Movie Review: Black Panther

Marvel fans have been in heaven for the past few years. The films have been getting better each year, and the universe is expanding to be more fleshed out. However, two significant problems have been pointed out for a long time. Villains often fall flat, and there is a lack of diversity in the MCU. Thankfully we have Black Panther that correctly addresses both of these significant issues that fans have been complaining about in the MCU.

There is a lot of hype behind this movie with its glowing reviews from both critics and audiences along with the records that have been broken by this film. Left and right this film is crushing the box office. The film had a high bar set from experts, but when it came out those expectations were blown away by how wildly successful Black Panther turned out to be. So, the big question is that whether this film is worth it or not, and the answer is yes!

The film is set after Captain America: Civil War in which Wakanda’s leader dies in an explosion. T’Challa (Chadwick Boseman) comes home to take part in a ritual that will set him as the new leader of his home country, but make him the Black Panther. This role is not only a king but a warrior and much more. After getting some evidence that a long time villain to his country, especially his father, Klaue (Andy Serkis) who is making a deal in South Korea. After an attempt to get him, a new foe reveals himself. This introduces Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan) who wants to become the new king of Wakanda. T’Challa must protect his people and defeat this new enemy. That is the gist of everything that you need to know before going in.

The world sees Wakanda as a third world country. However, the country is the primary source of vibranium. This powerful metal that came from a meteor should sound familiar. Ultron is made of this metal and same with Captain America’s shield. This stuff grants powerful weapons, clothing, and pretty much is everything to the people of Wakanda. The story heavily revolves around it and gives background to this country.

A significant part of the film is fleshing out the country of Wakanda. The country is one of the most incredible locations in the entire MCU, at least that is on Earth. A mix of African culture along with futuristic tech makes for an exciting place that gives a fresh feel to a Marvel film. The whole movie is full of culture to represent the people of Africa importantly. The music, accessories, clothing, and the way people communicate plays an essential role in the main cast of characters. People have wanted diversity, and this delivers perfectly. Not only do we see people of color given power, we see women having an enormous amount of power. Seriously, I need a movie that is with the female supporting cast as the leads because they are badass.

The film is full of exciting and loveable characters. Their dynamic with one another is excellent. The supporting cast is so great, that makes T’Challa looks less impressive. I think he is a great protagonist, but the other characters are that good. T’Challa has a good heart and a great sense of humor. Along with his skills in fighting which is an absolute joy to watch. What shines most are his friends and family who play a significant role in the film. First, we have Nakia (Lupita Nyong’o) who is a spy for Wakanda. She travels the world to gather information then comes home to bring back anything important that she finds. She has wonderful action scenes and is a faithful friend to T’Challa. Okoye (Danai Gurira) is an excellent warrior who leads the Dora Milaje, who is Wakanda’s deadliest warriors. These ladies slaughter their foes, and it is the coolest thing ever. She may look familiar to some people because Danai is from The Walking Dead and can bring her skills into action scenes quite well. Shuri (Letitia Wright) provides Black Panther and many others in Wakanda their high valued technology. She can find ways to heal others while giving them powerful new weapons. Shuri is easily one of my personal favorites who brings a lot of lightheartedness to the film.  We see the return from Everett Ross (Martin Freeman) who had his first appearance in Civil War. Out of the main supporting cast, he is the weakest. I felt his role seemed a bit typical and brought nothing that unique or special to the film. He is a fine character, who felt unnecessary in some ways. Ramonda (Angela Bassett) is the former queen and mother of the king. She is a great supporting character who has a great dynamic with her children. There are many other characters, but this film is so packed with them the best thing to do was to look at a few key characters. It is always a joy to see some of the cast members who are now a part of the MCU.

