how to draw trico from the last guardian

design of Trico with the boy and ended up drawing this design, Here are some recent sketches that I will be building a full on. Discover more posts about the last guardian trico. second one is my character, they don't have a name or background really just wanted to draw them too. The illustration Trico (The Last Guardian) NF, with the tags medibangpaint, fanart, thelastguardian, drawing, trico etc. is created by ChaosWing105.

How to draw trico from the last guardian -

Can we talk about the ending of The Last Guardian?

As the title implies, this article contain MAJOR SPOILERS about the ending of The Last Guardian. It also contains spoilers for Ico and Shadow of the Colossus.

Fumito Ueda's games all end in a similar manner. Each ones concludes on an ambiguous, vaguely melancholy note before fading away to credits, only to be revisited with a more optimistic post-credits epilogue.

Ico initially ended with its titular star lost at sea. Sure he escaped from the cursed castle that the beautiful and the damned leads were bound to by an ominous witch, but our protagonist was still adrift on open waters so any happiness perceived from this ending is tinged with a rational fear of "Won't he starve to death if he doesn't find land soon?"

Thankfully, he does find land with the post-credits coda showing him docking on an idyllic beach. Better yet, he finds his quasi-romantic companion there too! It's a sweet note, but maybe a little too twee for our forsaken heroes - though some interpret it as just a dream.

Shadow of the Colossus had a similarly grim initial conclusion with player character Wander getting turned into a demon after an ill-advised quest to resurrect his beloved. Once transformed into a monster god, they're vanquished by some sort of village elder via a strange spell. There's a faint glimmer of hope as the object of Wander's affection is revived after his passing, and it turns out that Agro the horse survived with only a limp to show for their troubles, but it ultimately ends on a somber note. This initial conclusion is defanged by an epilogue that saw the recently resurrected woman finding our cursed hero reborn as a sweet, adorably demonic, horned baby. Then we get an uplifting scene of this makeshift family frolicking in a garden with cute animals. It's a little too happy, in my opinion, even if our hero (or anti-hero?) gets the short end of the stick.

The Last Guardian sticks to this template on the surface, but its supposedly optimistic conclusion is actually the bleakest in Ueda's history. As soon as the first trailer for The Last Guardian was revealed the popular theory was that the "catweagle" (the unofficial Eurogamer term for the species) would die at the end. It would be sad. We'd all cry. Then give it awards. As it turns out, Trico does survive the story, as does the boy, yet its final moments are even more ominous as a result.

1

At the story's conclusion Trico takes a beating, to put it lightly, in order to save our protagonist from a hoard of malicious catweagles. With its tail ripped off and its majestic body littered with severe wounds, the lovable creature returns our battered hero to the village he was abducted from. Unfortunately, the townspeople don't take kindly to Trico, for it was they who kidnapped the boy in the first place; little do they know the beast was being brainwashed by an ominous force presiding over a magical mountain. The boy is too hurt to speak in defense of his feathered friend while Trico's cries are misinterpreted as a threat. In the end, Trico bails before violence erupts and the adult version of the boy narrating the tale explains that he never saw the beast again, though he suspects it died shortly after this Ueda rendition of Guess Who's Coming to Dinner.

Had it ended here it would have wrapped things up in a neat little package. Trico dies saving you. How noble! Roll credits. The end. But wait, there's more!

After the credits we see the boy - now a grown bearded man with children of his own - unearth the mirror shield central to his strange tale. With an impassioned expression of respect, the man raises the shield to the heavens emitting a beam of light to honour his lost companion. The camera swoops up, flies through the clouds, descends upon the mountain citadel where their adventure transpired, and settles upon the cave where their journey began. Out of the shadows, Trico glowing green eyes appear. They live! So it's a happy ending after all!

Or is it?

In truth, I don't think it's any more optimistic that Trico is still alive as one wonders about the quality of their life after the epic adventure decades prior. Did they simply trot about sniffing plants and chasing butterflies to their heart's content? Or was this more of a Jurassic Bark situation where Trico spent its remaining years in desolate hopes of seeing their best friend again. I'd like to think the former, I really would, but I just don't know. One would think that providing closure about Trico's whereabouts would add greater finality to the tale, but in actuality it does the opposite.

Conversely, the boy manages to move on with his life in some ways - he does have a family now, after all - though he still can't properly mourn his friend, as he's never sure if Trico is still alive out there. The epilogue provides closure to the player, but not to the boy, who must go on with the fate of his former companion open-ended.

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Had Trico simply died saving the boy, it would be a fitting end for the creature - and the game - tying everything up in a pat finale. But the game isn't about life or death: it's about a relationship. And at the end of the day, these two cannot be together due to the narrow-mindedness of the society from which the boy emanates. That's pretty grim.

All of Ueda's games have been about relationships. Ico was an optimistic fairy tale about the power of love (it might just save your liiife!), Shadow of the Colossus was a screed against the dangers of obsession, and The Last Guardian is about the troubled relationship between man and nature. We live in a world threatened by climate change, a dwindling amount of natural resources, and an increased list of endangered species. The Last Guardian is a reminder that we need to treat the natural world better or there won't be any more catweagles to hang out with.

More than that, The Last Guardian is about peacefully coexisting with that which is different than us and cannot be properly understood. But they can be understood better! The details and specifics of another's mind - be it another human, cat or catweagle - will always elude us in ways both big and small, but Ueda believes that if we take the time to communicate, harmony can be formed across even the most unlikely of pairings. That's the optimistic part. The downer is that he suggests that even the most beautiful of bonds can be broken by ill-informed mob rule; a timeless message that's as relevant now as ever.

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InVisible Culture

By Kaelan Doyle-Myerscough

The Last Guardian is a 2016 single-player adventure game that follows the relationship between an unnamed young boy and a giant gryphon-like creature, referred to as Trico, as they navigate the ruins of an ancient, apparently technologically-advanced civilization. The player controls the boy, who is small and weak—he is incapable of fighting the ghostly suits of armor that he and Trico encounter throughout the game, and he often cannot physically traverse the massive, vertical ruins in which the game takes place without falling or stumbling. Meanwhile, Trico, who accompanies the boy, protects him from danger and is essentially impervious to harm; however, Trico is vulnerable to hunger, distraction, fear, and to the lingering effects of traumas it has apparently suffered at the hands of something in the ruins. The boy and Trico, neither fully able to traverse the space they find themselves in, must work together to locate food, overcome obstacles, and defeat enemies.

Critical and audience responses to The Last Guardian were mixed: though the game was praised for its map design, graphics, and for the emotional resonance of the bond between the boy and Trico, many critics took issue with the game’s controls, particularly as they pertain to Trico. Philip Kollar for Polygon writes, “if the main character annoys because he moves exactly as you’d expect a little boy to, then Trico annoys because it acts exactly as you’d expect a cat to act. […] It makes for a realistic depiction of my favorite house pet, but it’s terrible gameplay.” Kollar’s criticism encapsulates an issue expressed by many players online: unlike the vast majority of animal companions in video games, Trico does not always respond in the way that one expects or wants, and this is deeply frustrating. This is amplified by the game’s structure, in which the player can often do nothing but call out to Trico and wait for it to understand and follow their commands—sometimes for long stretches of time.

This troubled reception speaks to a broader tension in video games culture with losing control, being patient and accommodating, and having to wait. The Last Guardian exposes and complicates these tensions by framing them in the context of an intimate human-animal relationship. In this essay, rather than pushing these experiences of frustration to the margins by framing them as failures, I argue that the intimate relationship between the boy and Trico could not have come about without those moments of frustration, slowness, and the inability to move properly. Moreover, I believe that the frustration of Trico and the boy’s relationship exposes something crucial about intimacy that prompts a definition of the term that accounts for these negative sensations. The connection between Trico and the boy is drawn through an affective assemblage consisting of the aesthetic, haptic, proprioceptive, and mechanical elements of the game. Drawing from Lauren Berlant, Gilles Deleuze, Felix Guattari and Aubrey Anable, I define intimacy as an affect and read The Last Guardian for the formal and structural ways it renders an intimacy that stems from frustration, waiting and incapacity.

Affect, Relationality, Intimacy

Intimacy, I argue, is an apt framework to understand the pleasure to be found in games in losing control, vulnerability and precarity. Drawing from Deleuze and Guattari, I locate affects “in the midst of things and relations […] and, then, in the complex assemblages that come to compose bodies and worlds simultaneously.” I understand intimacy as an affective weight that a relationship—or any relation within the “complex assemblages” Deleuze and Guattari outline—can take on. In the context of video games, this allows us to examine the forces a game world exerts on the player on a formal level—from the aesthetics of the world to the way characters move within it and with each other—as potentially containing intimate affects. I draw from Aubrey Anable’s call in Playing With Feelings: Video Games and Affect to attend to “the unfinished business of representation in theory” by considering aesthetics and representation (particularly animal representation) as significant elements of this assemblage. My work departs from Anable’s, however, in that while she criticizes Deleuzian strains of affect theory that “cleave affect from subjectivity” (8) by presenting affect as a network independent from the individual body, I find the relational structure of the assemblage useful as a way to flatten out considerations of representation, aesthetics, mechanics, temporal structure and bodily sensation. It is not any one element that creates the affect of intimacy in The Last Guardian, but the messy and surprising ways they act together.

So what comprises an intimate affect? Lauren Berlant, in her introduction to “Intimacy: A Special Issue” of Critical Inquiry, draws attention to the tension between the private—communication “with the sparest of signs and gestures,” with “the quality of eloquence and brevity”—and the public—the ideal of “something shared”—at the heart of intimacy. Similarly, Nancy Yousef in Romantic Intimacy notes that intimacy “crystallizes a tension between sharing and enclosing as opposed imaginations of relational possibilities,” considering it as referring “to what is closely held and personal and to what is deeply shared with others.” Indeed, intimacy seems to be caught in a moment between the private and the public: to intimate is to reveal a closely-held secret. But just as intimacy is connected to revealing, to nakedness, to the baring of secrets, it cannot be fully public, either. Berlant understands that “intimacy builds worlds; it creates spaces and usurps places meant for other kinds of relation.” As both authors note, intimacy can take place between strangers, lovers, or family, but within that relation it establishes a private space in which secrets can be revealed. Yousef describes this as “the phenomenal fact of proximity between persons – whether sustained over time, as in a familial relationship, or in the fleeting immediacy of an encounter with a stranger.” Intimacy as these authors discuss it can be figured as a space between the public and private, felt as the sensation of closeness or proximity, and of being seen or of revealing.

But this proximity is never certain—in fact, intimacy is defined by a sense of uncertainty. Berlant understands intimacy as deeply connected to desire and fantasy. She considers intimacy as involving “an aspiration for a narrative about something shared, a story about both oneself and others that will turn out in a particular way” and notes that “its potential failure to stabilize closeness always haunts its persistent activity, making the very attachments deemed to buttress ‘a life’ seem in a state of constant if latent vulnerability.” “Unstable closeness” seems an apt way to describe intimacy-as-relation: one may aspire for an intimate relation to last indefinitely, or to “turn out in a particular way,” but one can never know for certain what the other will do with that relation, or when they will decide to leave it. The precarity of the intimate thus forces a focus on the present, on the closeness that might disappear, but for now, lingers. This precarious temporality is another intimate sensation.

With all of this in mind, I understand intimate affects in terms of a precarious, synchronous orientation in the present, made pleasurable and terrifying by the sensation of nakedness or revealing of oneself. It is fragile; the threat of embarrassment or humiliation or disappointment lingers at its edges, so much so that it is sometimes more bearable to end the intimate moment than to remain. Intimacy can be cultivated through gestures or sustained proximity, but one can find oneself thrown into intimacy as well.

Intimacy can also take on different affective valences: the intimacy of an unexpected shared moment with a stranger is quite different from the intimacy of a morning spent with an old friend, but both feel intimate. In The Last Guardian, intimacy is formed through frustration, waiting, and the differently-limited capacities of bodies. Frustration and frustrate come from the Latin term frustra, which means “without effect, to no purpose, without cause, uselessly, in vain, [or] for nothing.” Frustration is thus connected both to the incapacity to affect things and to a lack of purpose or teleology—to act for nothing is at once to act with no cause and with no effect. Frustration’s relationship to the capacity to affect also evokes Spinoza’s foundational definition of affect as “the modifications of the body whereby the active power of the said body is increased or diminished, aided or constrained, and also the ideas of such modification.” Spinoza endeavors to “consider human actions and desires in exactly the same manner, as though I were concerned with lines, planes, and solids,” and so he is deeply concerned in his descriptions with the concrete ways affects alter the capacity of a body to act. This definition, though complicated by recent scholarship, is useful as a framework through which to understand frustration. As such, I consider frustration as an encounter with the inability of one’s body to affect other bodies or be affected, a duration that forces one to stay with that inability. It is with these definitions of frustration and intimacy that we can begin to consider the forms of the boy and Trico: if frustration is located in the inability of a body, then we must begin by understanding how exactly Trico’s and the boy’s bodies frustrate, in what ways they are useless.

The Boy: Controllable Helplessness

From the first moments of The Last Guardian, the unnamed boy controlled by the player seems not to fit in in the world of the game. For one, this is manifested aesthetically. In contrast with the dark blues and greens of the cavern in which he wakes up, his clothes are creamy white and orange. While the world around him is thick with the textures of decay—rust, worn stones, moss and grass—the boy’s skin and hair are smooth and glossy. Though the world has already marked him both physically and mentally—he stumbles drearily in his first moments, his body covered in tattoos apparently given to him here—he stands out from it. Even his face seems out of place: while the rest of the world is rendered with a photorealistic aesthetic, his large, round eyes and small nose are reminiscent of Japanese anime. This sense of not fitting in is similarly rendered by the clumsy way the boy moves through the game space: even when he falls only a short distance he crumples to the ground; when he pulls levers or pushes on objects, he can only do so with great difficulty; when he jumps for distant ledges, he is often only barely able to grasp them.

Even when he climbs atop Trico’s back, the beast’s movements startle him, topple him over and yank him around. When he and Trico encounter enemies in the form of possessed suits of armor that guard the ruins, the boy can do little but push at them ineffectually, while they harm him by grabbing him and dragging him towards a door which causes a game over if walked through. In their grip, all the player can do is mash buttons on the controller as the boy flails around, which sometimes—though not often—frees him from them before they get to the door. The enemies, in turn, can shoot runes at the boy, which stun and daze him. When he is hurt or waking up from having fainted, the player’s inputs at first only stir his body or cause him to move very slowly; in fact, the boy faints numerous times throughout the game regardless of what the player does. In short, the boy is defined by an extremely limited capacity to affect the world around him.

More colloquially, the website TVTropes—a publicly-editable encyclopedia similar to Wikipedia which organizes popular media in terms of common tropes—describes several moments in the game in terms of “Controllable Helplessness.” The website describes this trope as “a point at which you can be captured or restrained, and not able to move around, but you can still control your character. This might mean being able to wriggle around in your bonds, walk around in your prison cell, what have you, until you either die or are rescued.” In one clear example of this, the boy becomes trapped in a round cage. The player can control the boy and roll the cage around an area delimited by impassable ledges, but cannot open the cage or get out of the area until Trico returns over a minute later. The sense of powerless urgency created by this controllable helplessness is amplified by the reason why the boy is in the cage in the first place: he closed himself inside in order to escape another Trico creature who was hunting him and has left for the moment but may return later.

Though TVTropes uses Controllable Helplessness to refer to specific gameplay instances within The Last Guardian, the term is an apt description for the boy’s affects in general. There is almost always only one way to escape a bad situation or one path through a space in which the boy can fit. These paths often involve desperate scrambling over decaying platforms, patient waiting for Trico to understand where to go next, or sheer luck. Occasionally, even when the player and the boy do everything right, the boy may miss a ledge or fail to grasp Trico properly, resulting in a game over as he falls off a cliff to his death. This is perhaps due to sluggish and sometimes unresponsive controls, which itself only amplifies the frustration for the player: the game’s inconsistent controls mirror the boy’s inconsistent helplessness, creating a sense of limited affect for both character and player.

Trico: Uncontrollable Affect

In contrast to the boy’s inability to affect the world around him, Trico is defined by immense affective power that thwarts the promise of purposeful movement. Its stomps, jumps, and leaps invariably destroy the ruins through which it moves with the boy, felling entire structures, creating passages and making others impassable. This goes for the boy as well: though it makes attempts to move without harming the boy, Trico often accidentally knocks him over as it moves past him or approaches him. When Trico jumps with the boy on its back, his body jostles violently around to the extent that even the character model cannot keep up: numerous times when jumping I witnessed the boy’s body spin around in a way that should have broken his arms. That Trico is so powerful as to cause the boy’s body to glitch speaks to its enormous capacity to affect the game world.

