Hey guys, Yamori_B here! First off, I would like to apologize for my absence on here. A combination of personal stuff, conventions, art related stuff, various holidays, and my own forgetfulness and procrastination would be the culprits here, so again, I'm really sorry!
So today I thought I might share some of my theories and information on some random locations on the map - I'll be looking at The Shrine of Worship, Underground (#6's area), Ruins (#12's area), and Kirin's Hill (#4's area).
Let's kick things off with the Shrine of Worship! This isn't much of a discovery, but I suppose it's kind of cool. The Shrine is referred to as Himeji (This is probably a reference to the real Himeji Castle in Japan) in a lot of the textures - while looking at Fumito's twitter with google translate, my brother and I came across these tweets-
It's not much but I thought it was kind of neat. XD
On to Underground! There are some textures used here (among other places) that all have "Baiyon Wall" in their names.
If you then search Baiyon on google....you only get the musician Baiyon. XD
But if you put it in google translate it asks "Did you mean バイヨン?"
If you click that, it comes back out as "Bayon" or "the Bayon".
So! What is the Bayon? Well, to quote Wikipedia "The Bayon is a well-known and richly decorated Khmer temple at Angkor in Cambodia." Hooray, puzzle solved! :D So again, not too exciting, but I found it interesting. XD
...And on a side note, there is a photograph of Fumito's bookshelf in the art-book that came with the Japanese collection.
...And it would appear he has a book about Angkor Wat. ;)
Now for the Ruins - and on to the weird speculation part of this blog post! XD When I look at the ruins, the way the stone blocks in one area appear to almost be just stacked up one on top of the other seems odd.
The area is referred to as a city by Dormin, but something has never seemed right about it to me. It's always looked the least natural of any of the architecture in the game to me. Like there's no rhyme or reason to the placement of things. That's always bugged me because Team Ico is pretty good with that kind of thing most of the time. So there are two parts to my theory here. The first one I'm pretty confident in, and that's that the area is a Marsh and the purpose of the water channels winding through the ruins may have been to drain the marsh thus making it more suitable for construction.
Some of the ground appears somewhat soft and wet, and in one area it appears a whole toppled block has sunk into the ground.
Actually, there are a couple other instances of blocks sunk into the ground too.
The second part of the theory I'm less confident in, but could possibly explain the strange nature of the ruins. Maybe this area was never actually completed? The tower of blocks stacked up on top of one another could be building materials, not yet assembled into a proper structure. This could also explain the blocks strewn around the passageway.
Alternately, the area could be an area that was completed, but was being torn down and the blocks transported somewhere else...
So that's my theory there, though I'm probably not correct. XD It's also possible that Team Ico didn't put that much thought into the area...but where's the fun in thinking that? ;)
And last, but not least! Probably the most exciting thing in this post (Which still isn't necessarily all that exciting), Kirin's Hill! :D
"In the land of vast green fields...
Rows of guiding graves...
It is a giant indeed but fearful, it is not."
Personally, I've never seen the area as vast, or as much of a field...though it certainly is green if nothing else! :D
Then there's the matter of that "Rows of guiding graves" comment...
There's been some interesting theories about what it could be referring
to. I believe Nomad mentioned a few of the better ones in his post on Kirin
here - http://nomads-sotc-blog.blogspot.com/2012/01/phaedra-4th-colossus.html
Now, one theory I've been thinking about lately is that
the lines "Land of vast green fields" and "Rows of guiding graves"
both may have made more sense earlier in the game's development...
But anyway, recently while watching
this video I saw something I could've sworn I recognized.
As it turns out, I was right! After taking a look through the concept art in the art-book from the japanese boxset, I found something strikingly similar to what was seen in that video!
Now I don't know, but personally, that looks much more like a "vast green field" to me!
The four pillars are oddly enough, absent from the sketch, but I'm not certain there would be room to show them anyway. I believe that the four pillars may be arranged at the corners of a large square...come to think of it, while there weren't any pillars,
wasn't there a gigantic square near the back of the area in the final game? I wonder if they're connected, and if so why they removed the pillars?
So that's all I got for this post! :) Next post I might delve into some Beta colossus speculation or something. XD I'm also thinking about posting some findings related to some other games (mainly Twilight Princess). Should I collect those on a different blog, or just post them here?
Well anway, that's it until next time! :D