Out of all the characters, it is time to look at the villains. The film has two major villains, Killmonger (I vote for possibly the most ridiculous name in the MCU) and Klaue. Klaue is not as a fully developed as some of the other characters. This issue makes him a bit weaker amongst the rest of the cast. That does not mean he isn’t enjoyable. His constant humor and mixed with his ruthlessness makes for a great side antagonist for Black Panther. Killmonger takes a more prominent part in the second half of the film. I wish he had been given attention throughout the film, but his primary focus is the second half. His motives are clear and understandable. This is why so many people love him. He has style and sound reasoning. His cause is not that bad, but his execution is where he goes into villain territory. Ignore his lust for blood and the name Killmonger to appreciate his plan that could be beneficial, but too bad he is a psychopath. Killmonger is easily one of the best villains in the MCU. There have been some good ones in recent MCU films, but he is one of the most exceptional since Loki.

Marvel continues to deliver a gripping story with loveable characters. Ryan Coogler did an excellent job of directing. He and his crew were able to provide the right film to give respect and power to their community. Like many MCU movies, you will get action, dramatic moments with beloved characters, and some hilarious moments. Besides some of the typical tropes that follow in almost every Marvel film, this takes a step in a different direction. Black Panther takes a stand in a political direction about third world countries and the racial issues across the world. Some Marvel movies have tackled severe problems before, but this does go a little bit stronger about it than the previous films. If you are not a fan of politics in your Marvel movies, the film does not go too strong with this. It says its ideas and then focuses back on superheroes going on an entertaining adventure.

The film has excellent time management and pacing that takes it time with its action but focuses on world building for Wakanda’s history and its characters. There is an outstanding balance between every aspect of the film. However, the first half is a bit slower. Some action is there, but for the most part, there is a substantial focus on T’Challa and his family. Killmonger does not get much attention until the second half, which is the best part of the film.

Black Panther is strongest with its cast of characters, exciting and beautiful location of Wakanda, and delivering the perfect amount of diversity for people of color and women. The film offers one of the best villains in the entire MCU that rivals right next to Loki’s greatness. This is a refreshing change for the MCU that is familiar, but different enough to stand on its own two feet. A few issues are there. I wish there were even distribution of attention to Killmonger. Giving him a bit more time early on would help flesh him out earlier rather than later. A few ordinary moments that we see in every MCU movie that can be a little annoying that help with the story to progress. Everything else is entirely on point. Watch it for yourself to see how you like it. Black Panther will return in the upcoming Avengers movie that comes out this May.

Score: 9/10

Image via Marvel Studios.

 

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Quick News: Jessica Chastain in It 2? Duffer Brothers NOT Leaving Stranger Things. Black Panther Crushes Records. Plus More News.

It is the end of the week so let us get into a quick roundup of the news in entertainment. A lot has happened, so let’s get caught up on a few of the highlights.

  • The Punisher Season 2 is filming! Confirmation for the second season was announced in December of last year, but now the show is in the works. Since filming just started, we can expect the show to appear next year. There is not much information for now, but expect plenty of news on here when more light shines on season 2. Netflix will be giving us two shows to extend their Marvel series. Jessica Jones has her second season coming in a few weeks. Luke Cage is also getting a second season that we can expect to be released sometime this summer or fall. Be sure to check out the first season of The Punisher to see if you are interested in this upcoming second season. I do have a review for the first season if you need that extra push to go read that here: Punisher Review.
  • No sequel plans for Rainbow Six Siege? That is right, Ubisoft says there are no current plans. This does not mean the franchise will stick to Siege forever, but it will be a while before we get another entry. The company plans on supporting the game for a total of 10 years. Whether that will happen or not is up to them. It looks like it is possible since the game’s popularity continues to grow. Recently it was reported the game has reached 27 million total players. Sorry to anyone who wants a sequel already, but you will have to wait more than seven more years. The game is currently in year three with a lot of essential plans coming in the coming weeks such as a temporary game mode called Outbreak that will have two more operators to play with.
  •  Burnout Paradise is getting a 1080p remaster, that can also run at 4K. The cost will only be at $40 too. That is right racing fans, you are going to get one hell of a deal! Not only is the game going to look amazing, but the game will run even better. It is announced the game will run at 60 frames-per-second. “We’ve given Burnout Paradise a complete graphics overhaul, with high-resolution textures and a range of technical enhancements designed to deliver all the high-octane chaos with an almost irresponsible level of visual fidelity,” says EA. Check out the new trailer that was just released:
  • Experts were having their estimates about how much Black Panther was going to do at the box office. However, the new Marvel flick destroyed the already high expectations. The previous record holder for the largest grossing opening weekend in February was Deadpool. The film had a lot of publicity, excellent marketing, and had that Valentine’s Day weekend. However, Black Panther had the PG-13 rating along with all of its hype by representing the diversity that has been lacking in many Marvel films. Deadpool opened with $132 million in its weekend. Black Panther had earned $242 million. On top of that, as of writing the film has made $520 million worldwide. The other records that the film has broken consist of the biggest non-sequel opening weekend, biggest solo superhero launch, biggest Friday-Sunday opening weekend during a holiday, the biggest opening for a non-white director, the highest grossing film in North America for a black director, biggest pre-summer opening weekend, and biggest Monday gross. It is safe to say that this was a major success.
  • A rumor floated around recently that the Duffer brothers would be leaving Stranger Things after season three. Despite the brothers confirming the show being four seasons, it did worry people. Thankfully Netflix came in to crush the rumor with a tweet that said, “Don’t drop your Eggos. Rumors that the Duffer Bros are leaving Stranger Things after season 3 are false.” The brothers are currently writing the third season. We can expect the next season to be late this year or sometime next year.