Trico’s affects extend even to the camera, which frequently focuses on its movements while often being unable to capture its body in its entirety (Fig 1). In one scene, the boy must coax Trico into a pool of water with food. As the boy looks for the food, the camera gravitates towards Trico’s body above the water as it prepares to jump and finds itself unable to. When Trico finally jumps in, it makes such waves in the pool that the boy is knocked off his feet and into the water, jostling the camera as well. While the boy is defined by his inability to affect the world of the game, Trico is unable to move through the game space without affecting it. Further, its affects are so powerful that they exceed the limitations of the game’s mechanics and camera.

Here, two distinct forms of frustration become clear: first, the frustration rendered by the boy’s inability to affect the world; second, the frustration rendered by the inability of the game system to contain Trico’s affects. This second form of frustration is also created via the boy’s relationship with Trico’s body: indeed, the boy’s interactions with Trico are defined by the constant attempt and ultimate inability to contend with its form.

Trico and Form

The Last Guardian makes one thing immediately clear: its concern with Trico’s form. The game’s opening credits pan and fade over several pen-and-ink drawings of animals from insects, birds of prey, bats, dogs and cats to mythical animals: unicorns, gryphons, dragons and phoenixes. The final image is of Trico itself (Fig. 2).

Stylistically, the images evoke a lineage of animal studies drawings that were at once observational and speculative. One reference is the Renaissance artist Albrecht Dürer, famous at his time for his drawings of animals. Dürer’s woodcut drawing The Rhinoceros (Fig. 3), based on an anonymous sketch and second-hand account of a rhinoceros brought to Lisbon from India in 1515, became for Europeans the definitive image of a Rhinoceros until well into the 18th century, despite the fact that Dürer had never seen a rhinoceros before. The detailed textures and focus on line lend the image an air of authenticity, but many of these details, like the spiral horn on the rhinoceros’s back and the armoresque quality of its skin, were inaccurate.

The drawings also evoke the illustrations in the works of Charles Darwin, such as those by T.W. Wood. In a series of drawings for Darwin’s The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals, Wood focuses on the bodily and facial expressions of animals in particular emotional states as a complement to Darwin’s observations and discussions of the ways emotions are expressed across species.

Both referents serve as testaments to the verisimilitude of an animal body through a concern with the specific textures and lines of its form. Further, the introductory sequence begins with images of animals whose forms, gestures and behaviors we find familiar—bees swarming around a nest, a bird preparing to fly, a cat in an aggressive stance—and transitions to increasingly fantastical animals, creating a throughline of behavior and form between animals with which we are familiar and ones upon which we must speculate. For example, by the time we see Trico’s face, we also see in its smooth, long shape and large, dark eyes echoes of the faces of the dog, cat, goat, and gryphon.

This is the first image we see of Trico in the game proper. In this way, we are introduced to Trico’s body as an amalgamation of formal properties that is at once alien and familiar. It is interesting, then, that The Last Guardian’s mechanics center around consideration of Trico’s form and behavior. Climbing to a place out of the boy’s reach, for instance, involves recognizing Trico’s relative height, finding a way to climb its body, and finding a stable vantage point on its back from which to jump off. Other maneuvers require climbing up and down Trico’s long tail, waiting for it to jump up on its hind legs to examine something and then climbing its body, or jumping down onto the safety of its body from great heights. Even the act of climbing Trico itself creates a certain familiarity with the textures of its feathers and fur.

By moving up and down Trico’s body over the course of the game, the player traces out the contours of its form in a way reminiscent of the attention to form in the pen-and-ink drawings: attention to form, empathy and spatial awareness become deeply entangled. Throughout these explorations, the camera is often unable to show Trico’s form in its entirety. The player, through control of the camera, is inculcated in the usually-futile process of trying to fit Trico in to the frame. At the same time, the player attempts to communicate with Trico: the boy pets its fur, calls out to it, and looks up at it. In response, Trico looks back down at the boy and makes eye contact with him; there are many moments throughout the game when the boy and Trico stand still and look at each other, though there is no way for the player to capture this gaze with the camera.

Moments like these encapsulate the intertwining of intimacy and frustration in The Last Guardian: an intimacy defined by a constant, often-futile negotiation, a push-pull that is never resolved but that nonetheless becomes intimate. This intimacy becomes mapped onto space as Trico and the boy struggle to move through the game’s ruined world.

Scale, Verticality, and Progression

The first real introduction to the spatiality of The Last Guardian happens about an hour into the game, when Trico and the boy emerge for the first time from a cave. Trico runs out ahead of the boy into an open area from the mouth of the cave, and in one of the game’s few cutscenes, the camera tilts upwards from behind Trico to reveal a tower so tall that it disappears into the sky. The game cuts to a long shot of Trico, now dwarfed by the incredible verticality of the space and distressed at its inability to fly to the top of the tower. Even when the camera returns to the boy’s control, the tower is so tall that there is no angle from which you can see the top. The ruins the player traverses over the course of the game are similar: they are impossibly tall, too large for either Trico or the boy to traverse; decrepit, and seemingly purposeless, with extended passageways that lead nowhere and infinitely high ceilings.

The Last Guardian is a linear game; there is little exploration involved beyond discovering how to progress to the next area. This is complicated, however, by the way that the space is experienced as linear because of the limited capacity of Trico’s and the boy’s bodies to move through it. This is rendered in a few ways. For one, locations recur throughout the game – the tower Trico and the boy see in the above scene reappears in the distance at several points later on and ultimately becomes their final destination in the game. Other areas, like a long bridge or an open landing area, can be seen in the distance before Trico and the boy get to them. The pair never finds a map of the space, however, and they spend most of the game inside caves or buildings. As a result, the player never becomes familiar enough with the space to understand its topography. Like the camera’s inability to capture the space in its entirety, this adds to the sense of the space being too large and too tall for the pair to comprehend. Along a similar vein, there are some locations to which Trico and the boy physically return; however, invariably they are unable to move through them in the same way as before and must find a different path that wasn’t available the first time around.

This has the effect of giving a glimpse into the potentiality of the space limited by Trico and the boy’s bodies: when circumstances convene (via a collapsed building or fallen rock) so that they can move through the space in different ways, new places open up to them that hint at other paths they are so far unable to follow. On that note, there are a number of pathways throughout the game that Trico and the boy simply can’t follow, either because they are blocked off or because they are too large or too small for the pair to move through. The cutscene at the bottom of the tower at the beginning of the game serves as a microcosm of the space’s logic more generally: a constant reminder of the things Trico and the boy can’t do, the places they can’t go. The result of this is a sense of desperation combined with a hyper-awareness of both the boy’s and Trico’s bodies—the player is constantly made to look at the space in terms of how they might fit (or fail to fit) through it.

At the same time, the differing negative abilities of Trico and the boy to fit through space draws positive attention to distance and scale at several points throughout the game. There are several points when the boy must separate from Trico in order to open a pathway for it to follow him (either by opening a door or destroying a glass eye). Whenever the boy leaves Trico alone, Trico’s howls and whines echo off the walls and cliffs, reminding the player of its absence and of the vast scale of the space. The act of closing the distance after opening these paths is often given particular attention. In one section, the pair must cross a crumbling old wooden bridge that extends down into a chasm so deep it is impossible to see the bottom. With the boy’s guidance, Trico eventually jumps across a gap too wide for the boy to cross. As it lands on the bridge across the gap, the bridge falls down enough that the boy just might be able to make the distance, with Trico waiting on the other side. As he boy jumps, time slows and the sound of the boy’s leap transitions into a processed, almost metallic whoosh, and the camera follows the boy from above as he freefalls towards the chasm. Trico’s head appears from the top of the frame and it catches him in its mouth, and as they make contact, time speeds up again and the whoosh is cut off by Trico’s grunting breaths. As Trico lifts the boy to a safe place on the bridge, he shakes and squirms in its mouth, the player powerless to do anything else until it puts him down. In contrast to the jump, at this moment the game is utterly silent (see press kit video for The Last Guardian from the Internet Game Database below).

This moment and others like it emphasize the tight connection in The Last Guardian between the limitations of Trico’s and the boy’s bodies, vertical space, and temporality. From the exaggerated verticality of the bridge, to the difference in scale between Trico and the boy emphasized by the camera angles, to the slowing of time itself as the boy leaps across the gap, the entire section is anchored around this moment of extended precarity, a moment that emphasizes the boy’s inability to cross the gap on his own. This begs the question: if the spatial architecture of the game was designed to create these painfully long moments of precarity—moments which, if the player jumps just a little too early or late, can end in the boy falling to his death—then what relationship does The Last Guardian articulate between frustration and time?

Temporality and Communication: Two Kinds of Waiting

We might divide The Last Guardian into two kinds of long moments. The first is of a type mentioned above: moments of a distance being closed that are bloated by slow motion, exaggerated sound, and vertical space. The second type of moment, which takes up perhaps the majority of the game, is waiting.

Here, I draw from Harold Schweizer’s On Waiting, in which he unpacks the notion of waiting through Henri Bergson’s notion of duration. For Schweizer, while waiting, “the time that is felt and consciously endured seems slow, thick, opaque, unlike the transparent, inconspicuous time in which we accomplish our tasks and meet our appointments;” he describes these moments as perceptions of enduring which, “because they are intimate, are vexingly uncomfortable,” causing the waiter to fidget, pace, complain and consult their watch. But waiting also opens up the waiter to the potential to perceive duration, if only for a moment—and “it is in this fleeting moment that the waiter is conscious of her intimate existential duration, of her having lingered in time, of time having lingered in her. Her realization of her duration is as momentary and tenuous as the dreamer’s remembrance of his dream.” It is interesting that Schweizer uses the word intimate to refer to these moments of waiting that become encounters with duration. Indeed, the intimate moment as discussed earlier bears significant similarities with Schweizer’s waiting: they are both tenuous and precarious, uncomfortable and sometimes unbearable. Likewise, just as frustration is an encounter with the body’s incapacities, waiting is an encounter with the body’s duration, with the body’s existence in time and therefore its finitude.

As discussed previously, one source of frustration on the part of reviewers and audiences of the game was that Trico doesn’t always listen to the player’s commands. Throughout the game, the player often relies on Trico to jump, climb, walk or stand at particular points in order to access the next area. The player can call out to Trico or use one of several commands, which the boy acts out in exaggerated fashion, to encourage Trico towards certain places. The commands are never precisely defined, but they are mapped to the same buttons that the player uses to control the boy to perform certain actions—namely, to jump, hit, grab and crouch—and to an extent they encourage Trico to respond by doing the same thing. However, the commands are extremely unreliable. Sometimes Trico fails to understand them; sometimes, it appears not to listen or to be reluctant to follow the directive; other times, commands that should encourage Trico to do one thing instead inspire it to do another. In practice, the player and the boy end up waiting for Trico more often than not. Returning to Schweizer, these moments become “slow, thick, opaque,” compelling the player to fidget and pace, to move around so as to occupy the time. Several times during my own play experience, frustrated at Trico’s failure to respond to my command, I began cycling through all the commands one after the other, and the sight of the boy haplessly flailing his arms and yelling to Trico became rather comical. Of course, compounding this frustration at waiting for Trico is the frustration of the boy’s body’s inability to act on its own. With the boy’s constant fumbles, falls, and struggles in mind, his exaggerated, ultimately purposeless movement becomes an encapsulation of The Last Guardian’s spatial and temporal frustrations.

These long moments of waiting are punctuated by interactions with Trico that emphasize the boy’s and Trico’s vulnerability. In one scene, Trico and the boy approach a large, glowing room resembling a massive, Trico-sized cage. Trico is extremely reluctant to jump down into the cage from a platform above, and when the boy finally manages to coax it down, Trico is taken over by a mechanical crystalline object in the cage and becomes hostile towards the boy. No matter what the boy does or how long he avoids it, Trico will catch up to him and eat him. Impatience from so much time waiting gives way to total vulnerability, and the familiarity of Trico’s form created through haptic engagement becomes suddenly horrifying as that massive form is leveraged against the boy’s tiny body.

Here, what could be read as payoff to hours of waiting is simply another form of frustration. Like the distance-closing moments described earlier, this frustration is marked by formal intensity that is extended too long, though in this case the extension is created by the player attempting in vain to avoid Trico long enough to survive. Given these structural and formal similarities, we might denote two forms of frustration in The Last Guardian: the frustration of waiting, and the frustration of something awaited happening (Fig. 4).

Intimacy and the Animal

I have written at length about the many frustrations of The Last Guardian, but as of yet we have only seen intimacy come in at the margins. The bloated moments of closing the distance between the boy and Trico were evocative of the intimate sensations described in the introduction to this essay: the precarity of the moment of the jump, the vulnerability to Trico’s actions and to the vertical space, and the present-oriented temporal focus at the moment of contact with Trico’s form all evoke intimacy. But what is intimate about the extended moments of inability described above, or the genuine horror created by the (fulfilled, several times) potential of Trico to eat the boy? Here, I must finally ask a deceptively simple question that, like intimacy, has lingered in the margins of our frustrations until now: how do we define the specific relationship between the boy and Trico?

The key, I argue, lies in the subject position of Trico. The Last Guardian insists on Trico’s subjectivity. So many of its formal details and gestures throughout the game—its careful steps when you’re underfoot so as not to crush you, its anxious glance backwards as you climb tenuously onto its back before a jump, the slight incline of its head as you stand on its back and pet it—draw attention to its capacity to respond to and care for the boy. Even the fact that the player must wait—sometimes for quite a while—for Trico to respond to commands has the effect of forcing the player to accommodate its needs and wants. And the haptic process of learning Trico’s form is also a process of watching its responses – in the long moments it takes to climb up to Trico’s head, with nothing else to do, the player notices Trico’s body reacting to the boy’s movements. When the boy stops to look at Trico, Trico sometimes leans down to get a pat on the head, and in these moments when its face fills the frame, its form is more comprehensible, even if only for a moment.

Collective Incapacities

There is one moment in particular that evokes Trico’s subjectivity to great effect. Towards the end of the game, the pair encounter a second cage apparatus, and once again Trico becomes hostile and eats the boy. When Trico wakes up having regurgitated the boy, who is unconscious beside him, in a long, slow and silent scene, it nudges him, paws at him, picks him up and puts him in the sunlight, and finally drops him in a puddle of water in an attempt to wake him up. The long, drawn-out quality of the scene and the way it opens on a close-up of the boy’s face (reminiscent of earlier scenes in which the boy was awoken by player input) encourage the player to attempt to wake (the boy) up using their game controller, but their input is futile until the boy is finally awoken by the water. Though the player does not control it directly, Trico and the player become aligned in their efforts to awaken the boy, in their similar inabilities to do so and therefore their similar frustrations. In my own play experience I found this moment deeply upsetting. After playing for hours and finding only frustration in the boy’s limited capacity to move, this new frustration of suddenly being unable to move at all expanded into a profound vulnerability that I experienced at once from my own subject position, from the boy’s, and from Trico’s. In light of Trico’s—and at the same time my own—quiet, desperate response to the boy’s unconsciousness, I found an intimacy in our collective incapacities.

Donna Haraway allows us a way forward here in her discussions of companion species and oddkin. In When Species Meet, Donna Haraway uses the term “companion species” not to refer only to companion animals (ie. domesticates), but to denote “less of a category than a pointer to an ongoing ‘becoming with.’” Gesturing towards Derrida, Haraway draws from the etymologies of companion species to locate the notion of the companion species in seeing and response. For Haraway, “species interdependence is the name of the worlding game on earth, and that game must be one of response and respect. That is the play of companion species learning to pay attention.” Haraway elaborates on this in Staying With The Trouble: Keeping Kin in the Cthulhucene, in which she contends with climate change and environmental destruction by calling for a practice of “learning to stay with the trouble of living and dying in response-ability on a damaged earth.” Haraway locates staying with the trouble in “a thick present […] not as a vanishing pivot between awful or edenic pasts and apocalyptic or salvific futures, but as mortal critters entwined in myriad unfinished configurations of places, times, matters, meanings.” Finally, “staying with the trouble requires making oddkin; that is, we require each other in unexpected collaborations and combinations, in hot compost piles. We become-with each other or not at all.” With the terms “companion species” and “oddkin,” Haraway traces out a model of “being-with” and “becoming-with” marked by a temporality stubbornly and decisively oriented in a present that is thick, slow, difficult and even painful. This is reminiscent of intimacy and frustration: it is in the too-long, too-tall, sometimes unbearable durations of waiting and experiences of inability that make up The Last Guardian where moments of profound vulnerability and intimacy can be found.

The Last Guardian is a deeply intimate, deeply frustrating process of being-with and becoming-with articulated through the troubling companion species relationship between Trico and the boy. It is rare for a game to force its players to stay with the incapacities of their characters’ bodies; so many linear adventure games allow the player to overcome these incapacities by leveling up, acquiring weapons, or gaining the ability to move in new and more efficient ways. The Last Guardian does eventually allow for a new form of movement: at the end of the game, in order to save the boy’s life, Trico spreads its once-injured wings and flies with him in its mouth. It is not a coincidence that this happens just as the game ends, and also just before Trico and the boy part ways: The Last Guardian is not about the promise of powerful movement, but about the intimacy of moving imperfectly. In this essay I attended to the specific temporal and formal structures that this imperfection took in The Last Guardian, and how intimacy in this case became tied to frustration, waiting and incapacity. But what other intimacies might result from games that force their players to be with imperfection, as vulnerable and as intolerable as that can be? Constant failures, precarious encounters and the loss of control are important to the affective experience of many games, and attending to the formal ways that these elements are rendered and contended with might reveal other intimate affects, other ways of staying with the trouble.

