The Last Guardian Reviews
The divide between the highs and lows of The Last Guardian is staggering. For every wonderful moment of absolute beauty and emotional attachment to its lifelike companion, there's an equal and opposite baffling moment that ruins the mood with frustrating controls and camera angles. But I found myself willing to put up with all of these hiccups if it meant experiencing any of its multitude of incredibly-beautiful moments.
Does the successor to Ico and Shadow of the Colossus live up to its lineage? It does so much more.
Not quite up to the same standards of its predecessors, but this is still an emotionally draining and beautifully realised story of friendship against the odds.
A moving adventure starring an extraordinary companion. Framerate issues intrude, but don't let them stop you from finishing this wonderful game.
The Last Guardian forges a connection between the player and Trico unlike anything else in gaming. You need to experience it, despite its problems in other areas
The Last Guardian's peerless animation and character development bring a fascinating relationship between boy and beast to life.
The Last Guardian bounces between highs and lows without ever fully living up to its legacy
Eschewing the spare storytelling of previous Team Ico games, The Last Guardian's plot unfolds in a series of easily digestible cutscenes. It's a dark fairy tale that probably isn't quite what anyone expected, but ultimately serves to make the friendship at the core of the game even more remarkable. The Last Guardian is about two lost souls becoming one, and the strength and joy found in that conjunction.
Playing The Last Guardian reminds me a lot of playing Half-Life games: The actual moment-to-moment of working my way through the game involves an enormous amount of frustration and annoyance... but when I look back at it, all I see are the happy memories of the experience. That's due in large part to the incredible design of Trico, and also to the spectacular emotive ending. Make no mistake, though, you will want to tear your hair out throughout your journey with Trico... but patient players will find the payoff justifies the suffering.
Like Team Ico's past work, talking about The Last Guardian too much inherently drifts into spoiler territory, but we have years to unpack this. For now, I'm confident in saying that although it isn't their best work, there really aren't too many directors out there like Fumito Ueda, and I hope for our sake, he continues making games.
The Last Guardian is a frustrating experience, and I'm not talking about its difficulty. While the game is hard, that is more than welcome in a puzzle platformer, a genre no stranger to the easy, cinematic throwaway set pieces.
The Last Guardian is not perfect, but those issues are nothing compared to its wonderful gameplay and its beautiful setting. This game and its soundtrack will live forever in the gaming world.
Review in Spanish | Read full review
All round, The Last Guardian feels meticulously pieced together and is easily one of the PlayStation 4's stronger exclusive titles. It's risky and unconventional, flouting modern design practices in a way that few other AAA game would dare to in 2016. Although far from perfect and a little worn from age, it's a one of a kind experience and hopefully won't be the last we see from Fumito Ueda and this enchanting world.
Overall, The Last Guardian for all its faults is a good game and one that I have enjoyed. Yes, there are many frustrating elements, amplified by the fact they feel unnecessary and out of character for the series, but the journey this game takes you on is a worthwhile one.
All in all, I didn't really enjoy the game as a whole when looking at its mechanics, narrative and characters separately, thanks to technical issues and bizarre choices that mar it as an interactive experience. But I did find a forever friend in Trico, who I'll remember for the rest of my time in gaming. If you do play The Last Guardian, I surmise that's the takeaway you'll have from it too.
The Last Guardian is an incredible journey with an unforgettable friend... plagued by a poor camera and some frustrating moments.
Review in Italian | Read full review
Buy it if you're ready to be an exceptionally patient pet owner. Watch some videos online otherwise.
The Last Guardian is a marvelous achievement in a number of ways. Its story is subtle, but beautiful. Its world is fascinating and mysterious. And Trico will go down as one of the best characters ever made for a video game. Players are in for a wonderful treat, but that quality comes at a cost. The game struggles to run well at times, and the controls can be a chore. You will also need to be patient, as Trico truly acts as a living animal, not something you can just control like any other video game character. If you can get past these things though, you will find an experience like none other, and one that is truly worth the effort.
The world is stunning, the bond between the boy and Trico is a beautiful example of love and friendship, and the story is gripping, it's just a shame there are so many technical issues holding it back.