Gamebusters myth 18: Shadow of the Colossus contains a 17th Colossus
Welcome, dear readers, to the eighteenth entry of our Gamebusters series, where we track down gaming myths and try to debunk them. This week we’ll be focusing on a PlayStation 2 classic title, Shadow of the Colossus. Before we begin, however, I want to warn anybody who may not have beaten the game: This myth will contain some spoilers in the final section, so if you’ve not beaten the game yet you may want to pass by this myth for now.
There are several myths surrounding the popular game, Shadow of the Colossus, but in particular we’ll be focusing on the rumored 17th colossus. As gamers know, there has been a rumor floating around that there is a hidden colossus that you can access after beating the sixteen in the game. The methods to unlock this mighty foe are numerous, however most tend to agree that you need to beat the game a total of four times.
Why four times, you may ask. The rumor goes that you need to beat the title on Normal mode, Hard mode, Time Trial Normal, and finally, Time Trial Hard. Once you’ve done this your grip will be strong enough to allow you to climb the tower and make your way to the secret garden, where the rumored colossus will bust out of a wall and face you down.
One gamer, known as Ozzymandius, thought that there was another way to get access to this supposed beast. At the southern part of the map there’s some seagulls that are flying in a fixed pattern. Ozzy recalls, “I remember seeing them and watching them for like five minutes before they’d make that split-second pass. I was watching them for an excruciatingly long time. But I knew the jump was possible. I don’t know how many times I died trying to do it.” He was positive that these birds would take him to a secret cave where he’d be able to take on the colossus.
Myth or fact? Unfortunately for fans of the game, this one is merely myth, unless you count the end of the game where your character becomes a colossus. While it is true that the developers had initially intended for there to be a grand total of 48 colossi in the game, as evidenced by the official art book, which revealed quite a few unused designs. Gamers have tested this myth time and again utilizing Agro jumps to access areas with poor collision detection as well as other exploits via emulators.
The most dedicated secret hunters have even obtained early preview discs and ripped them, the North American, and the PAL versions in search of any hint that such a colossus truly existed. In the end they discovered that none of these versions contained a model for the rumored colossus.
As for those wondering what happened with Ozzy’s attempt, he was (eventually) successful and grabbed onto a bird, which proceeded to carry him around for a while before they both plummeted into the sea and died.