Review by sakura4994
"It's a man on the silver mountain"
Perfection is such a opinion, that when one does hit the market, there still are detractors. For all intents and purposes, Journey is perfection handed to us on a stick. Personally, I think Journey should be one of those games that hate on it should be illegal and punishable by taking your gamer privileges away for a month.
Journey is one of those sweet, short,simple, and emotional games that puts emphasis on captivating your senses and emotions and telling of a story through uncommunicative methods, instead of selling sex and/or violence. It is change that we can seriously believe in. When I heard of Journey, I honestly didn't think I would be interested in this game or even in this genre of games. Previously, I had played Ico and hated it (BLASPHEMY, right?) and thought that I would not do artsy games. Short and simple, I was curious (after hearing positive reviews), had some spending money, and then proceeded to be blown away.
Journey is one of those games that created a sense of wonder and a need to take a look around. Aside from the emotional feedback from the game itself, the game invites you to be a part of its world and asks you to become the main character. Just listen to the opening song for the game. It evokes a sense of wonder and what's out there. It may sound sad, but that's not what it's really about. The song for the ending credits almost made me feel sad that the game already ended, but I also felt that I accomplished a journey to the top - a fantastic, yet emotional Journey. It's the first time in my life that I watched the entire ending sequence of a game/movie/TV show in its entirety repeatedly.
Journey is one of those games that also asks, "Is games art?" In this case, it's a resounding YES. There aren't enough games out there that strike a chord within my heart and my senses. Most games assault the senses in a thrilling sense, but this is different.
When trying to decide whether or not you want Journey, you have to ask yourself, "Is this the kind of thing that I would understand? Would I like it?" It isn't going to be exciting or thrilling, if you are into that kind of thing. It's because Journey is not going to be like the vast majority of games on the market now. Even its online feature is different than most in which you have no idea who your partner is and you don't talk to them - even if you spend an hour and a half with them. Only the Demon's Souls series seems to have a similar feature. It's not a shooter or RPG or fighting game. It's not made by a major studio. I don't know if it's even one of those games that most people knew of until ThatGameCompany released all three of their games on a single disc.
Of course, it wouldn't be a game if it didn't have many of the same features of every other game out there right? You have a couple commands at your disposal in order to explore your world. Other than moving, jumping, and gliding, you can make a pinging sound with your character, when online. Armed with these simple actions, you can see the impressive, beautiful landscapes unfold before you and search for various hidden glyphs and story boards. These are important, as the glyphs extend your scarf, in turn, allows you to glide further and the story boards, well, they show you what has happened so far. On top of that, it's very clear where you have to go - to the top of the mountain.
And of course, the online feature. The online feature allows you to play with a random partner. This type of play is fascinating as several players helped me find things that I did not find in previous play through. Most of the time, I found myself following the other, just to see if (s)he knew something I did not know about this game. Other times, I lead. This dynamic can be interesting and can become challenging sometimes.
Sadly, Journey is a game that can be completed within an hour, if you really tried. But then again, maybe it shouldn't be longer than a couple hours anyway. It's not a game for those who wants to shout insults into their microphone nor is it for those who wants action and thrills. It's for those who want something different and beautiful. It won't amaze you with constant action or thrills, but it will give you something that has been sourly lacking in the gaming industry. Perhaps it's because the technology is catching up to help the creative types to push different types of projects into reality or it's something else. Whatever it is, it is still a great game that should be in everyone's collection.
So, you understand different, right? It's minimalistic, it's an emotionally investing game, direct, short, simple, and it doesn't do too much. Even you can decide what the game's message is. Sure, many other games have these features. But it's not Journey.
Reviewer's Score: 10/10 | Originally Posted: 01/22/13
Game Release: Journey (US, 03/13/12)
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