Shadow of the Colossus: Death List & Unbiased Review

Deaths #1-3: The First Colossus

These were legitimate “experimental deaths” because I had no clue what could kill me, nor did I have any clue what I was doing.

Death #4: The Waterfall

On the way to the fifth colossus, I swam down a waterfall, marking the first time in the history of the universe that a fictional character was killed by a waterfall.

Deaths #5-6: The Eighth Colossus

This bitch colossus was too scared to fight me head-on, so it tried poisoning me with its pussy mist. It worked. The mist drains your life bar without visibly affecting your character, so you don’t realize you’re being killed until you’re already dead.

Death #7: The Eleventh Colossus

“I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!”

Death #8: The Fifteenth Colossus

I approached the edge of a cliff. An invisible guard rail kept me from falling off.

I tried to jump off the cliff. Didn’t work.

I tried to roll off the cliff. Didn’t work.

A colossus stomped on the ground. I ingloriously plummeted to my death.

Deaths #9-19: The Bridge of Sighs

This goddamn bridge was by far the deadliest boss in the game. I’m sure it killed me more than 11 times, but for Death List purposes, anything that kills me more than 10 times gets recorded as 11 deaths.

Death #20: The Sixteenth Colossus

It looked cooler in the game

Yet another gravity-related death: its rapid-fire energy blast knocked me off a cliff.


Three things that sucked:

1. The Hints for the Twelfth Colossus

Although some of the battle strategies took me up to two hours to figure out, I was proud of myself for not having to resort to a strategy guide to defeat any of the first eleven colossi. Granted, I relied on the game’s built-in hints quite often, but those hints were the good kind: helpful without completely giving away the strategy. All was well until I fought the twelfth colossus.  I climbed onto its back only to get the following message:

What the hell is that supposed to mean? “Do something else?” Thanks a lot, mysterious spirits. The second hint was even worse:

Cross to higher ground

Higher ground than the colossus I’m standing on? There isn’t any, except for the cliffs and bridge in the background. So I spent about two hours running around the map trying to “cross to higher ground.” Finally I gave up and looked at a strategy guide.

Apparently I was supposed to get on top of those little stone gazebos (which by my calculations was lower ground). I thought about doing that before receiving the hint, but I had no idea how to get on top. My only option was to jump from the colossus, which was nowhere near the gazebos. The strategy guide told me that I could steer the colossus toward a gazebo my smacking the crap on its head. How the hell was I supposed to figure that out?

After this battle, I got lazy and resorted to strategy guides twice more.

  • The Fifteenth Colossus (to locate its special area)
  • The Sixteenth Colossus (to find out what to do once I got on its second hand)

2. Holes

Fourteen of my Twenty deaths were hole-related. I’m sick of holes. They’ve been my worse enemies since I started playing video games (Super Mario Brothers). If I never see another hole, I will die a happy man.

3. Agro (Battles 1-8)

The stupid horse couldn’t do anything right.

Three things that rocked:

1. The Colossi

Badass. Every single one of them. Even the worthless ones (I’m looking at you, Colossus #4).

2. Changing the Title

The game’s original title was Wanda and the Colossus.

3. Agro (Battles 9-16)

I love Agro. He saved my ass so many times.

As usual, I shall take recommendations for my next PS2 game. I want to do an RPG this time around. Based on previous recommendations and my subsequent research, I’m leaning towards Odin Sphere.