Friday, April 19, 2013

Unused Colossus Speculation - Possible Locations and Numbers

Hello everyone! :) It's been a while hasn't it? The past couple months have been full of computer trouble for me. XD My main computer went down, followed by both of my brother's computers (one of which is still down) and as a result I've been unable to do much on the subject of Colossus. Preparation for the local anime con also kept me busy, but now that it's out of the way I figured I'd scramble up a blog entry as best I could since it's been a while.

The first thing I'd like to talk about isn't a discovery about the game or anything of that sort, but instead something that's been bugging me for ages.

The SotC Wiki.
Not the Team Ico one, the SotC one.
In particular what I'm talking about is it's section on the unused colossi. -
One day back before I had a blog, my brother and I stumbled upon the wiki's pages on the beta colossi and were stumped. Stumped as to where the information they listed came from. Where did they get these names? Where did they hear that Worm was triggered by another colossus fight? My brother got to work and searched back through the pages' history and found out...
Well, it turns out they didn't get it from any reliable source. The names, as well as some of the information - are entirely made up. Many of the articles used to have in-depth descriptions of finding and fighting the colossi - (Here's a past version of Worm's page for example  ) all of which used to be labelled with warnings such as "Defeat(made up)" or "(As with other unused colossi i have profiled, this article of Pholux is entirely made up.)" Through searching back through the history archives of these pages you can find that at some point someone decided to try and remove these fanfiction segments from the articles resulting in a lengthy argument with the guy who wrote them. Unfortunately, this ultimately led to the deletion of some parts of the articles - but not other parts. The pages are left with bits of incorrect made up information and no warnings to specify them as such. As I'm not sure how to go about getting these things changed, I am posting this here as a warning. And if someone knows how and would like to try and change it, that would be wonderful. ^^; And to clarify here I don't have anything against the fanfiction writings or the guy that wrote them. (Hey, I actively support creativity and making fan works based on things you love! :'D) I just think they should be labelled as such to prevent any sort of misinformation! ;)

Now that that's out of the way, let's move on to the fun stuff! :D

So I'm sure we all know by now that there were initially 24 colossi. (Well, technically 48, but the cut to 24 presumably happened very, very early on and is thus largely irrelevant here.) I and many others have talked about the possible locations of some of the cut colossi before (and the latter part of this entry I'll be talking about them again. ) but what I don't often see is speculation on the order you would have fought them in early on! Surely they wouldn't have all come near the end of the game after most of the existing colossi, right? XD So I can't be the only one who's wondered - who did the 16th colossus used to be? Well, we may have a clue to the answer due in part to a seemingly useless codebreaker code! The code basically modifies the number of colossi it says you've defeated when you load your save file. Here's a video that mentions it by Nomad -
You add the appropriate number to the codebreaker code (make sure you input it in hexadecimal, otherwise you might get an unexpected result. ;D ) and load your file up, and voila! 

Whatever number you please displays when you load your save file. (You'll notice it will only go up to 16 defeated on the list.) Sadly, numbers 17 and onward result in a glitched icon appearing in the center intersection of the grid.

16 however, is a different story.

Malus's icon appears when you input 16. But wait! What is he doing off in square I4? Here's my take on what's going on here. The fact that Malus's icon even exists is likely a fluke on one of the texture artists' part. If for instance they were told to "make icons for all of the colossi" it'd be easy to forget that Malus's icon is actually unnecessary as you never get to see it. As for the location...I can imagine a similar scenario something like this - In cleaning up the game and deleting some of the unnecessary data someone on the team is to "delete the location data for all the no longer used numbers". Yet again, it would be quite easy forget 16. I propose that a location on the map was never attributed to Malus and if it was, it was on 24 and was wiped with the rest of the numbers. 16 being the number of a different colossus previously, didn't get wiped with the rest as an accident, once again caused by the fact that the amount of the colossi in the game is different from the amount you get to see defeated on your map. What does this mean? The previous colossus number 16...may have been in square I4. :0 It's anyone's guess as to which colossus this was. ;)

So, while we're on the subject of the map, I thought I'd bring up something about the map on the preview disc. In particular the placement of clouds on the preview map. The placement of the clouds on the preview map strikes me as interesting not only because the placement of clouds is different from the final map -

but also because they seem to be placed in a manner that lends to an earlier version of the game. Here's an animated version for comparison -

The clouds covering the squares in the I column could easily be another clue towards finding the cut colossi locations on the map. But there are really only three notable cloud clusters over there. Which brings up the question...where were the rest of them? Here are my current theories as to the locations of a couple of the colossi. (I'll only be covering three for now, because I don't have the time to compile theories and screenshots for more at the moment. I also need to make sure I still have things to post about in the future! XD )

Lets start things off with Phoenix!

