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God of War 2:
Challenge of the Titans: Titan Ranking
v1.5

Author: Andre de Leon
Email: andre18tx@hotmail.com
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Use Ctrl+F and the corresponding shortcut to quickly jump between topics.
Skip to [E000] if you want to get right into the "meat" of this guide.

Table of Contents
I.    Introduction.................................[A000]
II.   Why Bother...................................[B000]
III.  Mechanics....................................[C000]
IV.   Getting Ready................................[D000]
V.    Challenges...................................[E000]
        1. Blind Fury..............................[E001] 
        2. Death From Above........................[E002]  
        3. Gorgon Graveyard........................[E003] 
        4. Protect The Weak........................[E004]
        5. Reap The Rewards........................[E005]
        6. Survival Of The Fittest.................[E006]
        7. Perfection Is Divine....................[E007]
VI.   Legal........................................[F000]
VII.  Version History..............................[G000]
VIII. Credits......................................[H000]


Legend:
L - light attack (square button)
H - heavy attack (triangle button)
G - grab/throw  (circle button) 



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I. Introduction [A000]
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For the record, I finished the game within 4 days of purchase, at around
5 am of 3/17, which is, oddily enough, around the same time I finished the
first game. The game is long, but not THAT long--working full time kind of
gets in the way.

This time around you only get 7 challenges, as opposed to 10 in the first
game. These new challenges are harder (but still easier than Challenge 10
in the first game), so I'm hoping this guide will provide you the means
to not only pass them, but be very good at it. 

But one begs to ask...


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II. Why Bother [B000]
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You don't get much, really. Just the Arena of the Fates, which is basically
a practice mode wherein you can fight as many of ANY 3 creature types that's
available in the game. The mode itself is loaded with options, including the
ability to change the AI of your enemies, and to set your health and magic
to infinity. All the creatures will behave as if they're in story mode, and
you gain all the orb types while you fight them, including red orbs. 
Everything that you gain can be used during a bonus playthrough in story mode.

Crap-tastic, isn't it?

If you're a dork like me, and you want a preview of what your enemies are like
when you play through Titan mode, then NO, it's actually a very useful mode to
have if you ever want to finish Titan mode expediently.

If you're not a dork like me, then yeah. I wouldn't bother with doing well in
this mode, much less finishing it.

But as Mortortex, a recent contributor, points out, this is the ONLY WAY
to get 2 the other urns in the game! I almost overlooked too, so
huge thanks goes to him. One of the urns extends your combo time, whilst
the other allows you to change your Kronos' Rage to Poseidon's Rage. 

See? Now it's LESS of a complete waste of time. 

But if you want a thorough understanding of how the game works, then please,
keep reading.  


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III. Mechanics [C000]
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The grading system per challenge is simple enough, really. 

Don't get hit too much. 
Kill as much as possible.
Finish everything in as little time as possible.   

Depending on how well you do, you get a grade per challenge, with Titan being
the highest you can get. Once you finish ALL the challenges, your grades
for each challenge is averaged to get an overall grade for the entire mode.

Anything less than an overall grade of Titan won't be enough to get you the
Arena of Fates. But because your grades are averaged, you DON'T NEED to get
a Titan grade on all the challenges (one of which is particularly hard to get
a Titan grade on) to receive the reward. 6 out of 7 Titan grades is enough to
get you by, and that's what I'm going to help you achieve. 

Each challenge comes with a bonus objective that, if achieved, raises your 
grade by one FULL RANK, which makes things even easier for us. 

You also do each challenge with your heatlh and magic maxed out, and with
ALL of the weapons you had when you finished the game, including any red orbs
you had. You retain the upgrades for all your weapons and magic. 

When you pass a challenge, you're given the option to save your progress. Do
so. Because this game mode plays exactly like story mode, you gain red orbs 
normally for each kill; red orbs you can use to improve anything else you 
haven't in your arsenal. 

If you're going to do well in each challenge though, you will need to do a 
couple of things BEFORE you go through with them. 

Here's a short laundry list...


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IV. Getting Ready [D000]
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1. Sword of Olympus. MAX IT OUT. 

   Athenas' Blades won't cut it any more.