Filed under: Articles, Current Issue, Issue 30

Tagged with: affect, animal studies, frustration, game studies, intimacy, the last guardian, Video games, waiting

Источник: https://ivc.lib.rochester.edu/the-monster-has-kind-eyes-intimacy-and-frustration-in-the-last-guardian/
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Ryan Meitzler

Ryan is the Editor-in-Chief at DualShockers and has been a lover of games as long as he can remember. He holds a BA in English and Cinema and lives in New York City.

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Источник: https://www.dualshockers.com/the-last-guardian-3d-chalk-art/

The Last Guardian

For other uses, see The Last Guardian (disambiguation).

2016 video game

2016 video game

The Last Guardian[a] is a 2016 action-adventure game developed by Japan Studio and GenDesign and published by Sony Interactive Entertainment for the PlayStation 4. Players control a boy who befriends a giant half-bird, half-mammal creature, Trico.

Team Ico began developing The Last Guardian in 2007. It was designed and directed by Fumito Ueda, and shares stylistic, thematic, and gameplay elements with his previous games, Ico (2001) and Shadow of the Colossus (2005). He employed the "design through subtraction" approach he had used for his previous games, removing elements that did not contribute to the core theme of the connection between the boy and Trico.

Sony announced The Last Guardian at E3 2009 with a planned release in 2011 for the PlayStation 3. It suffered numerous delays; Ueda and other Team Ico members departed Sony, forming the studio GenDesign, and hardware difficulties moved the game to the PlayStation 4 in 2012, drawing speculation that the game would not see release. Ueda and GenDesign remained as creative consultants, with Ueda as director and Sony's Japan Studio handling technical development. The Last Guardian was reintroduced at E3 2015. Upon release, it received praise for its art direction, story, and depiction of Trico, though some criticized the gameplay.

Gameplay[edit]

Like its predecessors Ico (2001) and Shadow of the Colossus (2005), The Last Guardian is a third-person game that combines action-adventure and puzzle elements.[1][2] The player controls an unnamed boy who must cooperate with a half-bird-half-mammal creature, Trico, to solve puzzles and explore areas. The name of the creature, Trico (トリコ, Toriko),[3] can be taken to mean "prisoner" (虜, toriko), "baby bird" (鳥の子, tori no ko), or a portmanteau of "bird" (鳥, tori) and "cat" (猫, neko).[4]

The boy can climb on structures, carry objects such as barrels, and operate mechanisms such as levers. Trico's size and agility allow it to reach areas that the boy cannot reach alone, and fight off guards who attempt to capture the boy.[3] Conversely, certain obstacles, such as gates, or glass eyes that frighten Trico, prevent Trico from progressing, and must be removed by the boy.[5] The boy must locate barrels to feed Trico when it is hungry, pet Trico to calm it after a battle, and remove spears thrown at Trico by enemies.[5]

Though the player initially has little command over Trico, the boy learns to command Trico to leap onto ledges or head in a certain direction, among other actions.[6] Although players are encouraged to train Trico to move in the right direction, new areas can be discovered by letting Trico wander independently.[7] At various points, the boy wields a reflective mirror that summons lightning from Trico's tail, which can be used to break certain objects.[8]

The player is returned to the last checkpoint if the boy is captured by guards, or if he falls from too great a height.[9] Multiple playthroughs unlock additional costumes based on previous Ueda games.[10]

Plot[edit]

The player controls the boy, who must care for and work with the large creature, Trico, using its animal instincts to solve puzzles

The Last Guardian's story is framed as a flashback told by an older man (voiced by Hiroshi Shirokuma) recounting his experience as a boy.[3]

The boy (voiced by Tatsuki Ishikawa) awakens in a ruined castle in a deep valley known as the Nest.[11] He discovers an enormous, winged, cat-like creature called a Trico, chained and wounded. Though Trico is hostile, after the boy removes the spears from its body and feeds it, it begins to accept him.[12] The boy unchains Trico and they explore the area, discovering a mirror-like shield that summons lightning-like energy from Trico's tail. The pair make their way through the castle ruins, evading the ghostly soldiers,[13] and Trico's broken horns and wings slowly regrow.

In a flashback, Trico flies to the boy's village and steals him from his dormitory. It flies back to the Nest, but is struck by lightning and chained up by the soldiers. In the present, Trico resuscitates the boy after a cave collapse. After fending off an attack from a second, armored creature, Trico and the boy enter a mysterious tower and discover a malevolent force, the "master of the valley", which manipulates creatures and soldiers. It summons several creatures of the same kind as Trico, which regurgitate stolen children into the tower and savage Trico, tearing off the end of its tail. The boy uses the mirror to summon energy from the severed tail segment and destroy the master of the valley, causing the creatures to plummet from the sky.

Wounded, Trico takes the boy, near-death, and flies to his village. When the terrified villagers attack him the boy instructs Trico to leave. Years later, the boy, now grown, discovers the shield and raises it to the sky, sending a beam of light to the Nest, where Trico resides.[14]

Development[edit]

In his previous game, Shadow of the Colossus, director Fumito Ueda had intended to create an emotional interaction between Mono, the character that Wander wants to save, and the colossi that Wander must fight to save her. He was surprised and inspired to find players felt a stronger connection between Wander and his horse Agro.[15] Ueda wanted to make the relationship between a human and a creature the central concept for his next game.[6][15][12]

Ueda found that people were drawn to games with lifelike creatures, and felt The Last Guardian needed something similar to attract a broad audience. He wanted to create a virtual creature that behaved as realistically as possible, avoiding the unnatural behavior of other virtual animals.[6][8] He based much of Trico's behavior on his childhood experiences growing up in a home full of animals.[16] The final version of Trico is an amalgam of several creatures; the design was "deliberately unbalanced because looking strange was important", according to Ueda.[6] The team wanted to avoid making the animal cute, and instead focused on realistic-looking behavior with "animal-like expressions".[6] Trico's ears react with a cat-like "twitch" if they touch ceilings or other tall features, using the game's mesh-based collision detection.[7] The team added the ability to summon lightning from Trico's tail to have players understand Trico's "force and ferocity".[8] Ueda described Trico as "adolescent", allowing the developers to add humor through its actions.[17] The team used programmed key frame animations instead of more common motion capture techniques, allowing them to capture subtleties that would be difficult using live animal subjects.[18]

As Trico functions similarly to the colossi the player climbs in Shadow of the Colossus, journalists have described The Last Guardian as a combination of Ico and Shadow of the Colossus; Ueda stated there was "a bit of each of those [games] in there".[18] He described the relationship between the boy, Trico, and the guards as a game of rock-paper-scissors that changes throughout the game; at times, the boy needs Trico to protect him, while at others the situation is reversed.[17] Though Ico and Shadow of the Colossus have a similar changing connection between pairs of characters, Ueda said there was more "dynamic range" in The Last Guardian.[19]

The Last Guardian is the first Team Ico game to use voice-over narration. As much of the game relies on non-verbal communication between the boy and Trico, Ueda felt the voice-over helped immerse the player in the mindset of the boy. It also provided a way to provide gameplay hints and other context to the player.[19]

Whereas the team had designed the areas of previous games for the characters they had designed in advance, for The Last Guardian they made Trico as flexible as possible, allowing them to create levels and have Trico adapt to them.[12][20] The size difference and interactions between the boy and Trico were informed by the limitations of the PlayStation; if the characters were of the same size, the team would have needed to determine the animation interactions for both, whereas Trico's size meant the boy's animations would not need to affect him much.[8]

Although the boy is less detailed than Trico, he was animated via key frame animation.[18] He places hands on nearby walls, and reaches to pet Trico without player interaction.[7] Ueda felt these animations were necessary to help convince the player of the game world.[7] The animation system uses layers of animation that mimic real-life physics, taking advantage of the greater processing power of the PlayStation 4.[8] The team considered making the player character a girl, but felt it would not be realistic that a female character would have enough stamina to climb Trico.[20]

To create the game's art and architecture, the team used the same "design through subtraction" method they had used to develop Ico and Shadow of the Colossus, removing elements they felt distracted from the core experience.[21] Music is used sparingly to highlight key emotional moments, such as when Trico uses his tail to catch the boy as he falls from a collapsing platform.[21] The game uses vertical space to emphasize the boy's small size.[21]

The Last Guardiangame engine builds on the team's previous development of AI processing from Ico and transformative collisions from Shadow of the Colossus.[6] It is the first Team Ico game to use a full physics engine, Havok.[8] According to Ueda, the effect of wind was modeled separately for each of Trico's feathers.[22] Yasuhide Kobayashi, vice president of Japan Studio, stated that the title The Last Guardian was chosen to appeal to the larger demographic markets in the United States and Europe for the PlayStation 3, hoping to avoid the cultural problems in title and artwork blamed for Ico's low sales in western countries.[23]

In August 2019 interview Fumito Ueda mentioned that Trico they were creating on PlayStation 3 actually had more motion patterns than the PlayStation 4 version did, but they were unable to transfer everything due to transition time issues.[24]

Technical development[edit]

With initial ideas for The Last Guardian envisioned by Ueda since around 2005 after completing Shadow of the Colossus,[25] the game was in active development since 2007, a year after the release of the PlayStation 3.[26][27][28] The working title was Project Trico, revealed to the public due to a leaked video posted at PlayStation Lifestyle in 2008 that showed the current "Target Render" of the game at that time.[29][30] Ueda had long considered the development time for Ico and Shadow of the Colossus, and had anticipated being able "to create something good in a short period of time" with The Last Guardian at the onset.[31] By 2009, the development team had completed enough of the game for it to be showcased during the E3 2009, using an improved render of the same set pieces previously seen in the Target Render[29][30][32][33] and later provided a short vertical slice of the game to the press for the Game Developers Conference in early March 2011.[18] Ueda had considered including this demo on the then-upcoming remastered The Ico & Shadow of the Colossus Collection, though it was ultimately not included.[34]

Behind the scenes, the development of The Last Guardian was considered slow by Shuhei Yoshida, the president of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide.[26] Yoshida explained that the vision for The Last Guardian was based on a video prepared by Ueda to demonstrate the concepts and style of the game, a process Ueda had used for Ico,[35] and Sony wanted to stay true to that vision.[36] Team Ico, which is a small studio compared to other Sony studios in Japan or other Western developers, were struggling with achieving Ueda's vision for the game on the PlayStation 3 hardware.[36] In 2015 Yoshida revealed that the previous 2009 trailer was "specced up", running at a much lower frame rate on the PlayStation 3 and sped up for the presentation.[37] Around 2011, Sony brought in many of their core development teams such as Santa Monica Studios to review the code and try to improve the performance.[26][38] In 2012, with Sony preparing to announce the PlayStation 4 and still recognizing the sluggish development of the PlayStation 3 version of the game, it was decided to change the target platform to the PlayStation 4 so that Ueda's concept could be fully realized.[26][36] Ueda stated that this choice was primarily Sony's decision, speculating that the PlayStation 3 version of the game at this point would still have been sufficient to convey his concept.[39] Following the target platform switch, Ueda and other members of Team Ico were not as involved with the process, as other teams worked to take the highly customized PlayStation 3 code to adapt it to the PlayStation 4; this included the help of PlayStation 4 lead architect Mark Cerny.[26] With the reintroduction of the game at the E3 2015, Yoshida explained that the game engine is now fully running at speed on the PlayStation 4 and that the remainder of the development lies with the game designers to complete.[26]

Development was hampered by Ueda's departure from Sony in December 2011. With Sony's decision to delay the release of the game early that year, Ueda and other Sony and Team Ico employees opted to leave Sony. Ueda stated in 2013 interview that his departure from Sony was due to feeling "a sense of crisis within myself about a lot of things" on news of the delay.[28] Some of those that departed Sony went on to other projects. For example, executive producer Yoshifusa Hayama joined Bossa Studios to work on social/mobile games,[40] while two Team Ico artists joined an indie startup studio Friends & Foes to develop their first game, Vane, which has been compared visually to The Last Guardian.[41] Ueda and other former Team Ico members, including Jinji Horagai, the lead programmer from Ico and Shadow of the Colossus, created a new studio, GenDesign.[31][42] In founding the studio, they were faced with a choice, according to Ueda: "Do we try to create something new, or do we keep going, providing support on The Last Guardian?"[25] GenDesign opted to commit themselves to helping Sony complete The Last Guardian through contract and working alongside Sony's internal studio, Japan Studio.[43][44] Under this arrangement, GenDesign developed the creative content for the game, such as character design and animation and level design, which was then put into place via Japan Studio, with Ueda maintaining oversight on the completed project.[31][36]

Ueda stated that the final game, as of June 2016, still represents the initial vision he had for The Last Guardian at its onset.[15] The transition from the PlayStation 3 to 4 only improved how the game looked, but did not change how it played. Ueda stressed it was important during the extended development cycle to keep the question "what kind of game do I want to play?" at the forefront, and to remember that the game needed to be targeted at players experiencing the game for the first time rather than developers that had played it through over and over.[15]Digital Foundry, in comparing the game from its initial Target Render from 2008, the 2009 trailer, the 2015 trailer, and the final game, found very few changes in the game's structure and nature, while observing several improvements and changes made to the rendering systems.[30]

Music[edit]

The Last Guardian's original score was written, orchestrated, conducted, and co-produced by Takeshi Furukawa. Furukawa had joined the soundtrack development around 2011, near the same time that the game was being transitioned to the PlayStation 4. Furukawa had been invited to participate by Tommy Kikuchi, the music director for Shadow of the Colossus.[45] During the platform transition, much of the creative work had been put on hold, and Furukawa did not spend extensive effort on the composition until about 2013, three years prior to release. He completed his compositions in early 2016.[45]

Furakawa stated that Ueda trusted him with freedom to compose the music and providing only a broad direction of a cinematic soundtrack and some specific directorial notes. While he was aware of the reputation of the soundtracks by Michiru Oshima and Kow Otani for Ico and Shadow of the Colossus, respectively, and wanted to have The Last Guardian's soundtrack to be similarly unique, Furukawa opted to avoid using these previous works and instead drew his own inspirations primarily from works with a "muted aesthetic", such as Impressionist art and music and French cinema.[45] Furakawa wanted to avoid overstating the emotional aspect of the game, which he felt was already sufficiently conveyed through the gameplay and animation, and instead kept the music restrained except during key narrative elements or in specific locales of the game work.[45] Furukawa did not have to adapt his score significantly to account for changes in story and game direction since these elements were still made within Ueda's vision.[45] He worked with audio lead Tsubasa Ito frequently to review the status and use of his scored compositions.[45]

The performance of the soundtrack was conducted by Furukawa with the London Symphony Orchestra, the Trinity Boys Choir, and London Voices, and was recorded at Lyndhurst Hall.[45] The 19-track Composer's Choice Edition soundtrack was released digitally alongside the game on the PlayStation 4 Music App, and later on other digital retailers. A 24-track CD version of the soundtrack was released by TEAM Entertainment on 21 December 2016.[46] In addition, a two-disc vinyl LP edition was published by iam8bit in 2017.[47]

Release[edit]

Shawn Layden formally reintroduced The Last Guardian at the beginning of Sony's E3 2015 conference.[48] Sony affirmed that that game was now slated for release on the PlayStation 4 with a 2016 release date. Sony also assured fans that Ueda still remained a main developer of the game despite his prior departure from Sony.[49] According to Chris Plante of Polygon, the gameplay presented shows the same gameplay from previous demos, where the young boy and the large creature work together to solve various platforming puzzles.[50] The presentation at E3 2015 was based on the milestone of the game being fully playable, affirmed by selected members of the press,[51] though Yoshida stated they did not do a live gameplay demo as the artificial intelligence behavior of the animal creature could be sporadic and impact the demonstration.[37] Ueda said that the fundamentals of the gameplay had not changed from the original PlayStation 3 version to the PlayStation 4, only that with the more-powerful PlayStation 4, they were able to put more detail into the characters and the environment.[3]

Though the game demo was not playable at the 2015 Tokyo Game Show, part of Sony's display for the game including a full-screen version of Trico that would respond in real time to the actions of the attendees as captured by a PlayStation Move camera.[52] Yoshida stated that they had not shown much additional footage of the game since the E3 2015 announcement as they believed that The Last Guardian is story-heavy and feared showing too much beyond that the game does exist and is playable.[53]