  • Not a lot of information is out about the sequel to the highly successful IT film that came out last year. The cast has said their dream actors who will play as the grown-up versions in the sequel. Both Sophia Lillis who played Beverly wants to see Jessica Chastain play as adult Beverly, but even director Andy Muschietti has said so too. Rumor has it that Jessica Chastain is in negotiations to play as Beverly in the sequel. However, the film is in such early stages so let’s take this with a grain of salt because you never know what might happen. IT Chapter 2 starts filming this summer and has an expected release date that is aiming for September 6, 2019.

That is all for the news this week. A lot was covered, but not everything. So much happens in the world of entertainment in just a week. Be sure to keep coming back for more reviews, news, lists, and more. Comment on what exciting news has caught your attention this week.

Image via Marvel Studios

News: Westworld is Coming to Life?

Wouldn’t it be amazing to have that same experience at the characters in Westworld? Just take away all of the problems that occur in the story, but an open world to live out fantasies in the Old West would be incredible. HBO has unveiled a brand new experience recently at SXSW.

HBO has announced that they will give people the chance to visit this world. The recreation of various locations from the show will be built outside of Austin, Texas. This recreation will try to give a unique experience to die-hard fans. Two acres of land has been rented out to build out the park. Fans will be able to eat western-themed food and beverages, hunt for clues as they go on adventures, interact with real horses, and interact with the hosts. The hosts will not be robots, they will be actors. Sorry to break it to you, the hosts in this experience will not have sex with you, unlike the show.

The event is only coming for a short period of time and to register for attendees is limited too. The experienced that is dubbed as “Live Without Limits Weekend” that will run through the weekend of March 9th to the 11th. Do you want to get in? Then there is a link to register: https://discoverwestworld.com/#

UPDATE (2/23/18): Registration is sold out. Hopes to this event expanding in the future if it is successful.

A trailer is also here for you to check out:

Image via HBO

TV Show Review: The Grand Tour Season 2

It might be weird that I love The Grand Tour and Top Gear since I am not a car person at all. However, I cannot resist watching these shows because of the excellent hosts. When Jeremy got kicked off of Top Gear, the guys came together to create their new Amazon original, The Grand Tour. Season one was solid but had its flaws. The guys needed to find something to make this show unique and to make everything work. Some significant changes have happened this season. I love it, but there are its flaws that remain.

The format is generally the same. The guys will have something they filmed whether it is a crazy idea or just a general car review. After any car review which may come at the beginning or somewhere in the middle, their professional driver will race around their track to see how good of a time that car can achieve. Conversation Street is the same with a wacky intro that leads into a discussion about the latest cars. These conversations are some of the most consistently interesting portions of the show. If you have seen the first season or have seen Top Gear, then you know what to expect from Jeremy Clarkson, James May, and Richard Hammond. The show continues its spirit through them with hilarious moments and ridiculous moments that probably got them in trouble with other countries.

