Shadow of the Colossus Walkthrough and Strategy Guide >
Introduction, Colossi 1 - 4
To find the Colossi, hold your sword up with "O", turn until the light focuses in one direction, and follow that focus. Clearly the focus becomes more difficult to follow as the game progresses (mountains, cliffs and canyons hinder your straight line) which is why directions to each Colossus are provided in this guide. Please note, in these directions, coordinates are often provided. Hit the "Start button" to view the map, then use the left analog stick to move the map left and down. Here you will find the coordinates to which this guide refers.
Also note, this strategy guide often references the default buttons in this game. If you want to change the button configuration, hit the "Start button", select options, scroll (with the D-Pad) and select "Button Configuration", then switch the buttons around to what you want them to be. Just keep that in mind when you're trying to jump with "X" and we're telling you to jump with "Triangle".
Everything else in this game is explained when you come to it, with the exception of lizards and tree fruits. We left lizards and tree fruits out because we didn't realize they existed until just before we reached the last Colossus, meaning we didn't need to take advantage of them. However, if you're looking to increase your stamina or your health meter, let them work for you. Look for the white-tailed lizards near altars (save points) and large boulders. Look for fruits hanging from most moss-covered trees. Shoot them both with arrows, then stand over the fallen victims and hit "O" to pick them up (it may take a few tries). The white tails of the lizards will increase stamina (grip strength, lung capacity, etc.), while the fruits will increase health.
With that, enjoy the guide and enjoy the game.
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After an extensive and beautiful introduction, your mission will be laid out for you: Find and kill each of the 16 Colossi. This is the only way to resurrect the soul of your fair maiden. You are told to "head to the place where the sword light gathers". Start by just running around and learning the controls the game provides for you. When you're ready, call Agro (your horse) with "X", then approach either of his sides and climb him with "Triangle".
Once you're on Agro's back, practice riding him a bit. It's easy. Kick him with "X" for extra speed, and guide him with the left control stick. To stop, pull back on the left control stick. After you've practiced riding Agro, return to the front of the main temple and face south (pull up your map with the "Start" button). Use the D - Pad to select the Ancient Sword, then press and hold "O" to put the Sword in the air. Note the light catching the sword. If you move around, you'll see the light spreads out in some directions and focuses in one specific spot (to the South). This spot is the location of Colossus #1. Ride toward the "place where the light gathers", or F-6, if you're using the map coordinates. You'll know you're in the right place when you get a quick widescreen cutscene.
Dismount from Agro ("Triangle") and note the ivy-covered west wall. Run toward an ivy patch, jump at it with "Triangle" then grab on with "R1". Continue to hold "R1" as you climb the wall and you'll automatically grab the ledge at the top. Pull yourself up by hitting "Triangle" again. Move left along the path, and jump the gap. Pull yourself up to the next level by facing the upper ledge, hitting "Triangle" to jump, then "R1" to catch the ledge. Again, while hanging from the ledge, hit "Triangle" to pull yourself up. Continue moving up the path, jumping gaps as you go.
At the downed tree, hold R1 then tap "Triangle" to slip under it. Jump up the next two ledges. Here you'll see the path you want to take to your left, but you'll be blocked by a large pillar-like stone. To get around it, jump up and grab onto the small lip along the outside of the pillar. While holding on with "R1", shimmy around toward that left path. Once your back is to it, move your left control stick in the direction you want to jump, and hit "Triangle" to jump (while still holding "R1"). If executed correctly, you'll find yourself hanging off the ledge of the path. Pull yourself up with "Triangle" then run up to the top, where you'll meet your first Colossus.
You're told here how to switch weapons. Stay with your sword. Run to a patch of light, hold your sword up with "O" and aim it in the direction of the Colossus. Scan his body to find his "vitals" or weak points. You'll find one on his head, and a couple on his calves. Run up to the Colossus and sneak around to his back side. Note the fur that hangs from the back of his lower legs. Jump at it (either leg) with "Triangle" and hang onto the fur with "R1". Continue to hold "R1" as you move up that back leg, and check the fact that the pink circle in your lower right hand meter is getting smaller. When it runs out, you'll lose your grip completely, and you'll fall off.
Climb up just a bit to the area with a small patch of blue/green light coming from it, then charge your sword by holding "Square" (you'll lose the charge if the Colossus moves too much and swings you around), then stab the Colossus by releasing and tapping "Square" again (keep in mind, you are holding "R1" as you do this). A successful hit will bring the Colossus to his knee. When his knee is down, run up his leg and jump up to the fur of his back (you can use the ledges provided by his upper leg armor to do this, or you can just jump straight for the fur, which is what I opted to do). Climb up to his mid-back where you'll discover a platform. You need to get to this platform before your grip runs out. Just climb straight to it, and don't forget to pull yourself up to it with "Triangle". Just keep "Triangle" in mind at all times. If you're hanging from something and feel you're stuck, hit "Triangle".
Once on the platform, the ride may be a little rough, but you should be safe from falling off while you let your grip meter regenerate. When it does, hop up to either of the two above platforms, then to the fur of the Colossus's upper back. Climb up to the top of his head, and you'll find his true vital point. Move directly over it (still holding "R1"), and stab him as you did before. The number of stabs required depends on how charged each stab was. Run the Colossus's meter out to kill him.
One Colossus down, fifteen to go.
After the cutscene, head out into the field with Agro (you'll be shown a Save Altar when you go). Use your sword to guide you to Colossus #2, to the north (F - 3). Cross the ravine via the low lying land bridge, just west of the massive aqueduct structure. Once across, take the winding path to the right down to the sand area below. Continue to use your sword to guide you to Colossus #2.