The Last Guardian was announced for a 25 October 2016 release in Japan and North America during Sony's presentation at E3 2016 in June,[54] and was available in a playable form to attendees.[5] In an interview with Kotaku during E3 2016, Ueda commented that the game was fully complete, and the only work remaining was fine-tuning visuals and cut-scenes.[15] A short delay was announced in September 2016, pushing the title back to early December 2016 release, as the developers needed more time to fix bugs that had come up during the final production of the game, according to Yoshida.[55] By 21 October 2016, development of The Last Guardian concluded and the game was submitted for manufacturing.[56] A patch enabled high dynamic range and added 4k resolution support for the PlayStation 4 Pro system.[57]

In addition to regular retail copies, Sony released a "collector's edition" including the game, an artbook, a soundtrack, and a statue of a resting Trico and the boy.[58] The week prior to release, Sony's Joe Palmer stated that pre-order numbers were "exceeding expectations", including high interest in the collector's edition.[59] A standalone demo version of The Last Guardian was released for the PlayStation VR on 12 December 2017; the virtual reality version allows the player to experience interacting with Trico from the viewpoint of the boy.[60] After the launch of the PlayStation 5 in November 2020, players discovered that this game runs at 60 frames per seconds when playing an unpatched version from the PlayStation 4 disc. [61]

Reception[edit]

Reception

The Last Guardian received "generally favorable" reviews, according to video game review aggregatorMetacritic.[62] Most reviewers praised the game's environment and story as some of its strongest elements, while the realism of the animal behavior that Trico exhibits was praised by some critics, yet others felt that the realism also hampered the gameplay causing impatience and frustration due to lack of immediate action by Trico when giving commands.[77]

GameSpot's Pete Brown praised the characters, their relationship and the story as the important aspects to the game and overall experience, noting interactions with Trico and acting very independently at times by not knowing "if it's a concerted effort to test your patience for a lovable-yet-stubborn creature". However Brown felt that it added personality to Trico and "sympathy for both characters" in addition to their development within the story and for the player, "culminating in an enrapturing series of revelations that cements your attachment to their personalities".[69] Tom Senior of GamesRadar called Trico "the greatest AI companion in games", in addition to the subtle use of visual and audio cues to add more character and its impact on the gameplay itself.[70]

Reviewing for The Guardian, Simon Parkin praised the design of Trico and its interactions with the world and puzzles, adding further emotional investment. He likened Trico to an "abuse survivor" due to being scared and imprisoned at the start of the game and the thoughtfulness and relationship development of its characters making it "a game, as much as anything, about rehabilitation through kindness and companionship".[75] Chris Carter of Destructoid felt that the detail and realistic behavior of Trico and the boy were "emotive in a way that most developers wouldn't even attempt", potentially being the reason behind the long development, praising the effort put in by Fumito Ueda and the developers nonetheless.[63]US Gamer's Jermey Parish believed that Trico as an in-game character with its own apparent volition was revolutionary in character design, and that the emotional relationship between Trico and the boy was something that could only be effectively done with the interactivity of a video game.[78]

In contrast, Marty Sliva of IGN was critical of Trico's behavior during puzzles combined with camera controls making sections of the game more frustrating, particularly during interiors due to the cramped nature of certain levels and the size of Trico detracting from the experience, calling it "rare to even have to think about the camera in a third-person game in 2016, but I found myself constantly being pulled out of the experience trying to wrestle with my point of view". Sliva however still felt that the game succeeded in the attachment with its characters and delivered memorable moments despite its issues.[71]Game Revolution's James Kozanitis found that there were moments that Trico would continue with traversing the environment and performing tasks even without player input, making the act of controlling Trico at times "ineffective and unnecessary".[68]

Reviewers also noted performance problems with the game running on default PlayStation 4 hardware. Eurogamer's Digital Foundry determined that the game ran into rendering issues and framerate drops on the PlayStation 4, while running at 1080p on the newer PlayStation 4 Pro provided a stable framerate.[79] Philip Kollar of Polygon compared technical aspects to its predecessors release on the PlayStation 2 due to the long development across multiple generations of Sony consoles, stating that the game at times did take advantage of the PlayStation 4 hardware while in others, such as framerate and control issues made its age more noticeable.[72] Sam Byford of The Verge commented that while framerate drops were common in Shadow of the Colossus, they were more acceptable based on the PlayStation 2 hardware of the time and the extent the game maximized out the console's hardware, while such issues on PlayStation 4 for The Last Guardian were less forgivable, making it feel like "a PS3 game that never really came together until the brute force of new hardware allowed the team to ship"; he contrasted this to Final Fantasy XV which had the game's engine rebuilt after its target platform was switched to eighth-generation consoles.[80]

The game was named on several year-end Game of the Year lists, including The New Yorker,[81]Engadget,[82]GameSpot,[83]VG247,[84] and Polygon.[85]

Reaction to delays[edit]

Because of the development delays in The Last Guardian and lack of updates from Sony, The Last Guardian was considered to have been in development hell over its eight-year development period.[86] Ueda and Yoshida would regularly report progress on the game, but the title was notably absent from major video game conventions, including E3 and the Tokyo Game Show.[31]

Journalists also expressed concern with the potential release of the game when The Last Guardiantrademark had hit some critical milestones. In August 2012, about three years after the trademark had been filed in the United States, Sony had yet to produce a viable product under trademark law,[87][88] and in February 2015, Sony failed to renew the North American trademark for The Last Guardian.[89] Sony re-registered the trademark, noting that lack of a renewal was an administrative oversight, and the game was still in development.[90]

Prior to the reintroduction in 2015, some journalists expressed concern if The Last Guardian would be as much a landmark game as initially seen. Evan Narcisse for the website Kotaku opined that the lengthy delay of The Last Guardian's release since the 2009 reveal may have been harming the game's relevance on the contemporary market. Narcisse considered that the landscape of games had vastly changed since 2009, during which "by-the-numbers racers, shooters and action-adventure games dominated" the market and the expected emotional impact of The Last Guardian would have made it a stand-out game. Since then, the rise of more independent games such as Papo & Yo, Bastion, The Walking Dead, and Journey had created similar experiences to The Last Guardian, according to Narcisse.[91]Leigh Alexander of Boing Boing agreed, noting that the delay of The Last Guardian had spanned a console generation, and other emotionally filled games have been offered in lieu of The Last Guardian.[92]GamesIndustry.biz's Rob Fahey considered that both The Last Guardian and Final Fantasy XV, which also had a protracted development cycle lasting nearly a decade, represent the last remnants of game development practices from the early 2000s, challenged by the rise of mobile gaming, independent game development, and more efficient software development practices that change the nature and role of auteurs like Ueda and Final Fantasy's Tetsuya Nomura in game development.[93]

News writers were able to play The Last Guardian at E3 2016 and the 2016 Tokyo Game Show in the months before the game's release, and several expressed further concerns about the nature of the game's lengthy development period. Patrick Garrett, writing for VG247, found that the visuals felt flat and aged considering modern hardware capabilities, and expressed concern that while older gamers would readily purchase the game, The Last Guardian may not draw in enough newer gamers to be a commercial success.[94] Philip Kollar for Polygon, though still impressed with the characters, graphics, and core gameplay, found controlling the character difficult and managing the game's camera tricky, elements that made the game feel like a PlayStation 2 game rather than something on modern hardware.[95]Wired's Chris Kohler found much of the demo to require patient observation of Trico's movements and puzzle solving, which, he commented, some players would appreciate but were elements that have slowly been phased out of action games over the last console generation, and other players may not have the patience for these.[96] Brian Ashcraft of Kotaku also noted that the demo's pace was often set by how fast Trico would respond or react, which may test the patience of players looking for a more action-based experience.[97]

Sales[edit]

In the UK, The Last Guardian suffered lower than expected sales,[98] debuting at number 7 in the weekly game sales charts.[99] It debuted at number four in the Japanese video game sales charts, with 82,260 copies sold.[100] The following week, it sold an additional 10,754 copies in Japan, bringing the total number of copies sold in the country to 93,014.[101]

Awards[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^Known as Hitokui no Ōwashi Trico (人喰いの大鷲トリコ, Hitokui no Ōwashi Toriko, "Trico the Large Man-Eating Eagle") in Japan.

References[edit]

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Источник: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Last_Guardian

Everybody Poops, Including The Last Guardian's Cat Beast

The Last Guardian is filled with magical moments, but none quite as magical as when the legendary winged cat beast takes a massive rolling poo off the side of a treacherous bit of scaffolding.

Without giving too much away, Trico’s digestive tract plays a pretty big role in The Last Guardian, and why shouldn’t it? His behavior is modeled after that of various real-world beasts, and real-world beasts poop all the time. Seriously, they never stop. There’s probably one near you right now, just a-poopin’ away.

That said, someone in the comments of my The Last Guardian review asked me if Trico pooped, and I replied that he did not. I was so wrong. The video below shows an event that occurred during in my playthrough of the game, but somehow I managed to be looking away from Trico as green globes rained from his anus. If not for YouTuber Brian Taylor (via Reddit), I may have never witnessed this majestic moment.

A few observations here.

  • From what I gather from playing through the game, Trico feeds on barrels of blue energy. If he poops out green globes, that must mean his digestive tract absorbs yellow, making him Sinestro’s arch-enemy.
  • I’m glad Trico attempts to scratch at the ground to bury his poo, but all he is doing here is covering it with wood shavings.
  • How could I have possibly missed this? Half of the screenshots I took while playing were of Trico’s rear end.
  • Since he’s part bird and part cat, does Trico have an anus, or does he sport a cloaca, the combination sex/digestive output gland enjoyed by most reptiles, birds and fish? Rather than just ask, I say we form groups for the opposing theories, mostly because I want a Team Cloaca t-shirt.

Also take note of the size and shape of Trico’s excrement. Maybe draw some pictures. Compose a little song to them. Anything to keep you from just picking them up and running about with them, as in the outstanding threat in The Last Guardian Reddit titled, “Strange green eggs or blobs. No purpose?” (via Games Radar).

Ultimately I appreciate the effort that went into making Trico a living, breathing, pooping creature. He makes a fine companion to the young boy who doesn’t eat, drink or poop the entire time you play him.

Perhaps their bond is so strong that Trico poops for the boy. Imagine being that close to another living being. May we all find that one day.

Источник: https://kotaku.com/everybody-poops-including-the-last-guardians-cat-beast-1789926957

: How to draw trico from the last guardian

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Can we talk about the ending of The Last Guardian?

As the title implies, this article contain MAJOR SPOILERS about the ending of The Last Guardian. It also contains spoilers for Ico and Shadow of the Colossus.

Fumito Ueda's games all end in a similar manner. Each ones concludes on an ambiguous, vaguely melancholy note before fading away to credits, only to be revisited with a more optimistic post-credits epilogue.

Ico initially ended with its titular star lost at sea. Sure he escaped from the cursed castle that the beautiful and the damned leads were bound to by an ominous witch, but our protagonist was still adrift on open waters so any happiness perceived from this ending is tinged with a rational fear of "Won't he starve to death if he doesn't find land soon?"

Thankfully, he does find land with the post-credits coda showing him docking on an idyllic beach. Better yet, he finds his quasi-romantic companion there too! It's a sweet note, but maybe a little too twee for our forsaken heroes - though some interpret it as just a dream.

Shadow of the Colossus had a similarly grim initial conclusion with player character Wander getting turned into a demon after an ill-advised quest to resurrect his beloved. Once transformed into a monster god, they're vanquished by some sort of village elder via a strange spell. There's a faint glimmer of hope as the object of Wander's affection is revived after his passing, and it turns out that Agro the horse survived with only a limp to show for their troubles, but it ultimately ends on a somber note. This initial conclusion is defanged by an epilogue that saw the recently resurrected woman finding our cursed hero reborn as a sweet, adorably demonic, horned baby. Then we get an uplifting scene of this makeshift family frolicking in a garden with cute animals. It's a little too happy, in my opinion, even if our hero (or anti-hero?) gets the short end of the stick.

The Last Guardian sticks to this template on the surface, but its supposedly optimistic conclusion is actually the bleakest in Ueda's history. As soon as the first trailer for The Last Guardian was revealed the popular theory was that the "catweagle" (the unofficial Eurogamer term for the species) would die at the end. It would be sad. We'd all cry. Then give it awards. As it turns out, Trico does survive the story, as does the boy, yet its final moments are even more ominous as a result.

1

At the story's conclusion Trico takes a beating, to put it lightly, in order to save our protagonist from a hoard of malicious catweagles. With its tail ripped off and its majestic body littered with severe wounds, the lovable creature returns our battered hero to the village he was abducted from. Unfortunately, the townspeople don't take kindly to Trico, for it was they who kidnapped the boy in the first place; little do they know the beast was being brainwashed by an ominous force presiding over a magical mountain. The boy is too hurt to speak in defense of his feathered friend while Trico's cries are misinterpreted as a threat. In the end, Trico bails before violence erupts and the adult version of the boy narrating the tale explains that he never saw the beast again, though he suspects it died shortly after this Ueda rendition of Guess Who's Coming to Dinner.

Had it ended here it would have wrapped things up in a neat little package. Trico dies saving you. How noble! Roll credits. The end. But wait, there's more!

After the credits we see the boy - now a grown bearded man with children of his own - unearth the mirror shield central to his strange tale. With an impassioned expression of respect, the man raises the shield to the heavens emitting a beam of light to honour his lost companion. The camera swoops up, flies through the clouds, descends upon the mountain citadel where their adventure transpired, and settles upon the cave where their journey began. Out of the shadows, Trico glowing green eyes appear. They live! So it's a happy ending after all!

Or is it?

In truth, I don't think it's any more optimistic that Trico is still alive as one wonders about the quality of their life after the epic adventure decades prior. Did they simply trot about sniffing plants and chasing butterflies to their heart's content? Or was this more of a Jurassic Bark situation where Trico spent its remaining years in desolate hopes of seeing their how to draw trico from the last guardian friend again. I'd like to think the former, I really would, but I just don't know. One would think that providing closure about Trico's whereabouts would add greater finality to the tale, but in actuality it does the opposite.

Conversely, the boy manages to move on with his life in some ways - he does have a family now, after all - though he still can't properly mourn his friend, as he's never sure if Trico is still alive out there. The epilogue provides closure to the player, but not to the boy, who must go on with the fate of his former companion open-ended.

2

Had Trico simply died saving the boy, it would be a fitting end for the creature - and the game - tying everything up in a pat finale. But the game isn't about life or death: it's about a relationship. And at the end of the day, these two cannot be together due to the narrow-mindedness of the society from which the boy emanates. That's pretty grim.

All of Ueda's games have been about relationships. Ico was an optimistic fairy tale about the power of love (it might just save your liiife!), Shadow of the Colossus was a screed against the dangers of obsession, and The Last Guardian is about the troubled relationship between man and nature. We live in a world threatened by climate change, a dwindling amount of natural resources, and an increased list of endangered species. The Last Guardian is a reminder that we need to treat the natural world better or there won't be any more catweagles to hang out with.

More than that, The Last Guardian is about peacefully coexisting with that which is different than us and cannot be properly understood. But they can be understood better! The details and specifics of another's mind - be it another human, cat or catweagle - will always elude us in ways both big and small, but Ueda believes that if we take the time to communicate, harmony can be formed across even the most unlikely of pairings. That's the optimistic part. The downer is that he suggests that even the most beautiful of bonds can be broken by ill-informed mob rule; a timeless message that's as relevant now as ever.

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Источник: https://www.eurogamer.net/

-sh͞a̶dow̨s̷ ̵o̵f͘h͢i͏m̴- — Trico!! I was watching the Shadow of the.

Trico!! I was watching the Shadow of the Colossus play through that @therealjacksepticeye is doing and after seeing the last one I decided to go back and watch The Last Guardian play through, and It reminded me of this drawing I did awhile ago. So I.

See more posts like this on Tumblr

#the last guardian#jacksepticeye#art#artist#video game#drawing#the last guardian trico#trico#the last guardian fan art#fan art#video game fan art#handdrawn#I love it#cute

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Some line work and sketches of my high elf rogue, Aliki after his reincarnation and the synchronization of his past life as Fen my tiefling fighter. He was reincarnated as a black dragonborn but with all that happened he ended up looking like a mix of something in between the three. Unfortunately the finished product might not be out for awhile.

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All the stars in the universe couldn’t compare to you, my dear~

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A little line work of my D&D character after he was resurrected. He was a high elf before, as you can see he’s had a little bit of a change since then…

Click for better quality

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It’s been awhile since I posted something digital.

My computer may have decided after my convention crunch that it needed a rest and stopped working. Sorry bout that.

I did this last minute for some prints. It’s been a little while since I drew it but I figured better late than never.

Hope you enjoy this mysterious magician

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Just a merrimack county savings bank jobs doodle from the other night, I’m trying to get back in the habit of posting more regularly.

The proportions are off but the concept is cute and something I wanna revisit in the future.

My hand was also a little shaky when inking sorry~

Enjoy!

Источник: https://crows-sing.tumblr.com/post/170099261570/trico-i-was-watching-the-shadow-of-the

After years of waiting and anticipation, the highly-anticipated and long-awaited The Last Guardian will finally be on store shelves tomorrow for all to enjoy, and in celebration you can watch the magical Trico come to life, through the art of chalk.

