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God of War 3 Game Review

Kratos is back to kick some krass

By Hanso     March 23, 2010


God of War Demo
© Mania/Bob Trate

 


An “epic of epic epicness” may be the tagline for the Scott Pilgrim vs. the World movie poster but after playing through God of War 3 it is also the only thing that can describe Kratos’ latest and possibly last adventure.
 
Single Player
First things first, you do not have to have played the previous God of War entries to be able to enjoy or understand this game. Sony Santa Monica (the game developers) uses an opening sequence (think something along the lines of the opening sequence of Spider-Man 2 but with tons of more blood and the art of Sin City) to recap the events prior to God of War 3 and get you up to speed. It is however, preferable that you have played the games so you are emotionally involved and fully engaged in Kratos’s revenge quest. Knowledge of the past games will also allow you to pick up on a lot of the nods to the previous entries scattered throughout God of War 3.
 
The game opens up right where God of War 2 left off and how God of War 3 starts is truly epic; in terms of scale no game can touch it. The opening of the game is something that has to be seen to be believed. If you thought the Hydra battle in God of War and the Colossus of Rhodes battle in God of War 2 were awesome then prepare to be blown away for what’s in store God of War 3. The opening sequence is perfect because it sets the stage and prepares you for everything that the game will be. The grand scale of the events is showcased by the settings; you are climbing your way to Mt. Olympus on top of a titan as you battle a god. How is that for big? Describing how epic this game is would require the story to be spoiled and we won’t do that because it would ruin the many surprises and cool moments the game has to offer. Just know that the story delivers and offers a nice closure to the God of War trilogy. 
 
We won’t go into details of the story and instead focus on what is new in God of War 3. The first thing you’ll notice is obviously the improvement in graphics which is a given since the God of War series is making the jump from Playstation 2 to the Playstation 3. Kratos in HD looks truly badass and beautiful at the same time. For our money he is the best looking character in any of the Sony Playstation 3 flagship titles, surpassing Solid Snake and Nathan Drake. The level of detail on Kratos is impressive; everything from his facial expressions to how he looks all covered in ash and blood is great. It’s not only Kratos that look great, the characters and the environments in the game also look sick.
 
Aside from mind blowing graphics, God of War 3 features new weapons. Unlike the past God of War entries where you stuck always with Blades of Chaos due to the other weapons sucking, you’ll actually want to use the weapons in God of War 3. There are a total of three new main weapons; two of them (Claws of Hades and Nemesis Whip) are basically variations of the Blades of Chaos. The Claw of Hades allows you to summon enemy souls for attacking and the Nemesis Whip allows Kratos’s to unleash electricity attacks. The other weapon you may be familiar if you played through the demo, it’s the Nemean Cestus.    The Cestus is two huge gloves in the shape of a lion’s head that lets Kratos hand out devastating attacks.   You’ll also be able to carry a few secondary ones like the Bow of Apollo (basic bow & arrow), Winged Boots (run fast, reach new areas) and the Head of Helios. Yes, you rip out the head of the god Helios and then use it as a flashlight or use sun god’s light to attack. As in all God of War games, using the red orbs will upgrade the weapons to deal more damage and add moves to the attack combos.
 
If you remember, in God of War 2, Kratos acquired the Icarus Wings. Since God of War 3 takes place immediately after God of War 2, Kratos still has the wings and they play a big part on a new addition to the game. God of War 3 comes equipped with some flying sections. Kratos now has to travel great distances in a short amount of time (from Mt. Olympus to the Underworld for example) so he will use the wings in a couple of sections in the game to fly up or drop down to where ever he needs to get to. When the flying starts, the camera pulls back behind Kratos and then you’ll have to navigate your way through debris and treacherous paths till you reach your destination. These sequences while few, offer a nice change of pace to the constant hack and slash action constant throughout the game.
 
Also new this time around is the ability to ride certain beasts. Kratos faces a lot more enemies this time around to the point where he may be overwhelmed by them. At this point he can use a new move to his arsenal where he picks up an enemy and uses him as a battering ram to clear some space or if there is a beast near by he can hop on top of them. Once on top of the beast, you control it for a few seconds and use it to deal damage. For example, riding a Cyclops will allow you to destroy enemies with shields fairly easy.
Our favorite new addition to the game is the one added to the quick time events God of War is famous for. There are a few moments in God of War 3 where during the quick time events the camera will switch to a first person view, be it from Kratos’s view or his victim. Witnessing Kratos’s brutality through the eyes of his victim can only be described as pure and unadulterated awesomess!
All these additions to the game cause improvements that easily make God of War 3 the best of the series.
 
Multiplayer
A one man’s quest for revenge has no room for multiplayer so you won’t find any in God of War 3. However, Sony Santa Monica has promised downloadable content which will probably come in the form of extra rounds in the Challenge of Olympus mode.
 
