God of War Ascension – Still the Hotness
2 iterations on the PS2, 2 on the PSP and now the 2nd installment on the PS3 and this game is still highly addictive. If you are a God of War (GoW) fan, then this is a no brainer.
After 3 years, we get to see how Kratos attempts to break his oath with Ares and how he fights with the Furies at the beginning of the game. We also as always get to see a tortured side of Kratos as he tries to come to grips with the loss of his family and perhaps his humanity. Story-wise, it’s what you can expect from a GoW game.
Control-wise it’s basically the same mechanics we have come to know and love from any GoW game as the more destruction you cause the higher combo points you can rack up. You still have to collect red orbs to power your weapons and still have basic combos to get you through the game. One addition is now the Rage Meter as once it’s filled up your combos becomes more deadly and potent so again, if you ever played this before, you will have no problem with this.
Speaking of collecting, you still have to fill up not just the red orbs but also gorgon eyes, and phoenix feathers as well. My one small complaint on my first playthru is so far, I have found more gorgon eyes and I am wondering if there may be a possible balance issue as other GoW titles it seems like I found both in nearly equal measures of exploring but it’s still not taking away from gameplay.
One other great addition that some may not even notice is that the game automatically saves and saves a LOT which is a bit better than trying to find that elusive save point as done in earlier iterations which for me makes it harder to stop playing because usually the visible save point sometimes was my cue to step back but last night I found myself playing a lot longer than intended because I ignored the autosaves.
A new addition is the world weapons: swords, spear clubs and more as well as the new chain grabbing move at Kratos’ command. Grab an enemy with your chains and beat the others around until you are ready to get rid of him.
So far one thing I see that is a waste in the game is that there are chests that are decayed and can’t be open and I don’t know if they can be restored yet but I really don’t see a need for them in the game.
Graphically speaking, it’s as always a gorgeous game with crazy environments from haunted prisons to snowy mountaintops and the enemies and bosses are very well defined. Keep in mind also that this is definitely not a game for children as early on there are some very graphic sexual scenes that kind of surprised even me but what good Greek action game like this would go without?
So with all this in mind again, no GoW fan should pass on this especially since it looks like this gaming gen is coming to a close. Also, I would say if you want some GoW on the go and you have a PS Vita, now may be a good time to check out both God of War entries that was originally released for the PSP. They have aged pretty well and still play well even when upscaled.
4 out of 5 stars.
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