Ico is a young boy with horns on his head from an unnamed tribe which consider children born with horns to be cursed. He is seen at the beginning of the story being taken by 3 masked villagers on horseback to a mysterious castle surrounded by water, where he is locked inside a sarcophagus and presumably left to die. Shortly after the villagers leave, Ico, by chance, manages to break the sarcophagus and escape, only to discover that the castle itself is a giant maze with seemingly no means of escape.
Ico and Yorda
Ico is a very unique game in that for the majority of the game Ico is accompanied by an AI controlled character named Yorda. While Yorda can help Ico (by opening doors and solving puzzles) for the most part the player must help her to progress by navigating obstacles and making long jumps. Therefore one of the key concepts in the game is the relationship between Yorda and the player (as Ico). An important aspect of this interaction is that Ico and Yorda do not speak the same language, therefore this relationship is conveyed by character animation alone for which no motion capture was done, as the animation was all hand drawn.