So as a first time attempt, and after a long hiatus after my children got me put down my controller, I've since been able to pick it up and wow, I've missed alot. And now I feel its time, I put my thoughts to... Digital paper.. And write my first ever review and if it pans out then yeah I'll write more.
Set in a Nordic period of Aesir Gods, old traditions and being immersed in Norse mythology; God of war truly is, the game I’ve been waiting for.
Already being a very strong fan of the ‘God of war’ franchise before I had children, I now have a reason to stay true to the game. Throughout I felt encouraged, a sense of responsibility and an overwhelming sense of pride towards both Kratos and Areus on their quest.
From the moment this game began, to walking through the woods, getting a feel for sailing to motion control; which was all done in a beautiful setting, the fun factor for this game was apparent.
In typical GOW (God of War) fashion, it doesn’t take long before you’re being thrown into the dynamics of the game; whether that’s looking for clues to opens chests, collecting hidden objects & collectibles to aiding lingering spirits in the ‘Lake of Nine’.
But it doesn’t end there, as we soon discover that Atrues is incredibly vital to our ‘fun factor’. He isn’t just our Son, he’s our Lore marker, personal language sypher and treasure map reader. It’s truly a wonder to see, that no stone went un-turned in the development of this game. Aside from the story itself being incredibly prominent through-out, but it doesn’t prevent you from freely exploring hidden passages, newly discovered locations or helping ‘Brok and sindri’; and lest we forget with the insatiable stories of our bodiless friend ‘Mimir’.
The controls themselves are quite interesting to get used to, in previous game’s where your ‘blades of chaos’ felt free moving and rather fluid in a 360-degree kind of way, covering yourself from all angles is no longer the case. Instead we’ve been given a style of combat and control that is more centralized and requires tactics. However, all of which is integral in telling this vast story.
knowing when to block, Parry and strike a blow feels key I found especially in my first encounter with ‘Drougar’ and more so when the bosses evolve and become more enhanced through-out the game. And learning you can throw back a molten attack become especially fun and a useful skill for dispelling enemies in a seamless fashion.
I found all of this rather important especially when it came to the GAME+ version of the game. My enemies were more clued up, and felt that they were more expectant of my moves. So familiarizing yourself with the controls and in the first play through is vital. I did find that experimenting with different power runes and trying out new powerful attacks that suit your play style, will allow you to glide well through a lot of these future encounters. Eventually I had a great rapport with not just my Axe, but my blades.
GOW has created an intense, fluid and immersive beauty throughout. From the simplest facial expression, to a panoramic view of the mountains, no expense was spared in giving us a thoroughly graphic experience.
I found small subtle details at first glance, like your Armour shuffling in combat, the flow of the lake and eventually became grander as the dialogue progressed. I do believe if it wasn't for these factors I might not have been able to truly grasp the extent in which this story is being told, and lose myself in the struggles of this father and son duo. The raw emotion and clash of these two personalities is well personified by these graphics, and their story is brought to life in a way that we've not seen before in previous games. There's a softness to Kratos that we've never seen as he takes on this role of 'teacher and father'.
For myself as a father, I've been able to relate strongly, and found it easy to respond to the choices, a father would make to protect their child. This naturally environment, perfectly allows you to capture each precious moment on their journey.
with every punch, clash of shield and footstep, the game is incredibly responsive to sounds.
Whether it's the representation of distance or closeness between a characters stand-point, we're invited in to capture the moment and embrace the story.
With a compelling soundtrack by master composer 'Bear McCreary', GOW is brought to life. It's essence resonates with you as player, whether through dialogue, the sound of the sea or the epic cut scenes and BGM (background music) that we as gamers, live for.
With game's I've previously played in the past, I've rarely dedicated as much time to making sure it was thoroughly complete, that every possible cavern, side passage, chest had been explored. I can honestly say, after 3 weeks of intensive playing, exploring and bonding with these two 'men', i can not wait to the next installment of the series. If like me, playing it once wasn't enough, GAME+ allows you to try out the newly updated Armour sets, weapon handles and feel's like we're being allowed to experience it all over again, as if we've never played it before. This for me, is exactly what I love about gaming. Just when you think we've seen it all before, GOW threw us a curve ball and I can't wait to show my son and daughter, exactly what we're blessed with when great writing, great composing and graphics bring us games like this.
Until next time.