A traditionally hack-and-slash, fast-paced, God-murdering collection of video games, the God of War series has a pretty large, pretty devoted, fan base. Having already hacked his way through Sparta (and most of the Greek Pantheon), fans were excited to see Kratos now in the realm of Midgard, and expectantly awaited to see their favourite spartan now take on new challenges in a world of mythology until now, untouched, by the game developers.
I myself knew little to nothing about the God of War series. Which is honestly odd for me considering my acute mythology obsession, but alas, such a game had never before shown up on my radar. But it was practically impossible not to notice this God of War – the amount of hype for it alone sparked my interest, and so I decided that as soon as I finished my exams, I’d buy it. (Plus, about four to five of my friends constantly shouted at me to buy it so, to be frank, if I hadn’t bought it then, I’m pretty sure I’d have been made to play it by force).
And so, within hours of my final exam finishing, I bought it, installed it, and sat down ready to play. And let me tell you, I was not disappointed. Although not used to the combat mechanics employed by God of War, I quickly adjusted (depending on your definition of ‘quickly’) and hastily set to work defeating enemies, traversing terrain, and solving puzzles, all in an attempt to get ‘Boy’ (also known as Atreus, not that this name is ever really used) to the peak of the highest mountain.
Well, I say I adjusted quickly… really I just spammed throwing my axe, summoning it back, and throwing it again a million and one times until the enemy was dead. And then repeat for the next enemy, and so on. Or at least, I did, up until my boyfriend threatened to take the controller away from me for ‘not killing things properly’.
This game is visually stunning, brilliantly paced, and contains one of the most interesting stories I’ve played in a long time. Differing to the previous games of the series, this is not a story of revenge, but instead, a heart-warming tale of a Father and son making their way together to the top of the mountain, and their experience of bonding along the way. Combined, of course, with the occasional appearance of annoying Gods, talking, severed heads, a giant serpent, some intriguing Dwarves, hilarious snippets of mythology, and your typical hack-and-slash of every enemy you lay your eyes on. So y’know, your usual father-son tale.
Plus, as a Norse mythology nerd, I couldn’t help but love this game. Sure, a couple of bits and pieces are a little irksome, but I suppose that’s where ‘creative licence’ comes in. Aside from these few (and I have to admit, very rare) occasions, the game fantastically incorporates the beautiful mythology of the Vikings, not only showcasing the typical tales of Thor, and Odin, but also allowing you to explore the lesser known realms of Alfheim, Muspelheim, and meet far more minor, fantastically intriguing, characters.
“I found some of the short conversations, especially those during the frequent boat rides, even more interesting than the plot itself”
Not only this, but the dialogue between our two main characters: Kratos and Atreus, is fantastic. The comments themselves outside of cut scenes may not be overly pertinent to the story (though if you get stuck, paying attention to ‘Boy’ is usually a good way to find out where you need to go), but they are brilliant at adding a beautiful amount of wit, and character development, to the game. Personally, I found some of the short conversations, especially those during the frequent boat rides, even more interesting than the plot itself, at times, and considering that the plot itself is amazing, that’s saying something.
“if you’re looking for a game with a brilliant story, beautiful graphics, and great gameplay, you definitely need to check this out.”
Ultimately, I loved playing this game, and can’t wait for the next one. So if you’re looking for a game with a brilliant story, beautiful graphics, and great gameplay, you definitely need to check this out. Not only is it a testament to the idea that linear story games can still be a great success, considering all the enemies in the world; it’s a brilliant stress-reliever! So, although the most stressful part of student life may now be long gone, should you be in need of a quick dose of destruction, be sure to check out this awesome game. With it being similarly full of brilliant side quests and miscellaneous content, including epic challenges, this game still has me hooked.
Featured image courtesy of steamXO via Flickr.
Article images courtesy of Nicolaj Nielsen and commorancy via Flickr.
Image use licence here.
Follow @ImpactMagazine on Twitter or like the Impact Entertainment Facebook page for more articles and information on how to get involved.