A new video was released by YouTube channel AWE Me and produced in collaboration with Sony with master chalk artist Chris Carlson taking on the challenge of recreating the game’s iconic creature, Trico, and bringing him to life through the use of 3D chalk art. I’ll leave the rest for you to discover by watching the full video below from the awesome time-lapse as Carlson produces the epic drawing.

The Last Guardian will release for PS4 on December 6th, 2016 – you can check out the full video below:

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Let us know

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The Last Guardian

For other uses, see The Last Guardian (disambiguation).

2016 video game

2016 video game

The Last Guardian[a] is a 2016 action-adventure game developed by Japan Studio and GenDesign can i open a bank account online published by Sony Interactive Entertainment for the PlayStation 4. Players control a boy how to open ally bank online befriends a giant half-bird, half-mammal creature, Trico.

Team Ico began developing The Last Guardian in 2007. It was designed and directed by Fumito Ueda, and shares stylistic, thematic, and gameplay elements with his previous games, Ico (2001) and Shadow of the Colossus (2005). He employed the "design through subtraction" approach he had used for his previous games, removing elements that did not contribute to the core theme of the connection between the boy and Trico.

Sony announced The Last Guardian at E3 2009 with a planned release in 2011 for the PlayStation 3. It suffered numerous delays; Ueda and other Team Ico members departed Sony, forming the studio GenDesign, and hardware difficulties moved the game to the PlayStation 4 in 2012, drawing speculation that the game would not see release. Ueda and GenDesign remained as creative consultants, with Ueda as director and Sony's Japan Studio handling technical development. The Last Guardian was reintroduced at E3 2015. Upon release, it received praise for its art direction, story, and depiction of Trico, though some criticized the gameplay.

Gameplay[edit]

Like its predecessors Ico (2001) and Shadow of the Colossus (2005), The Last Guardian is a third-person game that combines action-adventure and puzzle elements.[1][2] The player controls an unnamed boy who must cooperate with a half-bird-half-mammal creature, Trico, to solve puzzles and explore areas. The name of the creature, Trico (トリコ, Toriko),[3] can be taken to how to draw trico from the last guardian "prisoner" (虜, toriko), "baby bird" (鳥の子, tori no ko), or a portmanteau of "bird" (鳥, tori) and "cat" (猫, neko).[4]

The boy can climb on structures, carry objects such as barrels, and operate mechanisms such as levers. Trico's size and agility allow it to reach areas that the boy cannot reach alone, and fight off guards who attempt to capture the boy.[3] Conversely, certain obstacles, such as gates, or glass eyes that frighten Trico, prevent Trico from progressing, and must be removed by the boy.[5] The boy must locate barrels to feed Trico when it is hungry, pet Trico to calm it after a battle, and remove spears thrown at Trico by enemies.[5]

Though the player initially has little command over Trico, the boy learns to command Trico to leap onto ledges or head in a certain direction, among other actions.[6] Although players are encouraged to train Trico to move in the right direction, new areas can be discovered by letting Trico wander independently.[7] At various points, the boy wields a reflective mirror that summons lightning from Trico's tail, which can be used to break certain objects.[8]

The player is returned to the last checkpoint if the boy is captured by guards, or if he falls from too great a height.[9] Multiple playthroughs unlock additional costumes based on previous Wells fargo online bank statement games.[10]

Plot[edit]

The player controls the boy, who must care for and work with the large creature, Trico, using its animal instincts to solve puzzles

The Last Guardian's story is framed as a flashback told by an older man (voiced by Hiroshi Shirokuma) recounting his experience as a boy.[3]

The boy (voiced by Tatsuki Ishikawa) awakens in a ruined castle in a deep valley known as the Nest.[11] He discovers an enormous, winged, cat-like creature called a Trico, chained and wounded. Though Trico is hostile, after the boy removes the spears from its body and feeds it, it begins to accept him.[12] The boy unchains Trico and they explore the area, discovering a mirror-like shield that summons lightning-like energy from Trico's tail. The pair make their way through the castle ruins, evading the ghostly soldiers,[13] and Trico's broken horns and wings slowly regrow.

In a flashback, Trico flies to the boy's village and steals him from his dormitory. It flies back to the Nest, but is struck by lightning and chained up by the soldiers. In the present, Trico resuscitates the boy after a cave collapse. After fending off an attack from a second, armored creature, Trico and the boy enter a mysterious tower and discover a malevolent force, the "master of the valley", which manipulates creatures and soldiers. It summons several creatures of the same kind as Trico, which regurgitate stolen children into the tower and savage Trico, tearing off the end of its tail. The boy uses the mirror to summon energy from the severed tail segment and destroy the master of the valley, causing the creatures to plummet from the sky.

Wounded, Trico takes the boy, near-death, and flies to his village. When the terrified villagers attack him the boy instructs Trico to leave. Years later, the boy, now grown, discovers the shield and raises it to the sky, sending a beam of light to the Nest, where Trico resides.[14]

Development[edit]

In his previous game, Shadow of the Colossus, director Fumito Ueda had intended to create an emotional interaction between Mono, the character that Wander wants to save, and the colossi that Wander must fight to save her. He was surprised and inspired to find players felt a stronger connection between Wander and his horse Agro.[15] Ueda wanted to make the relationship between a human and a creature the central concept for his next game.[6][15][12]

Ueda found that people were drawn to games with lifelike creatures, and felt The Last Guardian needed something similar to attract a broad audience. He wanted to create a virtual creature that behaved as realistically as possible, avoiding the unnatural behavior of other virtual animals.[6][8] He based much of Trico's behavior on his childhood experiences growing up in a home full of animals.[16] The final version of Trico is an amalgam of several creatures; the design was "deliberately unbalanced because looking strange was important", according to Ueda.[6] The team wanted to avoid making the animal cute, and instead focused on realistic-looking behavior with "animal-like expressions".[6] Trico's ears react with a cat-like "twitch" if they touch ceilings or other tall features, using the game's mesh-based collision detection.[7] The team added the ability to summon lightning from Trico's tail to have players understand Trico's "force and ferocity".[8] Ueda described Trico as "adolescent", allowing the developers to add humor through its actions.[17] The team used programmed key frame animations instead of more common motion capture techniques, allowing them to capture subtleties that would be difficult using live animal subjects.[18]

As Trico functions similarly to the colossi the player climbs in Shadow of the Colossus, journalists have described The Last Guardian as a combination of Ico and Shadow of the Colossus; Ueda stated there was "a bit of each of those [games] in there".[18] He described the relationship between the boy, Trico, and the guards as a game of rock-paper-scissors that changes throughout the game; at times, the boy needs Trico to protect him, while at others the situation is reversed.[17] Though Ico and Shadow of the Colossus have a similar changing connection between pairs of characters, Ueda said there was more "dynamic range" in The Last Guardian.[19]

The Last Guardian is the first Team Ico game to use voice-over narration. As much of the game relies on non-verbal communication between the boy and Trico, Ueda felt the voice-over helped immerse the player in the mindset of the boy. It also provided a way to provide gameplay hints and other context to the player.[19]

Whereas the team had designed the areas of previous games for the characters they had designed in advance, for The Last Guardian they made Trico as flexible as possible, allowing them to create levels and have Trico adapt to them.[12][20] The size difference and interactions between the boy and Trico were informed by the limitations of the PlayStation; if the characters were of the same size, the team would have needed to determine the animation interactions for both, whereas Trico's size meant the boy's animations would not need to affect him much.[8]

Although the boy is less detailed than Trico, he was animated via key frame animation.[18] He places hands on nearby walls, and reaches to pet Trico without player interaction.[7] Ueda felt these animations were necessary to help convince the player of the game world.[7] The animation system uses layers of animation that mimic real-life physics, taking advantage of the greater processing power of the PlayStation 4.[8] The team considered making the player character a girl, but felt it would not be realistic that a female character would have enough stamina to climb Trico.[20]

To create the game's art and architecture, the team used the same "design through subtraction" method they had used to develop Ico and Shadow of the Colossus, removing elements they felt distracted from the core experience.[21] Music is used sparingly to highlight key emotional moments, such as when Trico uses his tail to catch the boy as he falls from a collapsing platform.[21] The game uses vertical space to emphasize the boy's small size.[21]

The Last Guardiangame engine builds on the team's previous development of AI processing from Ico and transformative collisions from Shadow of the Colossus.[6] It is the first Team Ico game to use a full physics engine, Havok.[8] According to Ueda, the effect of wind was modeled separately for each of Trico's feathers.[22] Yasuhide Kobayashi, vice president of Japan Studio, stated that the title The Last Guardian was chosen to appeal to the larger demographic markets in the United States and Europe for the PlayStation 3, hoping to avoid the cultural problems in title and artwork blamed for Ico's low sales in western countries.[23]

In August 2019 interview Fumito Ueda mentioned that Trico they were creating on PlayStation 3 actually had more motion patterns than the PlayStation 4 version did, but they were unable to transfer everything due to transition time issues.[24]

Technical development[edit]

With initial ideas for The Last Guardian envisioned by Ueda since around 2005 after completing Shadow of the Colossus,[25] the game was in active development since 2007, a year after the release of the PlayStation 3.[26][27][28] The working title was Project Trico, revealed to the public due to a leaked video posted at PlayStation Lifestyle in 2008 that showed the current "Target Render" of the game at that time.[29][30] Ueda had long considered the development time for Ico and Shadow of the Colossus, and had anticipated being able "to create something good in a short period of time" with The Last Guardian at the onset.[31] By 2009, the development team had completed enough of the game for it to be showcased during the E3 2009, using an improved render of the same set pieces previously seen in the Target Render[29][30][32][33] and later provided a short vertical slice of the game to the press for the Game Developers Conference in early March 2011.[18] Ueda had considered including this demo on the then-upcoming remastered The Ico & Shadow of the Colossus Collection, though it was ultimately not included.[34]

Behind the scenes, the development of The Last Guardian was considered slow by Shuhei Yoshida, the president of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide.[26] Yoshida explained that the vision for The Last Guardian was based on a video prepared by Ueda to demonstrate the concepts and style of the game, a process Ueda had used for Ico,[35] and Sony wanted to stay true to that vision.[36] Team Ico, which is a small studio compared to other Sony studios in Japan or other Western developers, were struggling with achieving Ueda's vision for the game on the PlayStation 3 hardware.[36] In 2015 Yoshida revealed that the previous 2009 trailer was "specced up", running at a much lower frame rate on the PlayStation 3 and sped up for the presentation.[37] Around 2011, Sony brought in many of their core development teams such as Santa Monica Studios to review the code and try to improve the performance.[26][38] In 2012, with Sony preparing to announce the PlayStation 4 and still recognizing the sluggish development of the PlayStation 3 version of the game, it was decided to change the target platform to the PlayStation 4 so that Ueda's concept could be fully realized.[26][36] Ueda stated that this choice was primarily Sony's decision, speculating that the PlayStation 3 version of the game at this point would still have been sufficient to convey his concept.[39] Following the target platform switch, Ueda and other members of Team Ico were not as involved with the process, as other teams worked to take the highly customized PlayStation 3 code to adapt it to the PlayStation 4; this included the help of PlayStation 4 lead architect Mark Cerny.[26] With the reintroduction of the game at the E3 2015, Yoshida explained that the game engine is now fully running at speed on the PlayStation 4 and that the remainder of the development lies with the game designers to complete.[26]

Development was hampered by Ueda's departure from Sony in December 2011. With Sony's decision to delay the release of the game early that year, Ueda and other Sony and Team Ico employees opted to leave Sony. Ueda stated in 2013 interview that his departure from Sony was due to feeling "a sense of crisis within myself about a lot of things" on news of the delay.[28] Some of those that departed Sony went on to other projects. For example, executive producer Yoshifusa Hayama joined Bossa Studios to work on social/mobile games,[40] while two Team Ico artists joined an indie startup studio Friends & Foes to develop their first game, Vane, which has been compared visually to The Last Guardian.[41] Ueda and other former Team Ico members, including Jinji Horagai, the lead programmer from Ico and Shadow of the Colossus, created a new studio, GenDesign.[31][42] In founding the studio, they were faced with a choice, according to Ueda: "Do we try to create something new, or do we keep going, providing support on The Last Guardian?"[25] GenDesign opted to commit themselves to helping Sony complete The Last Guardian through contract and working alongside Sony's internal studio, Japan Studio.[43][44] Under this arrangement, GenDesign developed the creative content for the game, such as character design and animation and level design, which was then put into place via Japan Studio, with Ueda maintaining oversight on the completed project.[31][36]

Ueda stated that the final game, as of June 2016, still represents the initial vision he had for The Last Guardian at its onset.[15] The transition from the PlayStation 3 to 4 only improved how the game looked, but did not change how it played. Ueda stressed it was important during the extended development cycle to keep the question "what kind of game do I want to play?" at the forefront, and to remember that the game needed to be targeted at players experiencing the game for the first time rather than developers that had played it through over and over.[15]Digital Foundry, in comparing the game from its initial Target Render from 2008, the 2009 trailer, the 2015 trailer, and the final game, found very few changes in the game's structure and nature, while observing several improvements and changes made to the rendering systems.[30]

Music[edit]

The Last Guardian's original score was written, orchestrated, conducted, and co-produced by Takeshi Furukawa. Furukawa had joined the soundtrack development around 2011, near the same time that the game was being transitioned to the PlayStation 4. Furukawa had been invited to participate by Tommy Kikuchi, the music director for Shadow of the Colossus.[45] During the platform transition, much of the creative work had been put on hold, and Furukawa did not spend extensive effort on the composition until about 2013, three years prior to release. He completed his compositions in early 2016.[45]

Furakawa stated that Ueda trusted him with freedom to compose the music and providing only a broad direction of a cinematic soundtrack and some specific directorial notes. While he was aware of the reputation of the soundtracks by Michiru Oshima and Kow Otani for Ico and Shadow of the Colossus, respectively, and wanted to have The Last Guardian's soundtrack to be similarly unique, Furukawa opted to avoid using these previous works and instead drew his own inspirations primarily from works with a "muted aesthetic", such as Impressionist art and music and French cinema.[45] Furakawa wanted to avoid overstating the emotional aspect of the game, which he felt was already sufficiently conveyed through the gameplay and animation, and instead kept the music restrained except during key narrative elements or in specific locales of the game work.[45] Furukawa did not have to adapt his score significantly to account for changes in story and game direction since these elements were still made within Ueda's vision.[45] He worked with audio lead Tsubasa Ito frequently to review the status and use of his scored compositions.[45]

The performance of the soundtrack was conducted by Furukawa with the London Symphony Orchestra, the Trinity Boys Choir, and London Voices, and was recorded at Lyndhurst Hall.[45] The 19-track Composer's Choice Edition soundtrack was released digitally alongside the game on the PlayStation 4 Music App, and later on other digital retailers. A 24-track CD version of the soundtrack was bank of america college debit card designs by TEAM Entertainment on 21 December 2016.[46] In addition, a two-disc vinyl LP edition was published by iam8bit in 2017.[47]

Release[edit]

Shawn Layden formally reintroduced The Last Guardian at the beginning of Sony's E3 2015 conference.[48] Sony affirmed that that game was now slated for release on the PlayStation 4 with a 2016 release date. Sony also assured fans that Ueda still remained a main developer of the game despite his prior departure from Sony.[49] According to Chris Plante of Polygon, the gameplay presented shows the same gameplay from previous demos, where the young boy and the large creature work together to solve various platforming puzzles.[50] The presentation at E3 2015 was based on the milestone of the game being fully playable, affirmed by selected members of the press,[51] though Yoshida stated they did not do a live gameplay demo as the artificial intelligence behavior of the animal creature could be sporadic and impact the demonstration.[37] Ueda said that the fundamentals of the gameplay had not changed from the original PlayStation 3 version to the PlayStation 4, only that with the more-powerful PlayStation 4, they were able to put more detail into the characters and the environment.[3]

Though the game demo was not playable at the 2015 Tokyo Game Show, flowers for you mount vernon ohio of Sony's display for the game including a full-screen version of Trico that would respond in real time to the actions of the attendees as captured by a PlayStation Move camera.[52] Yoshida stated that they had not shown much additional footage of the game since the E3 2015 announcement as they believed that The Last Guardian is story-heavy and feared showing too much beyond that the game does exist and is playable.[53]

The Last Guardian was announced for a 25 October 2016 release in Japan and North America during Sony's presentation at E3 2016 in June,[54] and was available in a playable form to attendees.[5] In an interview with Kotaku during E3 2016, Ueda commented that the game was fully complete, and the only work remaining was fine-tuning visuals and cut-scenes.[15] A short how to draw trico from the last guardian was announced in September 2016, pushing the title back to early December 2016 release, as the developers needed more time to fix bugs that had come up during the final production of the game, according to Yoshida.[55] By 21 October 2016, development of The Last Guardian concluded and the game was submitted for manufacturing.[56] A patch enabled high dynamic range and added 4k resolution support for the PlayStation 4 Pro system.[57]

