The Spot

Video Game Rentals Delivered
Once You Know, You Newegg

Welcome to Gamers Platform

Click on the slide!

Dante's Inferno in Review

Burn, baby burn! Dante's Inferno! Burn, baby burn!

MORE
Click on the slide!

Bioshock 2 - In Review

Let's party like it's still 1959!

MORE
Click on the slide!

Bayonetta - In Review

Those fingers through your hair. That sly come hither stare...

MORE
Click on the slide!

Darksiders - In Review

War! Uh. Good God y'all!

MORE
Click on the slide!

VGA 2009

Spike's choices... and ours.

MORE
Click on the slide!

Dissidia Final Fantasy in Review

I think we have a different definition of the word "Final"...

MORE
Click on the slide!

Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 PC in Review

I'm not sure how I feel about being with a guy nicknamed "Soap" in the showers...

MORE
Click on the slide!

Marvel Ultimate Alliance 2 in Review

Seriously, no jokes about my catch phrase. "Flame on!" isn't that bad, right?

MORE
Click on the slide!

Beatles Rock Band in Review

There's nothing you can do that can't be done.

MORE
Click on the slide!

ColorZ in Review

Look at all the pretty colors!

MORE
Click on the slide!

Defense Grid: The Awakening in Review

What's worse? Aliens, smart ass A.I. or knowing your going to be dealing with both?

MORE
Click on the slide!

Sacred 2: Fallen Angel in Review

You're a fallen diety? Well, so long and thanks for all the fish!

MORE
Frontpage Slideshow (version 2.0.0) - Copyright © 2006-2008 by JoomlaWorks

Featured Advertisers

  

Click to see our great gamer deals!

Article Highlights

  • Join House Jin Rei, the Offical Gaming Community of the GameTechWorld Network.

 

Login Form

Sponsors & Friends

First Impressions: God of War III– “Eviscerations here… 12 for $0.10”

Publisher: Sony Computer Entertainment America
Developer: Santa Monica Studios
Platform: PS3
ESRB Rating: Pending, but you know what’s up.

In what is almost assured to be the killer app of the first quarter (or at least Sony is hoping for it to be) Kratos, or as I like to call him, “that Fuzzy Little Teddy Bear” (aww… he’s so cute), is back for the third installment of the God of War saga. And let me tell you, boy, does he make a good third impression, in a multitude of ways.

I need to issue a disclaimer here. I am new to the GoW series. I missed the boat on the first two games. I think I was vacationing on Venus for a while. In all actuality, I spent a few years away from gaming and by the time I got back, there was always something new to chew on, and I never had more than a mild inclination to go back and try an “old” school action game. Nevertheless, I’m glad for this opportunity to take a look here because I’m coming to this series with a fresh set of eyes, unclouded by bias or fandom. There is a decent chance that some new PS3 gamers, having just bought their new system or received it for the holidays, may not have had a chance to experience the exploits of Kratos.

I’ve got to hand it to Sony. As far as flagship franchises go, the God of War series has to be one of the better ones. Kratos is a violent, visceral, compelling character, and the gameplay certainly stands up. If Microsoft has Master Chief, Nintendo has Mario, and Sony has Kratos, I think they will be ok. If the playability of the first two games (which were recently re-released as a combo pack for the PS3, and remastered in HD) is anywhere near as good as the demo I just finished playing, then I’ve missed a real treat and I just have to go back and play these games. No doubt about it, it just has to be done.

OK, let’s get to it. The demo wastes absolutely NO time. No cut scene. No exposition. No talk. It’s right to bloodshed and violence. Which is i suppose the way most GoW fans like it. A whopping 50 characters can appear on screen at once, easily 3 times more than the previous games. And our Homeboy Kratos is up to the added challenge. Believe that. Kratos is wielding his trusted Twin Blades of Athena, and the slaughter they produce is astounding. The battles feel epic and intense as Kratos dispatches his foes with ease and style. You can also switch on the fly with the touch of the d-pad to a wicked cool set of fist weapons called the Cestus. It’s like you have two lion headed battering rams on the ends of your arms. Wherein the Blades of Athena are fast, yielding multi hit combos into the hundreds, the Cestus are extremely powerful, deliberate weapons, needing very few strikes to subdue Kratos’ enemies.

The way Kratos controls is similar to previous editions. There are two strike buttons (light and heavy) a jump, a grab (keep those meathooks off me), a range weapon with his fire bow, and special move modifiers. As you play, it feels as if there is literally nothing you can’t do, as combos flow seamlessly and effortlessly from one strike to another. Grab a foe and use him as a snowplow to wreck his comrades? Easy. Switch from the surgically precise Blades for three strikes, and finish with a bone-crushing blow with your Cestus? As. Shake off a crushing mob, sweep the rest away with an arcing blow, pop up and juggle one hapless victim in the air while chuckling with glee, firing arrows at the remaining nasties? Pie. You think it, and the possibilities are limitless.

Traversing the world is done in a number of different ways. You have your feet of course, as well as gliding with the Wings of Icarus, which were acquired in the previous game, and forcibly hitching rides on somewhat unwilling (and extremely un-sexy) harpies. There are also Icarus vents in this game, which are huge wind tunnels that allow rapid, if dangerous, ascents of Mount Olympus using the aforementioned Icarus Wings. These events really do produce some edge of the seat, grit your teeth, moments.

Ok, I have to take some time to really describe the level of gore and violence in this game. The act of killing your enemies is treated with relish bordering on near fetishism. There is one scene where you’re fighting a rather upset centaur, and when you finish him (button press sequence finisher) his insides lay splayed across the gorgeously rendered marble floor. The killing of the Chimera moments later is a collection of dismemberments. But nothing compares to the much-hyped decapitation of Helios, the Sun god. When you put your hands on the sides of that hapless deity’s cranium… and twist…. Man… I’ve never seen anything like that. It’s so truly and unapologetically brutal. You end up using his head as a magic item later in the game, as a lantern, and as a means to uncover secret passages. I’m sure Helios feels just peachy about all this (oh, wait. Helios isn’t feeling much of anything at all now. ). Throughout all the unremitting carnage, Kratos shows the effects of all this brutality with blood and gore staining his person and garments, which gives me a nice segue into…

The graphics in this game are so so sooo good. Polished yet gritty. It’s realistic, and still stylish. Kratos has never looked better in High Definition. 1080p is your new home, my man. The effects are really great as well. The gore effects have been given great attention too, as entrails and organs are a treat (?) to behold. The lighting and music add a great deal of tone and feeling to the game. The scale and scope is majestic with thousand-foot Titans waging their war against the gods in the background. There are plenty of oh s#!+ moments in the demo, which I’m sure are just a minor touch of what this climax of the series has to bring to us. The struggle against the gods, the titans, scores of enemies, the look and feel and sound, all these things seem to be well concocted into a must play experience.

I will say this though. There is some competition with GoW in the 3rd person action genre. I have to wonder if the game is innovative and refreshing enough to match the upcoming Dante’s Inferno and Darksiders. Both of those titles seem to offer some really nice gameplay touches as well as epic scope that may rival this offering by Sony. Being a proven franchise does have its benefits however. There is a built in fanbase for this title. I’m sure reservations are going to be huge. Still, does Kratos need more innovation and a fresher take to fend off some really worthy challengers? And since this is game is to be the completion of Kratos’ story, what does that mean for the viability of the franchise and the use of Kratos as a flagship mascot? I can’t wait to find out.

It’s a good time to be a gamer again.

Tags: , , , , ,

Leave a Reply