Back in 2005 the hyper-genius space brain people over at Team Ico followed up their critically worshiped title Ico by releasing Shadow of The Colossus. A mammoth open world fantasy adventure where you play as a fragile little itty bitty fella, trying to tooth pick to death 16 Colossi that are pretty much drowsy mountain gods with giant sword and laser eyes.
The game was a glorious amalgamation of responsive game play, thoughtful design, a unique logic train, and a story that was presented like a heartbreaking whisper. It was critically venerated and considered by most to be a pillar of artist achievement within the industry.
So how do you follow that?
Well with nothing...
A leaked screen shot of a feather and a chain was the only hint of further output from team Ico for nearly 4 years until May 2009 when Playstation lifestyle Blog posted a video revealing a game titled Project Trico.
A reused score and art assets made of Play-Doh, heavy bloom and video compression spoke with no subtlety that the game was not ready to be seen but a finished trailer for the game was revealed later that year at TGS along with the games actual name, The Last Guardian.
The game was supposed to release sometime in 2011. A year that it completely whiffed on, in fact it missed that entire generation of counsels, and became something of an information negative space.
The game became semi-forgotten by the industry, only reappearing to debunk rumors of its own demise. That demise seemed to come last week when Sony let the trademark of the name Last Guardian enter abandoned statue. The video game community became infected with hysterical speculation that the game had finally shuffled off the mortal coil and joined Starcraft Ghost in video game Valhalla.
But instead it looks like The Last Guardian will be joining Duke Nukem forever on the video game pop stick. Sony has applied for recovery of the Trademark and again reassured everyone the game is still in development.
Gamers and fans continue to question what exactly has gone wrong? What has taken so long? Why the tits have we gotten no news other than the cryptic tease that that the game is continuing under “completely new condition.”
Former IGN editor Ryan Clements reported seeing a running playable version of the game behind closed doors back 2011 yet we have seen nothing and have been given no answers. Being purely speculative the answer we are looking for is as simple as it is unsatisfying. Creating shit is hard, especially good shit. When you look at something like Shadow of the Colossus and try to conceive the amount of work, planning and error that goes into something some mulch-dimensional in its success it enough to melt you cerebral cortex.
Just because you build something brilliant once doesn’t mean you can just fart out brilliance again. Having said that nearly ten years of development is well silly and doing so while keeping the public in the dark is a failure of marketing and disrespectful to your community.
No matter how good this game when it comes out. (if it comes out) it will still probably not be as good as the story of its own labor pains.