As Nomad has mentioned over on his blog entry about the beta colossi, Phoenix actually has some possible evidence present in it's screenshots -

The trees seen in the screenshots appear to be the same ones present in #9's area. It seems unlikely that Phoenix would have literally been in #9's area as one of the reasons it was cut was because it required a much larger area to battle than they wanted. (and after all, where would #9 be if that were the case!) My theory is that Phoenix resided in the plain below #9's area. (stretching from C4 to D4 and possibly E4)

The preview map has this area covered in a thick cluster of clouds, and there's even an unused lake here! -  I've also wondered if this could be connected to the massive tree above #10's area. The fact that there is evidence of the tree having been both alive and dead, combined with the preview disc referring to this area as a "nest" (which admittedly, could also refer to a snake's nest...) is interesting...It's quite a stretch, but maybe I just like to imagine that Phoenix would light the tree on fire and climb down out of the mountain after you. XD Even if it's not plausible. (You gotta admit, that'd be pretty fun to watch! ;D )

Next up is Sirius! :D

I have to admit, I think Nomad's spot on with this one. It's highly likely that you would have fought Sirius in G7. However, I would like to add one little theory of my own here. As I'm sure everyone knows, there's a small cave at the edge of the lands in G8.

I propose that this would be Sirius' starting location. You'd make your way down to the edge of the map, walk into the cave (or in front of) and a cut-scene would trigger of Sirius emerging thus starting the battle. Just a theory, but one that I like. Not to mention the cave is covered by clouds on the map. ;)

And lastly Devil!

I don't have a lot on Devil...Just a vague suspicion if you will. I believe Devil may have resided at I1 on the map.

My reasoning being that the screenshots of Devil indicate two things. One being an area very heavy on architecture. (something that I've noticed is oddly absent in most of the other beta colossus screenshots) And two being that the area appears to be perched high up in the mountains. (there are few other landmarks visible in the screenshots, possibly implying that the area is much higher up than the surrounding lands.) My reasoning on placing him in I1 would be that the structure of the land here almost appears to be geometric in nature, there are clouds here on the map implying that something was there, and the surrounding areas appear to be mountainous.

This is of course pure speculation though. ;D

Before I end this article I thought I'd also mention something amusing that I encountered while trying to get screenshots and searching for subjects for this blog. When I had finished looking around I decided to jump off the cliff at the bottom right section of F3 for fun. I jumped and hit the button to make Wander go into dive position. It didn't go to death cam like I expected, and it even looked like he was gonna land in water...and then he hit the ground under the apparently shallow water with a splat. it was oddly hilarious, so I went back to try and recreate it for my brother to see.

This time I was apparently positioned in a slightly different spot though and he landed safely in the water to my initial disappointment.

I quickly realized I had landed outside of the wave barriers which was exciting for a moment, but once I realized I couldn't get anywhere significant from there I headed back to shore.

I flopped around in the waves a bit like a dork.

and then I noticed something on the beach...

Nooo! Agro! D: What happened?! XD

Agro was dead on the beach! I tried the same thing several more times from that spot, and it appears to kill Agro consistently. This isn't all that interesting, but it sure gave me a good laugh! XD

So anyway, that's it for this time! If you liked something tell me, if you have a different theory tell me, and if I made some horrendously horrible, hilarious, or stupid mistake tell me! XD Any feedback is appreciated, good or bad! :D

And as a final note, my brother and I are currently replaying Twilight Princess so I won't be lost or make stupid mistakes if and when I do an entry on that game. XD And I was wondering if anyone here is familiar with the game Okage: Shadow King? It's an old favorite of mine, and it has quite an interesting development history. (Similarly to Ico, it was started on PS1 but released on PS2) Upon opening the files we found some highly interesting stuff, and once we've gotten a chance to search it more thoroughly I'll be making a post about it! ;D


Monday, December 10, 2012

Random Locations on the Map - Part One, of I Don't Know How Many!

Hey guys, Yamori_B here! First off, I would like to apologize for my absence on here. A combination of personal stuff, conventions, art related stuff, various holidays, and my own forgetfulness and procrastination would be the culprits here, so again, I'm really sorry! 

So today I thought I might share some of my theories and information on some random locations on the map - I'll be looking at The Shrine of Worship, Underground (#6's area), Ruins (#12's area), and Kirin's Hill (#4's area).

Let's kick things off with the Shrine of Worship! This isn't much of a discovery, but I suppose it's kind of cool. The Shrine is referred to as Himeji (This is probably a reference to the real Himeji Castle in Japan) in a lot of the textures - while looking at Fumito's twitter with google translate, my brother and I came across these tweets-
It's not much but I thought it was kind of neat. XD

On to Underground! There are some textures used here (among other places) that all have "Baiyon Wall" in their names.

 If you then search Baiyon on only get the musician Baiyon. XD

But if you put it in google translate it asks "Did you mean バイヨン?"

If you click that, it comes back out as "Bayon" or "the Bayon".
So! What is the Bayon? Well, to quote Wikipedia "The Bayon is a well-known and richly decorated Khmer temple at Angkor in Cambodia." Hooray, puzzle solved! :D So again, not too exciting, but I found it interesting. XD

...And on a side note, there is a photograph of Fumito's bookshelf in the art-book that came with the Japanese collection.