A lot of the show has changed. Their celebrity portion is entirely different. Instead of a spoof to make fun of the BBC not allowing their original idea for a celebrity portion of the show, they managed to make something work. Jeremy will interview two celebrities from different countries. Most of these people I did not personally know because they were mostly athletes. After the interview, a clip of both people will be played of them driving around the track. Similar to the celebrity segment from Top Gear except it is two celebrities racing against one another. I love this change. Everything feels more organic and interesting. The first season was hilarious to see how each famous figure would horrifically die, but there was not much substance to that.

The American driver from the first season was widely hated. Personally, I thought his stereotypical schtick that made fun of my country was hilarious. However, many people did not enjoy it. He is replaced by Abbie Eaton. If you are a gearhead, then you probably know her. She is an upcoming driver who has become quite popular. It is great to see a female in the show. Her driving is impressive, but there is not much commentary from her. This does not give much of a character to her. The Stig from Top Gear or The American had a schtick to distinguish themselves as a character in the show. Despite this issue, I do like her. I hope to see if there is an expansion to her in the next season or if the driver changes per season.

Crazy antics have always been an essential part of the new and previous shows that the trio of hosts worked on. Some of the events that happen this season range from crazy races, testing out SUVs in a hilarious way, making an aquatic car similar to the two episodes from Top Gear, and a lot more. Almost everything done is funny and interesting. Some of the most hilarious moments in the history of these three working together will happen this season.

Every show has drawbacks, especially one that is still figuring things out. Some of the celebrities did not make for compelling interviews. There were a few moments the guys would try to do something insane and entertaining that would fall flat. There was nothing too ghastly like some of the dull moments from the first season. Not everything this season is enjoyable. Each episode is packed with so much that some moments will fall flat and be downright dull. I do wish they gave Abbie some direction to give her more character on screen. Also, it is weird they never mention her by name. She is referred as “her” or “she.” That is not much of a problem, but just a weird part of the show to point out.

Overall, this is an excellent season. The first was good, and in some ways awesome. However, the first suffered from various issues to find its identity. The second season does show that Jeremy, James, and Richard have found this show’s identity to stand on its own away from their career at the BBC with Top Gear. When a third season is released, the show will only improve at this point.

Score: 9/10

To give a comparison to the first season, that score would have been a 7/10

Watch the latest season here:

10 Games that Need a Sequel

Game development takes years of hard work. Even when a game is announced the release date still could be years away. Every year there are dozens of great games that come out. If a game is an absolute high level of quality, it can sting when you do not get a sequel. Here we will be looking at 10 games that need a sequel. Some of these games are having sequels that are in the making or that we can assume that there will be another in the future. However, some of these games we may never get a sequel ever. Let’s look at some games and just hope that as many of these as possible can arrive one day.

10. LA Noire (Release date: May 17, 2011)

If Rockstar has its name on a game, then you will go on a gripping adventure in whatever game they are delivering. Even though it was Team Bondi who developed the game, the game felt like a typical Rockstar game. This 2011 police drama put the player in the shoes of a detective in L.A. in the late 1940s. Each significant chapter of the game sees the protagonist Cole Phelps rise through different departments within the police force. Excellent voice acting and writing with great gameplay. Since the game just received a remaster last year, maybe Rockstar will think about developing a sequel after a few years of supporting Red Dead Redemption 2.lanoire.jpg

9. Bioshock (Last entry: Bioshock Infinite. Released: March 26, 2013)

The first and third games in the Bioshock franchise are incredible despite being polar opposites. I don’t mention the second game because I personally never played and the game received a lukewarm response. However, the first game delivered a gripping story in a terrifying environment. The first game is legendary. The last entry in 2013, Bioshock Infinite was straight action instead of action-horror. Still, the characters were phenomenally written and acted. Along with an excellent story that ties itself to the other games. The possibilities are quite extensive on what the series could deliver if a fourth entry were to be made. With no signs of a sequel, all we can do is hope.246-bioshock_gamepage_bg

