Assassin’s Creed, it is not.

While the overall point of the game is to slay the colossi scattered across the land, I’d say half the enjoyment you’ll experience in the game comes from simply hunting then down.  At any point in the game, you can hold up your sword, as long as you’re in direct sunlight anyhow, and by focusing the camera in the right direction, a beam of light will aim directly toward your target. It’s not always as simple as riding in a straight line though. Sometimes you’ll have to cross massive bridges, trek up a mountainside, or slowly maneuver your way through a twisted forest, and even discover a hidden underground temple.  Once you find the colossal beasts, you’ll have to figure out how to even get to their weak points to slay them, so there’s a fun puzzle-solving aspect to the game as well.  Despite the beasts trying to crush you, or kill you through any other means, you can’t help but feel slightly emotional when you plunge your sword into them numerous times, and when that final strike takes place, it’s a little bit sad.

There’s not really that much more I can tell you about Shadow of the Colossus. It was always considered to be an amazing game, and it still is. I’ve always told people, graphics don’t make a game, but when I had the opportunity to play this one again, I was a tad bit excited. Needless to say it was still a fantastic experience the first time, but having the added power of the PS4 Pro really enhanced an already great experience to make it truly unforgettable. Shadow of the Colossus truly is a magical experience from start to finish.

From the trek to discover each colossus, to the puzzle of figuring out to take it down, and the final plunge of your sword, Shadow of the Colossus offers fantastic gameplay from start to finish.
Whether it's the rays of light breaking through a dense forest, the sparkling waters, or the vast open canyons or towering mountains, it's all stunning to see. That's not to mention the pure beauty of each colossus as well.
The music tracks tend to really pick up during the battles against each colossi, and it feels like the perfect accompaniment to the David vs. Goliath style of battles.
9.5Final Score

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