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God of War III (God of War 3) PS3 Review - -

Gameplay 9.9
Graphics 9.9
Sound 9.9
Value 10
Distributor: Sony
Review Date:
March 2010
Andrew Bistak


God of War III
(God of War 3)

GOD OF WAAAAAAR 3!!! Okay, it's hard to do a Kratos interpretation with text and I'm sure quite a few gamers got excited as I did, when they heard that God of War III was finally being released and even better, it would be pure unadulterated PS3 fun. So what's it all about, besides being one of the best damn games of all-time? Well my dear gamers, it's the final chapter of Kratos, the powerful Spartan warrior, who fuelled by vengeance, has “joined” forces with the Titans in order to bring down the Gods of Olympus in this larger than life game.

My burning bow of fire!

Once again our anti-hero is adorned with his double-chained blades, new weapons and even magic to slaughter anyone and anything that gets in his way to achieve his bloody goals. At times, God of War III is reminiscent of Shadow of the Colossus with its amazing game cinematography but where it stands apart is through its over the top violence, quick time events and some visually impressive monster designs to create a truly visceral experience.

From the very first opening sequence of the game, the gamers is treated to a spectacular introduction as Kratos is being carried up Mount Olympus by a titan as a small army of titans follows him in order to destroy the gods. Gaia, the titan that Kratos is travelling on is gigantic and depth perception plays a huge role in making the game quite epic.

With a strong storyline, God of War III will definitely be enjoyed more if you played the previous games but thankfully the developers have not disadvantaged newcomers to the franchise who will just as easily be drawn into this game. Even though Kratos is a violent and mean spirited bastard, there is something likeable about his thirst of retribution that is only highlighted by the epic story that I’m sure some ancient Greek poets would be impressed at its scope. Just to spoil a small portion of the story, the battle between Kratos and Poseidon is like watching two gods duke it out, especially the bloody way that our anti-hero beats him to a pulp.

Don't F with me!

It's not all about killing (well, yes it is) but God of War III contains plenty of puzzles that need to be solved, even some with strange PlayStation symbols. However, the main soul of the game is the combat which is even more fluid than the previous games. As you use your double-chained blades to enforce damage, the scope of combination attacks is only limited by your imagination and the grapple system works extremely well.

As you beat the crap out of your enemies to Hades and back, the highlight of the original game was the finishing manoeuvres that are even more explicit and gory, only highlighted even more by the quick time events. The best part of these quick time events is that when the buttons appear on screen, they are highlighted quite well and appear on the screen like a virtual controller. Of course sometimes it's difficult to pull them off, especially on the harder levels but this new system makes it quite flawless in reality. One  issue with the controls is the jumping because at the start of the game, I fell quite a few bloody times. It seems that the ledge detection in God of War III is a little faulty and you need to compensate.

In terms of these violent and thoroughly enjoying finishing moves, Kratos knows no moral boundaries as he rips out the innards of his victims and even tears the wings from a Harpy. Sickening yes… enjoyable… yes! The new weapons are a godsend for this game and even the older weapons have been tweaked, so swapping between weapons is not a chore or if you prefer to use something from the environment, that’s also an option as well. The most difficult aspect of the game for combat are the boss battles which does require some strategy on the players behalf because you just can’t hack and slash your way to victory as each boss has a weakness that must be exploited.

Double-chained blades are so cool.

The game does contain a variety of difficulty modes and if you play one of the harder levels and find that your Spartan ass is being handed to you on too many occasions, they game will suggest in changing the difficulty. A nifty little feature, especially as you progress when the monsters you encounter and bosses become more and more difficult. Exploring the diverse and well designed environments is another treat in the game as are the puzzles which give the player a break, although I was a little confused at the ancient guitar hero puzzle! And if you’re wondering whether nudity and those “sexy times” are back, yes they are my violent friends, yes they are.

The only slight and I should repeat slight issue with God of War III is that once you have battled the various monsters and performed the devastating killing blows, you will be craving for more because by now you’ve already witnessed the grizzly nature of Kratos. That’s the only unfortunate thing of God of War III, the player is rewarded early on in the game but surprisingly enough, the developers do manage to continue throwing those curve balls at the player. But after you've killed a Minotaur or skeletons dozens of times, you want more.

Eye candy! The visuals in God of War III are stunning and the attention to detail is flawless. Not only have they captured the classic mythology of the ancient Greeks but they have successfully merged it with the gameplay that is almost perfect. Even though Kratos is human-sized, there are considerably larger things in his worlds from Minotaurs to lumbering Titans that makes you appreciate the game even more. The backgrounds contain all the clichés and images you would expect to see from ancient mythology but the stars of the games are the amazing characters, from Kratos to his supporting cast and of course the hundreds of enemies that he will face from grunts to gods.

Getting ready for kill number four million and sixty two.

The texture details add to the realism of the title as do they facial expressions of all characters in the game that are well animated and sometimes quite diverse such as the jerky movement of the undead to the charge of the Minotaurs. Unlike other games, you’re not just limited to the land or the planes of the gods as you fly and swim which ensures that nothing becomes stale for the player. Nonetheless, God of War III is a true technological achievement on the PS3. We also need to mention the great voice acting and the majestic soundtrack that makes this a perfect gaming experience. Kratos is oozing with clichés but it suits the story perfectly.

When it comes to the crunch, God of War III delivers on many levels, just as the previous two titles. However with the inclusion of next-generation graphics and gameplay, God of War III transcends its predecessors with a surreal and bloody gaming experience that makes you feel like you are part of some Greek epic. Although a little top heavy with combat, it’s well justified and goes hand-in-hand with the exploration and puzzles of the title. The characters are larger than life and the story is well written and from the very first moments of the game, you’ll be immersed into this mythical battle and I’ve not had this much since the original game and of course, Bayonetta which shares some parallels. Play it now!


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