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ICO

Developer: Japan Studio Publisher: SCE
24 September 2001
PS2
ICO - cover art
Glitchwave rating
3.93 / 5.0
0.5
5.0
 
 
71 Ratings / 1 Reviews
#138 All-time
#4 for 2001
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In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Releases 6
Filter by: All 6 PS2 4 PS3 2
ICO
2001 Japan Studio SCE  
DVD
XNA 7 11719 71132 2 SCUS 97113
ICO
2001 Japan Studio SCE  
CD-ROM
JP 4 948872 110037 SCPS-11003
ICO PlayStation 2 the Best
2004 Japan Studio SCE  
CD-ROM
JP 4 948872 191517 SCPS 19151
Show all 6 releases
ICO
2011 Japan Studio Bluepoint  
Blu-ray
JP 4 948872 730709 BCJS 30070
ICO
2012 SCEJ SCE  
Download
ICO Limited Edition
DVD
AU NZ 7 11719 34092 8 SCES-50760-ANZ
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Title
In an industry that has always run with the idea of "bigger, better, and faster", Ico was the milestone of the PS2-generation that implied the true future of video games lies in minimalism and player connectivity.

You can almost feel the testosterone of a Gears fanboy spiking the Ico lovefest of recent years. The game, when played by the wrong person, can be outright offensive. "I've played Zelda, dammit! I know you can do more in a video game than this!" they might yell. The idea of Ico being a piece of art isn't reinforced by its overly sentimental fanbase, but by the way it feels completely alien to some players even though it remains grounded in gameplay not too distant from more popular titles.

Ico's presence as minimal art can be narrowed down into a list: no HUD, IDM score, no real dialogue, etc. It's a matter of class. Team Ico who-- you guessed it! --developed Ico modeled the game entirely around what the core experience is and what would detract from it. The idea that your character cannot die in combat would break a The Legend of Zelda [ゼルダの伝説] game, but since Ico's main concern varies from those games it works as a strength. At Ico's core is the player's connection to Yorda, the girl you have at your side for the better part of the game, dragging her along every step of the way. While the audio and art direction are sublime, it is the core experience delivered through the platforming and puzzles that makes it a timeless adventure.

Since the PlayStation-era, games have grown more and more obsessed with player connection through cinematic presentation. Instead of deep storytelling, Ico creates a tangible emotional connection in the player through subliminal elements. The way the controller vibrates when you grab hold of Yorda's hand, the loneliness of the game's world, and the haunting music all exhort an emotional reaction out of the player that most games would try to attempt forcefully via FMVs and lengthy cut-scenes. It's remarkable how well Ico works without these things, as only an hour into the game I would feel my heart rate escalate when I had to leave Yorda behind or when I had to make a jump I wasn't quite sure I could manage. I didn't know why I was at this castle, I didn't know who Yorda was, but I wanted to escape it with her by my side. Through crafting a believable world with elegant presentation, Ico turned the 8-bit joke of saving the princess into an actual concern.

Between Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty and Final Fantasy X [ファイナルファンタジーX], the PS2 era came into its own in 2001. Even with all Ico's heart and ambition, I can't say it's a superior game than those two. Yet, as a pure experience, Ico will forever be put in the hall of fame for the simplicity of its design (have I mention how the game is actually fun?) and its brilliant presentation. The "games as art" discussion has become null in recent years, between the chiptune scene and 8-bit decals in the walls of every nerd's home. Games have always been art. It wasn't until Ico that gamers got a real taste of games that stirred up emotion in the player through sheer interaction and existence in a different world.

Ico's ending won't make you cry and the games making you feel lonely dates back to Metroid [メトロイド], but 2001 brought about the first game to fill gamers with an intangible connection to an unrealistic scenario. And, it was all done through the player convincing his or herself through a personal connection to the world, not in-game cinemas and plot devices.
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Catalog

chikin ICO 2024-02-23T07:11:22Z
PS2 • XNA
2024-02-23T07:11:22Z
4.5
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
cronoclone ICO 2024-02-19T14:38:56Z
PS2 • XNA
2024-02-19T14:38:56Z
5.0
1
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
ministersinister ICO 2024-02-18T16:07:48Z
PS2 • XNA
2024-02-18T16:07:48Z
4.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Giann96 ICO 2024-01-19T01:26:54Z
PS2 • XNA
2024-01-19T01:26:54Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Baller16 ICO 2024-01-05T05:02:25Z
PS2 • XNA
2024-01-05T05:02:25Z
4.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Zippybing ICO 2023-12-31T22:42:45Z
PS2 • XNA
2023-12-31T22:42:45Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
128BIT START64 8x8+M 555 6TH_GEN FORTY
vnianpurks ICO 2023-12-09T16:52:01Z
PS2 • XNA
2023-12-09T16:52:01Z
5.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
letmetrythisname ICO 2023-11-29T00:24:20Z
PS2 • XNA
2023-11-29T00:24:20Z
1.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Deadedededemon ICO 2023-11-09T10:13:41Z
PS2 • XNA
2023-11-09T10:13:41Z
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
happykc ICO 2023-08-31T22:16:03Z
PS2 • XNA
2023-08-31T22:16:03Z
5.0
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Fantasy Action-Adventure Puzzle-Platformer
Stiwar_D ICO 2023-07-26T18:50:50Z
PS2 • XNA
2023-07-26T18:50:50Z
4.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Wrought ICO 2023-07-24T02:57:23Z
PS2 • XNA
2023-07-24T02:57:23Z
3.5
In collection Want to buy Used to own  
Player modes
Single-player
Media
1x DVD
Content rating
ESRB: T
Release details
7 11719 71132 2/SCUS 97113/xna

Comments

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  • Previous comments (28) Loading...
  • FleegalFlargel 2023-07-20 23:43:09.904125+00
    Practically flawless aside from the occasional 'How was I supposed to know to do that' moments
    reply
    • renegadexavier06 2023-08-29 10:37:47.582446+00
      "How was I supposed to know to do that"
      Genre: Puzzle platformer
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  • Diugo 2023-09-27 20:29:29.633326+00
    Art
    reply
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  • Kittyhat 2023-11-30 23:17:22.439627+00
    some of the best architecture in gaming
    reply
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  • simonkenis 2024-01-12 09:24:44.289005+00
    I liked the part where I had to wait for the girl.
    reply
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  • ricopomelo 2024-01-12 22:06:34.150369+00
    this game makes me feel like no other thing in the world
    reply
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  • Magic8Ball 2024-02-04 20:53:21.629136+00
    i wouldnt mind the combat so much if you weren't fighting hoards of enemies at a time. beautiful game otherwise
    reply
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  • Molten_ 2024-02-18 06:26:21.427853+00
    in some ways, I feel like the games are still trying to catch up to ico. incredibly ahead of its time.
    reply
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  • Romanshower 2024-02-23 13:11:52.303702+00
    Let's all upvote the American cover
    reply
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