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Shadow of the Colossus collectibles guide

Understanding coins and fruits and shining lizard tails

Jeffrey Parkin (he/him) has been writing video game guides for Polygon for almost seven years. He has learned to love just about every genre of game that exists.

Shadow of the Colossus is a simple game by design. You start with the same weapons you end with. There’s no armor to worry about. There are no consumable items to manage. You’re just a boy trying to kill colossi to bring a girl back from the dead. You know, simple.

But there are items to collect and unlock. You can find shining lizard tails to increase your maximum and fruit to increase your health. By playing Time Attack mode, you can unlock new swords and outfits (and coat colors for your horse, Agro).

In this guide, we’ll talk about how to unlock Shadow of the Colossus’ optional and secret useful items. And we’ll tell you about the items around the world you might want to collect to make your game a little easier. We should make clear, though, that these are optional collectibles. They’ll get you trophies and make your game slightly easier, but they’re not necessary. (We played and wrote our colossus guides without collecting anything.)

Time Attack mode

Bluepoint Games/Sony Interactive Entertainment

After you beat the game on a given difficulty, you’ll start over in a New Game+. In this new game, you can kneel in front of any of the colossus statues in the Shrine of Worship to start a Time Attack for that colossus. These are stripped-down fights with a colossus that skip over all of the riding around the countryside. These fights have a goal — a time limit to aim for. At normal difficulty, at least, they are very reasonable and achievable goals.

Bluepoint Games/Sony Interactive Entertainment

For every two Time Attacks that you successfully complete, an item will appear in the pool at the north end of the Shrine of Worship. These items can be anything from a new color scheme for Agro to a new weapon or new information on your map.

Bluepoint Games/Sony Interactive Entertainment

Press triangle on the map screen to check out these items and learn how to earn them. The lizard stone and the fruit tree map are very useful for finding the first two collectibles we’re about to discuss.

Shining-tailed lizards (or shining lizard tails)

Bluepoint Games/Sony Interactive Entertainment

Shining lizard tails increase your maximum stamina by a tiny bit. This will let you hold on to a colossus a little longer during your battles.

The shining-tailed lizards are easy to spot — they’ve got bright white-blue tails. There’s at least one lizard hanging out at every shrine, and there are others scattered around the map. It’s usually easiest to shoot them with an arrow from a distance, but it’s also possible to just slash at them with your sword if you happen to be close enough.

Fruit trees

Bluepoint Games/Sony Interactive Entertainment

There aren’t many trees around the world of Shadow of the Colossus. A few of the ones that there are have fruit hanging from their branches. If you knock the fruit down and then pick it up, you’ll increase your maximum health by a little bit. Unlike the lizards, fruit trees aren’t usually near a shrine. They are, frankly, pretty hard to track down. But the rarity of trees in general makes them a bit easier to spot.

Gold coins

Bluepoint Games/Sony Interactive Entertainment

With 2018’s new remake, a new collectible has been added to the game — gold coins. There are 79 of these coins scattered all over the world. They sparkle on your screen and make a pretty little song come out of your controller’s speaker. Collecting all 79 of them will earn you a special sword.

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