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Definitely not living happily ever after in: Shadow of the Colossus
There’s no two ways about it. Love will drive people to clinically insane lengths. And by “clinically insane” we mean inspire certain folk to seek out and murder 16 of the most heartbreakingly huggable monsters you’ve ever seen.
Above: Every time you kill a Colossus, you're murdering something with Sesame Street levels of innocence
Horrendously sympathetic or not, Colossus’ mainly silent hero commits acts of titanic slaughter when he makes a pact with a demon to bring his beloved back to the union. If there’s ever been an example of love driving a character to more tragic, futile acts in a game, we definitely never want to play it. Honestly, it’s five years on from SOTC and we still have to pretend we’ve got something in our eyes every time it’s mentioned.
Above: Tears, you say? Nah, we've just got sweaty eyeballs
When you play the game for the first time, everything is cloaked in mystery. How did Mono (Wander’s love) die? What’s the deal with the creepy disembodied voice? And is killing the Colossi an act of heroism or unspeakable evil? When you get to the end, it’s essentially a tale of a man becoming Beast to save Beauty. Just replace the hairy-ass monster with a haunted hero who’s had all the life and goodness drained out of him by a malevolent demonic force.
Why their love is doomed from the start: Happy, lasting relationships aren’t formed on committing unspeakable acts of violence of gentle leviathans.
At the start of his quest, Wander is clearly blinded by love. Setting foot (well, four hooves) upon a forbidden land with his awesome steed Agro, it’s clear nothing good can come from the pact he makes to bring Mono back. As he says at the start of his stabby journey, though, what he has to go through to revive his love doesn't matter…
Above: Actually, maybe it matters a smidge
As he kills each titan, he gradually begins to lose himself. His hair begins to darken and his skin becomes ever more ghostly, as he absorbs the essence of each of his kills. Only at the end does he realise the Colossi were keeping the evil demon Dormin at bay. Once Wander has sent them the way of Mel Gibson’s acting career, the monster is released. Cue a tragic series of events which see Wander and the beast sharing the body of a newborn baby together. It’s just like a 80s mismatched buddy comedy. Just replace the class of culture laughs with agonising torment and being reborn as someone who constantly shits himself.
If there’s one thing the interwebs are good for, other than showing us pictures of amazingly dexterous video-game playing hamsters, it’s providing a forum for amazing fan art. Like the example below, which hints at a semi happy ending for the couple. Changing a youngling’s nappy every five minutes is definitely romantic, yeah?
Now, in one final celebratory act of completely screwed love, lets all watch Shadow of the Colossus’ tragic ending together. Be strong, readers. God, be strong. <fights back impending breakdown>
Feb 21, 2011
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