15 Best Games Like Shadow of the Colossus

Praey for the Guardians

It is difficult to recommend the best games like Shadow of the Colossus. This is because Shadow of the Colossus is one of the most unique gameplay experiences ever made.

The development team at Team Ico always pushes the boundaries of what a video game can be. From creating a sense of atmosphere in the world, including an immersive yet thought-provoking narrative, and providing killer gameplay to tie everything together, every title from this studio can be considered a classic.

We’ll be taking into account all of the factors that make Shadow of the Colossus such a timeless video game when making our recommendations.

15. Demon’s Souls

Now that the original Demon’s Souls has been rereleased onto PS5, we are starting to remember why this game spawned an entire genre.

Demon’s Souls’ difficulty isn’t for everyone but is genuinely rewarding for those who put in the time and effort to master the combat system.

Similar to Shadow of the Colossus, the game can be tricky at times, especially during some of the later boss battles, but there are plenty of rewards for those who stick it out to the very end.

Fending off bosses in Demon’s Souls will continue to make your character more powerful. Whereas, in Shadow of the Colossus, exploring the world, increasing your stamina bar, and defeating time attack bosses, will grant you new equipment like the bomb arrows.

Both of these games incentivize exploring a new world and taking on tricky boss battles. For more of a challenge, be sure to check out Demon’s Souls.

14. Dark Souls

Much like Demon’s Souls, Dark Souls is another From Software game that perfectly blends open-world exploration with insanely brutal boss battles.

Dark Souls is a game devoted to its boss battles with the open-world exploration being a conduit through which the player can, you guessed it, reach more boss battles.

Shadow of the Colossus delivers the same approach albeit with a lot more of a baron world to explore.

However, both of these games totally nail the sense of dread and loneliness while traversing through their respective worlds.

In Dark Souls, any lowly enemy could spell the end of your playthrough if you aren’t being careful. In Shadow of the Colossus, the eery silence and lack of any other life make every situation feel just as tense.

For deeply atmospheric games that focus on unique and compelling boss battles, the Dark Souls series is a must-play.

13. Majora’s Mask

Majora’s Mask and Shadow of the Colossus are very different games when it comes to gameplay. While both titles are 3D action-adventure games, Shadow of the Colossus focuses more on the boss rush element of the game, whereas Majora’s mask is more so interested in dungeons and sidequests.

However, both these games lean heavily into the overwhelming atmospheric tension that looms over you throughout your playthrough. In Majora’s Mask, the moon that will destroy the world in three days gets closer and closer to the ground as time goes on. In Shadow of the Colossus, Dormin’s presence is always there whenever you return to base camp after defeating a boss.

Another contributing factor to Majora’s Mask’s inclusion is the various myths surrounding it. For those unaware, Shadow of the Colossus’s quest for the 17th colossus occupied hundreds of pages on a forum thread before the advent of modding and emulation. Fans were convinced that one more boss was secretly hidden somewhere within the game’s code.

This was later revealed to be false, but the secret seekers left an impact as, in the remake of Shadow of the Colossus, a sword can be acquired by collecting various glowing objects scattered about the world.

Similarly, Majora’s Mask has a lot of conspiracy theories surrounding it as well. For example, the Deku Maks players receive at the start of the game is thought to be of the deceased son of the Deku Butler.

If you enjoy a dark and atmospheric game with lots of hidden lore and head-canon created by fans, Majora’s Mask is the game for you.

12. Nioh

Nioh is a game that focuses on taking down uniquely designed and exciting bosses.

Several Colossi in this game are based on mythical creatures such as minotaurs, Cerberus, and kirin.

Similarly, in Nioh, almost all of the boss battles are based on traditional Japanese Yokai (monsters from folklore).

Nioh is a game that also utilizes compelling boss fights to keep players hooked much like Shadow of the Colossus does.

If you enjoyed the design of the Colossi and the unique take Team Ico used to adapt each inspiratory source, Nioh does the exact same thing with its bosses!

11. Okami HD

Shadow of the Colossus is often referred to as a piece of art, rather than a video game (as are the other titles in Team Ico’s collection).

No other game on this list fits that criteria better than Okami. Okami uses traditional Japanese brush painting as a means of engaging in combat with enemies.

This is such a unique idea that has never been replicated to the same effect. Additionally, the game world of Okami is glorious to look at and gets even better in the HD remake.

Traveling through the world of Okami is an adventure in and of itself. The boss battles are just as grandiose here as they are in Shadow of the Colossus as well.

Okami and Shadow of the Colossus are both wonderfully fulfilling and artistic experiences.

10. Return of the Obra Dinn

Return of the Obra Dinn is a stylistic puzzle game in which you can explore the moments before a crewmate’s death and use that information to progress further into the game.

The game doesn’t have monsters per se. Unlike Shadow of the Colossus, the closest thing to a demon you will encounter are the huge crab-like monsters that will attack your ship.