In addition to regular retail copies, Sony released a "collector's edition" including the game, an artbook, a soundtrack, and a statue of a resting Trico and the boy.[58] The week prior to release, Sony's Joe Palmer stated that pre-order numbers were "exceeding expectations", including high interest in the collector's edition.[59] A standalone demo version of The Last Guardian was released for the PlayStation VR on 12 December 2017; the virtual reality version allows the player to experience interacting with Trico from the viewpoint of the boy.[60] After the launch of the PlayStation 5 in November 2020, players discovered that this game runs at 60 frames per seconds when playing an unpatched version from the PlayStation 4 disc. [61]

Reception[edit]

Reception

The Last Guardian received "generally favorable" reviews, according to video game review aggregatorMetacritic.[62] Most reviewers praised the game's environment and story as chilis bangor maine of its strongest elements, while the realism of the animal behavior that Trico exhibits was praised by some critics, yet others felt that the realism also hampered the gameplay causing impatience and frustration due to lack of immediate action by Trico when giving commands.[77]

GameSpot's Pete Brown praised the characters, their relationship and the story as the important aspects to the game and overall experience, noting interactions with Trico and acting very independently at times by not knowing "if it's a concerted effort to test your patience for a lovable-yet-stubborn creature". However Brown felt that it added personality to Trico and "sympathy for both characters" in addition to their development within the story and for the player, "culminating in an enrapturing series of revelations that cements your attachment to their personalities".[69] Tom Senior of GamesRadar called Trico "the greatest AI companion in games", in addition to the subtle use of visual and audio cues to add more character and its impact on the gameplay itself.[70]

Reviewing for The Guardian, Simon Parkin praised the design of Trico and its interactions with the world and puzzles, adding further emotional investment. He likened Trico to an "abuse survivor" due to being scared and imprisoned at the start of the game and the thoughtfulness and relationship development of its characters making it "a game, as much as anything, about rehabilitation through kindness and companionship".[75] Chris Carter of Destructoid felt that the detail and realistic behavior of Trico and the boy were "emotive in a way that most developers wouldn't even attempt", potentially being the reason behind the long development, praising the effort put in by Fumito Ueda and the developers nonetheless.[63]US Gamer's Jermey Parish believed that Trico as an in-game character with its own apparent volition was revolutionary in character design, and that the emotional pnc earnings call between Trico and the boy was something that could only be effectively done with the interactivity of a video game.[78]

In contrast, Marty Sliva of IGN was critical of Trico's behavior during puzzles combined with camera controls making sections of the game more frustrating, particularly during interiors due to the cramped nature of certain levels and the size of Trico detracting from the experience, calling it "rare to even have to think about the camera in a third-person game in 2016, but I found myself constantly being pulled out of the experience trying to wrestle with my point of view". Sliva however still felt that the game succeeded in the attachment with its characters and delivered memorable moments despite its issues.[71]Game Revolution's James Kozanitis found that there were moments that Trico would continue with traversing the environment and performing tasks even without player input, making the act of controlling Trico at times "ineffective and unnecessary".[68]

Reviewers also noted performance problems with the game running on default PlayStation 4 hardware. Eurogamer's Digital Foundry determined that how to draw trico from the last guardian game ran into rendering issues and framerate drops on the PlayStation 4, while running at 1080p on the newer PlayStation 4 Pro provided a stable framerate.[79] Philip Kollar of Polygon compared technical aspects to its predecessors release on the PlayStation 2 due to the long development across multiple generations of Sony consoles, stating that the game at times did take advantage of the PlayStation 4 hardware while in others, such as framerate and control issues made its age more noticeable.[72] Sam Byford of The Verge commented that while framerate drops were common in Shadow of the Colossus, they were more acceptable based on the PlayStation 2 hardware of the time and the extent the game maximized out the console's hardware, while such issues on PlayStation 4 for The Last Guardian were less forgivable, making it feel like "a PS3 game that never really came together until the brute force of new hardware allowed the team to ship"; he contrasted this to Final Fantasy XV which had the game's engine rebuilt after its target platform was switched to eighth-generation consoles.[80]

The game was named on several year-end Game of the Year lists, including The New Yorker,[81]Engadget,[82]GameSpot,[83]VG247,[84] and Polygon.[85]

Reaction to delays[edit]

Because of the development delays in The Last Guardian and lack of updates from Sony, The Last Guardian was considered to have been in development hell over its eight-year development period.[86] Ueda and Yoshida would regularly report progress on the game, but the title was notably absent from major video game conventions, including E3 and the Tokyo Game Show.[31]

Journalists also expressed concern with the potential release of the game when The Last Guardiantrademark had hit some critical milestones. In August 2012, about three years after the trademark had been filed in the United States, Sony had yet to produce a viable product under trademark law,[87][88] and in February 2015, Sony failed to renew the North American trademark for The Last Guardian.[89] Sony re-registered the trademark, noting that lack of a renewal was an administrative oversight, and the game was still in development.[90]

Prior to the reintroduction in 2015, some journalists expressed concern if The Last Guardian would be as much a landmark game as initially seen. Evan Narcisse for the website Kotaku opined that the lengthy delay of The Last Guardian's release since the 2009 reveal may have been harming the game's relevance on the contemporary market. Narcisse considered that the landscape of games had vastly changed since 2009, during which "by-the-numbers racers, shooters and action-adventure games dominated" the market and the expected emotional impact of The Last Guardian would have made it a stand-out game. Since then, the rise of more independent games such as Papo & Yo, Bastion, The Walking Dead, and Journey had created similar experiences to The Last Guardian, according to Narcisse.[91]Leigh Alexander of Boing Boing agreed, noting that the delay of The Last Guardian had spanned a console generation, and other emotionally filled games have been offered in lieu of The Last Guardian.[92]GamesIndustry.biz's Rob Fahey considered that both The Last Guardian and Final Fantasy XV, which also had a protracted development cycle lasting nearly a decade, represent the last remnants of game development practices from the early 2000s, challenged by the rise of mobile gaming, independent game development, and more efficient software development practices that change the nature and role of auteurs like Ueda and Final Fantasy's Tetsuya Nomura in game development.[93]

News writers were able to play The Last Guardian at E3 2016 and the 2016 Tokyo Game Show in the months before the game's release, and several expressed further concerns about the nature of the game's lengthy development period. Patrick Garrett, writing for VG247, found that the visuals felt flat and aged considering modern hardware capabilities, and expressed concern that while older gamers would readily purchase the game, The Last Guardian may not draw in enough newer gamers to be a commercial success.[94] Philip Kollar for Polygon, though still impressed with the characters, graphics, and core gameplay, found controlling the character difficult and managing the game's camera tricky, elements that made the game feel like a PlayStation 2 game rather than something on modern hardware.[95]Wired's Chris Kohler found much of the demo to require patient observation of Trico's movements and puzzle solving, which, he commented, some players would appreciate but were elements that have slowly been phased out of action games over the last console generation, and other players may not have the patience for these.[96] Brian Ashcraft of Kotaku also noted that the demo's pace was often set by how fast Trico would respond or react, which may test the patience of players looking for a more action-based experience.[97]

Sales[edit]

In the UK, The Last Guardian suffered lower than expected sales,[98] debuting at number 7 in the weekly game sales charts.[99] It debuted at number four in the Japanese video game sales charts, with 82,260 copies sold.[100] The following week, it sold an additional 10,754 copies in Japan, bringing the total number of copies sold in the country to 93,014.[101]

Awards[edit]

Notes[edit]

  1. ^Known as Hitokui no Ōwashi Trico (人喰いの大鷲トリコ, Hitokui no Ōwashi Toriko, "Trico the Large Man-Eating Eagle") in Japan.

References[edit]

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  2. ^Juba, Joe (5 December 2016). "Six Things The Last Guardian Borrows From Its Predecessors". Game Informer. Retrieved 5 December 2016.
  3. ^ abcdStuart, Keith (19 June 2015). "The Last Guardian: Fumito Ueda's quest for epic minimalism". The Guardian. Retrieved 22 June 2015.
  4. ^Famitsū staff (2009). "Hitokue no Ōwashi Trico". Shūkan Famitsū (in Japanese). Enterbrain.
  5. ^ abcMiller, Ross (14 June 2016). "I fell in love with The Last Guardian's big friendly cat-dog-bird in less than a minute". The Verge. Retrieved 14 June 2016.
  6. ^ abcdefTakana, John (3 June 2016). "Fumito Ueda Talks Trico". IGN. Retrieved 8 December 2016.
  7. ^ abcdGrifford, Kevin (2 March 2011). "Fumito Ueda Talks About Last Guardian's Impeccable Animation". 1UP.com. Archived from the original on 16 July 2016. Retrieved 2 March 2011.
  8. ^ abcdefMaxwell, Ben (July 2016). "Altered Beast". Edge. No. 294. pp. 64–77.
  9. ^Kollar, Phil (2 March 2011). "The Last Guardian". Game Informer. Retrieved 2 March 2011.
  10. ^Martin, Matt (7 December 2016). "The Last Guardian: how to unlock secret Ico, Shadow of the Colossus outfits and more". VG247. Retrieved 7 December 2016.
  11. ^Shuman, Sid (24 September 2010). "Team Ico Talks: Fumito Ueda on The Last Guardian, Shadow of The Colossus". Sony Computer Entertainment. Retrieved 24 September 2010.
  12. ^ abcNutt, Christian (16 September 2010). "TGS: Reawakening The Last Guardian". Gamasutra. Retrieved 16 September 2010.
  13. ^Severino, Anthony (19 May 2009). "Project Trico Screenshots". PlayStation LifeStyle blog. Retrieved 20 May 2009.
  14. ^Matulef, Jeffrey (20 December 2016). "Can we talk about the ending of The Last Guardian?". Eurogamer. Retrieved 20 December 2016.
  15. ^ abcdeKlepek, Patrick (22 June 2016). "The Last Guardian's Designer Explains How He Stayed Motivated For Nine Years". Kotaku. Retrieved 22 June 2016.
  16. ^Shuman, Sid (18 November 2016). "The Last Guardian: New CG Trailer, Q&A". PlayStation Blog. Retrieved 18 November 2016.
  17. ^ abGallagher, James (16 September 2010). "Fumito Ueda Interview". Sony Computer Entertainment Europe. Retrieved 16 September 2010.
  18. ^ abcdWelsh, Oli (2 March 2011). "The Last Guardian". Eurogamer. Retrieved 2 March 2011.
  19. ^ abBrotherson, Corey (21 June 2016). "The Last Guardian: 5 Storytelling Secrets". PlayStation Blog. Retrieved 21 June 2016.
  20. ^ abGonzalez, Annette (16 September 2010). "Ueda Provides Details On The Last Guardian". Game Informer. Retrieved 16 September 2010.
  21. ^ abcStuart, Keith (19 June 2015). "The Last Guardian: Fumito Ueda's quest for epic minimalism". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 August 2015.
  22. ^Tanaka, John (3 June 2009). "Fumito Ueda Talks Trico". IGN. Retrieved 3 June 2009.
  23. ^Elliot, Phil (17 September 2009). "Last Guardian game 'named for US, Europe' - Kobayashi". GamesIndustry.biz. Retrieved 17 September 2009.
  24. ^"Interview Extra: Fumito Ueda (Ico, Shadow of the Colossus, The Last Guardian)". Cane and Rinse. 27 August 2019. Retrieved 28 August 2019.
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Источник: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Last_Guardian
Beside me lay a great, man-eating beast: 'Trico'.

Trico

Height

19 feet/5.8 meters

Dislikes

Talismans, Knights, Armored Tricos

Appears in

The Last Guardian


Trico (トリコ, Toriko) is the name of the griffin-like beast in The Last Guardian and the deuteragonist of the game. It looks like a combination of a dog, bird, and a cat. The mysterious masked knights searching for the Boy are no match for its power and ferocity. The boy will need to take care of Trico, both by feeding it mysterious barrels and removing spears from its hide.

Appearance

Trico is a large, hybridized beast with the face of a dog, the ears, body and tail of a cat, and the beak, wings, talons and feathers of a bird. It also sports a pair of horns on its head. Its feathers are a grayish blue with darker feathers on its tail, wings, and nose, while having lighter feathers on its face. The beast's eyes change colors depending on its mood.

Trico's appearance also changes over time. At the beginning, its wings are in tatters, and the horns are broken. By the end of the game, the wings are fully healed and its horns are about a foot long and slightly curved forwards.

History

The Last Guardian™ 20180210160241.jpg

Trico first appears in the cave with the boy, unconscious and wounded. After the Boy cares for the creature, the two start to bond and Trico follows the Boy around.

As the two make their way through the Nest, Trico defends the boy from enemies large and small and helps him access areas and cover ground very quickly. Trico's bond becomes so how to draw trico from the last guardian that the beast would protect the Boy from seemingly anything.

It is discovered that Trico is one of many other beasts like itself and was once enslaved to an entity called the Master of the Valley, who controls the beasts and uses them to kidnap human children to sustain its own immortality. However, the Master's control over this creature was broken when Trico was hit by lightning after stealing the Boy. Fearing the power of the now independent beast, the Knights chained Trico up in the cave, hoping it would die from the wounds it sustained from the lightning and the long fall. However, Trico regurgitated the boy, who helped the beast recover and escape.

The two gain entrance to the Master's citadel tower. While Trico holds off a large pack of Armored Tricos, the boy destroys the Master. Badly wounded, Trico decides nonetheless that it is now time that the Boy returned to his village. Upon returning the Boy home, Trico leaves for its own safety, leaving the Boy to tell the story of their extraordinary adventure.

In the final cutscene, it is revealed that Trico not only survived its agonizing wounds but has gone on to sire a young Trico of its own, raising it in the cave where the whole adventure began. It still seems to remember the Boy fondly when it hears the call of the Boy's (now a man) mirror.

Personality

Trico behaves much like a typical domesticated dog. At first, Trico does not trust the Boy, even swiping him into a cave wall when the Boy tries to remove spears from its body. However, after receiving food and care from the Boy, the beast trusts him enough to follow him around. As time goes on, Trico even seeks affection in the form of being fed or being petted, which calms it down after a battle. Trico will also bestow affection on the Boy, rubbing its head against him and nuzzling while making loving whines. Once Trico becomes fully bonded, the beast will protect the Boy without a thought to its own personal safety, even taking on a pack of Armored Tricos without hesitation.

Trico is a creature one would do best not to make an enemy of. When the Boy is endangered or it perceives a threat, Trico goes into a bloodthirsty rage, destroying said threat with vigor. Even if Trico is outmatched, the beast will still throw itself into the fray, fighting until either killed or knocked unconscious.

It is possible that Trico is a younger or less experienced beast, while quite effective against Knights, is easily overpowered by Armored Tricos, even in one-on-one encounters. It is also shown to be rather clumsy as, when kidnapping the Boy in his sleep, the beast gets its head stuck in a window and knocks over a pot, alerting the village to its presence.

This also is supported by how the Boy pronounces the creature's name (in spite of the subtitles reading "Trico"): "Toriko". This name has the suffix "-ko", which can refer to a child or a baby.

Development

The first-ever screenshot for the game (and the only screenshot of the game released for well over two years) depicted a giant length of chain running into a hole in the ground. In the game's first trailer, the creature on the end of the chain was revealed to be Trico.

Powers and abilities

  • The Last Guardian™ 20180210180447.jpg
    Chimeran physiology:
    Trico can best be described as a chimera, a creature composed of several different animals. This gives the beast the abilities of all the species it embodies: the strength of a dog, the agility of a cat, and the flight of a bird.
  • Enhanced strength: Because of its massive size, Trico is incredibly strong, capable of destroying stone structures and smashing groups of enemies with relative ease.
  • Enhanced agility: Trico can climb and leap great distances that would be impossible for any other animal. This is embodied by its cat-like traits. Its large, tridactyl feet are also quite wide, making it an effective swimmer.
  • Flight: Initially, Trico cannot fly because of the wounds that it has sustained, the wings having been badly hurt by lightning and fall damage. However, when its wings are fully healed, Trico can fly great distances and is able to achieve altitude to soar above the clouds. Even when the beast's wings are still healing, it can glide with them for a short period of time.
  • Enhanced durability and healing: Trico can take massive amounts of damage. Swords do not affect the beast, spears only slow it down, and even serious wounds sustained by Armored Tricos, long falls, or being struck by lightning can be shrugged off in a short amount of time. Trico also seems to heal very fast, as it does not bleed very much from spear wounds and can quickly get up from even life-threatening wounds.
  • Prehensile tail: Trico's tail acts as an extra limb. The creature mainly uses this ability to assist the Boy while its four feet are in use. While unable to grab the Boy using its tail, the beast can quickly position it to act like a rope to climb up/down.
  • Enhanced senses: Thanks to its dog-like attributes, Trico has incredible senses of smell and hearing. This helps it find items of interest in the environment, but also serves to distract it when finding pots of the precursor material used to make the food to feed those of its kind, as it creates a miasma that keeps it rapt and oblivious to all else.
  • Intelligence: Trico is rather intelligent, not only able to navigate its way around the environment of the Valley but also follow the Boy's simple directions. The Boy can direct Trico to where he wants to go, pointing out what he wants him to do, and even gesturing actions for Trico to perform like pushing, pulling, or jumping. Presented with a somewhat-complex concept - like stamping down on one end of a wagon to launch the Boy into the air - it can figure out what the Boy wants and perform it quickly and easily.
  • Eyeshine: The color of Trico's eyes change depending on its mood. The huge eyes shine pink when aggressive or angry, glow white when excited or interested, are yellow when it sees a barrel, and when its eyes are dark green, Trico is calm and friendly. Its pupils will contract greatly when the creature is satisfied when being fed a barrel, closely resembling a more human eye.
  • Electricity generation: Early in the game, the boy finds a mysterious mirror. Upon seeing the symbol produced by the mirror, Trico can fire a continuous bolt of electricity from its tail at the mirror's target, useful for destroying obstacles and enemies. However, when the mirror is lost, so is this ability. When the ability is regained later in the game, Trico now fires a built-up pulse of explosive lightning. Trico's tail can fire electricity even when severed from his body. This ability is not directly controlled by Trico.

