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Trekking: Journey

28 Apr 2012

If there’s one game that everyone’s talking about lately, it’s Journey, the indie game created by thatgamecompany for the PS3. Featuring incredible landscapes, anonymous co-op play with one other person, and the journey of the pair towards a distant mountaintop, it’s an incredibly emotional, deep experience that really brings out the best of a long trip. 

One of the most exciting things about it is how different it feels to a lot of games. You can easily imagine the epic lands of Azeroth in World of Warcraft, or picture the tables in Vegas as you log onto the site of partypoker, but Journey crafts huge deserts, forgotten cities, and a snowy mountainside for you to explore at your leisure. It’s an incredibly powerful experience, and with a huge draw distance, you can always see the mountaintop you’re journeying towards. 

Trekking is not going to be an enjoyable experience for those who go it alone, and for this reason, Journey pairs you up with one other person. You don’t see their username until after the game ends (around an hour and a half, which makes this game expensive given it’s $14.99 USD, but it’s worth it), and your only method of interaction is - get this - a single blast of noise. That’s it. It seems impossible to communicate, but it’s not - bleeping when you find something, or bleeping to get someone to follow your lead or to help you is instinctive. You form a bond with the person you’re playing with. 

Journey is not your average game, but it doesn’t come from an average company. thatgamecompany have previously made Flower, a game about controlling the wind to push flower petals around to heal a broken world, and flOw, a game about a small organism that eats others to slowly become bigger and more complex. Yeah, they’re not your average game company. Journey is a really special experience, and I highly recommend it if you believe games can be more than just shooters and fantasy roleplayers.