Shadow of the Colossus is the unlikely inspiration for this, the fourth game starring generically tribal platforming star Tak. This time, the loinclothed bonehead has accidentally released four giant ‘Grosstrosities’ upon the world, and it’s up to him to bring these lumbering maniacs to heel. That might seem a pretty tall order for a 14-year-old kid armed with little more than a small staff and some purple eyeshadow, but – as luck would have it! – each of these monsters’ innards resemble linear 3D platforming levels, which just happen to be our guy’s specialty.
Once you’ve hopped on board the good ship Gorgonzilla (or whoever), the camera jerks around in time with the monster’s steps, making it that much harder to time your jumps. Luckily, Tak is a nimble fellow who can vault, jump and wall-kick his way around the place in a manner that’s usually the preserve of a pot-bellied plumber, so you should be able to navigate your way to the beast’s head in no time. There, you have to polish off the monster (which usually involves performing unspeakable acts of violence against their eyes) and then move on to the next one.
It’s all good fun, if very easy. It only really has two flaws to speak of: 1) a crushingly dull combat system and 2) a borderline obsessive love of dull combat sections. But when you’re bounding instead of battling, Tak is standing on the shoulders of giants. This is the right way to get kids into gaming. A charming romp with plenty in reserve to enchant us oldies.
Nov 3, 2008