Weaknesses

  • The Last Guardian™ 20180304194545.jpg
    The Boy
    : First and foremost, Trico will do whatever it takes to protect the Boy, even if that means recklessly throwing itself in harm's way or against an overpowering enemy. While the beast has always survived, it nearly dies several times.
  • Talismans: These huge, hexagonal stained glass panes evoke a strange, insurmountable fear in Trico-beasts. When the talismans come within Trico's eyesight, Trico's animal instincts become apparent, and the creature is unable to do anything but fearfully back away unless the offending pane is destroyed. These objects come in the form of small shields carried by Knights that they will aim against the animal, or as larger stationary ones, mounted on trolleys or suspended by chains. Most often they can be knocked over, broken by throwing a stone, or destroyed with Trico's ranged tail attack (when available).
  • Armored Tricos: As powerful as Trico is, the beast stands little chance against even one of its own kind. While it first time mortgage no down payment bravely, it is always overwhelmed.
  • Small spaces: Trico's size is not always an advantage, and the well-meaning beast has trouble squeezing into tight spots (although not from lack of trying). At one point, Trico valiantly attempts to squeeze into a mine tunnel, which causes the walls to collapse around it and the Boy.

Effects on gameplay

The Last Guardian™ 20180210154859.jpg

The gameplay of The Last Guardian stems around using Trico's natural instinct to the player's benefit in order to traverse the environment and solve puzzles. Trico reacts based on its surroundings and mood and cannot be controlled directly.

Examples of using Trico's animal instinct includes:

  • When injured by spears, Trico's mobility is reduced or prevented, and the boy must pull them out in order for it to move.
  • When encountered by the armor suits, Trico will become aggressive, destroying them, but, afterward, the boy must pet it to calm the beast down.
  • The boy can feed barrels of food to Trico in order to keep the creature happy and to lure it to places it does not want to immediately go, such as jumping into a pool of knee-deep (to Trico) water.
  • Standing on an upper ledge, getting Trico's attention, then jumping to demonstrate will motivate Trico to jump up to the ledge.
  • After the boy gains Trico's trust, Trico will follow the Boy around and even follow his commands.
  • Trico will occasionally defecate anywhere when left alone for a long period of time.
  • Like a cat, Trico proves hesitant to jump into bodies of deep water.

Meaning of name

"Toriko" is the Japanese word for "prisoner", possibly given during the initial predicament. "Toriko" is also a combination of the Japanese words "tori" (bird) and "neko" (cat), and also has the suffix "-ko", which can refer to a child or a baby. Finally, Project Trico was the name for the game's working title, which is a combination of "Tri" and coldwell banker plourde real estate. This could be referring to the game itself, which is Team Ico's third release.

Gallery

Trico boy back

It is possible to navigate through the land on Trico's back to surpass obstacles or reach certain heights.

Trico eyes

Trico with green eyes.

Trico pet

The Boy petting Trico.

Trico sit

Trico sitting similarly to a cat.

Trico waiting

Trico looking back at its companion.

Trico lightning

Trico firing lightning from its tail.

Trico catch

Trico catches the Boy.

Trico sunset

Trico in the sunset.

Trico flying

Trico flying, prior to being struck.

TricoConcept1

A concept of Trico.

TricoConcept2

Another concept of Trico.

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SotCFullTemplate.png
TLGFullTemplate.png
Источник: https://teamico.fandom.com/wiki/Trico
Accolades Trailer
Valorant

InVisible Culture

By Kaelan Doyle-Myerscough

The Last Guardian is a 2016 single-player adventure game that follows the relationship between an unnamed young boy and a giant gryphon-like creature, referred to as Trico, as they navigate the ruins of an ancient, apparently technologically-advanced civilization. The player controls the boy, who is small and weak—he is incapable of fighting the ghostly suits of armor that he and Trico encounter throughout the game, and he often cannot physically traverse the massive, vertical ruins in which the game takes place without falling or stumbling. Meanwhile, Trico, who accompanies the boy, protects him from danger and is essentially impervious to harm; however, Trico is vulnerable to hunger, distraction, fear, and to the lingering effects of traumas it has apparently suffered at the hands of something in the ruins. The boy and Trico, neither fully able to traverse the space they find themselves in, must work together to locate food, overcome obstacles, and defeat enemies.

Critical and audience responses to The Last Guardian were mixed: though the game was praised for its map design, graphics, and for the emotional resonance of the bond between the boy and Trico, many critics took issue with the game’s controls, particularly as they pertain to Trico. Philip Kollar for Polygon writes, “if the main character annoys because he moves exactly as you’d expect a little boy to, then Trico annoys because it acts exactly as you’d expect a cat to act. […] It makes for a realistic depiction of my favorite house pet, but it’s terrible gameplay.” Kollar’s criticism encapsulates an issue expressed by many players online: unlike the vast majority of animal companions in video games, Trico does not always respond in the way that one expects or wants, and this is deeply frustrating. This is amplified by the game’s structure, in which the player can often do nothing but call out to Trico and wait for it to understand and follow their commands—sometimes for long stretches of time.

This troubled reception speaks to a broader tension in video games culture with losing control, being patient and accommodating, and having to wait. The Last Guardian exposes and complicates these tensions by framing them in the context of an intimate human-animal relationship. In this essay, rather than pushing these experiences of frustration to the margins by framing them as failures, I argue that the intimate relationship between the boy and Trico could not have come about without those moments of frustration, slowness, and the inability to move properly. Moreover, I believe that the frustration of Trico and the boy’s relationship exposes something crucial about intimacy that prompts a definition of the term that accounts for these negative sensations. The connection between Trico and the boy is drawn through an affective assemblage consisting of the aesthetic, haptic, proprioceptive, and mechanical elements of the game. Drawing from Lauren Berlant, Gilles Deleuze, Felix Guattari and Aubrey Anable, I define intimacy as an affect and read The Last Guardian for the formal and structural ways it renders an intimacy that stems from frustration, waiting and incapacity.

Affect, Relationality, Intimacy

Intimacy, I argue, is an apt framework to understand the pleasure to be found in games in losing control, vulnerability and precarity. Drawing from Deleuze and Guattari, I locate affects “in the midst of things and relations […] and, then, in the complex assemblages that come to compose bodies and worlds simultaneously.” I understand intimacy as an affective weight that a relationship—or any relation within the “complex assemblages” Deleuze and Guattari outline—can take on. In the context of video games, this allows us to examine the forces a game world exerts on the player on a formal level—from the aesthetics of the world to the way characters move within it and with each other—as potentially containing intimate affects. I draw from Aubrey Anable’s call in Playing With Feelings: Video Games and Affect to attend to “the unfinished business of representation in theory” by considering aesthetics and representation (particularly animal representation) as significant elements of this assemblage. My work departs from Anable’s, however, in that while she criticizes Deleuzian strains of affect theory that “cleave affect from subjectivity” (8) by presenting affect as a network independent from the individual body, I find the relational structure of the assemblage useful as a way to flatten out considerations of representation, aesthetics, mechanics, temporal structure and bodily sensation. It is not any one element that creates the affect of intimacy in The Last Guardian, but the messy and surprising ways they act together.

So what comprises an intimate affect? Lauren Berlant, in her introduction to “Intimacy: A Special Issue” of Critical Inquiry, draws attention to the tension between the private—communication “with the sparest of signs and gestures,” with “the quality of eloquence and brevity”—and the public—the ideal of “something shared”—at the heart of intimacy. Similarly, Nancy Yousef in Romantic Intimacy notes that intimacy “crystallizes a tension between sharing and enclosing as opposed imaginations of relational possibilities,” considering it as referring “to what is closely held and personal and to what is deeply shared with others.” Indeed, intimacy seems to be caught in a moment between the private and the public: to intimate is to reveal a closely-held secret. But just as intimacy is connected to revealing, to nakedness, to the baring of secrets, it cannot be fully public, either. Berlant understands that “intimacy builds worlds; it creates spaces and usurps places meant for other kinds of relation.” As both authors note, intimacy can take place between strangers, lovers, or family, but within that relation it establishes a private space in which secrets can be revealed. Yousef describes this as “the phenomenal fact of proximity between persons – whether sustained over time, as in a familial relationship, or in the fleeting immediacy of an encounter with a stranger.” Intimacy as these authors discuss it can be figured as a space between the public and private, felt as the sensation of closeness or proximity, and of being seen or of revealing.

But this proximity is never certain—in fact, intimacy is defined by a sense of uncertainty. Berlant understands intimacy as deeply connected to desire and fantasy. She considers intimacy as involving “an aspiration for a narrative about something shared, a story about both oneself and others that will turn out in a particular way” and notes that “its potential failure to stabilize closeness always haunts its persistent activity, making the very attachments https bankmobilevibe com get started to buttress ‘a life’ seem in a state of frc limelight if latent vulnerability.” “Unstable closeness” seems an apt way to describe intimacy-as-relation: one may aspire for an intimate relation to last indefinitely, or to “turn out in a particular way,” but one can never know for certain what the other will do with that relation, or when they will decide to leave it. The precarity of the intimate thus forces a focus on the present, on the closeness that might disappear, but for now, lingers. This precarious temporality is another intimate sensation.

With all of this in mind, I understand intimate affects in terms of a precarious, synchronous orientation in the present, made pleasurable and terrifying by the sensation of nakedness or revealing of oneself. It is fragile; the threat of embarrassment or humiliation or disappointment lingers at its edges, so much so that it is sometimes more bearable to end the intimate moment than to remain. Intimacy can be cultivated through gestures or sustained proximity, but one can find oneself thrown into intimacy as well.

Intimacy can also take on different affective valences: the intimacy of an unexpected shared moment with a stranger is quite different from the intimacy of a morning spent with an old friend, but both feel intimate. In The Last Guardian, intimacy is formed through frustration, waiting, and the differently-limited capacities of bodies. Frustration and frustrate come from the Latin term frustra, which means “without effect, to no purpose, without cause, uselessly, in vain, [or] for nothing.” Frustration is thus connected both to the incapacity to affect things and to a lack of purpose or teleology—to act for nothing is at once to act with no cause and with no effect. Frustration’s relationship to the capacity to affect also evokes Spinoza’s foundational definition of affect as “the modifications of the body whereby the active power of the said body is increased or diminished, aided or constrained, and also the ideas of such modification.” Spinoza endeavors to “consider human actions and desires in exactly the same manner, as though I were concerned with lines, planes, and solids,” and so he is deeply concerned in his descriptions with the concrete ways affects alter the capacity of a body to act. This definition, though complicated by recent scholarship, is useful as a framework through which to understand frustration. As such, I consider frustration as an encounter with the inability of one’s body to affect other bodies or be affected, a duration that forces one to stay with that inability. It is with these definitions of frustration and intimacy that we can begin to consider the forms of the boy and Trico: if frustration is located in the inability of a body, then we must begin by understanding how exactly Trico’s and the boy’s bodies frustrate, in what ways they are useless.

The Boy: Controllable Helplessness

From the first moments of The Last Guardian, the unnamed boy controlled by the player seems not to fit in in the world of the game. For one, this is manifested aesthetically. In contrast with the dark blues and greens of the cavern in which he wakes up, his clothes are creamy white and orange. While the world around him is thick with the textures of decay—rust, worn stones, moss and grass—the boy’s skin and hair are smooth and glossy. Though the world has already marked him both physically and mentally—he stumbles drearily in his first moments, his body covered in tattoos apparently given to him here—he stands out from it. Even his face seems out of place: while the rest of the world is rendered with a photorealistic aesthetic, his large, round eyes and small nose are reminiscent of Japanese anime. This sense of not fitting in is similarly rendered by the clumsy way the boy moves through the game space: even when he falls only a short distance he crumples to the ground; when he pulls levers or pushes on objects, he can only do so with great difficulty; when he jumps for distant ledges, he is often only barely able to grasp them.

Even when he climbs atop Trico’s back, the beast’s movements startle him, topple him over and yank him around. When he and Trico encounter enemies in the form of possessed suits of armor that guard the ruins, the boy can do little but push at them ineffectually, while they harm him by grabbing him and dragging him towards a door which causes a game over if walked through. In their grip, all the player can do is mash buttons on the controller as the boy flails around, which sometimes—though not often—frees him from them before they get to the door. The enemies, in turn, can shoot runes at the boy, which stun and daze him. When he is hurt or waking up from having fainted, the player’s inputs at first only stir his body or cause him to move very slowly; in fact, the boy faints numerous times throughout the game regardless of what the player does. In short, the boy is defined by an extremely limited capacity to affect the world around him.

More colloquially, the website TVTropes—a publicly-editable encyclopedia similar to Wikipedia which organizes popular media in terms of common tropes—describes several moments in the game in terms of “Controllable Helplessness.” The website describes this trope as “a point at which you can be captured or restrained, and not able to move around, but you can still control your character. This might mean being able to wriggle around in your bonds, walk around in your prison cell, what have you, until you either die or are rescued.” In one clear example of this, the boy becomes trapped in a round cage. The player can control the boy and roll the cage around an area delimited by impassable ledges, but cannot open the cage or get out of the area until Trico returns over a minute later. The sense of powerless urgency created by this controllable helplessness is amplified by the reason why the boy is in the cage in the first place: he closed himself inside in order to escape another Trico creature who was hunting him and has left for the moment but may return later.

Though TVTropes uses Controllable Helplessness to refer to specific gameplay instances within The Last Guardian, the term is an apt description for the boy’s affects in general. There is almost always only one way to escape a bad situation or one path through a space in which the boy can fit. These paths often involve desperate scrambling over decaying platforms, patient waiting for Trico to understand where to go next, or sheer luck. Occasionally, even when the player and the boy do everything right, the boy may miss a ledge or fail to grasp Trico properly, resulting in a game over as he falls off a cliff to his death. This is perhaps due to sluggish and sometimes unresponsive controls, which itself only amplifies the frustration for the player: the game’s inconsistent controls mirror the boy’s inconsistent helplessness, creating a sense of limited affect for both character and player.

Trico: Uncontrollable Affect

In contrast to the boy’s inability to affect the world around him, Trico is defined by immense affective power that thwarts the promise of purposeful movement. Its stomps, jumps, and leaps invariably destroy the ruins through which it moves with the boy, felling entire structures, creating passages and making others impassable. This goes for the boy as well: though it makes attempts to move without harming the boy, Trico often accidentally knocks him over as it moves past him or approaches him. When Trico jumps with the boy on its back, his body jostles violently around to the extent that even the character model cannot keep up: numerous times when jumping I witnessed the boy’s body spin around in a way that should have broken his arms. That Trico is so powerful as to cause the boy’s body to glitch speaks to its enormous capacity to affect the game world.

Trico’s affects extend even to the camera, which frequently focuses on its movements while often being unable to capture its body in its entirety (Fig 1). In one scene, the boy must coax Trico into a pool of water with food. As the boy looks for the food, the camera gravitates towards Trico’s body above the water as it prepares to jump and finds itself unable to. When Trico finally jumps in, it makes such waves in the pool that the boy is knocked off his feet and into the water, jostling the camera as well. While the boy is defined by his inability to affect the world of the game, Trico is unable to move through the game space without affecting it. Further, its affects are so powerful that they exceed the limitations of the game’s mechanics and camera.

Here, two distinct forms of frustration become clear: first, the frustration rendered by the boy’s inability to affect the world; second, the frustration rendered by the inability of the game system to contain Trico’s affects. This second form of frustration is also created via the boy’s relationship with Trico’s body: indeed, the boy’s interactions with Trico are defined by the constant attempt and ultimate inability to contend with its form.

Trico and Form

The Last Guardian makes one thing immediately clear: its concern with Trico’s form. The game’s opening credits pan and fade over several pen-and-ink drawings of animals from insects, birds of prey, bats, dogs and cats to mythical animals: unicorns, gryphons, dragons and phoenixes. The final image is of Trico itself (Fig. 2).