However, the puzzle-solving elements of this game are what land it on this list.

A lot of the fun in Shadow of the Colossus comes from both tracking the said Colossi down and subsequently figuring out their weak spots.

Every boss in Shadow of the Colossus has a different way they need to be taken down. Stabbing the sigil remains the same throughout the game, but utilizing the surrounding areas and Agro will often be required as well.

If you enjoyed the puzzle-solving elements of Shadow of the Colossus and are interested in exploring another atmospheric and tense game, Return of the Obra Dinn is a great game to try out.

10. Bloodborne

As mentioned already, the SoulsBorne catalog of games is some of the most similar to Shadow of the Colossus.

These games tend to do away with traditional narrative structure and moment-to-moment gameplay, in favor of creating vast open worlds that players can venture across in order to take on a series of boss battles.

Bloodborne is a strict departure from the other Souls games. Here, the fantasy elements are scrapped and, in their place, we have more of a gothic aesthetic.

Shadow of the Colossus, arguably, aligns more with the world of Bloodborne. The game is less about taking down knights and other fantastical creatures and more about fighting against otherworldly, almost alien monsters.

Both of these games are great fun and, if you like boss rushes, Bloodborne is the game for you.

9. Castlevania: Lords of Shadow

Castlevania Lords of Shadow is a game that, perhaps, tries a little too hard to emulate Shadow of the Colossus.

While the main gameplay of these two games couldn’t be more different (one being an action hack-and-slash while the other is an extended boss rush), a lot of elements from Shadow of the Colossus made their way over to Lords of Shadow.

The main similarity between these two games can be found in some of the bosses, most notably, the Ice Titan.

The Ice Titan in Lords of Shadow features an almost identical fight to Shadow of the Colossus’ opening boss fight.

Players must scale the Ice Titan, take out specific weak points, and topple it without being thrown off.

Lords of Shadow is a great game to try out for a different kind of experience than the one found in Shadow of the Colossus.

8. Horizon Zero Dawn

Horizon Zero Dawn is a great game with a lot more content on offer than Shadow of the Colossus. The latter of these two games is short, sweet, and to the point. If you felt the experience lacking somewhat, Horizon Zero Dawn has hours upon hours of mainline content with tons of side missions as well.

Shadow of the Colossus expertly blended storytelling through gameplay and Horizon Zero Dawn manages to do this as well. While there are several cutscenes in both games, most of the story is told through your actions as a player.

Horizon Zero Dawn also features a large open world that is freely explorable just like Shadow of the Colossus.

As one of the newer games on this list, we recommend checking out Horizon Zero Dawn if graphics and modern quality of life features are important to you.

7. The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild

The Legend of Zelda Breath of the Wild was a breath of fresh air for long-time Zelda fans and is widely considered to be one of the best adventure games on Switch. Ditching the traditional formula, the developers decided to make things more free-flowing this time around.

In Breath of the Wild, it is possible to go from the tutorial straight to the final boss. You will likely be killed in less than a few seconds, but it’s possible!

Speedrunners and those with amazing gaming skills, however, relish in tough challenges like this and appreciate not having their hands held from the outset of a new adventure.

Casual players, on the other hand, are allowed to roam about a vast open-world, exploring the new dungeons and taking on a series of bosses.

Much like Shadow of the Colossus, the world in Breath of the Wild is expansive and incentivizes exploration. Additionally, most of the dungeons, like several of the bosses in Shadow of the Colossus, can be completed in whatever order you choose.

All in all, if you enjoy the sense of adventure while journeying through an open world on horseback, Breath of the Wild delivers more of what you love in spades.

6. God of War

The original God of War games is the most similar to Shadow of the Colossus in the form of gameplay. Whether doing battle against Poseidon, the Hydra, or any other mythical god of legend, Kratos will be forced to climb atop them and land the finishing blow.

However, these older titles are a lot more action-focused. There is certainly a story that runs throughout the original trilogy, but the main draw of these titles is the great action combat and unique boss battles.

The new God of War takes a different approach. While there is certainly still a lot of action, the game has shifted from an overheard top-down perspective to a third-person over-the-shoulder view.

Additionally, there is a lot more focus placed on the story in this game, as you play as an aging Kratos alongside “Boy.”

Depending on which aspects you enjoyed when playing Shadow of the Colossus will depend on which generation of God of War appeals to you the most.

If you loved the bosses and the combat, the original games might be more your cup of team. However, if you enjoyed the bleak narrative and overall themes of Shadow of the Colossus, the newer game might appeal to you more.

Or, if you have the time, why not play both!

5. Monster Hunter Rise

Shadow of the Colossus and Monster Hunter Rise both have players fighting off large monsters. Monster Hunter Rise, in particular, is a lot more similar to Shadow of the Colossus, than other games in the Monster Hunter series.

