January 30, 2019 at 5:52 AM #570
God of War
Rating: 4.5 – Outstanding
God of War: The Best Action-packed Thrill Ride of this Console Generation
With its captivating narrative, which is complemented by stunning visual graphics, God of War is truly a technical masterpiece. It continues to captivate the imagination of its fans both young and old long after the initial release. Aside from its brilliantly crafted narrative and aesthetic beauty, the free roaming camera feature combined with some welcome tweaks to the game’s leveling system and combat mechanics add a new level of immersion to the gameplay experience by giving the player the freedom of choice to level up Kratos as they see fit. Additionally, God of War’s New Game Plus feature further enhances the experience by giving the player the opportunity to spend an additional playthrough of the campaign to acquire more advanced armor sets after completing the adventure. If you are one of those players who just wants a solid narrative driven action game this one should definitely be on your playlist. While its plot and action sequences will have you on the edge of your seat throughout the campaign, this game will give you an unforgettable experience and leave you feeling like the true God of War after conquering your enemies.
God of War’s narrative is nothing short of spectacular. Its eloquently crafted plot far exceeds the scope of a simple action adventure story and places it in the same company with games such as Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End, The Last of Us, and Horizon Zero Dawn. For the first time in the history of the God of War series, Kratos is a character who is more relatable and capable of expressing more emotions than just sadness and rage. Although he is still very much a cunning warrior, Kratos is no longer solely concerned with conquering his enemies and gaining omnipotent power. Instead, he is a broken warrior who wants to forget about his tragic past and start a new life. Breaking away from the traditional God of War revenge plot, this story takes the form of journey and discovery. Stylistically, this is a brilliant move as it allows Kratos to change as a character and to convey emotions that were absent or underdeveloped in the previous installments of the series. Rather than exacting revenge on an antagonistic God, this adventure tasks the emotionally battered Kratos to fulfill his wife’s final, insightful wish to train their son, Atreus, to become a warrior as they journey to the highest mountain peak in J?tenheim to spread her ashes. Admittedly, the most rewarding aspect of this narrative is experiencing how the relationship between Kratos and Atreus continues to develop throughout the adventure. Ultimately, the relationship aspect of the plot makes the conclusion of the adventure more impactful and satisfying
Although this adventure’s narrative is its strongest aspect, God of War’s gameplay also brings a lot to the table. It vividly weaves hard-hitting hack-and-slash action with elements of strategy and puzzle solving which keeps the game from becoming monotonous, repetitive, or predictable. A redefined free roaming camera system along with new combat and armor crafting features help reshape how God of War is played while keeping the appreciated core gameplay mechanics intact. The unrestricted camera also adds a new facet to the gameplay as it gives you the ability to focus on individual enemies and objects. With that being said however, this new feature also adds an additional challenge as it forces you to become more aware of your surroundings tasking you to utilize the camera to defeat enemies who hide in blind spots. Although controlling the camera can prove to be a difficult task initially, once you have mastered how to utilize the camera in battle, it becomes one of your greatest tools and can be used to defeat tougher enemies in the advanced stages of the game.
God of War’s character leveling system has also gotten a much-needed overhaul as well. While this leveling system still resembles the one used in the game’s prior installments, the new combat mechanics and armor crafting adds a welcomed layer of customization to the system. The old leveling system was more primitive and restricted how many magic attacks could be upgraded. The new system allows you to upgrade dozens of magic attacks, armor sets, and weapons while giving you the freedom to swap in and out these items based on the situation.
The combat system has also been overhauled as well. This is immediately evident once you realize that you can no longer simply combat-role to avoid incoming enemy attacks. Additionally, the new combat mechanics eliminates the possibility of mindlessly flailing away at enemies with the Blades of Chaos. To defeat a barrage of enemies, many situations will require you to utilize the Leviathan Axe or the Spartan Shield. While at times switching between these three weapons can be difficult, it feels exceptionally rewarding after slashing through an army of Hel-Reavers or chopping down a mighty troll.
Aside from the character leveling and combat mechanics, the armor crafting system adds yet another layer to God of War’s gameplay by providing the ability to craft armor sets that accommodate different play styles. Moreover, armor sets can be upgraded by collecting materials you find by either exploring the map, opening secret chests, or completing side quests during the campaign. Thankfully, the New Game Plus feature provides the opportunity for you to collect perfect armor sets which are even more potent than your most overpowered armor. So, if you are tired of being mercilessly massacred by the final Valkyrie, (who is relentlessly difficult forcing you to question your skills as a gamer), the New Game Plus feature will definitely give you an opportunity to bring her down and settle the score once and a for all Â¨C by God!
God of War is one of the prime examples illustrating why Sony continues to dominate the consul exclusive market. With its emotionally gripping narrative and exhilarating gameplay, there is no question why God of War continues to bring in fans and dominate sale charts. This game is by far one of the best gameplay experiences of this year, and some may adamantly argue that it is the single best gameplay experience of this console generation.
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