If Flower doesn't touch you then you're emotionally dead inside.

User Rating: 9.5 | flower PS3
Flower is not so much a game as it is an experience, few titles have managed to move me quite like this, in fact i believe ICO was the last game that gave me this feeling, another game case of less is more.This seems to be Thatgamecompany's way of thinking having previously worked on Fl0w before Flower who's tag line was "life could be simple".

In Flower you play the role of the wind guiding a petal towards other flowers that have yet to bloom, whenever you touch one it opens adding another petal until you have a long line stretching behind you in a beautiful array of colours. This is all controlled by one button, any one of your choosing as all it does is increase the wind while the six axis is used to steer, and brilliantly implemented at that, the controls are sharp, responding to your every move as you guide a fountain of petals.

Sounds simple right? Maybe even boring? But it's not. Much more then that, Flower is the sort of game that subtly gives you things and lets you infer the rest. I mean what sort of game can make you feel guilty about being indoors? About the impact of humans on the planet? Made me water the plants on my windowsill without preaching anything? Flower's beauty and subtle cutscenes aim at the soul, not the mind.

The game starts with a rather wilted looking flower on the grey windowsill of an apartment, after selecting it you see the camera pull back over a grey city with traffic before starting you in a lush field of green with that flower in the middle of it. Is the flower dreaming? Remembering? It is never explained but gives you so much by telling you so little.

Once one level is finished by following the path of flowers a new different flower appears on the windowsill with it's own 5 second cutscene, every time different, every time allowing the player to take from it what they will. There are 6 in all, and every level is unique to the last, from night to day, windmills to a city, some relaxing, and some melancholy before finishing in a near rapturous finale.

What really impresses straight away about flower though is the visuals. The game is simply stunning to look at. So vibrant, full of life and amazing colours, simply one of the best looking titles I have seen on the PS3. Technically the game is impressive as well as artistically with what seems like millions of blades of grass in the fields all swaying in the breeze and parting as you rush through them.

Flower is the sort of game in which relaxing and admiring your surroundings are as important as moving towards the next flower, I spent literally 20 minutes on the first level swooping and diving before stopping to watch my petal trail and the scenery, breath taking.

These fantastic visuals would all be for naught without sound to match however, and once again Thatgamecompany have pulled through with fantastic scores lending to the atmosphere of the title. Every time you bloom a flower it will chime a certain note depending on it's colour, almost giving you the chance to make your own melody as you breeze by.

The game took me about 2 hours to finish, though there are 3 hidden flowers to bloom in each level along with the trophies. Though to be honest Flower is a game that doesn't need to be long, it doesn't need hidden features or speed trial modes or time limits, all it needs to be is the relaxing emotional ride it is, that is simply enough for me to want to replay it.