God of War Ghost of Sparta PSP Review - www.impulsegamer.com -

Gameplay 9.5
Graphics 9.5
Sound 9.5
Value 9.5
Distributor: Sony
Classification:
M15+
Review Date:
December 2010
Reviewer:
James Wright

9.5


God of War: Ghost of Sparta

The PSP is still a damn good console and it's a shame that both developers and consumers have not fully embraced this portable console technology. Even so, there are still some impressive games that occasionally pop up on this console and God of War: Ghost of Sparta is one of those games. Not only does it pay homage to the God of War series but it features some amazing gameplay and graphics for the PlayStation Portable. This is how games should be designed for the PSP.

Story wise, once again, gamers are thrown into the role of Kratos, an aggressive demi-god who is hell bent on violent revenge. Kratos may not be the nicest character in the gaming world but boy is he enjoyable to play. This game takes place well before the awesome finale of the series on the PlayStation 3 as Kratos is searching for his lost brother.

Separated as children, Kratos does not even know if his brother is still alive but by the gods, he will use all his power to discover the answers. In terms of continuity, the title takes place after God of War and before God of War 2. With all that said, the story of God of War: Ghost of Sparta is wonderfully written and truly pays justice to one of the best gaming series of all time.

Before I get to the gameplay, I must first address the graphics. I've never seen such a good looking game on the PSP and God of War: Ghost of Sparta is the penultimate game. From its ancient Greek, almost gothic visuals, the game is definitely larger than life of the PSP, even on its small screen. The characters are well animated and there are some decent special effects along the way. I would love to see this game get converted to the PlayStation Network because this game really needs to be experienced by more. Technically speaking, the developers have definitely pushed architecture of the PSP and it really shows.

In terms of gameplay, it would be best described as a controlled arcade game which means you are limited to what your character can do and what he can access. There lots of exploring and jumping in God of War: Ghost of Sparta but the main catalyst of the game is combat. Combat is enhanced by magical weapons that become unlocked as you progress through the game and just like the PS2 and PS3 games, you need to roll, jump and use your deadly weaponry to slay your enemies. Boss battles are just as over the top as the larger console games which include standard attacks and quick-time events to dispatch them.

The control system is well mapped on the PSP controller and there were no issues in navigating Kratos through this visually surreal world or attacking the enemies. The only issue is that at times, the camera zooms out to give you a better view of the action that sometimes makes it a little hard to judge your enemies.  To give you a break from all the bloody combat, there are a number of puzzles that will challenge you but thankfully these are relatively on the easy side to solve. And then you have the awesome soundtrack of Ghost of Sparta... one of the best on the PSP and perhaps the series.
 
Final Thoughts?

God of War: Ghost of Sparta is the best fun I've had on the PSP since Batman LEGO thanks to the great use of the PSP hardware. It's easily one of the nicest looking games on the PSP and even though the control system does falter at times, it's easy to move on because of how good everything merges together. Kratos is definitely back as are all the wondrous mythological creatures and settings of ancient Greece. Most gamers will complete this title is just over 10 hours but it does offer some replay value for areas or unlockables you have missed the first time. This is PSP gaming at its best!






 
 



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