Graphics are an example of what remastered graphics should be
Content is sparse for this day and age
After 18 years, and 1 previous remaster for the PS3, Shadow of the Colossus returns with another remaster this year on the PS4.
While I’ve never played the game prior to the PS4 version, I’ve heard people talk about it. And it’s always been said to be a “masterpiece,” or that the game world had “nothing of its kind,” and even described “one of the best games ever made!”
I can see why people love the game, but I personally ain’t a huge fan.
For those who’ve never played the game, the gist of it is that you play as a character named Wander, and are tasked by a higher being to slay all the Colossi roaming the forbidden land in order to revive a a girl named Mono. Not much is really told about the story as the game was built to be a real open world RPG with no NPCs or extra equipment. There aren’t even any other monsters. The whole game is just you traveling on your horse to areas where you’d have to slay Colossi.
As there are no dungeons or obstacles to get to the Colossus, the only time game play actually comes in is when you engage the giant. The Colossi are designed in ways that makes each of them a different puzzle having to be solved through trial and error. Each Colossus has a unique weak point you have to attack in order to beat them… getting to those weak points, of course, pose a challenge.
With the bulk of the content in the game is contained within each Colossus fight, the rest of the content is pure open world available to you for exploration. To top off this experience, Shadow of the Colossus carries a pretty amazing, albeit short, story that unfolds with each Colossus slain.
What I really love about the remaster is the graphics. For a game originally made for the PS2 the developers really put in their time to make it feel native to a PS4 game. The graphics are incredibly crisp, allowing you to enjoy the scenery of the Forbidden Land to the smallest detail.
It’s easy to see why people love the game given its unique and brilliant design. However, to me, content is king–especially in this day and age where games usual hold back significant features to add them into DLCs.
With that said, Shadow of the Colossus will always have its place in the gaming Hall of Fame as I don’t think anyone else can pull off a game with such little story-driven content and still make it a nominated masterpiece, that qualifies as being relevant enough to be remastered.