Review by VillainC

"God Of War Makes Its Genre In A Better Position"

Imagine your own religion with your own ways. Greek Mythology, however…seems to capture your own ways. Gods, and beliefs…it's inspiring. However, there has really never been a game trying to base it off of Greek Mythology…though one game did. It's called God of War. God of War is a game that is unarguably a good game. It's the capital of its genre, and it's capital awe-inspiring. The creator of the Twisted Metal franchise developed the game. What happened to cause the creators of a shoot-‘em-up car racing game, to a third-person platformer? I myself ask these questions quite frequently, but no denying it, the creators spent a little extra time in this, other than Twisted Metal.

You play as the antihero Kratos. An odd name indeed, though let me reassure you, Kratos might be on of the most evil antiheroes that I've seen in this gaming industry. Ok, anyways, Ares, the God of War, trained you. As you progress through the game, you seek revenge because…your family was sort of murdered. Anyways, the whole game is about seeking the God of War who is destroying Athens as you play, and Athena (Goddess of Athens), wants you to help save Athens. In the game, you'll meet many baddies and foes, such as minotaurs, Cerberuses…many more. Though, at the end of the game it takes a twist and it'll leave you stunned, believe me.

This game does feature nudity (seriously, you do not know how many times people have asked, ‘Does God of War have nudity?') Anyways, if you don't mind a little nudity here and there, then it shouldn't be a problem. Though, putting in nudity might've been a good step, but it has consequences. Such as, Greeks thought the body as a piece of art. Though, the flaw would be that many people may not buy it because of that, but still, they tried to capture the Greek religion, and they did it well.

What can I say? The graphics in this game are superb, and absolutely stunning.
The environments were so thought out I could've just looked at them for a while. While Kratos' design does seem a little common, the graphics cheer it up. The effects, like there was sand moving throughout the desert. A lot of time was put into it; the graphics need to be recognized. Awesome job.

The audio in this game isn't really that much. It would've been nice to see other music. You know, like when a battle heats up, the music gets louder to anticipate you. It would've been a great thing to add into the game, though, it really wasn't a problem. Though, the special effects were well put together. Like in the desert, you could hear the sand swooping around, and then you can hear the footsteps of Kratos, and any other person throughout the game, just really good in that department.

Let's face it. Every adventure game needs its puzzles! Despite looking on the back seeing that there is blood and gore, God of War features a selection of puzzles for the people who need some challenge other than button-mashing. The puzzles, such as drag the statue on the switch to open the door, or kick the box in a certain amount of time to the end to jump on it and reach a higher level type stuff. Puzzles sometimes can be leaving left blank in God of War. I know because it did it to me. I swear I was spending 45 minutes trying to fix a puzzle together. All in all, this is what God of War needed, it succeeded in this, and I hope to see more puzzles to work my brain!

Ok…ok. The gameplay. The gameplay in God of War was really, really laid out. You do smash buttons quite a lot but there is so many twists engaging in the fight that it really isn't much of a flaw. You press one button to swing your blades and you got yourself a nice combo. The thing that was the greatest part in the fights was that you can engage in a mini-game type…thingamajig. What happens is that you'll press triangle or something and then a button will appear in the middle of the screen. You press the sequence of buttons, and Kratos will do a stunt, which by the way is sort of cool to watch. The combat and puzzles…they just fit together perfectly.

There's no doubt about it. God of War features tons of gore and blood. Just enough to fill that daily gore, you know what I'm saying. Of course when you've completed the mini-game in the combat, you'll see blood, of course, but I felt it really wasn't a big deal. Also, a mini-game that can be started is when you have to tap a button many times, and then Kratos will do the sequence for you. Tapping the button can wear down your fingers; so it may get tedious after a while, and it might just get to the point where your finger is as red as a cherry.

Ok, there are some RPG elements in the game, but only for one part. Throughout the game you get different weapons and magic abilities. After you kill an enemy you can get green orbs, which restore missing health. Blue orbs, which restore missing magic. Finally, red orbs which can be used on your weapons. Your weapons can gain levels to learn new moves, or do more damage. Around Level 5 is the time where it stops, but then it was really worth it.

The problem with this game is that there are only 3 bosses! You heard me! 3 bosses! Knowing there's Greek Mythology I thought that this would focus on tough enemies, but nope. Seriously, it would've been nice to see some more of the bosses. There was some ‘sub-bosses', but there was like Medusa and so forth. Just about 2 more bosses would've passed ‘mediocre'. It was a real disappointment for me.

Oh yeah, I forgot. There's magic. Yes, magic abilities Kratos can use. You get powers every now and then, but one of them (named after Medusa…not quite sure of the name), allows you to freeze enemies! I know it has been used many times in games, but never has this been more enjoyable. Though this is one the problems, that magic ability does nothing when you upgrade it, from my perspective. That was a minor flaw right there, but something not to fret about.
Have you ever heard of Pandora's box? Well…in the game, you are trying to obtain it, but this is the sad part. This is the bulk of the game. You are in the temple for about 7 hours of the game, you go out and then the grand finale is there. It would've been nice to see more variety in the levels. Of course, you get to roam through Athens…though, c'mon! Variety is a must!

After you beat the game, you watch the credits and then truckload of special features are unlocked. There is a feature with deleted levels, I thought that I was going to play them; instead you had to watch a video. Yippee! That's so entertaining. But, I do understand. If the levels were there to play, it wouldn't necessarily be called “Deleted Levels”. There are just tons of things to keep you having God of War.

Ok, I'll spill. The game has a difficulty selection. There are all different styles. I, being myself, cannot start a game without playing easy mode first. So after beating the game, I unlocked a mode called, “God Mode”. Of course, I checked it out. A label was on it advising, “Advanced Players Only”. I considered myself one and started a game. Boy, I am not even a superb gamer. In god mode, you die in about 2 hits. I immediately shut it off and then never played god mode again!
The biggest flaw in God of War is its shortness. Despite its awesome looking cover, this game covers about 10 hours. I saw David Jaffe (the creator), saying that he wanted to add so much more, but they were limited to PS2's ability. I was disappointed, though, I kept playing it from time to time, and it never seemed like a short game, when in fact it was. This was the biggest flaw of the game.

The voiceovers got a good lineup. The girl form Murder, She Wrote plays as the narrator, and Kratos…don't really know who plays him, but his voice fit his antihero style. Kratos' voice was gruff, and sort of a mean tone. If anything, the voiceovers have some sketchy stuff here and there, but still something that wasn't really bad in.

All in all, God of War is a skilled game. It has awesome graphics, gameplay, and despite its flaws, God of War deserves to be in your PS2.

Positives

* Superb Graphics
* Combat system is neatly done
* Lots of Puzzles
* Pretty Good Voiceovers
* Many special features

Negatives

* The game is just too short
* (This really isn't a flaw, but a warning) Try not to try God Mode
* More variety could've been put in the game
* Upgrading a particular magic ability is useless (not really a flaw, but something to advise you on)
* Lacking bosses


Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 04/11/05, Updated 05/31/05


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