ESGS 2016: The Last Guardian – First Impressions

Alright, it’s the moment we’ve all been waiting for. To those who weren’t able to try out The Last Guardian‘s demo in this year’s Tokyo Game Show 2016, Sony Interactive Entertainment Singapore and Tokyo Japan Studios has showcased the highly-anticipated game (which was teased every E3 since 2009) in this year’s Electronic Sports and Gaming Summit (ESGS) in Pasay City, Philippines within a closed-media session.

I was only given an hour to play the demo, and it started at a checkpoint where the Boy and Trico needs to solve some puzzles to get through the ruins. Yes, this is the same demo that was at Tokyo Game Show 2016 and the ones uploaded on IGN, Polygon, and GameSpot’s YouTube channel.

The experience was really great. It was another intense and immersive cinematic experience next to Naughty Dog’s Uncharted 4. Trico and the Boy have this relationship where one of them needs to build their trust in order for them to efficiently work together. It’s unique in a sense that Trico feels more real and that it’s not following any patterns or simply follows an order by just pressing the L1 button. No. It can be a little frustrating sometimes but that’s the whole point and experience. You have to let Trico trust you first before you get to be demanding; and while building that trust, Trico will eventually be easier to ask for help.


It took me a while to get the hang of it and I had my fair share of trial and errors. Since the demo started at the middle of the game, I had to discover and figure things the hard way, but it was fun nonetheless. SIE Japan Studios’ PR representative had to teach me how to tell Trico to jump by pressing and holding the L1 button then hit the Triangle button.

The Last Guardian also had its own technical difficulties. There were frame-drops in some certain aspect in the game — like for example, the gameplay where you had to run away as fast as possible to not fall from the collapsing wooden bridge-like platform. The camera also had some problems with its focus where angle forces itself to Trico that makes the screen jump to the top then slowly goes back to the Boy. But surely, this version of the game was the unpolished one and we should expect a better and more stable version once the game is out.

Even with these minor glitches, the experience was great! Every moment you spend in the game even if it was approximately almost 30 minutes to finish the whole demo is very precious. You get to witness and feel how to build the foundation of trust and courage in The Last Guardian. I can feel the thrill of the moment in every near-death experience of the Boy where the game transitions to a slow-motion sequence (the same feeling when playing the road chase in Uncharted 4).

We will all find out if The Last Guardian was worth delaying for quite a long time once it’s released.

The Last Guardian will be released on December 6, 2016 exclusively on the PS4.

Our hands-on of The Last Guardian will be uploaded on our YouTube after ESGS 2016 days.

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