[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/journey_tvtropes_1983.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:300:That identical figure to the left will probably be your new best friend by the end of the game.]]
''Journey'' is a video game for the PlayStation3 created by Creator/ThatGameCompany, best known as the creators of ''[=flOw=]'' and ''VideoGame/{{Flower}}''. You play as a nameless robed figure who is crossing the desert to reach a mountain in the distance. As the game progresses, you will pass through several unique environments and ruins, uncovering more of the game's story as you go. It's something of an AdventureGame with light PlatformGame elements.

Your character has only two real abilities: singing, which radiates a sound wave whose size is proportional to how long you hold down the button -- this is used to activate or attract various objects; and jumping, which allows you to go sailing through the air -- this ability uses energy, which can be replenished by touching the floating bits of cloth you encounter throughout the game; the amount of energy, indicated by the length of your character's scarf, can be increased by collecting glowing symbols.

One of the game's main selling points is its unique form of multiplayer: during the game, you may encounter another player, whom you may travel with if you wish. However, unlike most multiplayer games, you can't see the other player's name or other information except for a unique icon that appears above their head when they sing, which is the only real way to communicate - there is no text or voice chat in the game, so you must rely entirely on your in-game abilities to work with your partner. [[spoiler:However, when you finish your current game, it reveals the user names of all the other players you encountered on your journey.]]

Decidedly not related to the [[Music/{{Journey}} rock band of the same name]], an arcade game based on the band released in 1983, a video game ''Journey'' released in 1989 on various home computers or several films named ''Journey''.

Compare and contrast ''LostWinds'', which is practically its WiiWare and [[{{IOS}} iOS]] equivalent.

It is, as of March 2012, [[CrowningMomentOfAwesome the fastest selling PSN-game]] [[http://blog.us.playstation.com/2012/03/29/journey-is-psns-fastest-selling-game-soundtrack-coming-soon/ of all time]].

Note that the game's story is very much meant to be experienced firsthand rather than read about, so check out the tropes below at your own risk.
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!!This game provides examples of:

* AdventureGame: This game is all about how the player chooses to explore while heading towards the distant split peaked mountain.
* [[spoiler:AfterTheEnd]]: [[spoiler:The robed beings' civilization was destroyed in a civil war.]]
* AllTheWorldsAreAStage: The Temple is a Final Exam Stage (sans the death risk) the entire purpose of which is to prep you up for the climax. [[spoiler:And so is the very last level, commonly known as Apotheosis, as well as a walk down Muscle Memory Lane.]]
* AnimateInanimateObject: Banners and cloth you'll come across largely resemble marine life, with rays, jellyfish, kelp and so on moving like the air was an ocean.
* AmbiguousGender: The robed beings really don't have any identifiable sexual characteristics.
* AndYourRewardIsClothes: [[spoiler:The first four times you complete the game, a new section is added to the pattern on your cape]].
** BIG SPOILER: [[spoiler: Also, collecting all the symbols unlocks a white cape, which starts with a longer scarf that recharges automatically when you're on the ground]].
* AprilFoolsDay: thatgamecompany put up a teaser for a "Rocket Death Match" DLC, which of course goes against the entire point of the game.
* ArmlessBiped: Your character doesn't have any arms. WordOfGod is that this is because they didn't want people wondering why you can't climb or pick up things.
* AscendedGlitch[=/=]ThrowItIn: During a phase in which thatgamecompany had trouble getting the ending levels to properly resonate with playtesters, one test ended prematurely when a glitch caused the game to seem like it was over [[spoiler: right after you die in the snowstorm]]. The playtester found this false ending so profoundly moving it brought him to tears; this inspired tgc to put in significant extra effort (see DoingItForTheArt below) to turn the actual ending into something equally moving.
* [[spoiler:AscendToAHigherPlaneOfExistence]]: [[spoiler:Your character in the ending, and apparently what happened to the robed beings who survived the civil war and made the journey.]]
* BeautifulVoid: And how. Even the mere sand itself is a thing of beauty.
* BenevolentArchitecture: The levels were designed with this in mind: just head towards the most prominent object in the area and you're probably going in the right direction.