   Save up some red orbs from story mode. I had about 40000 when I finished 
   the game, and you really don't need THAT much to max out the sword. You
   won't get the sword till AFTER you finish the game though, so you'd have
   to do the upgrade whilst doing a challenge. 

   Why the sword? It's fast, it has excellent range, it does a butt-load of
   damage, you still have your dodge when you use it, and it's easy to cancel
   an L to a block/parry. The Barbarian Hammer does more damage than the 
   sword, but it's simply too sluggish, and you're open to a lot of attacks
   when you use it. 
   
2. Cronos' Rage. MAX IT OUT.

   It's the cheapest magic that you have in your arsenal. It hits a lot of
   enemies, plus you get a bonus explosion at the end of each casting. You are
   not too open during casting either.

Now that that's out of way, let's get on with the...



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V. Challenges [E000]
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1. Blind Fury [E001]

   Difficulty: Easy
               Easy (see Alternate Strategy)

   Don't bother with the bonus objective. Kill and rip out the eye of the
   Cyclops as fast as possible. I did this in 23 seconds and got a Titan
   rank.


   Alternate Strategy:

   Contributor: 
     Prayer350z

   He used Euryale's Head (L2 + G, hold G) to freeze and shatter everyone.
   He then waited for another Cyclops to re-spawn, and ripped out his eye.
   It took him 24 seconds to do so. 
   

2. Death From Above [E002]

   Difficulty: Hard (if you don't want the Titan rank)
               Very Hard (if you want the Titan rank)

   Don't bother with getting the Titan rank for this one. It's pretty damn
   hard to get it, considering that ONLY air kills count towards your
   main objective. 

   A kill counts as an "air" kill if the enemy dies from your attack AFTER A
   LAUNCHING ATTACK. Some air throws don't count. Enemies REALLY have to be 
   launched in the air for the kill to count as an "air" kill, which is
   easier said than done. You fight a host of monster types in this mode and
   a lot of them are NOT EASY to launch. Here's a list of launchable enemy
   types:

       Hades Legionnaire (Ha! These are very aggressive and burly)
       Gorgon (Ha! These dodge too much)
       Fates Sentry (The half-goat grey ones are VERY EASY to launch)

   There's always one Juggernaut in the field, and he's WAY too heavy to be
   launched. The Gorgon could potentially kill you in mid-air if she stares
   at you (you instantly shatter when you land AFTER you're petrified). If 
   you accidentally reverse her stare, you end up wasting time, having to 
   wait for other opponents to shake themselves out of petrification. 

   Given all of that, you're hands will be quite full, not to mention that 
   you NEED to survive to finish this challenge.

   The trick is to pick a good launcher. Use Icarus' Wings (L1 + x) to do a
   radial launcher (it will launch everything that's near and around you). 
   
   It's just too bad that you can't really turn in mid-air when you attack.
   So if you want to REALLY launch something, make sure you're FACING it
   to the point that your actual air attacks are CONNECTING. 

   The Gorgon and the Legionnaires can be killed through context prompts.
   Launch them ONLY WHEN you see the context prompts (when the circle
   button appears on top of their heads). Kill them with as many L attacks
   as possible once you launch them. DON'T INITIATE THE INSTANT-KILL 
   SEQUENCE.

   The Fates Sentries are too weak against the Sword of Olympus so you have
   to be "gentle" with these bastards. Attack them with L no more than once,
   THEN launch them. There's not enough of these to meet your quota of 10
   air kills, so you'd have to pick off some other monster type, such as the
   Gorgon and Legionnaire; preferrably the later than the former. Gorgons
   just move around and counter too much. 

   17 air kills wasn't enough to get me a Titan rank for this one, even
   though you only need 15 to get a bonus. I just took way too much damage.
   I only managed a God rank for this one. You guys can try, but I don't
   think there's a point. 

   Various contributors have also said that the Spear of Destiny is a good
   launcher. Using H and the launching finisher after that (another H after
   the first one) worked wonders for them, they said. 


3. Gorgon Graveyard [E003]

   Difficulty: Medium (the old way I did it)
               Easy (through everyone else's - see Alternate Strategy)

   The hardest part really is WAITING for the Gorgon to use its Stare. The
   timing to reverse the Stare is simple enough. Once you see the Gorgon's
   eyes glow green, start the block/parry. Explosion is instantanious. The
   Stare is more of a burst than the usual long-drawn ones, but it's also
   more potent. It only takes a second or two before you're petrified so
   just be careful. 

