The End of A Cycle for Kratos
God of War 3 is the conclusion of Kratos adventure, or at least his first one. It’s more of what fans of the series learned to love, with some cool new additions and still some small problems.
It starts with the same idea, you’re Kratos, the God of War, seeking revenge on who he believes did him wrong. You’ll start with all your powers from the previous game, but soon lose them, so you can become stronger all over again. Through the adventure you’ll be a part of some epic boss fights, with lots of quick time events and a unique sense of scale that defines the series. Absurdly huge giants that are known as Titans, beautifully designed gods that are ready to be killed on the most gruesome and awesome way possible, with some amazing looking cut scenes, lightning effects that look ahead of its time and a very solid soundtrack that always delivers. So, the basic God of War experience, what else do I need to say? Well…
I felt like your weapons arsenal is the coolest the series has ever had, in terms of design. You’ll unlock 4 weapons to choose from – as well as 4 items - and all of them can be very useful, with an interesting choice of design that makes sense to the gameplay and story, all being so cool to use in combat as well. I also never imagined I would like a bow in a God of War game so much, at the point of using it in pretty much every single fight, at least to start with, it’s just so useful (the bow is one of the 4 items, not the 4 main weapons).
The worst thing about the game is pretty much the same issue the series had in previous games, the double jump is just awful, it feels clunky, doesn’t let you wait a second longer to press the button again, that it doesn’t work anymore, I know that it’s by choice, but well, that’s a bad decision. That’s despite the fact that almost all platforming sections in this game feel bad, because that’s not the point of the game, I know. But they have so much of those moments, always with a bad camera angle that makes it a “please be over soon” type of section. And you can’t rotate the camera, because the right analog is what you use to roll, so you can dodge, and… well… the dodge is not good either, it’s that angular thing of you only being able to role in 4 directions, it feels clunky.
The upgrade system is the same, you collect orbs so you can use them to power up your weapons, anytime you like, just press start and do it, I like that. And to upgrade your health & mana, you’ll find big chests throughout the game that will give you either an eye (for health), a feather (for mana) or a horn (for item usage), when you get 3 of one of them, that stat increases, kind of like hearts in Zelda games. It’s a good system, but my problem with it during this game was that I felt they should’ve been more spaced out, I felt like it took me a bunch of time to get the first upgrade on my health, and later I got a bunch of chests pretty much on the same place, twice. I’ve beat the game without getting the last bit of max health, so I might have missed some in the beginning, but still, it felt slow to start. Another thing that felt uneven was the difficulty, a couple of times you arrive to a climactic battle, that’s supposed to be huge, and you get it done on the first trial, then soon after, you just come across some regular mobs and get killed twice in a row, because of an annoying setup. It’s nothing bad, just weird when you’re playing it.
The presentation in the game is still one of its strengths, all the gore and awesome looking finishing moves are still there, as well as the nudity, that for a lot of people it’s a thumbs up. But this game felt like it took the aesthetic to another level. The sense of suffering and horror that you feel from some characters, by the fact that either Kratos, Zeus or both, ruined their life, it’s something that was really well done. The puzzles are some of the best in the series, there’s a special one that is really clever, top of the crop, when you have to use a green stone to see the game from another angle, really well done. Some cool moments like when you’re flying or falling through a tunnel at an absurd speed, with a behind the back camera and just has to avoid hitting all kinds of things in the way, it’s really fun. There’s even a rhythm game type puzzle, for those who like Guitar Hero or games like that, adding some needed variety to the mix. The only thing I thought need a bit more was during the parts of the combat are a puzzle, those types of enemies that you don’t need to just hit them as much as you can, but you need to see something different, in a few of those moments I felt that it could use tips to show up on the screen, for the type of game this is. But nothing that big of a deal.
So, God of War 3 is an amazing conclusion to the first adventure of Kratos, it’s a no brainer if you like this types of game, because it’s one of the best melee action games you can find. You’ll do a bunch of pulling levers, pushing heavy things, opening doors, opening chests, a whole lot of hacking n slashing, with some head turning/eye closing gore in between. It’s pretty great overall.