It’s no ac­ci­dent that the first im­age you see after The­Last

Guardian’s short pro­logue is a sin­gle feather and a set of thick chains: a jux­ta­po­si­tion of fragility with im­mense power. It’s telling, too, that dur­ing the game’s mas­ter­ful open­ing credit se­quence, Takeshi Fu­rukawa’s sump­tu­ous score shifts to a low, omi­nous pi­ano note and rolling tim­pani when the cam­era alights on an il­lus­tra­tion of Trico. Clearly, this is a beast to be ad­mired, but not to be un­der­es­ti­mated. Be­fore that, we see black-and-white draw­ings of real-world an­i­mals be­fore a shift to oth­er­worldly crea­tures, such as uni­corns and gryphons. This tells us ex­actly what Trico is: some­thing fan­tas­ti­cal, but in­formed by na­ture. Ev­ery­thing that comes af­ter­ward only serves to bear that out.

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