Sony's first party support has never been as big as it is right now, in-fact come to think of it, I can't remember a better first party line-up, not even Nintendo's. Sony's originality is definitely the force behind their amazing set of PS2 games, first we have Dark Cloud, one of the most imaginative action-adventure/RPG's that you'll ever play, this one is bound to set a genre of its own. Second we have Gran Turismo 3, a racing game that has been improved upon every aspect. Then we have the revival of the Twisted Metal franchise, the original team is back at developing the fifth title, and have claimed an all new experience for gamers as well as previous TW owners alike. On top of that, Sony has an online disk in the works for TW: Black, which obviously will allow you to play the game online. Those of course are the three biggest Sony titles, but the ones not to be forgotten include, the amazing looking SOCOM: Navy Seals, the highly anticipated Naughty Dog title Jak and Daxter: The Precusor Legacy, and the game I'm talkin' about... ICO.
ICO is an adventure title like no other. As Ico, you will be required to explore a vast castle that spans a magnitude of land and exploration will take about 15-30 hours, as you will battle through dozens and dozens of different rooms that have distinct puzzles within them. For the most part it's easy to see that what was once a PSOne game, has turned into one magnificent looking PS2 adventure, that sports some gorgeous looking texture detail, certainly some of the finest I've seen. As you make way through the castle you'll make way around large rooms with spectacular lighting effects. For instance you can see a gorgeous sunset glare when you are on the winding stairs of the castle, it's a scene that looks absolutely stunning. As for the character work, I'm afraid Sony needs to spend a little more time in that field. The models have a first-generation look to them, with some blocky-like polygonal showing, but hopefully Sony will work on this.
The story of ICO is quite creative to say the least. You are Ico, a boy who was mysteriously born with horns on his head. People think that you are a prophet of the devil, and the next thing you know, you are kidnapped by a gang of thieves who are in co-ordination with the castle. You wake up in one of the castle's prison rooms and find your self hundreds of feet above water. Ico decides to free himself, he breaks a hole in the wall and jumps down to the floor below him (could also be water). He is stunned when he hits the ground and falls into a state of unconsciousness. He has a dream of a girl trapped in the castle (a princess), and when he awakes, he realizes that the dream turns into reality. So Ico returns to the castle once more, in an attempt to rescue the stranded princess. Apparently most of the game will be spent in the castle as Ico and the young princess must solve dozens of brain teasing puzzles, as well as no brainers in order to make it to the queen, defeat her and free themselves from the captivity of the castle. I'll try to gather up more info on ICO, as the game approaches its Summer 2001 release.