Locate the vital points with your sword. Notice the bottom of each foot has one. Equip your bow and arrow with the D-Pad, then, when the Colossus moves and exposes the bottoms of his feet, or when he raises up on two feet before he stomps you, shoot an arrow into one of the white foot bottoms. A successful hit will cause the Colossus to put the foot down in a position where you can reach some upper leg fur. Hop on and climb up the leg to the "shelf" at the top. Pull yourself up and switch to the sword, as the vital point won't be revealed unless the Ancient Sword is equipped. Wait until the grip meter regenerates, then begin your trek to the Colossus's head.
If you climbed one of the Colossus's front legs, you'll have to climb from the front leg shelf to his hind quarters, where you'll find fur that takes you to the top of his back. Once on that back patch of fur, move forward and toward the Colossus's head, by jumping over his many back bones. You shouldn't need to grab onto his fur up here.
Once you reach the Colossus's head, grab his fur with "R1" then crawl atop the vital sign and stab him in it with "Square". If your grip meter is running low, wait for the Colossus to stop swinging his head, then run to a stable part of his back and wait for it to regenerate. The head vital sign will disappear when the Colossus's meter is halfway down. When this happens, locate his second vital sign near his tail bone. Same rules apply. Crawl over the sign and stab the Colossus until he goes down.
Northwest is the direction you must ride to reach Colossus #3. Use the same land bridge you used to reach Colossus #2, but, this time, continue along the upper path instead of taking the path down to the beach below. Once in the open field, let the light guide you west, through the passage between the cliffs, to the arena in the middle of the lake (E - 2). When you get there, dismount and jump into the water. Swim to the ramp, then move up it to the top. Jump onto the small ledge surrounding the platform at the top, then shimmy around to the backside. From here, aim yourself at the ledge surrounding the arena, then jump (while holding "R1") to catch that ledge in mid-air. Run left to find the small ramp leading you to the arena and the third Colossus.
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The first thing you should notice about Colossus #3 is his large block sword. You'll be climbing that momentarily, but, first, you need to break off some Colossus armor so you have access to some climbable fur. To break off some of his armor, locate the circular plate in the middle of the arena and stand on it. The Colossus will try to slam you with his block sword. Remain in position until he pulls his sword back, ready to strike. When that happens, run out of the way (your "R1" crouch follow by a "Triangle" roll will help you out). When his block sword hits the circle, a portion of his armor will shatter. You're now ready to climb the sword.
Again, you'll have to tempt the Colossus to get him to lay down his sword for you. Stand in front of him, but keep your distance a bit. The Colossus has two sword moves. If you're too close to him, he'll slam his sword straight down and into the ground. You want a nice angle so you can run up the sword, so get some distance in front of him and wait for him to strike (I also found he was more likely to give up and angled sword if you were near that center plate). When he gives you that angle, his sword will be momentarily stuck in the ground. Use this time to run up it.
Once on the sword, don't panic. You won't have much time before the Colossus plucks his sword from the ground again. Steady yourself when he lifts, grab onto the ledge, if necessary, then pull yourself up and walk up the sword to the furry upper arm. Jump onto the fur and climb up to the top of the beast, using any ledges you find along the way. You may note in your climb there is a vital sign on his belly. You can jump from his arm to the platform beneath his belly, but I found going to his head, first, is the better way to go. So, continue climbing to his head. Once there, stab him until the vital sign disappears. Again, if you think you're going to run out of grip juice, let yourself fall down to his shoulder, or a flat portion of his body, so you can refuel without having to start over from the ground.
With the head vital sign out of the way, head down to the belly. To get there most easily, just climb down the back of the colossus. When you get to the upper armor belt obstacle, make sure your feet are facing down, and release "R1". When you pass the upper armor belt, quickly hold "R1" again, and you'll automatically grab onto his fur. Lower yourself to the lower belt, which functions as a steady platform, then make your way around to the front side where the vital sign is. Climb to it and stab away.
Let the Ancient Sword guide you SE this time, up and through the mountain pass until you emerge at an overlook. Ride the narrow path to your right down to the mounds, or "graves". Note that each mound has an open door in it. You will be coming back here, but, for now, move past them, toward the light which leads to Colossus #4 (G - 5). The second you wake up Colossus #4, return to the mounds and dismount from Agro.
Move into the center of all four mounds and wait for the Colossus to follow you there. If the mounds form a circle, you want the Colossus within that circle. Once there, lead him to any one of the four mounds. Make sure the beast sees you, then fall off the front of the mound and hop through the open door.
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Run down the stairs and take any path in any direction toward any staircase that leads to a door to another mound. Climb up the stairs and slowly and quietly emerge from the doorway. Move into a spot where you can see the Colossus. He should be investigating the mound through which you disappeared a moment ago. Wait for the Colossus to mount the mound (he'll kneel down and hug it from the top), then run beneath him and make a flying leap for either of the two long "beards" hanging from his face. Hold "R1" and hope you attach yourself to anyone of the lips surrounding the beard. Once attached, keep holding "R1", and hit "Triangle" to work your way up to the next lip of the beard. At the top, attach yourself to his mask, then make a big jump to his backside. You should safely land on his flat back.
At the base of the Colossus's neck is a blue indicator. Stab it until the Colossus puts his head down, providing you with the flat path you need to reach the top of his head, where the vital sign is located. Move across the path (more like a neck bone), then fall onto the top of the head, crawl on top of the vital sign, and stab away.