Ico, Shadow of the Colossus Confirmed for PS3 Re-Release

The latest issue of Japanese games mag Famitsu confirms what we’ve been expecting for a long, long time: Team ICO’s classic PlayStation 2 adventures Ico and Shadow of the Colossus are getting an HD makeover for the PlayStation 3.

Shadow of the Colossus

Hardly a surprise. Team ICO and Sony have been talking about the possibility of a Team ICO collection for the better part of a year. Retailers have already started taking orders for a PS3 compilation. But Sony’s making it official via Famitsu.

Unfortunately, the mag is light on details. Release date is still “undecided” and exactly how the HD re-release will be distributed is unclear. (Famitsu has two separate listings for each game, as opposed to the bundled release hinted at by retailers.)

We expect to hear more about the Ico and Shadow of the Colossus—and Team ICO’s third game, The Last Guardian—later this week at the Tokyo Game Show.


Famitsu Reveals New The Last Guardian Details

This week’s Famitsu issue features an interview with Team Ico’s Fumito Ueda about his upcoming Playstation 3 game, The Last Guardian.

In the interview, he stated that game will utilize a new physics engine so that the character’s animation will look more realistic. The development team is especially focused on trying to make the mysterious creature, Trico, look alive.

The Last Guardian

On the gameplay front, Fumito Ueda revealed that The Last Guardian will feature many of the same elements found in Ico and Shadow of the Colossus. With that said, he promises that his latest project will be different and unique.

Finally, Fumito Ueda was surprised by the positive reactions, especially from the West, when The Last Guardian was revealed during Sony’s E3 2009 press conference. As a result, he and his team are feeling more pressure than ever before.

Although no release date has been set, Fumito Ueda said to expect more information regarding The Last Guardian later this year, possibly at E3 or the Tokyo Game Show.


Shadow of the Colossus to Be Re-Released?

According to Japanese retailers, cult PS2 hit Shadow of the Colossus may be seeing a re-release next February as Sony gears up for the release of The Last Guardian.


Fumito Ueda and his Team Ico have been responsible for two of the most beloved games of the last generation: Though 2001’s Ico and 2005’s Shadow of the Colossus didn’t sell in the neighborhood of Modern Warfare 2 (or even Uncharted 2, for that matter) they were critically acclaimed and extremely well-received by the people who did play them – which is why expectations for Ueda’s third game The Last Guardian are so high.

It seems that Sony may be trying to capitalize on the love for the previous Team Ico games – specifically Shadow of the Colossus, which significantly outsold its predecessor – in promoting The Last Guardian. A poster at the Team Ico Gamers blog noted that “all major Japanese retailers” were listing Wanda and the Colossus (Best Edition) – that is, the Japanese title of SotC – for release on the PS2 on February 4th, 2010.

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No Multiplayer Planned for The Last Guardian

While perhaps not the most surprising bit of news to come out of the Tokyo Game Show,  Fumito Ueda confirmed in an interview with 1UP that his latest game, The Last Guardian, will not include any multiplayer features.

Ueda’s previous games have been highly focused single-player titles, and the first trailer released for The Last Guardian suggests a similar approach. However, previously, he had mentioned in an interview with Famitsu that he was considering online features for the game.


In the interview, Ueda clarified that such features would not involve multiplayer gameplay, but that he “can’t really commit to anything right now” regarding what they might be because he is unsure of whether they will make it into the final product.

Fumito Ueda Hints at Movie Invovlement

During a chat last week with Kotaku about The Last Guardian, developer Fumito Ueda discussed two key, but uncertain, developments regarding his much-loved PlayStation 2 work — Shadow of the Colossus.

Ueda indicated that he will play some role in the creation of the April-announced Shadow of the Colossus movie. The project would turn into a movie the Ueda-directed 2005 PS2 adventure that featured a boy wandering the plains, hunting quiet lumbering beasts. “It won’t be that I’m completely not involved,” he said of the film.