* BilingualBonus[=/=]GeniusBonus: The OneWomanWail credits song, [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2hvX3lXViXI I Was Born For This]], consists of lyrics not only from many different languages but derived from several classic sources:
-->Stat sua cuique dies\\
'''To each his day is given''' (Latin, TheAeneid)
-->Ml is me to feran\\
'''Time is it for me to go''' (Old English, {{Literature/Beowulf}})
-->Aleto men moi nostos\\
'''Lost is my homecoming''' (Greek, TheIliad)
-->Cest pour cela que je suis ne\\
'''I was born for this''' (French, JoanOfArc)
-->Kono michi ya, Yuku hito nashini[[note]]she mispronounces nashini as 'nishini'[[/note]]\\
Kono michi ya, Aki no kure\\
'''Along this road, goes no one'''\\
'''Along this road, this Autumn eve''' (Japanese, [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matsuo_Bash%C5%8D Matsuo Basho]] haiku.)
-->Cest pour cela que je suis ne, ne me plaignez pas\\
Cest pour cela que je suis ne\\
'''I was born for this, do not pity me'''\\
'''I was born for this''' (French, JoanOfArc)
* BookEnds: The last shot of the credits montage is actually the start-of-game screen, complete with "Press Start to begin a new Journey".
* BorderPatrol: While later stages take place in confined areas, the beginning areas seem like a never-ending desert. Players are kept inside the boundaries by wind picking up the closer to the edge they get, first slowing them down, then blowing them back across the invisible boundary.
* CompilationRerelease: The ''Journey Collector's Edition'', released August 28, 2012, includes ''Journey'', ''[=flOw=]'', and ''VideoGame/{{Flower}}'', as well as three unreleased mini-games, videos, commentaries, and other fun extras.
* CrossingTheDesert: The beginning chapters consist of a desert landscape - one that simply places the player in the middle of nowhere, pointed toward a distant mountain split by a crevice full of light. Your objective, whole and entire, is to reach the mountain. The player characters are completely swathed in robes and don't seem to need supplies, fortunately.
* [[spoiler:DarkestHour: At the end of the penultimate chapter, your character is left without a scarf, the mountain is more distant than it was at the start of the chapter and it slowly fades away from view as the whiteout intensifies.]]
* DesertPunk: More magic than Sci-fi but the ruins you come across make the setting feel like this sometimes, especially after [[spoiler: finding working War Machines and learning that the deserted lands you have been traveling across are of the AfterTheEnd varity.]]
* {{Determinator}}: [[spoiler:You, in chapter 7, when you keep on walking toward the summit even though you're slowly freezing to death.]] Which then turns into a {{Tearjerker}} when [[spoiler:you finally do freeze to death just as you're reaching the summit. Even worse if you have a partner because you watch them die alongside you.]]
* DeusExMachina: [[spoiler:The Traveler and the Companion would have frozen to death in the snowstorm, if not for the timely intervention of the six spirits of the Ancestors who give them enough energy to reach the Summit. Until that point, there was no indication that the Ancestors can interact with the Travelers beyond merely showing them images.]]
** ''Or'' a case of ChekhovsGunman instead [[spoiler: since they're probably the six Ancestors you've met through the game, which you may, up until then, have thought were all the same single person]].
* TheDevTeamThinksOfEverything: If you play through the game without a companion and then one joins you later, the mural that you see at the end of chapter six will only show one red-cloaked person until it pans to the level where your friend joined, when two will show from there until the endgame.
** The reverse is also true - if you lose your partner in the Temple (for instance, they go back down for bonuses and you don't), the mural will show you partnered for the sections where you were together... and facing the winds alone at the end.
*** But you can very well ScrewDestiny and find a new partner in the next level, going it together.
* DiegeticInterface: While you're never in any danger of dying, your scarf serves as an indicator of your overall energy, determining both how long you're able to glide and your health; [[spoiler:It decreases in length when you suffer through the blizzard (that ultimately kills you) and whenever you're mauled by the guardians]].
* DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything: For most of the game the peak of the High Mountain looks a bit like an upside down camel toe. [[spoiler: Walking through the peak at the end of the game, and the theme of rebirth, reinforce the vaginal imagery.]]
** On a less sexual note, [[spoiler: the ancient civilization's dependency on the red cloth mirroring [[GreenAesop modern society's dependency on petroleum]].]] Doesn't help that you're in a desert.
* DoingItForTheArt: The nature of the game aside, thatgamecompany went a year and a half over budget and eventually into bankruptcy just to achieve a satisfactory ending (see AscendedGlitch above).
* DramaticThunder[=/=]AStormIsComing: This can be heard near the end of the penultimate chapter.
* DropInDropOutMultiplayer: Sometimes you might not even realize that someone else is around until you see your screen glow because of their singing and it can be easy to leave another player's game by accident.
* DyingDream: A possible interpretation of [[spoiler: the events that occur at the end of the game.]]
* EarnYourHappyEnding: [[spoiler: Over and over and over again.]]
* [[spoiler:EleventhHourSuperpower]]: [[spoiler:After the Ancestors revive you near the end of chapter 7, you'll have a maxed out scarf/energy meter.]]
** [[spoiler:After the power up you also periodically become bathed in golden light and gain the ability to truly fly.]]
* EasterEgg: There's a ''VideoGame/{{Flower}}'' hidden in the pink desert in the third stage of the game, and a creature from ''[=flOw=]'' in the Temple level. Finding them nets you trophies.
* FadeToWhite: Happens in every chapter...
** FadeToBlack: ...except for the fourth and fifth ones.
* FanNickname: Several, but one example would be "Gary the Scarf", named for a scarf attached to ground at the end of the fifth chapter.
* {{Foreshadowing}}: You know those comets you can see periodically throughout the game? [[spoiler:Those are other travelers who have reached the end of the game. All of the ones you see are scripted, but you see them at the same points where it shows a "player" during the end credits.]]
** On a similar note, the Ancestors that appear to you in the game's cutscenes are just telling you a story with pictures, [[spoiler: until you get to the penultimate level. The cutscene is you looking at a panorama of all the places you've been so far--then the camera holds for a long, lingering shot of what looks like you (and your travel companion, if you have one) attempting to scale the mountain you've been walking towards... and failing.]] Oh, and speaking of things you see throughout the game, [[spoiler: all those stone markers are probably graves]].
* GlowingEyes: Your character has these, as do the Ancestors, though yours are white and the white figures' are blue.
** [[spoiler:EyeLightsOut]]:[[spoiler: Eyes which fade as you freeze to death.]]
* [[spoiler:GoIntoTheLight]]: Another interpretation of [[spoiler:the ending of the game]] and a strong contributing factor to the RuleOfSymbolism and emotional impact.
* GustyGlade: At one of the later chapters. Crosses with DeathMountain and SlippySlideyIceWorld.
* ItsTheJourneyThatCounts: Perhaps a main theme of the game, appropriate considering its title [[spoiler:and implicit in the ending]].
* [[spoiler:HereWeGoAgain]]: [[spoiler:Implied in the ending, when the ascended player character returns to the desert where the game began. Also BookEnds.]]
* HeroicMime: [[SilenceIsGolden It's not only]] [[WorldOfSymbolism you can't speak]]...
* [[spoiler:TheHeroDies]]: [[spoiler:Happens twice in the game's seventh and final chapter, first while struggling to the climb the mountain, and second after you reach the top of it. Worse if you have a companion.]]
* TheHerosJourney: Perfect evocation of this story structure.
** The song titles on the [[http://austinwintory.bandcamp.com/album/journey soundtrack]] coincide with steps in The Hero's Journey.
* [[spoiler:LookOnMyWorksYeMightyAndDespair]]: [[spoiler: The ruins and trapped cloth creatures you find throughout the game are the result of the fall of the advanced ancient White Cloak civilization after they wiped themselves out during a war over the red cloth they grew dependent on.]]
* LostSuperweapon: [[spoiler:The guardians which destroyed the civilization. Some are still active.]]