   I killed 37 with the stare to get the Titan ranking, but you only need
   a minimum of 35 to obtain the bonus. Shattering the stoned enemies
   isn't very hard either when you use the Sword of Olympus.


   Alternate Strategy:

   Contributors (from oldest to most recent email):
     curiousgeorge77
     Rhett C.
     Colin L.
     Joshua S.
     Madriker V.
     bitedcurbnow (original contributor on GameFAQs board, apparently)
     Jason C.
     a1000jae
     Nodipman 
     David W.
     Dansmith547
     EVERYTHING69 
     Wesley C.
     Dan M.
     Keenan B.

     When you attempt to grab the Gorgon, she ALWAYS reverses with a 
     Stare! This should make the challenge a lot easier. Thanks for all
     the submissions!
        

4. Protect The Weak [E004]

   Difficulty: Medium

   Keeping the translator alive is easy enough, seeing as you can slow down
   time by pressing L1 + R1. It's just that you will be facing A LOT of 
   different enemy types, including Satyrs and Cyclops who deal out a lot of
   damage and are generally burly themselves. 

   Just watch out for the protective circle. Remember that the translator 
   HAS TO BE WITHIN the protective circle at all times, or else his health
   will slowly drain away. Moreover, at 2 different points of time, the 
   protective circle WILL MOVE to another location (SE then SW). Move the
   translator accordingly. You'll know when it's time to move the 
   translator once you see a wave of enemies comprised by nothing more than
   Sirens (usually as a pair). 


5. Reap The Rewards [E005]

   Difficulty: Easy
               Very Easy (see Alternate Strategy)

   I got a Titan ranking in one try, so this one's not really very 
   difficult. Throw. Kill. Combo. As many as you can. That's it.


   Alternate Strategy:

   Contributors: 
     Colin L.
     John T.
     Josh S.
     Carlo R.

     They equipped the Blade of Olympus and used L1 + G to earn more red 
     orbs with minimum effort. 

 
6. Survival Of The Fittest [E006]

   Difficulty: Easy

   I also got a Titan ranking in one try for this one. Don't use the Rage of
   the Titans to get the bonus. Throw. Kill. Combo. Don't get hit too much
   because your health is slowly draining. Kill the Hades Minotaurs using
   the instant-kill sequence. They provide you with green orbs. 


7. Perfection Is Divine [E007] 

   ... and VERY DIFFICULT for that matter.
   ... and easier to achieve if you use the alternate strategy
   

   Even though getting a Titan rank for this IS EASIER than Challenge 2, it's
   still very difficult to finish. Not getting hit would be easier, if it
   weren't for those stupid Beast Lords. 

   Beast Lords have a running attack that starts with a GUARD BREAK, then
   ends with a spinning axe attack. Granted that the guard break DOES NOT
   COUNT as a hit, the spinning axe attack can ONLY BE DODGED once your 
   guard HAS BEEN BROKEN. Each attack can be parried but AT THE RISK of 
   getting hit afterwards. 

   The High Priests of the Fates tend to SUMMON cyclops once in a while,
   which just make things harder for you. 

   Couple this with the fact that YOU HAVE TO keep the Titan Minotaur ASLEEP,
   by making sure NOTHING makes contact with it INCLUDING enemies (if even
   one enemy BRUSHES AGAINST the Minotaur, IT WILL WAKE UP), then yeah, it's
   pretty damn hard.

   The key really is exploiting your invincibility during G or throws. Aside
   from the Cursed Remains and the Minotaur, every other enemy in the 
   can be instantly grabbed/thrown. 

   It helps that the High Priests aren't very aggressive. They tend to stand
   idle as long as you're not within their vicinity. You just need to attack
   him once in a while, just so you'd interrupt him when he starts READING
   his scroll to summon the Cyclops. They do have this annoying throw, which
   you can escape out of and which WON'T COUNT as a hit, but drains your
   magic, which somehow COUNTS AS USE OF MAGIC, which kills your bonus. 

