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POSTED 2/10/11


ICO & SHADOW OF THE COLOSSUS CLASSICS HD

Sony



Few videogames are mentioned in such reverent tones as these two PS2 works. After all, if you’re a worthwhile gamer, you’ve played them forwards, backwards and possibly sideways, yeah?

Nuh. Not everybody had the chance originally, and it’s OK, you can admit it! Fuck the snob-knobbing elitists, ’cos you’re no less gamertastic if an ICO and/or Shadow of the Colossus neophyte. Actually, some might envy your virginity.

That’s definitely so with 2002’s beautiful, atmospheric ICO. If ever the line between interactivity and art was fuzzied, it was here. Big on visual exposition, there’s little in leaden story or dialogue, just dive in and wade blissfully. You guide a lad ousted from his village and subsequently sarcophagus-ensconced for being horny – erm, he has a built-in Viking helmet thing happening, so is considered e-vil. He’s a cleverclogs though and escapes, discovering a caged ghosty-princess needing rescue. She’s Yorda, and you’ll hold hands with her lots. Aww! Sadly, action cravers won’t dig ICO, as casual exploration’s punctuated only by occasional frenetic outbreaks battling icky black Yorda-nabbing blotty things.

ICO’s partner here, Shadow of the Colossus, is similarly storyistically minimalist. Unnamed boy with amply-arsed horse aims to revive girlfriend (uh, the boy’s, not the horse’s) by skewering 16 colossuses – or ‘colossi’ if you prefer. In 2005 the sight of massive beasties to best sent jaws thwutoomphing floorwards. Nowadays, meh.

ICO does suffer from obstreperous camera syndrome – you’ll be wrestling. It’s magnified in SotC, which suffers further from convoluted controls that’d make any bureaucrat engorged with pride. What’s the bigger battle? Conquering a massive creature whilst clambering upon it, or succeeding with borked controls?

Meanwhile, the HD/3D rejuvenation has accomplished wonders, especially for ICO. SotC’s bonussy if you reckon bigger’s better and possess the patience of something halo-topped, but we’re happy to ICO ICO all day.

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ALL WRITTEN CONTENT COPYRIGHT © AMY FLOWER 2008-2017. GAME IMAGES COURTESY OF RESPECTIVE GAMES COMPANIES.