* {{Minimalism}}: Part of what makes this game so beautiful and helps make finding anything (like easter eggs, cloth creatures, or another player to journey with) feel so rewarding.
* [[spoiler:MomentOfSilence: At the end of the penultimate chapter, it slowly turns very silent as your own life fades away.]]
* MindScrew: In the last chapter, just after exiting the Temple, going over the top of the archway/corridor that leads into the snow takes you into some pretty weird places otherwise inaccessible, including long patches of dark nothingness and the top of the cliff where the silhouettes of cloth creatures are spawning.
* MoodMotif: Certain musical instruments heard in the game are associated with various events. For an example, bass flute is for the white figure seen at the end of most chapters. Certain instruments play only when being with a companion.
* MrExposition: When you activate the shrine at the end of each level, an Ancestor will show you a visual representation of historical events.
* NewGamePlus: Starting a new game with [[spoiler:the White Robe]].
* NoAntagonist: [[spoiler: The only enemies you can find are the Guardians, and even they can't really qualify as antagonists.]]
* NotQuiteFlight: The character's gliding ability.
* OneWomanWail: The credits music, provided by Lisbeth Scott.
* ThePhoenix: [[spoiler: A possible interpretation of the characters. Considering the cycle of re-birth they undergo everytime you beat the game, not to mention their clothes are red or white with yellow designs. This may be enforced by the fact that red is the "coldest" color of natural fire while white is the "hottest", which fits with how White Robes have more energy than red robes.]]
* PlayerDataSharing: Subverted. The glowing symbols that can be seen floating above the environments ''look'' like previous players' souls/symbols [[spoiler:returning to the beginning from the top of the mountain, as happens to your own at the end of the game]], especially since other players can actually accompany you if you play online, but careful observation reveals that those symbols are always the same and are essentially static features of the respective levels.
* {{Precursors}}: The White Robes are implied to be this to the Red Robes. They're named 'Ancestors' by the art book.
* PreOrderBonus: The game was made available for purchase one week before its official release date. Buying it within this time frame gets you a free dynamic PS3 theme; in addition, PlayStation Plus subscribers can access the game a week early.
* RagnarokProofing: Mostly averted. The vast majority of the buildings encountered in the game are in a visible state of disrepair. [[spoiler: The still-active Guardians are the exception to this rule.]]
* RecurringRiff: A certain motif is played throughout the game.
* RedEyesTakeWarning: How you can tell you're about to be [[spoiler:viciously savaged by a Guardian.]]
* SandIsWater: Played around with. Sometimes, the sand acts like sand. At other times, you can surf through it like water, and watch it glisten and ripple like water as well.
** The use of marine animal styles for the "cloth creatures" makes the parallel even stronger.
** This is particularly evident in the underground level, where greenish-blue lighting filters in from above, and dust motes float through the light like tiny bubbles. Your character's flight abilities look more like swimming in this environment.
* ScarfOfAsskicking: [[AvertedTrope No violence so not asskicking]], but it can grow to roughly four times the length of the character and it lets you glide for massive amounts of space. This also depends on [[spoiler: if you chose to begin your journey with a [[NewGamePlus White Robe]] ]]. At a certain point [[spoiler:(just after you are revived by the Ancestors)]], you are given the power to ''fly'', and '' '''turn into [[LightemUp pure light]]''' ''.
* SceneryPorn: Massive desert with gorgeous ruins and realistic cloth, sand and lighting effects? Yes please. Not to mention some of the views that you're able to see throughout the game.
* SceneryGorn: These are the crumbling remains of your main character's once great civilization you're going through.
* ScienceFantasy: Besides the beautiful sand that submerged the world, glyphs, magical cloth, and the impaired buildings, technology is uncommon at most. You glide using the energy bundled in your scarf, and although there exists an ancient language you can't seem to talk at all, even the game hardly shows any text beside from the logo and closing credits. Singing near large pieces of cloth can release "cloth creatures" from the machines'/[[spoiler: Guardians']] remnants. Glyphs and confluences teach you the history of a civilization started by your ancestors. The reason why the game [[spoiler: takes place AfterTheEnd is the machines powered by energy from red cloth destroyed the world in a war against the ancestor characters]].
