Oh God or War, what can I say that hasn’t already been said. This is probably one of the best games of its console generation. This is a bloody, mature beat-em up that is disguised as an adventure game. There are really clever puzzles mixed in, a great story, fluid and fun combat, and even upgradable attacks.
First let’s start with the story. Set in ancient Greece in a world full of Greek mythology, you play as Kratos, a great general that sold his soul to win a battle and as the pawn of the god Aries, Kratos inadvertently kills his wife and child. Because of this, Kratos is a pawn to Aries no more and the entire game is your quest to slay the giant god of war Aries. The story is told in excellently stylized cut scenes that give you little bits of information about what’s happening and how you came to get to where you are. The story alone is very solid and logical.
Now let’s talk about the gameplay, which is amazing, fun, fluid and diverse. Like I mentioned, this is a beat-em up, so you can actually spam one button… but because of the fantastic enemy diversity you need to change your tactics to defeat each enemy. To top that off, when some of the larger enemies are weak, you can execute specific death finishing moves to them that require you to push certain buttons quickly or swirl one of the control sticks. They are a true test of your skill. On top of your standard weapon comes four magic spells that you need to find throughout the game. A Poseidon’s rage that will damage everything around you, a Medusa’s gaze that will turn enemies to stone, a Zeus’s lightning volt that allows you to throw lightning at distant enemies and the last one I won’t spoil. Then on top of that you can execute a temporary powerup to help you mow down enemies. The left analog stick controls you and the right analog stick allows you to dodge or move quickly in a brief burst of speed with a roll. There are two attack buttons a jump button (that turns into a double jump), a block, a shoulder charge, a magic button and the D-pad selects the spell. These are just the combat options. Then there are swimming controls that you obtain a few hours into the game, and even fighting and swinging mechanics for when you’re hanging from ropes. This game has a lot of depth.
The enemies are diverse and you might kill a million foes on your way to meet Aries, but you will never be bored from it. Everything from standard soldiers to Minotaur, Cyclopes, archers, Gorgons (Medusas), hydras, skeletons and so on. Everything is different and looks awesome. There are different attack patterns and ways you need to deal with them. The bosses are gigantic, you really feel good when you’ve tackled one of them, simply because boss battles are epic and might take you ten minutes to take one down without dying. Ten minutes of action and not hiding, in fact this game has no emphasis on hiding or stealth. You are Kratos and you are up to the challenge of anything. That’s something the game really achieves, you feel powerful, without feeling overpowered.
Between the fighting, there are clever puzzles. Excellent puzzles that keep you playing even if some of them are daunting. The game always has something to break up the fighting that you will enjoy completing. The puzzles are sometimes relaxing, no pressure puzzles to timed, death puzzles. Not everything is wildly heart pumping, some things are sedate and the music will even change to reflect that.
Next comes the sound design. The sound is awesome and the music is incredible for keeping the pace of the game and getting your blood pumping. The music sounds empowering to you as a player. Any orchestra would love to play this music and it becomes engraved in your head as one of the best themes in history, not just gaming history.
Last are the graphics, which stand out as a selling point. Everything is beautiful from standard enemies to wide vistas. Plus, to top that off, there are contrasting visuals, such as you a man standing inside of this gigantic fortress that has no end… that is ontop of a giant’s back crawling in a desert. There is a certain awe that you will feel when you run through a city that in the horizon has a giant Aries fighting an entire army in the background. Your jaw will drop in amazement at some things you will see.
In conclusion, this is an awesome game that every action fan should play through to the end. There are also some awesome unlockables and reasons to play again and again. There are different things to find, other nooks to explore. God or War is an amazing game that is a true epic classic. Kudos to everyone who made it.