The developer shied away from providing details about the planned movie.


The spring announcement of the Hollywood project was received skeptically among gamers scorched by a film industry that has failed to make good movies about games half as subtle and respected as Shadow of the Colossus. Ueda’s apparent involvement in the film, if significant enough, could calm some of that concern.

The Source of Inspiration for The Last Guardian

Fumito Ueda, the creator of Ico, Shadow of the Colossus, and forthcoming Last Guardian got a cat when he started making his new game. And in a recent interview with Kotaku, he talked about his feline inspiration.

“The idea behind the creature, for me, it is based on a cat,” Ueda said through a translator during a sit-down chat with Kotaku in a meeting room at this year’s Tokyo Game Show. “Whether it looks like it or not is up to the viewers of the game. But to me it looks like a cat, mixing in other elements from household pets like birds and dogs, mixing in some of the cute aspects of those types of animals.” Gamers could be forgiven from seeing a lot of bird in it. The creature is called Torico in Japanese. “Tori” is the Japanese word for bird.

The Last Guardian

Torico, or Trico as it is being called in English, is, nevertheless, a cat to him. What Ueda thinks it is is important, of course. But the fact that its creator seems unbothered that other people might see it differently is an Ueda signature. His games are not made to declare, but to suggest . Maybe the boy hunting colossal giants is a hero. Maybe he is a villain. The lines of definition are soft, the sunlight on the scene grayed.

Why “Last Guardian” Was Given an English Name

Team Ico’s eagerly anticipated upcoming PS3 title The Last Guardian has an English title. There must be a reason for that. Turns out, there is.

Yasuhide Kobayashi, the VP of Sony’s Japan Studio, states at the DICE Summit Asia that the game was given an English title so it would appeal to the US and European markets, reports game site Games Industry.

“There are so many issues we have to solve, and the biggest challenge is that the market in Japan is shrinking — they key is gaining success in the US and Europe,” stated the exec. “At the time of the original PlayStation the Japanese market was one third of the global market, and production costs weren’t that high — so we were able to generate profit from that market alone.

“But now we’re in the era of the PlayStation 3, and the Japanese market is only one fifth of the global market — when it comes to production costs, those are swelling, so it means that unless we gain success in the overseas market our studio will go bankrupt,” said Kobayashi. “It’s a crisis we recognize.”


Secret Message in The Last Guardian Trailer

Everybody agrees that the trailer for The Last Guardian looks visually spectacular. However, what you might not have noticed is that a secret message also lies hidden withing the majestic footage.

At around the halfway point of the trailer, the title “The Last Guardian” fades into the picture. Parts of the title faded in faster than the others, forming the letters “I,” “C” and “o”.

The secret message can be seen on the image below:

The Last Guardian secret message


Fumito Ueda Talks Trico

Although it was surrounded by two hours worth of major announcements and unveilings, the trailer for Team Ico’s first PS3 project, The Last Guardian was, for many, the highlight of Sony’s E3 press conference yesterday.

Fumito Ueda

As you might have guessed, players take control of the little boy from the trailer. The basic game design has the boy being young and thus weak and lacking abilities. The giant eagle makes up for these areas. As a young boy, the main character cannot rely on his strength to get past obstacles. However, perhaps he can overcome some trials by bringing the eagle with him.

The eagle itself has been drawing quite a bit of attention for its unique design. As detailed by Ueda, the current design was arrived at by treading closely the line between things looking natural and things looking unnatural. A big issue is that when recreating elements of dogs and cats, for instance, the unnatural will easily stand out amongst those who actually care for dogs and cats as pets. In addition to this, the eagle’s designers had to take into consideration areas relating to game design.

The flow of the game is a bit of a mystery right now. Asked if your movement through the stages will be seamless, Uedo said that it’s seamless as far as there being no load times as you move about. However, there is an order to the locations that you visit.

To read the full article, head over to IGN.com