Verdict
Even though God of War 3 has no multiplayer mode and instead focuses only on the single player campaign, the game is a definite must buy as it offers one of the most visceral gaming experiences to date. Much of the game play remains the same, so you’ll feel right at home if you’ve played the previous games. If you haven’t played them don’t worry, the in-game tutorials will get you familiar with the control schemes. The game kicks ass in every facet and offers a campaign (around nine to twelve hours depending on the difficulty) filled with breathtaking and awe inducing moments. It also looks great in high definition and more importantly is a great closing chapter to the God of War trilogy.
 
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COMMENTS AND RESPONSES

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FrostyMugSensation 3/23/2010 5:32:34 AM

Played it and beat in three days.  This game is really the main reason I got a PS3.  Your review says it all....the game is amazing.  I'm just sad that the adventures of Kratos has come to an end.  Hopefully the developers can somehow find a way to continue the story in the future, but if not then I can safely say that the God of War series are the best games I have ever played.  Really the only downside to the game is that the two slave girls don't join Kratos and Aphrodite.  But thats my dirty old man side speaking.  Flawless!!

everdreaded 3/23/2010 5:39:00 AM

 took my time beating the game and i'm still replayin it ! To me this is a game that raises the stakes for game developers. metal gear is a thing of the past (was getting too convoluted for me but still good) halo is played...And Frosty you know better, besides there are so many directions they could take this series especially with that hint Zeus gave about someone else being chosen other than Kratos.

hanso 3/23/2010 6:03:11 AM

God of War 3 is at another level, everyone with a Playstation 3 owes it to themselves to play this masterful game. The boss battles were insane, especially Krato’s fatalities.

Ok, now as far as this being Kratos’s last adventure I seriously doubt it. There is a website already hinting at a new game but speculation is it may be for the PSP like God of War: Chain of Olympus was. I hope it isn’t, Chain of Olympus was great but I want more Kratos for my PS3.

Everdreaded, I too think the next main villain in the God of War series will be Kratos’s brother. Zeus hints at it and during the game you can pick up a note lying on the floor in one of the Underworld sections. The message reads like if it came from Kratos’s brother and is jealous of Kratos’s success. Also, I don’t know if you remember but after you beat the first God of War, a video unlocks and it shows Kratos and his brother, and then his brother is sent down to the underworld where he looks all evil.

However, if this is indeed the last we’ve seen of Kratos then they did an excellent job. The God of War creator said that at the God of War trilogy would answer the question as to why there are no more Greek myths and Kratos managed to answer that by laying waste to every known Greek mythology character.
 

ddiaz28 3/23/2010 6:17:33 AM

I can't wait to play this.  I'm holding off though because I just bought the first two to play through.  I've always had playstations but for some reason missed playing them.  Looking forward to doing all three in a row. 

Darkknight2280 3/23/2010 6:28:21 AM

Just beat GOW 3 last night. Kratos's brother was Hercules i thought and if you all have played this you know we plowed his face in with our fists!! :) Nice touch on getting Kevin Sorbo to voice him too! yes GOW 3 is a gaming masterpeice! The best in game graphics i have seen in any game since Uncharted 2. Ther boss battles were amazing! Only 1 gripe with this game. The beginning sequence with Posiden was AMAZING and EPIC in scale and i feel as if things, as far as boss battles, went down hill after that. Things werent as epic and huge...but still amazing and sweet! Just think they shoudlnt have blown their "load" that early in the game. But i would condiser this a must have game, and a BIG canidate for gmae of the year!

HudsonTaco 3/23/2010 6:39:30 AM

Well bought my replacement PS3 a week ago beat GOW in 2 sittings. Fantastic game in every way. The opening is truley epic no game can come close to the scale presented here. I would have scored it slightly lower at an "A" though and here's why, with the obvious exception of SPOILERS!!!! Gaia and Chronos levels (which were unbeliveably amazing) the rest of the game felt very similar to playing GOW2. Sure the Graphics are amazing up close but from the traditional camera angles and with no titans on screen the it was hard to appreciate the effort they put into Kratos and the eviroments. The final Boss as well feels like a step back from the epicness of SPOILERS!!! the Chronos boss fight. But this is all minor stuff to me anyway and like Hanso said every PS3 owner should play this game.

 

hanso 3/23/2010 6:45:13 AM

Technically everyone that Zeus fathered would be Kratos’s brother, that’s why Hercules is his brother. That’s not the brother I’m referring too. There is a video clip in God of War, that shows Kratos had a brother. When they were both kids, Kratos got picked for that stuff the Spartans did with the kids, while his brother didn’t get picked and ended up in the underworld. He grew up down there and all he has hate towards Kratos. There were no hints to this character in the GoW or GoW 2 campaing, but he is hinted at in GoW 3.

MrJawbreakingEquilibrium 3/23/2010 12:02:21 PM

I heard in the next trilogy that Kratos takes on Jesus Christ and his Twelve Apostles. 

swisshammer 3/23/2010 12:38:45 PM

This game is amazing! I haven't beaten it yet, but I think I'm getting close. Did anyone have a helluva time defeating Hades?!?! I must have died about 8 times!

Killing Helios was amazing, but Poseiden's death was the best so far. The first person perspective was unbelievable!

I'm loving this game!!!!!

violator14 3/23/2010 1:52:18 PM

WOW.. u guys are really making me wanna get this game!! haha

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