God of War III PlayStation 3
Published by: Sony Computer Entertainment Europe
Developed by: SCE Santa Monica
God of War III is without a doubt one of the most anticipated games on the PlayStation 3 and it’s a game that hits all the right notes for fans of the series. This finale to a series which takes an awful amount of liberties with Greek mythology, has epic battles with huge mythical beasts, over the top brutal combat and all of the other ingredients which you’d expect from a God of War game. Whilst this will deservedly impress many, there’s just a tinge of disappointment that it sticks so rigidly to the tried and tested formula without daring to add something new to freshen up the experience a little.
The game opens with Kratos, who is making an assault on Mount Olympus as he bids to take on Zeus, aboard a huge Titan named Gaia. In fact, Gaia is so big that traversing her is no easy effort particularly as she’s moving around quite a lot as she comes under attack. Before he gets to square off with Zeus however there are many powerful mythical enemies to overcome and some truly spectacular boss fights. The storyline doesn’t start off particularly promising, although the action is immediately intense, but as the epic tale nears its end, the quality of the storyline ramps up considerably and the series comes to its conclusion in dramatic fashion.
All of the key ingredients for a God of War game are here and the end result is as enjoyable as any previous game in the series. Brutal, blood-soaked combat, a few puzzles, which aren’t so prevalent in God of War III, and epic battles against some truly enormous enemies which feature the now customary, and much copied, quick time event moments which require you to press the appropriate buttons as icons appear on the screen. It’s all much more visually spectacular this time around which is no surprise given than it’s the first game in the series to be on the PlayStation 3. The game offers four difficulty modes although the highest difficulty mode, Chaos, won’t be available for your first play through the game.
Probably the only disappointment to be had with God of War III is that it follows the God of War blueprint a little too closely and it’s not daring enough with attempting new things. The combat is mostly the same aside from a couple of extra abilities such as being able to pick up an enemy and use them as a kind of shield/battering ram. Most probably won’t see this as a problem however and in some respects you can understand the reluctance to tinker with such a successful formula. It also has to be said that the successful formula has been polished almost to perfection in God of War III.
Graphically the game is about as good as it could be on the PlayStation 3 and it’s one of the more visually spectacular games of this console generation. As with all of the God of War titles, it’s the impressive scale of the main enemies that you’ll fight which will make most people’s jaw drop. Previous games in the series were also full of brutal violence but it’s all so much more profuse, and to some degree disturbing, this time around due to the far superior visuals and animations that are on offer. Fans of the series will love it but it easily deserves its 18 rating.
God of War III is subtitled and as such is a much better experience for deaf gamers than God of War II. The game’s cut scenes and all essential dialogue is subtitled. The subtitles don’t have any character names or portraits placed alongside them but it’s usually clear who is saying what. All of the tutorial messages are in text too allowing deaf gamers to fully get to grips with the game without having to resort to a game manual. Even the bonus movie which gives some insight on the making of God of War is subtitled which is great to see.
2010 is turning out to be quite a year for PlayStation 3 gamers. Heavy Rain started the year off in dramatic, if a slightly flawed, fashion and God of War III is without a doubt one of the best games on the system. In many ways it’s the antithesis of Heavy Rain in that it does little different from previous games in the series but everything it does do is highly polished and feels just right. All things considered, God of War III is a game that fans of the series will be highly impressed with.