Monday, March 22
In case you haven't played it: God of War III Review (PS3)
I know I said I would explore my gaming history a little further, however I want to start living in the now.
On Saturday I played through and finished God of War III. Was it good? It was great! Is it worth AU $119.95 HELL NO! This is a game you can potentially finish in one sitting. Not to say this fleeting experience will not stay with you, or that you would not want to relive it.
For those of you who haven't seen GoW III in action know this: it is quite simply the most visually spectacular game in memory. The scale of the creatures and environments is nothing short of breath-taking. Standing in "The Forge," while Hephaestus slaved away creating statues is one of the greatest sights in recent gaming memory. The framerate is consistent and visual hitches are a rarity. The graphics exceed expectations in both artistic and technical contexts. The character model for Kratos is honestly life-like. The boss creatures are huge and intricately detailed. You will have read this before, but the first 10 minutes of GoW III will blow you out of the water! (Poseidon joke!!! Hilarious!!!)
The action is solid. For those of you who have played any of the previous chapters you know exactly what to expect. Stringing together combos of melee hits and magic attacks is made all the more easy now that you can swap weapons on the fly. Real time event executions also make a return and some of the visual effects are outrageously brutal. The platforming sections are competent and at times enojyable. The puzzles are somewhat easier than the usual God of War fare, very rarley was I left scratching my head. GoW III is fun, but very little has changed since the last iteration. It is not quite stale yet, but the sense of familiarity with the action did take a little away from the experience.
Where GoW III fails is the story. To me, Kratos is a jerk. A jerk I can't relate to. A jerk who needs to pull his head in. A lot of the violence is unjustified: not only can you render vengeance on the Gods and their undead minions, you can also walk up to fleeing civilians and grapple kill them to obtain extra orbs. There seems to be a reward for killing/destroying everything. Kratos is not an anti-hero, or a victim, he is an instigator, he is evil. The half-assed attempt to redeem Kratos also fails to make him endearing. I've read extensively about how the ending is fantastic... I found it to be a bit of a cop out. You make your own judgement and please feel free to share it with me.
The score is great and really adds to the sense of scale and drama. The sound effects accurately portray what I imagine buckets of blood being spattered across the Greek countryside would sound like. It is nauseatingly brutal at times, the aural experience of Kratos gutting a centaur is one you will remember for quite a while.
I've read whispers of sporadic visual glitches and game freezes interrupting and at times, spoiling play. From my experience, I had one 3 minute freeze in the lead up to the final battle. I could resume play after the freeze and I was very happy with the stability of the game.
8/10: GoW III is unforgettable. The graphics are easily the best on the PS3 and I can't think of anything else that compares to it. The action is solid if familiar and for many this can hardly be considered a negative. The sound is suitably epic and many of the tunes will stay with you for weeks to come. There is not enough here to keep you going. I know there are extra difficulty settings and challenges but 10 hours for a single player only experience is not good enough. Rent it for now, buy it when it goes platinum.
PS. In the Collector's Edition you get some extra skins and challenges however you can't play them until you finish the game. Further to that, if you use any of the bonus skins, trophies are disabled. I'd say it isn't worth it, but when the CE costs the same as the standard game I guess it doesn't hurt.
Posted by Tristan Damen