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    jp's The Last Guardian (PS4)

    [October 7, 2021 06:28:30 PM]
    I appreciate that the game was not super long (having recently finished it) and, I guess I'm still processing a lot of things in the game. Mostly trying to make sense of how great some things are and how other things are much less so - all while trying to figure out (for myself) how important/unimportant these things are.

    I think that what I've appreciated most about the design of the game - even when it didn't work for me - is the general freedom and openness of the experience. There's no waypoints, map, and barely any guidance into where it is your supposed to go or do. There is a "hint" system of sorts that gives some advice. I think it triggers after a certain amount of time has passed without "progress", but there might be additional triggers.

    So, the game FEELS quite liberating in the sense that I really enjoyed the sense of wonder and exploration of seeing and traversing these incredible environments that left me in awe and full of questions. Who built all this? Where are they now? Why did they build all this? Etc.

    In that sense, the game is a delightful experience because so many things are opaque (as in, not super highlighted or signalled to the player). I was often wondering - can I climb up that area, can I reach this place or that, and so on. Having recently finished Ghost of Tsushima - where this is a lot of environmental traversal, it was clear how much more subtle and toned down things are in Last Guardian. This felt much more natural to experience, though it often got quite frustrating as well - when you get to a point where you don't know what to do next.

    So, the game tries to balance these two things - let players figure stuff out, enjoy the unknown - but at the risk of (and it happened often enough that I think it's fair to comment on it) getting frustrated, bored or otherwise disengaged.

    I guess now that I'm reflecting and writing this out, that might be the general theme of the game - here's this thing that is really interesting and compelling, but it will fall completely flat on its face more times than you'd like, but not enough that you'll quit altogether.

    I'm also impressed by the restraint in the game design - it really is entirely about moving through the environment (with or without Trico) - there's no inventory, stuff to pick up (mostly), progression systems, combat systems, etc. It's super barebones - yes there is "combat" of sorts - but very limited in both options and availability. For example, early in the game you get a shield you learn to use to get Trico to blast stuff. However, you quickly lose that shield. Later in the game you get it back, and you use it to blast stuff - but the blasting is much "worse" (slower to fire). Also, it wasn't until the very end of the game that I realized that you could "pull" the heads of the moving statues when they're on the ground. However, it's a risky move, that takes time to pull off, and wasn't that much better than running around waiting for Trico to take care of the enemies.

    So, the game has its moments - but when it shines - oh wow! My favorite moments are probably those when hanging on to Trico for dear life as he/she/it leaps to a new place...and desperately trying to see if that's where I want to go (or think I should go). It was 100% vertigo. Audio work, the motion and movement of the camera, and above all Trico's animation - I could tell when he/she/it was about to leap!
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    Status

    jp's The Last Guardian (PS4)

    Current Status: Finished playing

    GameLog started on: Saturday 25 September, 2021

    GameLog closed on: Thursday 7 October, 2021

    Opinion
    jp's opinion and rating for this game

    No comment, yet.

    Rating (out of 5):starstarstarstarstar

    Related Links

    See jp's page

    See info on The Last Guardian

    More GameLogs
    other GameLogs for this Game
    1 : The Last Guardian (PS4) by Chimes (rating: 5)
    2 : The Last Guardian (PS4) by Chimes (rating: 5)
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    4 : The Last Guardian (PS4) by choli (rating: 4)
    5 : The Last Guardian (PS4) by dreimanatee (rating: 5)
    6 : The Last Guardian (PS4) by edGarcia (rating: 5)
    7 : The Last Guardian (PS4) by GingerbreadFetus (rating: 4)
    8 : The Last Guardian (PS4) by jwiser (rating: 5)
    9 : The Last Guardian (PS4) by Phosk (rating: 5)
    10 : The Last Guardian (PS4) by vic1500 (rating: 5)

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