8. Borderlands (Last entry: Borderlands: The Pre-Sequel. Released: October 14, 2014)

This wacky cartoon shooter is coming out with another game in the series. However, nobody knows when this will happen. Hints have been made by 2K Games, but there is not much information to go by. Maybe this E3 we will finally get a trailer, gameplay, or even a release date. With the announcement being made a few years ago at this point, a third game can come out any year at this point. Fingers crossed for a 2018 release date.Borderlands-the-pre-sequel

7. Left 4 Dead (Last entry: Left 4 Dead 2. Release date: November 17, 2009)

This one is a stretch about whether or not we will ever get another Left 4 Dead game. This is easily one of the most fun cooperative games out there. Playing against players or the AI. Either way, these games are phenomenal. The problem is that Valve is making so much money on Steam, there is no reason for them to make another game. The standard joke about the company not being able to count to three is accurate. There is no Half-Life 3, no Left 4 Dead 3, no Portal 3, and no Team Fortress 3. This one might forever live in our dreams and never be a reality.
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6. Elder Scrolls (Last entry: The Elder Scrolls V: Skyrim. Release date: November 11, 2011)

Back to another guarantee is another game in the Elder Scrolls franchise. The last entry boosted its popularity through the roof. Skyrim was my entry into the franchise and I fell in love. The games have a brilliant universe with a vast open world full of exciting quests. Even nonRPG fans can get into the series because of its simplicity can let new comers in and please the most experienced of RPG plauers. Bethesda has said that they will work on the game. You have to respect the company for sticking to their creative guns. Expanding themselves to other franchises like the brutally excellent DOOM reboot and the great stealth oriented Dishonor games shows that the company needs to stretch themselves to other projects outside of their most popular franchises. Bethesda marketing boss Pete Hines has even said, “Quite honestly, [Bethesda Studios] didn’t want to be the developer that was just Elder ScrollsFalloutElder ScrollsFallout for the rest of their development careers…and you’ve got a lot of people in that studio who have been there for a really long time. They wanted to be able to self-determine things they worked on next, whether it was existing stuff [or] whether it was new IP.” He has an excellent point. Another Elder Scrolls will be released. Fans need to give the company time, and we will be able to slay as many dragons as we want in no time.
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5. Bully (Release date: October 17, 2006.)

Another excellent title by Rockstar. This open world game is like GTA without the murder and horrible crimes. Running around wrecking havoc around campus and the town is so much fun. Rockstar needs to dive into one of its older franchises after Red Dead Redemption 2, and this could be another excellent choice for the company. The amount of content they could add to a sequel would be excellent, especially with multiplayer. Imagine you and your friends in this game’s world as you ditch class and play pranks on unsuspecting students.bully.jpg

4. TimeSplitters (Last entry: TimeSplitters: Future Perfect. Release date: March 21, 2005)

Yes, I have written an entire article on this game before. No, I will not stop talking about how this game needs a new entry. TimeSplitters, especially its last entry, are some of the best FPS games ever. With the advances in gaming technology and how great online gaming is now, I can only imagine this game getting a modern look and feel to it. Even with just playing with friends and the AI back in the day, the games had a great campaign. The likelihood of another entry is dim, but never let go of hope. Especially if that hope allows for the possibility of a great game. timesplitters.png

3. Sunset Overdrive (Release date: October 28, 2014)

Many people are divided on this game. Many love it, but many do not. Even the people who did not like Sunset Overdrive would say that it is a great game, just not for everyone. Personally, this is the only exclusive on the Xbox One that I like. To me, it is the best Xbox exclusive and rivals any game ever made. This is easily one of my favorite games of all time. The game is beautifully stylized, hilariously written with excellent characters to drive the comedy further, insane gameplay, and great movement that is the entire base of the gameplay. Insomniac Games have said they would like to do a sequel, all they need is a publisher. Maybe after their upcoming Spider-Man game on the PS4, we can get a sequel if Sony makes a deal. sunsetoverdrive.jpg

2. Ratchet and Clank (Last entry: Ratchet & Clank. Release date: April 12, 2016)

Insomniac is one of my favorite companies. Their games often are beautifully stylized, brilliantly written, and excellent gameplay that is full of great weapons, gadgets, and fluid movement. No wonder they are making a Spider-Man game. One of their flagship franchises is Ratchet & Clank. This game is the definition of what I tend to think about when playing any game by Insomniac. The latest entry was a retelling of the first game in a way to tie in with the movie that came out around the same time back in 2016. I was able to refind my love for these games, and now I need another game as soon as possible. With the franchise being so popular among their catalog, it is possible to see another game in the future.ratchetandclank.jpg

