now playing: God of War

God of War Collection.

Following the pattern of not starting my gaming deserts till I’ve finished my cyber-greens (or something), I’ve picked up a copy of the God of War collection for PS3 to get caught up on two games worth of plot before I dive into God of War 3 [1].

I’m about 3 hours into God of War 1 (or I for the Romans out there), and so far I’ve established that Kratos (our protagonist) is angry, and um… yeah he’s real angry. He’s been burdened with images of his violent past, which is really getting in the way of his sleep, and also training to join the Spartan rhythmic gymnastics team.

So the goddess Anthena suggests that if Kratos is really not cool with these visions and really really wants focus on what he’s good at – cause he’s really really good at rhythmic gymnastics – he could maybe go and kill Ares, who is in the process of stomping the shit out of Athens.

Kratos is all “Yeah, sure why not. I could probably get some training in on the way too.” And off he goes, slicing and pirouetting his way through anything moves into his field of vision.

The God of War games were on my short list of “I really wish I had a PS2 so I could play” games, so it’s great to have them together now to play on the PS3. While some effort has been made to upgrade the low-res PS2 textures, cut-scenes are still deliciously compressed, frequently reminding you that we’ve come a long way since this was a visual benchmark

Game-play wise God of War feels like it could’ve come out this year [2]. Kratos has light and heavy attacks, which stretch and flow beautifully in all directions. Launch an enemy up in the air to build up combos. Perform quicktime events successfully and you’ll execute gory finishing moves on some of the larger enemies. It’s all very fun and in no way taxing on the brain. Even the occasional Zelda-esque push-a-crate puzzles are only there to break up the action, rather than act as frustrating roadblocks.

For a five year old game God of War still feels very fresh and new – probably help by the fact games are still ripping off its format. If you’ve never played the originals, or are considering reacquainting yourself with Kratos before jumping into God of War 3, the God of War Collection is a great package.

Four beheaded Gorgon sisters our of five.

[1] And also, it was cheap on Play-Asia, which is good cause I wasn’t quite prepared to drop $250 on the collectors edition that had all three games, the soundtracks, some downloadable costumes, and an actually rather cool box that would’ve been a great place to store things I didn’t want my parents to find. If I still lived at home, I mean.

[2] And be called Dante’s Inferno.


Author: Mark Ampersand

Budding writer, connoisseur of fine popular culture and Batman fan.

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