   There's only 2 High Priests throughout the challenge, and only 1 can
   appear at a time. Just don't leave him alone for too long. 

   A common pattern of going about this challenge, runs along the lines of:
    
     -  kill all the Cursed Remains
     -  kill the first Beast Lord that appears in the NW
     -  watchout for other Beast Lords and the High Priest
     -  grab the closest enemy nearest you, either the Beast Lord or the
        High Priest
     -  kill as many Beast Lords as possible, while throwing the High 
        Priest once in a while. Rinse, repeat.
     -  once all other enemies are dead, go for the Minotaur.

   Beast Lords take 3 L attacks and one G to kill them. 

   High Priests take 1 initial G, 3-4 L attacks and one last G to kill them.

   Of course, you don't have to kill them like these. Adjust to the 
   situation. Grab the nearest opponent when you notice other ones are 
   surrounding or approaching you. 

   Beast Lords tend to be bastards sometimes and run in short bursts when they
   are near you, making it hard to see the guard break coming, so be very 
   careful.

   Try not to be greedy when you're left with the Minotaur. Keep your 
   distance, use short sequences of L attacks, and dodge the rock he throws.
   Just remember that his sides are his most vulnerable spot. When the
   Minotaur gets frustrated when your long combos connect, he spins around
   in place to try and hit you. The most dangerous attack is not so much the
   spin attack but its hand motions afterwards, when it "rests" its fists
   on the ground, starting with the left fist. It COUNTS as a hit if you 
   go near his fists during the said animation, so, again, be VERY CAREFUL. 
   Keep your distance, don't be too aggressive and BE PATIENT. 

   You will be rewarded for your efforts. 
   

   Alternate Strategy:

   Contributors: 
     cloud549
     Tim C.
     Nick D.
     batjewx@hotmail.com
     Dylan B. 
     Jeff P.
     Keenan B.
     P^2
     Carlo R.

     Each contributor has their own variation on the strategy, but it all
     boils down to you attacking the Minotaur while you leave one Cursed
     Remain "alive." The High Priests and the Beast Lords shouldn't spawn
     till AFTER you've killed the last Cursed Remain, which makes it somewhat
     easier to kill the Minotaur.   

     Start attacking from behind the Minotaur. You should get some good shots
     in BEFORE he starts doing his spin attack. Dodge right, and go back 
     behind him again once its attack is over. 

     Most of the contributors used magic; afew did not. All claim to have
     a Titan Rank, so do what suits you best. 


   
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VI. Legal [F000]
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    
This file may not be reproduced, quoted, or posted by any other website aside 
from www.gamefaqs.com, and those that specifically asked and received my 
permission. Proper notification via email and credit to me, Andre de Leon, is 
necessary to attain said permission. 

I, Andre de Leon, wrote this faq and, thusly, own the copyrights to it. 



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VII. Version History [G000]
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Version 1.0 - 3/19/07
     - Added Sections I to VIII

Version 1.5 - 3/23/07
     - Added the extras you get after beating the Challenge of the Titans
     - Added strategies for Challenges 1, 2, 3, 5 and 7
     - Added to Section II



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VIII. Credits [F000]
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Cory Barlog, David Jaffe and his staff
     - for YET AGAIN meeting all of our expectations
     - for YET AGAIN raising the bar

Mortortex
     - for reminding me of the extras you'll get once you beat all 7
       challenges

Prayer350z
     - for the alternative strategy for Challenge 1
     
curiousgeorge77
Rhett C.
Colin L.
Joshua S.
Madriker V.
bitedcurbnow
Jason C.
a1000jae
Nodipman
David W.
Dansmith547
EVERYTHING69,
Wesley C.
Dan M.
Keenan B.
     - for the alternative strategy for Challenge 3 

Colin L.
John T.
Josh S.
Carlo R.
     - for the alternative strategy for Challenge 5

cloud549
Tim C.
Nick D.
batjewx@hotmail.com
Dylan B. 
Jeff P.
Keenan B.
P^2
Carlo R.
     - for the alternative strategy for Challenge 7


To the readers


Nothing can be something...
       

If you wish to contribute, ask questions, etc, feel free to email me. You'll be
credited accordingly if you do contribute.