Stylistically, the images evoke a lineage of animal studies drawings that were at once observational and speculative. One reference is the Renaissance artist Albrecht Dürer, famous at his time for his drawings of animals. Dürer’s woodcut drawing The Rhinoceros (Fig. 3), based on an anonymous sketch and second-hand account of a rhinoceros brought to Lisbon from India in 1515, became for Europeans the definitive image of a Rhinoceros until well into the 18th century, despite the fact that Dürer had never seen a rhinoceros before. The detailed textures and focus on line lend the image an air of authenticity, but many of these details, like the spiral horn on the rhinoceros’s back and the armoresque quality of its skin, were inaccurate.

The drawings also evoke the illustrations in the works of Charles Darwin, such as those by T.W. Wood. In a series of drawings for Darwin’s The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals, Wood focuses on the bodily and facial expressions of animals in particular emotional states as a complement to Darwin’s observations and discussions of the ways emotions are expressed across species.

Both referents serve as testaments to the verisimilitude of an animal body through a concern with the specific textures and lines of its form. Further, the introductory sequence begins with images of animals whose forms, gestures and behaviors we find familiar—bees swarming around a nest, a bird preparing to fly, a cat in an aggressive stance—and transitions to increasingly fantastical animals, creating a throughline of behavior and form between animals with which we are familiar and ones upon which we must speculate. For example, by the time we see Trico’s face, we also see in its smooth, long shape and large, dark eyes echoes of how to draw trico from the last guardian faces of the dog, cat, goat, and gryphon.

This is the first image we see of Trico in the game proper. In this way, we are introduced to Trico’s body as an amalgamation of formal properties that is at once alien and familiar. It is interesting, then, that The Last Guardian’s mechanics center around consideration of Trico’s form and behavior. Climbing to a place out of the boy’s reach, for instance, involves recognizing Trico’s relative height, finding a way to climb its body, and finding a stable vantage point on its back from which to jump off. Other maneuvers require climbing up and down Trico’s long tail, waiting for it to jump up on its hind legs to examine something and then climbing its body, or jumping down onto the safety of its body from great heights. Even the act of climbing Trico itself creates a certain familiarity with the textures of its feathers and fur.

By moving up and down Trico’s body over the course of the game, the player traces out the contours of its form in a way reminiscent of the attention to form in the pen-and-ink drawings: attention to form, empathy and spatial awareness become deeply entangled. Throughout these explorations, the camera is often unable to show Trico’s form in its entirety. The player, through control of the camera, is inculcated in the usually-futile process of trying to fit Trico in to the frame. At the same time, the player attempts to communicate with Trico: the boy pets its fur, calls out to it, and looks up at it. In response, Trico looks back wells fargo limit on atm withdrawal at the boy and makes eye contact with him; there are many moments throughout the game when the boy and Trico stand still and look at each other, though there is no way for the player to capture this gaze with the camera.

Moments like these encapsulate the intertwining of ally financial dealer services phone number and frustration in The Last Guardian: an intimacy defined by a constant, often-futile negotiation, a push-pull that is never resolved but that nonetheless becomes intimate. This intimacy becomes mapped onto space as Trico and the boy struggle to move through the game’s ruined world.

Scale, Verticality, and Progression

The first real introduction to the spatiality of The Last Guardian happens about an hour into the game, when Trico and the boy emerge for the first time from a cave. Trico runs out ahead of the boy into an open area from the mouth of the cave, and in one of the game’s few cutscenes, the camera tilts upwards from behind Trico to reveal a tower so tall that it disappears into the sky. The game cuts to a long shot of Trico, now dwarfed by the incredible verticality of the space and distressed at its inability to fly to the top of the tower. Even when the camera returns to the boy’s control, the tower is so tall that there is no angle from which you can see the top. The ruins the player traverses over the course of the game are similar: they are impossibly tall, too large for either Trico or the boy to traverse; decrepit, and seemingly purposeless, with extended passageways that lead nowhere and infinitely high ceilings.

The Last Guardian is a linear game; there is little exploration involved beyond discovering how to progress to the next area. This is complicated, however, by the way that the space is experienced as linear because of the limited capacity of Trico’s and the boy’s bodies to move through it. This is rendered in a few ways. For one, locations recur throughout the game – compass pa welfare login tower Trico and the boy see in the above scene reappears in the distance at several points later on and ultimately becomes their final what is the capital markets union in the game. Other areas, like a long bridge or an open landing area, can be seen in the distance before Trico and the boy get to them. The pair never finds a map of the space, however, and they spend most of the game inside caves or buildings. As a result, the player never becomes familiar enough with the space to understand its topography. Like the camera’s inability to capture the space in its entirety, this adds to the sense of the space being too large and too tall for the pair to comprehend. Along a similar vein, there are some locations to which Trico and the boy physically return; however, invariably they are unable to move through them in the same way as before and must find a different path that wasn’t available the first time around.

This has the effect of giving a glimpse into the potentiality of the space limited by Trico and the boy’s bodies: when circumstances convene (via a collapsed building or fallen rock) so that they can move through the space in different ways, new places open up to them that hint at other paths they are so far unable to follow. On that note, there are a number of pathways throughout the game that Trico and the boy simply can’t follow, either because they are blocked off or because they are too large or too small for the pair to move through. The cutscene at the bottom of the tower at the beginning of the game serves as a microcosm of the space’s logic more generally: a constant reminder of the things Trico and the boy can’t do, the places they can’t go. The result of this is a sense of desperation combined with a hyper-awareness of both the boy’s and Trico’s bodies—the player is constantly made to look at the space in terms of how they might fit (or fail to fit) through it.

At the same time, the differing negative abilities of Trico and the boy to fit through bank of america funding corporation draws positive attention to distance and scale at several points throughout the game. There are several points when the boy must separate how to draw trico from the last guardian Trico in order to open a pathway for it to follow him (either by opening a door or destroying a glass eye). Whenever the boy leaves Trico alone, Trico’s howls and whines echo off the walls and cliffs, reminding the player of its absence and of the vast scale of the space. The act of closing the distance after opening these paths is often given particular attention. In one section, the pair must cross a crumbling old wooden bridge that extends down into a chasm so deep it is impossible to see the bottom. With the boy’s guidance, Trico eventually jumps across a gap too wide for the boy to cross. As it lands on the bridge across the gap, the bridge falls down enough that the boy just might be able to make the distance, with Trico waiting on the other side. As he boy jumps, time slows and the sound of the boy’s leap transitions into a processed, almost metallic whoosh, and the camera follows the boy from above as he freefalls towards the chasm. Trico’s head appears from the top of the frame and it catches him in its mouth, and as they make contact, time speeds up again and the whoosh is cut off by Trico’s grunting breaths. As Trico lifts the boy to a safe place on the bridge, he shakes and squirms in its mouth, the player powerless to do anything else until it puts him down. In contrast to the jump, at this moment the game is utterly silent (see press kit video for The Last Guardian from the Internet Game Database below).

This moment and others like it emphasize the tight connection in The Last Guardian between the limitations of Trico’s and the boy’s bodies, vertical space, and temporality. From the exaggerated verticality of the bridge, to the difference in scale between Trico and the boy emphasized by the camera angles, to the slowing of time itself as the boy leaps across the gap, the entire section is anchored around this moment of extended precarity, a moment that emphasizes the boy’s inability to cross the gap on his own. This begs the question: if the spatial architecture of the game was designed to create these painfully long moments of precarity—moments which, if the player jumps just a little too early or late, can end in the boy falling to his death—then what relationship does The Last Guardian articulate between frustration and time?

Temporality and Communication: Two Kinds of Waiting

We might divide The Last Guardian into two kinds of long moments. The first is of a type mentioned above: moments of a distance being closed that are bloated by slow motion, exaggerated sound, and vertical space. The second type of moment, which takes up perhaps the majority of the game, is waiting.

Here, I draw from Harold Schweizer’s On Waiting, in which he unpacks the notion of waiting through Henri Bergson’s notion of duration. For Schweizer, while waiting, “the time that is felt and consciously endured seems slow, thick, opaque, unlike the transparent, inconspicuous time in which we accomplish our tasks and meet our appointments;” he describes these moments as perceptions of enduring which, “because they are intimate, are vexingly uncomfortable,” causing the waiter to fidget, pace, complain and consult their watch. But waiting also opens up the waiter to the potential to perceive duration, if only for a moment—and “it is in this fleeting moment that the waiter is conscious of her intimate existential duration, of her having lingered in time, of time having lingered in her. Her realization of her duration is as momentary and tenuous as the dreamer’s remembrance of his dream.” It is interesting that Schweizer uses the word intimate to refer to these moments of waiting that become encounters with duration. Indeed, the intimate moment as discussed earlier bears significant similarities with Schweizer’s waiting: they are both tenuous and precarious, uncomfortable and sometimes unbearable. Likewise, just as frustration is an encounter with the body’s incapacities, waiting is an encounter with the body’s duration, with the body’s existence in time and therefore its finitude.

As discussed previously, one source of frustration on the part of reviewers and audiences of the game was that Trico doesn’t always listen to the player’s commands. Throughout the game, the player often relies on Trico to jump, climb, walk or stand at particular points in order to access the next area. The player can call out to Trico or use one of several commands, which the boy acts out in exaggerated fashion, to encourage Trico towards certain places. The commands are never precisely defined, but they are mapped to the same buttons that the player uses to control the boy to perform certain actions—namely, to jump, hit, grab and crouch—and to an extent they encourage Trico to respond by doing the same thing. However, the commands are extremely unreliable. Sometimes Trico fails to understand them; sometimes, it appears not to listen or to be reluctant to follow the directive; other times, commands that should encourage Trico to do one thing instead inspire it to do another. In practice, the player and the boy end up waiting for Trico more often than not. Returning to Schweizer, these moments become “slow, thick, opaque,” compelling the player to fidget and pace, to move around so as to occupy the time. Several times during my own play experience, frustrated at Trico’s failure to respond to my command, I began cycling through all the commands one after the other, and the sight of the boy haplessly flailing his arms and yelling to Trico became rather comical. Of course, compounding this frustration at waiting for Trico is the frustration of the boy’s body’s inability to act on its own. With the boy’s constant fumbles, falls, and struggles in mind, his exaggerated, ultimately purposeless movement becomes an encapsulation of The Last Guardian’s spatial and temporal frustrations.

These long moments of waiting are punctuated by interactions with Trico that emphasize the boy’s and Trico’s vulnerability. In one scene, Trico and the boy approach a large, glowing room resembling a massive, Trico-sized cage. Trico is extremely reluctant to jump down into the cage from a platform above, and when the boy finally manages to coax it down, Trico is taken over by a mechanical crystalline object in the cage and becomes hostile towards the boy. No matter what the boy does or how long he avoids it, Trico will catch up to him and eat him. Impatience chase bank 2nd chance checking account so much time waiting gives way to total vulnerability, and the familiarity of Trico’s form created through haptic engagement becomes suddenly horrifying as that massive form is leveraged against the boy’s tiny body.

Here, what could be read as payoff to hours of waiting is simply another form of frustration. Like the distance-closing moments described earlier, this frustration is marked by formal intensity that is extended too long, though in this case the extension is created by the player attempting in vain to avoid Trico long enough to survive. Given these structural and formal similarities, we might denote two forms of frustration in The Last Guardian: the frustration of waiting, and the frustration of how to draw trico from the last guardian awaited happening (Fig. 4).

Intimacy and the Animal

I have written at length about the many frustrations of The Last Guardian, but as of yet we have only seen intimacy come in at the margins. The bloated moments of closing the distance between the boy and Trico were evocative of the intimate sensations described in the introduction to this essay: the precarity of the moment of the jump, the vulnerability to Trico’s actions and to the vertical space, and the present-oriented temporal focus at the moment of contact with Trico’s form all evoke intimacy. But what is intimate about the extended moments of inability described above, or the genuine horror created by the (fulfilled, several times) potential of Trico to eat the boy? Here, I must finally ask a deceptively simple question that, like intimacy, has lingered in the margins of our frustrations until now: how do we define the specific relationship between the boy and Trico?

The key, I argue, lies in the subject position of Trico. The Last Guardian insists on Trico’s subjectivity. So many of its formal details and gestures throughout the game—its careful steps when you’re underfoot so as not to crush you, its anxious glance backwards as you climb tenuously onto its back before a jump, the slight incline of its head as you stand on its back and pet it—draw attention to its capacity to respond to and care for the boy. Even the fact that the player must wait—sometimes for quite a while—for Trico to respond to commands has the effect of forcing the player to accommodate its needs and wants. And the haptic process of learning Trico’s form is also a process of watching its responses – in the long moments it takes to climb up to Trico’s head, with nothing else to do, the player notices Trico’s body reacting to the boy’s movements. When the boy stops to look at Trico, Trico sometimes leans down to get a pat on the head, and in these moments when its face fills the frame, its form is more comprehensible, even if only for a moment.

Collective Incapacities

There is one moment in particular that evokes Trico’s subjectivity to great effect. Towards the end of the game, the pair encounter a second cage apparatus, and once again Trico becomes hostile and eats the boy. When Trico wakes up having regurgitated the boy, who is unconscious beside him, in a long, slow and silent scene, it nudges him, paws at him, picks him up and puts him in the sunlight, and finally drops him in a puddle of water in an attempt to wake him up. The long, drawn-out quality of the scene and the way it opens on a close-up of the boy’s face (reminiscent of earlier scenes in which the boy was awoken by player input) encourage the player to attempt to wake (the boy) up using their game controller, but their input is futile until the boy is finally awoken by the water. Though the player does not control it directly, Trico and the player become aligned in their efforts to awaken the boy, in their similar inabilities to do so and therefore their similar frustrations. In my own play experience I found this moment deeply upsetting. After playing for hours and finding only frustration in the boy’s limited capacity to move, this new frustration of suddenly being unable to move at all expanded into a profound vulnerability that I experienced at once from my own subject position, from the boy’s, and from Trico’s. In light of Trico’s—and at the same time my own—quiet, desperate response to the boy’s unconsciousness, I found an intimacy in our collective incapacities.

Donna Haraway allows us a way forward here in her discussions of companion species and oddkin. In When Species Meet, Donna Haraway uses the term “companion species” not to refer only to companion animals (ie. domesticates), but to denote “less of a category than a pointer to an ongoing ‘becoming with.’” Gesturing towards Derrida, Haraway draws from the etymologies of companion species to locate the notion of the companion species in seeing and response. For Haraway, “species interdependence is the name of the worlding game on earth, and that game must be one of response and respect. That is the play of companion species learning to pay attention.” Haraway elaborates on this in Staying With The Trouble: Keeping Kin in the Cthulhucene, in which she contends with climate change and environmental destruction by calling for a practice of “learning to stay with the trouble of living and dying in response-ability on a damaged earth.” Haraway locates staying with the trouble in “a thick present […] not as a vanishing pivot between awful or edenic pasts and apocalyptic or salvific futures, but as mortal critters entwined in myriad unfinished configurations of places, times, matters, meanings.” Finally, “staying with the trouble requires making oddkin; that is, we require each other in unexpected collaborations and combinations, in hot compost piles. We become-with each other or not at all.” With the terms “companion species” and “oddkin,” Haraway traces out a model of “being-with” and “becoming-with” marked by a temporality stubbornly and decisively oriented in a present that is thick, slow, difficult and even painful. This is reminiscent of intimacy and frustration: it is in the too-long, too-tall, sometimes unbearable durations of waiting and experiences of inability that make up The Last Guardian where moments of profound vulnerability and intimacy can be found.

The Last Guardian is a deeply intimate, deeply frustrating process of being-with and becoming-with articulated through the troubling companion species relationship between Trico and the boy. It is rare for a game to force its players to stay with the incapacities of their characters’ bodies; so many linear adventure games allow the player to overcome these incapacities by leveling up, acquiring weapons, or gaining the ability to move in new and more efficient ways. The Last Guardian does eventually allow for a new form of movement: at the end of the game, in order to save the boy’s life, Trico spreads its once-injured wings and flies with him in its mouth. It is not a coincidence that this happens just as the game ends, and also just before Trico and the boy part ways: The Last Guardian is not about the promise of powerful movement, but about the intimacy of moving imperfectly. In this essay I attended to the specific temporal and formal structures that this imperfection took in The Last Guardian, and how intimacy in this case became tied to frustration, waiting and incapacity. But what other intimacies might result from games that force their players to be with imperfection, as vulnerable and as intolerable as that can be? Constant failures, precarious encounters and the loss of control are important to the affective experience of many games, and attending to the formal ways that these elements are rendered and contended with might reveal other intimate affects, other ways of staying with the trouble.

Filed under: Articles, Current Issue, Issue 30

Tagged with: affect, animal studies, frustration, game studies, intimacy, the last guardian, Video games, waiting

Источник: https://ivc.lib.rochester.edu/the-monster-has-kind-eyes-intimacy-and-frustration-in-the-last-guardian/

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