...And it would appear he has a book about Angkor Wat. ;)

Now for the Ruins - and on to the weird speculation part of this blog post! XD When I look at the ruins, the way the stone blocks in one area appear to almost be just stacked up one on top of the other seems odd.

The area is referred to as a city by Dormin, but something has never seemed right about it to me. It's always looked the least natural of any of the architecture in the game to me. Like there's no rhyme or reason to the placement of things. That's always bugged me because Team Ico is pretty good with that kind of thing most of the time. So there are two parts to my theory here. The first one I'm pretty confident in, and that's that the area is a Marsh and the purpose of the water channels winding through the ruins may have been to drain the marsh thus making it more suitable for construction.

Some of the ground appears somewhat soft and wet, and in one area it appears a whole toppled block has sunk into the ground.

 Actually, there are a couple other instances of blocks sunk into the ground too.

The second part of the theory I'm less confident in, but could possibly explain the strange nature of the ruins. Maybe this area was never actually completed? The tower of blocks stacked up on top of one another could be building materials, not yet assembled into a proper structure. This could also explain the blocks strewn around the passageway.

Alternately, the area could be an area that was completed, but was being torn down and the blocks transported somewhere else...

So that's my theory there, though I'm probably not correct. XD It's also possible that Team Ico didn't put that much thought into the area...but where's the fun in thinking that? ;)

And last, but not least! Probably the most exciting thing in this post (Which still isn't necessarily all that exciting), Kirin's Hill! :D

"In the land of vast green fields...
Rows of guiding graves...
It is a giant indeed but fearful, it is not."

Personally, I've never seen the area as vast, or as much of a field...though it certainly is green if nothing else! :D

Then there's the matter of that "Rows of guiding graves" comment...
There's been some interesting theories about what it could be referring
to. I believe Nomad mentioned a few of the better ones in his post on Kirin
here -

Now, one theory I've been thinking about lately is that
the lines "Land of vast green fields" and  "Rows of guiding graves"
both may have made more sense earlier in the game's development...
But anyway, recently while watching
this video I saw something I could've sworn I recognized.

As it turns out, I was right! After taking a look through the concept art in the art-book from the japanese boxset, I found something strikingly similar to what was seen in that video!

Now I don't know, but personally, that looks much more like a "vast green field" to me!
The four pillars are oddly enough, absent from the sketch, but I'm not certain there would be room to show them anyway. I believe that the four pillars may be arranged at the corners of a large square...come to think of it, while there weren't any pillars,
wasn't there a gigantic square near the back of the area in the final game? I wonder if they're connected, and if so why they removed the pillars?

So that's all I got for this post! :) Next post I might delve into some Beta colossus speculation or something. XD I'm also thinking about posting some findings related to some other games (mainly Twilight Princess). Should I collect those on a different blog, or just post them here?
Well anway, that's it until next time! :D


Thursday, June 28, 2012


Let's kick this blog off with my first post here, and take a look at Monkey, my personal favorite of all the beta colossi! Why is monkey my favorite you ask? Because he's one of the only  beta colossi that you can, without a doubt, pin to a specific location on the beta map!

Let's take a look at what information we have from the artbook.

Translated pictures from the official artbook courtesy of the wonderful GlitterBerri!

So we know that he was in a cave, and hung from the stalactites on the ceiling. There are a few caves in the game...but none of them have many stalactites, or are nearly large enough to house monkey, who appears to be a fairly big colossus. So where on the map could monkey have been?

...I really don't know how no one else has noticed this yet. (At least as far as I know they haven't. feel free to correct me if I'm wrong XD)

Look at this close up of square I-5 on the beta map -

Anyone else see the Gigantic cave on that beach? If not maybe this will help!

Still not convinced? Well, not for long!

Voila! one cave, large enough to house a whole colossus! In fact...
what is that on the beach...

Could that actually BE monkey?! It's hard to say for sure, but
it's a possibility! :)

Oh, and anyone remember that unused track on the soundtrack "Voice of the Earth"?
Gee, I wonder where that might've played? XD

I've had some suspicions about the land above the cave in I4 being the "Wetlands" that another of the unused tracks went with too. And if that's the case...well, I don't know whether to chalk it up to coincidence or Team Ico's amazing attention to detail but, if I remember correctly stalactites, stalagmites and many other cave formations, are formed by dripping water over a long time. This would have been one of the only caves in the game with formations, and if the wetlands are indeed above it, then one of the only caves that would theoretically, have the water supply around to cause said formations. The other cave with formations is the little one on the way to the 14th colossus Cerberus, and it has a good bit of water too.

So that's all I've got on this subject for now. I'd love to hear anything you've got to say so please, feel free to comment! Tell me what you think! Don't hesitate to correct my mistakes if I've made any! XD