Okay, Before I get anyone's hopes up, at the time of me writing this post, The Last Guardian isn't available for purchase yet. But it IS coming out in two days time. So you might as well say the game has been released.
But what exactly IS The Last Guardian? It's the spiritual sequel to Shadow of the Colossus, which, in turn, is the spiritual prequel to ICO. This game has been through a lot in it's development. It's coming out as a PS4 exclusive, but was MEANT to be released on the PS2.
For those of you who haven't heard of the previous games I mentioned, I'll provide a brief, spoiler-free recap of both games.
ICO is a puzzle-platformer game where the titular horned boy must escape from a castle while protecting a girl with mysterious powers.
Shadow of the Colossus, in addition to being one of my all-time favorite video games, is the hidden gem of the PS2 era. In this game you play as a warrior named Wander (not to be confused with the protagonist of the cartoon Wander over Yonder) who goes on a quest to bring the woman he (presumably) loves back from the dead by defeating the eponymous stone giants.
But what's the story for The Last Guardian? Well, basically, you play as a boy (kind of like in ICO) who befriends a large creature that is apparently named Trico (which is a punny name, because this is the third game in the ICO universe!). Also, the boy seems to be hunted by these ghostly knight looking dudes (maybe they're armored versions of the Smokemen from ICO!?). That's all I know about the story because I'm getting this game and I want as little information as possible. Heck, all the info on this very blog post is basically everything from the trailer.
Am I the only one who thinks that Trico is constantly
crying? S/he even has little tear lines!
Also, I'm just going to say that I find the concept of cooperating with a giant griffon to solve puzzles is cool.
Although I should explain that while Trico bears a resemblance to griffons (a mythical creature that is half-lion, half-eagle), Trico's design is (from what I heard) supposed to be a mix-and-match of several different animals that the creator of this game has had as pets at some point in his life (dogs, cats, birds, etc).
Oh, and I should mention that considering this game almost got cancelled TWICE and has been in development limbo for 9+ years, it's a miracle we are this close to getting the game.
But before I can actually get this game, I would like to explain some things about WHY am I so excited about playing this game. One, IT'S MADE BY THE SAME TEAM THAT MADE SHADOW OF THE COLOSSUS!!! Two, the whole mechanic of cooperating with a griffon-like monster the size of King Kong to solve puzzles and defeat enemies sounds really fun. And finally, the game looks and sounds amazing (judging from the trailers).
I'm guessing, based on my experience with the
last two games, will at some point *grow horns
on his head.
But there are a few things I am worried about with The Last Guardian. First, ICO's camera was horrendous. Shadow of the Colossus's controls were a little finicky and the fact that Wander got stunned by literally everything made some boss battles needlessly frustrating. If either of these return in The Last Guardian, then that will hamper my enjoyment of the game.
Secondly, there are currently three ways for this game's story to end. Either the griffon dies, the boy dies, or neither of them die. Who knows, maybe they'll both die? Why do I feel this way. The bond between the boy and Trico is that of a "Boy and his dog" bond. And they ALWAYS kill one of them off towards the end. Well, except for The Good Dinosaur, but that movie was so sad anyway that killing off one of the two mains in that movie would be one step too far.
Either this is a brand new location, or a heavily
fortified **Forbidden Land.
And thirdly, this game, along with Digimon World: Next Order, that Spider-Man game Insomniac Games is making, and Tales of Berseria, is my most highly anticipated game in a LONG time. So naturally, my expectations are quite high. Not like "This game must be a instant classic with perfect everything or I will hate it" levels of hype, but more like "If Last Guardian can surpass Shadow of the Colossus, then happy days. If not, oh well".
The last thing I will say before publishing this post is that I am very excited to get this game, and also, am I the only one who thinks Trico looks cute AND terrifying at the same time? I thought only Tokomon from Digimon could do that, but here comes Trico, who is both cute AND terrifying at the same time.
*- In case you don't understand, the main hero of ICO has horns on his head all the way up until the final boss battle, where they get broken off. Wander from Shadow of the Colossus grows a pair of horns after, SPOILERS FOR A REALLY OLD GAME, he gets possessed by a demigod known as Dormin. Coincidence? I THINK NOT.
**- The Forbidden Land is a location from Shadow of the Colossus, It's an island connected to the mainland only by a single bridge made out of what I think might be marble. Said bridge gets destroyed by the end of the game, which makes my theory that the island pictured is just a more fortified Forbidden Land seem more legit because obviously there aren't any visible bridges (from the angle we can see from). But there's no way to be sure until I actually play the game. I'll let you know if my theory is correct.
P.S. Sorry if this post seemed kind of short.