The Last Guardian: Reviews and where to find it
Countdown is on for new action adventure from the creator of the iconic Shadow of the Colossus
After spending nine years in development, The Last Guardian will release exclusively on the PlayStation 4 on Friday - and it's already a hit with reviewers.
It's the latest fantasy game from SIE Japan, the developers of 2005's legendary Shadow of the Colossus, which many hail as the best game to be released on the PlayStation 2.
You play a young boy who befriends a giant half-dog, half-bird creature called Trico. After waking up in prison and covered in tattoos, you must escape with Trico without catching the attention of his captors.
The Last Guardian offers players an imaginative game world and unique story - but is the game worth the nine-year wait?
Here's what the critics think.
"It's insane how organic Guardian is," says Destructoid, which feels it's a game created as an adventure rather than a "cookie-cutter puzzle platform". The long development time is evident in the character animations, it adds, with the boy and Trico moving in "emotive" ways that make the relationship between the two feel "genuine".
The Guardian says Trico's animations provide a "uniquely organic" flow to puzzles unrivalled by other games, but the creature is "inescapably an artificial intelligence" that only responds to suggestions, rather than straight directions.
Its movements can feel frustrating as the player may know how to solve a puzzle, only to have progression hindered by a "stubborn or confused AI", the paper adds.
Trico's stubbornness can leave you feeling annoyed, but its similarities to that of a real-world creature means "your affection for Trico and sympathy for both characters blossoms nonetheless", GameSpot says.
The young boy, meanwhile, acts as a "valuable lesson in how to be patient" when facing tough challenges, although his adopted creature stands out as "the undeniable star of the show".
The boy can feel "janky and cumbersome" to manoeuvre, says Trusted Reviews, and this can break immersion as it feels as though there is a "gameplay glitch hindering progression". However, it adds, the controls are not enough to fracture the two main characters' relationship, which "gradually" becomes more of an "engaging bond".
Living with Trico
Ahead of the game's launch in the UK, PlayStation has created a comedy sketch, Living with Trico, which brings Trico, the Dog-Cat-Bird-Griffin Hybrid from the game, to life in the present day.
Where to buy
The Last Guardian isn't officially out until 9 December, but you can pre-order it from Amazon on the PS4 for £44.00.