God of War III
Review by Jinxpalm
"Olympus was the goal, but this game falls short of its lofty expectations"
God of War 3 is a bittersweet memory after you play it. It has moments that will certainly captivate you and it has moments when it will surely let you down. At times I thought I was playing one of the greatest games of all time yet at the end of the game I somehow felt disappointed and let down.
The game starts off right at the end spot of its predecessor where Kratos is climbing Mt. Olympus in search of vengeance against his father, Zeus. Along the journey of his cause Kratos will encounter many foes and challenges that stand in his way. In keeping this spoiler free I will not divulge much into the story and let you experience that yourselves.
Luckily for the player Kratos is armed with more moves, weapons, and abilities than ever before. And you will need every last one of them as this game truly does deliver some brilliant, epic boss fights. Most boss fights are unique, well thought out, and just a blast to play really.
But let's backtrack for just one second here. It's not all hack and slash. There are various puzzles to do along the way which range from clever to pretty bad design. The garden area in particular is full of great puzzles that will make you really get creative and put your thinking cap on. Another area is a place called the Labyrinth which I found to be pretty poor in design and it's puzzles consisted nothing more than trial and error as you watch yourself die repeatedly.
Speaking of dying, the combat in this game is about right where it should be. Seldom will be the time you die in combat from an unfair game play mechanic. If you die it can mostly lie on your shoulders for making a mistake.
However in getting from objective A to B you will die. Many times. Not due to player control, but more so due to a set camera angle. This game throws all kinds of swinging and flying jumps into the mix that are just not done well. I died way more times due to trying to traverse a cliff than actually falling in combat. Not the way an action game should play out.
All of this brings us to the end of our heroes journey, and very quickly I might add. As a fan of the series I played through both God of War 1 & 2 and I remember the experience lasting much longer than this game. I finished the game right at the 10 hour mark playing on the normal difficulty setting. This time included fully upgrading all my moves, abilities, and status bars mind you. And while I will say overall that it was a fantastic 10 hours it came to an end way too quickly. I without a doubt finished this play through faster than my first playing with either of the older console games.
On top of this, unlike the second game, there is no new game + option. You cannot play again and start off with all your abilities and items. Sure there are hero possessions that you collect and can use to wreak havoc on the next play through but there is a big catch: you can only use these items on a difficulty you have already cleared. I would have had the desire to play through the game on a higher difficulty had this not been the case. As it sits the only replay it offers are a few challenges and a combat arena. While these are fun for a short burst they won't keep you coming back to the game for long after completion.
And I will not tell you how the ending plays out but I will say that in my opinion it was one of the worst endings in video game history. It was very uncharacteristic of the series and just did not fit in with the overall theme of the games. This followed what was also the worst boss fight in the game and overall made the end of the game drop you from a awesome high note into a pit of disappointment.
Fans of the series, well you don't even need to read this. I am sure you are playing it right now. People on the fence, I'd say go for it as it does have some truly amazing moments. Everyone just brace yourself as the action ends too fast and the story sinks at the end. Just be prepared to say, "Is that it?" and possibly come away disappointed.
This game delivers some truly breathtaking visuals and at times has so much going on and yet has no frame rate stutters.
One truly amazing soundtrack and good voice acting.
Great cinematics and cut scenes but what's up with the cookie cutter storytelling throughout the game? Seemed like a way to cut out some extra development time.
Same formula as the first two games in the trilogy. At least this time you are offered more weapons and abilities at your disposal.
An awful ending to a great trilogy. The last battle was incredibly forgettable as well.
10 hour campaign that you may or may not want to revisit. No extras if you want to replay at a higher difficulty. Challenges and Arena are short lived.
A game most will enjoy. The length of game will disappoint many, as will the story and ending,
but everyone should at least play through it for it's truly epic moments.
Reviewer's Score: 8/10 | Originally Posted: 03/18/10
Game Release: God of War III (US, 03/16/10)
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