1. Bloodborne (Release date: March 24, 2015)

From Software have knocked it out of the park with their last two games: Dark Souls 3 and Bloodborne. This game looks stunning and like the Dark Souls games manage to be punishing while maintaining how much fun it really is. With a few tweaks to gameplay to make itself unique along with interesting lore delivers an incredible journey. There have been rumors about a potential sequel, and we may find out this E3. Hopefully, there will be an announcement because this game deserves a sequel. bloodborne.png

Images via From Software, Insomniac Games, CryTek, Valve, Rockstar Games, 2K Games, and Gearbox Software.

Quick News: Call of Duty Movie Update, Kingdom Hearts 3 Release Date, Joker Origin Casted, Spyro Remaster, and More!

A lot has happened in the world of movies and video games. Here we will be doing a quick rundown of some exciting highlights of news that have come out in the last week.

  • The idea about a potential Call of Duty movie has been around for a long time. The ultimate plan is to build this franchise into its own universe similar to the MCU. Now sources are telling Variety that Sicario 2 director Stefano Sollima is in talks to direct the first of the upcoming franchise based off of the popular video games. Nothing is finalized, but it could lead to something potentially good. Video game movies are known for being terrible, so maybe with the right director, things can be turned around for the genre.
  • Alex Garland is best known for his directorial debut with Ex Machina and his upcoming film Annihilation. During an AMA on Reddit, he was asked by Reddit user deadpool902, “In the massive wave of comic book films, Dredd is still to me among the most well-written, so my question to you is: If given a chance, which comic book characters would you want to write/direct?” Alex’s response was simply, “Swamp Thing.” This does not mean a whole lot, but with Swamp Thing’s popularity growing within the comics and being in the Injustice fighting games, this could potentially happen with or without Alex. Either way, it is exciting news that would be an excellent possibility for DC.
  • It is no secret that DC has been working on getting a Joker origin movie out there and to not have Jared Leto as the iconic villain. The film is currently going to be directed by Todd Phillips who is best known for his work on the Hangover trilogy. Now Joaquin Phoenix is in talks to play as the Joker. According to reports by Variety, he has accepted the role. Initial interest in the film started with the legendary Martin Scorcese being attached to produce and with Todd Phillips being the director and writer, a lot of people got curious as to where this will go. The future plans that DC has is a bit confusing since Jared Leto is set to return to his role as the Joker for Suicide Squad 2. Making these separate standalone movies can bring back credibility to DC after its numerous films that have been brutalized by fans and critics.
  • Everywhere you turn, there is another game being remastered or remade entirely. With the success of Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy, a lot of people have been wondering if there will be a remaster of the Spyro games. Sources with Kotaku say that Activision is working on a remaster of the original Spyro the Dragon trilogy. Their sources say that there will be an official announcement in March and the remaster will come out sometime later this year for PS4 and PS4 Pro.
  • Kingdom Hearts 3 got a massive update with a brand new trailer. The trailer shows that there will be a Monsters Inc. world and some new footage of gameplay. The game will feature three main sections to the game with about three worlds in each of those sections. After over a decade of waiting for the third entry, the release date will finally be announced in a few months at E3. To hold you over until then the trailer can be viewed below:

Thank you for reading this update on all sorts of exciting news out of the gaming and movie world. Since so much happens all the time, be sure to post a comment of what has happened lately that you have been interested in.

Image via Square Enix

Video Game Review: Shadow of the Colossus Remake

I have to be honest when I say that I had never played Shadow of the Colossus when the game initially came out. Coming in as a newcomer was intimidating. The reason I felt this way was for a couple of reasons. I felt intimidated by how much I was told the controls and camera are difficult. Plus I was worried that I would not like this legendary game. I can happily say that I love it.

The game is remade from the ground up by Bluepoint Games. They are experienced in remasters with the Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection and the PS3 remaster of Shadow of the Colossus. So, this remake was in excellent hands.