* ScrewDestiny: If you haven't found a partner or lost them before the end of the 5th level [[spoiler: the cutscene will show you braving the blizzard alone (again)]], but you can still find a new partner in the next level (and achieve your own CrowningMomentOfHeartwarming).
* ShoutOut: There are hidden references to ''[=flOw=]'' and ''VideoGame/{{Flower}}'' at certain locations in the game.
** The flower can be found [[http://journey.wikia.com/wiki/Hidden_Desert_Flower here]]. As for the creature from ''[=flOw=]'', use [[http://journey.wikia.com/wiki/Mysterious_Creature this]].
* SentientPhlebotinum: The cloth creatures.
* SilenceIsGolden: No spoken dialogue ever occurs. It just isn't needed. The only words in the entire game are written the options menu, the title screen, and the ending credits while the only spoken words are part of the ending song "I was born for this", which is in multiple languages and hard to decipher or understand without knowing the lyrics and sources.
* SpiritualSuccessor: The minimalist adventure style seems similar to ''VideoGame/{{Ico}}'' and ''VideoGame/ShadowOfTheColossus''.
* SuperNotDrowningSkills: Though in truth, it is debatable whether the substances one "swims" in qualify as water in the first place.
* [[spoiler:TerminallyDependentSociety]]: [[spoiler:The scarcity of red banners, which were used as an energy source, started the civilization-ending war.]]
* TurnedAgainstTheirMasters: [[spoiler:Implied with the Guardians.]]
* UnexpectedGameplayChange: Part of chapter 5 consists of a StealthBasedMission in which you have to sneak through a tunnel being patrolled by [[spoiler: Guardians.]] You'll repeat this exercise in chapter 7, this time hiding in the [[spoiler: husks of dead Guardians as live ones pass overhead.]] If one sees you, it'll grab and toss you a long ways and tear off part of your scarf, reducing your energy meter.
* VariableMix: A few musical instruments are added to some of the songs when playing with another player.
* VideoGameCaringPotential: You can fill your partner's energy gauge by singing or by walking very close to them. [[spoiler:In chapter 7, when the extreme cold constantly drains your energy, you can still replenish it by the latter method, like you're huddling together for warmth.]] [[IntimateHealing How sweet!]]
** [[spoiler:At the end of the game the usernames of your companions are listed, it's become common for players to send messages of thanks to their companions after playing the game.]]
** Also, some clever gamers have devised another method of communication besides singing. It involves tracing in the bit of snow just before [[spoiler: the end of the journey]]. The most common symbol? [[spoiler: A heart.]]
** VideoGameCrueltyPotential: ...or you can just desert them in a ditch somewhere. Your choice. The physical and communicative abilities of the players were also deliberately limited to [[AvertedTrope avoid]] the kind of griefing that's usually associated with online multiplayer.
*** WordOfGod (by Jenova Chen himself) stated that Griefing is exactly the last thing he want to see in the game. The experience that taught him this? Playing ''WorldOfWarcraft'' for years.
* TheWanderingYou: [[spoiler: [[BecauseDestinySaysSo Played with]]. Mostly due to the fact that your character(s) always know where to travel during each journey, or ''end up there''.]] The characters you play as are sometimes refereed to as journeymen, wanderers, or travelers since they don't have a name and the game is spent wandering from the desert to the mountain.
* WarIsHell: [[WorldOfSymbolism Played with]]. After a long and quite literal descent you're informed of [[spoiler:your ancestors' apocalyptic conflict]] by the gloomy and oppressive subterranean level, which also contains the first appearance of the [[spoiler:guardians]], the game's only source of the scary.
* WorldOfSymbolism: Yes, you're allowed to interpret the story. Unfortunately, [[spoiler: many interpretations are bleak, leading most gamers to think that the primary symbols allude to our own RealLife CrapsackWorld, and [[DoesThisRemindYouOfAnything our dependence on natural resources]] ]].
* TheWorldIsJustAwesome: Many areas in the game appear to exist solely to make you sit back in your chair with your mouth hanging open.
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