Unlike older Monster Hunter titles, it is now possible to mount enemies for a brief duration and deal extra damage.

Furthermore, Monster Hunter involves tracking down unique monsters, hitting their weak points, and taking them down.

Almost every Colossi in Shadow of the Colossus had both a unique design and a unique method for taking them out.

Monster Hunter Rise continues the trend of having incredibly well-designed enemies, each one with a design more interesting than the last.

Additionally, these monsters have specific weak points, and players must also utilize the terrain to their advantage during fights (especially during fights off-land such as against aquatic enemies).

All in all, Monster Hunter Rise is a more fast-paced action-driven alternative to Shadow of the Colossus.

4. Elden Ring

Elden Ring has some of the most memorable and gigantic bosses we’ve ever seen. Much like Shadow of the Colossus, the majority of an Elden Ring playthrough will involve traveling between various locations and taking on increasingly difficult bosses.

One of the main similarities between these two games is the dark atmosphere. Both Elden Ring and Shadow of the Colossus are darker games both in color palette and in overall feel.

However, the vast open world is shared in both of these games and the sense of loneliness is palpable.

The key difference between Elden Ring and Shadow of the Colossus would have to be the difficulty. There is no shame in looking up Elden Ring Guides as this game can get very intense. Shadow of the Colossus is by no means a cakewalk, and when it comes time to complete the time trial missions, things get even harder.

However, none of these elements can compare to Elden Ring’s difficulty. As a member of the illustrious SoulsBorne line of games developed by From Software, Elden Ring is a game targeted toward a hardcore audience.

If you want a game with all the same aesthetics as Shadow of the Colossus but with a higher difficulty ceiling and more customizable player options, Elden Ring is the game for you.

3. Praey for the Gods

When it comes time to recommend the game most like Shadow of the Colossus on paper, none can compete with Praey for the Gods.

While other games capture the atmosphere and overall complexity of Shadow of the Colossus better than this title, there is no denying the heavy inspiration Praey for the Gods took from Shadow of the Colossus.

Praey for the Gods is an action-adventure title in which you take on hulking behemoths by first mounting them and then whittling down their health bar.

Sound familiar?

Praey for the Gods is a very fun and interesting game, but one that lacks the same atmosphere as Shadow of the Colossus. It is very clear to see what the developers were trying to do here and they succeeded very well. The only problem is that they wanted to create a new Shadow of the Colossus instead of creating something truly unique.

That being said, if you enjoyed the core gameplay of Shadow of the Colossus, Praey for the Gods is the next best thing.

2. The Last Guardian

The Last Guardian is another game from Team Ico. As such, you can expect the same level of polish here as you did in Shadow of the Colossus.

The Last Guardian takes a different approach than Shadow of the Colossus. This time, instead of killing huge monsters, you’ll be working alongside one.

The Last Guardian requires players to work alongside the griffin-like creature Trico in order to maneuver about a ruined castle.

The Last Guardian is a great inversion of the plot found in Shadow of the Colossus. Wander, in a quest to revive his deceased wife, is told by Dormin to slay the titanic Colossi. There was a sinister undercurrent that ran throughout this game, that these monsters were seemingly harmless, and only attacked you once provoked.

Phalanx, in particular, will do the player no harm even after being attacked. Trico in the Last Guardian is also hostile at first but learns to accept the player after you tend to its wounds.

The gameplay here is less action-focused and leans more into the puzzles. Making Trico do what you want in order to progress can be a challenge in and of itself. If there is only one complaint about this game, it is that Trico is not the most cooperative AI.

However, The Last Guardian is still just as atmospheric and entertaining as Shadow of the Colossus.

1. Ico

As the game with the same name as the studio produced it, Team Ico’s Ico is nothing short of a masterpiece.

In this game, you play as a young horned boy named Ico. Working together with a girl who speaks a different language, named Yorda, you must work together in order to fend off shadowy monsters and escape from a castle.

The plot of Ico is a lot more similar to The Last Guardian as opposed to Shadow of the Colossus. The game itself is almost like one long escort mission, in which you must traverse various platforming challenges and puzzles while making sure Yorda doesn’t fall too far behind.

Aside from the phenomenal soundtrack, wonderful visuals, and stellar gameplay, Ico has some of the best game feel out there.

Similar to how Shadow of the Colossus made players feel as though they were hanging on for dear life whenever they scaled a Colossus, dragging Yorda by the arm always feels incredibly realistic (making escape sequences that much more tense).

Several myths and Easter Eggs are also found in Ico. Unlike Shadow of the Colossus’ quest for the 17th Colossus, however, these Easter Eggs are all real. For example, it is possible to acquire a lightsaber in this game!

If you loved Shadow of the Colossus, we recommend checking out the rest of Team Ico’s library. With only two other games to choose from, where better to start than with the first in the series, Ico.


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