The story in Shadow of the Colossus is quite simple. Most of the story is told in the beginning cutscene. After a few bosses, there might be a new scene to show some more story. Then you get another long cutscene at the end to give you the wrapup of the story.

Wander is the protagonist of this story with his trusty steed Agro. When they arrive at a large temple, Wander places a young girl on an altar in the main room on the first floor. Mysterious shadows appear with a voice speaking to Wander. The voice reveals himself to be Dormin. An ancient entity that is a pseudo-villain who strikes a deal with Wander because he sees that Wander is wielding the Ancient Sword that can be used for his benefit. He will revive this girl, only if Wander kills 16 colossi. Then that is where the game begins.

As a game, everything is relatively simple, but with some of its own complexity to it. For the most part, you are not told much. The game will say to you basic controls, but there is a lot it does not tell you. A big part is for the player to figure things out on their own. Gameplay is simple. You have a sword that can be used to attack and use a light to guide yourself to your targetted colossus. The other weapon that is available is a bow and arrow. This is mostly used for strategic purposes for individual bosses. Climbing is an essential aspect of the game. Climbing to get to specific areas and most importantly, to get on top of the colossi. To travel you use your horse, Agro. Each boss is a puzzle by finding out how to get on top of them. When you do get on top of them, then you have to stab a particular weak point that will have a shining symbol when you get near it. Stab a couple of marked points then the colossus will die. The puzzles of each colossus are not challenging but can be tricky. The game does ramp things up by giving you easy battles then increasing the difficulty as you progress.

Controls in the game have been enhanced for modern gaming. You can switch back to the old controls for nostalgia if you have played the original or want to know what it feels like as a newcomer. They are clunky. Bluepoint has remade the game from the ground up but maintained how the original was. UI and control layout is different along with enhanced graphics, but that is about it. The controls and camera can be awkward especially as gaming has changed so much in the years since the game initially came out. However, it was not a huge deal for the most part. Agro is challenging to control, sometimes harder depending on the area of the game you are in. Wander can be troubling, but you can get used to how the game controls. Depending on which boss battle you are on, the controls and camera can make things extra tricky. This was a pain during the final colossus because of the amount of climbing required.

Graphically, the game is absolutely stunning. I played on my PS4, and the game looked incredible. If you play on a PS4 Pro, then you get an extra option for graphics. There would be a cinematic selection that makes for FPS 30, but the game will look better. Personally, I would not choose that even if I could because framerate is so essential. The developers put in a lot of detail to enhance how gorgeous this game is. Each hair on the colossi moves so realistically. Walking through the various terrain is breathtaking. A photo mode with multiple filters and options to get the best camera shot possible is in the game too. This makes for some incredible screenshots to show how pretty this game really is. This is a stunning remake that you can look at for hours.

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SHADOW OF THE COLOSSUS_20180207134033

With each colossus, there is such beautiful music that gets played. The soundtrack to this game is just as pretty as the graphics. The orchestral music fits so perfectly with every moment.

The game is incredibly short. I was able to beat the game in about seven hours. Since the game is a bit of a puzzle when it comes to trying to find out how to defeat each colossus and to find them can be tricky. Without these moments of being lost, I could have beaten the game closer to five hours. However, there are unlocks after beating the game. New Game + allows the player to play through the game with all your upgrades to health and stamina. A time attack mode is a time challenge mode to beat each colossus in a certain amount of time. You do unlock items with this mode that can be used in the other modes. Then there is a reminiscence mode is just a way to refight any of your favorite battles with the inclusion of a filter to change to the look of the game.

This game does live up to its legendary status even by today’s standards. The controls and camera angles can be awkward, especially to new players. Along with Agro who can be quite terrible a lot of the times too. If you are someone who loves a game with puzzles, epic boss battles, and do not mind a short game, then you should absolutely check it out. If you are a fan of the original, then this is the definitive edition of the game. Everything will play like you remember, but with updated graphics to give a different feeling to the world as you go around fighting your way through each colossus.

Score: 9/10

Images are in-game screenshots with photo mode on a PS4.

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